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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
Why Israel is closely following Fatah conventionShlomi Eldar - Al Monitor - MI head Gen. Herzl Halevi issued a warning about the situation, in a closed-door conference at Tel Aviv University last week. Halevi said that power struggles in the Palestinian Authority (PA) may lead to a destabilization of the security situation in the West Bank in the coming year. In his estimation, power struggles between Fatah’s rival sectors will give Hamas great achievements on the ground. “The result will be a very challenging reality in Judea and Samaria,” Halevi said.-rh 30/11/2016
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How will Israel punish suspected wildfire arsonists?Ben Caspit - Al-Monitor - "Israeli politicians are asking to revoke the citizenship of the Palestinian arsonists, even though international law prohibits leaving a person without citizenship." - id 30/11/2016
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Trump Strives to Undo 70 Years of Bipartisan U.S. Mideast ConsensusRichard Silverstein - Tikun Olam - "Despite Trump’s avowed inclination to stay out of overseas conflicts, it’s quite possible key advisors and allies in the region like Benjamin Netanyahu could inveigle him into military adventurism." - id 30/11/2016
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How “Trump-Muslims” debate chokes Palestine rightsRay Hanania - The Arab Daily News - "More harm was done to Palestinians under the administration of President Barack Obama than under any previous president. Home demolitions, killings of civilians, racist Jewish only settler expansion, and anti-Palestinian legislation to curb American Arab rights adopted or proposed in 19 US states. Thanks but no thanks Obama!" - id 30/11/2016
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The new axis of evil: Trump, Putin, NetanyahuYacov Ben Efrat - Challenge - "The Tea Party recorded a historic achievement, but this was not only a triumph for the American right-wing. Benjamin Netanyahu and his extreme right-wing allies in Israel were also celebrating. On that fateful Tuesday, the Kremlin was biting its nails in anticipation of a Trump victory. Putin openly welcomed the prospect of Donald Trump in the White House." - id 30/11/2016
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If you`re Palestinian in Israel, satire can land you in jailJohn Brown - Abudaabes’ Facebook posts actually criticize Arabs from surrounding countries who are praising the fires on social media. The irony of the posts was lost on the police detectives, and he will have to stand trial. Meanwhile, Y., an Israeli Jew published the status on Facebook that reads “Haifa and Jerusalem share the same fate as Umm al-Fahm burn them back sons of whores.” He was arrested but immediately released.[bz]29/11/2016
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Netanyahu’s Divine InterventionYoav Litvin - Counterpunch - Just when the heat under Netanyahu’s throne started ratcheting up, in an ironic and devastating form of divine intervention, multiple fires have broken out all over Israel, causing vast devastation and the evacuation of thousands from their homes, including both Jews and Palestinians. Now he can bask in his element – fear – and revert to autopilot, a standard operating procedure in which he cynically colludes with his coalition puppets and an all-too-eager Israeli media to incite against Palestinians. [bz]29/11/2016
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Jimmy Carter: America Must Recognize PalestineJimmy Carter - New York Times - The United States can still shape the future of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict before a change in presidents, but time is very short. The simple but vital step this administration must take before its term expires on Jan. 20 is to grant American diplomatic recognition to the state of Palestine, as 137 countries have already done, and help it achieve full United Nations membership.(...) The Security Council should pass a resolution laying out the parameters for resolving the conflict. It should reaffirm the illegality of all Israeli settlements beyond the 1967 borders, while leaving open the possibility that the parties could negotiate modifications.[ak]29/11/2016
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It’s Fun Being an Arab in IsraelGideon Levy--It’s fun being an Arab in Israel. If you’re a pharmacist at a high-street drugstore, you can wake up to discover that you’re a potential arsonist. A nursery-school teacher in Shfaram gets up and finds she’s a member of the Islamic State group. Every construction worker from Taibeh is part of a fifth column, and every nurse at the Hadassah hospitals in Jerusalem is a demographic threat. That hummus vendor may just be a hummus vendor, but he could be spreading poison, too; that dishwasher could come out of the kitchen with a knife. And you can’t even count on an Arab doctor, which is reason enough to ask for a Jewish one. dn27/11/2016
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Trump Prepares Vicious Attacks – We Must Prepare Massive ResistanceTom Crean and Philip Locker--Trump’s victory in the presidential election two weeks ago was a profound shock to tens of millions of progressive workers, young people, immigrants, women, people of color, Muslims and LGBTQ people across the US. As Trump’s reactionary cabinet appointments have been announced and the list of targets of his administration has become clearer there is enormous fear and anger in many communities. dn27/11/2016
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45% of Palestinian population is compromised of childrenPNN/ Bethlehem/ - "PCBS said, according to WAFA, that whereas children constituted 49.6% of the population of the Gaza Strip, they represented 43.4% of the total population of the West Bank." ca25/11/2016
