“The earth is closing in on us . . .” (Mahmoud Darwish)

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SELECTED   NEWS   OF   THE   DAY
. . .

| ISRAELI  SETTLERS  HANG  POSTERS  CALLING  FOR  KILLING  PALESTINIAN  PRESIDENT   
Israeli extreme Jewish groups hung posters of the Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas at the Huwwara crossroads in southern Nablus, in the northern occupied West Bank, on Tuesday, calling for his assassination.    [. . . .] The posters read “supporter of terrorists” and called for killing (assassinating) the Palestinian President.    ___The incident comes as member of the Likud party at the Israeli Knesset, Oren Hazan, had called for imposing closure on the Ramallah and al-Bireh district until the suspect of an attack carried out in the Ofra illegal Israeli settlement, two days ago, is detained.    [. . . .] Israeli forces raided several institutions in Ramallah, including the Palestinian Authority (PA)-owned Wafa News and Information Agency, allegedly searching for the suspect.    More. . .
. . . . Related  Palestinian journalists, officials protest Israeli army raid of WAFA news agency office  
. . . . Related  Palestinians kidnapped, civilian homes ransacked by Israeli forces
. . . . Related  Israel shoots dozens of Palestinians in the 19th maritime march in Gaza
. . . . Related  Palestinian shot, killed by Israeli forces in Hebron
RAMALAWI:  THE  OCCUPATION  HAS  ISSUED  A  DECISION  RESTRICTING  VACCINE  IMPORTS  TO  PALESTINE
The Israeli occupation authorities issued a decree banning the Palestinian Ministry of Health from importing vaccines, starting from the beginning of the year 2019, said Undersecretary of the Ministry of Health Dr. Asaad Ramlawi.    ___In an interview with the official Voice of Palestine radio station, Dr. Ramlawi said that the Israeli decree put the supply of vaccinations at risk; the Ministry of Health has resources for just two months of vaccine provision, after which there will be a serious problem if the issue is not resolved.    More . . .
. . . . Related  Mizan Center: Eight patients died due to Israeli travel restriction
| OMAN  ALLOWS  ISRAELI  PLANES  TO  USE  ITS  AIRSPACE    More . . .
. . . . Related  Qatari envoy says Gaza airport was proposed, Israel unresponsive
. . . . Related  Britain’s unreported military alliance with Israel
. . . . Related  World Zionist Organization Used Israeli Public Funds to Finance Illegal Outpost
. . . . Related  [American] Evangelical Christian Groups Invested $65 Million to Jewish Settlements

COMMENTARY    AND    OPINION. . . .
|  WHY  IS  ISRAEL  FORGING  SECRET  TIES  WITH  SUDAN?
The past two months saw Israeli official visits to several Arab countries. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visited Qatar Oct. 26 and met with Sultan Qaboos bin Said to discuss the situation in the region. On the same day, Israeli Sports Minister Miri Regev touched down in Abu Dhabi as part of the Israeli judo team participating in international competitions there. Israeli Minister of Transportation Yisrael Katz arrived Nov. 4 in Muscat for an international conference on global transportation.    ___Moreover, Bahrain invited Nov. 25 Israeli Minister of Economy Eli Cohen for a visit in April to attend a technology conference. On the same day, Chadian President Idriss Debby visited Israel, in a bid to strengthen ties between the two countries, while Chad is hoping to obtain Israeli-made weapons and security assistance as well as benefit from Israeli technologies.    ____Amid these Arab-Israeli developments, Israel’s Channel 2 reported Nov. 25 that Netanyahu’s next Arab visit will be Sudan, without specifying a date. The visit comes within the framework of efforts to create short air routes from Israel to South America via Sudan.    More . . .    

POEM  FOR  THE  DAY. . . . 

“THE  EARTH  IS  CLOSING  IN  ON  US,”  BY  MAHMOUD  DARWISH

The earth is closing in on us, pushing us through the last passage, and
. . . . we tear off our limbs to pass through.
The earth is squeezing us. I wish we were its wheat so we could die
. . . . and live again. I wish the earth was our mother
So she’d be kind to us. I wish we were pictures on the rocks for our
. . . . dreams to carry
As mirrors. We saw the faces of those to be killed by the last of us
. . . . in the last defense of the soul.
We cried over their children’s feast. We saw the faces of those who’ll
. . . . throw our children
Out of the windows of this last space. Our star will hang up mirrors.
Where should we go after the last frontiers? Where should the birds
. . . .fly after the last sky?
Where should the plants sleep after the last breath of air? We will
. . . . write our names with scarlet steam.
We will cut off the hand of the song to be finished by our flesh.
We will die here, here in the last passage. Here and here our blood
. . . . will plant its olive tree.

–From Adonis; Mahmud Darwish; and Samih al-Qasim. VICTIMS OF A MAP: A BILINGUAL ANTHOLOGY OF ARABIC POETRY.  Trans. Abdullah al-Udhari. London: Saqi Books, 2008. Available from Barnes and Noble.

“. . . With bloodied footsteps, Silence reigned in the city . . .” (Fadwa Tuqan)

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Shopping in The Old City’s Souq (Photo: Harold Knight, Nov. 11, 2015)

