“. . . The street collapsed The clock was still on the wall . . .” (Samih Al-Qasim)

Manara_clocktower
Ottoman Clock Tower, Nablus (Photo by Tiamat). See #4 below.

❶ Analysis: The missing data on the Palestinian revolt
❷ More Than One Third of Syria’s Palestinians Have Been Displaced
❸ Military Court Watch Newsletter – January 2016: Detention figures
❹ The Ottoman legacy in Palestine
❺ Opinion/Analysis: COPING  WITH  INSECURITY
. . . . . ❺―(ᴀ)  THE  SECURITY  FORCES  OPERATING  IN  PALESTINE:  AN  OVERVIEW
❻ Poetry by Samih Al-Qasim
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
Analysis
MIDDLE EAST MONITOR (MEMO)
THE  MISSING  DATA  ON  THE  PALESTINIAN  REVOLT
Ben White
Feb. 5, 2016
On Wednesday, Palestinian youths . . . attacked Israeli Border Police officers outside Damascus Gate, in Occupied East Jerusalem, killing one and wounding another. The three assailants were killed on the spot.
___With nearly daily bloodshed, most news agencies have been using ‘copy and paste’-style paragraphs to provide context for . . . .
___ . . . they all share some troubling similarities, evidence of how – even unthinkingly – coverage of an anti-colonial revolt is being distorted by a narrative that is shaped and promoted by the Israeli government and its allies.
___Israel’s assertions about Palestinian assailants are repeated . . . despite the fact that in many cases, the circumstances in which Palestinians have been killed are disputed. . . .
___Israeli forces’ use of lethal violence to suppress anti-occupation protests is barely mentioned.    More . . .
PALESTINE CHRONICLE
MORE  THAN  ONE  THIRD  OF  SYRIA’S  PALESTINIANS  HAVE  BEEN  DISPLACED
Feb 5 2016
More than one third of the 500,000 Palestinian refugees in Syria have been displaced by the ongoing conflict, a new report has revealed.
___The Action Group for Palestinian Refugees in Syria said the refugees were displaced after their camps were either subjected to air raids or caught up in clashes.
___The semi-annual report said that more than 71,200 Palestinian refugees have reached Europe after Syria’s neighbouring countries prevented them from entering their lands formally.    More . . .

yarmouk_aid_unrwa
Refugees waiting to be allowed to proceed across the front line in Yarmouk to join queue at the distribution area. (UNRWA/file)

MILITARY COURT WATCH
NEWSLETTER  –  JANUARY  2016:  DETENTION  FIGURES
According to the Israeli Prison Service (IPS), as of 31 December 2015, there were 6,066 Palestinians (West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza) held as “security prisoners” in Israeli detention facilities including 422 children. In the case of children there was a 4 per cent increase in the number compared with the previous month and an annual increase of 15 per cent compared with 2014.    More . . . 
AL-MONITOR (PALESTINE PULSE) 
THE  OTTOMAN  LEGACY  IN  PALESTINE
Aziza Nofal, Trans. Pascale Menassa
Feb. 4, 2016
In 1901, to commemorate the 25th year of enthronement of Sultan Abdul Hamid II in the Ottoman Empire, the sultan gifted 30 clock towers to the regions under the Ottoman state’s control. Palestine received seven of these, including the clock tower at the entrance to the Old City in Nablus, north of the West Bank.
___The clock tower stands today as one of the most important touristic and historical sites in the city. It still functions, and it is the central landmark of Nablus.   More . . . 
Opinion/Analysis
THIS WEEK IN PALESTINE
COPING  WITH  INSECURITY
Salwa Duaibis
Feb. 1, 2016
I always look forward with apprehension to accompanying visiting delegations to Ofer military court, where they can witness injustice in “concentrated doses.” The visits are always stark reminders of what life is like for ordinary Palestinian men, women, and children who live in the shadow of settlements, along bypass roads, or behind the wall. This time . . . [I had] to calm down my sister a bit as she kept expressing her “fear” of witnessing mothers in distress. . . I myself could not put my finger on what exactly it was that made me believe there was no reason for her to worry.    More . . .
. . . . . ❺―(ᴀ) THIS WEEK IN PALESTINE
THE  SECURITY  FORCES  OPERATING  IN  PALESTINE:  AN  OVERVIEW
TWIP Collective
Feb. 1, 2016
Security has been a cornerstone of the Oslo Accords, and . . . all peace plans, and the ongoing public discourse . . . . But the term carries different meanings . . . Palestinians view the security sector as a main element in the process of state-building and seek a full-fledged functional system that can protect them against Israeli incursion and form the basis of sovereignty. Israel wants a Palestinian security sector that is strong enough to carry out the policing required in order to secure Israel’s safety.    More . . .

