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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    

Barak might make me vote Bibi Yossi Sarid - Haaretz - "Everyone has their own nightmares, particularly in the autumn. Lately, when I sleep, I`ve been hearing a voice whispering: `There are only two candidates left in this country, and you have no alternative but to choose between them - Benjamin Netanyahu and Ehud Barak.` A gun is pressed against my head. I break out in a cold sweat, cry out in my sleep and wake up terrified. If that happened in reality, and not only in a nightmare, I might vote Bibi rather than Barak, if only to redeem just a little of the honor of the Israeli left"31/10/2009
Israeli Physicians for Human Rights doctor muzzled in UK, talks cancelledCecilie Surasky - MuzzleWatch - Miri Weingarten from PHR-I was due to give a lecture, entitled The Right to Health in a Conflict Zone, to three hospitals in Manchester, Liverpool and Bury last week. But just hours before the lecture, the Manchester Royal Infirmary and Alder Hey Hospital in Liverpool cancelled the event. Karen Solomon, director of the Zionist Central Council in Manchester, sent more than 200 emails to members urging them to contact the hospitals. Ms Solomon said that the original plan was to send members to the meeting to dispute some of the topics. She said: “We felt the talk was political and hospitals should not be seen to be political or hold political events. The group is blatantly anti-Israel and so we asked people to write in to say what we felt.” 31/10/2009
Palestinian Prisoners: Stripped of Due Process Britain Eakin - MIFTAH - Over 650,000 Palestinians have been detained by Israel since 1967 when they occupied the remaining Palestinian territories. Moreover, Palestinians who are arrested are handled and tried through military courts and tribunals, not through civil courts. Upon arrest, they are handcuffed and blindfolded; they are not told why they are being arrested or where they are being taken, and they are often times not charged with any crime, but are placed under administrative detention. 31/10/2009
WHO`S AFRAID OF RICHARD GOLDSTONE?Ronnie Kasrils - Sabbah Report - The reason for the hysteria against Justice Goldstone`s Report goes far deeper than the findings. Goldstone is a self-professed Zionist, of liberal persuasion. Some like him believe that Israel can and should live up to its founding ideals and commitment to justice, equality and the rule of law – and act as an inspirational "light unto the nations." He clearly and sincerely hopes that Israel will reform its ways. Unfortunately this commonly held view of the past sixty years hides the reality of the expropriation by force of an indigenous people`s land, and their dispersal in a bloody process of ethnic cleansing from 1948 to present times. 30/10/2009
With a conscience that is always clear Zeev Sternhell - Haaretz - It is not the Goldstone report that has opened another painful phase in the erosion of Israel`s credibility, but rather the cavalier attitude here toward the heavy Palestinian losses. In broad circles of Western European and American intelligentsia - in the universities and among cultural and media figures - Israel arouses ever-deepening hostility. 30/10/2009
Washington Watch: What`s so scary about J Street?Douglas Bloomfield - Jerusalem Post - I suspect for some, attacking J Street is a backdoor way to attack Obama without doing so openly and risking White House access. 30/10/2009
Rattling the Cage: Some victims we areLarry Derfner - Jerusalem Post - We talk only about the thousands of Kassams fired at Sderot; we never mention the thousands of Gazans we killed at the same time. We talk only about Gilad Schalit; we never mention the 8,000 Palestinian prisoners we`re holding. And we never mention our ongoing blockade of Gaza or the devastation it does to those people.30/10/2009
Gaza FirstEilat Maoz- Translated from Hebrew by George Malent - The separation will be complete, and the aircraft of the air force will be able to again bomb Ramallah, Nablus and Jenin as needed, like they did only a few years ago. But unlike then, after absolute separation and a de facto and de jure siege have been created, we will no longer be able to struggle together, we will not be able to be human shields, we will not be able to bear witness, we will be unable even to take photos – we will simply have no physical access. Exactly as today we have no access to Gaza. 30/10/2009
Amira Hass has won the 2009 Lifetime Achievement Award from the Global Network for Women in the News MediaIn her Acceptance speech she said:... "It is the failure to make the Israeli and international public use and accept correct terms and words - which reflect the reality. Not the Orwelian New Speech that has flourished since 1993 and has been cleverly dictated and disseminated by those with invested interests."30/10/2009
On One Field, Two Goals: Equality and Statehood ISABEL KERSHNER - The New York Times - With the peace process stalled and the Palestinian polity divided, the atmosphere is generally dour. Yet the game turned into an exuberant carnival of social liberation and national pride. The line between the dual quests for equality and statehood became increasingly blurred as the women chased the ball. 29/10/2009
My own war crime: personal reflections following the Goldstone ReportNoam - Promised Land - Every generation of combat soldiers in the IDF has its own active experience on the front: a war, a limited operation, an Intifada. I was lucky: I served in the nineties, when things were fairly quiet. I had two full tours in Lebanon and more time in the West Bank and Gaza than I care to remember, but I only took part in one large operation: “Grapes of Wrath” in 1996 – another one of these violent escalations between the IDF and the Hezbollah that takes place every few years. 29/10/2009
