Aletho News


The Blood of Gaza Will Be on the Hands of Mahmoud Abbas in Israel’s Next Attack

By Robert Inlakesh | American Herald Tribune | March 20, 2018

‘Palestinian President’ Mahmoud Abbas, has announced his plans to collectively punish the civilian population of the Gaza Strip, justifying his decision by accusing Hamas of something he has no evidence for.

Yesterday at a press meeting, held in Ramallah (Occupied West Bank), Mahmoud Abbas – President of the ‘Palestinian Authority’ (PA) – lashed out at Hamas, announcing his plans to increase the suffering in the Gaza Strip.

Mahmoud Abbas, who like Israel, illegally occupies his position in the West Bank, has accused Hamas of orchestrating the attempted assassination of Rami Hamdallah. Rami Hamdallah is the current Prime Minister of the ‘Palestinian Authority’.

On the 13th of March, the Palestinian PM’s convoy was attacked, shortly after passing the Beit Hanoun/Erez crossing (Gaza/Israel border). The attack left 9 members of Hamdallah’s security personnel injured, he survived with no injuries.

Almost within minutes of the attack taking place, allegations were mounted by PA members, against Hamas. No consideration was given to the possibility of an Israeli attack. This attack was carried out so close to border with the occupying power, yet somehow there is absolutely no suspicion on the part of the PA.

Adding to the fire, yesterday, Mahmoud Abbas indicated his belief, that Hamas was behind the assassination attempt. Abbas offered no evidence to support this allegation, an allegation which has been condemned by Palestinian factions, such as the PLFP and Islamic Jihad.

The true colors of Mahmoud Abbas begin to shine…

The PA president, who accuses Hamas of the assassination attempt, does not punish Hamas, instead he decides to tighten the grip around the throat of Gaza’s civilian population.

Mahmoud Abbas announced that he would “take national, legal and financial measures” against the Gaza Strip, in response to Hamas. But make no mistake, Abbas is not punishing Hamas, he is collectively punishing Gaza.

Hamas officials will not suffer from the treacherous decisions of Abbas. No Hamas official will lose their access to food, nor their access to clean water.

No Hamas officials are going to die as a result of this PA decision, the dead will be of the civilian population, 52% of which are children!

It was an integral part of the ‘Unity Deal’, signed between Hamas and Fatah parties, that the PA help the humanitarian situation in Gaza, this part of the deal was promised last September. Since the highly anticipated signing of the ‘Unity Deal’, there have been next to no efforts from the PA to help Gaza. The situation in the Gaza Strip has gotten so much worse, since the deal, that Gaza is in a declared state of emergency.

Not only does Abbas understand the situation, on the ground, in Gaza, he helped Israel create it. Just last year, the Palestinian authority – prior the ‘Unity Deal’ – stopped paying for the import of diesel fuel into the besieged Strip. The PA even reduced the salaries of its members in Gaza, this reduction ranged from 30-70 percent of the individual’s wages, placing many below the poverty line.

Mahmoud Abbas is doing the work of Israel

The situation in Gaza has deteriorated significantly, to the point now, of complete collapse. Another conflict between Hamas and the Israeli Regime seems highly likely, with Israel having much incentive to now launch a large scale attack.

Benjamin Netanyahu, the Prime Minister of the Israeli regime, is currently under corruption investigation and is even losing support to further right-wing parties. Israel has also just privatized and centralized, most of their weapons manufacturing companies to Elbit Systems, meaning the demand for using weapons in Gaza is high. There is also nothing Israelis like more, than to see Gazans suffer and any excuse to launch an attack will win praise from the country’s population.

The PA’s Mahmoud Abbas, has been looking to steal the Gaza Strip from Hamas, hoping to have already achieved this aim by now. Frustration has been expressed from the PA, after going to Egypt several times, in an attempt to push Hamas to hand control of the besieged strip over. Hamas has resisted this, including the PLO call – on the 28th of Feb this year – to deploy 3000 PA policemen, from Ramallah to Gaza, in order to take over the strip militarily.

During the past 3 months, municipalities in Gaza have been forced to take an approximate, 30% pay cut, from their employees. Gaza has now also come to a 50% unemployment rate. Gaza’s population of 2 million, are now 80% below the poverty line, 96% of the water in Gaza is also unfit for human consumption.

The actions of Mahmoud Abbas, will mean the further collapse of social services, as well as all other aspects of life, in Gaza. Instead of solving any disputes like men, Abbas and his traitorous PA, punish the population of Gaza, waiting for war or revolution, anything but freedom.

If a confrontation between Hamas and Israel is to take place, Abbas and his PA will once again, most likely, hide and use the assassination attempt, as an excuse not to act against Israel.

The two state delusion, is gone, Israel won’t have it, nor will the US.

Mahmoud Abbas understands that his actions in the UN and with the International community, will not bring peace, instead he tries to squeeze every bit of power and money he can, out of a false dream. Instead of bringing the people together, the “President” of the PA, for now, divides his people, collectively punishes Gaza, watches the West Bank disappear and runs security forces for Israel’s illegal occupation.

To the people of Gaza, Mahmoud Abbas continues to declare himself, no friend and no representative.

March 22, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism | , , , , | 1 Comment

Who wants to kill Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah?

By Ramzy Baroud | MEMO | March 19, 2018

On March 13, while on his way to the besieged Gaza Strip, two 33-pounds bombs targeted the convoy of Palestinian Authority Prime Minister, Rami Hamdallah.

Hamdallah was visiting Gaza, through the Israeli border checkpoint, Erez, to open a large sewage treatment plant that, if allowed to operate regularly, will make life easier for hundreds of thousands of Gazans, who have endured a perpetual Israeli siege since 2006.

The Prime Minister’s visit was also seen as another important step in the reconciliation efforts between the two main Palestinian factions, Fatah – led by PA President, Mahmoud Abbas, in the Occupied West Bank – and Hamas, led by former Prime Minister, Ismael Haniyeh, in Gaza.

Although reconciliation efforts have, for years, been half-hearted at best, the latest round of talks between both groups led to a breakthrough in Cairo last October. This time, Palestinians were told that the two factions are keen on establishing unity, ending the siege on Gaza and revamping the largely dormant Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) institutions.

