||Today in Palestine! ~ Headlines ~
Land theft / Settlements|
Israeli high court upholds eviction of Palestinians from Jerusalem homes
The Israeli Supreme Court rejected a petition by two Palestinian
families challenging their eviction from their houses in the Sheikh
Jarrah neighborhood of East Jerusalem on Sunday.
The Hanoun and Al-Ghawi families had appealed a decision by the Israeli
Central Court which also denied their right to remain in their homes.
The families’ lawyer, Husni Abu Hussein presented Ottoman-era documents
proving the family’s ownership of the land. The court rejected the
Palestinians’ claims, siding with Israeli settlers who also claim the
Beit Liqya commemorates Land Day by planting trees near martyrs' graves
the 31st of March, at 10:30am, villagers in Beit Liqya marked Land Day
by planting trees near the graves of two villagers killed by Israeli
forces during demonstrations against the Apartheid Wall in 2005. Beit
Liqya is located in the Ramallah district of the central West Bank.
Around 200 villagers, supported by Israeli and international solidarity
activists, moved towards the Apartheid Wall, which is built on village
land. Around 50 boys from the local youth committee beat drums and
marched in procession to the graves of two boys killed by Israeli
forces. Jamal Jaber, 15 years old, and Uday Mofeed, 14 years old, were
shot with live ammunition during nonviolent demonstrations against the
construction of the Apartheid Wall in 2005.
Land Day demonstration in Halhul, Hebron district
At midday on the 4th of April, around forty Palestinians from
Halhul and the surrounding villages set off to cultivate land near the
illegal settlement of Karmi Zur. Halhul is a village in the Hebron
district of the southern West Bank. Demonstrators were also joined by
Israeli and international solidarity activists. The protestors headed
up the road to the fields around that village that have restricted
access to Palestinian farmers. The Israeli military restricts these
lands due to their proximity to the illegal Israeli settlement of Karme
Zur. These fields are also dangerous for Palestinian farmers to
cultivate because of attacks and harrassment from settlers.
Settlers, Palestinians clash in Hebron over easing of restrictions
out during settler demonstration against opening of Kiryat Arba-Cave of
the Patriarchs road to Palestinian traffic. Nadia Matar blames
Thursday's murder of settler teen on removal of checkpoints, opening of
roads, says 'we won't let it happen here too'
Swallowing up Jerusalem
In its rabid efforts to consolidate its control of traditionally Arab
East Jerusalem, Israel moved forcefully mid-March to suppress
Palestinian cultural activities marking the declaration of the city as
the capital of Arab culture for the year 2009 ... Israeli efforts to obliterate Jerusalem’s
Arab-Islamic-Christian identity began immediately after 1967. For
example, only four days after the seizure of the city, Israeli army
bulldozers wantonly demolished the Maghariba and Sharaf neighbourhoods,
leveling them to the ground. The Palestinian inhabitants of the two
neighbourhoods were expelled rather unceremoniously at gunpoint. All in
all, 135 houses, two mosques and two religious schools or Zawiyas were
destroyed and completely obliterated.
Siege / aftermath / aid / humanitarian situation
Hamas: Arabs to send aid ships to Gaza
GAZA, April 5 (Xinhua) -- A fleet of Arab ships plans to sail
into the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip in a bid to break a 22-month-old
Israeli blockade on the territory, a Hamas spokesman said on Sunday. According
to Zourob, a lobby of 35 Lebanese and Palestinian organizations is
preparing to send ships to the Gaza Strip by the end of May. "Arab and
international campaigners will be onboard."
Anti-siege fleet scheduled to arrive in Gaza in May
Activists are planning a “Freedom Fleet” to break the Israeli siege
of the Gaza Strip in early may. The flotilla is part of an “uprising”
that is being prepared by the
official anti-siege committee in the Gaza Strip, said spokesperson Adel
Zu’rub. Zu’rub explained in a statement that the committee encompasses
more than 35 subcommittees in Palestine and Lebanon ... Zu’rub
highlighted that Israeli authorities detained a ship heading
from Tripoli and confiscated its contents in February. The people on
board the ship and the load were detained and released later, yet the
ship remains impounded.
