Palestine’s Olympic Team for Rio 2016 Olympic Games

  • Mayda Al-Sayed - Women’s marathon
  • Mary Al-Atrash -  Swimming - Women’s 50m freestyle
  • Ahmed Gebrel -  Swimming - Men’s 200m freestyle 
  • Mohammed Abukhousa - Track and Field - Men’s 100m 
  • Simon Yacoub -  Judo - Men’s 60 kg
  • Christian Zimmermann -  Equestrian 

Read more about Palestine in the 2016 Olympics and the team wanting to show the world the Palestinians’ strong will to be.

“In one of the last letters I received from her [Diana] just before she died, she said: ‘I want to share this very meaningful quote with you and send you lots of love.’ It was from The Little Prince. It said: I have to go now to the stars. And one day when you look at the stars, you will remember me.’ It was almost prophetic.” - Lisa Yacoub.

Diana, Princess of Wales. (1st July 1961 - 31st August 1997)

The Shirt of Ibrāhīm (as): Report

From Al-Mufādhāl b. `Umār, from Abu `Abdullah (as), he said:

“Do you know what the shirt of Yūsuf (as) was?” Al-Mufādhāl said, “No.”

Imam (as) said, “When the fire was set ablaze for Ibrāhīm (as), Gabriel (as) brought to him one of the shirts of Paradise, then he clothed him in it, and no heat or cold harmed him. Then, when death came to Ibrāhīm (as), he put it into an amulet and tied it to Ishāq, and Ishāq tied it to Ya`coub, and when Yusuf was born, he (Ya`coub) tied it to him. Then it was (tied) to his upper arm until what happened to him had happened. When Yūsuf took it out from the amulet in Egypt, Ya`qub perceived its scent, and this is the meaning of His words: ‘Surely I perceive Yusuf’s scent, unless you think me doting.” (Yusuf, 12:94) This is the shirt which Allah sent down from Paradise.’“

I (Mufādhāl) said, "May I be made your ransom! To whom did that shirt pass?”

He (as) said, “To its people.” He said, “Whatever knowledge or (special) thing that was given to the Prophets has been given to Al-Muhammad (Progeny of Muhammad) [saws].”

Al-Kāfi, Usool, V.1, H.620


Soldiers Kidnap Seven Palestinian Children In Jerusalem

The Wadi Hilweh Information Center in Silwan (Silwanic) has reported that the undercover forces attacked and beat the children before moving them to the Neve Yacoub Police Station.

The children have been identified as Mohammad Jaber, 13, Murad ‘Alqam, 14, Omar at-Tawil, 14,’ Omar Yassin, 14, Noureddin Abu Hadwan, 15, Mohammad Tayeh, 15, and Saleh Eshteyya, 15 years of age. Silwanic said 'Omar Yassin is also a US citizen.

The soldiers struck the children with their rifles in addition to punching and kicking them, causing various cuts and bruises, especially in their faces.

“In one of the last letters I received from her just before she died, she said, ‘I want to share this very meaningful quote with you and send you lots of love.’ It was from The Little Prince. It said: 'I have to go now to the stars. And one day when you look at the stars, you will remember me.’ It was almost prophetic.”

Lisa Yacoub, Chain of Hope, on Diana, Princess of Wales

{“Diana: The Portrait” ~ 2004}


Stop what you are doing and listen to this

A humorous take on grandparents vs. millennials: http://nyr.kr/1nbVf3i

“Many senior citizens argue that being associated with millennials is detrimental to the credibility they’ve been cultivating for quite literally, decades.”

Photograph by Charlie Yacoub/Getty.



“Oops!… I Did It Again” is a song recorded by American singer Britney Spears for her second studio album, Oops!… I Did It Again (2000). It was released on March 27, 2000, by Jive Records as the lead single from the album. The song was written and produced by Max Martin and Rami Yacoub. “Oops!… I Did It Again” is a song that lyrically speaks of a female who views love as a game, and she decides to use that to her advantage by playing with her lover’s emotions.