Hamas and the Islamic Jihad were to join the PLO at some point in the future, leading to the formulation of a unified Palestinian political program.

And, perhaps, this keenness at ending the rift has led to the attempt on Hamdallah’s life.

But who is Rami Hamdallah?

Hamdallah, 60, was chosen by Abbas to serve in the current post in June 2013, despite the fact that he was not a member of Fatah. He took over from Salaam Fayyad who served for six years, focusing mostly on state-building in a region that is still militarily occupied by a foreign power.

Hamdallah, though not a particularity controversial figure, has been a follower of Abbas and committed to his agenda. He is a political moderate by Palestinian standards, and it was through his strong ties with powerful Fatah figures like Tayeb Abdul Rahim and Tawfik Tirawi – who served under late PA leader, Yasser Arafat, and Abbas respectively – that allowed him to claim the post and keep it for nearly five years.

Last October, Hamdallah led a delegation of Fatah PA officials to Gaza to “end the painful impacts of divisions and to rebuild Gaza brick by brick.”

Since Israel destroyed much of Gaza’s infrastructure and thousands of homes in the summer of 2014, Gaza – already reeling under a hermetic siege and the impact of previous wars – has been in ruins. Hamdallah’s visit rekindled hope among Gazans, and all Palestinians, that respite is on the way.

Hamas’ insistent attempts to break from its isolation seemed to be finally bearing fruit.

Abbas’ party, too, moved forward with the unity arrangements, although for its own reasons. Fatah has been dysfunctional for years, and the imminent exit of Abbas, 83, has opened up intense rivalry among those who want to succeed the aging leader.

Supporters of Mohammed Dahlan, who was shunned by Abbas years ago and is currently based abroad, would like to see him back in a position of power.

The United States and Israel are following these developments closely. They, too, have favorites and are vested in the future of Fatah to sustain the current status quo as long as possible.

Those who want Hamdallah dead are likely not targeting the Prime Minister for his own ideas or policies per se, but for what he represents, as the moderate leader capable of achieving a long term understanding with Hamas.

Killing Hamdallah also means ending or, at least, obstructing the unity efforts, discrediting Hamas, and denying Abbas and his leadership the necessary political capital to secure his legacy.

Hamas’ main enemy in Gaza are the Salafi Jihadist groups who are unhappy with Hamas’ politics and what they see as a too moderate style of Islamic governance.

Of course, there are those in Fatah, including Abbas’ own office, who accused Hamas of trying to kill Hamdallah. Hamas did more than deny the accusations, but, within one day of the apparent assassination attempt, announced that it had apprehended suspects behind the explosion.

It would make no sense for Hamas to kill Hamdallah. The group has worked tirelessly to engage the PA, as life in Gaza has become truly unlivable.  Their leadership and reputation has suffered as a result of the failed efforts to end the siege.

Moreover, as Amira Hass noted, Hamas “could not have any interest in attacking senior Palestinian Authority officials on their way to inaugurate a sewage treatment plant that residents of the Gaza Strip have long awaited.”

Hamas, in turn, accused the Israel intelligence of the assassination attempt. The group’s spokesman, Fawzi Barhoum, claimed that “same hands” that gunned down Mazen Fakha in March 2017 and Tawfiq Abu Naim in October are behind the attempt on Hamdallah’s life. He was referring to Israel, of course.

The timing of the bombing of Hamdallah’s convoy was quite interesting as well, as it came barely a few hours after a meeting at the White House regarding Gaza. The meeting, chaired by leading pro-Israel officials in Washington, including Jared Kushner, was dubbed as a “brainstorming session” on how to solve the Gaza crisis.

“The Palestinian Authority, furious over the Trump administration’s actions in recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, moving its embassy there from Tel Aviv, and cutting aid for Palestinian refugees, refused to attend,” reported the New York Times.

One, however, should not underestimate the seriousness of the remaining disagreements between Hamas and Fatah.

Perhaps the main point of conflict is over Hamas’ fighting force. Hamas refuses to compromise on the issue of armed resistance, and Abbas insists on the dismantling of Hamas’ armed group, Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigades.

But these disagreements are hardly strong enough reason to kill Hamdallah, the last hope for an end to the rift and easing the blockade on Gaza.

Although Hamdallah survived, the bombing achieved some of its objectives. A senior PA official told AFP that “Abbas decided no members of Hamdallah’s government would travel to Gaza in the short term ‘due to the security problems.’”

While this might not be the end of reconciliation, it could possibly be the beginning of the end.

See also:

Hamas calls on Fatah to wait for findings on Hamdallah incident

March 20, 2018 Posted by | Aletho News | , | Leave a comment

Hamas denounces Abbas’s accusations regarding Gaza explosion

Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum
Palestine Information Center – March 13, 2018

GAZA – The Hamas movement on Tuesday slammed the Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas’s statements in which he held Hamas responsible for the explosion that targeted the Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah in Gaza.

The Movement stressed that what happened was a crime and an attempt to harm the reconciliation.

Hamas’s spokesman Fawzi Barhoum said in a press statement that his Movement strongly condemns the attack on Hamdallah’s convoy in Gaza, affirming that this crime is a thinly veiled attempt to undermine the reconciliation efforts and harm Gaza’s security.

Barhoum slammed the “ready accusations” made by Abbas and called on Gaza’s Ministry of Interior to open an urgent investigation into the crime to hold its perpetrators accountable.

Hamdallah’s convoy was targeted by a blast shortly after it arrived in the Gaza Strip through Beit Hanoun (Erez) checkpoint. No injuries were reported.

Gaza’s Ministry of Interior said that Hamdallah resumed his mission scheduled for Tuesday and affirmed that security services are investigating the incident.

March 13, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism | , , | 1 Comment

US Commander: ‘US Troops Prepared to Die for Israel’ in War against Syria, Hezbollah

Operation Juniper Cobra is not a routine exercise; it is a portent of a potentially devastating war against Syria, Hezbollah and Gaza for which Israel is actively preparing — a war likely to erupt within the coming months.