We`re all GaydamakGideon Levy - Haaretz - Gaydamak thought he could fool everyone all the time. Israel does too. We drag out the occupation, cover up what happened in Gaza, hide what happened in the Second Lebanon War, build more and more in the settlements, deceive everyone forever. But just as with Gaydamak, it can`t work all the time and doesn`t fool everyone. The world is starting to ask questions and lose its patience. We have already been tried in absentia29/10/2009
West Bank land belongs to Jews, says Israeli army judgeMeron Rapoport - The Guardian - In an unusually frank interview, which offers insights into the melding of religion, politics and law that underpins land seizures in the occupied territories, Agassi has laid out his belief that Israel has a biblical claim to territory beyond its borders and that he, even as an immigrant, has a right to live on it when those born there do not. 28/10/2009
Squaring the circle and erasing the margins Adam Horowitz - Mondoweiss - My very initial impression was that If AIPAC feels like going to the Jewish Oscars, then J Street felt like a really fancy bar mitzvah. It was large and impressive, but did not have the ostentatious sense of stage production and drama that AIPAC displays, and I guess that’s to be expected. I don’t think it’s only a matter of resources (which I’m sure play a part), but also of mission. The AIPAC conference seems to say – sit and let us overwhelm you, with facts, with fear, with theater – while J Street was conscious from the beginning that it was more self-reflexive and open. 28/10/2009
External interference a major obstacle to Palestinian reconciliationDaoud Kuttab - Common Ground News - As this Palestinian public gets stronger and is able to make a stronger case for their call for reconciliation the warring factions will be forced to bring about unity irrespective of external pressures. If all efforts to get both parties to reconcile fail, a deadline must be set, by which these public leaders announce that they will point fingers to whichever party, in their opinion, is holding up Palestinian unity. 31/10/2009
Conformity and usAya Kaniuk - Mahsanmilim - Israel is shocked that its deeds are named war crimes and acts of state terror. As in Ramon’s case, not the actual deeds but rather their names appall and amaze. Like Haim Ramon, Israel refuses to acknowledge the fact that norms in the world have changed. Shocked that what is considered norm in Israel is not accepted as the norm in the parts of the world to which it wishes to belong. That what is accepted in Israel is not what everyone does. 31/10/2009
Israeli military gives settlers free reinSeth Freedman - The Guardian - The IDF is offering ever more support to settlers as its influence by religious-nationalist politics increases31/10/2009
A Wonderful Hiding Place - Criticism of Israel Michael Neumann - CounterPunch - "Antisemites have flocked to criticism of Israel precisely because criticism of Israel is so amply justified. Criticism of Israel isn`t a great disguise because the critics are sleazebags. Quite the contrary: it`s a great disguise because criticizing Israel is not only correct, it`s the right thing to do. The more-than-overwhelming majority of those who criticize Israel are genuine humanitarians, genuine enemies of oppression and ethnic nationalism, genuine fighters for justice. The more obvious this has become, the more antisemites get on board"31/10/2009
News from Within Podcast: From Individual Prosperity to Communal Stagnation — The Economy as a Form of Social Control AIC - "On 24 October 2009, Prof. Neve Gordon, presented the lecture `From Individual Prosperity to Communal Stagnation: The Economy as a Form of Social Control` at the two day seminar `United in Struggle against Israeli Colonialism, Occupation, and Racism: Economic Perspectives and Advocacy Strategies,` which took place in Bethlehem, 24-25 October. The seminar was jointly sponsored by The Alternative Information Center (AIC) and the Occupied Palestine and Golan Heights Advocacy Initiative (OPGAI). Professor Gordon is chair of the Department of Politics and Government at Ben-Gurion University in Israel"31/10/2009
Red RagGideon Spiro - Much hullaballoo in Israel over the Turkish TV series Separation, in which IDF soldiers are depicted as thugs who murder children and babies.28/10/2009
Abbas is a partner for peace. Is Netanyahu?Gershon Baskin - Jerusalem Post - "I say to the citizens of Israel, you, our neighbors on this small land, neither us nor you are begging for peace from each other. It is a common interest for us and for you. Peace and freedom is a right to us, inasmuch as peace and security is a right for you and for us."27/10/2009
Only Jews deserve dignity?Shulamit Aloni - Ynet - These Border Guards indeed deserve to be put on trial for the offenses they committed: Misuse of authority and assault, which carry a prison term of two years or more. In the face of the State Prosecutor’s decision in this matter [not to prosecute], which is not unusual, I believe we should be amending the Basic Law and decide that the State of Israel is committed to maintaining the liberty and dignity of a person only if he’s Jewish.27/10/2009
Gone with the windAviad Kleinberg - Y-Net - Reading the Goldstone Report is difficult. It’s in English and it’s replete with tiring details. Moreover, the story line lacks the kind of ending we like so much - the great and overwhelming victory by the good guys, an army that is both very efficient and also the most moral in the world. On the other hand, writing about the report isn’t difficult. We don`t at all need to read it in order to know that it’s wrong and inaccurate. 27/10/2009
Can International Law Forestall a Golanian Intifada? Syria`s Golan Heights Franklin Lamb - CounterPunch - “Moshe Dayan, Israel’s Minister of Defense at the time, explained to an Israeli journalist in 1976: ‘I know how at least 80 percent of the clashes there (on the Golan front) started. In my opinion, more than 80 percent, but let’s talk about 80 percent. It went this way: we would send a tractor to plough someplace where it wasn’t possible to do anything, in the demilitarized area and knew in advance that the Syrians would start to shoot. If they didn’t shoot, we would tell the tractor to advance further, until in the end the Syrians would get annoyed and shoot. And then we would use artillery and later the air force also, and that’s how it was…’”24/10/2009
