“. . . I have prepared my poems And reclaimed my hand From the combat of the street . . .” Ibrahim Nasrallah

NEWS OF THE DAY

Israeli settlers raze lands near Nablus

WAFA
Mar 1 2020
Extremist Israeli settlers embarked today on razing tracts of land in the villages of Qusra and Jurish, to the south of the occupied West Bank city of Nablus, according to local sources.
– – – – Ghassan Daghlas, a local official in charge of monitoring settler violence, told WAFA that settlers used bulldozers to raze lands in an area belonging to the aforementioned villages.    More . . . .

Another push to make Qalandia Airport a Jewish settlement

AL-MONITOR – PALESTINE PULSE
Feb  28 2020
By Daoud Kuttab
In a move that appears to directly contradict the Donald Trump administration’s Mideast plan, the Israeli Housing Ministry announced Feb. 18 its intention to build 11,000 housing units on the grounds of the runway of the former Jerusalem airport, known as the Qalandia Airport (Atarot Airport).
– – – – The US “Peace to Prosperity” plan states: “The State of Israel should allow for the development by the State of Palestine of a special tourism zone in Atarot, in a specific area to be agreed upon by the parties.”
– – – – Atarot, according to the plan, “should be a world class tourist zone that should support Muslim tourism to Jerusalem and its holy sites,” and would include restaurants, shops, hotels, cultural centers, and other tourism facilities, along with “state-of-the-art public transportation that provides easy access to and from the holy sites.”     More . . . .

Weekly Report On Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (20– 26 February 2020)

PALESTINIAN CENTER FOR HUMAN RIGHTS
Feb 27 2020
Summary:
This week, PCHR documented 207 violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law (IHL) by Israeli occupation forces (IOF) and settlers in the occupied Palestinian territory.  As part of its excessive use of lethal force, IOF killed a Palestinian in Jerusalem and abused the body of a Palestinian in the southern Gaza Strip in a humiliating manner.  Moreover, IOF continued to use excessive force against the peaceful protests organized against Trump’s Peace Plan for the Middle East known as the “Deal of Century” that violates the rights of the Palestinian people and is in conflict with the United Nation (UN) resolutions and international law.  Meanwhile, settlers backed up by IOF continued to seize more civilian property and attack civilians and their property.     More . . . .

BACKGROUND/OPINION

The Systematic use of Torture and Ill-Treatment at Israeli Interrogation Centers … Cases of Torture Committed at al-Mascobiyya Interrogation Center

ADDAMEER Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association
Jan 23 2020
Since its creation, the occupying state enforced and developed laws and practices that led to both the systematic use of torture and to absolute impunity for the perpetrator of this crime. Historically speaking, several torture methods were used against Palestinians, that included but were not limited to shaking, the baby chair, covering the head with a bag, forced listening to loud music, the closet, ripping of nails, and many other methods that were used to extract confessions from Palestinian detainees. In fact, since the beginning of the occupation in 1967, 73 Palestinian detainees were killed in Israeli interrogations.
– – – – The Israeli occupation authorities never stopped resorting to torture as the standard operating procedure in extracting confessions from Palestinian detainees. In point of fact, the crime of torture is systematic and widely-spread with the complicity of the Israeli judicial system. At the end of 2019, the intelligence agency “Shabak” subjected a number of detainees at al-Mascobiyya interrogation center to severe physical and psychological torture, without any form of monitoring and protection. Addameer is the legal representative for around 50 cases of the detainees in interrogations.    More . . . .

POEM OF THE DAY

“ABSENCE,” BY  IBRAHIM NASRALLAH

Who loves the winter as you do?
And is fascinated by trees that resist the wind as you do?
And who like you perfects life
With such innocent joy?
God!
If only you were with me now
I have prepared everything
The chestnuts and the fire,
I have pulled back the blinds
And raised my prayer to the gypsy rain
Pleaded that it persist in its discord
And eternal rites
God!
If only you were beside me now!
I have prepared my poems
And reclaimed my hand
From the combat of the street
From the merchants
And the brokers
And the guardsmen,
And a frost that has tried so often
To squeeze you out of my heart
From bullets that have repeatedly aimed
To swallow up the ring of your voice
As you commune with the buds
Or kindle the fire
God!
Had you been with me
We would have sung our song now
The one which the wind almost uproots from my voice
Each time I sing it alone

–Translation by Ibrahim Muhawi
From RAIN INSIDE: Selected Poems, by Ibrahim Nasrallah. Curbstone Press, 2009. Available from Google Books.

“. . . these are not equal sides, occupier and occupied / We teach life, Sir . . . “ (Rafeef Ziadah)

IMG_3215 - Copy
Israeli Occupation Forces tower separating Palestinian homes from illegal settlement in Hebron (Photo: Harold Knight, Nov. 7, 2015)

SELECTED   NEWS   OF   THE   DAY. . .
|    IN  VIDEO  –  DOZENS  OF  PALESTINIAN  STUDENTS  SHOT,  INJURED  NEAR  BETHLEHEM
Israeli forces shot and injured several Palestinian students, while dozens of others suffered from tear-gas inhalation, on Sunday, as Israeli forces attacked them in the Tuqu village, in the southern occupied West Bank district of Bethlehem.    ___Local sources confirmed that Israeli forces raided the Tuqu high school and fired tear-gas bombs and rubber-coated steel bullets towards Palestinian students. of Bethlehem.    ___Local sources confirmed that Israeli forces raided the Tuqu high school and fired tear-gas bombs and rubber-coated steel bullets towards Palestinian students.    [. . . .] Israeli forces forced the students and staff members to evacuate the premises, resulting in taking control of the high school and shutting it down.    Sources added that that Israeli forces sealed off the two main entrances to the Tuqu village.     More . . .
. . . . Related  ISRAELI  FORCES  ATTACK,  INJURE  DOZENS  OF  PALESTINIAN  STUDENTS  IN  HEBRON
. . . . Related  ISRAEL  BANS  RENOVATIONS  OF  PALESTINIAN  KINDERGARTEN  IN  HEBRON
. . . . Related  ISRAELI  SOLDIERS  TRY  TO  STEAL  PLAYGROUND  EQUIPMENT  IN  BEIT  TA’MIR  TOWN
|    HEBRON  IS  BRAVING  A  STORM  OF  JUDAISATION   The ongoing and intense settlement activity in the occupied West Bank city of Hebron confirms Israel’s deliberate policy to empty it of its Arab inhabitants and Judaise it. The Palestinian city remains the second most targeted area for illegal Jewish settlements after Jerusalem. The first settlement activity in the West Bank was the establishment of the Kfar Etzion kibbutz in the strategic area bordering Hebron.    ___. . . Israel’s plans for the Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron are no less dangerous than its Judaisation plans for Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem. Over the years, the Israeli settlers have turned a major section of the mosque into a synagogue.   [. . . .]  the Israeli government announced recently a new settlement plan targeting the heart of Hebron in order to link the settlements built across the city by means of new illegal blocs.    More . . .
. . . . Related EXTREMIST  ISRAELI  SETTLERS  ATTACK  PALESTINIAN  WORKERS  [HEBRON]
. . . . Related SETTLERS  BAN  ENTRY  OF  TRUCKLOADS  TO  GAZA
|    GREENBLATT:  NEITHER  SIDE  WILL  LIKE  THE  US  “DEAL  OF  THE  CENTURY”
US White House Envoy [Special Representative for International Negotiations] Jason Greenblatt, said in a closed meeting, that the US administration will soon be presenting President Trump’s peace plan in the Middle East that “neither side will like.”    ___According to Israel’s Channel 10, the meeting was held in London, and organized by the UK Association for the Wellbeing of Israel’s Soldiers, in which Greenblatt said that the plan would be a permanent deal instead of temporary agreements, adding that “there will be a need to compromise.”    More . . .

COMMENTARY    AND    OPINION. . . .
|    PALESTINIAN  EDUCATION  MUST  MOVE  AWAY  FROM  THE  IMPOSED  HUMANITARIAN  AGENDA
Ramona Wadi
As the media hype over Khan Al-Ahmar fades away, mainstream narratives have yet to find another sensationalist violation to exploit . . .   the fate of the Bedouin community it houses will be forgotten . . .  Khan Al-Ahmar’s much-publicized school, built of tires and clay, will also fade into oblivion with the rest of the village and its inhabitants.    [. . . .] a Human Rights Watch (HRW) report dated April 2018 stated that 44 Palestinian schools are risking full or partial demolitions.   [. . . .]  For Israel, the targeting of Palestinian education is a political act designed to reduce drastically any chances of Palestinian emancipation, let alone resistance. Palestinians have a long history of utilizing education to provide the foundations for their legitimate anti-colonial struggle. Yet the incessant deprivation is increasingly contributing to a scenario where education is classified as a right from a western, and therefore, acceptable, perspective. Hence, the humanitarian focus on Palestinians being deprived of an uninterrupted right to education is dissociated from the particular needs of Palestinians who are living the realities of Israel’s colonial violence.    More . . .

