“. . . I vowed: I will not accept you occupied! . . .” (Yusuf Hamdan)

The Arab identity of Jerusalem: Inside Al-Aqsa Mosque (Photo: Harold Knight, November, 2015)

❶ Israel spars with the world at UNESCO
❷ Israeli forces demolish East Jerusalem home, leaving 6 Palestinians homeless
❸ Jordan Rejects Any Attempt to Undermine Arab Identity of Jerusalem
❹ Opinion/Analysis:  Donald Trump and Mahmoud Abbas both accomplished what they wanted to accomplish
❺ POETRY by Yusuf Hamdan
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+972 Blog
By Talya Ezrahi and Yonathan Mizrachi
May 5, 2017
Israel’s success at UNESCO this week was a diplomatic coup. In a work of crafty diplomacy, Israel succeeded in undermining an agreement between the Arab states and 11 EU countries which softened the wording of a resolution that it believes disputes its claims to Jerusalem. Nevertheless, we are told that as a result of heavy pressure by Netanyahu and the Foreign Ministry, more countries opposed a UNESCO resolution concerning Israel than had in years.
___ Why did Israel invest so much effort into foiling a resolution it ought to have regarded as less objectionable?
___Unlike previous UNESCO resolutions, this one cannot be construed as a denial of the Jewish people’s religious and historical connection to Jerusalem. It omits any references to the Temple Mount by its Muslim name, Haram al-Sharif, or to al-Aqsa Mosque — references which had so outraged Israel in the past. The new resolution also includes a clause affirming the importance of Jerusalem to the three monotheistic religions.
___So why object? Because the resolution continues the tradition of calling Israel the “occupying power” in East Jerusalem and declares the Basic Law on Jerusalem (through which Israel officially annexed East Jerusalem) null and void.       MORE . . .

Ma’an News Agency
May 5, 2017
JERUSALEM  — Amid a spate of demolitions in occupied East Jerusalem, Israeli authorities Thursday demolished a home in the town of Sur Bahir, leaving six Palestinians homeless.
___Israeli bulldozers, escorted by crew from Israel’s Jerusalem municipality and armed Israeli forces, demolished a house Sur Bahir belonging to Ashraf Fawaqa.
___Fawaqa told Ma’an that forces raided his house without prior notice, and began emptying and evacuating the house in preparation for demolition. Authorities told Fawaqa that his home would be destroyed for lacking nearly impossible to obtain construction permits.
[. . . .] ___ According to UN documentation, as of April 17, 59 Palestinian-owned structures were demolished by Israel in East Jerusalem since the beginning of the year, displacing at least 135 Palestinians. A total of 190 Palestinian buildings were demolished in East Jerusalem in 2016.     MORE . . .

holy land 1 046
Palestinian home demolished in Jerusalem (Photo: Harold Knight, July 2008)

International Middle East Media Center – IMEMC 
May 4, 2017
Jordan’s King Abdullah II, on Tuesday, welcomed Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, and reviewed the Kingdom’s efforts to safeguard Islamic and Christian holy sites in Jerusalem, in addition to discussing the latest developments in the Middle East.
___The meeting, held at al-Husseiniya Palace and attended by King’s Personal Envoy and Advisor for Religious and Cultural Affairs, HRH Prince Ghazi bin Mohammad, touched on the key role of Arab Christians and their contributions in the region in its past, present and future.
___According to Al Ray, the meeting dealt with Israel’s unilateral actions in Jerusalem which threaten Islamic and Christian holy sites, with the King reiterating that Jordan totally rejects any attempt to undermine the Arab identity of the holy city.     MORE . . .

