Robert Lynn Pruett, Scheduled for Texas execution, Tuesday, April, 28 2015

Robert Lynn Pruett, Scheduled for Texas execution, Tuesday, April, 28 2015

This past Wednesday, the State of Texas once again dramatized its power over the disobedient individual. We, you and I, my Texas friends, murdered Manuel Garza, Jr., on April 15, 2015. We participated in one of the

communicative acts which ‘outrun the immediacies of crime and punishment and speak of broader and more extended issues’ – such as politics, morality and social order (Philip Smith, quoting David Garland –see citations below).

Manuel Garza Jr., Texas executed  Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Manuel Garza Jr., Texas executed Wednesday, April 15, 2015

We have participated in the ritual that

Reinforce[s] the value of the dominant normative system and the need for social order by destroying, humiliating and ridiculing what is defined as evil. Critical theorists, on the other hand, argue that executions dramatize the power of the state and church over the disobedient individual by means of coercing, controlling and manipulating his or her body (Philip Smith).

Kent Sprouse, Texas executed  Thursday, April 9, 2015

Kent Sprouse, Texas executed Thursday, April 9, 2015

We have, perhaps, made another ritual sacrifice, in the sense that

. . . modern executions are more or less undeniably ritualized killings of a human being and so, of course, are those traditional religious practices termed “human sacrifices.” Indeed . . . one is struck by how much attention there is to detail, regulation, and control; the ritualized dimension of these affairs is fairly obvious. . . the ceremonial last meal, the administration of last rites, the last words of the victim, the covering of the head of the prisoner before death, the protection of the identity of the executioner, and the dispersal of responsibility for the death [and the] striking . . . concern to ritualize time, to mark it off and to heighten each and every moment of the process. . . (Brian K. Smith—see citation below)

Manuel Vasquez, Texas executed, Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Manuel Vasquez, Texas executed, Wednesday, March 11, 2015

My opinion of our joining together to murder yet another “victim” is obvious. But there are deeper and more disturbing questions to ask than whether or not one agrees with the state killing of individuals.

Donald Newbury, Texas executed, Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Donald Newbury, Texas executed, Wednesday, February 4, 2015

The question about how to categorize the violence done in a modern execution is thus the same question as that concerning “sacrifice”: is it “legitimate” or even “sacred” killing, or is it “illegitimate” and “criminal”? [The] debate over capital punishment . . . between impure and “illegitimate” violence, on the one hand, and purifying and “legitimate” violence, on the other, [makes] the ritual act of killing . . . no longer a socially “purifying” act but itself the possibility for social dissension—and perhaps even the outbreak of renewed violence (Brian Smith).

The outbreak of renewed violence.

Robert Ladd, Texas executed, Thursday,  January 29, 2015

Robert Ladd, Texas executed, Thursday,
January 29, 2015

Smith, Brian K. “Capital Punishment and Human Sacrifice.” Journal of the American Academy of Religion 68.1 (2000): 3.
Smith, Philip. “Executing executions: Aesthetics, identity, and the problematic narratives of capital punishment ritual.” Theory & Society 25.2 (April 1996), 235-261.
Garland, David. Punishment and Modern Society: A Study in Social Theory. Chicago: University of Chicago Press (1993).

Arnold Prieto, Texas executed, Wednesday,             January 21, 2015

Arnold Prieto, Texas executed, Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Tent of Nations
Tent of Nations

(Please see Palestine InSight for background of this posting. More importantly, please see Tent of Nations website!)

On Tuesday, April 7, 2015 11:01 PM, Ann Hafften wrote on behalf of the The North Texas-Northern Louisiana Mission Area of the ELCA:

Dear friends,
I am sorry to report that the Daoud Nassar events in Denton, Fort Worth and Dallas have been cancelled. It is necessary for Mr. Nassar to be on hand at the family farm right now and in the days to come. Bill Plitt, Executive Director of Friends of Tent of Nations North America, writes:

“As you know, the Nassar family has been fighting in the Israeli courts since 1991 to retain their ownership of the family’s land which was originally purchased and registered in 1916. The local authorities in the Gush Etzion Settlement area, in which the Tent of Nations is located, are now requiring the land be re-registered for the fourth time, and have placed new requirements on the family to provide additional evidence in their application. The deadline for doing so is April 21st.

“Continually shortened times allowed for response to these requirements are making it more difficult for Daoud to be away from the land, and the family is fearful that some kind of unforeseen action will be taken against the land, and think this is more likely if he is out of the country.

“As you know, life under the occupation is not only oppressive, but unpredictable for Palestinians. The rules often change on the spur of the moment. It’s amazing how resilient the Palestinian people have been under such circumstances. We hope you will continue to lift up the Nassar family and all Palestinians in your prayer and action.”

Thank you for your patience and understanding. We look forward to another opportunity to hear the witness of Tent of Nations in the NT-NL mission.
Easter blessings of joy!
Ann Hafften
Weatherford, Texas
tol-boys_photo

____________
“Holy Landers,” by Lahab Assef Al-Jundi

Listen!
You are fighting over a land that can fit,
with wilderness to spare,
in the Panhandle of Texas.

You are building walls to segregate,
splitting wholes till little is left,
killing and dying for pieces of sky
in the same window.

The olive trees are dying
of embarrassment.
They have enough fruits
and pits for all of you.
All they want is for you to stop
uprooting them.
Sending your children to die
in their names.

Listen!
Your land is no holier than my backyard.
None of you is any more chosen
than the homeless veteran panhandling
with a God Bless cardboard sign
at the light of Mecca
and San Pedro.

