“Prison is a moral position that must be made daily . . . .” Khalida Jarrar

NEWS  OF  THE  DAY

Israeli settlers storm northern Jordan Valley villages

WAFA
Feb 21 2020
Thousands of Israeli settlers today stormed the northern Jordan Valley villages of al-Burj and Umm al-Qaba.
– – – – Aref Daraghmeh, a local activist, confirmed that Israeli forces escorted a convoy of buses packed with some 4,000 settlers into the two villages, where they stayed for over four hours. This came after Israel sealed off the main checkpoint of Tayaseer, east of Tubas city, in a prelude to the settlers’ encroachment into the villages.
– – – – The Jordan Valley, which is a fertile strip of land running west along the Jordan River, is home to about 65,000 Palestinians and makes up approximately 30% of the West Bank. Since 1967, when the Israeli army occupied the West Bank, Israel has transferred at least 11,000 of its Jewish citizens to the Jordan Valley. Some of the settlements in which they live were built almost entirely on private Palestinian land.    More . . . .

Archbishop Hanna: “We Urge All Churches Globally To Reject Deal Of The Century”

IMEMC News
Feb 20 2020
Archbishop of Sebastia Diocese Of the Greek Orthodox Church in occupied Jerusalem, Attallah Hanna, welcomed a delegation of the World Council of Churches at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and the adjacent cathedral, and urged them, along with all churches, to denounce the so-called “Deal of the Century” and the ongoing historical injustice inflicted on the Palestinian people in their occupied homeland.
– – – – Archbishop Hanna called on the World Council of Churches to take clear Christian standards, based on the holy bible, humanity, morality, and dignity, to stand firm against this so-called deal, and not to surrender to pressure from the Zionist lobby which is acting against basic the principles of justice and freedom.
– – – – “What is the benefit of having a World Council of Churches if it becomes a political organization serving certain interests against the other, and if it continues to be hesitant about taking obvious stances against occupation, oppression, and injustice targeting the Palestinian people,” Archbishop Hanna said.    More . . . .

Bereaved Mother of Palestinian Prisoner Denied Visit to her Other Son in Israeli Prison

The Palestine Chronicle
Feb 20 2020
The mother of a Palestinian prisoner in Israel was denied today the right to visit her son in prison, reported WAFA correspondent.
– – – – Israeli soldiers manning a checkpoint northwest of Ramallah stopped Amneh Abu Diak, from Silat al-Daher village, near Jenin, and told her that she could not proceed with the visit.
– – – – Her other son, Sami, DIED FROM CANCER last November in an Israeli jail due to medical negligence. From the prison, his last message was:  “I want to be in my last days and hours beside my mother and my loved ones, and I want to die in her arms.”    More . . . .

BACKGROUND / OPINION

Palestinian Prisoner Khalida Jarrar in her own Words: The Age of Freedom Will Come

The Palestine Chronicle
Feb 19 2020
Khalida Jarrar is a Palestinian feminist, a lawyer, educator and an elected parliamentarian. Over the years, she came to symbolize Palestinian popular resistance in the occupied West Bank, enraging the Israeli occupation authorities that arrested her repeatedly. . . .
– – – – After her release from prison in February 2019, she was rearrested in October, and is currently held under a precarious Israeli law known as ‘administrative detention’. This law is inconsistent with international law and the most basic requirements of fair trial in democratic countries, as prisoners are incarcerated for prolonged periods, without charge or due process.
– – – – Between her release and re-arrest, Jarrar contributed a Foreword. . . . Below are excerpts of Jarrar’s Foreword. . . .Prison is not just a place made of high walls, barbed wire and small, suffocating cells with heavy iron doors. . . .  No, prison is more than all of this. It is also stories of real people, daily suffering and struggles against the prison guards and administration. Prison is a moral position that must be made daily, and can never be put behind you.    More . . . .

POEM  OF  THE  DAY

“TAKE  ME  TO  AL-QASTAL,”  BY  SAMI  AL-JUNDI

There, in the cradle of yearning
Where the birds circle in cheerless skies
in the pine forests,
There rest the souls of the ancients
Did you ask the Swallow, my friend,
About Al-Qastal?

From a hill looking over Deir Yassin
Where love was first born
Thousands of years ago
Before the birth of Christ
Before the budding of jasmine
By the cradle of the goldfinch
Be sure to ask about Al-Qastal.

A deep valley
A mystifying magic and a nectar of secrets
A flock of pigeons and a nightingale
And the remains of a forgotten village and a cross
Ruins of a Babylonian minaret
There, where the moon is near
And our first concern is
Love and Al-Qastal.

Take me to Al-Qastal
Take me to the beautiful grave
Take me to my last home
And load me up with the tragedies of the Arabs
And all the fragrance of the ancestors
My home is the prettiest
My grave is the largest
My path is to Al-Qastal.
—Translated by Amal Eqeiq

About Sami Al-Jundi, author of THE HOUR OF SUNLIGHT: ONE PALESTINIAN’S JOURNEY FROM PRISONER TO PEACEMAKER.
From BEFORE  THERE  IS  NOWHERE  TO  STAND:  PALESTINE ISRAEL  POETS  RESPOND  TO  THE  STRUGGLE.  Ed. Joan Dobbie and Grace Beeler. Sandpoint ID: Lost Horse Press, 2012. Available from Barnes and Noble.

“. . . a permanent phenomenon incapable of being nullified, and we need to consider another vision. . .” (Dr. Meir Margalit)

❶ Government condemns Likud’s decision to annex West Bank settlements
. . . . . ❶― (ᴀ) Knesset to vote on unified Jerusalem bill
. . . . . ❶― (ᴃ) Abbas to make important decisions in 2018 in response to Israel’s violations

  • Background: “Jerusalem between the Veteran and the Younger Generation.” Palestine-Israel Journal of Politics, Economics & Culture.