Fuel, but no spark, for third intifada Zvi Bar`el - Haaretz - "However, if the intra-Palestinian dispute is for the time being a wall against a sweeping intifada, it is not an obstacle to individual terror attacks. Rock-throwing, stabbings and even suicide bombings are the result of personal issues, which do not require broad national agreement . The frustrated person at the checkpoint, the student who did not get a permit to study abroad and sees his future shattered, the woman who lost her baby because the permit that would have allowed her to get to a hospital was delayed, or a teenager out to avenge the death of a family member: all of them can find a violent channel of action"24/10/2009
Human Rights Watch and Israel Carroll Bogert Letters to the Editor- NYT "Human Rights Watch was saddened to read that our founding chairman, Robert Bernstein, opposes holding Israel to the same standards that we apply to the rest of the world (“Lost in the Mideast,” Views, Oct. 21). "23/10/2009
BBC TV sparks outrage by hosting far-right leader Nick GriffinBy Ben Quinn - The Christian Science Monitor "The BBC invited Nick Griffin, leader of the whites-only British National Party, to its flagship political show Thursday. The move is meeting sharp criticism from a broad range of critics, including former military leaders". 23/10/2009
Palestinian refugees reject `sell-out` deal By Mahan Abedin - Asia Times online "The latest tri-lateral Middle East peace talks have been overshadowed by the United Nations report by Richard Goldstone that accuses both Israel and Hamas of war crimes in Gaza and the candid remarks by Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman to the effect that there is no "solution" to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the region should learn to "live" with the consequences. 23/10/2009
Israel is in denial over Turkish rageSimon Tisdall - The Guardian "Turkey was shocked by Goldstone`s report on the Gaza conflict, but Israel is seeking other explanations for deteriorating ties"23/10/2009
This is not Northern Ireland by Mustafa Abu Sway - Bitterlemons "This is not about Mitchell`s credentials or goodwill. This is about international and regional power structures that continue to permit Israel to function mostly outside international law, dragging everyone into a political black hole. "23/10/2009
Goldstone`s Report -- Israel`s Missed Opportunity by Hadas Ziv, CEO PHR-Israel - the Huffington Post "I watch with disappointment the reactions to the Goldstone report. I believed it to be a watershed that could have -- and should have -- changed the discourse on the conflict that torments us all. "23/10/2009
Obama`s Bad InfluenceNaomi Klein - The Nation - The United States has had a similarly corrupting influence as a new member of the UN Human Rights Council. Its first big test was Judge Richard Goldstone`s courageous report on Israel`s Gaza onslaught, which found that war crimes had been committed by both the Israeli army and Hamas. Rather than prove its commitment to international law, the United States used its clout to smear the report as "deeply flawed" and to strong-arm the Palestinian Authority into withdrawing a supportive resolution. (The PA, which faced a furious backlash at home for caving in to US pressure, may introduce a new version.) 22/10/2009
Israel`s attacks will lead to its isolationGideon Levy - Haaretz - Dividing the world up between absolute good and evil - our side and our enemies, with no middle ground - is a sign of despair and a complete loss of direction. It`s not just our ambassador in Washington, who knows nothing at all about democracy and pluralism and only wants to please his masters. Such behavior - kicking and barking crazily in every direction - is destroying Israel. 22/10/2009
A Country Of Sacred Cows And Ten Commandments Ershad Abubacker - Countercurrents - Accusation of Anti-Semitism has been Israel `s most effective strategy in silencing the dissent and journalists in particular has been the target of this tactics. This remains the constant weapon that is used to make vociferous accusations and slanders against such people. Anyone who dares to speak against Israel has been dealt with the deafening chorus of Anti-Semitism or in case the accusations are from a Jew he is labeled as a self-hating Jew. The latest victim of this disparage has been Judge Richard J Goldstone, the Chair of United Nations fact finding mission on the Gaza conflict. 22/10/2009
We are Not Always `Equal` Joharah Baker - MIFTAH - When referring to the Palestinians and Israelis, the term "both sides" should not be used in equal terms. We are not equal in regards to political standing. We are far from equal when it comes to military might and we are certainly not equal in terms of realities on the ground. That is why the term "both sides" is so misleading. It implies that the Palestinians and Israelis are bound by the same obligations in terms of their commitments to one another. It also implies that the Palestinians and Israelis enjoy the same political and economic benefits and privileges at home and abroad. 21/10/2009
Olmert visit sparks Palestine movement at US university Emily Ratner - Electronic Intifada - Tulane was as hostile an environment as we expected. Hundreds of Tulane students showed up to hear Olmert speak, and many laughed and applauded when he made jokes about the comments of overwhelmed Palestinians who threw up their hands in exasperation at his remarks (i.e., lies) and walked out of the building. Many of our own group were only kept silent by the red tape we`d hidden on our bodies and then used to cover our mouths when Olmert first walked onto the stage. Scrawled on the tape were words that enumerated some of Olmert`s administration`s crimes, such as "human shields," "illegal settlements," "white phosphorous" and "occupation." 21/10/2009
