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On Accountability in the Light of Israeli Brutality

By Gilad Atzmon | May 20, 2018

For the last few weeks Israel has displayed a new level of institutional criminality. Fearing that Palestinian protestors attempting to return to their land would cross the Gaza border fence, Israel deployed hundreds of snipers, scores of tanks and drones across the Gaza Strip border. The government ordered forces to shoot at anyone who managed to reach the border. (although it is clear that Israeli forces also shot well inside the border.) This was a premeditated massacre: a cold blooded governmental decision to shoot at protestors. The outcome of this disastrous decision is known and it reveals the murderous nature of the Jewish State.

The world reacted in disgust. The UN voted two days ago to send an international war crimes probe to Gaza. Israel has already refused to cooperate with this fact finding mission.

These events in Gaza proved that the nature of Israeli barbarism has no precedent in human history. Israel is not a tyrannical dictatorship deploying death squads against protestors, nor were the killings the result of an outburst by a lone commander on the battlefield. Instead, Israel’s actions resulted from a non-ethical continuum that stretched from the Israeli PM to the last IDF sniper on the Gaza dunes. The Jewish state is a democracy. Its army is a popular army. The events in Gaza were the direct outcome of a policy that remained unchanged for 6 weeks despite the high level of civilian casualties on the Palestinian side. We are talking about an murderous system that is institutionalised at all levels of the state that repeatedly defines itself as ‘The Jewish State.’

This has exposed a complete absence of moral awareness. Israel has acted with impunity to kill on a mass scale as if ethics had never made it to Israel. However John Adlington from Treflach seems to be really upset that I  insist that Jews must look into themselves so that they can understand what is it about their culture and politics that evoke so much fury. John Adlington from Treflach wrote to his local paper, Oswestry Advertiser, complaining about a local music venue inviting me to perform and run Jazz workshops. In Adlington’s eyes I am ‘anti-Semitic’ for insisting that Jews, like everyone else, must reflect on their actions to understand once and for all why their history has been a chain of total disasters and how they bring misfortune on themselves.

I remain firmly behind those words that upset Mr. Adlington “… maybe the time is ripe for Jewish and Zionist organisations to draw the real and most important lesson from the Holocaust. Instead of constantly blaming the Goyim for inflicting pain on Jews, it is time for Jews to look in the mirror and try to identify what it is in Jews and their culture that evokes so much fury. It may even be possible that some Jews would take this opportunity to apologise to the Gentiles around them for evoking all this anger.”

I insist that it is well past the time for the Jewish State and Jewish institutions to figure out why the entire world has been disgusted by the actions of the IDF in Gaza. It is time for the Jewish State and Jewish organisations to grasp that Israeli criminality paints Jews in a disastrous light. It is time for Israelis and Jews alike to accept that as long as Israel defines itself as the ‘Jewish State,’ the ethnic cleansing of the Palestinians doesn’t reflect well on Jews. The ongoing Gaza siege doesn’t present the Jewish State as a humanist adventure either. I would advise Mr. Adlington that in this imaginary ‘racist contest’ he is well ahead of me. Expecting Jews not to self reflect and to understand their role in their own misfortune is actually a surrender to Jewish racial exceptionalism.

If the Jewish State and its many satellite lobbies and advocacy bodies around the world were taking responsibility for their actions, the Gaza massacre wouldn’t have happened because the Palestinians would, by now, be living back on their land and peace would have prevailed. However, if promoting Jewish accountability and peace is ‘anti-Semitism’ one may wonder, what is a real bigot?

May 20, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , , | Leave a comment

NDP MPs must stop being ‘friends’ with Israel

By Yves Engler · May 19, 2018

Is it appropriate for NDP Members of Parliament to be working for “greater friendship” with a country that is killing and maiming thousands of non-violent protestors?

Would it have been appropriate for any elected member of the party to be a “friend” with South Africa’s government during the apartheid era?

Victoria area MPs Randall Garrison (left) and Murray Rankin are members of the Canada Israel Interparliamentary Group (previously named Canada-Israel Friendship Group).

Garrison is vice-chair of a group designed to promote “greater friendship” and “cooperation” between the two countries’ parliaments.

The chair of the group is York Centre MP Michael Levitt, a former board member of the explicitly racist Jewish National Fund, who issued a statement blaming “Hamas incitement” for Israeli forces shooting thousands of peaceful protesters, including Canadian doctor Tarek Loubani.

