“. . . I will rise from the land that feeds our furious storm . . .” (Mu’in Bseiso, b. Gaza, 1927)

❶ As Gaza’s sole power plant shuts down, groups warn of devastating consequences

  • Background: “Isolation through Humanitarianism: Subaltern Geopolitics of the Siege on Gaza.” Antipode

❷ PFLP slams Hamas, Fatah for putting politics over lives of Palestinians in Gaza
❸ ‘Gaza will be unlivable next year, not 2020 as the UN says’
❹ POETRY by Mu’in Bseiso
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
AS  GAZA’S  SOLE  POWER  PLANT  SHUTS  DOWN,  GROUPS  WARN  OF  DEVASTATING  CONSEQUENCES
Ma’an News Agency 
July 13, 2017.   Gaza’s months-long power crisis once again took a turn for the worst on Wednesday night, when the besieged territory’s sole power plant shut down, further straining the dire humanitarian situation for Gaza’s two million residents.
___Israeli NGO Gisha released a statement on Thursday, stating that the power plant had shut down owing to lack of fuel and that the lives of residents have been “disrupted, entire hospital wards are shut down, untreated sewage is spilling to the sea in heretofore-unseen quantities and beaches are becoming more dangerous for swimming.”
___Head of Public Relations for Gaza’s electricity company Muhammad Thabet also released a statement warning of the devastating consequences that would affect every aspect of life in the Gaza Strip if the electricity supply continued to dwindle.
___The besieged Gaza Strip only has a supply of 70 megawatts of electricity available, after Israel reduced electricity supply to the besieged territory from 120 megawatts upon request of the Palestinian Authority (PA) three weeks ago, he pointed out.    MORE . . .

Smith, Ron J. “ISOLATION  THROUGH  HUMANITARIANISM:  SUBALTERN  GEOPOLITICS  OF  THE  SIEGE  ON  GAZA.” Antipode, vol. 48, no. 3, June 2016, pp. 750-769.
[. . . .] The process of maintaining control over territory and populations while dispossessing inhabitants through violence, immiseration and dispossession makes clear that, at its core, occupation is a colonial process.
___Gaza represents a peculiar form of occupation, wherein an occupying military need not be permanently present on the ground to impose its will and control on the local population. . .  Gazan lives are permanently circumscribed by occupation from afar—what Gazans and international agencies refer to as “Al Hissar”—the siege. Siege is a geopolitical phenomenon that functions through the removal of societies from the global networks of trade and movement. . . . The siege of Gaza represents a distinct form of political control based on a subset of occupation practices carried out to their extreme. Within this comprehensive program of isolation, the population is cut off completely from the surrounding territory. The local populace is deprived of basic goods needed for survival and freedom of movement is completely curtailed. . . .    While Israel’s regulation of everyday life is common to both Gaza and the West Bank . . .   Gaza thus far represents an extreme of isolation and deprivation, punctuated by large-scale military invasions.
[. . . .] This article therefore insists on the importance of considering siege as a particular geopolitical phenomenon that is related to but distinct from other forms of violence and control . . .   siege must be understood as a highly developed form of collective punishment against a population deemed surplus. Siege uses the tactic of isolating ordinary people from their ability to engage in the exchange of goods, services, people, and ideas as a means of imposing political pressure. The violence of the siege is visible in the ways in which it denies basic needs for the targeted population, and through its enforcement through policies like shoot to kill. Conventional wars, the types that punctuate the ongoing siege in Gaza, work in concert with siege as a means of injuring the population as a whole.
___The siege makes the injuries of war fester: there are no resources to repair the destruction and rebuild homes; it prevents victims from receiving appropriate medical care; it prevents families from returning to the territory to mourn the dead and to support the survivors; and is in itself a form of violence and deprivation. The supposed expectation of any siege is that the inhabitants will put the necessary pressure on their governments to exact the kinds of political changes desired by those imposing the siege. In the case of Gaza, this is complicated by the fact that Israel does not acknowledge its system of control as siege, and has presented no demands as requisite for the lifting of the siege. Indeed, it is unclear that there is any course of activity Gazans can follow that would bring the siege to an end . . .   1.7 million Gazans (the vast majority of whom are refugees from earlier programs of Zionist and Israeli displacement) are a body of civilians that serves no purpose to the Israeli government, and the territory of Gaza itself appears to be a sacrifice zone. Indeed, if we take seriously the notion of Avodat Ivrit, or “Hebrew Labor,” as an organizing principle of Israeli policy, then the siege is a result of the brutal logic of Israel’s categorization of Gaza as a population considered hostile and surplus [. . . .]     SOURCE . . .

PFLP  SLAMS  HAMAS,  FATAH  FOR  PUTTING  POLITICS  OVER  LIVES  OF  PALESTINIANS  IN  GAZA     
Ma’an News Agency 
July 13, 2017.  The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) a left-wing Palestinian political faction, released statements on Thursday, criticizing both the Hamas and Fatah movements for the ongoing punitive measures that the two factions have taken  against each other in recent weeks amidst a deepening political crisis.
___The PFLP rejected the move by Hamas to prevent members of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and Fatah Central Committee from leaving the Gaza Strip, where Hamas was elected to power in 2006, to travel to the occupied West Bank.
___“The ban and the obstruction of movement from Gaza to the West bank is a policy that Hamas follows, violating all rights and personal freedom, and damages national relations,” the PFLP said, demanding that Hamas and its security forces “immediately stop this policy and create the suitable atmosphere for better national relations and avoid any tensions that deepen the national conflict and violate rights and freedom guaranteed for all Palestinians in West bank and in Gaza Strip.”
___The group went on to criticize the Fatah-led Palestinian Authority (PA) of “collective punishment” on Palestinians living in the Hamas-led Gaza Strip, which has been embroiled in a dire electricity crisis, worsened by increasing punitive measures by Israel and the PA.        MORE . . .
‘GAZA  WILL  BE  UNLIVABLE  NEXT  YEAR,  NOT  2020  AS  THE  UN  SAYS’ 
+972 Magazine 
Edo Konrad
July 11, 2017.   Things have gotten acutely worse in the Gaza Strip over the past month, since Israel and the Pale1stinian Authority cut the besieged strip’s already inadequate supply of power. But an entire generation of Gazans have grown up without ever experiencing electricity that is available around the clock. Crisis is nothing new.
___In addition to sewage that flows into the sea untreated, and hospital ICUs that must rely on gasoline-powered generators, the power shortage also has dire consequences on everyday life in regular households. Without electricity, the pumps that deliver tap water to apartments in high-rise residential buildings stop working. “Water used to reach these houses between two-to-three hours every few days,” Khalil Shaheen says. “And this is in the summer. Yesterday, my building only had one hour of water.”
___Israel pulled its troops out of the Gaza Strip a little over a decade ago, but its military retains effective control over many aspects of life in the coastal enclave. The Israeli army still controls the Strip’s land and maritime borders, decides who and what may enter and exit, blocks basic technologies like 3G cellular broadband from being installed, and has launched three military operations that left thousands of Gazans dead. Israel also sells Gaza the majority of its inadequate supply of electricity.
___Shaheen, who is the director of the Economic and Social Rights Unit at the Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR), one of Palestine’s most prominent rights groups, monitors the impact of Israeli, Palestinian Authority, and Hamas policies on life in the Gaza Strip. “I’m afraid that with the ongoing situation, Gaza will be unlivable by the end of 2018,” he said in a telephone interview earlier this week.   MORE . . . 

FOOTSTEPS,”  BY  MU’IN  BSEISO

Brother! If they should sharpen the sword on my neck,
I would not kneel, even if their whips lashed
my bloodied mouth
If dawn is so close to coming
I shall not retreat.
I will rise from the land that feeds our furious storm!