SELECTED   NEWS   OF   THE   DAY. . .
| ON  DAY  OF  SOLIDARITY  WITH  PALESTINE,  GOVERNMENT  CALLS  ON  WORLD  TO  END  ISRAELI  OCCUPATION   
Marking the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People on Thursday
, the Palestinian government called on the international community to work hard toward implementing international resolutions and law that demand an end to the Israeli occupation and enable the Palestinian people to regain all their legitimate rights.    ___Government spokesman Yousef al-Mahmoud said in a statement on Thursday that the international community must go past remembrance of the Palestinian tragedy and move toward enabling the Palestinian people to establish their fully sovereign independent state on all the Palestinian territories occupied in 1967 with East Jerusalem as its capital.    More . . .
. . . . Related  Haneyya [Hamas Political Bureau] calls on UN to protect Palestinians’ right to resistance
.  .  .  .  . Related  Russia Foreign Ministry invites Haneyya to Moscow
. . . . Related  Bill on boycott of Israeli settlement products passes first reading in Irish Senate
. . . . Related  Erekat applauds Chilean parliament for standing by Palestinian rights
|  NETANYAHU  AIMS  TO  COMPLETE  TOTAL  ANNEXATION  OF  JERUSALEM  FROM  PALESTINE
In light of the recent grave developments in Jerusalem and the Israeli occupation’s accelerated and egregious violations committed against the Palestinian people’s national and human rights in the occupied city, Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) Executive Committee Member, Hanan Ashrawi, said on Wednesday that “the reality and future of Jerusalem is a litmus test for the world.”    ___Ashrawi appealed to governments around the world and all members of the international community to hold Israel accountable for its illegal actions in occupied Jerusalem.    [. . . .] Israel has accelerated and intensified its efforts to entrench its colonial military occupation . . .   measures include Israel’s theft of Palestinian lands, the expansion of its illegal settlement enterprise, the arrest of Palestinian representatives and officials and the deliberate targeting of Palestinian ministries and institutions, the revocation the IDs and residency status of Palestinians, the demolition of commercial and residential Palestinian-owned properties and other structures, and the expulsion of Palestinians from their homes, among other flagrant violations of international law and relevant conventions.”    More . . .
. . . . Related  Israeli police summons Palestinian Authority minister of Jerusalem Affairs
. . . . Related  Israeli demolition leaves Palestinian family homeless [East Jerusalem]
. . . . Related  Over 170 settlers break into Al-Aqsa Mosque
. . . . Related  Israeli forces attack Palestinian students near Jerusalem university
| KUFFIYEHS  AND  TALLITS:  HOPE  IN  THE  OLD  CITY’S  SOUQ    
By Nissim Lebovits
The Old City’s Souq (open-air market) is an often-overwhelming collision of competing visuals. Its optical milieu is rooted in Jerusalem’s status as the meeting point of a wide range of cultures, as well as the market’s thousand-plus year history. One of the most jarring manifestations of this reality is the merchandise sold there; in shops across the souq, kuffiyehs hang next to tallits. The t-shirt vendors sell “Free Palestine” designs, and also “Guns’n ’Moses”. Food carts offer rugelach next to ka’ak, and postcards of the Dome of the Rock are for sale next to pictures of the Western Wall. Merchandise choices in the souk often seem so hyper political and contradictory as to cancel each other out.     More . . .

COMMENTARY    AND    OPINION. . . .
ISRAEL’S  DE  FACTO  ANNEXATION  OF  EAST  JERUSALEM  VIOLATES  THE  PALESTINIAN  PEOPLE’S  RIGHT  TO  SELF-DETERMINATION   In observation of the 2018 International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, the Executive Director of the Geneva Centre for Human Rights Advancement and Global Dialogue Ambassador Idriss Jazairy appealed to the international community to express solidarity to the endeavours of the Palestinian people to exercise their right to self-determination.    ___Ambassador Jazairy stated that Israel’s de facto annexation of East Jerusalem impedes the prospects of a two-state solution and hinders the realization of regional peace and security. The decision of several countries to move their embassies to Jerusalem, thus recognising the latter as the capital of Israel, contradicts the provisions set forth in the Arab Peace Initiative that calls for the normalization of relations between Arab states and Israel once the latter cedes, inter alia,its military occupation of the West Bank including East Jerusalem.    More . . .

POEM  FOR  THE  DAY. . . . 

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

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

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

 

“. . every window and door: a color…resisting the conquerors . . ” (Majid Abu Ghoush)

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Jerusalem Post: The Gush Etzion Charade. (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)

SELECTED   NEWS   OF   THE   DAY. . .
ISRAELI  SUPREME  COURT  RULES  SETTLEMENT  OWNERSHIP  OF  A  500-DUNUM  LAND  IN  WEST  BANK
The Israeli Supreme Court issued a ruling on the ownership of the Jewish National Fund (JNF) of more than 500 dunums of Palestinian land in the Gush Etzion settlement area, south of Bethlehem, Israel Hayom newspaper reported.    ___The newspaper said the judges of the Israeli Supreme Court rejected this week an appeal filed by Palestinians against a previous decision by the Central Court in Jerusalem stating that the ownership of the land by the JNF.    ___The new ruling enables settlers to start work on confiscated land and build hundreds of settlement units there.    More . . .
. . . . Related  Netanyahu: “No Settlement Will be Evacuated” in His Time
. . . . Related  Catholic Lands to be Seized in Jordan Valley  
. . . . Related  Israeli bulldozers demolish house in Jerusalem  |
| SAUDI  ARABIA  TO  CONTRIBUTE  $50  MILLION  TO  UNRWA
Saudi Arabia announced, on Wednesday, it will contribute $50 million to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA).    ___During a press conference, Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al-Rabiah, the Supervisor General of King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre (KSrelief), told the Commissioner-General of UNRWA, Pierre Krahenbuhl, about the contribution.     __UNRWA has faced a financial crisis this past year after the United States announced in mid-January the reduction of financial support . . .   More. . .
. . . . Related  Trump: ‘US troops will remain in Middle East for Israel’
. . . . Related  South African academic conference cancels participation of Israelis
| IOF  BESIEGE  SCHOOL  IN  BETHLEHEM  TO  ARREST  A  STUDENT
Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) on Wednesday besieged Minya Secondary School, east of Bethlehem, in an attempt to break into the school and arrest a student.    More . . .
. . . . Related  Israeli undercover units nab youth after beating him and his father
. . . . Related  Israeli forces detain 20 Palestinians, including minor

COMMENTARY    AND    OPINION. . . .
WHEN  YARA  MET  FADI:  GAZANS  HELP  COUPLE  PICK  UP  THE  PIECES  AFTER  ISRAELI  STRIKE  
By  Ali Adam
“We thought our love was hopeless, but we continued nonetheless,” Fadi al-Ghazali told Al-Monitor, standing in his heavily damaged apartment in the Sheikh Radwan district of Gaza City. As he and his mother went about clearing the rubble in their apartment from the Nov. 12 Israeli airstrike, on the wall hung a wedding gown, an object that has dominated social media as the symbol of the touching love story of Fadi and Yara, a young woman from Syria.    [. . . .] In late September, the Egyptian Embassy finally contacted Yara to tell her that she had been granted permission to enter Gaza through the Rafah crossing. After three years of trying, Yara finally arrived in Gaza, on Nov. 8. As Fadi describes it, they can’t remember what their first conversations were about, because when they first met in person, they both “blacked out” from extreme joy and excitement.    More . . .

POEM  FOR  THE  DAY. . . .