Skills vow for Gaza doctors
from war-torn Gaza could be brought to Bahrain for specialist training,
it has emerged. The Health Ministry has entered discussions on the
possibility of bringing health professionals to Manama for intensive
care unit training, said Gaza Union of Health Workers Executive
Director Dr Yusuf Mousa. "We are re-arranging the staffing capacities
in our hospitals," he told the GDN. "I have spoken to ministry
officials about bringing doctors and nurses from Gaza to Salmaniya
Medical Complex for training, especially the ICU. "We are also looking
to transfer Bahraini experts to Gaza to train some of the staff there."
1346 children lost one or both parents during Israel's war on Gaza
The Islamic Relief Organization in the Gaza Strip reported that
Palestinian children lost one parent or both during the Israeli war on
the Gaza Strip.Mohammad Abu Darraz, head of the Child Center at the
organization, reported that in most cases orphaned children lost their
fathers. Darraz stated that there are 5200 orphans in the Gaza Strip,
and added that the organization received so far 500 forms asking for
sponsorships for orphaned children, but the organization only managed
to approve 200.
Al Jazeera video: Israeli bombs still threaten Gaza's civilians
than two months after Israel's 22-day offensive on the Gaza
Strip, unexploded bombs continue to threaten Palestinian civilians.
Explosives that failed to detonate during the bombardment still lie in
heavily populated areas of Gaza. Since the war ended, seven people have been killed by bombs
suddenly exploding, six of them children, as Sherine Tadros reports
from the war-torn territory.
Warmth and support
By Eva Bartlett. I met Ramadan and Sabrine Shamali at a Sheyjayee market a couple of days
ago. They were going to buy new blankets, mattresses, and other
essentials, including clothing, to replace what was lost when their
house was attacked by the invading Israeli army during Israel’s war on
Gaza. They were using money sent from those outside of Gaza in
solidarity with Palestinians.
Tales to tell: The lentils did OK today
(with photos) By Sharon Lock. Today [Mar 31] we accompanied farmers in the Latamat area on the outskirts of Khoza’a. The last time we were out farming in Khoza’a the shooting was the closest I’d experienced, and from the video footage it looked like the Israelis were aiming to shoot my colleague J in the leg. Since later that same day Wafa was shot in the kneecap, and not too long before that farmer Mohammed was shot in the foot
while we were with him, the ISM group had been taking stock of our
role. We decided that Gaza ISM had to hold meetings with any farmers
that wanted our accompaniment and be absolutely sure they understood
that our presence protects them only mildly if in fact it protects them
Photo gallery: Sameh Habeeb, "Victim's victims"
Attacks / arrests / incursions / closures
Israeli forces impose collective punishment on Saffa village following attack on settler youth
(with photos) At around 1:30pm, dozens of soldiers entered the village, declaring a
24-hour curfew and preventing residents from leaving their homes.
Israeli authorities have said that the military operation was in
response to the attack on the settler children, which occurred in the
settlement of Bet Ayn, located adjacent to Saffa. However, the Fourth
Geneva Convention prohibits acts of collective punishment against
civilian populations ... On the following day of 3 April, a large military presence still
remained in Saffa, and most roads in the area continue to be closed. At
around 9am, villagers removed an army earth mound between Beit Omar and
Saffa. The army returned to build the roadblock again, only to clear
the road a few hours later and build a new roadblock on another street.
IOF troops isolate Palestinian village from the outside world
AL-KHALIL, (PIC)-- The Israeli occupation forces on Sunday
continued to isolate the Palestinian village of Safa for the fourth
consecutive day from the outside world and persisted in large-scale
search operations in all village homes, locals reported. The sources
said that the IOF soldiers block travel of inhabitants outside the
village after installing several roadblocks at its entrances in a
futile attempt to capture a Palestinian worker suspected of attacking
two Israeli settlers north of Al-Khalil near Safa.