Draw a borderline around the place.
Call it home for all the living,
all the dead,
all the tired exiles with its dust
gummed on their tongues.

There are no heroes left.

Lahab Assef Al-Jundi was born, and grew up, in Damascus, Syria. Attended The University of Texas in Austin, where he graduated with a degree in Electrical Engineering. Not long after graduation, he discovered his passion for writing. He published his first poetry collection, “A Long Way”, in 1985. His poetry has appeared in numerous literary publications, and many Anthologies including: “In These Latitudes, Ten Contemporary Poets”, edited by Robert Bonazzi, “Inclined to Speak, An Anthology of Contemporary Arab American Poetry”, edited by Hayan Charara, and “Between Heaven and Texas”, edited by Naomi Shihab Nye.

http://brightgreenscotland.org/index.php/2010/06/demolishing-peace-in-palestine-tent-by-tent/
http://brightgreenscotland.org/index.php/2010/06/demolishing-peace-in-palestine-tent-by-tent/

The WALL and olive trees near Bethlehem

The WALL and olive trees near Bethlehem

TWO SPEAKERS AND A POET

Thursday, April 16, 7:00 P.M.
DR. ROBERT ASHMORE, JR.
Northaven United Methodist Church
11211 Preston Road, Dallas

Sunday, April 19, 10:30 A.M.
DR. ROBERT ASHMORE, JR.
Dallas Hall
Southern Methodist University

Sunday, April 19, 6:30 P.M.
DAOUD NASSER
Trinity Lutheran Church
3621 Tulsa Way, Fort Worth

Tuesday April 21, 7:00 P.M.
DAOUD NASSER
Bethany Lutheran Church, Nelson Hall
10101 Walnut Hill, Dallas

DAOUD NASSER WILL SHARE THE MESSAGE OF TENT OF NATIONS.

daoud-nassar_72dpiMr. Nasser is from Bethlehem and a member of Christmas Lutheran Church there. He is a leader in the Tent of Nations organization.

Tent of Nations seeks to prepare young people in Palestine to make positive contributions to their society through the values of understanding and peaceful coexistence. The organic farm where the education and work camps take place is under threat of confiscation by the Israeli military. It is about 33 miles southwest of Bethlehem.

The Nassar family land is located in the fertile hill country 9 KM southwest of Bethlehem in the West Bank, in an area totally controlled by Israel per the Oslo Agreement of 1993.
In fulfillment of his father’s dream to establish an institute for the building of peace and coexistence on the family land, Daoud Nassar, grandson of Daher Nassar who purchased the land in 1916, established The Tent of Nations. Tent of Nations has established projects to develop and protect the land and to make the land a center for people from different countries to come together and build bridges of trust and hope.

In May 2014, the Israeli military bulldozed 1,500 productive fruit trees growing on the Nasser farm. Daoud Nasser will explain the challenges facing his family’s farming efforts from the military and surrounding Israeli settlements. (More. . .)

Daoud Nasser’s presentation is part of the NT-NL Mission’s participation in the ELCA strategy: Peace Not Walls: Stand for Justice in the Holy Land.

DR. ROBERT ASHMORE, JR., WILL SPEAK ABOUT THE HUMAN RIGHTS AND ETHICS OF THE PALESTINIAN/ISRAELI SITUATION.

robert ashmore-001Dr. Ashmore is professor emeritus of philosophy and former director of the center for ethics studies at Marquette University. He serves on the national advisory board of Middle East Policy Council, and is a member of both Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International.

He is a native of Dallas.

As director of Marquette’s Center for Ethics Studies, Ashmore received two successive grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Active since 1982 on human rights issues relating to the Middle East conflicts, Ashmore has made many trips the West Bank and Gaza, and Israel. He serves on the national advisory board of Middle East Policy Council, and is a member of both Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International.

Dr. Ashmore also serves on the boards of the Center for Peacemaking at Marquette University, and the Wisconsin Chapter of American Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC).

Dr. Ashmore’s publications include a chapter titled “State Terrorism and Its Sponsors” in Philosophical Perspectives on the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, edited by Tomis Kapitan (M.E. Sharpe, 1997); “Israel and South Africa: A Natural Alliance,” The Link, Oct. 1988, Vo. 21, No. 4; “The Crusades Then and Now,” The Link, July 2002, Vo. 35, No. 3;
“Palestinian Universities Under Israeli Occupation—A Human Rights Analysis,” American Arab Affairs, Spring 1986, No. 16; “Nonviolence as an Intifada Strategy,” American Arab Affairs, Spring 1990, No. 32.

Dr. Ashmore’s presentations are sponsored by
Northaven United Methodist Church 2015 Speaker Series: Faith Voices on Justice
Embrey Human Rights Program Southern Methodist University
and by The Dallas Area Christian Progressive Alliance

“JERUSALEM,” BY NAOMI SHIHAB NYE

“Let’s be the same wound if we must bleed.
Let’s fight side by side, even if the enemy
is ourselves: I am yours, you are mine.”
—Tommy Olofsson, Sweden

I’m not interested in
who suffered the most.
I’m interested in
people getting over it.

Once when my father was a boy
a stone hit him on the head.
Hair would never grow there.
Our fingers found the tender spot
and its riddle: the boy who has fallen
stands up. A bucket of pears
in his mother’s doorway welcomes him home.
The pears are not crying.
Later his friend who threw the stone
says he was aiming at a bird.
And my father starts growing wings.

