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Palestinian-American Groups Withdraw from Women’s March in Protest of Pro-Israel Speaker, Scarlett Johannson

Palestine Chronicle | January 21, 2018

NBC reported that three Palestinian human rights groups pulled out of the Los Angeles Women’s March Saturday after it was announced that one of the featured speakers was actress Scarlett Johannson, who promoted SodaStream, a beverage company that owns a factory in an Israeli settlement in the West Bank.

A former OXFAM ambassador, Johannson resigned her position with the humanitarian organization after criticism for supporting and promoting the support of Israeli settlements built on stolen Palestinian land.

The Southern California branch of the Palestinian Women’s Organization made a statement on their Facebook page about the decision to pull out of the march:

“PAWA recently became aware of LA March’s decision to include Scarlett Johansson in their lineup of special guest speakers. Johansson has expressed her unapologetic support of illegal settlements in the West Bank, a human rights violation recognized by the international community whose calls only led to a reaffirmation of her position, sending a clear message that Palestinian voices and human rights for Palestinians do not matter. While her position may not be reflective of all organizers at the Women’s March Los Angeles Foundation, PAWA cannot in good conscience partner itself with an organization that fails to genuinely and thoughtfully recognize when their speaker selection contradicts their message.

“Currently, 16 year old Ahed Tamimi is being held in custody for standing up to two Israeli combat soldiers who raided her family home in the middle of the night on illegally occupied land. Her story, one among hundreds of Palestinian children being abused and imprisoned by Israeli military, has been heard across the globe with calls to #FreeAhed, making the decision to invite Scarlett Johansson speak at an event highlighting “the struggles of marginalized communities and all attacks on human rights” all the more tone deaf.

“We join Al-Awda: The Palestine Right to Return Coalition, Jewish Voice for Peace, Code Pink, BDS-LA, Jews for Palestinian Right of Return and other organizations who have signed the petition below in boycott of the January 20 march in Los Angeles.”

January 21, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Solidarity and Activism | , , , , | 1 Comment

Is A “Great War” on Israel’s Horizon?

By Jeremy Salt | American Herald Tribune | January 21, 2018

After more than a century the Zionists seem poised to deliver the coup-de-grace to Palestine, by annexing the West Bank. Limited in the first place to the settlements, it would be the forerunner to the annexation of the entire territory. The status of the Palestinian population would continue to be held in limbo until a permanent solution appears. After annexation, some might leave. The greater the number the greater the satisfaction for Israel, but two mass expulsions have taught the Palestinians that they must stay. There could still be a third wave of expulsions, with war again providing the smokescreen and, again, war is beckoning.

The Zionist founders never wanted anything less than all of Palestine. From the start they knew they would have to eject the indigenous population. The ‘binationalism’ of Martin Buber was a nice idea that had no traction in the political class. The intentions of the Zionist leadership had to be hidden until the colony had reached the point where it had the physical force to take Palestine over.

Weizmann and others proclaimed nothing but good intentions, nothing but wanting to live alongside the Palestinians and as for wanting a Jewish state, that was the furthest thing from their mind. Only in their diaries did they record what they really wanted, from Herzl’s wish to spirit the ‘penniless population’ out of Palestine to the conclusion in 1940 of Yosef Weitz, the director of the land settlement department of the Jewish National Fund that there was no room in Palestine for the settlers and ‘the Arabs’. The latter would have to go. These intentions were not anomalous but representative of what the Zionist leadership realised would have to be done if Palestine was to be theirs.

As the Palestinians would fight to the last, the land could be taken only by force. Step by step the Zionists were able to move forward towards this objective. The British helped by suppressing the Palestinian uprising in 1936-39, the first intifada, decapitating  the populist leadership that would have led the struggle against the Zionists in the 1940s. Thousands were killed and many more arrested.

The partition plan of 1947 did not represent the genuine wishes of UN members. It was imposed on the General Assembly by threats made to vulnerable members by the US and would never have passed otherwise. Israel benefitted from it politically but had no intention of adhering to its provisions, which would have left the Palestinians intact, three times the size of the Zionist settler community. The war of 1948 was a war of necessity: without the ethnic cleansing of Palestine there could have been no Israel.

The mass expulsions of 1948/49 were followed by a second bout of expulsions in 1967, followed by the slow strangulation of the Palestinians on the West Bank and Gaza, with Israel using all means possible, military, economic and pseudo-legal. There were other wars, all aimed at consolidating and expanding the Zionist hold on Palestine and destroying Israel’s enemies: Suez 1956, Lebanon 1978, 1982 and 2006, Gaza on numerous occasions, along with innumerable border ‘incursions’ taking, altogether, the lives of tens of thousands of Arab civilians.

There was also a ‘peace process’, an initiative of the PLO, which Israel only followed up to see what it could get out of it. Launched in 1993 it was clearly finished as early as 1995, although the corpse continues to pulsate to the present day. The ‘peace process’ was a diplomatic ruse giving Israel more time to strengthen its hold on the territories taken in 1967. Yasser Arafat was accepted as a negotiating partner and when there was nothing more he could or would give, Israel turned the peacemaker back into a terrorist and killed him. Mahmud Abbas (Abu Mazen of revolutionary days) followed Arafat, taking on the role of Israel’s tribune in the West Bank, also only to be discarded once Israel no longer had any use for him.

