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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    

On What the Pope Taught Richard Falk--In my view, perhaps overstated, such carping misses the point, and manifests a disabling form of blindness. What was worth seeing, and only this, was the Pope bowed in prayer at the Bethlehem apartheid wall. dn31/5/2014
The Nakba Day shooting sums up the crime of occupation, which has turned the IDF from the people’s army into a hothouse of violence.Haaretz Editorial--The report in Haaretz (Chaim Levinson and Amos Harel, Thursday) that a non-combat soldier attached to the Border Police force fired, contrary to regulations, at Palestinian protesters during the riots in Beitunia – apparently because of “boredom” – does little to advance the investigation into the death of two young Palestinians at the Nakba Day protest. However, it raises other troubling questions, which are no less serious. dn31/5/2014
Not neo-Nazis, Judeo-NazisUri Misgav - Haaretz "Amos Oz got it wrong again. It’s not neo-Nazis. It’s Judeo-Nazis. Scions of a unique group which Yeshayahu Leibowitz Prophesized so well immediately after the great victory of 1967. Racism, murderousness and profound hatred originating in a religious-messianic worldview that is fueled by the occupation and settlement enterprise." ca30/5/2014
‘Washington Post’ reports that funders have excommunicated Jews who don’t believe in ZionismPhilip Weiss - Mondoweiss "Marc Fisher has an excellent piece up at the Washington Post on the cracks beginning to show inside the official Washington Jewish community over Israel, with young Jews saying they do not believe in the need for a Jewish state, and in doing so, fostering an argument. The Post piece is exceptional for its openness about matters usually deemed too parochial or marginal for American readers to care about them — the Jewish argument over Zionism " ca30/5/2014
Israel pushes West Bank toward economic disasterAkiva Eldar - Al-Monitor - Turning the West Bank into an economic twin of the Gaza Strip will result in a similar situation in terms of security, as well. Initial signs of this are already evident in a new-old phenomenon of attacking Israeli journalists covering the occupied territories.-rh 28/5/2014
A Papal confession to the Palestinian peopleMarc H. Ellis - Mondoweiss - The Papacy’s stand for justice and peace is new on the world scene. Historically, the culpability of the Roman Catholic Church is more than sitting on the sidelines as the Jews of Europe were murdered by the millions. The Catholic Church, indeed the history of Christianity itself, is culpable in colonial violence around the world. For many communities, the coming of Christianity is one of the dark holes of their human universe.-rh 28/5/2014
Israel prefers right wing over radical Islam in EuropeBen Caspit - Al-Monitor - "Many Israelis do not perceive the rise of Europe’s radical right parties at the present time to be a real threat, and perhaps the opposite. This might [even] help to curb the Islamization of Europe, which in Israel is perceived to be a disconcerting strategic phenomenon."28/5/2014
Housing Minister`s deal with JNF raises legal questionsNahum Barnea - Ynet - "Uri Ariel`s back-door agreement to act as middleman between Jewish National Fund and government ministries is an act of `chutzpah`." - id 28/5/2014
What Turkish arrest warrants could mean for reconciliation effortsMichael Omer-Man - +972 - "A final reconciliation deal, although reportedly nearly complete, has not been signed. Two demands appeared to be blocking the deal: Turkey’s insistence that Israel lift its blockade on Gaza, and Israel’s insistence that the Turkish Parliament pass legislation to block the prosecution of Israeli officials involved in the deadly raid." - id 28/5/2014
Israel criticized for helping Christians, but what are Muslims doing?Ray Hanania - The Arab Daily News - "I suspect Israel is reaching out to Christian Palestinians not because it’s the right thing to do, but because they need to counter the growing concerns from Christians in the West about Israel’s oppressive policies." - id 28/5/2014
Unilateral withdrawal makes a comeback in Israeli politicsNoam Sheizaf - +972 - This solution will involve taking all the demands and trial balloons Netanyahu put forward during his negotiations with John Kerry’s team and making them into part of the plan: Israel will declare itself a Jewish state through Knesset legislation (which is already underway); the IDF will maintain its presence in the Jordan Valley and will enjoy the freedom to operate in the evacuated land, as Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon demanded; East Jerusalem will remain in Israel’s hands; and no Palestinian refugees will be allowed to return. Israel will eat the cake – maintain maximum control over land and a minimum number of Palestinians within its territory – and be absolved of apartheid accusations in the eyes of most of the international community, though not the Palestinians. [ak]27/5/2014
