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Blair Family Impending Corruption Scandal? Tony Blair Faces Pressure Over Role as Middle East EnvoyGlobal Research News - Information Clearing House "The declassified letter of 2009 – published in full by Exaro – was obtained for a new book, ‘Blair Inc’, and shows how the Middle East envoy regarded the project as one of the two most important “key issues” in trying to forge a two-state solution for the Palestinians and Israelis. He lobbied Israel to allocate the bandwidth for the network, although his spokesman said that the full transfer took until 2011.Disclosure of the letter added to pressure on Blair to quit as the Quartet’s representative." ca24/4/2015
Social divide widens between West Bank, Gaza StripHazem Balousha - Al-Monitor "The inequitable distribution of resources and political and social opportunities between the West Bank and Gaza Strip is deepening the rift between the two territories, feeding people’s growing dissatisfaction on each side." ca 24/4/2015
Activists turn to PalestineAmira Howeidy - Al-Ahram "A broad coalition of political parties, groups, student unions and professional syndicates has rediscovered its solidarity with the Palestinians, and is rallying around a campaign of boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against Israeli occupation. The Egyptian Popular Campaign to Boycott Israel (BDS) seeks to name companies operating in Egypt that also work in Israel or do business with the occupation army. Its aim is to pressure them to either stop doing business with the Israelis or to leave Egypt." ca24/4/2015
“Farmers are not Hamas, and farmers are not ISIS”
How a Biblical Edict Became a Boon for Palestinian Farmers
Naomi Zeveloff - Forward - Soon after the Jewish new year of Rosh Hashanah, workers in Froush Beit Dajan loaded boxes of young cucumbers with yellow blossoms still attached to their stems into a truck bed shaded by a blue tarp. The cucumbers were destined for Israel, where, to the consternation of some Israeli Jews, they would be sold almost exclusively to the ultra-Orthodox.[bz]21/4/2015
Likud minister: Drowning of migrants justifies Israeli policyLisa Goldman - +972 - Katz demonstrates vulgarity and an almost pathological lack of compassion with his gleeful-sounding status, in which he makes political capital of a catastrophe involving the massacre of hundreds of human beings — including small children. [bz]21/4/2015
Settler group tries to shut down bi-national Memorial Day eventHaggai Matar - +972 - The Samaria Settler Council, the same group that recently released a video defaming human rights groups with anti-Semitic imagery, petitions the defense minister to stop Palestinians from participating in, and to pass a law banning an alternative Israeli-Palestinian Memorial Day ceremony. [bz]21/4/2015
Israel: Leaders Decline to Meet CarterJodi Rudoren - NYT - When Carter visited Jerusalem in 2012 with a group of former leaders called The Elders, he met with Shimon Peres, then president, but said he had been denied meetings with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his cabinet. [bz]21/4/2015
War is America’s BusinessRichard Silverstein - Tikun Olam - "Calvin Coolidge once famously remarked that `the business of America is business.` Now that statement has become a tautology. But it needs to be updated: today, the business of America is war" [ry]20/4/2015
Israel, Palestinians Agree on Tax Revenue TransferAP - The Wallstreet Journal - Speaking to a gathering of Palestinians leaders, Mr. Abbas said that “There is an agreement; the money will be sent in full.” [bz]18/4/2015
How Israel Hid Its Secret Nuclear Weapons ProgramAvner Cohen and William Burr - Information Clearing House "An exclusive look inside newly declassified documents shows how Israel blocked U.S. efforts to uncover its secret nuclear reactor." ca17/4/2015
Vandals attack Christian graveyard in northern IsraelMa`an News Agency - "Police opened an investigation after receiving a report about damage to a number of graves at the Christian cemetery in Kufr Birim, spokeswoman Luba Samri said, indicating that the tombstones were "broken and displaced." Kufr Birim is a derelict Palestinian village whose inhabitants were evicted by Israeli forces 1948 six months after Israel was established and never allowed to return. The village was almost totally razed by the Israeli army in 1953." ca17/4/2015
Eye on the futureNevine El-Aref - Al-Ahram "Culture, Al-Nabawi believes, is the “soft power of the state” and should be used to convert enemies into friends. “This requires time and effort,” he says. “Changing people’s thoughts and traditions is not an easy task and cannot be accomplished overnight...The ministry has 34,000 employees and an annual budget of LE1.5 billion, 66 per cent of which goes to paying salaries." ca17/4/2015
IDF`s Gaza probe reveals Hamas outsmarted forces in RafahYoav Zitun - Ynet - "Internal IDF investigation into `Black Friday` incident during Gaza war reveals forces entered Rafah without proper military equipment, fell prey to Hamas ruse conducted under cover of humanitarian lull." id 15/4/2015