❷ Palestinian girl indicted for slapping heavily armed Israeli soldier
. . . . . ❷― (ᴀ) IOF arrest retired General at Jerusalem checkpoint
. . . . . ❷― (ᴃ) IOF extend re-arrest of Parliamentarian Khalida Jarrar
❸ IOF breaks into al-Khalil, erects checkpoint north of Halhul
❹ “On Hope,” poetry by Mahmoud Darwish
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
GOVERNMENT  CONDEMNS  LIKUD’S  DECISION  TO  ANNEX  WEST  BANK  SETTLEMENTS
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA 
Jan. 1, 2018 ― The government condemned on Monday the approval by Likud party, Israel’s ruling party, of a draft resolution that calls on Likud leaders and Israeli lawmakers to agree on annexing Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank.
__Government’s spokesman Yousef al-Mahmoud described the resolution as “an outrageous violation of the resolutions of international legitimacy, especially the resolutions of the United Nations and the Security Council, as well as an irony and contempt for the entire UN system.”
___“The Palestinian land that includes the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, foremost of which our eternal capital Jerusalem, is a land occupied by Israel. . .   MORE . . .  
.  .  .  .  . ❶ ―  (ᴀ)  KNESSET  TO  VOTE  ON  UNIFIED  JERUSALEM  BILL
The Palestinian Information Center   
Jan. 1, 2018 ― The Knesset is set on Monday to vote on the “unified Jerusalem” bill which provides for separating Palestinian neighborhoods from Jerusalem and prohibits relinquishing any part of the city under any future agreement.
___The bill, filed by the Jewish Home party, requires the approval of 80 MKs for any decision to hand over parts of Jerusalem to the Palestinian Authority in the future.   MORE . . .   
.  .  .  .  . ❶―  (ᴃ)  ABBAS  TO  MAKE  IMPORTANT  DECISIONS  IN  2018  IN  RESPONSE  TO  ISRAEL’S  VIOLATIONS  
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA  
Jan. 1, 2018 ― President Mahmoud Abbas said that he is going to make important decisions in 2018 to hold Israel accountable for its grave and systematic violations of international law.
___Abbas’ statement came in response to the decision of the ruling Israeli party, Likud, to annex the Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank to Israel, which the president said was a result of the support Israel enjoys from the United States.
___“We shall make important decisions during 2018, including regarding legal venues, in order to hold Israel accountable for its grave and systematic violations of international law, and to revisit agreements signed with Israel,” Abbas said in a press statement.    MORE . . .    ..

Margalit, Meir.
“JERUSALEM  BETWEEN  THE  VETERAN  AND  THE  YOUNGER  GENERATION.” PALESTINE-ISRAEL JOURNAL OF POLITICS, ECONOMICS & CULTURE, vol. 21, no. 2, Nov. 2015, pp. 43-50
[. . . .] We have always known the solution to the conflict . . . .  and in the realm of intellectual debate, there are no inherent deficiencies in our program. However, the general public has not been impressed by our rational arguments . . . .
[. . . .]  We [Israelis] have also ignored the irrational components of the conflict. We provided a rational answer to a conflict that is, to a large extent, irrational. We downplayed (or ignored) the irrational dimensions, and in doing so, we lost most of the public. Freud wrote in 1915 that the behavior of nations stems far more from impulses and irrational compulsions then it does from rational calculations, and most even employ rational arguments to justify irrational urges. . .  We would like to believe that in life there is rational order, but . . . nothing can be taken for granted, and no rational explanation can truly explicate phenomena around us.
[. . . .]  . . .  since the 1990s . . . Jewish settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories have changed the reality . . . such that the occupation appears to be here indefinitely, a permanent feature of the landscape that is not going anywhere. A change of such magnitude is not merely quantitative but also fundamentally qualitative, which obligates new thinking, a different perspective and an alternative political model. If our occupation is akin to that of Algeria, Ireland or apartheid, then the impetus to disengage is correct. However . . . we are dealing with a permanent phenomenon incapable of being nullified, and we need to consider another vision. It would then not be precisely ending the occupation but reducing its associated damages and changing the power relations from within, for example, ensuring full civic equality for all citizens from the Jordan River to Mediterranean Sea and allowing demographic trends to exact their consequences. . . . we need to understand that “peace” itself is also no longer feasible.    SOURCE . . .  

PALESTINIAN  GIRL  INDICTED  FOR  SLAPPING  HEAVILY  ARMED  ISRAELI  SOLDIER  (In Israel, killing thousands of innocent Palestinians does not matter, but slapping a heavily armed Israeli soldier by a little girl deserves rape and life sentence.)    Days of Palestine 
Jan. 01, 2018 ― Israeli court indicted on Sunday Palestinian girl Nour Tamimi, 21, who was seen slapping heavily armed Israeli soldier along with her cousin Ahed Tamimi two weeks ago.
___The Israeli court charged Tamimi with aggravated assault of an Israeli soldier and obstructing a soldier from carrying out his duty.
___ A short video showed the young Tamimi girls, slapping an Israeli soldier in Nabi Salih after shoting their cousin in the head.   MORE . . .   
.  .  .  .  . ❷― (ᴀ) IOF  ARREST  RETIRED  GENERAL  AT  JERUSALEM CHECKPOINT
Palestine News Network – PNN    
Jan. 1, 2018 ― Israeli occupation forces on Sunday afternoon arrested the retired Major General and activist Yusuf al-Sharqawi at a military checkpoint east of occupied Jerusalem, while on his way from Ramallah to Bethlehem.
___Eyewitnesses said that the Israeli occupation forces arrested Al-Sharqawi during while he was in a taxi heading home from Ramallah to Bethlehem, when the vehicle was stopped by soldiers, and he was asked to show his ID card.
___After that, he was taken to an unknown destination.       MORE . . .  
.  .  .  .  . ❷ ―  (ᴃ)  IOF  EXTEND  RE-ARREST  OF  PARLIAMENTARIAN  KHALIDA  JARRAR 
Palestine News Network – PNN
Jan. 1, 2018 ― The Israeli occupation military issued an order extending the arbitrary administrative detention of Palestinian parliamentarian and national leader Khalida Jarrar for an additional six months on Wednesday, 27 December 2017, four days before her detention was to expire. Jarrar was seized by occupation soldiers who invaded her home in El-Bireh on 2 July 2017. A well-known Palestinian leader, Jarrar is a member of the Palestinian Legislative Council, head of its Prisoners’ Committee and Vice-Chair of the Board of Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association.     MORE . . .  
❸ IOF  BREAKS  INTO  AL-KHALIL,  ERECTS  CHECKPOINT  NORTH  OF  HALHUL
The Palestinian Information Center
Jan. 1, 2018 ― The Israeli occupation forces (IOF) on Monday morning stormed al-Shuyukh town in al-Khalil province.
___Eyewitnesses told the PIC reporter that six Israeli military vehicles, accompanied by a car belonging to the so-called Civil Administration, broke into a neighborhood to the southeast of the town, conducted some examinations and took several photos of the area.
___More than 20 years ago, the Israeli occupation authorities issued a decision to confiscate dozens of dunums of land privately-owned by Palestinian families living in al-Shuyukh in preparation for the establishment of a new settlement outpost, but the residents’ protests prevented the implementation of the Israeli plan.     MORE . . .  