The Interparliamentary Group is one of many pro-Israel lobbying organizations in Canada. In conjunction with the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) and Canadian Jewish Political Affairs Committee, the Interparliamentary Group has hosted wine and cheese lobbying events on Parliament Hill. Three hundred parliamentarians and parliamentary staff attended their 2014 “Israeli Wine Meets Canadian Cheese” gathering in the East Block courtyard.

The group regularly meets the Israeli Ambassador and that country’s other diplomats. Representatives of the Group also regularly visit Israel on sponsored trips. For their part, Garrison and Rankin both participated in CIJA-organized trips to Israel in 2016.

The Interparliamentary Group works with its Israeli counterpart the Israel-Canada Inter-Parliamentary Friendship Group. In 2016 the Group sent a delegation to the Israeli Knesset and last year they organized a joint teleconference with Israel-Canada Inter-Parliamentary Friendship Group co-chairs Yoel Hasson and Anat Berko.

Last month Hasson responded to Meretz party Chairwoman Tamar Zandberg’s call for an investigation into the Israel Defense Forces’ killing of non-violent Palestinian protesters by tweeting, “there was nothing to investigate, the IDF is doing what’s necessary to defend the Gaza border.”

Chairman of the Zionist Union Knesset faction, Hasson opposed the UN resolution on a Palestinian state. When the Knesset voted to strip Arab MK Hanin Zoabi of parliamentary privileges for participating in the 2010 Gaza flotilla Hasson and MK Carmel Shama “nearly came to blows” with Zoabi and her fellow Balad party MK Jamal Zahalka. Hasson later called Zoabi a “terrorist”.

Berko is even more openly racist and anti-Palestinian. A Lieutenant-Colonel in the IDF reserves prior to her election with Likud, Berko openly disparaged African refugees. In February Israel National News reported, “Berko said that the MKs should see the suffering that African migrants have caused South Tel Aviv residents before jetting off to Rwanda” to oppose an effort to deport mostly Eritrean and Sudanese refugees to the small East African nation.

In January Berko co-sponsored a bill to bypass a High Court ruling that Israeli forces cannot use the bodies of dead Palestinian protesters as bargaining chips. The aim of the bill was to make it harder for the bodies to be given over for burial, which should happen as soon as possible under Muslim ritual, in the hopes of preventing high profile funerals. In a 2016 Knesset debate Berko make the ridiculous claim that the absence of the letter “P” in the Arabic alphabet meant Palestine did not exist since “no people would give itself a name it couldn’t pronounce.”

In response Richard Silverstein noted, “Apparently, the fact that the word is spelled and pronounced with an ‘F’ (Falastin) in Arabic seems to have escaped her. It’s worth noting, too, that according to her logic, Israeli Jews do not exist either, since there is no letter ‘J’ in Hebrew.”

Garrison and Rankin must immediately withdraw from the Canada–Israel Interparliamentary Group. If the NDP MPs refuse to disassociate themselves from the pro-Israel lobby organization, party leader Jagmeet Singh should replace them as (respectively) NDP defence and justice critics.

Israel’s slaughter in Gaza should lead to an end of the NDP’s anti-Palestinian past.

Please join me in asking Garrison (Randall.Garrison@parl.gc.ca) and Rankin (Murray.Rankin@parl.gc.ca) to withdraw from the Canada–Israel Interparliamentary Group. Make sure to cc Jagmeet Singh (jagmeet@ndp.ca)

May 20, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Progressive Hypocrite, War Crimes | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Israeli police break activist’s leg while in custody: Report

Press TV – May 20, 2018

Activists say Israeli police have brutally beaten an Arab-Israeli NGO worker after arresting him at a Haifa demonstration, which landed him in hospital with a broken leg.

Jafar Farah, the CEO of the Mossawa Center, was one of the 21 people arrested on Friday during a demonstration against the May 14 Israeli carnage in the Gaza Strip.

Footage of Farah’s arrest shows him being escorted away from the protest on his own feet and in handcuffs.

However, the police said the activist is now hospitalized, without providing further details on his condition.

Farah’s relatives and Adalah, an organization dedicated to Palestinian legal rights in Israel, accused the police of breaking the campaigner’s leg while in custody.

