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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    
Commentary

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Criticism grows over Netanyahu`s response to US neo-Nazism AFP - Al Monitor "Criticism of Netanyahu among opposition politicians and others has grown louder over the last couple of days, particularly after Trump`s comments on Tuesday in which he said there was "blame on both sides." Perhaps the harshest criticism came from Shelly Yachimovich, a parliament member and former leader of the opposition Labour party." ca 18/8/2017
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The Israel Lobby vs the First AmendmentRamzy Baroud - nformation Clearing House "In its obsessive efforts to defeat the Palestinian-led boycott movement, AIPAC will soon force the revisitation of a long-dormant debate on the illegal Israeli military occupation of Palestine. US mainstream media has long avoided an honest discussion on Israel and Palestine as if the mere acknowledgment of a Palestinian point of view, let alone Palestinian rights, is in itself a sinister act." ca 18/8/2017
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Netanyahu is silent for 3 days over neo-Nazi violence, while his son says Black Lives Matter and Antifa are the real threatAllison Deger - Mondoweiss "Bradley Burston wrote in an op-ed for Haaretz, “This is the message of Netanyahu’s silence regarding Charlottesville: I am not the prime minister of the Jewish people. I am the prime minister of all of the Jewish people who are right-wing, pro-settlement, anti-Palestinian, pro-Me.” ca18/8/2017
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Left wing Israeli think tank trolls Benjamin Netanyahu and his son Yair in libel suitBethan McKernan - Independent - Molad, a left-leaning institution which describes itself as ‘the centre for the renewal of Israeli democracy’, decided to sue the younger Mr Netanyahu for libel last week after he refused to apologise for comments in a Facebook post which branded the organisation “The Fund for the Destruction of Israel, funded by Soros and the European Union.” -rh16/8/2017
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Al Jazeera gains from Israel’s attempts to close it Daoud Kuttab - Al-Monitor - Despite Israel’s public statements about closing down Al Jazeera’s offices in Jerusalem, it appears that the execution of such a decision will require a great deal of legal work on the part of the Israeli government. The decision, if implemented, will do little to reduce the coverage by the most-watched Arab satellite TV station. The move seems particularly odd since it would not be favorable to Israeli officials, who used to provide some kind of balance to Al Jazeera’s stories, which allowed them to speak unfiltered in its reports.-rh 16/8/2017
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My youngest child has no idea that I am his mother` Recently released Palestinian prisoner and mother of six says she is finding it hard to reintegrate into her family.Hiba Aslan - Aljazeera - Dalal Abu al-Hawa`s 22-month-old son does not recognise her. Hamza was just 10 months old when his mother was imprisoned for a year by an Israeli court for charges she vehemently denies. Abu al-Hawa, who was released on August 7, is having trouble sleeping, is considering seeing a psychiatrist and is finding it hard to reintegrate into her family. "My youngest son [Hamza] refuses to come close to me. "I wanted to put him on my lap, but he hit my hand and ran away," Abu al-Hawa tells Al Jazeera.-rh16/8/2017
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Making It a Crime to Support Palestinian Human RightsJames J. Zogby - LobeLog - It is fascinating to watch some US senators tripping over themselves as they attempt to defend their support for or opposition to proposed legislation that would make it a federal crime to support the international campaign to Boycott, Divest, or Sanction (BDS) Israel for its continued occupation of Palestinian lands. What ties these officials up in knots are their efforts to square the circle of their “love of Israel”, their opposition to BDS, their support for a “two-state solution”, and their commitment to free speech.-rh 16/8/2017
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Israeli police raid homes of Jerusalemites accused of receiving funds from HamasMA’AN NEWS AGENCY - Israeli police and Shin Bet, Israel’s internal intelligence agency, forces raided several neighborhoods in occupied East Jerusalem overnight between Monday and Tuesday, storming and ransacking Palestinian homes that police accused of being financially supported by the Hamas movement Israeli police spokeswoman Luba al- Samri said in a statement that the raids were carried out after “intensive investigations” by Israeli police and intelligence officials that indicated that Jerusalemite families of "terrorists" were receiving money and funding from the Hamas movement “to reward them for the bloody and massive terrorist attacks their children have carried out.”-rh 16/8/2017
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Trump’s Blindness to Moral Truth: This Cannot Stand J.J. Goldberg - Forward - America was shamed on Tuesday as we have never been shamed before. We were debased as a nation by the words of a president who stood before the world and defended the honor of Nazis. He reduced himself in an instant from alarming buffoon to dangerous villain. We who elected him stand disgraced, humiliated.-rh 16/8/2017
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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu `to introduce law making it easier to declare war`BETHAN MCKERNAN - Independent - Israel’s Channel 2 - known for its political coverage - said it had learned that over the last few weeks Mr Netanyahu has been pushing for an amendment to the Basic Law Concerning the Government which would allow him to “declare war or to launch a military operation, without the need for its approval by the government, and in certain cases, without the presence of the entire [Security] Cabinet.”Israel’s Channel 2 - known for its political coverage - said it had learned that over the last few weeks Mr Netanyahu has been pushing for an amendment to the Basic Law Concerning the Government which would allow him to “declare war or to launch a military operation, without the need for its approval by the government, and in certain cases, without the presence of the entire [Security] Cabinet.”Israel’s Channel 2 - known for its political coverage - said it had learned that over the last few weeks Mr Netanyahu has been pushing for an amendment to the Basic Law Concerning the Government which would allow him to “declare war or to launch a military operation, without the need for its approval by the government, and in certain cases, without the presence of the entire [Security] Cabinet.”Israel’s Channel 2 - known for its political coverage - said it had learned that over the last few weeks Mr Netanyahu has been pushing for an amendment to the Basic Law Concerning the Government which would allow him to “declare war or to launch a military operation, without the need for its approval by the government, and in certain cases, without the presence of the entire [Security] Cabinet.-rh16/8/2017
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The Zionist-white supremacist alliance in Trump’s White HouseAli Abunimah - Lobby Watch - EI - ""A cornerstone of Israel’s policy today is to cement ties with other ultra-nationalist, racist and Islamophobic forces around the world – even if they are also anti-Semitic." A striking example is Netanyahu’s own embrace of Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban." - id16/8/2017
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Israel pushes security ties while Cairo, Amman embassies sit emptyAkiva Eldar - Al Monitor - "Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu seems to care little about Israel’s diplomatic ties with Egypt and Jordan so long as security ties are maintained." - id16/8/2017
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It`s not Netanyahu — it`s a country drunk on powerMarzuq Al-Halabi - +972 - "Even if Netanyahu’s corruption scandals force him out of office, Israeli politics will still be guided by the idea that Palestinians must be pummeled into submission." - id 16/8/2017
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Does It Really Matter If Netanyahu Ends Up Behind Bars?Neve Gordon - Palestine Chronicle - Netanyahu’s 11-year rule thus appears to be fast approaching an inglorious end. The more interesting question now, however, is what the significance of these developments will be. Two points are worth making: First, Netanyahu is not really an outlier. Many leaders and politicians across the globe, particularly those who, like Netanyahu, have managed to stay in power for many years, have also become corrupt by abusing the privileges and responsibilities bestowed upon them by their office. Yet what is unusual about the Israeli case is that some of the corrupt protagonists actually end up in jail.-rh16/8/2017