Each carries a tender spot:
something our lives forgot to give us.
A man builds a house and says,
“I am native now.”
A woman speaks to a tree in place
of her son. And olives come.
A child’s poem says,
“I don’t like wars,
they end up with monuments.”
He’s painting a bird with wings
wide enough to cover two roofs at once.

Why are we so monumentally slow?
Soldiers stalk a pharmacy:
big guns, little pills.
If you tilt your head just slightly
it’s ridiculous.

There’s a place in my brain
where hate won’t grow.
I touch its riddle: wind, and seeds.
Something pokes us as we sleep.

It’s late but everything comes next.

Naomi Shihab Nye was born on March 12, 1952, in St. Louis, Missouri, to a Palestinian father and an American mother. During her high school years, she lived in Ramallah in Palestine, the Old City in Jerusalem, and San Antonio, Texas, where she later received her BA in English and world religions from Trinity University.

Nye is the author of numerous books of poems, including Transfer (BOA Editions, 2011); You and Yours (BOA Editions, 2005), which received the Isabella Gardner Poetry Award; 19 Varieties of Gazelle: Poems of the Middle East (Greenwillow Books, 2002), a collection of new and selected poems about the Middle East; Fuel (BOA Editions, 1998); Red Suitcase (BOA Editions, 1994); and Hugging the Jukebox (Far Corner Books, 1982).
naomi_shihab_nye

Posted by: Harold Knight | 03/05/2015

PLEASE TRANSFER TO MY NEW BLOG

holy land 2 080THIS BLOG IS MOVING TO

https://palestineinsight.wordpress.com/

photo(1)-002IN ORDER TO PREVENT CONFUSION

BETWEEN THE PRESENTATION OF INFORMATION,

OPINION, NEWS, AND POETRY FROM PALESTINE

and my personal writing.

I have chosen a photo of the Palestinian desert for this post, first, because I love the desert whatever continent it is on (I took this picture in the summer of 2008).
But more importantly, this photo seems to me representative of the stunning beauty of Palestine
which not everyone can see. Yet. Isaiah 35:1:

The wilderness and the dry land shall be glad,
   the desert shall rejoice and blossom;
like the crocus; it shall blossom abundantly,
   and rejoice with joy and singing.

Note: When I have completed the change to Palestine InSight, I will again take this blog up as a space for my personal writing.

Samia Khoury

Samia Khoury

Samia Khoury puts the Netanyahu/Boehner circus into proper perspective.
(About Samia Khoury)

In his speech to the American Congress today, the prime minister of Israel , Benjamin Netanyahu,  said: “ Alliance between the USA and Israel should be above Politics.”

Really Mr. Netanyahu!!!! It is all about politics. When the prime minister chose to address the American Congress two weeks before the Israeli elections, and when his main focus in the speech was Iran , and the negotiations going on between it and the USA , he is indeed making a political statement. The mere fact that the invitation to Mr. Netanyahu to address the congress was not coordinated with President Obama is again a political statement. It is ironic that the Prime Minister whose country could not have been established or could have survived without the support of the USA and its presidents, including Mr. Obama, finds it fit to barge into this  controversial scene and split the congress and the administration. (Entire post)
Fadwa Tuqan

Fadwa Tuqan

“The Deluge and the Tree,” by Fadwa Tuqan
When the hurricane swirled and spread its deluge
of dark evil
onto the good green land
‘they’ gloated. The Western skies
reverberated with joyous accounts:
“The Tree has fallen!
The great trunk is smashed! The hurricane leaves no life in the Tree
Had the Tree really fallen?
Never! Not with our red streams flowing forever,
not while the wine of our thorn limbs
fed the thirsty roots,
Arab roots alive
tunneling deep, deep, into the land!
When the Tree rises up, the branches
shall flourish green and fresh in the sun
the laughter of the Tree shall leaf
beneath the sun
and birds shall return
Undoubtedly, the birds shall return.
The birds shall return.
(About Fadwa Tuqan)
Jerusalem, Damascus Gate

Jerusalem, Damascus Gate

photo.

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eiHOW EU-US TRADE DEAL COULD THWART “BOYCOTT ISRAEL” CAMPAIGN
Ryvka Barnard and John Hilary
19 February 2015
Two members of the US Congress have introduced a bill that would turn a giant trade deal between the EU and US into a devastating weapon against the people of Palestine and all those seeking justice alongside them. Together with the proposed Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) that is currently under negotiation, the proposed bill would compel all 28 EU member states to crack down on European groups participating in the growing movement of boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against Israel in solidarity with the Palestinian people.

In order to combat the increasing isolation of Israel in global public opinion, European governments would effectively be turned into police agents for the US. (More. . .)

IMECOXFAM: GAZA RECONSTRUCTION COULD TAKE OVER A CENTURY TO COMPLETE
Friday February 27, 2015
British rights organization, Oxfam, stated that the reconstruction of the Gaza Strip may take more than 100 years, at the current rate, to complete essential building of homes, schools and health facilities unless the Israeli blockade is lifted. (More. . .)

ISRAELI ATTORNEY-GENERAL TO DECIDE ON CRIMINAL PROBE OF NETANYAHU
Saturday February 28, 2015
Israeli Attorney-General Yehuda Weinstein will decide, on Sunday, whether or not to launch a criminal investigation into the various affairs regarding the spending at Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s official residence, after Israel Police Commissioner Yohanan Danino announced, earlier this week, that there is room to open a formal examination against Netanyahu. (More. . .)