Two Poems by SAMIH AL-QASIM

“THE  CLOCK  ON  THE  WALL”
My city collapsed
The clock was still on the wall
Our neighborhood collapsed
The clock was still on the wall
The street collapsed
The clock was still on the wall
The square collapse
The clock was still on the wall
The house collapsed
The clock was still on the wall
The wall collapsed
The clock
Ticked on

“THE  WILL  OF  A  MAN  DYING  IN  EXILE”
Light the fire so I can see in the mirror of the flames
The courtyard, the bridge
And the golden meadows.
Light the fire so I can see my tears
On the night of the massacre
So I can see your sister’s corpse
Whose heart is a bird ripped by foreign tongues,
By foreign winds.
Light the fires so I can see your sister’s corpse,
So I can see jasmine
As a shroud,
The moon
As an incense burner
On the night of the massacre.
Light the fire so I can see myself dying
My suffering is your only inheritance
My suffering before the jasmine turns
Into a witness
The moon
Into a witness
Light the fire so I can see
Light the fi. . .

(Written after the 1967 Arab-Israeli war and the Israeli occupation of the rest of the Palestinian territories, al-Qasim refers to the plight exiled Palestinians who lost hope of returning to their homeland.)

About Samih Al-Qasim
From: Adonis, Mahmud Darwish, Samih al-Qasim.  VICTIMS  OF  A  M AP:  A  BILINGUAL  ANTHOLOGY  OF  ARABIC  POETRY.  London: Saqi Books, 2008. Available from Amazon.

“. . . Descendants of Old Abe! Shake the marble of history. . .” (Samih Al-Qasim)

(Please read “Purpose” above. Thank you.)

Caption: A growing number of Palestinian refugees in Syria and Lebanon are joining the hundreds of thousands of Syrians making the perilous journey to survival in Europe. (AFP/Samar Hazboun)
Caption: A growing number of Palestinian refugees in Syria and Lebanon are joining the hundreds of thousands of Syrians making the perilous journey to survival in Europe. (AFP/Samar Hazboun)

❶ UN votes in favor of raising Palestinian flag at headquarters
❷ In Silwan, Jewish settlers plant their flag among Palestinians
❸ Palestinian Refugees Joining Exodus from Syria
❹ Madama Villagers Foil Infiltration Attack By Israeli Extremists
❺ Opinion/Analysis: A guide to the worst refugee crisis since WWII
❻ Poem by Samih Al-Qasim

◊ ◊ ◊ ◊ ◊ ◊

MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
UN  VOTES  IN  FAVOR  OF  RAISING  PALESTINIAN  FLAG  AT  HEADQUARTERS
Sept. 11, 2015
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — The United Nations General Assembly voted late Thursday in favor of raising the Palestinian flag at its headquarters in New York by an overwhelming majority, in a symbolic diplomatic victory in the PLO’s campaign for statehood.
____A resolution was adopted by member states with 119 in favor, eight voting against — including Israel and the United States — and 45 abstentions.
____President Mahmoud Abbas hailed the decision, adding that the struggle will continue until the flag is raised over the “eternal” Palestinian capital of Jerusalem.
More. . .
Related. . . [Note: the NYT published this on page A4, the Associated Press story, not its own.]

MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
IN  SILWAN,  JEWISH  SETTLERS  PLANT  THEIR  FLAG  AMONG  PALESTINIANS
Sept. 11, 2015
JERUSALEM (AFP) — The Abu Snineh family woke up at their home in East Jerusalem one morning to find Jewish settlers had moved into the building and Israeli flags were on the roof.
____Their Silwan neighborhood in the shadow of Jerusalem’s Old City has become a flash-point in the struggle between ideologically driven Israelis moving in and longtime Palestinian residents.
____”There are still areas where Jews want to go back,” said Daniel Luria, whose Ateret Cohanim activist organisation facilitates the purchase of homes by Jews from Israel and abroad.
____”That was our dream, not to live on the outskirts of Tel Aviv or Haifa. It’s to be close to the Temple Mount, where the kings and the prophets walked.”
More. . .