“ON  HOPE,”  BY  MAHMOUD  DARWISH
Do not tell me:
I wish to be a baker in Algeria
In order to sing with the revolutionaries
Do not tell me:
I wish to be a shepherd in the Yemen
To sing for the uprising of the age
Do not tell me:
I wish to be a waiter in Havana
To sing for the victory of the poor
Do not tell me:
I wish to be a stone carrier in Aswan
To sing for the rocks
My friends:
The Nile will not pour into the Volga
The Congo and Jordan Rivers
Will not serve the Euphrates
Each river has its own
Our land is not barren
Each land has its own rebirth
Each dawn has a date with revolution.

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

“. . . the PROHIBITION of settlements . . . categorical, unconditional . . .” (Theodor Meron, Legal Counsel of Israel’s Foreign Ministry, 1967)

nof zion
An Overview of Nof Zion Neighborhood (Photo: ARIJ, in POICA.com)

❶ Israel to build synagogue and plunge pool on Palestinian lands

  • Background from Global Business & Development Law Journal (University of the Pacific)

❷ Israel admits to confiscating privately owned Palestinian lands ‘by mistake’
Opinion/Analysis:  Interview with Khalida Jarrar, Prominent Palestinian Activist and Parliamentary Member, After her Release from Prison
❹ POETRY by Zuhair Abu Shaib
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ ISRAEL  TO  BUILD  SYNAGOGUE  AND  PLUNGE  POOL  ON  PALESTINIAN  LANDS
Alray-Palestinian Media Agency
Aug. 10, 2016
The so-called Committee for planning and construction in the municipality of Jerusalem is scheduled to discuss, on Wednesday, a plan to confiscate lands from the Mount Scopus Jerusalemite neighborhood, for the construction of synagogues and a plunge pool.
___The synagogues and plunger pool are planned to be constructed in the settlement neighborhood of “Nof Zion”. The area of land that will be forfeited is 1.2 dunums, while 90 families live in the neighborhood surrounded by the Mount Scopus neighborhood.  MORE . . .         HISTORY OF  Nof Zion Settlement

From Global Business & Development Law Journal (University of the Pacific)
Watts, Bianca. “Better Than A Thousand Hollow Words Is One Word That Brings Peace: Enforcing Article 49(6) Of The Fourth Geneva Convention Against Israeli Settlements In The Occupied Palestinian Territory.” Global Business & Development Law Journal 24.1 (2011): 443-472.
[See footnotes below poetry

Israel first inquired about the legality of settling in the OPT, specifically the West Bank and the Golan Heights, in the fall of 1967. 28  On September 18, 1967, Israeli Foreign Ministry Officials received a top-secret memo that settlement in the West Bank and Golan Heights would violate Article 49(6). 29  Israeli officials were advised that the prohibition of settlements under Article 49(6) was categorical, unconditional, and aimed at preventing colonization of a conquered territory by the conquering state. 30  This memo confirmed that Israeli officials knew that building settlements in the OPT violated international law prior to beginning settlement construction. 31  Yet, despite the memo’s unequivocal warning that settlements violated the Geneva IV, Israel forged ahead with plans that resulted in the settlement enterprise we see today.
___A key substantive principle of the international law of belligerent occupation, which finds influence in the Geneva IV, is that belligerent occupation is temporary. 32  This principle is based on the fact that prolonged occupations negatively impact the occupied community. 33  The risks of stagnation, impoverishment, and the “backwardness” of the occupied community all follow prolonged occupations. 34  Scholars argue that “the longer an occupation continues, the more difficult it is to ensure effective compliance with the Geneva IV.” 35
[. . . . ]
Security Council Resolution 465 also confirmed the applicability of the Geneva IV to the OPT. 41  In this resolution, the Council stated that all measures taken by Israel since 1967 to change the physical and demographic composition of the OPT had no legal validity. 42  It further noted that Israel’s policy of settling its population and new immigrants in the OPT constituted a “flagrant violation” of the Geneva IV, 43  and asked that no state provide any assistance to Israel in connection with the settlements in the OPT. 44  ___This resolution is particularly significant because it marks the first Security Council resolution where the United States joined in criticizing Israel. 45  But just two days later, the United States declared that it had intended to abstain, and that its vote in favor of Resolution 465 was the result of a miscommunication.  46  The United States has assisted, and continues to assist, Israel in connection with the settlements by providing economic and military aid. 47     

❷ ISRAEL  ADMITS  TO  CONFISCATING  PRIVATELY  OWNED  PALESTINIAN  LANDS  ‘BY  MISTAKE’
Ma’an News Agency
Aug. 10, 201
The state of Israel admitted to the Israeli Supreme Court that they had expropriated privately held Palestinian land for the construction of the Ofra settlement in the north of the occupied West Bank district of Ramallah, according to Israeli media.
___Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported on Wednesday that the state admitted that it had “mistakenly expropriated” 45 dunums (11 acres) of land privately owned by Palestinians, and claimed the expropriated land would be returned to their Palestinian owners.
___Last year, the court ordered the demolition of nine already populated Jewish homes in the Ofer settlement on the grounds that the lands were privately held by Palestinians.  MORE . . .        BACKROUND FROM B’TSELEM

Houses are seen in the West Bank Jewish settlement of Ofra, north of Ramallah
Houses in the settlement of Ofra, with the village of ‘Ein Yabrud, Ramallah district, in the background, July 18, 2013. (Photo: REUTERS/Baz Ratner)

❸ Opinion/Analysis: INTERVIEW  WITH  KHALIDA  JARRAR,  PROMINENT  PALESTINIAN  ACTIVIST  AND  PARLIAMENTARY  MEMBER,  AFTER  HER  RELEASE  FROM  PRISON
Jadaliyya (Arab Studies Institute)
Noura Erakat
Aug. 8, 2016
Khalida Jarrar is a longtime Palestinian activist, feminist, and leading member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP). She served as the Director of the Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association between 1993 and 2005 and has been a member of the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) since 2006 . . .
___In 2014, the Israeli military ordered that Jarrar move from her home in Ramallah to Jericho. . . . The deportation order is on its face, violative of [the Oslo Accords]. In response, Jarrar staged a month long sit-in in front of the PLC offices in Ramallah and . . . successfully overturned the military order.
___On 2 April 2015, Israeli military forces arrested Jarrar in a pre-dawn raid where they forcibly removed her from her home. . . . She accepted a plea bargain whereby she would serve a fifteen-month sentence and pay a 10,000 NIS fine (~2,600 USD) for being a member of the PFLP and incitement.        MORE . . .  

