“. . . they come to burn the love in our hearts . . .” (Yousef al-Mahmoud)

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Maale Adumim settlement, part of “E1 Corridor” threatening Khan al-Ahmar (Photo: Palestine Information Center, October 28, 2017)

SELECTED   NEWS   OF   THE   DAY. . .

|   KHAN  AL-AHMAR  FLOODED  WITH  WASTEWATER  FOR  2ND  TIME    Israeli settlers stormed the Bedouin village of Khan al-Ahmar, east of Jerusalem, on Monday, and flooded the area with wastewater for a second time.    __Locals said that Israeli settlers from the nearby illegal Israeli settlement of Kfar Adummim stormed the village and flooded Khan al-Ahmar with wastewater, causing serious environmental and health hazard for residents.   ___Sources added that the wastewater from the Kfar Adummim settlement flooded large areas of the village, as Israeli settlers attempt to assist the Israeli government force the residents to leave the area.    More . . .
. . . . . . . Resource: What  is  the  E1  area,  and  why  is  it  so  important?
. . . . Related   Israeli  soldiers,  settlers  uproot  trees  in  East  Jerusalem  neighborhood
|   ISRAELI  [HEBRON]  SETTLEMENT  PLANS  ‘DECLARATION  OF  NEW  WAR  AGAINST  PALESTINIANS’          The Palestinian government slammed, on Monday, the Israeli government’s approval of 22 million shekels ($6.1 million) in government funding to expand an illegal Israeli settlement inside the southern occupied West Bank city of Hebron.   ___The Palestinian government’s spokesperson, Youssef al-Mahmoud, said in a statement that the approval is a “literal translation of the occupation’s plans that is based on what became known as the ‘Deal of the Century.'”   ___He called it expansion of an Israeli settlement in the center of Hebron City is “a declaration of a new war against the Palestinian people, a blatant targeting of their existence, and an attack on international laws and resolutions.”   More . . .
|   EURO-MED  RIGHTS  GROUP  CALLS  FOR  PRESSURE  ON  ISRAEL  TO  END  TARGETING  PALESTINIAN  DEMONSTRATORS      The Geneva-based  EURO-MEDITERRANEAN  HUMAN  RIGHTS  MONITOR  (Euro-Med)  Monday said that Israeli forces caused injuries to one in every 100 Palestinians as Gaza protests conclude 200 days and called on the international community to exert serious pressure on Israel to end  its targeting of Palestinian demonstrators.   ___“The Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor calls on the international community to exert serious pressure to put an end to the targeting of Palestinian demonstrators in the Gaza Strip and to protect their right to peaceful assembly,” said Euro-Med in a statement.   ___It also called on “all parties concerned to exert pressure on Israel to lift its blockade affecting every aspect of Gaza’s largely civilian population.”   More . . .
|   AFTER  A  DAY  OF  PROTEST,  ISRAELI  ARMY  BACKS  DOWN  ON  DECISION  TO  CLOSE  WEST  BANK  SCHOOL     After a day of protest against an Israeli army order to close al-Lubban/al-Sawiyeh school in the north of the West Bank, the Israeli army backed down on its decision on Monday and allowed the school to reopen, according to Nablus Governor Akram Rajoub.    ___He told WAFA that the protest by the families and officials earlier today against the closure order seem to have forced the army to back down on its earlier decision.    More . . .
. . . . Related  Palestinians  arrested,  homes  ransacked  in  dawn  sweep  by  Israel  army
. . . . Related  Israeli  forces  arrest  Khan  Ahmar  activists

COMMENTARY    AND    OPINION. . . .

|   A  PALESTINIAN  BEDOUIN  VILLAGE  BRACES  FOR  FORCIBLE  TRANSFER  AS  ISRAEL  SEEKS  TO  SPLIT  THE  WEST  BANK  IN  HALF    RAYYAH HAS LIVED in Khan al-Ahmar all of her 47 years. . .  Her family and neighbors, members of a Bedouin community known as the Jahalin, found refuge on this scorched patch of rocks and dust in the 1950s, after they were expelled from the land they had inhabited for generations, in the Negev desert, following the establishment of the Israeli state. The land Khan al-Ahmar stands on was under Jordanian control when the Jahalin arrived. Today, this smatter of tin roofs and tarps sits on the side of a highway in the occupied West Bank, surrounded by a fast-growing ring of Israeli settlements . . .    ___The village, which is home to less than 200 people and where the only building with walls is a school made of mud and old tires, has become the latest front line in a conflict over land that for decades has determined the fates of Palestinians . . .    More . . .

POEM  FOR  THE  DAY. . . . 

“ENEMY,”  BY  YOUSEF  AL-MAHMOUD
They come from all the ends of the earth to sit among us
they come from the ends of the winds
they bring sickness and a hissing like snakes
they come from the ends of the snows
they come smelling of death
they come with blood-dipping knives
they bring panic and terror
they are utterly not-to-be-trusted
they are utterly murderous
they are proud of their murders, they are drinkers of blood
proud of tooth and nail
even more proud of guns and treachery
they come to burn the love in our hearts
and turn it to torture and bitterness
they bring sorrow, terror, sickness. . .
How have they come to sit among us?
—Translated by DM Black

Yousef Al-Mahmoud is a prominent broadcaster and poet, and former head of the Ministry of Culture in his native Jenin.
From A  BIRD  IS  NOT  A  STONE:  AN  ANTHOLOGY  OF  CONTEMPORARY  PALESTINIAN  POETRY (Glasgow: Freight Books, 2014) –available from Barnes and Noble.

“. . . the bark of artillery came near to the flowers . . .” (Yousef Al-Mahmoud)

❶ Israel closes Palestinian institutions in Jerusalem
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) EU’s security committee discussed secret report on Israel, says official

  • Background: “State-Sponsored Vigilantism: Jewish Settlers’ Violence in the Occupied Palestinian Territories.” Sociology.
    “. . . the Israeli state itself, assisted by its agents, works in collusion with the settlers, and maintains the structural preconditions for this provisional political activity. . .”

❷ UN report says at least 206 international companies tied to Israeli settlements
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) Haley slams UN anti-settlement report: It is a “waste of time”
❸ Israeli settlers attack Palestinian farmers north of Hebron
. . . . . ❸ ― (ᴀ) ‘Construction terror’ Israel’s metaphor for Palestinian displacement
❹ POETRY by Yousef Al-Mahmoud
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
ISRAEL  CLOSES  PALESTINIAN  INSTITUTIONS  IN  JERUSALEM
Al Hourriah Magazine (Freedom)
Feb. 3, 2018 — Israel Hayom newspaper on Friday said that the Israeli authorities have decided to close a number of Palestinian institutions in Occupied Jerusalem.
___According to the Hebrew newspaper, the Israeli Minister of Public Security, Gilad Erdan, on Thursday issued a decision to close the Palestine Chamber of Commerce, the Higher Council of Tourism, the Palestinian Center for Studies, the Palestinian Prisoner Society and the Office of Social Studies and Statistics.
___Erdan’s decision was based on an Israeli law issued in 1994 preventing the Palestinian Authority from opening offices or carrying out activities in “Israeli areas”. The same law grants the minister the authority to issue decisions prohibiting such activities.
___The paper said, quoting Erdan, that efforts will continue to impose Israeli sovereignty over every part of Jerusalem. . . following the US president Donald Trump’s recognition . . . .  MORE . . . 
.  .  .  .  .  ❶  ―  (ᴀ)  EU’S  SECURITY  COMMITTEE  DISCUSSED  SECRET  REPORT  ON  ISRAEL,  SAYS  OFFICIAL
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
Feb. 3, 2018 ― The European Union’s (EU) Political and Security Committee (PSC) discussed in its session on Wednesday a secret report that strongly criticized Israel and its policies, Palestine’s ambassador to the EU, Abdul Rahim al-Farra, said on Saturday.
___He said in an interview with the official Palestine TV that the PSC, which is composed of ambassadors from the 28 EU member states, also discussed the situation in occupied East Jerusalem in particular and came out with recommendations that will be presented to the EU’s Foreign Affairs Council when it meets on February 25 and 26 in Brussels.
___He said the PSC recommended that the EU plays a primary and active role in the Middle East peace process in order to salvage the two-state solution.      MORE . . .