Soldiers assault Palestinian ambulance en route to Hebron
to Abdul-Halim Ja’afira, director of Emergency and Ambulance
Services in Hebron, Israeli soldiers assaulted ambulance driver Iyad
Mudiyya and medic Ali Tmeizi Sunday morning.
Ja’afira explained that the ambulance was heading to Jerusalem after
medics received a call from Israeli ambulance service Magen David to
evacuate a Palestinian worker who fell in a factory in Jerusalem.
Ja’abira added that the ambulance failed to deliver the worker because
Israeli soldiers impeded the mission.
Israeli military patrols storm Tulkarem 'to buy a hookah'
Israeli soldiers stormed the northern West Bank city of Tulkarem in
three vehicles on Sunday, firing gunshots and tear gas before they
besieged a café and forced everybody inside to lie on the ground.
Palestinian youth who were inside Za’im Café had assumed the mission
was, as usual, aimed at detaining someone. However, they were surprised
when the soldiers examined hookahs and one asked for the owner. Still
lying on the floor, the owner, Thaer Al-Jaroun, answered. The
soldier asked him how much he should pay for the hookah, then he took
the hookah he selected and paid 230 Israeli shekels as the owner of the
café requested. After the soldiers left, youth pelted them with stones
and confrontations erupted
'Teenage Bedouin gunwoman sought to avenge Gaza op'
The 16-year-old Bedouin girl killed during a foiled
weekend shooting attack at a Border Police base in the Negev had
apparently sought to avenge Israel's offensive on the Gaza Strip, the
Israel Police said late Saturday ... The police findings contradicted the claims of
Al-Nabari's family, who argued that the girl had been shot for no
reason. Ali al-Nabari, the attacker's cousin, said following the
incident that "it couldn't be. The police is lying and exaggerating.
Maybe she was there to make a complaint and got mixed-up."
'Gaza screams echo in my ears'
parents, uncle of teenage terrorist who fired on Border Guard officers
in Shoket Junction, to custody; police enter excerpts of girl's diary,
expressing her wish to 'die for Palestine', say it's 'unlikely a
16-year-old girl took it upon herself to become shahida' -- The police asked the court to remand all
three on suspicion of conspiracy to committing a crime and breaching
national security. The court remanded the girl's father, Ibrahim, and
uncle, Awad, for four days, and her mother, Najah for 24 hours;
afterwards she will be remanded to house arrest at her brother's home.
Talks / diplomacy
Gaza official: backchannel Shalit talks ongoing
Deputy Prime Minister Ziad Dhadha said in a statement that a deal
involving the release of captured Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit had
almost been sealed, but that Israel had scuttled two separate tracks of
mediation. “After a final agreement was brokered by the Egyptians, the Israelis
retreated because it meant a defeat to them by Palestinian resistance,”
Egypt: Abbas should head transitional government
Director of Egyptian Intelligence Umar Sulaiman has suggested that
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas head the Palestinian national
consensus government as a compromise between Fatah and Hamas, said a
Palestinian official on Sunday.
The official told United Press International that Sulaiman suggested
the new government include ministers from the West Bank and the Gaza
Strip, and operate for a transitional period until after legislative
and presidential elections scheduled for January 2010.
US envoy: Arab peace initiative will be part of Obama policy
2002 initiative offers to normalize relations
between the entire Arab region and Israel, in exchange for a complete
Israeli withdrawal from occupied territories including East Jerusalem,
the establishment of a Palestinian State and a "just settlement" for
Palestinian refugees. The envoy, George Mitchell, said the U.S. intends
to "incorporate" the initiative into its Middle East policy ... Meanwhile, U.S. State Department spokesman Robert Wood insisted the U.S. would push for the establishment of a Palestinian state
EU calls on Netanyahu to back two-state solution
The EU Presidency and the president of the European Parliament have
both called on the new Israeli government to resume peace talks with
the Palestinians on the basis of a two-state solution.