How Israel was absolved of Deir Yassin and all other massacresIlan Pappe - EI - "On the anniversary’s eve, I went with a group of Palestinians, Israelis and visitors from abroad to a tour in the village organized by Zochrot, the Israeli group that continues relentlessly to remind Israelis of the crimes committed during the Nakba." id for bz 14/4/2015
How the Israeli army obfuscates its use of live fire against PalestiniansRodrick Beiler - +972 = "Recent statements by unnamed military sources attempt to confuse the issue of lower-powered but completely lethal ammunition used against Palestinians." id for bz 14/4/2015
Justice unlikely in deadly Kafr Kanna police shootingMichael Schaeffer Omer-Man - +972 - Clashes break out in the town in northern Israel as police demolish local resident’s home. Knesset member warns of ‘consequences’ if the officer who shot Khair Hamdan isn’t charged [ry]13/4/2015
High court success for al Arakib residentsAIC - A decision of Israel`s High Court is now being published which rejects the state`s appeal and accepts the position of al Arakib residents, the Abu Madyam A-Turi and Abu Freih families: al Arakib residents who are struggling for their land that was stolen from them can bring their arguments before the court in the city of Beer Sheva and to demand recognition of their ownership and annulment of the confiscation of their land in the 1950s [ry]13/4/2015
Why I took my family to Sinai for our Passover vacationOrly Noy - +972 "While Sinai used to be one of the most popular tourist destinations for Israeli Jews, today it is nearly abandoned. But neither the threat of Al-Qaida attacks, ISIS kidnappings or her friends’ pleading could stop Orly Noy from going back to her own private heaven." ca12/4/2015
NYU faculty call for divestment from companies supplying the Israeli army Alex Kane - Mondoweiss "About 120 New York University (NYU) professors are calling on the school to divest from companies linked to the Israeli occupation." ca 12/4/2015
New Joint List MK: Israel discriminates against ArabsMazal Mualem - Al-Monitor "In his first interview with Al-Monitor, Jabareen states that in no other country in the world that boasts about its democracy is there such a large volume of discriminatory legislation against a national minority." ca 12/4/2015
Zionist Camp MK: Israel can maximize benefits from Iran dealMazal Mualem - Al-Monitor "It’s not too late; there’s still time for damage control of the nuclear deal reached with Iran,” newly elected Zionist Camp Knesset member Maj. Gen. (Res.) Eyal Ben-Reuven said. Ben-Reuven, who is expected to serve on the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee on behalf of the Zionist Camp told Al-Monitor, with reference to the progress made in the Lausanne nuclear talks..." ca 12/4/2015
Netanyahu resurrects ‘no partner’ excuse for Iran dealMichael Schaeffer Omer-Man - +972 - " pulling out all of its usual tricks. It is clear that the Israeli prime minister will never accept any deal with the current Iranian regime — much like his approach to the two-state solution." - id 8/4/2015
Palestinians Want UN Timetable to End Israeli OccupationEdith M. Lederer, Associated Press - ABC News - "The Palestinians are `ready and willing` to see if the U.N. Security Council has `the political will` to adopt a resolution with a deadline for ending Israel`s occupation and establishing a Palestinian state, the Palestinian U.N. ambassador said Monday. Ambassador Riyad Mansour told reporters that adoption of a resolution with a timetable would be `one of the most effective measures to combat extremism in our region, because extremists receive their fuel from the injustice of the Palestinian people`" [ry]7/4/2015
Yarmouk: Not sure which is worse, the arrival of Islamic State, or the starvation and war that preceded it. Roi Kais - Ynet - Thousands of Palestinians live in Yarmouk, the descendants of Palestinians who fled Israel upon the establishment of the state in 1948. They are now caught between a rock and a hard place: on the one hand Bashar Assad`s air force is launching barrel bombs in the area in an attempt to eliminate his opponents, and on the other side is fierce fighting between rebel groups – the brutal Islamic State and the Al-Nusra Front, al-Qaeda`s arm in the country. [bz] 6/4/2015
PLO and Hamas decry Yarmouk `death trap`Ma`an - IS reportedly captured a square where residents of Yarmouk gather to receive aid handouts. On Saturday, UNRWA spokesman Chris Gunness described the situation in the camp as "an affront to the humanity of all of us, a source of universal shame." "The humanitarian actors on the ground, like UNRWA, must have immediate access to bring urgent assistance to civilians," Gunness said. He urged "moral and diplomatic leadership from the international community" to ensure the protection of civilians. [bz] 6/4/2015
Refusing handout, Abbas threatens to turn to ICC over frozen tax moniesMa`an - "We will not take the money until we get all of it: either you give us the full amount or we go to the ICC." [bz]6/4/2015