“NAME OF THE SOIL,” BY ZUHAIR ABU SHAIB
what is its name?
what is the name of the soil
that falls from my withered body?
what is its name as it drifts and gathers
under my clothes
while, slowly, I build wall after wall?

I picture a sky full of clouds
I see it as I wish it to be

when night falls, I gulp my fill of springs
in darkness I lift my latch
to wise men

I ask my guests
who imprisoned the soul in rock?
who left prophets spread-eagled on doorsteps?

who risks everything to capture the earth?
a man who does not know his own shadow

what can I call this rug of soil?
is it my country or the source of my exile?
is it my miracle or my cross?

what is its name?
――Translated by Tom Pow

Zuhair Abu Shaib was born in Deir al-Ghusun, a town near the city of Tulkarm in the northern West Bank. and studied at Yarmouk University. He was a teacher and journalist in Yemen, and a book designer. He was also editor of the journal Awraq.
From A BIRD IS NOT A STONE: AN ANTHOLOGY OF CONTEMPORARY PALESTINIAN POETRY (Glasgow: Freight Books, 2014) –available from Barnes & Noble.

Footnotes for Watts article

  1. See GERSHAM GORENBERG, THE ACCIDENTAL EMPIRE: ISRAEL AND THE BIRTH OF SETTLEMENTS, 1967-1977, at 99-100 (2006).
  2. 29.Theodor Meron, Legal Council of Israel’s Foreign Ministry, advised the Prime Minister’s PoliticalSecretary that “civilian settlement in the administered territories contravenes the explicit provisions of the Fourth Geneva Convention.” Id. at 99-100.
  1. Id.
  2. Id.
  3. Imseis, supra note 5, at 91.
  4. Id.
  5. Special Rapporteur of the Comm’n on Human Rights, Rep. on the Situation of Human Rights in thePalestinian Territories Occupied by Israel Since 1967, Comm’n on Human Rights, ¶¶ 3, 11, 18, U.N. Doc.41. S.C. Res. 465, ¶ 5, U.N. Doc. S/RES/465 (Mar. 1, 1980). The Security Council is the organ responsible for maintaining international peace and security. It determines the existence of threats to international peace and security, and recommends what action should be taken in response to those threats. One of its key powers is that it can take military action against an aggressor state should it determine that that state proposes a threat to international peace and security. See generally U.N. Charter chs. V, VII (for a detailed discussion of the functions and powers of the Security Council).
  1. S.C. Res. 465, ¶ 5, U.N. Doc. S/RES/465 (Mar. 1, 1980).
  2. Id.
  3. Id.
  4. See MADIHA RASHID AL MADFAI, JORDAN, THE UNITED STATES AND THE MIDDLE EAST PEACE PROCESS 1974-1991, at 111 (1993).
  1. Id. at 112.
  2. See U.S. Census Bureau, The 2010 Statistical Abstract 29 tbl.1263 (2010), available  http://www.census.gov/compendia/statab/2010/tables/10s1263.pdf (outlining statistical information of foreign economic and military aid received from the United States).

“. . . Though to the walls they bind me, Palestinian I am. . .” (Harun Hashim Rashid)

-612555625
Jamal Burham, 56, and Shaher Ra’ee, 47, from Tulkarem and Qalqiliya respectively. Administrative detentions renewed. (Photo: Palestine Information Center)

❶ Erekat: Paris meeting send a clear message if Israel continue colonization the future will be for more extremism
❷ Palestinian factions slam French initiative as dangerous violation of rights
❸ IOA renews administrative detention of PFLP leaders for 3rd time
. . ❸ ― (ᴀ) MP Jarrar: Prisoners call for ending the rift, activating their cause
❹ Opinion/Analysis: WHAT’S  BEHIND  THE  US  MEDIA’S  SPECIAL  RELATIONSHIP  WITH  ISRAEL?
❺ POETRY by Harun Hashim Rashid
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ EREKAT:  PARIS  MEETING  SEND  A  CLEAR  MESSAGE  IF  ISRAEL  CONTINUE  COLONIZATION  THE  FUTURE  WILL  BE  FOR  MORE  EXTREMISM
Palestine News Network – PNN
June 3, 2016
PLO Secretary General Dr. Saeb Erekat said in press reels on the Paris Middle East Peace Meeting that the Paris Meeting is a very significant step and its message is clear: If Israel is allowed to continue its colonization and Apartheid policies in Occupied Palestine, the future will be for more extremism and bloodshed rather than for coexistence and peace.    MORE . . .          BACKGROUND . . . FRANCE  FELT  ‘COMPELLED  TO  ACT’  ON  MIDDLE  EAST  PEACE  TALKS 

By the colonisation principle . . .  powers do not conquer for the sake of imposing administrative rule on the indigenous population, but they end up managing the conquered inhabitants in order to facilitate the extraction of resources. [. . . .]
___The colonisation principle thus incorporates . . .  the first separation principle. Levi Eshkol, Israel’s prime minister in 1967, clearly articulated this separation principle . . . He turned to Golda Meir, who was then the party’s general secretary, and said: ‘I understand . . . you covet the dowry, but not the bride’ [. . . .]
___. . . The desire to normalise the occupation and successfully annihilate the Palestinian national subject through a series of disciplinary technologies that were supported when need be by the sword proved to be unrealistic . . . the second separation principle was adopted. . . .The paradigmatic sentence describing this principle is ‘We are here, they are there’. The ‘we’ refers to Israelis, and the ‘they’ to Palestinians.
___. . .  the second principle does not aim to solve the occupation, but rather to alter its logic. In other words, ‘We are here, they are there’ does not signify a withdrawal of Israeli power from the Occupied Territories . . . but is used to blur the fact that Israel has been reorganising its power in the territories in order to continue its control over their resources.

  • Gordon, Neve. “From Colonization To Separation: Exploring The Structure Of Israel’s Occupation.” Third World Quarterly 29.1 (2008): 25-44.  Available.