“RESISTANCE,”  MAJID  ABU  GHOUSH

I plant my poetry
in the streets,
in every quarter
and every alley,
a poem…resisting the conquerors!
I plant my fingers
in the streets,
in every hole,
in every flower pot:
a finger…resisting the conquerors!
I plant my blood
in the streets,
on every sidewalk,
on every roadsign:
a drop of blood…resisting the conquerors!
I plant my dreams
in the streets,
in the heads of passers-by:
an infant dream…resisting the conquerors!
I plant the names of my loved ones
in the streets,
on every tree, on every wall:
the name of a martyr resisting the conquerors!
I plant the colors of the flag
in the streets,
on every house,
and every window and door:
a color…resisting the conquerors!
I plant my children’s luggage
in the streets
at every roadblock,
at every checkpoint:
a suitcase…resisting the conquerors!
I plant my hands
in the streets,
on every corner:
a firm hand resisting the conquerors!

From: University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, Middle East Affairs
Special Programs, 
Commemorating the Intifada’s Tenth Year, April 10, 1998
Prof. Naseer Aruri

“. . . She gazes at me like a little child. . .” (Muhammad al-Dhahir)

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Neighborhood of Jericho (Photo: Harold Knight, Nov. 15, 2015)

SELECTED   NEWS   OF   THE   DAY. . .  
|  PRISONER’S  SOCIETY:  ISRAEL  DETAINED  OVER  900  PALESTINIAN  CHILDREN  SINCE  BEGINNING  OF  YEAR
Israel detained 908 Palestinian children under 18 years of age since the beginning of the year, the Palestinian Prisoner’s Society (PPS) said on Tuesday.    ___It said in a statement marking  UNIVERSAL CHILDREN’S DAY, which coincides on Tuesday, that out of the 908 detained since January 2018 until the end of October, 270 are still held in detention in various prisons in Israel.   More . . .
|  THE  RIGHT  TO  EDUCATION  CAMPAIGN  CONDEMNS  ARBITRARY  ARREST  OF  BIRZEIT  UNIVERSITY’S  HEAD  OF  STUDENT  COUNCIL
The Right to Education Campaign expresses its grave concern over the Israeli Occupying forces’ arrest of the head of Birzeit University student council Yehya Rabie’ at dawn on November 19, 2018, from his house in Al- Mazra’a Al Gharbiya near Ramallah. Rabie’ is a third-year student in the Faculty of Business and Economics.    ___ Such outrageous acts are categorical violation of international laws and norms, which all forbid any violation against the basic right of people to the right of education.   More . . .
|  ISRAEL  RAZES  PALESTINIAN  LANDS,  UPROOTS  500  PALM  TREES  IN  JERICHO
Israeli bulldozers razed and leveled Palestinian-owned agricultural lands, and uprooted about 500 palm trees, on Tuesday, in Jericho City, near road 90, in the central occupied West Bank district of Jericho.    ___Ibrahim Ahmad, the tenant of the razed lands, said that Israeli forces along with several bulldozers stormed the area and razed agricultural lands that belong to the ISLAMIC  ENDOWMENT  (WAQF)  DEPARTMENT.    ___No reason was given for the razing and leveling of the lands.  More . . .
. . . . Related  Netanyahu: KHAN AL-AHMAR to Be Demolished Very Soon
. . . . Related  Israeli  bulldozers  raze  lands  in  GAZA
. . . . Related  Israeli  bulldozers  demolish  Palestinian  structures  in  EAST  JERUSALEM 

COMMENTARY    AND    OPINION. . . .
|  WHY  IS  NETANYAHU  SO  DESPERATE  FOR  A  CEASEFIRE  WITH  HAMAS?
It was supposed to be a routine intelligence undercover operation whereby the Israeli agents would infiltrate into “enemy territory”, carry out the mission, and leave without being detected . . .  But the Israeli intelligence operation on November 11 in Gaza did not go according to plan. . .    [. . . .] Seven Palestinians were killed in the botched operation, including a prominent al-Qassam Brigades commander, Nour Baraka . . .    [. . . .] Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had little space for manoeuvre: he was forced to settle for a ceasefire with Gaza armed groups, which prompted Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman to resign and plunged his government into a major political crisis.    ___This time, provoking a new conflict in Gaza in order to take attention away from the domestic political mess he has made is not an option for Netanyahu. He is cornered by a resurgent Hamas and his own geopolitical game in the Middle East, so he needs to keep Gaza quiet.    More . . .

POEM  FOR  THE  DAY. . . . 

“THE  LITTLE  GIRL,”  BY  MUHAMMAD  AL-DHAHIR

I tell her:

speak to me—she holds her breath
and draws a circle of suffering
a circle of soldiers
a circle of guns

She lets down her ropelike braids
I tell her:
Plough my body
travel in my palm
and give me a sign

She gazes at me like a little child
opens her album
pointing to the map of the big Arab homeland
writing in blood the names of the tribes

I tell her:
Draw a moon for proof
She slams her album shut
and enters me to sleep within my ribs
Out comes a troop of children,
a bouquet of wheatstalks,
And her voice, whispering:
—All others but you are enemies
and every god but you, an intruder.

–Translated by May Jayyusi and Naomi Shihab Nye
From ANTHOLOGY OF MODERN PALESTINIAN LITERATURE. Ed. Salma Khadra Jayyusi. New York: Columbia University Press, 1992. Available from Columbia University Press.

 

 

Noontime call to prayer, Jericho, November 10, 2015.

“. . . We learned to speak from the margins of pages . . .” (Jehan Bseiso)

SELECTED   NEWS   OF   THE   DAY. . .
|  INTERNATIONAL  FEDERATION  OF  JOURNALISTS  DEMANDS  RESPONSE  AFTER  ISRAELI  ATTACK  ON  JOURNALISTS  PROTEST
In an open letter to the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) demanded an urgent response to the unprovoked attack by Israeli forces . . . against a peaceful march organized by IFJ, at the Qalandiya checkpoint north of Jerusalem in the central occupied West Bank.    ___Several Palestinian and international journalists suffered severe tear-gas inhalation as Israeli forces suppressed the peaceful march . . .    ___The march was organized in support of the rights of Palestinian journalists and demanded freedom of movement for Palestinian journalists.    More . . .
|   PALESTINIAN  ‘GEEKS’  CODE  THEIR  WAY  TO  A  BETTER  FUTURE  IN  GAZA
By Fedaa al-Qedra
When Yasmin Helles was an English literature student at a Gaza college, she would spend most of her time online looking for information that could help her in academic life.   She always wondered who designed these websites . . . .   Six months ago, the 24-year-old saw an advertisement by Gaza Sky Geeks (GSG), a rapidly growing business and tech incubator, calling for young graduates to enroll in the first coding school in the beleaguered Palestinian territory . . .     [. . . .] Gazans are finding opportunities beyond the besieged strip. There is a rise in entrepreneurial start-ups and tech accelerators. . .  GSG’S  CODING  SCHOOL  was established in 2017 with funding from the likes of Google and London-based coding boot camp Founders & Coders. It aims to empower students to be full-stack developers . . .    More . . .
|  ISRAELI  SOLDIERS  ABDUCT  FIVE  PALESTINIANS  IN  BETHLEHEM  AND  JERUSALEM
Israeli soldiers abducted, on Sunday at dawn, five young Palestinian men from several areas in Bethlehem and Jerusalem, in the occupied West Bank, the Palestinian Prisoners’ Society (PPS) has reported.    ___The PPS said the soldiers stormed and violently searched many homes, and interrogated several Palestinians, before abducting three.    More . . .
. . . . Related  IOF  Opens  Fire  at  Farmers  and  Shepherds  Near  Gaza  Border
. . . . Related  Weekly Report On Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (08 – 13 November 2018)