Will PA focus on settlements at ICC?Daoud Kuttab - Al-Monitor - To start war crimes cases against Israelis involved in last summer`s attack on Gaza, Palestinians would need to show to the ICC`s satisfaction that investigations carried out by Israel`s own judicial system were not effective; this might take years. On the other hand, the case against Israeli settlement activities, land confiscation and the movement of persons from the occupying country to the occupied areas form a much easier case to win. The Fourth Geneva Convention makes very clear that settlements and those directing and protecting the settlers are committing a violation of international humanitarian law — which makes the settlement track stronger for Palestinians, since it is a crime that is still continuing, and no denial of its existence is possible. ak 6/4/2015
‘This is what happens when you don’t have a nuclear weapon: America attacks.’, Obama in interview.Thomas Friedman - NYT - “We know that a military strike or a series of military strikes can set back Iran’s nuclear program for a period of time — but almost certainly will prompt Iran to rush towards a bomb, will provide an excuse for hard-liners inside of Iran to say, ‘This is what happens when you don’t have a nuclear weapon: America attacks.’ `There is no option, to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon that will be more effective than the diplomatic initiative and framework that we put forward.` [bz]6/4/2015
Israel Dismantles Solar Panels Providing Power To A Bedouin CommunityIMEMC - "The Hebron Defense Committee said the solar panels were the only source of electricity to the residents, and provided power to a children`s school.Israel repeatedly invades Palestinian Bedouin communities near occupied Jerusalem, the West Bank Northern Plains, Hebron, and several other areas in occupied Palestine. " ca3/4/2015
A Promising Nuclear Deal With IranThe Editorial Board - NYT "Mr. Obama, speaking at the White House, insisted he was not relying on trust to ensure Iran’s compliance but on “the most robust and intrusive inspections and transparency regime ever negotiated for any nuclear program.” ca3/4/2015
Israel offering African asylum seekers departure to third country - or detentionOmri Efraim - Ynet - Africans refusing to take part in the `willing departure` program will face a hearing, where it will be decided whether to move him to another detention facility as someone who fails to cooperate in his expulsion. [bz for id] 1/4/2015
Will the real Isaac Herzog please stand up?Akiva Eldar - Haaretz - Tthe only remaining path to bringing the occupation beyond the Green Line to an end is forcibly removing Israel from the territories. The first, unavoidable step on this path is a UN Security Council resolution recognizing a Palestinian state on the basis of 1967 borders, together with a specified time frame for negotiations or international arbitration on the details. This is the highest interest of Jewish, democratic, moral and secure Israel. The international community must know that a large proportion of elected officials in Israel, and not only “the usual suspects” such as Meretz and the Joint List of Arab parties, support the immediate admission of Palestine to the United Nations. The heads of the Security Council member states must know that in the eyes of a central group within Israeli society, a vote for Palestine would not be considered an “anti-Israeli” or “anti-Semitic” act. [bz for id]1/4/2015
Obama, Netanyahu and the Palestinian conflict: What`s next?Noam Sheizaf - +972 - The first policy option the administration has is to publish the parameters for a future Palestinian state. In other words, to let it be known how the U.S. envisions this state (probably pre-’67 borders with land swaps, the division of Jerusalem and no substantial refugee return). Such positions matter because they serve as the starting points for future negotiations. Since Israel is the stronger party, which holds all the cards, publishing parameters is traditionally considered as a move that serves the Palestinians. [bz for id]1/4/2015
Gazans hope ICC will make `Israel pay`Ma`an - Palestine joined the ICC with the goal of trying Israeli leaders for alleged war crimes in the fighting in and around the Gaza Strip in summer 2014, and alleged crimes relating to the occupation of the West Bank and East Jerusalem. [bz for id]1/4/2015
The Jewish establishment has banned these four valiant Jews. Why?Philip Weiss - Mondoweiss - All in their 70s, they are veterans of the civil rights movement; they went south 50 years ago to help free our country from Jim Crow, risking their lives for equal rights. But they have been banned from speaking at Hillel, the Jewish campus organization, because they have come out in favor of Palestinian human rights. Last Wednesday they were to speak at Swarthmore Hillel, but... [bz for id]1/4/2015