On the back of endless settlement-building and Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital (rejected by virtually the rest of the world), along with a subsequent cut in US aid to UNRWA (the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian refugees), the PLO is now threatening to ‘derecognize’ Israel. If this takes the ‘Palestine problem’ back to 1948, that is only appropriate, because Israel has never left it.

The time taken up from 1993 until now has allowed Israel to plant hundreds of thousands more settlers on the West Bank, whom it says cannot be removed without the risk of civil war. That might be true but the state put them there to stay, as they are bringing the Zionist project closer to fulfilment, and has never had any intention of removing them. Israel now intends to ‘legitimize’ what until it has called illegal settler ‘outposts’, as if there is any difference in international law between the complete illegality of the settler presence on the West Bank, whether in the settlements or in the outposts set up by the ‘hilltop youth’, running amuck whenever and wherever they please, beating, burning and destroying.  They are protected by the state and no wonder, as this is a state which has run amuck for more than seven decades.

The bellwether of the Zionist flock now is Naftali Bennett, the education minister, who has just spoken of ‘the end of the era of the Palestinian state and the beginning of the era of sovereignty’, by which he means Israeli annexation of the West Bank and sovereignty over all of Palestine. If there is a difference between Bennett, a likely next Prime Minister, and Netanyahu, it is only that the former speaks more plainly about his intentions. The glib Netanyahu, still seeing benefit in talking of a ‘peace process’, has others in his party to speak as openly as Bennett does. Tzipi Hotovely, for example, the Deputy Foreign Minister, also speaks of annexation: she can’t wait to see the Israeli flag flying over the Haram al Sharif and regards the former soldiers belonging to the protest movement Breaking the Silence as ‘war criminals.’

Bennett is only pointing in the direction Israel will be taking sooner or later. From the Zionist point of view the next substantial move has to be annexation. The peace tactic has been played out to the end, the two-state solution is dead (insofar as it ever lived), there is nothing more to be squeezed out of the Palestinian Authority and in Washington Israel has a friend, Donald Trump, who is delivering as much and more (recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital) than any previous US president going back to 1948: only Truman’s recognition of Israel the moment the state was declared compares. What can come next now but annexation? Bennett thinks the tide is turning in Israel’s favour and insofar as backroom dealings with gulf governments and even more lavish support from the US, he is right.

But is this enough to think the game is over and Israel has won, game, set and match? Perhaps not: perhaps not at all. This issue is not just about the Palestinians and never was. It is an Arab issue, a Muslim issue, a human rights issue and a world issue. It has not gone away and it will not go away. Ahed Tamimi, slapping an Israeli soldier on the face after he struck her (did anyone notice? Certainly not the mainstream media) and now locked away indefinitely for this heinous crime, is the latest example of Palestinian fortitude in the face of oppression.

From the beginning, however brave and steadfast, the Palestinians faced forces which no small group of people could overcome on their own: the British, the Zionists, the United States and the enormous resources they have poured into the occupation of Palestine over the past century. However, Palestine is not just a Palestinian issue and not just a broader human rights issue: it is an issue that goes to the heart of Arab history and identity. The road back to Palestine would always have to run through the Arab world. That was clear virtually from the beginning. So far, two Arab governments (Egypt and Jordan) have signed ‘peace’ treaties with Israel. These paper arrangements between governments have no popular support in either Egypt or Jordan: it is not that their people do not want peace, but that they are not prepared to sacrifice Palestine to get it. There is a slumbering giant here which Israel seems to think will slumber forever. The people are the dynamite at the end of the wick. In the right circumstances and by the right leaders they can be mobilized, as they have been before.

As a racist state Israel has a long history of treating ‘the Arabs’ with contempt or thinking them not capable of doing what they ended up doing. The prime example is 1973 when the Egyptians launched a brilliant cross-canal operation and caught the Israeli troops completely by surprise. They broke and ran and had not Sadat betrayed Hafiz al Assad, by calling the Egyptian offensive off after a week, Israel could have been driven out of the Sinai and off the Golan Heights as well. Only further US intervention (it was already directly intervening by airlifting military supplies directly into Sinai) could have prevented an Israeli defeat. In occupied southern Lebanon, Israel suffered shock after shock. It was outthought and outfought by Hezbollah, and effectively cut and run in 2000. It had another go in 2006, and was humiliated again, which is why Israel is determined to destroy Hezbollah next time, even if Lebanon has to be buried with it.

Naftali Bennett was one of Israel’s soldiers in Lebanon. He projects a tough guy persona. ‘I have killed lots of Arabs in my time and there’s no problem with that’, he has said.  Among ‘the Arabs’ he has helped to kill were the more 100 Lebanese civilians, many of them children, who had taken refuge in the UN compound at Qana, southern Lebanon, when it was shelled by an invading Israeli force in April, 1996. One man lost 31 members of his family, including nine children. Bennett was a member of the so-called ‘elite’ Maglan unit.  When his detachment was caught in an ambush by Hezbollah he called for help from an artillery unit. According to another officer, when he came on the line, Bennett was hysterical, but the shells came in and saved him, 13 exploding in the UN compound. Israel’s claim that it was a mistake was belied by UN Secretary General Boutros Boutros Ghali, who filed a report with the Security Council showing that the bombing was unlikely to have been an error, given that the compound had been under reconnaissance by Israeli drones and helicopters. He lost his second term in office as a result, the US refusing to support him and backing Kofi Annan instead.