NOTICES  FROM  ORGANIZATIONS. . . .
   UNRWA  –  PALESTINIAN  REFUGEES  NEED  YOUR  SOLIDARITY  AND  SUPPORT  NOW  MORE  THAN  EVER  BEFORE.   #DignityIsPriceless Campaign. Donate now.

POEM  FOR  THE  DAY. . . . 

“WE  TEACH  LIFE,  SIR”,  LONDON,  12.11.11, BY  RAFEEF  ZIADAH 

“. . . Can a people be born on the guillotine? . . .” (Mahmoud Darwish)

SELECTED   NEWS   OF   THE   DAY. . .

ISRAEL  TO  SEIZE  PALESTINIAN  LANDS  FOR  SETTLEMENT  EXPANSION      The Israeli Civil Administration announced an expansion plan of the illegal Israeli settlement of Tina Omarim in the town of Dahriyeh, in the southern occupied West Bank district of Hebron.    ___A Palestinian research center, Land Research Center, released a report on Monday showing that the Israeli Civil Administration have published a detailed plan that would change the classification of the Palestinian-owned land from agricultural into urban, in order to justify expanding the illegal Israeli settlement.   ___The report said that the plan would lead to the seizure of 260 dunums (64 acres) of Palestinian-owned land in the al-Thahriyeh town.   More . . .

IMF  DRAWS  BLEAK  PICTURE  OF  PALESTINIAN  ECONOMY,  SUGGESTS  WAYS  OUT   The International Monetary Fund (IMF) drew a bleak picture of the Palestinian economy as longstanding constraints continue to act as a brake to growth and suggested ways out from this impediment.   ___It said in a report on the West Bank and Gaza economy that will be submitted to the next ad hoc liaison committee meeting that several factors have contributed to worsening economic situation in the Palestinian territories.   ___The IMF cited the worsening situation in Gaza aggravated by a long Israeli blockade, division, violence and other factors have deemed the outlook “increasingly untenable.”    More . . .

EXCESSIVE  FORCE  REASON  FOR  DEATH  OF  DETAINEE,  SAYS  RIGHTS  GROUP    The Ramallah-based Addameer  human  rights  organization  said on Tuesday that excessive use of force by Israeli soldiers during the arrest of a Palestinian youth was the cause for his death.   ___Mohammad Zaghloul Rimawi, 24, died hours after he was detained by Israeli soldiers during an early morning raid at his home in Beit Rima, northwest of Ramallah.   ___Addameer said . . . an Israeli army force raided the village at around 4 in the morning on Tuesday. . .  The soldiers assaulted Mohammad’s mother then forced all the family (the father, mother and three of their children) into a corner of the house while they took Mohammad to another room in the middle of the house where he was severely beaten . . .  After that the soldiers dragged him and took him to an unknown location. Two hours later, the family was informed by the Palestinian District Office that its son has died.   More . . .
Related . . .  ISRAELI  OCCUPATION  FORCES  ARRESTS  ADDAMEER’S  LEGAL  UNIT  COORDINATOR  AYMAN  NASSER
Related . . .  IOF  LAUNCHES  LARGE-SCALE  ARREST  CAMPAIGN  IN  WEST  BANK
Related . . .  ISRAELI  POLICE  ASSAULT  PALESTINIANS  AT  AL-AQSA  MOSQUE  AS  JEWISH  FANATICS  INTENSIFY  PROVOCATIONS

COMMENTARY    AND    OPINION. . . .

TRUMP’S  DECISION  TO  CLOSE  THE  PLO  EMBASSY  SAYS  MORE  ABOUT  THE  FUTURE  OF  THE  US  THAN  THE  FUTURE  OF  PALESTINE
Trump’s decision to revoke the presence of the PLO Embassy in Washington says a lot more about the future of the US order than about the future of Palestine.   ___US willingness to parley with the PLO was based on the PLO’s participation in a bi-partisan charade: the peace process. . .  The peace process was the name given to the game of geopolitical management the US used to maintain its relationships with client states in Jordan, Egypt, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia. . . The US secured arms markets, purchases of its treasuries, sowing of anti-Shia sectarianism, and socio-political containment . . .  of the largest Arab working class, the Egyptians, in exchange for supporting local elites.  [. . . .] Trump  has  ripped  the  veils  off  US  government  strategy. This portends little for Palestine, since the Democratic Party – Lobby or no Lobby – will disintegrate into a thousand fragments before it will push for even a whisper of justice for Palestinians. There is no hope there. However, larger shifts in turn speak to a larger question: where does Palestine and the struggles to which Palestine is increasingly linked fit into a long-term strategy for those of us who wish for a relatively more equal and just world – a world with room for many worlds?   More . . .
DECODING  THE  PIPES/TRUMP/KUSHNER  ‘DEAL  OF  THE  CENTURY”
Richard Falk
You didn’t have to be a ‘never Trump’ loyalist to have qualms about proposing to bring peace to Palestinians and Jews by creating conditions that would produce ‘The Deal of the Century.’ And let’s be fair, if the game of nations is now played according to the rules of Madison Avenue, the phrase was a winner despite being a loser if evaluated from a problem-solving perspective. Even in the present degraded political atmosphere, to bet on an advertising slogan as a substitute for healing ideas may be a good formula for ensuring a large audience for a reality TV episode, but it is a cruel evasion when it comes to addressing the daily ordeal of the Palestinian people consigned to the victimization associated with living under the Israeli apartheid state.    More . . .

NOTICES  FROM  ORGANIZATIONS. . . .

RESEARCHING  THE  AMERICAN-ISRAELI  ALLIANCE  (RAIA)   RAIA is a research initiative launched in 2017 dedicated to exposing the connections between American and Israeli state violence. Our work is grounded in the conviction that the ongoing dispossession and oppression of the Palestinian people undermines the possibility of a viable homeland for both Palestinians and Israelis.  Website . . .   Donate . . .

POEM  FOR  THE  DAY. . . . 

“WE  ARE  ENTITLED  TO  LOVE  AUTUMN,”  BY  MAHMOUD  DARWISH

We are entitled to love the end of this autumn and ask:
Is there room for another autumn in the field to rest our bodies like coal?
An autumn lowering its leaves like gold. I wish we were fig leaves
…I wish we were an abandoned plant
To witness the change of seasons. I wish we didn’t say goodbye
…to the south of the eye so as to ask what
Our fathers had asked when they flew on the tip of the spear. Poetry
…and God’s name will be merciful to us.
We are entitled to dry the nights of lovely women, and talk
…about what
Shortens the night for two strangers waiting for the north to reach the
…compass.
An autumn. Indeed we are entitled to smell the scent of this autumn,
…to ask the night for a dream.
Does a dream fall sick like the dreamers? An autumn, an autumn.
Can a people be born on the guillotine?
We are entitled to die the way we want to die. Let the land hide in an
…ear of wheat.

– – – From VICTIMS  OF  A  MAP:  A  Bilingual  Anthology  of  Arabic  Poetry.
Trans. by Abdullah al-Udhari. London: Saqi Books, 1984 & 2005.

“. . . Prison assaults but does not hit the mark . . .” (Ahmad Dahbur)

❶ Israel’s arrests of Palestinians ‘highest in years’

Background: “Multiple Legal Systems in the West Bank.” Palestine-Israel Journal of Politics, Economics & Culture.