Abbas and the Goldstone Report: Our Shame is CompleteRamzy Baroud - Znet - As Israeli bombs fell on the Gaza Strip during its one-sided war between December 27, 2008 and January 18, 2009, millions around the world took to the streets in complete and uncompromising outrage. The level of barbarity in that war, especially as it was conducted against a poor, defenseless and physically trapped nation, united people of every color, race and religion. But among those who seemed utterly unmoved, unreservedly cold were some Palestinian officials in the West Bank. 21/10/2009
Justifying War Crimes as Self-Defense Britain Eakin - MIFTAH - Ever since the release of the Goldstone Report, I have been waiting to hear the words that often deflect attention away from the reality of the Israeli occupation and its state-sponsored violence against Palestinians. I finally heard them when Israeli Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz declared that the United Nations Human Rights Council decision to endorse the Goldstone Report is anti-Semitic. On this basis it was argued that the vote represents an attempt to deny Israel the right to defend itself, a right not denied to other nations engaged in the War on Terror. 21/10/2009
Lieberman, Goldstone, trade verbal snipes over Gaza m&c - Middle East News - "Israel Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman Tuesday became the latest voice in Israel to condemn the Goldstone report on the Gaza war, calling it a danger to the Middle East peace process." 21/10/2009
The Dark Side of the ‘Special Relationship’ Justin Raimondo - AntiWar - "...a battle of spy vs. spy." "so dark that hardly anyone wants to acknowledge it, let alone consider its implications." 21/10/2009
A war crime whitewashMichael Lerner - Guardian - "We in the Jewish community who want Israel to be strong and secure know that the path must be through justice and generosity toward the Palestinian people."21/10/2009
What went wrong in Gaza?Nahum Barnea - Ynet - "The truth is that there was no real combat in Gaza. The difference in casualty figures attests to that: The IDF lost 10 soldiers, including four killed by friendly fire. The Palestinians sustained 1,100 to 1,400 casualties. Many of them were unarmed civilians." 21/10/2009
Public opinion, where art thou? Yitzhak Laor - Haaretz - ""Public opinion" hasn`t had influence over any level of government, a situation amply illustrated by the failure to release Gilad Shalit or curb the settlement project." 21/10/2009
Painful Mideast Truth: Force Trumps Diplomacy ETHAN BRONNER - NYT - "The Palestinians may have driven Israel out of Gaza, but they ended up living in a vast network of barriers and military outposts of Israeli occupation in the West Bank and under harsh siege in Gaza." 20/10/2009
Abdullah: US focusing too much on IranAP - J-lem Post - "He said the two sides have a window of opportunity over the next year to make progress on creating a two-state solution, after which point the possibility of a Palestinian state will disappear as more Arab land gets swallowed up by Jewish settlements." 20/10/2009
Who decided to go to war in Gaza and why? Aluf Ben - Haaretz - I want to know how and why it was decided to embark on Operation Cast Lead in the Gaza Strip and to expand it into a ground offensive. I want to know if the decisions were affected by the Israeli election campaign then underway and the change in U.S. presidents. I want to know if the leaders who launched the operation correctly judged the political damage it would cause Israel and what they did to minimize it. I want to know if those who gave orders to the Israel Defense Forces assumed that hundreds of Palestinian civilians would be killed, and how they tried to prevent this. 28/10/2009
Something is Rotten in the State of Israel Joharah Baker - MIFTAH - Yesterday`s events in Jerusalem`s Old City can only be viewed as one more link in Israel`s master plan for the city and for the Aqsa Mosque Compound in particular. For the second time in the past month, extremist Jewish groups announced their intent to enter the mosque and for the second time, Palestinian Muslims in Jerusalem staved them off. Following a morning call from the mosques` muezzin to the people of the Old City to "come and protect Al Aqsa", clashes ensued between Israeli riot police and soldiers, many who had taken up position the night before in anticipation of confrontations. 28/10/2009
Meretz`s silence is only a symptom Yitzhak Laor - Haaretz - ""In the first stage," war was just, and after that it wasn`t. How many children need to die for this and for it to be understood that a left-wing movement must not take part in Israel`s military games." 28/10/2009
Obama`s mettle is about to be testedSimon Tisdall - The Guardian - As the Middle East slides towards renewed conflict, the president has to revitalise US efforts for a peace – or face humiliation19/10/2009
Goldstone report revisitedCurtis Doebbler - Ma`an News Agency - "But the adoption of the report might just raise even greater questions. For example, will the Palestinian authorities take action to ensure that such diplomatic blunders do not take place in the future? To date, the investigation that President Mahmoud Abbas promised has not named a single person who was responsible for this blunder"19/10/2009
Analysis: The Coming IntifadaYousef Munayyer - The Palestinian Center - "So now what? That is the question Palestinians are asking. Their leaders have failed them. The United States and Barack Obama, supposedly an honest broker, have failed them. The international community and the system which is supposed to protect the basic human rights of all people have failed them. […] But now that every avenue for achieving those goals has been closed off to them, it seems almost inevitable that another uprising is upon us. We would be naďve, even culpable, if we dared to ask why"19/10/2009
How do Turkey and Israel measure each other`s love? Zvi Bar`el - Haaretz - "Because in Israel`s eyes, Turkey is seen as two states - one in the form of the military, twin sister of Israel, the other political, leaning toward Islam and making friends with Syria and Iran. Thus, insolent Israel decided in a typical manner not to take Turkey`s politicians seriously and to adopt the Turkish army"19/10/2009