By Whitney Webb | Mint Press | March 12, 2018

Last Sunday, the largest joint military exercise between the United States and Israel began with little fanfare. The war game, dubbed “Operation Juniper Cobra,” has been a regular occurrence for years, though it has consistently grown in size and scope. Now, however, this year’s 12-day exercise brings a portent of conflict unlike those of its predecessors.

Previous reports on the operation suggested that, like prior incarnations of the same exercise, the focus would be on improving Israeli defenses. “Juniper Cobra 2018 is another step in improving the readiness of the IDF [Israeli Defense Forces] and the IAF [Israeli Air Force] in particular to enhance their operational capabilities in facing the threat posed by high-trajectory missiles,” Brig. Gen. Zvika Haimovitch, the IDF’s Aerial Defense Division head, told the Jerusalem Post.

However, this year’s “Juniper Cobra” is unique for several reasons. The Post reported on Thursday that the drill, set to end on March 15, was not only the largest joint U.S.-Israeli air defense exercise to ever happen but it was also simulating a battle “on three fronts.” In other words, Israel and the U.S. are jointly simulating a war with Lebanon, Syria, and Palestine – namely, the Gaza strip – simultaneously.

What makes this last part so concerning are Israel’s recent statements and other preparations for war with all three nations, making “Juniper Cobra” anything but a “routine” drill. It is instead yet another preparation for a massive regional conflict, suggesting that such a conflict could be only a matter of months away.

As MintPress recently reported, Israeli officials recently told a bipartisan pair of U.S. Senators that it needed “ammunition, ammunition, ammunition” for a war against Hezbollah in Lebanon — a war that will expressly target Lebanese civilians and civilian infrastructure, such as hospitals, schools, and apartment buildings. The alleged motive for the invasion is the presence of Iranian rocket factories. However, this allegation is based solely on the claims of an anonymous deputy serving in the Iranian Revolutionary Guard and was first reported on by a Kuwaiti newspaper known to publish stories planted by the Israeli government.

In addition, Israel has been laying the groundwork for an invasion of Syria since last year and is largely responsible for the current conflict in Syria that has raged on for seven years. Israel’s current push to invade Syria is also based on flimsy evidence suggesting that Iran is establishing bases in Syria to target Israel.

Israel has also been preparing for a conflict on the embattled Gaza strip, which – owing to the effects of Israel’s illegal blockade and the devastation wrought by past wars – is set to be entirely uninhabitable by 2020. Reports have quoted officials of the Palestinian resistance group Hamas, which governs the Gaza strip, as saying that they place the chances of a new war with Israel in 2018 “at 95 percent” and that war games, like Operation Juniper Cobra, were likely to be used to plan or even initiate such a conflict. This concern was echoed by IDF Chief of Staff Gadi Eizenkot, who stated that another Israeli invasion of Gaza, home to 1.8 million people, was “likely” to occur this year. Eizenkot ironically framed the imminent invasion as a way to “prevent a humanitarian collapse” in Gaza.

U.S. lights match, prepares troops

Such a war is likely to be ignited by the unrest destined to follow the U.S.’ imminent move of its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. The move, set to take place in May, led Hamas to call for a third intifada, or uprising, in response to the U.S.’ unilateral decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel in defiance of the international consensus.

Beyond the fact that Israel is preparing to go to war with several countries simultaneously is the fact that U.S. ground troops are now “prepared to die for the Jewish state,” according to U.S. Third Air Force Commander Lt. Gen. Richard Clark. “We are ready to commit to the defense of Israel and anytime we get involved in a kinetic fight there is always the risk that there will be casualties. But we accept that, as in every conflict we train for and enter, there is always that possibility,” Clark told the Post.

However, more troubling than the fact that U.S. troops stand ready to die at Israel’s behest was Clark’s assertion that Haimovitch would “probably” have the last word as to whether U.S. forces would join the IDF during war time. In other words, the IDF will decide whether or not U.S. troops become embroiled in the regional war for which Israel is preparing, not the United States. Indeed, Haimovitch buoyed Clark’s words, stating that: “I am sure once the order comes we will find here U.S. troops on the ground to be part of our deployment and team to defend the state of Israel.”

Operation Juniper Cobra is not a routine exercise; it is a portent of a potentially devastating war for which Israel is actively preparing, a war likely to erupt within the coming months. In addition to overtly targeting civilians, these preparations for war — as Juniper Cobra shows — directly involve the United States military and give the war-bent Israeli government the power to decide whether or not American troops will be involved and to what extent. This is a devastating giveaway of national sovereignty by U.S. President Donald Trump.

While the potential involvement of the U.S. forces in such a war is being framed as limited in scope, there is no indication that such a war will be so in practice. Indeed, the U.S. is currently occupying 25 percent of Syria and the Trump administration has economically attacked Palestinians living in Gaza by withdrawing crucial aid, as well as Hezbollah by enforcing new sanctions against the group. Furthermore, Israel’s nuclear arsenal and the fact that Iran — and even Russia — could become involved in such a conflict means that it could quickly spiral out of control.

Whitney Webb is a staff writer for MintPress News who has written for several news organizations in both English and Spanish; her stories have been featured on ZeroHedge, the Anti-Media, and 21st Century Wire among others. She currently lives in Southern Chile.

March 13, 2018 Posted by | Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Hamas gets one step ahead of ‘deal of the century’ with five-point strategy

Head of the Political Bureau of Hamas, Ismail Haniyeh delivers a speech during a press conference in Gaza City, Gaza on 23 January 2017 [Ali Jadallah/Anadolu Agency]
MEMO | March 9, 2018

Palestinian sources said that the Chief of the Political Bureau of Hamas movement, Ismail Haniyeh, outlined a five pronged strategy to counter the US-led ‘deal of the century’, in a meeting of various Palestinian factions in Cairo.

The first principle of this strategy is to take on the ‘deal of the century’ by holding all Palestinian factions together – including Fatah movement – to a unified position.

The second prong is “the implementation of reconciliation agreements,” especially the comprehensive agreement which was signed on 4 May 2011, and the executive agreement which was signed on 12 October, 2017.

The third axis is “building strength and resistance until the liberation of Palestine.”

The fourth element is based on “establishing open political relations” with the Arab and Islamic countries to develop an Arab-Islamic safety network that includes especially “Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Iran, Turkey” as well as other countries.