Gazit, Nir.
“STATE-SPONSORED  VIGILANTISM:  JEWISH  SETTLERS’  VIOLENCE  IN  THE  OCCUPIED  PALESTINIAN  TERRITORIES.”
SOCIOLOGY
, vol. 49, no. 3, June 2015, pp. 438-454.
[. . . .] Civilian violence often disrupts government authority and undermines its exclusive sovereignty. However, it may also operate as an extra-juridical force that reproduces governmental power through unofficial channels. This dynamic is salient in situations of contested and fragmented sovereignty, when state power is discontinuous and lacks international and local legitimacy . . .  provisional violence by state forces and ordinary civilians becomes an important mechanism of political power and control.
[. . . .] These trends . . .  suggest a correlation between the two forms of Israeli violence – institutional military violence and non-institutional civilian violence. In times and places of low military presence and violence, unofficial civilian political mechanisms come into play. These reproduce Israeli dominance through direct violence or through initiating Palestinian hostility resulting in provisional active military involvement. The dialectical relationship between the two forms of violence is not trivial . . .  Hence, it is important to analyse the relationship between Israeli ground-level state agents and settlers, and consider how the two sides manage this tension.
[. . . .] . . . the ambiguity surrounding the formal status of the Israeli state in the OTP creates a governmental void. This void is filled, inter alia, by greater freedom of action of the settlers, who, in effect, act as informal agents of the state, behaving as vigilantes and taking the law into their own hands. The settlers’ violence contributes to the manifestation of Israeli rule in two significant ways. First, it brings Israeli dominance to areas with a scarce presence of military forces, generating ad hoc ‘effective control’ over Palestinian territory and population even in the absence of state officials. . .  While the state has limited direct influence over these domains, they undoubtedly contribute to the overall Israeli dominance in the region. The second and complementary mode of support these acts provide to the overall control system is when the Israeli security forces intervene and prevent the settlers from harassing the Palestinians. Such interventions paradoxically demonstrate and reproduce the Israeli power in the region – this time as protectors of the local civilian population. The elusive political and legal structural frameworks of the Israeli occupation are important factors of this phenomenon, generating the necessary ‘degrees of freedom’, so to speak, that allow, and even support, a proliferation of settlers’ violence against Palestinian civilians. In other words, the Israeli state itself, assisted by its agents, works in collusion with the settlers, and maintains the structural preconditions for this provisional political activity, even if it challenges its exclusive jurisdiction.     SOURCE . . .

UN  REPORT  SAYS  AT  LEAST  206  INTERNATIONAL  COMPANIES  TIED  TO  ISRAELI  SETTLEMENTS
Ma’an News Agency
Feb. 1, 2018 ― The United Nations (UN) High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) released a report on Wednesday identifying 206 companies from around the world that are doing business linked to Israeli settlements, which are built in the occupied West Bank in violation of international law.
___The long-delayed report was initially intended to include the names of companies, but reportedly after intense pressure from the US and Israel, the published report included only the number of companies from each country, rather than naming them.
___”Businesses play a central role in furthering the establishment, maintenance and expansion of Israeli settlements,” the UN report said.    MORE . . .
.  .  .  .  .  ❷  ―  (ᴀ)  HALEY  SLAMS  UN  ANTI-SETTLEMENT  REPORT:  IT  IS  A  “WASTE  OF  TIME”
Palestine News Network – PNN 
Feb. 1, 2018 ― US Ambassador to the United Nations on Wednesday slammed a UN report on 206 companies tied to Israeli settlements as “a waste of time and resources” that showed an “anti-Israeli obsession.”
___The office of the UN high commissioner for human rights released the report that did not name the companies but could pave the way to a “blacklist” of businesses that Israeli officials fear would be targeted for an international boycott.
___“This whole issue is outside the bounds of the High Commissioner for Human Rights office’s mandate and is a waste of time and resources,” Haley said.   MORE . . . 
ISRAELI  SETTLERS  ATTACK  PALESTINIAN  FARMERS  NORTH  OF HEBRON
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA   
Feb. 3, 2018 ― Israeli settlers attacked on Saturday Palestinian farmers in the town of Beit Ummar, north of Hebron in the occupied West Bank, according to Yousef Abu Maria, a local activist.
___He told WAFA that a group of settlers from the illegal settlement of Karmi Tsur and settlement security guards threw rocks at farmers, cursed them and prevented them from cultivating their land. The settlement is built on seized Palestinian land that belong to Beit Ummar and other area villages.   MORE . . . 
.  .  .  .  .  ❸  ―  (ᴀ)  ‘CONSTRUCTION  TERROR’  ISRAEL’S  METAPHOR  FOR  PALESTINIAN  DISPLACEMENT
The Palestinian Information Center
Feb. 1, 2018 ― Israel’s construction of its politics on contrasting levels which echo its colonial agenda knows no limits. Now that the international community is largely reluctant to do more than refer to previous statements of colonial expansion as illegal, Israel is more explicit in promoting its state and settler narratives in its appropriation of land ownership.
___A news report published on Monday in Haaretz quotes Jewish Home Party MK Moti Yogev: “Our goal is to protect state lands, consistent with decisions by the state not letting their status be determined by construction terror guided by the Palestinian Authority with the intervention of international elements such as the European Union.” He also suggested legal recourse against Palestinians opposing demolition orders.
___This is not the first time that such rhetoric has been used. In April 2016 a press release titled “Re-evaluate state’s handling of EU-funded construction in Area C” described Palestinian dwellings in similar terms, accusing the EU of financing “construction and infrastructure terror”.     MORE . . . 

“ABOVE  THE  CARNATIONS,”  BY  YOUSEF  AL-MAHMOUD
Her house is above the carnations
on the path to the wind-swept hills. . .
At evening we sought refuge there
watching out for the guns and the aeroplanes.

The crack of bullets followed our coffee
and smashed into our conversation.
The crack of bullets and the bark of artillery
came near to the flowers inside the windows
came near to the warmth and the water jug
debris clattered down the outside stairway
and fell towards the marble pavement.

Her house is above the carnations
there we were in it
we had sought refuge there
and so we moved to where the Jewish soldiers could no longer see us.

—Translated by DM Black
—Yousef Al-Mahmoud is a prominent broadcaster and poet, and former head of the Ministry of Culture in his native Jenin.
—From A  BIRD  IS  NOT  A  STONE:  AN  ANTHOLOGY  OF  CONTEMPORARY  PALESTINIAN  POETRY (Glasgow: Freight Books, 2014) –available from Amazon.com.

“. . . they bring panic and terror they are utterly not-to-be-trusted . . .” (Yousef Al-Mahmoud)

❶ Foreign Minister says Israeli settlement plans have a US green light
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) President Abbas receives important call from Saudi King Salman

  • Background: “Clarity or Ambiguity? The Withdrawal Clause of UN Security Council Resolution 242.” International Affairs.

❷ Palestinian refugees live in fear of Trump aid cuts
❸ Israeli forces shoot 2 Palestinians, detain minors during predawn raids
. . . . . ❸ ― (ᴀ) Israeli settler killed in shooting attack near Nablus
❹ POETRY by Yousef Al-Mahmoud
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ FOREIGN  MINISTER  SAYS  ISRAELI  SETTLEMENT  PLANS  HAVE  A  US  GREEN  LIGHT
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
Jan. 10, 2018 ― Foreign Minister Riyad Malki said on Wednesday that Israeli announcement of plans to build 1285 new settlement units in the occupied West Bank was one outcome of US President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, which gave Israel the green light to do whatever it wants with the Palestinian land.
___Malki told Voice of Palestine radio that the Israeli decision was also a result of the international community’s failure to hold Israel accountable for its acts, particularly with regard to settlement construction.      MORE . . .   
.  .  .  .  .  ❶  ―  (ᴀ)  PRESIDENT  ABBAS  RECEIVES  IMPORTANT  CALL  FROM  SAUDI  KING  SALMAN    
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA
Jan. 10, 2018 ― Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas received on Tuesday an important telephone call from King Salman bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud of Saudi Arabia.
___King Salman reaffirmed Saudi Arabia’s firm and continuing support for Palestinian right to establish an independent state with East Jerusalem as its capital.
___He affirmed as well the importance of continuing with direct daily coordination to assure support for the Palestinian cause, the Arab’s number one issue, reiterating his country’s firm position from the Palestinian issue, particularly Jerusalem.    MORE . . .   

(Note: while the “facts on the ground” have changed considerably since this article was written, it provides important information about of the intent of UN Resolution 242.)  

