“. . . 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)

palestine-olive_crop1440007030651.jpg_1718483346
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 . . . 

jewish-extremist-ettinger-super-169
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

“. . . brutal, degenerate war as a method of keeping the Palestinians in their place. . . .” (Martin Shaw)

[Please note: Today’s post is in a format different from the normal here. It simply presents a selection of news items about individual Palestinians directly affected by the Israeli forces of occupation in the context of Israel’s new law cracking down on the most effective voice for the Palestinians.]  

HIZMA
Hizma Village lost more than 60% of its lands for the construction of the Israeli Segregation Wall, Dec. 7, 2007 (Photo: POICA/ARIJ)

❶ NEW  ISRAELI  CRACKDOWN  AIMS  TO  ROOT  OUT,  EXPEL  BDS  ACTIVISTS
The Electronic Intifada
Ali Abunimah
Aug. 8 2016
MORE . . .   
RELATED:  “THE   BOYCOTT,   DIVESTMENT,   SANCTIONS   (BDS)   MOVEMENT   WORKS  TO  END  INTERNATIONAL  SUPPORT  FOR ISRAEL’S  OPPRESSION  OF  PALESTINIANS

  • Shaw, Martin. “PALESTINE  IN  AN  INTERNATIONAL  HISTORICAL  PERSPECTIVE  ON  GENOCIDE.” Holy Land Studies: A Multidisciplinary Journal  9.1 (2010): 1-24.

Israel’s destruction of the larger part of Palestinian Arab society in 1948 was not exceptionally murderous (‘only’ a few thousand Arabs were massacred), nor was it complete (an Arab minority remained within the Israeli state). Yet it can be argued that the consequences for Israel and the region have been more severe than in many other cases. In part this is because the Palestinians mostly survived, including within Israel, and were able to develop a national movement, with support from the Arab world. Yet it is also because for Israel’s leaders, the national project was evidently incomplete. Subsequent phases of the conflict, although not marked by large-scale violent expulsions and induced flight as in 1948, have provided Israel with opportunities to extend its confiscation of Arab land and to continue piecemeal the displacement of population. Israel has of course used its security concerns as a rationale for settlement and complex geographical control, both designed to make Palestinian communities unviable and force individuals and families to move. These continuing policies can be seen as the ‘slow-motion’ extension and consolidation of the genocide of 1948.
[. . . .]
. . . the consequence of a society founded on genocide in these circumstances is a situation of more or less permanent war. So long as Israel does not come to terms with the genocide of 1948 and its enduring injustice, its leaders will continue to resort to brutal, degenerate war as a method of keeping the Palestinians in their place. A society thus founded cannot hope either for integrity or for security.     FULL ARTICLE

❷ ISRAEL  RELEASES  JERUSALEMITE  GIRL  AFTER  FIVE  MONTHS  IN  PRISON  FOR  KNIFE  POSSESSION
Ma’an News Agency
Aug. 11, 2016
MORE . . .
❸ CHILD  DAWABSHEH  TRANSFERRED  TO  TEL HASHOMER  HOSPITAL
Alray-Palestinian Media Agency
Aug. 11, 2016
MORE . . .
❹ AFTER  7  MONTHS  UNDER  HOUSE  ARREST,  A  JERUSALEMITE  CHILD  TURNS  HIMSELF  IN  TO  SERVE  A  10-MONTH  PRISON  SENTENCE
Wadi Hilweh Information Center – Silwan
Aug. 8, 2016
MORE. . .
❺ IOF  ARRESTS  12  PALESTINIANS  IN  THE  WEST  BANK
The Palestinian Information Center
Aug. 11, 2016
MORE . . .

ziad-abu-ein-death
An Israeli border guard grabs Palestinian official Ziad Abu Ein during the demonstration in the village of Turmus Aya near Ramallah, during which Abu Ein died, on December 10, 2014 (Photo: AFP/Getty Images)

❻ ISRAELI  POLICE  FINDS  NO  WRONGDOING  IN  DEATH  OF  PALESTINIAN  MINISTER  BEATEN  DURING  PROTEST
Ma’an News Agency
Aug. 10, 2016
MORE . . .
❼ SHOT  IN  THE  HEAD  BY  THE  IDF?  YOUR  ENTRY  PERMIT  IS  NOW  REVOKED
+972 Blog
Aug. 6, 2016
MORE . . . 
❽ PPS: “ISRAELI  SOLDIERS  AND  INTERROGATORS  ASSAULT  THREE  PALESTINIAN  DETAINEES”
International Middle East Media Center – IMEMC
Aug. 11, 2016
MORE . . .
❾ ARMY  ORDERS  A  PALESTINIAN  TO  LEAVE  HIS  HOME  TO  USE  IT  AS  A  MILITARY  POST
International Middle East Media Center – IMEMC
Aug. 11, 2016
MORE . . .  
❿ JENIN:  ISRAELI  SOLDIERS  DEMOLISH  A  BRICK  FACTORY,  CONFISCATE  ITS  EQUIPMENT
International Middle East Media Center – IMEMC
Aug. 11, 2016
MORE . . .

