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Sunday 10 August 2014


Smoke billows following an Israeli military strike on Gaza City on August 8, 2014: photo by Mahmud Hams / AFP. 8 August 2014

Ripe are, dipped in fire, cooked
The fruits and proved upon the earth and an Order it is
That all must enter in, as snakes,
Prophetic, dreaming upon
The hills of heaven. And much
As on the bent shoulders
A load of logs
Must be retained. But evil are
The ways. For errantly
Like wild horses, run the constrained
Elements and the ancient
Orders of the earth. And always
Toward unboundedness goes out longing. Much however must
Be retained. And fidelity is required.
Forward however nor back will
We look. And allow ourselves to be rocked, like
A light boat at sea.

Friedrich Hölderlin: "Reif sind..." (Ripe are the fruits), Hymnal Draft for Mnemosyne (Third Version), 1803 or 1805/1806 [?], trans. TC

Palestinians report four deaths as Israel resumes airstrikes
Palestinians look on as rescue workers continue the search for bodies buried under the Al-Qassam mosque after an overnight Israeli air strike in Nuseira: photo by Oliver Weiken / EPA 9 August 2014

Israel-Gaza conflict

Palestinians remove a body from under the rubble of Qassam Mosque in Nuseirat refugee camp in central Gaza
: photo by Hatem Moussa / AP, 9 August 2014

Israel-Gaza conflict

Palestinians watch as rescuers work to retrieve bodies from the rubble of the Qassam mosque after an overnight Israeli airstrike in Nuseirat refugee camp in central Gaza
: photo by Oliver Weiken / EPA, 9 August 2014.

Palestinians gather on the rubble of al-Qassam mosque in Nuseirat refugee camp, central Gaza Strip, after it was hit by an Israeli airstrike, Saturday, Aug. 9, 2014. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)

Palestinians gather on the rubble of al-Qassam mosque in Nuseirat refugee camp, central Gaza Strip, after it was hit by an Israeli airstrike, Saturday, August 9, 2014
: photo by Hatem Moussa / AP, 8 August 2014

Desecration (also called desacralization or desanctification) is the act of depriving something of its sacred character, or the disrespectful, contemptuous, or destructive treatment of that which is held to be sacred or holy by a group or individual.

Residents of Nusairat in the Gaza Strip watch from every perch as bodies are excavated from the rubble of the al-Kassam mosque hit by an Israeli airstrike on Saturday: photo by Max Becherer / Polaris Images for The Washington Post, 9 August 2014

Gaza mosques fall to Israeli airstrikes, without any groundswell of outrage: Sudarsan Raghavan and William Booth, Washington Post, 9 August 2014
NUSEIRAT CAMP, Gaza Strip — A yellow bulldozer clawed through the rubble of Al Qassam mosque on Saturday, searching for the last body. The crowd looked on without emotion, as it had throughout a day during which two other corpses were unearthed. Someone had planted a green Hamas flag atop the debris, at once a sign of mourning and defiance.
“The Israelis have the idea that Hamas owned the mosque, and they do suspicious activities inside,” Ahmed Jabbar, 42, said matter-of-factly, standing near the debris. 

"They think there are tunnels inside. It’s all lies. This is Allah’s house. Anyone can go inside it.”

Once viewed as crossing a red line in conflicts pitting Jews or Christians against Muslims, the mosque has become a military target. Israel’s military says mosques are being used to store weapons, cover tunnels and shelter fighters and serve as command control centers and launch sites for rockets. Palestinians say that when Israel strikes a mosque, it mostly kills civilians and destroys their religious sanctuary.
In the month-long war, Israeli airstrikes have struck more religious targets than in Israel’s two previous offensives against Hamas in 2009 and 2012, Palestinians say. According to the Palestinian Liberation Organization, 63 mosques have been destroyed and 150 have been partially damaged. Ten Muslim cemeteries were also targeted.
Surprisingly, there has been little outrage from the Palestinian street or from the broader Muslim world. Violent upheavals across the Middle East, political analysts say, have acclimated Muslims to seeing their houses of worship under siege. Arabic news channels and Facebook and other social media have been filled with scenes of mosques pocked with bullets and damaged by attacks in recent conflicts and revolutions in Egypt, Syria and Libya. The shock value is over, say analysts.