Brother! If the executioner should drag me to the slaughterhouse
before your eyes to make you kneel,
so you might beg him to relent,
I’d call again, Brother! Raise your proud head
and watch as they murder me!
Witness my executioner, sword dripping with my blood!
What shall expose the murderer, but our innocent bleeding?

At night their guns kidnapped him from his trench.
The hero was flung into the cells’ darkness
where, like a banner flutter above chains, he stayed.
The chains became flaming torches,
burning the ashes which coat our shining future.
Now the hero lives, his footsteps ringing triumphantly
within the closed walls of every prison.
—Trans. by May Jayyusi and Naomi Shihab Nye

About Mu’in Bseiso
From: ANTHOLOGY  OF  MODERN  PALESTINIAN  LITERATURE.  Ed. Salma Khadra Jayyusi. New York: Columbia University Press, 1992. Available from Columbia University Press.

“. . . What shall expose the murderer, but our innocent bleeding.” (Mu’in Bseiso)

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Palestinians gather in front of the Rafah crossing between the southern Gaza Strip and Egypt, Jan. 16, 2015. (AFP/Said Khatib, File)

❶ Hundreds of Palestinians return to Gaza through Egypt’s Rafah crossing
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) Israeli forces open fire on Palestinian fishing boats, level lands in Gaza
❷ Hamas launches its new Political Document
❸ Christians Speak to Archbishop of Canterbury about Life in Gaza
❹ Opinion/Analysis:  What the West gets wrong on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict
“. . . The Palestinians are not struggling for peace; they are struggling for freedom . . .”
❺ POETRY by Mu’in Bseiso (b. Gaza, 1930)
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
HUNDREDS  OF  PALESTINIANS  RETURN  TO  GAZA  THROUGH  EGYPT’S  RAFAH  CROSSING
Ma’an News Agency   
May 7, 2017
GAZA (Ma’an) — Egyptian authorities opened the Rafah border crossing in one direction for the second consecutive day on Sunday, to allow Palestinians stranded on the Egyptian side to return to the besieged Gaza Strip.
___Head of the media office at the Rafah crossing Wael Abu Omar said that 832 Palestinians were able to arrive to the Palestinian hall of the terminal during the first day of opening that lasted from 10 a.m. Saturday until 3 a.m. Sunday.
___Abu Omar said that among the passengers was the body of a dead Palestinian that was allowed to return to Gaza to be buried.
___He added that Egyptian authorities also permitted the entry of trucks loaded with cement, paint, and cheese.      MORE . . .

. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) ISRAELI  FORCES  OPEN  FIRE  ON  PALESTINIAN  FISHING  BOATS,  LEVEL  LANDS  IN  GAZA
Ma’an News Agency
May 7, 2017 
Israeli military vehicles staged a limited incursion into Palestinian lands east of Deir al-Balah in the central Gaza Strip on Sunday morning, while Israeli naval forces also opened fire on Palestinian fishing boats off the coast of northern Gaza, causing no injuries.
___Eyewitnesses told Ma’an that five Israeli military bulldozers set off from Israel’s Kissufim military base and passed tens of meters beyond the border area, and proceeded to level lands.
___Separately, Israeli naval forces opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats off the coat of Beit Lahiya in the northern Gaza Strip.       MORE . . .

❷ HAMAS  LAUNCHES  ITS  NEW  POLITICAL  DOCUMENT
Gaza.Scoop.ps – Real Time News From Gaza    
May 2, 2017      PRESS RELEASE – HAMAS
The Islamic Resistance Movement, Hamas, launched its Political Document “General Principles and Policies” on Monday at a press conference in the Qatari capital of Doha.      ___The document was announced at a press conference held by Hamas politburo chief, Khaled Mashaal, with a number of leaders of the movement, in the presence of elite writers, media outlets and researchers.
___The 42 article document carries the essence of the Movement’s thought and political legacy for 30 years now.
___Hamas said in its document that it is an Islamic Palestinian national liberation movement aimed at liberating Palestine and confronting the Zionist project, indicating that Islam is a reference in its principles, objectives and means.     MORE . . .

❸ CHRISTIANS  SPEAK  TO  ARCHBISHOP  OF  CANTERBURY  ABOUT  LIFE  IN  GAZA     
International Middle East Media Center – IMEMC    
May 6, 2017
Christian residents of the Gaza Strip recently spoke about their daily life to Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, during a surprise visit to the coastal enclave.
___During his visit to the Gaza Strip, the Archbishop sat with leaders of the Christian community in Gaza, and listened to their life experience under the rule of the Islamic Palestinian movement Hamas.
___Philip Tarazi, one of the Gaza Christians who were selected to meet with the Archbishop Justin Welby, described the life in Gaza as “smooth.”     MORE . . .  

ImageGen.ashx
Archbishop Justin Welby and Bishop Suheil Dawani with members of Gaza’s Christian community at Ahli Arab Hospital, Gaza City

❹ Opinion/Analysis: WHAT  THE  WEST  GETS  WRONG  ON  THE  ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN  CONFLICT
+972 Blog  
Mitchell Plitnick
“. . . The Palestinians are not struggling for peace; they are struggling for freedom . . .”
May 5, 2017
On April 21, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that the Palestinians must prove that they want peace. “I think the first test of peace is to say to them, ‘Hey, you want peace? Prove it,” Netanyahu told Fox News’ Sean Hannity.
___This is very typical of Netanyahu’s statements on peace over the years. But perhaps it’s time to consider the issue too rarely discussed by those of us who work for peace between Israel and the Palestinians. The government’s actions aside, most Israelis do very much want peace. But on the Palestinian side, again setting aside the statements of Palestinian Authority leaders, peace is not at the top of the agenda.
___This is one of the biggest, most fundamental disconnects in the Western approach to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. THE PALESTINIANS ARE NOT STRUGGLING FOR PEACE; THEY ARE STRUGGLING FOR FREEDOM. That struggle may be against second-class citizenship for Palestinian citizens of Israel, the expansion of settlements and land confiscation in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, or the strangling siege in Gaza. But in all cases, it comes down to a struggle for freedom and a future where today’s Palestinians and future generations can forge their own future outside the yoke of Israel.     MORE . . .

“FOOTSTEPS,”  BY  MU’IN BSEISO

Brother! If they should sharpen the sword on my neck,
I would not kneel, even if their whips lashed
my bloodied mouth
If dawn is so close to coming
I shall not retreat.
I will rise from the land that feeds our furious storm!

Brother! If the executioner should drag me to the slaughterhouse
before your eyes to make you kneel,
so you might beg him to relent,
I’d call again, Brother! Raise your proud head
and watch as they murder me!
Witness my executioner, sword dripping with my blood!
What shall expose the murderer, but our innocent bleeding?

At night their guns kidnapped him from his trench.
The hero was flung into the cells’ darkness
where, like a banner fluttering above chains, he stayed.
The chains became flaming torches,
burning the ashes which coat our shining future.
Now the hero lives, his footsteps ringing triumphantly
within the closed walls of every prison.
–– Translated by May Jayyusi and Naomi Shihab Nye

  • From: Jayyusi, Salma Khadra, Ed. ANTHOLOGY OF MODERN PALESTINIAN LITERATURE. New York: Columbia University Press, 1992.
    Available from Barnes and Noble.

“. . . He’s wearing a white t-shirt with red and green writing that says, ‘There is no such thing as Palestine’. . .” (Liz Rose)

1-Jaffa_Gate_and_Tower_of_David
Jaffa Gate, Jerusalem

❶ ‘Waiting is the worst part’: Families of slain Palestinians withheld by Israel continue their fight

  • Background from Biography: An Interdisciplinary Quarterly.