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Are Israelis indifferent to corruption around Netanyahu?Akiva Eldar - Al-Monitor - Netanyahu, for his part, succeeded in making corruption much more sophisticated than ever before, all while undermining the pillars of democracy. But given the heavy "background noise" emanating from police investigations against him to every Israeli household, the guardians of democracy and the judicial system may just end Netanyahu’s rule before he destroys them.-rh 16/8/2017
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The ‘diplomatic tsunami’ that never came Hagai El-Ad - +972 Magazine - Last week PM Netanyahu, speaking to a cheering crowd of Likud party loyalists, made a myriad of manifestly false accusations against the media and “the left". But Netanyahu did state one essential truth: the world can bring an end to Israel’s occupation of Palestine. Back in 2011 former PM Ehud Barak had warned that Israel was about to face a “diplomatic tsunami”, an overwhelming "international movement towards recognizing a Palestinian state within the 1967 borders…". As Netanyahu correctly noted, there was no tsunami, nor even a strong rainstorm. [ak]15/8/2017
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Why I Cannot be a Zionist: an Open Letter to Emmanuel MacronShlomo Sand - Counterpunch - I stopped being able to understand you when, in the course of your speech, you stated that “Anti-Zionism … is the reinvented form of anti-Semitism.” Has this former student of philosophy, Paul Ricoeur’s assistant, read so few history books that he does not know that many Jews or descendants of Jewish heritage have always opposed Zionism, without this making them anti-Semites? (...) And finally I wonder if you seriously expect of the Palestinians that they should not be anti-Zionists! [bz]15/8/2017
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Israel would use nuclear weapons to keep refugees from returning — Noam ChomskyPhilip Weiss - Mondoweiss - "BDS tactics in the Israel Palestine case, were actually initiated in 1997 by an Israeli group, Gush Shalom, Uri Avnery’s group, a militantly anti-occupation group which played a significant role. They proposed boycott of the settlements and divestment from anything involving the settlements. And I myself have been involved in– it’s really BD activities, there are no real sanctions, that’s a state matter. But I’ve been involved in these things since the late ’90s, when it took off, aimed at the settlements. The BDS movement, which developed in 2005, has a different approach. That’s the movement, not the tactics. [bz]12/8/2017
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Netanyahu`s legacy will haunt IsraelAkiva Eldar - Al-Monitor - "In his many years as Israel`s prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu has managed to destroy relations between Israelis and Palestinians, Jews and Arabs and the right and left." - id 11/8/2017
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Washington and Jerusalem: Two leaders, one fate?Orly Azoulay - Ynet - "Neither of them is capable of taking the final bow and getting off the stage, realizing that the party is over. They will keep whining until the blow arrives, instead of doing what each of them is required to do: Just go." - id 11/8/2017
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Israel`s empty threat to `shut down` Al JazeeraMoshe Ronen - +972 - "In practice, the State of Israel has no legal tools that allow it to limit Al Jazeera’s Israeli-citizen journalists to do their work as long as they don’t violate some other law. Walid al-Omari, Al Jazeera’s Jerusalem bureau chief, is an Israeli citizen." - id 11/8/2017
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Bibi: “This is the End, My Friend”Richard Silverstein - Tikun Olam - "Deposing him will not lead to any change in Israeli politics.  Undoubtedly, when the ax does fall you will find the liberal Zionist journalists from the NY Times, Haaretz, and other foreign publications writing rapturously about the chance for a “new beginning.” How Israel can “make a fresh start.”  How it can now approach the Palestinian issue with fresh eyes.  Mainly they will carry on about how much hope there now is for a change in Israel’s posture toward the Palestinians. And they will all be wrong." - id 11/8/2017
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Wistful Eyes Uri Avnery - Gush Shalom - "FROM WHATEVER angle one looks at it, the death sentence is a barbaric and stupid measure. It has been abolished by all civilized countries, except some US states (which can hardly be called civilized.)" - id 11/8/2017
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Can Israel transfer its Palestinian population?Patrick Strickland - Aljazeera - Yousef Jabareen, a legislator in Israel`s Knesset, described both the forced population transfer and the annexation of settlements - considered illegal under international law - as "war crimes". "Arab citizens of Israel were not granted citizenship by grace, but by the fact that they live in their historical homeland," he told Al Jazeera.-rh 9/8/2017
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Elizabeth Warren opposes Israel Anti-Boycott ActAli Abunimah - Electronic Intifada "VIDEO: I think the boycott is wrong, but I think outlawing protected free speech activity violates our basic constitutional rights,” Warren told constituents in Massachusetts on Friday...The powerful Israel lobby group AIPAC has made the bill one of its top legislative priorities." ca9/8/2017
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What steps does Israel have to take to ban Al Jazeera?Al Jazeera - "Shutting down Al Jazeera`s offices in Jerusalem will be a lengthy process and involves multiple offices and official bodies, lawyers have said." ca9/8/2017
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Israel has stripped citizenship from an Arab Israeli for the first time ever : Judge says the move is a `suitable` response after Alaa Raed Ahmad Zayoud injured four people in an `act of terror`GreGreg Wilford - Independent - Israel has stripped an Arab Israeli man of citizenship, claiming he "removed himself from society" by launching a car-and-knife rampage that left four people injured last year. Activists claim the ruling, believed to be a legal first, will leave Alaa Raed Ahmad Zayoud "stateless" and may violate international laws.-rh9/8/2017
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Netanyahu investigations have reached the point of no returnSima Kadmon - YnetNews - The state’s witness deal signed with Benjamin Netanyahu’s former chief of staff and close aide, Ari Harow, is not just the game changer in the Netanyahu affairs. It’s also a personal-family rift as big as the Great Rift Valley, and the beginning of a realization among the family members that Netanyahu is facing an indictment.-rh9/8/2017
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Trapped between Israel and Hamas, Gaza’s wasted generation is going nowhereWilliam Booth and Hazem Balousha - The Waqshington Post - They are the Hamas generation, raised under the firm hand of an Islamist militant movement. They are the survivors of three wars with Israel and a siege who find themselves as young adults going absolutely nowhere. In many circles in Gaza, it is hard to find anyone in their 20s with real employment, with a monthly salary. They call themselves a wasted generation.-rh9/8/2017
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As Investigations Intensify, Israel Imagines Life After NetanyahuISABEL KERSHNER -The New York Times - A black curtain went up a few months ago near Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s official residence on Jerusalem’s leafy Balfour Street. It screened pesky protesters from Mr. Netanyahu’s view — and prevented the public from seeing lawyers and detectives come and go as criminal investigations of the prime minister intensified.-rh9/8/2017
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Netanyahu`s money man set to tell allBen Caspit - Al-Monitor - On Aug. 4, the investigations into Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu turned from dark clouds hovering over his head to the perfect storm. Netanyahu’s twice former chief of staff Ari Harow, the person who served as Netanyahu’s ultimate confidante, with access to all of his most intimate chambers, signed an agreement with the State Attorney`s Office. Harow agreed to be a state witness against Netanyahu. It is hard to imagine Netanyahu receiving any more of a resounding blow. Harow gave detailed testimony against the prime minister, giving a major boost to Case 1000 (the gifts allegedly received by Netanyahu from businesspeople in exchange for favors) and Case 2000 (Netanyahu`s conversations with the publisher of Yedioth Ahronot Arnon Mozes for a positive coverage deal). It is also conceivable that Harow will provide information on other cases involving Netanyahu, such as the submarine affair or the far-reaching investigation into Bezeq phone company and the Ministry of Communications.-rh 9/8/2017