There have been clear-cut cases where Israel has killed civilians when striking a mosque.

Saturday’s attack on Al Qassam Mosque killed a local Hamas leader who was praying inside during pre-dawn prayers, according to Palestinian news reports. But the identities of the other two who died were unknown. Residents said they all used the mosque to pray, not only Hamas members.
As the bulldozer picked up a tangle of concrete and steel, some residents said they were outraged by Israel’s attacks on mosques. But they were too afraid to hold protest rallies. 

The war, they said, has forced them to stay inside their homes or seek refuge in U.N. schools or other areas. They also worried that Israel would target any large gathering of Palestinians.

“We feel so insecure,” Jabbar said. “Do you think we can go out and protest? We’re afraid we’ll be hit by the Israeli jets.”

But the mosque attacks, others said, will have consequences for the future.

“This makes matters worse,” said Bajes Ehsawi, 64, a resident, as he watched the bulldozer. “The only relationship between Palestinians and Israelis will be jihad.”

A Palestinian man embraces the body of a man who was killed when Israel bombed Al-Qassam mosque in the central Gaxan town of Nuseirat on August 9, 2014: photo by Roberto Schmidt / AFP, 9 August 2014

Summary of damage
: via Al Jazeerah: Cross-Cultural Understanding, 9 August 2014

With today's numbers of deaths and injuries as a result of Israeli terrorist attacks on the Palestinian people in Gaza Strip, the death toll has reached 1901, in addition to 9,567 injuries, more than one-third of them crippling for life.

The Palestinian Ministry of Health has stated that a total of 1901, including 432 children, 243 women and 79 elderly Palestinians have been killed. We are still awaiting confirmation of some names.

A total of 9567 Palestinians, including 2878 children, 1854 women, and 374 elderly, have been injured.

Five Palestinians Killed In Central Gaza

Saturday August 09, 2014 13:38 by Saed Bannoura -- IMEMC (International Middle East Media Center) and Agencies

The Palestinian Ministry Of Health stated that five Palestinians were killed, and several others injured, some seriously, after the Israeli occupation terrorist army bombarded a mosque in Nussayrat area, and the al-Maghazi refugee camp, in Central Gaza.

The Ministry said resident Moath Azzam Abu Zaid, 37, died under the rubble of the al-Qassam Mosque in Nussayrat.

His remains and a number of wounded Palestinians have been moved to the al-Aqsa Hospital.

Rescue teams continued the search under rubble, and located the remains of two Palestinians, identified as Nidal Mohammad Badran, 34, and Tareq Ziad Jadallah, 25.


Israel drones and war jets are still flying over different parts of the Gaza Strip.

The Ministry of Health in Gaza stated on Saturday at dawn, the 1899 Palestinians have been killed, and Israeli missiles and shells have injured more than 9837 since July 8.

Gaza death toll tops 1900, three dead bodies pulled out of mosque rubble

[ 09/08/2014 - 10:35 AM ]

GAZA, (PIC) -- 

At least three dead bodies have been recovered by the Gaza rescue crews from beneath the debris of Izzuddin Al-Qassam Mosque in the Nussayrat refugee camp, in central Gaza, on Saturday while search for other dead bodies continued.

A PIC correspondent said civil defense crews rushed to the bombed are to recover the casualties buried under Izzuddin Al-Qassam Mosque, razed to the ground by a barrage of rocket fire unleashed by the Israeli fighter jets at dawn Saturday.

The recovered bodies were identified as those of Mu'adh Zayed, Tareq Jad Allah, and Nidhal Badran.