McDOWALL, DAVID.
“CLARITY  OR  AMBIGUITY?  THE  WITHDRAWAL  CLAUSE  OF  UN  SECURITY  COUNCIL  RESOLUTION  242.”
INTERNATIONAL  AFFAIRS, vol. 90, no. 6, Nov. 2014, pp. 1367-1381.
[. . . .] How does one explain the failure to hold the line, either on the ‘inadmissibility’ preamble or on the withdrawal clause? Both the US and UK were politically more sympathetic to Israel than to the Arab states. In America this attitude encompassed virtually the whole electorate, as well as government and commerce. In Britain, the electorate was also overwhelmingly pro-Israel, but the government’s position, while still firmly pro-Israel, was tempered by the importance of trade with the Arab world. These attitudes possibly affected the two countries’ position regarding Resolution 242, giving Israel the leeway on the withdrawal clause to which the Council majority were opposed. Fatefully, however, neither America nor Britain felt able to defy its ardently pro-Israel electorate and take a firm stance against Israel’s practical disregard for Resolution 242. Neither had the political will to do this; and Israel, from the outset, knew it.
[. . . .] So let us do so now, almost 50 years later, with a comparison of the requirements of Resolution 242 with those relevant parts of the Fourth Geneva Convention. Quite simply, it is illegal for any body purporting to represent civilian persons under occupation—including, in this case, the PLO, the Palestinian Authority or the government of Syria—to agree any terms with the occupant that in any regard ‘renounce in part or in entirety the rights secured to them by the present Convention’ (article 8). In elaborating on this theme, article 47 states:

Protected persons who are in occupied territory shall not be deprived, in any case or
in any manner whatsoever, of the benefits of the present Convention by any change introduced, as the result of the occupation of a territory, into the institutions or
government of the said territory, nor by any agreement concluded between the authorities of the occupied territories and the Occupying Power, nor by any annexation by the latter of the whole or part of the occupied territory.

In the light of everything that has transpired since 1967 one must gulp at the clarity and foresight of this prohibition, articulated specifically to protect and prevent the vulnerable from giving up their rights in the face of overwhelming military and political pressure.     SOURCE . . .  

❷ PALESTINIAN  REFUGEES  LIVE  IN  FEAR  OF  TRUMP  AID  CUTS 
Al Jazeera English 
by Ibrahim Husseini
Jan. 10, 2018 ― Palestinians living in refugee camps have expressed deep alarm over US threats to potentially cut funding for a relief agency tasked with providing aid and services to them.
___For nearly 70 years, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees (UNRWA) has been the lifeline to the more than five million registered Palestinian refugees in the occupied territories and neighbouring countries.
___It offers support in food supply, access to education, healthcare, social services and employment.
___”Today, more than two-thirds of refugees are children who go to UNRWA schools. If the schools shut down, there will be a big problem,” Salah Ajarmeh, a 44-year-old living in Aida refugee camp outside of Bethlehem, told Al Jazeera.    MORE . . .   
ISRAELI  FORCES  SHOOT  2  PALESTINIANS,  DETAIN  MINORS  DURING  PREDAWN  RAIDS
Ma’an News Agency 
Jan. 10, 2018 ― Two Palestinian youths were injured with live ammunition as Israeli forces conducted predawn detention raids in several districts across the occupied West Bank before dawn on Wednesday, detaining 12 Palestinians.
___Locals in the city of Jericho told Ma’an that two youths, whose identities remained unknown, were shot by Israeli forces with live ammunition during a raid on the Aqbat Jaber refugee camp. Two other Palestinians were detained during the raid.
___According to a statement from the Palestinian Prisoner’s Society (PPS), a 16-year-old Palestinian and his 26-year-old brother were detained from Jericho.
___Meanwhile, PPS said in a statement that Israeli forces detained 10 other Palestinians during West Bank raids.     MORE . . .   
.  .  .  .  .  ❸  ―  (ᴀ)  ISRAELI  SETTLER  KILLED  IN  SHOOTING  ATTACK  NEAR  NABLUS 
Ma’an News Agency 
Jan. 10, 2018 ― An Israeli settler, 35, was killed late Tuesday after he succumbed to wounds sustained in a shooting attack near the Surra village, south of Nablus City in the northern occupied West Bank.
___Israeli media identified the settler as Raziel Shevah. Reports said that Shevah came under fire while driving in his car near.
___The assailants, whose identities remained unknown, reportedly fired 22 shots at his vehicle.
___Shevah was transferred to the Meir Hospital in Kfar Saba in central Israel, where he was declared dead.
___Following the attack, Israeli forces closed the Yitzhar-Nablus road, a main road in the northern West Bank, and heavily deployed in the area.   MORE . . .   

“ENEMY,”  BY  YOUSEF  AL-MAHMOUD
They come from all the ends of the earth to sit among us
they come from the ends of the winds
they bring sickness and a hissing like sakes
they come from the ends of the snows
they come smelling of death
they come with blood-dipping knives
they bring panic and terror
they are utterly not-to-be-trusted
they are utterly murderous
they are proud of their murders, they are drinkers of blood
proud of tooth and nail
even more proud of guns and treachery
they come to burn the love in our hearts
and turn it to torture and bitterness
they bring sorrow, terror, sickness. . .
How have they come to sit among us?
—Translated by DM Black

Yousef Al-Mahmoud is a prominent broadcaster and poet, and former head of the Ministry of Culture in his native Jenin.
From A  BIRD  IS  NOT  A  STONE:  AN  ANTHOLOGY  OF  CONTEMPORARY  PALESTINIAN  POETRY (Glasgow: Freight Books, 2014) –available From Amazon.com.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“. . . debris clattered down the outside stairway and fell towards the marble pavement. . . .” (Yousef Al-Mahmoud)

❶ Israel halts construction of school in Bethlehem, despite residents receiving permit
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) Settler Caravans Erected Near Bethlehem

  • “The Future of Israel and Palestine: Expanding the Debate.” Middle East Policy.

❷ Israeli forces blow up home of slain Palestinian in Ramallah-area village
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) Israeli forces demolish homes in Bedouin villages in southern Israel
❸ Hebron: Israeli Occupation Forces Confiscate 47 Dunums of Land
. . . . . ❸ ― (ᴀ) Hebron: ‘We’re living in the heart of a prison’
❹ POETRY by Yousef Al-Mahmoud
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ ISRAEL  HALTS  CONSTRUCTION  OF  SCHOOL  IN  BETHLEHEM,  DESPITE  RESIDENTS  RECEIVING  PERMIT
Ma’an News Agency
Aug. 18, 2017.   Israeli authorities forcibly halted the construction of a school in Jubbet Al-Dhib village in the eastern part of Bethlehem in the southern occupied West Bank on Thursday, despite Palestinians receiving an Israeli-issued building permit for the project.
___A representative of a popular resistance committee in Bethlehem Hadan Brejiyeh told Ma’an that Israeli forces, escorted by employees of the Israeli civil administration had “raided the village,” and shut down the construction at the school.
___Israeli forces had put a stop to the construction, which consisted of eight mobile structures, and confiscated vehicles belonging to an Italian NGO. The residents said they had received a difficult-to-obtain Israeli-issued building permit for the project.   MORE . . .
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) SETTLER CARAVANS ERECTED NEAR BETHLEHEM
International Middle East Media Center – IMEMC 
August 17, 2017.   Israeli settlers, on Wednesday, installed caravans near the village of Nahalin, to the west of Bethlehem, according to local sources.
___Sobhi Zeidan, head of Nahalin village council, told WAFA that settlers from the nearby illegal settlement of Beitar Elit installed 10 caravans near the fence separating the settlement from Nahalin.   MORE . . .

Walt, Stephen M., et al.
“THE  FUTURE  OF  ISRAEL  AND  PALESTINE:  EXPANDING  THE  DEBATE.”
Middle East Policy,
vol. 20, no. 2, Summer2013, pp. 1-24.
[. . . .] The second scene is in a small village that I visited near the Hebron Hills in Area C in the West Bank. There are Palestinian herdsmen there who have a couple of small houses and sheds for livestock. The day I visited this hamlet — Sadat a Thaale, I think it was called — the Israelis had come in a few days before and, using a bulldozer, had destroyed the cistern. It is an ancient practice, throughout the Middle East and many parts of the world, of storing water in cisterns — in this case a limestone cistern carved out of the hill. The Israelis had destroyed it. The source of water was destroyed and five sheep were killed. This kind of wanton destruction is happening on a regular basis in the West Bank, with the aim of pushing people off the land, off Area C and into cities, where they can be gathered together. Israel has always wanted as much land as possible with as few Palestinians on it. That has been part of the program from the start.
[. . . .] Because Israel has so permeated the West Bank and East Jerusalem and has encircled East Jerusalem, I believe the two-state solution is over. It’s not going to happen. There are 600,000-650,000 Israelis east of the Green Line. They’re not going to move. So this historic conflict, which has been called two irreconcilable claims to the same land, is over. One side has won. That has always been the case; one side was winning. We’re now at a point where one side controls all the land with the exception of Area A, in which the Palestinian Authority is exercising some type of authority.    FULL ARTICLE . . .

