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The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil,    but because of the people who don't do anything about it    

The little NGO that managed to move an Israeli settlementRuth Eglash - The Washington Post - “In legal terms, the Amona case was simple. Someone had invaded private land and built structures on the property. But ultimately we were dealing with the Israeli government with all its power, not just the trespassers,” said Michael Sfard, Yesh Din’s legal adviser and a key figure in the fight against Amona for nearly a decade. -rh29/3/2017
Abbas awaiting US word on Israel settlementsAssociated Press - Ynet - "Abbas, who is to meet Trump in coming weeks, says there are "lots of questions from the American side at this stage, and we answered all of their questions."" - id29/3/2017
Israeli soldiers drag shoeless Palestinian eight-year-old from house to house in shocking video from Hebron : Israel Defence Force troops force boy looking for lost toy to help them find other children believed to have thrown stones and a Molotov cocktailBethan McKernan - Independent - Eight-year-old Sufian Abu Hitah disobeyed his mother to sneak out from his grandparents’ house to look for a missing toy when he was seized by a group of around 15 soldiers who asked him in Arabic to give the names of children who had thrown stones and a Molotov cocktail at the nearby Kiryat Arba Israeli settlement. Crying, the boy told the soldiers he didn’t known anything. However, he was then grabbed by both arms and escorted to both the Kiryat Arba gate and into several houses, despite only wearing socks. Several women who witnessed the scene tried to intervene, eventually managing to free the boy more than an hour later.-rh 29/3/2017
Israel`s false narrative on land swapsBen White - Al Jazeera - The idea of future land swaps has been used to justify expanding Israeli settlements on Palestinian land, analysts say. They also expect Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to deflect pressure from the international community against illegal Israeli settlements by using the concept of blocs and swaps. [bz]28/3/2017
Netanyahu denies deal to limit West Bank settlement constructionThe Times of Israel - PM dismisses ‘incorrect’ media reports of alleged agreement made with Washington, says negotiations continuing [ry]27/3/2017
Palestinian families prevent Israeli settlers from breaking into Hebron kindergartenMa`an - Youth Against Settlement (YAS) coordinator Issa Amro said that a number of settlers and their children attempted to enter a kindergarten on al-Shuhada street in Hebron’s Old City, but that Palestinian locals were able to prevent them from crossing the fence surrounding the school. Israeli settlers in Hebron often gather in al-Shuhada street and the neighborhood of Tel Rumeida during the Jewish holiday of Purim. The Hebron settlers chanted a number of anti-Palestinian slogans on Sunday, including some hailing Baruch Goldstein, who killed 29 Palestinian Muslims in Hebron’s Ibrahimi Mosque in 1994. [bz for dn]19/3/2017
Netanyahu Seeks Settlement Approval From Trump AideJason Ditz - AntiWar - Argues New Settlement Not Really `New` But a Replacement [ry]13/3/2017
NABOTH’S VINEYARD : Israeli settler agriculture as a means of land takeover in the West BankKerem Naboth - Report - The goal of this report has been to add another layer to the discussion about the Israeli settlements in the West Bank. This debate about the settlements tends to focus on construction of new neighborhoods, establishment of outposts, demographic growth among the settlers, the benefits they receive, and settler violence. Israeli agriculture in the West Bank is usually discussed in connection with the monitoring and labeling of agricultural exports from the West Bank settlements, which is an important tool for advocacy work on the economic implications of settler agriculture. Little is known or discussed, however, about the far-reaching territorial implications of the phenomenon, its humanitarian repercussions, and the risk this poses to Palestinian the state building and for Palestinian civil society.-rh9/3/2017
Who is the main culprit - settlers or government?Ben Ehrenreich - The Baffler - In making his documentary "The Settlers", Shimon Dotan got settlers to say the damnedest things on camera: “Arabs don’t belong in our country” /"The Land of Israel stretches virtually all the way to Iraq” / “Ultimately the Arabs are right, Zionism is the aggressor.” However, Dotan`s presentation is clearly slanted to place the full blame for Israel`s present situation on "the fanatic settlers" and distract attention from the willing complicity of all governments since 1967 - including Labor governments. [ak] 7/3/2017
