“. . . A thousand eyes for an eye? . . .” (Lahab Assef Al-Jundi)

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Children of Bedouin community of Khan al Ahmar. (Photo: Medical Aid for Palestinians, March 3, 2017.)

SELECTED   NEWS   OF   THE   DAY. . .

|  UNRWA  RECEIVES  $118  MILLION  IN  AID  FOR  PALESTINE  REFUGEES
The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees (UNRWA) has received $118 million from a number of countries to help in upholding its essential services.    ___UNRWA’s spokesman Sami Mashasha said a meeting, which was held on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in support of the UNRWA, under the sponsorship of Turkey, Japan, Sweden, Jordan and the European Union, culminated in pledges for allocating further essential funding to the UNRWA.   More . . .
Related . . .    EU proposes additional €40 million for UNRWA to keep schools and health clinics open
|  ABBAS  UNANIMOUSLY  NAMED  CHAIRMAN  OF  THE  GROUP  OF  77  AND  CHINA
The Group of 77 and China meeting in New York on Thursday . . .  unanimously named Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas as chairman, replacing Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, the current chairman.   ___The representatives of 134 countries, representing 80% of the world’s population, named the State of Palestine as chairman of the Group of 77 and China during the 42nd meeting of the group’s foreign ministers . . .   ___The State of Palestine, while presiding over the group of 134 countries, will . . .  negotiate with the other partners and member states of the organization on all the developmental, humanitarian and legal issues on the agenda of the United Nations 2019.  More . . .
|  ISRAEL  SEALS  OFF,  DECLARES  KHAN  AL-AHMAR  CLOSED  MILITARY  ZONE   Israeli forces declared the Khan al-Ahmar village, east of occupied Jerusalem in the central West bank, on Friday, a closed military zone.   ___A Ma’an reporter said that Israeli forces closed all roads leading to Khan al-Ahmar, preventing Palestinians and journalists from entering the village.   ___Israeli forces closed the iron gate at the entrance of the village, early Friday morning.   More . . .
Related . . . EU Exerts Effort to Halt Demolition of Khan Al-Ahmar
Related . . . Despite Israeli restrictions, Palestinians perform prayer in Khan al-Ahmar
|  ISRAELI  SOLDIERS  SAVAGELY  ASSAULT  [DISABLED]  JERUSALEMITE
He was not protected by his injury nor his crutch. The young Jerusalemite Amir Abu Laban, 28 years old, was hospitalized in the Hadassah Ein Karem hospital in Jerusalem, after he was cruelly beaten by Israeli soldiers at the King Hussein Bridge crossing at the Jordanian-Palestinian border a few days ago.   [. . . .] The crime of the young Abu Laban was that he said to the occupation soldiers that he has special needs, and that he cannot be examined through X-rays which has a negative impact on his health, due to the existence of platinum in his body because of his disability, yet the soldiers violently assaulted him.   More . . .

COMMENTARY    AND    OPINION. . . .

|  ISRAEL’S  STRANGLEHOLD  ON  AREA  C:  DEVELOPMENT  AS  RESISTANCE
Ahmad El-Atrash
Israel’s efforts to tighten its grip on the West Bank have been unprecedented since the current Israeli cabinet formed in 2015. . . . Five decades of Israeli occupation – particularly since the Oslo Accords were signed in 1993 – have allowed Israel to continue its colonization of Palestinian land while rendering Palestinian development truncated, distorted, and even mythological.    [. . . .]  Israel has developed [Area C] in particular for its own purposes, namely through the construction of settlements and military infrastructure.   ___In the face of Israel’s policy of expansion in the West Bank, Palestinians view their own development as a means of resistance.    More . . .
|  WHAT  NETANYAHU’S  IDEA  OF  PEACE  LOOKS  LIKE 
Haggai Matar
U.S. President Donald Trump said that he favors two states as a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, during a press conference alongside Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in New York on Wednesday.   ___ In response to Trump’s comments, which signaled a change from his previous stance, according to which he would back whichever solution Israelis and Palestinians support, Netanyahu told “. . . . I am willing for the Palestinians to have the authority to rule themselves without the capability to harm us.” Israel, said Netanyahu, will not “relinquish security control west of the Jordan.”   More. . .