FIFA orders Israeli soccer club to compensate Palestinian clubReuters - Haaretz - FIFA`s Dispute Resolution Chamber ruled Hapoel Haifa and Khatib must pay Jabal al-Mukabbar 450,000 shekels ($113,500). It is thought to be the first time an Israeli club has been ordered to compensate a Palestinian side in a dispute. Movement of players between Israeli and Palestinian clubs is very rare. Despite living side by side the respective teams do not interact as Israel are members of European soccer`s governing body, UEFA, and the Palestinians play in Asia. [bz]31/3/2015
Report: Palestinian Authority will not file charges against Israel in International Court in exchange for the release of tax moneyCeline Hagbard - IMEMC - Even if the Palestinian Authority did at some point move forward with formal charges against Israel, its unclear how much hold these charges would have, since Israel is not a signatory to the International Criminal Court, and does not recognize the court`s authority. [bz]31/3/2015
Al Qaeda a Lesser Evil? Syria War Pulls U.S., Israel ApartYaroslav Trofimov - Wall Street Journal - Mountaintop on edge of Golan Heights illustrates complexities. ak31/3/2015
Pro-Bedouin march winds up at Israel presidencyMa`an News Agency - "[Palestinian MP, Ayman] Odeh has pledged to secure formal recognition for more than 40 Bedouin villages which have no running water, are not connected to the electricity grid and lack basic infrastructure because of their unrecognized status" [ry]30/3/2015
Every day is Land Day, on both sides of the Green LineEdo Konrad - +972 - The word ‘occupation’ evokes the West Bank, but the policies of land expropriation and Judaization were perfected inside Israel long before they were used on Palestinians in the occupied territories [ry]30/3/2015
Netanyahu`s delicate coalition dance Sima Kadmon - Ynet - With both the parties he needs and his own Likud MKs clamoring for what they see as their deserved portfolios, the prime minister must make everyone happy – but does he have a coalition ace up his sleeve? [ry]30/3/2015
Israel`s Joint List faces Callenging Road AheadLena Odgaard - AlJazeera - Coalition of Arab parties is now the Knesset`s third-largest bloc, but success hinges on its ability to form alliances [ry]30/3/2015
As Iran Deal Nears, Israel Steps Up Efforts to Sabotage ItJason Ditz - AntiWar - Netanyahu Lobbies Senate to Kill Lausanne Deal [ry]30/3/2015
UN: Emergency fund for Syrian Palestinians running lowAP - Ynet - More than 95 percent of Palestinian refugees from Syria rely on UNRWA assistance, particularly the cash distributions due to high unemployment caused by the Syrian civil war, now in its fifth year. The agency`s relief reaches some 475,000 Palestinian refugees still residing in Syria, with another 45,000 in Lebanon and 15,000 in Jordan where many have fled. "This is literally a lifeline. It is quite literally a matter of life and death." [bz]29/3/2015
Russia to Help Palestine Become Independent StateSputniknews - Russia will help Palestine in achieving its goal of becoming an independent state with the capital in East Jerusalem, Russian President Vladimir Putin said Saturday in his address to the Arab League summit participants. [bz]29/3/2015
Virginia state agency cancels Jerusalem trip citing Israeli discriminationAli Abunimah - Electronic Intifada - “Upon review of US State Department advisories and other research, and after consultation with our leaders, it has been determined that there is enough legitimate concern to warrant cancellation of the Israel trip and exploration of alternative locations.” [bz]28/3/2015
Israel to stop withholding Palestinian tax revenuesAP - Ynet - State Department spokesman Jeff Rathke told reporters at a briefing the move will benefit the Palestinian people and said that having a functioning Palestinian Authority is important to stability in the West Bank. Quartet Representative to the Middle East and former British Prime Minister Tony Blair also lauded the decision, saying: "It is absolutely the right decision both for the improvement of the conditions of Palestinians on the ground and for Israel." [bz]28/3/2015
France to launch new UN push for Israel-Palestinian resolutionCarole Landry, Andre Viollaz - AFP - The Security Council in December rejected a resolution that would have set a deadline for reaching a final peace deal and pave the way to the creation of a Palestinian state. The United States had voted against the measure but was spared from resorting to its veto after eight council members including France voted yes, one vote short of the nine needed for adoption. "I hope the partners that were reluctant will be less reluctant," Fabius said. [bz]28/3/2015
PHOTOS: Joint List marches for unrecognized Bedouin villagesActivestills - +972 "Dozens of members of the Joint List — including chairman Ayman Odeh, Dov Khenin and other future members of Knesset — marched alongside other Arab leaders Thursday on a four-day trip through the Negev/Naqab’s unrecognized Bedouin villages. They were joined by representatives of the Arab Higher Monitoring Committee and the Regional Council of Unrecognized Villages. The march is set to end at the President’s Residence in Jerusalem on Sunday." ca27/3/2015