Red Rag Weekly ColumnGideon Spiro - A culture in collapse - Academic rhinos - Amos Oz and the Nobel Prize - We won? - New intifada?19/10/2009
Fearsome words? A suppressed talk on the Israel/Palestine conflictMichael Neumann - Counterpunch - In April of this year I was invited by the Canada-Palestine Parliamentary Association to speak at one of their meetings. The meeting was to have taken place in the Parliament building in Ottawa, where I have spoken previously without incident. John Ivison, in the National Post newspaper, published a not particularly vicious or unbalanced attack on me, deploring the invitation. After this, without any contact with me and without seeing the content of my talk, the meeting was `postponed`. It is now clear that the postponement was permanent.18/10/2009
The slippery slopeUri Avnery - Gush Shalom - Hamas in power over all the Palestinian people would deflect these “dangers”. No American pressure for compromise. No need for negotiations. No need for ”restraint” of settlement activity or for a compromise over Jerusalem. The occupation could go on undisturbed. This may lead to disaster in the future. But who cares about the future?18/10/2009
The court does not sympathizeNurit Peled Elhanan - MahsomWatch - Salwa and Bassam Aramin are not Jews and they are not Israelis. They live under a cruel occupation and they have experienced all it has to offer: exile, imprisonment and the killing of their small daughter Abir by a rubber bullet that was allegedly fired from the rifle of a Border Guard soldier18/10/2009
Why Fayyad plan for Palestine has Israelis worriedDouglas Hamilton - Reuters - So far, so good. But unlike the familiar forms of Palestinian resistance which Israel has coped with, the Fayyad plan leads into dangerous, uncharted territory, the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs fears.17/10/2009
An Ordinary IsraelRoger Cohen - NYT - Cut the posturing and deal with reality. This can be painful — as with Justice Richard Goldstone’s recent U.N. report finding that both Israeli forces and Palestinian militants committed possible crimes against humanity during Israel’s military operations in Gaza. 17/10/2009
Ari Shavit / Israel needs legitimacy to wage war and peaceAri Shavit - Haaretz - (...) underneath those still waters on which Israel`s ship is sailing lurks an iceberg. The Goldstone report marked the iceberg`s first appearance. Turkey turning its back on Israel was the second. Attempts by European courts to try Israel Defense Forces officers were the third; the boycott of Israeli products and companies in various places round the world was the fourth (...). 17/10/2009
Rattling the Cage: Forget the inquiries - lift the blockadeLarry Derfner - Jerusalem Post - What may, just may, get the world to ease up on Israel is if, instead of trying to whitewash the wrongs of the war, we try to correct them by ending the policy of collective punishment against Gaza - by lifting the blockade. By disengaging for real this time. By finally setting those people free. 17/10/2009
The Economy of the Occupation 21-22: Cast Lead - Israel Attacks GazaShir Hever - - The Israeli government did not declare war, and officially the attack was an Israeli “operation,” though in the Israeli media it was called a “war.” Since this was not a conflict between two standing armies, and as the fighting was mostly onesided, the term “war” is inappropriate here, and the term “attack” will be used instead. This is despite the fact that both the Israeli authorities and the Hamas spokespeople endeavored to use the word “war” and thus convey that intensive two-sided fighting took place. For Israel, descriptions of intensive fighting help to justify its widespread use of force that ended up mostly harming unarmed and uninvolved civilians. For Hamas, the image of intensive fighting bolsters their public image as active and brave resisters of the occupation.17/10/2009
U.N. Rights Official Backs Gaza Report By SHARON OTTERMAN Source NYT "A Palestinian effort to formally endorse the findings of a United Nations report on war crimes committed during the Gaza war last winter received a strong statement of support on Thursday from the top United Nations human rights official, Navanethem Pillay"16/10/2009
Tony Blair and the business of covering up war crimes By Jim Holstun Source The Electronic Intifada "Like Benjamin Netanyahu in his recent speech to the UN, Blair failed to note the report`s forthright and detailed chronicle and condemnation of Palestinian rocket and mortar attacks, and its statement that they had all but ended during the lull of June-November 2008 "16/10/2009
Embarrassed and denouncedBy Khaled Amayreh Source Al Ahram weekly "In monumental fashion, recent events in Geneva have roundly earned Fatah and Abbas`s Palestinian Authority the contempt of ordinary Palestinians"16/10/2009
Guilty without a trial By: Moshe Dann YNetnews "analyzes Goldstone Report’s findings and how Israel was set up. According to the ICRC, Article 51 of the UN Charter does not allow Israel to act in self-defense against terrorists because "they are not a state but organized individuals among the population it occupies." 16/10/2009
Is Goldstone the tipping point?by Adam Horowitz Source: Mondoweiss "A national movement that began as ‘legitimacy without an entity’ is becoming ‘an entity without legitimacy’ before our very eyes." 16/10/2009
NAM wants Israel to be responsible for Gaza crimes PressTV "115 countries of the Non-aligned Movement (NAM) have called on the UN Security Council to hold Israel responsible for atrocities committed in Gaza during its offensive"16/10/2009
Strike against Silence - Israelis and Palestinians are meeting in London this week to explore the psychological aspects of their conflictAntony Lerman - The Guardian - Members of Psychoactive and other groups working in nonviolent ways to resist occupation and military conflict are discussing the use of psycho-social methods to understand the motivations of protagonists and victims of violence and how resistance can be made more effective. At the opening public session last night, Professor Uri Hadar of Tel Aviv University, an Israeli psychologist, sought to explain "Israeli brutality towards Palestinians and what enables it". Professor Stephen Frosh, Pro-Vice-Master of Birkbeck, thought that some of the questions Jews are asking themselves are: "What have we done? What have we become?" 15/10/2009
