“. . . Descendants of Ole Abe! My voice has become hoarse . . .” (Samih al-Qasim)

triplets
Gazan names triplets ‘Quds’, ‘Assima’ and ‘Falisteen’ which means Jerusalem is the capital of Palestine. (Photo: MEMO, Dec. 22, 2017)

❶ Christian leaders say there can never be peace without Jerusalem
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) Palestinian in Gaza names triplets Jerusalem, Capital and Palestine

  • Background: “Mobile Cartographies and Mobilized Ideologies: The Visual Management of Jerusalem.”  Antipode.

❷ 2 Palestinians shot dead by Israeli forces during protests along Gaza border
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) Palestinian Dies From Wounds Suffered A Week Earlier In Gaza
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴃ) Israeli forces detain elderly man for owning two air, plastic guns
❸ Opinion/Analysis: Free at last:  a UN without US diplomatic blackmail
❹ POETRY by Samih al-Qasim
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ CHRISTIAN  LEADERS  SAY  THERE  CAN  NEVER  BE  PEACE  WITHOUT  JERUSALEM 
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA 
Dec. 23, 2017    Christian leaders stressed on Saturday the centrality of Jerusalem to all three monotheistic religions, denouncing the United States for declaring it capital of Israel.
[. . . .] “Those who want peace in Jerusalem should know that power will not bring peace,” said former Latin Patriarch Michel Sabah. “Peace starts with Jerusalem. Power cannot impose unjust peace.”
[. . . .] Attallah Hanna, a Greek Orthodox archbishop, said that the Christians reject the US declaration on Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. . . .   Hanna vowed to protect the Christian property in Palestine, “and this way we will defeat (US President Donald) Trump’s project that aims to abolish the Palestinian cause and not only the issue of Jerusalem.”
___Bishop Munib Younan of the Lutheran Church said the Christian leaders wrote Trump before he announced his decision on Jerusalem on December 6 urging him not to take any action that would prejudice the status of Jerusalem . . .
___He said that “there cannot be peace in the Middle East without peace in Jerusalem. It is time that our people gain their legitimate right in a Palestinian state with Jerusalem as its capital.”   MORE . . .  
.  .  .  .  .  ❶  ―  (ᴀ)  PALESTINIAN  IN  GAZA  NAMES  TRIPLETS  JERUSALEM,  CAPITAL  AND  PALESTINE 
The Middle East Monitor – MEMO
Dec. 22, 2017 ― A Palestinian from the besieged Gaza Strip’s southern village of Khan Yunis has named his three newborn triplets “Quds”, “Asima” and “Filisteen” – meaning “Jerusalem”, “Capital” and “Palestine” in Arabic – in protest against the US decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
___Nidal Al-Siqli, 30, told the Anadolu Agency that he chose the names “to emphasise Jerusalem’s Palestinian, Arab and Muslim character”.   MORE . . . 

Hercbergs, Dana and Chaim Noy.
“MOBILE  CARTOGRAPHIES  AND  MOBILIZED  IDEOLOGIES  THE  VISUAL  MANAGEMENT  OF  JERUSALEM.”
ANTIPODE. Vol. 47 no. 4, Sep2015, pp. 942-962.
[. . . .] As the focus of religious and political yearnings throughout the ages, Jerusalem has been an object of changing depictions and gazes. The visual representation of the Old City —where the holy places of the Jewish prayer site of the Western Wall (“Wailing Wall”) and the Muslim Noble Sanctuary (Haram ash-Sharif, including al-Aqsa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock) are adjacently located—is central to today’s political struggles between Israel and the Palestinians.
___In this article we are interested in illustrating a particular turning point that . . . concerns a shift in the spatial and visual regimes of, and perspectives in, Jerusalem; namely from portraying the city for decades via a number of sites, most prominently the dual Western Wall/Dome of the Rock image—to promoting an exclusively Jewish-Israeli city . . .
[. . . .] Recent neoliberal policies augment and dovetail practices of urban ethnocracy in Jerusalem, amplifying social and economic divisions through further processes of spatial separation that are occurring in West Bank settlements and in other Israeli towns . . .  affluent gated urban communities have been cropping in Jerusalem since the 1990s . . .   These developments present a departure from the government-subsidized settlements built since 1967 on confiscated Palestinian land in and around Jerusalem, and a move towards a government–private sector partnership associated with neoliberal regimes and exclusionary forms of development . . . directed respectively at wealthy, diaspora Jewish visitors and/or buyers of properties in Jerusalem. . .
[. . . .]  What we have in this case is a twofold movement consisting of the denial of the Palestinian presence and history of Jerusalem, coupled with appropriation of its architectural, artistic and cultural motifs . . .  A surprising contradiction appears in relation to the traditional Jewish longing for Jerusalem: the contemporary Jewish viewer is still viewing the Old City from the pre-1967 position. This distance strikes us as a final warning against short-sighted attempts to actualize divine plan, the utopia-in-the now of ethnocratic urban planning.   FULL ARTICLE . . . 

❷  2  PALESTINIANS  SHOT  DEAD  BY  ISRAELI  FORCES  DURING  PROTESTS  ALONG  GAZA  BORDER
Ma’an News Agency 
Dec. 22, 2017 ― Israeli forces have shot and killed two Palestinian protesters in the Gaza Strip during clashes along the border fence with Israel, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Health.
___The first Palestinian was identified as 24-year-old Zakariya al-Kafarne, who was killed after being shot with live ammunition by Israeli forces during clashes in eastern Jabaliya in the northern Gaza Strip.
[. . . .] Protesters had marched following Friday prayers and protested near the border fence in response to calls from Palestinian factions for a third “Friday of Rage” in protest of US President Donald Trump’s announcement earlier this month recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.   MORE . . . 
.  .  .  .  .  ❷  ―  (ᴀ)  PALESTINIAN  DIES  FROM  WOUNDS  SUFFERED  A  WEEK  EARLIER  IN  GAZA 
International Middle East Media Center – IMEMC    
Dec. 23, 2017 ― The Palestinian Health Ministry has reported that a Palestinian man died, Saturday, from wounds he suffered a week earlier, east of Jabalia, in the northern part of the Gaza Strip.
___The Ministry said the young man, Sharif al-‘Abed Shalashel, 28, suffered a serious injury after the soldiers shot him with live fire, and remained in a critical condition until he succumbed to his wounds.
___He was injured on the same day when the soldiers killed four Palestinians, and wounded at least 367 others, in the Gaza Strip, and the West Bank.   MORE . . . 
.  .  .  .  .  ❷  ―  (ᴃ)  ISRAELI  FORCES  DETAIN  ELDERLY  MAN  FOR  OWNING  TWO  AIR,  PLASTIC  GUNS 
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA   
Dec. 23, 2017 ― December 22, 2017 (WAFA) – Israeli forces Friday detained a 67-year-old Palestinian man from the village of Ya’bad, in Jenin district, for owning an air gun and another gun made of plastic belonging to his grandchild.
___The Detainees Affairs Commission said Mahmoud Hamdan, 67, was detained by Israeli army after a military raid into his home.
___Israeli forces wreaked havoc into Hamdan’s home, destroying its contents and furniture, before detaining him and his son Hadi, 30.     MORE . . . 
❸ Opinion/Analysis: FREE  AT  LAST:  A  UN  WITHOUT  US  DIPLOMATIC  BLACKMAIL 
The Middle East Monitor – MEMO   
Dr Daud Abdullah     ..
Dec. 22, 2017 ― Not for the first time, the free world has stood up for truth and justice in Palestine. The General Assembly’s vote against President Trump’s decision on Jerusalem was a victory for the rule of law over the law of the jungle. It now leaves both the US and Israel isolated, disgraced and humiliated.
___Washington’s threat to cut aid to countries that voted not to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital was an insult to the UN and a vicious assault on the sovereign rights of its members. In their customary delusional manner, Israelis believed the US threat was enough to force compliance. They were mistaken; people around the world are simply tired of their arrogance and unethical conduct.
___As it stands, Trump’s threat is consistent with a long-standing policy of US blackmail and intimidation exerted within the UN to further Israel’s illegal claims. It was no different from the threats issued to impoverished nations to extract the controversial UN Partition Resolution 181 in 1947.
[. . . .] Where does this crushing defeat leave Israel and its mercurial Prime Minister, Benyamin Netanyahu? For sure, Israel will become more isolated among the community of nations. Instead of countries moving their embassies to Jerusalem many will now consider severing or curtailing diplomatic contact with the Zionist state. South Africa’s ruling African National Congress (ANC) has taken the lead by adopting a resolution at its national conference to downgrade the South African embassy in Israel to a liaison office.   MORE . . .  

“THE  UNKNOWN  CONTINENT,”  BY  SAMIH  AL-QASIM
How do we reach you
Slums of Chicago?
How is the spark to reach you?
How is the fire to be born?
Skyscrapers!
Stacked huts!
Stretch your arms out of the darkness―
For the big banner
Spreads its warmth, its light
Forever
Into the depths of night
And the big banner is
Forever
A sail for the drowning.