Adalah said in a statement that the Israeli police had dealt with the Haifa demonstration “like a war,” beaten those who attempted to escape and denied the detainees access to lawyers for over an hour after their arrest.

“All the detainees were handcuffed for the entire night and kept sitting on the police station floor. Many of them experienced serious bruising to their wrists. Adalah considers these arrests to be illegal, as the police violence in Haifa was unprecedented and unprovoked,” the statement read.

Additionally, the Mossawa Center said on Facebook that Farah had been assaulted while in police custody and is now in Bnai Tzion Hospital with a broken leg.
Israeli policemen arrest a protester in Haifa on May 18, 2018.

Israeli lawmaker Ilan Gilon said he had passed an urgent question to Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan regarding Farah’s arrest.

“I demand to know if police brutality led to the broken leg by Jafar Farah,” he said on Facebook. “The idea that a protester leaves his home to use his democratic right and is taken to an interrogation because of that, and as it ends it turns out his limbs are broken, is a thought that makes my blood run cold.”

In a Twitter post, Merav Michaeli, another Israeli lawmaker, called Farah “a partner in the struggle for equality and peace,” condemning his “frightening” treatment at the hands of policemen.

Member of the Knesset (MK) Ayman Odeh, who met the Haifa detainees, said police forces brutally oppressed the protest without any explanation.

He said Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s regime “wants to silence any voice of resistance and dissent coming from here, to silence any voice that embarrasses it and its actions.”

MK Aida Touma-Suleiman also spoke against the Israeli police clampdown on Haifa demonstrators, saying, “the attempts to scare and silence people will fail again!”

“The violence exerted on protesters was unchecked. Interrogators continued to beat up the detainees after they were arrested without any explanation or justification. As a result, some of them were injured. Jafar Farah’s leg was broken,” she added.

Israeli forces killed at least 65 Palestinians during protests near the Gaza fence on the eve of the 70th anniversary of the Nakba Day (the Day of Catastrophe), which coincided this year with the US embassy relocation from Tel Aviv to occupied Jerusalem al-Quds.

More than 2,700 Palestinians were also wounded as the Israeli forces used snipers, airstrikes, tank fire and tear gas to target the demonstrators.

The UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) convened on Friday, demanding an “independent, international commission of inquiry” into the Gaza killings and denouncing “the disproportionate and indiscriminate use of force” by Israeli forces against Palestinians.

Israeli officials angry with UN rights council

The move infuriated Israeli officials, with the minister of military affairs claiming that the council had become a “cheerleader for terrorists.”

In a post on his Twitter account on Saturday, Avigdor Lieberman rejected the probe into the Gaza killings. He had earlier urged Tel Aviv and the US to immediately withdraw from the UNHRC.

Netanyahu also railed against the UNHRC, saying the Geneva-based body had backed terrorism by launching the Gaza investigation.

“There is nothing new under the sun. An organization that calls itself a council for human rights has once again proven that it is hypocritical and biased” and that its “purpose is to harm Israel and support terror,” the Israeli premier said.

May 20, 2018 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Solidarity and Activism, Subjugation - Torture | , , , | Leave a comment

Congress Ignores Israel’s War Crimes: It’s the American Way

By Philip Giraldi | American Herald Tribune | May 20, 2018

While many European parliamentarians have been outspoken in their disgust at the “horrific” one-sided atrocity being clearly observed in the Israeli slaughter of Palestinian demonstrators last week, most of their U.S. counterparts appear to have lost their ability to express themselves over the egregious human rights violations being committed by the Israeli Army in Gaza. Sixty-two unarmed Palestinian demonstrators were shot dead and nearly three thousand more were injured by gunfire and tear gas versus no Israelis killed or wounded while a leading Knesset parliamentarian has assured the public that the Army has plenty of bullets left to kill all the Gazans if necessary.

The White House, however, has obviously not seen the video footage of the slaughter, and was instead celebrating the opening of the new American Embassy in Jerusalem intended to coincide with the 70th Anniversary of the creation of Israel, which some might also refer to as the 70th anniversary of the ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian Christians and Muslims. Donald Trump tweeted that it was a “great day for Israel,” apparently having missed watching the slaying of the Palestinians by split screen as the largely American Jewish celebrants yukked it up with a broadly grinning Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. A short time later someone named Raj Shah at the White House told reporters at a press briefing that “The responsibility for these tragic deaths rests squarely with Hamas. Hamas is intentionally and cynically provoking this response” as “a gruesome and unfortunate propaganda attempt.”