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The war on Israeli BDS supportersAmnon Portugaly - +972 - These days Gilad Erdan, Israel’s minister of public security and strategic affairs, is promoting a new law that would exclude his ministry from governmental oversight. This is a step meant to help fight the BDS movement, while also granting legitimacy to gathering intelligence on Israeli citizens who are involved in the movement to boycott Israel.-rh9/8/2017
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The Sly Effort to Criminalize the BDS Movement in the U.S.Scott McConnell - The American Conservative - BDS may well be conceived and supported by some who don’t want Israel to exist at all. But support for it would dry up overnight if the occupation ended and Palestinians had their own sovereign state. [bz]8/8/2017
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The End of This Road: The Decline of the Palestinian National MovementHussein Agha and Ahmad Samih Khalidi - The New Yorker - Israeli settlements may have all but erased the 1967 borders in one direction, but fifty years of occupation have helped to erase the border in the opposite direction as well. The broader Palestinian public has slowly begun to recognize the national role and place of its brethren in Israel. (...) With the expiration of the national movement “outside” the West Bank and Gaza Israel’s Palestinian citizens have inherited a new share of the struggle. [bz] 8/8/2017
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What is behind Israel`s attempt to ban Al Jazeera?Mark LeVine - Al Jazeera - Does Netanyahu need a smoke screen for his corruption scandal or is there a more sinister reason for banning Al Jazeera? [bz] 8/8/2017
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The Trumpeter and Violinist Can`t Leave Gaza for the West Bank (for Jordan no problem!)Amira Hass - Haaretz - The two young musicians, with the help of attorney Moran Gur of Gisha, still hoped that the High Court would explain the absurdity of the situation to the state. But the judges found that "the petitioners have no legal reason for which this court should intervene (...) musical development not necessarily [being] dependent on location." So, in Ramallah and Nablus the Palestine Youth Orchestra had to perform without them. [bz] 8/8/2017
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If you can’t say ‘equal rights,’ I can’t work with youRobert Cohen - Mondoweiss - There is a paradox at the heart of modern Jewish identity. It goes like this: “We wholeheartedly support equality in every land apart from the place we call our national home. There we claim privilege, we claim superior rights, we claim a superior history, we claim a unique story of oppression which, we argue, requires a unique and discriminatory response.” The seamless merger that has taken place over the last 70 years, between Judaism and Zionism and modern Jewish identity, has taken us down a moral cul-de-sac that’s now very difficult to walk back out from.[ak] 8/8/2017
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Israel is going to miss Mahmoud AbbasRonni Shaked - Ynet - It’s true that Abbas annoyed us with his de-legitimization moves and with his battle against the occupation in the international arena, but even without him, there would have been an opposition to settlements and there would have been international support for the two-state solution. Contrary to the Right’s mantra, Abbas could have been the best partner for negotiations. The government missed the opportunity of his days in power to try to advance an agreement. [bz]5/8/2017
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The fog of Al Aqsa violence obscures the true face of Israel`s occupation Joseph Dana - The National - Any change to the status quo in the Old City is cast in the media as part of a religious war. But is this latest outbreak of violence really a religious fight or is it instead a flash point in the battle between an occupying power and an occupied people? In the age of ISIL and the historic transformation of the Middle East, occupation doesn’t gather nearly the same attention as religious conflict.-rh3/8/2017
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BDS ban: Five Jewish, Muslim, and Christian leaders denied entry to Israel for supporting Palestinian human rightsJewish Voice for Peace - Mondoweiss - Five leaders on an interfaith delegation to Israel/Palestine were refused permission to board their plane in the United States, in what appears to be an implementation of Israel’s travel ban on supporters of Palestinian rights and Boycott, Divestment Sanctions (BDS).-rh3/8/2017
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Islamic Waqf gives go ahead for prayers at al-AqsaAljazeera - Officials of the Islamic Waqf authority that administers the holy site said on Thursday that Muslims should claim victory after Israel backed down, and urged them to once again pray inside the mosque.-rh3/8/2017
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The Al Aqsa Protests Prove That Palestinian Nonviolence Has Arrived Issa Amro - Forward - My dream has always been to see my people in a mass movement of nonviolent resistance. I have spent most of my adult life making this appeal to my fellow Palestinians and building the relationships we need with the international bodies who can help us. And for one of the first times in my life, I’m seeing the fruits of my labor. Since July, I have seen my fellow Palestinians displaying the strength and the will to pursue nonviolent resistance as the fastest and the only way to end the occupation. It is the success of nonviolent resistance, and its spread throughout Palestinian society, that you have been witnessing over the past few weeks.-rh 3/8/2017
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Residents of Israeli-Arab town anxious about proposed land swap Shlomi Eldar - Al-Monitor - The funeral in Umm al-Fahm of the three terrorists who killed the policemen on the Temple Mount on July 14 was attended by masses of local Israeli-Arabs. Immediately afterward, Israel’s Channel 2 reported that Netanyahu had raised a proposal to the US emissaries to the region: The prime minister wants to annex the Etzion Bloc settlement localities in exchange for transferring the Wadi Ara territory — including Umm al-Fahm — to the Palestinians. Liberman had promoted a similar plan for many years, and he even made it the cornerstone of his campaign in the 2015 elections. As soon as he heard Netanyahu’s proposal, Liberman tweeted at him, “Welcome to the club.”-rh 3/8/2017
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Israeli settlements and Palestinian terror: a moral equivalence?Ghassan Michel Rubeiz - The Arab Daily News - "To people in despair the world looks different." - id 2/8/2017
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The March of Folly Uri Avnery - Gush Shalom - "Netanyahu does not fear God or the Arabs. He fears Naftali Bennett. Bennett is the leader of the "Jewish Home" party.".."Now they are the most extreme right-wing party. It is a small faction, with only eight Knesset members (out of 120), but that is enough to break up the coalition and bring the government down. Netanyahu is mortally afraid of them." - id 2/8/2017
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The craziest things Netanyahu has said this summer, so farMichael Schaeffer Omer-Man - +972 - "From outlawing foreign funding for human rights NGOs to reviving the death penalty (for Palestinians), to population transfer and more, Benjamin Netanyahu is going a little wild. It probably isn’t unrelated to the multiple police investigations into him and his friends." - id 2/8/2017
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It’s time to bid farewell to the Elor Azaria affair Nahum Barnea - Ynet - "The lessons from the Hebron shooting incident cannot end in the IDF. The entire political system—the entire Israeli society, in fact—must draw conclusions. If we fail to maintain the norms of a law-abiding state, we will undermine the foundations this country is built on." - id 2/8/2017
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Border Police assault a father and son from East Jerusalem, break the 58-year-old father’s arm and arrest him and his 15-year-old sonB`Tselem - In a testimony he gave B’Tselem field researcher ‘Amer Aruri on 14 June 2017, S.H. recounted what happened next: Four officers went at me right away. One of them bashed my head against the front of the car. A second one grabbed me by the left hand and a third by the right. At the same time, I saw they were also assaulting my son.-rh 2/8/2017