How are the storms to reach you
Jazzband Club in New York?
The black man is hungry and fearful
The wolves of the KKK roam the forest
―the current overpowering
And the conscience of the statue shaken
And the heart of night.
The wind is frozen,
And the waves of the sea unmoving?
How is the message to reach you
Deaf Washington,
With the humming of the machine?
In Vietnam you slaughter
And you export
Cokes and medicine to the sad moon!
And you sweep over the blood of victims.
How is the message to reach you?

Descendants of Ole Abe!
My voice has become hoarse
And the wind
Has become tired of my shouts!
Descendants of Old Abe!
Shake the marble of history,
Rise to the sky,
Rise above the band of stupid maggis
And halt ―for
The earth grumbles
Rivers of blood.

From: Aruri, Naseer and Edmund Ghareeb, eds. ENEMY  OF  THE  SUN:  POETRY  OF  THE  PALESTINIAN  RESISTANCE. Washington, DC: Drum and Spear Press, 1970.
Available from Amazon.
About Samih Al-Qasim

“. . . . The Land of Israel will be returned to the people of Israel. In its entirety. Forever.” (Menachem Begin)

❶ PA welcomes UN resolution rejecting US recognition of Jerusalem as Israeli capital
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) PLO official: UN vote demonstrates isolation of US

  • Background: “‘A Simple Historical Truth’: Judea, Samaria and the Gaza Strip in Menachem Begin’s Ideology.” Israel Affairs

❷ President on Christmas: US recognition of Jerusalem added insult to millions of people
❸ POETRY by Samih Al-Qasim
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ PA  WELCOMES  UN  RESOLUTION  REJECTING  US  RECOGNITION  OF  JERUSALEM  AS  ISRAELI  CAPITAL 
Ma’an News Agency 
Dec. 22, 2017 ― The United Nations (UN) General Assembly adopted a resolution on Thursday rejecting US President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and his plans to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
___A total of 128 countries voted in favor of the resolution, with nine countries — including the US and Israel — voting against, and 35 countries voting to abstain, including Canada, Australia and Mexico.
___The vote came after a series of threats by Trump and Nikki Haley, the US ambassador to the UN, who said that Washington would remember which countries “disrespected” America by voting against it.
___Leading up to the vote, President Trump had promised to “take names” and possibly cut donor funding to those countries who voted against it.   MORE . . .  
.  .  .  .  . ❶ ―  (ᴀ)  PLO  OFFICIAL:  UN  VOTE  DEMONSTRATES  ISOLATION  OF  US
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
Dec. 22, 2017 ― The UN vote in favor of a draft resolution rejecting US recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital demonstrates the isolation of the US, said Thursday the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO).
___Member of the PLO Executive Committee Hanan Ashrawi stated: “We are extremely encouraged and empowered by the overwhelming vote in favor of a UNGA resolution rejecting U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.”
[. . . .] “Despite American efforts to safeguard Israeli violations and war crimes, the majority maintained their principled position while a minimal number succumbed by abstaining or voting against the resolution,” she remarked.
___“This further demonstrates the isolation of the U.S. in its blind support of Israeli lawlessness and impunity. It is therefore called on to rescind its irresponsible and dangerous decision and refrain from joining Israel in its criminal behavior,” she concluded.   MORE . . . 

Naor, Arye.
“‘A  SIMPLE  HISTORICAL  TRUTH’:  JUDEA,  SAMARIA  AND  THE  GAZA  STRIP  IN  MENACHEM  BEGIN’S  IDEOLOGY.” 
ISRAEL  AFFAIRS, vol. 21, no. 3, July 2015, pp. 462-481.
The orientation of Menachem Begin with regard to the political future of areas in the western part of the Land of Israel that were not in the possession of Israel before the Six Day War (1967) . . .   point to one political conclusion, namely, that the State of Israel should not permit foreign sovereignty over areas of the historical homeland of the Jewish people.
[. . . .] On 8 June 1967, the day after the conquest of the Old City of Jerusalem . . .    he made the following pronouncement:
“On this day, we stand before the Western Wall, remnant of our resplendent Temple in a redeemed Jerusalem, in a city which is compact together [Psalms 122, 3], and we bear a prayer emitted from our hearts that the holy temple will be built quickly in our days. And we shall go to Hebron, which is Kiryat Arba, and we shall prostrate ourselves before the graves of the Patriarchs, and we shall go by the way of Efrata, coming to Bethlehem in Judea, and pray at the tomb of the matriarch Rachel, and we shall recall the words of the prophet:
‘A voice is heard in Ramah, Lamentation, and bitter weeping, Rachel weeping for her children; She refuseth  to be comforted for her children, Because they are not. Thus saith the Lord: Refrain thy voice from weeping, And thine eyes from tears; For thy work shall be rewarded, saith the Lord; And they shall come back from the land of the enemy. And there is hope for thy  future, saith the Lord; And thy children shall return to their own border’ (Jeremiah 31, 15–17).”

There is no doubt that he regarded the territorial gains of the IDF as justified in international law, as well as historically justified through its biblical foundations. Thus, the vision of the prophet Jeremiah, which he selected for his prayer – ‘And thy children shall return to their own border’ – was on the verge of being realized and consolidated into a permanent reality.
[. . . .] If the partitions of the country were illegal, the implication is that the reunification is not an act of illegal annexation; rather, it is the realization of the right of the Jewish people over an inheritance from its forefathers. Time and again Begin referred back to Simon the Hasmonean’s reply to the messenger of King Antiochos VII from Side, who demanded that Simon withdraw from several places that he had conquered in the Judean periphery:   “We have neither taken other men’s land, nor have we possession of that which appertaineth to others, but of the inheritance of our fathers; howbeit, it was had in possession of our enemies wrongfully for a certain time. But we, having the opportunity, hold fast the inheritance of our fathers” [I  Maccabees, 15: 33–34].   SOURCE . . . 

❷  PRESIDENT  ON  CHRISTMAS:  US  RECOGNITION  OF  JERUSALEM  ADDED  INSULT  TO  MILLIONS  OF  PEOPLE 
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
Dec. 22, 2017 ― President Mahmoud Abbas Friday stated on a Christmas message that the US recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital has added “insult to millions of people worldwide and also to the city of Bethlehem”.
___Abbas added that the US President Donald Trump’s decision on Jerusalem “has encouraged the illegal disconnection between the holy cities of Bethlehem and Jerusalem, both separated for the first time in over 2000 years of Christianity.”     Following are excerpts from the text of the Christmas message: 
“This time every year, the souls of billions of people turn to Bethlehem to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, the messenger of love, peace and justice. Over 2000 years ago, the message of Jesus was delivered from a humble manger in Bethlehem. We are proud that this precious tradition is an integral part of Palestine and that Palestinians all over the world feel pride and inspiration for coming from a land of divine messages, prophets and saints.
___[. . . .] Bethlehem is currently surrounded by 18 illegal colonial-settlements that are under ongoing expansion on Palestinian land. The Annexation Wall, a wall of shame and apartheid, has been built from the heart of the city and extends towards the Cremisan Valley, affecting the livelihoods of hundreds of Palestinian families, mainly Christians. Bethlehem, the birthplace of hope, continues to be affected by the Israeli plans to create the “Greater Jerusalem” on the sufferings of Palestinians.
___Regretfully, the U.S. has decided, against its obligations under International Law, to reward such policies by recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. This has been an insult to millions of people worldwide, and also to the city of Bethlehem. Washington’s decision has encouraged the illegal disconnection between the holy cities of Bethlehem and Jerusalem, both separated for the first time in 2000 years of Christianity.”  COMPLETE TEXT . . .    ..

“A  HOMELAND,”  BY  SAMIH  AL-QASIM
So what,
When in my homeland
The sparrow dies of starvation,
In exile, without a shroud,
While the earthworm is satiated, devouring God’s food!

So what,
When the yellow fields
Yield no more to their tillers
Than memories of weariness,
While their rich harvest pours
Into the granaries of the usurper!

So what,
If the cement has diverted
The ancient springs
Causing them to forget their natural course,
When their owner calls,
They cry in his face: “Who are you?”

So what,
When the almond and the olive have turned to timber
Adorning tavern doorways,
And monuments
Whose nude loveliness beautifies halls and bars,
And is carried by tourists
To the farthest corners of the earth,
While nothing remains before my eyes
But dry leaves and tinder!

So what,
When my people’s tragedy
Has turned to farce in others’ eyes,
And my face is a poor bargain
That even the slave-trader gleefully disdains!

So what,
When in barren space the satellites spin,
And in the streets walks a beggar, holding a hat,
And the song of autumn is heard!
Blow, East winds!
Our roots are still alive.