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What Trump`s new UN envoy could mean for Israel-PalestineSamer Badawi - +972 "How a child of South Asian immigrants, whose signature act as Governor was to counter the BDS movement — on grounds that it resembled “Nazi” tactics — will fare in a Trump administration remains to be seen. But if Trump’s other appointments to date are any indication, Haley’s views on Israel are what will matter most in her new position." ca25/11/2016
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Fire Breaks Out across Israel and West BankIMEMC News & Agencies - "Fires have broken out all over Israel and the occupied West Bank, starting Tuesday and continuing until Thursday evening, due to “dry winds.” However, PNN reports that, according to the Israeli minister of public security, Gilad Erdan, reasons to the fire were due to arson." ca 25/11/2016
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Israel’s New FriendsNeve Gordon - London Review of Books - In February, the Israeli prime minister praised the British government for introducing new guidelines prohibiting publicly funded bodies from boycotting Israeli products. ‘I want to commend the British government for refusing to discriminate against Israel and Israelis and I commend you for standing up for the one and only true democracy in the Middle East,’ Netanyahu said.-rh23/11/2016
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Israeli parliament votes for suspected terrorist interrogations to remain secretBethan McKernan - Independent - “This bill would give every security interrogator total immunity to do whatever he pleases, and nobody will know how much force he uses or what he does to the suspect,” “This is a crime not only against international law, but also against basic morality, which says that people suspected of security offenses have basic rights that must be upheld.”-rh23/11/2016
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Israel police to probe alleged Netanyahu submarine scandalPeter Beaumont - The Guardian - The affair – which has dominated Israeli headlines for days – involves allegations of a serious conflict of interest in the purchase of the submarines. At the heart of the issue is a claim that Netanyahu’s personal lawyer, David Shimron, was representing the German arms manufacturer making the submarines at the same time Netanyahu was pushing for the submarine purchase. Among the allegations are that Netanyahu purchased the new submarines for the Israeli navy over the objections of his own defence ministry.-rh 23/11/2016
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Were Israeli ministers the last to learn about Gaza tunnels?Shlomi Eldar - Al Monitor - "According to different sources, Israeli Cabinet ministers did not receive information about the tunnels dug by Hamas in 2014, though the information was gathered by Israeli intelligence and was transferred to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu." - id 23/11/2016
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Because BDS, Israeli archeologists want West Bank work kept secretHaggai Matar - +972 - "An Israeli court rejects a freedom of information request for the names of archeologists digging, under IDF license, in the occupied territories, and where Israel is storing the antiquities they uncover. The reason: so they don’t face academic boycott." - id 23/11/2016
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Reminder Arabs forgotten even in Obama eraRay Hanania- The Arab Daily News - "It’s a true reflection of Obama’s hypocrisy in limiting the definition of “diversity” to include only certain minorities." - id 23/11/2016
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Why Israel isn’t shocked by anti-Semites in White HouseYaron London - Ynet - Thousands of Jews from France who see Israel as a lifeboat, as an insurance policy, purchased apartments here and raised real estate prices in the coastal cities. That’s good. It proves Zionism was right. (...) It would be good to have some anti-Semitism in America. Not serious anti-Semitism, not pogroms, not persecutions that will empty America from its Jews, as we need them there, but just a taste of this pungent stuff, so that we can restore our faith in Zionism. [bz]22/11/2016
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Pro-Israel and racist? Palestinians aren’t surprised in the slightestSamer Badawi - +972 - Though it may have sparked debate in the Jewish-American community, the idea that Israel can be a cause célèbre for white nationalists is hardly news to Palestinians, whose very existence vies with a state steeped in European, colonial racism. [bz]22/11/2016
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What’s an illegal settlement?Michael Schaeffer Omer - +972 - The Israeli government is working tirelessly to retroactively legalize over 100 illegal West Bank outposts. They’ll probably get away with it. Is that such a bad thing? [ry] 21/11/2016
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In Gaza, we aren`t mourning Clinton`s lossYasmeen Elkhoudary - Aljazeera - Bill Clinton, George Bush, Barack Obama, none of them tried to allay Palestine`s misery. Hillary wouldn`t have either [ry] 21/11/2016
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Dismissed Fatah leaders look to reform movement from outside Ahmad Abu Amer - Al-Monitor "A number of Fatah leaders, namely Jamal al-Tirawi and Najat Abu Bakr, who were dismissed from the movement at the end of October on the grounds of having other allegiances, have called for the formation of a committee of Fatah elders to try to re-boost the movement, reunite it and thwart any exclusionary decisions by the movement’s seventh conference scheduled for Nov. 29." ca 18/11/2016