Investing in storageMona El-Fiqi - Al-Ahram "The project was first proposed last year as part of plans to provide food security for Egypt’s 90 million people. Egypt is the largest wheat importer in the world. The Damietta project includes construction of high-tech storage silos for grains, and will increase Egypt’s storage capacity from its current 2.5 million tons to 7.5 million tons." ca27/3/2015
Naomi Klein: Let`s Kick Oil While the Price is DownVIDEO - "Climate change should be a catalyst for a major change, but we`re not treating it as a real emergency. Naomi Klein believes that capitalism is at war with the climate, but she says sometimes it gives us a gift – the sudden drop in oil prices. So let`s not blow what could be our best chance to prevent catastrophic global warming." ca27/3/2015
Official: White House was part of bid to oust NetanyahuAvi Issacharoff - The Times of Israel - "Senior Jerusalem source says administration wanted ‘revenge’ over Congress speech; declares there’ll be no Palestinian state ‘in our generation’." - id 25/3/2015
In Israel’s elections, racism is the winning ballotADALAH - The Arab Daily News - "The elections also saw an unprecedented level of racist incitement against Palestinian Arab citizens of Israel, a fifth of the population, which played a critical part in the election’s events and results. This series of threats, intimidations, and attempts to delegitimize Arab citizens and their political participation, which occurred throughout the process, did not end until the polls closed on 17 March." - id 25/3/2015
IDF warns: Freeze in Palestinian funds could fuel West Bank unrestYoav Zitun, Elior Levy - Ynet - Meanwhile, the IDF are preparing for a possible escalation in the West Bank, both spontaneous and organized. The different scenarios include multi-site riots involving thousands of protesters, some armed, throughout the West Bank; simultaneous terror attacks; kidnapping and infiltration attempts; and a possible end to security coordination with the Palestinians, which they say is very unlikely, though a number of such cases have happened at a local level. [bz]24/3/2015
British PM Cameron to Netanyahu: Lasting peace requires two-state solutionFrances Perraudin - The Guardian - The British PM told the House of Commons “We must put pressure on both sides to make sure talks get going on a two-state solution. I think that’s in the long term interest not just to the Palestinians, but also to the Israelis, and Britain’s policy on that will not change.” This was followed by a phone call to the newly re-elected Netanyahu, in which Cameron reiterated the same points. Cameron himself faces general elections in a month`s time, and such British groups as the Palestine Solidarity Camapaign have striven to put the Palestinian issue on the campaign agenda. ak 24/3/2015
Former Sec. of State Baker blasts Netanyahu at J Street Jerusalem Post - Also a keynote speaker at the J Street conference, former Secretary of State James Baker - who had been at the center of a 1992 confrontation with then Israeli PM Shamir - attacked current PM Netanyahu for “diplomatic missteps and political gamesmanship," a reference to the prime minister`s alliance with Republicans. “Frankly, I have been disappointed with the lack of progress regarding a lasting peace — and I have been for some time,” Baker said. “In the aftermath of Netanyahu’s recent election victory, the chance of a two-state solution seems even slimmer, given his reversal on the issue.” Baker has been appointed foreign policy adviser to the nascent Presidential campaign of Florida Governor Jeb Bush. ak24/3/2015
US, Joint List MKs reject PM’s apology to Israeli ArabsJerusalem Post - The administration of US President Barack Obama joined Arab Knesset members in questioning an apology offered by PM Netanyahu for election day remarks - considered highly offensive - about "Arab voters bused to the ballots in droves". Netanyahu made his apology to a group of Arab mayors of minor villages allied to his own Likud Party. Ayman Odeh, head of the Joint List which gained most Arab votes, called Netanyahu’s statement unacceptable and noted that immediately after making this supposed apology the PM spoke with his extreme right coalition partner Naftali Bennet about passing nationalist laws designed to "enhance the Jewish character of Israel".ak 24/3/2015
White House Chief of Staff: `Israel`s occupation must end`Rebecca Shimoni Stoil - The Times of Israel - White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonough called for the end of Israel’s “50-year occupation” in a warmly received speech to the lobbying group J Street in Washington. The statement to the dovish group’s national conference represented an unusually harsh repudiation of Israel’s control over the Palestinian territories. ak24/3/2015
Vanunu lost libel suit against Yediot Ahronot, has to pay 40 000 NISNot only are they allowed to publish absurd lies about me but I also should pay them. Please, help.24/3/2015