COMMENTARY    AND    OPINION. . . .
|  STOLEN  CHILDHOODS:  GAZA’S  INJURED  CHILDREN  STRUGGLE  TO  COMPLETE  EDUCATION
For 16-year-old Gaza teenager Abdallah Qassem, getting to school every day is a challenge. . . .  after losing both of his legs during the Great March Return protests, he is now confined to a wheelchair, making the journey much more complicated.    ___Qassem lives in Gaza’s Sheikh Redwan neighbourhood in an apartment situated on the second floor. . .   he has to be carried down the narrow stairwell by his two older brothers.    [. . . .] Around 10,000 Palestinians have been injured during protests, including more than 1,800 children. According to al-Minawi, 210 of these children are registered in Gaza’s public schools and 92 of them have stopped going to school completely or are missing many classes due to their injuries.   More . . .

NOTICES  FROM  ORGANIZATIONS. . . .
|   UNRWA  AND  QATAR  CELEBRATE  THE  RIGHT  TO  EDUCATION  FOR  PALESTINE  REFUGEES  STUDENTS 
The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) organized a Back to School ceremony to celebrate support from the State of Qatar. The US$ 50 million contribution to the Agency’s education programme in Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, Gaza and the West Bank was a vital component in the decision to open UNRWA schools without delay this August. The ceremony, held at the UNRWA Baqa’a Basic Boys’ School, affirms the importance of the right to education for Palestine refugees in the presence of the Qatar Fund for Development (QFFD) Managing Director H.E. Mr. Khalifa Bin Jassim Al-Kuwari.   Donate . . .

POEM  FOR  THE  DAY. . . . 

“BRAINSTORMING  NAKBA,”  BY  JEHAN  BSEISO
At curious four I asked my mother why Superman did not speak
the same language I did
She told me that
Our cartoon hero is a little boy forever ten
His hands clasped behind his back, invisible handcuffs
She told me I had to learn another alphabet, another geography,
In the Big Yellow Atlas, for kids, full of pictures
We stenciled in your awkward shape into maps that didn’t even want you
We had to learn your name in their language
They told me I spoke funny.
So I rinsed my accent at school; madraseh instead of madrasa
I read about diaspora and exile and power structures
Without knowing what they meant
So you’re American? On paper
And Jordan? Is what I know
And Gaza? An old wives tale
We are bastard children of hyphens and supplements and sentences
that start with
Originally I’m from . . .
At home,
Baba counted in dead bodies, in ratios, and for breakfast we had
Nostalgia and symbols
We read Kanafani, Darwiche, and Said
When we found tongues
We learned to speak from the margins of pages,
From the periphery
Maybe this is Freud’s “Oceanic feeling”.
A veritable storehouse in the unconscious
To be from a place and not know the place
There are simple ways of being in the world, I’m told.
Still I choose Za3tar and Shatta and this awkward Fat7a.

From: I  REMEMBER  MY  NAME:  POETRY  BY  SAMAH  SABAWI,  RAMZY  BAROUD,  JEHAN  BSEISO.  Vacy Vlazna, editor. London: Novum Publishing, 2016. Available from publisher.

“. . . You will be liberated from your own tyranny . . .” (Samah Sabawi)

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“Israel is once again looking to instigate a war on Gaza,” Yousef Munayyer, U.S. Campaign for Palestinian Rights, wrote on Twitter. (Photo: Ibraheem Abu Mustafa/Reuters)

SELECTED   NEWS   OF   THE   DAY. . .
|    VIOLENCE  ESCALATES:  6  PALESTINIANS  KILLED,  20  INJURED  IN  ISRAELI   [ GAZA]  AIRSTRIKES 
Six Palestinians were killed and at least 20 others were injured during a campaign of Israeli airstrikes from overnight Monday until predawn Tuesday across the northern besieged Gaza Strip.    ___Medical sources in Gaza reported that six Palestinians were killed and 20 others were injured during continuous Israeli airstrikes over various parts of Gaza.    More . . .
. . . . Related  PLO  HOLDS  ISRAEL  FULLY  RESPONSIBLE  FOR  ESCALATION  IN  GAZA
. . . . Related  HAMAS  CONDEMN  ISRAEL  DESTRUCTION  OF  AL  AQSA  TV  STATION  (VIDEO)
. . . . Related  [AL-QASSAM  BRIGADES]:  ISRAEL  RESPONSIBLE  FOR  CONSEQUENCES  OF  ITS  AGGRESSION  AGAINST  GAZA
|    POLITICAL  SOURCE:  ISRAEL  SUSPENDS  GAZA  TRUCE  TALKS
A senior Israeli political source said the government had suspended contacts with Egypt and the United Nations regarding a truce with the Gaza Strip.    ___Israeli media, including Channel 10, quoted a senior political source, who it did not identify, as saying that Tel Aviv “has no contacts with Egypt and the United Nations on the ceasefire in Gaza”.    ___The announcement came at the height of the Israeli cabinet meeting on Tuesday morning, chaired by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.    More . . .
|    ISRAELI  FORCES  DETAIN  9  PALESTINIANS  IN  WEST  BANK 
Israeli forces detained at least nine Palestinians across the occupied West Bank during raids, on predawn Tuesday.    ___Palestinian Prisoner’s Society (PPS) confirmed that Israeli forces detained two Palestinians in the southern West Bank district of Hebron . . .   In the southern West Bank district of Bethlehem, two Palestinians were detained . . .   In the central West Bank district of Jerusalem, four Palestinians were detained by Israeli forces. . .    More . . .