❷ 2 Palestinians, Israeli soldier injured during al-Duheisha refugee camp raid
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) Israeli forces detain 32 Palestinians in West Bank, Jerusalem
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴃ) Israeli forces ban Palestinian citizens of Israel from entering Old City of Jerusalem
❸ “MADA” demands release of detained journalists in Palestinian prisons
❹ POETRY by  Ahmad Dahbur
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ ISRAEL’S  ARRESTS  OF  PALESTINIANS  ‘HIGHEST  IN  YEARS’
Al Jazeera English
Zena Tahhan
Aug. 9, 2017.   Israeli forces arrested some 1,268 Palestinians in the occupied Palestinian territories over the last two months, according to rights groups.
___Several non-governmental organisations, including the Ramallah-based Addameer prisoner rights group and al-Mezan rights centre in Gaza, released the figures in a joint press release published on Tuesday.
___In June, the arrest of 388 Palestinians from across the West Bank, the Gaza Strip and Jerusalem, including 70 children and six women was documented.
___In July, Israeli forces proceeded to arrest an additional 880 Palestinians, including 144 children and 18 women.   MORE . . .

(Note: This article is an explanation of the evolution of the current system of laws and courts in the West Bank.)

Shehadeh, Raja.
“MULTIPLE  LEGAL  SYSTEMS  IN  THE  WEST  BANK.”
Palestine-Israel Journal of Politics, Economics & Culture, vol. 21, no. 3, Jan. 2016, pp. 6-15.
The concept of a ’’dual legal system” has a long history, stemming from the beginning of Israel’s military occupation of the West Bank of the Jordan River in 1967. . .  Israel’s ultimate aim is the annexation of the West Bank without its Palestinian inhabitants. However, the unlikelihood and difficulty of a mass expulsion of Arabs has meant that an interim period, pending full de jure annexation, has necessitated the creation of a particular legal relationship with the territory. Among the legal problems that arise in this interim period are the following:

* How to apply Israeli law to the Jewish settlements in the West Bank while the area has not been annexed and is not under Israeli sovereignty. Related to this problem are the situations in which courts are to apply this law, which government departments are to execute it, and how to ensure that only the Jewish settlers will be subject to these laws, courts and government departments.

* How to avoid applying the Israeli legal system to the Palestinian inhabitants.

* How to reconcile this peculiar legal state of affairs with the requirements of international law.     FULL ARTICLE . . .

❷ 2  PALESTINIANS,  ISRAELI  SOLDIER  INJURED  DURING  AL-DUHEISHA  REFUGEE  CAMP  RAID  
Ma’an News Agency 
Aug. 9, 2017.   Two Palestinians were shot and injured during a predawn raid on Wednesday by Israeli forces on the al-Duheisha refugee camp in the southern occupied West Bank city of Bethlehem.
___Locals identified the two injured as Raed al-Salhi and Aziz Arafeh, adding that al-Salhi was critically injured while Arafeh was injured in the leg and in stable condition.
___The two were detained by Israeli forces and taken to the Hadassah hospital in Jerusalem for treatment.        MORE . . .
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) ISRAELI  FORCES  DETAIN  32  PALESTINIANS  IN  WEST  BANK,  JERUSALEM
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
August 9, 2017.   Israeli forces detained overnight at least 32 Palestinians during raids across the occupied West Bank districts and East Jerusalem, the Palestinian Prisoner’s Society (PPS) said on Wednesday.   MORE . . .
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴃ) ISRAELI  FORCES  BAN  PALESTINIAN  CITIZENS  OF  ISRAEL  FROM  ENTERING  OLD  CITY  OF  JERUSALEM 
Ma’an News Agency
Aug. 9, 2017.   Israeli forces prevented dozens of Palestinian citizens of Israel from entering the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in occupied East Jerusalem on Tuesday afternoon, claiming that they had been subjected to bans from “higher orders.”
___Sources told Ma’an that Israeli forces were deployed at the entrances to the Old City and Al-Aqsa ahead of the asr afternoon prayers, examining the IDs of people entering the Old City, and preventing Palestinians whose ID cards said they resided in Palestinian-majority towns in Israel from entering.
___Witnesses said that Israeli forces chased after some people who tried to pass through Damascus Gate into the Old City despite having been told they were not allowed in, and escorted them out.
___The witnesses added that Israeli forces had forced some buses carrying worshipers to leave Jerusalem.
___A worshiper from the town of Umm al-Fahm said that some eight buses coming from Palestinian-majority municipalities such as Umm al-Fahm, Mashhad, and Baqa al-Gharbiya had been stopped by Israeli security forces upon arriving at the Old City of Jerusalem.   MORE . . .
❸ “MADA”  DEMANDS  RELEASE  OF  DETAINED  JOURNALISTS  IN  PALESTINIAN  PRISONS    
Palestine News Network – PNN
Aug. 9, 2017.   The Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedoms (MADA) condemns the arrest campaign carried out by the security services in the West Bank last night against five journalists; MADA expresses its rejection of all justifications of attacks against media freedoms.
___The arrestment campaign included the following journalists: Ahmad Mohammad Halayka, Tareq Abu Zeyd, Quttaiba Saleh Qasem, Mamdouh Mahmoud Hamamreh and Amer Abdulhakim Abu Arafa.
___Moy’ad Hamamreh the brother of the journalist Mamdouh Hamamreh reported to MADA “at around19:00pm of (08/08/2017) and while my brother Mamdouh was in a shop right near his house in Husan village, a private car arrived (Scoda), with agents dressed in civil presented themselves as Palestinian intelligence agents, and asked Mamdouh to accompany them without presenting any official document or any arrest warrant, and they deported him to the headquarters of the Palestinian Intelligence in Bethlehem”.   MORE . . .

“THE  PRISON,”  BY  AHMAD  DAHBUR  (Ahmed  Dahbour)
(To Abu Faris. . . who has been there)

Prison teaches that the heart is a desert,
That light is a desert.
It curses the fire and the land of the commandos.
Prison teaches that water is a chameleon,
That the landscape is a snake,
That echo is treacherous, and the wind an enemy.
Prison teaches that the guide’s sight grows dim,
And that the homeland departs.
Prison is a black kingdom in the sand;
Prison is a sword guarding the eyelids;
Prison . . . not the homeland!
So how, my beloved homeland, will the beloved ones survive?

Here we are, no complaints and no regrets,
We never say: an aimless wandering!
Blood gushes forth from the depths of our love.
Prison assaults but does not hit the mark;
Our wounds hit back,
Reaching out like water . . . like the wilderness,
Promising the light with a new light.
From deep within us, signaling twice!
Our cub child,
And the fire of salvation.
We see it, yes we do.
We are not dreaming,
We almost step into his joyous landscape
We almost do.
This is the moment of travail in our difficult labor,
We hug the newborn―
He who springs from our very ecstasy,
Whose kicks we feel in our guts,
Who teaches the hungry what he knows
And declares in words well understood:
Revolution, revolution . . . till life.

The inmate has not lost his features in the sand,
Prison did not turn him into a desert.
From his hunger, water and vegetation sprang.
When silence wounds him,
He can break it with a sigh,
But he endures.
His testimony:
Near death, there were exhaustion and fatigue,
His executioner pressing him to promise
A word . . . a groan, or to divulge his secret,
But all in vain.
His countenance was radiating in the sand
Like an oasis,
For prison had not turned him into a desert.

About Ahmad Dahbur. And here.
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

“. . . we will begin our prayers amid this bloody sorrow . . .” (Ibrahim Nasrallah)

❶ Islamic Cooperation to ask Security Council for protection for Aqsa Mosque

Background: “In Defense of Al-Aqsa: The Islamic Movement inside Israel and the Battle for Jerusalem.” Middle East Journal.

. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) Religious figures warn Israel against meddling in Aqsa affairs
❷ Israeli forces detain 21 Palestinians, PLC deputy, in overnight West Bank raids
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) Israeli forces raid Palestinian civil office in Hebron’s Old City
❸ Report: 96 Israeli violations against Palestinian journalists in July
❹ POETRY by Ibrahim Nasrallah
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ ISLAMIC  COOPERATION  TO  ASK  SECURITY  COUNCIL  FOR  PROTECTION  FOR  AQSA  MOSQUE  
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
August 2, 2017.   The Organization of the Islamic Cooperation (OIC), which met in Istanbul in an urgent meeting over the situation in Jerusalem and its Al-Aqsa Mosque, has decided to ask the United Nations Security Council to provide protection to the mosque from Israeli abuses, Foreign Minister Riyad Malki said on Wednesday.
___He told Voice of Palestine radio that the OIC went this time beyond the traditional verbal denunciation of Israel to adopting practical proposals that will be implemented soon.
___He said the OIC decided to call on the Security Council to provide protection for Al-Aqsa Mosque. It also called for providing financial support to strengthen the steadfastness of the Palestinians in Jerusalem and to boycott Israeli settlements products.   MORE . . .