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palestine news networkJOINT STATEMENT BY 30 INTERNATIONAL AID AGENCIES: “WE MUST NOT FAIL IN GAZA”.
Thursday, 26 February 2015
Six months have passed since a ceasefire on 26 August 2014 ended over seven weeks of fighting between Israeli forces and Palestinian armed groups in the Gaza Strip. The limited progress in rebuilding the lives of those affected and tackling the root causes of the conflict have alarmed many UN agencies and international NGOs operating in Gaza.

The Israeli-imposed blockade continues, the political process, along with the economy, is paralyzed, and living conditions have worsened. Reconstruction and repairs to the tens of thousands of homes, hospitals, and schools damaged or destroyed in the fighting has been sadly slow.  (More. . .)

photo(3)-001.

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TWIP-homepage-logo-betaTHE JERUSALEM BLUES: A PORTRAIT OF THE CITY
By: Ali Qleibo
Issue 202.5, February 015
I had arrived early for my daily walk with my friend Abed. I took a seat on the stairway leading to Damascus Gate and whiled away the time watching the hubbub below.

“You could not have chosen any better position from which to enjoy the city!” An aged man patronized me from under his long camel-hair overcoat, abayeh, as he dashed past me. I did not recognize the presumptuous voice. “In Amman, they crave to be in your position,” he added without stopping. Before I could identify him he had disappeared into the crowds entering the city gate. (More. . .)

Dr. Ali Qleibo is an anthropologist, author, and artist. A specialist in the social history of Jerusalem and Palestinian peasant culture, he is the author of Before the Mountains Disappear, Jerusalem in the Heart, and Surviving the Wall, an ethnographic chronicle of contemporary Palestinians and their roots in ancient Semitic civilisations. Dr.Qleibo lectures at Al-Quds University.

photo(2).

“CURFEW,” by Ibtisam Barakat

Our city is a cell
Children’s faces
Are replacing
Flower pots on
Window sills.
And we are waiting.

From our bars
Of boredom
We enter
A spit race
The one whose spit
Reaches farther
Is freer.

We look to the sky
Squint our questions.

We turn the sun
Into a kite
Hold it with a ray
Till it is torn up
Inside the horizon.

And the light is
Peeled off the ground
A page in a bedtime story
We do not understand.

Our questions remain
A yeast
Inside our chests,
Rising.

Ibtisam Barakat is a Palestinian-American writer, poet, and educator. She was born in Beit Hanina, near Jerusalem.
Barakat received her Bachelor’s degree from Bir Zeit University, near Ramallah in the West Bank. In 1986, she moved to New York City, where she interned with The Nation magazine. She went on to earn a Master’s degree in Journalism and Human Development and Family Studies from the University of Missouri.
Her childhood memoir, Tasting the Sky: A Palestinian Childhood, about growing up under Israeli occupation following the 1967 Six-Day War, was published in 2007 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux and won numerous awards and honors, including the Middle East Council Best Literature Book Award, 2007.

Jerusalem Temple Mount

Jerusalem Temple Mount

(A blog linking to information about PALESTINE not available in mainstream media.
“Online Resources” above lists helpful sites. Works by Palestinian poets close all posts.)

Eleven-year-old Firas al-Shirafi plays the ganun

Eleven-year-old Firas al-Shirafi plays the ganun

eiLISTEN: ELEVEN-YEAR-OLD GAZA MUSICIAN PLAYS QANUN
Rami Almeghari
Gaza City
24 February 2015
Eleven-year-old Firas al-Shirafi has experienced three major offensives against Gaza during his short life. Last summer, he was confined to his home in the Tal al-Hawa neighborhood of Gaza City as it was too dangerous to venture outside. As Israel bombed and shelled buildings and infrastructure across the Strip, Firas did his best to replace the sounds of destruction with life-affirming tunes.

“The only shelter for me was my music,” said Firas, who plays the qanun, a traditional string instrument.

JASMINE FESTIVAL, MARCH 3-10, Ramallah, Jerusalem
The Jasmine Festival is an annual festival that has been primarily hosted in Ramallah since the spring of 2011, with concerts also held in several other Palestinian towns and cities such as Bethlehem, Nablus, Shafamer, Jerusalem and Hebron, as well as the occupied Syrian Golan Heights. The Jasmine Music Festival highlights genres such as Jazz, Western Classical music, Contemporary Arabic music, Sufi and traditional music from India, and traditional and folkloric music from Palestine and the world, and as such is an integral part of the ESNCM mission to promote music in Palestinian society in its different genres and forms.

IMECABBAS, ARAB LEAGUE, DENOUNCE ISRAELI ATTACKS ON HOLY SITES
By Saed Bannoura
Friday February 27, 2015 13:33 – IMEMC News
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas issued a statement denouncing the Israeli attacks on Islamic and Christian holy sites in occupied Palestine, and called for international protection. Arab League condemns latest assaults, demands protection to holy sites.

SOLDIERS INVADE TOWN NEAR SALFIT
Friday February 27, 2015 10:11
Several Israeli military vehicles invaded, on Friday at dawn, Kuful Hares town, east of the central West Bank city of Salfit, to accompany Israelis touring archaeological sites in the town. Dozens of Palestinians suffer effects of teargas inhalation in Bethlehem.

palestineTHE TRUTH ABOUT ROOT CAUSES OF TERRORISM
by Ramzy Baroud, February 26, 2015

Truly, US President Barack Obama’s recent call to address the root causes of violence, including that of the so-called “Islamic State” (IS) and al-Qaeda was a step in the right direction, but still miles away from taking the least responsibility for the mayhem that has afflicted the Middle East since the US invasion of Iraq in 2003.