An intensive campaign to save Khan al AhmarDonna Baranski-Walker - Rebuilding Alliance - Khan al Ahmar in the West Bank is located between the Israeli settlement of Ma`ale Adumim and one of its elite suburbs, Kfar Adumim. All its 127 houses now got demolition orders. An intensive campaign has been going on in the US, calling upon US Senators and Representatives to take up this grave humanitarian issue, resulting so far in a visit to the threatened village by US Consular staff from East Jerusalem (not to be taken for granted under Trump). [ak] 7/3/2017
Israeli soldiers stand by as settlers attack civilians in West Bank villageOren Ziv/Activestills - +972 - Because there hadn’t been protests of late in Nabi Saleh, it appeared the army was caught off on Friday, and the protesters managed to reach what had been their spring, waving a Palestinian flag. Within a matter of minutes, settlers from Halamish arrived, and began to attack the protesters. Soldiers arrived shortly thereafter. [bz]7/3/2017
Settler leaders should have been put on trial, not AzariaAmnon Abramovich - Ynetnews - It’s not Elor Azaria who should have been put on trial, it’s all the leaders of the Jewish settlement in Hebron throughout the years. The trial should not have focused on morality in battle, but on the morality of their presence there. Some 900 settlers and yeshiva students have placed themselves among 250,000 Palestinians. Most of them are not preaching good neighborly relations and peace, they are agitators calling for a transfer.-rh 2/3/2017
Elor Azarya’s ‘normative’ support for genocideJonathan Ofir - Mondoweiss "Let us pay particular attention to the sentence “positive personality and his being a normative person until his current complication”. Below are two exchanges between Elor Azarya and his family – that is, his parents (Charlie and Oshra), on Facebook, July 2014. The first is from July 15th, with the background of a discussed ceasefire with Hamas in the midst of the 2014 Gaza onslaught. The second is from July 30th." ca1/3/2017
‘If we resist: more sanctions. If the settlers kill us: more sanctions.’Ahmad Jaradat - AIC - After the massacre, Palestinians in Hebron anticipated the evacuation of nearby settlers or at least for restrictions to be imposed on them. Instead, Israeli authorities instituted restrictions on Palestinian locals, including eventually prohibiting Palestinian foot traffic on Shuhada Street. [bz]28/2/2017
Settlers building race track inside IDF live-fire training zoneEdo Konrad - +972 - The Israeli army uses `live-fire zones` as an excuse to displace Palestinian villages. Now Israeli settlers are illegally building a race track inside one. The decision whether to demolish it or not “will be carried out in accordance with political directives and the necessary legal approval." [bz] 28/2/2017
Palestinians, Israel soldiers clash in West Bank`s HebronAFP/Yahoo news - Hundreds of Palestinian protesters clashed with Israeli soldiers Friday in the powderkeg West Bank city of Hebron on the anniversary of a 1994 massacre carried out by a far-right Jewish settler. Soldiers fired tear gas and sound grenades to disperse the crowd as cannons doused them with stinking water, an AFP correspondent said. There was no report of injuries. Jewish settlers, of whom 500 are entrenched in the centre of the city of around 200,000 Palestinians, hurled stones at the protesters who also pelted soldiers with stones. [bz]25/2/2017
Palestinian Lands in Salfit Razed for Settlement ExpansionIMEMC - "Palestinian farmers in Qarawat Bani Hassan and Deir Istiya, to the west of Salift, said that Israeli bulldozers have been leveling their land lots in an attempt to expand the adjacent (and illegal) Hafat Yair settlement outpost.PNN reports that, according to the Palestine Information Center (PIC), Israeli forces and settlers declared the razed area a “nature reserve”, preventing Palestinians from growing crops or reclaiming their private lands." ca 24/2/2017
How is aiding Israel’s war crimesMieke Zagt - Electronic Intifada " is headquartered in the Netherlands. It should, therefore, abide by Dutch and European Union law.In November 2015, the EU published guidelines for firms doing business in the Middle East. They state that the Union “does not recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the territories” it has occupied since 1967 – the West Bank (including East Jerusalem), Gaza and the Golan Heights – and “does not consider them to be part of Israel’s territory.” ca 24/2/2017