Larkin, Craig and Michael Dumper.
“IN  DEFENSE  OF  AL-AQSA:  THE  ISLAMIC  MOVEMENT  INSIDE  ISRAEL  AND  THE  BATTLE  FOR  JERUSALEM.”
Middle East Journal
, vol. 66, no. 1, Winter2012, pp. 31-52.
[. . . .] This battle for the sacred is most famously played out on Jerusalem’s ancient fault line: the Jewish “Temple Mount” or the Muslim “Noble Sanctuary” [al-Haram al-Sharif], the site of the Western (Wailing) Wall and the only visible remainder of the second Jewish Temple and the al-Aqsa Mosque, the place of Muhammad’s legendary night journey to Heaven . . .  our interest is in its contemporary politicization as a dynamic symbol and site of Israeli-Zionist domination and Palestinian-Muslim resistance.
___Since Israel’s occupation of East Jerusalem in 1967, the Western Wall (and Temple Mount) has become central to nationalist discourses of Yerushalayim — the “unified” “eternal” capital of a Jewish State — and integral as an iconic space for the performance of military ceremonies, political inaugurations, and national-religious festivals.
___For Palestinians, the Haram al-Sharif (al-Aqsa mosque) has similarly emerged as a sacred national emblem. It serves as the emotive scene for the violent outbreak of the second Palestinian uprising or “Al-Aqsa Intifada” in September 2000 and a potent symbol to mobilize local, regional, and global opposition against Israel’s “Judaization” policies in Arab East Jerusalem and ongoing occupation of Palestinian land.
[. . . .] The Islamic presence in Jerusalem was established in 638 CE and its early history in the city is well-documented. . . The city’s prominence in the genesis of Islam and its eschatology made the city also the site of religious schools, mausoleums of the rich, holy, and learned and thus also of pilgrimages, second only to the pilgrimage cities Mecca and Medina. One result of such a role was the evolution of an extensive system of external support in the form of the endowment (or Waqf) system which generated income for the upkeep of mosques and other communal services. The administration and maintenance of this system led in turn to the creation of an extensive bureaucracy, control over and employment in which was highly prized. While there were periods of decline and paralysis during this long and fruitful period, it is clear that on the eve of the 1967 War, the Muslim community in Jerusalem had deep roots, and a comprehensive and strong institutional presence.
[. . . .]  . . . Waqf assets, the sharia court system, religious education, and holy places have become battlegrounds and popular rallying points in the Islamist campaign to create “a parallel system of autonomous communal institutions.” This tactical shift can be traced back to the beginning of Shaykh Ra’id Salah’s “Al-Aqsa is in Danger” [Al-Aqsa fi Khatir] campaign in 1996, which refocused funds, volunteers, and media attention towards the contested Haram al-Sharif/Temple Mount, challenging both Israeli control of the site and PA and Jordanian compliance.    SOURCE . . .

. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) RELIGIOUS  FIGURES  WARN  ISRAEL  AGAINST  MEDDLING  IN  AQSA  AFFAIRS     
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA  
August 2, 2017.   Islamic figures in Jerusalem warned on Wednesday that Israel’s repeated intervention in al-Aqsa Mosque affairs could lead to grave consequences.     ___Head of Islamic Waqf Council, head of the Supreme Islamic Committee, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem and acting Chief Islamic Justice said in a joint statement that Israeli police restrictions on entry of Muslim worshipers into Al-Aqsa Mosque constitute a blatant intervention in the right of worship.     ___Israeli meddling in Al-Aqsa affairs “will take us back to the crisis situation and could lead the entire region to unforeseen grave consequences” . . .     MORE . . .
❷ ISRAELI  FORCES  DETAIN  21  PALESTINIANS,  PLC  DEPUTY,  IN  OVERNIGHT  WEST  BANK  RAIDS 
Ma’an News Agency
Aug. 2, 2017.   Israeli forces detained at least 21 Palestinians, including a deputy of the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC), in overnight raids between Tuesday and Wednesday across the occupied West Bank, according to Palestinian and Israeli sources.
___Israeli raids in Palestinian towns, villages, and refugee camps are a daily occurrence in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, with a biweekly average of 95 search and detention raids carried out over the course of 2016, according to UN documentation.
___According to prisoners’ rights group Addameer, as of May, there were 6,200 Palestinians being held in Israeli prisons, including 12 PLC members.   MORE . . .
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) ISRAELI  FORCES  RAID  PALESTINIAN  CIVIL  OFFICE  IN  HEBRON’S  OLD  CITY
Ma’an News Agency    
Aug. 2, 2017.   Israeli forces raided a civil investigations office in the Old City of Hebron in the southern occupied West Bank on Wednesday, detained the staff members, and confiscated equipment from the office.
___Local sources told Ma’an that the office was opened just a few days ago after an agreement was made between Palestinian and Israeli authorities to establish an office in order to deal with a “wave of increased violence” among locals, especially family disputes in the area which often turn violent.
[. . . .] Israeli forces have continued to hold a number of the employees, local sources said, while Palestinian authorities have been making calls to the Israeli side in order to secure the release of the employees and allow them to continue their work.   MORE . . .
❸ REPORT:  96  ISRAELI  VIOLATIONS  AGAINST  PALESTINIAN  JOURNALISTS  IN  JULY  
The Palestinian Information Center  
August 2, 2017.   The Committee to Support Palestinian Journalists issued a new report on Wednesday documenting Israeli violations against Palestinian journalists over the past month.
___The report said that 96 violations were committed by Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) against Palestinian journalists, while PA forces committed 17 violations.
___The report noted that July 2017 has witnessed the biggest number of violations against Palestinian journalists and media institutions.   MORE . . .

“PRAYER,”  BY  IBRAHIM  NASRALLAH

Farah, we will begin our prayers
amid this bloody sorrow
and among the lonely pine.
What makes the mountains this morning much kinder,
the sun more glamorous,
the wind a song that celebrates the heights?
What makes our beloved jasmine
more pure than we imagined
and more disobedient than we had thought?
What makes these mountains
and these trees that we allowed to be taller than us
much shorter than us now?
Farah, we will continue our prayers
and conjure new seasons for our lives,
new rivers to flow in our veins
and a new place for the world’s singing.
We will continues our prayers
and when love is total,
when our fingers shyly and tenderly come together
like beads of the fig’s milk,
we will climb the mountain to bless all creatures
and together whisper: Amen . . . amen.

About Ibrahim Nasrallah
From Nasrallah, Ibrahim. RAIN INSIDE: SELECTED POEMS. Trans. Omnia Amin and Rick London. Willimantic, CT: Curbstone Press, 2009. Available from Barnes and Noble.

 

“. . . You have stolen my ancestors’ vineyards and the land I once ploughed . . .” (Mahmoud Darwish)

“The savage would eventually cease to exist in the face of civilization’s inevitable, God-ordained expansion. Savagism salved the civilized conscience while completing the task: ‘Civilization had created a savage, so to kill him. Idea had begotten an image, so to kill it’.” (Roy Harvey Pearce)

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A Palestinian woman mourns the destruction of olive trees. (Photo: Flickr / Frank M. Rafik, via Telesur, August 19, 2015)

❶ Assailants destroy 45 olive trees and spray paint ‘revenge’ on Palestinian land
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) On the International Day in Support of Victims of Torture, Addameer highlights systematic abuses by Israeli forces
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴃ) Lawyer who says Palestinians don’t exist sues San Francisco University

Background:   “Civilization, Savagism, and the Presence of Burning Children,” from Cross Currents