❷ PALESTINIAN  FACTIONS  SLAM  FRENCH  INITIATIVE  AS  DANGEROUS  VIOLATION OF RIGHTS 
Ma’an News Agency
June 3, 2016
Palestinian factions from across the political spectrum came together on Friday to announce their rejection of the French-led Israeli-Palestinian peace initiative, calling it a dangerous violation of national rights.
___In conjunction with the Islamic Jihad Movement in Palestine, Hamas published a statement signed by the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) and the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine, saying “the ideas suggested by France as an initiative impose a dangerous violation against agreed-upon national rights, especially the right of return.”      MORE . . .

❸ IOA  RENEWS  ADMINISTRATIVE  DETENTION  OF  PFLP  LEADERS  FOR  3RD  TIME
The Palestinian Information Center
June 4, 2016
The Palestine center for studies said on Saturday that the Israeli occupation authorities (IOA) had renewed the administrative detention of two leaders of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) for the third consecutive time. The PCS said in a press release that the IOA renewed the detention without trial or charge of Jamal Burham, 56, and Shaher Ra’ee, 47, from Tulkarem and Qalqiliya respectively for sixth months.   MORE . . .
. . . ❸ ― (ᴀ) MP  JARRAR:  PRISONERS  CALL  FOR  ENDING  THE  RIFT,  ACTIVATING  THEIR  CAUSE
The Palestinian Information Center
June 4, 2016
The Palestinian Legislative Council member, Khalida Jarrar, said that all Palestinian prisoners in the Israeli occupation prisons appeal to all Palestinians to prioritize their issue. The released MP stressed the need to end the internal division and the completion of the unity of the Palestinian people, saying: “This is the demand of all prisoners in Israeli jails.” Jarrar’s remarks came after her release from Israeli jails on Friday afternoon, at the Jubarah military checkpoint south of Tulkarem.      MORE . . . 

This paper . . .  spring[s] directly from a singular personal event, a nightmare forced upon me while travelling in northern Palestine in the early summer of 2006. While touring on 8 July 2006 along Israel’s northern border . . . I was stopped by Israeli security forces and two hours later was detained by the Israeli Shin Bet (Security Police) for 23 days, placed under severe conditions, and subjected to maltreatment, abuse and humiliation [. . . .] ___This paper has attempted to describe and reflect on my personal experience as one of the hundreds of thousands of individuals of Palestinian background who have been detained and tortured by the Israeli authorities for political reasons. . . . I speak as an academic who was seized by state force and transported to a hellish space/time with my body at its core. My research on this hell, while at a distance of increasing reflection, is also totally from the inside. It has led me to explore new areas of knowledge I would probably never had been led to by my previous history of curiosity as a Palestinian geographer.
___What I report is true.

  • Falah, Ghazi-Walid. “Geography In Ominous Intersection With Interrogation And Torture: Reflections On Detention In Israel.” Third World Quarterly 29.4 (2008): 749-766.  Available.
falah
Ghazi-Walid Falah is a Bedouin Israeli-Canadian geographer, who is a tenured professor at the University of Akron, Ohio.

❹ Opinion/Analysis: WHAT’S BEHIND THE US MEDIA’S SPECIAL RELATIONSHIP WITH ISRAEL?
The Electronic Intifada
Rod Such
June 3, 2016
[The film] The Occupation of the American Mind poses the question: why are mainstream US media such a reliable conduit for Israeli propaganda compared to other countries?
___In attempting to answer this question, the film, narrated by Roger Waters [Pink Floyd], illuminates not just the inner workings of Israeli hasbara (propaganda) but also the root causes of the occupation itself by depicting the systematic denial of Palestinians’ human and national rights.
___This film could not possibly arrive at a better time, given the extent to which Israeli hasbara will be promoted during the US presidential election campaign.      MORE . . .

“PALESTINIAN,”  BY  HARUN  HASHIM  RASHID
Palestinian,
Palestinian is my name.
In a clear script,
On all battlefields
I have inscribed my name,
Eclipsing all other titles.
The letters of my name cling to me,
Live with me, nourish me,
Fill my soul with fire
And pulse through my veins.
Palestinian,
Such is my name, I know
It torments and grieves me,
Their eyes hunt me,
Pursue me, wound me.
For my name is Palestinian.
And as they pleased
They have made me wander.

I have lived all my life
Without traits and features
As they pleased,
They gave me names and titles.
Jails with their gates flung wide
Summon me
And in all the airports of the world
Are found my names and titles―
The lying wind carries me,
Disperses me.
Palestinian―
The name pursues me, lives with me.
Palestinian is my fate,
Clinging to me, reviving me.
Palestinian I am
Though they betray me and my cause
Palestinian I am
Though they sell me in the market
For what they please,
For thousands of millions;
Palestinian I am,
Though to the gallows they drive me;
Palestinian I am,
Though to the walls they bind me.
Palestinian I am,
Palestinian I am,
Though to the flames they cast me.
I―what am I?
Without my name, Palestinian,
Without a homeland to live for,
To protect and be protected by?
I―what am I?
Answer me, answer me.

Harun Hashim Rashid  
AN  ANTHOLOGY  OF  MODERN  ARABIC  POETRY. Selected, Edited, and Translate by Mounah A. Khouri and Hamid Algar. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1974. Available from Amazon.

“. . . What makes a man with a gun seem bigger than a man with almonds? . . .” (Naomi Shihab Nye)

IMG_2845 - Copy-001
Five Israeli soldiers with assault rifles search one Palestinian at Damascus Gate. (Photo: Harold Knight, Nov. 4, 2015)

❶ Israeli forces shoot 5 Palestinians during Tulkarem university demo
❷ Palestinian shot dead after allegedly injuring 2 Israelis in Jerusalem
❸ Palestinian killed ‘in cold blood’ Friday was reportedly an American citizen
❹ Legislator Jarrar Sentenced To 15 Months
❺ Opinion/Analysis: IN THE AFTERMATH OF PARIS, THE ISRAELI WAY IS NOT THE ANSWER
❻ Poetry by Naomi Shihab Nye
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
ISRAELI  FORCES  SHOOT  5  PALESTINIANS  DURING  TULKAREM  UNIVERSITY  DEMONSTRATION
Dec. 7, 2015
TULKAREM (Ma’an) — Israeli forces on Monday shot and injured five Palestinians during a student demonstration near the Palestine Technical University in Tulkarem, medics said.
___Clashes erupted near the university, also known as al-Khadouri University, after Israeli military forces fired tear gas canisters and live rounds at students.
___Five Palestinians were evacuated to the Thabet Ibn Thabet hospital to be treated for gunshot wounds, while at least 10 others suffered excessive tear gas inhalation.
More . . .
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
PALESTINIAN  SHOT  DEAD  AFTER  ALLEGEDLY  INJURING  2  ISRAELIS  IN  JERUSALEM
Dec. 6, 2015
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — A Palestinian man was shot dead after he allegedly injured two Israelis in a stabbing attack in central Jerusalem on Saturday night, Israeli police said.
___Israeli police spokesperson Micky Rosenfeld said the Palestinian, identified as a 21-year-old from Beit Hanina in occupied East Jerusalem, was shot and killed after he allegedly hit one Israeli with his car, before stabbing another with a knife.
___However, Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported that one of these Israelis was injured when he was apparently “hit by a vehicle that passed by the scene as he was attempting to flee.”
More . . . 