Of tunnels, Goldstone and the "peace process" George Giacaman - Bitterlemons - In early September 2009, Palestinians discovered that a new and wider tunnel is being dug under the Aqsa Mosque. Then, in the first week of October, Israeli right-wing groups called on supporters to go and "visit" the mosque. The Israeli police let them in and several days of protests by Palestinians ensued. Even the government of Jordan felt impelled to intervene lest things get out of hand. These incidents also happened on Netanyahu`s watch, now prime minister again. 15/10/2009
The Golda warsGideon Levy - Haaretz - Those who are to blame for everything have been found: the "Goldstoners." Not the occupation, the settlements, Israeli aggressiveness or brutality; just Goldstone. According to Ari Shavit (Haaretz, October 8), the spirit of Judge Richard Goldstone will bring the next war upon us, and it will be called the Goldstone War. 15/10/2009
Goldstone, Israel`s Frankenstein`s monster Bradley Burston - Haaretz - The bottom line, for Israelis, is simply this: Israel desperately needs a respected commission of inquiry of its own, to probe precisely the charges leveled by the Goldstone Mission. Israel owes its own citizens no less. It needs this, first and foremost, for the sake of its own future, and for the moral standards that it has explicitly set for itself. In fact, this is what Justice Goldstone is recommending that Israel do, specifically to avoid a summons to the Hague. 15/10/2009
Dissolve the PA! Shraga Elam - Blog - "Sooner or later the Israeli leadership is bound to complete the project Nakba II or III (it is difficult to keep an account) and the present relative lull should not mislead anyone." 14/10/2009
War is peace - week 2209 of OccupationDaniel Breslau - Occupation Magazine - Netanyahu`s logic: Force directed at Israel brings chaos and is damaging not only to Israel, but to the region. Israel`s use of force, on the contrary, restores order, not only to Israel, but for its ungrateful neighbors as well.14/10/2009
Shalit wasn`t kidnapped Uri Avnery - Haaretz - The Israeli government refused to call the taking of a prisoner of war by its real name, arguing Shalit was "kidnapped." The term is significant. Every army in the world is accustomed to exchanging prisoners of war. When it comes to kidnapping, the question can arise whether to pay the price.13/10/2009
Middle East: a Belgian solution?Khaled Diab - The Guardian - "There is no such thing as a conflict that can`t be ended. Conflicts are created by human beings, and can be ended by human beings. It may take a long time. But with committed, active and strong leadership, it can happen here in the Middle East"12/10/2009
Who are we to mock? Akiva Eldar - Haaretz - "One needs considerable Jewish chutzpah to elect a right-wing government and then expect the goyim to rescue us from it. […] With or without a Nobel Prize, Obama will not evict us from the territories by force. The United States can also make do without peace between Israel and the Arabs. Even if it seems to the Israelis that they are the center of the world, when the American voter, and even history, judge Obama, the end of the Zionist project will not be one of the top criteria"12/10/2009
Israel`s export of occupation police tactics Jimmy Johnson - EI - "Israel`s specialized policing and fighting capacity, which it is currently exporting to other countries, including the US, began to take shape after the June 1967 Arab-Israeli war. In the territories it occupied during the conflict, especially the Palestinian West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza Strip, the Israeli government wanted to lay claim, permanently, to specific parts of the occupied area"12/10/2009
New crisis developing in PalestineKathleen and Bill Christison - Counterpunch Weekend Edition - Tensions Intensified by Obama Administration`s Lack of Decisiveness New Crisis Developing in Palestine11/10/2009
The other IsraelUri Avnery - Gush Shalom - We have to decide what we are: the Israel of Ada Yonath or the Israel of Ateret Cohanim. An Israel that cherishes its culture, science, high-tech, literature, medicine and agriculture, which marches in the first row of progressive human society towards a better future, or an Israel of wars, occupation and settlements, a fundamentalist state that looks to the past.11/10/2009
Obama has yet to earn itGush Shalom - President Obama does not yet deserve the Nobel Peace Prize. That he was himself the first to say so does not make it less true.11/10/2009
John Pilger on Obama, Israel/Palestine and BDSJohn Pilger - discusses Obama, Israel/Palestine and BDS10/10/2009
Let France, Israel, Saudis deter IranLeon T. Hadar - Huffingtonpost - The notion that Saudi Arabia and other Arab governments could decide to join the nuclear club shouldn`t cause us too many sleepless nights. There is no reason why Washington should not encourage the French, the Saudis, or the Israelis to protect themselves against a potential threat from a nuclear Iran.10/10/2009
Only gall and nothing moreGideon Levy - Haaretz - Just as a rapist does not have the right to discuss carrying out his nefarious scheme, and the robber cannot haggle over the conditions under which he will return his loot, the occupier, the taskmaster, the jack-booted soldier and the exploiter cannot discuss the conditions under which they will carry out their deeds. This is a blatantly immoral discussion.10/10/2009
Attacking conscienceDaniel - Op-ed blog - "Few artists are able to transcend political discourse in challenging our perceptions of state power, morality, and our own passive complicity." 9/10/2009