❷ Claims of Israeli settlement freeze an ‘attempt to fool the public’
. . . . .  ❷ ― (ᴀ) Knesset passes draft bill to annex illegal West Bank settlements
❸ POETRY by Mahmoud Darwish
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ ASSAILANTS  DESTROY  45  OLIVE  TREES  AND  SPRAY  PAINT  ‘REVENGE’  ON  PALESTINIAN  LAND
Ma’an News Agency
June 25, 2017.  Some 45 olive trees were found destroyed near the village of Burin, adjacent to the notorious illegal Yitzhar settlement in the northern occupied West Bank district of Nablus, while the Hebrew word for “revenge” was spray painted on a stone left in the area, an Israeli human rights organization said Sunday.
___Israeli NGO Rabbis for Human Rights reported on Facebook that the damage was done adjacent to Route 60, the main highway running through the occupied West Bank.  MORE . . .
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) ON  THE  INTERNATIONAL  DAY  IN  SUPPORT  OF  VICTIMS  OF  TORTURE,  ADDAMEER  HIGHLIGHTS  SYSTEMATIC  ABUSES  BY  ISRAELI  FORCES
Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association
June 26, 2017.   On International Day to Support Victims of Torture, Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association highlights the continued forms of physical and psychological torture of Palestinian prisoners and detainees by Israeli forces. Occupation authorities practice torture and ill-treatment in a systematic manner, in contravention with international law, which prohibits physical and psychological torture. Human rights conventions, including the Convention Against Torture, to which Israeli is a signatory, as well as the Fourth Geneva Convention, prohibit the use of torture with no exceptions.
MORE . . .
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴃ) LAWYER  WHO  SAYS  PALESTINIANS  DON’T  EXIST  SUES  SAN  FRANCISCO  UNIVERSITY
The Electronic Intifada   
Charlotte Silver
June 23, 2017.   A lawyer who denies that Palestinians exist is suing San Francisco State University, alleging the administration there fosters a hostile environment for Jewish students.
___But faculty and civil rights lawyers say the lawsuit, filed on behalf of six plaintiffs, is yet another attempt at censorship by conflating criticism of Israel with anti-Semitism.
___The complaint, filed in federal court in Northern California on 19 June, was prepared by The Lawfare Project, a group that describes itself as “the legal arm of the pro-Israel community.”
___Last year, the group’s director, Brooke Goldstein, was filmed asking Israel lobby leaders in New York, “Why are we using the word Palestinian?”
___“THERE’S NO SUCH THING AS A PALESTINIAN PERSON,” GOLDSTEIN ASSERTED . . .   MORE . . .

Smith, Robert O. “Civilization, Savagism, and the Presence of Burning Children.” Cross Currents, vol. 66, no. 2, June 2016, pp. 204-214.
[Roy Harvey Pearce in Savagism and Civilization in 1953] argues that “savagism” is a creation of “civilization” so civilization better understands the boundaries surrounding its proper existence. In the North American context, the “savage” was the Indian (undifferentiated by different tribes). While the Indian had many virtues (i.e., eloquence and closeness to the earth), these were all savage virtues diminished by contact with civilization. . . .  The savage would eventually cease to exist in the face of civilization’s inevitable, God-ordained expansion. Savagism salved the civilized conscience while completing the task: “Civilization had created a savage, so to kill him. Idea had begotten an image, so to kill it” (Pearce).
[. . . .] Five days after the [burning to death of 5-year-old Ali Saad Dawabshe on July 31, 2015], Israeli novelist and commentator David Grossman indicted Israeli right-wing politics for nurturing a climate of extremism.
___Grossman suggested “the consciousness of an occupying people” includes the idea that “there are two kinds of people, and the fact that one is apparently subordinate to another means that it is naturally also inferior to the other,” that “the occupied is less of a human being than the occupier.” Thus, “the person who burned down the Dawabsheh family home knew . . . only that they were Palestinians.” This, Grossman says, “was adequate reason in his eyes . . . to kill them . . .  their mere existence justified their murder and their removal from this world.” This is the logic of savagism. The savage exists, but should not. Their race is run. (Grossman, David, “Will the Israeli Right Finally Come to Its Senses?” Ha’aretz. August 4, 2015).
SOURCE . . . 

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Mohammed, grandfather of 5-year-old Ali Saad Dawabshe, murdered when his family’s home was firebombed by Jewish extremists on July 31, prays while sitting in the wrecked home. (Photo: CNN.com, n.d.)

❷ CLAIMS  OF  ISRAELI  SETTLEMENT  FREEZE  AN  ‘ATTEMPT  TO  FOOL  THE  PUBLIC’       
Ma’an News Agency
June 26, 2017.   After reports emerged Friday that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu promised the United States government to stop marketing new settlement units for the rest of 2017, a representative from settlement watchdog Peace Now called the alleged promise “another spin of the Netanyahu government trying to fool the public.”
___Israeli newspaper The Jerusalem Post had reported that the alleged freeze was discovered when settlers from the illegal Beit El settlement in the central occupied West Bank discovered that plans for 300 new settler homes — promised to the settlers by Netanyahu in exchange for a peaceful evacuation of the illegal Ulpana outpost — were halted.
___Netanyahu then reportedly met with the settlement’s regional council head Shai Alon and ensured him that the homes promised to the settlers would be excluded from the temporary settlement freeze. . . .     MORE . . .
. . . . .  ❷ ― (ᴀ) KNESSET  PASSES  DRAFT  BILL  TO  ANNEX  ILLEGAL  WEST  BANK  SETTLEMENTS   
Palestine News Network – PNN
June 24, 2017.   The Israeli Knesset approved in its preliminary reading a draft law allowing the application of Israeli law in the illegal Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem, Israeli media reported.
___Haaretz said 48 Members of the Knesset supported the bill while 39 voted against it on Wednesday.
___MK, Bezalel Smotrich, of the right-wing Jewish Home party, who initiated the bill said the decision includes transferring petitions against illegal construction in the settlements to the administrative court instead of the Supreme Court.   MORE . . . 

[Note: Mahmoud Darwish wrote this poem in 1964 when he was 22 years old. He was imprisoned for it―his first imprisonment. The poem became rallying words for the Palestinians. Note, it was written before the 1967 War and before the First and Second Intifadas and remains germane in today’s Palestine.]

“IDENTITY  CARD,”  BY MAHMOUD  DARWISH  (1964)

Write down:
I am an Arab
my I.D. number, 50,000
my children, eight
and the ninth due next summer
―Does that anger you?

Write down:
Arab.
I work with my struggling friends in a quarry
and my children are eight.
I chip a loaf of bread for them,
clothes and notebooks
from the rocks.
I will not beg for a handout at your
door nor humble myself
on your threshold
―Does that anger you?

Write down:
Arab,
a name with no friendly diminutive.
A patient man, in a country
brimming with anger.
My roots have gripped this soil
since time began,
before the opening of ages
before the cypress and the olive,
before the grasses flourished.
My father came from a line of plowmen,
and my grandfather was a peasant
who taught me about the sun’s glory
before teaching me to read.
My home is a watchman’s shack
made of reeds and sticks―
Does my condition anger you?

There is no gentle name,
write down:
Arab.
The colour of my hair, jet black―
eyes, brown―
trademarks, a headband over a keffiyeh
and a hand whose touch grates
rough as a rock.
My address is a weaponless village
with nameless streets.
All its men are in the field and quarry
―Does that anger you?

Write down:
Arab.
You have stolen my ancestors’ vineyards
and the land I once ploughed
with my children
leaving my grandchildren nothing but rocks.
Will your government take those too,
as the rumour goes?

Write down, then
at the top of Page One:
I do not hate
and do not steal
but starve me, and I will eat
my assailant’s flesh.
Beware of my hunger
and of my anger.

About Mahmoud Darwish
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.
Film biography of Mahmoud Darwish, Hot Docs Film Festival, Toronto, 2014

“. . . “Since . . . 1967, Israeli forces have arrested more than 800,000 Palestinians . . . 20% of the total Palestinian population . . . .” (Addameer)

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Palestinian protesters during a demonstration in Bethlehem to show their support for Palestinians imprisoned in Israeli jails after hundreds of detainees launched a hunger strike, April 17, 2017. (AHMAD GHARABLI / AFP/GETTY IMAGES)

❶  Israeli authorities continue attempts to break [prisoners’] mass hunger strike on 24th day
❷ The Prisoners’ Revolt: The Real Reasons behind the Palestinian Hunger Strike
❸ BACKGROUND ARTICLES

  • The Economic Exploitation of Palestinian Prisoners
  • On Administrative Detention
  • The Impact of Parental Detention on the Psychological Wellbeing of Palestinian Children
  • Israel’s Policy Of Administrative Detention

❹ POETRY by Fouzi El Asmar

` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
ISRAELI  AUTHORITIES  CONTINUE  ATTEMPTS  TO  BREAK [PRISONERS’] MASS  HUNGER STRIKE  ON  24TH  DAY   
Ma’an News Agency    
May 10, 2017
RAMALLAH — As some 1,600 Palestinians held in Israeli prisons entered their 24th day of a mass hunger strike on Wednesday, the prisoners have reported severe health deterioration — including several hunger strikers coughing up blood — and continued repressive measures imposed on the prisoners by the Israel Prison Service (IPS).
___Israeli authorities have also escalated their delegitimization campaign against Marwan Barghouthi, an imprisoned Fatah figure and the primary leader of the strike.     ___Palestinian prisoners are calling for an end to the denial of family visits, the right to pursue higher education, appropriate medical care and treatment, and an end to solitary confinement and administrative detention — imprisonment without charge or trial — among other demands for basic rights.       MORE . . .