Samih Al-Qasim
From THE  PALESTINIAN  WEDDING:  A  BILINGUAL  ANTHOLOGY  OF  CONTEMPORARY  PALESTINIAN  RESISTANCE  POETRY. Ed. and Trans. A. M. Elmessiri. Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner Publishers, 2011. Reprint from Three Continents Press, Inc., 1982. Available from Palestine Online Store.

 

“. . . Why the time with amputated legs . . .” (Fadwa Tuqan)

457175C - Copy
Ibrahim Abu Thurayya, 29, Palestinian activist, disabled by Israelis, 2008; murdered by Israelis, 2017. Photo Ma’an News Agency.

❶ Thousands march in funeral of disabled Palestinian killed by Israeli forces in Gaza
. . . . . ― (ᴀ) 29-year-old Palestinian shot dead by Israeli forces laid to rest in Anata

  • Background: “Intimidation, Reassurance, and Invisibility: Israeli Security Agents in the Old City of Jerusalem.” Focaal—Journal of Global and Historical Anthropology.

❷ Civilians arrested, cash stolen by Israeli army in West Bank sweep
. . . . . ― (ᴀ) Blindfolded Palestinian boy surrounded by Israeli soldiers may spend 20 years in prison
. . . . . ― (ᴃ) Israel to demolish Abu al-Nawwar hamlet’s only school
❸ Erdogan says Turkey will open embassy in East Jerusalem
❹ POETRY by Fadwa Tuqan
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ THOUSANDS  MARCH  IN  FUNERAL  OF  DISABLED  PALESTINIAN  KILLED  BY  ISRAELI  FORCES  IN  GAZA
Ma’an News Agency 
Dec. 16, 2017 ― Thousands of Palestinians in the besieged Gaza Strip marched on Saturday in the funeral of slain Palestinian Ibrahim Abu Thurayya, 29, who was shot in the head and killed by Israeli forces on Friday during clashes along the border with Israel.
___Abu Thurayya was a well-known Palestinian activists, famously known for consistently protesting the Israeli occupation, despite losing both his leds in an Israeli airstrike in 2008. After he was disabled by Israeli in 2008, Abu Thurayya worked washing cars in Gaza to support hi 11-member family.    MORE . . . 
.  .  .  .  .  ―  (ᴀ)  29-YEAR-OLD  PALESTINIAN  SHOT  DEAD  BY  ISRAELI  FORCES  LAID  TO  REST  IN  ANATA 
Ma’an News Agency   
Dec. 16, 2017 ― Hundreds of Palestinians marched on Saturday in the funeral of 29-year-old Bassel Mustafa Ibrahim, who was shot and killed by Israeli forces on Friday during clashes in his hometown of Anata, a village in the central occupied West Bank district of Jerusalem.
___Ibrahim was shot in the chest during clashes that had erupted following protests against US President Donald Trump’s decision last week to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.    MORE . . . 

Grassiani, Erella and Lior Volinz.
“INTIMIDATION,  REASSURANCE,  AND  INVISIBILITY:  ISRAELI  SECURITY  AGENTS  IN  THE  OLD  CITY  OF  JERUSALEM.” 
Focaal—Journal of Global and Historical Anthropology, vol. 2016, no. 75, Summer2016, pp. 14-30.
[. . . .] Analyzing Jerusalem as a colonial city (and Israel as a settler colonial state for that matter) and thus acknowledging the asymmetrical power relations between Israeli Jews and Palestinians and the context of the oppression, exploitation, and dispossession of the latter by the Israeli state has two distinct goals. First, it embeds policing strategies within a power structure that is not found in a noncolonial setting. Policing and the provisions of (security) services to citizens and noncitizens beget inherently different connotations within a colonial or settler colonial context. . . .  Second, by positioning the policing practices within the wider settler colonial enterprise of the Israeli state, we can understand these practices within their underlying and often hidden political context.
[. . . .] Within policing literature [this is called] the strategy deterrence policing, where the police tries to deter criminals from carrying out illegal activities . . .  something else is happening here: the police is not trying to deter criminals but local civilians who can be guilty only of living within the Old City. The strategy thus points much more to a performance of intimidation . . .  a national strategy whose objective is to make daily life as difficult as possible in the hope people will leave the Old City to the Jewish minority. Such Judaization in Israel, and Jerusalem specifically, is part and parcel of the settler-colonial character of the Israeli state.
[. . . .] . . .  in the Old City of Jerusalem these policing strategies look like and shape the urban landscape. By using such strategies within the space of the Old City, these security agents (re)establish their power over the Palestinian population and legitimize their presence. Their (in)visibility confirms the occupation as a given; Palestinians are controlled, the settlers are kept in place and reassured, the tourist can continue to enjoy the space without worry.    SOURCE . . . 

❷ CIVILIANS  ARRESTED,  CASH  STOLEN  BY  ISRAELI  ARMY  IN  WEST  BANK  SWEEP 
The Palestinian Information Center 
Dec. 17, 2017 ― A number of Palestinians were kidnapped by the Israeli occupation forces (IOF) while others have had their homes ransacked in abduction sweeps rocking the West Bank at daybreak Sunday.
___The occupation army claimed responsibility for the abduction of five Palestinians at predawn time on allegations of involvement in anti-occupation protests.
___The Israeli forces also stole 1,800 Jordanian Dinars from the home of the Palestinian prisoner Mohamed Zakarna in Jenin’s southern town of Qabatiya on claims that they were funneled to anti-occupation parties.   MORE . . . 
.  .  .  .  .  ―  (ᴀ)  BLINDFOLDED  PALESTINIAN  BOY  SURROUNDED  BY  ISRAELI  SOLDIERS  MAY  SPEND  20  YEARS  IN  PRISON   
Days of Palestine
Dec. 17, 2017 ― The Palestinian boy at centre of powerful photograph in which he has been blindfolded and surrounded by 22 Israeli soldiers marching him to prison is to face charges over throwing stones.
___Sixteen-year-old Fawzi al-Junaidi was photographed on 7 December during protests in the occupied West Bank city of Al-Khalil over US President Donald Trump’s decision to recognise the Palestinian city of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
___Wearing ripped jeans, the boy is shown being propelled forward by soldiers in full protective gear who have hold of both of his arms. Israeli stipulates that a Palestinian boy charged with throwing stones faces 20-year-prison-term.    MORE . . . 
.  .  .  .  .  ―  (ᴃ)  ISRAEL  TO  DEMOLISH  ABU  AL-NAWWAR  HAMLET’S  ONLY  SCHOOL 
The Palestinian Information Center 
Dec. 17, 2017 ― The Israeli army’s civil administration last Tuesday, December 12, delivered a demolition order against the only school in the Bedouin community of Abu al-Nawwar, east of Occupied Jerusalem.     ___Spokesman for the Jerusalem Bedouin communities Abu Imad al-Jahhalin told the Palestinian Information Center (PIC) that employees from the civil administration escorted by soldiers stormed Abu al-Nawwar hamlet and put up a demolition order giving the residents 72 hours before they come again to remove the school structures.     MORE . . . 
❸ ERDOGAN  SAYS  TURKEY  WILL  OPEN  EMBASSY  IN  EAST  JERUSALEM            The Middle East Monitor – MEMO
Dec. 17, 2017 ― Turkey will open an embassy in East Jerusalem, President Tayyip Erdogan said on Sunday, days after leading calls at a summit of Muslim leaders for the world to recognise it as the capital of Palestine.
___“God willing, the day is close when officially, with God’s permission, we will open our embassy there,” Erdogan said in a speech, maintaining his fierce criticism of the United States’ decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.    MORE . . . 

“EYTAN  IN  THE  STEEL  TRAP,”  BY  FADWA  TUQAN
Under the tree, branching out, spreading and growing … growing
In savage rhythms,
Under the “star”, as it builds before his very eyes
Walls of bloody dreams,
Forming a trap, held tightly together with the thread of steel,
Trapping him within, denying him movement
Eytan, the child, the human being, opens his eyes
And asks,
Why the trap and the walls?
Why the time with amputated legs, clad in khaki and death,
Enveloped in smoke rising from flames and from sorrows?

If only the “star” could tell the truth,
If only it could.
But alas!
Alas, the “star”!

Eytan, my child
You are the victim, drowning in lies,
And like Eytan, the harbor is sunk in a sea of lies,
Drowned by the bloated dream
With the head of a dragon
And a thousand arms.
Alas, alas!
If only you could remain the child, the human being!
But I shudder, and live in dread.
That you may grow up inside the trap,
In this time of amputated legs, clad in khaki,
In cruel death, in smoke and sorrow.

From Abdel-Malek, Kamal. THE  RHETORIC  OF  VIOLENCE:  ARAB-JEWISH  ENCOUNTERS  IN  CONTEMPORARY  PALESTINIAN  LITERATURE  AND  FILM. MacMillan, 2005. Web.