The fifth aspect consists of “holding an inclusive national conference” following which there would be “an agreement to adopt a joint political program,” then organising the presidential and legislative elections (inside Palestine) and the National Council.

The sources also stated that the representatives of factions present, including those of Fatah, agreed on two points, confronting the ‘deal of the century’ and the need for reconciliation and national unity.

March 9, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Solidarity and Activism | , , , , | 1 Comment

Hamas: Abbas’s speech did not rise up to the desired level

Palestine Information Center – February 22, 2018

GAZA – Palestinian resistance group Hamas criticized Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas following his speech at the UN Security Council on Wednesday.

In a press release, Hamas underlined that the political plan presented by Abbas in his speech does not reflect the national position which calls for an end to the Oslo Accords and which opposes a resumption of negotiations with Israel.

“Abbas’s speech did not rise up to the desired level, nor did it reflect the national consensus, which wants to terminate the Oslo agreements and rejects negotiations with the occupiers,” Hamas said.

Abbas is working to create a new mechanism for the failed peace process despite Israel’s violations and crimes against Palestinian women and children and the dangerous bias of the United States in favor of Israel on Jerusalem and the refugees and the encouragement it gives Israel to commit crimes and liquidate the Palestinian cause, the statement reads.

In this context, Hamas demanded an end to Abbas’s unilateral decision-making, and instead of following the path of a political process, to accelerate the unification of the ranks within the Palestinian arena and reach an agreement on a national strategy that focuses on the path of resistance.

February 22, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Illegal Occupation | , , , , | Leave a comment

Two Israeli officers involved in Lebanon car bomb attack against Hamas official: Report

Press TV – January 29, 2018

A recent report has exposed that two Israeli agents were involved in the car bomb explosion in the southern Lebanese city of Sidon, which slightly wounded a member of the Palestinian Islamic resistance movement, Hamas, earlier this month.

According to a report published by Lebanon’s Arabic-language al-Akhbar newspaper on Monday, the pair was aided by two locals in the assassination operation against Mohammed Hamdan on January 14. They left Lebanon using Georgian, Swedish and Iraqi passports.

The report added that Lebanese security officials have now managed to identify the two Israeli officers, obtain their photographs and copies of their identity documents, the date of their entry into and exit from Lebanon, their respective roles in the operation and the nationality they used to operate under disguise.

Lebanese intelligence officials, requesting anonymity, told al-Akhbar that one of the Israeli agents was a man holding a duel Swedish-Iraqi citizenship, while another was a Georgian woman working for the Israeli intelligence service, Mossad.

The officials went on to say that, Mossad kept Hamdan under surveillance for more than seven months.

About six months ago, Hamdan lived in the Sirub district of Sidon, located 40 kilometers (25 miles) south of the capital, Beirut, and a Lebanese national, identified as Muhammad H, lived in a nearby neighborhood.

Mossad then assigned its agent to closely monitor the high-ranking Hamas figure.

After that, Hamdan moved to al-Boustan al-Kabir area of Sidon, and the second Lebanese national, identified as 38-year-old Ahmad Baytiyah and strongly believed to be main suspect in the assassination bid, tracked him.

Baytiyah rented a warehouse near the house of the Hamas leader under the pretext of storing clothes.

The four assailants flew out of Lebanon to different destinations after the failed assassination operation. The two Lebanese nationals fled to Turkey.

Baytiyah was arrested by Turkish authorities and extradited to Lebanon at the request of Prime Minister Saad Hariri earlier this week, while the other managed to flee Turkey to Romania.

Hamdan suffered a leg injury in the car bomb explosion. He was taken to a local hospital for treatment.

The explosion destroyed the vehicle and caused damage to a nearby building, sending black smoke rising above the city.

Firefighters rushed to the scene to put out the flames, while security forces cordoned off the area.

January 29, 2018 Posted by | Deception, War Crimes | , , , , | 1 Comment

Destroying Syria

Why does Washington hate Bashar al-Assad?

By Philip Giraldi • Unz Review • January 23, 2018

The Donald Trump administration is planning to install a 30,000 strong armed “security force” in northern Syria along the borders with Turkey and Iraq. This presumably will tie together and support the remaining rag-tags of allegedly pro-democracy rebels and will fit in with existing and proposed U.S. bases. The maneuver is part of a broader plan to restructure Syria to suit the usual crop of neocon geniuses in Washington that have slithered their way back into the White House and National Security Council, to include renewed demands that the country’s President Bashar al-Assad “must go,” reiterated by Secretary of State Rex Tillerson last Wednesday. He said “But let us be clear: The United States will maintain a military presence in Syria, focused on ensuring ISIS cannot re-emerge.” Tillerson also claimed that remaining in Syria would prevent Iran from “reinforcing” its position inside Syria and would enable the eventual ouster of al-Assad, but he has also denied that Washington was creating a border force at all, yet another indication of the dysfunction in the White House.

A plan pulled together in Washington by people who should know better but seemingly don’t is hardly a blueprint for success, particularly as there is no path to anything approximating “victory” and no exit strategy. The Syrians have not been asked if they approve of an arrangement that will be put in place in their sovereign territory and the Turks have already bombed targets and sent troops and allied militias into the Afrin region, also a U.S. supported Kurdish enclave on the border. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has indicated clearly that Ankara will disrupt any U.S. devised border arrangement. From the Turkish point of view the border security force, which reportedly will largely consist of Kurdish militiamen, will inevitably work in cooperation with the Kurdish terrorist group PKK which is active on the Turkish side of the border, in seeking to create an autonomous Kurdish state, which Turkey reasonably enough regards as an existential threat.

And then there is one other little complication, which is that the United States presence in Syria is completely illegal both under international law and under the U.S. government’s War Powers Act. Syria is a sovereign state with a recognized government and there is no U.N. or Congressional mandate that permits Washington to station its soldiers, Marines and airmen within the country’s borders. The argument that the recent Authorizations to Use Military Force (AUMF) permitted the activity because groups linked to al-Qaeda were active there and the local government was unable to expel them is only thinly credible as the U.S. has also attacked Syrian Army forces and the militiamen linked to Syria’s ally Iran. That constitutes a war crime.