Netanyahu to develop diplomatic policy within weeks
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday that his
government would produce policies on “peace and security,” including
presumably the Palestinians, in the coming weeks. The charter of Netanyahu’s right-wing Likud party expressly prohibits
Israel from giving up any land it has occupied. His foreign minister is
Avigdor Lieberman, the leader of an extreme-right fringe party and a
resident of an illegal settlement in the occupied West Bank.
Abbas pressured to reinstate ambassador to Russia
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is coming under pressure to
reinstate the Palestinian ambassador to Russia, Afif Safieh, who he
fired in March. The Coalition of Jerusalem Organizations and the Coalition of Christian
organizations in Palestine issued a joint call on Saturday urging the
president to reinstate Safieh ... A Christian and a long-serving diplomat for the Palestine Liberation
Organization (PLO), Safieh has also served as ambassador to the United
Sates, the Netherlands, and the Vatican.
Abbas is scheduled to visit Russia later this week for talks with its
president, Dimitri Medvedev.
Photo gallery: Disproportionate, indiscriminate
Medical sources tell what has really happened in Gaza
3 simultaneous press conferences in Brussels, Paris and Jerusalem
on 6th April -- Palestinian and Israeli organisations will present the
conclusions of an international independent medical fact-finding
mission commissioned by the Palestinian Medical Relief Society (PMRS)
and Physicians for Human Rights – Israel (PHR)
UN judge pick for Gaza shocks, awes
Gaza City, April 4, 2009 - (Pal Telegraph) - Following global
concern about Israel's conduct in Gaza, the UN decision to appoint a
Jewish judge to head the war crimes probe raises eyebrows -- Richard
Goldstone, a South African Jewish judge, was appointed by President of
the UN Human Rights Council Martin Uhomoibhi on Friday to play the
leading role in an internationally-urged probe into Israeli war crimes
during the three-week offensive in the Gaza Strip. Following the
appointment, Goldstone said he was 'shocked, as a Jew' to be invited to
head the mission. The fact-finding mission is set to start an inquiry
as Israel has previously snubbed human rights investigations, arguing
that the Human Rights Council is biased. The appointment is believed to
be an attempt to appease Israeli opposition to the investigation. The
decision has also raised fears of Palestinian refusal to cooperate on
Shooting and crying - nothing new since 1948 ... or is it?
amazement the world public has noticed in recent weeks that war
crimes had apparently been committed in Gaza. (1) Even Israeli soldiers
and military staff now report about their own cruelties against the
Palestinian population, cruelties that we do not even know from movies
... Did anything change in Israeli politics? Are those really
completely new phenomena, suddenly coming up in the discourse, out of
thin air? Or do we only witness the consequences of a continuing
strategy that had begun more than sixty years ago? There are good
arguments for the latter alternative, especially when you look at the
facts. Let us, for example, revisit the year 1948 … Deir Yassin and the
Solidarity / boycotts / sanctions
Video: Congresswoman Barbara Lee speaking about Tristan Anderson in the House of Representatives
Congresswoman Barbara Lee makes a statement regarding the American citizen, Tristan Anderson, who was shot in the head with a tear-gas projectile on 13 March 2009 by Israeli forces.
Jews sans frontieres: Relabelling rumbled
From the Cyprus Mail:
"Commerce Minister Antonis Paschalides is looking into a humiliating
blunder by a leading EU supermarket chain after it sold tons of Israeli
fruit as ”Produce of Cyprus”, he said yesterday. German-owned Aldi were
left red-faced when they admitted to the Cyprus Mail that they had
effectively misled thousands of Irish consumers by falsely labeling
Israeli grapefruit as Cypriot produce ... Some Irish consumers even
said they would boycott Cyprus produce until they knew it was genuinely
Cypriot. The prospect could be damaging for Cypriot citrus growers.