Caption: A general view of the Dome of the Rock in the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound and the East Jerusalem Silwan neighborhood, a densely populated Palestinian area on a steep hillside flanking the southern walls of Jerusalem's Old City. (AFP/Ahmad Gharabli)
A general view of the Dome of the Rock in the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound and the East Jerusalem Silwan neighborhood, a densely populated Palestinian area on a steep hillside flanking the southern walls of Jerusalem’s Old City. (AFP/Ahmad Gharabli)

❸ THE PALESTINE CHRONICLE
PALESTINIAN  REFUGEES  JOINING  EXODUS  FROM  SYRIA
Sep 10 2015
Palestinian pensioner Zahra Zahroura always imagined seeing out her days in her adopted Syrian hometown of Homs, sustained by the hope that being made a refugee once was enough for any lifetime.
____But as the war in Syria worsened the 84-year-old was forced to flee a second time, aiming for a new life in mainland Europe but making it only as far as Cyprus, lucky to be alive at all. [. . . .]
____“All the houses were rubble, everything was destroyed by the bombing.”
____Zahroura is one of a growing number of Palestinian refugees in Syria and Lebanon joining the hundreds of thousands of Syrians fleeing the war on the perilous journey to survival in Europe.
More. . .
Related. . .

❹ INTERNATIONAL MIDDLE EAST MEDIA CENTER (IMEMC)
MADAMA  VILLAGERS  FOIL  INFILTRATION  ATTACK  BY  ISRAELI  EXTREMISTS
Sept. 11, 2015
A group young Palestinian men managed, earlier on Friday at dawn, to foil an attempt by a number of Israeli extremists to carry out an attack in Madama village, near the northern West Bank city of Nablus.
____The WAFA News Agency has reported that the Palestinians noticed an unusual activity, shortly after 2 after midnight, when they saw a short, bearded armed man wearing a cap, monitoring some homes in the village, and alerted the families.
More. . .

❺ Opinion/Analysis
MONDOWEISS
A  GUIDE  TO  THE  WORST  REFUGEE  CRISIS  SINCE  WWII
Ben Norton
Sept. 9, 2015
The world is witnessing the largest refugee crisis since the horrors of World War II.
____Today there are close to 60 million war refugees, according to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)—“an all-time high as violence and persecution” around the world are on the rise.
____The Middle East, North Africa, and Western Asia are particularly hard hit. Millions of refugees from Syria, Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, and Yemen are fleeing violence and war in their countries.
____In all of 2014, approximately 219,000 people tried to cross the Mediterranean to seek asylum in Europe. In just the first eight months of 2015, over 300,000 refugees tried to cross the sea, according to the UNHCR. More than 2,500 died.
____Human rights organizations warn the Gulf states, Israel, Iran, and Russia—all of which have taken zero refugees—along with the US, Canada, and Europe—which have taken few—are not doing enough to provide refuge to the asylum-seekers.
More. . .

“THE  UNKNOWN  CONTINENT,”  BY  SAMIH  AL-QASIM
How do we reach you
Slums of Chicago?
How is the spark to reach you?
How is the fire to be born?
Skyscrapers!
Stacked huts!
Stretch your arms out of the darkness―
For the big banner
Spreads its warmth, its light
Forever
Into the depths of night
And the big banner is
Forever
A sail for the drowning.

How are the storms to reach you
Jazzband Club in New York?
The black man is hungry and fearful
The wolves of the KKK roam the forest
―the current overpowering
And the conscience of the statue shaken
And the heart of night.
The wind is frozen,
And the waves of the sea unmoving?
How is the message to reach you
Deaf Washington,
With the humming of the machine?
In Vietnam you slaughter
And you export
Cokes and medicine to the sad moon!
And you sweep over the blood of victims.
How is the message to reach you?

Descendants of Ole Abe!
My voice has become hoarse
And the wind
Has become tired of my shouts!
Descendants of Old Abe!
Shake the marble of history,
Rise to the sky,
Rise above the band of stupid maggis
And halt ―for
The earth grumbles
Rivers of blood.

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

The Palestinian flag will be allowed to fly at the United Nations headquarters in New York. Photo justin tallis Agence France-Presse Getty Images
The Palestinian flag will be allowed to fly at the United Nations headquarters in New York. Photo justin tallis Agence France-Presse Getty Images

“. . . a civilization that lives On destruction. . .” (Salem Jubran)

(Please read “Purpose” above. Thank you.)

