This is the English-language version of Defoliated Island, a Japanese award-winning documentary about the usage of Agent Orange on Okinawa during the Vietnam War. Produced by Okinawa TV station, QAB, the show won national acclaim in Japan when it was first aired in May 2012.
- US Department of ‘Defense’ is the Worst Polluter on the Planet (Aletho News)
- The History of Agent Orange (Aletho News)
- 50 Years of Agent Orange (Aletho News)
- Agent Orange – Vietnam (Aletho News)
Netanyahu identifies Israel with the children of Sandy Hook Elementary School
It was intended to be thoughtful and compassionate, but it came across as something far different.
In his letter of condolences to President Barack Obama over the tragedy in Newton, Connecticut, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu deliberately referenced Palestinian attacks in Israel. He didn’t actually write ‘terrorism’ or ‘Hamas’ or something else incendiary because he didn’t have to; the implication was clear.
The letter reads:
Dear President Obama,
I was shocked and horrified by today’s savage massacre of innocent children and adults at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut.
We in Israel have experienced such cruel acts of slaughter and we know the shock and agony they bring.
I want to express my profound grief, and that of all the people in Israel, to the families that lost their loved ones.
May you and the American people find the strength to overcome this unspeakable tragedy.
With my deepest condolences,
(Signed) Benjamin Netanyahu,
Prime Minister of Israel
It would be deeply cynical to suggest that Netanyahu consciously saw a massacre of innocent children as an opportunity to make a political point about the conflict between Israel and Palestine. In fact, there is no doubt that the Prime Minister’s sympathies are genuine.
But that’s just the point. The line about Israel having ‘experienced such cruel acts of slaughter’ gives us a telling commentary on the way Netanyahu sees the world, and, more specifically, the way he sees Israel’s relationship with Palestinians.
Prime Minister Netanyahu identifies Israel with the children of Sandy Hook Elementary School, and Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza with the gunman. According to Netanyahu’s worldview, any violent interaction between Israelis and Palestinians will, without fail, be an example of evil Palestinian terrorists preying upon Israeli innocence. To wit, even after the formidable Israeli army pounded Gaza City last month [killing 35 children], Netanyahu, displaying a stunning nerve, declared that Israel would not be bullied by the Palestinians.
It’s this perverse victimization philosophy that drives Israeli foreign policy, and, according to Israel’s hawkish officials, it is what should form the framework of the United States’ national conversation about the Israel-Palestine conflict. According to Netanyahu, however, that framework has begun to crack under the Obama Presidency.
Though Obama has repeatedly reaffirmed the ‘special relationship’ the US has with its Middle Eastern partner, the President’s administration has had the temerity to chastise Israel for some of its particularly extreme policy decisions, such as the approval of the construction of thousands of apartment buildings the day after the United Nations voted to upgrade Palestine’s diplomatic status.
Netanyahu has found it intolerable that Obama is either unable or unwilling to entirely accept (to the Prime Minister’s standard) the Israeli narrative on Israel-Palestine relations, and has struggled for a way to help the President understand what the Palestinians truly represent.
The shooting in Connecticut was his chance, and he took it. In Netanyahu’s mind, comparing the state of Israel to the victims of the Sandy Hook slayings wasn’t a crude and awkward attempt to portray the Palestinian struggle for statehood and dignity as a cold-blooded attack on school children. It was an opportunity to show Obama just how evil the Palestinians really are.
He just couldn’t help himself.
- Matt Moir is a Journalism graduate student and former history teacher in Toronto, Canada.
Guards from the Alnhacon unit beat al-Issawi when he tried to greet his family in the Jerusalem court, said Jawad Boulos, adding that the prisoner’s hands and feet were cuffed.
Al-Issawi has been on hunger strike for 140 days in Israel’s Ramle prison and was briefly hospitalized when his heart dropped to 36 beats per minute.
Boulos said he asked the judge to adjourn the hearing as al-Issawi needed urgent medical treatment for chest pains but the judge refused and continued the hearing for 30 minutes.
The session was postponed to Dec. 27 and the judge ordered guards to take al-Issawi for medical treatment.
The Ministry of Prisoner Affairs said Tuesday that al-Issawi and Ayman Sharawneh, who has been on hunger strike for 171 days, refused Israeli proposals to release them to exile.