❷ ISRAELI  FORCES  BLOW  UP  HOME  OF  SLAIN  PALESTINIAN  IN  RAMALLAH-AREA  VILLAGE     
Ma’an News Agency
Aug. 17, 2017.   In a raid Thursday morning on the Ramallah-area village of Deir Abu Mashaal in the central occupied West Bank, Israeli forces blew up the home of slain Palestinian Adel Hassan Ahmad Ankoush, who was killed by Israeli forces in June along with two other Palestinians after the three carried out a deadly shooting and stabbing attack in occupied East Jerusalem that left an Israeli border police officer dead.
___Locals told Ma’an that the Israeli army raided Ankoush’s family home and set up explosives around the house, as other forces surrounded Deir Abu Mashaal and deployed across all entrances to the village, while drones hovered overhead.   MORE . . .
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) ISRAELI  FORCES  DEMOLISH  HOMES  IN  BEDOUIN  VILLAGES  IN  SOUTHERN  ISRAEL 
Ma’an News Agency
Aug. 17, 2017.   Israeli authorities demolished three Palestinian homes on Thursday morning in several Bedouin villages in the Negev of southern Israel for allegedly being built without Israeli-issued building permits, locals told Ma’an.
___According to locals, Israeli authorities demolished a house belonging to Salman Abu Sabileh in the Umm Qabu village, while two other homes were demolished in the al-Atrash and al-Sayyid villages.
___Meanwhile, locals in the Umm al-Hiran village in the Negev told Ma’an that clashes had erupted between Palestinian residents and Israeli police forces after they raided the village to carry out demolitions. However, there were no reports of demolitions being carried out.   MORE . . .
❸ HEBRON:  ISRAELI  OCCUPATION  FORCES  CONFISCATE  47  DUNUMS  OF  LAND
PalestineChronicle
Aug. 17, 2017.  Israeli authorities confiscated at least 47 dunams (12 acres) of lands in al-Thahiryeh village, south of Hebron city, in the southern occupied West Bank for alleged military purposes, locals told Ma’an on Wednesday.
___Al-Thahiryeh mayor Ratib al-Sabber told Ma’an that locals were surprised last Sunday when an Israeli confiscation order was put up on the entrance of the Mitar checkpoint in the southern part of al-Thahiryeh, close to the lands that were confiscated. The order stated that the land would be used for Israeli army purposes.   MORE . . .
. . . . . ❸ ― (ᴀ) HEBRON:  ‘WE’RE  LIVING  IN  THE  HEART  OF  A  PRISON’   
Al Jazeera English 
August  16, 2017.   (Amid heightened restrictions and harassment, Palestinians struggle to keep their homes in Hebron’s historic Old City.)     
For weeks, members of the Abu Rajab family have been confined to their home in the heart of Hebron’s historic Old City.
___They cannot leave for fear that settlers will occupy the house. When absolutely necessary, one family member takes a short trip to buy food or other necessities, before hurrying back inside.     “We’re always careful about going out and coming back in, and we make sure not to leave the house alone,” Hazem Abu Rajab, 28, told Al Jazeera as he sat outside on their porch.
___On July 25, a group of 15 settler families broke into apartments belonging to the Abu Rajabs’ ancestral family home and moved in. The same evening, the settlers physically attacked members of the Abu Rajab family while attempting to invade their primary residence. Yet when Israeli authorities arrived on the scene, they attempted to arrest the Abu Rajabs, they said.
___For six days, the Abu Rajab family could not leave their home at all, due to a military order that forbade anyone from exiting or entering, Abu Rajab said. The Palestinian Civil Administration tried to deliver food on the fourth day but was turned away.   MORE . . .

“ABOVE  THE  CARNATIONS,”  BY  YOUSEF  AL-MAHMOUD
Her house is above the carnations
on the path to the wind-swept hills. . .
At evening we sought refuge there
watching out for the guns and the aeroplanes.

The crack of bullets followed our coffee
and smashed into our conversation.
The crack of bullets and the bark of artillery
came near to the flowers inside the windows
came near to the warmth and the water jug
debris clattered down the outside stairway
and fell towards the marble pavement.

Her house is above the carnations
there we were in it
we had sought refuge there
and so we moved to where the Jewish soldiers could no longer see us.

Translated by DM Black
Yousef Al-Mahmoud is a prominent broadcaster and poet, and former head of the Ministry of Culture in his native Jenin.
From A  BIRD  IS  NOT  A  STONE:  AN  ANTHOLOGY  OF  CONTEMPORARY  PALESTINIAN  POETRY.   (Glasgow: Freight Books, 2014) –available from Amazon.com.

“. . . At evening we sought refuge there watching out for the guns . . .” (Yousef Al-Mahmoud)

❶ Israeli forces shoot, kill 2 young Palestinians during raid in Jenin refugee camp

Background: “Exiled at Home: Writing Return and the Palestinian Home.” Biography: An Interdisciplinary Quarterly

❷ Palestinian family served punitive demolition order by Israeli army
❸ Ashrawi tells “Know Thy Heritage” delegation Palestinians are united in national identity
❹ POETRY by Yousef Al-Mahmoud
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ ISRAELI  FORCES  SHOOT,  KILL  2  YOUNG  PALESTINIANS  DURING  RAID  IN  JENIN  REFUGEE  CAMP           
Ma’an News Agency
July 12, 2017.   Israeli forces shot and killed two young Palestinians — one 17-year-old and one 20-year-old — and injured at least two others after a violent military raid into Jenin refugee camp in the northern occupied West Bank erupted into clashes early Wednesday morning.
___An Israeli army spokesperson said that during an “operation” in the camp, a Palestinian gunman opened fire at Israeli forces, and other locals threw Molotov cocktails, which prompted Israeli fires to open fire toward the “attackers.”
___No casualties were reported among the heavily armed and armored Israeli forces.
[. . . .] The Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs condemned Israeli forces for the deadly raid and accused the Israeli government of deliberately escalating the situation in the occupied territory to coincide with visits from US diplomats, in an attempt to disrupt the peace process.
___”The Israeli crime in Jenin was committed in line with a visit from US envoy Jason Greenblatt, who is conducting meetings with Israeli and Palestinian officials to revive negotiations.” the ministry’s statement said, alleging the raid was committed as part of attempts by Israel’s right-wing government to impose their agenda on meetings with Greenblatt.
___The ministry said it held the Israeli government responsible for the “a hideous crime” in Jenin, for the continuous deterioration of the situation in the occupied Palestinian territory, and for “obstructing American efforts for peace.”   MORE . . .

Shalhoub-Kevorkian, Nadera And Sarah Ihmoud. “Exiled at Home: Writing Return and the Palestinian Home.” Biography: An Interdisciplinary Quarterly, vol. 37, no. 2, Spring2014, pp. 377-397.
The homespace and the homeland are critical places of being and becoming. Homing works as a powerful force that gives voice, spreads love, and maintains continuities. . . .
[. . . .]   Handal’s ongoing process of this web documentary exposes the reality of the absurd post-1948 political situation in West Jerusalem where expropriated Palestinian houses are being sold on Israeli real-estate agents’ websites. The realisation of this absurd political reality was the persuasive point for Handal’s engagement in this issue:
The idea for the work grew from an encounter I made in the early 1990s. During a trip to NYC, I met a Palestinian refugee and he showed me a real estate advertisement that featured upscale residential properties in West Jerusalem. At first glance, there was nothing particularly special about this ad, but the absurd political reality around it became evident after he explained to me that this was in fact his family’s expropriated home that was now on sale for an Israeli international clientele. I was a teenager at the time and the story had an enduring impact on me – beneath the glossy surface of the ad was a cruel reality. [From Karmah Elmusa, Alexandra Handal Combines Palestinian History and Art in Web Documentary].
[. . . .]  The concept of homeland and the limitations of the Green Line are obvious in Alexandra Handal’s practice. Born in 1975 into a Palestinian family in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Handal is influenced by the 1948 Palestinian depopulation from West Jerusalem and the ongoing Palestinian occupation by Israel.
[. . . .] The desire to document the socio-political events of her homeland is obvious in Handal’s work. In the artist’s statement for No Parking without Permission, Jerusalem, Handal describes her longing to explore the occupied areas:
I wanted to go see first-hand what had become of those neighbourhoods whose stories had shaped my image of the city. So I decided to undertake a number of walks there. Although walking through a city would almost anywhere in the world be seen as a mundane activity, for a Palestinian drifting in Jerusalem is politicised and loaded with emotional ramifications. Through numerous walks, I explored these areas by looking through all sorts of barriers, fences, gates and bushes in an attempt to remove the distance and be/come closer to the spaces that Palestinians were torn apart from in 1948. These drifts culminated into a series of photos, each image – a visual testimony of my yearning. [Author’s Communication with Alexandra Handal, 2015]       SOURCE . . .