 

“. . . Next to the great room we call our country . . .” (Mourid Barghouti)

❶ Palestinians across the West Bank, Jerusalem protest Trump’s decision
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) Over 50 injured, 9 with live ammunition, in clashes across Palestinian territory
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴃ) Israeli arrest campaign waged in anticipation of ‘day of rage’
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴄ) Israeli Soldiers Isolate Kufur Qaddoum
❷ Israel to construct 14,000 settlement units in Jerusalem

  • Background: “Divided We Rise: Politics, Architecture and Vertical Cityscapes at Opposite Ends of Jerusalem.” Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers.

❸ REACTIONS TO TRUMP’S DECISION
❹ POETRY by Mourid Barghouti
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
PALESTINIANS  ACROSS  THE  WEST  BANK,  JERUSALEM  PROTEST  TRUMP’S  DECISION  
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA 
Dec. 8, 2017 ― Thousands of Palestinians across the West Bank and East Jerusalem marched in protest of US President Donald Trump’s recent decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and plans to move the US embassy.
___The protestors headed to Israeli checkpoints in several districts to express condemnation and rejection of the illegal move. In Ramallah district, hundreds gathered after the Friday prayer and marched to al-Bireh’s northern entrance, where clashes erupted with Israeli soldiers.   MORE . . .
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ)  OVER  50  INJURED,  9  WITH  LIVE  AMMUNITION,  IN  CLASHES  ACROSS  PALESTINIAN  TERRITORY   
Ma’an News Agency
Dec. 7, 2017 ― The number of injured Palestinians continues to climb on Thursday as clashes with Israeli forces continue to escalate across the occupied West Bank, East Jerusalem, and Gaza Strip, in response to U.S. President Donald Trump’s announcement recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
___Palestinian and world leaders warned Trump against making the announcement, for fear of instability and violence across the region that is now expected to continue in the days to come.
___9 injured with live ammunition [. . . .]   MORE . . .
. . . . . ❶―  (ᴃ)  ISRAELI  ARREST  CAMPAIGN  WAGED  IN  ANTICIPATION  OF  ‘DAY  OF  RAGE’   
The Palestinian Information Center
Dec. 8, 2017 ― The Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) launched at dawn Friday a large-scale raid and arrest campaign in West Bank and Jerusalem as Palestinians declare a day of rage over US President Donald Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
___Local sources affirmed that at least 16 Palestinian were detained in occupied Jerusalem, while ten others were arrested in Issawiya town after being brutally attacked.   MORE . . .
. . . . . ❶― (ᴄ) ISRAELI  SOLDIERS  ISOLATE  KUFUR  QADDOUM 
International Middle East Media Center – IMEMC  
Dec. 8, 2017 ― Earlier Friday, dozens of Israeli soldiers surrounded and isolated Kufur Qaddoum town, east of the northern West Bank city of Qalqilia, ahead of the weekly protest against the Annexation Wall and colonies.
___The army stopped and searched dozens of cars, and interrogated many Palestinians, while inspecting their ID cards.
___Morad Eshteiwi, the coordinator of the Popular Committee against the Annexation Wall and Colonies in Kufur Qaddoum, said the army is trying to prevent the Palestinians, along with Israeli and international peace activists, from marching.   MORE . . .
ISRAEL  TO  CONSTRUCT  14,000  SETTLEMENT  UNITS  IN  JERUSALEM
The Palestinian Information Center 
Dec. 8, 2017 ― Emboldened by US President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, the Israeli government is considering pushing ahead with plans to build around new 14,000 settler units in the city.
___Under the plan, pursued by Israeli housing minister Yoav Galant, 5,000 units would be built in the northern parts of the city and just outside Ramallah, Israeli media reported Thursday night.
___There would be 1,000 units built in East Jerusalem, while the remaining 8,000 units were to be built in the city’s western neighborhoods.   MORE . . .

Rosen, Gillad and Igal Charney.
“DIVIDED  WE  RISE:  POLITICS,  ARCHITECTURE  AND  VERTICAL  CITYSCAPES  AT  OPPOSITE  ENDS  OF  JERUSALEM.”
TRANSACTIONS OF THE INSTITUTE OF BRITISH GEOGRAPHERS, vol. 41, no. 2, Apr. 2016, pp. 163-174.
[. . . .] Since 1967 Palestinian East Jerusalem is to a large extent a construct of Israeli power and political domination. To strengthen control over annexed lands in East Jerusalem, Israel has been manipulating planning policies and procedures. . .  decisions are highly political and reflect the state’s power to . . .  determine what is acceptable and what is not, and direct which forms of informality will thrive and which will disappear.
___For almost 50 years, Israel has enforced a discriminatory planning regime that has systematically delegitimised Palestinian development rights, restricting the growth of Palestinian communities. Planning policies and practices in these areas have been largely subordinated to the ethno-national aspirations and geopolitical territorial claims of Israel, which have intentionally ignored the development needs of Palestinians. A Palestinian planning rights advocate explained this reality: ‘Palestinians do not exist for the Israeli planning system in Jerusalem . . . they are neither partners nor participants in planning agendas and procedures’, thus making them practically invisible to the Israeli planning authorities.
___Permissive approaches to tall-building development in West Jerusalem and in Jewish neighbourhoods in East Jerusalem make discrimination against Palestinians even blunter. It is nothing but preposterous to apply the anachronistic limit of four to six storeys to most Palestinian areas of East Jerusalem. . . .  As a planner from a human right advocacy group explained, this situation is actually ‘another tool of Israeli occupation which exploits and marginalises the Palestinian population of East Jerusalem’.   [. . . .]  SOURCE . . .    ..

REACTIONS  TO  TRUMP’S  DECISION
Arab League says Trump’s decision on Jerusalem inflames tension   MORE . . .    ..
Ambassador: EU will not transfer embassy to Jerusalem   MORE . . .    ..
Pakistan condemns US move, calls it violation of Security Council’s resolutions MORE . . .
South Africa: US Unilateral Decision Undermines Middle East Peace Process    MORE . . .
Norway warns of increased instability following Trump’s decision     MORE . . .
Abbas meets King Abdullah II to discuss Jerusalem developments     MORE . . .
‘If these decisions go into effect my life here will become like a prison’: Palestinians in Jerusalem respond to Trump    MORE . . .

“IN THE NEIGHBORING ROOM,” BY MOURID BARGHOUTI
Next to
our nation’s bedroom,
Next to
the 5 a.m. orchestra, when
upright and in a hurry
the farm-worker goes out
and the 5 p.m. flute, when

bent and dumb
he comes back

Next to
the room of hope and despair,
the family prayers,
the silence of nurses
and the dry branch,
motionless on clean sheets

Next to
the poet’s room
where words are dogs
or birds:
with his stick
he drives the assaulting dogs away,
his hand opens
to throw barley to the birds
and he waits

Next to
the interrogation room
packed with the stupidity of screams
and the cunning
of the iron chains

Next to
the grandmother
squatting near the clay oven
watching the interaction between
a loaf of bread
and the flames

Next to
the maternity ward

He sits
with strong muscles
and tools and weapons
ready to help:
he thinks of us a lot
he looks after us
like an indispensable
head of the family

Next to
the great room we call our country

Death
stays up, active
for our sake.

From Barghouti, Mourid. MIDNIGHT AND OTHER POEMS. Trans. Radwa Ashour. Todmorden, UK: Arc Publications, 2008. Available from Barnes and Noble.  A biographical essay about Mourid Barghouti.

“. . . Any hope of peace in the future will just vanish . . .” (Saeb Erekat, Palestinian negotiator)

kerry-erekat
US Secretary of State John Kerry and Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat shake hands, Jan. 4, 2014, in Ramallah. (Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images)

❶ . PLO will revoke Israel recognition if US moves embassy, top official warns

  • Background: “Jerusalem In The Courts And On The Ground.” Florida Journal Of International Law

❷ . ‘Israel replaces one land theft with another,’ NGO says
❸ .  Father of slain Palestinian teen objects to plea deal with Israeli officer
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ . PLO  WILL  REVOKE  ISRAEL  RECOGNITION  IF  US  MOVES  EMBASSY,  TOP  OFFICIAL  WARNS   
The Times of Israel
Dec. 20, 2016 – If the incoming Trump administration moves the US embassy to Jerusalem, the PLO will revoke its recognition of Israel, the prospect of a two-state solution will be over, and any hope of Israeli-Palestinian peace in the future will vanish, the top Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat warned on Monday.
___Speaking on a conference call organized by the Wilson Center . . .   Erekat reeled off a list of what he said would be the consequences of President-elect Donald Trump honoring his campaign pledge and relocating the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
[. . . .]  Erekat noted that he held meetings last week in Washington with State Department officials, but failed to secure meetings he had sought with incoming Trump administration officials. “I don’t know any of them,” he said of Trump’s personnel.     More . . .