HumanRights Newsletter Email List
Mazin Qumsiyeh
May 5, 2017
Donald Trump and Mahmoud Abbas both accomplished what they wanted to accomplish from the meeting at the White House. I could only think of the statements of Martin Luther King Jr and of Edward Said as I watched the theater unfold in DC. Just a reminder of what MLK Jr said 50 years ago as leaders of South Vietnam trashed leaders of North Vietnam: Their questions hit home, and I knew that I could never again raise my voice against the violence of the oppressed in the ghettos without having first spoken clearly to the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today: my own government.  This was one of his most analytical and important speeches which should still be read carefully today (full text)
___Little changed in those 50 years since then and Trump (like Obama and other presidents before him) gave green light to his military to bomb poor neighborhoods around the world (killing hundreds of civilians mostly children in Mosul alone) while hosting compliant leaders and speaking of “peace” (like fucking for virginity!?). Excuse my language.
___Let me step back into analytical mode. In meeting with Abbas, Trump wanted to get the aura of working for a peace process so that when he goes to Saudi Arabia and Israel later this month they can be more comfortable increasing the wars on Yemen, Syria, Lebanon, and Iran (the remaining axis of rebel states in an otherwise US/Israel dominated Middle East). This public  relations ploy worked historically. Trump and his advisors praised Abbas for the continued close security cooperation with Israel (the main function for keeping the Palestinian Authority in the past 24 years). Trump said that cooperation between “Palestinians” (the PA) and Israel is “working beautifully” and encouraged further emasculation of any potential future leverage for the Palestinians (I cringe when I hear terms like “incitement” used for native people who want their rights back).
____Oppressors and enablers of oppressors use the same language. Clinton used it 20 years ago for Arafat. This is the usual carrot and stick approach. Trump asked Abbas to stop the verbal acrobatics of appearing to support “terrorists” (resistance) pushing him strongly in private and nudging him gently in public. Husam Zomlot (PLO representative in Washington) tried his best to facilitate and get some productive outcome but the decks are stacked and the PLO has long been stripped by the PA of its original role as a “Palestine Liberation Organization” (it neither reflects all of Palestine nor Liberation and no longer an organization but a club). It cannot apply any pressure since it has been stripped of all such cards and there is little prospect of democratizing it now (I hope I am wrong).
___Abbas got what he came for: appearing “presidential” and relevant to the future, international visibility, and most importantly continuation of the status quo that guarantees continued “financial support” that allows the system to go on.
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You came to me, chained,
Carried forcibly.
You came
Flowing, like the tears of a wounded heart.
And yet, I will not meet you.
Forgive me,
For today, you are occupied!

Have you indeed come to me?
In my passion, I prayed often
Without a “Rock,”
And when I found no water,
I simulated the ritual ablution;
And when you finally came to me, I vowed:
I will not accept you occupied!

I want you to be a Kaaba for the people of the earth,
A spacious house,
Without guards;
I love you . . . a voice from a minaret,
The sound of horns
Mingled with church bells.
I love you, a jasmine in the open air,
But I have sworn, yes I have,
I will not accept you occupied!

  • 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.
    ___Yusuf Hamdan was born in 1942 in the Triangle area of Palestine. He lived in Haifa in the early ‘60s and taught in a nearby Arabic school. He published his poems in al-Jadid, al-Ittihad, and al-Ghad, and lost his teaching position because of his poetry. In 1970 he left Israel for the US, where he presently lives and works.

“. . . form the seamless web of colonial sovereignty . . .” (Annie Pfingst)

Beit Hanina, East Jerusalem – 27th of January, 2014, bulldozers demolish the house of the Adjluni family, allegedly for having been built illegally (Photo: by János Chialá)

❶ Israeli forces demolishes homes of Tel Aviv attack suspects

  • Background from Politics & The Life Sciences

❷ Israel demolishes Palestinian home in East Jerusalem for 6th time in 10 years
❸ Israel approves prison sentences for ‘terrorists’ as young as 12

  • Background from Cosmopolitan Civil Societies: An Interdisciplinary Journal

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Ma’an News Agency
Aug. 4, 2016
Israeli forces raided the town of Yatta in the southern occupied West Bank late on Wednesday night and demolished the family homes of two Palestinian cousins who carried out a deadly shooting attack in Tel Aviv in June which killed four Israelis.
___Yatta residents said that hundreds of Israeli soldiers raided central Yatta and the al-Hileh area, the locations of the homes of Khalid and Muhammad Makhamreh, who have been held in Israeli custody since the attack.
___Israeli bulldozers then demolished Khalid’s family’s house, while Muhammad’s family home was remotely detonated. A video released by the Israeli army shows bulldozers demolishing one house, while Israeli troops set up explosives in another, which was then detonated remotely, possibly by a drone.     MORE . . .