COMMENTARY    AND    OPINION. . . .
|    HAMAS  DIDN’T  START  THIS  FIGHT,  BUT  IT  WON’T  WIN  IT  EITHER
Israel’s killing of  Hamas  commander  Nour  Baraka  on Sunday and the predictable response from the Islamist movement have sparked fears of renewed hostilities between the two sides. . . .   observers see parallels with Israel’s 2012 assassination of  Ahmad  Al  Jabari  . . .   That incident set off eight days of fighting in which six Israelis and 167 Palestinians were killed.    ___If the deadly exchange six years ago was about avenging a senior Hamas commander, its casualties, even according to the Israeli military’s official figures, were mostly civilian. . . .  though Netanyahu has demonstrated time and again that he will not hesitate to kill innocents, especially in pursuit of domestic political gain, what options does Hamas have?    [. . . . ] Whether they intended it or not, Israel’s military planners know that Baraka’s killing will bait Hamas. Any sustained response by the Palestinian faction would clearly benefit Netanyahu, who has been lambasted by his political opponents for allowing $15 million in Qatari cash to be transferred to the Strip. . .  Netanyahu has a more pressing political problem — mass resistance to Israel’s ongoing siege and the humanitarian disaster it has created.    More . . .
. . . . Related  ISRAELI  INCURSIONS  INTO  GAZA  ARE  THE  RULE,  NOT  THE  EXCEPTION

POEM  FOR  THE  DAY. . . .

“THE  LIBERATION  ANTHEM”  BY  SAMAH  SABAWI
(June 27, 2011)

To the people of Israel who fear our freedom:  Don’t be afraid,
we will liberate you too.
This is my rendition of an anthem to be sung
That day you and I will stand side by side
Shoulder to shoulder
Watching a new dawn wipe away decades of hate and savagery
The day I rise from the ashes of your oppression
I promise you I will not rise alone
You too will rise with me
You will be liberated from your own tyranny
And my freedom will bring your salvation

This is my rendition of an anthem to be sung
I’ll craft new words of expression
Outside of this suffocating language that has occupied me
Your words are like your walls
They encroach on my humanity
I am more than demography
I’m neither your collaborator
Nor your enemy
I am not your moderate
Not your terrorist
Not your Islamist
Funammentalist
Extremist
Militant
Radical
I am more than adjectives letters and syllables
I will construct my own language
And replace your words of power
With the power of my words

This is my rendition of an anthem to be sung
I don’t want to obliterate nor humiliate you
I refuse to hate you
Don’t care to demonize or proselytize or theorize your intentions
Every breath you draw reminds me you are human
The sound of your beating heart is a rhythm familiar to my ears
You and I are no different
We are made of blood and tears

This is my rendition of an anthem to be be sung
I will resist and soar above your matrix of control
With the power of my will your wall will fall
And the concrete that once segregated us will be used to rebuild homes
Your bulldozers and your tanks will dissolve into the earth
The sap will return to the olive trees
The gates will open wide for the refugees
We will be free
I will be your equal
And only then you will be mine
My other self
My fellow human being

From: I  REMEMBER  MY  NAME:  POETRY  BY  SAMAH  SABAWI,  RAMZY  BAROUD,  JEHAN  BSEISO.  Vacy Vlazna, editor. London: Novum Publishing, 2016. Available from publisher.

“. . . settlers sucking the breath from your lungs . . .” (Susan Abulhawa)

SELECTED   NEWS   OF   THE   DAY. . .
|    ISRAEL,  GAZA  CLOSE  TO  CEASEFIRE:  ISRAELI  SOURCE
Israel and Palestinians in the Gaza Strip are close to an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire, a report said Saturday, citing a high-level Israeli source.    ___According to the Israeli Public Broadcasting Corporation, an unnamed senior political figure leaked that a deal was in the making between Israel and the Gazan administration to allow Qatar to provide the enclave with funds to pay its civil servants as well as fuel.    ___The source added that the Israeli side would audit the funds to ensure they were not being used for “terror activities”.    More . . .
. . . . Related  ISRAEL-HAMAS  GAZA  DEAL  REPORTEDLY  INCLUDES  PARTIAL  LIFTING  OF  SIEGE,  END  OF  VIOLENCE  BY  YEAR’S  END
|   TEENAGE  GAZAN  DIES  OF  INJURIES  SUSTAINED  IN  2014  ISRAELI  AIRSTRIKE
A Palestinian 14-year-old boy died, on Saturday morning, of wounds he had sustained in an Israeli airstrike that targeted his family home in the besieged Gaza Strip in 2014.    ___The al-Wafaa Hospital for Rehabilitation and Specialized Surgery announced that Muhammad al-Rifi, 14, died of his injuries on Saturday morning.    ___The hospital pointed out that al-Rifi had sustained a critical injury in his cervical vertebrae, which left Muhammad Quadriplegic and on ventilators for four years.    More . . .
|    ISRAELI  MILITARY  INTENSIFIES  CRACKDOWN  ON  TULKARM
Israeli forces on Saturday evening raided many homes and terrorized their residents in the city of Tulkarm, northern West Bank, in a step seen as a collective punishment measure against the city’s population, according to witnesses.    [. . . .] For almost a month, the city has been a target of almost daily raids and searches by the Israeli army under the pretext of pursuing Ashraf Na’alweh, 23, the main suspect in killing two Israeli settlers in the illegal Israel settlement of Barkan on October 7.    More . . .
|    RESEARCHER:  AL-AQSA  MOSQUE  THREATENED  WITH  COLLAPSE
Fakhri Abu Diab, a Palestinian expert in Jerusalem affairs, on Thursday said that al-Aqsa Mosque and all of its facilities and walls are on the verge of collapse.    ___Abu Diab said that the Israeli authorities have prevented the restoration of al-Aqsa Mosque’s eastern wall after damage and change in the colors of its stones appeared lately.   More . . .

COMMENTARY    AND    OPINION. . . .
|    THIS  IS  JUST  THE  BEGINNING’:  PALESTINIAN  REFUGEES  IN  JERUSALEM  FEAR  MUNICIPALITY  TAKEOVER  OF  UNRWA
It was a typical Tuesday morning in the Shufat Refugee Camp in occupied East Jerusalem. . .    The camp’s residents were surprised to find 15 sanitation workers from Israel’s Jerusalem Municipality, escorted by Israeli border police and garbage trucks, picking up trash in the streets. Among them was Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat.    [. . . . ] The cleanup, largely regarded by locals as a power play by Barkat, was publicized by the right-wing Mayor as the first step in his plans to “end the refugee lie” and shut down UNRWA operations in Jerusalem — plans which he announced earlier this month.    More . . .

POEM  FOR  THE  DAY. . . . 
(Susan Abulhawa is deported from Israel for second time in three years.   More . . .)

