Sabbagh: Syria Spared No Efforts to Stand by the Palestinians to Restore their Rights


23 June، 2022
New York, SANA

Syria’s permanent representative to the United Nations, Ambassador Bassam Sabbagh, reiterated that Syria spared no effort to stand by the Palestinians in their struggle to restore their occupied lands and their legitimate rights.

In a statement at the UNRWA Donations Conference, Sabbagh said “Palestine was and still the central cause of Syria, for which Syria spared no effort to stand by the brotherly Palestinians, especially their right to establish their independent state on their land whose capital is Jerusalem, and for Bassam Sabbagh to obtain their rights to return to their homeland in accordance with international law and relevant United Nations resolutions, foremost of which is Resolution No. 194 of 1948.

Ambassador Sabbagh indicated that “terrorism’s destruction of a large part of the infrastructure and vital sectors in a number of Palestinian camps calls for an urgent need to rehabilitate these sectors, which we hope will take place as soon as possible, including schools and health care centers, and UNRWA restores its headquarters and offices to resume managing activities through them”.

Fedaa al-Rhayiah/Amer dawa


JUNE 16TH, 2022


While it is true that Zionism is a modern political ideology that has exploited religion to achieve specific colonial objectives in Palestine, prophecies continue to be a critical component of Israel’s perception of itself, and of the state’s relationship to other groups, especially Christian messianic groups in the United States and worldwide.

The subject of religious prophecies and their centrality to Israel’s political thought was once more highlighted following remarks by former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak, in a recent interview with the Hebrew-language newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth. Barak, perceived to be a ‘progressive’ politician, who was once the leader of Israel’s Labor Party, expressed fears that Israel will “disintegrate” before the 80th anniversary of its 1948 establishment.

“Throughout the Jewish history, the Jews did not rule for more than eighty years, except in the two kingdoms of David and the Hasmonean dynasty and, in both periods, their disintegration began in the eighth decade,” Barak said.

Based on pseudo-historical analysis, Barak’s prophecy seemed to conflate historical facts with typical messianic Israeli thinking, reminiscent of statements made by Israel’s former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in 2017.

Like Barak, Netanyahu’s comments were expressed in the form of fear over the future of Israel, and the looming ‘existential threat’, the cornerstone of Israeli hasbara throughout the years. At a Bible study session in his house in Jerusalem, Netanyahu had then warned that the Hasmonean kingdom – also known as the Maccabees – had merely survived for 80 years before it was conquered by the Romans in 63 B.C.E.

The “Hasmonean state lasted only 80 years, and we needed to exceed this,” Netanyahu was quoted by one of the attendees as saying, the Israeli Haaretz newspaper reported.

But, even according to Netanyahu’s purported determination to exceed that number, he had reportedly vowed to ensure Israel will surpass the Maccabees’ 80 years, and survive for 100 years. That is merely 20 years more.

The difference between Barak and Netanyahu’s statements is quite negligible: the former’s views are supposedly ‘historical’ and the latter’s are biblical. Worth noting, however, is that both leaders, though they subscribe to two different political schools, have converged on similar meeting points: Israel’s survival is at stake; the existential threat is real and the end of Israel is only a matter of time.

But the pessimism in Israel is hardly confined to political leaders, who are known to exaggerate and manipulate facts to instill fear and to rile up their political camps, especially Israel’s powerful messianic constituencies. Although this is true, predictions regarding Israel’s grim future are not confined to the country’s political elites.

In an interview with Haaretz in 2019, one of Israel’s most respected mainstream historians, Benny Morris, had much to say about the future of his country. Unlike Barak and Netanyahu, Morris was not sending warning signals but stating what, to him, seemed an unavoidable outcome of the country’s political and demographic evolution.

“I don’t see how we get out of it,” Morris said, adding: “Already, today there are more Arabs than Jews between the (Mediterranean) Sea and the Jordan (River). The whole territory is unavoidably becoming one state with an Arab majority. Israel still calls itself a Jewish state, but a situation in which we rule an occupied people that has no rights cannot persist in the 21st century.”

Morris’ predictions, while remaining committed to the racial fantasy of a Jewish majority, were far more articulate and also realistic if compared to those of Barak, Netanyahu and others. The man who once regretted that Israel’s founder, David Ben Gurion, did not expel all of Palestine’s native population in 1947-48, spoke with resignation that, in a matter of a generation, Israel will cease to exist in its current form.

Particularly notable about his comments is the accurate perception that “the Palestinians look at everything from a broad, long-term perspective,” and that the Palestinians will continue to “demand the return of the refugees.” But who were the “Palestinians” Morris was referring to? Certainly not the Palestinian Authority, whose leaders have already marginalized the Right of Return for Palestinian refugees, and most certainly have no “broad, long-term perspective”. Morris’ ‘Palestinians’ are, of course, the Palestinian people themselves, generations of whom have served, and continue to serve, as the vanguards of Palestinian rights despite all of the setbacks, defeats and political ‘compromises’.

Actually, prophecies regarding Palestine and Israel are not a new phenomenon. Palestine was colonized by Zionists with the help of Britain, also based on biblical frames of reference. It was populated by Zionist settlers based on biblical references dedicated to the restoration of ancient kingdoms and the ‘return’ of ancient peoples to their supposedly rightful ‘promised land’. Though Israel took on many different meanings throughout the years – perceived to be a ‘socialist’ utopia at times, a liberal, democratic haven at others – it was always preoccupied with religious meanings, spiritual visions and inundated with prophecies. The most sinister expression of this truth is the fact that the current support of Israel by millions of Christian fundamentalists in the West is largely driven by messianic, end-of-the-world prophecies.

The latest predictions about Israel’s uncertain future are based on a different logic. Since Israel has always defined itself as a Jewish State, its future is mostly linked to its ability to maintain a Jewish majority in historic Palestine. By the admission of Morris and others, this pipedream is now crumbling as the ‘demographic war’ is clearly and quickly being lost.

Of course, co-existence in a single democratic state will always be a possibility. Alas, for Israel’s Zionist ideologues, such a state will hardly meet the minimum expectations of the country’s founders, since it would no longer exist in the form of a Jewish, Zionist state. For co-existence to take place, the Zionist ideology would have to be scrapped altogether.

Barak, Netanyahu and Morris are all right: Israel will not exist as a ‘Jewish state’ for much longer. Speaking strictly in terms of demographics, Israel is no longer a Jewish-majority state. History has taught us that Muslims, Christians and Jews can peacefully coexist and collectively thrive, as they have done throughout the Middle East and the Iberian Peninsula for millennia. Indeed, this is a prediction, even a prophecy, that is worth striving for.

Feature photo | A Palestinian boy faces an Israeli tank on the outskirts of Gaza City, Oct. 29, 2000. Laurent Rebours | AP

Dr. Ramzy Baroud is a journalist and the Editor of The Palestine Chronicle. He is the author of six books. His latest book, co-edited with Ilan Pappé, is “Our Vision for Liberation: Engaged Palestinian Leaders and Intellectuals Speak out”. Baroud is a Non-resident Senior Research Fellow at the Center for Islam and Global Affairs (CIGA). His website is

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect MintPress News editorial policy.

Three Palestinians killed in a raid on Jenin camp

June 17, 2022

Source: Agencies

By Al Mayadeen English 

Israeli occupation forces kill three Palestinians in Jenin which has been targeted in the occupation’s latest wave of violence.

The three martyrs are Laith Abu Sorour, Youssef Salah, and Baraa Al-Halhouh from Jenin camp.

Three Palestinian youths were murdered and another eight wounded during an Israeli raid on Jenin refugee camp in the occupied West Bank.

The Palestinian health ministry reported that the three martyrs are Laith Abu Sorour, Youssef Salah, and Baraa Al-Halhouh from Jenin camp.

Local witnesses said that Israeli occupation forces (IOF) have opened fire at four Palestinian young men while they were in a vehicle during a military raid into the occupied West Bank camp of Jenin.

Simultaneously, confrontations were renewed after the IOF brutally stormed the refugee camp and fired live ammunition and tear gas bombs at civilians there.

It is worth noting that the occupation forces have been actively storming Jenin and its camp, aiming clearly at killing Palestinians and arresting others who, in turn, are confronting the occupation forces.

This is happening as Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennet has recently given a green light for killing Palestinians. 

“There are not and will not be limited for this war. We are granting full freedom of action to the army, the Shin Bet [domestic intelligence agency], and all security forces,” Bennet said last April.

Since the beginning of 2022, IOF killed at least 70 Palestinians,  27 of them from Jenin and its camp.

Shireen Abu Akleh

When talking about Jenin, the name of Shireen Abu Akleh, famed Al Jazeera journalist and veteran reporter, comes to mind. Shireen was murdered on May 11 when Israeli occupation forces storming the Jenin refugee camp, north of the West Bank, shot her with a live bullet to the head as she was covering the events of the storming.

The Washington Post has lately published a detailed examination of the deliberate murder of Shireen Abu Akleh by Israeli Occupation Forces.

Read more: 

‘Our Vision for Liberation’: Book Launch Special with Baroud, Pappe and Karmi

June 9, 2022

Ramzy Baroud, Ilan Pappé and Ghada Karmi discuss the just-released book Our Vision for Liberation. (Photo: PDD)

In its latest live show, Palestine Deep Dive celebrates the book launch of Our Vision for Liberation: Engaged Palestinian Leaders & Intellectuals Speak Out (Clarity Press).

Deep Dive’s host, Mark Seddon, is joined in the studio by the book’s co-editor Dr. Ramzy Baroud and one of its many Palestinian contributors, Dr. Ghada Karmi, joined via video link with co-editor Prof. Ilan Pappé.

Kicking off the show, Seddon asks Pappé what the idea was which inspired him and Baroud to put the book together:

“It was a sense that while there is a lot of information about the oppression, about the brutality of the Israeli policy, whether analyzing it in the past or understanding it in the present, there was a sense that the Palestinian agency in this is sometimes forgotten,” Pappé responds.

“I think also the obvious, disunity in the Palestinian leadership, a sense of disorientation that cannot be hidden is clearly there. Sometimes this obfuscates the very individual bravery and resilience that is taking place all over Palestine or wherever the Palestinians are in the globe. We thought that the first mission was to show, first of all, how this resilience, resistance, sometimes very personal, not as part of an organization, sometimes as part of a larger movement is a daily occurrence which gives us a lot of hope that there is still a Palestinian liberation movement, even if, from an institutional point of view, it seems sometimes that it does not exist.”

Asking Ghada Karmi for her thoughts on the title of the book, she responds:

“I must say it’s very brave, as you point out, to actually include the word ‘intellectual’ at a time and in a context in which there is an anti-intellectual movement. It’s very courageous, but it’s the truth. It’s the truth and it has to be said. Palestine, like many other nations, has its own class of people who think about things, which is what an intellectual is, and debate within themselves and with others what is the best way forward for whatever it is that they’re concerned about.”

Seddon probes further, asking, “When you talk about liberation as authors, what do you actually mean?”

Karmi responds: “… I think that there is this unity that Ilan Pappé spoke about in the idea, in the belief, that liberation means regaining Palestine. It’s very simple, no Palestinian ever really accepted the loss of the homeland. None of us ever believes or thinks that it’s gone forever.”

Dr. Ghada Karmi’s chapter in the book is titled: “An Equal Rights Campaign – Key to the End of Zionism” which she elaborates on in the show:

“We, that is not only the ‘we Palestinians’ who are living already in historic Palestine, but all the Palestinians who are living outside it or exiled or who are sitting in refugee camps, people like me, how can we accommodate this? How can we realistically do it? Quite clearly, there are no divisions. You can’t partition Palestine, the people have to live together. How are they going to live together? Ideally, of course, as one person, one vote in a democracy with equal rights.”

Returning to Seddon’s question on the title of the book, Baroud responds:

“We were thinking of liberation at two different levels, the actual act of liberation, the ending of the occupation, the dismantling of apartheid, and for Palestinians to be given basic human rights, to be treated as citizens in a territory that we can identify and the rest… but there is also a different kind of liberation that we were aiming for. This is why I think some of our 30 contributors may have discussed liberation from a different point of view, which is the liberation of the discourse itself, the liberation of the language itself, the liberation of how we locate ourselves as Palestinians.”

Baroud progresses by emphasizing the misrepresentation of Palestinians historically and how this book seeks to undo this injustice by giving Palestinians center-stage to articulate their own discourse:

“We’re always, in some ways, being perceived to be the aggressor, which makes absolutely no sense given that we are the ones who are colonized and aggressed upon and constantly trying to fight, not only for the freedom to move about, but for our own survival as we have seen in the case of Gaza.”

Currently in Gaza, where two million Palestinians endure a 15-year-long hermetic siege, 98% of water there is undrinkable, electricity is shut off daily due to power shortages and a mental health crisis afflicts the population who have lived through four deadly military assaults on the enclave by Israel since 2008.

“We wanted to say if we as Palestinians imagine a different narrative in which the story is told from our point of view, what would it look like? What would the story be if it’s based entirely on Palestinian priorities? Not in a cliché sentimental way, but rather in a very specific way, people with programs.

“Ghada was quite courageous in her chapter. Others also talk on various issues, whether in art and cinema, in embroidery, in science, in archeology, in diplomacy, and all of these issues talking about them; this is how we have been doing it, this is what we learned, these are the mistakes that have been committed, this is what we think is the proper way forward.”