❷ THE  PRISONERS’  REVOLT:  THE  REAL  REASONS  BEHIND  THE  PALESTINIAN  HUNGER  STRIKE      
Palestine Chronicle      
Ramzy Baroud
May 3 2017
Gaza is the world’s largest open air prison. The West Bank is a prison, too, segmented into various wards, known as areas A, B and C.  In fact, all Palestinians are subjected to varied degrees of military restrictions. At some level, they are all prisoners.
___East Jerusalem is cut off from the West Bank, and those in the West Bank are separated from one another.
[. . . .] ___Palestinians ‘lucky’ enough to escape the handcuffs and shackles are still trapped in different ways.
[. . . .]  This is why the issue of prisoners is a very sensitive one for Palestinians. It is a real and metaphorical representation of all that Palestinians have in common.
___The protests igniting across the Occupied Territories to support 1,500 hunger strikers are not merely an act of ‘solidarity’ with the incarcerated and abused men and women who are demanding improvements to their conditions.
___Sadly, prison is the most obvious fact of Palestinian life; it is the status quo; the everyday reality.     MORE . . .

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More than 100 Palestinian children are in Israeli prisons are aged between 12 and 15. April 24, 2016. (Getty Images)

❸ BACKGROUND  ARTICLES

“THE  ECONOMIC  EXPLOITATION  OF  PALESTINIAN  PRISONERS.”
Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association
February 2017
This report addresses the economic aspects of the imprisonment of over 800,000 Palestinians since the occupation of the West Bank and Gaza in 1967, with a particular focus on the role that prisons play in the maintenance of the regime of occupation, from 1985 until the present.    MORE. . . .

“ON  ADMINISTRATIVE  DETENTION.”
Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association
December 2015
Administrative detention is a procedure that allows the Israeli military to hold prisoners indefinitely on secret information without charging them or allowing them to stand trial. Although administrative detention is used almost exclusively to detain Palestinians from the occupied Palestinian territory (OPT), which includes the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip, Israeli citizens and foreign nationals can also be held as administrative detainees by Israel (over the years, only 9 Israeli settlers have been held in administrative detention) . . . .
___Since the beginning of the Israeli occupation in 1967, Israeli forces have arrested more than 800,000 Palestinians, constitute almost 20% of the total Palestinian population in the occupied Palestinian territories.       MORE . . .

“THE  IMPACT  OF  PARENTAL  DETENTION  ON  THE  PSYCHOLOGICAL  WELLBEING  OF  PALESTINIAN  CHILDREN.”
Plos ONE, vol. 10, no. 7, 17
Amer Shehadeh, et al.  July 2015, pp. 1-11.
For about one quarter to one third of the young children whose fathers were in prison, mothers reported scores above the threshold, showing they had severe psychological problems (SDQ) and severe symptoms of posttraumatic stress (UCLA-PTSD-RI). These percentages are much higher than in the control group of children whose fathers were not detention (table 3). Logistic regression analyses confirm the large impact of father’s detention onto young children’s psychological wellbeing      MORE. . . .  

“ISRAEL’S  POLICY  OF  ADMINISTRATIVE  DETENTION.”
Directorate-General For External Policies Of The [European] Union Policy Department
May 10, 2012.
[. . . . ] In Israel, the Ministry of Defence issues the administrative detention order, to be implemented by the Israeli executive power. Administrative detentions are usually secret orders for six months periods of incarceration, and can be renewed indefinitely. In some cases, prisoners have been held without charge or trial for several years. The practice is based on three pieces of legislation, each of which applies in a different area (the West Bank, the territory of Israeli and the Gaza Strip)      MORE . . .

“TWENTY  COMRADES,”  BY  FOUZI  EL ASMAR
Beloved, you ask me
Of life in this prison, this cell
what of the chains
chafing my wrists
what of my food and drink
and the comrades of my cell?

Beloved, let me tell you:
Our clouds are indeed heavy
But our being here
is a smile of spring,
The shock of thunder
in autumn, after draught.
We are not defeated
Like our jailers.

Life in this prison, this cell
is a palm tree impregnated
at the dawn.
My chains are the round
echo of a muezzin,
Their clank is the ringing
of my people’s bells.

Beloved, you ask me
of the meaning of my food
Here beloved
we grow like the wild flowers.

And what of
my comrades in this cell? you ask
They are the twenty candles
lighting the darkness of this cell
The twenty songs
shaking the walls of this cell
The twenty revolutions
that will eternalize this cell
And we, beloved
we shall not be stopped.  (June, 1970)

El Asmar, Fouzi. POEMS  FROM  AN  ISRAELI  PRISON. Intro. By Israel Shahak. New York: KNOW Books, 1973.
Available from Amazon.
About Fouzi El Asmar.

“. . . It is my right to behold the sun . . .” (Fouzi El-Asmar)

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Ofer Prison gate. (Photo, a rainy day in November, 2015, Harold Knight)

❶ Palestinian prisoners enter 20th day of mass hunger strike
. . . . . ❶― (ᴀ)   18th day of hunger strike: More prisoners join mass hunger strike

  • Background from journal Public Health Ethics

❷ Solidarity strikes spreading through Europe after Manchester and Edinburgh student hunger strikes launched
❸ Links to related articles
❹ POETRY by Fouzi El-Asmar
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
PALESTINIAN  PRISONERS  ENTER  20TH  DAY  OF  MASS  HUNGER  STRIKE
Ma’an News Agency
May 6, 2017
Some 1,600 Palestinian prisoners entered their 20th day of a mass hunger strike demanding humane treatment in Israeli prisons and an end to Israel’s policy of imprisoning Palestinians without charge or trial, as more Palestinian prisoners have joined the strike, while Israel Prison Service (IPS) has continued cracking down on the hunger strikers.
___According to the Media Committee of the Freedom and Dignity Strike — a joint committee formed by the Palestinian Prisoner’s Society (PPS) and Palestinian Committee for Prisoners’ Affairs, five more Palestinian prisoners in Israel’s Ofer prison joined the hunger strike on Friday.
[. . . .] ___The committee also added that representative of the prisoners in Ofer prison Akram Hamed said that the hunger strikers’ sections in the prison have been raided daily and subjected to “suppressing procedures,” noting that despite this and the continued deterioration of the healths of some of the hunger strikers, they were determined to continue until their demands are met.    ___Meanwhile, the the Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Antioch and All the East Gregory III Laham declared a solidarity hunger strike for Saturday in support of the prisoners.     MORE . . .

IMG_3057
Ofer Prison guard tower (Photo, November, 2015. Harold Knight)

. . . . . ❶― (ᴀ)   18TH  DAY  OF  HUNGER  STRIKE:  MORE  PRISONERS  JOIN  MASS  HUNGER  STRIKE
Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association 
May 4, 2017
[. . . .] Over 1500 Palestinian political prisoners and detainees held in Israeli prisons and detention centers began an open hunger strike on 17 April 2017. The call for a hunger strike came as a result of Israeli’s policies and practices towards political prisoners. The hunger striking prisoners’ demands include: an end to the transfer of Palestinian prisoners from the occupied Palestinian territory (OPT) into prisons in Israel; regular family visits; proper medical care; an end to Israel’s practice of detaining Palestinians without charge or trial in so-called administrative detentions; and stopping the use of solitary confinement.
___Punitive measures imposed on hunger strikers have included: the denial of family visits; denial of recreational time; denial of access to the “canteen” (prison store); prohibition from participating in group prayers on Fridays; seizure of salt during the first days of the strike; and. . .
___As a result of the hunger strike, Palestinian prisoners have been subjected to violent and coercive measures and policies by Israeli Prison Service and special units to push prisoners and detainees to end their hunger strikes. Addameer Prisoner Support & Human rights Association visited non-striking prisoners in Remon and Meggido prison on 4 May 2017.        MORE . . .

