tagged w/ Gaza
INTERNATIONAL press advocacy group Reporters Without Borders has accused the Israeli military of deliberately targeting news photographers covering Palestinian protests in the occupied West Bank.
"Reporters Without Borders strongly condemns the violence used by Israeli forces against Palestinian, Israeli and foreign photojournalists covering demonstrations against Israel's West Bank separation barrier and the continuing colonisation of Palestinian territory," it said in a statement.
"The press freedom organisation deplores the total impunity enjoyed by the soldiers responsible for these abuses," it added in the statement, headlined: "Israeli troops take aim at photojournalists covering protests in West Bank."
An army spokesman denied the allegations.
"There is no such policy and I would even say it's ridiculous to make such a claim," Captain Arye Shalicar told AFP.
"There is no intention to deliberately hurt somebody.
"These demonstrations are generally violent," he said.
"The photographers are among them ... exactly where those using violence against the security forces are, they are taking a risk of being hurt.
"By the fact of being there, they are placing themselves in danger and they need to be aware of that."
http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/world/israeli-military-accused-of-targetting-members-of-press-in-west-bank/story-e6frf7lf-1226271846145INTERNATIONAL press advocacy group Reporters Without Borders has accused the Israeli... more
Palestinians have every right for membership in international organizations.
Russia’s UN envoy Vitaly Churkin said on Tuesday that the Palestinian Authority could count on Moscow’s support on this matter and that Russia would continue its effort to restart the stuttering Israeli-Palestinian peace process.
Churkin urged Israel to lift the blockade of the Gaza Strip and halt its settlement activity on the West Bank. He also voiced alarm over the recent arrest by the Israeli military of a number of Palestinian officials.Palestinians have every right for membership in international organizations.... more
Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff Martin Dempsey visited Sunday the Yad Vashem Holocaust History Museum in Jerusalem, accompanied by IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz and US Ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro.
During his visit, Dempsey lit the memorial "Eternal Flame" torch and laid a wreath at the Yizkor tent. The US general stated that the US will work together with Israel to make sure that such atrocities never happen again.
Dempsey also signed the Yad Vashem guest book, writing that his country is committed to the protection of Israel and will do everything to prevent such a human tragedy from reoccurring.
Earlier, the general visited the IDF's headquarters in Tel Aviv, where he met with Gantz and Defense Minister Ehud Barak.
Later on Sunday, Dempsey met with President Shimon Peres and told him that the United States is honored to have Israel as a partner. Peres noted that the struggle against Iran's nuclear program is not only Israel's and the United States' struggle – but an international struggle for the safety of all nations."Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff Martin Dempsey visited Sunday the Yad Vashem... more
The National Union of Israeli Students (NUIS) has become a full-time partner in the Israeli government’s efforts to spread its propaganda online and on college campuses around the world.
NUIS has launched a program to pay Israeli university students $2,000 to spread pro-Israel propaganda online for 5 hours per week from the “comfort of home.”
The union is also partnering with Israel’s Jewish Agency to send Israeli students as missionaries to spread propaganda in other countries, for which they will also receive a stipend.
"This active recruitment of Israeli students is part of Israel’s orchestrated effort to suppress the Palestinian solidarity movement under the guise of combating “delegitimization” of Israel and anti-Semitism."
The involvement of the official Israeli student union as well as Haifa University, Tel Aviv University, Ben-Gurion University and Sapir College in these state propaganda programs will likely bolster Palestinian calls for the international boycott of Israeli academic institutions.
Paying students to spread Israeli propaganda online
"This is our opportunity, as Israeli students, to provide hasbara [state propaganda] that is correct and balanced, to help in the struggle against the delegitimization of the State of Israel and against hatred of Jews in the world."