Palestine Under Attack! Urgent Call for International Solidarity

The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine is calling urgently for all supporters and friends of Palestine and the Palestinian people around the world, and our Palestinian communities and people everywhere in exile and diaspora, to take to the streets and take action in response to the ongoing occupation attacks and atrocities against almost every city, town, refugee camp and village in the West Bank and Gaza. Everywhere the streets are filled with jeeps and armored vehicles and soldiers armed with killing machines, and the skies filled with Apache helicopters and F-16s threatening to rain death upon our people. In the past week, occupation forces have escalated their war on the Palestinian people, including:

  • The killing, just today of 13-year-old Mahmoud Jihad Dudeen in Dura outside al-Khalil, shot in the chest; and the killing of Ahmad Sabarin, 20, in Jalazone refugee camp
  • The shooting and wounding of numerous Palestinians throughout the West Bank and Gaza, including shooting Palestinian youth Yazan Yacoub, 17 in the chest in Qalandiya refugee camp and shooting Amir Sa’dy Saleh, also 17, in Jenin.
  • The massive invasions and raids, sending thousands of occupation soldiers to al-Khalil, Ramallah, Nablus, Jenin, Bethlehem, Jerusalem, Qalqilya, Salfit regions, and besieging cities, towns and refugee camps, which have been particularly targeted for mass invasions and violent attacks
  • The mass arrests and violent home invasion of hundreds of Palestinians, including student activists, legislators, political leaders, and the targeting of former political prisoners for re-arrest and harassment, including the capture of 51 former prisoners freed in the 2011 prisoner exchange and a failed attempt to arrest Samer Issawi, former hunger striker
  • The demolition of Palestinian homes, leaving multiple families homeless
  • The rampant settler violence and attacks on Palestinians and Palestinian land throughout the West Bank
  • The bombing and shelling of Gaza by occupation warplanes
  • The closure, curfews, checkpoints and restrictions on movement imposed on Palestinians
  • The invasion of Bir Zeit University and arrests of students, invasions of civil society organizations and charities
  • This brutal violence at the hands of a settler colonial racist apartheid state, its armed forces and its settlers is increasing on a daily basis. Palestinian prisoners’ torture is officially sanctioned and Palestinian blood is running in the streets of Gaza and the West Bank, and Palestinian youth trod under the wheels of invading army jeeps.

These crimes have been met with overwhelming international silence and complicity. Palestinians are continuing to resist, to protest, to live, to struggle, despite the aggression that threatens their existence on a daily basis, despite the complicity and betrayal of Palestinian Authority officials who continue to engage in security cooperation with the occupier that is waging a war on Palestinian refugee camps, cities and towns.

The United States, Canada and the European Union have continued business as usual and have raised not a single cry of protest or concern – on the contrary, the U.S. continues to daily ship $10 million of mostly military aid to the occupation state. It is clear that they are full partners with the occupation in the ongoing war on the Palestinian people.

In a particularly absurd and insulting gesture, the occupation state was elected vice-chair of the UN’s Fourth Committee – addressing issues of decolonization and Palestinian refugees’ rights, which the occupier has denied for the past 66 years – while it is engaging in this all-out colonial assault on Palestinian lives.

This cannot be allowed to continue in silence. Little has been heard in international media. International organizations who seek to defend human rights – particularly the International Committee of the Red Cross which witnesses daily violations against Palestinian prisoners – must speak out and end their damaging silence. The voice of the people must be heard.

It is once again the time for the popular movements of the world to take to the streets, to express their solidarity with Palestine and demand an end to the ongoing international official complicity and support for the occupier. Palestinians are resisting – but the image of people around the world standing beside them will encourage and strengthen the Palestinian people as they confront a vicious occupier.

We call upon you to act now, today, urgently to support the Palestinian people under attack. The silence must end:

Intensify the boycott! The critical weapon of international isolation of the occupier must be escalated. Boycott “Israel” on cultural, academic and economic levels. Expose and target the corporations – like G4S – whose technology is being used to wage war on the Palestinian people.

Take the streets! March, demonstrate, break the silence in public space to demand an end to these attacks. Parliaments and governments must be held accountable for their complicity.

Occupy and shut down occupation embassies and consulates. These embassies and consulates are freely operating around the world while Palestinians are suffering mass arrests, curfew, closure and killing. It should not be business as usual for the occupation state around the world!