Expanding on the idea of liberating the discourse, Baroud explains how Palestinians historically have been denied the right to speak freely:

“When Oslo was signed in 1993, we quite often talk about Oslo as a political doctrine, but we rarely discuss Oslo as a culture. Where Palestinians were told that in order for you to be accepted within the realm of good moderate nations, you have to behave in a certain way and you have to speak in a certain way as well.

“Certain terminologies like liberation, freedom fighting, resistance, muqawama, we were not allowed to use those terms anymore. The terms that we were supposed to use, ‘the peace process’ only ‘two-state solutions’, we can’t venture out of this stifling paradigm that was really never meant to actualize in the first place. There were the good Palestinians, the bad Palestinians, the terrorist sympathizers versus the moderate friendly one.”

Returning back to Pappé, Seddon puts to him an audience question, “Is this book a manifesto for change or a history of what has already been tried?”

Pappé responds: “Well, I think it’s both. First of all, it’s a record. It’s recording through individual stories. A humanizing story.”

“I would just mention one thing here that is very important, and this comes out in several of the contributions. The Palestinian society is one of the youngest in the world. 50% of the Palestinians, wherever they are, are under 18 years old.

“You talk to Palestinian teenagers all over, wherever they are, and you understand that this is an assertive generation that would continue the struggle of liberation. With the way Israel is going to evolve, it’s very clear what’s going on on the ground in Israel. The way it’s going to evolve, giving up on the democratic charade anyway, and really becoming an official apartheid state. I think that this is more than a manifesto.”

Keen to emphasize one of the book’s vital takeaways, Baroud mentions:

“There is an implicit message in the book about solidarity. In fact, if you notice that all the endorsements come from non-Palestinians, and all the contributions come from Palestinians. As if we are trying to say there’s a message there.

“Solidarity is not when you take my place, solidarity is when you stand by my side and try to create networks, support me, help me to communicate my message, but not to replace me. I think that becomes quite clear throughout the book.”

Turning to the question of the Palestinian leadership, Seddon asks with the abandonment of elections recently in Palestine, is it indeed possible to create a unified Palestinian leadership any time soon?

Baroud responds: “Now, according to a recent public opinion poll, a majority of Palestinians in the West Bank support a one-state solution. That critical mass is about to be reached in Gaza. That happened within relatively a very short period of time. If these indicators continue, at this level, it seems that sooner or later, Palestinians will back this particular solution, and we will then speak about an objective that is being championed by the Palestinian people.”

According to a poll conducted by the Jerusalem Media and Communication Center (JMCC), published on November 22, 2021, there are more West Bank Palestinians who support the one-state solution than those still in favor of the two-state solution.

“Now, the question is, will we ever have that leadership that is going to support the people’s position? Edward Said famously said, ‘Palestinians are cursed by a bad leadership.’ Far from trying to correct Professor Said in any possible way, but I don’t think it’s really a matter of bad leadership per se, as much as we had no other alternative but to have that bad leadership, because our good leadership is either in prison, assassinated, marginalized, deported out of Palestine, and so forth.

“This is the very purpose of the book. How do we move beyond this? How do we create that legitimate leadership? Not necessarily via elections, because we know that Israel is not going to give Palestinians the space and the room to really create democratic representatives. Even though the elections have never even taken place, many Palestinian potential candidates were arrested anyway. We know that either way, we will never have that moment. We need to have alternative ways in which we can have a legitimate leadership. Within the framework of liberation movements, legitimate leadership does not necessarily have to be the outcome of the ballot box. There are other ways of achieving that.”

Order your copy now of Our Vision for Liberation: Engaged Palestinian Leaders & Intellectuals Speak Out here

(Palestine Deep Dive)

The modern epic of Palestine

June 7 2022

Source: Al Mayadeen English

Mehdi Rizvi 

Palestine remains a burning issue for the Muslims of the world.

The modern epic of Palestine

The Palestinian cause: the most important cause of the Islamic world

The Palestinian cause is the most important cause in Islam. No other international issue in the world of Islam is more important than the issue of Palestine because the domination of the occupiers of Palestine and Al-Quds over this part of the Islamic Ummah is the source of many of the weaknesses and problems in the world of Islam.

Bait Al-Maqdis The main pivot of the Al-Aqsa Intifada is Bait Al-Maqdis

In other words, the spark that provoked the anger of the Palestinian people was the Zionists’ affront to the Al-Aqsa mosque in occupied Al-Quds. Having realized their great mission to safeguard the sanctity of one of the most sacred Islamic sites, the Palestinian people entered the arena of struggle against the Zionists.

Occupation of Palestine: A long-held Western wish

Certain western powers have always wished to occupy Palestine and holy Al-Quds and the fact that they imposed the long Crusades on Muslims is a clear sign of their greed for this holy land. After the Allied Powers defeated the Ottomans and entered Bait Al-Maqdis, some of their commanders said, “Today the Crusades came to an end!”

Palestinian uprising ruined all Israeli calculations

The second point that is very important is that this uprising has ruined all calculations of this usurping Zionist regime. This is because their calculations were based on the assumption that over time the Palestinian people would lose the energy and determination to fight back after those early pressures and after the exile of more than half the population of Palestine.

“Israel’s” defeat in the 33-day and 22-day wars: Signs of steep decline

Two important events are “Israel’s” unbelievable military and political defeat against the Lebanese Islamic Resistance in the 33-day war in Lebanon -in the year 1427 of the Islamic calendar- and the humiliating defeat of the Zionist regime in the 22-day war on the people and the legitimate government of Palestine in Gaza.

Resistance of the people of Palestine: an obstacle in the way of Israel:

Of course, the Palestinian nation is powerful: it has proven this.

The Palestinian nation has proven that it has the power to resist. It has proven that it is highly motivated and that it will undoubtedly break the teeth of the brutal and blood-thirsty aggressor.

With its resistance and steadfastness, the Palestinian nation has created a big and insoluble problem for the fake and usurping Zionist regime, a problem that this fake “state” had not faced over the past 50 years. The pressure that the Zionists and their supporters exert on the oppressed people of Palestine is because their movement and their uprising have created such a problem for global arrogance and colonialism that all calculations have been ruined.

The opinions mentioned in this article do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Al mayadeen, but rather express the opinion of its writer exclusively.


MAY 25TH, 2022


By Ramzy Baroud

The Nakba is back on the Palestinian agenda.

For nearly three decades, Palestinians were told that the Nakba – or Catastrophe – is a thing of the past. That real peace requires compromises and sacrifices, therefore, the original sin that has led to the destruction of their historic homeland should be entirely removed from any ‘pragmatic’ political discourse. They were urged to move on.

The consequences of that shift in narrative were dire. Disowning the Nakba, the single most important event that shaped modern Palestinian history, has resulted in more than political division between the so-called radicals and the supposedly peace-loving pragmatists, the likes of Mahmoud Abbas and his Palestinian Authority. It also divided Palestinian communities in Palestine and across the world around political, ideological and class lines.

Following the signing of the Oslo Accords in 1993, it became clear that the Palestinian struggle for freedom was being entirely redefined and reframed. It was no longer a Palestinian fight against Zionism and Israeli settler colonialism that goes back to the start of the 20th century, but a ‘conflict’ between two equal parties, with equally legitimate territorial claims that can only be resolved through ‘painful concessions’.

The first of such concessions was relegating the core issue of the ‘Right of Return’ for Palestinian refugees who were driven out of their villages and cities in 1947-48. That Palestinian Nakba paved the way for Israel’s ‘independence’, which was declared atop the rubble and smoke of nearly 500 destroyed and burnt Palestinian villages and towns.

At the start of the ‘peace process’, Israel was asked to honor the Right of Return for Palestinians, although symbolically. Israel refused. Palestinians were then pushed to relegate that fundamental issue to a ‘final status negotiations’, which never took place. This meant that millions of Palestinian refugees – many of whom are still living in refugee camps in Lebanon, Syria and Jordan, as well as the occupied Palestinian territories – were dropped from the political conversation altogether.

If it were not for the continued social and cultural activities of the refugees themselves, insisting on their rights and teaching their children to do the same, such terms as the Nakba and Right of Return would have been completely dropped out of the Palestinian political lexicon.

Palestinian refugee
A Family warms themselves by a fire during cold weather in a slum on the outskirts of a Gaza refugee camp, Jan. 19, 2022. Khalil Hamra | AP

While some Palestinians rejected the marginalization of the refugees, insisting that the subject is a political not merely a humanitarian one, others were willing to move on as if this right was of no consequence. Various Palestinian officials affiliated with the now-defunct ‘peace process’ have made it clear that the Right of Return was no longer a Palestinian priority. But none came even close to the way that PA President Abbas, himself, framed the Palestinian position in a 2012 interview with Israeli Channel 2.

“Palestine now for me is the ’67 borders, with East Jerusalem as its capital. This is now and forever … This is Palestine for me. I am [a] refugee, but I am living in Ramallah,” he said.

Abbas had it completely wrong, of course. Whether he wished to exercise his right of return or not, that right, according to United Nations General Assembly Resolution 194, is simply “inalienable”, meaning that neither Israel nor the Palestinians themselves, can deny or forfeit it.

Let alone the lack of intellectual integrity of separating the tragic reality of the present from its main root cause, Abbas lacked political wisdom as well. With his ‘peace process’ floundering, and with the lack of any tangible political solution, he simply decided to abandon millions of refugees, denying them the very hope of having their homes, land or dignity restored.

Since then, Israel, along with the United States, has fought Palestinians on two different fronts: one, by denying them any political horizon and, the other, by attempting to dismantle their historically enshrined rights, mainly their Right of Return. Washington’s war on the Palestinian refugees’ agency, UNRWA, falls under the latter category as the aim was – and remains – the destruction of the very legal and humanitarian infrastructures that allow Palestinian refugees to see themselves as a collective of people seeking repatriation, reparations and justice.

Yet, all such efforts continue to fail. Far more important than Abbas’ personal concessions to Israel, UNRWA’s ever-shrinking budget or the failure of the international community to restore Palestinian rights, is the fact that the Palestinian people are, once again, unifying around the Nakba anniversary, thus insisting on the Right of Return for the seven million refugees in Palestine and the shattat – Diaspora.

Ironically, it was Israel that has unwittingly re-unified Palestinians around the Nakba. By refusing to concede an inch of Palestine, let alone allow Palestinians to claim any victory, a State of their own – demilitarized or otherwise – or allow a single refugee to go home, Palestinians were forced to abandon Oslo and its numerous illusions. The once-popular argument that the Right of Return was simply ‘impractical’ no longer matters, neither to ordinary Palestinians nor to their intellectual or political elites.

In political logic, for something to be impossible, an alternative would have to be attainable. However, with Palestinian reality worsening under the deepening system of Israeli settler colonialism and apartheid, Palestinians now understand that they have no possible alternative but their unity, their resistance and the return to the fundamentals of their struggle. The Unity Intifada of last May was a culmination of this new realization. Moreover, the Nakba anniversary commemoration rallies and events throughout historic Palestine and the world on May 15 have further helped crystallize the new discourse that the Nakba is no longer symbolic and the Right of Return is the collective, core demand of most Palestinians.

Israel is now an apartheid state in the real meaning of the word. Israeli apartheid, like any such system of racial separation, aims at protecting the gains of nearly 74 years of unhinged colonialism, land theft and military dominance. Palestinians, whether in Haifa, Gaza or Jerusalem, now fully understand this, and are increasingly fighting back as one nation.

And since the Nakba and the subsequent ethnic cleansing of Palestinian refugees are the common denominators behind all Palestinian suffering, the term and its underpinnings are back at the center stage of any meaningful conversation on Palestine, as should have always been the case.

From Nakba 74 and Beyond: Solidarity is Ongoing

May 19, 2022

Thousands of Palestinians throughout the besieged Gaza Strip commemorate the 74th anniversary of the Palestinian Nakba. (Photo: Mahmoud Ajjour, The Palestine Chronicle)

By Benay Blend

On Nakba Day 2022, thousands of people around the world marked the 74th anniversary of the “catastrophe” of 1948 that saw nearly 800,000 Palestinians expelled from their homes as Zionists established the illegal state of Israel. Demonstrators also demanded justice for the slain Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh who was assassinated by Israeli forces in Jenin within the Occupied Palestinian Territory.

Appropriately, on May 15, poet and activist Remi Kanazi tweeted: “Why solidarity matters. It’s Nakba Day. Other communities are in pain and dealing with supremacist forces. If we don’t fight against all systems of domination and build with each other,” he warned, “the oppression we face will never truly end, even if we think it does.”

 As if in answer, an Azov-insignia wearing teen carried out a mass shooting at a supermarket in Buffalo, New York. Because 11 out of the 13 victims were black, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the police have labeled the murders a “hate crime.”

The problem with this label is that it implies that the crime was an act of a lone individual acting on racist impulses. The solution, many believe, is gun control. Both assumptions are mere band-aids on the problem. Whether a member of an organized group or not, this man was not a lone shooter, but rather part of a larger Nazi movement.

As Benjamin Norton noted, the shooter was wearing the same “black sun” Nazi symbol used by Ukraine’s neo-Nazi Azov militia, which NATO is arming and training. According to an Al Jazeera report, Ukraine has emerged as an international center for the far right around the world. There Azov has been active in training men who want combat experience and share a fascist ideology.

The soldier who murdered Abu Akleh also acted as a member of a particular society, writes  scholar/activist Steven Salaita, doing “exactly what Israeli soldiers do.” Indeed, over the past two decades the Zionist state has murdered approximately fifty journalists, making Abu Akleh’s death not an aberration, a mistake, but rather a matter of policy.