Palestinians flee clashes in Ein al-Hilweh refugee camp on 22 August. Photo: Ali Hashisho, Reuters
Palestinians flee clashes in Ein al-Hilweh refugee camp on 22 August. Photo: Ali Hashisho, Reuters

ELECTRONIC INTIFADA
DOUBLE  DISPLACEMENT:  PALESTINIANS  FLEE  VIOLENCE  IN  SYRIA,  THEN  LEBANON
Patrick Strickland
Sept. 3, 2015
Riad Najem and his family have endured a double displacement in recent years.
____Having fled Yarmouk, a besieged camp for Palestinian refugees in Syria, during 2013, they took shelter in Lebanon’s Ein al-Hilweh camp. Last week, they were uprooted because of fighting between armed groups within that camp.
____In the Musalli Mosque — just outside the camp — Najem, his wife and his four daughters have been sleeping on the floor alongside hundreds of others who fled the violence.
More. . .

INTERNATIONAL MIDDLE EAST MEDIA CENTER (IMEMC)
ARMY  KIDNAPS  FOUR  PALESTINIANS,  ASSAULTS  THREE  WORKERS
Sept. 6, 2015
Israeli soldiers kidnapped, earlier on Sunday, a young Palestinian man in the West Bank district of Bethlehem, one near Jerusalem, and two others Hebron, and attacked three workers from Hebron, causing various injuries that required hospitalization.
____Media sources in Bethlehem said several Israeli military vehicles invaded the ‘Aida refugee camp, north of the city, searched a number of homes, and kidnapped a young man identified as Mahmoud Nasser al-Badawna, 19 years of age.
____Soldiers also invaded Nahhalin village, west of Bethlehem, and searched a home belonging to Abdul-Hadi Mohammad Shakarna.
____In addition, soldiers invaded Beit Ummar and Yatta towns, south of Hebron, kidnapped two Palestinians.
More. . .

❸ THE PALESTINIAN INFORMATION CENTER
VILLAGERS:  JEWISH  SETTLERS  KEEP  ANNEXING  MORE  LANDS  IN  SALFIT
Sept. 6, 2015
SALFIT, (PIC)– Palestinian citizens from four villages to the west of Salfit have complained that Jewish settlers persist in annexing their agricultural lands and bulldozing them without stop.
____Eyewitnesses said that heavy construction machinery were seen preparing a vast tract of land west of Salfit for the establishment of a service infrastructure for the illegal settlement of Leshem, including water, sewerage, electricity and telephone systems.
More. . .

Israeli police accompanied by a helicopter and drone snapping photos raided the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Issawiya Sunday morning. Photo: Mohammad Abu Humus
Israeli police accompanied by a helicopter and drone snapping photos raided the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Issawiya Sunday morning.
Photo: Mohammad Abu Humus

ALTERNATIVE INFORMATION CENTER (AIC)
SEE!  POLICE  RAID  EAST  JERUSALEM
30 Israeli police and border police, accompanied by a helicopter and drone snapping photos, raided the East Jerusalem neighbourhood of Issawiya Sunday morning.
____Mohammad Abu Humus, member of the Issawiya Follow-Up Committee, told the AIC that “we don’t know why they invaded. The heavily armed police are conducted a patrol through Issawiya, we don’t yet know what they want.”
____Just six days ago the Israeli police opened an entrance to Issawiya they had blocked for 18 days straight.
More. . . 

❺ Opinion/Analysis
INTERNATIONAL MIDDLE EAST MEDIA CENTER (IMEMC)
PEACEFUL  ACTIVISM  IN  PALESTINE:  THEY  TRIED  TO  KILL  ME
Iyad Burnet
Sept. 6, 2015
Friday 28th August afternoon we went to our weekly demonstration, against the theft of our land and apartheid wall, in Bil’in. We have been doing this non-violent demonstration for 10 years.
____As usual the soldiers were waiting for us in front of our village . . .
____To begin they fired a smaller amount of gas towards the peaceful demonstration, but as the march continued towards site of the old segregation wall the soldiers ambushed us and held me at gunpoint, threatening to shoot.
____The soldiers tied my hands far too tight behind my back, the plastic ties cutting into my skin. Still with their guns aimed at me, I was brutally beaten by five or six soldiers with sticks and they bound my eyes with blindfold material soaked with pepper spray.
____I did not resist, any resistance against these type of soldiers would just lead to more of a beating or worse.
More. . .

“ON  AMERICAN  INDIANS,”  BY  SALEM  JUBRAN
Flowers on the graves, America,
And dancing and songs on the remains―
There is nothing left but films
Films that make you laugh and cry.
My dead brothers, it is funny and tearful.
The farms of the colonists stretch across the prairie
Large, green, and fertile.
The noisy factories of the colonists’ heirs destroy the earth
And pollute the sky―
What shall I say, brothers?
Alas for your history!
And death for a civilization that lives
On destruction―and blood.