That is one of the exhortations in a Hebrew document issued by NUIS, and translated by The Electronic Intifada, inviting Israeli students to apply for a program to help spread Israel’s message.The National Union of Israeli Students (NUIS) has become a full-time partner in the... more
Judaism dictates subservience to all nations. A message from Torah true Jews: Please give us a moment of your time to consider the following information. The Orthodox Jewish leadership and the Torah abiding Jews universally, have fought the ideology of Zionism and the State of “Israel”, since its inception and up until the present day. What could be the reason for the most devout element of Jewish adherers, to be in such vehement opposition to such a seemingly “holy” and “Jewish” cause, as the State of “Israel”? The Rabbis constantly declared that Judaism and Zionism are extreme opposites because... Judaism is a G-dliness and spirituality, Zionism is its transformation into materialism with nationalistic aspirations. The fathers of this relatively new ideology of Zionism (approximately 100 years), have taken the Almighty out of the equation. The Rabbis further declared that Jews are forbidden to have a State of “Israel”, because…
Zionist Israeli Thugs are beating up and using tasers on members of the Orthodox Jewish Faith Neturei Karta. ------- ---------------- ------------------------ ----Anti-Zionist Orthodox Jews protesting the desecration of graves by a highway construction project near Haifa were attacked and brutally beaten by private security guards hired by the Ministry of Transportation. The group, known for being outspokenly critical of the State of Israel and its very existence were peacefully demonstrating at the time. This attack follows a long history of violence against the Orthodox Jewish community. Consistent with fundamental Jewish beliefs, some of these protesters often take part in demonstrations, side by side with Palestinians, against the State of Israel and its inhuman policies toward the Palestinian people." The apparent strategy of using organized violence through private security personnel against these peaceful protesters is only one of many tactics used by the State of Israel to intimidate and discourage further protests. The police were nowhere to be found at the time or even hours after the melee. Several Rabbis and children were attacked with electric stun gun devices and knives, requiring some to be hospitalized. Among the injured were Rabbi Leibl Deutsch and Rabbi Yisroel Rothchild, both of Jerusalem who were stabbed in the lower back and leg respectively. The Jewish cemetery at the heart of the incident dates back to the Second Temple era, over 2000 years ago.Some of the caves that comprise the cemetery have been destroyed as a result of the ongoing highway work and there are heightened fears of further desecration as the highway project continues unabated. http://www.makeahistory.com/index.php/recent-news/43036-neturei-kartaJudaism dictates subservience to all nations. A message from Torah true Jews: Please... more
A nice counter-balance to the story about Penn State University Students rioting because their coach got fired for a pedophile coverup scandal.
Perhaps only in Israel can someone be taken seriously as an objective journalist reporting on military and political affairs while at the same time acting as an official mouthpiece for the army.
Students at Wayne State University in Detroit staged a silent protest and mass walk-out that left Israel Army reserve spokesman and Jerusalem Post correspondent Gil Hoffman lecturing to a virtually empty auditorium on November 1.
A video of the event just posted on YouTube shows Hoffman lecturing to hundreds of students. Many of them have their mouths symbolically covered in red tape, or have signs pinned to them protesting Israeli war crimes and calling to hold Israel accountable.
At a certain point, the students walk out of the large auditorium en masse leaving only a handful of people listening to the speaker.
Hillel, the national pro-Israel advocacy organization which sponsored Hoffman’s talk, billed him as “Chief Political Correspondent and Analyst for the Jerusalem Post.”A nice counter-balance to the story about Penn State University Students rioting... more
Juan Cole succinctly delineates what the vote to include Palestine in UNESCO means. Especially in light of current global disgust with Israel's anti-peace policies! Concluding: 'Disgust with these Israeli policies of continually victimizing the Palestinians is so widespread and deep that even Germany has just threatened to cancel the delivery to Israel of a submarine because of the announcement of settlements in Arab east Jerusalem. Germany, for understandable historical reasons, almost never criticizes Israel. But the Likud attempt to expel Palestinians from their long-time homes in Jerusalem has pushed even Berlin to criticize the policy publicly.
