“. . . The world will be cleansed of its sorrows . . .” (Fadwa Tuqan)

❶ Maliki: Palestinians can no longer accept the US as a peace mediator
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) Arab foreign ministers demand US to annul Jerusalem decision
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴃ) The world’s anger toward Trump gives Palestinians a clear path for action
❷ In Photos: Israeli police use force to break up protest in East Jerusalem
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) Prisoner’s Society says Israel detained 150 Palestinians since US move
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴃ) Trump’s announcement threatens the heart of Palestinian healthcare
POETRY by Fadwa Tuqan
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ MALIKI:  PALESTINIANS  CAN  NO  LONGER  ACCEPT  THE  US  AS  A  PEACE  MEDIATOR 
The Palestinian Information Center 
Dec. 10, 2017 ― Palestinian minister of foreign affairs Riyadh al-Maliki has affirmed that the Palestinian Authority (PA) is looking for another international sponsor for the peace process in the aftermath of the serious decision that was taken by the US president regarding Jerusalem.
___Maliki made his remarks in a news conference held on Saturday at the Palestinian embassy in Cairo to clarify the PA’s position after the US proved itself to be unfit as a neutral sponsor for the peace process. MORE . . .    ..
.  .  .  .  .  ❶  ―  (ᴀ)  ARAB  FOREIGN  MINISTERS  DEMAND  US  TO  ANNUL  JERUSALEM  DECISION  
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
Dec. 10, 2017 – Arab Foreign Ministers demanded the United States to withdraw its decision on Jerusalem and to work with the international community to oblige Israel to implement international laws.
___The ministers concluded in an emergency meeting in Cairo, which was called for to discuss the US move to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and to transfer the embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem that the decision has no legal effect, but constitutes a serious violation of the international law.
___The ministers warned that attempts to change the legal and historical status of Jerusalem and its Arab identity and attack its Islamic and Christian holy sites provokes the feelings of Muslims and Christians throughout the Arab and Muslim world.  MORE . . .
.  .  .  .  .  ❶  ―  (ᴃ)  THE  WORLD’S  ANGER  TOWARD  TRUMP  GIVES  PALESTINIANS  A  CLEAR  PATH  FOR  ACTION   
Mondoweiss
Haidar Eid      (Haidar Eid is Associate Professor of Postcolonial and Postmodern Literature at Gaza’s al-Aqsa University.)
Dec. 9, 2017 ― US president Donald Trump has taken a decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. Forget about international law, UN and Security Council Resolutions, Arab and Muslim reaction! The President of the United of Sates of America does not give a damn. If the world doesn’t like it, it can bang its head against the “wailing wall!”
___What is Jerusalem?
___Jerusalem is Zarnouqa, the village from which my family together with thousands of villagers, were ethnically cleansed in 1948 in order to make room for Ashkenazi Jews from Eastern Europe, a pure Jewish state, similar to Apartheid South Africa and other settler-colonies, one that does not grant you citizenship unless you are born to a Jewish mother.
___Alas, my mother was not Jewish and, therefore, I am expected to live in a refugee camp, accept my low status, and never think of praying in one of the holiest sites of Islam, Christianity and Judaism.
___President Trump, with all sincerity, believes that we are biologically born different and, therefore, some of us have no right to exist and survive on this piece of land unless we choose to be slaves and be grateful for that!   MORE . . .
❷ IN  PHOTOS:  ISRAELI  POLICE  USE  FORCE  TO  BREAK  UP  PROTEST  IN  EAST  JERUSALEM
Ma’an News Agency
Dec. 9, 2017 ― Israeli police on Saturday entered occupied East Jerusalem on foot and on horseback, and suppressed a peaceful Palestinian demonstration against US President Donald Trump’s announcement recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
___Witnesses said police stormed into the crowd of local activists, students and ordinary citizens who were marching peacefully on the main city street, dispersing them and arresting two people.
___Police tossed stun grenades into the crowd as police on horseback reportedly ran over people, including journalists covering the event.
__The witnesses said the police attacked people, mainly women, who were carrying Palestinian flags and snatched them from their hands.   MORE . . .
.  .  .  .  .  ❷  ―  (ᴀ)  PRISONER’S  SOCIETY  SAYS  ISRAEL  DETAINED  150  PALESTINIANS  SINCE  US  MOVE 
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
Dec. 10, 2017 ― The Palestinian Prisoner’s Society (PPS) Sunday said Israeli army forces and police detained a total of 150 Palestinians since US recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
___A press released published by PPS said the highest percentage of detentions occurred in Jerusalem with 40 people detained, including four women who were later released.   MORE . . .
.  .  .  .  .  ❷  ―  (ᴃ)  TRUMP’S  ANNOUNCEMENT  THREATENS  THE  HEART  OF  PALESTINIAN  HEALTHCARE
Palestine News Network – PNN     Dec. 8, 2017 ― On Wednesday, President Donald Trump declared that the United States now recognises Jerusalem as the capital of the State of Israel, and announced his intention to move the US embassy to the city.
___At Medical Aid for Palestinians (MAP), we are deeply concerned by this development and reports that at least 50 Palestinians protesting against the US decision have been injured by Israeli security forces, nine by live ammunition.
___Israel’s annexation of occupied East Jerusalem, the surrounding separation wall, and its complex regime of permits and IDs create manifold barriers to the rights to health and dignity of Palestinians.
___MAP has repeatedly raised concerns about armed raids on Palestinian hospitals and healthcare centres in occupied East Jerusalem, as well as dangerous delays to ambulances and patients entering the city via checkpoints.
___East Jerusalem is the site of many medical specialties unavailable elsewhere in the occupied Palestinian territory, including cardiac surgery and essential specialist cancer treatments such as radiotherapy. It is therefore vital that Palestinian patients from the West Bank and Gaza are able to enter freely to access this care.   MORE . . .

“THE  SEAGULL  AND  THE  NEGATION  OF  NEGATION,”  BY  FADWA  TUQAN

It crossed the horizon and cleft the darkness,
Mastering the blue, darting on wings of light―
Twisting, turning and still turning.
It knocked at my dark window, and the gasping silence quivered:
“Bird, is it good news you bring?”
It divulged its secret, yet breathed not a word,
And the seagull disappeared.

Bird, my sea-bird, I know now
That during hard times, standing in the tunnel of silence,
All things change.
The seed sprouts even within the heart of the dead,
Morning bursts forth from darkness.
I know now,
As I hear horses galloping the call of death along the shores,
That when the flood comes,
The world will be cleansed of its sorrows.

Bird, my sea-bird, rising from the depths of darkness,
God’s blessing upon you for the good news you bring.
For I know now
Something happened . . . the horizon parted and the house greeted the light of day.

About Fadwa Tuqan.
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.

“. . . Sorrow crawled naked in my city . . .” (Fadwa Tuqan)