Palestinian protesters burn tires during clashes with Israeli security forces following the funeral of Abdul Rahman Barghouthi
Palestinian protesters burn tires during clashes with Israeli security forces following the funeral of Abdul Rahman Barghouthi, who was shot dead in Aboud village, near the West Bank city of Ramallah, December 5, 2015. (Photo by Shadi Hatem – Mondoweiss)

MONDOWEISS
PALESTINIAN  KILLED  ‘IN  COLD  BLOOD’  FRIDAY  WAS  REPORTEDLY  AN  AMERICAN  CITIZEN
Annie Robbins
Dec. 6, 2015
Friday was another deadly bloody day in Palestine. Israeli forces killed four Palestinians, two in Hebron and two outside illegal Israeli settlements near Ramallah. The third to die was Abed Rahman Barghouthi, 26, killed at the entrance of the Palestinian village of Aboud, adjacent to the settlement of Halamish. Witnesses told Ma’an News Barghouthi was an American citizen who “recently arrived back from the US to get married, after getting engaged five months previously.”
– See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2015/12/palestinian-reportedly-american#sthash.T3tbMjic.dpuf
More . . .
IMEMC-INTERNATIONAL MIDDLE EAST MEDIA CENTER
LEGISLATOR  JARRAR  SENTENCED  TO  15  MONTHS
Dec. 07, 2015
An Israeli court sentenced, Sunday, democratically-elected leftist Palestinian legislator, and a senior political leader of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), Khaleda Jarrar to 15 months imprisonment.
___The army kidnapped the legislator on April 2nd of this year, and on April 5th, she was sentenced for six months imprisonment, under arbitrary Administrative Detention orders, without charges.
___On April 15, the Israeli military prosecutor’s office filed an indictment of twelve charges against Jarrar, including what it called “membership in an illegal organization,” in addition to “holding and participating in protests” in solidarity with Palestinian political prisoners.
More . . .
Opinion/Analysis
PALESTINE CHRONICLE
IN  THE  AFTERMATH  OF  PARIS,  THE  ISRAELI  WAY  IS  NOT  THE  ANSWER
Dr. Samah Jabr
Dec 2 2015
When I arrived in Paris on the evening of Friday, 13 November, my host asked our taxi driver to take us to her home at Fontaine au Roi; the taxi’s GPS system displayed that a shooting was taking place at that very moment. It wasn’t until the next morning that we understood the full details of the tragedy.
[. . . . ]
___The truth is that the “Jewish State” was established through excessive violence and aggression against the Palestinians, the native people of the land. Like other native peoples whose land was colonized . . . the Palestinians have been capable of using violence to retaliate against their oppressors and to deter them from further oppression, as well as utilising nonviolent campaigns and diplomatic channels to achieve liberation. That is all entirely within their rights under international law.
[. . . . ]
___It is thus more reasonable to compare the tactics of Daesh with those of the terrorist groups behind the founding of the state of Israel rather than with the Palestinian resistance. Both Daesh and the “Jewish state” were established through horrible massacres leaving a population of refugees in their wake. Both display expansionist ambitions.
[. . . . ]
___In addition to reaping political benefit through reframing the occupation of Palestine and the imposition of Israeli policies as a “war on terror” and smearing the character of Palestinians as inhumane, uncivilised terrorists,
More . . .

“WHEN  YOU  LUNCH,”  BY  NAOMI  SHIHAB  NYE

When you lunch in a town
which has recently known war
under a calm slate sky mirroring none of it,
certain words feel impossible in the mouth.
Casualty: too casual, it must be changed.
A short man stacks mounds of pita bread
on each end of the table, muttering
something about more to come.
[. . . . ]
What makes a man with a gun seem bigger
than a man with almonds? How can there be a
war and the next day eating, a man stacking plates
on the curl of his arm, a table of people
toasting one another in languages of grace:
[. . . . ]
. . . and someone with sky and birds in his heart
said this would be a good place for a park.

From: Nye, Naomi Shihab. 19  VARIETIES  OF  GAZELLE:  POEMS  OF  THE  MIDDLE  EAST. New York: Green Willow Books, 1994. Available from Barnes and Noble.
About Naomi Shihab Nye.

IMG_3359 - Copy
Member of St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church in Beit Jala practicing the legendary Palestinian hospitality after Sunday Service. (Photo: Harold Knight, Nov. 8, 2015)

 

“. . . they thought it was a dream But the night went on and on . . .” (Tawfiq Zayyad)

(Please see Note from the editor above the Zayyad poem.)

Netanyahu vows to expand the settlements during a 2015 campaign stop at Har Homa. (See "opinion" below)
Netanyahu vows to expand the settlements during a 2015 campaign stop at Har Homa. (See “opinion” below)

❶ From: MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
ISRAELI  POLICE  PREVENT  WOMEN,  CHILDREN  FROM  ENTERING  AQSA
Aug. 11, 2015
JERUSALEM ― Israeli police on Tuesday prevented Palestinian children taking part in a summer camp as well as a number of Palestinian women from entering the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, witnesses said.
____Witnesses said that Israeli police “suddenly” deployed at the compound gates and set up iron barriers.
____Israeli police reportedly distributed a list of women’s names at all gates and prevented a number of women, as well as children taking part in a summer camp, from entering the holy site.
____Witnesses added that police deployed at the Lion’s Gate chased children from the area, causing them to panic.
More. . .