Bennett regards himself and his former military comrades as warriors. This is not an opinion shared by Hasan Nasrallah, on the basis of all the experiences Hezbollah has had with the Israelis. In a recent interview on Al Mayadeen television station Nasrallah derided the fighting capacity of Israeli soldiers. In his eyes the achievements of the resistance in Lebanon and Palestine had shattered the myth of Israeli invincibility (a myth actually shattered at least as far back as the war of 1973). Hezbollah and allied forces had fought the takfiris for more than seven years in Syria and more than three years in Iraq. This was an enemy going into battle with squads of suicide bombers, an enemy ready to die ‘without limit’, compared to the Israelis whom, Nasrallah said, do not move forward unless they are preceded by armor, followed by ambulances and protected by fighter jets and helicopters overhead. ‘Such a soldier is defeated beforehand. He is a coward with no will to fight.’  Fighting the Islamic State was much more difficult than fighting Israel, which it was possible to defeat ‘bila shaq’ (without doubt). It was the human factor that gave the resistance the edge.

Nasrallah referred repeatedly to the coming ‘great war’ with Israel, which would involve not just the ‘axis of resistance’ (Iran, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Palestine and all organizations in the Arab world ‘that support this path’) but hundreds of thousands of Arab volunteers. Nasrallah said Sayyid Abd al Malik al Houthi had promised to send tens of thousands of fighters volunteers even if the Saudi-Yemeni war continued. This war, which Nasrallah has frequently said Hezbollah would carry across the armistice line into Galilee, and would stretch along the whole Lebanese and Syrian front with Israel, has been the central theme of all his recent interviews.

Israel’s strategy from the start will be the total destruction of Hezbollah as quickly as possible and as much of Lebanon as is needed to destroy Hezbollah. Air power will be the crux of Israel’s war strategies, as it has been in the past. This is what Hezbollah and its allies will have been working on for years to neutralize. That Israel is actively preparing for war is clear from the air and ground exercises it has held in the past six months, combining air, naval and ground forces, robotics, fighting in tunnels and the evacuation of civilians from the northern region up to the armistice line with Lebanon. The Israeli general staff has effectively acknowledged the poor performance of troops on the ground, in Gaza or in Lebanon in 2006 by increasing the ratio of soldiers and officers from a religious settler background, more strongly motivated to fight, it thinks, than young men from a secular background.

There is no doubt that the Israeli general staff analyses every word Nasrallah utters, takes him seriously and has respect for him on the basis of Hezbollah’s military achievements but little of what he says reaches the ‘western’ mainstream media. He is just the bushy-bearded cleric regularly presented as Iran’s proxy in Lebanon as if he has no mind of his own, rather than having one of the most impressive minds in the Middle East. Nasrallah never indulges in loose talk and talks only of the ‘possibility’ of a coming great war, so as not to alarm people, when clearly in his mind it is not just a probability but a war that will bring the historical confrontation with Israel to an end point. By inflicting a crushing defeat on its enemies, this is certainly what Israel will have in mind. Hezbollah is prepared and Nasrallah thinks it can win.

The very idea that Israel could be defeated on the battlefield has no place at all in a ‘western’ discourse built as it has been on media bias and centuries of anti-Arab and anti-Muslim bias. It would be regarded as unthinkable, nonsensical, and laughable. Israel has setbacks but it does not lose wars: the possibility does not exist in minds conditioned by endless media bias. Such a war should be regarded with dread: as Nasrallah says, no-one could say where it might not lead, but with all options for peace destroyed, the pendulum inevitably swings in this direction. Has Hasan Nasrallah drifted away from reality, talking of victory and the hundreds of thousands of fighters who will join this coming war, or does he know something that we don’t? He obviously knows many things that we don’t but to defeat Israel, its offensive and defensive air power would have to be neutralized. Have Hezbollah and Iran worked out how to do this? Is this the source of his confidence? We will have to wait for the war to find out.

January 21, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular | , , , , , | 4 Comments

Slapping an Israeli Soldier More Newsworthy Than Shooting a Palestinian Child in the Face

Coverage of Ahed Tamimi obscures Israeli violence and occupation

Gregory Shupak | FAIR | January 17, 2018

Israeli soldiers shot 14-year-old Palestinian Mohammad Tamimi point-blank in the face with a rubber-jacketed bullet on December 14, 2017, in Nabi Saleh, a small village in the occupied West Bank. The boy had to undergo six hours of surgery and was placed in a medically induced coma.

An hour later, Mohammad’s cousin, Ahed Tamimi, slapped and kicked at an armed Israeli soldier. Early the next week, after video of Ahed’s actions went viral, Israeli soldiers raided the Tamimi home at 3 a.m., arresting Ahed and confiscating the family’s phones, computers and laptops.

Ahed has been denied bail and could face years in prison. (Nour Tamimi, a 16-year-old cousin of Ahed’s who is also in the video, was also arrested and has been released on bail. Ahed’s mother Nariman was arrested later that day when she inquired about her daughter, and she remains in custody.)

Erasing the shooting

A January 1 Newsweek article described the incident as Ahed “assaulting Israeli soldiers,” “threatening two Israeli soldiers and then hitting them in the face,” “pushing the soldiers as well as kicking them, hitting them in the face and throwing stones at them.” The piece referred to Ahed’s actions as “assaults” and an “attack.” It failed to report that Israeli soldiers had just shot and severely injured her 14-year-old cousin.

CNN (1/8/18) also ran a piece that left out the most serious act of violence that day, as did Reuters (12/28/17, 1/1/18). An Associated Press report (12/28/17) had the same deficiency, leaving the false impression that the soldier was attacked without provocation.