❶ Trump informs Palestinian president his decision to move the US embassy to Jerusalem
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) Senior White House official said that Donald Trump to declare recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital on Wednesday
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴃ) In a phone call by US President Donald Trump, President Abbas rejects intentions‎ to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴄ) Abbas urges UN to stop Trump from recognizing Jerusalem as Israeli capital
❷ Why Jerusalem is not the capital of Israel
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) Trump is proving that the Israeli right was right all along
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴃ) Why is Trump moving on Jerusalem now?
❸ POETRY by Fadwa Tuqan
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ TRUMP  INFORMS  PALESTINIAN  PRESIDENT  HIS  DECISION  TO  MOVE  THE  US  EMBASSY  TO  JERUSALEM
Palestine News Network – PNN
Dec. 6, 2017 ― US President Donald Trump inform Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas his decision to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv  to Jerusalem.
___Palestinian Presidential spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeineh said that President Abbas was informed by Trump in phone call that us will move US embassy to Jerusalem.     MORE . . .
.  .  .  .  .  ❶  ―  (ᴀ)  SENIOR  WHITE  HOUSE  OFFICIAL  SAID  THAT  DONALD  TRUMP  TO  DECLARE  RECOGNITION  OF  JERUSALEM  AS  ISRAEL’S  CAPITAL  ON  WEDNESDAY   
Palestine News Network – PNN  
Dec. 6, 2017 ― A senior White House official said that the U.S. President Donald Trump will declare his recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital on Wednesday. While Trump intends to move the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, he will sign a waiver delaying the move by six months, according to American law.
___He explained that Trump’s announcement is a mere acknowledgment of the fact that all Israeli government institutions are already based in Jerusalem, stressing that issues of borders and sovereignty will be determined through negotiations between Palestinians and Israelis, ” an acknowledgement of reality seems like an important change.”     MORE . . .
.  .  .  .  .  ❶  ―  (ᴃ)  IN  A  PHONE  CALL  BY  US  PRESIDENT  DONALD  TRUMP,  PRESIDENT  ABBAS  REJECTS  INTENTIONS‎  TO  MOVE  THE  US  EMBASSY  FROM  TEL  AVIV  TO  JERUSALEM 
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA 
Dec. 5, 2017 (WAFA) – President Mahmoud Abbas relayed to the US President Donald Trump in a phone call that he received from the US president at 3:30 p.m. occupied Jerusalem time against the grave consequences of moving the US embassy to Jerusalem or making any announcement that alters the long held US policy regarding Jerusalem.
___ President Abbas reiterated that such a move will have detrimental consequences on the peace process and the prospects for the internationally endorsed two-state solution.
___Furthermore, President Abbas warned of the grave consequences on the stability and security of the region and the world at large.    MORE . . .   ..
.  .  .  .  .  ❶  ―  (ᴄ)  ABBAS  URGES  UN  TO  STOP  TRUMP  FROM  RECOGNIZING  JERUSALEM  AS  ISRAELI  CAPITAL 
Ma’an News Agency   
Dec. 6, 2017 ― Hours before US President Donald Trump is expected to announce his decision to move the American embassy in Tel Aviv to Jerusalem and recognized the Israeli-occupied city as the official capital of Israel, Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas, in a last-ditch-effort, is reportedly pleading to the United Nations (UN) to stop the move.
___Official Palestinian Authority (PA)-owned Wafa news agency reported that Abbas sent an urgent letter to the Secretary-General of the UN demanding the intervention of the UN Security Council (UNSC) to stop Trump for making the declaration.
___In his letter, Abbas said that “this would end the peace process,” which Trump and his administration have attempted to revive in the first year of his presidency, with reports in recent weeks suggesting that the “ultimate peace plan” would be announced soon.
___After days of speculation over whether the US would be moving its Israeli embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, Trump called Abbas on Tuesday and confirmed his intentions to move the embassy.     MORE . . .   ..
❷ WHY  JERUSALEM  IS  NOT  THE  CAPITAL  OF  ISRAEL   
Al Jazeera English      
by Zena Tahhan & Farah Najjar
Dec. 6, 2017 ―US President Donald Trump is expected to call Jerusalem the capital of Israel on Wednesday and begin the process moving his country’s embassy to the city, according to senior US officials.
___The move has sparked global condemnation from world leaders who urged Trump to reconsider the decision.
___Israel occupied East Jerusalem at the end of the 1967 War with Syria, Egypt and Jordan; the western half of the holy city had been captured in the 1948 Arab-Israeli war.
___Israel’s occupation of East Jerusalem effectively put the entire city under de-facto Israeli control. Israeli jurisdiction and ownership of Jerusalem, however, is not recognised by the international community, including the United States.
___The status of Jerusalem remains one of the main sticking points in efforts to resolve the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.     MORE . . .
.  .  .  .  .  ❷  ―  (ᴀ)  TRUMP  IS  PROVING  THAT  THE  ISRAELI  RIGHT  WAS  RIGHT  ALL  ALONG 
+972 Magazine
Noam Sheizaf
Dec. 6, 2017 By recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital the U.S. president is boosting the settlers’ argument that in the long run, ‘facts on the ground’ are more important than diplomacy, and that Israel will eventually win legitimacy for its actions — even unilateral annexation.
___Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Dayan is said to have hesitated before ordering the IDF to conquer the Temple Mount and Jerusalem’s Old City in 1967. “What do I need this Vatican for,” he said at one meeting. But even the secular Dayan was swept by the wave of religious euphoria that took Israel after the war. A few weeks later, the government decided to annex the eastern part of the city, along with a sizable territory around it, including over 20 Palestinian towns and villages that had never been part of the city. The size of the annexed land was 10 times bigger than what the Jordanians defined as East Jerusalem during the 19 years they ruled over it.
____ No country has recognized Israel’s unilateral annexation of the territory (and people) of Jerusalem; and since the Oslo process in the 1990s, it was commonly understood that the fate of the city would be decided in negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians. To complicate things further, Israel didn’t grant East Jerusalemites citizenship; it has kept them as “permanent residents” – a legal status usually meant for immigrants, which deprives them of many rights (most notably, the purchase of state land and the participation in the general elections), and which can be revoked at any moment by the Interior Ministry.  MORE . . .
.  .  .  .  .  ❷  ―  (ᴃ)  WHY  IS  TRUMP  MOVING  ON  JERUSALEM  NOW?
The Middle East Monitor – MEMO  
Ben White
Dec. 6, 2017 ― In comparison to the focus on opposition to the move and its possible ramifications, relatively little has been said about why Donald Trump’s administration has decided to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and signal its intent to relocate the US embassy from Tel Aviv.
___For example, one widely-shared piece of analysis does not really answer the question in its title, namely, “Why is Trump undoing decades of US policy on Jerusalem?”
___I believe there are three main reasons, none of which are mutually exclusive.
___First, US domestic politics. Today’s announcement plays well with Trump’s base amongst right-wing Christian evangelicals, as well as with the likes of influential individuals like Sheldon Adelson.
[. . . .] Second, Benjamin Netanyahu, along with other senior Israeli officials, might well have done a good job in persuading the Trump administration to make such a move.
[. . . .] Third – and this is perhaps where many commentators are missing a trick – the Trump administration might well envisage, and justify, the Jerusalem shift in the context of its much-heralded efforts at securing the “deal of the century”.     MORE . . .

“MY  SAD  CITY,”  BY  FADWA  TUQAN
(The day of Zionist Occupation, June 27, 1967)
The day we saw death and betrayal,
The tide ebbed.
The windows of the sky closed,
And the city held its breath.
The day the waves were vanquished, the day
The ugliness of the abyss revealed its true face,
Hope turned to ashes,
And gagging on disaster,
My sad city choked.

Gone were the children and the songs,
There was no shadow, no echo.
Sorrow crawled naked in my city,
With bloodied footsteps,
Silence reigned in the city,
Silence like crouching mountains,
Mysterious like the night, tragic silence,
Burdened,
Weighed down with death and defeat.
Alas! My sad and silent city.
Can it be true that in the season of harvest,
Grain and fruit have turned to ashes?
Alas! That this should be the fruit of all the journeying!
―Translated by A.M. Elmesseri

From BEFORE  THERE  IS  NOWHERE  TO  STAND: PALESTINE ISRAEL POETS RESPOND TO THE STRUGGLE. Ed. By Joan Dobbie and Grace Beeler. Sandpoint ID: Lost Horse Press, 2012. Available from B&N.
Obituary for Fadwa Tuqan, 2003.

“. . . Alas! My sad and silent city . . .” (Fadwa Tuqan)

❶ Israeli municipality demolishes residential structure in al-Issawiya
❶ Israeli municipality demolishes building in Jerusalem despite pending permit application

  • Background: “Crows on the Cradles: Palestinian Mothers At a Frontline Vortex: Reflections on the Psychology of Occupation.” International Journal of Applied Psychoanalytic Studies.

❶ Two More EU-Funded Palestinian Schools under Threat of Destruction by Israeli Army
❶ 9 Palestinian homes demolished by IOF
❷ Elkin: Start planning for one million settlers in W. Bank & J’lem
❸ POETRY by Fadwa Tuqan
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ ISRAELI  MUNICIPALITY  DEMOLISHES  RESIDENTIAL  STRUCTURE  IN  AL-ISSAWIYA 
Palestine News and Information Agency
Nov. 15, 2017 ― Israeli municipality of Jerusalem on Wednesday demolished a residential structure in the neighborhood of al-Issawiya in occupied East Jerusalem, under the pretext of lacking an Israeli construction permit, according to local sources.
___The municipality demolished a residential structure, made of metals, that was installed by Omar Dari, a local citizen, who said he was forced to build without a permit in order to shelter his family, after he was unable to obtain a permit from the Israeli municipality.   MORE . . .
❶ ISRAELI  MUNICIPALITY  DEMOLISHES  BUILDING  IN  JERUSALEM  DESPITE  PENDING  PERMIT  APPLICATION
Palestine News and Information Agency
Nov. 15, 2017 ― Israeli municipality of Jerusalem demolished on Wednesday morning a two-storey building under construction in the neighborhood of al-Issawiya, in occupied East Jerusalem, according to local sources.
___Locals told WAFA that staff from the Israeli municipality of Jerusalem accompanied by an Israeli police escort raided the neighborhood and demolished the building, under the pretext of lacking an Israeli permit of construction.
___Mohammad Abu Rayala, a local rights activist, said the owners of the building had earlier received a notification to stop the construction of the building. He said though the owners stopped the construction upon notification and started the process of obtaining a construction permit, they were astonished that the building was demolished without a warning.    MORE . . .   ..

Roth, Judy, and Salwa Duaibis.
“CROWS  ON  THE  CRADLES:  PALESTINIAN  MOTHERS  AT  A  FRONTLINE  VORTEX:  REFLECTIONS  ON  THE  PSYCHOLOGY  OF  OCCUPATION.”
International Journal Of Applied Psychoanalytic Studies 12.1 (2015): 5-20.
[. . . .] Last June marked 46 [49] years since the start of Israel’s military occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip. International law is clear that territory can never be acquired as a result of aggression, even if exercised in self-defense. That is why military occupations are meant to be temporary and cannot be legally maintained indefinitely. On the conclusion of the 1967 war, the Israeli authorities imposed military law in the occupied Palestinian territory which still remains in force in the west bank to this day. During this time, East Jerusalem has been annexed, in violation of international law; more than half a million Israelis now live in illegal settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem; and at least 750,000 men, women and children have been prosecuted in military courts and imprisoned. In other words, one in four Palestinian men have been through the military system at one point in their lives. . . .
___Women living in the West Bank and East Jerusalem face many, differing challenges, which include home demolitions . . .   But the issue that stands out above all other issues is that of the settlements built in clear violation of international law on Palestinian land. These settlements are not only illegal, but they are also at the epicenter of a host of human rights violations that occur on a daily basis and affect 2.5 million Palestinians.
[. . . .] Nur is a mother of extraordinary light . . .  Her home, slated for demolition, sits on a small path that Israeli soldiers use to move from one side of the neighborhood to the next. The path is right outside her door. She uses the word “Ro`ub”, absolute terror, to describe her children’s experience of the soldiers. Nur, herself, is worried that her nine-year-old son will be arrested soon. She hears how he talks about the Israeli soldiers and settlers, the revenge that he is brewing in response to their provocations. While she is pretty certain that she will lose him, she retains some hope for a different outcome – although she is unable to create a realistic alternative. Perhaps, none exist.
[. . . .]  Our psychoanalytic understanding of how militarism is inculcated, how rage incubates, and how societies sanction violence and racism is critical to defining a nuanced and sober stance from which to approach this relentless conflict that reverberates both near and far. Finding this stance that humanizes all players – victims, oppressors, and bystanders – and that can then better inform modes of action, prioritizing the urgency of Palestinian suffering, while holding accountable all who are complicit, is now more crucial than ever.    Source . . .