❷ PALESTINIAN  FAMILY  SERVED  PUNITIVE  DEMOLITION  ORDER  BY  ISRAELI  ARMY      
Ma’an News Agency        
July 12, 2017.   The Israeli army delivered a punitive demolition order to a Palestinian family in the village of Deir Abu Meshaal in the central occupied West Bank district of Ramallah in a predawn military raid Wednesday, in the wake of a deadly attack in front of Jerusalem’s Old City last month in which three Palestinians assailants were shot dead and an Israeli border police officer was killed.
___Last week, the Israeli army already delivered demolition warrants for the homes belonging to the families of two of the slain Palestinians, and for unknown reasons, the third family was not notified that their house would be demolished until Wednesday’s raid.   MORE . . .
❸ ASHRAWI  TELLS  “KNOW  THY  HERITAGE”  DELEGATION  PALESTINIANS  ARE  UNITED  IN  NATIONAL  IDENTITY
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA  
July 12, 2017.    Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Executive Committee member Hanan Ashrawi, who serves on the Know Thy Heritage (KTH) Advisory Board, Wednesday told the 2017 KTH delegation visiting Ramallah that as Palestinians living in exile, Palestinians are united by their national identity and historical roots in Palestine.
___Ashrawi, who met the participants who represent four continents and seven countries at the PLO Headquarters in Ramallah, reminded them of the importance of reconnecting to Palestine and returning to their homeland to maintain a sense of belonging and to defy Israeli violations and unlawful policies on the ground.
___Ashrawi concluded her presentation on the escalation of Israel’s continued breach of international law by taking questions on the internal division, the importance of the BDS movement, American efforts to revitalize the “peace process,” and the role of Palestinians politicians working in the Israeli Knesset.   MORE . . . 

“ABOVE  THE  CARNATIONS,”  BY  YOUSEF  AL-MAHMOUD
Her house is above the carnations
on the path to the wind-swept hills. . .
At evening we sought refuge there
watching out for the guns and the aeroplanes.

The crack of bullets followed our coffee
and smashed into our conversation.
The crack of bullets and the bark of artillery
came near to the flowers inside the windows
came near to the warmth and the water jug
debris clattered down the outside stairway
and fell towards the marble pavement.

Her house is above the carnations
there we were in it
we had sought refuge there
and so we moved to where the Jewish soldiers could no longer see us.
—Translated by DM Black

—Yousef Al-Mahmoud is a prominent broadcaster and poet, and former head of the Ministry of Culture in his native Jenin.
—From A BIRD IS NOT A STONE: AN ANTHOLOGY OF CONTEMPORARY PALESTINIAN POETRY (Glasgow: Freight Books, 2014) –available from Barnes and Noble

 

“. . . The crack of bullets followed our coffee and smashed into our conversation . . .” (Yousef Al-Mahmoud)

❶ Silwan- Settlers attempt to seize a land owned by Basboos family
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) Clashes flare as Israelis try to grab Palestinian land near al-Aqsa

  • Background:  “A Dangerous Divide: The Deterioration of Jewish-Palestinian Relations in Israel.” Middle East Journal.

❷ Palestinian shot dead after carrying out alleged vehicular attack on Israeli soldiers
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) Israeli police detains Palestinian in Jerusalem for alleged knife possession
❸ Germany says it is watching Israeli settlement plans with great concern
❹ POETRY by Yousef Al-Mahmoud
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ SILWAN-  SETTLERS  ATTEMPT  TO  SEIZE  A  LAND  OWNED  BY  BASBOOS  FAMILY
Wadi Hilweh Information Center – Silwan
July 10, 2017.   Settlers attempted on Monday morning to seize a land owned by Basboos family in the neighborhood of Batn Al-Hawa in Silwan under the pretext of being owned by three Jews from Yemen who used to live and own the land before 1948.
___Ra’fat Basboos explained to Wadi Hilweh Information Center that the family was surprised this morning when a group of settlers along with workers raided their land which is adjacent to their house and started placing wires around . . .     the residents confronted the settlers and prevented them from continuing their actions.
___Afterwards, the occupation forces raided the land and assaulted the residents with pepper gas which led to the suffocation of 6 young men.
___Ra’fat Basboos added that the police officer informed the family and the locals of Batn Al-Hawa that they are not allowed to enter or use the land while settlers are allowed to enter land without doing any work.     MORE . . . 
. . . . . ❶ ― (ᴀ)  CLASHES  FLARE  AS  ISRAELIS  TRY  TO  GRAB  PALESTINIAN  LAND  NEAR  AL-AQSA     
The Palestinian Information Center  
July 10, 2017.   Violent clashes burst out south of holy al-Aqsa Mosque, in Occupied Jerusalem, after Israeli settlers attempted to seize a Palestinian land lot.
___A PIC news correspondent said a group of Israeli settlers, escorted by a special unit, broke into Batn al-Hawa neighborhood, in Silwan, and attempted to grab hold of a Palestinian land owned by al-Rajabi and Basbous families.      MORE . . .   

Waxman, Dov. “A  DANGEROUS  DIVIDE:  THE  DETERIORATION  OF  JEWISH-PALESTINIAN  RELATIONS  IN  ISRAEL.” Middle East Journal, vol. 66, no. 1, Winter2012, pp. 11-29
[. . . . ] An even more disturbing trend than the rise of political intolerance among Israeli Jews for the future of Jewish-Palestinian relations in Israel is growing Israeli-Jewish support for proposals to rid Israel of some or all of its Arab population. The idea of forcibly expelling Arab citizens from Israel — euphemistically referred to as “transfer” in Israeli political discourse — had . . .   never received much support from the Jewish public since it was generally deemed to be morally reprehensible. Since 2000, however, the idea of transfer has been raised more frequently, and has become more publicly acceptable. In a survey taken in 2003, a third of the Israeli-Jewish public (33%) expressed support for the expulsion of Arab citizens from Israel . . . . More popular than simply expelling Arabs from Israel . . .  is the idea of “voluntary transfer,” which would involve government policies aimed at encouraging Arab emigration. This is increasingly supported by Israeli Jews, with 50% favoring this in a 2001 poll, 63% supporting it in 2006, and 72% in favor of it in 2009.
[. . . .] Many Israeli Jews now regard the Palestinian minority as an enemy — a threat to national security and to the continued existence of Israel as a Jewish state. Palestinian citizens, in turn, have felt ever more alienated from Israeli-Jewish society and the state, and have become more radical in their political views and goals. Abandoning their hopes for integration into Israeli society and equality within the state, they have grown more separatist in their social and political orientation. More and more Palestinian citizens are giving up the desire to belong to an Israeli society that they feel has rejected them time and again. Instead, they are turning inwards, and focusing on building a separate Arab society within Israel. As both communities turn away from each other and perceive each other in adversarial ways, the rift between Jews and Palestinians in Israel — always wide — has become dangerously deep and bitter, and the prospects for their peaceful coexistence in the future diminish day by day. Jews and Palestinians in Israel are currently on a collision course, with potentially severe consequences for their continued peaceful co-existence, as well as for stability and democracy in Israel.   FULL ARTICLE . . .

