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Once again: alt as my meta key

When I boot my Jessie it brings me, as desired, to a bash command line prompt (no X at this stage of the game).

If I then launch the jed editor (or emacs -nw) from that prompt, pressing Alt-x on the keyboard, produces the M-x prompt where jed wants it.

I then can enter startx and arrive in my desired icewm X desktop, I can then launch an xterm and, in it, jed, or emacs. But only Esc-x on the keyboard produces the wanted M-x prompt these editors.

Somewhere, somehow X (xorg, to be more precise) has eaten my M-x. Can anyone help me get my Meta key -- Alt -- back?

"Natasha! First we shoot jet, then we go after moose and squirrel."

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