The colonizer, concludes Salaita, perpetuates violence “because of colonization.” In the end, it is “the only way he knows how to be a good citizen” while maintaining a “meaningful existence” for himself.

Just as few shooters act alone, but rather as products of their worldview, so do those who successfully work for social justice do so in community. Mourning the assassination of her compatriot, Gaza-based Palestinian journalist Wafa Aludaini writes that Abu Akleh was a household name in local homes because she documented Israeli crimes.

In her own words, Abu Akleh attests to her close connection to community: “I chose journalism,” she explained, because she wanted to be “close to the people. It might not be easy to change reality,” she continued, “but at least I could bring their voice to the world.”

Writing is a solitary endeavor, but the formation of ideas is not. In the introduction of These Chains Will Be Broken: Palestinian Stories of Struggle and Defiance in Israeli Prisons (2020), Ramzy Baroud, activist/journalist/writer and editor of this collection, declares that “because Palestinian resistance is a collective experience, the writing of this book has also been a collective effort. It is our attempt to reclaim the narrative of our people,” he continues, “to liberate it from the suffocating confines of political, media and academic discourse and take it into the heart of resistance.”

Palestine solidarity by its very definition is also a communal effort, the work of many groups of individuals whose histories are likely different but whose goals for the future intersect with those of all colonized peoples around the world.

My own involvement began around 1980 with a Muslim/Jewish dialogue group organized by fellow grad students at the University of New Mexico. Since then, my activism has evolved away from conversations that by their very nature involve a power gap to direct involvement/writing that attempts to place Palestinians at the center. At the present time my activist work involves membership in the recently organized Albuquerque chapter of Samidoun: Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network. As a writer, I’ve also learned that very little happens in a vacuum; formulation of ideas requires a give and take between people of similar, and sometimes different, persuasion. From all those years I’ve learned the importance of being part of an organization.

Solidarity means maintaining unanimity no matter where the media directs our attention. “Empathy’s endurance,” writes Onyesonwu Chatoyer, organizer for the All African People’s Revolutionary Party—Southwest, makes possible “a better and more just way of living” that is “within our capacity” to rebuild. At the present time, however, our inner lives are being “weaponized and manipulated,” especially among the “disorganized and unconscious” elements of our society.

In his preface to Our Vision for Liberation: Engaged Palestinian Leaders and Intellectuals Speak Out (2022), Ramzy Baroud defines the parameters of the struggle. “Solidarity that is not guided by authentic Palestinian voices is simply futile,” Baroud declares, “it cannot effectively mobilize what is essential: their purpose” (p. xviii).

The collection’s chapters are a testament to the ability of Palestinians—and by extension all people who are engaged in freedom struggles—to liberate themselves. Reflecting on “The International Struggle on Behalf of Palestine,” co-editor Ilan Pappé shares three major truths that he has learned during his decades-long involvement in the solidarity campaign. First, solidarity for an Israeli Jew means moving away from Zionism and its “comfort zone”; second, winning the trust of the Palestinian people remains crucial; and finally, trying to influence others to follow the same path is hard (p. 411).

In an interview with Asantewaa Nkrumah-Turé, organizer with Black Alliance for Peace Philadelphia, Margaret Kimberly led the conversation in a way that resonates well with Baroud’s and Pappe’s interpretation of solidarity. Nkrumah-Turé began by speaking of her experience on a panel at the recent Al-Awda Conference in New York. There she tied her anti-imperialist work to Palestine solidarity, commitments that she traced back to the long history of Black support for the Palestinian struggle,

For example, Nkrumah-Turé mentioned her late brother Kwame Turé who came out against Zionism during his involvement with the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC). In this way her trajectory is different than Pappé in that she did not have to leave Zionism in order to oppose it.

Like Baroud and Pappé, Nkrumah-Turé acknowledges other groups who have come to share her position. For example, she salutes Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) for what she believes must have been a “difficult move” when they came out with a public statement denouncing Zionism.

Finally, she addresses what Pappé calls the “tension between effort and tangible results” (pp. 411,412), losing hope due to the lack of significant changes on the ground. In answer, both highlight the importance of looking to the future. For Pappé, the solution is asking if we “have done enough for the cause,” and for Nkrumah-Turé, a similar response: developing the kind of courage to stay in the fight for the long haul.

For me, it is helpful to consider all of the activists mentioned in this article, along with the contributors to Our Vision for Liberation, as the energy who provide sumud (steadfastness) and inspiration for the future struggle.

– Benay Blend earned her doctorate in American Studies from the University of New Mexico. Her scholarly works include Douglas Vakoch and Sam Mickey, Eds. (2017), “’Neither Homeland Nor Exile are Words’: ‘Situated Knowledge’ in the Works of Palestinian and Native American Writers”. She contributed this article to The Palestine Chronicle.

74 Years of Historical Injustice: The Creation of “Israel”

18 May 2022

Source: Al Mayadeen English

Hussam AbdelKareem 

The British colonialists viewed the Zionist movement as a tool for their imperial designs and hence the Balfour Declaration was issued in 1917.

74 Years of Historical Injustice: The Creation of “Israel”

“Al-Nakba” is the Arabic term used to commemorate the creation of the “State of Israel” on May 15, 1948. “Al Nakba” literally means “catastrophe”, which best describes how Arab peoples feel about the creation of the Hebrew “state” in Palestine at the expense of its legitimate owners; the Palestinian Arabs.

In 1948, the principles of right and justice were, literally, butchered at the hands of the Zionist gangs and militias known as Haganah, which later turned into the “Israeli Army”. The Jewish Zionists in Palestine, who emigrated mainly from Eastern Europe, were preparing for this day for decades. The Zionists knew very well that they were not welcomed in Palestine and will never be accepted by Arab nations, so conquering the land by force was their sole path to achieving their goals in Palestine. War with the Arabs, in the Zionists’ eyes, was inevitable. Extensive military planning and preparations were undertaken by the Zionists in Palestine since their early arrivals at the beginning of the 20th century and particularly after Great Britain took over Palestine at the end of World War I.

The British colonialists viewed the Zionist movement as a tool for their imperial designs and hence the Balfour Declaration was issued in 1917, confirming Great Britain’s commitment to establishing a “Jewish homeland” in Palestine. The Zionists were receiving full support from the colonial power, which was true to its pledge. Waves of Jewish immigrants arrived from Europe to strengthen the Zionist project in Palestine, and by 1947, when the Palestine partition plan was passed at the UN, the Zionists had a 75,000 semi-army force, which was further aided by another 20,000 Jewish militants in the following year when they waged their war on the Arabs in Palestine in 1948. When the British withdrew their forces from Palestine in 1948, they handed their military installations, camps, and equipment to the Haganah, thus leaving behind them a fully armed and well-trained Jewish army ready to fight the Arabs in Palestine who were practically deprived of weapons and even the slightest means of defense.

The Zionists, who were owning a mere 6% of the land in Palestine in 1948, launched their “war of independence” against the Arabs, which ended in declaring their Jewish “state of Israel” after conquering about 80% of historical Palestine by force and bloodshed. The war was brutal, and the Zionists exhibited utmost forms of savagery and cruelty. Many massacres against civilian Arabs were committed in several cities and villages in Palestine. In one of the most horrible massacres, 254 civilian villagers, including women and children, were killed in cold blood at the hands of Zionist terrorists in the town of Der Yassin, near Jerusalem. Other brutal crimes were also committed in Haifa, Tantura, and Lydd, and the Zionist terror campaign resulted in about 800,000 Palestinian Arabs fleeing their homes and lands and becoming refugees in neighboring Arab countries, namely Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, and Egypt. Total destruction was inflicted by the Haganah on 531 Arab villages all over Palestine. About 85% of the Arabs who lived within the borders of the to-be “State of Israel” were forcefully expelled. It was ethnic cleansing in its ugliest forms.  

The world was watching while these Zionist crimes were happening in Palestine and did practically nothing except some relief efforts and humanitarian aid. Even when “Israel” officially decided to confiscate the Palestinian refugees’ homes, lands, and properties in 1949, the UN did not bother to intervene. Actually, it was no surprise, as the UN was under the domination of the Great Powers of the post-World War II era, particularly the UK and USA, both supporting the new Jewish “state” which was planted in the heart of the Arab world.

After the 1948 war ended, “Israel’ firmly refused to allow the Palestinian refugees to return to their country and demanded they be settled permanently in the other Arab countries. Furthermore, “Israel” refused to admit to the crimes committed by its troops and even declined to acknowledge its responsibility for uprooting the Palestinian Arabs and turning most of them into stateless refugees in miserable camps. The Israeli narrative about the Palestinian refugee problem is that they “voluntarily” left their homes and lands! And “Israel” refused to pay any financial compensation to the refugees whose properties were illegally confiscated and taken over by Jewish settlers. In 1967, another wave of displaced Palestinian refugees was added to the 1948 one to make the problem even worse. Again, the world did nothing apart from some expressions of sorrow for the humanitarian suffering of the refugees. With the help of its patron, the US, “Israel” escaped any accountability for its crimes and actions.

Seven decades have passed, with successive generations, and the status of the Palestinian refugees is still the same; not allowed to return to their historical homeland, not compensated, and not recognized as victims of historical injustice!

“Al-Nakba” will remain the term to be used to describe what happened on May 15, 1948, as long as the Palestinian suffering at the hands of the Israeli occupation continues. It’s a shame that the world allows such a tragedy to go on this long. It’s a shame that “Israel” is left without accountability.

The opinions mentioned in this article do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Al mayadeen, but rather express the opinion of its writer exclusively.

Since the Nakba: More than 100,000 martyrs, 6.4 mln refugees

15 May 2022

Source: Agencies + Al Mayadeen Net

By Al Mayadeen English 

Palestine’s Central Bureau of Statistics reveals shocking numbers related to Palestine, its martyrs, prisoners, and lands, from the Nakba until the present day.

By the end of 2020, Palestinians around the world numbered 14 million, marking a tenfold increase from their numbers in the Nakba

The Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS) says the number of UNRWA’s Palestinian refugees reached 6.4 million by December 2020.

The center’s statistics showed that 28.4% of Palestinian refugees are currently living in 58 official UNRWA camps, with 10 in Jordan, 9 in Syria, 12 in Lebanon, 19 in the West Bank, and 8 in the Gaza Strip.

These estimates show the minimum number of Palestinian refugees, seeing as some refugees are not registered, like those forcibly displaced from Palestine after 1949 until the war of June 1967, according to UNRWA, and this also does not include those who were displaced during the 1967 war, who weren’t refugees.

According to UNRWA’s official definition, Palestinian refugees are defined as “persons whose normal place of residence was Palestine during the period 1 June 1946 to 15 May 1948, and who lost both home and means of livelihood as a result of the 1948 conflict.”

The number of Palestinians increased more than tenfold since the Nakba

The PCBS revealed that historical Palestine’s population reached around 690,000 in 1914, 8% of whom were Jews. In 1948, the population rose to more than 2 million, around 31.5% of which were Jews, as 225,000 flocked to Palestine between 1932 in 1939’s organized migration waves. 

Between 1940 and 1947, more than 93,000 Jews entered Palestine, and by 1975, the total number of Jews that immigrated to Palestine reached more than 540,000.

As for the total number of Palestinians around the world, the number was estimated in 2021 to have reached around 14 million, a tenfold increase of their numbers since the Nakba, especially since 7 million of them were living in historical Palestine, including 1.7 million living in 48-occupied territories.

Nakba cause of overpopulation in Palestine

The Palestinian Nakba turned the Gaza Strip into the world’s most densely populated area. While the population density in Palestine reached 878 persons/km2 by the end of 2021, with a density of 557 persons/km2, the Gaza Strip’s density reaches 5,855 persons/km2, knowing that 66% of Gaza’s citizens are refugees.

Furthermore, the occupation’s establishment of a buffer zone on the periphery of the Gaza Strip allowed it to seize control over 24% of the strip’s 365 km2 area, which further exacerbated the city’s economic difficulties, and impoverished over a half of its citizens, with Gaza’s poverty rate reaching 53% in 2017.

Over 100,000 martyred since the 1948 Nakba

Since the Nakba in 1948, both inside Palestine and out, close to 100,000 people were martyred, with the number of martyrs since the beginning of the Intifada reaching 11,358 between 29/9/2000 and up to 30/4/2022.

It is noted that 2014 was the bloodiest year, as 2,240 people were martyred, 2,181 of whom were martyred in Gaza during an Israeli aggression.

The number of martyrs in Palestine reached 341 in 2021, including 87 children and 48 women, whereas the number of wounded reached 12,500.

Close to 1 million arrests since 1967

The occupation has kept 25 Palestinians under arrest for over a quarter century, whereas the total number of detainees in Israeli prisons reached 4,450 in April, including 160 child prisoners, 32 women, 570 sentences to life, 700 prisoners who are in ill health, six Palestinian lawmakers, and 650 prisoners placed in administrative detention.

The overall number of arrests in 2021 reached 8,000 in Palestine, including 1,300 children and 184, while 1,595 people were sentenced to administrative detention without any charges being brought up against them.

226 prisoners have been martyred since 1967, either because of torture inflicted upon them following their arrest or due to medical neglect; these include 103 prisoners that were martyred since September 2000.

Continued colonialist expansion of Israeli occupation

By the end of 2020, 712,815 illegal settlers were living in the West Bank, around 47% of whom (246,909) were living in Al-Quds. The settler/Palestinian ratio reached 23/100 in the West Bank and surged to 71/100 in Al-Quds.