  • Opinion/Analysis:  FACED  WITH  A  CHOICE  OF  PEACE  AND  BDS,  ISRAEL  CHOOSES  BDS
    Middle East Monitor (MEMO)
    Professor Kamel Hawwash

    [Professor Hawwash is a British Palestinian engineering academic based at the University of Birmingham.]

    August 10, 2016
    Israel’s recent decision to form a taskforce to target Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) activists for deportation is in stark contrast to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s recent claim that BDS had been defeated.
    [. . . .]
    ___How can calls for ending the illegal occupation, for equality for all citizens and the respect and promotion of the right of return for Palestinian refugees be a strategic threat?
    [. . . .]
    ___ US Secretary of State John Kerry . . . warned Israel . . .  it would face boycotts on steroids. Israel is now facing this because when it has been called on to choose between a just peace and BDS, it chooses BDS and then blames others for its self-inflicted delegitimisation strategy.      MORE . . .   

BDS FINAL LOGO_v5WEB_URL_side

“. . . When the faces of the judges peer down on us . . .” (Muhammad al-As’ad)

israeli_tanks_at_gaza_borders_file_2008
Israeli Tanks Invade Border Areas Near Central Gaza Strip, April 22, 2010 (Photo IMEMC)

Israeli forces detain 47 Palestinians in major East Jerusalem, West Bank raids
❷ Israeli [alleged] murderer of Dawabsheh family released
❸ Israeli Army Invades Palestinian Agricultural Lands in Central and Southern Gaza
❹ Opinion/Analysis: WHICH  JERUSALEM?  ISRAEL’S  LITTLE-KNOWN  MASTER  PLANS
❺ POETRY by Muhammad al-As’ad
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ ISRAELI  FORCES  DETAIN  47  PALESTINIANS  IN  MAJOR  EAST  JERUSALEM,  WEST  BANK RAIDS
Ma’an News Agency
June 1, 2016
Israeli forces detained at least 47 Palestinians in overnight raids in occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank, Palestinian and Israeli sources told Ma’an.
___Israeli police carried out a major detention campaign in the al-Tur and al-Suwwana neighborhoods of East Jerusalem, detaining at least 29 Palestinian men and teenagers, locals told Ma’an [. . . .]
___Israeli police spokeswoman Luba al-Samri said in a statement that Israeli police and border guard officers detained 33 Palestinians across East Jerusalem on Tuesday night.  MORE . . .  

The Fourth Geneva Convention establishes a high standard for detaining a civilian, whether in occupied territory or in the territory of a party to the conflict. . . .
___The rule is slightly different for occupying powers in occupied territory. In that case, “if the Occupying Power considers it necessary, for imperative reasons of security”  [. . . .]
___Israel has two laws that authorize it to conduct security detentions―an emergency powers law and an “incarceration of illegal combatants” law. Under both laws, a detainee may have his detention reviewed by a court. The Government of Israel views itself as being in an ongoing armed conflict with Palestinian terrorist organizations operating from Judea and Samaria and the Gaza Strip [. . . .]
___Under Israel’s emergency powers law, the Ministry of Defense (MOD) may detain a person during a “state of emergency” when the Minister has “reasonable cause to believe that reasons of state security or public security require “. . . . The proceedings are not public, and may depart from the regular rules of evidence.

  • Deeks, Ashley S. “Administrative Detention in Armed Conflict.” Case Western Reserve Journal of International Law 40.3 (2009): 403-436.      MORE. . .