Israeli authorities move to demolish entire Bedouin communityMa`an - Rights groups and Bedouin community members have sharply criticized Israel`s relocation plans for the Bedouin residing near the illegal Israeli settlement of Maale Adumim, claiming that the removal would displace indigenous Palestinians for the sake of expanding Israeli settlements across the occupied West Bank in violation of international law. Meanwhile, discussion of an Israeli bill seeking to annex Maale Adumim was postponed last month, reportedly until after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and US President Donald Trump held their first meeting after Trump`s inauguration. The meeting took place Wednesday... [bz]21/2/2017
Knesset Enacts Law That Would Force Labeling of Israeli Businesses That Refuse Service to Settlements Jonathan Lis - Haaretz - An article in the amendment specifies that its purpose is to help settlers address the refusal by many business owners to cross the border out of security concerns or ideology. “It cannot be that residents of Judea and Samaria, for example, will purchase a product but never receive services or shipping for it because they live beyond the Green Line, or they will be required to pay a ‘special charge,’” said KM Moalem-Refaeli, referring to the West Bank and Israel’s pre-1967 borders. [bz]21/2/2017
Netanyahu says Trump’s settlement moratorium request may preclude Amona resettlementItamar Eichner - Ynet - Speaking at a Security Cabinet meeting on Sunday, Netanyahu said President Trump’s recent request to ‘hold back’ on construction in the West Bank may impede his ability to deliver a promise to found an alternative settlement for the evacuees on the land of their choosing; Likud members fear failure to fulfill pledge could precipitate Bayit Yehudi`s exit from the government, risking its demise [ry]20/2/2017
Palestinian Jordan Valley February 7, 2017 AM and PMNurit Popper, Daphne Banai, translated by Tal Haran - Machsomwatch report - Ali lives in Ras Al Ahmar with his wife Dalal and their five children. The place is highly fertile, its ground containing plenty of water. Ali, however, may not pump a single drop. Since the region has been declared a firing zone, many generations after Ali’s family began living there, he may not even introduce a tractor to carry water and feed for his flock. For three months Ali’s tractor as well as the tractors of 6 other residents have been held by the Civil Administration. These people call me on a daily basis, desperate – these tractors are as vital to them as hands and feet. Two weeks ago they were notified of the fine they must pay. They ran to the postal bank and paid. All of them. But then the Civil Administration got clever – now they must also sign a commitment not to re-introduce tractors into the area. What can they do with the tractor if it cannot bring them water? Without water, this is no less than expulsion. It has no other name!-rh 16/2/2017
In commemoration of the Ibrahimi Mosque Massacre: #DismantleTheGhetto take the settlers out of of HebronInternational Solidarity Movement - February 25th marks the 23rd commemoration of the Ibrahim Mosque Massacre in Hebron. This year’s commemoration coincides with Israel’s unprecedented escalation in seizing Palestinian land in the West Bank for settlement expansion. This has been accompanied with ideas from Israeli ministers to construct settlements and annex most of the C areas in the West Bank. The commemoration also coincides with Israel’s increasing campaigns to Judaize the Naqab, similar to what has happened in Um Al-Hiran recently, with a general rise in the policy of demolishing Palestinian houses whether in the occupied territories or within the Green Line.-rh16/2/2017
The law to legalize settlements: Inching toward a one-state solutionYacov Ben Efrat - Challenge - "Naftali Bennett is in a hurry. Bennett`s position is crystal clear: He sees Trump`s election as a game changer, an opportunity to take a historic step toward annexing Area C of the West Bank to Israel. The Legalization Law is the key. Bennett wants Netanyahu to arrive in Washington “armed” with the law and to put Trump to the test." - id 15/2/2017
Berlin protesters target exploitive Israeli settler date producers BDS Berlin - Protesters picketed Fruit Logiscitica 2017, a major international agricultural fair held annually in Berlin. Visitors could not avoid the big signs held on the porch, before the entrance to the fair: "Boycott the companies which profit from Israeli Apartheid: Mhehadrin, Arava, Hadiklaim" and "Ignorance is a choice". The Israeli companies named participate in Fruit Logiscitica to promote their dates, which compete for the European consumer market. They neglect to tell visitors that most of these dates come from settlements in the Jordan Valley, part of the occupied West Bank, or that harvesting the dates is done by highly exploited, low paid Palestinian workers - many of them minors. [ak] 14/2/2017