Moreover, 2021 also witnessed a large increase in the speed at which Israeli settlements were built in the West Bank, as Israeli occupation forces approved the building of more than 12,000 new settlement units in 2021, including 9,000 on the lands of Al-Quds’ Qalandia airport.

Continued confiscation of land

The Israeli occupation abused the categorization of lands according to the Oslo Accords (A, B and C) in order to further its control on Palestinian C-classified lands, which are completely under Israeli control in terms of security, planning, and construction, and close to 76% of their area are currently being exploited.

Al-Quds: Displacement and settlement policies

In 2021, Israeli occupation authorities approved the building of more than 12,000 settlement units, most of which were in Al-Quds. Meanwhile, it demolished more than 300 buildings and gave orders to demolish more than 200 others, in addition to approving a project to seize 2,050 Palestinian properties, including those of the Sheikh Jarrah and Silwan neighborhoods in eastern Al-Quds, whose area is estimated at 2,500 acres.

Last year also saw close to 1,621 cases of attacks by settlers protected by occupation forces against Palestinians and their properties, marking a 49% increase in attacks from 2020. Israeli settlers are also exploiting around 120,000 acres of Palestinian lands for agriculture.

20% of water in Palestine is bought from Mekorot

Israeli measures against Palestinian water resources force them to compensate for their lack of water by buying 20% of their water from Israeli company Mekorot, meaning around 448.4 million m3. The main reason behind Palestinians’ inability to use surface water is due to the Israeli occupation’s control over the Jordan River and Dead Sea’s waters.

79% of available water drawn from groundwater

Palestine mainly relies on water extracted from surface and groundwater, which constitutes around 79% of all available water resources. In 2020, the amount of water pumped from groundwater wells (eastern, western, and northeastern basins) in the West Bank amounted to 108.6 million m3.

هل تكون دماء الشهيدة شيرين أبو عاقلة نقطة تحول؟

 ناصر قنديل

شهادة شيرين أبو عاقلة ليست موضوع نقاش، فهي بصدق التزامها بقضية شعبها ورفع صوته تحوّلت على مدى ربع قرن الى أيقونة، وما عبر عنه الفلسطينيون ومقاومتهم من مواكب التشييع الى البيانات والمواقف وما حفلت به وسائل التواصل خير مصداق وشاهد، وحال الحزن والغضب التي عمّت الكثير من بيوت العرب بكبارهم وصغارهم ورجالهم ونسائهم خير تعبير عن أن صدقها أوصل الرسالة التي كانت تحرص على إيصالها بكل قوة في كل مناسبة، بأنها لم تغادر وباقية لتوصل صوت هذا الشعب الى كل العالم. وقد كان حملها للجنسية الأميركية والعروض التي تلقتها من مؤسسات إعلامية غربية يخوّلانها هجرة القدس وفلسطين مراراً، وما يرويه أهالي الأسرى وعائلات الشهداء عن صداقة ربطتهم بها ومودة زرعتها في قلوبهم تأكيد لذلك النبض الصادق الذي عبرت عنه، واستحقت معه مرتبة الشهادة، سواء كانت تعمل في قناة الجزيرة أو في قناة السي أن أن.

شهادة شيرين أبو عاقلة وموجة الغضب والحزن التي أطلقتها، قدّمت فرصة لتفحص الوهم الذي تروج له بعض الأوساط الفلسطينية والعربية، وهو إمكانية أن يؤدي شعور قادة كيان الاحتلال بضعفهم داخل الكيان وضعف كيانهم داخل معادلات المنطقة إلى التعقل وإقامة الحسابات، والتجربة قالت مراراً وهي تقول اليوم إن هذا الكيان كلما ضعفت قيادته فهي تضعف أمام المتطرفين والمستوطنين وتتماهى مع توحشهم، وإن هذا الكيان كلما ضعف أمام معادلات المنطقة، سواء صنعتها دول أو حركات مقاومة، يوسّع دائرة القتل أملا بتضييق دائرة الضوء على جرائمه وردع الشرائح الفلسطينية والعربية المتردّدة عن أي إعادة نظر في تموضعها إلى جانبه، ولا يجب أن يراود الشك أحد في أن ما حصل في جريمة إعدام شيرين ابو عاقلة مراسلة قناة الجزيرة هو رسالة موقعة من قيادة الكيان، موجهة إلى دول التطبيع، وإلى السلطة الفلسطينية ومسؤوليتها عن التنسيق الأمني، والقائمة العربية المشاركة في الحكومة ودورها في الحفاظ على الحكومة، بأن القتل يشكل الجواب على أية محاولة للتأقلم مع المعادلات الجديدة وعدم احترام الخطوط الحمراء للكيان.

شهادة شيرين أبو عاقلة، سواء فهمتها حكومة قطر وقناة الجزيرة كرسالة مباشرة إليهما أو لم تفهماها كذلك، فهي كذلك، وقطر التي شاركت دون كل دول الخليج في اجتماع وزراء الدفاع للدول الحليفة لواشنطن من أجل تسليح الجيش الأوكراني، وقناة الجزيرة التي تولّت دون كل قنوات العالم الفضائية مهمة الإعلام الحربي للحكم الأوكراني في شيطنة روسيا وعملياتها العسكرية، وحكومة قطر وقناة الجزيرة قد تشاركتا في ريادة نهج التطبيع النفسي مع كيان الاحتلال من بوابة تصنيفه رأياً آخر، واعتبار الانفتاح عليه والتعامل معه يخففان من غلوّه وعدوانيّته، وصنعتا نظرية أولوية العداء للحكومات العربية المناوئة للكيان على العداء للكيان نفسه أملاً باسترضائه بخوض حروبه بالوكالة، كما تقول كل وقائع مواقف قطر والجزيرة من الحرب على سورية؛ هل تفهمان اليوم الرسالة، ومضمونها أن الاحتلال ليس رأياً آخر، وأن التعامل معه ليس وجهة نظر، وأن التحول الى موقع الحليف المميّز عند الأميركي ليس حصانة بوجهه، وأن العداء لكل من يعادي الكيان لا يحتسب لأصحابه عندما يستدعي جدول أعمال الكيان المزيد من التوحش، بل قد تكون أولى الرسائل الدموية موجهة لهم بدماء شهداء أنقياء من أمثال شيرين ابو عاقلة، رسالة مضمونها أن المنطقة عشية حرب ستكون غزة طرفاً مباشراً فيها فاختاروا موقعكم الإعلامي من الآن وإلا..!

أن تكون دماء شيرين ابو عاقلة نقطة تحول، يعني أحد أمرين أو كليهما، الأول أن يتوقف العالم الغربي بمؤسساته الحكومية والقانونية عن معاملة جرائم الاحتلال بمعيار الحماية، أو المواربة، والثاني أن تغسل دماء شيرين أبوعاقلة عار التطبيع عن الإعلام العربيّ، وفي المقدمة منه قناة الجزيرة، وأن يرد الاعتبار لمعيار العداء لكيان الاحتلال في رسم صورة المشهد العربي السياسي والإعلامي، ورغم الحزن والغضب والمرارة ليس ثمّة ما يقول أن شيئا من هذا سيحدث قريباً أو أنه على وشك الحدوث.

رحم الله شيرين شهيدة فلسطين وقد احتضنها القلوب ورفعتها الأكتاف، وبكتها العيون، وشيعها المقاومون، قبل أن يتسابق الانتهازيون إلى التقاط الصورة التذكارية!

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‘These are My Priorities’: Palestine Chronicle Hosts Newly-Appointed UN Special Rapporteur in Palestine (VIDEO)

May 3, 2022

Palestine Chronicle editors interview the new UN Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights in Palestine, Francesca Albanese. (Photo: Video Grab)

On May 1, the mandate of UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967, Michael Lynk, came to an end. International human rights and refugee lawyer Francesca Albanese became the new UN Human Rights envoy.

Though human rights for the occupied Palestinian people have always been the center stage of any conversation relevant to the Israeli occupation or to the so-called Palestinian-Israeli conflict, little has been done to ensure that Palestinian human rights are, in fact, respected. 

In her first interview as UN Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights in Palestine, Francesca Albanese joined Palestine Chronicle editors, Ramzy Baroud and Romana Rubeo to discuss her vision and priorities in coming years. 

(The Palestine Chronicle)

Quds Day Commemorations: A Promising Commitment to the Liberation of Al-Quds, Entire Palestine

May 3 2022

By Mohammad Youssef

The celebration of world Quds days this year was exceptionally distinguished due to many reasons inside and outside Palestine.

As for Palestine itself, the commemoration of the day that was first initiated by late Imam Khomeini, the leader of the Islamic Revolution in Iran, was very significant this year, the Palestinian resistance has proved its efficiency and the Palestinian people have further demonstrated their commitment to liberate their country from the ‘Israeli’ occupation.

The Palestinians who have held a permanent sit in inside the holy al-Aqsa Mosque have confronted the ‘Israeli’ occupation forces and the Zionist settlers who attempted many times to storm the mosque, tens of thousands of Palestinians have flocked to the place to defend their sacred shrine.

The Palestinian youth also, have proved their sober attention and their awareness and keenness to defend the cause as they carried many courageous operations against the enemies killing many of them.

This has put the Palestinian issue in the front of the events and proved all the ‘Israeli’ efforts to subjugate their will are meaningless.

Moreover, the spread of the celebrations of the International Quds Day all over the world have shown clearly that no matter how hard the enemies and their collaborators have tried to brainwash the Islamic Umma about its first cause, the Muslim people still prioritize Palestine as their first and most important cause.

Muslims this year, and after so many years of conspiracies to busy them with different internal crises all over, have slapped the world arrogance and its proxy governments in the Arab and Islamic world in the face and proved how genuine and real their commitment to Palestine and the Aqsa is.

This is very promising, as it clearly shows the kind of synchronization and deep harmony on three levels:

First, the presence and readiness of the Palestinians in the battlefield to defend their cause, especially among the young generation whether they belong to certain organized groups or not.

Second, the high efficiency and self-confidence among the Palestinian resistance groups, especially Hamas and Islamic jihad to consolidate the defense equation they produced and to intensify their efforts and go into a new confrontation to defend their people and cause.

Third, the crystallization of the forces of the Axis of Resistance and their consensus to consider al-Quds as the center and heart of this axis.

The speeches delivered by Leader of the Islamic Revolution Imam Sayyed Ali Khamenei and Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah on the occasion have shown a fixed commitment to support and defend the cause.

This threefold coordination along with the commemoration of the event all over the world with rising awareness as shown by the mounting numbers of participators prove that the ‘Israelis’ have almost lost the battle of awareness.

Moreover, the kind of reactions the ‘Israeli’ leadership is making clearly proves it has lost control. Through tough measures, military incursions, and continuous aggressions, it is showing the world its ugly face of being an apartheid criminal regime that gives no value or respect to laws and regulations or human rights. This hopefully will deepen its crisis of legitimacy it is suffering from in the eyes of the international community and the world’s public opinion.

All observers agree that a new horizon is on the making now in Palestine. A horizon of hope that will usher in a new era, an era of systematic gradual liberation, independence and victory.

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Sayyed Nasrallah Warns Zionists: Demise of Al-Quds Means Demise of ‘Israel’

 April 29, 2022

Click to watch the Video

Marwa Haidar

Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah on Friday warned the Zionist entity against targeting Al-Quds, stressing that the demise of the Palestinian capital means the demise of ‘Israel’.

In a lengthy speech on the occasion of International Al-Quds Day, Sayyed Nasrallah delivered several messages to the Israeli enemy, its backers and inferiors in the region.

His eminence stressed that the Resistance is making head against Israeli enemy despite all means of pressures adopted by the occupation and its backers.

Sayyed Nasrallah underlined that the formula that relates between Al-Quds and Gaza is still persistent, warning the Israeli enemy of the status of the Palestinian capital according to powers in the Axis of Resistance.

In this context, he urged countries and armies of the region to deliver a message to the Israeli occupation that says that the demise of Al-Quds means the demise of ‘Israel’, hinting out that any aggression on Al-Quds could lead to a regional war with Axis of Resistance.

Commenting on Israeli threats regarding the upcoming drills, Sayyed Nasrallah revealed that the Lebanese Resistance group has staged a ‘silent’ military drills in the last weeks, warning the Israeli enemy against attacking Hezbollah.

“Any folly by the Israeli enemy will be met by harsh response in a flash. This means that Israeli officials in such attack will not hear the statement: ‘Hezbollah reserves right to respond in the appropriate time and place’… We will retaliate at once.”

Al-Quds in the Conscience of the Muslim Nation

At the beginning of his speech, Sayyed Nasrallah saluted dozens of thousands of Palestinians who performed prayers at Al-Aqsa Mosque on the last Friday of the holy month of Ramadan.

He also saluted those who have been barricaded at the holy site in the latest weeks to defend it against Israeli attempts to desecrate it. His eminence, meanwhile, hailed the mass rallies which took place in about 90 countries across the world, especially those held in Iran and Yemen.

Talking more about the occasion, Sayyed Nasrallah said that the founder and the supreme leader of the Islamic Republic Imam Ruhollah Mousavi Khomeini wanted through designation the last Friday in Ramadan moth as International Al-Quds Day to “keep Al-Quds in the conscience of this nation.”

Israeli Schemes of Forgetting, Despair and Exhausting

He noted that the Israeli enemy and their backers adopted three paths in dealing with Palestine and the Muslim nation: forcing the Muslims to forget Palestine and Al-Quds, despairing Palestinian people and exhausting Palestinians as well as countries in the region.