Khamenei hails Venezuela's 'courageous' cuts in Israeli ties
(AFP) – Iran's supreme leader Ali Khemenei hailed on Saturday as a
"courageous" step the Venezuelan government's decision to cut ties with
Tehran's archfoe Israel over the Gaza war. Venezuela expelled the
Israeli ambassador in January to protest the Israeli invasion of the
Gaza Strip that left more than 1,400 Palestinians dead ...On Friday,
Tehran and Caracas inaugurated a bank to finance their joint economic,
industrial and mining projects projects. The Iran-Venezuela Joint Bank,
based in Tehran, has an initial capital
base of 200 million dollars, with each nation providing half the funds.
Arab child's sickbed is part of the battleground
WADI FUQEEN, West Bank (AP) -- Asil Manasra, a 6-year-old
Palestinian girl, was in her eighth month of intensive treatment at an
Israeli hospital for complications arising from a long bout of
tuberculosis when she was abruptly forced to stop the visits. A week
after she was discharged, she died. It's impossible to know how much
longer Asil might have lived, but her family is convinced she is the
first victim of a Palestinian [PA] decision that has cut hundreds of
people off from proper medical care and has led Israeli hospitals to
turn away those in need.
European campaign asks PA to spare Gaza patients the political wrangling
BRUSSELS, (PIC)-- The European campaign to lift the siege on Gaza
has expressed surprise at the news report that the PA in Ramallah was
blocking travel of Gaza patients abroad for life-saving medical
treatment. Mohammed Hanun, the representative of the campaign in Italy,
said in a press statement on Saturday that the World Health
Organization had confirmed that the travel of those patients was hinged
on Ramallah's approval as both Egypt and Israel refuses to allow those
patients access without prior approval of Ramallah.
Why does the [New York] Times only let Arabs criticize Israel?
Wonderful, yes, that today the Times ran George Bisharat's op-ed piece
saying Israel committed war crimes in Gaza. But Bisharat is a
Palestinian-American. And do you notice the pattern? Jeff Blankfort
does: "I have noticed that, almost
without exception, the only critics of Israeli policy that are given
op-ed space, not only in the NY Times, but elsewhere in the mainstream
media, are either Palestinians such as Rashid Khalidi, Saree Makdisi,
or George Bisharat, or in the most extreme example, Libyan president Muammar Qaddafi, being given space
to promote a one-state solution (an assignment that, quite clearly, was
intended to permanently marginalize the idea). It has long been the
same with the Times letter section, in which criticism of Israel seems
also to be reserved for writers with non-Western names. I know of
several people, besides myself, Jewish and non-Jewish, who have
attempted, without success, to get letters published in the paper but
to no avail and have since given up. The thinking behind the Times'
decision as to who does or doesn't get their words in print is to not
so subtly portray the Israel-Palestine conflict as being "them vs. us,"
the "us" being those who identify with Israel thanks to the cleverly
oversold and mistaken notion that "we" and the Israelis have "shared
Mid-East article was not biased, Press Council finds
The Press Council has dismissed a complaint by Rabih Alkadamani
about an opinion article in The Australian on November 26, 2008, on the
It was an account by Janet Albrechtsen of her experiences and views
following an Israel-sponsored visit to the region. Albrechtsen spoke of
Hamas rocket attacks, and briefly about "intractable hurdles to peace"
before focusing on what she called "a generation of Palestinian
children being raised on a full diet of hate education" -- partially
funded by Western money -- that negates the prospects of future peace.
Mr Alkadamani said he had provided to The Australian an opinion article
repudiating Albrechtsen's views, but this was not published. The
Australian said it had published a "lively" selection of letters about
Albrechtsen's column in the days following its publication. Mr
Alkadamani expressed concern that the person who rejected his
article, Rebecca Weisser, the opinion editor, had herself been on a
sponsored trip to Israel, which resulted in a pro-Israeli feature
article in The Australian on November 29.
