“. . . the colonel came over and asked why I’d been provocative . . .” (Sam Hamod)

Palestinian, Israeli and international activists march during a protest marking ten years for the struggle against the Wall in the West Bank village Bil’in, February 27, 2015. (photo: Yotam Ronen/Activestills.org)

❶ Israeli Commander: I Will Make All the Youth of Al-Duheisha Camp Disabled
❷ Israel investigating claim unarmed Palestinian was shot in the back

  • Background from Critique: Critical Middle Eastern Studies.  “. . . territoriality is ultimately about power and is embedded in social relations . . .”

. . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) Five Palestinians Injured by Army Fire during Funeral of Slain Palestinian in Silwad
❸ Israeli forces attack non-violent weekly protest in Bil’in village
❹ POETRY by  Sam Hamod

` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
The Middle East Monitor-MEMO  
Aug 27 2016
An Israeli army commander responsible for the Al-Duheisha area, known to locals as “Captain Nidal”, has repeatedly been reported as threatening to make “all youth in the [Al-Duheisha] camp disabled”.
___BADIL, the Resource Centre for Palestinian Residency and Refugee Rights, reported an Israeli army commander making repeated threats during and after raids on the camp as well as during interrogations.      MORE . . .  

Ma’an News Agency   
Aug. 28, 2016
The Israeli army’s military police have reportedly opened an investigation into the killing of an unarmed Palestinian man who was shot dead by Israeli forces on Friday, an Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an.
___Thirty-eight-year-old Iyad Zakariya Hamed, a resident of the Ramallah area village of Silwad, was shot dead by Israeli forces near a military post at the village’s entrance not far from the illegal Israeli settlement Ofra, when soldiers alleged that they saw Hamed “charging” towards them.
___Israeli media initially reported that Hamed, a husband and father of three, fired shots at the Israeli soldiers, though it was later confirmed that he was unarmed.     MORE . . .    

Clashes in Silwad after the funeral of Iyad Zakariya Hamed. (Photo: Palestine Chronicle via Twitter)

International Middle East Media Center – IMEMC    
August 26, 2016
Israeli soldiers shot, on Friday, five Palestinians with rubber-coated steel bullets, at the western entrance of Silwad town, east of the central West Bank city of Ramallah, during the funeral procession of a Palestinian who was killed by the soldiers a few hours earlier.      MORE . . .

  • Hallward, Maia Carter. “NEGOTIATING BOUNDARIES, NARRATING CHECKPOINTS: THE CASE OF MACHSOM WATCH.” Critique: Critical Middle Eastern Studies 17.1 (2008): 21-40.

Territoriality has a tendency to ‘neutralize’ the relationship between identity and geographic boundaries by classifying according to area rather than type. This means that all who live within a specific area are classified accordingly, regardless of felt identification or other personal characteristics (such as language, culture, etc.) . . .  Palestinian movement between areas is regulated according to the identity card—each of which is identified with a particular geographic location—they carry, regardless of family, personal, or work-related considerations. Likewise, discussions of Jewish settlements are often framed in ‘neutral’ planning language . . . rather than noting . . .  location on the West Bank, or Jewish-only population in the midst of a Palestinian Arab population, etc. Territoriality is ultimately about power and is embedded in social relations; an ‘area’ becomes a ‘territory’ only once its boundaries have been established. . . Boundaries must be maintained constantly . . .  they are applied in various degrees to different people and at different times . . .
[. . . .]
Checkpoints serve as gatekeepers; they delimit a boundary and soldiers staffing them enforce regulations regarding who can cross . . .  The vast majority of checkpoints are located deep within the West Bank  . . . consequently, they primarily affect Palestinians trying to conduct their daily lives. However, checkpoints also make Israeli–Palestinian interaction extremely difficult: Israeli law forbids Israeli citizens from entering areas under nominal Palestinian control . . .  and it is extremely difficult for Palestinians to obtain permission to travel to Jerusalem or areas within 1948 Israel. Such restrictions amplify tendencies to stereotype the ‘Other’ as ‘Enemy’ and further solidify place (area)-based boundaries of identity. Official language used to justify the checkpoints often reflects the displacing tendency of territoriality, as it shifts focus away from the location of the checkpoints . . .  as well as the relationship between the controllers and the controlled (it focuses on the regulation of who can cross and not on who has the power to make that classification).