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Geopolitical Dirty Dreams: Israel’s ‘Victory Caucus’Richard Falk -Wordpress - On an international level Trump will be expected by Zionist forces to translate the UN-bashing of Nikki Haley into concrete reality by defunding any organ of the UN (e.g. Human Rights Council, UNESCO) that dares document and censure Israeli wrongdoing under international law. And regionally, Trump seems determined to champion the dangerous Saudi/Israel agenda of anti-Iran war mongering, a posture that threatens to convert the entire region into a war zone.-rh 2/8/2017
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Jodi Rudoren says Palestinians experience ‘apartheid’ — but not in NYTJonathan Cook - Mondoweiss - Israel’s treatment of Palestinians looks “a lot like apartheid” – and not just in the occupied territories, but inside Israel too, where one in five citizens are Palestinian. “I actually think the issue of apartheid is more relevant to how Arab Israelis [Palestinian citizens of Israel] are treated within the framework of the country [Israel].”rh2/8/2017
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Shedding Legal Light on the Gaza Electricity CrisisJulie Webb-Pullman - teleSUR - General Comment No. 6 of the Human Rights Committee of the United Nations states that the right to life in the ICCPR contains the obligation for States to take positive measures, which include measures to ensure health care, especially in life-threatening-circumstances. The reduction in Israeli fuel supplied since May 2017 cannot be considered a positive measure. It also fails the test of a ‘negative obligation’ ie for Israel to refrain from taking action that would directly contravene a right.-rh2/8/2017
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Archives belie Israel`s narrative of Palestinian conflictDaoud Kuttab - Al-Monitor - The efforts by Sela, Hassan and others to search, document and present the public with hidden images of Palestine and the Palestinians flies in the face of the prevailing Israeli narrative, which aims to negate the Palestinians and therefore justify the continued occupation and colonization of the land and the people. Ongoing attempts to muzzle information and keep the truth hidden from a curious public will not succeed in erasing the memories and images that show what Palestine was before the Zionists and Israelis attempted to erase its history and with it the Palestinians` presence and rights in Palestine.-rh 2/8/2017
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Radiohead is art-washing Israeli apartheidOmar Barghouti - Al Jazeera - At concerts throughout Europe, Radiohead fans raised Palestinian flags, yet Radiohead went on with their show in Tel Aviv, allowing Israel to use their brand for whitewashing, or art-washing, its siege of Gaza, forced displacement of Palestinian communities in Jerusalem, the Negev and the Jordan Valley, and incessant construction of illegal settlements and walls in the occupied Palestinian - and Syrian - territory.[bz]1/8/2017
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Goodbye, Ambassador Lenk, you won’t be missed in South AfricaAzad Essa - Mail and Guardian/The Daily Vox - Arthur Lenk, Israel’s representative to Pretoria, was astutely ambassadorial. Mention Israel on Twitter and Ambassador would pop around to “celebrate” or “correct” the perception. He was a one-man PR stunt. In parting from us you say “South Africa’s liberation story still has resonance and inspiration for so many of us around the world.” Is this why you continue to build settlements in the West Bank despite your closest ally, the United States, asking you not to do so? This is your inspiration from South Africa? [ak]1/8/2017
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At Palestinian Assailant`s Village, Locals Lament Israeli Army`s Nightly Raids Amira Hass - Haaretz - Between the previous Friday, when 20-year-old Omar al-Abed killed three members of the Salomon family in the settlement of Halamish, and the following Thursday, the army raided the village every night except Wednesday. Last Sunday morning it was still possible to hear a few reservations about Abed’s act. By Wednesday, a veteran Fatah activist said, “The Shin Bet security service and the army think they’re deterring people, but they’re also causing people who don’t support violence to do so.” [bz]1/8/2017
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The Next War in Gaza Is Brewing. Here’s How to Stop It.NATHAN THRALL and ROBERT BLECHER - NYT - First, Israel — which refuses to engage with any Hamas-led government — could transfer tax revenues on Gaza-bound goods to the people of Gaza (...) by using the tax revenues to pay for increased electricity. Second, Egypt could export more goods to Gaza, thereby reducing the amount taxed by Israel and increasing the amount taxed directly by Gaza’s government. [bz]1/8/2017
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Red Rag column - the blood bank overflowsGideon Spiro - Netanyahu’s blood-drenched government succeeded in provoking Palestinians by installing metal-detecting devices at the Mosques Compound in Jerusalem. It was clear that this provocation would lead to mass protest demonstrations, which would exact a high price in blood. gm31/7/2017
The Match That Will Ignite a Third Intifada in Israel Is Already Lit David Rosenberg - Haaretz "Israel probably came closer to a third intifada this week than any time since the second one wound down 12 years ago – and not because of the role of religion in sparking the violence. It’s because of the dangerous economic backdrop.Religion and economics are two factors in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict that routinely get short shrift." ca 28/7/2017
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Attorney indicts embassy killer, urges trial under int’l lawThe Jordan Times - "Attorney General Judge Akram Masaadeh on Thursday announced the end of the investigation in the killings of the two Jordanian citizens Mohammad Jawawdeh and Bashar Kamel Hamarneh, which took place at the Israeli embassy in Amman, according to the Jordan News Agency, Petra. Masaadeh said that the Public Prosecution indicted the murderer, named Ziv, with both the murder of more than one person in violation of Article 27/3 of the Jordanian Penal Code, and the possession of a firearm without a licence contrary to Articles 3, 4 and 11/D of the Firearms and Ammunition Law No. 54 of 1952 after the investigations clarified that Ziv is the murderer." ca 28/7/2017
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Forget Al Jazeera — Bibi should halt his own government`s incitementEdo Konrad - +972 "Netanyahu is calling to shut down Al Jazeera’s Jerusalem bureau, accusing the station of incitement to violence amid tensions over the Temple Mount. Has he heard what his own ministers have been saying recently?" ca28/7/2017
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Bitter Palestinian rivalry adds to the agony of Gaza’s vulnerableSarah Helm - The Guardian - Kidney dialysis, intensive care and neonatal units are all in crisis. The Palestinian Authority in Ramallah on the West Bank has refused to pay for medicines, which are now critically depleted even for those in most need. Payments due to Israel each time patients are transferred are also being blocked, so that babies in need of critical care as well as cancer patients are refused permits to leave for treatment in the West Bank and Israel. Doctors say 10 cancer patients who have died in the past month could have been saved if they had been transferred.-rh26/7/2017
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Official Jordanian Account of Killings by Shin Bet Agent Dramatically Contradicts Israel’sRichard Silverstein - Tikun Olam - "Given the outrageous abuse of truth and facts of Israeli officials and security personnel in past instances, it’s highly likely that the Jordanian account is, if not fully accurate, closer to what actually happened." -id26/7/2017
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The al-Aqsa Metal Detectors Aren`t A Security MeasureDiana Buttu - Information Clearing House - For his part, Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu is happy to see Jerusalem erupt in violence. Facing a corruption investigation for a submarine scandal, Netanyahu is refusing to remove the metal detectors so as to ensure that attention is deflected from this deal and instead focused on violence. You see, in Israel, "security" sells - it ensures votes and ensures that corruption charges are deflected.-rh26/7/2017
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Al-Aqsa protests unite JerusalemitesDaoud Kuttab - Al-Monitor - Having been turned into political orphans, residents of East Jerusalem feel they must rely on themselves and not expect a savior to come to their rescue from the outside. In the current conflict on access to Al-Aqsa Mosque, the leadership formed to deal with this issue had to come from the religious community. The Islamic Supreme Committee, the office of the mufti of Jerusalem and other religious organizations, along with some respected Jerusalem leaders, were in the forefront issuing statements and providing the moral and philosophical leadership in this crisis.-rh 26/7/2017