And meanwhile over at the United Nations, American Ambassador Nikki Haley vetoed a Russian proposal seeking an investigation into the carnage, explaining that that Hamas, aided of course by Iran, was to blame for the violence. “I ask my colleagues here in the Security Council: who among us would accept this type of activity on your border? No one would. No country in this chamber would act with more restraint than Israel has.” She then walked out when Riyad Mansour, the Palestinian Permanent Representative to the United Nations began to speak.

Trump son-in-law Jared Kushner, who was part of the Jerusalem delegation, even as violence was erupting in Gaza forty miles away, also knew whom to blame, saying “As we have seen from the protests of the last month and even today, those provoking violence are part of the problem and not part of the solution.” He was not talking about the 200 Israeli snipers firing into an unarmed crowd of Gazans.

To be sure, some Democratic Congressman have expressed horror over what has been taking place. Barbara Lee, Betty McCollum and Bernie Sanders have all spoken up. Sanders said that “Israel should be condemned.” Congressman Mark Pocan declared that “There are better ways to deal with the tensions in Gaza than bullets.” Pocan and Raúl Grijalva, Pramila Jayapal, Keith Ellison, and Hank Johnson all expressed shock and dismay at “the lethal force used by Israeli troops against mostly unarmed protesters demonstrating at Gaza’s border.” They asked Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government to “show utmost restraint, allow for unfettered medical attention for those who have been wounded, and ease the 12-year blockade on Gaza, which has contributed to grave food insecurity, unemployment and a humanitarian crisis for Gaza’s two million inhabitants.”

Congressmen Johnson and Pocan as well as Dan Kildee of Michigan have recently called for the Israeli government to permit them to enter the Palestinian region to see what is happening on the ground there. The three congressmen visited Israel in 2016 but were blocked from crossing into the Gaza Strip by the Israeli Coordination and Liaison Administration, which operates the borders and entry points, limiting who can enter and leave as well as the flow of such essentials as food supplies. It might astonish some Americans to learn that Israel can stop any U.S. Congressmen from entering Gaza, which Tel Aviv illogically claims is no longer under its control even though it has turned the area into an outdoor prison camp.

One notes particularly the lack of even a single Republican concerned over the completely disproportionate carnage in Gaza. Senator Rand Paul, who once referred to Israeli controlled Gaza as a “concentration camp,” is notable by his absence. Senators Ten Cruise, Lindsey Graham, Dean Heller and Mike Lee (a bit of a surprise that, but he is a Mormon) were all part of the official delegation, which also included a number of GOP House members as well as Florida governor Rick Scott.

Regarding the Democrats, it has long been observed that the party base does not any longer support the philo-Israel policies embraced by the Clintonesque Democratic National Committee leadership. Those congressmen who have spoken out certainly deserve the public’s support when they find Israel’s behavior just too much to take.

It would have been refreshing to see more Congressmen criticizing Israel for what are indisputably war crimes in using live fire against unarmed demonstrators. And they should use the same blunt language they use when criticizing Russia or North Korea or Iran. Unfortunately, even when there have been comments or statements that express some concern, they are inevitably and invariably wrapped in excuses for Israel’s inhumane actions, referring to provocative protests “organized by Hamas,” a claim that is pure Israeli propaganda, and/or blaming “all sides,” which again distributes the fault to make Israel look like a victim as well as the Gazans. It is typical newspeak intended to avoid making Israel and its friends unhappy.

The truth is that what Israel does in its own neighborhood endangers the United States and makes every American who travels through the Middle East a target. I recently returned from a conference in Iran and, as the Gaza tragedy was unfolding, we American participants were all wondering if we would make it home. We considered that Israel, bent on a war with Iran that would drag the U.S. in to do the real fighting, might just choose their moment of apparent strength with the new Embassy and the “successful” slaughter of the Palestinians without so much as a peep out of the White House, as a good time to escalate. How many civilian airliners might get shot down? How many more Palestinians will have to die for the monstrous Benjamin Netanyahu’s blood lust truly to be satisfied?