Trump can under the War Powers Act take military action to counter an imminent threat, which was never the case from Syria in any event, but after 60 days he has to cease or desist or go to Congress for authorization up to and possibly including a declaration of war. The military offensive against Syria began under President Barack Obama and it is far beyond that two-month window already, so egregiously in violation that some Congressmen are actually beginning to take notice. Democratic Senator Tim Kaine of Virginia has demanded that no military initiatives in Syria be undertaken without a Senate vote. He said on Thursday that“I am deeply alarmed that yet again, the Trump administration continues to raise the risk of unnecessary war, disconnected from any firm policy objectives and core national security interests. To be clear, neither the 2001 or 2002 AUMFs provide authority to target Assad or Iranian proxies in Syria, and it is unacceptable for this action to be taken absent a vote and approval of Congress.”

The animus against Syria runs deep, to include questionable claims from generally hostile sources that al-Assad has deliberately massacred hundreds of thousands of his own people as well as dubious assertations about the use of chemical weapons that led to a U.S. cruise missile attack on a Syrian airbase in Shayrat. A perfect example of how brain dead the western media is over the issue was provided by last week’s article by David Brunnstrom of Reuters on the Tillerson speech, where he wrote “U.S. forces in Syria have already faced direct threats from Syrian and Iranian-backed forces, leading to the shoot-down of Iranian drones and a Syrian jet last year, as well as to tensions with Russia.” The uninformed reader would assume that Americans were the victims of an attack and aggression by Moscow whereas the reality is quite different. Iran and Russia are allies of the legitimate Syrian government that are in the country by invitation to help in its fight against groups that everyone acknowledges to be terrorists. The United States is there illegally and is as often as not using its proxies to fight the Syrian Army.

Syria-phobia goes back to the George W. Bush Administration in December 2003, when Congress passed the Syria Accountability Act, House Resolution 1828. Syria at that time was already in the cross-hairs of two principal American so-called allies in the region, Israel and Saudi Arabia. Both were actively working to destabilize the regime, though for different reasons. The Saudis were fearful of Iranian influence over Damascus but also had a religious agenda in that the secular Syrian regime was protective of religious minorities and was itself an offshoot of Shi’a Islam referred to as Alawites. The Saudis considered them to be heretics.

The Israelis for their part were enamored of the Yinon Plan of 1982 and the Clean Break proposals made in 1996 by a team of Jewish American neocons. Their intention was to transform most of Israel’s neighboring Arab states into warring tribes and ethnicities so they would no longer be a threat. Israeli leaders have stated openly that they would prefer continued chaos in Syria, which remains a prime target. Israel is, in fact, currently bombing Syrian Army positions, most recently near Damascus, while also supporting the ISIS and al-Nusra Front remnants.

The Syrian Accountability Act does indeed read at times like the completely bogus indictment of Saddam Hussein that had led to the invasion of Iraq earlier in 2003. It cites development of weapons of mass destruction and missiles, but its main focus is related to the alleged support of terrorist groups by Damascus. It “Declares the sense of Congress that the Government of Syria should immediately and unconditionally halt support for terrorism, permanently and openly declare its total renunciation of all forms of terrorism, and close all terrorist offices and facilities in Syria, including the offices of Hamas, Hizballah, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command.”

One might note that the groups cited by name are not identified as being a threat to the United States. Rather, they are organizations hostile to Israel, which suggests that the motivation for the bill was the usual dominant pro-Israeli sentiment in Congress. The bill’s sponsor was Eliot Engel of New York, a passionately pro-Israeli legislator.

Be that as it may, the drive to “get” Syria has remained a constant in American Foreign Policy to this day. When the U.S. still had an Embassy in Damascus, in December 2010 President Barack Obama maladroitly sent as Ambassador Robert Ford. Ford actively supported the large demonstrations by anti-regime Syrians inspired by the Arab Spring who were opposed to the al-Assad government and he might even have openly advocated an armed uprising, a bizarre interpretation of what Ambassadors are supposed to do in a foreign country. He once stated absurdly that if the U.S. had armed opponents of the regime, al-Qaeda groups would have been “unable to compete.” Ford was recalled a year later, after being pelted by tomatoes and eggs, over concerns that his remaining in country might not be safe, but the damage had been done and normal diplomatic relations between Damascus and Washington have never been restored.

The desire to bring about regime change in Damascus gathered considerable steam in 2011. Harsh government efforts to repress the demonstrations that did take place inevitably led to violence in both directions and the United States, Saudis and the Gulf States subsequently began to arm the rebels and support the formation of the Free Syrian Army, which Washington assured the American public consisted of only good people who wanted democracy and fundamental rights. To no one’s surprise many of the fledgling democrats accepted U.S. training and weapons before defecting to the al-Qaeda affiliate al-Nusra Front or to ISIS.

Currently, the reconstruction of Syria is proceeding. The Syrian Arab Army is wiping out the last few enclaves controlled by ISIS in Idlib Province and the so-called Syrian Civil War will soon be over but for the mopping up. Many internal refugees have returned to their homes after the government reasserted control and also thousands who fled overseas have reportedly come back. Note that they are returning to areas where the al-Assad government is firmly in charge, perhaps suggesting that, while there were legitimate grievances among the Syrian people, the propaganda insisting that most Syrians were opposed to the regime was grossly overstated. There is considerable evidence that Bashar al-Assad is actually supported by a large majority of the Syrian people, even among those who would welcome more democracy, because they know the alternative to him is chaos.

One would like to think that Syria might again be Syria but Washington is baying for blood and clearly would like to see a solution that involves a fragmentation of the state enabling containment and rollback of Iranian influence there while also satisfying both its clients Israel and the Saudis as well as creating a possible mini-state for the Kurds. The destruction of Syria and the Syrian people will just be regarded as collateral damage while building a new Middle East. Hopefully the Syrians, backed by Iran, Russia and China will prevent that from happening and as the U.S. did not directly engage in much of the hard fighting that destroyed ISIS, it thankfully has little leverage over what comes next.