'We all know that Israeli soldiers don't kill on purpose': The contribution of the media discource to unawareness
The recent Gaza war, like the war that came before it, began
with inflammatory, militant and jingoistic media coverage [in Israel]. Then, as
now, troubling details about the conduct of the IDF were revealed only
later. How the media discourse clouds public perceptions...
Keshev finds that alongside the impassioned coverage of the first few days of the fighting the major media outlets in Israel
played down information that was known at the time about arbitrary
conduct and severe harm to innocent civilians, minimizing the
significance of these reports and placing them only in the margins of
Israel isolates Hamas and Islamic Jihad prisoners in Nafha prison
RAMALLAH, (PIC)-- The lawyer of the Palestinian prisoner club said that
the Israeli Nafha prison administration started recently to isolate the
prisoners of Hamas and Islamic Jihad from other prisoners as a prelude
to taking punitive measures against them including depriving them of
their financial allocations.
Two Hamas leaders start hunger strike in Israeli jails
NABLUS, (PIC)-- Dr. Nasseruddin Al-Shaer and Ra'fat Nassif, two of
the Hamas political leaders in the West Bank, have gone on hunger
strike in protest over their incarceration conditions, the
international Tadamun institution for human rights reported. Shaer, a
former deputy premier in the tenth PA national unity government, told
the Tadamun lawyer Fares Abu Hassan in a press release on Sunday that
the Israeli prisons authority was holding them in a cell that lacks the
minimum life requirements ever since their arrival to the Megiddo
prison more than a week ago.
Sheikh Salah: The file of prisoners is one of Palestinian cause's priorities
During a news conference held in east Jerusalem, Sheik Ra'ed Salah,
the head of the Islamic Movement in the 1948 occupied lands, underlined
that there are 20 veteran prisoners from the 1948 occupied lands who
were arrested before the Oslo accords, 16 of them spent more than 20
years especially prisoner Sami Younis who had been in jail since 1983.
He pointed out that the Israeli occupation authority discriminates
between the Arab and Israeli prisoners, where it released all Israeli
criminals who killed Arabs after a few years of their imprisonment.
First women to graduate from Palestinian [PA] military academy
The first batch of women set to graduate from the
Palestinian military academy marched with their male colleagues on
Saturday, in a rare display of women and men training alongside each
other in the Middle East ... The two-year-old academy currently has 16 women among 148 men in its class set to graduate in June. They will then be incorporated into the Palestinian police, intelligence services and preventive security forces.
On Saturday, women clad in olive-green uniforms, some
with their heads covered, marched together with the men. Farah Salman
was one of them and said she dreamed of being a police commander.
Hamas denies establishment of military academy in Gaza
GAZA, April 3 (Xinhua) -- A senior Islamic Hamas official
denied on Friday the earlier Israeli reports saying that the movement
has inaugurated in Gaza a military academy to train militants on
fighting Israel. Ismail Radwan said in a press statement
that the Israeli report" is false and inaccurate. It is just a poor
attempt to justify the occupation's defeat during the war on the Gaza
Israeli security sources: Fatah has resumed terrorist activities
officials said over the weekend they are
concerned about the increased involvement of Fatah-affiliated militants
in attacks against Jews in the West Bank over the past two months.
Fatah members stopped attacks against Israel around two years ago,
but the involvement of Fatah members in the recent deadly attack in Bat
Ayin and the murder of two policemen in the Jordan Valley is being
Israeli police: FM Lieberman to face charges
Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman will likely face charges
money laundering, fraud and breach of trust, police reportedly told
Israeli media on Saturday.