“WALA,”  BY  SUSAN  ABULHAWA     

It’s 3 am
In the cattle cage
The line is long
A jibneh sandwich
With cucumber
In a plastic bag
Clutched in your callused laborer’s hand
Your wife prepared your breakfast and lunch
She was up before you
And together you prayed a predawn salat
She kissed your face and said
Allah ma’ak ya habibi
Allah be with you, my love
You kiss the faces of your sleeping babies
You haven’t seen them awake in months
And you wonder
Has Walid’s voice begun to crack yet?
Have Wijdad’s hips begun to flare?
How big was Suraya’s smile when she came home
with her report card?
It’s 4 am
In the cattle cage
Still, you wait
The line before you is so long
And behind you now, it is longer
Few speak
You’re packed so damn tight
That you hold one another upright
You see your own fatigue
Reflected in the weariness etched on
The faces all around you
You look away
Pine for a smoke
But who the hell can afford that?
You stare at the graffiti beyond the
Iron bars holding you in
Written just for you
Written
By zionist settlers sucking the breath from your lungs
You understand the meaning
Of their English words
“Die Sand Niggers”
Sometimes
You pine for that, too.
It’s 5 am
In the cattle cage
The soldiers arrive
The line loosens
You take one step forward
Propelled by the weight of bodies
Behind you
Your jibneh sandwich
With cucumber
In a plastic bag
Is crushed.
It never survives
It’s 7 am
In the cattle cage
Now is your turn
You produce your papers
Unfold and refold
Eyes down
Heart dow
Your shoes are down on their luck
But
You’re out of the line
Fifteen men before you were pulled aside
And you tried not to look
Not to hear the one begging
Don’t hit me
It’s 7:30 am
On the cattle busYou ride
The country they stole from you
Seeds outside your window
And you imagine
The man you would have been
The man you should have been
Out there
Riding the family steed
The thoroughbred mares your grandfather
Raised and nurtured and love
In a Palestine
Un-raped
Un-stolen
It’s 8 am
You get off the cattle bus
Your crushed jibneh sandwich
With cucumberIn a plastic bag
In one hand
Your eyes down
Heart down
You put your toolbox down to knock
On the zionist settler’s back door
Where the help goes
But
The zionist settler boss-man yells
Wala
Mish hon el yom!
Not there today
Boy!
And all you can do is thank Allah that your
Wife and your babies are not
There to hear them call you

From  MY  VOICE  SOUGHT  THE  WIND.   Available from Barnes and Noble.

“. . . no legacy under the rubble, no pride in long fires . . .” (Jehan Bseiso)

Bedouin_woman_Al_Araqib-1A Bedouin woman after authorities demolished her village of Al Araqeeb,
January 16, 2011 (Keren Manor/Activestills.org)

SELECTED   NEWS   OF   THE   DAY. . .
|    5  PALESTINIANS  KILLED,  HUNDREDS  INJURED  DURING  GAZA  PROTESTS
The total number of those killed during the 31st Friday of “The Great March of Return” rose to five Palestinians killed and more than 232 injured alongside the eastern borders of the besieged Gaza Strip.    ____According to the Palestinian Ministry of Health in Gaza, Israeli forces fired live bullets and rubber-coated steel bullets, as well as tear-gas bombs at Palestinian protesters, who gathered along the Gaza border, killing five protesters and injuring hundreds.    [. . . .] Since the start of the protests on March 30th, more than 205 Palestinians have been killed and over 22,000 others were injured along the Gaza border by Israeli forces.    More . . .
. . . . Related  Israel  targets  Gaza’s  children,  say  witnesse
. . . . Related  Schools  suspended  in  parts  of  Gaza  as  Israeli  warplanes  intensify  airstrikes
. . . . Related  Gaza  Is  At  The  Forefront  Of  Palestine’s  Pain
. . . . Related  Hamas  warns  against  [Mahmoud  Abbas]  undermining  reconciliation  and  ceasefire,  Great  Return  March  to  continue
|    ISRAEL  DEMOLISHES  AL-ARAQEEB  FOR  135TH  TIME,  ARRESTS  RESIDENTS
Israeli forces have demolished the village of Al-Araqeeb in the occupied Negev desert for the 135th time, local sources reported yesterday.    ___Al-Araqeeb’s residents told Arab48 that Israeli bulldozers, reinforced and protected by the occupation forces, stormed the village and proceeded to demolish all the Palestinian houses and tents there, displacing women and children despite the “cold weather and rain”.    More . . .
|    HOME  DEMOLITIONS  IN  THE  NEGEV  AND  TEL  AVIV  SHOW  THE  REAL  FACE  OF  GOVERNMENT  CORRUPTION       Orly Noy     Corruption does not begin with Netanyahu’s cigars or pink champagne. It begins with an ideological system that sees entire segments of the population as undesirable and unnecessary, and as temporary residents in their own homes.    More . . .

COMMENTARY    AND    OPINION. . . .
|    WHY  ISRAEL  SEES  BDS  AS  A  ‘STRATEGIC  THREAT’    As leaders of a state that is totally alien to the region and its indigenous peoples, Israeli political and military planners are obsessed with what they term “strategic threats”.    ___Such “threats” have varied over the years. The prime targets have included former Egyptian President Gamal Abdul Nasser, the Palestine Liberation Organisation and, since 1988, Hamas, Palestine’s Islamic liberation movement.    ___The PLO, “the Hamas” (or “the Khamas” as Israeli leaders constantly – and wholly incorrectly – insist on naming it) have been joined in the last decade or so by “the BDS” – the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement.    More . . .
    ISRAEL’S  $72M  WAR  CHEST  TO  FIGHT  BDS  COMES  TO  BRUSSELS     In its ongoing battle against the  international  Boycott,  Divestment  and  Sanctions  (BDS)  campaign  Israel is pushing for European political parties to declare the movement “fundamentally anti-Semitic”.    ___The latest drive saw Israel’s Minister of Jerusalem Affairs, Ze’ev Elkin, attending a conference in Brussels backed by the Israeli government which proposed a text for prospective MEPs and political parties to sign up to before European elections in May next year.    More . . .

NOTICES  FROM  ORGANIZATIONS. . . .
|    BDS  CAMPAIGN   The Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement works to end international support for Israel’s oppression of Palestinians and pressure Israel to comply with international law.    Get Involved . . .

POEM  FOR  THE  DAY. . . . 

“CEASEFIRE,”  BY  JEHAN  BSEISO.

Little men, cross legged, trade war stories like boys trade baseball cards.

These are times ripe and full with want and promise never fulfilled.

This much is true:
Lost boys become lost men.