NOTICES  FROM  ORGANIZATIONS. . . .

KinderUSADR.  MADS  GILBERT:  A  RETURN  VISIT  TO  GAZA,  October 21, 2018 3:00 pm – 6:00 pm. Angelika Film Center, Plano, Texas. Information and REGISTRATION.

POEM  FOR  THE  DAY. . . .

“COLLATERAL  SAVAGE,”  BY  LAHAB  ASSEF  AL-JUNDI
Survivors of The Holocaust please
Talk to me. Help me understand―
Do you sanction what’s being done
In your names?

I thought your spirits
grew more gentle
having lived through the unspeakable.

Bombs are not less lethal or evil―
Stop being so deathly afraid of the other.

A thousand eyes for an eye?
Children of the Holocaust
please do not lash out
as if you lost your sight.

From BEFORE  THERE  IS  NOWHERE  TO  STAND:  PALESTINE  ISRAEL  POETS  RESPOND  TO  THE  STRUGGLE.  Ed. By Joan Dobbie and Grace Beeler. Sandpoint ID: Lost Horse Press, 2012.

“. . . . 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.

 

“. . . but with you, the sun’s enemy, I will not bargain . . .” (Samih al -Qasim)

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A Meme from FaceBook. Perhaps it should read “recognizes Tel Aviv as the capital of the United States.”

❶ PPS: 490 Palestinians detained by Israeli forces since Trump decision on Jerusalem

  • Background: “A Letter from the Editors: The Longest Occupation.” Against the Current

. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) Israeli forces detain cousin of Ahed Tamimi, extend detention of Ahed and her mother
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴃ) Palestinians injured as Israeli army suppresses rallies against US decision on Jerusalem
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴄ) Palestinian teen remains in a coma after being shot in head by Israeli forces
❷ President Abbas meets Saudi King Salman in Riyadh
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) UNGA to vote on withdrawing US recognition of Jerusalem as Israeli capital
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴃ) Palestinian delegations holding talks in Russia and China on future of peace process
❸ POETRY by Samih al -Qasim
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ PPS:  490  PALESTINIANS  DETAINED  BY  ISRAELI  FORCES  SINCE  TRUMP  DECISION  ON  JERUSALEM 
Ma’an News Agency    
Dec. 20, 2017 ―Israeli forces detained at least 28 Palestinians overnight between Tuesday and Wednesday from the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, according to official Palestinian and Israeli sources.
___The Palestinian Prisoner’s Society (PPS) . . .   said that as of Tuesday, the total number of Palestinians detained by Israeli forces since the beginning of the protests that followed US President Donald Trump’s’ recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital was 490, including 148 minors and 11 women.  MORE . . . 

“A  LETTER  FROM  THE  EDITORS:  THE  LONGEST  OCCUPATION.” 
AGAINST THE CURRENT, vol. 32, no. 189, Jul/Aug2017, pp. 2-44.
DONALD TRUMP’S SPEECH to the regional potentates and dictators assembled for the occasion in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia was generally acclaimed as eminently presidential, and rightly so. That is to say, it was firmly in the tradition of U.S. presidential addresses on Middle East policy: utterly cynical, dripping with deceit, and above all, irreversibly tied to the United States’ leading role as the chief arms merchant to some of the world’s most brutal regimes.
___Unlike some of his predecessors, of course, Trump paid no lip service to human rights or democracy, both of which he despises — as do his Saudi royal hosts, who understood perfectly that the way to treat him is with limitless pomp and flattery . . .
[. . . .] Trump’s performance in Riyadh . . .  was in some ways as breathtaking as it was presidential. He assured the assembled rulers of Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain etc. that “we are not here to lecture you,” and declaimed the absence of democracy — in Iran. In fact, Iran just held an election. The population didn’t get to choose the candidates. . .  But given the choices presented to them, Iranians voted overwhelmingly for the “moderate” president Hassan Rouhani who promised openness and social relaxation.
[. . . .] Whatever happens to Trump’s presidency won’t be decided by his antics in Riyadh, Jerusalem or Brussels. It will end if, and at whatever point, he becomes a liability rather than an enabler of the savage rightwing Republican political agenda. But it’s important that the resistance to the Trump regime — which has only intensified after his withdrawal from the international climate agreement — take up the issues of war in the Middle East, Palestine in particular.   FULL ARTICLE . . .