Lieberman has been questioned by police twice since taking office
earlier last week. Lieberman is expected to testify once more before
the police probe
concludes. His case will then be transferred to the Israeli State
Economic blues hovering over Israel
By Khalid Amayreh in occupied E. Jerusalem. The main challenge facing the new
right-wing government in Israel is not going to be the moribund peace
process with the Palestinians, but rather the depressive crisis now
haunting the Israeli economy. Some economists label the current crisis as the “harshest in Israel’s history.”
Israel's Cairo embassy at 30: lonely but hopeful
Israelis see the embassy as a crucial foothold in a Middle East largely
hostile or, at best, indifferent to them. Yet many Egyptians resent
being the first to have engaged a Jewish state whose presence Arabs
often consider anathema, and any sympathies are sapped by the plight of
the Palestinians ... By signing the 1979 Camp David accord with Israel, Egypt won back the
occupied Sinai -- over which it launched a war six years prior -- and
secured vital U.S. aid grants. There is scant sense of any broader
Op-ed / analysis / testimony
Reham Alhelsi / Jerusalem: the heart, soul and home of Palestine
In 1929 Ben-Gurion said: “Jerusalem is not the same thing to the Arabs
as it is to the Jews”. While he meant to say that Palestinians were not
part of Jerusalem and are not attached to it as the Jews are, I would
say, he almost got it right: Jerusalem is not the same thing to the
Palestinians as it is to the Zionists. To us, Jerusalem is a home and
an integral part of each of us, to the Zionists it is but another
construction site, for he who loves a city would not destroy it as the
Zionists are doing right now with Jerusalem.
Stuart Littlewood / Student Merna foils Israeli bid to wreck family's education hopes
Bethlehem University has been closed a dozen times by Israeli
storm-troopers and shelled by their tanks, but it remains one of those
magical places in the Holy Land where you always feels good ‘vibes’.
Meeting the students is a continual source of inspiration, as so
many apply themselves to their studies with cheerful determination in
spite of difficult family circumstances and almost insurmountable
obstacles put in their way by the Occupation. So I enjoy the
newsletters the Brothers regularly send me. Their latest includes the
heart-rending story of a young girl,
Merna, an honors student in her final year majoring in English. For
most people studying for a degree is tough enough, but this youngster
also has to battle against armed intruders who invade her home and have
systematically destroyed her family life.
Gideon Levy / Was Israel's reported strike in Sudan an exercise in propaganda?
Shhhhh, Israel has done it again. On the eve of the
end of prime minister Ehud Olmert's term, in what appeared like a
suspicious coincidence, we heard the report from distant America about
another covert, impressive Israeli operation. This time it was carried
out by planes or unmanned aerial vehicles. Israel had struck again.
Uri Avnery / Who's the boss?
Concessions, [Lieberman] said, do not bring peace, but quite the
reverse. The world respected and admired Israel when it won the Six-day
war. Two fallacies in one sentence. Returning occupied territory is not
a “concession”. When a thief is compelled to return stolen property, or
when a squatter vacates an apartment that does not belong to him, that
is not a “concession”. And the admiration for Israel in 1967 came from
a world that saw us as a little, valiant country that had stood up to
mighty armies out to destroy us. But today’s Israel looks like a brutal
Goliath, while the occupied Palestinians are now viewed as a David with
his slingshot, fighting for his life.
Open letter to the editor of the Jerusalem Post: When is someone who attacks you a 'terrorist' and when is he just a 'man'?
Yesterday we noted a murderous incident, Palestinian against settler,
in the occupied West Bank. Well there's a back story worthy of Dickens.
From the JPost:
"Yair Gamliel, the seven-year-old boy whose skull was
fractured by an ax-wielding terrorist in the settlement of Bat Ayin on
Thursday, is the son of Ofer Gamliel, one of three men convicted in
2003 and sent to prison for 15 years for a failed bomb plot against a
Arab girls school in east Jerusalem..."