Israel Spied on Iran Nuclear Talks With U.S.Adam Entous - Wall Street Journal - “It is one thing for the U.S. and Israel to spy on each other. It is another thing for Israel to steal U.S. secrets and play them back to U.S. legislators to undermine U.S. diplomacy.” ak24/3/2015
Israel `boycotts` UN rights council session on Gaza warMa`an News Agency - "Israel`s representative was conspicuously missing when the UN Human Rights Council started a special session Monday on the situation in the Palestinian territories and the 2014 Gaza conflict" [ry]23/3/2015
Israeli Delegation Heads to France to Try to Kill Iran DealJason Ditz - AntiWar - Amid US Tensions, Israel Turns to France to Sabotage Diplomacy [ry]23/3/2015
Technion opens new `defense exports` courseAIC - The Technion is launching a new training programme for professionals to enter Israel`s growing “defense exports” industry. “People aren`t aware of just how much money can be made in this field”, states a programme lecturer. “Israeli high tech and Israeli security have good reputations – the combination is a winner” [ry]23/3/2015
Obama: US and Iran have chance to mend tiesAl-Jazeera - "Video Message - In video message directed at Iranians, US president says nuclear negotiations present a "historic opportunity"." ca20/3/2015
New York Times Published Piece About Netanyahu’s Racism, Then Rewrote All Of ItBen Norton - Information Clearing House "The New York Times published an article about the incident—and more generally about Netanyahu’s bigoted, jingoistic, far-right tactics to attract more votes—titled “Netanyahu Expresses Alarm That Arab Voter Turnout Could Help Unseat Him.” The piece was written by Isabel Kershner and Rick Gladstone. At least, for the moment, that was the case. Several hours later, the NYT published a rewrite of the article—a rewrite not just of parts of it, but of all of it." ca20/3/2015
Netanyahu victory gets muted response from WestAFP - Ma`an - "Netanyahu`s hard line had already plunged relations with the West to an unprecedented low, which his latest comments will do little to repair." - id for rh 19/3/2015
A Victory for War and Racism - Netanyahu’s WinSTEPHEN LENDMAN - CoounterPunch - "Netanyahu is a world-class thug – a ruthless demagogue. He spurns rule of law principles. He abhors democratic values. He prioritizes stealing all valued Palestinian land. He deplores peace. He calls pursuing it a waste of time." - id 18/3/2015
Netanyahu wakes up to shock election victoryYaron Druckman- Ynet - "While Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had been trailing his Zionist Union opponent in the polls leading up to the elections, the real-time results on Wednesday morning show the Likud leader enjoying a major advantage over the left-wing`s Isaac Herzog." - id 18/3/2015
Netanyahu defeat could mean `peace dividend` for Israel`s business sectorTova Cohen and Steven Scheer - Reuters/Haaretz - Though a centre-left government may spend more on social and welfare issues, the potential benefits of a return to a peace process outweigh the risks. (...) Dov Moran is part of a non-profit group called Breaking the Impasse, formed by 200 business leaders to promote a return to the negotiating table for Israelis and Palestinians. [bz]17/3/2015
Peacemakers arrested for escorting Palestinian kids on way home from kindergartenAmos Gvirtz - Don`t Say We Didn`t Know 446 - Furthermore, government agents, escorted by police, destroyed cereal fields of Bedouins in the Negev.17/3/2015
Exclusive: Netanyahu Canceled Intel Briefing for U.S. Senators on Iran DangersMassimo Calabresi - Time Magazine - Freshman Republican Senator Tom Cotton (initiator of the letter of 46 senators to Iran) has said that rather than negotiate with Iran, the U.S. should adopt a policy of regime change and should arm Israel with bombers and bunker busting bombs with which it could attack Iranian nuclear sites. bz16/3/2015
Israel elections: Benjamin Netanyahu claims foreign money is being used to help left-wing Zionist Union beat himThe Independent - Ben Lynfield reports from Jerusalem on the last days of a bitter election campaign [ry]16/3/2015
Netanyahu Tried to Block Mossad Briefing US Senate on IranJason Ditz - AntiWar - Mossad Warned Them Against New Sanctions [ry]16/3/2015
UNRWA chief joins aid convoy into besieged Damascus campAFP - Yahoo News - The head of the UN agency for Palestinian refugees accompanied the first aid convoy in three months to enter the besieged Yarmuk camp in the Syrian capital on Tuesday. Pierre Krahenbuhl said it was "totally unacceptable" that some 18,000 residents of Yarmuk had not received aid for so long. Rebel groups inside the camp, the largest in Syria, have been under army siege for more than a year. More than 200 people have been killed since the siege began, among them dozens who have died of starvation, non-governmental groups say. "There should be distributions more regularly during the week, not just one day and interrupted again," Krahenbuhl told AFP. The last UNRWA aid delivery was in December, "which from a human point of view is totally unacceptable". [bz]14/3/2015