❶ TWO  MORE  EU-FUNDED  PALESTINIAN  SCHOOLS  UNDER  THREAT  OF  DESTRUCTION  BY  ISRAELI  ARMY 
Palestine Chronicle
Nov. 15, 2017 ― Two new Palestinian schools in the occupied West Bank, funded by European governments, are under threat of destruction and seizure, according to the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC). An Israeli court has already ordered students not to attend class in one of them, the NGO says.
___Built over the last year with European funding, the schools in Wadi as-Seeq and Al Muntar serve Palestinian Bedouin communities who have long suffered neglect and discrimination at the hands of the Israeli occupation authorities.
___Many of the families served by the schools have “already suffered destruction of their property over many years”, NRC states.    MORE . . .
❶  9  PALESTINIAN  HOMES  DEMOLISHED  BY  IOF   
The Palestinian Information Center
Nov. 15, 2017 ― The Israeli occupation forces (IOF) on Wednesday knocked down nine Palestinian homes in the West Bank governorate of Jericho.
The demolition was carried out under the pretext of unlicensed construction.  At the same time, the Israeli authorities seized a Palestinian agricultural vehicle in the northern Jordan Valley on claims that it was spotted inside a natural reserve.   MORE . . .   ..
❷ ELKIN:  START  PLANNING  FOR  ONE  MILLION  SETTLERS  IN  W.  BANK  &  J’LEM  
Al Hourriah Magazine (Freedom)
Nov. 15, 2017 ― Israeli Jerusalem affairs minister Ze’ev Elkin has urged his government to start planning for one million settlers in Area C of the West Bank and Jerusalem.     ___“This will happen; it is only a question of when,” Elkin said, adding that it could be anywhere between the next 10 to 20 years, depending on the pace of construction.     ___According to the Israeli central bureau of statistics, 400,000 settlers lived in West Bank settlements in 2016.     ___Using a word of Arabic slang, Elkin dismissed the idea of a Palestinian state in the West Bank. “Halas (enough) with the story of two states. There is no other option but the state of Israel, certainly between the Jordan [River] to the sea there will be one state.”  MORE . . .

“MY SAD CITY,” BY FADWA TUQAN
(The day of Zionist Occupation, June 27, 1967)
The day we saw death and betrayal,
The tide ebbed.
The windows of the sky closed,
And the city held its breath.
The day the waves were vanquished, the day
The ugliness of the abyss revealed its true face,
Hope turned to ashes,
And gagging on disaster,
My sad city choked.

Gone were the children and the songs,
There was no shadow, no echo.
Sorrow crawled naked in my city,
With bloodied footsteps,
Silence reigned in the city,
Silence like crouching mountains,
Mysterious like the night, tragic silence,
Burdened,
Weighed down with death and defeat.
Alas! My sad and silent city.
Can it be true that in the season of harvest,
Grain and fruit have turned to ashes?
Alas! That this should be the fruit of all the journeying!
―Translated by A.M. Elmesseri

From BEFORE  THERE  IS  NOWHERE  TO  STAND: PALESTINE ISRAEL POETS RESPOND TO THE STRUGGLE. Ed. By Joan Dobbie and Grace Beeler. Sandpoint ID: Lost Horse Press, 2012. Available from B&N.
Obituary for Fadwa Tuqan, 2003.

“. . . the chains of an arrogant fate . . .” (Fadwa Tuqan)

❶ 100 years on Balfour Declaration
❷ Saeb Erekat: Nothing is more shameful than [the British] celebrating colonialism

  • “The Palestinian Nakba and Its Continuous Repercussions.” Israel Studies.
  • “Britain’s Secret Re-Assessment of the Balfour Declaration. The Perfidy of Albion.” Journal of the History of International Law.
  • “Political Engagement: The Palestinian Confessional Genre.” Arab Studies Quarterly.

❸ POETRY by Fadwa Tuqan
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
100 YEARS ON BALFOUR DECLARATION 
Alray-Palestinian Media Agency
Nov. 2, 2017 ― Palestinians around the world are marking 100 years since the Balfour Declaration was issued on November 2, 1917.
___The Balfour Declaration (“Balfour’s promise” in Arabic) was a public pledge by Britain in 1917 declaring its aim to establish “a national home for the Jewish people” in Palestine.
___The statement came in the form of a letter from Britain’s then-foreign secretary, Arthur Balfour, addressed to Lionel Walter Rothschild, a figurehead of the British Jewish community.
___It was made during World War I (1914-1918) and was included in the terms of the British Mandate for Palestine after the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire.
[. . . .] Unlike the rest of the post-war mandates, the main goal of the British Mandate there was to create the conditions for the establishment of a Jewish “national home” – where Jews constituted less than 10 percent of the population at the time.    MORE . . .
❷ SAEB EREKAT: NOTHING IS MORE SHAMEFUL THAN [THE BRITISH] CELEBRATING COLONIALISM 
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA         
Nov. 2, 2017 ― Secretary General of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Saeb Erekat said on Thursday that by celebrating the centenary of the Balfour Declaration, the British government has chosen to celebrate 100 years of injustice, racism, and violence.
___“Today we mark the centenary of the Balfour Declaration, when the British colonial power promised Palestine, a land that wasn’t theirs, to the Zionist movement, thus ignoring the political and national rights of the indigenous Palestinian people. To implement the Balfour Declaration, the United Kingdom made use of the British Mandate of Palestine by oppressing the Palestinian national liberation movement and changing the identity of Palestine,” said Erekat in a statement marking this occasion. MORE . . .    …

Manna, Adel.
“THE PALESTINIAN NAKBA AND ITS CONTINUOUS REPERCUSSIONS.”
ISRAEL STUDIES, vol. 18, no. 2, Summer2013, pp. 86-99.
[. . . .] During the late 19th Century . . . Jews in Europe established an organized Zionist movement aiming to transform Palestine into a Jewish homeland. Furthermore, thousands of Zionist Jews started to immigrate into Palestine and settle it, beginning in the 1880’s.
___However, only at the end of World War I did the Palestinians start to fully grasp the serious challenge of the Zionist project, which by then had earned the official support of Great Britain with THE BALFOUR DECLARATION, ISSUED IN NOVEMBER 1917. The British, who succeeded the Ottomans in controlling Palestine and other neighboring Arab countries, posed a special threat to the national aspirations of the Palestinians. In the next two decades, the Arabs in general and the Palestinians in particular did their best to persuade the British to end their support for the Zionist project, but failed to achieve this aim by peaceful means in the 1920’s (See: Muhammad Muslih, The Origins of Palestinian Nationalism. New York, 1988: 191-210.)
___Palestinians who watched the construction of the infrastructure for a Jewish state turned to violence as a last resort to defend their country against British rule and the Zionist newcomers. However, the Jewish state-in-the-making gathered more and more strength and support, particularly after World War II and the disclosure of the horrors of the Holocaust. The climax of international support for establishing a Jewish state in Palestine materialized fully in the UN partition plan, approved on 29 November 1947. Notwithstanding these new realities, the Palestinians were absolutely confident in their cause and believed that justice would prevail.
___At the end of 1947 the Arabs of Palestine were more than two thirds (about 1,350,000) of the country’s two million people. Furthermore, they possessed about 90% of Palestine’s privately-owned land. Hence, as an indigenous stable majority, they believed in their right to take control of a free and complete Palestine.   SOURCE . . .

Quiley, John.
“BRITAIN’S SECRET RE-ASSESSMENT OF THE BALFOUR DECLARATION. THE PERFIDY OF ALBION.”
JOURNAL OF THE HISTORY OF INTERNATIONAL LAW
, vol. 13, no. 2, Oct. 2011, pp. 249-283.
[. . . .] In the British Cabinet’s internal discussion of Palestine, however, the prospects of success in meeting these two goals were rated as low. The Arab and Jewish sectors of Palestine’s population were immediately at odds with each other. In 1923 the Cabinet undertook a comprehensive re-assessment of the Jewish national home project. The Cabinet concluded that it could not promote a Jewish national home, yet ensure a peaceful outcome that would protect the Arab population and move Palestine towards independence. For reasons relating to its own interests, however, the Cabinet decided to persist in promoting a Jewish national home. The unfortunate consequence was an Arab-Jewish confrontation that ultimately saw Britain depart unceremoniously from Palestine in 1948, setting the stage for conflict that continues to the present day.
[. . . .] In Palestine, Britain as the administering power committed itself to bringing in an outside population that entertained the goal of establishing itself in a way that seemed to threaten the status of the local population.
___This commitment was contained in the Balfour Declaration, a 1917 document of the British Government. The Balfour Declaration committed Britain to promoting a Jewish “national home” in Palestine, a project being urged by the World Zionist Organization, a Jewish group based in Europe. At the time, Jews constituted 10% of Palestine’s population. The other 90% of the population was Arab. The declaration, issued in the form of a letter signed by A.J. Balfour, the foreign secretary, read:
___His Majesty’s government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavours to facilitate the achievement of this object, it being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of the existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine, or the rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country.    COMPLETE ARTICLE . . .

Mir, Salam.
“POLITICAL ENGAGEMENT: THE PALESTINIAN CONFESSIONAL GENRE.”
ARAB STUDIES QUARTERLY
, vol. 35, no. 4, Fall2013, pp. 360-377.
[. . . .] Fadwa Tuqan’s personal history strikes an unusual inverse parallel with that of Palestinian people. Nineteen seventeen, the year of Tuqan’s birth, coincided with the Balfour Declaration in which the British government promised to establish a Jewish National Home (JNH) in Palestine. Nineteen forty-eight, the year of Tuqan’s father’s death, was the year the poet began to participate in politics and the world outside. Forty-eight was also the time of Nakba, the “Catastrophe,” when Palestine was divided and Israel established. By 1948, Tuqan was the up-and-coming poet who focused mainly on personal concerns and love poetry.
___When her father died and Palestine was lost in 1948, a slight shift in Tuqan’s journey for self-fulfillment takes place. The familial and sociopolitical changes signaled a turbulent period for country and poet.
[. . . .] A Mountainous Journey, An Autobiography by Palestinian poet Fadwa Tuqan (1917-2003) was first published serially in 1978-79, in the Arab Israeli magazine al Jadid. Autobiography is a personal account of the coming of age of this accomplished Palestinian poet, who is among the most celebrated contemporary women poets in the Arab world.   SOURCE . . .