❷ ISRAELI  [ALLEGED]  MURDERER  OF  DAWABSHEH  FAMILY  RELEASED
Palestine News Network – PNN
June 1, 2016
The top Israeli terror suspect, Meir Ettinger (20) who [allegedly] led the arson attack on the Dawabsheh home in Duma village was released after 10 months of administrative detention on Wednesday morning.
___Ettinger, the grandson of the slain far-right activist Meir Kahane, was detained following the murder of the Dawabsheh family last July, in which baby Ali Dawabsheh and both his parents were killed.       MORE . . .

master plan
Jerusalem’s Har Homa Jewish Settler neighborhood in 2008. (Photo: Haaretz/Emil Salman)

❸ ISRAELI  ARMY  INVADES  PALESTINIAN  AGRICULTURAL  LANDS  IN  CENTRAL  AND  SOUTHERN  GAZA
International Middle East Media Center – IMEMC
June 1, 2016
Several armored Israeli military vehicles and bulldozers invaded, on Wednesday morning, Palestinian agricultural lands, close to the border fence, in the southern and central parts of the Gaza Strip.
___Several tanks and bulldozers, stationed in the Kissufim military base, east of Khan Younis, invaded Palestinian lands, northeast of al-Qarara town, northeast of Khan Younis, while three tanks were positioned behind sand hills, across the border fence.     MORE . . .  
. . . RELATED   Israeli navy injures one Palestinian fisher, kidnaps four others, in Gaza waters   
. . . RELATED   Gaza commemorates 6th anniversary of the freedom flotilla attack

If it cannot be established that the objective (intention) of the closure [of Gaza] regime was to deny the civilian population of Gaza objects essential for its survival then the closure regime will still be unlawful if . . . ‘the damage to the civilian population is, or may be expected to be, excessive in relation to the concrete and direct military advantage anticipated from the blockade’. A blockade cannot be therefore deployed if the damage to the civilian population is expected to be excessive in relation to the anticipated military advantage [. . . .]
. . . even if the Israel-Hamas armed conflict could be internationalised and thus regarded as an international armed conflict, the blockade would still be unlawful because, on 31 May 2010, the blockade was not deployed in accordance with the principle of proportionality. . . Israel’s blockade of Gaza on 31 May 2010 cannot be regarded as lawful. As a state cannot lawfully enforce an unlawful blockade Israel cannot rely upon international humanitarian law to override its obligations under the law of the sea . . .

  • Buchan, Russell. “The International Law of Naval Blockade and Israel’s Interception of the Mavi Marmara.” Netherlands International Law Review (Cambridge University Press) 58.2 (2011): 209-241

Opinion/Analysis: WHICH  JERUSALEM?  ISRAEL’S  LITTLE-KNOWN  MASTER  PLANS
Al-Shabaka: The Palestinian Policy Network.
Nur Arafeh
May 31, 2016
It is the year 2050 and Israel has fulfilled its vision for Jerusalem: Visitors will see a largely Jewish high-tech center amid a sea of tourists, with a minimal Palestinian presence. To achieve this vision, Israel is working on three master plans; one is well-known but two remain under the radar [. . . .]
___The best known of the three Israeli master plans for the city is the Jerusalem 2020 Master Plan, which has not been deposited for public view even though it was first published in 2004. The least known are the Marom Plan, a government-commissioned plan for the development of Jerusalem, and the “Jerusalem 5800” Plan, also known as Jerusalem 2050, which is the outcome of a private sector initiative and is presented as a “transformational master plan for Jerusalem” (see below).      MORE . . .

. . . Israel occupied East Jerusalem in 1967 during the Six-day War and in 1980 declared the whole city, both the western part and the eastern occupied part, to be the “eternal and united” capital of the Jewish State. Nonetheless, the international community has never recognized Israel’s annexation of East Jerusalem and Palestinians still claim East Jerusalem as the capital of their future state. This is the reason why the main Israeli effort since the 1967 annexation has been to strengthen de facto its control over the whole city; the aim being to create “urban facts” which would make any future division of the city practically impossible. As Michael Romann and Alex Weingrod state, “the overall policy had as its main axiom the prevention of any possible future attempts to again divide the city or to cut off the occupied East Jerusalem territory from sovereign Israeli control.” 9

  • Chiodell, Francesco. The Jerusalem Master Plan: Planning into the Conflict. Jerusalem Quarterly 51 (2012): 5-20.  MORE. . .

(The footnotes to above article are below)

“SINGERS,” BY MUHAMMAD AL-AS’AD

A deep plunge into the darkness
Merits golden birds
Red roses
And a band all ready to play.
But we the singers in the Arab night
The night of low-profile stars
And eternal sands
We scorn the reward
And cannot take it in.
When the faces of the judges peer down on us
We weep a botanical pain
Picked up in meadows, weep
The blue of waters
And the beauty of deer
Running in our valleys.
When sentence is passed down
In our absolute absence
We will be content with a smile
Or perhaps a sneer.
We are
Not of
This
Kingdom.
Who comprehends the bewilderment
of the last bird
In a blazing forest.
―Translated by May Jayyusi and Jack Collom

About Muhammad al-As’ad
From: ANTHOLOGY  OF  MODERN  PALESTINIAN  LITERATURE. Ed. Salma Khadra Jayyusi. New York: Columbia University Press, 1992. Available from Columbia University Press.