Palestinians Were Among The 180 Who Drowned Near Italian ShoresIMEMC & Agencies - "Palestinian Ambassador in Italy, Mai al-Kaila, stated that the ship carrying refugees from the Gaza Strip, Lebanon and the al-Yarmouk refugee camp in Syria, which drowned on March 4, close to Italian shores, carried nearly 60 Palestinian refugees...She added sixty were rescued; sixty others died, and around sixty are still missing.They were heading from Libya to Europe." ca13/3/2015
Students in Brussels defeat Israeli embassy`s attempt to silence apartheid week eventsCharlotte Kates - Mondoweiss "Students filled a lecture hall for a lecture via Skype by Palestinian leftist parliamentarian Khalida Jarrar at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (Free University of Brussels, VUB) on Wednesday evening, March 4, after student organizers defeated an attempt by Israel’s ambassador to Belgium to cancel Israeli Apartheid Week at the Dutch-speaking university in the Belgian capital." ca13/3/2015
Hamas and Iran: Rapprochement?Ahmed El-Sayed - Al-Ahram "...the London-based Raialyoum newspaper quoted unnamed Hamas sources as saying that the group is looking forward to new relations with Iran, especially after the war on Gaza. It is also hoping for renewed support for the resistance and its armed wing, including missiles and materiel that could be used in any future confrontation with Israel.However, it does not want this to come at the expense of the Qatar axis opposing the Al-Assad regime, which is Iran’s ally." ca13/3/2015
High Court greenlights racial profiling at Israel`s airportsEdo Konrad - +972 - "Although Ben-Gurion Airport has made changes to its security policy in the years since the petition was filed – including the installment of an automated system to check all passenger luggage that replaced the public checks that often took place in the ticketing area — ACRI claimed that the new system only sweeps the policy of racial profiling under the rug." - id or rh 12/3/2015
Qatar says to begin rebuilding 1,000 homes in GazaReuters - Ynet - "Qatari official says reconstruction project as part of $1 billion aid pledge has begun, urges `more countries to come and build Gaza`." - id 11/3/2015
Banksy British artist spotlights devastation in GazaMohammed Asad - The Arab Daily News - "The anonymous British “graffiti” artist known only as “Banksy” secretly entered the Gaza Strip recently to help bring international attention to the suffering of Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip." - id11/3/2015
PA calls for arrest of Liberman for saying anti-Israel Arab citizens should be beheaded Khaled Abu Toameh & Lahav Harkov - MK Ahmed Tibi (UAL-Ta’al) called Liberman the “Jewish Islamic State.” Tibi added that The Joint List, made up of several Arab parties and one mixed Arab-Jewish party, “will remove the heads of racists and fascists only through democratic means – bringing as many [Knesset] seats as possible and active participation in the election. The stronger we are, the weaker Jewish Islamic State will be.” [bz]10/3/2015
Oren: Israel must restrict settlement building, create `two-state reality` AP - Ynet - Israel has to start creating a "two-state reality" on the ground, says former Israeli ambassador to the US Michael Oren, by restricting settlement construction to major blocs and East Jerusalem - lands Israel expects to keep - while improving the living conditions of Palestinians. Ambassador under Netanyahu, Oren now is candidate for the Knesset on the list of former Likud minister Kahlon`s "Kulanu" party. [bz]10/3/2015
“A Palestinian State is no longer relevant”Sergio Yahni - AIC - An Arab League draft resolution to be discussed on Monday states that a "just and comprehensive peace is a strategic option," [but] Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israeli Prime Minister ruled out the establishment of a Palestinian state. [bz]9/3/2015
Netanyahu says Israel won`t cede land to Palestinians, despite reports, docs claiming otherwise Ynet/AP - Despite past speech, commitments to world and Palestinians, Netanyahu now says Israel won’t withdraw from West Bank; report says Netanyahu aide Dermer promised Blair `Palestinian state along 67` borders` during past talks. [Including document scan-bz]9/3/2015
Erekat: Netanyahu never believed in two-state solution, always chose settlements Jodi Rudoren - NYT - The apparent contradictions between Mr. Netanyahu’s political and governmental apparatuses came as he is struggling to shore up support in his conservative base and win over voters in West Bank settlements before March 17 elections. It might have been more hairsplitting than actual disagreement: both statements cited the chaotic regional situation and said Israel would not cede territory for fear of takeover by Islamists. [bz]9/3/2015