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Israel `playing with fire and risking major crisis with Islamic world`, Arab League chief warnsSamuel Osborne - Independent - “Jerusalem is a red line that Muslims and Arabs cannot allow to be crossed ... and what is happening today is an attempt to impose a new reality on the Holy city,” Arab League secretary-general Ahmed Aboul Gheit said in a statement.“The Israeli government is playing with fire and risking a major crisis with the Arab and Islamic world.”-rh26/7/2017
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When Netanyahu walked eyes wide shut into disasterDAVID HOROVITZ - The Times of Israel - It has been widely reported that the Shin Bet security agency and the IDF were barely consulted ahead of the decision to install metal detector gates at the Temple Mount after the July 14 terror attack there. It has been widely reported that police chiefs and the public security minister did not believe the measure constituted a particularly significant step. It has been widely reported that Netanyahu failed to detail the metal detector plans when he spoke to Jordan’s King Abdullah and the Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in the immediate aftermath of the attack, in which three Arab Israelis shot dead two police officers on duty just outside the compound with guns they had smuggled into the holy site. It has been widely reported that the Shin Bet and the IDF urged that the metal detector gates be removed ahead of July 21’s Friday mass Muslim prayers.-rh 26/7/2017
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Netanyahu`s rash decision on Temple Mount sparks speculationsBen Caspit - Al-Monitor - Adding to all these problems is the emerging tension between Israel`s defense establishment and the political leadership. In all matters pertaining to the Temple Mount, Netanyahu has deferred to advice from the police, ignoring the security establishment. The problem is that the police lack a broad perspective. They are less involved in what is taking place in the West Bank, less interested in the geopolitical situation. Netanyahu now finds himself pitted against the IDF and Shin Bet.-rh 26/7/2017
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Palestinians continue protests after Israel takes down metal detectors around al-Aqsa, installs new camerasSheren Khalel - Mondoweiss - “Yes there have been Israeli guards outside the compound, but it is under Palestinian control within the compound, with Palestinian guards — so our stance is that putting any kind of new administrations on the ground will give Israel new control over the mosque, which is what the Israelis have always wanted, and what we will not accept” he said. “Any new cameras or gates or what have you at the mosque will help to out the mosque between the Israeli’s hands, it is not a security issue the way they are saying, it is an issue of who has control over the mosque.”-rh26/7/2017
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Netanyahu`s dangerous delusionAkiva Eldar - Al-Monitor - "Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the right remain under the delusion that they can sustain the occupation at no cost to Israel." - id 26/7/2017
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Amman embassy shooting was just what Netanyahu needed Nahum Barnea - Ynet - "While the incident at the Israeli embassy compound cost two Jordanian citizens their lives, it provided the prime minister with a way out of the metal detector fiasco. Instead of strengthening Israeli sovereignty at the Temple Mount, the government demonstrated to the entire world that Israel is not the landlord there." - id 26/7/2017
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How the world missed a week of Palestinian civil disobedienceEdo Konrad - +972 - "“The decision to boycott the metal detectors and refrain from going up to Al-Aqsa, the continuous stream of people to the gates of the compound, the mass prayers, all of these are a form of civil disobedience. And as such, it is a legitimate form of protest — whether or not we agree with it.”" - id 26/7/2017
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Senior Israeli gov’t minister warns Palestinians of ‘third Nakba’Michael Schaeffer Omer-Man - +972 - "Tzachi Hanegbi, a close ally of Netanyahu, threatens Palestinians with mass expulsion and ethnic cleansing in response to the latest round of violence." - id 26/7/2017
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Why Israel censored reporting on the Jordan embassy shootingDeutsche Welle - According to Israel`s government, an Israeli security guard opened fire after a 17-year-old Jordanian, who had entered the embassy complex to replace furniture, attacked him with a screwdriver. Israeli embassy compound in Jordan hit by deadly attack But reports on Jordanian media suggest that it wasn`t the Jordanian workman who attacked the guard, but that he himself was shot by the guard during an argument between the two. Although there was no official gag order issued by the court, the Israeli Military Censor did not allow the incident to be published on local media - a rule all media outlets in the county are bound to when reporting about security issues.-rh26/7/2017
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Playing with fire: Israel’s sweeping disregard for the wellbeing and security of East Jerusalem residents has led to four fatalities and dozens of injuries, and disrupted the lives of tens of thousands of residentsB`tselem press release - The harsh measures following the 14 July killing of two Border Police officers by three Israeli citizens led to harsh consequences: four Palestinians were killed and over one hundred demonstrators were injured by police. A few hours after the incidents of 21 July in Jerusalem, a Palestinian perpetrated a stabbing attack in the settlement of Halamish, killing three Israeli civilians and injuring another. [bz]25/7/2017
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Why the metal detectors at Al-Aqsa are such a big dealNoa Levy - +972 - Palestinians aren’t against security measures at the Al-Aqsa compound — they are against changing the delicate status quo at one of Islam’s holiest sites [ry]24/7/2017
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The Story Behind the Jerusalem Attack: How Trump and Netanyahu Pushed Palestinians to A CornerRamzy Baroud - CounterPunch - “Not only is the US abandoning its self-tailored role as a ‘peace broker’ between Israel and the Palestinian leadership, but it is sending a clear signal to Israel that there can be no pressure on Israel regarding the status of Jerusalem” [ry]24/7/2017
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PFLP slams Hamas, Fatah for putting politics over lives of Palestinians in GazaMa`an News Agency - "The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) a left- wing Palestinian political faction, released statements on Thursday, criticizing both the Hamas and Fatah movements for the ongoing punitive measures that the two factions have taken against each other in recent weeks amidst a deepening political crisis." ca21/7/2017
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Saving Israel by Ending the OccupationJessica Montell - Palestine-Israel Journal - What is striking is the absence of Israeli public awareness and discussion regarding the effects of the occupation on Israeli society. This is the rationale behind SISO, a new movement whose name stands for Save Israel, Stop the Occupation. SISO is a partnership of Israelis and Diaspora Jews, founded to leverage this 50th year to serve as a catalyst for real change.-rh20/7/2017
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Sensing an opportunity, Israel targets UNRWA and the Palestinian right of returnBen White - MEMO - UNRWA has long been a bête noire of Israeli politicians and pro-Israel advocacy groups, who in recent years have attacked the agency over allegations of ‘incitement’ in schools, employees’ social media posts, and claims of compromised neutrality during Israeli attacks on the Gaza Strip. Such complaints – which have lacked in substance and accuracy – are, however, primarily proxy targets for the fundamental reason why UNRWA is so despised: in the words of Netanyahu, “by its very existence”, the agency “perpetuates – and does not solve – the Palestinian refugee problem”. So, what does Netanyahu mean? To unpack this further, consider this piece written by fellows at right-wing institute Middle East Forum, praising Netanyahu’s call for the dismantling of UNRWA.-rh20/7/2017