8 The international resolutions about Jerusalem by the General assembly and Security Council of the United Nations are available at http:// unispal.un.org  . For a summary, see Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics, Jerusalem Statistical Yearbook No 13 (Ramallah: Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics, 2011), 49-60).
9 Michael Romann and Alex Weingrod, Living Together Separately. Arabs and Jews in Contemporary Jerusalem (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1991), 54. The words of Golda Meir (Prime minister of Israel from 1969 to 1974 . . .) are very elucidatory: “Arab sovereignty in Jerusalem just cannot be. This city will not be divided – not half and half, not 60–40, not 75–25, nothing” (Golda Meir, “Middle East: Getting almost all Points of View”, The Times, February 19, 1973).

“. . . there’s still some hope, behind that nearby dune . . .” (Samih Al-Qasim)

2015: The Evangelical Lutheran Church of the Reformation in Beit Jala celebrated Palm Sunday with palms and flowers before joining the local Catholic Church for a procession through Beit Jala. (Photos: Lutheran Church of the Redeemer Website)
2015: The Evangelical Lutheran Church of the Reformation in Beit Jala celebrated Palm Sunday with palms and flowers before joining the local Catholic Church for a procession through Beit Jala. (Photos: Lutheran Church of the Redeemer Website)

❶ Unidentified assailants set fire to home of 2015 Duma arson witness
❷ 850 Gaza Christians receive permits to celebrate Easter in Jerusalem
❸ Shanti: Gaza suffers from a serious water crisis
❹ Japan Deplores Israel’s Decision to Expropriate Thousands of Dumuns in Jericho
❺ Opinion/Analysis: ECONOMIC POLICIES ENTRENCH ISRAELI OCCUPATION
❻ Poetry by Samih Al-Qasim
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
UNIDENTIFIED  ASSAILANTS  SET  FIRE  TO  HOME  OF  2015  DUMA  ARSON  WITNESS
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
20 Mar. 2016
Unidentified assailants on Saturday night set fire to a house in the village of Duma in the occupied West Bank, targeting the only witness of an arson attack that killed a Palestinian family last year.
___.  . .  unidentified attackers threw Molotov cocktails at the house of Ibrahim Dawabsha at 2 a.m. and broke a window while he and his family were sleeping. . . .  Dawabsha was the only witness of the deadly arson attack carried out by extremist Israeli settlers on the home of Saad and Riham Dawabsha in the northern West Bank village on July 30 last year.      MORE . . .

850  GAZA  CHRISTIANS  RECEIVE  PERMITS  TO  CELEBRATE  EASTER  IN  JERUSALEM
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
19 Mar. 2016
Hundreds of Christian Palestinians from the Gaza Strip will travel to celebrate Easter in Bethlehem and occupied East Jerusalem after the Israeli authorities agreed to grant them permits, a Palestinian Authority official said Saturday.
___Muhammad al-Maqadma, a public information officer for the Palestinian Ministry of Civil Affairs, told Ma’an that Israel had granted around 850 permits to Gaza Christians of different ages to travel to the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem.       MORE . . .
1-18-procession

SHANTI:  GAZA  SUFFERS  FROM  A  SERIOUS  WATER CRISIS
THE PALESTINIAN INFORMATION CENTER
20 Mar. 2016
The water authority in Gaza has warned that the besieged enclave suffers from a severe water shortage in its coastal aquifer, which is the primary source for getting water.
___This came during “an interview with an official,” which was organized on Sunday by the government’s information office in Gaza City in the presence of a reporter from the Palestinian Information Center (PIC). Head of the water authority Yaser al-Shanti described the water situation in Gaza as very dangerous.      MORE . . . 

JAPAN  DEPLORES  ISRAEL’S  DECISION  TO  EXPROPRIATE  THOUSANDS  OF  DUMUNS  IN  JERICHO
PALESTINE NEWS AND INFORMATION AGENCY – WAFA
20 Mar. 2016
The Government of Japan Sunday deplored the Israeli government’s decision to expropriate nearly 2,342 dunums near the West Bank district of Jericho, under the pretext of being classified as ‘state land’.
___“The announcement by the Government of Israel clearly contradicts the ongoing efforts by the international community toward a two-state solution,” said the statement . . . .      MORE . . .