The Newsweek piece also failed to note that the Israeli soldiers are members of a military force that has been occupying the West Bank for 50 years. Nor does CBS’s December 21 account mention the occupation, which structures every interaction between Palestinians and Israelis. (The fact that occupied people have a legal right to resist occupation is left out of all of the articles discussed in this piece.)

A report in the New York Times (12/22/17) does not mention that Mohammad Tamimi was shot in the face with a rubber bullet until the 13th paragraph, as though this fact is of minimal importance. The Times describes Nabi Saleh as having “long-running disputes with a nearby Israeli settlement, Halamish, that Nabi Saleh residents say has stolen their land and water.” The Times does not note that, as a colony on occupied territory, Halamish is illegal under international law.

Normalizing military tribunals

The Newsweek piece says Tamimi “has now been indicted on five counts of assaulting security forces,” and that she is “charged with interfering with the soldiers’ duties by preventing them from returning to their post.” It notes that “in May, she was charged with interfering with soldiers who were trying to arrest a protester throwing stones,” and refers to her indictment two other times, including in the headline. At no point does the article mention that the proceedings are taking place in a military court. Similarly, an Associated Press (1/9/18) report refers to “Israel’s hard-charging prosecution” and “the charges” against Tamimi, without mentioning that she is being tried by the same occupying military that shot her cousin.

Omitting that information makes it sound like Tamimi will receive a fair legal process, but the evidence suggests the opposite. According to the Association for Civil Rights in Israel, Palestinians in the occupied West Bank are subjected to a military court system that “does not grant the right to due process and the rights derived from it,” whereas Israelis illegally colonizing the Occupied Territories have the rights and privileges of a civilian legal system.

In the military courts, the age of majority is 16, which means that Palestinian teenagers can be tried as adults, while 18 is the age of majority for Israelis. Defence for Children International Palestine (DCIP), a group that has consultative status with the UN, reports that Israeli military court judges, who are either active duty or reserve officers in the Israeli military, “rarely exclude evidence obtained by coercion or torture, including confessions drafted in Hebrew, a language most Palestinian children do not understand.” The Israeli military courts’ conviction rate of greater than 99 percent underscores how stacked they are against Palestinians.

Framing Resistance as PR Stunts

The New York Times’ framing of Tamimi’s story suggests that the case’s central issue is whether Palestinians or Israelis would have been better off if the soldier had reacted more violently to being slapped. The Times’ David Halbfinger says

that Israelis could not decide whether the soldiers were virtuous pillars of forbearance and strength . . . or an embarrassing advertisement of national paralysis and vulnerability.

Palestinians, meanwhile,

debated whether the video might have damaged their cause, by showing their oppressors behaving gently, or helped it, by showing that resistance can be effective even when one is unarmed.

The paper even implied that Palestinians may be happy that Tamimi was arrested, writing that “the scene of the young woman being hauled away may have given Palestinians the clear-cut propaganda coup they had been denied by the original confrontation.”

CNN similarly trivialized Tamimi’s arrest, noting that Israelis call her “Shirley Temper” because of “her long ginger curls” and because they accuse her of “starring in carefully choreographed ‘Pallywood’ videos, a dismissive characterization of protests considered staged for the camera.”

While the Times and CNN provide a forum for speculation about whether Palestinians want their own children to suffer because it makes for good public relations, there is much this framing overlooks. For example, none of the above-mentioned articles mention the risk of Tamimi being seriously harmed in Israeli jails. Yet UNICEF charges Israel with subjecting Palestinian youth to “practices that amount to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, according to the Convention on the Rights of the Child and the Convention against Torture.” These include children “being aggressively awakened in the middle of the night by many armed soldiers and being forcibly brought to an interrogation center tied and blindfolded, sleep-deprived,” and “threatened with death, physical violence, solitary confinement and sexual assault, against themselves or a family member.”

Israel’s well-documented mistreatment of Palestinian youth is ignored in these reports, which suggests it is not Palestinian parents but Western reporters who are interested in crafting a public relations spectacle.

January 20, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , , , , | 3 Comments

The less-mentioned lives of Mrs. Krim

By Helena Cobban | Just World News | January 18, 2018

This week, US media have contained many glowing obituaries of a 91-year-old medical researcher called Mathilde Krim, who in the early 1980s played an apparently huge role in publicizing and destigmatizing the then-new disease of HIV/AIDS and in mobilizing funding for NGOs and research centers working to understand the disease and treat its many victims. Dr. Krim died on January 15.

The New York Times, for example, carried this obituary, covering more than half a page, that devoted nearly all its column inches to the many contributions Dr. Krim had made to AIDS research.

What that obit referred to only in passing was the role she had played in immediate post-1945 Europe as a gun-runner for the Irgun– described there only as part of the “Zionist underground” rather than (as would have been more accurate) an already well-known terror group.

Mathilde and JohnsonBut neither the NYT nor any other Western MSM outlet I have seen/heard has made any mention of the role Mrs. Krim played as a very close confidante to Pres. Lyndon B. Johnson during the crucial days leading up to and during Israel’s “Six Day War” of 1967 against its Arab neighbors.

In those days, Mrs. Krim’s husband (her second) was Arthur B. Krim, a prominent Hollywood lawyer who was Chair of the Democratic National Finance Committee. Conveniently, the Krims had a ranch in Texas right next to Pres. Johnson’s; and it was a barely hidden secret in leading government circles in Israel and the United States at the time that Mrs. Krim was extremely close to Lyndon Johnson.