“THE ROCK,” BY FADWA TUQAN
Look how this black
rock has been fastened over my chest
with the chains of an arrogant fate, with the chains of senseless time.
Look, how it grinds beneath it
my fruit and my flower,
carves me with time
and crushes my breath.
Let be! We can’t overpower it.
The chains of my prison will hold.
I shall remain
in isolation
while fate is my jailor.
Leave me
so: no light,
no tomorrow,
no hope.
There is no escaping this black rock,
no refuge.
In vain I try to budge its weight from my chest
by forgetting myself―
how I roamed in
the heart of life
and travelled in
every direction.

I played,
I sang
in the streams of youth,
held up my cup
and greedily drank
until absent to the world.
How the world of pleasure deceived me,
my pain and my misery in its lap!
I have escaped from
the world of my feelings
and dance, swift as birds
laughing in madness. Then from
the depths of my pessimism
a call shook my spirit
and in secret thundered on:

“You will not escape,
here I stay!
There is no running from me, no refuge!”

The shadow of the black rock casts
deformed pictures.
In vain I try to budge it,
in vain seek to escape.
There is no refuge.

How I have probed the land of misery!
I smell the elixir of consolation
in the misery of prisoners like me,
prisoners of fate.
I came among the people
where tragedies are,
and tears,
where whips sizzle and fall
over the hordes,
over the naked backs
and the crushed necks,
where the slaves
are tamed
and rush in groups, each one
foundering in his own
tears,
blood and sweat.

I keep on: I seek comfort
but there is no refuge.
The curse of this black rock
was born with me,
a constant trial.
Mute,
it follows me,
its shadow dogs my steps.
Look how it has settled
in its arrogance
over my chest!
Let be; we can’t overpower it.
The chains of my prison will hold.
My spirit is locked; I am
alone in my struggle
alone
with pain
with time
with fate
alone
and this black rock grinding.

There is no refuge.

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.  Available from Barnes & Noble.

“. . . And the green olive tree rose high Embracing the house . . .” (Fadwa Tuqan)

nc-alexandrahandal-imagecatalogue-11june09
Alexandra Handal. From  “Bed & Breakfast Notebooks, 2007-2008,” Video (Still from Bloomberg New Contemporaries 2009 Catalogue)

❶ Israeli security cabinet freezes plan for Palestinian housing in Qalqiliya
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) Israeli forces demolish Palestinian homes in Jabal al-Mukabbir, Silwan

  • Background: “Be/Come Closer to Home.” Third Text

❷ Israel will not slow settlement on Palestinian land, Says Netanyahu
❸ Population, housing and institutions general census 2017 kicks off
❹ POETRY by Fadwa Tuqan
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶   ISRAELI  SECURITY  CABINET  FREEZES  PLAN  FOR  PALESTINIAN  HOUSING  IN  QALQILIYA    
Ma’an News Agency
July 13, 2017.   The Israeli security cabinet voted on Wednesday to postpone discussions regarding plans to expand the Palestinian city of Qalqiliya in the northern occupied West Bank, weeks after Israeli officials condemned the planned construction.
___According to Israeli news outlet Ynet, the security cabinet ruled for no further steps to be taken with regards to the plan, which would see some 5,000 housing units built in Qalqiliya, until it convenes to discuss the matter on July 23.
___The security cabinet also called on Israeli Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit to issue a ruling on how control of Area C, the 60 percent of the West Bank under full Israeli control, should be divided between the Israeli army and government, and how this would affect the plan.     MORE . . .
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) ISRAELI   FORCES  DEMOLISH  PALESTINIAN  HOMES  IN  JABAL  AL-MUKABBIR,  SILWAN 
Ma’an News Agency
July 12, 2017.   Israeli forces targeted Palestinian-owned buildings in occupied East Jerusalem with demolitions for the second day in a row, under the pretext that the structures lacked the nearly impossible to obtain construction permits from Israeli authorities.
___Locals told Ma’an that Israel’s Jerusalem municipality enforced the demolition of three buildings, which included two homes, in the East Jerusalem neighborhoods of Jabal al-Mukabbir and Silwan. Amid the tense atmosphere in Silwan, Israeli forces reportedly assaulted a local youth during the demolition.
___In Jabal al-Mukabbir, Musa Obidat told Ma’an that Israeli bulldozers raided the neighborhood around dawn time and razed his house to the ground for being built without a permit.
___Obidat noted that he was away from his home when the demolition was carried out, and was informed by his neighbors of the raid. When he attempted to return to the house, Israeli forces prevented him from accessing the area and imposed a complete siege around the premises.   MORE . . .

Photiou, Maria. “BE/COME CLOSER TO HOME.” Third Text, vol. 29, no. 4/5, Jul-Sep2015, pp. 340-355. (Article about the Palestinian artist, Alexandra Handal)
[. . . .]   Handal’s ongoing process of this web documentary exposes the reality of the absurd post-1948 political situation in West Jerusalem where expropriated Palestinian houses are being sold on Israeli real-estate agents’ websites. The realisation of this absurd political reality was the persuasive point for Handal’s engagement in this issue:
“The idea for the work grew from an encounter I made in the early 1990s. During a trip to NYC, I met a Palestinian refugee and he showed me a real estate advertisement that featured upscale residential properties in West Jerusalem. At first glance, there was nothing particularly special about this ad, but the absurd political reality around it became evident after he explained to me that this was in fact his family’s expropriated home that was now on sale for an Israeli international clientele. I was a teenager at the time and the story had an enduring impact on me – beneath the glossy surface of the ad was a cruel reality” [From Karmah Elmusa, ‘Alexandra Handal Combines Palestinian History and Art in Web Documentary,
found at
. . .].
[. . . .]  The concept of homeland and the limitations of the Green Line are obvious in Alexandra Handal’s practice. Born in 1975 into a Palestinian family in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Handal is influenced by the 1948 Palestinian depopulation from West Jerusalem and the ongoing Palestinian occupation by Israel.
[. . . .] The desire to document the socio-political events of her homeland is obvious in Handal’s work. In the artist’s statement for No Parking without Permission, Jerusalem, Handal describes her longing to explore the occupied areas:
“I wanted to go see first-hand what had become of those neighbourhoods whose stories had shaped my image of the city. So I decided to undertake a number of walks there. Although walking through a city would almost anywhere in the world be seen as a mundane activity, for a Palestinian drifting in Jerusalem is politicised and loaded with emotional ramifications. Through numerous walks, I explored these areas by looking through all sorts of barriers, fences, gates and bushes in an attempt to remove the distance and be/come closer to the spaces that Palestinians were torn apart from in 1948. These drifts culminated into a series of photos, each image – a visual testimony of my yearning” [Author’s Communication with Alexandra Handal, 2015].       SOURCE . . .

❷ ISRAEL WILL  NOT  SLOW  SETTLEMENT  ON  PALESTINIAN  LAND,  SAYS  NETANYAHU 
The Palestinian Information Center  
July 12, 2107.   Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has denied media reports claiming that Tel Aviv had agreed to slow the construction of illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank to kick-start the peace process.
___The Prime Minister’s Office denied reports by Hebrew-speaking and Arab news outlets that the White House special envoy Jason Greenblatt and senior Israeli and Palestinian Authority (PA) leaders had secured backing for new final status agreement talks, including assurances from Israel that construction in the occupied West Bank would be slowed during negotiations with the PA.   MORE . . .
❸ POPULATION,  HOUSING  AND  INSTITUTIONS  GENERAL  CENSUS  2017  KICKS  OFF 
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
July 13, 2017.   Ola Awad, president of the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS), Thursday announced the start of field operations for the population, housing and institutions 2017 general census.
___Awad said in a press release, “This is the third general census, fully conducted by Palestinians. Modern technology will be used to collect information, such as tablets and geographic information systems.”
___The general census is considered the biggest on the national level and is conducted every 10 years and will officially start on Saturday July 15. It was conducted in 2007 and 1997.   MORE . . 

“THE  LAST  KNOCK,”  BY  FADWA  TUQAN
Will you not open this door for me?
My hand is exhausted from knocking at Your door.
I have come to Your vastness to beg
Some tranquility and peace of mind
But Your door is closed in my face,
Drowned in silence.
Lord of the house,
The door was open here,
A refuge for all burdened with grief.
The door was open here,
And the green olive tree rose high
Embracing the house.
The oil lamb kindling without fire,
Guiding steps of one walking at night,
Relieving those crushed by the burden of Earth,
Flooding them with satisfaction and ease.
Do you hear me, O Lord of the house,
After my loss in the deserts;
Away from You I have returned to You
But Your door is closed
In my face, drowned in silence.
Your house is shrouded
With the dust of death.
You are here. Open, then, the door.
Do not veil your face.
See my orphanhood, my loss,
Amid the ruins of a collapsing world,
The grief of the world on my shoulders
And terrors of a tyrant destiny
To be undone.

From: A  Lover  From  Palestine  and  Other  Poems:  An  Anthology  of  Palestinian  Poetry.  Ed. Abdul Wahab Al-Messiri. Washington, DC: Free Palestine Press, 1970. Available from Amazon.
Fadwa Tuqan obituary.

“. . . The windows of the sky closed, And the city held its breath . . .” (Fadwa Tuqan)

IMG_3041
Demolished home in Shuafat neighborhood, East Jerusalem (Photo: Harold Knight, Nov. 10, 2015)

❶ Israeli authorities demolish Palestinian-owned building in Issawiya

  • Background: “Whose Place? Emplaced Narratives and the Politics of Belonging in East Jerusalem’s Contested Neighbourhood of Silwan.” Space & Polity.