OPINION/ANALYSIS:   ECONOMIC  POLICIES  ENTRENCH  ISRAELI  OCCUPATION
ALTERNATIVE INFORMATION CENTER (AIC)
Nassar Ibrahim
20 Mar. 2016
The Palestinian economy has not been independent in centuries. Like the economies of other Arab countries, the Palestinian economy was subject to foreign control and looting for four centuries under Ottoman rule. Next, British colonial rule lorded over Palestine, until the Nakba uprooted Palestinians from their land in 1948. Following Israel’s occupation of Palestine, Israeli colonial powers took control of the Palestinian economy. All of this made the already weak Palestinian economy an easy target for manipulation and destruction. Israeli management of the Palestinian economy has created deep structural disparities in Palestinian society.       MORE . . .

“OASIS,”  BY  SAMIH  AL-QASIM

Behind this dune we have an oasis. Leave me alone.
Leave me to rinse myself off in a bit
of its mirage. I’m tired of running after myself
to catch myself before I die.
Take―old friends and my companions―my body,
the shadow of its body’s shadow,
and hold it for a while, so I can reach my time in time.
Behind this dune we have an oasis.
Sustain your longing with dates and water,
without despair.
Listen with me to the songs of the girls
beneath the palms, but do not follow
the voice of my silence.
We have, friends, the right to die as we desire.
But there’s still some hope, behind that nearby dune.
And we have the right to make the stranger
a stranger’s friend, and we have an oasis―
and a bit of rest in the house
of the loved one who left us.
He will come from behind this dune.

From Al-Qasim, Samih. SADDER  THAN  WATER.  NEW  AND  SELECTED  POEMS.  Trans. Nazih Kasis and Adina Hoffman. Jerusalem: Ibis Editions, 2008. Available from Amazon
Samih al-Qasim Obituary,
August 20, 2014
1-17-procession-and-church

“. . . we will continue our prayers and conjure new seasons for our lives . . .” (Ibrahim Nasrallah)

❶ Analysis: The end of normalcy for Israeli settlements?
❷ Israeli forces seize Palestinian vehicles, equipment in Jordan Valley
❸ Israeli forces open fire on Palestinian farmers, shepherds in Gaza
❹ Jerusalem court slams police over arrests of left-wing activists
❺ Opinion/Analysis: The Israeli government is as responsible for Duma murders as those who threw the firebomb
❻ Poetry by Ibrahim Nasrallah
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
+972 MAGAZINE
THE  END  OF  NORMALCY  FOR  ISRAELI  SETTLEMENTS?
Michael Schaeffer Omer-Man
January 29, 2016
The United States appears to be following the European Union in taking symbolic steps to challenge the aura of normalcy with which Israel has cloaked its settlement enterprise for decades.
___United States Customs officials published a notice last week clarifying that U.S. law does not permit goods manufactured in the West Bank, including in Israeli settlements, to be labeled as “made in Israel.”   More
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
ISRAELI  FORCES  SEIZE  PALESTINIAN  VEHICLES,  EQUIPMENT  IN  JORDAN  VALLEY
Jan. 30, 2016
Israeli forces late Friday confiscated trucks and equipment being used to build a new agricultural road in the Palestinian village of Khirbet al-Dir in the northern Jordan Valley.
___The head of a local council in the occupied West Bank village, al-Maleh Arif Daraghmah, told Ma’an that military forces had seized the equipment, without citing a reason for its removal.
___Daraghmah added that days before, Israeli forces had ruined dozens of acres of agricultural land and roads while carrying out military drills in the area.    More . . .
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
ISRAELI  FORCES  OPEN  FIRE  ON  PALESTINIAN  FARMERS,  SHEPHERDS  IN  GAZA
Jan. 30, 2016
Israeli forces deployed at the borderline between the Gaza Strip and Israel opened fire at a group of Palestinian farmers and shepherds who were in nearby agricultural lands.
___Witnesses told Ma’an that the group was forced to leave the area after the forces opened fire east of the city of Khan Younis. No injuries were reported. . . .
___Israeli military forces have opened fire on Palestinian farmers near the border at least four times this month, one of whom was injured on Friday.    More . . .
+972 MAGAZINE
JERUSALEM  COURT  SLAMS  POLICE  OVER  ARRESTS  OF  LEFT-WING  ACTIVISTS
Haggai Matar
Jan. 29, 2016
The Jerusalem Magistate’s Court freed Israeli left-wing activists Ezra Nawi and Guy Butavia from house arrest on Thursday, with Judge David Shaul Gabai Richter chastising police for not substantiating their suspicions against the pair.
___Nawi and Butavia, activists with anti-occupation direct-action group Ta’ayush, were arrested following the broadcast of a right-wing hidden camera “sting,” on suspicion of making contact with a foreign agent (Palestinian security services). . . .    More . . .
Opinion/Analysis
MONDOWEISS
THE  ISRAELI  GOVERNMENT  IS  AS  RESPONSIBLE  FOR  DUMA  MURDERS  AS  THOSE  WHO  THREW  THE  FIREBOMB
Dan Cohen
Jan. 29, 2016
Since the announcement of an indictment in the deadly firebombing in the occupied West Bank village of Duma, Israeli media outlets have analyzed the likelihood that the killers will be punished, given that the main suspect’s confession were extracted by torture.
___But they have not mentioned the elephant in the room: culpability for the murder of baby Ali Dawabshe and his parents lies not only with those who threw the firebomb, but with the Israeli government which promotes, subsidizes and protects their presence in the West Bank.   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 Amazon.