(Note: The following article is a detailed and documented history of the U.S. policy on the status of Jerusalem over the years. The sections quoted here present only a small part of the writing about the continually evolving realities “on the ground” of the status of Jerusalem.) 

  • Halabi, Sam F. “Jerusalem In The Courts And On The Ground.” Florida Journal Of International Law 26.2 (2014): 223-270.  (Sam F. Halabi is Associate Professor, University of Tulsa College of Law. J.D. Harvard, M.Phil. Oxford, B.A. Kansas State University.) FULL ARTICLE.

[. . . .] In 1967, Israel conquered all of Jerusalem and the West Bank, politically reunifying the city and obtaining control over the Temple Mount which it left under the stewardship of the Islamic waqf. It offered Israeli citizenship to Arabs living in Jerusalem in 1967, most of whom rejected the offer. They became so-called Jerusalem residents, neither citizens of Israel nor civilians subject to the same rules of occupation which applied to other Palestinian residents living in the West Bank.
___In 1980, Israel officially annexed East Jerusalem and the areas within the redrawn municipal boundary which included settlements built over the 1967 “Green Line.” The U.N. Security Council declared the “Jerusalem Law” null and void and a violation of international law. In 1993, Israel and the Palestinians agreed to settle the final status of Jerusalem and other matters by negotiation. U.S. Executive Branch policy from 1948 forward never recognized Israeli or Jordanian sovereignty over any part of Jerusalem. In 1949, when Israel announced its intention to convene its parliament’s first meeting in the part of Jerusalem it controlled, the United States refused to send a representative to attend, noting that the U.S. Government “cannot support any arrangement which would purport to authorize the establishment of Israeli . . . sovereignty over parts of the Jerusalem area.” The United States similarly opposed the Jordanian effort to declare East Jerusalem its “second” capital (after Amman) in 1950. The State Department established a formal diplomatic presence in Tel Aviv for relations with Israel and separate consular offices in Jerusalem. Arab and Jewish U.S. citizens born within Jerusalem’s 1948 municipal borders are designated as having been born in “Jerusalem” consistent with this non-recognition.
___Congress, however, became more active on the issue after the 1980 Jerusalem Law, both directly and indirectly seeking to have the city’s status as Israel’s capital formalized. Several U.S. Presidents, including Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, and William Clinton, have stated that Jerusalem should remain united and its final status should be determined by negotiation, implying that Israelis and Palestinians might both establish recognized capitals there and further implying that U.S. policy disfavors separation of the type experienced between 1948 and 1967 [. . . .]

❷ . ‘ISRAEL  REPLACES  ONE  LAND  THEFT  WITH  ANOTHER,’  NGO  SAYS
Days of Palestine
Dec. 19, 2016 – Israeli settlers of the illegal settlement of Amona in occupied West Bank agreed to move to another private Palestinian land, an Israeli NGO said.
___The Israeli Jewish settlers of Amona, which the Israeli High Court decided it be evacuated by December 25, agreed to a deal offered by the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his Education Minister Naftali Bennett.
___According to the new deal, adopted by the Israeli occupation government, the illegal Jewish settlers are going to move to another private Palestinian land on a hilltop nearby Amona.    
[. . . .]
Israeli rights group Peace Now said that the latest Israeli government compromise would see the relocation of 40 settler families to nearby land privately owned by Palestinians.
___“The Israeli government is replacing one land theft by another,” Peace Now said in a statement.      More . . .  

img_2918-002
Israeli flags flying over confiscated Palestinian homes in East Jerusalem. (Photo: Harold Knight, Nov. 2015)


❸ .  FATHER  OF  SLAIN  PALESTINIAN  TEEN  OBJECTS  TO  PLEA  DEAL  WITH  ISRAELI  OFFICER  

Ma’an News Agency
Dec. 20, 2016 – The father of a 17-year-old Palestinian who was shot dead . . .  in 2014 said he strongly objected to the plea deal being prepared for the Israeli border police officer who killed his son.
___Siyam Nuwarah told Ma’an Monday evening that he sent a letter to the Israeli Attorney General saying that his family was “extremely saddened” about the recently published reports regarding the Attorney General’s intent to sign a plea deal, in which the officer would receive a reduced sentence.
[. . . .]  Nadim Siyam Nuwarah was shot and killed with live ammunition in the chest during a protest rally marking the 66th anniversary of the Nakba on May 15, 2014. The incident was captured on video.     More . . .

 

“. . . merely one expression of the twin processes of ethnic cleansing and Judaization . . .” (Jeff Halper)

demolition-002
Israeli bulldozers demolished a Palestinian family’s home in the occupied East Jerusalem neighborhood of Beit Hanina, Aug.1, 2016 (Photo: Ma’an News Agency)

❶ Israel compels Jerusalemite to demolish his home

  • Background:  “The Policy Of House Demolitions In East Jerusalem: What It Is, How It Is Done And To What End.” Palestine-Israel Journal Of Politics, Economics & Culture

❷ Israeli forces deliver demolition order to occupied East Jerusalem home
❸ Spain joins US in condemning Israel’s expansion of Gilo settlement
❹ Opinion/Analysis:  Israel’s barbarism policy of Judaizing Jerusalem
. . . ❹― (a) Jerusalem simmering over ‘Judaisation’ plan
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
ISRAEL  COMPELS  JERUSALEMITE  TO  DEMOLISH  HIS  HOME   
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA        
Nov. 13, 2016
Israeli occupation authorities on Sunday forced a Palestinian to demolish two homes of his own in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Jabal al-Mukabir, under the pretext of being built without an Israeli-issued permit.
___Mohammad al-Jaabis, owner of the two homes, said Israeli authorities compelled him to demolish his two homes for being “illegally” constructed. He said he has incurred some $91,000 in losses for construction costs and lawyers’ fees.       More . . .  

  • Halper, Jeff. “The Policy Of House Demolitions In East Jerusalem: What It Is, How It Is Done And To What End.” Palestine-Israel Journal Of Politics, Economics & Culture 17.1/2 (2011): 74-82.   Source.  

Israel’s policy . . .  of systematically demolishing Palestinian homes, urban neighborhoods and entire towns and villages goes back to 1948 and continues with a vengeance up to this moment, both within Israel and in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT). The motivation is obvious: It is merely one expression of the twin processes of ethnic cleansing and Judaization, both of those, in turn, being consequences of defining Israel as a “Jewish state” and taking the steps necessary to make it so. The house demolition policy represents the essence of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict: denying the Palestinian people the right to remain in the Land of Israel, either as a national collective or as individuals, and their displacement by Jews.
___ Even if Israel cannot force the emigration of all the Palestinians, the effect of these twin processes is evident. . .  the very first act of the occupation was that of home demolition, carried out during the 1967 war, even before the fighting had ended. On June 11 . . .  West Jerusalem mayor Teddy KoUek ordered the destruction of the Arab Mughrabi Quarter of the Old City, situated at the entrance to the Western Wall.
[. . . .]   Since Palestinian residents of Jerusalem cannot acquire permits to build on the 89% of East Jerusalem that they own, some 25,000 housing units are currently lacking in the Palestinian sector. . . . the shortage is artificial and induced, a way to force Palestinians out of the city.
___ Refusal to issue building permits confines Palestinians to small patches of East Jerusalem. In order to give teeth to its hostile zoning practices, the Jerusalem municipality, together with the Ministry of Interior, demolishes “illegal” Palestinian houses. . .  Thus, despite an induced shortage of 25,000 units, the municipality grants only 150-350 permits a year for Arab housing and demolishes 50-100 homes a year. Twenty-two thousand Palestinian housing units have been declared “illegal”; some 15,000 demolition orders are outstanding. According to the Jerusalem municipality itself, 2,000 Palestinian houses have been demolished in East Jerusalem since 1967, none in Israeli West Jerusalem.    [. . . .]

ISRAELI  FORCES  DELIVER  DEMOLITION  ORDER  TO  OCCUPIED  EAST  JERUSALEM  HOME
Ma’an News Agency
Nov. 12, 2016
Israeli forces raided the occupied East Jerusalem neighborhood of Silwan on Saturday, where they delivered a demolition notice to the home of a local resident.
___Local activist Jamal Amr told Ma’an that armed Israeli forces . . . gave him a summons notice to meet with the municipality as well as a demolition order on his home.
___Amr said that the house was built in 1954, and was legally licensed in 1993 after receiving a “renovating license” from the municipality.
___It remained unclear for what reason Amr was given a demolition order.     More . . .        Related . . .

gilo-001
Picture from the West Bank village of Walajah, near the Bethlehem, shows the Israeli settlement of Gilo, Feb, 6, 2015. (Photo: Getty Images)

SPAIN  JOINS  US  IN  CONDEMNING  ISRAEL’S  EXPANSION  OF  GILO  SETTLEMENT 
Ma’an News Agency
Nov. 12, 2016
The government of Spain released a statement on Friday joining the United States in condemning Israel’s recent approval of the construction of 181 new housing units in the illegal Gilo settlement in the occupied West Bank.     
[. . . .]  
  The statement reiterated Spain’s disapproval of Israel’s settlement expansions, and “like the rest of the international community, it considers Israeli settlements on Palestinian Occupied Territories to be illegal under international law.”     More . . .