Palestinian-American journalist, author, editor, Ramzy Baroud (www.ramzybaroud.net) taught Mass Communication at Australia’s Curtin University of Technology, and is Editor-in-Chief of the Palestine Chronicle. Baroud’s work has been published in hundreds of newspapers and journals worldwide and his books “His books “Searching Jenin: Eyewitness Accounts of the Israeli Invasion” and “The Second Palestinian Intifada: A Chronicle of a People’s Struggle” have received international recognition. Baroud’s third book, “My Father Was a Freedom Fighter: Gaza’s Untold Story” (Pluto Press, December 18, 2014) narrates the story of the life of his family, used as a representation of millions of Palestinians in Diaspora, starting in the early 1940’s until the present time.

WILL THEY BELIEVE, by Ghassan Zaqtan
Will the children forgive the generation
trampled by horses of war, exile and preparation for departure?
Will they think of us as we were:
ambushes in ravines
we’d shake our jealousy
and carve trees into the earth’s shirt
to sit under
we the factional fighters
who’d shoo the clouds of war out of their carriages
and peer around our eternal siege
or catch the dead
like sudden fruit fallen on a wasteland?
Will the children forgive what we were:
missile shepherds and masters of exile and chaotic celebration
whenever a neighboring war gestured to us
we’d rise
to set up in its braids a place
good for love and residence?
The bombing rarely took a rest
the missile launchers rarely returned unharmed
we rarely picked flowers for the dead or went on
with our lives
If only that summer had
given us a bit of time’s space
before our mad departure
Will they believe?

Born near Bethlehem, Palestinian poet, novelist, and editor Ghassan Zaqtan has lived in Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, and Tunisia. A poet who writes primarily in Arabic, Zaqtan is the author of numerous collections of poetry, including Early Morning (1980), Ordering Descriptions: Selected Poems (1998), and Like a Straw Bird It Follows Me (2012, translated by Fady Joudah); the novel Describing the Past (1995); and the play The Narrow Sea, which was honored at the 1994 Cairo Festival.

main-image

(A blog linking to information about PALESTINE not available in mainstream media.
“Online Resources” above lists helpful sites. Works by Palestinian poets close all posts.)

“EFFECT OF TRAUMA DUE TO WAR. . ."

“EFFECT OF TRAUMA DUE TO WAR. . .”

$1000 SCHOLARSHIPS AVAILABLE
Interfaith Peace-Builders is offering two $1,000 Scholarships for students and young adults who travel on Interfaith Peace-Builders’ July/August 2015 Delegation. In addition to the two $1000 scholarships, anyone who applies will also be considered for smaller financial aid packages from IFPB, ranging from $250 – $500. Our delegations are the core of Interfaith Peace-Builders’ work. . . IFPB delegations expose participants to perspectives that are not readily available in North America. Meetings with diverse representatives of Palestinian and Israeli society focus particularly on those working nonviolently for a resolution to the conflict and an end to the occupation.

IFPB Delegation, August, 2013

IFPB Delegation, August, 2013

Delegates see the Wall, checkpoints, and demolished homes and learn how these and much more affect Palestinians.

Likewise, delegates hear from Israelis about the effects of the conflict on Israeli society. The experiential learning that the delegation fosters is intended to motivate action for change when delegates return.

haaretz

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ABUSING THE PALESTINIAN CORPSE
Controlling the water, electricity and taxes, Israel’s mob – IEC, Customs and the infrastructure ministry – shows the Palestinian Authority who’s the boss.
By Zvi Bar’el | Feb. 25, 2015
There is no closure on the West Bank: Citizens can go out in the streets, travel, spend time in Ramallah’s discotheques and renovate their homes. Paradise.

But just so they won’t forget where they came from, and where they’re going, Israel reminds them that their ship of fools is no more than a corpse tossed to the side of the road, with every passerby permitted to kick it or spit on it. (Full story)

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fmepWASHINGTON POST GIVES HUCKABEE A PLATFORM ON ISRAEL
Mitchell Plitnick
February 25, 2015
As a Jew, I would be absolutely appalled to read these sentences: “The Huckabeeans also heard from Muhammed Tamimi, national president of the Arab Organization of America, who explained to the group, according to

Huckabee, that there’s really no such thing as the ‘Jewish People.’ ‘The idea that they have a long history here, dating back hundreds or thousands of years, is not true,’ Huckabee said.”

In fact, what appeared in the front-page article of today’s Washington Post read, “The Huckabeeans also heard from Morton Klein, national president of the Zionist Organization of America, who explained to the group, according to Huckabee, that there’s really no such thing as the ‘Palestinians.’ ‘The idea that they have a long history, dating back hundreds or thousands of years, is not true,’ Huckabee said.”

Aside from mentioning that prospective GOP presidential candidate Mike Huckabee and his group would not be visiting Ramallah or meeting with any Palestinians, there was no mention of the Palestinians in this piece at all. (Full Story)

THREE ACADEMIC JOURNAL ARTICLES ON CHILDREN IN PALESTINE

Giacaman, Rita, et al. “MENTAL HEALTH, SOCIAL DISTRESS AND POLITICAL OPPRESSION: THE CASE OF THE OCCUPIED PALESTINIAN TERRITORY.” Global Public Health 6.5 (2011): 547-559.
Rita Giacaman, Yoke Rabaia, Viet Nguyen-Gillham, Rajaie Batniji, Raija-Leena Punamaki, and Derek Summerfield