❷ Israeli settlers destroy vine trees, uproot plants south of Bethlehem

  • Background from Against The Current

❸ Opinion/Analysis:  O  JERUSALEM —  PLEASE  FORGET  ME 
❺ POETRY by Muin Bseiso
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ ‘WAITING  IS  THE  WORST  PART’:  FAMILIES  OF  SLAIN  PALESTINIANS  WITHHELD  BY  ISRAEL  CONTINUE  THEIR  FIGHT
Ma’an News Agency
Jaclynn Ashly
July 5, 2016
“We are hopeful,” Muhammad Elayyan said, as a few dozen Palestinians trickled into the quiet halls of Israel’s Supreme Court in Jerusalem on Monday. “These days, we have to see the glass as half full. We must stay hopeful.”
___Elayyan is the father of one of seven slain Palestinians whose bodies are currently locked inside refrigerators in Israel’s mortuary in Jaffa, withheld from their grieving families since they were killed by Israeli forces after carrying out or allegedly carrying out attacks on Israelis.      MORE . . .  

From Biography: An Interdisciplinary Quarterly

[NOTE: the account of the difficulties encountered in launching in the West Bank of a special edition of Biography, “Life in Occupied Palestine” last year.]

Our Palestine launches were held without physical copies of the special issue, which did not make it through on time. In part this was the result of run-of-the-mill production delays. Another reason owed to the difficulty and expense of getting the books into Palestine [. . . .]
___As anyone at all familiar with Palestine will know, these stories [of the restrictions on the entry of books into Palestine] are commonplace. Taken together, they cannot be dismissed as a consulate worker’s idiosyncratic malice or as a postal employee’s juvenile pranks. The systemic allowance for these individually aimed and invasive acts, especially when combined with their affective excess, provide clues about how Israel maintains its practices of land theft and ethnic cleansing. Certainly, these instances of mail tampering are more “benign” than the terrorizing actions of Israeli soldiers who admit to shooting Palestinians for fun and even take photos while doing so, or the “price tag” attacks Jewish Israelis commit against their Palestinian neighbors (most recently, the “revenge” killing of baby Ali Sa‘ed Dawabshe, burned alive when settlers gas-bombed his home), which they sometimes share on Facebook. Nonetheless, along with accounts of such war and hate crimes, these mail-related micro-aggressions provide insights into the affective structures that sustain individuals’ support for the Zionist project and anti-Palestinian violence that is part and parcel of it.

  • Franklin, Cynthia G. “The Afterlife Of The Text: Launching ‘Life In Occupied Palestine.’” Biography: An Interdisciplinary Quarterly 38.3 (2015): 395-424. SOURCE.
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Palestinians inspect their destroyed olive trees at the village of Qaryout near Nablus, October 19, 2013 (Photo: Issam Rimawi/Flash90)

❷ ISRAELI  SETTLERS  DESTROY  VINE  TREES,  UPROOT  PLANTS  SOUTH  OF  BETHLEHEM
Palestine News Network – PNN
July 5, 2016
A group of Israeli settlers on Monday destroyed grapevines, a shed and uprooted plants, belonging to a Palestinian farmer in Al-Khader town, south of Bethlehem, central West Bank.
___Ahmad Salah, the coordinator of the Popular Committee against the Wall and Settlements in al-Khader, said the assailants broke the main gate leading to the Palestinian land, uprooted grapevine shrubs and cut their arbors, IMEMC reported.     MORE . . .  

From Against The Current
Roots of Dehumanization
Anwar’s [Anwar Za’aneen of Al Mezan Center For Human Rights, killed August 8, 2014] story is but one among thousands that we will never hear. His name is one on the never ending list of the daily dead, a list that began long before the latest assault and that will continue long after it. His death means nothing to the killers who fire their missiles from above or blast them from gunboats stationed in the Mediterranean.
__Anwar’s life has no value because his people have been systematically dehumanized over the decades of ignorance and prejudice from a complacent West. His status as a refugee was long ago dismissed by the settlers of a colonial state impervious to the suffering of any other people. For many, he does not exist because “there are no Palestinians” according to former Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir and countless others.
___If we knew the stories, recognized the names, or saw the faces of all the women and men, children and elderly lying frozen in the morgues or waiting for burial by grieving and stunned families; by mothers hysterical with pain from the loss of their babies and preschoolers, school children and youth maturing into adulthood in such a difficult land, perhaps people living in the countries responsible for these outrages would finally wake up and demand a halt to this butchery.

  • Loewenstein, Jennifer. “Will Israel “Finish The Job”? Death In The Eagle’s Shadow.” Against The Current 29.4 (2014): 11-13.  THE ARTICLE.
    RELATED. “Israel’s Genocidal Killing Machine.” thepeoplesvoice.org  

❸ Opinion/Analysis: O JERUSALEM — PLEASE FORGET ME
Mondoweiss
Liz Rose
July 4, 2016
It’s 25 years since I was a student at Hebrew University and I’ve just arrived to do some research on how West Jerusalem has changed.  I’ve come with my husband, Kyle, who has never been here.  He’ll be with me for a week and then I’ll stay another week on my own to work.  My last two visits here were organized as Palestinian solidarity trips all over the West Bank; I haven’t seen West Jerusalem in years.  A friend tells me I must show my husband Tel-Aviv and West Jerusalem as I research the changes, “so he can see the apartheid society they have made for themselves.”
[. . . .]
When I’m on Jaffa Road once again, after exiting Mamilla Mall and walking a bit, a young man approaches me.  He’s holding a map of Jerusalem.  He’s wearing a white t-shirt with red and green writing that says, “There is no such thing as Palestine.”    MORE . . .  

“NO!”  BY  MUIN  BSEISO

His wounds said: “No!”
His chains said: “No!”
And the turtledove which shielded his wound with her feather
Said: “No!”
“No!” for those who sold and bought
Gaza’s silver anklet.
They sold the bullets and bought a goose.

Quaking goose!
Stop for a moment.
And listen to him
Saying: “No!”
Pity him; he did not die under neon lights,
Between the candlestick and the moon.
Pity him; there was no formal announcement
or a dumb funeral.
No moaning poem nor song.
Stones!
Let me compose, if only one line of verse,
That I may recite it to all the men with long and false beards.

Stop quaking for a moment
And listen to him saying: “No!”
Like the solid fence of a house in Gaza.
Every day, he gets killed one thousand times,
Quaking goose!

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.

Muin Bseiso
(1926 – January 23, 1984) was a Palestinian poet who lived in Egypt . . . He finished his primary and secondary education in Gaza in 1948. He started publishing his work in the Jaffa-based magazin Al-Hurriya (“Liberty”), where he published his first poems in 1946. In 1948, he enrolled in the American University in Cairo and subsequently graduated in 1952. On January 27, 1952 he published his first work titled Al-Ma’raka (“The Battle”). Imprisoned in Egyptian jails twice: 1955 to 1957 and 1959 to 1963. He died London in 1984.

“. . . burning the ashes which coat our shining future . . .” (Mu’in Bseiso)

1-open fire
Palestinian farmers targeted by Israeli soldiers in Khan Yunis, Gaza, May 29, 2016 (Photo: ParsToday)

❶ UN Chief: Closure of Gaza Suffocates Its People, Stifles Economy, Impedes Reconstruction

  • From Security Studies.

❷ Israeli Soldiers Open Fire On Gaza Farmers; Navy Fires On Fishing Boats
❸ Palestinian FM welcomes Israeli-Turkish reconciliation ahead of aid delivery to Gaza

  • From International Security.