It isn’t just the world community that is dismayed at the setting in of long-term Israeli Apartheid. Even the widow of Israeli war hero Moshe Dayan now laments,
“I’m a peacemaker, but the current Israeli government does not know how to make peace. We move from war to war, and this will never stop. I think Zionism has run its course.”…
“Today we use foreign labor to work in Israel because Palestinians are not allowed. And this continuous expansion of the settlements everywhere-—I cannot accept it. I cannot tolerate this deterioration in the territories and the roadblocks everywhere. And that horrible wall! It’s not right.”"
http://tinyurl.com/22do3Juan Cole succinctly delineates what the vote to include Palestine in UNESCO means.... more
In September of 2011, the Israeli cabinet approved a plan to relocate up to 30,000 Bedouin from unrecognised villages in the Negev. A national strike is planned in Israeli Arab areas in protest at this move.
The Bedouin are the indigenous owner-occupiers of the Negev – they have been there for thousands of years. Since 1948 Israel has built dozens of Jewish towns, villages, kibbutzim and farms while pushing the Bedouin into ever smaller enclaves. In Rahat, for example, there are 52,000 Bedouin living on 21,000 acres, while the regional council of Bnei-Shimon covers 440,000 acres and is home to just 6,000 Jews.
Watch the video and read the article in its entirety.
http://equalitynow.blog.com/2011/10/17/evicting-the-bedouin-people/In September of 2011, the Israeli cabinet approved a plan to relocate up to 30,000... more
A family being brutally torn from their home by Israeli police 04.10.2011
After years of gridlock in Mideast negotiations, the Palestinians plan to seek U.N. membership as a state on territory captured by Israel in the 1967 war. That territory includes the West Bank, the Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem, and the plan would go through the Security Council, where the U.S. has already promised to use its veto.
Palestinians Cite Obama Speech
The Obama administration is scrambling to head off what it fears will be a diplomatic train wreck at the United Nations next week.
When talking about their U.N. bid, Palestinians are quick to recall what President Obama told the world body one year ago, when he launched peace talks that he hoped would finally resolve decades of conflict.
"This time, we should reach for what's best within ourselves," the president said. "If we do, when we come back here next year, we can have an agreement that will lead to a new member of the United Nations — an independent, sovereign state of Palestine, living in peace with Israel."
U.S. Congress Could Act
You can pass any number of pieces of papers at the United Nations — it's not going to create a state.
- Susan Rice, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations (warmonger and Israeli shill)
Leading members of Congress accuse the Palestinians of trying to "delegitimize" Israel. Lawmakers are threatening to cut U.S. aid to Palestinians and stop funding U.N. agencies that upgrade the status of Palestinians.
A top Palestinian official, Hanan Ashrawi, says that's cause for concern.
"Yeah, we are worried," she says. "But we are not as worried as we are about losing the rest of our land, and about having Israel destroy the chances of peace by destroying the two-state solution, which is what it is doing with American cover."
She says the U.S. failed to revive serious negotiations with a clear time frame and goals. So now the Palestinians are taking what Ashrawi describes as a legal, responsible path at the U.N.
"If we get an upgrade in our status to a non-member state, that will first of all give us access to all U.N. institutions, organizations and agencies, including, of course, judicial agencies for legal accountability," she says.
In other words, the Palestinians could then challenge Israel's activities in the occupied territoriesAfter years of gridlock in Mideast negotiations, the Palestinians plan to seek U.N.... more
RELATIONS between Israel and Turkey, already rocky, have worsened. On September 2nd the Turkish government formally expelled the Israeli ambassador who, as it happened, was back in Israel. Military links have been suspended. Turkey’s prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, is to go to Egypt—the first visit at such a level for 15 years—to sign new military and economic agreements. Mr Erdogan may even visit the Gaza Strip, which Israel continues to blockade since it is still governed by Hamas, the Islamist movement that officially rejects Israel’s existence. That would be a real poke in Israel’s eye.