Whether it is Riyadh or Tel Aviv leading Washington by the nose is somehow irrelevant as the blame for what is taking place is squarely on the White House. The United States has no coherent policy, nor any actual national interest in remaining in Syria, but the strange political alignments that appear to be playing out in and around the Oval Office have generated a desire to destroy a country and people that in no way threaten the U.S. Someone should remind the president that similar scenarios did not turn out very well in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya. No one should expect that Syria will be any different.

January 23, 2018 Posted by | Illegal Occupation, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes, Wars for Israel | , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

The shameful intelligence leaks confirmed what we already knew

Dr Amira Abo el-Fetouh | MEMO | January 15, 2018

We did not need media leaks to reveal that an officer in Egypt’s intelligence agency, Captain Ashraf El-Kholi, was telling presenters on Egyptian TV channels what they should say about Donald Trump’s announcement concerning Jerusalem Published by the New York Times and broadcast by Egypt’s Mekameleen television station, the leaks merely confirmed what we already knew about Egyptian media outlets being fully mobilised to push the US-Israeli viewpoint.

Egypt’s media has become just like all state institutions in the country; it is under the control of the army. Companies owned by the intelligence agency have bought most of the satellite TV stations, in addition to establishing a new satellite network, DMC. In doing so, it has taken complete control of the media and has not limited itself to instructing those working in the sector on specific policies of the government, as happened in the past. Now, the state has completely monopolised an important sector that shapes public opinion and forms the sentiments of an entire nation, which has been spoon-fed what the Israeli enemy wants.

Herein lies the danger and catastrophe, as the nation’s constants have changed. The enemy has become the friend and vice versa. This was exposed by the leaks. TV presenters were told to explain to the people that there is no difference between Jerusalem and Ramallah, in an attempt to quell their anger and fill them with a sense of desperation and defeat. These journalists and presenters were told to say that they cannot fight Israel directly and that they must put poison in honey in order to achieve their goals.

The presenters must do this in such a way that it seems that they are trying to preserve the blood and lives of the Palestinians, because if there is another Palestinian uprising the victims — they didn’t say martyrs — will be Palestinians and not Israelis. They must also say that they want to resolve the Palestinian issue permanently and that a new uprising would be in favour of the Islamists and Hamas, who will rise once again after a decline.

This is what the intelligence officer was dictating to various presenters and this is what they want the people to believe. The purpose of this is to play with the people’s doctrinal and national constants in order to redirect the conflict compass from Israel, the nation’s traditional enemy, towards the Islamist trend, particularly the Muslim Brotherhood, of which they consider Hamas to be a part, and which the intelligence agency labels as a terrorist organisation.

Unfortunately, they were successful with this ploy, and not just with a small section of society who have been brainwashed by this false and corrupt media that is being managed by intelligence officers.

I am not concerned with who leaked the recording or who benefits from these leaks. I am not concerned with whether this is a result of a conflict amongst the various branches of the deep state. All of this will pull us into a cycle of questions until we doubt the leak itself, and this is what the government wants to happen, in order to divert us from the essence of what was said in the disgraceful recordings.

As such, I pay no attention to what is being said about the conflict between the military intelligence and general intelligence branches, as over 20 of their senior officers were retired in the past year alone. The general intelligence agency is currently controlled by Al-Sisi’s son, who also took it upon himself to form a parliament made up of individuals completely loyal to the government, as admitted by Hazem Abdel Azim, who was associated closely with the government and in charge of the youth in Al-Sisi’s election campaign in 2014.

I am more concerned about the deterioration and decline of Egyptian intelligence. The image in the minds of Egyptians about this sovereign agency is far from the truth. Many novels, shows and movies have been written about the agency’s heroic stories and exposure of espionage within Egypt, or the spies planted in Israel. The most famous of these shows are perhaps “Raafat Al-Haggan” by Mahmoud Abdel Aziz and “Dumou fi Oyoun Waqiha” (Tears in Shameless Eyes) by Adel Imam, as well as the movies “El-Soud Ela Al-Hawia” (The Climb into the Abyss) by Mahmoud Yasin and “Mohema fi Tal Abib” (Mission in Tel Aviv) by Nadia Al-Jundi. All of these have planted in our minds the heroics of the Egyptian intelligence agents and how they were able to infiltrate the Israeli Mossad spy agency.

Regardless of the credibility of all of these stories, all intelligence agencies around the world are tasked with preserving the security of the state and the safety of its territories, not dictate to TV presenters what they should and should not say. However, this is the situation in Egypt after the 2013 coup and after the conflict compass stopped pointing at Israel, with which the country is currently enjoying — if that’s the right word — a lukewarm peace. Instead, it is pointed at the Muslim Brotherhood, which the deep state in Cairo wants to eliminate from its roots and present it as a sacrifice to Donald Trump, who remains the biggest enemy of Islam and Muslims.

Video: Leaked tapes reveal Egypt’s support for Trump’s Jerusalem decision

Egypt: media blackout on Palestinian reconciliation talks

January 15, 2018 Posted by | Deception, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Daesh declares war on Palestine’s Hamas resistance movement

Press TV – January 5, 2018

The Egyptian wing of Daesh Takfiri terrorists has released a new execution video, declaring war on the Palestinian Hamas resistance movement based in Gaza.

The video, released Wednesday, purports to show the execution of a man who Daesh claims cooperated with Hamas’ armed wing.

“Never surrender to them. Use explosives, silenced pistols and sticky bombs. Bomb their courts and their security locations, for these are the pillars of tyranny that prop up its throne,” said one of the militants in the video.

The Egyptian wing of Daesh, known as the Sinai Province, is notorious for its brutal massacres, including the Sinai 2015 plane crash which killed 224 passengers and mass killing of over 300 people at a Sufi mosque in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula, the deadliest attack in modern Egyptian history.

The video comes as Hamas has been cooperating with Egyptian security forces to restore stability to Sinai, which borders Gaza.

In October, the Palestinian resistance movement arrested four senior Daesh terrorists in Sinai.

In July 2015, Daesh released a video saying that it would overthrow Hamas “tyrants” for their perceived lack of religious rulings in Gaza.

Takfiri groups such as Daesh have never attacked Israel despite operating close to Syria’s borders with the occupied Palestinian territories. Israel is widely believed to be supporting terrorists in Syria by launching airstrikes against various targets there from time to time.