❹ POETRY by Mu’in Bseiso
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ UN  CHIEF:  CLOSURE  OF  GAZA  SUFFOCATES  ITS  PEOPLE,  STIFLES  ECONOMY,  IMPEDES  RECONSTRUCTION
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
June 28, 2016
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon Tuesday arrived at Gaza city through Erez (Beit Hanoun) crossing, starting his trip to the besieged coastal enclave by delivering a speech to UN staff, said UN Secretary General’s Spokesperson.
___Ban visited the UNRWA-run al-Zaytoun girls’ primary school where he addressed staff and students, condemning the Israeli blockade on the Gaza Strip that “suffocates its people, stifles its economy, and impedes reconstruction.”
___Pledging to work for improving their future, Ban addressed the students stating: “As the UN was with me 60 years ago, I will always be with you and work for your better future.”      MORE . . .   

From Security Studies. “Revenge In International Politics.”
We consider revenge to be a form of negative reciprocity. However, distinct from a retaliator motivated by efforts to stop a harmful practice/act or deter a harmful actor from repeating an injury, a revengeful retaliator mainly seeks emotional satisfaction at the suffering of another or derives pleasure from such suffering . . . .  seeking such satisfaction leads revengers to use excessive force, to harm innocents, and to employ far more violence than was used against them originally. . . .
___International Relations theorists increasingly recognize that emotions are important in international politics. But many of the works in the developing IR literature on emotions are only engaged in agenda-setting aspects . . . This paper . . .  theorizes a specific emotionally based practice: revenge. Before discussing revenge and its determinants in international politics, however, we must first ask whether states, the prime object of analysis in IR theory, can have emotions. From a strict materialist point of view, states are abstract corporate actors, and as such, they cannot feel. Only individuals possess the capacity to have emotions, one may argue. . . .
[. . . .]
As opposed to the purpose of other forms of retaliation, in which actors look for material compensation for the losses they suffered or want to stop or deter further harm of this kind, the principle goal of revenge is to inflict suffering. . . . The important point here is that the aim is to cause suffering . . . because the infliction of suffering on the harm-doer arouses strong feelings of pleasure and satisfaction in the revenger. Revengers want their targets to suffer not only physically, but also—if not mainly—emotionally.  LÖWENHEIM, ODED, and GADI HEIMANN. “Revenge In International Politics.” Security Studies 17.4 (2008): 685-724.  SOURCE.

❷ ISRAELI  SOLDIERS  OPEN  FIRE  ON  GAZA  FARMERS;  NAVY  FIRES  ON  FISHING  BOATS
International Middle East Media Center – IMEMC
June 27, 2016
Israeli soldiers, stationed on military towers across the border fence, opened fire, on Monday morning, into Palestinian agricultural lands across the border fence, in the Gaza Strip, while navy ships fired live rounds targeting fishing boats northwest of Gaza city.
___The WAFA Palestinian News Agency has reported that the soldiers fired many live rounds into Palestinian agricultural lands, east of Gaza city, forcing the farmers to leave. The attack caused no casualties.      MORE . . .   

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Israeli forces patrolling off Gazan coast (Photo: Ma’an News Agency, April 24, 2016)

❸ PALESTINIAN  FM  WELCOMES  ISRAELI-TURKISH  RECONCILIATION  AHEAD  OF  AID  DELIVERY  TO  GAZA
Ma’an News Agency
June 27, 2016
The Palestinian Foreign Ministry welcomed the normalization of relations between Israel and Turkey that was announced early Monday afternoon, while voicing the importance of involving the Palestinian government in all matters concerning the Palestinian people.
___Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki told Ma’an on Monday in Ramallah that the Palestinian government would not intervene in the terms of the agreement or in Turkish affairs. However, he insisted that the terms of the agreement directly related to Palestinians, and the Gaza Strip in particular, involve the Palestinian government.
___The agreement, which included Israel’s approval of Turkish aid to reach the blockaded Gaza Strip, was welcomed by the Palestinian government, “as long as it’s not conditional,” al-Maliki said.      MORE . . .
RELATED. . .    DESPITE  TURKISH  POSTURING,  DETENTE  WITH  ISRAEL  WON’T  CHANGE  THE  GAZA  BLOCKADE  

From International Security. “Just War Moral Philosophy and the 2008-09 Israeli Campaign in Gaza.”
In 1923 Zeev Jabotinsky, a Russian-born journalist, soldier, and early leader of right-wing Zionism, published “The Iron Wall.” In it, Jabotinsky laid out the rationale for Jewish colonization and attacks against Palestinian civilians, concluding that “Zionist colonization . . . must be carried out in defiance of the will of the native population . . . under the protection of an iron wall of Jewish bayonets which the native population cannot break through.” The iron wall strategy has served as the core of Zionist/Israeli policies toward the Arab world ever since Jabotinsky’s article was published. In the article, Jabotinsky did not elaborate on the military strategies . . . history reveal[s] that attacks on Arab civilians resisting Jewish expansion in Palestine are a centralcomponent of the strategy.
[. . . .]
In [a New Republic article Moshe Halbertal] claims that the “death ratios” in Gaza prove that Israel did intentionally attack civilians. . . . This argument has been cited by many supporters of Israel, but it is a non sequitur: neither the Goldstone Commission nor anyone else accused Israel of killing as many civilians as it could. Rather, the charge was that for reasons of revenge, punishment, or deterrence, Israel intended to inflict substantial civilian destruction—a war crime against which the argument that Israel could have killed a lot more is not a defense.
[. . . .]
From the outset, a central component of the iron wall strategy has been to directly attack civilians, or their institutions, or both—partly as revenge or punishment for Arab attacks on Israelis, but more fundamentally for the purposes of what the Israelis see as “deterrence.” The premise is that the more the pain, the greater the likelihood that the Arab peoples will . . .  end their conflict with Israel. Slater, Jerome. “Just War Moral Philosophy and the 2008-09 Israeli Campaign in Gaza.” International Security 37.2 (2012): 44-80.

(Mu’in Tawfiq Bseiso (1926 – January 23, 1984), born in Gaza, was a Palestinian poet who lived in Egypt)

“FOOTSETPS,”  BY  MU’IN  BSEISO

Brother! If they should sharpen the sword on my neck,
I would not kneel, even if their whips lashed
my bloodied mouth
If dawn is so close to coming
I shall not retreat.
I will rise from the land that feeds our furious storm!

Brother! If the executioner should drag me to the slaughterhouse
before your eyes to make you kneel,
so you might beg him to relent,
I’d call again, Brother! Raise your proud head
and watch as they murder me!
Witness my executioner, sword dripping with my blood!
What shall expose the murderer, but our innocent bleeding?

At night their guns kidnapped him from his trench.
The hero was flung into the cells’ darkness
where, like a banner fluttering above chains, he stayed.
The chains became flaming torches,
burning the ashes which coat our shining future.
Now the hero lives, his footsteps ringing triumphantly
within the closed walls of every prison.
–Translated by May Jayyusi and Naomi Shihab Nye

More about Bseiso at:
GAZA: RESISTANCE THROUGH POETRY
Foreign Policy Journal 
by Ramzy Baroud
June 17, 2016

“. . . Kings and rebels drank to her health . . .” (Mu’in Bseiso)

1-dawaween-performance
The Dawaween ensemble performs at the Mishal Cultural Centre in Gaza City. (Photo: Shadi Alqarra)