Turkey’s moves against Israel followed the publication by the UN on September 2nd of a report on Israel’s attack on a flotilla bringing aid to Gaza in May 2010, when Israeli commandos killed eight Turks and one Turkish-American. The report upheld the legality of Israel’s blockade of Gaza, and hence its boarding the flotilla outside territorial waters, but found Israel’s methods “excessive and unreasonable”.
Israel agreed to adopt the report “with reservations”. Its officials quietly exulted over the legal vindication for the blockade and the right to board, at least in principle.
Turkey’s president, Abdullah Gul, called this ruling “null and void”. Mr Erdogan said “it means nothing to us.” In a statement attached to the report, the panel’s Turkish representative, Özdem Sanberk, said that “common sense and conscience dictate that the blockade is unlawful.”.......
http://www.economist.com/node/21528687RELATIONS between Israel and Turkey, already rocky, have worsened. On September 2nd... more
In a move reminiscent of FDR's expelling of Japanese government officials in Washington after the attacks of Pearl Harbor, Turkey has expelled Israel's ambassador and has started procedings to have Israel taken to court in the Hague to challenge the blockade of Gaza.
http://ca.news.yahoo.com/turkey-says-challenge-israels-naval-blockade-gaza-hague-135241181.htmlIn a move reminiscent of FDR's expelling of Japanese government officials in... more
Working for the US or working for Zionism? No man can, or rather should be allowed to serve two governments.
In Israel, US Democrat Congressman of Tel Aviv, Steny Hoyer (D-Maryland) promises, US financial crisis won’t cut Israel's aid package by a dime.
"The current economic crisis in the US will have no impact on US financial assistance to Israel, US Congressman Steny Hoyer (D-Maryland) said Wednesday.
"Hoyer said he wanted to “make it clear” that the financial challenges confronting the US will not “have any adverse effect on America’s determination to meet its promise to Israel in the form of aid for its qualitative [military] superiority, or for its economic security.”
Hoyer said he did not believe America’s financial challenges would have “any adverse effect on the economic relationship, or assistance, that we give to Israel.”
Hoyer said that Netanyahu brought up in their discussion President Barack Obama’s call for a return to negotiations to be based on the 1967 lines, with mutually agreed swaps, and said that Netanyahu believed that consistent with discussions he had with the president on this matter, that “they were in agreement, essentially."
[Hoyer went on,] “I think it’s clear that the president did not mean the 1967 borders [will be the final borders], he made it clear that this was subject to additional modifications, and I think the prime minister believed that to be the case as well.”
.Working for the US or working for Zionism? No man can, or rather should be allowed to... more
The City Council of Tehran has announced that a street in the Iranian capital will be named after the American peace activist, Rachel Corrie.
During a session on Tuesday, the council ratified a proposal to name a street after the activist, who is viewed by many as an epitome of resistance against Israel, Fars news agency reported.
According to the proposal, the 27th street of Tehran's municipal District Six will be named after Rachel Corrie.
Corrie, a 23-year-old American activist from Olympia, Washington, and a member of the International Solidarity Movement, was crushed to death in the Gaza Strip by an Israeli bulldozer on March 16, 2003, when she intervened to prevent a Palestinian home from demolition.
The Israeli Army claimed her death was due to the bulldozer driver's restricted angle of view. Eyewitnesses, however, say there was nothing to obscure the driver's view.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AUmBKuWCzkk The City Council of Tehran has... more
Around three weeks ago on a late Tuesday morning, Israeli soldiers armed with a truck and a digger entered the Palestinian village of Amniyr and destroyed nine water tanks. One week later, Israeli forces demolished water wells and water pumps in the villages of Al-Nasaryah, Al-Akrabanyah and Beit Hassan in the Jordan Valley. In Bethlehem, a severe water shortage have led to riots in refugee camps and forced hoteliers to pay over the odds for water just to stop tourists from leaving.
Palestinians insist that the Israeli occupation means that they are consistently denied their water rights which is why they have to live on 50 litres of water a day while Israeli settlers enjoy the luxury of 280 litres. Clearly, water is at the heart of the Israel-Palestine conflict, but commentators are now insisting that shared water problems could help motivate joint action and better co-operation between both sides, which could in turn help end the conflict.