This paper presents a brief history of Palestinian mental health care, a discussion of the current status of mental health and

health services in the occupied Palestinian territory, and a critique of the biomedical Western-led discourse as it relates to the mental health needs of Palestinians. Medicalising distress and providing psychological therapies for Palestinians offer little in the way of alleviating the underlying causes of ongoing collective trauma. This paper emphasises the importance of separating clinical responses to mental illness from the public health response to mass political violation and distress. . . Recognising social suffering as a public mental health issue requires a shift in the emphasis from narrow medical indicators, injury and illness to the lack of human security and human rights violations experienced by ordinary Palestinians. . . [and requires] development of a sustainable system of public mental health services, in combination with advocacy for human rights and the restoration of political, historical and moral justice. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR] (Full Article)

Abdelziz Thabet, “EFFECT OF TRAUMA DUE TO WAR ON DISSOCIATIVE SYMPTOMS AND RESILIENCE AMONG PALESTINIAN ADOLESCENTS IN THE GAZA STRIP.” The Arab Journal of Psychiatry (2014) Vol. 25 No. 2

As well as the obvious physical damage, Israel’s attacks will leave a severe psychological mark on Gaza’s

EFFECT OF TRAUMA DUE TO WAR

EFFECT OF TRAUMA DUE TO WAR

surviving children. Three months after the last period of bombing ended, in January 2009, Abdelziz Thabet, a child psychiatrist at Al-Quds University in the Gaza Strip, studied the effects of the bombing on Palestinian children.

The (2008) Gaza war lasted three weeks and saw 1100 Palestinians and 13 Israelis . Of the 358 teenagers Thabet studied, 30 per cent were left with full-blown post-traumatic stress disorder. Most other teenagers presented some PTSD symptoms, and only 12 per cent had no symptoms. The study was published in the May issue of the Arab Journal of Psychiatry, just a month before the 2014 campaign began. (Full article)

Al-Krenawi, Alean, and John R. Graham. “THE IMPACT OF POLITICAL VIOLENCE ON PSYCHOSOCIAL FUNCTIONING OF INDIVIDUALS AND FAMILIES: THE CASE OF PALESTINIAN ADOLESCENTS.”Child & Adolescent Mental Health 17.1 (2012): 14-22.

The impact of political violence on the psychosocial functioning of adolescents and their families was compared for surveyed populations from two regions of Palestine. Method: A randomly-selected sample of 971 adolescents (521 from the West Bank and 450 from the Gaza Strip regions, 42% male/57% female) completed scales measuring traumatic event, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), peer relations, mental health, aggression, and family functioning. Results: (1) West Bank participants reported a significantly higher level of exposure to political violence and significantly more aggression, mental health symptoms, problems in family and social functioning; (2) Participants exposed to greater political violence reported higher levels of depression, hostility, paranoid ideation, and PTSD; (3) Economic status and level of parental education were related to reduced levels of mental health symptoms and greater family functioning; (4) There were gendered differences. Conclusions: The study provides a starting point to begin to compare the experiences and outcomes between Palestinian adolescents in the West Bank and Gaza Strip and a basis for considering implications for service delivery and policy makers concerned with the wellbeing of Palestinian communities. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]  (Full article)

MIMESI, by Fady Joudah

My daughter
wouldn’t hurt a spider
That had nested
Between her bicycle handles
For two weeks
She waited
Until it left of its own accord

If you tear down the web I said
It will simply know
This isn’t a place to call home
And you’d get to go biking

She said that’s how others
Become refugees isn’t it?

From Alight. Copyright © 2013 by Fady Joudah
Fady Joudah is a Palestinian-American poet and physician. He is the 2007 winner of the Yale Series of Younger Poets Competition for his collection of poems The Earth in the Attic. He was born January 1, 1971 (age 44), Austin, TX.

(A blog linking to information about PALESTINE not available in mainstream media.
“Online Resources” above lists helpful sites. Works by Palestinian poets close all posts.)

Saleh Abu Shamsiya, a 10-year-old Palestinian boy playing in the snow

Saleh Abu Shamsiya, a 10-year-old Palestinian boy playing in the snow

St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Opinion
U.S. TAX MONEY HELPS KEEP PALESTINIANS IN OPEN-AIR PRISON
Madeline Buthod • St. Louis
February 21, 2015

Regarding the Washington Post article “Israel’s Netanyahu spent $24,000 on takeout” (Feb. 18):

It reported that his exorbitant spending on personal affairs violates ethical standards and could potentially raise criminal issues. While spending tax dollars on takeout food should raise concerns, I’d like to argue that the occupation of the West Bank and mass murder of thousands of Gazans should raise much higher red flags about ethical violations.

I recently spent two weeks in Israel/Palestine as an Interfaith Peace-Builder delegate. During my visit, I met farmers whose orchard had been bulldozed by Israeli authorities. I met other farmers who were separated from their land by an electrified fence. I met people who had family members shot at, arrested or killed for nonviolently trying to keep the separation wall from being built on their farm. (Full letter)

amp header.600American Muslims for Palestine
US AID TO ISRAEL – 2015 FACT SHEET

Total American aid to Israel since 1949 exceeds $121 billion (in non-inflation-adjusted dollars).

In 2007, President George Bush and Israel entered into a 10-year Memoradum of Understanding that would give Israel $30 billion in Foreign Military Assitance.