The Audacity of Nope IRA GLUNTS - Counterpunch - "When Obama dropped his demand for a freeze on Israeli settlement building, all of which is illegal according to international law, and adopted a softer formulation calling for a show of “restraint,” he was telling the world that he is surrendering to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu."9/10/2009
Netanyahu`s UN speech was that of a Jew, not an Israeli Yaron Ezrahi - Haaretz - "It was an emotional speech by a public relations minister that focused on Holocaust deniers, and not by an Israeli prime minister looking out for Israelis yearning for quiet and stability." 8/10/2009
How Israel Killed UN’s War Crimes ProbeJonathan Cook - Antiwar - "According to Who Profits?, an Israeli organization that investigates links between Israel and international companies in exploiting the occupied territories, Israel has a vested interest in limiting the success of the Palestinian mobile phone industry."7/10/2009
The right to be freeAhmad Tibi - Ynet - " The anger and frustration are the fuel, and Israel’s aggression is the spark." 7/10/2009
It`s all kosher for Kasher Gideon Levy - Haaretz - Mr. Ethics, Prof. Asa Kasher, the Israel Prize-winning philosopher and author of the IDF`s Code of Conduct. Kasher glossed over every transgression during this war. He`s the one responsible for that toxic "IDF spirit" - which holds that when it comes to protecting soldiers, anything goes for the IDF. 6/10/2009
How I’m Losing My Love For IsraelJay Michaelson - The Forward - I’m not sure any state with tanks can win a propaganda war against an occupied people with guns and Molotov cocktails - even if the occupied people’s leaders deserve plenty of blame. (...) I don’t think advocates of Israel understand exactly how bad the situation is on college campuses, in Europe, and in liberal or leftist social-political circles. Supporting Israel in these contexts is like supporting repression, or the war in Iraq, or George W. Bush. 6/10/2009
Israel`s democracy and its Arab populationDavid Newman - Jerusalem Post - It is not easy to understand the rationale behind almost every government policy to allocate fewer resources per capita to Arab citizens. It doesn`t make sense and, in the long term, has proved to be totally self-defeating for the state. 6/10/2009
The tropes of `Jewish antisemitism`Antony Lerman - The Guardian - The concept of the `self-hating Jew` has been dignified with a pseudo-psychopathology by those keen to suppress dissent5/10/2009
`Israel has to be held accountable` Sousan Hammad - Al Jazeera - "We believed this time... we would put an end to Israel`s... long, long history of immunity. But unfortunately our very own leaders damaged the whole issue. […] This is first time in the history of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict that a commission headed by a person like Goldstone came to investigate war crimes. This was an opportunity to show the world that international law and human rights is for everyone and that there is no immunity for any perpetrator" 5/10/2009
Mahmoud Abbas` chronic submissivenessAmira Hass - Haaretz - "For nine months, thousands of people - Palestinians, their supporters abroad and Israeli anti-occupation activists - toiled to ensure that the legacy of Israel`s military offensive against Gaza would not be consigned to the garbage bin of occupying nations obsessed with their feelings of superiority. Thanks to the Goldstone report, even in Israel voices began to stammer about the need for an independent inquiry into the assault. But shortly after Abbas was visited by the American consul-general on Thursday, the leader of the Palestine Liberation Organization got on the phone to instruct his representative on the United Nations Human Rights Council to ask his colleagues to postpone the vote on the adoption of the report`s conclusions"5/10/2009
Obama should back Goldstone reportGeorge Bisharat - SFGate - Obama can solidify broader global respect by supporting the recommendations of the just-released Goldstone report in the U.N. Human Rights Council.4/10/2009
The top ten things you didn`t know about IranJuan Cole - Salon - The assumptions most Americans hold about Iran and its policies are wrong3/10/2009
Iran, Israel and the muzzled US pressFaramarz Farbod - Commondreams - Speaking of "defiance" in the neighborhood where Iran resides and failing to mention Israel requires levels of disingenuousness and obedience to state propaganda that baffle the mind. And all this at a time when arguably the most significant news item to come our way this month was the UN Human Rights Council`s damning report (Goldstone Report) on Israeli crimes in the winter assault on Gaza.3/10/2009
Ridding the world of the sickness of pacifismWilliam Blum - ZNet - NATO (aka the United States) can take satisfaction in the fact that the Germans have put their silly pacifism aside and acted like real men, trained military killers; although prior to this incident the Germans had engaged in some aerial and ground combat, there hadn`t been such a dramatic and publicized taking of civilian lives. Deutschland now has more than 4,000 soldiers in Afghanistan, the third largest contingent in the country after the US and Britain.3/10/2009
Among the Shministim - excommunication and self-hatredPhilip Wesiss - Mondoweiss - I felt a Jewish solidarity with the women in the brave new world of Jewish identity that we are building. Netta said that she loves being an Israeli but does not want to be a patriot, and that her worst encounters were with American Jews with their Israel patriotism. "It is realy hard and really painful," she said, "and sometimes I even cry," when people criticize her for not caring about Israel, when their only connection to Israel is the Star of David on their neck.3/10/2009
A story of betrayalUri Avnery - Gush Shalom - Gilad Shalit was captured in a military action. He was an armed soldier in uniform. In this context, it does not matter whether the action itself was legal or illegal, and whether the captors were regular soldiers or guerrillas. Gilad Shalit is a prisoner of war. The denial started at the first moment. The Israeli government refused to call the capture by its proper name and insisted that it was an “abduction” or even “kidnapping”. 3/10/2009