Meanwhile, the US and its allies, which have been conducting airstrikes against what are said to be Daesh targets inside Syria, have repeatedly been accused of providing logistic support and air cover for Daesh terrorists.

Daesh, however, lost all the territory under its control in Syria and Iraq late last year.

January 5, 2018 Posted by | War Crimes | , , , | 1 Comment

Energy in Palestine – an introduction

By Palestina, Gas en de Palestijnse Revolutie | 25-12-2017

Fifteen gas fields have been found on the coast of Palestine since 1999. With a value of at least two hundred thirty billion dollar, this gas will play an important role in the region. The key question for us is how the gas will influence the Palestinian people and their struggle for liberation. This article is a short introduction to this topic.

Who, what, how much?

The first gas field off the coast of Palestine was found in 1999 and the first flow of gas was realized five years later. Up until today fifteen gas fields have been found that belong to Palestine, six of which are being exploited by ‘Israel’.[1] The total amount of gas is between forty and fifty TCF (trillion cubic feet) and has a minimal value of $230bn.

‘Israeli’ state and exploitation

As a settler-colony and apartheid state, ‘Israel’ has complete control of the gas fields. 40% of the gas will be exported and the remaining 60% will be used for domestic consumption.[2] The sole current export is to Jordan with a total value of fifteen billion dollars. Cyprus, Greece, Italy and the EU also have a joint agreement for the construction of a pipeline to facilitate ‘Israeli’ gas exports to Europe. In regards to domestic consumption the gas makes ‘Israel’ energy independent for the coming decades. ‘Israel’s’ economic position and economic independence are clearly strengthened by the exploitation of the gas fields.

The PA and political parties

The gas has far reaching political consequences. Gas deals with foreign states on the one hand further normalize ‘Israel’ and strengthen its economy. On the other hand gas platforms, pipelines and complicit companies are new targets for the Palestinian resistance and the international solidarity movement. It is only a matter of time before the global BDS movement becomes a significant force against the ‘Israeli’ exploitation of the gas. In this sense, the political meaning of the gas is two-sided or contradictory: on the one hand it strengthens the occupation economy; on the other hand it offers more ways of resistance.

But not all Palestinians have a problem with the Zionist gas exploitation. The Palestinian Authority is as always positive about ‘Israel’ and ‘their’ gas. While the PA canceled a $1.2 billion gas deal with ‘Israel’ in March 2015[3], they offer no resistance to ‘Israeli’ control over the gas. This holds for the gas in Gaza, the Dutch institute SOMO wrote that ‘Israel’ is currently stealing the gas there.[4]

Hamas, who govern Gaza, and the PFLP have been confronting ‘Israel’ about the gas. Mohammed al Zoari, aka ‘the engineer’, was killed in Tunisia in December 2016. He was working on an underwater drone for Hamas to attack gas- and oil platforms.[5] The PFLP rejects all non-Palestinian exploitation of the gas and also agitates against regimes that make gas deals with the Zionist entity.[6][7][8][9]

The Palestinian struggle for liberation in the Netherlands

Noble Energy (United States), Delek Group and Avner (both ‘Israeli’) are the most active companies currently involved with Palestinian gas. Additionally involved is, Royal Dutch Shell (British-Dutch), mainly working on the gas fields on the coast of Gaza. While the PA is in talks with Shell about exploitation of these fields, this is likely never to be a reality. Multiple high-placed ‘Israeli’ scientists and politicians have spoken negatively about a fast exploitation of the Gaza fields. Shell also wants to buy ‘Israeli’ gas to sell in Egypt.[10]

It may be clear that the Dutch movement can play an important role because of the Shell involvement. Add to this that work is being put into constructing a pipeline from Palestine to Europe.[11] With a government that probably wants less dependence on Russian gas[12], Palestinian gas can be flowing through the Netherlands in a decade.

The BDS-movement, especially in the Middle East, is already working on stopping the gas theft. It is our task in the Netherlands to follow this example and stand shoulder to shoulder with activists in Jordan,[13], Turkey[14] and Palestine. We have to struggle in order to guarantee that the resistance will be stronger than the ‘Israeli’ gas profits.

[1] Al-Haq. 2015. ‘Annexing Energy’ report.

[2] Jordan BDS. 2014. ‘$8.4billion to Israel’s treasury from Jordanian citizens’.

[3] Winer, Stuart. 11 maart 2015. ‘Palestinians cancel natural gas deal with Israel’

[4] SOMO. 2017. ‘Beneath troubled waters’ report.

[5] Burton, Fred. 31 December 2016. ‘Mossad’s Fingerprints on a Murder in Tunisia’.

[6] 25 februari 2015. PFLP denounces “treacherous” gas deal (between PA and ‘Israel’) and demands immediate cancellation.

[7] 18 mei 2016. PFLP denounces joint US/Israeli/Greek military exercises, calls for action from Greek popular movement.

[8] 1 juli 2016. PFLP warns of dangerous Turkish-Israeli agreement built on looting the natural gas of the Palestinian people.

[9] 25 oktober 2016. Jordan protests continue against national gas deal with Zionist state.

[10] 21 augustus 2017. Shell ‘to buy Israeli gas’ for Egypt market.



[13] 12 november 2016. (Jordanian) Protesters detained briefly over protest against gas deal with Israel.

[14] 28 maart 2017. BDS Turkey: Turkish-Israeli energy cooperation is unacceptable!

Translation by Samidoun

December 25, 2017 Posted by | Economics, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Illegal Occupation, Solidarity and Activism, Timeless or most popular | , , , , , | 1 Comment

Haneyya: Three means to thwart Trump’s decision over Jerusalem

Palestine Information Center – December 14, 2017

GAZA – The head of the Political Bureau of the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) Ismail Haneyya has outlined three means to confront Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and topple ‘the deal of the century’, stressing that the Palestinian people, Hamas, and the resistance will work to achieve this objective on the ground.

In a speech during celebrations marking the 30th Hamas founding anniversary in the Gaza Strip on Thursday, Haneyya stressed that his Movement is now working on two parallel goals: to thwart both the Trump decision and ‘the deal of the century’.

He added, “We will work to force the US administration to retreat from its unjust decision, our goal is to break the US position and annul the Trump decision once and for all.”