❷ EU Condemns Israel’s Illegal Settlement Plans
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) “The [Italian] Foreign Ministry expresses concern for the recent advancement in the plan to build new housing units in East Jerusalem.”
❸ PHOTO ESSAY: How Israel’s wall keeps Palestinian farmers off their land
❹ POETRY by Fadwa Tuqan
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
ISRAELI  AUTHORITIES  DEMOLISH  PALESTINIAN-OWNED  BUILDING  IN  ISSAWIYA 
Ma’an News Agency 
July 11, 2017.   Israeli forces demolished a four-story, under-construction building in the occupied East Jerusalem neighborhood of Issawiya on Tuesday morning, despite its Palestinian landowner having a schedule meeting with Israeli authorities to postpone the demolition.
___Owner of the building Hanan Mahmoud told Ma’an that she and her family were caught by surprise when four bulldozers escorted by armed Israeli forces stormed the area at around 4 a.m. and began razing the building to the ground.
___Construction of the four-floor building — comprised of six apartments, with the ground floor planned to be used as shops — started about a year ago.   MORE . . .

[Blogger’s note: This article is complex but quite accessible to the lay person. It is a thorough and fascinating study of the conflicting claims to “ownership” of Jerusalem.]

Mannergren Selimovic, Johanna and Lisa Strömbom. “WHOSE  PLACE?  EMPLACED  NARRATIVES  AND  THE  POLITICS  OF  BELONGING  IN  EAST  JERUSALEM’S  CONTESTED  NEIGHBOURHOOD  OF  SILWAN.”  Space & Polity, vol. 19, no. 2, Aug. 2015, pp. 191-205.
[. . . .] . . .  a close reading of the neighbourhood of Silwan in East Jerusalem. This dense, urban area is a highly tangible place where several spatial and narrative practices collide in many regards epitomizing the larger Israeli–Palestinian conflict. . . interrelatedness of narratives and material structure . . . places as physical sites are embedded in and based on collective memories and metanarratives of societies. The neighbourhood of Silwan has been partly appropriated by an archaeological excavation site, which is managed and controlled by the Jewish settler organization Elad and sanctioned by the Israeli state. Elad’s stated aim is to increase the Jewish connections to Jerusalem . . .  The organization uses the archaeological findings to support a coherent historical narrative that underpins the Israeli autochthonous [“Originating where found; found where it originates”] claim of “having been here first”. In addition to the excavation site and its concomitant tourist centre, this narrative is materialized through about 40 Jewish microsettlements in Silwan . . .  Palestinian inhabitants strongly protest the development of the archaeological site and the Jewish settlements, as it has brought demolitions of homes and of shared urban spaces. They challenge the autochthonous claims of Elad through the Palestinian nationalist narrative of authentic belonging, centred around the principle of “Sumud”, which refers to the political project of “steadfastness” or “clinging to one’s land”. In opposition to these two claims of belonging, a counternarrative . . .  visualizes a fluid and fragmented past and attempts to fill the place of Silwan/City of David with an alternative material and symbolic meaning of inclusion. This counternarrative is articulated by critical archaeologists as well as parts of Israeli civil society that challenge Elad’s claims to the place in particular, and the Israeli heritage “industry” in general.   SOURCE . . .

❷ EU  CONDEMNS  ISRAEL’S  ILLEGAL  SETTLEMENT  PLANS   
The Palestine Chronicle  
July 7, 2017.    The European Union (EU) condemned Israel’s plans to advance some 1,500 new illegal settlement units in occupied East Jerusalem in a statement released Friday, which said the plans “undermines the viability of the two-state solution and the prospect for a lasting peace.”
___The spokesperson for the EU reiterated that Israel’s settlement policy was illegal under international law, adding that the move would “undermine” the two-state solution and the “prospect for lasting peace.”
___Israeli NGO Peace Now reported on Monday that Israeli authorities were planning to discuss the advancement of nearly 1,800 housing units for illegal settlements in occupied East Jerusalem.   MORE . . .
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) “THE  [ITALIAN]  FOREIGN  MINISTRY  EXPRESSES  CONCERN  FOR  THE  RECENT  ADVANCEMENT  IN  THE  PLAN  TO  BUILD  NEW  HOUSING  UNITS  IN  EAST  JERUSALEM.”
Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation.
July 11, 2017.   MORE . . .

IMG_3397
Construction of Apartheid Wall extension through farmland at Cremisan – note the diminutive workman standing to the right of the wall. (Photo: Harold Knight, Nov. 10, 2015)

❸ PHOTO  ESSAY:  HOW  ISRAEL’S  WALL  KEEPS  PALESTINIAN  FARMERS  OFF  THEIR  LAND
+972 Magazine/Activestills.org   
Ahmad Al-Bazz and Haidi Motola
July 11, 2017.   Approximately 100 Palestinian farmers protested on Sunday morning in front of an Israeli military gate in the northern West Bank, calling on the army to ease restrictions on their daily journey through the gate, which separates them from their land.
___Joined by some 10 anti-occupation Israeli activists and several international human rights observers, the farmers refused to cross through Military Gate 623, part of Israel’s separation barrier, instead calling on the army to renew expired entry permits for their family members, to issue permits for their workers, and to open the gate earlier than 7 a.m. on a daily basis, due to the recent heatwave.     MORE . . .

“MY SAD CITY,” BY FADWA TUQAN
(The day of Zionist Occupation, June 27, 1967)

The day we saw death and betrayal,
The tide ebbed.
The windows of the sky closed,
And the city held its breath.
The day the waves were vanquished, the day
The ugliness of the abyss revealed its true face,
Hope turned to ashes,
And gaging on disaster,
My sad city choked.

Gone were the children and the songs,
There was no shadow, no echo.
Sorrow crawled naked in my city,
With bloodied footsteps,
Silence reigned in the city,
Silence like crouching mountains,
Mysterious like the night, tragic silence,
Burdened,
Weighed down with death and defeat.
Alas! My sad and silent city.
Can it be true that in the season of harvest,
Grain and fruit have turned to ashes?
Alas! That this should be the fruit of all the journeying!
―Translated by A.M. Elmesseri
From BEFORE  THERE  IS  NOWHERE  TO  STAND:  PALESTINE  ISRAEL  POETS  RESPOND  TO  THE  STRUGGLE.  Ed. By Joan Dobbie and Grace Beeler. Sandpoint ID: Lost Horse Press, 2012. Available from B&N.
Obituary for Fadwa Tuqan, 2003.

“. . . the day The ugliness of the abyss revealed its true face . . .” (Fadwa Tuqan)

events-six-day-war-5-1061967-captures-arabs-abu-tor-district-east-BB5Y94-001
Six Day War, June 6, 1967, captured Palestinians, Abu Tor district, East Jerusalem (Alamy Stock Photo)

❶ 50 years: Israeli occupation longest in modern history
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) PLO: 50 years of Israeli occupation is a shame for the international system
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴃ) Palestine in Motion: Where does the story begin?
❷ Israeli forces destroy [char]coal factories in Yabad
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) IOF kidnap Palestinian youths in overnight raids
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴃ) Palestinian cars damaged in new price tag attack
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴄ) Palestinian TV presenter injured by stun grenade during violent raid into Issawiya
❸ POETRY by Fadwa Tuqan
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `

Occupation

❶ 50  YEARS:  ISRAELI  OCCUPATION  LONGEST  IN  MODERN  HISTORY   
Al Jazeera English 
Zena Tahhan
June 5, 2017
Palestinians are marking 50 years since the 1967 occupation of their remaining lands this week.  
Fifty years ago this week, the state of Israel shocked the world when it seized the remaining Palestinian territories . . .  as well as the Syrian Golan Heights, and the Egyptian Sinai Peninsula, in a matter of six days.
___In a war with Egypt, Jordan and Syria, known as the 1967 War, or the June War, Israel delivered what came to be known as the “Naksa”, meaning setback or defeat, to the armies of the neighbouring Arab countries, and to the Palestinians who lost all what remained of their homeland.
[. . . .]  In 1967, Israel absorbed the whole of historic Palestine, as well as additional territory from Egypt and Syria. By the end of the war, Israel had expelled another 430,000 Palestinians from their homes . . .
[. . . .]  Between June 25-27, Israel illegally annexed East Jerusalem and various parts of the West Bank, declaring them part of the state of Israel, in a move never recognised by the international community.
___The rest of the occupied Palestinian territories of the West Bank and Gaza Strip, housing some 5.1 million Palestinians, remain under Israeli military control under the pretext of security.      MORE . . .   
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ)  PLO:  50  YEARS  OF  ISRAELI   OCCUPATION  IS  A  SHAME  FOR  THE  INTERNATIONAL  SYSTEM   
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA        
June 5, 2017
The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) said Monday that 50 years of Israeli occupation of the Palestinian land is a shame for the international system.
___Israel attacked Jordan, Egypt and Syria on June 5, 1967 occupying the West Bank and East Jerusalem from Jordan, the Sinai from Egypt and the Golan Heights from Syria.
___While Israel has returned the Sinai to Egypt following the signing of a peace agreement between them, it still holds on to the rest of the occupied territories in defiance of international resolutions that have called on it to withdraw from these territories.      MORE . . .
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴃ) PALESTINE  IN  MOTION:  WHERE  DOES  THE  STORY  BEGIN? 
Al Jazeera English
June 5, 2017
Stories of loss, love, trauma, hope, and ultimately, of what it means to be Palestinian.   From exile to resistance: The day my life changed forever. The deeply personal and revealing stories of ordinary people who survived massacres, displacement and military occupation.   From Honduras to New Zealand: What does it mean to be a Palestinian today?  Young Palestinians across the world reflect on their identity, life under occupation, exile and future aspirations.      MORE . . .