"It's a shame that water is being used as a form of collective punishment when it could be used to build trust and to help each side recognise that the other is a human being with water rights," says Nader Al-Khateeb, the Palestinian director of the environmental NGO Friends of the Earth Middle East (FoEME).
"We should be using water as a tool for peace and to bridge the gap of confidence in the region - not to create a water crisis," he adds. As part of his work with FoEME - which also operates in Israel and Jordan - Al-Khateeb says he has already witnessed the success of co-operative water projects. Over the past ten years, the FoEME "Good Water Neighbors" initiative has brought together 29 cross-border communities to encourage them to work together to resolve shared water problems.
According to Gidon Bromberg, the Israeli director of FoEME, the project has managed to leverage around $120 million in investments to help build sewerage plants and replace old and leaky water pipes. Most of this aid, which has come through agencies such as USAID, World Bank, the EU and other foreign governments, has gone to the occupied Palestinian territories. "There are mutual benefits to be had through co-operative work which identifies common interests and we've seen physical improvements on the ground. Nothing speaks louder than the investment of $120m," said Bromberg.
Co-operative work on water issues has also been able to tackle wider political aspects of the Israeli occupation. Bromberg recalls the case of the Palestinian village of Wadi Fuqin and Israeli community of Tzur Hassadeh who worked together to tackle water issues in 2010 but also came together to stop the separation wall from being built between their communities. "Till this day that wall hasn't been built which shows that working together on water can build real trust between individuals and presents a model where everyone benefits."
It's not just locally based environmental groups that think that water may be the solution to the Middle East's problems. This year a report titled "Blue Peace: Rethinking Middle East Water" was released by the Strategic Foresight Group and concluded that water could be a useful "instrument of peace and co-operation" in the region. Funded by Swiss and Swedish governments, the report promoted the concept of a "Blue Peace" which states that, if countries work together to protect water and the environment, this could secure peace in their own countries as well as the region.
Ambika Vishwanath, the principal researcher of the report says that we must move on from the focus on land in the Israel-Palestine conflict. "History shows that using land as a means to achieve peace and co-operation has not worked and therefore it's only prudent that we try to achieve the same through water. New avenues are worth attempting ... if not the problem is only likely to worsen."
More at the linkAround three weeks ago on a late Tuesday morning, Israeli soldiers armed with a truck... more
The Last recorded moments of the Libyan leader Major General Abdel Fattah Younes 28.07.2011The Last recorded moments of the Libyan leader Major General Abdel Fattah Younes... more
A blast at a coal mine in eastern Ukraine and an elevator collapse at another today killed at least 18 people, officials said. The rescuers are still searching for a total 20 miners missing at both mines.
An explosion went off at the Suhodolskaya-Vostochnaya mine in the Lugansk region, leaving 16 people dead, three injured and nine missing among the total of 28 miners working underground at about 2 a.m. local time (0000 GMT). According to an initial investigation, the accident was caused by a mix of methane and air, Xinhua told.
The other mine death occurred when an elevator collapsed at the Bazhanova mine in Donetsk region hours after the Lugansk explosion, authorities said, adding that nearly 600 workers underground had been evacuated through emergency exits.A blast at a coal mine in eastern Ukraine and an elevator collapse at another today... more
Skittish at first, then wide-eyed with delight, the women and girls entered the sea, smiling, splashing and then joining hands, getting knocked over by the waves, throwing back their heads and ultimately laughing with joy.
Most had never seen the sea before.
The women were Palestinians from the southern part of the West Bank, which is landlocked, and Israel does not allow them in. They risked criminal prosecution, along with the dozen Israeli women who took them to the beach. And that, in fact, was part of the point: to protest what they and their hosts consider unjust laws.
In the grinding rut of Israeli-Palestinian relations — no negotiations, mutual recriminations, growing distance and dehumanization — the illicit trip was a rare event that joined the simplest of pleasures with the most complex of politics. It showed why coexistence here is hard, but also why there are, on both sides, people who refuse to give up on it.