At the completion of this 10-year-plan in 2018, the U.S. will have given Israel $30 billion in unconditional military aid. The United States awards this grant in one lump sum, unlike other foreign recipients, which receive their payments in installments. Israel uses the interest it earns on this amount to pay down its debt to the United States, valued at $455 million in January 2013. In his March 2013 visit to Israel, President Barack Obama pledged to continue multi-year aid packages to Israel through 2028. (Full report)

cpt-001Christian Peacemaker Teams Palestine
WHOSE TOWNS ARE ALLOWED TO GROW? DEMOLITIONS IN IDHNA AND THE BAQA’A VALLEY

by Member of the Christian Peacemaker Teams Palestine
January 21, 2015

DEMOLITION IN IDHNA
Last week Christian Peacemaker Team members drove out of Hebron with our Palestinian partner organizations the Land Research Centre and Al-Haq. Our purpose of driving through the rocky hills with their terraced farms was to see the results of more Israeli demolitions that happened just before the recent big storm. While our destination was only thirteen kilometres as the crow flies – it was much longer, because we needed to navigate around the complex settler road system, and of course Palestinians aren’t allowed on them all.

We arrived in the town of Idhna, a village that that has existed since the Bronze Age. The Green Line (1949 armistice line) lies just a kilometre away, and from the village you can see the Israeli ‘security fence’ cutting across the Palestinian farmland. (Full report)

IMECInternational Middle East Media Center
10-YEAR-OLD BOY ATTACKED AND ARRESTED FOR PLAYING IN THE SNOW

Monday February 23, 2015

On the afternoon of the 21st of February Saleh Abu Shamsiya, a 10-year-old Palestinian boy, was attacked by settler youth in the Al-Khalil (Hebron) neighborhood of Tel Rumeida. (Full account)

ISRAEL BEGINS CUTTING OFF ELECTRICITY TO WEST BANK
Monday February 23, 2015
Israel’s Electric Corporation announced, Monday, that it will begin limiting the supply of electricity to a number of cities in the West Bank beginning from 2.00 p.m. today. (Full account)
_________
The Middle East Magazine

TROUBLED WATERS
Kerry Hutchinson,
February 2014

While statistics can be produced to manipulate whatever ‘fact’ the proposer wishes to establish as a ground truth, nature is oblivious to such human data manipulations – her truths are immutable. The man-made ‘truths’ over water in the Occupied Territories vary depending on whose statistics you believe. One set of figures show the Palestinians have adequate water supplies, whereas others indicate they are being denied access to even the most basic water needs. The reality involves vast disparity, widespread mismanagement and overall indifference from those in a position to instigate change.

Clearly, each side is stealing water from the other. Israeli settlers assault Palestinian farmers and fence off access to Palestinian water sources, or turn them into ‘tourist attractions’, before denying access to Arabs on so called ‘security grounds’. Palestinians syphon off what they can, at personal risk, to circumvent the draconian restrictions imposed upon them. However, what remains undeniable is that while water is freely available to fill the swimming pools of some, it remains off-limits to others to drink or cultivate crops. (Full article, available from Liberal Democrat Friends of Palestine; an organization of the Liberal Democrat Party of the UK.)

.

“REVENGE,” by Taha Muhammad Ali (1931-2011)
translated by Peter Cole, Yahya Hijazi and Gabriel Levin. 21 December 2006.

At times … I wish
I could meet in a duel
the man who killed my father
and razed our home,
expelling me
into
a narrow country.
And if he killed me,
I’d rest at last,
and if I were ready—
I would take my revenge!
*
But if it came to light,
when my rival appeared,
that he had a mother
waiting for him,
or a father who’d put
his right hand over
the heart’s place in his chest
whenever his son was late
even by just a quarter-hour
for a meeting they’d set—
then I would not kill him,
even if I could.
*
Likewise … I
would not murder him
if it were soon made clear
that he had a brother or sisters
who loved him and constantly longed to see him.
Or if he had a wife to greet him
and children who
couldn’t bear his absence
and whom his gifts would thrill.
Or if he had
friends or companions,
neighbours he knew
or allies from prison
or a hospital room,
or classmates from his school …
asking about him
and sending him regards.
*
But if he turned
out to be on his own—
cut off like a branch from a tree—
without a mother or father,
with neither a brother nor sister,
wifeless, without a child,
and without kin or neighbours or friends,
colleagues or companions,
then I’d add not a thing to his pain
within that aloneness—
not the torment of death,
and not the sorrow of passing away.
Instead I’d be content
to ignore him when I passed him by
on the street—as I
convinced myself
that paying him no attention
in itself was a kind of revenge.

“Revenge” was initially published by TWO LINES: World Writing in Translation, along with a short introduction to the poet and the poem by Peter Cole. The poem was read by Taha Muhammad Ali and Peter Cole at the 11th Dodge Poetry Festival in Stanhope, New Jersey. Taha Muhammad Ali lived in Nazareth. When he was not reading and writing poetry, he ran a souvenir shop. Peter Cole is a poet, translator and editor, and has been visiting professor at Wesleyan University and Middlebury College. He lives in Jerusalem. This poem is distributed by the Common Ground News Service (CGNews) and can be accessed at http://www.commongroundnews.org.

Mandate Era postcard of Nazareth

Mandate Era postcard of Nazareth

(A blog linking to information about PALESTINE not available in mainstream media.
“Online Resources” above lists helpful sites. Works by Palestinian poets close all posts.)

haaretz.