Sharawneh, 36, is suffering muscle spasms, memory loss and severe kidney and abdominal pains, the ministry’s lawyer Fadi Abedat said.
Israeli prison services spokeswoman Siwan Weizman said both men were still on hunger strike but that they were “both fine.” Weizman told Ma’an that al-Issawi had been returned from hospital to Ramle jail.
Sharawneh and al-Issawi were rearrested after being freed in the Oct. 2011 prisoner exchange between Israel and Hamas. They are on hunger strike to demand their release.
The Canadian government has reportedly ordered the scientific journals of the country not to publish articles authored by Iranian researchers and scientists.
Iranian academics, who had primarily received an acceptance from the journals, have received new messages that notified them of the journals’ decision not to publish their work due to recent policies adopted by the Canadian government.
In a recent move, the Canadian Journal of Psychiatric Nursing Research refused to publish an article by an Iranian assistant professor despite the earlier acceptance of the article.
The journal argued that it “will not be permitted to publish” the article as previously stated, citing the political and non-academic reasons. It said that Ottawa had closed down its mission in Tehran for what it called the “civil rights abuse of the citizens of Iran” and “the threat to the security of Canadian personnel and Israel.”
On September 7, the Canadian government closed its embassy in Tehran and ordered Iranian diplomats to leave Canada within five days.
In a statement, Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird said Canada views Iran “as the most significant threat to global peace and security in the world,” adding that Iran “routinely threatens the existence of Israel.”
The Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast censured Ottawa’s decision as undiplomatic and a move in line with the policies dictated by Israel.
“The hostile actions of the current racist Canadian government are in fact in line with the policies that are dictated by the Zionist regime (Israel) and the British government,” Mehmanparast said.
Pundits believe Canada’s move to sever diplomatic ties with Iran unveils Ottawa’s submissive attitude toward the Israeli regime.
“Canada’s abrupt move to sever all ties with the Islamic Republic of Iran manifestly springs from a strong Zionist sway which has permeated the political structure of the country,” Iranian academic Ismail Salami wrote in an op-ed published on Press TV website on September 11.
The analyst said that, governed as a constitutional monarchy with British Queen Elizabeth II as its head of state, Canada could be viewed as a country “supporting colonizing regimes such as Israel and seeking to isolate the peaceful nation of Iran.”
Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird have time and again expressed unconditional support for Israel, and are widely believed for dancing to every tune of Israel.
- Canada’s Palestinian Aid Programme Serving Israel’s Interests (alethonews.wordpress.com)
- Iran condemns Canadian Gov’t for freezing its assets (EndtheLie.com)
The USA’s longest serving and reputably most powerful Senator, Daniel “The One Armed Bandit” Inouye has died in a hospital outside of Washington D.C. at the age of 88, bringing an end to the career of one of the most loyal, and criminal, careers in service to Pax Americana.
Dan “the One Armed Bandit” Inouye was christened such by his comrades in arms in the US Army’s legendary 442nd outfit made up almost exclusively of Japanese Americans during W.W.II for stealing a wedding ring off a dead woman civilian and subsequently having the arm allegedly bearing the stolen ring blown off by a German artillery shell.
This marked the beginning of a long, sordid career in service to the USA that reached its peak when he almost single handedly covered up the role of the CIA in starting what went on to become the global pandemic known as the Crack Cocaine holocaust (see Gary Webb’s “Dark Alliance” or “White Out” by Alexander Cockburn and Jeffrey St. Clair).
Back in the beginnings of the 1980’s the CIA under President Reagan was carrying out a particularly murderous “contra-revolution” against the then revolutionary Sandanista lead government of Nicaragua in an attempt to destroy the first successful armed overthrow of a client regime of the USA in Central America.
The murder and mayhem carried out by the CIA proxies known as the Nicaraguan “Contras” proved to be very unpopular amongst the American people, then still able to remember the disastrous USA intervention in Vietnam and the US Congress passed a law supposedly cutting off funding for the Contras.
The CIA quickly moved to repair its cash flow problem by arranging for Nicaraguan Contra supporters in the USA to begin importing large amounts of cheap cocaine supplied by the narcotrafficking Colombian regime. Eventually these CIA backed drug dealers linked up with an enterprising black American nicknamed “Freeway Rick” who took powdered cocaine and cooked it up into “rocks” what became known as “crack” and the subsequent epidemic that metastasized into a global pandemic was born.