.  .  .  .  .  ❶  ―  (ᴀ)  ISRAELI  FORCES  DETAIN  COUSIN  OF  AHED  TAMIMI,  EXTEND  DETENTION  OF  AHED  AND  HER  MOTHER 
Ma’an News Agency   
Dec. 20, 2017 ― Israeli forces detained the cousin of Palestinian teenage actvist Ahed al-Tamimi during predawn raids on Wednesday in the occupied West Bank.
___Locals in the central West Bank village of Nabi Saleh told Ma’an that Israeli forces detained 21-year-old Nour Naji al-Tamimi, the cousin of 17-year-old Ahed al-Tamimi who was detained . . . after a video went viral of her slapping an armed Israeli officer during a raid on Nabi Saleh.
___Nour, who appeared in the video next to Ahed as the two attempted to push the soldiers out of their property, was reportedly arrested for reasons relating to the video.
___Ahed’s mother, Nariman, was also detained on Tuesday . . .  According to Arabic media, both Ahed and Nariman’s detentions were extended.  MORE . . .
.  .  .  .  .  ❶  ―  (ᴃ)  PALESTINIANS  INJURED  AS  ISRAELI  ARMY  SUPPRESSES  RALLIES  AGAINST  US  DECISION  ON  JERUSALEM
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
Dec. 20, 2017 ― Israeli forces responded with force on Wednesday shooting live and rubber bullets and tear gas canisters to disperse thousands of Palestinians who rallied across the West Bank districts of Ramallah, Hebron, Tulkarm and Bethlehem against the US decision recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital causing dozens of suffocation cases and at least one injury from live bullet.
___The Palestinian national and Islamic forces called for mass rallies in all the Palestinian cities after which participants would march to contact points with Israeli soldiers.     MORE . . . 
.  .  .  .  .  ❶  ―  (ᴄ)  PALESTINIAN  TEEN  REMAINS  IN  A  COMA  AFTER  BEING  SHOT  IN  HEAD  BY  ISRAELI  FORCES
Ma’an News Agency 
Dec. 19, 2017 ― Fourteen-year-old Muhammad Fadel al-Tamimi remains in a medically-induced coma as of Tuesday, days after he was hot in the face with a rubber-coated steel bullet by Israeli forces.
___The Palestinian teenager, a resident of the central occupied West Bank town of Nabi Saleh, was injured during clashes in his village on Friday.    MORE . . . 
❷  PRESIDENT  ABBAS  MEETS  SAUDI  KING  SALMAN  IN  RIYADH 
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA 
Dec. 20, 2017 ― President Mahmoud Abbas met in Riyadh on Wednesday with King Salman bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud of Saudi Arabia and briefed him on the latest developments and efforts to protect Jerusalem from the dangers facing it following US President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as capital of Israel earlier this month.   MORE . . .
.  .  .  .  .  ❷  ―  (ᴀ)  UNGA  TO  VOTE  ON  WITHDRAWING  US  RECOGNITION  OF  JERUSALEM  AS  ISRAELI  CAPITAL 
Palestine News Network – PNN
Dec. 20, 2017 ―Palestine’s Permanent Observer at the United Nations, Riyad Mansour, said the United Nations General Assembly is going to vote on Thursday on a draft resolution that calls for withdrawing the United States’ recent decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, Voice of Palestine radio reported Wednesday.
___He told the Voice of Palestine radio that the UN General Assembly will hold a session named “United for Peace” on Thursday to vote on the draft resolution which asks the US to back down on its recent decision on Jerusalem, after the US vetoed a similar UN Security Council resolution last Monday.    MORE . . .
.  .  .  .  .  ❷  ―  (ᴃ)  PALESTINIAN  DELEGATIONS  HOLDING  TALKS  IN  RUSSIA  AND  CHINA  ON  FUTURE  OF  PEACE  PROCESS  
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA     
Dec. 20, 2017 ― Two official Palestinian delegations are in Russia and China to discuss the future of the peace process, PLO Executive Committee member Saleh Rafat said on Wednesday.
___He told the official Voice of Palestine radio that the visit by the two Palestinian delegations is part of efforts to garner support for the Palestinian position that strongly opposes the US decision recognizing Jerusalem as capital of Israel.
___He said Moscow had confirmed its support for the Palestinian position and would stand by Palestine at the United Nations General Assembly when it meets on Thursday with a goal to denounce the US decision.   MORE . . . 