[. . . .] reflecting on the ethical dilemmas posed to the medical profession by the prisoners’ hunger-strike, Professor Avinoam Reches, chairperson of the Israeli Medical Association (IMA) Ethics’ Committee, called for a joint action of the Ministry of Justice (MOJ), the Ministry of Health (MOH), the IMA and human rights’ organizations. He called on them to work together in order to formulate a treatment policy for hunger-strikers in Israeli prisons, thus avoiding putting all the pressure of difficult decisions on the individual physician. In arguing for his proposal, Reches depicted the main ethical dilemma for the physician as a choice between respecting the rights of his/her patient’s—the hunger striking prisoner—to autonomy, and the sanctity of life. ‘This is a collision between two basic ethical principles: the value of autonomy and the right of the individual to decide on his body, up to the point that he can commit suicide as an expression of his free will; and the value of the sanctity of life, which for its supporters weighs more than the desire to die by any means, including by hunger.’
___In posing the ethical dilemma facing physicians as the tension between the principle of individual autonomy and the sanctity of life, Reches adopts the same liberal perspective that inspires the Malta 2006 declaration, signed by Israel, which broadly placed the question of how physicians should act in cases of hunger-strikes in the context of the tensions between two fundamental bioethical principles: autonomy versus sanctity of life. The declaration gave clear priority to the former, thus disallowing the practice of forced-feeding (World Medical Association). While the tension between these two principles is undoubtedly one of the central dilemmas presented to health practitioners dealing with hunger-strikes, we argue that limiting the ethical question to this tension obstructs and limits the ethical discussion.    FULL ARTICLE . . .

  • Filc, Dani, et al. “Palestinian Prisoners’ Hunger-Strikes in Israeli Prisons: Beyond the Dual-Loyalty Dilemma in Medical Practice and Patient Care.” Public Health Ethics, vol. 7, no. 3, Nov. 2014, pp. 229-238.

SOLIDARITY  STRIKES  SPREADING  THROUGH  EUROPE  AFTER  MANCHESTER  AND  EDINBURGH  STUDENT  HUNGER  STRIKES  LAUNCHED 
Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network   
May 3, 2017
Student groups at the University of Manchester in England and Edinburgh University in Scotland have launched solidarity hunger strikes in support of the Palestinian prisoners’ strike for freedom and dignity that have now extended for days of action in support of the prisoners’ struggle. Their campaign is now spreading across Europe, with activists in Madrid, Turin, Brussels, London and elsewhere joining growing solidarity strikes that highlight the prisoners’ demands and their urgent calls for support.
___After 1500 Palestinian prisoners launched their hunger strike on 17 April for a series of demands, including an end to the denial of family visits, the right to access distance higher education, appropriate medical care and an end to solitary confinement and administrative detention, imprisonment without charge or trial, protests across Palestine and around the world have demanded freedom for Palestinian prisoners and urged the immediate implementation of their demands. Now in their 17th day without food, strikers are facing harsh repression – including denial of legal visits, frequent transfers, and isolation of strike leaders – inside Israeli prisons.
___In Palestine, a number of solidarity hunger strikes and fasts have been organized to support the prisoners, including a large one-day strike in Gaza, a five-day strike by Lina Khattab and fellow Bir Zeit University students who are themselves former prisoners, and ongoing open-ended solidarity strikes in the protest tents in Qalqilya, Jenin, Nablus and elsewhere. A call has been issued from Palestine for a day-long solidarity strike by artists and other cultural workers on 3-4 May, linking with ongoing art actions by Decolonize this Place in support of the strikers.      MORE . . .
RELATED  ARTICLES
“European Hunger Strike Seeks to Strengthen Palestine Prisoners, Expose Israeli Apartheid.” TeleSUR English. May 5, 2017.    MORE . . . .
“Thousands rally to back Palestinian prisoners’ hunger strike.” ABCNews. By Mohammed Draghmeh, Associated Press. May 3, 2017.    MORE . . . .  
“A thousand Palestinian prisoners are on a hunger strike. This woman is fighting for their rights.” Washington Post. By Ruth Eglash. April 27, 2017.     MORE . . . .

“THE WAY,” by Fouzi El-Asmar

I shall not despair;
Whether my way leads to a jail,
under the sun
or in exile
I shall not despair.

It is my right to behold the sun
To demolish the tent and banishment
To eat the fruit of the olive
To water the vineyards
with music
To sing of Love
in Jaffa, in Haifa
To sow the fertile land
with new seeds
It is my right.

Let my way be
The reaching of one hand to another
That a tower of dreams be built.

This is my way
And if the last price to pay
is my sight
my life
I shall
but will not give up
my way.

El Asmar, Fouzi. POEMS FROM AN ISRAELI PRISON. Intro. By Israel Shahak. New York: KNOW Books, 1973.  Available from Amazon.
About Fouzi El Asmar.

previs_palestinian_hs.jpg_1718483346
University of Manchester students demonstrate their solidarity with the Palestinian political prisoners (Photo: BDS Campaign – University of Manchester)

“. . . So he picks up one of those stones and throws it at the armored jeep and runs like hell . . .” (Sahar Vardi)

kid
Police detaining a Silwan teen on suspicion of throwing stones, 2011. (Photo: Haaretz/Reuters, Mar. 21, 2012)

❶ Joint Report Estimates that 554 Palestinians Arrested in October 2016
❷ Injured 14-year-old Palestinian prisoner prevented from attending court session

  • Background: “The Stones Of Jerusalem.” Palestine-Israel Journal Of Politics, Economics & Culture

❸ 10 Palestinians detained in predawn raids, as scores of Israelis visit West Bank holy sites
❹ Home of Palestinian youth activist, former PA prisoner Basil al-Araj, invaded, family summoned to Israeli intelligence
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
JOINT  REPORT ESTIMATES  THAT  554  PALESTINIANS  ARRESTED  IN  OCTOBER  2016 
Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association   
Nov. 7, 2016
Palestinian prisoners’ affairs institutions (the Prisoners’ Affairs Commission, Palestinian Prisoners’ Society, Al-Mezan Center for Human Rights and the Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association) issued the following monthly joint report, reviewing the situation of Palestinian prisoners in October 2016.       ___The prisoners’ affairs institutions stated that 554 Palestinians were arrested in October 2016 in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, including 130 children and 11 women, including one minor girl.       More . . .

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Israeli Forces blocking East Jerusalem School children in Search of “Stone-throwers,” Nov. 1, 2016 (Photo: IMEMC News & Agencies)

INJURED  14-YEAR-OLD  PALESTINIAN  PRISONER  PREVENTED  FROM  ATTENDING  COURT  SESSION   
Ma’an News Agency
Nov. 13, 2016
The Israel Prison Service (IPS) prevented an injured 14-year-old Palestinian prisoner from attending his court session at the Ofer military court on Sunday, under the pretext that there were no ambulances to transfer him from the Ramla prison hospital where he is being held, according to the Palestinian Prisoner’s Society (PPS).
___Usama Murad Jamil Marie Zeidat was shot and injured by Israeli forces after he allegedly attempted to carry out a stabbing attack near the illegal settlement of Kiryat Arba in the southern occupied West Bank district of Hebron on Sep. 23. No Israelis were injured.
___He spent three weeks in Israel’s Shaare Zedek Medical Center and underwent foot surgery. Israeli media reported at the time of the incident that the teen had been shot in the stomach.      More . . . 

  • Vardi, Sahar. “The Stones Of Jerusalem.” Palestine-Israel Journal Of Politics, Economics & Culture 21.2 (2015): 24-27.  Full article.

[. . . .] In the past few months, I have been part of a group of activists, Free Jerusalem, who came together to grapple with the issue of child arrests in Jerusalem.
[. . . .]  By the time the Jewish High Holidays arrived, we couldn’t keep up. Sixty-eight minors were arrested in 10 days — seven of them under the age of 12. The following week the number doubled: 125 minors were arrested in Jerusalem alone between mid-September and mid-October. Almost every single one of them was arrested under the same charge: stone throwing.
___ But do any of us actually understand who these “stone-throwers” are? Let us imagine one of them: a 12-year-old boy from the neighborhood of A-Tur in East Jerusalem, or maybe he’s from Silwan or from Issawiye. Six schools in A-Tur were inaccessible by car for the last month of the school year last year, after Israeli police placed concrete blocks on one of the main roads of the neighborhood. Those roadblocks are now there again. Our 12-year-old boy studies in one of these schools, and now has to walk a much longer way to school every morning. Every morning he passes by the armed policeman standing outside of his school — sometimes they ask him to open his bag. Sometimes they just follow him with a glance. They glance at him the way one would look at a suspect because that’s what every 12-year-old is now.
[. . . .]   Then a heavily armored jeep enters the neighborhood while the boy and his friends are walking down the street. It is the same policeman he knows so well from the entrance to his school. The road is full of stones — they are badly paved with no sidewalks, just dirt and stones. So he picks up one of those stones and throws it at the armored jeep and runs like hell. It gets easier to do the second time, and the third, and it becomes one of the things he and his friends do. It is a 12-year-old’s form of resistance to what he has no control over. Born 10 kilometers east of where I was born, I would have been a stone-thrower, too.  [. . . .]