After 47 years, U.S. Jews must get over their fear of talking about the occupationAnat Saragusti--As the Six-Day War’s anniversary approaches, mainstream American Jewry cannot only watch from the sidelines: Stand up and oppose the injustice and human rights violations of the occupation.dn25/5/2014
Europe Should Atone for Its Sins John V. Whitbeck--Now that the American-monopolized “peace process” has expired, Europe should seize the initiative and try to do something useful for Israelis, Palestinians and peace. dn25/5/2014
The Idea of Israel – Book Review Jim Miles--This is a powerfully written unsettling work that relates the story of Israel from the perspective of how ideas are changed and manipulated for the benefit of the state. Unfortunately the majority of citizens of most countries are susceptible to the ideation/ideology of the mainstream of political thought as it is supported by the mainstream press. In the case of Israel, image and ideation, its narrative and ideology, are of paramount importance for the survival of the state beyond its military strength and relatively successful integration into the globalized corporate governed world.dn24/5/2014
Don`t Let Pamela Geller Speak for American JewsRachel Roberts--All of the mistrust, prejudices, and abuses that Muslims face in the post 9/11 world are things Jews should be quite familiar with. It was not so long ago that prominent public figures like Father Coughlin and Henry Ford proclaimed publicly that Jews were enemies of American values, that our leaders were secretly maneuvering to undermine the Constitution in favor of an anti-Christian state, and that we were simply not to be trusted. This resulted in pervasive discrimination that permeated all aspects of our lives,. . . dn24/5/2014
A Modest Proposal: The Three-State SolutionOri Z Soltes - Hubub "From the perspective of Israeli security, the majority of Palestinians and their PA leaders on the West Bank have expressed readiness to think and act in favor of peace and to move toward normalized relations with both Jordan and Israel—and with the world within and beyond the Middle East—but Hamas, embedded in Gaza, remains more intransigent. The three-state solution would make it possible for Israel to focus toward normalized relations with the West Bank." ca 23/5/2014
In Their Own JuiceUri Avnery - Gush Shalom "The United States has tried very hard to make peace between Israel and Palestine. Poor John Kerry has devoted almost all of his considerable energies to getting both sides to meet, to talk, to reach compromises. At the end of nine months, he found out that it was a false pregnancy. No baby, not even a fetus. Nothing at all. So American leaders are justified in feeling angry. Angry at both sides. Neither of them has shown any willingness to sacrifice its interests in order to do a favor to Obama or Kerry. Ungrateful, these Middle Easterners." ca 23/5/2014
Beitunia killings and the media`s incredibly high bar for Palestinian storiesNoam Sheizaf - +972 "At a time when newspapers are collapsing, this is no small thing. Israelis often ask why their own human rights organizations turn to the international community with their stories and findings, but they should actually be wondering why neither the public nor the Hebrew-language media are interested in this material." ca23/5/2014
Palestine: No Action in Assault by Police : Peaceful Protesters, Onlookers Beaten, ChargedHuman Rights Watch - “It’s absurd that the Palestinian justice system is prosecuting the victims of police brutality rather than their attackers,” said Joe Stork, deputy Middle East and North Africa director at Human Rights Watch. “Palestine should start living up to its human rights obligations by exonerating the victims and holding the police to account.”-rh 22/5/2014
Former Palestinian Spymaster: Only Solution is a Single Palestinian StateAmira Hass - Information Clearing House - Tirawi does not miss being the head of the Palestinian General Intelligence Service in the West Bank (from 1994 until late 2008). He says he prefers not issuing orders and instructions. The only orders that bind him, he says, are the feelings and desires of the Palestinian people. When asked what the biggest failure of the Palestinian intelligence service was during his term, he answers without hesitation: “That we didn’t manage to plant any spies inside the Zionist entity, the way they plant, and try to plant, spies among us.”-rh 22/5/2014