“A  SPEECH  IN  THE  UNEMPLOYMENT  MARKET,”  BY  SAMIH  AL-QASIM
If you like, I will forfeit my wages
and put up my clothes and bed for sale.
I’ll work as a stonecutter, porter or street-sweeper,
and search for grain in the dung of cattle
and languish, naked and hungry
but with you, the sun’s enemy, I will not bargain.
With the last throb in my veins I will resist.

Though you steal the last foot of my land
and feed my youth to the prison,
seize my grandfather’s inheritance
of furnishings, dishes and pots,
burn my poems and books,
throw my flesh to the dogs
and dwell as a dream of horror over my village
with you, the sun’s enemy, I will not bargain.
With the last throb in my veins I will resist.

You may smother my flame in the night,
withhold my mother’s kiss
and let children curse my kinfolk.
You may slip past the guardian of my sorrows
and settle my history between a coward and a senseless god.
You may deny my children holiday clothes
and fool my friends with a borrowed face,
hedge me around with all your walls
and sacrifice my days on some humble spot
but with you, the sun’s enemy, I will not bargain.
With the last throb in my veins I will resist.

Enemy of the sun,
in the port there is feasting, a flood of good tidings,
shrills and shouts and a cry of joy;
heroic anthems burst from every throat!
On the horizon, a boat
challenges the wind and boundless sea, and passes out of danger.
It is Ulysses’ return
from the lost seas―
the return of the sun, and of the exiled―
and by her eyes,
and by his eyes,
I swear I will not bargain!

I will resist.
― (1967)

An interview with Samih Al-Qasim.
From WHEN THE WORDS BURN: AN ANTHOLOGY OF MODERN ARABIC POETRY: 1945-1987. Translated and edited by John Mikhail Asfour. Dunvegan, Ontario, Canada. Cormorant Books, 1988.

“. . . The crowd has scattered and the guests are gone . . .” (Jabra Ibrahim Jabra)

❶ FM Malki says ‘United for Peace’ will be invoked at UN General Assembly
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) Abbas signs 22 int’l treaties to boost legal status of Palestine
❷ Nablus: Qusra village sees no end to settler violence
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) Israel settler who killed Palestinian farmer acted in ‘self-defense’
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴃ) Israel army exonerates itself over killing of Palestinian wheelchair-user

  • Background: “Freedom of Expression and Social Media in Palestine.” Palestine-Israel Journal of Politics, Economics & Culture