❷ PALESTINIAN  SHOT  DEAD  AFTER  CARRYING  OUT  ALLEGED  VEHICULAR  ATTACK  ON  ISRAELI  SOLDIERS      
Ma’an News Agency
July 10, 2017.   A Palestinian was shot and killed after he carried out an alleged vehicular attack on Israeli soldiers, lightly injuring one, at a junction near the village of Tuqu and the illegal Israeli settlement Maale Amos in the southern occupied West Bank district of Bethlehem.
___An Israeli army spokesperson claimed that the alleged assailant rammed his car at Israeli forces stationed at the junction, leaving one Israeli soldier lightly wounded. The driver then allegedly exited his vehicle armed with a knife and attempted to stab the soldier, when another soldier fatally shot the Palestinian.
___Israel’s emergency medical service Magen David Adom said it evacuated the 20-year-old Israeli soldier in a moderate condition to Israel’s Shaare Zedek hospital in Jerusalem for treatment, while the Palestinian driver was “neutralized” and treated by the Israeli army at the scene before being declared dead.   MORE . . . 
. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) ISRAELI  POLICE  DETAINS  PALESTINIAN  IN  JERUSALEM  FOR  ALLEGED  KNIFE  POSSESSION   
Ma’an News Agency  
July 9, 2017. Israeli forces detained a Jerusalemite Palestinian for alleged knife possession in Jerusalem on Sunday afternoon.
___According to Israeli news outlet Arutz Sheva, an Israeli security guard apprehended a young Palestinian at the central bus station in Jerusalem for being in possession of a knife and turned him in to Israeli police.
___Arutz Sheva added that there were no reported injuries during the incident.
___Scores of Palestinians have been detained in the past two year for alleged knife possession.   MORE . . . 
❸ GERMANY  SAYS  IT  IS  WATCHING  ISRAELI  SETTLEMENT  PLANS  WITH  GREAT  CONCERN   
Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA     
July 10, 2017.   The German government said on Monday that it was gravely concerned about Israeli settlement plans in East Jerusalem.
___It said in a statement by the German Foreign Ministry that it was “watching with great concern” Israeli decisions to build settlements inside Palestinian neighborhoods in East Jerusalem.        MORE . . . 

“ABOVE THE CARNATIONS,” BY YOUSEF AL-MAHMOUD
Her house is above the carnations
on the path to the wind-swept hills. . .
At evening we sought refuge there
watching out for the guns and the aeroplanes.

The crack of bullets followed our coffee
and smashed into our conversation.
The crack of bullets and the bark of artillery
came near to the flowers inside the windows
came near to the warmth and the water jug
debris clattered down the outside stairway
and fell towards the marble pavement.

Her house is above the carnations
there we were in it
we had sought refuge there
and so we moved to where the Jewish soldiers could no longer see us.

—Translated by DM Black
—Yousef Al-Mahmoud is a prominent broadcaster and poet, and former head of the Ministry of Culture in his native Jenin.
—From A BIRD IS NOT A STONE: AN ANTHOLOGY OF CONTEMPORARY PALESTINIAN POETRY (Glasgow: Freight Books, 2014). Available from Barnes and Noble.

“. . . they bring panic and terror they are utterly not-to-be-trusted . . .” (Yousef Al-Mahmoud)

A Palestinian woman stands next to a house sprayed with graffiti reading in Hebrew: "revenge" and "hello from the prisoners of Zion", in the village of Beitillu, near Ramallah
A Palestinian woman stands next to a house sprayed with graffiti reading in Hebrew: “revenge” and “hello from the prisoners of Zion” in the village of Beitillu on December 22, 2015. (Photo: Shadi Hatem/APA Images)

(“So you dehumanise them and once you dehumanise a group of people there is no turning back. You dehumanise them just so you can say “no” at a checkpoint. But the next time you’re in a situation where you have to push them, it’ll be easy enough for you to push them. And then, when you have to shoot them, it’ll be easy enough for you to shoot them. After a few months, you lose all touch with humanity.”)

❶ ‘It’s okay to be racist in Israel’ (Interview with Sahar Vardi)
❷ Israeli settlers block off Nablus-area road

Background: “West Bank Settlers’ Terrorizing of Palestinians to Deter Israeli Government Law Enforcement.” Case Western Reserve Journal of International Law.

. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) Palestinian Lands Set Ablaze, Contaminated with Sewage by Extremist Yitzhar Settlers
❸ Undercover Israeli soldiers shoot dead Palestinian in Hebron
. . . . . ❸ ― (ᴀ) Army Injures Two Palestinians Near Ramallah, Abducts One Near Jenin
❹ POETRY by Yousef Al-Mahmoud
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶ ‘IT’S  OKAY  TO  BE  RACIST  IN  ISRAEL’  (INTERVIEW  WITH  SAHAR  VARDI)    
Al Jazeera English  
Zena al-Tahhan
June 29, 2017.  Occupied East Jerusalem – This year, Israel’s 1967 occupation of the Palestinian territories entered its 51st year.
___In the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, the Israeli army is responsible for controlling the lives of more than three million Palestinians through hundreds of checkpoints, raids of villages and homes, trial of civilians in military courts, demolition of homes, suppression of protests, and the killing and injuring of civilians, to name a few.
___To sustain the occupation industry, Israel makes it mandatory by law for Israeli citizens . . . to enter the military at 18 . . .
___Yet, there are Israeli citizens who refuse to serve in the military for several reasons, including opposition to the army’s policies in the Palestinian territories it occupies.
___Sahar Vardi, 27, is one of such refusers . . .   MORE . . .
❷ ISRAELI  SETTLERS  BLOCK  OFF  NABLUS-AREA  ROAD  
Ma’an News Agency 
June 29, 2017.   Hundreds of Israeli settlers reportedly blocked a road in the northern occupied West Bank on Thursday, Palestinian media reported.
___According to official Palestinian news agency Wafa, between 500 and 600 Israelis escorted by Israeli army and police forces gathered on the main road linking the Palestinian cities of Nablus and Ramallah near the Zaatara military checkpoint in the Nablus district early on Thursday, blocking traffic in the area.
[. . . .]  While details about the incident remained unclear, the Zaatara checkpoint is located near at least half a dozen Israeli settlements, built in contravention of international law.
___One of these settlements, Yitzhar, is particularly known for its extremist residents who are notorious for carrying out attacks against Palestinians, as well as Israeli forces.   MORE . . .

vol40_issue3_2007
Zaatara checkpoint with separate lanes for settlers (left lane, yellow-plated cars) and non-Jews. (Photo by Anna Baltzer)

(Note: While this article was written six years ago, it reports the history of settler violence, and its discussion of the “gradual scale of escalation” has occurred.)

Nir, Ori. “WEST  BANK  SETTLERS’  TERRORIZING  OF  PALESTINIANS  TO  DETER  ISRAELI  GOVERNMENT  LAW  ENFORCEMENT.” Case Western Reserve Journal of International Law, vol. 44, no. 1/2, June 2011, pp. 277-289.
[. . . .] “Price Tag”. . .  is a set of violent tactics employed by national-religious Israeli settlers in the West Bank to deter Israeli law enforcement authorities from removing illegally-built structures from West Bank settlements. The tactics employed include attacks on Palestinians and their property, as well as attacks on Israeli military and police officers . . . . their ultimate goal is to deter Israeli leaders from implementing a possible future Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement that entails removing Israeli settlements from the West Bank.
___. . . a strategy that started as a reaction to a sense of powerlessness and ineptness morphed from an unpopular form of high-profile, anti-government resistance into a popular—and very effective—low-intensity anti-Palestinian terrorism campaign.
[. . . .] The U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in the West Bank has documented a total of 1,451 settlers’ attacks on Palestinians and their property since January 2006: physical attacks on Palestinians, attacks on vehicles, houses, schools and mosques, uprooting of trees, torching of fields, and more . . .
[. . . .] There are several reasons for Price Tag’s being a form of low-intensity terrorism:  Maintaining a high level of Israeli popular support: Extreme violence might alienate the Israeli public. . . .    Avoiding accountability: Israel’s “Judea and Samaria” police district, responsible for law enforcement in the settlements, is understaffed and under-equipped. . .  Most Price Tag incidents do not end up with indictments. . . .    Allowing room for escalation: Cumulative deterrence, the impact that the settlers are hoping to achieve through their Price Tag campaign, is best accomplished on a gradual scale of escalation.   FULL ARTICLE . . .

. . . . . ❷ ― (ᴀ) PALESTINIAN  LANDS  SET  ABLAZE,  CONTAMINATED  WITH  SEWAGE  BY  EXTREMIST  YITZHAR  SETTLERS   
International Middle East Media Center – IMEMC 
June 29, 2017.   Israeli settlers reportedly started a fire near the Palestinian village of Burin. in the occupied West Bank district of Nablus, on Wednesday afternoon.
___According to an Israeli army spokesperson, suspects coming from the illegal settlement of Yitzhar approached Burin on Wednesday afternoon, igniting a fire on lands near the village before fleeing the scene.
___The spokesperson added, according to Ma’an News Agency, that while the fire was extinguished by Israeli forces, no detentions were carried out at the scene, and the case was transferred to Israeli police.   MORE . . . 
❸ UNDERCOVER  ISRAELI  SOLDIERS  SHOOT  DEAD  PALESTINIAN  IN  HEBRON      Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA   
June 29, 2017.   Undercover Israeli soldiers from the special units shot and killed late Wednesday a Palestinian in Hebron, according to Palestinian medical sources.
___Medics at Alia Hospital in Hebron said Iyad Gheith, 22, was shot dead in the upper part of the body.
___While Palestinians did not have any more details, Israeli reports said the unit was searching for weapons in Hebron when it came under fire.   MORE . . .
. . . . . ❸ ― (ᴀ) ARMY  INJURES  TWO  PALESTINIANS  NEAR  RAMALLAH,  ABDUCTS  ONE  NEAR  JENIN 
International Middle East Media Center – IMEMC
June 29, 2017.   Israeli soldiers invaded, earlier Thursday, the village of Bil’in, west of the central West Bank city of Ramallah, and clashed with local youths, wounding two with rubber-coated steel bullets, and causing dozens of residents to suffer the severe effects of teargas inhalation. The soldiers also abducted a Palestinian man near Jenin.
__Abdullah Abu Rahma, the media coordinator of the Popular Committee against the Annexation Wall and Colonies in Bil’in, said the soldiers fired many gas bombs, concussion grenades and rubber-coated steel bullets.   MORE . . .