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Hamas blames Abbas in stalemate over PLO reform lRasha Abou Jalal - Al-Monitor "In a speech at the fourth Palestinian National Security Conference in Gaza on Nov. 2, Khaled Meshaal, head of Hamas’ political bureau, urged the parties to work on reforming the PLO and restore its role as representative of the Palestinian people.Meshaal denied talks that his movement is seeking to take control of the PLO, saying, “No one has the right to dominate the PLO. We are partners in sharing responsibility and in [preserving] the nation.” He stressed the need to form a common and unified authority for all Palestinians at home and abroad...Mudallal agrees with Abdo on this point, saying, “Abbas fears that Hamas will pull the rug from under his feet within the organization and thus threaten his monopoly over Palestinian political decisions.” ca 18/11/2016
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Welcome to the bi-national state’: Livni says Knesset bill to legalize settlement outposts sets stage for annexing West Bank Kate - Mondoweiss "Israel’s parliament gave preliminary approval on Wednesday to a disputed bill that would retroactively legalize Jewish settlement outposts built on privately owned Palestinian land in the occupied West Bank. The United States has described the measure, promoted by far-right members of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s governing coalition, as “troubling” and said it could pave the way for the legalization of dozens of outposts, built deep in the West Bank without Israeli government authorization." ca18/11/2016
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Israel`s biggest paper ignores anti-Semitism of senior Trump advisorEdo Konrad - +972 - "This is the same logic that undergirds the thinking of Israeli politicians who back far-right European politicians such as Marine Le Pen, Geert Wilder, and Heinz-Christian Strache: we will politely ignore their Nazi pasts, pesky anti-Semitic cartoons, and outright incitement — as long as they continue to back the Jewish state. This is what a deal with the devil looks like." - id 16/11/2016
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Trump: the Night Hell FrozeRichard Silverstein - Tikun Olam - "Donald Trump didn’t win this election.  Hillary Clinton lost it.  To win, she needed to stand for something.  She needed to have a message that resonated, a platform that motivated.  She needed to believe in something and convey that belief to the electorate." - id16/11/2016
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The bitter morning Adam Keller - Crazy Country - "Maybe this might increase Obama’s willingness to use his remaining two months in order to leave at least one final lasting legacy– i.e., removing the American veto and letting the UN Security Council adopt a binding resolution on the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict for whatever it is worth." - id 16/11/2016
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Settlements bill puts Israel on collision course with Obama Tovah Lazaroff - Jpost - Throwing diplomatic caution to the wind, the Ministerial Legislative Committee gave their initial approval to legislation to retroactively legalize over 2,000 settler homes, many of which are built on private Palestinian property. This means putting Israel on a collision course with US President Barack Obama over settlements, precisely as he weighs action on settlements at the United Nations Security Council in his last two months in office.[bz]15/11/2016
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Israel consolidates grip on Golan under cover of Syria’s chaosMatt Broomfield - EI - “Israeli designs on the Golan are no secret, but are often wrapped in seemingly innocuous language. Last year, Israel presented itself as a concerned protector of the Druze on the Syrian side of the 1967 boundary from the threat of Islamist militants” [ry] 14/11/2016
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Middle East will quickly teach Trump rules of the gameAkiva Eldar - Al Monitor - At the start of Ronald Reagan’s presidency, people also said that he would not go near the quagmire of the Arab-Israeli conflict. He was dragged in, however, ending up presenting Prime Minister Menachem Begin with a peace plan based on an Israeli withdrawal from the territories it had captured in 1967. After a furious Begin rejected the blueprint, Reagan lifted the US boycott of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and launched talks with its leader, Chairman Yasser Arafat. [bz]13/11/2016
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The bitter morning Adam Keller - Crazy Country - Would Trump be able - even if he wanted - to put down the flames of hatred which he had constantly fanned in his year of wild campaigning? Could he get rid of this blazing hatred, even if he tried? Does Trump have anything real to offer to the hopeless people to whom he gave a fleeting hope – and if he disappoints them, to whom and to what will they turn next? [bz]12/11/2016
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Trump’s victory leaves Obama with only one option on Israel-PalestineNoam Sheizaf - +972 - The old peace process is officially toast. The people who led it won’t be part of the next administration. The policies they pursued are the furthest possible from a Trump administration’s agenda — be it isolationist or neo-con/interventionist. That leaves Obama with one play, and one play only – a Security Council resolution against the settlements. In practice, all it would require of the Obama administration would be to not veto a resolution similar to the one it blocked in 2011. [bz]12/11/2016