❸ Video: Israeli forces detain 17-year-old Palestinian girl in overnight raid
. . . . . ❸ ― (ᴀ) Israeli forces arrest Palestinian mother hours after detaining her teenage daughter
❹ POETRY by Jabra Ibrahim Jabra
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
FM  MALKI  SAYS  ‘UNITED  FOR  PEACE’  WILL  BE  INVOKED  AT  UN  GENERAL  ASSEMBLY
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
Dec. 19, 2017 ― Foreign and Expatriates Minister Riyad Malki said on Tuesday that Palestine is going to call for an extraordinary session for the United Nations General Assembly under the term “United for Peace” to transfer the powers of the Security Council to the General Assembly in order to vote on the same draft resolution that the United States has vetoed the night.
___Malki said in an interview with Voice of Palestine radio that the General Assembly is going to meet on Tuesday to vote on a draft resolution affirming the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination.
___He said he expects that most of the member states are going to vote in favor of this resolution, which will constitute a slap in the face of the US and a strong response to its use of veto power to kill the Arab-sponsored draft resolution on Jerusalem.   MORE . . . 
.  .  .  .  .  ―  (ᴀ)  ABBAS  SIGNS  22  INT’L  TREATIES  TO  BOOST  LEGAL  STATUS  OF  PALESTINE 
The Palestinian Information Center
Dec. 18, 2017 ― President Mahmoud Abbas on Monday signed 22 agreements and international treaties that are believed to strengthen the legal status of the State of Palestine on a global scale.
___These important agreements would make the State of Palestine a key partner in discussing and addressing the fundamental issues facing the whole world, the official Palestinian news agency WAFA reported.   MORE . . .
❷  NABLUS:  QUSRA  VILLAGE  SEES  NO  END  TO  SETTLER  VIOLENCE   
Al Jazeera English 
by Farah Najjar & Shatha Hammad
Dec. 19, 2017 ― The killing of a Palestinian farmer by Israeli settlers in a northern West Bank village last month has left his family in mourning, while fighting an ongoing legal battle to save their home, which is slated for demolition.
___Mahmoud al-Zaal’s eight-member family live in Qusra, a village encircled by illegal settlements and outposts south of the city of Nablus.
___An Israeli settler from a nearby outpost shot Zaal, 48, while he was ploughing his farmland. “He saw them approaching and when they began to pester him, he called out for me,” Awad, Zaal’s son, told Al Jazeera.  MORE . . . 
.  .  .  .  . ❷ ―  (ᴀ)  ISRAEL  SETTLER  WHO  KILLED  PALESTINIAN  FARMER  ACTED  IN  ‘SELF-DEFENSE’    
The Middle East Monitor – MEMO
Dec. 19, 2017 ― Israeli military prosecution yesterday charged Palestinian Mohamed Wadi with attempted murder after he threw stones at settlers, while Israel Police are expected to accept a settler’s claims that he killed a Palestinian in “self-defence”, Arab48 reported.
___Requesting an extension to his detention, the prosecution said Wadi had entered a cave where settlers were hiding and threw stones at them at close range.
___The Palestinian from Nablus in the occupied West Bank had allegedly thrown a stone at one of the settler’s heads injuring him.
___This came after a group of illegal settlers raided Palestinian farms in the village of Qusra, near Nablus, and shot 48-year-old farmer Mahmoud Ahmad Zaal Odeh while he was working on his land.      MORE . . . 
.  .  .  .  .  ❷ ―  (ᴃ)  ISRAEL  ARMY  EXONERATES  ITSELF  OVER  KILLING  OF  PALESTINIAN  WHEELCHAIR-USER
The Middle East Monitor – MEMO
Dec. 19, 2017 ― The Israeli military announced yesterday evening that an internal investigation into the killing of Ibrahim Abu-Thurayya in protests on Friday found no wrongdoing by occupation forces.
___Wheelchair-user Abu-Thurayya, 29, was shot in the head during anti-occupation demonstrations by the Gaza Strip perimeter fence, one of four Palestinian fatalities the same day.
___“The initial investigation indicates that no moral or professional failures were identified,” said the Israeli army statement.   MORE . . . 