Too much water, too much blood dilutes history and
We always end up with less than what we started.

In Gaza,
There is no legacy under the rubble, no pride in long fires
Burning.

There is a face at the window, sallow.

One woman sighing, her body bears the marks of all their trudging,
thighs transformed to gallows and trenches.

Her hair shrouds the dead from both sides and her lap
cradles aporias generations can’t understand.

—from I  REMEMBER  MY  NAME.  Novum Pro Publishers. 2016.

“. . . He renovates a memory demolished like a wall . . .” (Ibrahim Nasrallah)

WEb-wo24-israel-demolition
Khan al Ahmar Village with illegal Israeli settlement Kfar Adummim in background. (Photo: Reuters, in The National, Sept. 23, 2018)

SELECTED   NEWS   OF   THE   DAY. . .

|   AL-MALKI  ON  CLOSURE  OF  US  CONSULATE:  US  HAS  ADOPTED  THE  AGENDA  OF  FAR-RIGHT  ISRAELI  SETTLER  MOVEMENT 
Minister of Foreign Affairs Riyad al-Malki strongly condemned on Thursday the recent US’ decision to close the US consulate in East Jerusalem, which mainly serves Palestinians, and merge it with the US embassy in the city.    ___“Closing of the US Consulate General in Jerusalem, which has operated independently since in 1844, and turning it into a unit in the illegally placed American Embassy in Jerusalem reflects the US administration’s determination to entrench its illegal embassy move and force its functions on the Palestinian side,” he said in a press release.    ___Al-Malki stressed that decision clearly “proves that the US administration has adopted the agenda of the far-right Israeli settler movement, treating the entire area of historic Palestine as one political unit under Israeli control.”    More . . .
|   UNRWA  DISMISSES  ISRAELI  THREATS  OF  CLOSING  ITS  JERUSALEM  OPERATIONS
The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) dismissed on Thursday threats by the Israeli mayor of West Jerusalem, Nir Barkat, to close down its operations in occupied Jerusalem.    ___Barkat submitted to a parliamentary committee a plan to end UNRWA operations in Jerusalem and to turn over its services in health and education to his municipality.    ___UNRWA spokesman Sami Mshasha told WAFA that while these threats are worrying, they will not change facts on the ground since UNRWA exists based on international resolutions and binding bilateral agreements.    ___UNRWA was created in December 1949 by a United Nations resolution. . .    More . . .
|   122  DAYS  OF  DEMOLITION  THREATS,  ISRAEL  SEALS  OFF  KHAN  AL-AHMAR    Israeli forces assaulted protesters inside the Bedouin village of Khan al-Ahmar, east of Jerusalem in the central occupied West Bank, on Friday.   ___Israeli soldiers fired tear-gas bombs and pepper-sprayed Palestinian and international protesters and activists as they attempted to protest at the main road leading to the village, preventing them from doing so.   [. . . .] Large numbers of Israeli forces surrounded Khan al-Ahmar and sealed off its main entrance, declaring it a closed military zone.   [. . . .] The seal off came as an attempt to prevent hundreds of protesters and journalists from reaching Khan al-Ahmar to show solidarity with the residents of the village after 122 days of being under threat of demolition. . .  as part of an Israeli plan to expand the nearby illegal Israeli settlement of Kfar Adummim More. . .
. . . . Related   Theresa  May  Condemns  Israel’s  Planned  Demolition  of  Khan  Al-Ahmar  (VIDEO)
. . . . Related   Israel  demolishes  7  structures  in  Jordan  Valley

COMMENTARY    AND    OPINION. . . .

|  THE  UN  ‘SHERIFF’:  NIKKI  HALEY  ELEVATED  ISRAEL,  DAMAGED  US  STANDING
Ramzy Baroud
US Ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, has made her post a “more glamorous” position than her predecessors – as President Donald Trump [said] following her resignation announcement.    ___. . . we certainly know that, during her relatively brief stint, Haley has further diminished her country’s struggling reputation, entrenching US isolation in the world’s most vital international political body.    ___In her own words, Haley concluded that her mission at the UN was accomplished, commending herself on three achievements: the US has become more respected; it saved a lot of money and vigorously defended Israel against UN ‘bias.’   [. . . .] Nothing could be further from the truth and Haley, who is suspected of engineering a run for the White House in the future, has no evidence to back up her claim of new-found ‘strength’ and ‘respect’.   ___During his speech before the General Assembly on September 25, Trump’s outrageous claims were not met with thundering applause but humiliating laughter. So much for respect.    More . . .

NOTICES  FROM  ORGANIZATIONS. . . .

Eyewitness  Palestine  PALESTINE  2.0  DELEGATION  WINTER  2019  For  Returning  Delegates  and  Previous  Travelers
___Co-sponsored by the Hebron Freedom Fund, this delegation is meant for alumni of previous Eyewitness Palestine delegations, as well as other delegation programs.   ___Delve deeper into the issues and spend more time with specific Palestinian communities. Explore the current realities for Palestinians, including the repression of Palestinian strategic organizing, the separation and segregation of the Palestinian population, and creative ways communities are continuing to resist.   More . . .

POEM  FOR  THE  DAY. . . . 

“RENOVATION,”  BY  IBRAHIM  NASRALLAH

He renovates a tin window
to open it for the morning birds.
And renovates some stars that have burned out
in the streets, and a woman massacred in the neighborhood.
He renovates a memory demolished like a wall,
a bird’s scattered ashes,
light reflected off a blade in the dark,
a woman lost in a spacious bed
and a bellow.
He renovates a friend’s face as the sea breaks over it
and the singer who no longer resembles his songs,
the wind when it sleeps forgetting the immensity of an orbit,
the taste of words in conversation,
the taste of air and fruit
and two legs that have never carried a planet
while destruction prevails.
He renovates a womb, subdues horses
and poems that beg for livelihood in the shade
before slipping into a chicken coop or blowing by
like a steaming train.
He renovates pillars, neighs,
guns covered with moss from waiting.
He renovates a promise, roots, clouds,
and in the end he is slain alone like a lighthouse.

From Nasrallah, Ibrahim. RAIN  INSIDE:  SELECTED  POEMS. Trans. Omnia Amin and Rick London. Willimantic, CT: Curbstone Press, 2009.  Available from Barnes and Noble.

“. . . Our roots are entrenched / Deep in the earth . . .” (Tawfiq Zayyad)

IMG_3349 - CopySt. Nicholas Orthodox Church, Beit Jala in Bethlehem Governate.
Priest greets parishioner after service.
Photo: Harold Knight, Sun. Nov. 8, 2015.