A pre-publication breakdown of Im Tirzu`s latest `report`Yossi Gurvitz - +972 - This is the first time that anyone has issued a report in the format of a children’s book. I want to congratulate Im Tirtzu for this stylistic breakthrough, and to congratulate them on their new graphic artist. However, other than this stylistic innovation, the report is regrettably a pack of lies and mostly a recycling of old material. It contains no new claims, nothing that hasn’t already been said in the last three years. Could it be that Im Tirtzu is suffering from arteriosclerosis? Let’s hope so.-rh 21/5/2014
Hamas, Fatah near deadline on new governmentAdnan Abu Amer - Al-Monitor - Palestinians are looking forward to the day when the Fatah and Hamas reconciliation government is finally formed, despite fears that this formation might face last-minute roadblocks, as the scheduled end of May date for its completion approaches.-rh 21/5/2014
Abbas` Holocaust condemnation commendableAviad Kleinberg - Ynet - "Netanyahu sees the Holocaust as an Israeli PR asset. Only Israel will decide who can use this asset and who cannot. Israel`s enemies, for example, should deny the Holocaust. Israel`s allies are allowed to recognize it only if they take responsibility for it and if it serves the State of Israel`s interests." - id 21/5/2014
Open Letter to Pope Francis from a Christian PalestinianRay Hanania - The Arab Daily News - "There is a big campaign by Israel to convince you that Christians are treated better in Israel than in the unrecognized State of Palestine in the West Bank and Gaza, or in the rest of the Arab World. But I wanted to bring a few facts to your attention, considering my mother is from Bethlehem, and, well, Jesus is my relative. (It’s a small world, really.)." - id 21/5/2014
Tea and AntipathyAdam Keller - Crazy Country - "It turns out that someone had presented to the Members of the German Parliament a detailed long list of the incidents in which the Israeli Navy’s existing gunboats opened fire on Palestinian fishermen off the Gaza coast." - id21/5/2014
Rajoub offers three alternatives to peace negotiationsALRAY - In a lecture held in Doha, Jibril Rajoub of the Fatah Central Committee suggested three alternatives to the failed peace talks with Israel: to impose an international trusteeship over the Palestinian lands, to resort to a regional integration that would be capable of supporting the Palestinian cause, and to set up an interior national front, using popular resistance as its weapon against the Israeli occupation. ak20/5/2014
After Kerry, only BDS may save the two-state solutionLarry Derfner - +972 - Even if Herzog (or Livni, or Lapid) could get elected to lead a center-left government with Meretz and Arabs and all sorts of other good people – which is unlikely; polls show Netanyahu and the right gaining popularity because the public blames the Palestinians for the peace talks’ failure – such a government could not end the occupation and carry out the two-state solution. The reason is that neither a Herzog government nor any other government in today’s Israel can do what’s necessary to meet the Palestinians’ demands, which are backed by the entire world (myself included), and which involve, but are by no means limited to, the removal of between roughly 100,000 and 170,000 settlers from the West Bank. [bz]20/5/2014
Palestinian reconciliation increases chance for peaceZeev Tzahor - Ynet - Jewish radicals and moderates reconciled too ahead of State of Israel`s establishment [ry]19/5/2014
Letter to Ghassan Kanafani on the 66th Anniversary of the Nakba Jehan Bseiso--On our birthday this year I turned 31 and you turned 78. Even the dead grow old without a homeland. dn18/5/2014
Bibi’s Big PR StuntCOLIN SHINDLERMAY--As Israel celebrates the 66th anniversary of its founding, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has vowed to introduce an addition to the country’s basic laws — the closest thing it has to a constitution — to “legally anchor” Israel as a Jewish state.dn 18/5/2014
Allow freedom of worshipHaaretz Editorial--Pope Francis I’s visit to Israel next week has awakened a number of sleeping demons. Right-wing activists, ultra-Orthodox elements, settler extremists and political activists have been running a callous campaign recently against the pope and any closer ties between Israel and the Vatican.dn18/5/2014
A Knesset member whose irresponsible violence belies her appearanceRavit Hecht--Ayelet Shaked is gradually finding her place in the pantheon of the extreme right that has taken over the country. dn18/5/2014
A History of ‘Price-Tag’ ViolenceNicola Perugini and Neve Gordon--On 10 May, Amos Oz criticised the so-called ‘price-tag attacks’ carried out by Israeli settlers. The label is used by the culprits themselves to describe retaliatory violence against Palestinians: beatings and arson as well as racist graffiti sprayed on the walls of churches and mosques. Oz described the perpetrators as ‘Hebrew neo-Nazi groups’. dn17/5/2014