International Middle East Media Center – IMEMC
August 27, 2016 12:06 AM
On Friday afternoon, dozens of local residents from the village of Bil’in, along with Israeli and international activists, marched toward the site of the Israeli Annexation Wall constructed on village land. They were pushed back by Israeli forces who attacked the protesters with rubber-coated steel bullets, tear gas and concussion grenades.  ___According to the Popular Resistance Committee of Bil’in, this week’s protest focused on the recent desecration and attacks on holy sites by Israeli settlers and soldiers. These attacks have included armed marches by settlers and soldiers into the Al-Aqsa mosque, as well as the defacement of numerous Christian churches by Israeli assailants.  ___Palestinian residents of Bil’in have been protesting every Friday for the past eleven years, and the weekly protests recently entered the 12th year.      MORE . . .  

(In memory of Mahmoud Darwish, the greatest of Arab Poets)
At the checkpoint, the
Israeli private asked me my name, I told
her, my name is
Zaitoun, she asked, what does that mean,
I told her 4,000 year old trees, she laughed,
asked for my real name, I told her, “Dumm,” what?
i said, it means blood, she said, that’s no name, I told her
blood of my grandfather, my father, my uncle
and even mine if necessary, she bridled, called the corporal,
he came running up, said, what kind of threat is that,
I said, it’s no threat, it’s just a fact,
he called the sergeant, he came up and hit me before he spoke,
my mouth  bled,  I told him, this is the blood I mean, that same
blood, you are afraid of, it’s over 4000 years old, see how dark it is
he called the lieutenant, who asked why my mouth was bleeding,
the sergeant said I had threatened him, the lieutenant asked me
if that was the truth, I told him, I had only stated facts, that
they would be true, after they conferred, he called the
colonel, the colonel came over and asked why I’d been provocative,
I said,all I was doing was stating facts; he asked what I did,
I told him, I was a farmer, he asked what kind, I told him
a farmer with words, what some call a poet—
he asked me if I knew the work of Amichai, I told him yes,
that I’d met him, that he knew what I meant, that Amichai was
sorry for what he’d felt he “had to do”—the colonel shrugged
dismissed the others and told me, “pass on,
I understand, but they don’t, they are not Jews, I am Jew,
not a Zionist”
I pulled the qhubz arabi from my pocket, pulled some zaitoun
from another, some jibbin from my bag and gave it to him–
we laughed, he split the bread in half—
we ate together, we laughed at how sad and foolish all this was

-Sam Hamod is a poet who was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize in Poetry, has published 10 books of poems, the winner of the Ethnic Heritage Prize for Poetry, taught at The Writers Workshop of The U. of Iowa, Princeton, Michigan, Howard and edited THIRD WORLD NEWS in Washington, DC. He contributed this poem to PalestineChronicle.com. Contact him at: samhamod@sbcglobal.net.


“. . . You may impose a nightmare of your terror on my village. . .” (Samih al-Qasim)

A damaged classroom in the school in Gaza bombed by Israel, July 30, 2014, while more than 3,200 people were sheltering there. The attack killed 20 people. (Photo: Anne Paq/Human Rights Watch)

❶ Palestinian murdered after buying candies for his disabled kids
❷  UN responds to Israel closing case into airstrike near UNRWA school during 2014 Gaza war

  • Background: British Journal of Psychotherapy 

❸ 4 hunger-striking Palestinian prisoners in critical condition, handcuffed to hospital beds
❹ POETRY by Samih al-Qasim
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
Days of Palestine
Aug 27, 201
Israeli occupation forces murdered on Friday Palestinian citizen in West Bank city of Silwad after buying some candies for his disabled children.
___At first, the Israeli occupation forces and the Israeli parrot media claimed that his approached an Israeli military post with his car near the illegal settlement of Ofra. ___Palestinian eyewitnesses insisted that the Israeli narrative about the incident was false as the Palestinian did not plan to harm any Israelis.
[. . . .]  Official Palestinian medical sources identified the Palestinian as Iyad Hamed, a resident of Silwad who was married and had three disabled children.
___Later on, when a video showed the man buying the candies for his disabled children went viral on the internet, the Israeli occupation admitted that its soldiers had shot the Palestinian mistakenly.   MORE . . .   