In this context, Sayyed Nasrallah said that the first path has been foiled, stressing that “the Israeli occupation failed to take the Palestinian cause off the nation’s top priorities.”

He noted that normalization deals between some Arab countries, which are aimed at despairing Palestinian people has also failed.

“The aim of normalization deals was to tell the Palestinians that there is no hope and that they have to surrender. However, this path has also failed.”

“The heroic operations in occupied territories as well as firing rockets and the confrontations in Jenin… All these indicate that Palestinian people believe in victory.”

“The third path is the exhausting one. And it’s aimed against Palestinians and all people in the Axis of Resistance. This path includes all forms of pressures against our people and the Resistance groups, like sanctions, financial pressures and terror lists.”

His eminence stressed here that despite sufferings, this path has failed and that Palestine and Al-Quds is still one of this nation’s top priorities.

Axis of Resistance Making Head

Sayyed Nasrallah affirmed that Palestine and Al-Quds “are part of our religion, ideology and dignity which we will never abandon.”

He noted that Axis of Resistance has not relied on the political stance, but went for the military confrontation, underlining the importance of such option.

“Military confrontation proved ability to achieve victories and this path should continue. Military confrontation tops acts of resistance against Zionist entity throughout long years of Jihad. Military confrontation has proved that ‘Israel’ could be conquered and that this entity is not a destiny.”

Sayyed Nasrallah then talked about achievements secured by the Axis of Resistance in the latest months, noting that the “Int’l Al-Quds Day comes this year as the resistance against occupation is making head.”

He hailed the individual operations taking place in Palestine in the latest weeks, calling for offering all forms of support to Palestinian people.

“Individual operations carried out by Palestinians against Israeli occupation in the latest weeks are game-changing acts of resistance. They Palestinian individual operations revealed the Israeli occupation’s vulnerability.”

He said that the individual operations toppled the Israeli formula which is based on occupation and security, noting that the Zionist entity “can’t survive without security” and that this is one of the most achievements secured by this kind of operations.

Unwavering Commitment to Al-Quds

The Hezbollah S.G. also pointed to the Al-Quds-Gaza formula established by Palestinian Resistance following Sword of Al-Quds Op. in 2021, stressing that such formula is still persistent.

Then, he highlighted the unwavering commitment by Axis of Resistance powers towards Al-Quds.

‘We reiterate the regional formula which stipulates the solid relation between the Axis of Resistance and Al-Quds.”

In this context, he called on some Arab countries, which have relations with the Zionist entity, to deliver a message to the Israeli occupation that reads: Demise of Al-Quds means demise of ‘Israel’.”

“The future of Axis of Resistance is hope while the fate of the enemy is defeat.”

Attack on Iran and Israeli Drills

Sayyed Nasrallah then cited when the Zionist entity attacked Iran from Erbil last month.

“Iran retaliated by firing 12 missiles on Israeli Mossad facility in Erbil. Tehran at time delivered a message to regional countries which established ties with Zionist entity that any attack on the Islamic Republic through their soils will be met by harsh response.”

His eminence then tackled the upcoming Israeli drills in the Zionist entity next May. He revealed that the Hezbollah holds ‘silent’ drills frequently, stressing that the Lebanese Resistance movement is fully ready to confront any potential Israeli aggression.

“Any Israeli folly will be met by harsh response. In such case you (Israelis) will not hear ‘we reserve right to respond in the appropriate time and place’. We will retaliate at once.”

Source: Al-Manar English Website

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Bennett Must Tread Carefully: The ‘Sword of Jerusalem’ Could Be Unleashed Again

This time around, Palestinians fear that Israel aims at more than just mere provocations. Instead, it plans to “impose a temporal and spatial division of Al-Aqsa Mosque.”

April 27th, 2022

By Ramzy Baroud

Starting on April 15, the Israeli occupation army and police raided Al-Aqsa Mosque in Occupied East Jerusalem on a daily basis. Under the pretense of providing protection to provocative ‘visits’ by thousands of illegal Israeli Jewish settlers and right-wing fanatics, the Israeli army has wounded hundreds of Palestinians, including journalists, and arrested hundreds more.

Palestinians understand that the current attacks on Al-Aqsa carry deeper political and strategic meanings for Israel than previous raids.

Al-Aqsa has experienced routine raids by Israeli forces under various guises in the past. However, the significance of the Mosque has acquired additional meanings in recent years, especially following the popular Palestinian rebellion, mass protests, clashes, and a war on Gaza last May, which Palestinians tellingly refer to as Saif Al Quds – Operation Sword of Jerusalem.

Historically, Haram Al-Sharif – or the Noble Sanctuary – has been at the heart of popular struggle in Palestine, as well as at the center of Israeli policies. Located in the Old City of Occupied East Jerusalem, the Sanctuary is considered one of the holiest sites for all Muslims. It has a special place in Islam, as it has been mentioned in the Holy Quran and frequently in the Hadith – the Sayings of Prophet Mohammed. The compound contains several historic mosques and 17 gates, along with other important Islamic sites. Al-Aqsa is one of these mosques.

Israel Palestinians

Israeli security forces carry out a Ramadhan raid in the Old City of Jerusalem, April 17, 2022. Mahmoud Illean | AP

But for Palestinians, the significance of Al-Aqsa has gained additional meaning due to the Israeli occupation which, throughout the years, has targeted Palestinian mosques, churches, and other holy sites. For example, during the 2014 Israeli war on the besieged Gaza Strip, the Palestinian Ministry of Endowments and Religious Affairs said that 203 mosques were damaged by Israeli bombs, with 73 being completely destroyed.

Therefore, Palestinian Muslims, but also Christians, consider Al-Aqsa, the Sanctuary, and other Muslim and Christian sites in Jerusalem, a red line that must not be crossed by Israel. Generation after generation, they have mobilized to protect the sites though, at times, they could not, including in 1969 when Australian Jewish extremist, Denis Michael Rohan carried out an arson attack in Al-Aqsa.

Even the recent raids on the Mosque were not confined to the bodily harm and mass arrest of worshippers. On April 15, the second Friday of Ramadan, much destruction took place at Al-Aqsa, where the Mosque’s famous stained-glass windows were shattered and furniture inside was left broken.

The raids on the Haram Al-Sharif continue, at the time of writing this article. The Jewish extremists are feeling increasingly empowered by the protection they are receiving from the Israeli military, and the blank check provided to them by influential Israeli politicians. Many of the raids are often led by far-right Israeli Knesset member Itamar Ben-Gvir, Likud politician Yehuda Glick and former government minister Uri Ariel.

Cycle of Violence: Israeli Authorities Prod Extremist Militias into Seeking “Vigilante Justice”

Israeli Prime Minister, Naftali Bennett, is undoubtedly using the raids on Al-Aqsa as a way to keep his often rebellious far-right and religious constituency in line. The sudden resignation on April 6 of Idit Silman, a member of the Yamina right-wing party, left Bennett even more desperate in his attempt to breathe life in his fractious coalition. Once a leader of the Yesha Council, an umbrella organization of West Bank illegal settlements, Bennett rose to power on the back of religious zealots, whether in Israel or in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. Losing the support of settlers could simply cost him his post.

Bennett’s behavior is consistent with those of previous Israeli leaders, who have escalated violence in Al-Aqsa as a way to distract from their own political woes, or to appeal to Israel’s powerful constituency of right-wing and religious extremists. In September 2000, then Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon raided the Mosque with thousands of Israeli soldiers, police, and like-minded extremists. He did so to provoke a Palestinian response, and to topple the government of his archenemy Ehud Barak. Sharon succeeded, but at a high price, as his ‘visit’ unleashed the five-year-long Second Palestinian Intifada, also known as Al-Aqsa Intifada.

In 2017, thousands of Palestinians protested an Israeli attempt at installing ‘security cameras’ at the entrances of the holy shrine. The measure was also an attempt by former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to appease his right-wing supporters. But the mass protests in Jerusalem and the subsequent Palestinian unity at the time forced Israel to cancel its plans.

This time around, however, Palestinians fear that Israel aims at more than just mere provocations. Israel plans to “impose a temporal and spatial division of Al-Aqsa Mosque”, according to Adnan Ghaith, the Palestinian Authority’s top representative in East Jerusalem. This particular phrase, ‘temporal and spatial division’, is also used by many Palestinians, as they fear a repeat of the Ibrahimi Mosque scenario.

Following the killing of 29 worshippers in 1994 at the hands of an Israeli Jewish extremist, Baruch Goldstein, and the subsequent killing of many more Palestinians by the Israeli army at the Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron (Al-Khalil), Israel partitioned the mosque. It allocated a larger space to the Jewish settlers while restricting access to Palestinians, who are allowed to pray at certain times and barred at others. This is precisely what Palestinians mean by temporal and spatial division, which has been at the heart of Israeli strategy for many years.

Prayer mats covered in blood at the Ibrahimi mosque in the aftermath of the massacre carried out by Jewish settler Baruch Goldstein, February 25, 1994. (Photo: Al-Khalil)

Prayer mats covered in blood at the Ibrahimi mosque in the aftermath of the massacre carried out by Jewish settler Baruch Goldstein, February 25, 1994. (Photo: Al-Khalil)

Bennett, however, must tread carefully. Palestinians today are more united in their resistance and awareness of the Israeli designs than at any other time in the past. An important component of this unity is the Palestinian Arab population in historic Palestine, who are now championing a similar political discourse as that of Palestinians in Gaza, the West Bank, and East Jerusalem. In fact, many of the defenders of Al-Aqsa come from these very communities. If Israel continues with its provocations in Al-Aqsa, it risks another Palestinian revolt as that of May, which tellingly started in East Jerusalem.

Appealing to right-wing voters by attacking, humiliating, and provoking Palestinians is no longer an easy task, as was often the case. As the ‘Sword of Jerusalem’ has taught us, Palestinians are now capable of responding in a unified fashion and, despite their limited means, even putting pressure on Israel to reverse its policies. Bennett must remember this before carrying out any more violent provocations.

Feature photo | A protester uses a slingshot against Israeli security forces in Burqa, north of Nablus, April 19, 2022. Nasser Nasser | AP

Dr. Ramzy Baroud is a journalist and the Editor of The Palestine Chronicle. He is the author of six books. His latest book, co-edited with Ilan Pappé, is “Our Vision for Liberation: Engaged Palestinian Leaders and Intellectuals Speak out”. Baroud is a Non-resident Senior Research Fellow at the Center for Islam and Global Affairs (CIGA). His website is

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect MintPress News editorial policy.

Nasrallah: the Liberation of Palestine is Imminent

April 27, 2022

Translation:  Resistance News

Speech of Hezbollah Secretary-General Sayed Hassan Nasrallah on the Al-Quds (Jerusalem) pulpit on the eve of the International Al-Quds Day, April 26, 2022.

Al-Quds International Day is celebrated every last Friday of the Holy Month of Ramadan. This year, it will be held on Friday 29th. Before this occasion, a Virtual Quds Forum is held each year via video conference, as a “Unified Platform” that gathers leaders, officials, and personalities from the regional Axis of Resistance.

The speakers were Hezbollah Secretary-General Sayed Hassan Nasrallah, Hamas politburo chief Ismail Haniyeh, Palestinian Islamic Jihad Secretary-General Ziyad Al-Nakhalah, Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine Deputy Secretary-General Abu Ahmad Fouad, Iraqi Fatah Alliance chief Hadi Al-Amiri, Grand Mufti of Iraq Sheikh Mahdi al-Sumaida’i, Archbishop of Sebastia from the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Al-Quds Atallah Hanna, Yemen’s AnsarAllah leader Abdul-Malik Al-Houthi, Preacher of Al-Aqsa Mosque Sheikh Ikrima Sabri, Bahrein’s religious leader Cheikh Issa Qassem, Secretary-General of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine’s General Command Talal Naji.

Nasrallah: the Liberation of Palestine is Imminent



I seek refuge with God from the accursed devil.

In the name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

Praise be to God, Lord of the worlds, and prayers and peace be upon our master and Prophet Muhammad, upon his noble and pure family, his good and chosen companions, and all the Prophets and Messengers.

Peace be upon you all and God’s mercy and blessings

Once again, comes upon us this great occasion, the occasion of faith, jihad and devotion, I mean the International Day of Al-Quds (Jerusalem) or the International Al-Quds Day.

Day after day, becomes clear to us the extent of the greatness and wisdom that was manifested in Imam Khomeini’s – may God be pleased with him – Declaration of the last Friday of the blessed month of Ramadan as an International Day for Al-Quds and his call to the peoples of the (Islamic) Nation, of the world and to the whole world to revive this occasion and consider it a central day for Al-Quds, Palestine, the people of Palestine and this great historical battle.

This becomes clear day after day when we see that this issue is buzzing with life again, you find more supporters, helpers & sympathizers for it, thinkers, theorists, as well as Mujahideen (fighters) who are ready to sacrifice for it, while the enemy’s strategy from the beginning – meaning the enemy who established this entity, I mean the World Arrogance (Imperialism), the Zionist movement, and those who cooperated with them behind the scenes, be it governments and regimes in the Arab world –, their strategy was to bet on time, that this issue be forgotten with time, that this issue be consumed by events, and becomes forgotten and forsaken with time, and that the peoples of the Middle East, including the Palestinian people, with all the challenges, trials and difficulties they face, will in one way or another abandon this issue or, at the very least, it will not remain at the top of the priority list.

Their strategy has always been betting on the despair of the Palestinian people, of our peoples and of our (Islamic) Nation, on their despair and frustration, and on the belief that there is no horizon before us, and we only have to surrender and accept the crumbs that are offered to the Palestinians in Palestine, and to the rest of the peoples of the region in the issues that are still pending with the usurping entity, whether with Lebanon or Syria, for example.