OPINION/ANALYSIS:   ISRAEL’S  BARBARISM  POLICY  OF  JUDAIZING  JERUSALEM      
Alray-Palestinian Media Agency  
Oct. 27, 2016
The Israeli occupation forces (IOF) has pursued policies of killing, arresting and displacing against Palestinian people in Jerusalem.
___Over many years, the IOF has been destroying the Jerusalemite houses for the simple reason that they do not have permits.
___The Jerusalemite have to choose between two options: either they have to demolish their own homes with their own hands, in order to avoid punishment from Israel’s Jerusalem Municipality, or the IOF will demolish them and make the Jerusalemite pay high fines plus demolition costs.
___“The Israeli occupation bulldozers demolished my home which was a shelter for 35 members,” the Jerusalemite Issa Jaavrah said while he was standing upon the rubble of his home, noting that the family got homeless.
___“This is our destiny. However, we will withstand on our land and we will build a new home in spite of the all IOF’s strict procedures which aim at expelling us from our own home.”
___”Our . . .  memories and dreams are demolished with the home,” the Jerusalemite aged Fatima Jaavrah gloomily said.     More . . .
  . . . ❹― (A) JERUSALEM  SIMMERING  OVER  ‘JUDAISATION’  PLAN  
Aljazeera
Dalia Hatuqa and Gregg Carlstrom
Oct. 13, 2014
An influx of ideological settlers into East Jerusalem threatens to put an end to the two state solution.
[. . . .]  “The objective, yes, it’s to strengthen the Jewish presence in all areas of East Jerusalem,” said Aryeh King, a member of the Jerusalem city council and right-wing activist who founded an organisation devoted to settling Jews in East Jerusalem. “This way we can stop, or at least delay, Bibi’s idea of dividing the city, and wait for the right political leadership that won’t think about this.”      More . . . 

“. . . I remained defying. . .” (Samih Al-Qasim)

1-zoo
TO DEFY: “This garden is a way of expressing OUR OBJECTION. . .” says Saeed al-Haddad as he works on his zoo in Shajaiya, Gaza City, Gaza, April 25, 2016. (photo by Motaz Alaaraj)

❶ Tensions escalate in Gaza as Israeli airstrikes injure 4
. . . . . ❶― (ᴀ) Israeli airstrikes target Rafah area after mortars, shells fired across Gaza border
❷ Why one Gazan turned destroyed home into a zoo
❸ Army Kidnaps A Child In Jerusalem, Injures A Disabled Young Man In Hebron
❹ Israeli Police Prevents [Boy Scout] Islamic Anniversary Parade in Jerusalem
❺ Opinion/Analysis:  ELOR  AZARYA,  KING  OF  ISRAEL
❻ POETRY by Samih Al-Qasim
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ TENSIONS  ESCALATE  IN  GAZA  AS  ISRAELI  AIRSTRIKES  INJURE  4
Ma’an News Agency
May 5, 2016
Four Palestinians, including three children, were injured when Israeli forces carried out several airstrikes in the besieged Gaza Strip early on Thursday morning, as tensions escalated in the Palestinian enclave in the past several days.
___The Israeli airstrikes on Thursday morning hit a metal workshop in the al-Zaytoun neighborhood southeast of Gaza City, injuring 65-year-old Hassan Hassanien and three children from the family, who were all taken to the al-Shifa hospital in Gaza City.   MORE . . .
. . . . . ❶― (ᴀ) ISRAELI  AIRSTRIKES  TARGET  RAFAH  AREA  AFTER  MORTARS,  SHELLS  FIRED  ACROSS  GAZA  BORDER
Ma’an News Agency
May 4, 2016
Israeli forces launched several airstrikes in the southern Gaza Strip on Wednesday evening, hours after Palestinian and Israeli shelling across the border of the besieged enclave.
___Witnesses told Ma’an that at least five airstrikes targeted an open area near the long-closed Rafah airport, causing material damage. No casualties were initially reported.    MORE . . . 

❷ WHY  ONE  GAZAN  TURNED  DESTROYED  HOME  INTO  A  ZOO
Al-Monitor (Palestine Pulse)
Asmaa al-Ghoul
May 2, 2016
More than one and a half years have passed since the 51-day war on Gaza, which started on July 8, 2014. Since then, about 18,000 homes were destroyed partially or completely and have yet to be rebuilt because of the suspension of the reconstruction process in the Gaza Strip.
___Saeed al-Haddad is one of the people who has yet to receive compensation for his destroyed property. The four-story building is dilapidated, uninhabitable and doomed to collapse. However, Haddad wishes to turn it into a zoo, as he has been fond of raising animals since childhood.      MORE . . .

ARMY  KIDNAPS  A  CHILD  IN  JERUSALEM,  INJURES  A  DISABLED  YOUNG  MAN   IN  HEBRON  
International Middle East Media Center – IMEMC
May 5, 2016
Israeli soldiers kidnapped, on Wednesday at night, a Palestinian child from Jerusalem’s Old City. The soldiers also shot and injured a disabled Palestinian man near Hebron, in the southern part of the occupied West Bank.
___Eyewitnesses in occupied Jerusalem said the soldiers kidnapped a child, only 14 years of age, in the Old city, after attacking and beating her.
___They added that the soldiers took the child to an interrogation center in the city, allegedly after “locating a knife in her purse.”      MORE . . .    

ISRAELI  POLICE  PREVENTS  [Boy Scout]  ISLAMIC  ANNIVERSARY  PARADE  IN  JERUSALEM
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
May 5, 2016
Israeli police Thursday prevented a Palestinian scout group from parading to celebrate the Islamic festival of Isra and Miraj in Jerusalem, said WAFA correspondent.
___Police prevented Hilal al-Quds Scout Group from observing the day through a parade to mark the occasion, under the pretext that the festival coincides with the Holocaust Memorial Day (Yom HaShoah).      MORE . . .

1-F160328YL010-e1459191636755
BLESSED IS HE WHO COMES! Residents of Beit Shemesh attend a March 28, 2016, rally in solidarity with ELOR AZARYA who shot a Palestinian assailant in Hebron the week before. (Yaacov Lederman/Flash90)

Opinion/Analysis:  ELOR  AZARYA,  KING  OF  ISRAEL
Mondoweiss
Dan Cohen
May 4, 2016
The episode since Israeli medic-soldier and French citizen Elor Azarya was filmed summarily executing Abd Al-Fattah Al-Sharif has been a sobering reminder of the Israeli right-wing’s total and long-standing dominance over the Zionist left  [. . . .]
___As the video went viral, the Israeli public rallied around Azarya . . . . a poll revealed that 82% of Israelis support the execution. Across the country, Israelis held public events including town halls and streets demonstrations, culminating with a rally for Azarya in Tel Aviv’s Rabin Square on April 19 . . . . around 80 Israeli men and boys of army age, some wearing Israeli flags as capes, rose from one knee and jumped while chanting: “Elor, HaMelech Yisrael! Chai chai, vekayam!” (Elor, the King of Israel lives!)      MORE . . .

“I  DEFY,”  BY  SAMIH  AL-QASIM
Talk about exile―I defy
silence my argument with chains
and a foolish prison cell
I defy

Turn plague and sadness against me
I remained defying
cut my wrist
with my bloody chest I defy
cut my leg
I mount the wound and walk
and with my violence I defy
with my forehead I defy
and with my teeth
and the teeth of songs―I defy

and kill me―I defy
I kill death
and come to you a defying God

All that I own of my father’s and grandfather’
inheritance is to defy!

All that I understand from the
wind and the secrets of erased villages
and the songs of springs
on dying grass
a concealed sob
the roots of the tree
memorize it for me
a sob: To defy

All the eyes of children living within me
in bloody exile
All that I live of my absent country
in name and deed
a scream bruising me―to defy!

My anger drips oil and honey
my pain bears almonds, flouts and roses
so jail my piece of bread
I defy

From: Aruri, Naseer and Edmund Ghareeb, eds. ENEMY  OF  THE  SUN:  POETRY  OF  THE  PALESTINIAN  RESISTANCE. Washington, DC: Drum and Spear Press, 1970.   Available from Amazon.
About Samih Al-Qasim.