AbuZayyad, Ziad Khalil.
“FREEDOM  OF  EXPRESSION  AND  SOCIAL  MEDIA  IN  PALESTINE.”
PALESTINE-ISRAEL  JOURNAL  OF  POLITICS,  ECONOMICS  &  CULTURE, vol. 21, no. 2, Nov. 2015, pp. 40-42.
[. . . .] According to Saed Karzoun, a well-known Palestinian activist and digital media expert, 67.5% of Palestinians use computers, while about 24.3% of them use the Internet on a daily basis. There are more than 1,039,700 Facebook users in Palestine. . . . It is accurate to say that social media is seen more as a tool to address non-Palestinians than as an effective tool for any kind of dialogue within Palestinian civil society. Nonetheless, Palestinians have witnessed great success on several occasions when social media was used to organize political or social events.
[. . . .] The greatest challenge that Palestinians face while trying to use social media as a tool for freedom of expression is the change in Israeli policy toward those who dare to express themselves on Facebook or Twitter. Recently Facebook posts have been used as grounds for possible imprisonment when used to express political opinions. Israel has sent dozens of Palestinians to jail for several months, asserting that they expressed extreme points of view on Facebook. Internationally, the discourse has always been that freedom of expression should be maintained on the Internet and that regulations should not allow digital expression to be used as a pretext to hunt down political activists. At the same time, many countries, including Israel, justify their control of the flow of Internet content by stating that this is done for national security and high-priority national interests.
___Palestinian activists clearly need to be given support and training that will help them face the political challenges presented by the censure of digital expression.   FULL ARTICLE . . . 

❸ VIDEO:  ISRAELI  FORCES  DETAIN  17-YEAR-OLD  PALESTINIAN  GIRL  IN  OVERNIGHT  RAID       
Ma’an News Agency   
Dec. 19, 2017 ― Israeli forces detained a 17-year-old Palestinian girl from the Nabi Saleh village in northwestern Ramallah in the central occupied West Bank on Tuesday morning before dawn.
___Israeli forces raided the home of the al-Tamimi family, well-known internationally for their activism against the Israeli occupation, and detained Ahed al-Tamimi, 17.
___Israeli forces also confiscated computers, mobile phones and cameras from the house during the raid. According to locals, Ahed was arrested over a video went viral on social media of her slapping an armed Israeli officer during a raid on Nabi Saleh.     MORE . . . 
.  .  .  .  .  ―  (ᴀ)  ISRAELI  FORCES  ARREST  PALESTINIAN  MOTHER  HOURS  AFTER  DETAINING  HER  TEENAGE  DAUGHTER   
Ma’an News Agency 
Dec. 19, 2017 ― The mother of a Palestinian teenage girl, who was detained from her home by Israeli forces before dawn on Tuesday, was reportedly detained at an Israeli police station when seeking information about her daughter’s whereabouts.
___Official Palestinian Authority (PA)-owned Wafa news agency reported that Nariman al-Tamimi was detained by Israeli officers on Tuesday morning at the Benyamin police station, north of Ramallah in the central occupied West Bank.  MORE . . .

“BEYOND  GALILEE,”  BY  JABRA  IBRAHIM  JABRA
When I lived with Christ,
died with him and was resurrected
my voice was still shouting in the wilderness,
a voice unlike my own
burning with an unfamiliar fire.

Whose fire?
Give me shade and cold water,
and I will hang my memories on
a wall in some deserted room.
The crowd has scattered and the guests are gone;
the voice shouts in vain
like the voice of all that came before
death and Galilee.
On my lips are traces of honey
and hemlock.
Have I come after death to hear my voice
pulling me toward a long-deserted void?
Give me shade! And you, woman,
put a chunk of ice in your water.
The sun is burning. Life after death
is tiresome. And still my voice is drawn by the fire.
For whom? For whom
have I closed my eyes, while on my lips were
those traces of honey and hemlock?

From WHEN  THE  WORDS  BURN:  AN  ANTHOLOGY  OF  MODERN  ARABIC  POETRY:  1945-1987.  Translated and edited by John Mikhail Asfour. Dunvegan, Ontario, Canada. Cormorant Books, 1988.
About Jabra Ibrahim Jabra.