❷ From: MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
SETTLERS  FIREBOMB  PUBLIC  PARK  IN  NABLUS  VILLAGE
Aug. 11, 2015
NABLUS ―Israeli settlers hurled Molotov cocktails at a public park in the northern West Bank village of Qaryut overnight Monday in a failed attempt to set fire to the park.
____Palestinian security sources told Ma’an that a number of settlers arrived in three vehicles at 2 a.m. and hurled several Molotov cocktails at the park before fleeing the scene.
____The sources said local youths tried to chase the attackers but they sped away. No injuries were reported.
____Residents of the nearby village of Beita said that settlers tried to carry out a separate attack there, but locals noticed them and managed to prevent the attack.
More. . .

❸ From: PALESTINE NEWS AND INFORMATION AGENCY – WAFA
ISRAELI  ‘DEFENSE’  MINISTER  BREAKS  INTO  IBRAHIMI  MOSQUE  IN  HEBRON
Aug. 11, 2015
HEBRON – Israeli ‘Defense’ Minister Moshe Ya’alon Tuesday morning broke into the Ibrahimi Mosque in the Old City of Hebron. . . . Ya’alon broke into the Ibrahimi Mosque under tightened security protection.
____. . . in anticipation of Ya’alon’s provocative visit, Israeli forces closed down all of the old market gates leading to the Mosque, effectively denying Palestinian Shari‘a Court employees as well as Muslim worshippers access into the Mosque.
____The Mosque caretaker Munther Abu al-Feilat denounced Ya’alon’s act describing it as an attempt to obliterate the Palestinian and Islamic nature of the Mosque and the Old City of Hebron.
More. . .

❹ From: MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
ISRAELI  COURT  POSTPONES  KHALIDA  JARRAR  HEARING  FOR  3RD  TIME
Aug. 11, 2015
RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — An Israeli military court on Monday postponed a court hearing for Palestinian lawmaker Khalida Jarrar for the third time in a row after witnesses failed to show up, her lawyer said.
____Mahmoud Hassan, director of the legal unit for prisoners’ rights group Addameer, said that the military prosecution had again failed to take the necessary steps to have the witnesses brought to the court.
____”Failure to bring the witnesses prolongs Jarrar’s detention, exhausts her and her family, and undermines her right to have a just trial,” Hassan told the court.
____The court judge on Monday rejected a second request to release Jarrar on bail that was submitted by Addameer last week. . . .
____ Hassan accused the prosecution of “procrastinating.”
More. . .

Demonsration in support of Khalida Jarrar. (Maanimages file)
Demonsration in support of Khalida Jarrar. (Maanimages file)

❺ Opinion
From: MONDOWEISS
ISRAEL’S  ‘BLAME  THE  HAND’  EXCUSE  FOR  SETTLER  VIOLENCE
Aaron Turgeman
Aug. 10, 2015
In Mel Brooks’ comedy Blazing Saddles, the newly appointed black sheriff of a Wild West township realizes that his welcome ceremony is about to turn into a lynch by the town’s all-white denizens. The black cowboy improvises an ingenious escape plan: he points his gun at his own head and pretends to be taken hostage.
____Fans of Mel Brooks may appreciate the Israeli spectacle, cast in the same mold, which could be referred to as “blame the hand”. . . .
[. . . .]
____It has been the mainstay of the Zionist left and the so-called peace camp to blame Israel’s post-1967 territorial entanglement on settlers. According to this view, the settlers have violated the 1967 borders, the settlers . . . the settlers . . . . . . the settlers . . . While these accusations certainly have merit, it is worth remembering that the hand does not operate by itself. It is the head that moves it. And the head is the Israeli government, representing Israel’s Jewish population.
More. . .

(RARE NOTE FROM THE EDITOR: I found this poem leafing through Enemy of the Sun. The line in the title above stuck in my mind. I realized that seldom [except in Gaza] do the horrors perpetrated on the Palestinians reach the level of the Kufr Qassem massacre, and that makes it easy for us―especially Americans―to forget that all that happens in Palestine is rooted in the horrors of the not-too-distant past. None of the reports above is insignificant or trivial, and “night [goes] on and on.”)

“THE  SKULL  HARVEST,”  BY  TAWFIQ  ZAYYAD
Did you hear the story of the skulls
how humans were slaughtered like cows
It is called the “Harvest of Skulls.”
The stage is a village
Call it Kufr Qassem
It has awakened the town’s people
At first they thought it was a dream
But the night went on and on
And the sleepy eyes opened again
This time they were shaken
by the wailing of bereaved mothers
and that of young men
of the elders, and the expectant
They exploded in our nation
volcanoes of bitterness and revenge
A voice is coming from the horizon
The cries of victims crack their graves
Listen carefully:
A chant is shaking the village yard
It is the people, massacred by the guards

Unite your ranks and be prepared
to erase the misery
which lies heavily on your chest
to destroy a system based on oppression
to destroy a system of crime and blood

From: ENEMY OF THE SUN: POETRY OF PALESTINIAN RESISTANCE. Edited by Naseer Aruri and Edmund Ghareeb. Washington, D.C.: Drum and Spear Press, 1970. ―Available from Amazon.
Tawfiq Zayyad was a Palestinian poet, writer, scholar and politician. He was born in Nazareth in 1929 and died on July 5, 1994 in a dreadful car crash while on his way to meet Yasser Arafat in Jericho after the Oslo agreements. He participated in Palestinian political life in occupied Palestine, was elected mayor of Nazareth, and served as a member of the Israeli Knesset.

FROM  WIKIPEDIA,  about  Kafr  Qawim:
The Kafr Qasim massacre took place in the Israeli Arab village of Kafr Qasim situated on the Green Line, at that time, the de facto border between Israel and the Jordanian West Bank on October 29, 1956. It was carried out by the Israel Border Police (Magav), who murdered Arab civilians returning from work during a curfew, imposed earlier in the day, on the eve of the Sinai war, of which they were unaware. In total 48 people died, including 6 women and 23 children aged 8–17. Arab sources usually give the death toll as 49, as they include the unborn child of one of the women.
The border policemen who were involved in the shooting were brought to trial and found guilty and sentenced to prison terms, but all received pardons and were released in a year. . .

Kafr Qasim. October 29, 1956.
Kafr Qasim. October 29, 1956.