“. . . the very air is confiscated, so why don’t you leave? . . .” (Taha Muhammad ‘Ali, 1992)

return march
Thousands of Palestinian citizens of Israel take part in the ‘March of Return’, on the land belonging to the destroyed village of Hadatha, near Tiberius, April 23, 2015. (Photo: Omar Sameer/Activestills.org)

❶ Jerusalem families in legal battle to stay in Old City homes
. . . . ❶― (ᴀ) WATCH: Internally displaced Palestinians plan their return
❷ Palestinian killed in day’s 2nd alleged attack on Israeli forces
❸ Why Israel has silenced the 1948 story of Nazareth’s survival
❹ Analysis: Palestinian citizens in Israel: A fast-shrinking civic space
❺ Opinion/Analysis: “HOW  TO  LIE  WITH  MAPS”  IN  THE  CONTEXT  OF  THE  ISRAELI  OCCUPATION
❻ Poetry by Taha Muhammad ‘Ali
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
JERUSALEM  FAMILIES  IN  LEGAL  BATTLE  TO  STAY  IN  OLD  CITY  HOMES
Jan. 13, 2016
For the past few weeks, four Palestinian families living in Jerusalem’s Old City have faced the threat of immediate eviction from their homes.
___The Hashima, Kastero, Seidawi, and Maswada families, who live in the Old City’s Aqbat al-Khalidiya quarter, told Ma’an that they were handed eviction notices in December when an Israeli court ruled that their homes originally belonged to a Jewish organization.
___Hayil Sandouka, a Palestinian who has long worked on the restoration of Palestinian buildings in the Old City, told Ma’an that the building previously belonged to the Diskin Orphan Fund of Israel, founded in 1881.   More . . .
. . . . ❶― (ᴀ) +972 MAGAZINE
Watch:  INTERNALLY  DISPLACED  PALESTINIANS  PLAN  THEIR  RETURN
More . . .
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
PALESTINIAN  KILLED  IN  DAY’S  2ND  ALLEGED  ATTACK  ON  ISRAELI  FORCES
Jan. 14, 2016
A Palestinian was shot and killed on Thursday after a stabbing attack at an Israeli military checkpoint north of the occupied West Bank city of Nablus . . . .
___An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that a stab attack took place on forces stationed at the checkpoint. Israeli forces reportedly opened fire on the assailant in response, killing him on site. . . .
___The attack took place at a flying checkpoint set up by Israeli forces nearby the Palestinian village of Asira ash-Shamaliya, hometown of the alleged attacker who was identified by locals as Haitham Mahmoud Abd al-Jalil, 31.   More . . .

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Sunrise over Nazareth (Photo: Harold Knight, Nov. 8, 2015)

MONDOWEISS
WHY  ISRAEL  HAS  SILENCED  THE  1948  STORY  OF  NAZARETH’S  SURVIVAL
Jonathan Cook
Jan. 12, 2016
A rarely told story of the 1948 war that founded Israel concerns Nazareth’s survival. It is the only Palestinian city in what is today Israel that was not ethnically cleansed during the year-long fighting . . . .
___Nazareth was not only an anomaly; it was a mistake. It was supposed to be cleared of its Palestinian population, just like those other Palestinian cities now in Israel. Much to Israel’s regret, it has become an unofficial capital for Israel’s 1.6 million Palestinian citizens, a fifth of the Israeli population.
___The reason for Nazareth’s survival are the actions of one individual. Ben Dunkelman, a Canadian Jew who was the commander of the Israeli army’s Seventh Armoured Brigade, disobeyed orders . . .    More . . .
Analysis
AL-SHABAKA: THE PALESTINIAN POLICY NETWORK
PALESTINIAN  CITIZENS  IN  ISRAEL:  A  FAST-SHRINKING  CIVIC  SPACE
Nadim Nashif, Raya Naamneh
Jan. 13, 2016
Israel still portrays itself as a Jewish and democratic state. Yet in practice, as its Palestinian citizens can attest, it functions as a Jewish ethnocracy, leaving small margins of freedom for its Palestinian citizens that have been steadily shrinking in the past few years. Now the Israeli state has come under the complete control of the far right wing, which sees no need even for such limited margins of freedom. This is evident in the wave of discriminatory legislation and the use of the Emergency Regulations against established non-governmental organizations (NGOs) an movements such as the northern branch of the Islamic Movement in Israel.    More . . .
Opinion/Analysis
THIS WEEK IN PALESTINE
“HOW  TO LIE  WITH  MAPS”  IN  THE  CONTEXT  OF  THE  ISRAELI  OCCUPATION
Ahmad El-Atrash
Jan. 2016
Since the early days of occupation, the Israeli authorities have used maps as a tool to dispossess Palestinians, establish de facto sovereignty over the occupied territory, and engineer a fabricated statehood. The socio-spatial consequences of map-making, as a form of authority-making, in present-day Palestine become “stubborn realities” that tend to perpetuate in a state of permanent temporariness due to Israel’s prolonged military occupation of territory. In this article, maps are best understood as discourses that create knowledge.  More . . . 

“EXODUS,”  BY  TAHA  MUHAMMAD  `ALI  (1931-1911)

The street is empty
like the memory of a monk
and faces explode in the flames
like an acorn
and the dead crowd all the doorways
they crowd the horizon
and no vein can bleed
more than it has already bled
no scream can rise
higher than it has already risen
We will not leave!
The shields of light are breaking in the face of this siege
in the face of these ill-matched forces
From outside, everyone wants us to leave
But we will not leave!
Ivory white girls hide themselves
from the glare of captivity
and everyone outside wants us to leave
We will not leave!
The big guns rake the jujube trees
and destroy the dreams of the violets
they blunt hunger, but sharpen thirst
they parch lip and souls.
And everyone outside says:
“What are you waiting for? All warmth is denied,
the very air is confiscated,
so why don’t you leave?”
Masks fill the pulpits, the brothels and the places of ablution
Masks cross-eyed with surprise
do not believe what is obvious
and fall, astonished and writhing
like worms.

We will not leave!
Are we inside here merely to be outside?
Leaving is only for the masks, for pulpits and for conferences
It is only the siege within that should go outside
the siege which the Bedouins of the deserts have brought on us
the siege inflicted by brethren tasting of the sword
and the stink of crimson birds
We will not leave!
Those outside are closing the escape routes
and giving their blessings to the imposter
Praying, petitioning the Almighty God
for our deaths.

―translated by Lena Jayyusi and John Heath-Stubbs

About Taha Muhammad ‘Ali
ANTHOLOGY  OF  MODERN  PALESTINIAN  LITERATURE.  Ed. Salma Khadra Jayyusi. New York: Columbia University Press, 1992. Available from Columbia University Press.

How-to-Lie-with-Maps-2
An Israeli Official Map Showing the West Bank as part of Israel. (Source: Middle East Monitor, 25 November 2015.)

“. . . towards what remained of her home . . .” (Majid Abu Ghoush)

1-home demo
Israeli police at the scene of a home demolition in East Jerusalem’s Shuafat refugee camp on Wednesday, December 2, 2015 (Israel Police)

❶ Israeli forces demolish homes of 2 Palestinian attackers in Jerusalem
❷ Settlers breach wall of Palestinian home in Jerusalem’s Old City
❸ Israeli settlers attack Palestinian home near Nablus
❹ Netanyahu targets Palestinians in Israel
❺ Opinion/Analysis: The road to hell is paved with ‘national security’
❻ Poetry by Majid Abu Ghoush
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
ISRAELI  FORCES  DEMOLISH  HOMES  OF  2  PALESTINIAN  ATTACKERS  IN  JERUSALEM
Jan. 4, 2016
Israeli forces on Monday demolished the family home of a Palestinian attacker killed in October and sealed off the home of another attacker’s family with cement, the families told Ma’an.
___The homes, in the Jabal al-Mukabbir neighborhood of East Jerusalem, belonged to relatives of Alaa Abu Jamal and Baha Elayyan who were both shot dead on Oct. 13 after carrying out separate attacks that left four Israelis dead.
___Israeli forces reportedly stormed the homes and ordered the families to evacuate them before they proceeded with the demolitions.   More . . .
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
SETTLERS  BREACH  WALL  OF  PALESTINIAN  HOME  IN  JERUSALEM’S  OLD  CITY
Jan. 4, 2016
Israeli settlers on Sunday made a number of breaches through the wall of a Palestinian home belonging to Noura Sub Laban in the Old City of Jerusalem, family members told Ma’an.
___Noura’s son, Ahmad Sub Laban, said the family was shocked to find at least six breaches through the wall, which borders a settler enclave that was established just two weeks ago.
___Ahmad said the family called Israeli police, who arrived on the scene and asked that the settlers repair the damage without bringing any formal procedures against them, despite the settlers admitting to breaching the wall.   More . . .
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
ISRAELI  SETTLERS  ATTACK  PALESTINIAN  HOME  NEAR  NABLUS
Jan. 3, 2016
Israeli settlers on Saturday attacked a Palestinian home in the village of Beit Furik near Nablus in the occupied West Bank, a Palestinian Authority official said.
___Ghassan Daghlas, a PA official who monitors settlement activities in the northern West Bank, told Ma’an that settlers threw stones at the home of Nihad Hanani before leaving behind a Molotov cocktail and a letter.
___Daghlas said that the settlers — believed to be from the nearby illegal settlement of Itamar — were chased by locals as they fled the scene after attacking the home. The attack is the most recent to be carried out by settlers in the occupied West Bank.   More . . .