Manoeuvres without substanceAhmed Eleiba - Al Ahram Weekly "“It is all maneuvering without sense or substance,” observed Said Okasha, Israeli affairs expert in Al-Ahram Centre for Political and Strategic Studies, with respect to Lapid’s remarks and the reactions they stirred.“The Israeli Finance Minister knows perfectly well that Hamas has an ideology that precedes its general political line — that it is a resistance movement,” he said in an interview with the Weekly." ca 16/5/2014
‘Forward’ runs shocking images of Israeli children glorifying violencePhilip Weiss - Mondoweiss - The Forward has published a shocking piece called, “When Israelis Teach Their Kids to Hate” with the picture above of children in the settlement of Efrat celebrating Israeli independence day, and another one of a child holding a giant rifle (at that link).-rh14/5/2014
Former ICC prosecutor says Palestinians can join courtAkiva Eldar - Al-Monitor - "Seventeen human rights organizations, among them Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, on May 8 called for the president of the Palestinian Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, to apply on behalf of Palestine to join the International Criminal Court (ICC)." - id 14/5/2014
Apartheid is 66 years oldKhaled Titi - Ynet - "Thank you, really. And really, just admit it: We are living in an apartheid after all." - id 14/5/2014
Ehud Olmert is going to jail for the wrong crimesHaggai Matar - +972 - "He has blood on his hands. The blood of over 2,000 people. Today he was sent to jail for six years for accepting bribes in order to build some ugly buildings in Jerusalem. When will he be put on trial for the serious crimes he committed?" - id 14/5/2014
Blue and White tirednessAdam Keller - Crazy Country - "Exactly what caused this lassitude and fatigue which befell so many Israeli citizens on the sixty-sixth Independence Day of their country? It is certainly worthwhile to look into this question." - id 14/5/2014
The Paradox: Taking Abu Mazen at his WordGilly Harpaz - The Geneva Initiative - "Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu didn`t believe PA President Mahmoud Abbas when he called the Holocaust the most heinous crime against humanity in the modern era. So why is he insisting that Abu Mazen recognize Israel as a Jewish state? Will he believe him then?" - id 14/5/2014
What is the Israeli Right`s one-state vision?Noam Sheizaf - +972 - Elitzur, Hotovely and Rivlin understood the criticism they might face. They predicted that the world will not accept a “solution” that leaves Gaza or the refugees out, and that Israel would be under considerable pressure during the implementation phase. [bz]13/5/2014
United Palestinian government may provide new opportunities for peaceJimmy Carter - Washington Post - The decision by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to have Palestine become more deeply involved in the United Nations can also be beneficial. All Palestinian factions within a unity government will have to accept the commitments to comply with the four Geneva Conventions of 1949, later protocols of 1977 regarding the laws of war and others related to discrimination against women and the rights of children. [bz]13/5/2014
With Status Quo On Its Side, Israel Happily Rejects PeaceSaeb Erekat - Time Magazine - Our country (...) respects human rights and international law, a commitment already assumed during the announcement of national reconciliation. This includes our right to make use of international forums in order to end Israeli violations and achieve the fulfillment of our long overdue rights. [bz]13/5/2014
The Bibster and the Slickster - Netanyahu and Clinton: Brothers Under the SkinAndrew Levine - CounterPunch - "It is therefore not surprising that the democratic character of the Israeli state is itself becoming undone. Unless the situation changes radically, it is only a matter of time before Israel’s Occupation regime takes over Israel itself" [ry] 12/5/2014
America & Israel: "War is our most important product"Jane Stillwater-- I just finished reading an article about how guns and munitions have become Israel`s most important export -- and immediately I started thinking, "Hey, that is America`s most important export too!" America and Israel now have so much in common. No wonder AIPAC is so popular here and Israelis love Americans so much. They are practically twins. dn11/5/2014
Charlie Andreasson speaks about the attack | Gaza`s ArkCharlie Andreasson--Charlie Andreasson is a member activist of Ship to Gaza – Sweden, a Freedom Flotilla Coalition partner - who is in Gaza cooperating with the Gaza’s Ark project. He writes his personal reflections about the attack on the Ark last Tuesday 29 April 2014 at 3:45 local time. dn11/5/2014