“ENEMY,”   BY   YOUSEF   AL-MAHMOUD
They come from all the ends of the earth to sit among us
they come from the ends of the winds
they bring sickness and a hissing like snakes
they come from the ends of the snows
they come smelling of death
they come with blood-dipping knives
they bring panic and terror
they are utterly not-to-be-trusted
they are utterly murderous
they are proud of their murders, they are drinkers of blood
proud of tooth and nail
even more proud of guns and treachery
they come to burn the love in our hearts
and turn it to torture and bitterness
they bring sorrow, terror, sickness. . .
How have they come to sit among us?
—Translated by DM Black

Yousef Al-Mahmoud is a prominent broadcaster and poet, and former head of the Ministry of Culture in his native Jenin.
From A BIRD IS NOT A STONE: AN ANTHOLOGY OF CONTEMPORARY PALESTINIAN POETRY. Ed. by Henry Bell and Sarah Irving. (Glasgow: Freight Books, 2014)
Available from Barnes & Noble

 

“. . . they come from the ends of the winds . . .” (Yousef Al-Mahmoud)

amona
Wednesday, May 18, 2016 photo, Jewish settler youths while their father barbecues in Amona, Israeli outpost in the West Bank (AP Photo/Oded Balilty)

❶ Israel advances plans for new settlement for Amona outpost evacuees
. . . ❶ ― (a) West Bank outpost’s impending evacuation a test for Israel

  • Background from Forced Migration Review

❷ Israeli plan to build new settlement neighborhood in Jerusalem
. . . ❷ ― (a) Related: Jerusalem demolishes Palestinian homes beyond the wall for first time [2010, Walaja]
❸ Genocide advocate Ayelet Shaked revives Peres plan for West Bank
❹ POETRY by Yousef Al-Mahmoud
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
ISRAEL  ADVANCES  PLANS  FOR  NEW  SETTLEMENT  FOR  AMONA  OUTPOST  EVACUEES
Ma’an News Agency
Oct. 2, 2016
The Israeli Civil Administration has advanced plans to construct a new illegal Israeli settlement in the northern occupied West Bank, likely to be used to relocate settlers residing in the Amona outpost, according to Israeli settlement watchdog Peace Now, following an Israeli Supreme Court decision to demolish the outpost by the end of this year.
___Peace Now said in a press release on Saturday that two plans were promoted by the Higher Planning Committee (HPC) of the Civil Administration on Wednesday, including the new settlement for the Amona evacuees, as well as for a new industrial zone west of Ramallah in the central occupied West Bank.      MORE . . .
. . . ❶ ― (A) WEST  BANK  OUTPOST’S  IMPENDING  EVACUATION  A  TEST  FOR  ISRAEL
Daily Mail      
Associated Press
May 27, 2016
The fate of 50 white caravans perched atop a West Bank hill in the Amona settler outpost is emerging as a key test for Benjamin Netanyahu’s newly-expanded hard-line government.
___Under a Supreme Court order, the government must tear down the outpost by the end of the year — a move expected to face staunch opposition from within the coalition and pit security forces against the wishes of leading members of the Cabinet.
___Amona is the largest of about 100 unauthorized outposts — built without permission but generally tolerated by the government — that dot the West Bank.    More . . .

  • Khalil, Karim. “Attempts To Prevent Displacement In The Occupied Palestinian Territories.” Forced Migration Review 41 (2012): 36-37.  Full article.

While strategies for the prevention of forced displacement gain value in the humanitarian community in addressing displacement situations, Israeli actions and policies in the occupied Palestinian territories (oPt) continue to directly and indirectly lead to the forced displacement of Palestinians. . . .
___Although there are no comprehensive figures available on displaced in the oPt, figures compiled from local and international NGOs and the UN indicate that since 1967, more than 270,000 people have been displaced across the oPt, including those temporarily displaced, with more than half of all displacements occurring in the last five years [2007-20012].
[. . . .] Palestinian communities and individual households have sought to prevent or mitigate the effects of Israeli policies that lead to displacement. The tenacity of people who remain – reflected in the concept of sumud, or steadfastness – is explained by the desire to retain one’s home, one’s land, and equally not replicate the fate of Palestinian refugees whose current situation is a stark reminder of the consequences of displacement and dispossession.
[. . . .] Throughout the West Bank and East Jerusalem protests are held by Palestinian communities, as well as by Palestinian, Israeli and international activists, against Israeli policies. Thousands of Palestinian households have contested demolition orders, appropriation of land, the revocation of residency or denial of family reunification through the Israeli courts, at great expense and over protracted periods of time. It is not uncommon for such litigation to last for years and in some cases close to a decade, often at great personal expense.
[. . . .] The impact – social, financial and psychological – on the well-being of individuals, families and their children is cumulative. They experience vulnerability, trauma and anxiety, balancing the risks they face against the need to retain their properties and their possessions.
[. . . . ] The response of the humanitarian community should not detract from the need for the international community to ensure international humanitarian and human rights law is upheld and further displacements prevented.

ISRAELI  PLAN  TO  BUILD  NEW  SETTLEMENT  NEIGHBORHOOD  IN  JERUSALEM
Alray-Palestinian Media Agency
Sep. 28, 2016
The committees of planning and construction in the Israeli municipality in Jerusalem officially announced a plan to build a new settlement neighborhood southwest of the city called the slopes of the torch, overlooking and adjacent to the territories of the Palestinian village of Walaja, and close to the town of Beit Jala.
___According to documents and maps seen by the Media Centre for Jerusalem and Al-Aqsa affairs “Ciobrs”, the municipality approved and published the details of building a new neighborhood in the hills of the southern West Jerusalem, an area of about 170 dunums.
___The construction scheme includes the establishment of 493 housing units, as well as a Jewish synagogue and its facilities, the center explained.        More . . .
. . . ❷ ― (a) BACKGROUND . . .     JERUSALEM  DEMOLISHES  PALESTINIAN  HOMES  BEYOND  THE  WALL  FOR  FIRST  TIME  [WALAJA, 2010]
The Electronic Intifada     
Aviv Tatarsky
April 14, 2016
Israeli authorities demolished three homes in the Palestinian village of al-Walaja on Tuesday. Bulldozers accompanied by Israeli soldiers raided the village at approximately 4 a.m. and began demolishing a home with two units that have yet to be occupied, a family home of five, and a home of Mahmoud, a young man who just got engaged.     More . . .  

walajawall
The Wall under construction in al-Walaja, Dec. 7, 2010. It now completely surrounds the village. (Photo: Anne Paq/Activestills.org)

GENOCIDE  ADVOCATE  AYELET  SHAKED  REVIVES  PERES  PLAN  FOR  WEST  BANK
The Electronic Intifada
Nora Barrows-Friedman
Oct. 1, 2016
Ayelet Shaked, Israel’s justice minister, faced protests as she spoke to law students and professors at Columbia University’s law school on 19 September.
___In a secret audio recording taken during the closed event, Shaked can be heard seeking to revive a discredited idea long championed by Shimon Peres, the leading Israeli politician who died this week.
___The idea is that a deal could be struck with Jordan to push Palestinians under its jurisdiction as Israel maintains effective control over the occupied West Bank.     ___A key objective behind Peres’ plan – the so-called Jordanian option – was to sideline the Palestine Liberation Organization and neuter Palestinian resistance to Israel. Palestinians saw it as an affront to their right of self-determination. Shaked denies Israel is an occupier, claiming that the West Bank is merely “territory under dispute.”  More . . . 