Al-Qassam Mosque was the largest in the Nusayrat refugee camp and built over an overall area amounting to 1000 square meters. An Israeli rocket attack reduced the four-floored mosque to rubble.

The incident occurred shortly after the 72-hour ceasefire, brokered by Egypt last Tuesday, expired.

The death toll has reached more than 1,900, while the number of wounded civilians has gone up to about 9,900, mostly children, women and elderly people. Hundreds of civilian homes, mosques, factories and public headquarters were completely destroyed in Israeli attacks.

60 Palestinian mosques destroyed by Israel during Gaza offensive

[ 09/08/2014 - 08:08 AM ]

GAZA, (PIC) --

At least 60 mosques were reduced to rubble while some 150 others sustained partial damages in the ongoing Israeli offensive that has been rocking the blockaded Gaza Strip for more than 30 days, the Palestinian Ministry of Awqaf and religious affairs said.

The Awqaf Ministry stated on Friday that the Israeli occupation destroyed at least 60 mosques in waves of atrocious strikes targeting Gaza since July 7.

According to the ministry, random Israeli rocket fire ruined 20 mosques in Central Gaza, 17 in Khan Younis, 11 north of the Strip, 10 in the Central Province, and two more mosques in Rafah, to the south of Gaza.

Israeli attacks culminated in the shelling of 11 cemeteries, three charity committees, and one religious school for boys.
At least 1894 Palestinian civilians were killed in the massive Israeli aggression, while 9817 others suffered injuries.

TODAY: taking out the martyrs from under the rubble of AlQassam mosque in Gaza...: photo via Falasteen on twitter, 9 August 2014

TODAY: taking out the martyrs from under the rubble of AlQassam mosque in Gaza...: photo via Falasteen on twitter, 9 August 2014

TODAY: taking out the martyrs from under the rubble of AlQassam mosque in Gaza...: photo via Falasteen on twitter, 9 August 2014

TODAY: taking out the martyrs from under the rubble of AlQassam mosque in Gaza...: photo via Falasteen on twitter, 9 August 2014


TC said...

So they messed up another mosque. Like we're supposed to care.

We've got our own problems.

TC said...

It's all gonna be ok. Nothing to worry about.

We're safe.

We've got our foil hats.

Daniel Abdal-Hayy Moore said...

Your translation of Holderlin is sublime. The evil in the heart of Zionism has burst full blown this time for all to see. Who have eyes to see. In this country of the blind.



A beautiful translation of Holderlin's poem, followed by disaster (image/news/"summary of damage") -- "The shock value is over, say analysts. " ( ? ? ? )

Lord Charlie said...

The "evil of Zionism" -- how about the evil of Jihad? No difference that I can see between the aims of Hamas and those of the Nazis in regard to the Jews: they both want to wipe Judaism off the map, and the Jihadists of various stripes won't differentiate between bien pensant Americans and rednecks if they get the chance to strike at the US.

Elmo St. Rose said...

"Teach your children well, their fathers hell did slowly go by" Graham Nash
How does Hamas educate its children...violent jihad, kill all the Jews?
The "holy land" is composed historically of many irredentas.
"Hale,hale rock n'roll,deliver us
from the days of old"Chuck Berry
Don't like Chicago,there's California dreaming or down the river to New Orleans. Americans,generally have not been stuck in the past. The past for
the Islamic radicals goes back to the Crusades and before to 8th century.
Now who would lead their people against a far superior military foe knowing they would sustain massive casualties if not to martyr them,and who would place offensive weaponry(rockets) among the civilian population knowing there would be awful pictures of
awful casualties so Islam would come and wipe Israel off the map.
There would be horrendous civilian
casualties in Israel had it not been for superior technology but the intent was there on the part of Hamas,Islamic Jihad,etc. So these are reap what you sow pictures. Now those tunnels, were
they built to store grain against
a famine.
Bigotry: it's bigotry not to hold
the Arabs to the same standard that you are trying to hold the Israelis to. Gee, 200,000 dead in Syria and Iraq and a blood thirsty
group ISIL on roll...Oh no,not to
worry that's just Arabs killing Arabs.
Now ISIL(Islamic state in Syria and the Levant)on a roll with ethnic cleansing,stoning,beheading, and
they also threatened to flog anyone who watched the World Cup,convert to Islam or die.
Hamas,Alqaeda,Islamic Jihad,Hezbollah...are all cousins
with variations. So why rationalize the havoc wreaked by
any of them?
The reality is Israel is there to stay unless their nuclear weapons are checkmated and they could be but then there is Masada.