Former diplomats slam Liberman for saying disloyal Israeli Arabs should be decapitated / MK Ahmed Tibi calls Yisrael Beytenu chairman `Jewish ISIS.`Lahav Harkov - Jpost - "Whoever is against us, there`s nothing else to do. We have to lift up an axe and remove his head, otherwise we won`t survive here" says Liberman in a speech at the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya Sunday. [bz]9/3/2015
Herzog sets three mains goals for first 100 days in office:Moran Azulay - Ynet - Implementing economic plan, dealing with housing crisis, presenting peace initiative to Arab League. [bz]9/3/2015
Torture of Palestinian detainees by Shin Bet investigators rises sharplyChaim Levinson - Haaretz - Under torture, Hatib admitted to serving as a lookout for Kawasme and his accomplice, Amar Abu-Aisha, on the night of the abduction. This was a lie; the investigation showed that there was no lookout. The Shin Bet and the military prosecution did not believe Hatib, as can be seen by the indictment he was served, in which there is no mention of involvement in the abduction. (...) Information collected by Haaretz from military courts, and the Public Committee Against Torture in Israel. [bz]7/3/2015
Netanyahu`s secret peace offer concessions to Palestinians revealed Nahum Barnea - Ynet - During his previous tenure as prime minister, Netanyahu sent his confidant to negotiate with Palestinians and offered land swaps along the 1967 lines and limited right of return. However, according to Netanyahu`s office it was an American proposal that Israel never signed-off on. [bz]6/3/2015
Amid nuclear dispute, Israel and Iran face off over past oil tiesAri Rabinovitch and Tova Cohen - Yahoo News "n a Swiss court, lawyers for each side are locked in arbitration over the Eilat-Ashkelon Pipeline Co. (EAPC), a joint venture set up in 1968, when the two nations were friendly, to transport Iranian oil to the Mediterranean." ca 4/3/2015
50 MPs urge gov’t to prevent listing of Palestinian villages as Israeli heritage sitesRaed Omari - The Jordan Times "In a memorandum they signed during Tuesday’s Lower House session, 50 lawmakers warned against measures being taken by the Israeli occupation authorities to declare the Palestinian villages of Lafta and Ein Kerem near Jerusalem as part of Israel’s heritage." ca4/3/2015
VIDEO: Palestinian MK Zoabi Assaulted by Israeli ExtremistsIMEMC News & Agencies - "According to the Palestinian News Network (PNN), Zoabi was giving a lecture in Ramat Gan college near Tel Aviv, when suddenly Israeli rightists threw glass bottles on her head, and spilled milk on her. Zoabi sustained moderate to light injuries due to the attack." ca4/3/2015
10 Reasons to Pray for AIPAC’s DeclineMedea Benjamin - ICH "AIPAC’s support of the Israeli prime minister over the US president is turning AIPAC into a Republican-biased lobby that could hopefully prove fatal to its future influence in Washington." ca4/3/2015
Netanyahu speech will be tested by its effect on Iran dealNachum Barnea - Ynet - There is another absence which is taking place quietly, under the radar: The 11 US Supreme Court justices have been invited to the event. They all said they would be unable to attend. Three of the Supreme Court judges are Jews who support Israel; at least six are conservatives appointed by Republican presidents. This was their way of saying: There is something faulty, unconstitutional, in the way the prime minister was invited. We are not part of this affair. [bz]3/3/2015
Right-wing activist hurls drink at Arab MK ZoabiThe Times of Israel - The activist and others also verbally attacked Zoabi, interrupting a Ramat Gan event that was meant to encourage women in politics. [bz]3/3/2015
Satmar Rebbe Calls for Mass Rally to Protest NetanyahuEliyahu Berkowitz - JP Updates - “All this behavior (of Netanyahu) contradicts the internationally accepted diplomatic rules and all the other Zionist heads of government were sure to keep the same rules,” he said. “Israel receives from the United States more than any other country receives, and what gives him the chutzpah so that he dares to come and challenge US President. He is not a mensch, he is not a diplomat, he is vile and despicable.” [bz]3/3/2015
Israeli military stages surprise wide-scale drill in West BankXinhua - Army chief Gadi Eisenkot ordered the drill, which involves overall 13,000 reserve soldiers. Out of those, 3,000 must report to their posts in the West Bank, while the remaining 10,000 were put on alert, the IDF said in a statement. The drill, due to end on late Monday, will involve air force, intelligence and field units, and simulate different scenarios, including response to the kidnapping of Israelis. The drill may be associated with a recent military assessment that a possible wave of violence by Palestinians might break out in the West Bank, possibly by the end of March or early April. [bz] 2/3/2015
Top Jewish Senator Feinstein: Netanyahu`s claim he represents all Jews is `arrogant`Itzhak Benhorin - Ynet - As Netanyahu makes way to US to address Congress on Iranian deal, leading Jewish senator slams Netanyahu: `He doesn’t speak for me on this... I think it’s a rather arrogant statement.` [bz]2/3/2015
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