❶ Israeli airstrike kills 10-year-old Palestinian, injures 1
. . . . . ❶―(ᴀ) Hours After Her Brother Was Killed In Israeli Bombardment; Child Dies Of Her Wounds In Gaza
❷ Keeping traditional music alive in Gaza
❸ Israeli police detain 250 Palestinians working illegally in Israel
❹ Israel’s education minister wants to reduce Jewish history to pogroms
❺ Opinion/Analysis: THE CASE FOR CULTURAL BOYCOTT OF ISRAEL
❻ Poetry by Mu’in Bseiso
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
ISRAELI  AIRSTRIKE  KILLS  10-YEAR-OLD  PALESTINIAN,  INJURES  1
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
12 Mar. 2016
A ten-year-old Palestinian was killed and his sister seriously injured in an Israeli airstrike launched early Saturday in the northern Gaza Strip after rockets were fired from the besieged enclave.
___Spokesman for the Gaza Ministry of Health Ashraf al-Qidra confirmed the death of Yasin Suleiman Abu Khusah,10, and told Ma’an his six-year-old sister Israa had sustained serious head injuries during the strike.
___A Ma’an reporter based in Gaza said the children were in their house at the time of the strike .    MORE . . .   
. . . . . ❶―(ᴀ) HOURS  AFTER  HER  BROTHER  WAS  KILLED  IN  ISRAELI  BOMBARDMENT;  CHILD  DIES  OF  HER  WOUNDS  IN  GAZA
IMEMC NEWS
12 Mar. 2016
The Palestinian Health Ministry in Gaza has reported, Saturday, that a child, six years of age, who was seriously injured after the Israeli Air Force fired a missile into their home in northern Gaza, killing her brother, died of her serious wounds.      MORE . . .
KEEPING  TRADITIONAL  MUSIC  ALIVE  IN  GAZA
THE ELECTRONIC INTIFADA
Rami Almeghari
8 Mar. 2016
They come from different backgrounds and have vastly different musical experience. But the 13 members of Dawaween, a newly formed band set for only its fourth concert in Gaza on 10 March, are united around one aim: the preservation and popularization of traditional Palestinian music.
___“Our music is pretty lively,” said Abdelraouf al-Bilbeisi, the band’s 30-year-old oud player, who spent the previous nine years performing with a wedding band around the Gaza Strip. “It deserves to be played on stage.”      MORE . . .
ISRAELI  POLICE  DETAIN  250  PALESTINIANS  WORKING  ILLEGALLY  IN  ISRAEL
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
11 Mar. 2016
Israeli forces detained at least 250 Palestinian workers without work permits inside Israel by the end of the day Thursday, Israeli police said. . . .
___Israeli forces pledged to continue the search campaign for Palestinians working illegally in Israel “in order to maintain public safety in the country,” al-Samri said.  MORE . . .

workers
Palestinians reportedly working illegally in Israel detained by Israeli police on March 10, 2016. (Photo Credit: Israeli police spokesperson)

ISRAEL’S  EDUCATION  MINISTER  WANTS  TO  REDUCE  JEWISH  HISTORY  TO  POGROMS
+972 BLOG
Gil Gertel
12 Mar. 2016
A new committee is tasked with exposing Israeli students to Mizrahi and Sephardic Jewish history. The problem? There is more than one narrative.      MORE . . . 
❺ OPINION/ANALYSIS:  THE  CASE  FOR  CULTURAL  BOYCOTT  OF  ISRAEL 
THE PALESTINIAN INFORMATION CENTER 
Ben White
17 Feb. 2016
The case for a boycott of Israel is straightforward, based on: the reality of Israel’s policies of colonialism and apartheid; the Palestinians’ appeal for solidarity, including the 2005 call for a global Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) campaign; and the effectiveness of BDS as a tactic.
___But what about a cultural boycott? This is a problem for some people who agree with the above argument – yet it is also based on a similar, logical argument.      MORE . . .

(Note: as is often the case in Palestinian poetry, the flower is the metaphor for Palestine over the centuries.)

“ALEXANDER  AND  THE  SUN  FLOWER,”  BY  MUEEN  BESSISSOU  (Mu’in  Bseiso)  
The auction began,
And she was carried on a litter to Alexander’s tent.
They brought her the milk of a deer and a lioness.
And so she washed.
She was perfumed with incense;
And when they blew the horn,
A bed was fetched.
And Alexander entered.
Joys of Alexander!
He slept with her
Until the cock crowed,
Then discarded her,
To be bestowed on a king
Who abandoned her after two nights.
She was carried on a camel
And bestowed on a prince.
The incense garden burned down.
Then she was bestowed on a minister,
And down to the fifty-first man in his entourage.
And when the sea gazelle was stabbed,
And the moon became an eye of glass,
Her navel became a wine pot.
Kings and rebels drank to her health,
She learned how to lie with them.
Rainbow! Stay this winter from our skies.
Your red and blue and green
Stain our face, like mud and glue.

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.
About Mu’in Bseiso (1926 – January 23, 1984)
BDS FINAL LOGO_v5WEB_URL_side

“Why I Had to Leave Israel’s Foreign Ministry” (Ilan Baruch)

A Palestinian child stands in front of his destroyed home in the Tuffah neighboorhood of Gaza city, Gaza Strip, February 9, 2015. Six months after the Israeli military offensive, tens of thousands of Palestinians are still displaced. (Photo: Anne Paq/Activestills.org) SEE #3 BELOW.
A Palestinian child stands in front of his destroyed home in the Tuffah neighboorhood of Gaza city, Gaza Strip, February 9, 2015. Six months after the Israeli military offensive, tens of thousands of Palestinians are still displaced. (Photo: Anne Paq/Activestills.org) SEE #3 BELOW.

❶ Israeli forces detain 33 Palestinians in overnight raids
❷ Welcome Peace, Farewell Fear
❸ Israelis can only ignore Gaza for so long
❹ In Photos: Palestinians face daily humiliation at Damascus Gate
❺ Opinion/Analysis: WHY I HAD TO LEAVE ISRAEL’S FOREIGN MINISTRY
❻ Poetry by Muin Bseiso
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
ISRAELI  FORCES  DETAIN  33  PALESTINIANS  IN  OVERNIGHT  RAIDS
Feb. 25, 2016
Israeli forces detained at least 33 Palestinians overnight Wednesday during raids across the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, an Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an.
___Locals were able to identify at least 25 of those detained.
___In the southern occupied West Bank district of Hebron, Israeli forces detained six Palestinians identified by locals . . . .
___In Hebron’s al-Majd village, Israeli forces raided the home of Mamdouh Amr and took measurements for a future punitive home demolition.      More . . .
THIS WEEK IN PALESTINE
WELCOME  PEACE,  FAREWELL  FEAR
Samar Al Dreamli
Feb. 1, 2016
Peace brings about serenity, security – and complacency.
___THE TINY GAZA STRIP HAS MUCH TO TELL. It teems with contradictions and uncertainties. Here we live in perpetual fear and insecurity. Serenity, peace, and security are synonyms that fail to describe the prevailing conditions in Gaza. Here every living thing that pulsates with life also trembles with fear and anguish over death. How we long for peace of mind, for tranquility, for a calm outlook on life! How we long for security when we deal with each other! For more than a decade Gaza has been a land forsaken by God and humanity. Malaise, fear, and constant vigilance pervade the atmosphere.     More . . .
+972 MAGAZINE
ISRAELIS  CAN  ONLY  IGNORE  GAZA  FOR  SO  LONG
Mairav Zonszein
Feb. 24, 2016
This week marks exactly one and a half years since the last Gaza war, although most of the time the tiny strip of land barely exists in the Israeli public consciousness. Now that the possibility of another round of fighting has emerged, Gaza is back in the headlines.
___Recent weeks have seen multiple reports by the Israeli military on Hamas’s attempts to re-build its tunnel infrastructure, with some tunnels already projected to have been dug into Israeli territory. Israeli satirical comedy show Eretz Nehederet recently poked fun at the situation.     More . . .

Israeli Soldiers stop and search young Palestinian man while a member of a Sabeel Ecumenical Liberation Theology delegation looks on. (Photo: Harold Knight, Nov. 12, 2015)
Israeli Soldiers stop and search young Palestinian man while a member of a Sabeel Ecumenical Liberation Theology delegation looks on. (Photo: Harold Knight, Nov. 12, 2015)

MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
IN  PHOTOS:  PALESTINIANS  FACE  DAILY  HUMILIATION  AT  DAMASCUS  GATE
Feb. 24, 2016
Palestinians have described undergoing daily humiliation during Israeli police searches at Damascus Gate in Jerusalem’s Old City, following a spate of deadly encounters at the landmark site.
___”Israeli forces force me to take off my shoes and almost take off my pants and t-shirt as a daily procedure,” 17-year-old Muhannad told Ma’an. “They threaten to detain and beat us if we do not obey them” . . . .
___ He said the searches demonstrated that Israel was “delusional.”     More . . .
❺ Opinion/Analysis
+972 MAGAZINE
WHY  I  HAD  TO  LEAVE  ISRAEL’S  FOREIGN  MINISTRY
Ilan Baruch
Feb. 24, 2016
It has been five years since I . . . left Israel’s Foreign Ministry building. No more would I represent the Netanyahu government’s hasbara as a diplomat and attorney. In my farewell letter to the Ministry I wrote: “The government leaders have endorsed policies that outrage me… I have a hard time explaining them honestly.” I did not expect that after five years. . . Israel’s situation would deteriorate beyond recognition.
___Not only did the prime minister ridicule his constituents and the world in his famous Bar Ilan speech: the vision of “two states for two people” was never really on his agenda. Netanyahu is pushing Israeli democracy to the brink.     More . . .

“TO  A  LADY  TOURIST,”  BY  MUIN  BSEISO  (Mu’in  Basisu)

Sorry, my lay, you came to us on a day
when the hands of the poets are being cut off.
What is for sale in the East?
We’ve sold to an old lady tourist before you
Sala al-Din’s tomb **
and the City of Hittin; ***
we’ve sold the gardens of Babel, bud and flower
in markets all over the world.
We’ve sold the fingers and the rings.
Nothing remains but the pyramids,
and consider how heavy their stones are!
Abu al-Hawl is stabbed; ****
it will kill him to leave this land―
to have the knife pulled from his forehead.
Sorry, my lady, we’ve sold the last coffin,
thrown the last inkwell into the river
and slain the last rooster that crowed.
Nothing remains now but God,
who runs like a green deer chased by hounds
and galloping lies.
Yes, we’ll pursue, we’ll hunt God for you!
Those who sell out the poet, my lady,
will sell Him too.

** Sala Dalin – First Sultan of Egypt who conquered Palestine. Modern spelling: Saladin.
*** Hittin—Palestinian town where Sala Dalin conquered Palestine
**** Abu al-Hawl—Arabic for “Sphinx”

MUIN BSEISO (1926 – January 23, 1984) was a Palestinian poet who lived in Egypt, having fled Palestine during the Nakba . . . He finished his primary and secondary education in Gaza in 1948. He started publishing his work in the Jaffa-based magazin Al-Hurriya (“Liberty”), where he published his first poems in 1946. In 1948, he enrolled in the American University in Cairo and subsequently graduated in 1952. On January 27, 1952 he published his first work titled Al-Ma’raka (“The Battle”). Imprisoned in Egyptian jails twice: 1955 to 1957 and 1959 to 1963, he died in London in 1984.
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.

“. . . ‘No!’ for those who sold and bought Gaza’s silver anklet. . .” (Mueen Bessissou)

Nada Mumer waits to travel to Egypt to meet her husband. The sleeping boy is her ill son. (Photo, Isra Saleh El-Namy)
Nada Mumer waits to travel to Egypt to meet her husband. The sleeping boy is her ill son. (Photo, Isra Saleh El-Namy)

❶ From: MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
ABBAS  RESIGNS  AS  HEAD  OF  PLO  EXECUTIVE  COMMITTEE
Aug. 22, 2015
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — President Mahmoud Abbas resigned as head of the PLO Executive Committee Saturday and several others are set to step down, according to local sources.
____Tayseer Qubaa, deputy Palestinian parliament speaker, said that the the Executive Committee will hold a meeting Saturday night in order to set a date for the Palestinian National Council (PNC) to discuss plans for filling the upcoming political vacuum.
____Qubaa said: “As of now, there are six resigning members: President Mahmoud Abbas, Hanan Ashrawi, Ahmad Majdalani, Saeb Erekat, Ghassan al-Shakaa, and Mahmoud Ismae.”
____Palestinian official Wassel Abu Yussef later said that more than half of the 18-member committee had also stepped down.
____”The resignation of the president of the executive committee Mahmud Abbas and more than half of its members has created a legal vacuum, and therefore the Palestine National Council has been asked to meet in one month to elect a new executive committee,” Yussef told AFP.
More. . .

❷ From: MONDOWEISS
PALESTINIANS  STRUGGLE  TO  LEAVE  GAZA  AS  EGYPT  OPENS  RAFAH  CROSSING  FOR  FOUR  DAYS
Isra Saleh El-Namy
August 21, 2015
Fatigue and stress was apparent on the face of Nada Mumer. Nine months pregnant, Mumer waited for the officer to call the names of people who will be allowed to ride a bus to the Egyptian side of the Rafah crossing in Gaza.
[. . . .]
The departure gallery at the Rafah crossing was full of people with their suitcases, waiting for their turn to leave as Egypt announced a four-day window the crossing will be open. . .
____Palestinian officials were relieved by the Egyptian decision to open the Rafah crossing, which had been closed for more than two months, aggravating the humanitarian crisis in Gaza.
____During this time, many people, including patients seeking advanced medical treatment abroad and students who want to complete their education in universities outside Gaza, found themselves trapped inside what is known as the “world’s biggest open air prison.”
More. . .

❸ From: INTERNATIONAL SOLIDARITY MOVEMENT (ISM)
EXTREME  RIGHT-WING  ZIONISTS  WITH  THE KAHANE  GROUP  ATTACK  PALESTINIANS  AND  INTERNATIONAL ACTIVISTS  IN  HEBRON
ISM al-Khalil Team, Hebron
August 20, 2015
A group of twenty-five extreme Jewish Zionists from France attacked three international activists in front of the shops near the Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron, H2 area this afternoon.
____When the activists encountered the group of extremists, the extremist started to clap their hands and sing songs while they approached the activists. The activists pulled out their cameras to record what was happening and the extremists responded by threatening the activists in Hebrew, attacking the cameras, pushing and spitting on the activists. . . The military occupation forces did not much to prevent the violence. Instead of holding the extremists accountable for their actions, the army encouraged them to walk away and formed a line to prevent the activists from walking the direction they had intended to and were directed to go another way.
More. . .

Hebron extremists proudly held the infamous yellow flag of Kahane group. ISM Photo.
Hebron extremists proudly held the infamous yellow flag of Kahane group. ISM Photo.

❹ From: INTERNATIONAL MIDDLE EAST MEDIA CENTER (IMEMC)
CHRISTIAN  PRIESTS,  PALESTINIANS,  HOLD  PRAYERS  ON  BULLDOZED  LANDS
August 23, 2015
Dozens of Palestinians, headed by several Christians priests, conducted prayers on Palestinian lands that have been destroyed and uprooted by Israeli soldiers, in Beit Jala city, in the West Bank district of Bethlehem.
____Head of the Beit Jala City Council Nicola Khamis said the priests, the locals and various international human rights and Palestine solidarity activists gathered on the lands, carrying Palestinian flags, and signs condemning the ongoing and escalating Israeli violations and land theft.
More . . .