Ma’an News Agency
Aug. 26, 2016
The United Nations Friday responded in a statement to Israel’s announcement Wednesday that the military had exonerated itself from any wrongdoing in a missile attack near an UNRWA-run school in Rafah during the 2014 Gaza war, which killed 15 people. . . .   ___According to the statement released by UNRWA spokesman Chris Gunness, on August 3, 2014 . . . Israeli forces launched a missile at a road outside of an UNRWA school, which was designated as an emergency shelter for displaced Palestinians on July 18 and was at the time sheltering at least 2,900 Palestinians.
___The strike resulted in the killings of 15 civilians, while at least another 30 were injured.
___ “This raises serious questions about the conduct of military operations in relation to obligations under international humanitarian law and respect for the inviolability and sanctity of United Nations premises under international law,” Gunness said in the statement.     MORE . . .   

  • Kemp, Martin. “DEHUMANIZATION,  GUILT  AND  LARGE  GROUP  DYNAMICS  WITH  REFERENCE  TO  THE  WEST,  ISRAEL  AND  THE  PALESTINIANS.” British Journal of Psychotherapy 27.4 (2011): 383-405.  SOURCE.

[. . . .]
Central to the defensive ends served by the denigration of the Palestinians is the avoidance of a profound depression that would follow from the acknowledgement of Israel’s responsibility for the Naqba . . .  [That drives] the Israelis to dehumanize the Palestinians, [but] breaking with this necessity and embracing their humanity is a requirement for both peace and for Israel’s survival. . . . Israel’s ‘large group tent’ is in large part held together by the projection of Israel’s profound and unresolved conflicts onto the Palestinians, and that dehumanization of the latter is . . .  difficult to reverse. One conclusion might be that political Zionism has not offered an escape from the dynamics of oppression, merely a reversal of roles.
[. . . . ]
. . . it could be imagined that the collective psyches of the West and Israel are each grappling with a crippling burden of culpability. I suggest this, and that each engages the other in their efforts to minimize the consequences. The West, aware of the pain that guilt would occasion for itself achieves distance by reassuring Israel – identified with the fate of ‘the Jews’ – that it has no need to feel guilty. The West has regularly upheld Israel’s position that it is the Palestinians who need to make up for something, and that it is their failure to do so that explains the protracted stalemate. For the West to concern itself with the lived experience of the Palestinians would be to challenge an Israeli psyche in part held together by its refusal to acknowledge those realities.
[. . . .]
Responding to [the] suggestion that we attend to the moment when the terrorist decides to ‘abandon their species decency’, G. Awad writes: “Less dramatic, but also lethal, is the slow and cumulative abandonment of a deeply ingrained species decency where there is no defining moment: this can be seen in the increasingly destructive actions of the Israelis against the Palestinians. A powerful oppressor can, more often than not, afford to wait things out and take his time; an occupation or an embargo can slowly yet effectively destroy the soul and the body of ‘the others’. The powerful can kill without dirtying their hands or exposing themselves to imminent danger . . . many Arabs and Muslims, even if they are horrified by the nature of the suicide bomber’s attacks on innocent civilians, do not see such attacks as being any more horrible than the slow, methodological killing of their innocents by the powerful” (Awad, G. “The minds and perceptions of ‘the others.’” 2003).

Ma’an News Agency  
Aug. 27, 2016
Four Palestinian hunger-striking prisoners are reportedly in critical condition at Israel’s Assaf Harofeh Hospital, according to a statement released Saturday by the Palestinian Committee of Prisoners’ Affairs, as 120 other Palestinian prisoners continued hunger strikes in a mass solidarity movement.
[. . . .]  
___ each of the prisoners declared a hunger strike in protest of being placed in administrative detention — an Israeli policy of detention without charge or trial almost exclusively used against Palestinians.
___The committee said in the statement that the hunger strikers were in “dire health conditions,” as they have lost a significant amount of weight and have been suffering from pains and numbing in their bodies.      MORE . . .   

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

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