May 20, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , | 1 Comment

Botswana National Front calls for boycott of Israel

Palestine Information Center | May 19, 2018

GABORONE – Botswana’ main opposition party, the Botswana National Front (BNF), has called on the government of Botswana to terminate all relations with Israel. This comes in the wake of Israel’s massacre of 60 people on the Israel-Gaza border on Monday.

In a scathing statement, BNF’s Secretary for International Affairs, Nelson Ramaotwana said:

“The BNF does not only condemn the barbaric acts of Israel but call upon the government of Botswana to terminate forthwith all diplomatic relations, trade linkages, military and intelligence support from Israel. We call upon Batswana from all walks of life to boycott and disinvest from Israel products and businesses in solidarity with 61 butchered and 2700 injured Palestinians.”

May 19, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Solidarity and Activism | , , , , , | 1 Comment

Hamas condemns Swiss minister’s comment about right to return

Ignazio Cassis, the Foreign Minister of Switzerland [screengrab / Youtube]
MEMO | May 19, 2018

The Islamic Palestinian Resistance Movement, Hamas, has condemned a comment by Swiss Foreign Minister Ignazio Cassis about the Palestinians’ right to return. The movement said that it was “shocked” to hear Cassis describe the legitimate return of all Palestinian refugees as an “unrealistic dream” in a comment about the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA).

According to the minister, “UNRWA poses a problem by holding an unrealistic dream about the return of all refugees.” The question, he said, is whether UNRWA is part of the solution or the problem. “It has long worked as a solution but now it is part of the problem, it is securing the ammunition needed for the continuation of the conflict. As long as Palestinians live in refugee camps, they will remain wanting to return to their homeland.”

Hamas denounced what it called the Swiss minister’s “disgraceful remarks” and demanded that the government of Switzerland should issue an apology to the people of Palestine.

“We reiterate our support for UNRWA and the need to enable it to continue its work mandated by the international community for the relief and employment of Palestinian refugees,” the movement said. “We affirm to all that the adherence of our people to their rights, foremost of which is the return to their land, is not linked to the existence of the camps or the continuation of the Agency’s work.”

The right to return to their homeland, Hamas pointed out, is one to be upheld for all refugees, regardless of where they are or their country of origin. Palestinian refugees are no different, it insisted, and their right to return has been reaffirmed in numerous UN Resolutions over the decades since the 1948 ethnic cleansing of their land. “Furthermore,” added Hamas, “it is an individual and collective right.”

May 19, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Canada’s Shameful Hypocrisy on Display!

By Marion Kawas | Canada Palestine Association | May 18, 2018

Six weeks after Israeli snipers started killing and maiming Palestinians, including children, journalists, and medical workers, Canada’s PM Justin Trudeau finally released a carefully worded statement regarding the situation. The statement came only after the wounding of a Canadian doctor on the ground in Gaza, Tarek Loubani.

Activists familiar with the long history of complicity and duplicity of successive Canadian governments cautioned that the statement missed the mark on two main points.

Firstly, it studiously avoided any mention of the culpability of the Israeli government by name, anywhere in the statement.

Secondly, although there was a call for an independent investigation, it was worded this way:

“Canada calls for an immediate independent investigation to thoroughly examine the facts on the ground – including any incitement, violence, and the excessive use of force…We will work closely with our international partners and through international institutions to address this serious situation.”

Calling for investigations is usually diplomatic code for stalling and not taking action. But note also the wording and the ordering of possible facts on the ground, “including any incitement, violence and the excessive use of force”.

However, no-one had to wait long to have the hypocrisy of the Canadian government revealed. Two days after the statement, on May 18, Canada stated it would not support the resolution that was then passed by an overwhelming majority at the UN Human Rights Council. This is what Canada had to say:

“Canada was gravely concerned about the numerous deaths and countless injuries in the Gaza Strip over the past several weeks.  However, it could not support the draft resolution because it prejudged the outcome of an international investigation.  The resolution was one-sided and did not advance the prospects for a peaceful, negotiated settlement to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The resolution singled out Israel, without making reference to other actors.”

So, there we have it. Either the UNHRC is not an “international institution” that the Trudeau government wants to work closely with or the resolution made the serious error of actually naming who was firing the shots and dropping the tear gas on unarmed protestors.