“. . . their dignity sets them free . . .” (Samah Sabawi)

jewish terrorists
Screenshot of a video showing extremist Israeli Jewish wedding-goers celebrating killings of the Dawabsha family. (Jerusalem: Channel 10)

❶ 24 shot, injured by Israeli forces in clashes after funeral in Abu Dis
❷ Analysis: Terrorism as defined by Israel
❸ Israeli police detain 5 after Israeli wedding incited murder
❹ Analysis: Palestinians and Israelis will pay a heavy price for unchecked Jewish settler terror
❺ Opinion/Analysis: Arab group in Israel paves new future for town’s next generation
❻ Poetry by Samah Sabawi
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
24  SHOT,  INJURED  BY  ISRAELI  FORCES  IN  CLASHES  AFTER  FUNERAL  IN  ABU  DIS
Dec. 30, 2015
JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — Clashes broke out late Tuesday in Abu Dis following a funeral held for a Palestinian killed earlier this month, whose body was held by Israeli authorities for 26 days.
___Locals told Ma’an that 24 Palestinians were shot and injured by rubber-coated steel bullets while 19 others suffered from severe tear gas inhalation when clashes erupted between locals and Israeli military forces.  More . . .
THE MIDDLE EAST MONITOR (MEMO)
TERRORISM  AS  DEFINED  BY  ISRAEL
Dr Fayez Abu Shamaleh
Dec. 30, 2015
The burning to death of the Dawabsheh family in July created a conflict between the Israeli Shin Bet internal security agency and the Jewish settlers who sympathised with those who carried out the deadly arson attack. While the Shin Bet knows how dangerous the extremist Jewish groups are and the consequences of their heinous acts that reflect on the existence of the state itself, the rabbis and settler leaders continue to attack the agency. . . .
___ “See, the murder in Duma was just a means,” said [Education Minister Naftali] Bennett. “They want to bring down the house on our heads. That is their goal. It is antithetical to the substance of religious Zionism. They want to dismantle the State of Israel. They are terrorists . . . .  More . . .
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
ISRAELI  POLICE  DETAIN  5  AFTER  ISRAELI  WEDDING  INCITED  MURDER
Dec. 30, 2015
[Blogger’s note: why would Israel prosecute when it refuses to prosecute Ali Dawabsha’s murderers?]
JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — Israeli police have arrested five Israelis involved in a Jerusalem wedding ceremony that incited violence towards Palestinians [in video footage that went viral], Israeli media reported Tuesday.
___The groom of the wedding . . . was arrested in addition to an Israeli soldier and two minors, Israeli daily Haaretz said.
___Israeli police also arrested renowned extremist settler Daniel Pinner from the illegal settlement of Tapuah, who was among a number of others seen dancing with a gun in video footage of the wedding . . . .
___At one point during the ceremony, a masked Israeli youth . . . stabs a photo of Ali Dawabsha, an 18-month-old Palestinian burned alive in an arson attack carried out by Jewish extremists over the summer. More . . .

abu dis funeral
Clashes broke out late Tuesday in Abu Dis following a funeral held for a Palestinian killed earlier this month. (Ma’an News Photo)