President Rivlin: "Applying sovereignty to an area gives citizenship to all those living there" Daniel K. Eisenbud - Jerusalem Post - Stating that he believes “Zion is entirely ours,” and that “the sovereignty of the State of Israel must be in all the blocs,” President Rivlin may have tested the waters for the one-state solution he has long championed.“It must be clear: If we extend sovereignty, the law must apply equally to all,” he told a packed auditorium of mostly right-wing participants. “Applying sovereignty to an area gives citizenship to all those living there.” [ak]14/2/2017
Buoyed by Trump-Netanyahu summit, ministers openly scratch annexation itchMarissa Newman - The Times of Israel - Right-wing lawmakers, policy wonks and several government ministers gathered to fete what they see as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity created by the ascension of Donald Trump to the US presidency. Undampened by some warning signals from Trump`s White House itself, the annexationists` reached fever pitch, demanding that Netanyahu discard his declared support for the two-state solution - lip service as it is generally perceived to be. There was, however, considerable dispute about the details - especially, on which devious scheme to use in order to carry out annexation and still avoid giving civil rights to the Palestinians. [ak]14/2/2017
Israeli forces deliver land confiscation notices in Ramallah-area villageMa`an - According to the Applied Research Institute - Jerusalem (ARIJ), at least 60 percent of the village is under threat of confiscation and isolation owing to the construction of Israel’s separation wall. The land confiscated by Israeli authorities has been repurposed for the construction of illegal Israeli settlements, ARIJ said. [bz for dn]12/2/2017
Some 1,000 olive trees uprooted to build bypass road on ‘Azzun village landB`tselem - [background] On 21 December 2015, the head of the Civil Administration issued an expropriation order for 10.4 hectares of land earmarked for the bypass road. The order noted that the new road will “serve the public good” and improve mobility between Nablus and Qalqilya. In March 2016, the Palestinian village councils and landowners petitioned Israel’s High Court of Justice (HCJ) against the expropriation, on the grounds that the road will not serve all residents of the area but only settlers. On 16 November 2016, the HCJ denied the petition after accepting the state’s claim that the road is intended to serve the entire population of the area. The seizure of the land and uprooting of olive trees have severely harmed the landowners, who have lost a source of income and a major financial asset, as well as an open space that served all local residents for leisure and recreational activities. [bz for dn] 12/2/2017
Palestinian historical city of Sebastia besieged by settlementsZuheir Dolah - Al-Monitor - Sebastia, the gateway of historical civilizations, is facing a future of invaders different from those in previous eras. These invaders are committing serious violations to eliminate the city’s history and impose the Jewish story on it. One of the most dangerous violations is the Israeli decision to ban the entry of foreign tourists to the land of Palestinian antiquities. To tighten the noose on Sebastia, Israel established the Shavei Shomron settlement after confiscating and controlling most of the city’s lands.-rh 9/2/2017
Israel Passes Law To Legalize Theft Of Private Palestinian Land Charlotte Silver - Countercurrents - Late Monday night, Israel’s parliament, the Knesset, approved a bill to retroactively legalize the expropriation by settlers of private Palestinian land that has taken place over the last two decades. Passed by 60-52, the so-called Regularization Bill will legalize around 4,000 settlement homes in so-called unauthorized outposts and settlements. Human Rights Watch swiftly condemned the vote, noting that the Regularization Bill “undoes years of established Israeli law and, coming just weeks after the [UN] Security Council’s unanimous passage of Resolution 2334 on the illegality of settlements, reflects Israel’s manifest disregard of international law.”.rh 9/2/2017
Israel’s New Land Law: Clearing the Path to AnnexationJonathan Cook - Counter Punch - The legalisation law – also commonly translated from Hebrew as the regulation or validation law – was the right’s forceful response to the eviction last week of a few dozen families from a settlement “outpost” called Amona. It was a rare and brief setback for the settlers, provoked by a court ruling that took three years to enforce. The evacuation of 40 families was transformed into an expensive piece of political theatre, costing $40 million. It was choreographed as a national trauma to ensure such an event is never repeated.-rh 9/2/2017