Or the Trudeau government was just playing politics from the beginning, and after realizing that the issue of Israel slaughtering Palestinians was becoming very unpopular and the Liberal Party was losing support for its deafening silence, decided to issue a statement that said little and achieved less.

This way, they (and their supporters) could claim they have indeed responded and stood up to the pro-Israel lobby. Actually, it is a sad tradition in Canada that most of the major political parties play “political football” with the lives and struggles of Palestinians. One eye always on the win/loss column to decide when and how to speak out.

We say enough, over 100 Palestinians have not died in the last 6 weeks just so the Canadian government can shed crocodile tears while still defending Israel. We need to focus less of our resources and time on what politicians have to say and more on developing concrete and grassroots work, like BDS campaigns, that have a long-term benefit to the Palestinian people.

– Marion Kawas is a member of the Canada Palestine Association and co-host of Voice of Palestine.

May 19, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Progressive Hypocrite, War Crimes | , , , , , | 1 Comment

Israel blocks Turkey from transporting wounded Palestinians from Gaza

RT | May 18, 2018

Turkey’s attempts to evacuate Palestinians wounded in Gaza for medical treatment have been blocked by Israel, the government in Ankara said.

Israel is blocking Turkey from “standing beside our oppressed brothers,” Turkey’s deputy prime minister, Recep Akdag, said, as cited by Anadolu Agency. Turkey asked to send a plane to Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion airport, but the request was rejected due to political and security concerns, according to Israel’s Channel 10.

“We received a request from international health authorities to approve a Turkish flight to evacuate those being treated in Gaza to Turkey,” Deputy Health Minister Yaakov Litzman told Channel 10.

“After discussion with security agencies and Israeli experts, we decided to allow treatment in Israel and/or to send medical supplies to Gaza. But we did not permit the Turkish flight.”

Tensions have increased between the two nations since Turkey expelled Israel’s ambassador from Ankara and withdrew its ambassador from Tel Aviv, in response to Israel’s killing of at least 60 Palestinians at the Great Return March protests in Gaza on Monday. More than 100 people have been killed during the six-week protests.

The Rafah border crossing has been opened for six days this week to allow injured Palestinians in Gaza to receive treatment in Egypt. Minister of Health Ahmed Emad Eddine said he had been “instructed by the political leadership” to allow Palestinians to be treated in Egyptian hospitals, Egypt Today reports.

Last month, Israel rejected a request to transfer two wounded Palestinians from Gaza to the West Bank because they had taken part in the demonstrations. The High Court ruled Israel had to allow the patients to receive treatment, but at that stage both needed amputations.

“The situation in Gaza is devastating and the crisis is far from over,” UN humanitarian coordinator Jamie McGoldrick said. “Medical teams in Gaza have exerted heroic efforts, working tirelessly and often at personal risk, to save lives. But stocks of medicines and supplies are being depleted, with few resources to replenish them. Our ability to reach affected families, including children, and provide assistance is extremely limited due to funding shortfalls.”

Before Monday’s protest, Doctors Without Borders (MSF) in Gaza said its medical facilities were “completely overwhelmed and will soon be unable to manage additional wounded,” and warned the health system was “on the verge of collapse.”

May 18, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Subjugation - Torture, War Crimes | , , , | 9 Comments

UNICEF: 1,000 children injured by Israeli gunfire in Gaza protests

Palestine Information Center | May 17, 2018

OCCUPIED JERUSALEM – Over 1,000 children have been injured by Israeli forces in the besieged Gaza Strip during demonstrations since March 30, according to the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF).

The UN body pointed out that some injuries had been severe and potentially life-altering, including amputations.

“Recent violence has exacerbated the already weak health system in the Gaza Strip, which is crumbling because of the severe power cuts and shortages of fuel, medicine and equipment,” UNICEF said in a statement.

“Medical facilities are buckling under the strain of additional casualties,” it further warned.

On Wednesday, UNICEF and its partners delivered two truck-loads of urgent medical supplies to the Gaza Strip for an estimated 70,000 people.

May 17, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Subjugation - Torture | , , , , , | 1 Comment

Award-winning photographer shot by Israel soldier in the West Bank

Internationally-acclaimed and award-winning photographer, Tanya Habjouqa [Happeningarts/Twitter]
MEMO | May 17, 2018

An internationally-acclaimed, award-winning photographer was shot by an Israeli soldier in the occupied West Bank on Tuesday, reports the Art Newspaper.