Analysis
THE MIDDLE EAST MONITOR (MEMO)
PALESTINIANS  AND  ISRAELIS  WILL  PAY  A  HEAVY  PRICE  FOR  UNCHECKED  JEWISH  SETTLER  TERROR
Professor Kamel Hawwash
Dec. 29, 2015
The recent Israeli wedding video in which revellers danced with knives and guns, and stabbed pictures of Palestinian baby Ali Dawabsheh, who was burnt to death by Jewish settlers, should trouble Israel’s supporters and society. . . .
___ However, there has been a worrying rise in settler violence, coordinated under the label of “price tag” attacks which target Palestinians on both sides of the Green (1949 Armistice) Line. They have included attacks on mosques and churches . . . .
___As settlers develop a terror infrastructure, safe in the knowledge that the state basically condones it, those Israelis who want to see a peaceful resolution to the conflict could soon face settler violence for advocating any evacuation of settlements under a peace agreement. . . . More . . . 
Opinion/Analysis
+972 MAGAZINE
ARAB  GROUP  IN  ISRAEL  PAVES  NEW  FUTURE  FOR  TOWN’S  NEXT  GENERATION
Amjad Iraqi
Dec. 27, 2015
Three weeks ago, the building of the municipality of Tira, a Palestinian Arab town in the Muthalath (“Triangle”) area of Israel, was bustling with over two hundred people gathering in its auditorium.
___Five speakers took the stage and delivered captivating talks on five different topics, all of which were nothing short of inspiring. Fadi Matar, the 24-year-old founder of the organization behind the event, described the process of making it happen in a community not used to such initiatives. . . .
___The “Tira Talks” were organized by the Academiyu al-Tira (“the students/educated of Tira”), a local collective of Arab university and college students from the town. More . . .

“DEFYING  THE  UNIVERSE,”  BY  SAMAH  SABAWI
Dedicated to her husband Monir

Are your loved ones trapped behind the wall
Do they need the army’s permission
For their prayers to reach the sky
For their love to cross the ocean
And touch your thirsty heart
Are your loved ones trapped

Do you yearn to be in your family home
And when you call, do they always say
“we are fine, alhamdollelah”
Does it surprise you that they are whole
While you… are broken
Must they always worry about you
Urge you to have faith in your exile
Must they always pity you
For not breathing the air
Of your ancestors’ land
Must they always comfort you
Even when the bombs are falling
Do you ever wonder who is walled in
Is it you…or is it them
And when it finally dawns upon you
That their dignity sets them free
Do you feel ashamed of your liberty

About Samah Sabawi.
From: Valentine, Douglas. “Poetry, Palestine and the Language of Resistance Counter Punch.” Counter Punch. counterpunch.org. September 20, 2013. Web.

“. . . the sweetest recreation for children. . .” (Salem Jubran)

The late Dawabsha Family
The late Dawabsha Family

(Note: please read “Purpose” above. Thank you.)

❶ Mother of infant killed in Duma settler attack dies from injuries
❷ Netanyahu says will not allow Israel to be ‘submerged’ by refugees
❸ Muslims denied rights in Jerusalem, Hebron
❹ PLO Erekat: Israel’s Lack of Justice Could Result in More Victims
❺ (Opinion/Analysis) How Israel honors the murderers in its midst
❻ Poem by Salem Jubran

◊ ◊ ◊ ◊ ◊ ◊

MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
MOTHER  OF  INFANT  KILLED  IN  DUMA  SETTLER  ATTACK  DIES  FROM  INJURIES
Sept. 7, 2015
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Riham Dawabsha, the mother of 18-month-old Ali Dawabsha who was burned alive in an arson attack by Israeli extremists on July 31, died from her injuries late Sunday, after fighting for her life for over a month, relatives and hospital officials said.
____Relatives said that Riham, 27, who suffered third degree burns to 90 percent of her body in the attack, had succumb to her injuries.
____Anwar Dawabsha, a family member, confirmed he had been informed of her death and said the funeral would be held on Monday in Duma.
More. . .

MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
NETANYAHU  SAYS  WILL  NOT  ALLOW  ISRAEL  TO  BE  ‘SUBMERGED’  BY  REFUGEES
Sept. 7, 2015
JERUSALEM―Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday said he would not allow Israel to be “submerged” by refugees after calls for Israel to take in those fleeing Syria’s war.
____Speaking at the weekly cabinet meeting, Netanyahu also announced the start of construction of a fence along Israel’s border with Jordan, according to his office.
____”We will not allow Israel to be submerged by a wave of illegal migrants and terrorist activists,” Netanyahu said [. . . .]
____Opposition leader Isaac Herzog on Saturday said Israel should take in Syrian refugees, RECALLING THE PLIGHT OF JEWS WHO SOUGHT REFUGE FROM PAST CONFLICTS.
More. . .