That’s right, before the CIA got involved cocaine was a rich mans drug, expensive, only mildly addictive and mainly taken orally by snorting up ones nose.
Thanks to “The Man”, in this case a light bird colonel named Oliver North working out of the White House with the CIA, cocaine quickly became a drug cheap enough for the masses, and when it is smoked rather than sniffed half of all those who smoke it only twice become addicted.
This sordid tale became part of what was dubbed “The Iran Contra Scandal” and resulted in hearings held by the US Congress that were supposed to get to the bottom of all this rottenness. Chaired by Sen. Inouye, of Watergate fame, the hearings instead became a massive coverup, with Sen. Inouye repeatedly having to intervene and shut down any public discussion of the CIA’s role in cocaine trafficking.
For this service to Pax Americana Dan Inouye was eventually awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor, supposedly for his heroism some 50 years previously when he gained his “One Armed Bandit” sobriquet.
“The One Armed Bandit” was one of the most prominent proponents of what is known as the Military-Industrial Complex and brought home the bacon for his home state of Hawaii for over half a century, keeping defense industry dollars and its related employment pouring into Hawaii via the Pearl Harbor Naval Base and other massive US military installations across the state, and was the real “Godfather” of politics in Hawaii. When he died he was said to be 3rd in line for the Presidency, though he was known as “the Senator who never asked for a favor.’
Dan Inouye was a true “American Liberal”, and truly dangerous as such. Rather than remembering him for his supposedly liberal bent, the world must see him for what he really was, a particularly evil proponent of American Imperialism, willing and able to even cover up a drug epidemic that went on to become a global pandemic, Crack Cocaine, back at a time when a real investigation and subsequent prosecution may have been able to prevent millions of deaths and tens of millions destroyed lives.
Thomas C. Mountain can be reached at thomascmountain_at_yahoo_dot_com.
Palestinian Authority Chief Mahmoud Abbas urged the international community to help Palestinian refugees fleeing camps across Syria enter the West Bank and Gaza.Mahmoud Abbas”Mahmud Abbas, president of the state of Palestine, requested Wednesday that UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and the international community enable our people in Syria to enter Palestinian territory,” a statement carried on the official WAFA news agency said.
He said help was needed “because of the exposure of Palestinian camps to the bloody conflict in Syria.”
Abbas’s call came after tens of thousands of Palestinians fled the Yarmouk camp in south Damascus, one of 12 camps in Syria which host Palestinian refugees and their descendants.
Yarmouk camp has been since Sunday witnessing violent clashes between armed groups and popular Palestinian committees.
According to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), there are 486,000 Palestine refugees living in nine official and three unofficial camps across Syria.
Abbas also “stressed the Palestinian position of non-interference in the internal affairs of Arab countries,” the statement on WAFA said.
- why the western media are reporting that assad planes bombed palestinian refugee camp (niqnaq.wordpress.com)
300 radical fighters infiltrate Palestinian refugee camp, battling local committees
DAMASCUS, Dec. 16 (Xinhua) — More than 300 fighters from the radical al-Nusra Front on Sunday morning infiltrated the Palestinian camp of Yarmouk in the Syrian capital Damascus and clashed with local committees there, causing human losses, great chaos and huge displacement movement, local media said.
Al-Nusra, an offshoot of al-Qaida in Iraq, has been beefing up the presence in the surrounding areas of the camp over the past days in a bid to storm it, the local Ajel news network said, adding that intense clashes are going on in the camp.
The local committees in the camp are controlled by the Palestinian Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine — General Command (PFLP-GC) led by Ahmad Jibril, who is a staunch supporter of the Syrian administration of President Bashar al- Assad.
Witnesses and sources said that tens of civilians and members of popular committees have been killed and wounded at the Yarmouk camp during the clashes, adding that most of the al-Nusra fighters came from the Damascus’ suburbs of Daraya, Eastern Ghouta, al- Hajar al-Aswad and Yeldah.
Meanwhile, Anwar Rajja, the PFLP-GC spokesman, denied untrue media reports about defections in the PFLP-GC ranks and about the departure of its leaders from Damascus to the Syrian coastal city of Tartous. [...]
Earlier in the day, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a London-based activists’ group, said that a Syrian MIG aircraft bombed parts of the camp, adding that eight people were killed in the process. However, Raja denied the airstrike reports.