So, did Netanyahu really `win`?Daniel Levy - Haaretz - The much derided and scorned Obama team actually has pulled off one of the more difficult moves in diplomatic choreography. They now have a tricky interlocutor, in this case Israel`s leader, enthusiastically embracing their target (endgame two-state negotiations) as his own. Netanyahu will no doubt pursue new exit strategies, but several of his more cherished diversionary tactics already have been neutralized. 3/10/2009
Born to be freeAdam Keller - Crazy Country blog - Because on this issue the people in Israel are united, more than on anything else. Because Menachem Begin and Yitzchak Shamir had also been called terrorists.3/10/2009
Red Rag Weekly ColumnGideon Spiro - Holocaust Deniers; a conversation in an Israeli cafďż˝; wise advice2/10/2009
The Pines-Paz ‘Wake Up!’ Clap on IranTaylor Marsh Source: Taylor Marsh webpage "However, hovering over it all remains Iran, with Israelis and some on the American Left holding very different positions, something over which we are no longer willing to stay silent." 2/10/2009
Everything is personal Gideon Levy - Haaretz - Goldstone held up a mirror to us; we tried to smash it, as is our wont, but this time, as opposed to earlier reports, smashing it did not work. Suddenly it was reported (and denied) that Defense Minister Ehud Barak has asked former Supreme Court president Aharon Barak to head an investigative committee, suddenly the head of Military Intelligence is calling for the adoption of the "ethics code" composed by Prof. Asa Kasher, and suddenly Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called an urgent meeting to discuss establishing an investigative committee. 1/10/2009
Report: Shin Bet foot-dragging keeping Gazans from doctors visits Amira Hass - Haaretz - The slow response of the Shin Bet security service to requests by Palestinians seeking to leave the Gaza Strip for medical care via the Erez crossing was the main reason that more than one third of such applicants missed their medical appointments between January and August 2009, according to a new report1/10/2009
Should Ehud Barak have immunity?Afua Hirsch - The Guardian - Sources say that Israeli officials who face possible arrest are now careful to arrange state visits before arriving in the UK, building a pre-emptive defence that their presence falls under the immunity of a serving official performing government acts. Lawyers for Barak are already arguing along these lines, as he prepares to meet the prime minister, Gordon Brown, and foreign minister, David Miliband, during his trip to the UK. 1/10/2009
One State, Two States, by Benny Morris: A ReviewDaniel Breslau - Z Space - Morris begins by warning readers of a resurgence of "one-state" solutions to the conflict. In his view, one-state proposals are cover for the hidden agenda of replacing Israel with a Muslim-Arab state in which Jews are at best a second-class minority. He contends that the resurgence of one-state proposals has been precipitated by Palestinian actions - Arafat`s rejection of the Clinton/Barak proposals in late 2000, and the rise of the Islamist Hamas movement - and its advocacy by "a coterie of non-Arab Western intellectuals"(6). 1/10/2009
What Obama Needs to Know Britain Eakin - MIFTAH - Obama’s refusal to condemn the excessive violence against and targeting of civilians by Israel in Gaza struck at the heart of what I feel is wrong with how the U.S. views, frames, discusses and approaches efforts to help resolve this conflict. His silence conveyed a strong message; the lives of the Palestinian people have been so devalued that they are simply not defendable, to the point that they were apparently not even entitled to self-defense against the onslaught of the world’s 5th strongest military power. Instead the Palestinians were largely blamed for the violence inflicted upon them, and we were encouraged to believe they deserved it.1/10/2009
As occupier, Israel must face up to Goldstone report Zvi Bar`el - Haaretz - "After blaming the messenger, there is a need to look for a real culprit, who has already been found. The occupied and their violent messengers are to blame. They are the ones who attack from schools and mosques, who carry bombs in ambulances and who dare to oppose the occupation using unacceptable means, leaving no option but to kill them without discrimination. If this is so, then it is not the nature of warfare that needs to be changed but the laws that limit it. To legalize the illegitimate war"26/10/2009
Looking back at GazaToronto Star - editorial - By any standard, Goldstone`s findings are serious. He is a renowned jurist with impeccable credentials. He was the lead war crimes prosecutor for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda, and he has spoken on behalf of the International Bar Association against rights abuses in China, Russia, Iran, Sri Lanka, Zimbabwe and Pakistan. His findings can`t be shrugged off as "propaganda and bias,"25/10/2009
A Middle East peace will suit Jewish interests the mostMehmet KamiĹź - Today`s Zaman - Jews around the world must exert pressure on Israel because of what it did to the Palestinians in Gaza. This is very important for two reasons. First, Gaza is one of the main factors inciting anti-Semitism around the world. Second, it also nurtures the ideology of hatred in the Middle East. 25/10/2009
The so-called Middle East peace process has been dead for yearsGwynne Dyer - Vue Weekly - All of President Obama`s pleas have failed to extract from Netanyahu even a promise to freeze the expansion of Israeli settlements in the occupied territories, let alone to negotiate a withdrawal from them. He has not moved from pleas to actual pressure because the Israelis effectively control the US Congress on this issue, and he will not risk alienating Congress over Israel while he is trying to get legislation through on health care, climate change and other urgent issues.25/10/2009
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