1-benjamin_netanyahu_01
Netanyahu remained committed to invigorating incitement against Palestinian citizens of Israel at Sunday’s Cabinet meeting. (Photo: Alternative News Agency)

ALTERNATIVE NEWS AGENCY
NETANYAHU  TARGETS  PALESTINIANS  IN  ISRAEL
Sergio Yahni
Jan. 4, 2016
Following Friday’s attack in Tel Aviv, which Israeli police suspect was carried out by a Palestinian citizen of Israel, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu opened Sunday’s cabinet meeting with a call for greater law enforcement in “the Arab sector.”
___On Friday, two people were shot dead and six others were wounded in a shooting at a crowded pub at 130 Dizengoff Street in Tel Aviv.
___The police have yet to officially refer to Friday’s shooting as a terrorist attack. . . .
___Nertanyahu visited the scene on Saturday and immediately treated the event as a terrorist attack.   More . . .
Opinion/Analysis
INTIFADA PALESTINE
THE  ROAD  TO  HELL  IS  PAVED  WITH  ‘NATIONAL  SECURITY’
CJ Werleman (from Middle East Eye)
Jan. 3, 2016
If you wanted to trace the roots of any of the world’s evil, conflict and chaos, you could start where you first heard the words “national security”.
___In the name of “national security,” Germany invaded Poland, the Nazis cleansed the Jews . . . while Israel ethnically cleansed more than 500 Arab villages, annexed Palestinian land, and enclosed it with a “security barrier”.
___More recently, it is the god of “national security” that has not only given us the self-defeating “war on terror” but also Guantanamo Bay . . . . It is also under the guise of national security that the US homeland-security-industrial complex has boomed to more than $50 billion per year . . . .
___In the wake of the recent Paris and San Bernardino attacks, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government is turning the West’s fixation on Islamic State-inspired terrorism into an opportunity to expand both its apartheid laws and its militarisation of the West Bank.  More . . .

“RETURNING,”  BY  AMJID  ABU  GHOUSH

the woman was dragging her feet
and what remained of her children
towards what remained of her home
towards what remained
of the sea
towards what remained
of the heart
towards what remained of the heart

she raised her hand softly
wiped a tear which rolled down her cheek
and smiled when the beautiful one
she met on the way asked her:
why are you going back?

to water the jasmine tree
to shade the names of the martyrs

—translated by Magi Gibson

MAJID ABU GHOUSH was born in Amwas. He is a prolific poet, a member of the Secretariat of the General Union of Palestinian Writers and a founding member of Poets Without Borders Palestine.
From A  BIRD  IS  NOT  A  STONE:  AN  ANTHOLOGY  OF  CONTEMPORARY  PALESTINIAN  POETRY  (Glasgow: Freight Books, 2014) –available from Amazon.com.

“. . . Who has spoken out against death at every corner. . .” (Fouzi El-Asmar)

Shepherd in Salem village near Nablus, occupied West Bank, 10 October 2014. Photo: Ahmad Al-Bazz ActiveStills
Shepherd in Salem village near Nablus, occupied West Bank, 10 October 2014. Photo: Ahmad Al-Bazz ActiveStills

❺ Opinion/Analysis
+972 MAGAZINE
IN  NABI  SALEH,  AN  OCCUPIER’S  SENSE  OF  ENTITLEMENT
September 2, 2015
Reactions in Israel to the attempted arrest of a minor in Nabi Saleh have been fierce yet predictable. Wrapped up in outraged reactions to the treatment of the soldier himself, however, is Israel’s bruised sense of entitlement.
An Israeli soldier’s attempted arrest of a Palestinian minor in Nabi Saleh last Friday, and its prevention by the child’s family, have generated heated reactions in Israel. Responses have ranged from outrage at the soldier’s treatment to calls for increased and harsher powers for Israeli security forces . . . Only in a few isolated corners did the question arise of whether it is reasonable or decent for an armed soldier to chase and pin down an injured child. . . .
____ . . . Much was made of the fact that this was not the first time the Tamimi family has been in the news . . . . There seems to have been little consideration of the fact that what is caught on camera simply gives the barest hint as to what goes on behind closed doors, or that the video camera might be a legitimate non-violent weapon in the struggle against military occupation.
More. . .
Related. . . 

ALTERNATIVE INFORMATION CENTER (AIC)
ISRAEL  UPS  JERUSALEM  REPRESSION
September 2, 2015
Israel has created the new position of “security coordinator” for Jerusalem’s Old City area, increasing repression of Palestinian residents in occupied East Jerusalem.
____The Jerusalem municipality established the new position of security coordinator for the occupied East Jerusalem Old City area, which includes the Old City itself and the surrounding Israeli settlements. Creation of this position is the initiative of municipal council member Arieh King, a right-wing activist for the Judaisation of Jerusalem and himself a settler residing in East Jerusalem’s Mount of Olives.
____King, who holds the emergency and security file for Jerusalem’s municipal council, told the settler-affiliated news portal Arutz 7 that “the ultimate goal is to transform the Old City and its surroundings into a safer area.”
More. . .
Related. . .
Related. . .

Increasing repression of Palestinian resistance in Jerusalem's Old City area. Photo Sergio Yahini, AIC
Increasing repression of Palestinian resistance in Jerusalem’s Old City area. Photo Sergio Yahini, AIC

INTERNATIONAL MIDDLE EAST MEDIA CENTER (IMEMC)
WOMAN  INJURED,  EIGHT  SHEPHERDS  KIDNAPPED  NEAR  NABLUS
September 02, 2015
Shepherd Injured, Eight Sheep Killed After Being Rammed With a Settler’s Car Near Hebron
____Israeli soldiers attacked and injured, Wednesday, an elderly Palestinian woman, and kidnapped eight shepherds and farmers, in Salem village, east of the northern West Bank city of Nablus.
____Medical sources in Nablus said an elderly woman, identified as Mahfoutha Eshteyya, 75 years of age, attempted to defend her son as Israeli soldiers were trying to kidnap him, when they violently assaulted her. . . The woman . . . was moved to a local hospital in Nablus.
____The soldiers also attacked and kidnapped eight Palestinian shepherds in the area, and took them to a number of detention and interrogation centers
More. . .

INTERNATIONAL MIDDLE EAST MEDIA CENTER (IMEMC)
DETAINEE  DEVELOPS  PSYCHOLOGICAL,  NEUROLOGICAL  ISSUES  DUE  TO  8  YEARS  IN  SOLITARY  CONFINEMENT
September 2, 2015
The Palestinian Detainees Committee has reported, Wednesday, that political prisoner Mohammad Jobran Khalil, 33, is suffering various psychological and neurological issues, resulting from being held in solitary confinement for the eight consecutive year.
____The Committee said that Jubran, from the central West Bank city of Ramallah, has also been denied family visits for the ninth consecutive month.
More. . .

PALESTINE CHRONICLE
UN:  GAZA  COULD  BE  ‘UNINHABITABLE’  BY  2020
September 1, 2015
The Gaza Strip, ravaged by wars and nearly a decade of a grueling Israeli blockade, could become uninhabitable for residents within just five years, the United Nations development agency said Tuesday.
____“The social, health and security-related ramifications of the high population density and overcrowding are among the factors that may render Gaza unlivable by 2020,” the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) wrote in its annual report.
____Gaza, a tiny enclave of just 362 square kilometers (about 225 square miles) squeezed between Israel, Egypt and the Mediterranean Sea that is home to some 1.8 million Palestinians, counts one of the highest population densities in the world.
More. . .

“BECAUSE  I  AM  AN  ARAB,”  BY  FOUZI  EL-ASMAR
I sit in preventive detention.
The reason, see, is that I am an Arab.
An Arab who has refused to sell his soul
who has always striven, sir, for freedom.
An Arab who has protested at the suffering
of his people
Who has carried with him the hope
of a just peace
Who has spoken out against death
at every corner
Who has called for and has lived
a life of brotherhood.
That is why I sit in preventive detention
Because I carried on the struggle
And because I am an Arab.

El-Asmar, Fouzi. THE  WIND-DRIVEN  REED  AND  OTHER  POEMS. Washington, D.C.: Three Continents Press, 1979.
Available from Amazon.
About Fouzi El-Asmar

Palestinian Manal Keferna, 30, cries as she holds dead chicks upon her return to the family house destroyed by Israeli strikes in Beit Hanoun, Gaza Strip, Saturday, July 26, 2014. AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Palestinian Manal Keferna, 30, cries as she holds dead chicks upon her return to the family house destroyed by Israeli strikes in Beit Hanoun, Gaza Strip, Saturday, July 26, 2014. AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis.