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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

TitleDescriptionDate
Israel`s NGO crackdown spells trouble Seth Freedman - The Guardian - Last week saw the latest move in the Israeli government`s clampdown on those working in solidarity with the Palestinians in the Occupied Territories. Ending a decades-old policy of granting work visas to employees of NGOs operating in the region, Israeli officials are now issuing NGO workers with tourist visas instead, prohibiting them from working in areas under Israeli jurisdiction, including Area C (which makes up 60% of the West Bank) and all of East Jerusalem. 28/1/2010
What One Hand Giveth, the Other Hand Taketh AwayGisha - Since Israel sent a search and rescue team and doctors to help earthquake-devastated Haiti, op-eds and articles have praised Israel`s important provision of relief and also attempted to hold up a mirror to the country, showing closure-devastated Gaza just over our shoulder. Some in Israel asked, how is it that aid is rushed half a world away when children are living in half-destroyed homes just an hour`s drive from Tel Aviv? Others argued that Israel`s positive actions in Haiti should stand alone, even if the Israeli government over-publicized the efforts 28/1/2010
How surrendering Palestinian rights became the language of `peace`Joseph Massad - The Electronic Intifada - Not only was the Palestinian vocabulary of liberation, end of colonialism, resistance, fighting racism, ending Israeli violence and theft of the land, independence, the right of return, justice and international law supplanted by new terms like negotiations, agreements, compromise, pragmatism, security assurances, moderation and recognition, all of which had been part of Israel`s vocabulary before Oslo and remain so, but also Oslo instituted itself as the language of peace that ipso facto delegitimizes any attempt to resist it as one that supports war, and dismisses all opponents of its surrender of Palestinian rights as opponents of peace. 28/1/2010
Should Arab MP Be In Auschwitz?Jonathan Cook - Countercurrents - Nazareth: An Arab member of the Israeli parliament has sparked controversy among Jews and Arabs in Israel over his decision to join an official Israeli delegation commemorating International Holocaust Day today at a Nazi death camp in Poland. Mohammed Barakeh will be the only Arab in a contingent of Israeli parliamentarians and government ministers, including Benjamin Netanyahu, the prime minister, at Auschwitz to commemorate the 65th anniversary of the camp’s liberation. Mr Barakeh has reported receiving a spate of hate mail, including a death threat, since he was invited to the remembrance service by the speaker of the parliament, or Knesset, over the opposition of many right-wing politicians. 28/1/2010
Badge of terror Haaretz - Editorial - There is no way to describe the West Bank settlers` attack on the Palestinian village of Bitilu but as a well-planned terror attack. The settlers` "military" organization and violent resistance to the cabinet decision to destroy the illegal outpost of Givat Menachem, as described by Chaim Levinson in Haaretz yesterday, are no different from the activities of other terrorist organizations. This includes the incitement, ranting and raving preceding the act of vengeance on Bitilu, the attempt to set a house on fire, the injuring of villagers with stones, and the threat to continue these violent tactics. 28/1/2010
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Holocaust remembrance is a boon for Israeli propaganda Gideon Levy - Haaretz - We have a prime minister who speaks about evil but is building a fence to prevent war refugees from knocking at Israel`s door. A prime minister who speaks about evil but shares the crime of the Gaza blockade, now in its fourth year, leaving 1.5 million people in disgraceful conditions. A prime minister in whose country settlers perpetrate pogroms against innocent Palestinians under the slogan "price tag," which also has horrific historical connotations, but against whom the state does virtually nothing. 28/1/2010
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The price of our Middle East policyGlenn Greenwald - Salon - The connection between our conduct in the Middle East and the motivations for anti-American Terrorism receives far too little attention in general, and the role played by our steadfast support for Israel receives less attention still. It goes without saying that the mere fact that Islamic radicals object to a certain policy (and that policy thus fuels anti-U.S. Terrorism) is not, by itself, a reason to discontinue that policy, but it`s certainly a cost that ought to be seriously weighed in deciding whether that policy is wise.24/1/2010
The LiebarakUri Avnery - Gush Shalom - THE BUSINESS is registered in the name of Binyamin Netanyahu. But the reality is different.24/1/2010
Negotiations? No thanks by Mordechai Kedar - Bitterlemons "Since the Netanyahu government was elected in late March 2009, negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians have been frozen. It looks like the two sides prefer it that way. " 22/1/2010
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The PA will have to yield to pressure by Sami Abdel-Shafi - Bitterlemons "It seems ever more evident that while the US-led international community is urging a resumption of Israeli-Palestinian negotiations, Palestinians increasingly feel the exercise is fruitless. More and more Palestinians are questioning the use of what has become a perpetual on-again off-again process." 22/1/2010
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Reconciliation in limbo: Hamas and Fatah are still deeply at odds by Saleh Al-Naami - Al-Ahram Weekly "Nonetheless, there are some Palestinians who believe that the Arab summit in Libya next March will be beneficial. Among them is the leader of the Palestinian bloc of independents who headed their delegation to the dialogue in Cairo, Yasser Al-Wadeya, who insists that the summit will push forward Palestinian reconciliation as mediated by Egypt." 22/1/2010
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Analysis / Whose failure is this peace process?By Akiva Eldar, Haaretz Correspondent "Exactly a year after trumpeting the appointment of former senator George Mitchell as his special envoy to the Middle East, U.S. President Barack Obama is holding Israel and the Palestinians equally responsible for the stalemate in the peace process."22/1/2010
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The tree-lined bunkers that could change the face of the Middle EastRobert Fisk - The Independent - Benjamin Netanyahu and his colleagues in the Israeli government have been announcing that the only "army" of Lebanon is the Hizbollah, the Iranian-armed and Syrian-assisted guerrilla force whose bunkers and missiles north of the Litani river might just tip the balance in the next Hizbollah-Israeli war. And Sayed Hassan Nasrallah, the chairman of the Hizbollah, has been making some even more interesting threats: that his forces will "change the face of the Middle East region" if there is another war with Israel. No-one is in much doubt about what this means. The newly resurfaced Lebanese roads near the border – courtesy of Hizbollah money – suggest that someone might want to move men at high speed towards the frontier. Perhaps even to cross the border.22/1/2010
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Yoav Shamir`s film DefamationYoav Shamir’s memorable, must-see Defamation is by turns hilarious, profound and disturbing. Shamir seeks to investigate whether Judeophobia really exists to anything near the levels the ADL (Anti-Defamation League of Bnai Brith) claims to combat. This takes him to the US, Israel, Russia, Poland and to several interesting encounters and interviews.31/1/2010
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Why does the US turn a blind eye to Israeli bulldozers?Robert Fisk - The Independent - "Palestine" is no more. Call it a "peace process" or a "road map"; blame it on Barack Obama`s weakness, his pathetic, childish admission – like an optimistic doctor returning a sick child to its parents without hope of recovery – that a Middle East peace was "more difficult" to reach than he imagined. 31/1/2010
Dershowitz: Israel`s new GoldstoneRichard Silverstein - Tikun Olam - The world has taken Goldstone seriously and now it appears Israel will have to–not take Goldstone seriously–but figure out a way to appear to be taking it seriously.31/1/2010
The world isn`t buying Israel`s explanations any moreAluf Benn - Haaretz - "Your situation isn`t good," said a high-ranking European diplomat recently. "No one believes Bibi [Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu] and we don`t want any connection with [Foreign Minister Avigdor] Lieberman. Only a dramatic and surprising diplomatic move, like [former prime minister] Ariel Sharon`s disengagement, will change the impression." 31/1/2010
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The kangarooUri Avnery - Gush Shalom - George Mitchell looks like a kangaroo hopping around with an empty pouch. He hops here and he hops there. Hops to Jerusalem and hops to Ramallah, Damascus, Beirut, Amman (but, God forbid, not to Gaza, because somebody may not like it). Hops, hops, but doesn’t take anything out of his pouch, because the pouch is empty. 31/1/2010
Mazuz the pocket flashlight Gideon Levy - Haaretz - So Israel`s 12th attorney general will be remembered as one who fought corruption, but only small-scale corruption, the misdeeds of individuals. When it came to the misdeeds of the state, Israel found itself bereft of an adviser, lacking a legal and ethical guide to show it the way, as Mazuz should have done. But that would have taken courage, a great deal of courage, even more than it takes to prosecute a president or a prime minister. Nobody would condemn him for that, but to stand up to the state? That was too much, even for Mazuz. 21/1/2010
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Third parties must help Israel comply with its obligations Ghassan Khatib - Bitterlemons - The international community, which has been instrumental in encouraging and facilitating the Palestinian side to fulfill its obligations under the roadmap, is now required to do the same with the Israeli side. That will be the shortest route to resuming meaningful and fruitful negotiations between the two sides.21/1/2010
Get a grip — unless Israel launches its own credible investigation now, it faces the full brunt of universal jurisdictionGadi Taub - Yediot Ahronot - If war crimes were committed in Operation Cast Lead, we have a right to know about them, and their perpetrators should stand trial here in Israel. But it is no less important that we not leave this manipulative report unanswered, and leave those who were sent to defend our security exposed to prosecution and imprisonment. If the IDF is proud of the fact that it does not forsake its soldiers in the hands of the enemy, it should understand that we have enemies of a new kind, and they are damaging our ability to defend ourselves.20/1/2010
Israeli Democracy Or Hypocrisy Stephen Lendman - Countercurrents - Overall, the conclusion is clear. Arabs never had rights in Israel, but increasingly, social benefits, human rights, and essential ones are denied Jews in a society no longer caring. The result is a nation looking more like America that looks more like a banana republic under a president, congress, and corporate community eroding its few remaining freedoms on the way to ending them all. 20/1/2010
Red Rag ColumnGideon Spiro - A righteous man in Sodom - The cry of the robbed Cossack - Righteous Gentile - or Israeli criminal? - Who liquidated the physics professor? - Disaster in Haiti - Sheikh Jarrah20/1/2010
A Palestinian State Has Become ImpossibleLe Figaro Interview with Nusseibah "Sari Nusseibeh: Interview With Le Figaro, 6 Jan 2010 For the pacifist Palestinian Sari Nusseibeh, Israel will soon have no choice but to integrate its Arab population."20/1/2010
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To the victor go the street namesGershom Gorenberg - The government of Israel is outraged because the Palestinian Authority has named a square after Dalal Mughrabi, who killed 37 Israelis in 1978. "Naming a square after Mughrabi is unconscionable. It glorifies political murder. Still, before Netanyahu looks out the window at the neighbors, he might try looking in the mirror." 19/1/2010
The United States, Israel and the retreat of freedomAli Abunimah - EI - "Freedom House`s approach to Israel provides the starkest example of the abyss into which liberal thinking has fallen on the relationship between colonialism and freedom. Israel, we are told, ‘remains the only country in the [Middle East] region to hold a Freedom in the World designation of Free.’ We are informed euphemistically that ‘The beginning of the year [2009] was marred by fierce fighting between the Israeli military and the Hamas movement in the Gaza Strip’"18/1/2010
The Wages of Fear in Israel and the USIra Chernus - AntiWar - "Just as King found the courage he needed back in 1967 when it was ‘time to break silence’ on a terrible war, more and more Jews are breaking the silence that has ruled the American Jewish community when it comes to Israel’s share of responsibility for the continuing conflict. J Street is only the most prominent among the many recent American Jewish voices for peace. They are all joining a movement that’s growing far faster than anyone could have imagined only a few years ago"18/1/2010
Israel`s aid to Haiti won`t save Gaza Akiva Eldar - Haaretz - "A few days before Israeli physicians rushed to save the lives of injured Haitians, the authorities at the Erez checkpoint prevented 17 people from passing through in order to get to a Ramallah hospital for urgent corneal transplant surgery. Perhaps they voted for Hamas. At the same time that Israeli psychologists are treating Haiti`s orphans with devotion, Israeli inspectors are making sure no one is attempting to plant a doll, a notebook or a bar of chocolate in a container bringing essential goods into Gaza"18/1/2010
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Humanitarian Imperialism – IIShmuel Amir - Hagada Hasmalit - It is the United States, with its military power, which maintains the state of extreme injustice that prevails today. The USA, not Iraq or Yugoslavia, is the country with which the world’s progressive forces are in confrontation and which they will confront in the future, again and again. Every gain for the USA in war or diplomacy is – at least partly – a setback for the forces of progress.17/1/2010
`Kill another Turk ...` Uri Avnery - Gush Shalom - Provoking the Turks is not necessarily a good idea.17/1/2010
To be Israeli todayLarry Derfner, J. Post: "When I try to explain Israel to Americans, I ask them to imagine that 80 percent of their fellow citizens were Republicans. Israel has become a one-party country - the war party."16/1/2010
Fraud Number 443David Kretzmer, professor emeritus of public and international law: "As in many other cases, the problem should not be laid at the feet of the Supreme Court justices. They ruled the way they had to rule. Rather, the problem can be attributed to the unwillingness of Israeli society to understand that the way it has administered the territories since 1967 is founded on hypocrisy, fraud and a trampling of rights." 16/1/2010
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Of domes and doom ...The very possibility of freeing the residents of the south from the rocket threat means that we are also free of the need to deal with the problem of Hamas ... and, in general, with what is called the political process ... Another few developments like this and we will be exempt from policy altogether. 16/1/2010
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Red Rag ColumnGideon Spiro - still a long way to go - police-approved love - immigrants14/1/2010
A second Gaza war around the corner? Hasan Abu Nimah - The Electronic Intifada - Israel, which does not act according to any normal or civilized standards, could have several motives for this; not least, another "small war" could give Israel a welcome distraction from the continuing diplomatic impasse or any threat of a renewed American-led peace initiative, no matter how timid. 14/1/2010
Gaza & the Israeli Peace Movement: One Year LaterDavid Shulman - The New York Review of Books Blog - As a result, hundreds of Israelis, many of them young people joining the struggle for the first time, take off Friday afternoons to march through town and then demonstrate, courting arrest and harassment, in Sheikh Jarrah; the clumsy attempts by the Jerusalem police to suppress the protest violently have only added to our numbers. The demonstrations have a festive character, with drummers, acrobats, and clowns (the police arrested the clowns). Rumors about the demise of the Israeli peace movement are, it seems, premature. 13/1/2010
Lieberman tells Israeli ambassadors to take the gloves offCecilie Surasky - MuzzleWatch - Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman, a former bouncer who now merely plays on a larger stage, summoned Israeli ambassadors to the homeland to berate them for being too soft and for not defending Israel’s honor when criticized. They must stop “groveling”, as the BBC reported: He told a shocked audience of some 150 envoys in Jerusalem to “stop turning the other cheek” whenever Israel was insulted, Israeli media report. The envoys were reportedly given no right of reply at the conference. “We received a monologue without being able to hold a discussion,” one unnamed ambassador told Ha’aretz newspaper. 13/1/2010
Response to Prof. Halbertal’s Article on the Goldstone Report – From Eight of His Former StudentsJerry Haber - The Magnes Zionist - The "Letter to Moshe Halbertal" begins as follows; Your article in the New Republic, an attack on the Goldstone Report, surprised and disturbed us. We feel obligated to lay before you our objections and our criticism in a direct manner. The immediate subject of the article is the Goldstone Report, which is portrayed as biased and fundamentally flawed. But it is difficult to escape the impression that in doing so you justify, after the fact, the pretext for the Gaza war, as well as its manner of conduct, without the qualifications that we consider vital. 13/1/2010
Israel`s New Rocket Defence SystemJonathan Cook - Countercurrents - Even more significantly, what economic sense does it make for Israel to try to destroy home-made rockets when each interceptor missile costs an estimated $100,000? Military analysts reckon that, in addition, Israel will be forced to spend $1 billion on 20 batteries needed to protect Israeli communities next to Gaza and more in the north that are currently in the line of Hizbollah’s fire from Lebanon. That cost will rise rapidly as Hamas and Hizbollah extend the reach of their arsenals. Another system, Magic Wand, can reportedly shoot down medium-range missiles, but each interception costs close to $1 million. 13/1/2010
Israel needs to rethink its Gaza strategy before it`s too late Editorial - Haaretz - The time has come to rethink Israeli strategy in Gaza. The economic embargo, which has brought severe distress to the inhabitants of Gaza, has not brought down Hamas, nor has it freed kidnapped soldier Gilad Shalit. The siege has only damaged Israel`s image and led to accusations that it has shirked its humanitarian responsibilities in Gaza under international law. Instead of erring by invoking the default solution of more force, which does not create long-term security or ease the distress of the Palestinians in Gaza, the crossings between Israel and the Gaza Strip should be opened and indirect assistance rendered to rebuild its ruins. 12/1/2010
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Israel and the worldAssaf Gefen - YNET - "Yet as opposed to Bibi, ‘Mr. PR,’ who believes any rotten merchandize can be sold in a nicer package and using smooth words, Lieberman’s policy package comes with more exclamation marks than a cigarette package. If we must find a ray of light in Lieberman’s presence in the Foreign Ministry and its effect on our global image, it is that U-turn from Netanyahu’s telemarketing policy. With Lieberman, what you see is what you get"11/1/2010
Imposing Middle East PeaceHenry Siegman - The Nation - Olmert was mistaken in one respect, for he said Israel would turn into an apartheid state when the Arab population in Greater Israel outnumbers the Jewish population. But the relative size of the populations is not the decisive factor in such a transition. Rather, the turning point comes when a state denies national self-determination to a part of its population--even one that is in the minority--to which it has also denied the rights of citizenship.10/1/2010
Starting from the endYoel Marcus - Haaretz - Nothing will move without an American plan, without a massive push, even a forced one, from Obama. We were always wary of a forced solution but it is most likely that there are greater dangers than that. 10/1/2010
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The Iran Nuclear Trigger Forgeries By GARETH PORTER - Counterpunch "New revelations about two documents leaked to The Times of London to show that Iran is working on a "nuclear trigger" mechanism have further undermined the credibility of the document the newspaper had presented as evidence of a continuing Iranian nuclear weapons program."8/1/2010
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Ten years of negotiations and crisis by Shlomo Gazit Bitterlemons "The first decade of the twenty-first century was characterized by crisis in both Israeli-Palestinian communication and progress toward an Israeli-Palestinian agreement."8/1/2010
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Almost irreversible by Ghassan Khatib - Bitterlemons "The first decade of the twenty-first century, which ended a few days ago, witnessed the undoing of all the positive milestones and achievements that had occurred in the Palestinian-Israeli peace process in the last decade of the twentieth century." 8/1/2010
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Chronicles of what comes nextby Samir Ghattas - Al Ahram Weekly in English "The Arabs should beware not to become victims of Israeli economic hegemony if and when direct conflict recedes" 8/1/2010
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A Tale of Two Cities...in Palestine` by Yousef MunayyerYousef Munayyer - PCB - "In sum, the successes or failures of both Gaza and Ramallah, like all occupied Palestinian locales, are overwhelmingly determined by Israeli or American actions and intentions and not the actions of the respective regimes."6/1/2010
Gaza and the path to accountability Sunera Thobani - EI - "In seeking to protect Israel from the Goldstone report and Israeli politicians from the threat of arrest in the UK, the British, American and Canadian governments might well be engaged in a battle to save their own skins in the face of an emboldened legal activism. Gaza may well be the gateway to anti-imperialist accountability in the 21st century." 6/1/2010
Israel must stop boycotting institutions of international lawEditorial - Haaretz - "A country that believes in the morality of its actions and those of its soldiers should not behave like a permanent suspect and boycott institutions of international law."6/1/2010
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Are Israel and apartheid South Africa really different? Akiva Eldar - Haaretz - Indeed, systematic segregation (apartheid) and discrimination in South Africa were meant to preserve the supremacy of one race over others. In Israel, on the other hand, institutional discrimination is meant to preserve the supremacy of a group of Jewish settlers over Palestinian Arabs. As far as discriminatory practices are concerned, it`s hard to find differences between white rule in South Africa and Israeli rule in the territories; for example, separate areas and separate laws for Jews and Palestinians. 4/1/2010
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Why We Support the Non-violent BDS Movement Udi Aloni (Translated from YNET) - If a critical mass of privileged Israeli citizens joins the non-violent struggle from the inside, standing shoulder to shoulder with the disenfranchised, perhaps outside pressure will no longer be necessary.3/1/2010
Settlers, tell us, what do you think will happen?Gideon Levy - Haaretz - Some of the highways on which the settler drives are cleansed of Palestinians; he has never visited the neighboring villages, not one of whose names he would know were it not for traffic signs pointing in their direction. His teachers, functionaries and rabbis sketch out the scenery that is his world, leaving him no shred of doubt: the Arabs are terrorists, all of them are suspicious packages, and the Jews are allowed to do as they wish, for they are the lords of the land, and there is no other but they. 3/1/2010
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PatriotismShmuel Amir - Hagada Hasmalit - The affinity of people on the left to their homeland is their concern for the people who live in it. It is a natural affinity for their surroundings, for their family, for their neighbours, for those who work with them, and of course for their cultural heritage. But that affinity is distinct from nationalism and not achieved at the expense of other peoples. They see the welfare of their people in the framework of the welfare of other peoples and not in opposition to them. They understand that the oppression of another people can not benefit their own people. Karl Marx, in his time, noted in regard to the oppression of Ireland by England that an oppressing people cannot itself be free. Left-wing patriots understand that well, and their love for their people is also expressed in the desire to save them from war and killing.3/1/2010
The entire world demands: Freedom for Gaza!Michael Warschawski - Alternative Information Centre - It is already possible to attribute one achievement to the Gaza Freedom March: the Gaza Strip and its 1.5 million inhabitants have come out of the forgotten world.3/1/2010
The Iron WallUri Avnery - Gush Shalom - SOMETHING ODD, almost bizarre, is going on in Egypt these days.3/1/2010
Nuclear Hero`s `Crime` Was Making Us Safer Daniel Ellsberg - LA Times - " Mordechai Vanunu - my friend, my hero, my brother - has again been arrested in Israel on "suspicion" of the "crime" of "meeting with foreigners."...The cult and culture of secrecy in every nuclear weapons state have endangered humanity and continues to threaten its survival. Vanunu`s challenge to that wrongful and dangerous secrecy must be joined worldwide. "2/1/2010
Once More Into the BreachUssama Makdisi A Middle East Report Online Feature "There is no unanimity among scholars of the Middle East about America’s relationship with the region they study. But discomfort with representations of the region has been widespread among scholars at least since the publication of Edward Said’s enormously influential book Orientalism in 1978. "1/1/2010
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The PA will have to yield to pressure by Sami Abdel-Shafi - Bitterlemons "It seems ever more evident that while the US-led international community is urging a resumption of Israeli-Palestinian negotiations, Palestinians increasingly feel the exercise is fruitless."29/1/2010
The grand Zionist façadeby Shahid Alam Al-Ahram Weekly "Assertions without substance, prejudice without apology, violence without regret; these are the foundations of the Zionist dream of Israel" 29/1/2010
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Teacher of a lifetime Gideon Levy - Haaretz - Cohen told his students about the occupation. He told them that you can`t brutally crush values the way Israel has been doing for 42 years and say we are educating for democracy. He asked them whether they would be willing to live under an occupation. He told them he does not justify terror but understands what leads to attacks. He called on educators to tell students that the occupation is cursed and called on students to serve in an army that protects security, not an army busy with the occupation. 7/1/2010
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Israel and Hamas have less than one month to show credible investigations into war crimesAmnesty International - "The clock is running – if both sides cannot provide real evidence that they are taking steps to put their houses in order, the international community will need to take measures to ensure that the perpetrators are held to account, and that the victims receive full reparation, including compensation," said Malcolm Smart, Amnesty International’s director for the Middle East and North Africa. Should investigations fail to meet required standards, it is the responsibility of the international community to bring the perpetrators of crimes to justice, including by the Security Council referring the situation to the International Criminal Court (ICC). 7/1/2010
Israeli Use Of Painful Shackling As A Form of Torture Stephen Lendman - Countercurrents - Israel`s use of shackling "has snowballed almost out of control....even when it serves no real" purpose, and it begins at the time of arrest. Plastic handcuffs are used "that can be tightened but cannot be released or halted." They inflict pain, especially when hands are cuffed from behind, the most common way. Shackling continues during interrogation, "where diverse and creative forms of cuffing are intended to apply pain and pressure...." Then in cells, detainees are painfully shackled to beds for extended periods. Even when they`re transfered for urgent hospital treatment, cuffing stays in place throughout. 6/1/2010
Officers’ trip to UK canceled due to concern of arrestItamar Eichner - Yediot Ahronot - The Israeli delegation, comprised of officers ranking colonel, lieutenant colonel and major, was invited by the British army to examine military cooperation. Due to concern that warrants of arrest would be issued, Israeli officials contacted British government officials in advance and demanded that they guarantee that the officers would not be arrested. This is after two weeks ago, a warrant of arrest was issued against Opposition Chairwoman Tzippi Livni and earlier there were attempts to have a similar warrant issued against Defense Minister Ehud Barak. To the great astonishment of the Israelis—the British announced last week that they could not guarantee that the officers would not be arrested. Consultations were held in Israel among the top echelons and it was decided: under the present circumstances, no risk should be taken, and the visit was canceled. 6/1/2010
Gaza and the path to accountabilitySunera Thobani - The Electronic Intifada - A number of reasons have been put forward for the British government`s eagerness to protect Israeli politicians from the threat of arrest. These include Britain`s staunch support for the State of Israel since its inception; the organizational strength of Zionist lobbies, and in particular, their ability to impact the outcome of electoral politics; and lastly, the desire to avoid being branded anti-Semitic. While these are certainly important considerations, there is yet another pressing concern that has received little attention. This is a concern shared by the Americans and Canadians, and it speaks directly to the specificity of this particular moment in the so-called War on Terror. Indeed, this concern may well eclipse all other considerations for the moment. 6/1/2010
Boycotting the Occupation Joharah Baker - MIFTAH - Palestinians in the occupied territories are under so many pressures, it is almost unfair to ask them to completely boycott Israeli products, especially since their foreign alternative is so much more expensive. The most that can be asked of them is to look for a suitable Palestinian alternative such as Juneidi dairy products, made in Hebron. For those living abroad there is really no excuse for buying any kind of Israeli products, originating from settlements or otherwise. There are enough alternatives for them to choose from. However, even Palestinians here are morally obligated to draw an indelible line where settlements are concerned. 6/1/2010
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