SELECTED   NEWS   OF   THE   DAY. . .

|   MYTHS  AND  FANTASIES  ABOUT  THE  PALESTINIAN  REFUGEES  AND  THE  UNITED  NATIONS     Andrew Whitley, former senior UNRWA official      The decision of the Trump Administration to halt all funding for UNRWA, the UN agency responsible for 5.4 million Palestinian refugees, and its attempts to redefine who qualifies as a “refugee” in this context, marks another egregious example of Washington’s disregard for international norms and humanitarian law in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.    ___The ultimate fate of those refugees who fled their homes or were forcibly expelled in the war that led to the founding of the State of Israel in 1948 – and of their descendants, now into third and fourth generations – has long been one of the most contentious issues in the conflict.    ___The “right to return” is seen by Palestinians and their supporters worldwide as a matter of natural and historic justice. After all, this is exactly the same right as all other refugees – for whom UNRWA’s sister agency, UNHCR, is their guardian – enjoy.    More . . .
|   MAYOR  OF  BETHLEHEM:  NETANYAHU’S  STATEMENT  ON  BETHLEHEM  AND  PALESTINIAN  CHRISTIANS  IS  ANOTHER  ISRAELI  ATTEMPT  AT  DISTORTING  REALITY  OF  ISRAELI  OCCUPATION     Mayor of Bethlehem, advocate Anton Salman said in response to Sunday’s statements by Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Bethlehem and the situation of Palestinian Christians, that such statement ‘is another Israeli attempt at distorting the reality of the Israeli occupation and particularly the effects that Israeli policies have had on the Palestinian Christian community since 1948’.    ___“If Mr. Netanyahu was concerned about the situation of Palestinian Christians, particularly in the Bethlehem area, he would return the 22,000 dunums of Bethlehem land illegally annexed to Israel for expansion of colonial settlements. He would dismantle the annexation wall that divides Bethlehem from Jerusalem for the first time in 2000 years of Christianity and would stop imposing restrictions to Palestinian movement, including the thousand of Palestinian Christians living in exile and whose return is impossible due to the Israeli control over the Palestinian population registry,” said the mayor in a statement issued by the Bethlehem municipality.    More . . .
. . . . Related  New  Israeli  Laws  Enhance  Creeping  Annexation  Policy
|   ISRAEL  CONTINUES  AIRSTRIKES  OVER  GAZA    An Israeli warplane carried out an airstrike, on Tuesday, targeting a group of Palestinians east of Beit Hanoun in the southern besieged Gaza Strip.    ___A Ma’an reporter said that an Israeli warplane fired one missile towards a group of Palestinian youths in northern Gaza; no injuries were reported.    ___The Israeli army said that a warplane targeted a group of Palestinians who were launching incendiary kites into southern Israel.    ___Meanwhile, locals reported that Israeli military bulldozers entered dozens of meters into south of Gaza City, razed and leveled lands.    More . . .
. . . . Related   Israeli  Navy,  Soldiers,  Injure  19  Palestinians  In  Northern  Gaza

COMMENTARY    AND    OPINION. . . .

|   WATCH:  ISRAELIS  AND  PALESTINIANS  MEET  FACE  TO  FACE  AT  GAZA  FENCE
For a few short minutes last week, a group of Israeli activists managed to have a face-to-face conversation with Palestinian activists in Gaza, albeit through a militarized fence.    ___On Wednesday of last week, for the first time since the Great Return March began in March, a small group of Israeli activists approached the fence to speak with Palestinian demonstrators, standing just meters from them on the other side.    ___The Palestinians who approached the fence had been taking part in a cultural event near the village of Khuza’a in one of the nearby tent encampments, which was established as part of the Great Return March.    ___The rare meeting lasted only a few minutes, until Israeli soldiers arrived and ordered the Israelis to leave the area.    More . . .
|   PALESTINIAN  PRISONER  IN  ISRAEL  FOR  33  YEARS  WARNED  OF  PUNISHMENT  IF  HE  PUBLISHES  BOOK     A Palestinian prisoner who served 33 years out of a 39-year prison sentence in Israeli jails for resisting the Israeli occupation was warned by the prison administration of severe punishment if he publishes a book he wrote in prison, the Palestinian Prisoner’s Society said on Tuesday.    ___It said Walid Dakka, a Palestinian from inside Israel, who previously was severely punished after publishing a book in Arabic called “The story of the secret of oil”, was told that he would be put in isolation if he goes ahead and publishes another book.    More . . .

POEM  FOR  THE  DAY. . . . 

“WE  SHALL  REMAIN,”  BY  TAWFIQ  ZAYYAD  – 1970
It is a thousand times easier
For you to pass an elephant through the needle’s eye
To catch fried fish in the Milky Way
To plow the sea
To teach the alligator speech, a thousand times easier
Than smothering with you oppression
The spark of an idea
Of forcing us to deviate
A single step
From our chosen march.
Like twenty impossibles
We shall remain in Lydda, Ramlah, and Galilee.

Here upon your chests
We shall remain
Like the glass and the cactus
In your throats
A fiery whirlwind
In your eyes.

Here we shall remain
A wall on your chests.
We wash dishes in the hotels
And serve drinks to the masters.
We mop the floors in the dark kitchens
To extract a piece of bread
From your blue teeth
For the little ones.

Here, we shall remain
A wall on your chests.
We starve,
Go naked,
Sing songs
And fill the streets
With demonstrations
And the jails with pride.
We breed rebellions
One after another.
Like twenty impossibles we remain
In Lydda, Ramlah, Galilee.

Here, we shall remain.
You may drink the sea;
We shall guard the shade
Of the olive tree and the fig,
Planting ideas
Like the yeast in the dough.
The coldness of ice is in our nerves
And a burning hell in our hearts.
We squeeze the rock
To quench our thirst
And if we starve
We eat the dirt
And never depart
Or grudge our blood.

Here―we have a past
―a present
―and a future.
Our roots are entrenched
Deep in the earth.
Like twenty impossibles
We shall remain.
Let the oppressor review his account
Before the turn of the wheel.
For every action there is a reaction:
Read what is written in the Book.
Like twenty impossibles
We shall remain―in Lydda, in Ramlah
And Galilee.

From THE  PALESTINIAN  WEDDING:  A  BILINGUAL  ANTHOLOGY  OF  CONTEMPORARY  PALESTINIAN  RESISTANCE  POETRY. Ed. and Trans. A. M. Elmessiri. Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner Publishers, 2011. Reprint from Three Continents Press, Inc., 1982. Available from Palestine Online Store.