LIFE UNDER OCCUPATION

❷ ISRAELI  FORCES  DESTROY  [CHAR]COAL  FACTORIES  IN  YABAD 
Palestine News Network – PNN       
June 4, 2017
The Israeli occupation bulldozers on Sunday knocked down five coal factories in Jenin’s southwestern town of Yabad, leaving hundreds of Palestinians unemployed.
___The Israeli forces destroyed five factories to manufacture coal and seized hundreds of tons of wood, worth tens of thousands of shekels.
___According to local sources, Israeli military vehicles, escorted by a bulldozer, cordoned off Palestinian lands in Yabad and knocked down coal structures and equipment.   MORE . . .

Mideast-Israel-Palest_Horo-9
Palestinian laborers work at the site of a charcoal factory, in the West Bank town of Yabad, near Jenin. (AP Photo/Nasser Nasser)

. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ)  IOF  KIDNAP  PALESTINIAN  YOUTHS  IN  OVERNIGHT  RAIDS
Palestine News Network – PNN
June 5, 2017
Israeli occupation forces (IOF) at dawn Monday kidnapped several Palestinian citizens from their homes in different areas of the West Bank and Jerusalem.
___Local sources told the Palestinian Information Center (PIC) that the IOF stormed Asira ash-Shamaliya town, north of Nablus, and kidnapped two brothers after ransacking their family home.
[. . . .] Six other Palestinian young men were kidnapped from their homes in IOF raids in different areas of east Jerusalem . . .      MORE . . .
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴃ) PALESTINIAN  CARS  DAMAGED  IN  NEW  PRICE  TAG  ATTACK 
Al Hourriah Magazine (Freedom)
June 5, 2017
A number of Palestinian cars had their tires slashed and racist graffiti was painted on others in two different places in occupied Jerusalem on Monday morning.
___The incident is considered the most recent in a string of “Price Tag” attacks committed by right wing settlers in the occupied Palestinian territories.   [Note: In “Price tag” attacks settlers demonstrate to Palestinians the “price” of resistance]  MORE . . .
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴄ)  PALESTINIAN  TV  PRESENTER  INJURED  BY  STUN  GRENADE  DURING  VIOLENT  RAID  INTO  ISSAWIYA  
Ma’an News Agency        
June 5, 2017
A Palestinian woman was injured by shrapnel from a stun grenade after getting caught clashes in the occupied East Jerusalem neighborhood of Issawiya on Sunday night while she was filming for a local TV show.
___Local activist Muhammad Abu al-Hummus told Ma’an that Israeli forces stormed Issawiya minutes before Iftar time — when Muslims observing the holy month of Ramadan eat their first meal after a day of fasting — sparking clashes with local Palestinians in a number of areas in the neighborhood.
___Israeli border police officers indiscriminately fired live ammunition, stun grenades, rubber-coated steel bullets, and tear gas canisters throughout the community, Abu al-Hummus said.
___Layali Eid, a reporter and TV presenter for local media outlet the al-Quds Educational TV channel, happened to be in the area interviewing locals about their experiences during Ramadan for a seasonal TV show.        MORE . . .         RELATED . . .

“MY SAD CITY,” BY FADWA TUQAN
(The day of Zionist Occupation, June 27, 1967**)

The day we saw death and betrayal,
The tide ebbed.
The windows of the sky closed,
And the city held its breath.
The day the waves were vanquished, the day
The ugliness of the abyss revealed its true face,
Hope turned to ashes,
And gagging on disaster,
My sad city choked.

Gone were the children and the songs,
There was no shadow, no echo.
Sorrow crawled naked in my city,
With bloodied footsteps,
Silence reigned in the city,
Silence like crouching mountains,
Mysterious like the night, tragic silence,
Burdened,
Weighed down with death and defeat.
Alas! My sad and silent city.
Can it be true that in the season of harvest,
Grain and fruit have turned to ashes?
Alas! That this should be the fruit of all the journeying!
―Translated by A.M. Elmesseri

** (While the military occupation of Jerusalem took place on June 6, the Israelis did not declare the actual annexation until June 27.)
From BEFORE  THERE  IS  NOWHERE  TO  STAND:  PALESTINE  ISRAEL  POETS  RESPOND  TO  THE  STRUGGLE.  Ed. By Joan Dobbie and Grace Beeler. Sandpoint, ID: Lost Horse Press, 2012. Available from B&N.
Obituary for Fadwa Tuqan, 2003.

“. . . Your house is shrouded with the dust of death . . .” (Fadwa Tuqan)

storm-001
Israeli forces storm Hebron-area refugee camp, Aug. 16, 2016 (Photo: Ma’an News Agency)

❶ Israeli forces kill 18-year-old Palestinian in Gaza after shooting him in head during protests

  • Background:   “Mental Suffering In Protracted Political Conflict: Feeling Broken Or Destroyed.”

❷ B’Tselem: Palestinian youth killed in al-Fawwar refugee camp away from clashes when shot dead

  • Background:  “An ‘Invented People’: Palestinian Refugee Women And Meanings Of Home.”

❸ US critical of Israeli [Netanyahu’s] remarks on West Bank settlements
❹ POETRY by Fadwa Tuqan
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ ISRAELI  FORCES  KILL  18-YEAR-OLD  PALESTINIAN  IN  GAZA  AFTER  SHOOTING  HIM  IN  HEAD  DURING  PROTESTS   
Ma’an News Agency  
Sept. 9, 2016
An 18-year-old Palestinian in Gaza was killed by Israeli forces on Friday after a soldier shot the youth in the head during protests east of al-Bureij refugee camp near the border between the besieged enclave and Israel. The Israeli army, however, has denied any involvement in the deadly shooting.
___Ministry of Health spokesman Ashraf al-Qidra identified the youth as Abd al-Rahman Ahmad al-Dabbagh and confirmed the 18-year-old had been shot in the head. He was rushed to the Al-Aqsa hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival.
[. . . .]   Witnesses told Ma’an that dozens of youths had gathered in several areas near the border with Israel . . . .  An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that a “violent riot erupted” near the border with Gaza, as “dozens of rioters breached the buffer zone” . . .  According to the spokesperson “in an attempt to prevent an escalation of violence,” Israeli forces used tear gas in order to disperse the “riot.”      MORE . . .  

  • Barber, Brian K., et al. “Mental Suffering In Protracted Political Conflict: Feeling Broken Or Destroyed.” Plos ONE 11.5 (2016): 1-17  ARTICLE  . . .

Gazan psychiatrist Eyad El Sarraj [wrote] “When we hear the blasts of their bombs, we do not falter. We resist even in our silence. We hope still that one day they will send a message of justice and peace. We will always be there.”  ___ Muna, one West Bank woman from our study, elaborated the suffering and its complexity as follows: “a kind of depression or despair, and some sort of emotional or psychological disorders, I don’t want to call them physiological disease. We live a very difficult life, in our practical and educational lives, we lived a short period of those trouble and suffered a great deal, how would you imagine someone lived all along those conflicts and intifadas. . . suffering a great deal, and feel[ing] emotionally exhausted and psychologically ill, and having great psychological problems. If not all the Palestinians, I’m sure more than three quarters feel this way, we lost hope, but [we are] still immovable and resisting.”

❷ B’TSELEM:  PALESTINIAN  YOUTH  KILLED  IN  AL-FAWWAR  REFUGEE  CAMP  AWAY  FROM  CLASHES  WHEN  SHOT  DEAD
Ma’an News Agency
Sept. 10, 2016
A report released Friday by the Israeli human rights group B’Tselem revealed that 19-year-old Muhammad Yudef Sebar Abu Hashhash, who was killed by an Israeli sniper on August 16 during a military raid in Hebron’s al-Fawwar refugee camp, was not taken part in clashes at the time he was killed as was initially reported by media.
___. . . .  Abu Hashhash, who was initially reported as being 17-years-old, and other youths in the camp had climbed to the roof of a building and threw stones at soldiers who had also taken position on rooftops in the camp . . . .
___Some ten Israeli soldiers entered the home of Bajes al-Hamuz nearby Abu Hashhash’s home at around noon, and proceeded to close the family in the bedroom as they ransacked their home.. . . .       During the raid on the home of al-Hamuz, witnesses told B’Tselem that a sniper was positioned at the hole in the family’s guestroom located some 30 to 40 meters away from Abu Hashhash’s family home.  Ayad told B’tselem he heard a sound that sounded like “a shot fired through a silencer . . . .
___Hashhash was killed by live fire, as the Israeli sniper shot him in his back, and the bullet exited through his chest right above his heart.      MORE . . .

shot-in-back
A hole carved into a home nearby Muhammad Abu Hashhash’s where an Israeli sniper was stationed and apparently shot Abu Hashhash in the back. (Photo: B’Tselem)
  • Background: Holt, Maria. “An ‘Invented People’: Palestinian Refugee Women And Meanings Of Home.” ACME: An International E-Journal For Critical Geographies 14.2 (2015): 98-106.   SOURCE.  

Notions of ‘national identity’, clearly, have undergone significant changes since 1948. In the process, Palestinians have developed new ways of envisaging themselves as a nation. They live as diasporic communities and share a longing to ‘return’. . . .  I suggest that the shape of Palestinian identity is changing to accommodate more fluid elements of belonging. . . .  In recent years, Palestinian identity has been demonized as violent and terrorist and this perception inevitably has an effect on how Palestinians practice resistance . . . .  women have strongly influenced the evolution of a transnational, diasporic identity, rooted both in the memory of place and the reality of placelessness.
[. . . .]     
While the Palestinian leadership attempted to sustain a unifying ideology based on memory and heroic struggle, individual Palestinians, especially women, have frequently dissented from the official narrative. They do not do this because they are opposed to the notion of an inclusive Palestinian nation but, rather, because it fails to represent the complex reality . . .  of Palestinians. ‘Real’ events, for example, the 2008-09 Israeli war against Gaza, have had a unifying effect on disparate Palestinian communities.
. . .  This incident, like the 1982 Israeli invasion of Lebanon before it, unites individual women . . .  and confirms their identity as Palestinians.
___Place ‘is space to which meaning has been ascribed’ but, while the refugees may not choose to ascribe meaning to the spaces they occupy, the fact that  successive generations have been forced to inhabit these spaces indicates that a degree of ‘meaning’ is inevitable. However, while memories of Palestine evoke nostalgia . . .  the present reality of the refugee camps is rejected. It is an uncomfortable position. On the one hand, women’s traditional role of homemaker has placed them at the centre of the project of place-making and yet, as it is not something they have chosen, they must find other meanings. Thus, their contribution to recreating a sense of place ‘is far from being restricted to the domestic arena’; their ‘place-making practices are integral to the cultural and political struggles against displacement’. Women ‘weave personal and collective struggles – from home to camp and beyond – into a collective historical process of place making’ (Harcourt and Escobar).