In the days leading up to the war, the many forms of “signaling” conducted between Washington and Tel Aviv were extremely important. Israel’s Labor Party PM, Levi Eshkol, needed to win support from Washington for the strategy he pursued in the lead-up to this war, which he and his generals were planning in exquisite detail in those days. And he needed reassurances from Washington that Pres. Johnson would back him, before he and his generals finally launched the “blitz” against the Arab armies that destroyed nearly all their capabilities in the first hours of the war. Mrs. Krim was almost certainly one key channel for those messages. She and Johnson were at their ranches together in the days leading up to the war (with several in-person visits and phone calls recorded between them); and then she went to Washington DC when he did, once the war broke out.

Mrs. Johnson, meanwhile, was suffering from what was described as a massive headache, and stayed in Texas.

More details about Mathilde Krim’s relationship with Johnson in that crucial period can be found in Donald Neff’s 1985 book Warriors for Jerusalem: The Six Days that Changed the Middle East. I don’t have a copy to hand but shall look for one shortly.

The huge role that Mrs. Krim played in 1967 is well-known to everyone who has seriously studied US-Israeli relations at that time. After all, she was an integral part of a well-oiled pro-Israeli influence movement at the heart of the US political system, and the DC-Tel Aviv signaling process that she was part of worked strongly in Israel’s favor to transform not just the Middle East but the whole shape of global politics. (It also led to the misery of the people of the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem; Gaza, and the Golan Heights: all of whom continue until today to live under the military occupation rule initiated by that war.)

So surely, that role Mrs. Krim played in the events of May-June 1967 should have received some mention in the news media this week? That it has not, thus far, probably tells us a lot about the extreme skittishness with which the Western MSM continues to address any topics related to the deep entanglement of so much of the US political elite– especially the Democratic Party– with their counterparts in Israel.

January 20, 2018 Posted by | War Crimes, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Wars for Israel, Timeless or most popular | , , , , | 3 Comments

US withholds $65 million from UN agency for Palestinian refugees

Press TV – January 17, 2018

The United States has withheld tens of millions of dollars in money for a United Nations agency tasked with providing services for Palestinian refugees.

The administration of US President Donald Trump held back 65 million dollars of a planned 125-million-dollar funding installment meant for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) on Tuesday, two weeks after US President Donald Trump warned to cut off future payments if Palestinians rejected negotiations with Israel.

The US State Department claimed that the decision was not taken to pressure Palestinian leaders and served as a call on other countries to step forward and do more to help the Palestinian refugees.

“This is not aimed at punishing anyone,” US State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert told reporters. “The United States government and the Trump administration believe that there should be more so-called burden-sharing to go around.”

The department also sent a letter to UNRWA, demanding that the agency undergo major changes and describing the reforms as a condition of releasing more money.

Earlier in the day, the UNRWA had announced a forced lay-off of more than 100 employees in Jordan because of the US’s refusal to allow the transfer of financial aid to the agency.

Wasel Abu Youssef, a senior Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) official, immediately denounced the Tuesday move as a deliberate US effort to deny the Palestinians their rights.

Israel created a wave of Palestinian refugees numbering in the hundreds of thousands after it overran huge swathes of Arab territories in the Middle East to proclaim existence in 1948. Ever since, many refugees have been scattered across densely-crowded camps in the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, as well as in Jordan and Lebanon.

Relations between the US and Palestine have also been stained over the past weeks since Washington recognized Jerusalem al-Quds as Israel’s capital and vowed to relocate the US embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to the occupied city.

The entire Jerusalem al-Quds is currently under Israel’s control, while the regime also claims the city’s eastern part, which hosts the third holiest Muslim site.

January 17, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism | , , , | 2 Comments

Quit Lying To Us About The ‘Peace Process’: Israel Won’t Willingly Return the Lands and Resources It Has Stolen

By Stuart Littlewood | American Herald Tribune | January 17, 2018

Face the truth: Israel won’t willingly return the lands and resources it has stolen unless slapped with tough, sustained sanctions. Civil society in the US and UK must end the conspiracy among their warped government ‘élites’ that makes a mockery of international law.

It goes something like this:

“Listen up, you wretched Palestinians. There’s no way you’re getting your lands back, or a state of your own, because that would make our Zionist buddies feel upset and insecure. And you know how their security matters above everyone else’s. Besides, God told them they could grab your land and kick you out even if they don’t really have any ancestral connection to it. So you rabble don’t belong here. And you might as well know that we support them 100 percent in their efforts to make life so f*cking unbearable that you all piss off somewhere else – and we don’t care where just as long as our beloved friends get their hands on your farms and homes and resources. Naturally we’ve suspended your human rights, and international law simply isn’t available to you.

“You don’t like being shafted? Tough. Learn to accept it. Bow down to those who are favoured by God, as we have done.”

signed: US and UK, adoring sponsors of God’s Rogue Regime

 That, essentially, has been the West’s attitude for the last 50 years. And, if we don’t change it, that’s how it will for another 50, by which time Israel will rule the Middle East and possibly beyond.

Life for the Palestinians hasn’t improved. It has only got worse under the tyrrany of Israel’s military occupation. And throughout that time the performance of their representatives to the outside world, the PLO (Palestine Liberation Organisation), has been chronic verging on useless.  Thanks in part to the Palestinian leadership’s diplomatic ineptitude and quisling tendencies Israel has been able to expand its frontiers and flourish far more than it had any right to.