“. . . I shall carve the sun’s beckonings and the moon’s whisperings. . .” (Tawfiq Zayyad)

Bethlehem olive wood carver
Bethlehem olive wood carver

❶ From AL MONITOR
BEDOUIN FACE EXPULSION AS ISRAEL BUILDS GREATER JERUSALEM
Aziza Nofal
June 4, 2015
RAMALLAH, West Bank — For years, Umm Mohamad, from the Abu Nawar Bedouin compound north of occupied Jerusalem, has been trying to find a house for her son Walid so he can get married and settle in the area where she lives. Her efforts have not paid off, though, as the Israeli occupation forces refuse to allow them to build a new house, not even a tent.
____The house Umm Mohamad and her sons are hoping to get is only a tent, but the plan is far-fetched as Israel is trying to expel them from their land to another location that was built to accommodate Bedouin and other communities. . . . [The family is] part of the 700 Bedouin living in the area facing the Ma’ale Adumim settlement — the largest in the West Bank. . .
____Israel issued a May 14 decision to expel the population to a region in the north of Al-Eizariya numbering 46 settlements of Bedouin groups from the highlands of Jerusalem.
(More. . .)

❷ From INTERNATIONAL MIDDLE EAST MEDIA CENTER (IMEMC)
SOLDIERS ATTACK PROTESTERS MARKING THE 48TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE NAKSA, IN HEBRON
Bassam Shweiki
June 06, 2015
Israeli soldiers attacked, Saturday, Palestinian protesters as they were commemorating the 1967 occupation of the full area of historic Palestine by the Israeli military. The demonstrators tried to reach the Bayt Al-Barakah (i.e. House of Blessing) in front of Arroub Refugees Camp, a building which was built on land belonging to the Palestinian town of Beit Ummar, north of Hebron.
____The land in question was recently threatened to be confiscated by the Israeli occupation authorities to establish a new settlement. Following the threat, the Israeli military declared the area as a military closed area.
____Dozens of activists participated in this demonstration, which was called for by the Hebron Defense Committee. . .
(More. . .)

❸ From MONDOWEISS +972
12 PALESTINIAN MEMBERS OF PARLIAMENT ARE IN ISRAELI PRISON
Noam Rotem
June 6, 2015
An Israeli military court decided last week to continue detaining Khalida Jarrar, a member of the Palestinian parliament, who has been imprisoned by Israel for the past two months. Jarrar was first arrested and put in administrative detention, which in effect meant that she could be held indefinitely without being charged or seeing trial. However, in the wake of a global campaign for her release, the state decided to release her from administrative detention and put her on trial.
____Jarrar is not the only member of the Palestinian parliament, known as the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC), to be held by Israel. Israel is currently imprisoning 12 other Palestinians parliamentarians, who were elected in the last democratic elections to take place in the Palestinian Authority in 2006. Some are in administrative detention, which in the eyes of the international community makes them political prisoners. . .
(More. . .)

Palestinian Bedouins shift through their family's belongings after their shacks and tents were destroyed by Israeli army bulldozers
Palestinian Bedouins shift through their family’s belongings after their shacks and tents were destroyed by Israeli army bulldozers

❹ From THE PALESTINIAN INFORMATION CENTER
REPORT: 850 THOUSAND PALESTINIANS ARRESTED SINCE 1967
June 5, 2015
Data from the Palestinian Commission of Detainees and Ex-detainees show that Israel has arrested more than 850 thousand Palestinians since 1967, consisting 20 percent of the Palestinian people.
____The commission expressed deep concerns over “the escalated Israeli daily arrests and violations that mainly target the Palestinian society.”
____Daily arrest policy is a main feature of Israeli occupation, the statement said, pointing out that more than ten arrests are daily reported in occupied Palestine.
____Since 1967, 206 Palestinians have died in Israeli jails, including 71 prisoners were tortured to death. . .
(More. . .)

❺ From PALESTINE NEWS NETWORK
UN CONFIDENTIAL REPORT: ISRAEL VIOLATED CHILDREN’S RIGHTS
June 6, 2015
A confidential UN document obtained by Reuters on Friday reported an alarming number of child victims in the 2014 Israeli assault on Gaza. The document was prepared by UN agencies for submission to the UN special envoy for children in armed conflict, Leila Zerrougui, as she prepares a draft of the annual list of violators of children’s rights.
____The 22-page confidential document reportedly uses strong language in its condemnation of violations of children’s rights during the attacks on Gaza. It specifies what it said were unlawful deaths and injuries caused by Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) in its attacks on schools and hospitals.
____2100 Palestinians, mostly civilians and around 540 children, were killed during the 2014 Israeli assault on Gaza. 371 of the children killed were 12 years old or younger.
(More. . .)

“THE OLIVE TREE,” BY TAWFIQ ZAYYAD
Because I do not knit wool,
Because I am always hunted
And my home is always raided,
Because I cannot buy a piece of paper,
I shall carve all what I see
And all my secrets
On the homeyard olive tree.

I shall carve my story and the scenes of my tragedy;
I shall carve my sorrows
In the orange grove and on the tombs of the dead;
I shall carve all the bitterness I taste
(Until my tongue is sweetened by days to come).
I shall carve the serial number
Of every piece of land,
The spot of my village on the map.
The destroyed houses,
My uprooted trees,
All the crushed wild blooms

I shall care the names
Of all the connoisseurs of torture,
The names of their prisons,
The trade-mark of their chains,
The archives of the jailors
And their maledictions.
I shall carve:
“Fafr Qassem, I will never forget you,
And your memory, Deir Yassin will never face.”
I shall also carve;
“After all our trials and pains
We have finally reached
The heights of intense tragedy.”

I shall carve the sun’s beckonings
And the moon’s whisperings
And what a skylark recalls
At a deserted well.

For the sake of remembrance,
I shall continue to carve,
On the homeyard olive tree,
All the scenes of my tragedy,
And all the stages of the disaster,
From the beginning
Till the end.
—translation by Sulafa Hijjawi and Abdul Wahab Al-Messiri

About Fafr Qassem
About Deir Yassin

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

Tawfiq Zyyad (7 May 1929 – 5 July 1994) was a Palestinian politician well known for his “poetry of protest”. Born in the Galilee, Zyyad studied literature in USSR. He was elected mayor of Nazareth, a victory that “surprised and alarmed” Israelis. Elected to the Knesset 1973, Zyyad was active in pressuring the Israeli government to change its policies towards Palestinians both in Israel and in the Occupied Territories. A report he co-authored. . .
(More . . .)

Illegal settlement, Ma'ale Adumim (Jerusalem)
Illegal settlement, Ma’ale Adumim (Jerusalem)