Tanya Habjouqa, who won the 2014 World Press photo award, was struck in the leg by a rubber-coated metal bullet fired by Israeli occupation forces during a protest near Bet El checkpoint.

Habjouqa told the paper that she was some 40 metres from Palestinian protesters “when Israeli soldiers in the distance started shooting rubber bullets and tear gas in several directions”.

“She also saw soldiers aim at a Palestinian gas station where there were no protesters, just people filling up their gas tanks,” the report added.

“I was on the side with my camera at the beginning of the protest with cameras around my neck, so I feel I was definitely targeted though thankfully they chose not to aim for my head,” Habjouqa tells us. “It hurts like hell and the bruise is spreading front and back.”

Habjouqa is a founder of Rawiya, the first all-female photo collective in the Middle East, as well as a member of the Noor Photography collective, a Magnum Foundation grantee, and the author of the photo book Occupied Pleasures that the Smithsonian named one of the best photo books of 2015.

Her work is in the permanent collections of the Carnegie Museum of Art, the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston and the Institut du Monde Art in Paris.

Read also:

Media freedom watchdog warns of more Israel attacks on journalists in Gaza

May 17, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Full Spectrum Dominance, Subjugation - Torture | , , , , | Leave a comment

Lieberman urges Israel to pull out of UN rights body, demands US to follow suit

Press TV – May 17, 2018

The Israeli minister of military affairs has lashed out at the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) for its condemnation of the recent Gaza carnage, saying Tel Aviv and the US should immediately withdraw from the Geneva-based body.

In a post on his Twitter account, Avigdor Lieberman claimed that “Israel is under a double attack,” one from Gaza and another campaign of “hypocrisy headed by the United Nations Human Rights Council.”

“We must stop permitting this celebration of hypocrisy and immediately withdraw from the Human Rights Council, and work diligently so that the United States joins us in this step,” he added.

Lieberman’s comments came two days after the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Right condemned “the appalling, deadly violence in Gaza.”

“The rules on the use of force under international law have been repeated many times but appear to have been ignored again and again. It seems anyone is liable to be shot dead or injured: women, children, press personnel, first responders, bystanders, and at almost any point up to 700m from the fence,” it noted.

The 47-member UNHRC is also scheduled to hold a special session on Friday to discuss “the deteriorating human rights situation in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem [al-Quds].”

Israeli forces killed at least 62 Palestinians during protests near the Gaza fence on the eve of the 70th anniversary of the Nakba Day (the Day of Catastrophe), which coincided this year with Washington’s embassy relocation from Tel Aviv to occupied Jerusalem al-Quds.

More than 2,700 Palestinians were also wounded as the Israeli forces used snipers, airstrikes, tank fire and tear gas to target the demonstrators.

The UN Security Council held an emergency meeting on Tuesday over the Gaza bloodshed.

The US, however, blocked the adoption of a Kuwait-drafted statement that expressed “outrage and sorrow” at the Gaza killings and called for an “independent and transparent investigation” into the massacre.

Hamas won ‘PR war’

In a relevant development, a senior Israeli army spokesman said that the Gaza killings had handed a PR victory to the Palestinian resistance movement, Hamas, which governs the besieged territory and organized the anti-occupation protests there.

During a briefing to the Jewish Federations of North America, Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan Conricus acknowledged that the Israeli military had failed to minimize the number of the casualties in Gaza and that some victims had been hit by mistake.

“We haven’t been able to get that message out of how it is from our side… – and the ‘winning picture’ overwhelmingly, by a knockout, unfortunately, have been the graphics from the Palestinian side. The amount of casualties has done us a tremendous disservice, unfortunately, and it has been very difficult to tell our story,” he said.

See also:

UN rights body urges probe into Gaza carnage

The UN rights body calls for an investigation into recent Israel’s massacre of Palestinian protesters in Gaza.

UNSC holds emergency meeting on Israeli violence

Washington has already blocked the adoption of a UN statement calling for an investigation into the killing of Palestinians.

May 17, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Subjugation - Torture, War Crimes | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Emily Thornberry powerfully condemns the Gaza massacre committed by the state of Israel

Bypass Mainstream Media | May 15, 2018

May 17, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Video, War Crimes | , , , , | 3 Comments