By 2015, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu felt untouchable enough to say that if he was returned to power, a Palestinian state would not be established because handing back territory would threaten Israel’s security.

And in August 2017 he announced that Israel would keep the West Bank permanently and there would be no more uprooting of settlements: “We are here to stay forever…. This is the inheritance of our ancestors. This is our land.”

Netanyahu’s ancestors, by the way, are from… where? And the rest of the thugs in his administration… where do their roots lie? Few if any can show ancestral links to the Biblical lands they claim are theirs. The true inheritors, of course, are the Palestinian peoples who have been there since the days when Jerusalem was a Canaanite city.

Netanyahu’s position echoes his Likud Party’s stance back in 1999 and 2009, so western politicians should be well acquainted with it. To remind them, David Morrison has produced a neat analysis of Israel’s unchanging position:

  • “The Government of Israel flatly rejects the establishment of a Palestinian Arab state west of the Jordan river.”
  • “The Jordan Valley and the territories that dominate it shall be under Israeli sovereignty. The Jordan river will be the permanent eastern border of the State of Israel.”
  • “Jerusalem is the eternal, united capital of the State of Israel and only of Israel. The government will flatly reject Palestinian proposals to divide Jerusalem”
  • “The Jewish communities in Judea, Samaria and Gaza are the realization of Zionist values [written before Israel removed its troops]. Settlement of the land is a clear expression of the unassailable right of the Jewish people to the Land of Israel and constitutes an important asset in the defense of the vital interests of the State of Israel. The Likud will continue to strengthen and develop these communities and will prevent their uprooting.”

Likud’s message still stands. Tzipi Hotovely, Israel’s Deputy Foreign Minister and second only in ranking to Netanyahu, told  Israeli diplomats in 2015 that “we need to return to the basic truth of our rights to this country….  This land is ours. All of it is ours. We did not come here to apologise for that.” She rattled on about God having promised the land of Israel to the Jews and how she was going to get the international community to “recognise Israel’s right to build homes for Jews in their homeland, everywhere”.

Zionist leaders before Netanyahu broadcast their fraudulent claims to the land and bragged about their plan to seize it. Their evil intent has been well advertised. Even if Netanyahu wanted a two-state solution he would be opposed by his own party and the five others making up his ruling coalition, virtually all of which stand against Palestinians having a state of their own.

Israel’s bad behaviour richly rewarded

As David Morrison and others have repeatedly pointed out, the UN Security Council has never applied sanctions against Israel to force a reversal of its illegal land grab. Instead of punishing the regime for its 50 years of terror, the US, UK and EU have showered it with privileges.

Since 1967, the US has handed Israel well over $100 billion in mostly military aid and provided political and diplomatic cover by vetoing resolutions critical of it in the UN Security Council. Obama before he left office guaranteed Israel a further $38 billion in military aid over the next ten years.

Hard-pressed American taxpayers still don’t seem to have grasped this misappropriation of their funds or they’d surely be angry enough to stop it.

The EU for its part allowed Israel to sign up to the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership in 1995 and gave it privileged access to EU markets under the EU-Israel Association Agreement of 2000, even though it breached the basic terms of membership from the start and continues to do so.So there are no painful consequences for Israel’s bad behaviour, just rich rewards.

Maintaining the illusion of a peace process

The peace process is, of course, a sham. Anyone who believes in it is hallucinating. But to perpetuate the cruel illusion Netanyahu offers an occasional glimmer of hope for a ‘negotiated’ settlement provided there are no awkward preconditions. In any event he will ensure the talks go nowhere, just as he has done many times before, aided and abetted by discredited ‘peace broker’ America and always blaming the Palestinians. It is patently obvious that Israel and the US (and indeed the UK) conspire to keep the idea of a peace process alive in order to provide a smoke-screen while Israel continues its expansionist policy and establishes more ‘facts on the ground’ designed to make its occupation irreversible.

Ban Ki-moon said two years ago: “The United Nations is committed to working to create the conditions for the parties to return to meaningful negotiations. That is the one and only path to a just and lasting solution — an end to the occupation that began in 1967…”

First, “meaningful negotiations” simply aren’t going to happen; and if they do they’ll lead nowhere as before. Besides, negotiations between a strong party backed by mighty powers and a weak demoralised party are unlikely to produce a “just” solution. Second, it is not “the only path”. There’s law and sanctions. And the law has already spoken. All that’s needed is the integrity and guts to enforce it. Nothing will change until the UN — or a significant section of the international community — rises to the moral challenge and enforces international law and the many resolutions relating to Israel’s crimes, and slaps Israel with severe sanctions until it complies. As long as it does nothing the UN is seen to be in on the conspiracy too.

The British government knows the facts. So what on earth was Ambassador Peter Wilson, UK Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations, thinking when he recently addressed the Security Council briefing on the Middle East Peace Process?

“Support for a two-state solution is the only way to ensure a just and lasting resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict…. The United Kingdom’s longstanding position on the Middle East Peace Process remains clear and unchanged: we support a negotiated settlement leading to a safe and secure Israel living alongside a viable and sovereign Palestinian state; based on 1967 borders with agreed land swaps, Jerusalem as the shared capital of both states, and a just, fair, agreed and realistic settlement for refugees.