The solidarity of the peoples of the world with Palestine and collective struggles to confront Zionism and imperialism have always been a source of strength as we confront a brutal occupier. This is an emergency situation. It is time for action.

Songs written and produced by Max Martin

Who is Max Martin? Well he is a Grammy award winning Swedish songwriter and producer that has co-written 20 Billboard #1 Hit Songs. He is the songwriter with the 3rd most #1 songs on the chart (behind Lennon and McCartney). As a producer he is 2nd on the list of the most #1 songs. His songs have sold over 135 million copies worldwide.

Max Martin is most famous for writing some of the biggest songs of the late 1990s-early 2000s teen pop era, for artists like The Backstreet Boys, N Sync, and his main muse, Britney Spears. Last year he won his first Grammy for his work with Taylor Swift, Ariana Grande and Katy Perry.  

It’s also worth noting that Martin’s impact has also infiltrated the current pop landscape by way of his proteges, Savan Kotecha, Rami Yacoub and Carl Falk, who wrote One Direction’s biggest early hits, and his most famous protege, Dr. Luke, who has co-written/produced over 30 Top 10 pop singles. Basically, Max Martin is the soundtrack to our teenage years.

These are some of the songs he wrote/produced over the years:

Backstreet Boys: I Want It That Way, Quit Playing Games With My Heart, Everybody (Backstreet’s Back), As Long As You Love Me, Larger Than Life, Show Me The Meaning of Being Lonely. 

NSync: I Want You Back, Tearin Up My Heart, It’s Gonna Be Me

Britney Spears: Baby One More Time, (You Drive Me) Crazy, Oops I Did It Again, Stronger, Lucky, Overprotected, Hold It Against Me, Till The World Ends, I Wanna Go, Inside Out, 3

Celine Dion: That’s The Way it Is

Bon Jovi: It’s My Life 

Kelly Clarkson: Since U Been Gone, Behind These Hazel Eyes, My Life Would Suck Without You

Pink: U + Ur Hand, Who Knew, So What, Raise Your Glass, Fuckin Perfect

Katy Perry: Hot and Cold, I Kissed a Girl, California Gurls, Teenage Dream, Last Friday Night, ET, Part of Me, Wide Awake, Roar, Legendary Lovers, Birthday, Dark House, This is How We Do

Kesha: C’Mon, Blow

Usher: DJ Got Us Fallin in Love

Taylor Swift: We are Never Getting Back Together, I Knew You Were Trouble, Blank Space, Style, Shake It Off, Bad Blood, New Romantics, Wildest Dreams

Ariana Grande: Problem, Break Free, Love Me Harder, Bang Bang 

Ellie Goulding: Love Me Like You Do

Another genocide we’ve almost forgotten

Year of the Sword: The Assyrian Christian Genocide by Joseph Yacoub (Oxford University Press, $29.95).

First, Americans: Assyrian is not Syrian. Different ethnic groups, different religion, different language. 

Just when we think we know all about the genocides of the 20th century, another one is brought to light. In Year of the Sword: The Assyrian Christian Genocide, Joseph Yacoub, a descendant of some of its victims, assembles documents and personal accounts of the Turkish effort to wipe out the Assyrian, Chaldean and Syriac Aramaic-speaking groups in 1915. 

Encompassing an area in what are now Turkey, Iraq, and Iran, Yacoub shows how the government of the Young Turks used the cover of WWI to attempt the elimination of a minority group that is now often targeted by ISIS: Christians in a predominantly-Muslim area. Like the better-known (and still not known enough) efforts to eradicate Armenians from its borders, Year of the Sword adds to our understanding of attempts to create a monocultural state in a multicultural land.  

Every BSB album has a song everyone sings really loudly and badly. The Red Album has We’ve Got It Goin’ On. Backstreet’s Back has Everybody. Millennium has I Want It That Way (or Larger Than Life depending on the occasion). Black & Blue has… The Call. This song will forever go hard. I love the video so much that I even used a screenshot for it. Now that I think about it, it’s the only time in the video all 5 are together. Another reason I love this video so much is because of Howie. That Dominican blowout was everything. Howie’s hair was laid by the gawwwds in this video. Plus it has an awesome remix that actually got more radio play than this version.

Writers: Max Martin, Rami Yacoub
Producers: Max Martin, Rami Yacoub

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