So their bet was on forgetfulness, on fatigue, despair, frustration, and ultimately on surrender and acceptance. But what is happening is the exact opposite, thanks to the blessing of faith and jihad, the blessing of sacrifices and insight expressed by countries, forces, movements and peoples of the Axis of Resistance, this faith, this presence, this perseverance, this challenge, this hard work, made the results completely different.

Today, Al-Quds returns to be the target issue, and the main issue and the axis of all the Axis of Resistance. That is why this year the title or slogan “Al-Quds is the axis” was launched. Our axis, the growing Axis of Resistance, should in truth also be called “the Axis of Al-Quds”, because in fact, Al-Quds is the central point that unites these countries, peoples, movements, parties, resistance factions and all elites, whether in the Axis of Resistance or at the level of the peoples of the (Islamic) Nation.

Al-Quds today returns to the thought, awareness, emotion, feelings and conscience, but most importantly it also returns with force to the field, rather to all fields. For the sake of Al-Quds today, real armies, strong and powerful fighters are built, with great strength, their minds, eyes, hearts and souls are fixed to Al-Quds and are tied to it. Al-Quds returns today and it has a sword in Gaza, defending it as it happened last year in the Battle of the Sword of Al-Quds. In the past days and weeks of Ramadan, we witnessed how the Battle of Al-Quds was strongly present in the conscience of the Palestinian people and also in the mind of the enemy, the enemy’s calculations, the enemy’s decisions, and the enemy’s fear.

Al-Quds returns and today has an axis that gathers to create its strong and solid regional equation in order first to protect it, and secondly to liberate it, God willing. I am confirming this equation today, equation on which we are working to complete all its strong, solid and integrated elements, God willing.

Al-Quds and its people in Palestine return today, inside the territories occupied in 1948 and in Gaza, making epics that shake the entity, as happened in the past few days, and prove to this entity and its masters in the world that this proud, oppressed, steadfast, patient and Mujaheed Palestinian people cannot forget, cannot despair, and cannot make concessions or surrender, and he will never leave his land, no matter how crushing the daily pressures imposed on him, how difficult his life is, and how great his sacrifices are. In the end, the one who will have to leave is the (Zionist) occupier and the usurper.

Al-Quds, o brothers and sisters, is the responsibility of the entire (Islamic) Nation, and we in Hezbollah as part of this Nation consider ourselves in the front line, in the front line along with our dear brothers and honorable Mujahideen in the Palestinian resistance factions. We work from this position and bear all the consequences and pressures and we look forward to the day when Al-Quds will return to its people and to the Nation.

We know that the most important reason for what we are exposed to in Lebanon as well as to what countries and resistance movements in our region are subjected to, everyone who belongs to this line, to this axis, to this idea, to this origin, to this goal, the siege, sanctions and restrictions we are subjected to at the international and regional and Interior levels, the main goal of all this pressure is to force us to abandon Al-Quds and Palestine, to abandon the logic of Resistance and the culture of Resistance, its real goal is to push us all to surrender to the will of the United States of America and Israel to establish the existence of the usurping entity, and also to accept normalization in all forms of normalization with this entity by all countries in the region, and also accept the crumbs that are presented to the Palestinian people and the peoples of the region.

We consider that steadfastness here in the face of these restrictions, siege, terrorism and threats, is an essential part of the battle of Resistance from the battle of destiny, the future and the making of the future, and just as killing, assassination and wars have not brought us down, the siege, pressure, terrorism and defamation will not bring us down.

We and all the honorable people in this (Islamic) Nation have a date with Al-Quds, God willing, to pray in it (once it is Liberated). This is our covenant with Al-Quds, this is our covenant with our proud Palestinian people, and this is our covenant with all our dear martyrs who perished on the road to Al-Quds, men and women, young and old in all the Middle East, in Palestine and Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Egypt and all the neighboring countries who suffered directly from the Israeli aggression and the existence of this entity. And this is our covenant with our great martyrs, with our leaders and our elders in Palestine, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Iran and Yemen, foremost among them is the martyr of Al-Quds, the great and inspiring leader, Hajj Qassem Soleimani, may God Almighty be pleased with him, who spent his honorable life in the service of this goal, this path, and this Axis, and witnessed many of his jihad and sacrifices of this axis, and witnessed many of his victories, and was always eager to witness the great and decisive victory to come, God willing.

With the blessing of this pure blood, and with loyalty to it, we will complete our path no matter how great the sacrifices, threats, difficulties and dangers, and as we have passed all the previous harsh stages and moved from victory to victory, we, with the help of God Almighty, are standing on the threshold of the great, huge and final victory that we see very close, God willing.

And, God willing, we will continue together hand in hand and shoulder to shoulder of all the Resistance factions, all the Resistance movements, all the peoples of the Resistance, all the countries of the Resistance. We will break all chains, foil all conspiracies, all the daggers that try to stab us in our backs and in our chests will fall, and our Qibla (aim) and our real battle will be to create complete freedom for the sanctities, and Al-Quds will remain the title, goal and foundation, and it is the Axis.

Peace be upon you all, and the mercy and blessings of God.


Nasrallah: the Palestinian People is Unbreakable

Speech by Hezbollah Secretary General Sayed Hassan Nasrallah on April 11, 2022, about the internal situation in Lebanon.

Source :


[…] I must begin with Palestine as an introduction, to say that we must have the utmost deference, respect and pride in the heroism displayed by the Palestinian youth, men and women, in the heroic deeds of its children and old people, in their great faith in God and their cause, in their enormous courage and strength and determination that goes to the point of risking death to shape a dignified life for their people and their country, and hoping to liberate their holy places, the holy places of the entire (Islamic) Nation.

Likewise, we must have the utmost deference and respect for the families of the martyrs, the fathers, mothers and relatives, and their clear, strong, lucid and decisive stances, and for the endurance of this fighting and patient people despite a long history of massacres. These days we commemorate the Deir Yassin massacre, which took place in April 1948. Despite a long history of massacres and wars, the latest being the Battle of the Sword of Al-Quds (in May 2021), despite expulsion, oppression, exile, refugee and displacement camps, abandonment, stabbing in the back even by countries, regimes and organizations that were supposed to stand by the Palestinian people.

What is happening these days has quite grandiose implications and consequences with regard to the struggle against the (Israeli) enemy, the future of Palestine and the future of the temporary entity that is the usurping Israeli entity. Of course, one of the most important consequences and implications of what has happened in the last few days, implications of real strategic importance to me, is what we have been talking about for years, but in the last few days I have been reading statements by Israeli commentators, analysts and journalists who recognize this truth that we have been talking about for many years: it is completely illusory and wrong to bet on the despair of the Palestinian people, on the collapse of their will, on their renunciation and abandonment of Palestine, the Palestinian cause and the holy places. Since 1948, and even before 1948 and until today, this people inherits (its sacred cause) from one generation to the next, and the young men and women whose names we have heard and whose pictures we have seen on television, who belong to this new generation of Palestinians, all inherit the Resistance, the endurance, the cause, the jihad, the yearning for martyrdom and struggle, generation after generation.

If the Israelis imagine that the normalization of their relations with some Arab countries, the visits of some normalizing Arab officials to the temporary Zionist entity, if they imagine that this official abandonment and neglect of the Arab countries (towards the Palestinian cause) can lead the Palestinian people to abandon their cause and accept the crumbs offered to them, as they had hoped with the Deal of the Century, they are deluding themselves.

Today, thank God, Zionist commentators, analysts and writers themselves are beginning to state this truth, that despite all that has happened, Israel faces an invincible people, which it is impossible to subdue, to bring to its knees, to impose solutions on. There is no other way out than to respond to their demands, to their rights, even if it is only the minimum of their rights. This is what (leading) Israelis say. For (they recognize that) more confrontation can only bring (Israel) more humiliation and defeat, and that they will only find (in the Palestinians) more courage, endurance, faith, determination and readiness to persevere on this path until the end.

In any case, what is happening in and around Palestine requires that we dwell on it at length and talk about it in detail, which I do not have time to do (in this speech devoted to the Lebanese domestic situation), but we will have the opportunity to do so on the International Day of Al-Quds on the last Friday of Ramadan (on April 27, during which I will make, as usual, a long speech devoted exclusively to this issue), where we will be able to express our support and the support of the peoples of the (Islamic) Nation for the Palestinian cause. I call on the Muslim world in general and Lebanon in particular to participate massively in this Day. For our part, we will hold a large popular celebration in the southern suburbs of Beirut, and I call on all my brothers and sisters, all those who support the Palestinian cause, to demonstrate on this day to express our support for this people and its cause, and our participation in its struggle and its inevitable victory, with the grace of God the Most High and Exalted. […]

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المنطقة في العصر الفلسطينيّ

الخميس 14 نيسان 2022

التعليق السياسي

مرت انتفاضات كثيرة على فلسطين، وكثيرة هي موجات العمليات الفدائية التي امتدت لأسابيع، وفي مرات عديدة امتزجت الانتفاضات بالعمليات المقاومة، لكن السياق السياسي الدولي والإقليمي والفلسطيني والإسرائيلي لم يكن يسمح بالقول إنه العصر الفلسطيني.

للمرة الأولى في المواجهات التاريخية التي يخوضها الفلسطينيون يبدو أن القوة العسكرية للغرب خارج احتمالات التورط في أية حرب دفاعاً عن كيان الاحتلال، وأن أميركا وأوروبا لا تملكان سلاحاً لحروبهما المباشرة إلا سلاح العقوبات، وأن جرح أفغانستان لا يزال حياً وينزف فشلاً وخيبة ويعزّز قرار الابتعاد عن التورط في الحروب، وسلاح العقوبات لا يُخيف الفلسطينيين ولا يقيمون له حساباً وهم تحت حصار ما مثله حصار، وما يعنيهم أن الغرب الذي كانت جيوشه طرفاً في حروب فلسطين قد تمّ تحييدها من أية مواجهة مقبلة.

للمرة الأولى في حروب فلسطين تتجه أولويات الغرب نحو وجهات جغرافية واستراتيجية أخرى، وتفقد المنطقة التي تشكل فلسطين قلبها مكانة الأولوية التي احتلتها لعقود في السياسات الغربية، ويتزامن ذلك مع تراجع القدرة الغربية، واشتداد التنافس حول الأحجام والأدوار مع قوى عالمية صاعدة تتصدّرها روسيا والصين، في لحظة تاريخية نادرة.

للمرة الأولى يتحرر الفلسطينيون من عقدة الوهم بأنهم أضعف من إمساك مصيرهم بأيديهم، وبأن مصدر قوتهم هو من عمقهم العربي بجيوشه ونفطه وعلاقاته الدولية، فينفضون أيديهم من هذا الوهم، ويكتشفون ان هذا العمق العربي بهذا البعد قد صار عبئاً على قضيتهم مع مسارات التطبيع وصفقة القرن، ويكتشفون أن هناك عمقاً عربياً آخر تمثله حركات المقاومة خصوصاً في لبنان واليمن ستكون جاهزة لمساندة الفلسطينيين في أية حرب مقبلة، خصوصاً عندما تكون القدس عنواناً لها.

للمرة الأولى لا يملك الإسرائيليون فائض قوة يفرض معادلة الردع على الفلسطينيين، بل إن ما يحدث هو العكس، فقد أثبتت المقاومة الفلسطينية في معركة سيف القدس أنها تملك فائض قوة يمثل قدرة ردع تحمي العمق الفلسطيني في المناطق المحتلة.

للمرة الأولى تذوب طروحات التفاوض ويضمحل أصحابها وتخلو الساحة لخيار المواجهة، وتسقط القيادة السياسية التي روّجت للتفاوض في وحل التنسيق الأمني مع الاحتلال، بحيث يصير الفرز حاداً بين المعسكرين، مَن في ساحات المواجهة لا يستطيع أن يكون من جماعة السلطة، وهذا يطال فتح نفسها، التي تعود لساحة المواجهة تحت عنوان كتائب الأقصى.

للمرة الأولى لا يكون سقوط خط التفاوض سياسياً فقط بل استراتيجياً، فمع تقدم مكانة المستوطنين المتطرفين في مشهد الكيان السياسي يتقدّم موقع فلسطينيي الأراضي المحتلة عام 48 والقدس المشهد الفلسطيني، ويصير الصراع أشد جذرية يصعب إيجاد مناطق وسط فيه.

في المنطقة سقط العصر الأميركي من بوابة حرب العراق وسقط العصر الإسرائيلي من بوابة المقاومة في لبنان، وسقط العصر العثمانيّ الجديد من بوابة الحرب على سورية، وسقط العصر السعوديّ من بوابة حرب اليمن ليبزغ فجر العصر الفلسطينيّ.

فيديوات متعلقة

مقالات متعلقة

Israeli occupation forces storm Al-Aqsa mosque, assault worshippers

 April 15, 2022

Source: Agencies + Al-Mayadeen Net

By Al Mayadeen Net 

A new Palestinian has fallen; Shawkat Kamal Abed was martyred following the injuries he sustained in Jenin yesterday.

Palestinian civilians confronting occupation forces in Al-Aqsa Mosque

Israeli occupation forces violently stormed Al-Aqsa Mosque at dawn on Friday, emptying it of worshippers.

According to Al Mayadeen‘s correspondent, occupation forces fired sound grenades, teargas, and rubber-coated metal bullets at worshippers, injuring a number of them.