The politics and money behind Israel`s Zionist bureaucracyAnshel Pfeffer--Israel`s national Zionist institutions, like the JNF, survive because they are run by politicians who know how to be useful to other politicians. dn 10/5/2014
Anti-Semitism` vs. Palestinian Solidarity - BDS Best Hope for a Desperately Needed ChangeCantor Michael Davis--Israel has withdrawn once again from peace talks with the Palestinians. Where, then, are we supposed to put our hopes for a peaceful and just resolution in Israel-Palestine? I have chosen to embrace the Palestinian call for boycott campaigns against Israel. Until Israel grants its Palestinian citizens rights equal to those of its Jewish citizens, addresses the legitimate grievances of the Palestinian refugees and, most urgently, ends the Occupation of the West Bank, this is our best option. A broad coalition of Palestinian civil society has called for our support of Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (BDS). Supporting campaigns against Israeli companies, institutions and people who are complicit in the Occupation and discrimination against Palestinians is a way to affirm our commitment to justice and equality. dn10/5/2014
Bill Clinton and the Bogus Iranian ThreatSheldon Richman - ICH "The Clinton administration implemented the “dual containment” policy against Iraq and Iran. But Porter reports that Robert Pelletreau, the Middle East policymaker in the State Department, acknowledges “that it was ‘pretty much accepted in Washington’ that the policy had originated in Israel.” ca9/5/2014
Obama outmaneuvers Netanyahu, at lastMatthew Taylor - Mondoweiss "Congratulations to our President and/or to whoever on his team decided to reveal the truth. A small dose of anonymous honesty is better than next to none. In the words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., “A time comes when silence is betrayal.” Just as that day arrived for King and Vietnam, that time is here now at last." ca9/5/2014
Former Head of Israeli Nuclear Commission: Iran Is At Least 10 Years Away From a NukeJohn Glaser - "Brigadier General (res.) Uzi Eilam, who for a decade headed the Israel Atomic Energy Commission, does not believe that Tehran is even close to having a bomb, if that is even what it really aspires to." ca9/5/2014
`There was no generous offer`: A history of peace talksRaviv Drucker - +972 "Raviv Drucker, a prominent journalist who co-hosts a well-known television magazine program on Channel 10, wrote a tough blog post in which he takes some of Israel’s best known journalists to task for presenting a completely erroneous interpretation of the Palestinian position regarding a negotiated agreement for a two-state solution." ca9/5/2014
Israel underestimates Palestinian leadershipDaoud Kuttab - Al Monitor "Nearly five decades of occupation and colonization have left Israelis shocked when Palestinians take action that`s independent of them and their expectations." ca 9/5/2014
Palestinian Unity: Hope And Gloom In The Beach Refugee CampRamzy Baroud - Countercurrents - The Americans and the Israelis have the largest keys to quashing the unity deal. Netanyahu immediately suspended the peace process, as the Hamas-Fatah agreement was a last minute escape route for his government to disown the futile talks, whose collapse is now being blamed on the Palestinians. The Americans are in agreement with Israel, as has always been the case. Scenes in Gaza tell of much hope and rejoicing, but it is a repeated scene of past agreements that have failed. Sometimes despair and hope go hand in hand. The impoverished place has served as a battlefield for several wars and a continued siege. It is aching for a glimmer of hope.-rh 8/5/2014
Yet another betrayal of the Palestinians : `Barack Obama becomes the latest US President effectively to give up on the peace process`Robert Fisk - The Independent - How on earth did Mr Kerry think that he could bring this nonsense off in nine months? For as long as the US administration remains in hock to the Israeli government and continues to support Israel, right or wrong, it can never – and will never – negotiate peace between the two.-rh 8/5/2014
Why The `Peace" Talks Collapsed—and Should Not be ResumedRichard Falk -Information Clearing House - Constructive diplomacy would contrast with what has recently transpired, which seemed to combine deflection from Israeli expansionism followed by participation in a childish blame game. It is important that world public opinion reject as meaningless the diplomatic charade of peace talks while the fate of a people continues to be daily sacrificed on the altar of geopolitics.-rh 8/5/2014