❺ Opinion
From: MIDDLE EAST MONITOR
THE  ILLUSION  OF  A  RIFT  IN  THE  OBAMA – NETANYAHU  RELATIONSHIP
Dr Fayez Rasheed
August 21, 2015
Some of our Palestinian and Arab politicians and writers are counting on a desert mirage. They think it is water, but when they approach it, they find that it is something else.
____This mirage is the rift in the relationship between Netanyahu and Obama. Their evidence of this is weak, i.e. Netanyahu’s statements against Obama, especially after the signing of the Iranian nuclear agreement and what seemed to be Obama’s anger with Netanyahu after his speech in Congress, etc.
[. . . .]
____ The point is that the relationship between America’s presidents and any of Israel’s prime ministers is governed by the following rule: the US officials must comply with Israel’s interests, even if Israel’s leaders attack the leaders of their top strategic ally. In order to please their consciences, the American presidents will say some words about the Palestinian-Israeli conflict after their presidential term is up or is on the verge of finishing.
More. . .

“NO!”  BY  MUEEN  BESSISSOU  (Mu’in  Bseiso)
His wounds said: “No!”
His chains said: “No!”
And the turtledove which shielded his sound with her feather
Said: “No!”
Gaza’s silver anklet.
They sold the bullets and bought a goose.

Quaking goose!
Stop for a moment.
And listen to him
Saying: “No!”
Pity him; he did not die under neon lights,
Between the candlestick and the moon.
Pity him; there was no formal announcement
. . . or a dumb funeral.
No moaning poem or song.
Stones!
Let me compose, if only one line of verse
That I may recite it to all the men with long and false beards.

Stop quaking for a moment
And listen to him saying: “No!”
Like the solid fence of a house in Gaza.
Every day, he gets killed one thousand times,
Quaking goose!

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.

Mu’in Tawfiq Bseiso (1926 –1984) was a Palestinian poet who lived in Egypt. . . He finished his primary and secondary education in Gaza in 1948. He started publishing his work in the Jaffa-based magazine Al-Hurriya where he published his first poems in 1946. . . he enrolled in the American University in Cairo and subsequently graduated in 1952. . . Imprisoned in Egyptian jails twice: 1955 to 1957 and 1959 to 1963. He died due to heart failure in London in 1984.
More. . .

ABBAS RESIGNS
ABBAS RESIGNS

“. . . when the sea gazelle was stabbed, And the moon became an eye of glass. . .” (Mu’in Bseiso)

A picture taken on March 19, 2013 shows workers at the archaeological site of the Saint Hilarion Monastery, one of the largest Christian monasteries in the Middle East, in Tel Umm al-Amr close to Deir al-Balah, in the central Gaza Strip. AFP photo. More. . .
A picture taken on March 19, 2013 shows workers at the archaeological site of the Saint Hilarion Monastery, one of the largest Christian monasteries in the Middle East, in Tel Umm al-Amr close to Deir al-Balah, in the central Gaza Strip. AFP photo.  More. . .  

❶ From: PALESTINE NEWS NETWORK
IOF  TO  BAN  MUSLIMS,  ALLOW  SETTLERS  INTO  IBRAHIMI  MOSQUE  ON  THURSDAY
August 12, 2015
Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) Tuesday night announced will to close the Ibrahimi mosque (Haram) in the old city of Hebron, southern West Bank, for the Muslim worshipers under the pretext of “Jewish occasions. “Local sources said that IOF announced the mosque will be closed in the face of Muslims Thursday early morning, until the evening, but will be opened for Israeli Jewish settlers.
____The mosque is regularly closed down by Israeli forces under the same pretext, but Jewish settlers are given full privilege to break into the mosque whenever desired.
[. . . .]
____IOF have often prevented the call for prayers (Adan) from the mosque, violating the religious freedom of Muslims.
____The Israeli minister of army, Moshe Ya’alon on Tuesday morning broke into the mosque “to carry out Jewish prayers” in midst of tight security guardianship.
More. . .

❷ From: PALESTINE NEWS AND INFORMATION AGENCY – WAFA
GRAND  MUFTI  CONDEMNS  ISRAEL’S  DECISION  TO  BUILD  SYNAGOGUE  IN  OLD  JERUSALEM
August 12, 2015
JERUSALEM, (WAFA) – The Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, Sheikh Mohammad Hussein, condemned on Wednesday the ongoing construction of a Jewish synagogue upon the ruins of an Islamic site in the Old City of Jerusalem.
____He said the construction of the synagogue comes as part of a “Judaization” plan which aims to transfer the holy city and areas surrounding al-Aqsa Mosque into a completely Jewish area.
____The Jordan-run Islamic Waqf, which has administrative jurisdiction over the compound, has accused Israel of attempting to “Judaize” the holy site and the city of Jerusalem.
More. . .

A view of Jerusalem’s Old City Hurva (The Ruin) synagogue, left, the Dome of the Rock mosque, center, and an Armenian church on January 24, 2011. Getty Images.
A view of Jerusalem’s Old City Hurva (The Ruin) synagogue, left, the Dome of the Rock mosque, center, and an Armenian church on January 24, 2011. Getty Images.

❸ From: AL-MONITOR (PALESTINE PULSE)
PERPETUAL  NEGLECT  JEOPARDIZES  GAZA’S  ARCHAEOLOGICAL  SITES
Rasha Abou Jalal
August 11, 2015
GAZA CITY — Some of the Gaza Strip’s most precious historical sites, dating back thousands of years, are being devastated not only by the targeted bombardments of repeated wars, but also from long-term government neglect.
____ “In addition to the Israeli attacks, cultural heritage, as well as Islamic and Christian archaeological sites, suffer from significant violations due to the neglect of successive governments,” [said] Nasser al-Yafawi, an expert on history and heritage in the Gaza Strip. . .
____He added, “These governments failed to preserve the Palestinian heritage in Gaza. They left heritage sites exposed to looting, pillaging and effacement without providing the minimal level of care that is worthy of the civilization that these sites and old buildings represent.”
More. . .

❹ From: MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
US  INTERVENES  IN  CASE  AGAINST  PALESTINIANS  OVER  ISRAEL  ATTACKS
Aug. 12, 2015
WASHINGTON ―The United States said on Tuesday it has intervened in a lawsuit against Palestinian authorities over attacks in Israel that killed and injured Americans, arguing that a high bond could compromise the Palestinians’ financial stability.
____A US jury in February found the Palestinian Authority (PA) and Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) liable for six attacks between 2002 and 2004, which killed 33 people . . .
____The families were awarded more than $218 million in damages, which was automatically tripled to about $650 million. . . .
____The US State Department said it had filed a Statement of Interest . . . to express concerns over the possible bond amount that could be issued in the case. . . for the PA to appeal the decision.
____The filing cited “US concerns about the harms that could arise if the ability of the Palestinian Authority to operate as a governmental authority is severely compromised.”
More. . .

❺ Opinion
From: MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
ISRAEL  STRUGGLES  WITH  RACIST  UNDERGROUND
August 11, 2015
James Dorsey
Israel is struggling with how to deal with groups . . . that are linked to a banned nationalist political party that has emerged at the core of recent racist, anti-Palestinian incidents and include a militant soccer fan group that was responsible for last month’s violent clashes during a Europa League qualifier in Belgium between Israeli club Beitar Jerusalem and Charleloi SC.
____Two government investigations of Beitar and La Familia, its notorious fan group that openly supports Kach, the banned party founded by Meir Kahane, an extremist rabbi who was assassinated in 1990, took on added significance. . . .
____ . . . the investigations have moved center stage amid recent racist and discriminatory attacks such as the firebombing of a Palestinian home that killed an 18-month-old baby . . . as well as the stabbing of participants in a gay parade by an ultra-religious repeat offender as well as allegations . . . .
[. . . .]
____Israeli leaders have condemned the firebombing as an act of terrorism and are keen to stop elements of the underground from threatening the fabric of Israeli society by escalating Israeli-Palestinian tensions.
____Israel also wants to ensure that racist incidents don’t pour grist on the mill of the growing boycott, divestment and sanctions movement that seeks to isolate Israel internationally or revive efforts by the Palestine Football Association (PFA) to get world soccer body FIFA to suspend Israel’s membership in part on the grounds of racism.
More. . .