Our correspondent added that “occupation forces pursued the worshippers, assaulting them, and evacuated most of them from Al-Aqsa’s courtyards, shutting all gateways there, except for Bab Huta.”

According to the Palestinian Red Crescent, 59 injuries have so far been transported to Al-Quds hospitals amid confrontations between Palestinians and occupation forces in Al-Aqsa, adding that reporters and medics are among those injured and that most injuries were in the upper parts of the body.

Al Mayadeen‘s correspondent stressed that occupation forces were obstructing the work of ambulances arriving at Bab Al-Asbat.

Palestinian factions call for a popular march

Palestinian Resistance factions in Gaza called for a popular march after today’s Friday prayers in support of Al-Quds and the West Bank.

Palestinian factions in Gaza had announced on Thursday a general mobilization in all places where the Palestinian people are present, inside Palestine or in the diaspora. The factions declared in a statement that they have decided to keep the joint operations room open in order to pursue developments and make the necessary decisions, stressing the factions’ unity against the occupation and aggression.

A new martyr in Jenin

The Palestinian Health Ministry announced this morning the martyrdom of Shawkat Kamal Abed due to injuries he sustained in Jenin yesterday. 35 other Palestinians were asphyxiated from inhaling gas during their confrontations with Israeli occupation forces in Beita, south of Nablus. 

Al Mayadeen‘s correspondent had reported yesterday that two martyrs fell by Israeli occupation fire after the IOF stormed a town near Jenin: Martyr Shas Kamamji, the brother of prisoner Ayham Kamamji, and martyr Mostafa Abou Al-Rab.

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Until Jerusalem | A comprehensive confrontation of a renewed revolution, Jenin is not alone

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Israeli Human Rights Violations in Palestine Weekly Update (07- 13 April 2022)

 April 14, 2022

Violation of right to life and bodily integrity:

Eight Palestinians, including 2 children and 2 women, were killed, and 48 others, including 6 children, a girl and 2 who lost their eyes, were wounded by Israeli occupation forces’ (IOF) fire while tens of others suffocated and sustained bruises in separate incidents in the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip. 

On 10 April 2022, a Palestinian woman was shot dead by IOF near an Israeli checkpoint in Husan, western Bethlehem.  More information available here.  On the same afternoon, IOF killed another woman in Hebron, claiming she stabbed an Israeli soldier near the Ibrahimi Mosque and killed another Palestinian after directly targeting him in al-Khader village, Bethlehem, claiming he threw  stones and Molotov Cocktails.  More information available here. 

On 11 April 2022, a child succumbed to wounds he sustained a day earlier in Jenin.  More information available  here.

On 13 April 2022, IOF killed a lawyer without justification while their troops withdrew from Nablus after conducting a widescale incursion in the city, wounding 3 Palestinians, including a child.  More details available here. In the afternoon, IOF killed a Palestinian and wounded 6 others during clashes when IOF withdrew from Silwad village in Ramallah.  During the incursion, IOF surrounded 2 houses; one was uninhabited, and opened fire at them, detaining the residents inside and then beating and arresting 3 of them. On the same afternoon, IOF opened fire and killed a child with several bullets in Husan village, western Bethlehem.  They detained his body and took him with them but few hours later his body was delivered.  IOF claimed that the child was targeted after he was seen trying to throw Molotov Cocktails at a military checkpoint in the area.

Most of them were victims of excessive use of force that accompanied suppression of peaceful protests and gatherings and they were as follows:

07 April: 4 fishermen were wounded with rubber bullets and then arrested by IOF when the latter chased 2 fishing boats sailing within the allowed fishing area (8 nautical miles ) off Rafah shore, southern Gaza Strip.  They were released the next day, but their boats were

confiscated.  Another chase recurred in the same area and IOF arrested 3 other fishermen and confiscated their boat.  A child sustained teargas canister shrapnel wounds in his hand, and another Palestinian was arrested in clashes erupted during IOF’s incursion into al-Am’ari refugee camp in Ramallah.  In the afternoon, IOF again suppressed Palestinians gathered in Bab al-‘Amoud in occupied East Jerusalem and arrested 3 of them, including a child, after assaulting them.  This recurred the next day after setters gathered and chanted slogans against Arabs and Muslim; during which, IOF arrested and severely beat up a Palestinian.

08 April: 3 Palestinians were wounded, including 2 children, with rubber bullets during IOF’s suppression of Kafr Qaddoum weekly protest in Qalqilya.  A Palestinian child lost his eye when IOF directly targeted him with a rubber bullet during their suppression of protesters in northern East Jerusalem.  More details available here.  IOF wounded 3 Palestinians near Gate 104 near the annexation wall, northern Tulkarm, during their attempt to enter Israel for work.  In the afternoon, a Palestinian was wounded with a rubber bullet in his foot and 2 others were arrested, including a child, during clashes with IOF in Kafr Malek village in Ramallah.

09 April: 13 Palestinians, including a child and a girl, were wounded; 2 sustained serious wounds in clashes during IOF’s incursion into Jenin refugee camp to surround the house of the Palestinian who carried out the shooting in Tel Aviv in Jenin.  The area witnessed clashes between IOF and members of Palestinian armed groups; as a result, one of the latter was killed.  IOF arrested 2 Palestinians; one of them was wounded, and later withdrew. 

10 April: a Palestinian was wounded with a bullet in his waist and others suffocated in clashes during IOF’s incursion into Yabad village, Jenin.  IOF arrested 8 Palestinians after raiding their houses and 3 shops, damaging their contents, and later withdrew. A Palestinian also sustained bullet shrapnel wounds in his hand and 3 others were arrested in similar circumstances in the eastern neighborhood in Jenin.  Another Palestinian was wounded with a bullet in the right thigh in clashes during IOF’s incursion into al-Bireh, northern Ramallah.  Moreover, two Palestinians were arrested in clashes during IOF’s incursion into ‘Aqabet Jaber refugee camp in Jericho.

11 April: a child was wounded with a bullet in his right leg, and 9 Palestinians were arrested, including a national security officer, during IOF’s incursion into Kafr Qalil village and the down suburb adjacent to the village, eastern Nablus.

12 April: IOF wounded 4 Palestinian university students after raiding Khadouri University’s campus in Tulkarm.  In the next day, an Israeli Special Force raided the university in a civilian car and opened fire at a student, visitor, and a security officer whom they arrested after wounding him.  Further information available here.

13 April: 7 Palestinians were wounded, including one in critical condition and another lost his eye by a rubber bullet that penetrated his eye in clashes during IOF’s incursion into Bita village, southeastern Nablus. Also, IOF wounded a Palestinian near the annexation wall, southern Tulkarm, when they targeted workers in their attempt to infiltrate in order to work in Israel.  In the afternoon, a young man was wounded in his chest with shrapnel of a sound bomb fired by IOF in their incursion into Kobar village, Ramallah.  IOF arrested 4 Palestinians and later withdrew.

In the Gaza Strip, IOF opened fire 3 times at agricultural lands in access restricted areas, eastern Khan Younis. Also, five IOF shootings were reported on fishing boats mostly off the northern, southern, and western Gaza shores.

So far in 2022, IOF attacks killed 28 Palestinians, including 7 children and 2 women, and wounded 235 others, including 45 children, 2 women, 2 paramedics and 10 journalists: all in the West Bank, except 5 fishermen in the Gaza Strip.

Settler-attacks on Palestinian civilians and their properties:

This week, settlers carried out 9 attacks in the West Bank, wounding 6 Palestinians, including 2 with bullets, and damaging many vehicles. The details were as follows:

07 April: setters from “Beit El” settlement, northern al-Bireh, threw stones at the Palestinian car traveling on the main street adjacent to the settlement and leading to al-Jalazone refugee camp.  No injuries were reported.  On the same day, settlers from “Shiloh” settlement, eastern Ramallah, threw stones at the Palestinian cars traveling on Ramallah-Nablus main street.  no injuries were reported.

08 April: 2 Palestinians were wounded with bullets when settlers opened fire at the Palestinian vehicles in Tarmesi’yah village, Ramallah.  IOF’s patrols arrived and took the wounded to an Israeli hospital.  On the same day, a Palestinian vehicle sustained damages after settlers threw stones near Ras Karkar intersection, western Ramallah.  Also, settlers sneaked into Sinjil village, eastern Ramallah, and opened fire at a house.  No injuries were reported.

09 April:  a Palestinian sustained wounds in his face when he was working in a kindergarten near his house in the closed Martyrs Street neighborhood in H2 area in Hebron.  Settlers from “al-Daboya” settlement outpost threw a stone at him.  in the afternoon, settlers beat up an elderly when the latter was herding his sheep in al-Hafasi pastoral areas surrounding ‘Inab settlement, eastern Tulkarm.  Also, settlers stormed agricultural lands in ‘Anabta

village, eastern Tulkarm, and raised the Israeli flag on the roof an agricultural room.  Settlers also threw stones and sprayed pepper gas at a Palestinian and his wife in an agricultural room in Kafr al-Deek, western Salfit.

So far this year, settlers carried out 95 attacks on Palestinians and their properties in the West Bank.

Land razing, demolitions, and notices

On 10 April, IOF confiscated a bulldozer and a truck for Palestinians in Tarmesi’yah village, Ramallah.

On 12 April, IOF uprooted 2 tents; one is residential and the other is for grazing sheep in Kafr Malek in Ramallah, under the pretext of building in an archeological area and within Area C.

Since the beginning of 2022, IOF made 40 families homeless, a total of 244 persons, including 47 women and 113 children. This was the outcome of IOF demolition of 50 houses and 5 residential tents. IOF also demolished 29 other civilian objects, razed 174 dunums and delivered 49 notices of demolition, cease-construction, and evacuation.

IOF incursions and arrests of Palestinian civilians:

 IOF carried out 210 incursions into the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem. Those incursions included raids and searches of civilian houses and facilities and establishment of checkpoints. During this week’s incursions, 131 Palestinians were arrested, including 7 children. 

So far in 2022, IOF conducted 2260 incursions into the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem, during which 1360 Palestinians were arrested, including 153 children and 14 women. IOF also conducted 12 limited incursions into eastern Gaza Strip and arrested 27 Palestinians, including 14 fishermen, 11 infiltrators, and 2 travelers via Beit Hanoun “Erez” Crossing.

Israeli collective punishment and closure policy and restrictions on freedom of movement:

On 09 April 2022, Major General Ghassan Alian, head of the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT), announced collective punitive measures against Jenin, northern West Bank, following the shooting in Tel Aviv carried out by one of the city’s residents. 

The announcement published on ‘Alian’s Facebook page says: “following the latest incidents in Jenin and upon the Israeli Defense Minister’s decision: businessmen from Jenin are not allowed to enter Israel, and Arabs in Israel are not allowed (neither in cars nor on feet) to enter or exit via al-Jalbou’a and Barta’a crossings.  Also, the rock rubble will not be transferred via DTD at crossings in Jenin, and due to security concerns, family visitations to Palestinians in Jenin will not be allowed (within the 5000 approved permits)                                                                          

The Israeli occupation maintains its illegal and inhuman 15-year closure on the Gaza Strip. Details available in PCHR’s February monthly update on the Gaza crossings.

 In the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem, IOF continues to impose restrictions on the freedom of movement. On top of its 108 permanent checkpoints, IOF established 93 temporary military checkpoints this week and arrested Palestinians at those checkpoints. The majority of the checkpoints were in Hebron (39) and Bethlehem (17).  Jerusalem also witnessed many restrictions on freedom of movement in Ramadan,

So far in 2022, IOF established at least 1056 checkpoints and arrested 59 Palestinians at those checkpoints.

Leaked files expose Britain’s covert infiltration of Palestinian refugee camps

Under the guise of improving the plight of Lebanon’s Palestinian refugees, an initiative by the British Foreign Office has ulterior motives that impact Lebanese domestic politics.

April 13 2022

The British government has infiltrated Lebanon’s Palestinian refugee camps, ostensibly to use those demographics to political advantage. Otherwise, why not assist them through UNRWA?Photo Credit: The Cradle

By Kit Klarenberg

In February, Lebanese journalist Mohammed Shoaib was arrested on suspicion of collusion with Israel’s Mossad spy agency. The writer who worked for Al-Jaras, confessed that the notorious spy agency secretly paid him to author “dozens” of anti-Hezbollah articles, receiving a paltry $30 to $70 per article.

In particular, Shoaib was tasked with writing hit jobs on the “Iranian occupation” of Lebanon, and falsely linking Hezbollah with the August 2020 Beirut port blast, drug trafficking, and murder of political activists.

It is also alleged that Mossad specifically requested his work incite hostility towards Palestinian refugees in the country who number almost 300,000. In all, Lebanon hosts more than 1.7 million refugees and has the largest per capita population of refugees in the world.

Roughly half inhabit camps administered by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), where they endure abysmal living conditions, overcrowding, poverty, unemployment, lack of access to justice, and other unspeakable hardships. The 11-year, foreign-backed crisis in neighboring Syria has also prompted Palestinian refugees there – and Syrian citizens – to seek sanctuary in Lebanon.

Given Israel’s track record of multifaceted crimes against the Palestinian people, that they are targeting an already vulnerable refugee population for propaganda purposes is hardly surprising. Nonetheless, Israel is not the only hostile foreign country resorting to these tactics.

Leaked files reviewed by The Cradle reveal the British Foreign Office has for many years secretly meddled in Lebanon’s refugee camps, courtesy of ARK, a shadowy intelligence cutout run by probable MI6 operative Alistair Harris. London’s agenda is rather different than Tel Aviv’s, however – it seeks to subtly stir up revolutionary fervor, and exploit them as unwitting foot soldiers in its ongoing clandestine war against Lebanon’s ruling elite.