TC said...

These are downtrodden people. Their lives have been and are terrible. And continue to get dramatically worse worse by the day, thanks to a racist expansionist programme that, in the utopian vision of Moshe Feiglin, would eliminate the inconvenient population of Gaza altogether (no parsings out of the bien pensant, simply go the absolutist route, kill them all, or if that proves too complicated logistically, march them off into the Sinai) -- this, in order to realize a bright real estate developer's vision that would pave over the ruins (and the memories) with an Israeli coastal highway spanning the Strip.

The victims of this historical apartheid policy have learnt over and over that they can expect no relief from the "West", which put them into this predicament in the first place. As always their only real defense is their solidarity with one another -- which is of course exactly the thing of which Zionist strategy is designed to deprive them. Their land has been taken away and subdivided. They're hungry, poor and besieged, in an open air concentration camp, shunted about much as concentration camp inmates. To hypothetically extrapolate from this a situation in which the same dispossessed people are miraculously whisked into a position of enormous global power, privilege, and influence, in a world massively armed to forestall the first signs of any such transformation (the "what would you do if the jihadists were coming down the road?" cartoon fantasy threat scenario), is a leap beyond mere imagination or argument into the realm of zionist persecution fiction. Take the angry people out of the situation you've put them in, wait a few generations until the wounds have been allowed to begin to heal and the rebuilding of a society to get underway, and guess what: the anger may by then have been channeled into the kind of positive energy that is anyway at the core of the long resistance of these proud, defiant, suffering people. They are, in fact, human beings, not bogeys.

And oh yes, the racist joke of the day: "...cousins with variations..." Reminded of the Charley Chan film in which Charley and nephew are dining in American restaurant, and nephew remarks, glancing at the American waiters, "All these Americans look the same!"


This from Jason Burke of the Guardian in Gaza, as of this morning (10 August):

A three-day pause is unlikely to convince many of those displaced in the conflict to return home.

"I can't go home unless there is a real peace," said Joma'a Ahmed Zaid, a farmer and fisherman from north-west Gaza. "My home is badly broken and my fields are ruined. I need much time and much help to repair everything."

Zaid was one of nearly 2,000 people staying in one UN school in Gaza City. The last ceasefire convinced half to head home, but all returned to the school when hostilities resumed.

Amad Zaqqout, the deputy director of the school and now head administrator of the shelter, said that her staff were exhausted. One colleague slept in a corner of her office as she spoke.

"I feel like we can't go on. But we will have to," she said.

In one classroom, now home to more than 40 members of an extended family, women were stunned by the possibility that the conflict could continue for many weeks. The family have no electricity, and share a single set of latrines with hundreds of others.

"It is just impossible to imagine. It is a catastrophe. The kids are all sick and bored and angry. We have no work and little food. I am eight months pregnant. How can this last any longer? Where will I have my baby?," said Hiam Joma'a' Zaid, 34.


Elmo St. Rose said...

I saw the American South change.
In addition to the racist squeaky
wheels that were organized and vocal there were always people
of good will...quiet to be sure
of out fear but in the end effective. "We shall overcome"
was the anthem of a non-violent
Ghandi was quite effective too.
A king of Morocco once said the
Jews and the Palestinians could
turn their part of the Middle East
into a paradise. I'm an optimist
so I still believe that.
Less likely the more blood is
shed, and I would not ignore the
zeitgeist in the rest of the area
in spillover effect.
"More is wrought in this world by
prayer, than is dreamed of" Dreams
help too.