❸ US CRITICAL OF ISRAELI REMARKS ON WEST BANK SETTLEMENTS      Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA      Sept. 10, 2016      The United States strongly criticized on Friday statements by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in which he described Palestinians not wanting settlers in their future state as “ethnic cleansing.”
___Netanyahu was seen in a video circulated on social media saying: “The Palestinian leadership actually demands a Palestinian state with one pre-condition: No Jews. There’s a phrase for that: It’s called ethnic cleansing.”
___He also described this demand as “outrageous,” and said that what is even more outrageous that the world does not find it outrageous and that some enlightened countries, hinting at the US, even promote this outrage.     MORE . . .

“THE  LAST  KNOCK,”  BY  FADWA  TUQAN
Will you not open this door for me?
My hand is exhausted from knocking at Your door.
I have come to Your vastness to beg
Some tranquility and peace of mind
But Your door is closed in my face,
Drowned in silence.
Lord of the house,
The door was open here,
A refuge for all burdened with grief.
The door was open here,
And the green olive tree rose high
Embracing the house.
The oil lamb kindling without fire,
Guiding steps of one walking at night,
Relieving those crushed by the burden of Earth,
Flooding them with satisfaction and ease.
Do you hear me, O Lord of the house,
After my loss in the deserts;
Away from You I have returned to You
But Your door is closed
In my face, drowned in silence.
Your house is shrouded
With the dust of death.
You are here. Open, then, the door.
Do not veil your face.
See my orphanhood, my loss,
Amid the ruins of a collapsing world,
The grief of the world on my shoulders
And terrors of a tyrant destiny
To be undone.

From: A Lover From Palestine and Other Poems: An Anthology of Palestinian Poetry. Ed. Abdul Wahab Al-Messiri. Washington, DC: Free Palestine Press, 1970. Available from Amazon.
Fadwa Tuqan obituary.

“. . . dashing off to defile the purity of Jerusalem . . .” (Fadwa Tuqan)

PRAYERS ICRC
Palestinians performed Friday prayers in front of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) building in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of occupied East Jerusalem (Photo: Ma’an News Agency)

❶ Hundreds commemorate Jewish holy day at Aqsa, 9 evacuated for violating regulations

  • Background: A Roman Catholic Perspective

❷ Palestinians perform Friday prayers at ICRC headquarters, demand release of hunger strikers

  • Background: A Muslim Perspective

❸ Israeli Soldiers Occupy A Palestinian Home In Bethlehem

  • About the Kairos Palestine Document

❹ Poetry by Fadwa Tuqan
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ HUNDREDS  COMMEMORATE  JEWISH  HOLY  DAY  AT  AQSA,  9  EVACUATED  FOR  VIOLATING  REGULATIONS
Ma’an News Agency
Aug. 14, 2016
Hundreds of Jewish worshippers gathered inside the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City on Sunday morning to commemorate the Jewish fasting holy day of Tisha Bav, which commemorates the destruction of Judaism’s First and Second Temple in Jerusalem, amid heightened security measures throughout the city and the occupied West Bank.
___Public information officer of the department of the Islamic Endowment (Waqf) — the religious trust responsible for managing the compound — told Ma’an that more than 180 extremist Israeli settlers “stormed the compound” in groups throughout the morning.
___Witnesses added that they saw some performing Jewish rituals inside the compound, in violation of long-standing agreements regarding non-Muslim worship at the site.   MORE . . .

  • Patriarch Michel Sabbah. “Religion And The Palestinian-Israeli Conflict.” Palestine-Israel Journal Of Politics, Economics & Culture 20/21.4/1 (2015): 7-11.     SOURCE 

The conflict between Israel and Palestine is military and political. It is not a religious conflict between Palestinian Muslims or Christians and Judaism. It is a conflict between two peoples, the Jewish people and the Palestinian people. The conflict is a dispute over the land and the question: Is there a place for both peoples, and in what way? The Palestinian position was expressed in 1988, when the Palestine Liberation Organization recognized the state of Israel on 78% of the British Mandate land. After that, the Palestinians claimed, and are still claiming, the right to have an independent Palestinian state on the remaining 22% of the land. Israel, for its part, is still not clear about the question: is there a place for the two peoples, and in what way? In recent months, there were negative declarations from Israeli political leaders affirming that there will be no Palestine and there will be no peace.
___The conflict is political and military. But it also has a religious dimension. Religion inspires many in the conflict. Many Israelis, to support their right, advocate the Bible, the word of God, the promise of the land by God to the Jewish people. And some Muslim Palestinians also give a religious dimension to the land, and consider it entirely Muslim land. For many, on both sides, the conflict has become a fight for God and religion. Some Christians, too, the world’s Evangelicals and pro-Zionists, add their religious input and pro-Jewish advocacy to the fight. On both sides of the conflict, religion is advocated to support its own position. Some Christian Palestinians, in the Kairos document, and many other world churches with them, advocate religion to call for justice and reconciliation based on repentance and forgiveness.

❷ PALESTINIANS  PERFORM  FRIDAY  PRAYERS  AT  ICRC  HEADQUARTERS,  DEMAND  RELEASE  OF  HUNGER  STRIKERS
Ma’an News Agency
Aug. 13, 2016
Dozens of Palestinians performed Friday prayers in front of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) building in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of occupied East Jerusalem, in solidarity with the current wave of hunger striking prisoners.
___Upon the request of the Palestinian Prisoner’s Society (PPS) and the Families of Jerusalem Detainees Committee, the Muslim worshipers gathered outside the building in order to draw attention to what Sheikh Muhammad Hussein, a local religious leader, said was the “Israeli authorities’ escalation of procedures against Jerusalemite prisoners.”    MORE . . .      BACKGROUND, ICRC   

  • Abu-Amr, Ziad.  “The Significance of Jerusalem: A Muslim Perspective.” Palestine-Israel Journal Of Politics, Economics & Culture 2.2 (1995): 7-11.    FULL ARTICLE

There is perhaps no other city in the world that has drawn the continued attention of the world community as much as the city of Jerusalem, especially among the adherents of the three monotheistic religions: Judaism, Christianity and Islam. The city’s religious centrality has generated its historical and political importance, as well as its symbolic impact, but its religious position has also been at the root of a considerable controversy
[. . . .]
While the Muslims, for example, especially Palestinian and Arab Islamists, recognize the religious significance of Jerusalem to Christians and Jews, they stress the Muslim character of the city and Muslim entitlement to it, and their attachment to Jerusalem constitutes part of their doctrinal views of the city
[. . . .]
Historically speaking, Jerusalem has generally been the site for Muslim pilgrimage, prayer, study or residence. Al Aqsa Mosque was a particular seat of learning. Muslim scholars came to Jerusalem from distant lands. “Just as it is true to say that the first textbook in Islam was the Koran, so it is true to say that the first school was the mosque.

❸ ISRAELI  SOLDIERS  OCCUPY  A  PALESTINIAN  HOME  IN  BETHLEHEM
International Middle East Media Center – IMEMC
August 14, 2016
Israeli soldiers invaded, on Saturday evening, Harmala town, east of Bethlehem city in the occupied West Bank, and occupied a Palestinian home after kicking the family out.
___Resident Mohammad Sbeih told the Maan News Agency said that soldiers invaded his two-story home, and confiscated its keys before kicking him and his nine family members, including several children, out.
___He added that the soldiers told the family to “find another place to live, as long as Palestinian youths continue to hurl stones at the army vehicles.” MORE . . .

  • Kassis, Rifat Odeh. “‘A Moment Of Truth’: The Kairos Palestine Document.” Ecumenical Review 63.1 (2011): 120-122.     SOURCE  

On 11 December 2009, a group of Palestinian Christians representing a variety of churches and church-related organizations issued a call for an end to occupation of Palestine by Israel. The call, in a document, ‘‘A Moment of Truth: A word of faith, hope, and love from the heart of Palestinian suffering’’, raises questions to the international community, political leaders in the region, and churches worldwide about their contribution to the Palestinian people’s pursuit of freedom. In the document, also referred to as, ‘‘The Kairos Palestine Document’’, Palestinian Christians declare that the military occupation of their land is a sin against God and humanity, and that any theology that legitimizes the occupation is far from Christian teachings because true Christian theology is a theology of love and solidarity with the oppressed, a call to justice and equality among peoples. The Palestinian call echoes a similar summons issued by South African churches in the mid-1980s at the height of repression under the apartheid regime. That call served to galvanize churches and the wider public in a concerted effort that eventually brought the end of apartheid. The Ecumenical Chronicle includes an introduction to the document by Rifat Odeh Kassis, the coordinator of Kairos Palestine, and texts by Imam A. Rashied Omar and John de Gruchy, both of whom come from South Africa. The full text of the document is available.

extremists
Israeli police accompany Jews past the Dome of the Rock mosque during a visit to the Al-Aqsa mosque compound in the Old City of Jerusalem on April 25, 2016 during the Jewish Pesach (Passover) holiday. (Photo: Ahmad Gharabli / AFP)

“TO  CHRIST  THE  LORD  ON  HIS  BIRTHDAY,”  BY  FADWA  TUQAN

But those husbandmen said among themselves, This is the heir; come let us kill him, and the inheritance shall be ours. And they took him, and killed him, and cast him out of the vineyard.   St. Mark’s Gospel XII: 7-8

O Lord, O glory of the universe,
crucified this year on your birthday,
are the joys of Jerusalem
silenced on your birthday?
O Lord, all the bells
for two millenia have not been silenced
on your birthday
except for this year:
the domes of the bells are in mourning,
black wrapped in black.