An unhelpful discourse on Israel: Jeff Halper to Australian Jewry
uproar in the organized Jewish community over the prospect of my
speaking in Australia is truly startling to an Israeli like me.
Granted, I am very critical of Israel's policies of Occupation and
doubt whether a two-state solution is still possible given the extent
of Israel's settlements, but this hardly warrants the kind of
demonization I received in the pages of The AJN. Opinions similar to
mine are readily available in the mainstream Israeli media. Indeed, I
myself write frequently for the Israeli press and appear regularly on
Israeli TV and radio. Why, then, the hysteria? Why was I banned from
Temple Emmanuel in Sydney, a self-proclaimed progressive synagogue? Why
did I, an Israeli, have to address the Jewish community from a church?
Why was I invited to speak in every university in eastern Australia
yet, at Monash University, I was forced to hold a secret meeting with
Jewish faculty in a darkened room far from the halls of intellectual
Iraq pledges to protect its Palestinian residents
BAGHDAD — Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas won assurances Sunday
that Iraqi leaders will protect Palestinians living in Iraq — including
thousands stranded in desert refugee camps — during his first visit to
the country since the U.S.-led invasion of 2003. The visit marked a
major step in improving ties between the Shiite-led government of Iraq
and the Palestinian leadership, which had warm relations with the
ousted regime of Saddam Hussein ... About 11,000 Palestinians still
live in Iraq, mostly in Baghdad’s
Shiite district of Baladiyat. Hundreds of Palestinians, overwhelmingly
Sunni, were slaughtered during the sectarian violence of a few years
ago in Iraq.
Saturday: 1 US Marine, 2 Iraqis killed; 10 Iraqis wounded
Excerpt: At least two Iraqis were killed and eight more were
wounded in the latest violence; however, no reports came out of Mosul where
attacks occur on a daily basis. One U.S. Marine was
killed in a non-combat incident.
Black funeral banners belie Iraq's declining death toll
At a time when the Iraqi government and U.S. military speak of lower
death tolls, black banners drape the mosque walls and traffic circles
of Baghdad, telling a different story of a world beyond statistics,
where killings still ripple through society.
Navy lawyer who faulted Guantánamo is reassigned
SAN JUAN, P.R. (AP) — A Navy lawyer who clashed with superiors over defense tactics for detainees held at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, has been removed from the case of a Canadian accused of killing an American soldier in Afghanistan,
an official said on Saturday. In his two years on the case, Commander
Kuebler campaigned for Mr. Khadr’s return to Canada to short-circuit a military tribunal
system that he described as unfair. Like all Guantánamo prosecutions,
the case is suspended pending a review of policies by the Obama
By Andy Worthington. On Monday March 30, in a committee room in the House of Commons, Diane
Abbott MP chaired a meeting entitled, "Britain’s Guantánamo? The use of
secret evidence and evidence based on torture in the UK courts," to
discuss the stories of some of the men held as "terror suspects" on the
basis of secret evidence, and to work out how to persuade the
government to change its policies. A detailed report of the meeting is
available here, and the profiles of five prisoners are available by following this link),
but I thought it was also worth addressing a question posed by the
meeting’s title, and to ask if it is fair to compare the bitter fruits
of Britain’s anti-terror legislation with the iconic symbol of the Bush
administration’s "War on Terror."
Arad visa dilemma will test Obama's resolve in confronting Netanyahu
The first official test of wills between the administration of US
President Barack Obama and the new Likud-led government of Israeli
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu could well be waged over the
issuance, or restoration, of a simple entry visa. For the past two
years, Dr. Uzi Arad, the former director of intelligence for Israel's
Mossad, has been denied entry into the United States based on a 2004
meeting he held with a Pentagon official who has since been sentenced
to 12 years in prison for passing classified information to Israel.
Under a long-standing section of the Immigration and Nationality Act
(NA), foreign individuals suspected of engaging in espionage or
sabotage against the US cannot be granted a visa to come here.
|For further information contact Shadi Fadda