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U.S. Lawmakers Seek to Criminally Outlaw Support for Boycott Campaign Against IsraelGlenn Greenwald - The Intercept - THE CRIMINALIZATION OF political speech and activism against Israel has become one of the gravest threats to free speech in the west. In France, activists have been arrested and prosecuted for wearing t-shirts advocating a boycott of Israel. The U.K. has enacted a series of measures designed to outlaw such activism. In the U.S., governors compete with one another over who can implement the most extreme regulations to bar businesses from participating in any boycotts aimed even at Israeli settlements, which the world regards as illegal. On U.S. campuses, punishment of pro- Palestinian students for expressing criticisms of Israel is so commonplace that the Center for Constitutional Rights refers to it as “the Palestine Exception” to free speech. But now, a group of 43 Senators – 29 Republicans and 14 Democrats – want to implement a law that would make it a felony for Americans to support the international boycott against Israel, which was launched in protest of that country’s decades-old occupation of Palestine. The two primary sponsors of the bill are Democrat Ben Cardin of Maryland and Republican Rob Portman of Ohio. Perhaps the most shocking aspect is the punishment: anyone guilty of violating its prohibitions will face a minimum civil penalty of $250,000, and a maximum criminal penalty of $1 million and 20 years in prison.-rh19/7/2017
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MIDDLE EAST CONFLICT: PALESTINIANS URGE `DAY OF RAGE` AS ISRAEL IMPOSES HOLY SITE MEASURES AFTER ATTACKJack Moore - Newsweek - The Palestinian Fatah party, led by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, called for a "Day of Rage" on Wednesday to protest new Israeli security measures at the contested Jerusalem holy site after a deadly shooting attack that killed two policemen last week. Israel closed the site on Friday after three Arab-Israeli citizens from the northern city of Umm al-Fahm carried out a shooting attack near the entrance to the site known as the Temple Mount to Jews, and the Haram al-Sharif, or the Noble Sanctuary, to Muslims.Israeli authorities reopened the compound to Muslims on Sunday, and non-Muslims on Monday, but with extra security measures, such as metal detectors. The city`s police said it was a necessary requirement for the site to open.-rh19/7/2017
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Our pal Mohammad Dahlan returns to the frayYacov Ben Efrat - Challenge - "Hope for peace lies in Palestinians who aspire to freedom and equality, and in those Israelis who understand that peace cannot be made between corrupt regimes, but only between Palestinians and Israelis sharing one common goal – a life of peace, democracy, and social justice." - id 19/7/2017
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Essential for UNESCO to put Hebron on endangered heritage listRay Hanania - The Arab Daily News - "Israel’s fanatic settler movement and its extremist government continue to push Holy Land heritage sites to the edge of destruction through their racist policies that discriminate against Christians and Muslims. It is important that UNESCO has placed Hebron on its endangered heritage list, regardless of the political lies of Israel’s officials or America’s racist UN Ambassador Nikki Haley." - id 19/7/2017
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BREAKING: Israeli Arrests United Nations Official in Gaza…AgainRichard Silverstein - Tikun Olam - "The news is under gag order in Israel and no media there may report the story.  This conveniently insulates the Israeli public from the news that their supposedly democratic nation has arrested human rights personnel from the most reputable NGO in the world." - id19/7/2017
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Israeli judiciary’s double standard on Jewish, Arab terroristsAkiva Eldar - Al-Monitor - "The latest attack is a warning that absent a fair arrangement with the Palestinians, the Temple Mount could erupt overnight, and its red-hot spewing lava will not stop at Umm al-Fahm." - id 19/7/2017
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Gaza on Verge of Collapse as Israel Sends 2.2M People "Back to Middle Ages" in Electricity CrisisDemocracy Now - Israeli-imposed restrictions have limited electricity in Gaza to barely four hours a day, creating a humanitarian catastrophe for its 2 million residents. In 2012, the World Health Organization warned that Gaza would be uninhabitable by 2020. The U.N. now says the area has already become unlivable, with living conditions in Gaza deteriorating faster than expected. We go directly to Gaza to speak with Raji Sourani, an award-winning human rights lawyer and director of the Palestinian Center for Human Rights in Gaza. We also speak with Tareq Baconi, author of the forthcoming book, "Hamas Contained: The Rise & Pacification of Palestinian Resistance." He is a policy fellow at Al-Shabaka, The Palestinian Policy Network.-rh19/7/2017
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Israeli-Palestinian water deal could chart course for further talks Shlomi Eldar - Al Monitor - An agreement between Israel and the Palestinian Authority on the Red Sea-Dead Sea canal project could build some trust between the sides, but the Palestinians are leery of any impact from it going into negotiations.-rh 19/7/2017
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The History of Anti-Arab Sentiment Is Too Deep, the Pain Too RealJames J. Zogby - LobeLog - A week ago, a pro-Israel media monitoring group accused me of making “an unsubstantiated charge that Israel supporters are responsible” for discrimination, hate crimes, and the political exclusion of Arab Americans. Because this issue is so important to Arab Americans and because some hardline pro-Israel groups refuse to acknowledge their role in harming my community, I am obliged to respond with a few examples representing just the tip of the iceberg of painful acts of defamation, discrimination, exclusion, threats, and violence.-rh19/7/2017
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When Gaza has no power, we all swim in sewageHagai El-Ad - +972 - As Netanyahu drinks water from a new Israeli mobile desalination technology with the visiting Indian prime minister, Israel’s actual desalination plant, planted firmly next to Gaza, stares down the consequences of Israel’s disastrous policies: raw sewage flowing its way.-rh19/7/2017
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Palestinian succession gets more complicatedDaoud Kuttab - Al-Monitor - Hopes that Saeb Erekat, the head of the Palestinian negotiating team, would succeed President Mahmoud Abbas have been dashed by news that Erekat has to undergo an urgent lung transplant, thus further complicating the Palestinian political scene.-rh 19/7/2017
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Abe, Izzy & Bibi Uri Avnery - The holy church in Nazareth is located in Israel, but it does not "belong" to Israel. The graves of holy Jewish rabbis in Russia or Egypt do not belong to Israel. UNESCO did not say that the Machpelah-al-Haram al-Ibrahim site belongs to the Palestinians. It said that it is located in Palestine.[bz]15/7/2017
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Will Mohammed Dahlan return to lead Gaza?Dylans Collins - Aljazeera - The document provides details of an alleged agreement between Hamas` second-in-command, Yahya Sinwar, and Dahlan. Under the deal, allegedly made during Egyptian-led talks last month, Dahlan would return to Gaza to lead the government and Hamas would run the territory`s interior ministry. Many believe that Dahlan brokered talks in Cairo between Hamas and senior Egyptian officials in an attempt to strengthen relations between Hamas and Cairo and pave the way for his return.-rh 12/7/2017
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UNESCO Hebron motion important to all faithsDaoud Kuttab - Al-Monitor - Declaring Hebron as an endangered World Heritage site should not be seen as being anti-Jewish or anti-Semitic or pro-Palestinian. Instead, it should be seen as the governor of the city saw it, that the heritage of the city is much bigger than Palestinians and Jews. It should be preserved for generations to come.-rh 12/7/2017
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Eyeless in Gaza Uri Avnery - Gush Shalom - "I couldn`t stop thinking about them during last week`s terrible heat wave, about the people languishing in awful conditions, without electricity and air conditioning, without clean water, without medicines for the sick." - id12/7/2017
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Israeli Minister Calls UNESCO Recognition of Hebron as World Heritage Site, “Holocaust Denial”Richard Silverstein - Tikun Olam - "Not to be outdone, Naftali Bennett, whose political brand should be, “The Settlers’ Friend,” likened the UNESCO decision to false statements attributed to Iran’s Grand Ayatollah Khamenei: “It’s disappointing and embarrassing to see UNESCO denying history and distorting reality time after time to knowingly serve those who try to wipe the Jewish state off the map.“" - id12/7/2017