Peace between unequal partiesAndrew J. Bacevich - The Boston Globe - Stripped to its essence, therefore, peace, as Israelis understand the term, is an agreement between supplicant and benefactor. It’s the condition that ensues when the weaker party meets the stronger party’s requirements. Peace implies submission. Given its superior power, why should Israel settle for less?-rh 8/5/2014
Israel, at 66, losing its creative national spiritAkiva Eldar - Al-Monitor - Since the first intifada, which broke out at the end of 1987 and was accompanied a year later by the Palestinian Declaration of Independence, the roles keep reversing. Israel started showing early signs of weariness and complacency, and the Palestinians took the initiative and started displaying creativity.-rh7/5/2014
Palestinian diaspora needs unity dealDaoud Kuttab - Al-Monitor - By bringing the PLO-Hamas split to a close and by reinvigorating the PLO it is hoped that Palestinians in the diaspora would also put aside their ideological differences and work together for a common goal of ending the occupation, irrespective of what type of state will replace it.-rh 7/5/2014
Israel`s halfhearted independence celebrationBen Caspit - Al-Monitor - " The Israel of 2014 is in a different place than where its founding fathers dreamed it would be." - id7/5/2014
Call it colonialism, call it occupation - just don`t call it `apartheid`Thomas Mitchell - +972 - "...the term apartheid sheds little light on a situation but is simply the latest politically-correct word of abuse." - id 7/5/2014
Of racism and occupation and apartheidAdam Keller - Crazy Country - "To the late Golda Meir is attributed the saying "After the Holocaust, nobody in the world can accuse us", and also this year ministers and deputy ministers and Knesset members repeated this argument in various forms, against anyone criticizing Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians." - id 7/5/2014
Israel`s Mordechai Vanunu is as much a hero as Edward SnowdenDuncan Campbell - The Guardian - Those who support the US whistleblower should back his Israeli predecessor in his bid for a new life abroad. The decision to restrict Mordechai Vanunu`s movements seems to be based more on a desire to inflict punishment on an unrepentant man than for security concerns. [bz]6/5/2014
Red Rag weekly column: Holocaust Memorial Day - Eichmannite mentality - Netanyahu: peace-refuser - Independence DayGideon Spiro - The Prime Minister of Israel is a peace refuser who is an expert in the Peace Process, an endless process the only purpose of which is to buy time and to wear down those who participate in it.6/5/2014
On Memorial Day, Israelis must reflect on Palestinians` collective punishmentMairav Zonszein - +972 - This year’s Memorial Day and Independence Day comes at a time of increasing incidents of terror against the Palestinian population in both Israel and the West Bank. And yet, Palestinians are the ones being put under total closure [ry]5/5/2014
A Shameful Chapter Uri Avnery - Gush Shalom - "How would the US react to a declaration that the Palestinians would not conduct negotiations with an Israeli government that includes semi-fascist parties? With outrage, of course. How does the US react to an Israeli statement that Israel will not negotiate with a Palestinian government that includes Hamas? With full approval, of course" [ry]5/5/2014
Why Mahmoud Abbas Holocaust Declaration MattersMarc Schneier - Forward - For Abbas to have elevated the Holocaust over all other crimes against humanity is a remarkable development. For others to dismiss this statement as nothing but theater is truly a shame. [bz] 3/5/2014
Netanyahu rides nationalist waveMazal Mualem - Al-Monitor “I don’t think we’ve ever experienced a time like this. We could, in a sense, deteriorate into a nationalist state. Our liberal democratic character is being worn away.” This was the diagnosis of Mordechai Kremnitzer, vice president of research at the Israel Democracy Institute and professor emeritus of law at the Hebrew University, during one of the most challenging weeks that Israeli democracy has ever known." ca 16/5/2014
COMIC: Why even god can`t reach a two-state solutionEli Valley - +972 "Eli Valley is a writer and artist whose work has been published in New York Magazine, The Daily Beast, Gawker, Saveur, Haaretz and elsewhere. He is currently finishing his first novel. Eli’s website is and he tweets at @elivalley." ca16/5/2014
A rights-based discourse is the best way to fight dispossessionAmjad Alqasis - +972 "A solution to the ongoing displacement of Palestinians cannot be based on fruitless negotiations, but rather on the full implementation of international law. A solution to the ongoing colonization and oppression of the Palestinian people should be found through a strict rights-based approach. Such rights are not guaranteed through political negotiations, but through full adherence to and implementation of international law and rights." ca16/5/2014