“What we are doing here will not change the situation,” said Hanna Rubinstein, who traveled to Tel Aviv from Haifa to take part. “But it is one more activity to oppose the occupation. One day in the future, people will ask, like they did of the Germans: ‘Did you know?’ And I will be able to say, ‘I knew. And I acted.’ ”
Such visits began a year ago as the idea of one Israeli, and have blossomed into a small, determined movement of civil disobedience.
Ilana Hammerman, a writer, translator and editor, had been spending time in the West Bank learning Arabic when a girl there told her she was desperate to get out, even for a day. Ms. Hammerman, 66, a widow with a grown son, decided to smuggle her to the beach. The resulting trip, described in an article she wrote for the weekend magazine of the newspaper Haaretz, prompted other Israeli women to invite her to speak, and led to the creation of a group they call We Will Not Obey. It also led a right-wing organization to report her to the police, who summoned her for questioning.
In a newspaper advertisement, the group of women declared: “We cannot assent to the legality of the Law of Entry into Israel, which allows every Israeli and every Jew to move freely in all regions between the Mediterranean and the Jordan River while depriving Palestinians of this same right. They are not permitted free movement within the occupied territories nor are they allowed into the towns and cities across the green line, where their families, their nation, and their traditions are deeply rooted.
“They and we, all ordinary citizens, took this step with a clear and resolute mind. In this way we were privileged to experience one of the most beautiful and exciting days of our lives, to meet and befriend our brave Palestinian neighbors, and together with them, to be free women, if only for one day.”
The police have questioned 28 Israeli women; their cases are pending. So far, none of the Palestinian women and girls have been caught or questioned by the police.
The beach trip last week followed a pattern: the Palestinian women went in disguise, which meant removing clothes rather than covering up. They sat in the back seats of Israeli cars driven by middle-aged Jewish women and took off headscarves and long gowns. As the cars drove through an Israeli Army checkpoint, everyone just waved.
Earlier, the Israelis had dropped off toys and equipment at the home of one of the Palestinian women, who is setting up a kindergarten. The Israelis also help the Palestinian women with medical and legal troubles.
The beach trips — seven so far — have produced some tense moments. An effort to generate interest in a university library fell flat. An invitation to spend the night met with rejection by Palestinian husbands and fathers. Home-cooked Israeli food did not make a big impression. And at a predominantly Jewish beach, a policeman made everyone nervous.
So, on this latest visit, the selected beach was one in Jaffa that is frequented by Israeli Arabs. Nobody noticed the visitors.
Dinner was a surprise. Hagit Aharoni, a psychotherapist and the wife of the celebrity chef Yisrael Aharoni, is a member of the organizing group, so the beachgoers dined on the roof of the Aharonis’ home, five floors above stylish Rothschild Boulevard, where hundreds of tents are currently pitched by Israelis angry with the high cost of housing. The guests loved Mr. Aharoni’s cooking. They lighted cigarettes — something they cannot do in public at home — and put on joyous Palestinian music. As the pink sun set over the Mediterranean, they danced with their Israeli friends.
Ms. Aharoni was asked her thoughts. She replied: “For 44 years, we have occupied another country. I am 53, which means most of my life I have been an occupier. I don’t want to be an occupier. I am engaged in an illegal act of disobedience. I am not Rosa Parks, but I admire her, because she had the courage to break a law that was not right.”
More at the linkSkittish at first, then wide-eyed with delight, the women and girls entered the sea,... more
Malawi's main cities have erupted in protest against President Bingu wa Mutharika, leaving one person dead as police used live fire and teargas to break up crowds who torched homes and vehicles.
One person was shot dead and six injured in the northern town of Mzuzu, a hospital official said, while police beat activists with rifle butts in the capital Lilongwe and fired teargas in the commercial hub Blantyre.Malawi's main cities have erupted in protest against President Bingu wa... more