From Politics & The Life Sciences
Since the onset of occupation in 1967, the model utilized by the Israeli government in administering policies in the occupied territories has been a colonial model. That is, the occupied territories have been governed directly by Israel to the economic advantage of Israel, and with a paramount concern for shoring up Israel’s geographic security. For 20 years this model did deliver peace, though not without tensions, which exploded in the 1987 Palestinian uprising. Goodwin and Skocpol discuss the colonial model . . .  Conflict – indeed, revolution – is predicted to occur under direct colonial rule and the right circumstances (J. Goodwin and T. Skopcol, ‘‘Explaining revolutions in the contemporary third world’’).
[. . . . ]
Their hypothesis would read something like the following: Revolution will be most likely to occur when the regime adopts policies that are highly exclusionary and repressive, when the administrative bureaucracy fails to integrate a broad coalition from the middle and upper strata of society, and when the regime is unable to fully penetrate (i.e., control) the national territory which it governs. The collapse of the colonial model as an organizing principle for the coexistence of both Israelis and Palestinian Arabs was evidenced by the 1987 Palestinian uprising, which eventually led to the signing of the Oslo Accords.
[. . . .]
Most of the peace plans presently circulating . . .  are incremental in nature with ‘‘nationhood’’ held as the final reward for Palestinians. In a linear process, this is perhaps a logical approach. However . . . the eventual promise of peace is held hostage to Palestinian violence perpetrated against Israeli citizens and Israeli state-sponsored violence (and further land confiscations) perpetrated against Palestinians.
___Such tensions are indirectly promoted at the international level, given that the reality of globalism, which promotes the desirable dimension of multinational cooperation, has also given rise to backlash animosities, extremist aggression, and the international ‘‘war on terror.’’ Pressures from the former push Israel to withdraw from its colonial occupation of Palestinian lands, while pressures from the latter regularly condemn Palestinian actions against the occupation as terrorism.

  • Urban, J. Kristen. “Competitive Exclusion.” Politics & The Life Sciences 28.2 (2009): 69-83.  SOURCE 

Ma’an News Agency
Aug. 3, 2016
Israeli bulldozers on Wednesday demolished a Palestinian family’s home in the occupied East Jerusalem neighborhood of Beit Hanina — the sixth time since the family began seeking an Israeli-issued building license more than a decade ago — amid a massive escalation of demolitions in the city over recent weeks.
___The owner of the house, Izz al-Din Abu Nijma, said that the demolition “caught him by surprise,” though it remained unclear if a demolition notice had previously been delivered by Israeli authorities.
___In response to a request for comment, a spokesperson for the Jerusalem municipality told Ma’an they were not involved in the demolition, despite Beit Hanina being located within Jerusalem’s municipal boundaries.        MORE . . .  

Middle East Eye
August 3, 2016
Israeli politicians have approved jailing children as young as 12 convicted of “terrorist offences” in the wake of repeated attacks by young Palestinians, parliament said on Wednesday.
___”The ‘Youth Bill’, which will allow the authorities to imprison a minor convicted of serious crimes such as murder, attempted murder or manslaughter even if he or she is under the age of 14, passed its second and third readings… Tuesday night,” an English-language statement said.
___It added that the seriousness of attacks in recent months “demands a more aggressive approach, including toward minors”.
___The statement quoted Anat Berko, an MP from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s right-wing Likud party and the bill’s sponsor, as saying “to those who are murdered with a knife in the heart it does not matter if the child is 12 or 15”.     MORE . . .

From Cosmopolitan Civil Societies: An Interdisciplinary Journal
The declaration of an Emergency and the practices enabled through Emergency regulations are intensified forms of instrumentalised colonial governmentality and violence, part of the structure of settler colonialism – of settlement, dispossession, repression, expulsion and containment – in which the technologies and architectures of oppression are codified and the legitimacy of colonialism unquestioned by either the colonial administration or the settlement project. The state of emergency as an oppressive regime is characterised by surveillance, arrest and detention, screening, secret evidence and torture, and the workings of secret services and militarised violence – characteristics evident in Israeli daily practices over Palestine to structure what Pappe describes as an oppressive state . . . a secret services state. Three forms of violence . . . founding violence, the violence of legitimation that in turn produced ‘an imaginary capacity converting the founding violence into authorizing authority’ and a third form of violence that would ensure the ‘maintenance, spread and permanence’ of the authorizing authority – form the seamless web of colonial sovereignty. . . ‘(t)he lack of justice of the means, and the lack of the legitimacy of the ends, conspired to allow an arbitrariness and intrinsic unconditionality that may be said to have been the distinctive features of colonial sovereignty.’ (Quoting Mbembe, A. On the Postcolony, 2001)

  • Pfingst, Annie. “Militarised Violence In The Service Of State-Imposed Emergencies Over Palestine And Kenya.” Cosmopolitan Civil Societies: An Interdisciplinary Journal 6.3 (2014): 6-37.     FULL ARTICLE
Israeli soldiers “conduct traumatic arrests of Palestinian children, often involving violence and humiliation,” says Defense for Children International-Palestine Section (Photo: Sliman Khader, APA images)

“. . . As he witnessed the wounds of oppression . . .” (Kamal Nasser)

Yasser Arafat sits between Kamal Nasser (L) and Kamal Adwan (R) in this archive photo. (Photo: Al-Akhbar)