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Israel-Hamas prisoner exchange deal `closer than ever`Shlomi Eldar - Al-Monitor - "According to the source, now that Dahlan has become Gaza and Hamas’ possible savior through his attempts to save the Strip from total collapse, an Egyptian effort is also underway to seal an overall deal that both Israel and Hamas can accept." - id 12/7/2017
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Why Palestine is Still the IssueJohn Pilger - CounterPunch - "What enrages those who colonise and occupy, steal and oppress, vandalise and defile is the victims’ refusal to comply. And this is the tribute we all should pay the Palestinians. They refuse to comply. They go on. They wait – until they fight again. And they do so even when those governing them collaborate with their oppressors." - id 12/7/2017
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When Israel Becomes an Anti-Semitic State Richard Silverstein - Tikun Olam - When you’ve blogged as long as I have (since 2003), you think you’ve seen everything. Until tonight, I never in my wildest dreams imagined that Israel as a state could become anti-Semitic. Of course, this notion violates just about every sacred principle of Zionism, which purports to be a haven for Jews around the world from persecution and anti-Semitism. No longer. With today’s “piling on” by the Israeli foreign ministry onto Hungary’s right-wing government’s anti-Semitic campaign against George Soros, Israel has sunk to the dregs.-rh12/7/2017
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Israel should stop trying to wall out its criticsEditorial - Los Angeles Times - here are many reasons people may be barred from entering the state of Israel. If they present a risk of criminal or terrorist activity, for instance. If they tell lies at the border or don’t cooperate with border officials. If they’re suspected of trying to immigrate illegally. But now Israel has added a new rule — to implement a noxious law passed by the Knesset in March — requiring border authorities to refuse entry also to people who have publicly supported a boycott of the country. These visitors would be turned away not because they are suspected of a crime or pose a security risk, but because they have expressed an opinion in favor of a nonviolent protest movement that is unpopular in the country.-rh12/7/2017
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 How Israel’s 10-Year Blockade Brought Gaza to the Brink of Collapse : The crisis in Gaza is not simply a humanitarian tragedy. It’s a moral outrage.Tareq Baconi - The Nation -  he stories read like dispatches from a nightmare, describing a reality that is almost too extreme to fathom: nearly 2 million people locked inside a land mass the size of Philadelphia, the borders carefully controlled, the movement of goods and humans severely restricted; as much as 72 percent of the population facing food insecurity and 41 percent struggling with unemployment; hospitals forced to rely on generators for life-saving equipment, while supplies of life-saving medicines dwindle to dangerous levels; and looming in the not-far-off distance, as water treatment and desalination plants stop working, the risk that drinking water will run out.-rh12/7/2017
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Israeli Court in Abu Khdeir Case: “Jewish terrorism is different from Arab terrorism”IMEMC news - The Israeli High Court ruled Tuesday that three Jewish Israelis convicted of kidnapping, torturing and brutally murdering a Palestinian teenager by setting him on fire should not have their homes demolished. The Court noted that “Jewish terrorism is different from Arab terrorism”, and the collective punishment measures used against the families of Palestinians who commit violence should not be used against Jewish Israelis who commit acts of political violence.-rh12/7/2017
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Al-Jazeera journalists: `This isn`t the first time we`ve come under threat`Emma Graham-Harrison and Graham Ruddick - The Guadian - Over two decades, the Doha-based channel has transformed the media environment in the Gulf, at some point angering almost every power in a region with very few democracies and no tradition of independent media. “We are used to being under the cosh, because of the unique nature of al- Jazeera as the first independent media organisation in a region filled with propaganda channels,” said Elshayyal. His channel, award-winning and internationally recognised, is not the main target of the blockade. Its sister channel, al-Jazeera Arabic, which reaches far wider audiences and has more controversial coverage, is widely believed to be the real focus.-rh12/7/2017
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Palestinians hope UN ruling will improve life in Hebron : West Bank residents welcome decision to recognise Hebron`s Old City as World Heritage Site.Nigel Wilson - Aljazeera - Twelve states on UNESCO`s World Heritage committee voted in favour of the Palestinian proposal to name the city a heritage site, while three countries voted against the move and six abstained. The proposal was accepted despite intense lobbying from Israel and the United States to prevent the resolution from passing. Israel reacted furiously to the decision and announced it would cut $1m in funding to the UN that would be diverted to Israeli cultural projects in Hebron. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called it "another delusional decision by UNESCO" and charged that by naming it a Palestinian heritage site, UNESCO had denied Jewish ties to the site.-rh 12/7/2017
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Israeli And Palestinian Teens Have Advice For Divided AmericansSarah Ruiz-Grossman - Huffington Post - The YMCA Jerusalem Youth Chorus brings together Israeli and Palestinian teens to sing together and to discuss issues facing the region, as well as their own lives. Started five years ago by Micah Hendler, a Jewish-American, the chorus has around 30 students, about evenly split between Israelis and Palestinians. They come from schools in East and West Jerusalem, are Christian, Jewish and Muslim, and represent a range of political beliefs.-rh12/7/2017
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Soros, Bannon, and the anti-Semitism of Israel`s prime ministerEdo Konrad - +972 - Instead of defending George Soros from Hungary’s anti-Semitism, Benjamin Netanyahu, the self-appointed protector of world Jewry, has taken to joining the attack and ignoring calls by Hungarian Jews to cancel his visit to Hungary next week. [bz] 11/7/2017
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If I won’t toe the line of supremacist ideology, I can be no part of Israeli society.Ofer Neiman - Mondoweiss - A few years ago I taught a course at an engineering college in central Israel. The content was entirely technical, so of course politics never came up. But one week, I noticed that very few students showed up. And one who did come was flaunting an army beret—unusual for someone out of uniform. When my student feedback came in after the term, one student was bold enough to write “This guy is against Israel, so I stopped going to class.” I realized the students probably learned about me from Facebook pages that post photos of “traitors.” This kind of ostracism is standard for Israeli citizens who realize that our regime practices colonialism, apartheid and even a slow genocide (Gaza). [bz] 11/7/2017
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Hebron is not on the Moon (re the UNESCO resolution)Odeh Bisharat - Haaretz - Israeli leaders rage against `anti- Semitic` UNESCO resolution on Hebron. I am grateful to blogger Idan Landau. He simply devoted a few minutes to reading a text a few lines long, rather than rely on the government or the mainstream Israeli media to tell him what UNESCO decided. UNESCO’s decision simply recognized the Old City of Hebron (Al-Khalil) and the Ibrahimi Mosque (Tomb of the Patriarchs) as a world heritage site holy to three faiths. Since this new world heritage site is not located on the moon, but in the State of Palestine (which has already been recognized by the world), the location noted in parentheses is - Palestine. And that’s what all the fuss is about. [ak] 11/7/2017
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The Price of the Occupation (2)Amos Gvirtz - Classic Zionism (also: "Existential Zionism") established the state, through a combination of the immense efforts of its followers and the understanding that the support of the superpowers was crucial both for the establishment of the state and for its continued existence. Zealous Zionism overwhelmingly believes in the existence of an omnipotent God on whom the existence of the state is based. (...) We see how a small minority has begun a process of imposing its ideology and turning existential Zionism into Zealous Zionism thereby preventing any possibility of peace and placing the existence of Israel and the Jewish people at risk. [bz]11/7/2017
There`s nothing anti-Semitic about UNESCO`s Hebron voteOrly Noy - +972 - Israel’s leaders are essentially trying to convince the world that anyone who recognizes Palestine is anti-Semitic [ry]10/7/2017