Israel`s land theft law is just the tip of the settlement icebergHaggai Matar - +972 - "...the West Bank is home to Israeli citizens who live under the Israeli democracy and enjoy all the same rights as those who live inside Israel, and alongside them Palestinians who live under an Israeli military regime. The latter group lacks basic rights, cannot choose who governs them, and their lives are determined by military laws issued by Israeli army officers." - id 8/2/2017
Israel Passes Contentious Palestinian Land-grab Bill in Late Night Vote - opposition warns: bill will land Israel in The HagueJonathan Lis and Barak Ravid - Haaretz - B`Tselem condemned the bill`s passage, saying it "proves yet again that Israel has no intention of ending its control over the Palestinians or its theft of their land. Lending a semblance of legality to this ongoing act of plunder is a disgrace of the state and its legislature. Passing the bill mere weeks after UN Security Council Resolution 2334 is a slap in the face of the international community." [bz]7/2/2017
European Union condemns Regulation Bill in sharp statement.Itamar Eichner - Ynet - The law may provide for `legalizing` numerous settlements and outposts previously considered as illegal even under Israeli law, which would be contrary to previous commitments by Israeli governments and illegal under international law. "In passing this new law, the Israeli parliament has legislated on the legal status of land within occupied territory, which is an issue that remains beyond its jurisdiction," said Mogherini. "Should it be implemented, the law would further entrench a one-state reality of unequal rights, perpetual occupation and conflict." [bz] 7/2/2017
Palestinians in Nablus-area village say settlers cut down hundreds of olive, almond treesMa`an - The trees were planted two years after the eviction of the nearby Homesh settlement which was located in northwest Nablus. After the eviction, the Palestinian landowners obtained decisions from Israeli courts, including the Supreme Court, that neither settlers, nor Israeli forces would harass the landowners. However, in 2016 settlers started to "camp" in the area under protection of Israeli troops, making it very difficult for farmers to tend their fields and water their trees. [bz]7/2/2017
EU puts off summit with Israel over Settlement Regularization LawBarak Ravid - Haaretz/Palestine News Network - Passage of the Land Grab Law, added to the large-scale settlement construction plans announced last week, caused the cancellation of a summit between the European Union and Israel, which was due to take place on February 28 and which was to signal "a thaw" in EU-Israel relations. Following the Knesset vote, Palestinian diplomat Saeb Erekat said that if the EU would go on with plans to hold the summit it would be “rewarding Israel" and "helping to bury the two-state solution". Among the countries urging the EU to put off indefinitely the summit were France, Sweden, Ireland, The Netherlands and Finland. [ak]7/2/2017
Netanyahu calls for postponing Regulation BillYoni Ariel/TPS, Elisha Ben Kimon & Itamar Eichner - Ynet - After Regulation Bill has already been postponed once before, PM Benjamin Netanyahu calls to postpone the voting on it yet again, sparking objection by its supporters and a large protest by the residents of Ofra [ry]6/2/2017
Israel’s Hard-Liners Want to ‘Go Big’: Annex a SettlementIAN FISHER - NYT - After eight years of little building, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu just allotted 100 new building units to Ma’ale Adumim, part of 2,500 new proposed housing units around the West Bank settlements, and another 560 in East Jerusalem. Mr. Netanyanu has proclaimed this as just the beginning of a new wave of building. [bz]4/2/2017
Ashrawi conducts separate meetings with diplomatsPNN/ Ramallah - "PLO Executive Committee Member Dr. Hanan Ashrawi conducted separate meetings with Spanish Consul General Rafael Matos, US Deputy Consul General Dorothy Shea and Turkish Consul General Gürcan Türkoğlu.Dr. Ashrawi briefed the diplomats on the current political and regional developments, as well as Israel’s massive campaign of land theft and its enormous wave of settlement activities: “It is clear that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is creating facts on the ground and destroying the very foundations of the two-state solution and the chances for peace. We cannot afford four more years as Israel rushes to complete the unjust and illegal transformation and ethnic cleansing of Jerusalem and the final annexation of the Occupied West Bank." ca 3/2/2017