❶ Israeli soldiers kill 14-year-old Palestinian boy in occupied village for allegedly throwing Molotov cocktail
❷ Israel to ‘close and confiscate’ homes of 4 teens accused of stone throwing attacks
❸ EU calls on Israel to stop home demolitions, settlement expansion
❹ Palestinian Prisoners Club: 18 journalists are detained in Israeli jails
❺ Ghassan Kanafani: In Our Memory
❻ Poetry by Kamal Nasser
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Feb. 6, 2016
Israeli soldiers killed a 14-year-old Palestinian and detained another young boy in the occupied West Bank town of Halhul north of Hebron, after the two allegedly tried to throw Molotov cocktails at passing vehicles.
___“During routine activity to secure Route 60,” Israeli forces “spotted two suspects attempting to throw Molotov cocktails at vehicles” on the highway, an Israeli army spokesperson told Ma‘an. The forces then opened fire on the teenagers, killing one and detaining another.     More . . .
Feb. 7, 2016
Israeli authorities on Sunday gave a notice of “closure and confiscation” on the family homes of four Palestinians aged 16-19 accused of causing an Israeli driver’s death by throwing stones at his car in early September, the families said . . . .
The families . . . said their homes in the occupied East Jerusalem neighborhood of Sur Baher are being confiscated in order to deter future attacks against Israelis . . . .
The families said the decision to kick them out of their homes is unfair, particularly because the Israeli court has yet to reach a final judgement in the case of the four teens. More . . .
Feb. 7, 2016
The European Union on Saturday called on Israel to stop demolishing Palestinian homes in the occupied West Bank, and reiterated “the EU’s firm opposition to Israel’s settlement policy.”
___In a statement, the EU said Israel’s most recent moves in the occupied West Bank — from settlement expansion to Palestinian home demolitions — undermine “the viability of a future Palestinian state” and only continue to “driv(e) the parties yet further apart.”
___The EU specifically mentioned Israel’s actions on Feb. 3, when Israeli forces demolished a number of Palestinian structures in the south Hebron hills.   More . . .

1-memo child prisoner
A former child prisoner reads out a letter in support of Muhammad al-Qaq in demonstration in Ramallah. (Photo: MEMO Photographer Rich Wiles.)

Feb. 8, 2016
The Palestinian Prisoners Club said on Sunday that there are 18 Palestinian journalists currently being held in Israeli jails, including Muhammad Al-Qeq, a journalist who has been on hunger strike for 75 days.
___In a press release, the group said that Mahmoud Moussa Issa is the oldest journalist in prison and he is also serving the longest sentence. From the West Bank town of Anata, his arrest pre-dates the signing of the Oslo Accords.    More . . .
Background of Kamal Nasser’s execution by the Israelis
As’ad AbuKhalil
Dec. 7, 2012   More . . . .


Beloved, if perchance word of my death reaches you
As, alone, you fondle my only child
Eagerly awaiting my return,
Shed no tears in sorrow for me
For in my homeland
Life is degradation and wounds
And in my eyes the call of danger rings.
Beloved, if word of my death reaches you
And the lovers cry out:
The loyal one has departed, his visage gone forever,
And fragrance has died within the bosom of the flower
Shed no tears . . . smile on life
And tell my only one, my loved one,
The dark recesses of your father’s being
Have been touched by visions of his people.
Splintered thoughts bestowed his path
As he witnessed the wounds of oppression.
In revolt, he set himself a goal
He became a martyr, sublimated his being
even changed his prayers
Deepened their features and improvised
And in the long struggle his blood flowed
His lofty vision unfolded shaking even destiny.
If news reaches you, and friends come to you,
Their eyes filled with cautious concern
Smile to them in kindness
For my death will bring life to all;
My people’s dreams are my shrine
at which I pray, for which I live.
The ecstasy of creation warms my being, shouting of joy,
Filling me with love, as day follows day,
Enveloping my struggling soul and body.
Immortalized am I in the hearts of friends
I live only in others’ thoughts and memories.
Beloved, if word reaches you and you fear for me
Should you shudder and your cheeks grow pale
As pale as the face of the moon,
Allow it not to look upon you, nor
feast on the beauty of your gaze
For I am jealous of the light of the moon.
Tell my only one, for I love him,
That I have tasted the joy of giving
And my heart relishes the wounds of sacrifice.
There is nothing left for him
Save the sighs from my song. . . Save the remnants of my lute
Lying piled and scattered in our house.
Tell my only one if he ever visits my grave
And yearns for my memory,
Tell him one day that I shall return
― to pick the fruits.

About Kamal Nasser
From PoemHunter.com