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Hamas turns to IranShlomi Eldar - Al-Monitor "An Israeli security source who listened closely to Haniyeh’s speech told Al-Monitor that the Hamas leader — formerly viewed as pragmatic — now embraces the most radical policies of the movement. Even more than that: Haniyeh has fallen captive to Hamas’ military wing only so that he can survive as the movement’s leader." ca 7/7/2017
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The myth of a `Palestinian economy` Nur Arafeh - Al Jazeera "viewing economic development as the horse and a just peace as the cart only exacerbates the political deadlock, since the symptom - economic deprivation - is mistaken for the cause: Israel`s occupation and military rule.Moreover, this approach disconnects the economy from its historical context and obscures the fact that the "Palestinian economy" is a political construct embedded in Israel`s occupation policies, which aim to expropriate Palestinian land and expand a Jewish state - while dominating the "Palestinian economy" in the process." ca 7/7/2017
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The real reason Hamas is flirting with dismissed Fatah leader Adnan Abu Amer - Al-Monitor - Although Hamas is aware of Dahlan’s regional and international relations and regardless of the political rivalry between the two, the aggravating humanitarian disaster in Gaza may prompt the movement to turn a blind eye to the negative aspects of the rapprochement in order to overcome this harsh phase with as little damage as possible. Today, Hamas’ most important mission is to positively promote its connection with Dahlan within the movement as it believes he may use UAE funding to help improve the living situation in Gaza and ease the Israeli blockade on Gaza thanks to his close relations with Egypt and Israel.-rh 5/7/2017
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Abbas Incensed With Kushner, After He Fully Adopts Israeli Talking PointsRichard Silverstein - Tikun Olam - "Bibi Netanyahu has proven himself masterful at drowning every U.S. effort at brokering Israeli-Palestinian peace talks in minutiae.  Then, when he can’t manipulate matters any further and has derived maximum benefit for Israel’s negotiating position, as he did during John Kerry’s shuttle diplomacy, he simply says No and walks away." - id5/7/2017
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How Israel’s education minister inserts ideology into schoolsAkiva Eldar - Al-Monitor - "The country’s children are under his control as minister of education. When those children who prayed for the coming of a third temple are old enough to vote, Bennett will only be in his early 50s. With the help of wealthy Uncle Shel (Adelson) from Las Vegas, money will be no object, either." - id 5/7/2017
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Why it is critical to focus on AljazeeraRami G. Khouri - Agence Global - Aljazeera gained immense, instant popularity across the region because it responded to a very basic human instinct that Arab governments had denied three generations of their citizens: the capacity to live as a full human being, able to speak one’s mind, hear a variety of other people’s views, learn about the real world as it actually is, debate ideas, experience new cultural expressions, and question in public how one’s society was developing and being managed. A foundational element of human dignity is to be treated with respect as a rational, thinking, feeling individual — rather than as cattle to be herded, or a robot to be programmed.-rh5/7/2017
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Bonanza for Palestinian businesses as Ramadan travel permits canceled Daoud Kuttab - Al-Monitor - Although not expected or planned, the change in Palestinian plans due to the Israeli cancellation of the travel permits reveals a long-standing claim that the permits are issued during holidays to benefit Israeli businesses and resorts.-rh 5/7/2017
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Demand to stop prisoner payments is Israeli gambit to avoid peace talks — PA commissionSheren Khalel - Mondoweiss - “The Israeli position understands very much what that impact [of cutting prisoners’ salaries] would be, and how impossible that is,” he said. “This demand to stop payment to prisoners is a condition by Israel to avoid making any peace treaties with the Palestinians. In a time in which people want to talk about settlements and borders and water issues, Israel wants to make this issue with prisoners the crux of a deal to make peace?”.-rh5/7/2017
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Israeli military court extends detention of Khalida Jarrar and Khitam Saafin as international protest growsSamidoun - Saafin and Jarrar were seized by Israeli occupation forces who invaded their family homes in the Ramallah area in pre-dawn raids on 2 July 2017. They recounted the experience of the raids to Addameer lawyer Muna Naddaf, who said that the two were taken to Ofer military court for interrogation after being seized. Both were only interrogated for 30 minutes before being placed in a small room with no windows for four hours. By 4:00 pm on the same day, the two were transferred to HaSharon prison, one of the two prisons where dozens of Palestinian women are held.-rh5/7/2017
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327 Palestinians Killed during Jerusalem IntifadaThe Palestine Chronicle - Israeli occupation forces have killed 327 Palestinians since the start of the ongoing Jerusalem Intifada in October 2015, according to figures released by Al-Quds Centre for Palestinian and Israel Studies yesterday. According to the statistic, Israeli occupation forces have killed 48 Palestinians since the start of this year.The largest number of deaths were of Palestinians from the occupied West Bank city of Hebron, where 81 Palestinians were killed, followed by Jerusalem with 65, Ramallah with 33, Jenin with 25, Nablus with 23, Bethlehem 20, Tulkarm 8, Salfit 5, Qalqilia 4 and Tubas 1.-rh5/7/2017
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Gaza`s child laborers find their way back to school Najlaa Eskafi - Al-Monitor - Operated by Terre des Hommes, an international nongovernmental organization, the center raises awareness among children, parents and other community members about the dangers of child labor and the importance of education. The center helps vulnerable working children and those who drop out of school through various projects, ranging from a summer school to year-round programs requiring a few hours every day.-rh 5/7/2017
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Why is Netanyahu trying to disband the UNRWA? Hanin Abou Salem - Aljazeera - Netanyahu wants to dismantle the UNRWA because the agency allows Palestinian refugee men to transmit their refugee status from one generation to another. This transmission of refugee status keeps the right of return for Palestinian refugees alive - it ensures that their hopes for returning to their ancestral homeland do not perish with the death of the original 1948 refugees.- rh5/7/2017
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Israel `playing with fire` on Hamas prisoner issueShlomi Eldar - Al-Monitor - The freezing of family visits comes a month after prisoners halted a hunger strike among other things about the number of family visits. (...) the atmosphere in Gaza feels like war is imminent. It’s not just the prisoner issue. It’s a sense that residents mired in such shameful poverty and horrible suffering have nothing to lose. [bz] 4/7/2017
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Yakov Rabkin’s devastating critique of Zionism: it is opposed to Jewish tradition and liberalismPhilip Weiss - Mondoweiss - Jewish secular identity acquired a socio-cultural dimension: those who consciously rejected Judaism could preserve, at least for a while, a specific language (Yiddish), and a few cultural markers. This new identity was conjugated in a wide range of political options, often of socialist or nationalist inspiration. By consummating the break with tradition, the concept of the secular Jew, at variance with the traditional Jewish vision, made it possible to redefine the Jews as a “normal people” and thus became the cornerstone of Zionism. [ak]4/7/2017
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Israel may be able to confiscate our money, but it cannot confiscate our dignity Issa Qaraqe - PNN "The ratification by the Israeli ministerial committee on June 14, 2017 of the draft law allowing the withholding of Palestinian tax funds under the claim that they are used to fund subsidies for the families of detainees, martyrs, and wounded is more horrifying and immoral than war itself.Israel is attempting to skin and punish the Palestinian people alive and cloak penal legislations designed to crush the Palestinian people under the veil of law." ca 1/7/2017
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