Israeli stamp honoring Shlomo Ben-Yosef (1913 – June 29, 1938); illegal immigrant to Mandatory Palestine; member of the Revisionist Zionist underground group Irgun; “martyr” of the Arab Revolt (1936-1938)
Israeli stamp honoring Shlomo Ben-Yosef (1913 – June 29, 1938); illegal immigrant to Mandatory Palestine; member of the Revisionist Zionist underground group Irgun; “martyr” of the Arab Revolt (1936-1938)

ALTERNATIVE INFORMATION CENTER (AIC)
MUSLIMS  DENIED  RIGHTS  IN  JERUSALEM,  HEBRON
Sept. 7, 2015
For the third consecutive week Israeli authorities impose restrictions on Palestinians wishing to enter East Jerusalem’s al Aqsa mosque, the third holiest site of Islam.
____Palestinian women are prevented from entering al Aqsa in the morning hours, whilst the Israeli police have a “black list” of some 45 women who are currently totally preventing from entering the mosque.
____Palestinian men are further limited in the morning hours from visitings lasting more than one hour in al Aqsa.
____Palestinian sources note that these limitations on their religious freedom are intended to facilitate the daily invasion of the mosque compound by tens of Israeli settlers, together with police and secret security officers.
More. . .

PALESTINE NEWS & INFORMATION AGENCY – WAFA
PLO  EREKAT:  ISRAEL’S  LACK  OF  JUSTICE  COULD  RESULT  IN  MORE  VICTIMS
RAMALLAH, September 7, 2015 (WAFA) – Secretary-General of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), Saeb Erekat, said the assassination of the Dawabsheh family by Jewish fanatics reflects the clear connection between hate speech, settlement expansion and the impunity granted to Israel by the International community. [. . . .]
____Reham, who has been suffering from critical third degree burns, was pronounced dead late Sunday night while receiving treatment; over a month after the arson attack against her family’s home in Nablus’ village of Duma on July 31 . . . .
____“If Israel is not stopped and held accountable then Riham will not be the last victim of Israeli terror,” said Erekat, adding: “There is a culture of hate that has been developing in Israel by supporting settlements and Apartheid.”
More. . .

❺ Opinion/Analysis
THE ELECTRONIC INTIFADA
HOW  ISRAEL  HONORS  THE MURDERERS  IN  ITS  MIDST
Stanley Heller
Aug. 31, 2015
Two days after Israeli settlers burned to death an 18-month-old baby earlier this summer, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared: “What distinguishes us from our neighbors is that we denounce and condemn murderers in our midst and pursue them until the end, while they name public squares after child murderers.” [. . . .]
Deliberate killing of civilians and glorification of the killers is disgusting. Yet is it true that the Israeli government denounces and condemns all terrorists and war criminals?
____. . . Shlomo Ben-Yosef. He was hanged by the British administrators of Palestine in 1938. He and others threw grenades in a failed effort to kill the passengers aboard a Palestinian bus. Today there are streets named after him in Akka and Tel Aviv.
____Ben-Yosef was part of the Irgun, the Zionist armed group that was led by Menachem Begin, later Israel’s prime minister. The first Irgun attacks began around April 1936 and by the start of the Second World War, as many as 250 Palestinians had been killed by the group.
____The Irgun was denounced as “terrorist” by Albert Einstein and other luminaries in 1948.
More. . . https://electronicintifada.net/content/how-israel-honors-murderers-its-midst/14813
For example, Shlomo Ben-Yosef Street . . .

(Blogger’s note: I have posted this poem with some trepidation. Do not assume from my using it that I am Anti-Semitic. Or, more important, that Salem Jubran was―note especially the last paragraph in the link about him below from the Israeli newspaper Haaretz. I post it because Jubran asked―in 1964―the same question many bewildered citizens of the world ask, for example, in the aftermath of the Israeli assault on Gaza in 2014.)

“A  HANGING  HUMAN  1964,”  BY  SALEM  JUBRAN
One of the toys that appeared on the Israeli market was that of a “hanged Arab.

A hanging human body
The prettiest of toys
The sweetest recreation for children
Displayed on the market!
No, it is not there anymore
It has been sold out for days
Don’t search for it, tell your child
It’s sold out for days!

Oh, souls of those
Dead in Nazi concentration camps―
The hanged human
Is not a Jew in Berlin.
The hanged human is an Arab
Like me, of my people
Hanged by your brothers―
Forgive me, hanged by the crypto Nazis
In Zion!

Souls of the victims
Of Nazi camps―
If only you knew!
If only you knew!

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

Scorch marks on the outside of the Dawabsha home. Photo: MENAHEM KAHANA/AFP
Scorch marks on the outside of the Dawabsha home. Photo: MENAHEM KAHANA/AFP