10  PALESTINIANS  DETAINED  IN  PREDAWN  RAIDS,  AS  SCORES  OF  ISRAELIS  VISIT  WEST  BANK  HOLY  SITES
Ma’an News Agency   
Nov. 13, 2016
Israeli forces detained at least 10 Palestinians during predawn military raids across the occupied West Bank on Sunday, according to local Palestinian and Israeli army sources.     ___Local sources in al-Duheisha refugee camp in the southern occupied West Bank district of Bethlehem told Ma’an that Israeli forces raided the camp and detained . . . .   ___In the Ramallah district of the central West Bank, Israeli forces raided several homes in the village of Silwad and detained . . . .
___Israeli forces also detained five Palestinians from the Jerusalem district. . . .
___Meanwhile, Israeli forces delivered interrogation summons to five young men from the Bethlehem-area town of Beit Fajjar. . . .        More . . .
Related . . .  Israeli occupation rearrests British citizen for “cooperating with Hamas”
HOME  OF  PALESTINIAN  YOUTH  ACTIVIST,  FORMER  PA  PRISONER  BASIL AL-ARAJ,  INVADED,  FAMILY  SUMMONED  TO  ISRAELI  INTELLIGENCE 
Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network
Nov. 11, 2016
Israeli occupation forces are continuing to harass the family of Palestinian youth activist Basil Al-Araj. On Thursday, 10 November, military occupation forces invaded his family home in the village of al-Walaja near Bethlehem for the seventh time, destroying property and ransacking their belongings, tossing their property around the home under the pretext of a “search”. The occupation soldiers delivered summons to his brothers and father to meet Israeli intelligence agents on Sunday, 13 November for questioning after the soldiers failed to find Al-Araj.      More . . .

palestinians-pa-terrorists
Basel al-Araj, 33 arrested, Apr. 11, 2016 (Photo: Tazpit [Israeli] Press Service)

“. . . I may lose my daily bread . . .” (Samih Al-Qasim)

WORLD BANK: “Increasing poverty in the occupied Palestinian territory.” Palestinian school children ride a rickshaw in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip on September 9, 2015. (Agence France‑Presse /Said Khatib/File)
WORLD BANK: “Increasing poverty in the occupied Palestinian territory.” Palestinian school children ride a rickshaw in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip on September 9, 2015. (Agence France‑Presse /Said Khatib/File)

❶ Facing Reality: Jewish terrorism is no longer limited to just a few bad seeds
❷ World Bank warns of ‘high risk’ of Palestine-Israel conflict
❸ Israeli forces round up 36 Palestinians after West Bank clashes
❹ Analysis: Israel Has Achieved All Its Objectives
❺ Opinion/Analysis: Abbas’ peace project has hit a dead end
❻ Poetry by

(Please read “Purpose” above. Thank you.)

◊  ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊  ◊

MONDOWEISS
FACING  REALITY:  JEWISH  TERRORISM  IS  NO  LONGER  LIMITED  TO  JUST  A  FEW  BAD  SEEDS
Karin Attia
Sept. 29, 2015
Stabbing at the Gay Pride Parade in Jerusalem. Death of 16-year-old Shira Banki. Arson attack on a family home in the West Bank. Deaths of 18-month old Ali Saad Dawabsheh, his father Saad Dawabsheh’s, and mother Reham Dawabsheh.
____It is time to look inwards at a rising culture of violence rather than facile explanations about individual bad seeds. Something is growing insidiously among us: racism, intolerance and hate. With attacks occurring more frequently, these seeds are no longer limited to one crazy individual, one extremist; instead they are indicative of widespread cultural seeds of racism, intolerance, and hate. These seeds have been cultivating for some time.
More . . .
Related . . .
(Karin Attia was born in Haifa, Israel, raised in Los Angeles, California, and is currently living in New York City studying as a Master’s student at New York University.)

Artwork inside the burned-out Dawabshe home blames the Israeli government for the firebombing. (Mondoweiss Photo: Dan Cohen)
Artwork inside the burned-out Dawabshe home blames the Israeli government for the firebombing. (Mondoweiss Photo: Dan Cohen)

MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
WORLD  BANK  WARNS  OF  ‘HIGH  RISK’  OF  PALESTINE-ISRAEL  CONFLICT
Sept. 29, 2015
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — The World Bank has warned of the “high risk” of renewed Palestine-Israel conflict following the third straight year of increasing poverty in the occupied Palestinian territory.
____In a report released Tuesday, the World Bank pointed to war, reduced donor aid, the suspension of revenue payments, and ongoing restrictions by Israel as having had “a severe impact on the Palestinian economy.”
____”The persistence of this situation could potentially lead to political and social unrest,” the report said.
____”In short, the status quo is not sustainable and downside risks of further conflict and social unrest are high,” said the World Bank.
More . . . 
Related . . .
Related . . .

MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
ISRAELI  FORCES  ROUND  UP  36  PALESTINIANS  AFTER  WEST  BANK  CLASHES
Sept. 30, 2015
JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — Israeli forces detained 36 Palestinians across occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank overnight Tuesday a day after violent clashes took place across the occupied Palestinian territory.
____Israeli police spokesperson Mickey Rosenfeld said . . . that all detainees were “involved in recent disturbances in and around the Old City of Jerusalem.” [. . . . .]
____A lawyer for Palestinian prisoners’ rights group Addameer, Muhammad Mahmoud, told Ma’an that Israeli forces detained four Palestinians in the southern Jerusalem neighborhood of Issawiya. [. . . . .]
____At least 18 Palestinians were injured on Tuesday when Israeli forces suppressed demonstrations across the West Bank that were held in support of the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound.
More . . .
Related . . .
Related . . .

❹ Analysis:
PALESTINE CHRONICLE
ISRAEL  HAS  ACHIEVED  ALL  ITS  OBJECTIVES
Hasan Afif El-Hasan
Sep 29 2015
Israel never had it so good today and justice to the Palestinians never has been so remote. Arab regimes have no credible options that may threaten Israel strategically, or they do not care if Israel continues to defy the UN resolutions and the International Court of Justice rulings. They are either fighting their own people or fighting each other. The Palestinians are hopelessly divided and the Arab Masses are not expected to help because they are heavily burdened by their own issues. [. . . . .]
____After eight decades since the cleansing of Palestine from its Arab population by its military and terrorist organizations, and almost five decades after the 1967 war and the occupation of Palestinian lands, Israel has no intention to make a just peace with its victims.
More . . .

❺ Opinion/Analysis:
+972 BLOG
ABBAS’  PEACE  PROJECT  HAS  HIT  A  DEAD  END
Menachem Klein
Sept. 30, 2015
He chose the path of moderation. He agreed to a small Palestinian state alongside Israel. He won the support of America and Europe. He proved his obligation to maintaining security for Israelis. And he got nothing in return. The tragedy of Mahmoud Abbas, part one of a two-part series.
More . . .

“I  MAY  LOSE  MY  DAILY  BREAD,”  BY  SAMIH  AL-QASIM
I may lose my daily bread, if you wish
I may hawk my clothes and bed
I may become a stonecutter, or a porter
Or a street sweeper
I may search in animal dung for food
I may collapse, naked and starved
Enemy of light
I will not compromise
And to the end
I shall fight.
You may rob me of the last span of my land
You may ditch my youth in prison holes
Steel what my grandfather left me behind:
Some furniture or clothes and jars,
You may burn my poems and books
You may feed your dog on my flesh
You may impose a nightmare of your terror
On my village
Enemy of light
I shall not compromise
And to the end
I shall fight.

“Poems of Resistance: 7 Poems for Palestine.” SCOOP  WORLD  INDEPENDENT  NEWS. January 2011. Web. http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/WO1101/S00522/poems-of-resistance-7-poems-for-palestine.htm
About Samih Al-Qasim

File photo shows Israeli forces arresting a young Palestinian near the occupied West Bank city of al-Khalil near Hebron. (PressTV photo)
File photo shows Israeli forces arresting a young Palestinian near the occupied West Bank city of al-Khalil near Hebron. (PressTV photo)