“ALEXANDER  AND  THE  SUN  FLOWER,”  BY  MUEEN  BESSISSOU  (Mu’in  Bseiso)
The auction began,
And she was carried on a litter to Alexander’s tent.
They brought her the milk of a deer and a lioness.
And so she washed.
She was perfumed with incense;
And when they blew the horn,
A bed was fetched.
And Alexander entered.
Joys of Alexander!
He slept with her
Until the cock crowed,
Then discarded her,
To be bestowed on a king
Who abandoned her after two nights.
She was carried on a camel
And bestowed on a prince.
The incense garden burned down.
Then she was bestowed on a minister,
And down to the fifty-first man in his entourage.
And when the sea gazelle was stabbed,
And the moon became an eye of glass,
Her navel became a wine pot.
Kings and rebels drank to her health,
She learned how to lie with them.
Rainbow! Stay this winter from our skies.
Your red and blue and green
Stain our face, like mud and glue.

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.
Mu’in Bseiso (1926 – January 23, 1984)

Fans of the Beitar Jerusalem soccer team hold up a sign saying "beitar pure for ever" and chanted against owner Arcadi Gayadamak during Saturday evening's game against Bnei Yehuda of Tel Aviv over Gaydamak's announced intention to make two Russians the first Muslims in the teams history. Jan 26 2013. Photo by Flash90
Fans of the Beitar Jerusalem soccer team hold up a sign saying “beitar pure for ever” and chanted against owner Arcadi Gayadamak during Saturday evening’s game against Bnei Yehuda of Tel Aviv over Gaydamak’s announced intention to make two Russians the first Muslims in the teams history. Jan 26 2013. Photo by Flash90

“. . .Stop for a moment and listen to him saying: ‘No!’. . .” (Muin Bseiso)

Palestinians hold their national flag as they ride boats during a rally to show support for activists on the Freedom Flotilla III at the seaport of Gaza City on 24 June 2015. The activists failed to reach Gaza, with three boats turning back and the fourth taken over by the Israelis. Photograph: Mahmud Hams/AFP/Getty Images.
Palestinians hold their national flag as they ride boats during a rally to show support for activists on the Freedom Flotilla III at the seaport of Gaza City on 24 June 2015. The activists failed to reach Gaza, with three boats turning back and the fourth taken over by the Israelis. Photograph: Mahmud Hams/AFP/Getty Images.

From INTERNATIONAL MIDDLE EAST MEDIA CENTER (IMEMC)
ISRAELIS OVERTAKE, BOARD SIEGE [OF GAZA] BREAKING VESSEL
June 29, 2015
According to Haaretz, Israeli forces intercepted the Gaza-bound boat Marianne late Sunday night, in what the military said was a short operation, free of any casualties . . .
____ . . . the Marianne of Gothenburg, was boarded by the Israeli navy and was being escorted to an Israeli port.
____The Swedish boat, which on Sunday afternoon was 150 nautical miles from the Gaza Coast, is carrying 20 activists, among them MK Basel Ghattas (Joint Arab List) and former Tunisian president Moncef Marzouki.
(More. . .)
(Additional “mainstream” media coverage)

From MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
ISRAEL LARGEST STATE USER OF EXPLOSIVE WEAPONS IN 2014 DUE TO GAZA WAR
Charlie Hoyle
June 26, 2015
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Israel was the single largest user of explosive weapons among international states in 2014 as a result of its war on Gaza, a London-based NGO said this week . . .
____In a report entitled ‘Explosive States: Monitoring explosive violence in 2014,’ Action on Armed Violence said that Gaza . . . saw one of the highest number of global casualties from explosive weapons as a result of Israel’s use of military force during Operation Protective Edge.
(More. . .)

From MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
ANTI-PALESTINIAN GRAFFITI FOUND IN JERUSALEM NEIGHBORHOOD
June 30, 2015
JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — Suspected Jewish extremists spray-painted racist graffiti in the Palestinian neighborhood of Beit Safafa in Jerusalem on Tuesday, Israeli police said.
____Luba al-Samri, spokeswoman for Arabic-language media, told Ma’an that “Arab blood is a public property,” “Kill Arabs,” and other racist phrases were sprayed on a wall in Hebrew.
(More. . .)

From +972 BLOG
A VICIOUS CYCLE OF LAWLESSNESS IN THE WEST BANK
Eyal Hareuveni
June 30, 2015
For nearly 50 years the Israeli army has been treating settler violence against Palestinians as a decree of fate . . . the army has dealt with the phenomenon without actually dealing with it.
____International law, however, is quite clear that the occupying power . . . has an obligation to preserve the rule of law and public order in those territories. . . the Israeli High Court has even emphasized that it is a basic and fundamental obligation — but the IDF paid no heed.
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Settlers throw stones at Palestinians as IDF soldiers stand by in the West Bank village of Asira al Qibliya. April 30, 2013 (Oren Ziv/Activestills.org)
Settlers throw stones at Palestinians as IDF soldiers stand by in the West Bank village of Asira al Qibliya. April 30, 2013 (Oren Ziv/Activestills.org)

Opinion
From +972 BLOG
THE ONLY REAL DANGER OF GAZA FLOTILLAS
Itamar Sha’altiel
June 29, 2015
Activists on the Freedom Flotilla must understand that . . . Putting the spotlight on humanitarian supplies allows Israel to divert attention from the worst parts of the blockade.
____The truth is that after five years it’s getting a little old. Israeli naval commandos once again take over a boat to Gaza, and again, it happens without any fuss. The Israeli defense minister once again claims that there is no blockade on Gaza, and once again the prime minister tells the activists they should be sailing to Syria.
____There is, of course, clearly a blockade on Gaza. It requires massive quantities of unabashed gall to claim otherwise. Israel forbids the entry and departure of boats to and from Gaza . . . it decides what building materials can be imported to Gaza and for which projects . . . and it restricts the entry and exit of people in and out of the Strip . . . let’s be honest — it’s a blockade, clear and simple.
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“NO!” BY MUIN BSEISO

His wounds said: “No!”
His chains said: “No!”
And the turtledove which shielded his wound with her feather
Said: “No!”
“No!” for those who sold and bought
Gaza’s silver anklet.
They sold the bullets and bought a goose.

Quaking goose!
Stop for a moment.
And listen to him
Saying: “No!”
Pity him; he did not die under neon lights,
Between the candlestick and the moon.
Pity him; there was no formal announcement
or a dumb funeral.
No moaning poem nor song.
Stones!
Let me compose, if only one line of verse,
That I may recite it to all the men with long and false beards.

Stop quaking for a moment
And listen to him saying: “No!”
Like the solid fence of a house in Gaza.
Every day, he gets killed one thousand times,
Quaking goose!

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

Muin Bseiso (1926 – January 23, 1984) was a Palestinian poet who lived in Egypt . . . He finished his primary and secondary education in Gaza in 1948. He started publishing his work in the Jaffa-based magazin Al-Hurriya (“Liberty”), where he published his first poems in 1946. In 1948, he enrolled in the American University in Cairo and subsequently graduated in 1952. On January 27, 1952 he published his first work titled Al-Ma’raka (“The Battle”). Imprisoned in Egyptian jails twice: 1955 to 1957 and 1959 to 1963. He died London in 1984.

A child at home in Gaza
A child at home in Gaza