TC said...

And by the by, I would propose a marvelous shedding of the sock puppet identities, for just a day, so that it would be clear to all who bother to stop in, that the persons who have spoken here have real names, and that those names are Tom Clark, Daniel Abdal-Hayy Moore, Stephen Ratcliffe, David Lehman and Dr. Charlie Vermont.

Please forgive this revolutionary proposal, it just seems the discourse might seem a bit more -- what would be the word? honest? -- that way.

TC said...

About that spillover effect, I have the sense that, were peace to somehow come about in this place in which all the trouble and pain of the area seem to have been concentrated, it might well begin to radiate out.

Elmo St. Rose said...

yeah Tom, that's the any
ideas on how to bring that about?
Practical ideas?

TC said...

Charlie, to respond honestly to that challenge, I would suggest, first of all, the removal of the double standard by which the Israelis remain mysteriously exempt from the kind of examination routinely applied to whoever it is the global war machine has designated this week's bad guys. Let's see, there's one side that's outnumbered, isolated, suffering humanitarian abuses, including possibly genocide, and facing an overwhelmingly disproportionate adversary whose might is such that they have literally no practical chance to resist it. These are the things now being mouthed about the victims of Isis. These are the things that our elected leaders have always been unable to say about the victims of Israel.

Next, I would propose, in extension of that first point, an international fund for the education of Israelis. Teach them, for example, the history of apartheid, including the details of how their own happy homeland came to exist, and who had to be displaced, removed, inconvenienced in order for that to happen, and how much suppression of these historical facts is required to maintain the state of willed ignorance lamented by Israeli writer Gideon Levy when he says it's now impossible to express doubts about the present occupation and its methods.

"What is different this time is the anti-democratic spirit. Zero tolerance of any kind of criticism, opposition to any kind of sympathy with the Palestinians," says Levy. "You shouldn't be surprised that the 95% [are in favour of the war], you should be surprised at the 5%. This is almost a miracle. The media has an enormous role. Given the decades of demonisation of the Palestinians, the incitement and hatred, don't be surprised the Israeli people are where they are."

"The young people are the worst. More ignorant. More brainwashed. They have never met a Palestinian in their lives."

Next, I'd propose the formation of an international body designed to protect the United Nations and give it a bit of true authority.

Next, I'd propose an opening of the box in which Israel now contains Gaza. That means lifting the present blockade so as to permit the free movement of boats, trains, planes, all the sorts of transit Israelis enjoy, moving in and out of Gaza, as the Gazans please.

Moving right along, I'd propose strict UN sanctions against the Israelis in the event they did not respect the above.

And finally, I'd suggest the wild idea that Palestinians might be considered human beings. But I suppose it's unfair to expect too much all at once, and I'm taking for granted a significant advantage in this regard. Unlike the young Israelis cited by Gideon Levy, I've actually met one.

Mose23 said...

an order it is that all must enter in

That sense of the narrative waiting for us that it's close to impossible to evade.

Here we have the words at odds with the given order, another discourse. As hard as it is to read about this unremitting onslaught on a people and its culture it gives me hope. Witnessing matters.

Israeli history: until there's some acknowledgement that in their flight from Europe's horror another people was terrorized and driven into exile, that the state was (at least in part) founded on the suffering of that other people, Israel as such will not grow up and will go on hollowing itself out with racial myths and violence. In the peace and security and dignity of the Palestinian people lies the possibility of peace for Israel. With the right to return it may be that the State becomes something new and alive again.

Mose23 said...

It's Duncan, by the way (thought I'd best put that in).

TC said...

Many thanks, Duncan.

"That sense of the narrative waiting for us..."

And it's said Hölderlin was mad -- end of story.

Madness perhaps the stepping off place to prophecy.

Dr Mad has also been said to be mad, and worse.

But you know how it is with these wet behind the ears graduates of the University of Hasbara.

Oy. They'll say anything.