Theresa May has all her ministers and MPs mouthing and writing the same tosh, as did her predecessors. It isn’t difficult given that 80 percent of them are reported to be signed-up Friends of Israel. We watched their grovelling worship of the rogue regime — and of the arch-criminal Netanyahu — at the Balfour centenary celebrations in London. Wilson added:

“The leadership and engagement that President Trump and his administration have demonstrated in reinvigorating the Middle East Peace Process must have our support. We call on the region, Israelis, and Palestinians to seize the opportunity that this presents and turn 2017 not just into another anniversary of occupation, but a new anniversary of peace.”

Well, we’ve seen Trump’s bull-in-a-china-shop leadership at work, gifting Jerusalem to Israel, and what that did for peace.

The Norwegian Refugee Council, an organisation not given to exaggeration, reacted by reminding everybody that acquiring or annexing territory is prohibited under international law, and the US is disregarding the international community’s long-standing position of not recognising Israel’s unlawful annexation of East Jerusalem. Recognising Jerusalem as the capital of Israel is tantamount to condoning annexation and the occupation. Furthermore Israel, as the occupying power, is prohibited from forcibly transferring Palestinians out of their homes in Jerusalem. Israel disregards this with its programme of evictions, home demolitions and residency revocations. “The US administration’s declaration risks condoning these practices and other violations of international law in the occupied Palestinian territory that NRC witnesses daily….  The international community should insist on respect for international law and the enforcement of existing UN resolutions, while governments should use their influence to hold those responsible for violations to account.”

Unfortunately respect for international law, enforcing UN resolutions and applying sanctions are not part of the US-UK tool kit unless directed against Iran and Israel’s other enemies.

So, as David Morrison warns, it looks as if “today’s Palestinian children will still be living under occupation when they are grandparents”.

And we as a nation will never be able to hold our heads up on account of the humiliation we heaped on them.

January 17, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular | , , , , , | 1 Comment

In words and deeds: the genesis of Israeli violence

By Ramzy Baroud | MEMO | January 16, 2018

Not a day passes without a prominent Israeli politician or intellectual making an outrageous statement against Palestinians. Many of these statements tend to garner little attention or evoke rightly deserved outrage.

Just recently, Israel’s Minister of Agriculture, Uri Ariel, called for more death and injuries on Palestinians in Gaza.

“What is this special weapon we have that we fire and see pillars of smoke and fire, but nobody gets hurt? It is time for there to be injuries and deaths as well,” he said.

Ariel’s calling for the killing of more Palestinians came on the heels of other repugnant statements concerning a 16-year-old teenager girl, Ahed Tamimi. Ahed was arrested in a violent Israeli army raid at her home in the West Bank village of Nabi Saleh.

A video recording showed her slapping an Israeli soldier a day after the Israeli army shot her cousin in the head, placing him in a coma.

Israeli Education Minister, Naftali Bennett, known for his extremist political views, demanded that Ahed and other Palestinian girls should “spend the rest of their days in prison”.

A prominent Israeli journalist, Ben Caspit, sought yet more punishment. He suggested that Ahed and girls like her should be raped in jail.

“In the case of the girls, we should exact a price at some other opportunity, in the dark, without witnesses and cameras”, he wrote in Hebrew.

This violent and revolting mindset, however, is not new. It is an extension of an old, entrenched belief system that is predicated on a long history of violence.

Undeniably, the views of Ariel, Bennett and Caspit are not angry statements uttered in a moment of rage. They are all reflections of real policies that have been carried out for over 70 years. Indeed, killing, raping and imprisoning for life are features that have accompanied the state of Israel since the very beginning.

This violent legacy continues to define Israel to this day, through the use of what Israeli historian Ilan Pappe describes as ‘incremental genocide.’

Throughout this long legacy, little has changed except for names and titles. The Zionist militias that orchestrated the genocide of the Palestinians prior to the establishment of Israel in 1948 merged together to form the Israeli army; and the leaders of these groups became Israel’s leaders.

Israel’s violent birth in 1947- 48 was the culmination of the violent discourse that preceded it for many years. It was the time when Zionist teachings of prior years were put into practice and the outcome was simply horrifying.

“The tactic of isolating and attacking a certain village or town and executing its population in a horrible, indiscriminate massacre was a strategy employed, time and again, by Zionist bands to compel the population of surrounding villages and towns to flee,” Ahmad Al-Haaj told me when I asked him to reflect on Israel’s past and present.

Al-Haaj is a Palestinian historian and an expert on the Nakba, the ‘Catastrophe’ that had befallen Palestinians in 1948.

The 85-year-old intellectual’s proficiency in the subject began 70 years ago, when, as a 15-year-old, he witnessed the massacre of Beit Daras at the hands of Jewish Haganah militia.

The destruction of the southern Palestinian village and the killing of dozens of its inhabitants resulted in the depopulation of many adjacent villages, including al-Sawafir, Al-Haaj’s home village.

“The notorious Deir Yasin massacre was the first example of such wanton killing, a model that was duplicated in other parts of Palestine,” Al-Haaj said.

The ethnic cleansing of Palestine at the time was orchestrated by several Zionist militias. The mainstream Jewish militia was the Haganah which belonged to the Jewish Agency.

The latter functioned as a semi-government, under the auspices of the British Mandate Government, while the Haganah served as its army.

However, other breakaway groups also operated according to their own agenda. Two leading bands amongst them were the Irgun (National Military Organization) and Lehi (also known as the Stern Gang). These groups carried out numerous terrorist attacks, including bus bombings and targeted assassinations.

Russian-born Menachem Begin was the leader of the Irgun which, along with the Stern Gang and other Jewish militants, massacred hundreds of civilians in Deir Yassin.