He praised the Palestinian people in Jerusalem, the West Bank, Gaza, and in the refugee camps and the diaspora. He saluted the people of all nations from Indonesia to Morocco and all the free people who responded to the call and rose for the sake of Jerusalem.

Objectives of the battle

“No one could take away our sacred sites or change their identity, and no force could grant Jerusalem to the occupier. There is no such thing as the State of Israel in the first place to have a capital called Jerusalem,” he said, stressing that this is not limited to political speeches and positions. Gaza, the West Bank, Jerusalem, Palestinians in the 1948 occupied territories, the refugee camps and the diaspora, know their role well. Our lives, our people and our homes are sacrificed for Jerusalem and Al-Aqsa.”

He noted that the people of Jerusalem removed the Israeli gates installed at Al-Aqsa and prayed in the streets, adding, “If they alone defeated Netanyahu and broke his decision and victoriously entered the Al-Aqsa Mosque, can’t we as a people and a nation foil the decision? Yes, we can.”

He added, “This ominous decision is no less dangerous than the Balfour Declaration,” stressing that the Palestinian and Arab Muslim generations will not allow for this decision to pass.

Haneyya stressed that the second goal of the uprising of our people and nation along with the world’s free people and their religious and political authorities is to overthrow the so-called ‘deal of the century’, which Palestinian President Abu Mazen described as ‘the slap of the century’.

He said, “We as a people and a nation are able to respond to this slap by thwarting the so-called ‘deal of the century’, because the issue of Jerusalem came at a time of proposing projects that aim at liquidating the Palestinian issue.

Three ways

Haneyya stressed that Hamas needs today to follow three paths, the most prominent of which is the achievement of national unity and partnership in the management of the country, adding, “the most effective response would be a unified Palestinian position.” He reiterated Hamas’s adherence to national reconciliation, which was revived over the last few months, with Hamas making important steps along that the path.

He said: “Achieving unity and reconciliation requires speeding up applying all the measures we have agreed upon in Cairo and Gaza and everywhere, and requires that our people live a decent and dignified life in Gaza. Gaza is the stronghold of resistance and the incubator of the national project. And despite fighting three wars, it comes out today to say we are with the resistance and unity with all of Palestine.”

He added, “We have to deal with the details quickly, the issue is bigger and is more serious. We must agree on a national strategy of struggle that takes all reasons of strength and steadfastness into consideration within the framework of the overall popular resistance to confront the occupier, and on the top of that armed and popular resistance.”

Haneyya stressed the need to work quickly to restructure the PLO, the house that includes under its umbrella all Palestinians, so tas to include all national and Islamic forces under it.

Building alliances

Haneyya stressed the need to build strong alliances at the regional and national levels. He said: “The battle of Jerusalem is not our battle alone; it is the battle of the entire nation.” He welcomed every genuine position that supports Jerusalem and every idea that could build a strong Muslim and Arab front at the regional level.”

He called for the formation of action groups that include all forces and components of the nation, adding, “Our nation is invited to forget its differences and internal conflicts and tears, and to seek to re-establish its connection to Jerusalem and the blessed land of Palestine.”

He stressed that Hamas has started and will continue to build alliances in the region to address the Israeli-American project, noting that that would also include “maintaining the strategy of openness to all Arab and Muslim countries and peoples.”

Continuation of Intifada

The third path is the continuation of the intifada, Haneyya said, stressing that it should not stop. “Netanyahu and the US administration are betting on the exhaustion of the Nation.”

Haneyya called on Arab and Muslim nations to make Friday of every week a day of anger and marches for Jerusalem.

He called on scholars and preachers to make Jerusalem present in their speeches and lessons and to incite people and the free world, until the decision is dropped.

He also called on Christian churches in Palestine and the Levant to devote their prayers on Sunday for Jerusalem, the Church of the Resurrection and the Al-Aqsa Mosque, affirming that “We still stick to the Pact of Omar.”

He called on the youths from the Atlantic Ocean to the Gulf to form frameworks to organize events monthly and weekly until Trump’s decision is revoked, adding: “We should not suffice with an emotional event, or with a march or a single event, but we want permanence and persistence. Let young people of our nation form national frameworks and design programs and strategies to support Jerusalem and Palestine and to foil Trump’s decision.”

Hamas and the resistance project

Haneyya paid tribute to the Palestinian people in all places of their presence, saluting the participants in the Hamas anniversary, prominent leaders of the national and Islamic factions, who attended the event, and all segments of the Palestinian people.

Haneyya stressed that this unique national presence that takes part in the Hamas anniversary is a proof that “Hamas is a natural extension of the resistance and steadfastness project on our land, and a proof of the blessed resistance that has been going on in our land since the beginning of the last century.”

He pointed out that other forces and factions preceded Hamas in this regard and will continue with it, noting that this national rally is an evidence of the popularity of Hamas, which keeps the identity and principles and stability and mobilization of our people.

He pointed out that Hamas has served as “a qualitative addition to our people and our resistance. Today, we celebrate this anniversary with these masses.”

“Let us emphasize that the Intifada was for Jerusalem and the resistance is for Jerusalem and Jihad is for Jerusalem, so are the martyrs, the blood, the wounded, the prisoners and all the heroic works”, he highlighted.

The Hamas leader said: “The celebration of Hamas is the celebration of a people and a nation and represents a great contribution to the resistance, Jihad and heroism project. Hamas gave the best of its people for the sake of Jerusalem. The entire Muslim nations celebrate this anniversary because they see in Hamas an example to follow that carries the flag of resistance and represents these nations in the battle to liberate Jerusalem and Al-Aqsa Mosque.”

He said: “The Palestinian issue is central to our nation and our people and the free world. After many thought that the issue has been overshadowed, and that the people of the nation were preoccupied with their concerns.”

In just eight days, the issue of Jerusalem became the center issue for all Muslims and Arabs, he explained, adding that for the first time in the history of the issue, “the whole world is standing on one side, and Netanyahu and Trump are standing on the other, which asserts that the occupation no longer has an important status even among the European countries.”

December 14, 2017 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Solidarity and Activism, Timeless or most popular | , , , , , | 2 Comments