Last hard-liners evicted from illegal West Bank settlement Joe Dyke with Laurent Lozano - Arab News "AMONA, Palestine: Israeli police forced hard-line Jewish settlers from the barricaded synagogue of a wildcat outpost in the occupied West Bank on Thursday, completing an emotive battle to evict residents.The operation, by hundreds of police at the Amona outpost near Ramallah, was the final act of a drama which prompted the government to pledge building a new settlement for the first time in 25 years." ca3/2/2017
Amona`s evacuation is no victoryOrly Noy - +972 "The Israeli legal system has never been neutral in everything having to do with the settlement enterprise. It certainly does not see itself as responsible for bringing about justice vis-a-vis the settlements, and its famed judicial activism has been expressed mainly in authorizing land theft on both sides of the Green Line... But an effective struggle requires a wider strategy — one which, first and foremost, requires of us to understand our reality. In this reality, the legal system, the state, the police, and the settlers are all on the same side — and it’s not our side." ca3/2/2017
PA challenges Israeli settlement expansion, official urges UN to interveneMa`an News Agency - "Walid Assaf, head of the PA Committee Against the Wall and Settlements said on Wednesday that a Palestinian government plan was being developed to “strengthen Palestinian determination” in Area C -- the more than 60 percent of the West Bank under full Israeli military and civil control -- and to counter Israeli attempts at annexation and settlement expansion." ca3/2/2017
White House says new Israeli settlements `may not be helpful` AFP - "The White House on Thursday said it had not yet taken a position on the construction of new Israeli settlements, but suggested they "may not be helpful" in securing peace. "While we don`t believe the existence of settlements is an impediment to peace, the construction of new settlements or the expansion of existing settlements beyond their current borders may not be helpful," said... " ca 3/2/2017
Israel’s Hard-Liners Want to ‘Go Big’: Annex a SettlementIAN FISHER - The New York Times - Ma’ale Adumim has become a flash point of the conflict between Palestinians and Israelis. Right-wing politicians, emboldened by a more sympathetic Trump administration, want to annex it to Israel proper — the first formal annexation of a settlement. Supporters of the move argue that in the long absence of negotiations, Israel cannot stand still, and Ma’ale Adumim would likely be a part of Israel in any case.-rh 2/2/2017
Israeli settlers hold 2 Palestinian teens returning home from school at gunpointMa`an News - Israeli forces and settlers detained two Palestinians teens at gunpoint on Sunday near an illegal Israeli settlement east of Qalqiliya in the northern occupied West Bank, according to reports from Israeli media, which alleged that the two Palestinians approached the settlement intending to carry out an attack.-rh2/2/2017
Hundreds infiltrate security blocks outside AmonaElisha Ben Kimon & Moran Azulay - Ynet - "Hundreds of teenagers managed to infiltrate the Amona outpost Tuesday night in a last-ditch effort to hinder the evacuation which is supposed to take place under court order no later than next Wednesday, February 8." - id   1/2/2017
Two families, die-hard protesters remain in AmonaYnet reporters & Reuters - Ynet - Police plan to first evacuate the remaining families of the 40 that have been evacuated that day, followed by the evacuation of those barricaded in the synagogue. Thursday morning, Ministry of Defense officials will commence the next stage of the evacuation—pack the belongings and removing the houses. Violent clashes had broken earlier in the afternoon as hundreds of activists staged fierce resistance against thousands of policemen deployed to the outpost to implement an evacuation ordered by the High Court of Justice (HCJ).-rh 1/2/2017
Israel evicts Amona settlers as 3,000 new homes approved elsewhere Peter Beaumont - The Guardian - "Bezalel Smotrich, a lawmaker from the Jewish Home party, who went to Amona to show support, added. “There is a great pain, a huge disappointment. They are uprooting a community in Israel. It is a terrible thing.”" - id 1/2/2017
Israel Approves 3000 Colonialist Units, After One Illegal Outpost Was Scheduled For RemovalIMEMC - "The decision was officially announced by the office of Israel’s Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman, in which it confirmed the approval of the 3000 units, in direct coordination with Netanyahu." - id 1/2/2017
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