Negotiations: What went wrong?Alon Ben-Meir - Ma`an News Agency "Kerry made a fundamental mistake by establishing rules of engagement that were not conducive to progress, raising serious doubts about the prospect of a solution. He caved in to Netanyahu`s demands to address Israel`s national security concerns first, instead of dealing with borders, which would have defined the contours of the Palestinian state, which Abbas sorely needed to allow him to be more flexible." ca 16/5/2014
Israeli sanctions on Palestinians could backfireShlomi Eldar - Al Monitor "On April 29, Israel began economic sanctions on the Palestinian Authority (PA) on the heels of the reconciliation agreement between Fatah and Hamas. This is accomplished by deducting the PA’s debts from the tax money that Israel collects on the PA’s behalf in accordance with economic agreements signed following the Oslo Accord. These funds serve the PA for payment of its employees` salaries. At this point, after the collapse of the negotiations and without any diplomatic resolution, the Israeli punishment has weighty implications." ca2/5/2014
Kerry Warns Israel Could Become ‘An Apartheid State’Josh Rogin - The Daily Beast -In 2010, for example, former Prime Minister and Defense Minister Ehud Barak used language very similar to Kerry’s. “As long as in this territory west of the Jordan River there is only one political entity called Israel it is going to be either non-Jewish, or non-democratic,” Barak said. “If this bloc of millions of ­Palestinians cannot vote, that will be an apartheid state.”-rh 1/5/2014
Israelis unmoved by Abbas Holocaust statementShlomi Eldar - Al-Monitor - One piece of advice to everyone: Leave the Holocaust alone. Concentrate on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict itself, from which we can also extract metaphors, comparisons and lessons to be learned. The exploitation of the Holocaust for diplomatic and political needs adversely hurts the memory of the victims.-rh 1/5/2014
Jewish Voice for Peace Statement on Hamas-Fatah unity agreement and Israeli withdrawal from talksCecilie Surasky - Jewish Voice for Peace - Given decades of failed US-orchestrated peace talks that have deepened the hold of Israel’s occupation, Jewish Voice for Peace will be grateful for an official end to the current round of talks. They appear to be all but dead, and show virtually no promise of achieving a just agreement.-rh 1/5/2014
Jewish Voice for Peace Statement on Hamas-Fatah unity agreement and Israeli withdrawal from talksCecilie Surasky - Jewish Voice for Peace - Given decades of failed US-orchestrated peace talks that have deepened the hold of Israel’s occupation, Jewish Voice for Peace will be grateful for an official end to the current round of talks. They appear to be all but dead, and show virtually no promise of achieving a just agreement.-rh 1/5/2014
PLO official: Netanyahu using Jewish state law to bury peaceJack Khoury - Haaretz "Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu`s attempt to pass a Jewish state law in the Knesset is a euphemism for blowing up the last chance to reach a two-state solution along the 1967 lines, a senior Palestinian official said Thursday." ca2/5/2014
Martin Indyk and the moral crisis at heart of Obama`s peaceRamzy Baroud - Ma`an News Agency "Indyk, a former US ambassador to Israel, was selected by Secretary of State John Kerry for the role of Special Envoy for negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority. Under normal circumstances, Kerry`s selection may appear somewhat rational. Former ambassadors oftentimes possess the needed expertise to navigate challenging political landscapes in countries where they previously served. But these are not normal circumstances, and Indyk is hardly a diplomat in the strict use of the term." ca 2/5/2014
Israeli presidential hopeful supports Palestinian dealMazal Mualem - Al Monitor "There is no reason to be alarmed by the Fatah-Hamas agreement. This actually could be an opportunity for us,” says Knesset member Meir Sheetrit (the Hatnua Party chairman) as he attempts to moderate the aggressive responses evinced by Israel’s prime minister and the right-wing ministers toward the news of the Palestinian reconciliation. This is a brave stance, uttered loud and clear. His manner seems to contradict what is expected of someone running for the role of president, and is supposed to try and please as many Knesset members as possible." ca 2/5/2014
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