NETANYAHU’S REAL VICTIM? THE AMERICAN JEWISH ESTABLISHMENT
A new, GOP-centered Jewish alliance powered by Sheldon Adelson is gradually taking its place.
By Peter Beinart,  February 11, 2015

Who are Benjamin Netanyahu’s American victims? Not Barack Obama. Despite Bibi’s best efforts, he’s still in office, and

Casino Billionaire, Patron-at-large

Casino Billionaire, Patron-at-large

retains the affections of most American Jews. Not the left-wing activists who oppose a Jewish state within any borders: Bibi’s settlement mania has been a bonanza for them. “We’ve got to give credit to. . .
. . . Bibi’s longtime patron, Sheldon Adelson. If the old American Jewish establishment tries to combine support for Israeli policy with domestic tolerance, the new American Jewish establishment is nakedly Islamophobic. Adelson, for instance, is on record as saying that “the Muslims…want to kill all Jews.” The ZOA sponsors talks by anti-Muslim bigot Pamela Geller.
(Full article)

fmepTHE UNITED STATES AND ISRAEL AT A CROSSROADS – Report/Resource
February 19, 2015
Today, the U.S-Israel bilateral relationship stands at a crossroads.
Increasingly the national interests of the two countries – and in particular its current leaders — are diverging. While the latest crisis is focused on the nuclear talks with Iran, on no issue does this divide have greater long-term implications for U.S. interests in the region than the creation of two states, Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and security. For the United States, this is an imperative; for the current Israeli government it is not.
(Full story)

new yorkerLetter from Jerusalem
“THE ONE-STATE REALITY.” ISRAEL’S CONSERVATIVE PRESIDENT SPEAKS UP FOR CIVILITY, AND PAYS A PRICE
By David Remnick, November 17, 2014
Reuven (Ruvi) Rivlin, the new President of Israel, is ardently opposed to the establishment of a Palestinian state. He is instead a proponent of Greater Israel, one Jewish state from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea. He professes to be mystified that anyone should object to the continued construction of Jewish settlements in the West Bank: “It can’t be ‘occupied territory’ if the land is your own.”
. . . since Rivlin was elected President, in June, he has become Israel’s most unlikely moralist. Rivlin. . . has emerged as the most prominent critic of racist rhetoric, jingoism, fundamentalism, and sectarian violence, the highest-ranking advocate among Jewish Israelis for the civil rights of the Palestinians both in Israel and in the occupied territories. Last month, he told an academic conference in Jerusalem, “It is time to honestly admit that Israel is sick, and it is our duty to treat this illness.” (Full story)

eiISRAELI FOREIGN MINISTER ON FACEBOOK: PALESTINIAN PRISONERS SHOULD BE EXECUTED
Patrick Strickland, Thursday 02/19/2015
Israel’s hardline right-wing foreign minister Avigdor Lieberman plans to introduce a bill into the country’s parliament, the Knesset, which would implement the death penalty for Palestinian political prisoners in Israeli lockup. (Full story)

PALESTINIANS FIGHT BACK AGAINST ISRAEL’S LAWLESSNESS.wrmeaorgbannerlogo7
Washington Report on Middle East Affairs (2015).
By Rachelle Marshall
For nearly 70 years, Palestinians under Israeli occupation have endured expulsion from their homes, theft of their land, arbitrary imprisonment, torture, humiliation and devastating bombing attacks with remarkable forbearance. Since taking office in 2005 Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has tested that forbearance to the limit. But as recent events suggest, their patience may be exhausted.

With an Israeli government openly opposed to an independent Palestinian state, the massacre of 2,200 Gazans in Operation Protective Edge, the burning to death by Israelis of 16-year-old Mohammed Abu Khdeir, and thousands more Jewish settlers scheduled to move into Arab East Jerusalem, angry Palestinians took action using the only means they had—stone throwing and knife attacks. Netanyahu’s response was a pledge to “use an iron fist” against the mostly teenage protesters.

Between July and early November, 800 young Palestinians were arrested, scores of them under 18. Police didn’t hesitate to shoot children. Among the victims were Fatima Panjabi, 11, and her 4-year-old cousin Ahmad. Another child, Saleh Mahmoud, 11, was blinded in one eye when he was shot in the face. Bahaa Mousa Bader, 13, Orwah Abdel Hammad, 14, and 15-year-old Mohamed Sinokrot were killed by police bullets. The slain children were among the 53 Palestinians. . .
(Full story)

monitorCOULD OFFICIAL’S DEATH MEAN THE END OF PALESTINIAN SECURITY TIES WITH ISRAEL?
By Christa Case Bryant, December 10, 2014
Jerusalem — “If anyone asks about the Palestinian Gandhi, he is dead.”
That’s how one Palestinian on Twitter summed up the events of Wednesday, in which Ziad Abu

Ziad Abu Ein, the late Palestinian Ghandi

Ziad Abu Ein, the late Palestinian Ghandi

Ein, a senior Palestinian Authority (PA) official and a fiery leader of protests against Israeli settlement activity, died shortly after a clash with Israeli soldiers at a West Bank demonstration. (Full story)

“RAMALLAH,” by Bei Dao, 1949

in Ramallah
the ancients play chess in the starry sky
the endgame flickers
a bird locked in a clock
jumps out to tell the time

in Ramallah
the sun climbs over the wall like an old man
and goes through the market
throwing mirror light on
a rusted copper plate”=

in Ramallah
gods drink water from earthen jars
a bow asks a string for directions
a boy sets out to inherit the ocean
from the edge of the sky

in Ramallah
seeds sown along the high noon
death blossoms outside my window
resisting, the tree takes on a hurricane’s
violent original shape

On August 2, 1949, Zhao Zhenkai was born in Beijing. His pseudonym Bei Dao literally means “North Island,” and was suggested by a friend as a reference to the poet’s provenance from Northern China as well as his typical solitude. . . At the request of Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish, he traveled to Palestine as part of a delegation for the International Parliament of Writers.

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