‘Community Engagement’

The documents indicate ARK has been operating in all 12 camps since 2009, implementing British-funded “programming” of various kinds. This experience has granted the company “granular understanding” of their internal political, economic, ideological, religious and practical dynamics, and led to the establishment of a “diverse delivery team” and array of “local contacts” with “access throughout all camps and gatherings,” meaning community-level discussions and activities of residents can be spied upon and influenced.

This intimate, insidious insight is reinforced by “daily monitoring of neighborhood-level WhatsApp groups,” with “any new information, such as affiliation between a local group and a faction, or conflict between factions” documented by ARK’s in-house “stakeholder tracker.”

Typically, ARK has engaged in small-scale initiatives in the camps, including the restoration of streets and cemeteries, recycling initiatives, assisting in the launch of small businesses, providing income to disadvantaged and disabled residents, creating nurseries and daycare centers, and even launching a community hub, Sawa Coffeeshop. It serves to this day as “a popular place for youth to gather and promote civic engagement in their community and a shared Palestinian identity that bridges factional differences.”

In submissions to the Foreign Office dating to May 2019, ARK proposed ramping up these activities significantly. It pledged to create “Community Leadership Committees” in each camp, composed of hand-picked “stakeholders” – including NGOs, youth activists, women’s organizations, and representatives of neighborhood armed groups – to identify “quick impact projects” that could be implemented therein. These projects aim to “counter threats to social stability in the camps, create or improve livelihood opportunities, and provide better access to services.”

A social media platform created by ARK, Nastopia – which boasted 20,000 “highly invested” followers on Facebook at the time, a figure that has almost doubled since – was forecast to be fundamental to these efforts.

The page, run by a 24-strong team of ARK-trained “youth reporters”, would be used to recruit local participants, increase awareness and demand for “community engagement and improved conditions” among camp residents.  Other activities include the promotion of Foreign Office-financed projects and to publicize “success stories” generated by them, while “promoting Palestinian culture and a sense of belonging, and tackling social injustice.”

Nastopia was “already [an] effective voice for connecting Palestinian communities, particularly youth” by that point. ARK cited a recent “Camps Films Festival” organized by the platform, covered by Al-Jazeera, which showcased “films portraying life in the camps and what it means to be Palestinian,” and in the process provided “positive examples of a shared identity.”

All along, the Nastopia page was to be monitored with “community feedback” on the assorted initiatives gauged to identify areas in which these activities “could be adapted to maximize impact.” Specialist training provided to its staff meant the platform could also serve “as a forum for online and offline discussion about social injustices [and] virtual space to talk about topics considered taboo in the camps,” allowing ARK to burrow even deeper inside the heads of refugees.

‘Active Citizenship’

If the obvious surveillance and manipulation dimensions of ARK’s project weren’t troubling enough, it takes on an acutely sinister character when one considers a key objective of “highlighting successful initiatives” in the camps was to “[enhance] the audience’s confidence in their own ability to contribute to social change.”

A Foreign Office-commissioned Target Audience Analysis conducted by ARK in March 2019 sought to pinpoint a segment of Lebanon’s population that could be mobilized to “affect positive social change,” and methods by which tensions between sectarian communities could be reduced, in order to unify them in opposition to the country’s ruling elite. Reading between the lines, it gives every appearance of a blueprint for the overthrow of the Lebanese government.

An ideal audience was duly identified, representing 12 percent of the population, who disavowed violence but did not reject “other forms of contentious politics,” and could be “influenced” to engage in “behaviors leading to positive social change,” such as protests and community initiatives.

The only questions for ARK were: “What might be done to enable other Lebanese to have similar confidence in their potential to contribute to positive social change?” and “how might this segment of the population … be grown to include a larger fraction of the public?”

The answer, ARK proposed, was to both covertly and overtly promote the message that “change is possible and ordinary citizens have a role to play in achieving change,” by way of propaganda campaigns and civil society initiatives “[highlighting] where change has been achieved or where threats to Lebanon’s stability have been countered.” This would demonstrate to the country’s diverse population that “barriers” to reform can be overcome, by taking matters into their own hands.

Providing evidence of “responsive government at local levels” was crucial for reinforcing “principles of active citizenship” among Lebanon’s population – and the analysis specifically cited Syrians and Palestinians, who are mostly Sunni Muslims, as representing an “important part” of the country’s demography, to be motivated in this manner.

In other words, Foreign Office activities in the refugee camps form just one fragment of a wider, clandestine, multi-channel assault on public perceptions in Lebanon that Britain has been waging against its democratically-elected government.

A mobilized force

One can judge these efforts by their fruits. In October 2019, seven months after ARK’s Target Audience Analysis was supplied to the Foreign Office, large-scale protests engulfed the streets of Beirut, which have ebbed and flowed ever since, and generated enormous amounts of western media coverage along the way.

The extent to which ARK’s Foreign Office-funded meddling in Lebanon influenced this incendiary unrest may never be fully quantifiable, but it may be significant that in July that year, thousands of refugees across several camps began demonstrating in unison, demanding the government immediately reform employment laws barring them as “foreign workers” from numerous professions.

This turmoil was arguably the spark that ignited the entire “October Revolution” – and in one of its Foreign Office submissions, ARK refers to how it “takes pride” in ensuring refugees recruited to its illicit schemes receive “annual leave, sick leave, and health insurance,” despite this not being “legally necessary” due to local legislation “discriminating against Palestinians.”

Who benefits?

The influence of ARK on Lebanon’s impending general election in May, the country’s first since the riots began, is even more unambiguous. Several news outlets have hailed the unprecedentedly high profusion of young candidates vying for office – 80 in total, many of them women.

A clandestine Foreign Office project influenced by the aforementioned Target Audience Analysis sought to enlist Lebanese youth as “agents of change”, fostering among them a culture of active political participation, in order that they could better “hold political institutions and individuals accountable,” and increase “electoral participation” in favor of opposition parties.

Under its auspices, ARK convened “boot camps” in “priority areas” of Lebanon, cultivated “a national group capable of pushing for greater change” composed of young women, and created social media assets and youth-focused websites featuring political interviews, question-and-answer sessions, coverage of boot camp meetings, “calls to action,” and “humorous messaging campaigns.” Activity on these assets was scheduled to ramp up ahead of the 2022 elections.

Clearly, irrespective of the outcome of the Lebanon May elections, the ultimate victors won’t be the parties and candidates that secure office, or the average Lebanese citizens who elected them, but Britain – for whatever form the next government takes, one way or another, it will serve London’s financial, ideological, military, and political interests.

The views expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect those of The Cradle.

جنين غزة جديدة

الإثنين 11 نيسان 2022

 ناصر قنديل


لا ينفصل التفكير بمخيم جنين في عقول القيادات الإسرائيلية السياسية والعسكرية عن التفكير بغزة، ففي عام 2002 عندما اقتحم جيش الاحتلال مخيم جنين بعد قتال امتدّ لأيام وأسابيع، وانتهت بالمجزرة التاريخية التي نفذها شاؤول موفاز رئيس أركان جيش الاحتلال يومها، كانت المعركة التي أطلق عليها جيش الاحتلال تسمية السور الواقي، تشتمل على عمليات توغل في قطاع غزة، سمّيت بمعركة الأنفاق يومها، وكان رهان الاحتلال على مذبحة جنين لردع غزة التي كانت تتنامى فيها ظاهرة المناطق المغلقة بوجه جيش الاحتلال، أملاً بتفادي معركة اقتحام مكلفة لغزة، كان يحاول دائماً تفاديها. ولم يكن من باب الصدفة أن الاحتلال عندما قرّر الانسحاب من غزة وتفكيك مستوطنات غلاف غزة عام 2005، قام بالتزامن بتفكيك أربع مستوطنات ومعسكر في غلاف جنين وهي «قديم وغنيم وحومش وصانور ومعسكر دوثان»، بل إن الاحتلال عندما قرر الانسحاب من طولكرم عام 1995 وضمّها إلى مناطق سيطرة السلطة الفلسطينية، وهي من المناطق المحتلة عام 1948 بخلاف كل مناطق التفاوض في اتفاقات أوسلو المحتلة عام 67، فعل ذلك لقرب طولكرم من جنين، وتشكيلهما معاً ثنائياً للمقاومة، وخشيته من أن تشكل طولكرم لاحقاً لساناً لجنين داخل حدود الـ 48 يشكل الدخول السهل إليها بالنسبة للمقاومين دخولاً الى عمق الكيان.


ليس بين قيادات الاحتلال مَن يزعم بأن جذوة جنين قد أطفئت عبر مذبحة عام 2002، ففي كل مرة كانت تشتعل المواجهات بين شباب وصبايا فلسطين وجيش الاحتلال كان النصيب الوافر للحضور لمخيم جنين. وفي كل مرة كانت الضفة الغربية والمناطق المحتلة عام 48 تشهدان تصاعداً في عمليات المقاومة، كانت عين الاحتلال على جنين، حيث نبع لا ينضب للمقاومين، وعندما تمّت عملية نفق الحرية التي انتهت بتحرير عدد من المقاومين الأسرى لأنفسهم، كانت عين الاحتلال على جنين، فإذا بلغوا المخيم تغيّرت طبيعة المواجهة، وربما تكون قد دخلت في نفق آخر. وفي هذه الموجة الصاعدة الأخيرة من عمليات المقاومة لم يكن خافياً أن لجنين مكانة خاصة، سواء في عدد الاستشهاديين الذين شكلوا عناوين هذه الموجة الصاعدة، أو في حالة النهوض المقاوم التي عرفها المخيم وعبر من خلالها عن الانتقال الى مرحلة جديدة من المواجهة مع الاحتلال.


بين كل مناطق الضفة الغربية تشكل جنين مدينة ومخيماً وجواراً بؤرة مثالية للمقاومة، وعقدة صعبة التفكيك على الاحتلال. ففي جنين تتركز الهياكل العسكرية المنظمة لقوى المقاومة بكل فصائلها من سرايا القسام الى سرايا القدس الى تشكيلات الجبهة الشعبية، ولكن أيضاً وقبل كل شيء في جنين تربض البنية الصلبة لكتائب شهداء الأقصى، ويتركز الحضور المقاوم لحركة فتح المتمايز بقوة عن مناخ انخراط الكثير من كوادر فتح في أجهزة السلطة وتورّطها مع الاحتلال عبر التنسيق الأمني. وكل معركة مع جنين مرشحة للتحول الى معركة مثلثة، مع غزة حيث البنى الداعمة لفصائل المقاومة التي تملك رأس حربتها في جنين، ومع فتح التي تملك بنيتها النضالية الصافية وكوادرها المشبعة بروح المقاومة في جنين، ومع الضفة الغربية التي تشكل جنين قلعتها وملجأ مقاوميها الملاحقين من السلطة والاحتلال، ومشكلة الاحتلال أنه إذا أراد تفادي مواجهة مجهولة النهايات وتخرج عن السيطرة، مع غزة وفتح والضفة، فعليه أن يتفادى مواجهة مفتوحة مع جنين، فبعض قادة الاحتلال يقولون إن معركة شاملة للسيطرة الكاملة على جنين وتجريدها من مقاومتها وأسلحتها قد تؤدي الى تفكيك السلطة وفرز حركة فتح بصورة لا يحتملها الاحتلال، وقد تؤدي الى حرب مفتوحة مع غزة، وقد تؤدي الى اشتعال انتفاضة شاملة في كل أنحاء الضفة الغربية.


مشكلة الاحتلال في التفكير بـاقتحام وتمشيط جنين لا تقلّ عن مشكلته في التساكن مع جنين، فيوماً بعد يوم تتحول جنين إلى غزة ثانية، حيث تتشكل بنية عسكرية منظمة، وتبدأ الأنفاق بالظهور، وتتحوّل الكهوف والمغر في جوارها الى قواعد عسكرية منظمة، وتتموضع فيها أسلحة نوعية، وتشكل قاعدة انطلاق تملك طرق الوصول السهلة الى عمق الأراضي المحتلة عام 1948، وتشكل تدريجياً قاعدة تقود مواجهات الضفة الغربية، وسرعان ما ستتحول بقوة التشابك السكاني والجغرافي إلى بقعة زيت تكبر فتكبر حتى تلتحق بها مدن ومخيمات جديدة في الضفة.


يقول بعض الخبراء في كيان الاحتلال إن نهاية الكيان وتفككه يبدآن من جنين، بمجرد التسليم بأن جنين غزة أخرى لا يجب التورّط في حرب مفتوحة معها، ويقول آخرون إن نهاية الكيان وبدء تفكّكه يبدآن من جنين عندما تقرر حكومة الكيان اقتحام جنين فتشتعل حرب جديدة مع غزة وتتحوّل فتح إلى جسم منتفض ومقاوم، وتشتعل الضفة الغربية في حال انتفاضة وعمليّات مسلحة واشتباكات متنقلة، فبدلاً من خطر خروج جنين عن السيطرة تصبح الضفة وربما كل المنطقة خارج السيطرة.


النقاش المفتوح داخل الكيان حول جنين يستعيد النقاش المفتوح حول غزة قبل أعوام، تماماً كما كان النقاش المفتوح حول غزة استعادة للنقاش الذي كان قبله حول جنوب لبنان، وتلك هي شارات انحلال الكيان نحو زوال محتوم لا يملك قادته فعل شيء لردّه أو تفاديه.

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