Jerusalem along the Via Dolorosa,
whipped under the cross of ordeal,
bleeding at the hands of the executioner,
and the world is a sealed heart
in the face of affliction.
In this hard indifferent world, O Lord,
the sun’s eye is smothered: the world went astray
and was lost.
In the ordeal it did not even raise a candle.
It did not even shed a tear
to wash away the sorrows in Jerusalem.

The husbandmen killed the heir, O Lord,
and raped the vineyard.
The sinners of the world fledged the bird of evil
dashing off to defile the purity of Jerusalem,
damned and infernal, hated even by Satan.

O Lord, O glory of Jerusalem,
from the well of sorrows, from the abyss,
from the depth of the night,
from the heart of plight,
the wails of Jerusalem are raised up to you.
In your mercy, take away from me, O Lord, this cup!
――Translated by Ferial Ghazoul

From: Smith, Michael. Ed. “Contemporary Palestinian Poetry.” Free  Verse. English.chass.ncsu.edu. 2008. Web.
About Fadwa Tuqan

“. . . windows of the sky closed, And the city held its breath . . .” (Fadwa Tuqan)

Sanaa balboul
Sanaa Balboul stands with her daughter Nuran in front of a banner dedicated to her slain husband and hunger-striking sons on Aug. 2, 2016 (MaanImages/Jaclynn Ashly)

❶ Israeli forces have cracked down on 21 Al-Aqsa employees in past 10 days, Waqf says
. . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) Jordan: Israeli practices against Al-Aqsa fuel global extremism

  • Background from Palestine-Israel Journal of Politics, Economics & Culture

❷ Israeli court confirms administrative detention of hunger-striking Balboul brothers
❸ Soldiers Prevent Twelve Bethlehem Families From Visiting With Their Detainees Sons

  • Background from Palestine-Israel Journal Of Politics, Economics & Culture

❹ POETRY by Fadwa Tuqan
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ ISRAELI  FORCES  HAVE  CRACKED  DOWN  ON  21  AL-AQSA  EMPLOYEES  IN  PAST  10  DAYS,  WAQF  SAYS
Ma’an News Agency
Aug. 8, 2016
Israeli forces have detained, summoned and banned 21 Palestinian employees of the Islamic Endowment (Waqf), which manages the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City, in the past 10 days, a Waqf spokesperson said on Monday.
___Firas al-Dibs, the head of Waqf public relations, said that Israel had banned 10 Waqf employees from the Al-Aqsa compound for periods of time ranging from five days to six months.
___Al-Dibs himself was briefly detained before being banned from accessing the religious site for six months.       MORE . . .    
. . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) JORDAN:  ISRAELI  PRACTICES  AGAINST  AL-AQSA  FUEL  GLOBAL  EXTREMISM
The Middle East Monitor – MEMO
August 8, 2016
Israel’s continued aggression against Al-Aqsa Mosque will “inflame and stimulate the environment that increases the behaviour of extremism and hatred all over the world”, the Committee of Palestine in the Jordanian government warned yesterday.
___In a statement, the committee said: “Jordan has a firm position in support of Jerusalem and the holy sites therein. It calls on Israel to respect all agreements, international conventions and various bilateral and multilateral treaties regarding the situation within the city of Jerusalem.”      MORE . . .         RELATED . . .

From:  Abu Sway, Mustafa. “Al-Aqsa Mosque: Do Not Intrude!” Palestine-Israel Journal of Politics, Economics & Culture 20/21.4/1 (2015): 108-113.

. . .  Meddling in the affairs of Al-Aqsa Mosque could destabilize the region and beyond. Any forced entry . . . is tantamount to a clear violation of the sanctity of the mosque. Not only do the Israeli occupation authorities prevent freedom of movement and freedom of worship, they interfere . . .  restricting the-meaning of Al-Aqsa Mosque to the southernmost building, Qibli Mosque, rather than all 144 dunums or 36 acres. The Israeli occupation authorities consider the open yards within Al-Aqsa Mosque as belonging to public parks. . . .
___In doing so, the Israeli occupation authorities justify their own role in permitting and protecting extremist Israelis’ and others’ entry into Al-Aqsa Mosque compound against the will of the Waqf administration. . . . These forced entries . . . lead to Israeli occupation security forces attacking and arresting protesters and restricting their entry into the mosque. . . The security situation deteriorated with many unfortunate incidents that were linked to Israeli policies at Al-Aqsa Mosque. The climax was the occupation authorities’ decision to totally close Al-Aqsa Mosque to Muslims at the end of October 2014, for the first time since 1967. Even Israeli commentators said that these policies could lead to a religious war.  [. . . .]
___For the last 1,400 years, Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem was under Islamic sovereignty except during the Crusades and Israeli occupation . . .  ongoing since 1967.  Israel continues to disregard United Nations resolutions according to which it should have ended its occupation . . .. . . .  Various measures make freedom of movement and worship a thing of the distant past. It is the extreme Israeli occupation policies and practices in and around Al-Aqsa Mosque, in addition to a long list of violations of international law (land confiscation, building colonies, house demolitions as collective punishment, revocation of residency, etc.), that undermine prospects for peace.     FULL ARTICLE

❷ ISRAELI  COURT  CONFIRMS  ADMINISTRATIVE  DETENTION  OF  HUNGER- STRIKING  BALBOUL  BROTHERS
Ma’an News Agency
Aug. 7, 2016
An Israeli military court at the Ofer detention center near Ramallah in the central occupied West Bank on Sunday decided to confirm the administrative detention sentence of Muhammad and Mahmoud Balboul, two brothers from Bethlehem who have been on hunger strike since the beginning of July.
___According to a statement from the Palestinian Committee of Prisoners’ Affairs, the court rejected an appeal by the committee’s lawyers to reduce the sentence.
___Muhammad, a dentist, was sentenced to six months of administrative detention, while Mahmoud, a Master’s student at al-Quds University, was sentenced to five months.
___Mahmoud Balboul has been on hunger-strike since July 5, and Muhammad since July 7.    MORE . . .  

aqa detentions
Israeli police arrested both of the director of the rehabilitation committee, Bassam al Hallaq and other five employees, August 7, 2016 (Photo: Alray-Palestinian MediaAgency)

❸ SOLDIERS  PREVENT  TWELVE  BETHLEHEM  FAMILIES  FROM  VISITING  WITH  THEIR  DETAINEES  SONS
International Middle East Media Center – IMEMC
August 8, 2016
The Palestinian Detainees’ Committee has reported, Monday, that Israeli soldiers prevented twelve Palestinian families, from the West Bank district of Bethlehem, from heading to prisons to visit with their detained family members, and tore their permits.
___The Committee stated that the soldiers stopped the families at military roadblocks, and tore their permits, before forcing them back.
___The Committee added that such violations have been seriously escalating and that a number of families filed complaints with the Israeli Prison Authority, especially since they already obtained permits from Israel.      MORE . . .   

From:  Sela, Ronit. “Freedom of Movement V. Restrictions on Movement under the Two Legal Systems.” Palestine-Israel Journal of Politics, Economics & Culture 21.3 (2016): 31-38.

Freedom of movement is one area — though certainly not the only one — in which the dual legal system has a decisive influence on the daily life of residents of the West Bank and on their basic human rights. Restriction ot movement infringes not only upon the right to freedom of movement but rather violates a range of rights. For Palestinians, those restrictions impact where a person can live, whether family members will be able to come and visit, how fast one can reach a hospital, which opportunities for studies and employment are available, and much more. In the West Bank, freedom of movement is a function of nationality. The movement of Israelis is permitted in the vast majority of the region, e primary restriction imposed on Israeli citizens is that they are forbidden from entering the large Palestinian cities of Area A, which amounts to 18% of the West Bank. While settlers’ freedom of movement is not completely unencumbered, they do enjoy freedom of movement in all significant domains of their daily life, moving freely within and between the settlements as well as into Israel proper, and using the main thoroughfares available.
___The situation of the Palestinians is completely different. For them, numerous restrictions limit their movement to, from and even within a given district of the West Bank. The many prohibitions imposed by the army throughout the West Bank are enforced through physical barriers, such as the Separation Wall, concrete roadblocks and inspection checkpoints. The rigid restrictions on travel between the West Bank and Gaza Strip and into  erusalem have bred a dependency on the army for receiving limited and conditional entrance permits.    FULL ARTICLE.

` ` ` ` `

“MY SAD CITY,” BY FADWA TUQAN
(The day of Zionist Occupation, June 27, 1967)

The day we saw death and betrayal,
The tide ebbed.
The windows of the sky closed,
And the city held its breath.
The day the waves were vanquished, the day
The ugliness of the abyss revealed its true face,
Hope turned to ashes,
And gaging on disaster,
My sad city choked.

Gone were the children and the songs,
There was no shadow, no echo.
Sorrow crawled naked in my city,
With bloodied footsteps,
Silence reigned in the city,
Silence like crouching mountains,
Mysterious like the night, tragic silence,
Burdened,
Weighed down with death and defeat.
Alas! My sad and silent city.
Can it be true that in the season of harvest,
Grain and fruit have turned to ashes?
Alas! That this should be the fruit of all the journeying!
―Translated by A.M. Elmesseri

From BEFORE THERE IS NOWHERE TO STAND: PALESTINE ISREL POETS RESPOND TO THE STRUGGLE. Ed. By Joan Dobbie and Grace Beeler. Sandpoint ID: Lost Horse Press, 2012. Available from B&N.
Obituary for Fadwa Tuqan, 2003.