   “ENEMY,”   BY   YOUSEF   AL-MAHMOUD

They come from all the ends of the earth to sit among us
they come from the ends of the winds
they bring sickness and a hissing like snakes
they come from the ends of the snows
they come smelling of death
they come with blood-dipping knives
they bring panic and terror
they are utterly not-to-be-trusted
they are utterly murderous
they are proud of their murders, they are drinkers of blood
proud of tooth and nail
even more proud of guns and treachery
they come to burn the love in our hearts
and turn it to torture and bitterness
they bring sorrow, terror, sickness. . .
How have they come to sit among us?
—Translated by DM Black

Yousef Al-Mahmoud is a prominent broadcaster and poet, and former head of the Ministry of Culture in his native Jenin.
From A  BIRD  IS  NOT  A  STONE:  AN  ANTHOLOGY  OF  CONTEMPORARY  PALESTINIAN  POETRY (Glasgow: Freight Books, 2014) –available From Amazon.com.

 

“. . . they come to burn the love in our hearts . . .” (Yousef Al-Mahmoud)

1-kiryat arba
A view of the settlement of Kiryat Arba, in the southern West Bank, adjoining the city of Hebron, February 19, 2014. (Photo: Michal Fattal/Flash90)

❶ Israeli confiscation of land shows 440% increase in 2016

  • Background from  Polar: Political & Legal Anthropology Review

. . . ❶ ― (ᴀ) Israel to construct new housing in Hebron settlement after killing of teenage resident
. . . ❶ ― (ᴃ) Amid denial, plans for a new Israeli settlement neighborhood in occupied East Jerusalem looms

  • Background from  Middle East

❷ Meretz Head: “Netanyahu’s Theory Of Running The Conflict Has Collapsed”
❸ Opinion/Analysis:   NETANYAHU’S BLOODY INCITEMENT
❹ POETRY by Yousef Al-Mahmoud
` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` ` `
❶  ISRAELI  CONFISCATION  OF  LAND  SHOWS  440%  INCREASE  IN  2016
Palestine News Network – PNN
June 30, 2016
Israeli confiscation policy has notably escalated in occupied Jerusalem and West Bank by 439% since the beginning of 2016 in comparison to last year, a Palestinian report revealed Tuesday.
___Applied Research Institute – Jerusalem (ARIJ) revealed in a report issued Tuesday that Israeli authorities confiscated since the beginning of the year 7,773 acres of Palestinian-owned lands, recording an increase by 439% in comparison with last year where 1,442 acres were seized.    MORE . . .  

From Polar: Political & Legal Anthropology Review
The settlement of Palestine/Israel has always been bound up with immigration, with the Zionist ideal of the ingathering of exiles . . .  inhabiting newly acquired lands of the emerging polity. . . .  Immigrants accordingly feature in public discourse as either the zealous agents or the mobilized victims of political projects.
___ . . . immigration . . .  raises [questions] about the Israel-Palestine conflict. At the most basic level, it forces one to rethink the role of Middle-East politics in the neoliberal era. Discourse on the West Bank has long been expressed exclusively in terms of the conflicting agendas of its main actors and the political powers they wield. But insofar as settlements are key to the future status of the West Bank, politics is clearly assuming a different role . . . No attempt to understand the current situation in the Middle East, let alone to think through possible solutions, can afford to ignore this insight.
___If normalization grounds settlement practices, it is necessary to question its affects on other coordinates of occupation. . . . [to describe] Israel’s occupation as a process of normalization that shifted sometime in 1990s from direct intervention in the lives and practices of Palestinians to indirect governing through control over infrastructure and resources . . .
___ Indeed, just as normalization obviates consent by Palestinians, the state makes scant efforts to seek legitimacy for settlement policies from its own citizens, who begrudgingly accept them as authoritative. . . . the transparent subjugation of Palestinians becomes instrumental in obfuscating settlers’ own lot, making it seem as though their civic rights and duties grant them far more control over their fate in The West Bank than their less fortunate neighbors. This account of immigrant-settlers suggests otherwise.

  • Weiss, Hadas. “Immigration And West Bank Settlement Normalization.” Polar: Political & Legal Anthropology Review 34.1 (2011): 112-130.   SOURCE

. . . ❶ ― (ᴀ)  ISRAEL  TO  CONSTRUCT  NEW  HOUSING  IN  HEBRON  SETTLEMENT  AFTER  KILLING  OF  TEENAGE  RESIDENT
Ma’an News Agency
July 2, 2016
The Israeli government reportedly approved on Friday the construction of new housing units in the illegal settlement of Kiryat Arba in the southern occupied West Bank district of Hebron, after a Palestinian boy stabbed an Israeli girl to death in her bedroom in the settlement Thursday.      MORE . . . 
. . ❶ ― (ᴃ) AMID DENIAL, PLANS FOR A NEW ISRAELI SETTLEMENT NEIGHBORHOOD IN OCCUPIED EAST JERUSALEM LOOMS
POICA – Monitoring Israeli Colonization Activities in the Palestinian Territories
The Applied Research Institute – Jerusalem
June 11, 2016
At the time the Israeli Municipality of Jerusalem denies any news related to the advancement of a settlement plan near Qalandyia airport, in occupied East Jerusalem, the Israeli Hebrew news website, WALLA, reports that the Jerusalem Municipality is promoting the construction of a new and huge settlement neighborhood on the old airport area north of the Atarot industrial settlement in Jerusalem, near Qalandyia village.  MORE . . .

From  Middle East
The window of opportunity for a two state solution, to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian crisis, is closing rapidly as Israeli settlement expansion and expropriation of Palestinian land and resources in the occupied West Bank accelerates at an unprecedented rate, with Israel setting aside more than 60% of the Territory for the several hundred illegal Israeli settlements and outposts that will be home to more than 500,000 Israeli settlers. [Note: The article continues with descriptions of several examples of settlement expansion.]

  • Frykberg, Mel. “Israeli Plan To Snatch 60% Of The West Bank.” Middle East 444 (2013): 28-31.   ARTICLE. 

❷ MERETZ  HEAD:  “NETANYAHU’S  THEORY  OF  RUNNING  THE  CONFLICT  HAS  COLLAPSED”
International Middle East Media Center – IMEMC
July 3, 2016
Meretz Party head, Israeli Member of Knesset (MK) Zehava Gal-On, stated Saturday that the theory of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of running the conflict has failed, and added that the only solution is ending this conflict through a political solution.
___. . . “Israel must understand that the only solution to stopping the attacks and the escalation is reaching a political soliton to the conflict, and ending this occupation.”
___“The conflict is running us; the recent attacks and threats have proven that the calm we’ve seen was temporary,” the Israeli official said, “Netanyahu’s theory of running the conflict has completely collapsed, and now this conflict is running us.”      MORE . . .  

1-qandiya
Workers and bulldozers work at a construction site on April 14, 2016 in the Israeli settlement of Givat Zeev near the West Bank city of Ramallah. (Photo: Agence France‑Presse)

❸  Opinion/Analysis:  NETANYAHU’S  BLOODY  INCITEMENT
Mondoweiss
Yakov Hirsch
July 1, 2016
Let’s agree on the facts.  One Palestinian male got into a West Bank settlement and killed a 13-year-old Israeli girl in her room with a knife. Nothing more, nothing less. Before her body was cold, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu rushed the same day to make a video for the English speaking world.
___What is the purpose of this Netanyahu video? What more does the world need to know about this terrible event? Why is he showing us her gruesome bloodstained room? Why are we hearing about her teddy bear?
[. . . .]
___Netanyahu is “interpreting” one isolated event for the world, talking about one Palestinian killing one girl, and deriving a political lesson.    MORE . . .

“ENEMY,”  BY  YOUSEF  AL-MAHMOUD

They come from all the ends of the earth to sit among us
they come from the ends of the winds
they bring sickness and a hissing like snakes
they come from the ends of the snows
they come smelling of death
they come with blood-dipping knives
they bring panic and terror
they are utterly not-to-be-trusted
they are utterly murderous
they are proud of their murders, they are drinkers of blood
proud of tooth and nail
even more proud of guns and treachery
they come to burn the love in our hearts
and turn it to torture and bitterness
they bring sorrow, terror, sickness. . .
How have they come to sit among us?
—Translated by DM Black

Yousef Al-Mahmoud is a prominent broadcaster and poet, and former head of the Ministry of Culture in his native Jenin.
From  A  BIRD  IS  NOT  A  STONE:  AN  ANTHOLOGY  OF  CONTEMPORARY  PALESTINIAN  POETRY (Glasgow: Freight Books, 2014) –available from Amazon.com.