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

Iyad Burnat’s chilling account of the torture and beatings suffered at the hands of Israeli soldiers after being detained at the weekly protests in Bil’in.
Iyad Burnat’s chilling account of the torture and beatings suffered at the hands of Israeli soldiers after being detained at the weekly protests in Bil’in.

“. . . Whenever a child goes silent in Al Yarmouk Camp. . .” (Maya Abu Al-Hayyat)

Maya Abu Al-Hayyat
Maya Abu Al-Hayyat

From MA’AN NEWS AGENCY
PLO: PALESTINIAN REFUGEES IN SYRIA FACE IMMINENT THREAT FROM FIGHTING
June 25, 2015
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Some 150,000 Palestinian refugees in four camps on the outskirts of Damascus face severe threats due to ongoing fighting in the Syrian conflict, a PLO official said Thursday. . . .
____The majority of Palestinians in those camps are originally from Yarmouk refugee camp, which has been on the front-line of the Syrian conflict and severely affected by fighting.
(More. . .)

From ELECTRONIC INTIFADA
US CONGRESS MEMBERS DEMAND END TO ISRAEL’S “CRUEL” ABUSES OF PALESTINIAN CHILDREN
Ali Abunimah
June 24, 2015
In rare defiance of the stifling pro-Israel consensus in the US capital, members of Congress are calling on the Obama administration to push Israel to end its systematic abuses of Palestinian children.
____Congresswoman Betty McCollum released a letter on Tuesday co-signed by 18 other members of the House of Representatives urging Secretary of State John Kerry to “prioritize the human rights of Palestinian children living in the Occupied West Bank in the bilateral relationship with the Government of Israel.”
(More. . .)

From KINDERUSA
THE INHUMANITY OF YARMOUK
Dalell Mohmed
April 15, 2015
“Yarmouk is a place which has descended even further into unimaginable levels of inhumanity.”– United Nations Relief Works Agency spokesperson Chris Gunness
____Formed in 1957 for Palestinians who fled across the border after the creation of Israel in 1948, Yarmouk quickly became home to the largest Palestinian refugee community in Syria. Located 8 kilometers from the center of Damascus, it is 2.1 square kilometers in size.
(More. . .)

Palestinian residents of Yarmouk waiting for food
Palestinian residents of Yarmouk waiting for food

From INTERNATIONAL MIDDLE EAST MEDIA CENTER (IMEMC)
UNRWA LAUNCHES CAMPAIGN TO FUND GAZA CHILDREN EDUCATION
June 25, 2015
The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) launched a global Ramadan campaign to raise funds to support the education of thousands of Palestinian refugee children in UNRWA schools in the besieged Gaza Strip.
(More. . .)

From MONDOWEISS
WHAT I LEARNED CROSSING THE QALANDIA CHECKPOINT
Léa Georgeson Caparros
June 23, 2015
The turnstile jams.
____It rattles uselessly as I try to move forward again. I start getting nervous. I manage to manoeuvre out of the gate and back into the holding cage. My companions are still being held at the previous turnstile from which I’m separated by a metal detector. I dare not go back for fear of breaking some unspoken rule.
____There is no indication anywhere of what to do other than your lack of alternatives. You are simply herded through cages and turnstiles like cattle. . . .
(More. . .)

“CHILDREN,” BY MAYA ABU AL-HAYYAT
Whenever I see an image of a child’s hands
sticking out of the rubble of a collapsed building
I check the hands of my three children
I count the fingers of their hands, the toes on their feet,
I check the numbers of teeth in their mouths, every
last hair in each finely-marked wee eyebrow.

Whenever a child goes silent in Al Yarmouk Camp
I turn up the volume on the TV, the songs on the radio,
I pinch my three children
to make them cry and squirm with life.

Whenever my sore heart gets hungry at Qalandia checkpoint
I comfort-eat, I
emotionally over-eat, craving excessive salt
as if I could then somehow say: enough, block out
the salt spark of the tears everyone around me is crying.
―Translated by Liz Lochhead

Maya Abu Al-Hayyat is a prize-winning author of novels, poetry, and short stories. Born in Lebanon, she has a degree in Civil Engineering from Al-Najah University in Nablus, the largest Palestinian university, and lives in Ramallah.
From A BIRD IS NOT A STONE: AN ANTHOLOGY OF CONTEMPORARY PALESTINIAN POETRY (Glasgow: Freight Books, 2014) –available From Amazon.com.
Maya Abu Al-Hayyat reading one of her poems
About Qalandia checkpoint

Children at play in Gaza
Children at play in Gaza