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Why Egypt`s Sisi welcomes Trump winShahira Amin - Al-Monitor "While President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and his supporters welcomed the news of Trump becoming the 45th president of the United States, Egypt’s liberals and pro-democracy activists expressed shock and anguish on social media networks. The widely divergent views on the shocking election outcome reflect the increased polarization in Egyptian society, a society as divided as the American electorate itself." ca 11/11/2016
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Trump`s first steps on Israel/PalestineSam Bahour - +972 "The Israeli prime minister is laughing all the way to the next West Bank hilltop, thinking he is better positioned than ever to impose his right-wing (some Israelis call it fascist) agenda on America. He is correct to think so given the Israeli settler community mobilized to support Trump’s campaign, so all indications would point to Trump embracing illegal settlement building with open arms." ca11/11/2016
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Palestinian Parties React to Trump’s ElectionIMEMC - "The US and Israel have been long term allies and have had an unbreakable military bond, over the years, a relationship that has always affected the Palestinian political ground. However, the reactions of Palestinian political parties to the election of Trump as president have varied, according to the PNN. PLO congratulates, hopes for two-state solution..." ca 11/11/2016
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The military trial that’s tearing Israel apartWilliam Booth and Ruth Eglash - The Washington Post - On trial for manslaughter before a military tribunal is a pint-size recruit who sits in the courtroom beside his mother, who wraps her arms around his shoulders and sometimes cries. Such a public trial of a soldier charged in the killing of a Palestinian is almost unprecedented here.-rh10/11/2016
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Israel’s ruling party used Facebook to track ‘antigovernment’ journalistsRuth Eglash - The Washington Post - Likud parliamentarian David Bitan, who serves as chairman of the government coalition, told the gathering that he and some friends had been following the Facebook pages of journalists hired recently to set up a new public broadcasting service. “We went and we checked the Facebook pages of these people. We saw what they are writing and I will tell you that we are talking about people who are leftist. They want to impose their own agenda on the new channel,” he said in the forum.-rh 10/11/2016
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What President Obama Must Tell Israel Before JanuaryHenry Siegman - The National Interest - But if Israel’s Jewish population continues to value territory over peace and over justice and perseveres in its denial of Palestinian statehood, it will have to come to terms with the inescapable adjustment of its Jewish religious, cultural and national identity it will have to make to accommodate the religious, cultural and national identity of a majority Arab population. Given the assaults Netanyahu’s government has of late been making on Israel’s shaky democracy in the name of the state’s Jewish identity, this might well be the best possible outcome.-rh10/11/2016
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Netanyahu attacks Israeli media, singles out investigative journalistMaayan Lubell - Reuters - After declining to be interviewed by Channel Two anchorwoman Ilana Dayan for a piece investigating the workings of his administration and the role his wife plays in appointing officials, Netanyahu`s office sent a written statement. Dayan read it in its entirety on air, taking six minutes to deliver the tirade against her as she stood in front of the prime minister`s office. "It is time to peel the mask off the face of Ilana Dayan, who has shown once more that she has no professional integrity," the statement said. "Ilana Dayan is one of the leaders of an orchestrated attack on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, intended to topple the right-wing government and bring about the establishment of a left-wing government."-rh 9/11/2016
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Obama’s last chance of ending Israeli occupationAkiva Eldar - AlMonitor - Israel feels free to conduct itself in the West Bank as if it owned the place, simply because it can. It can because the United States enables it, because Obama turned his back on the promise he made during his landmark 2009 Cairo speech to promote the establishment of a Palestinian state. Not only have things not improved since then, they have deteriorated. The hope that a democratic president, committed to human rights, would be the one to bring peace is all but gone. If Obama does not dare to expel Israel from the occupied territories, who will? He has only a few months left to rectify the wrong and stop our plunge into an abyss.-rh 9/11/2016
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Trump vs. the National Security Establishment: Will There be a Revolution in US Foreign Policy?James Luchte - CounterPunch - "Since the beginning of his presidential campaign, Trump had been savaged by the National Security establishment, castigated as unfit to lead, dangerous, incompetent, and ignorant." - id 9/11/2016
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Israel increasingly defiant as the world loses interest in PalestineMichael Schaeffer Omer-Man - +972 - "From the prime minister down, the Israeli government has effectively dropped the charade that the occupation is temporary, or that it actually fears consequences for its intransigence." - id 2/11/2016
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