‘Tell the soldiers: you have made history in Israel with your attack and your conquest. Continue this until victory. As in Deir Yassin, so everywhere, we will attack and smite the enemy. God, God, Thou has chosen us for conquest,” Begin wrote at the time. He described the massacre as a “splendid act of conquest.”

The intrinsic link between words and actions remain unchanged.

Nearly 30 years later, a once wanted terrorist, Begin became Prime Minister of Israel. He accelerated land theft of the newly-occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, launched a war on Lebanon, annexed Occupied Jerusalem to Israel and carried out the massacre of Sabra and Shatilla in 1982.

Some of the other terrorists-turned-politicians and top army brass include Begin, Moshe Dayan, Yitzhak Rabin, Ariel Sharon, Rafael Eitan and Yitzhak Shamir. Each one of these leaders has a record dotted with violence.

Shamir served as the Prime Minister of Israel from 1986 – 1992. In 1941, Shamir was imprisoned by the British for his role in the Stern Gang. Later, as Prime Minister, he ordered a violent crackdown against a mostly non-violent Palestinian uprising in 1987, purposely breaking the limbs of kids accused of throwing rocks at Israeli soldiers.

So, when government ministers like Ariel and Bennett call for wanton violence against Palestinians, they are simply carrying on with a bloody legacy that has defined every single Israeli leader in the past. It is the violent mindset that continues to control the Israeli government and its relationship with Palestinians; in fact, with all of its neighbours.

 

January 16, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , , | 1 Comment

Palestinian Leadership Decides to Suspend Recognition of and Cooperation with Israel

IMEMC News – January 16, 2018

The second-highest decision-making body of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) decided Monday to call on the executive committee to suspend recognition of Israel until Israel recognizes the existence of Palestine, and annuls its annexation of Jerusalem, marking the latest fallout from Donald Trump’s December 6th claim of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

The PLO will cease all security cooperation with Israel, and will cease the cooperation of the Paris Agreement, which had tied the Palestinian economy to the Israeli economy.

The statement from the Central Council said, in part, “Since Israel has voided all signed agreements through its constant violations of these agreements, the Central Council affirms that the direct goal is an independent Palestinian state, which involves moving from self-rule to having a state, by achieving sovereignty of the state of Palestine, with East Jerusalem as its capital.”

The Council called on the international community to work on ending the Israeli occupation, using all of the past UN Security Council and General Assembly resolutions, to achieve Palestinian sovereignty and an independent Palestinian state.

They called on countries to boycott Israeli settlement products, and to publish the database which includes the list of companies which bring products from the settlements.

The Council called for adopting the Boycott-Divestment-Sanctions (BDS) call, denouncing Israeli apartheid as a racist regime that is being imposed in place of a Palestinian state, rejecting any temporary solutions – especially regarding borders, rejecting any recognition of Israel as a Jewish state (which implies the denial of the existence and rights of the millions of non-Jews who live there), affirming the unity agreement signed in 2011 between the Palestinian factions, and affirmed again in 2017, and assuring a political partnership under the PLO as the only representative of the Palestinian people.

The Council affirmed the legitimate right of resistance to the occupation, as stated by international law, and called for support of the non-violent resistance movement in Palestine.

They also affirmed the urgent need to assist the Palestinians in Jerusalem, the eternal capital of Palestine, who are facing expulsion, home demolitions, and constant violations by Israel. They called on all Arab countries to follow through on their commitments of support to the Palestinian people.

The Council decided to take all needed measures to assist the Palestinians living in the besieged Gaza Strip.

They decided to continue the work on the international level to provide protection for the Palestinian people, as stated in Security Council Resolution 605 in 1987, 672 and 673 in 1990, Resolution 904 of 1998, and to ensure the implementation of the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949, which calls for protecting civilians living under foreign military occupation.

They decided to continue the international work to call for full membership at the United Nations for the state of Palestine.

The Council also decided to submit the cases of settlements, political prisoners, and the Israeli wars on Gaza to the International Criminal Court, and they also decided to continue filing more applications to international organizations and agencies.

Unofficial translation of the statement (by WAFA ):

Statement issued by the Central Council of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO)

January 14, 2018

Ramallah, Palestine

The Palestine Liberation Organization’s Central Council held its twenty-eighth ordinary session, under the name “Jerusalem the eternal capital of the State of Palestine”, between January 14 – 15 2018 in the city of Ramallah, in the presence of President Mahmoud Abbas.

A total of 87 members out of 109 members attended the session, while a number of members were unable to attend because they were arrested or prevented by Israel.

President of the Central council Salim Al-Za’noun began the session by saying that “The time has come for our Palestinian Central Council, that is representing the Palestinian National Council, which took the decision to establish the Palestinian National Authority to be the core of the state, to decide its future and function and to reconsider the recognition of the State of Israel until it recognizes the State of Palestine with Jerusalem as its capital and accept the refugees’ return based on resolution 194.”

Al-Za’noun stressed that the Central Council rejects any ideas that are being circulated as part of the so-called “deal of the century”, because they violate international law and resolutions of the international community and seek to impose a deficient solution that does not meet the minimum of Palestinians’ legitimate rights.

He called for finding other international pathways under the auspices of the United Nations to sponsor solving the Palestinian cause.

He said, “Our success in facing these risks and challenges requires accelerating the steps of implementing reconciliation and ending the division, and developing a plan to strengthen national partnership within the framework of the PLO, as the supreme national political and legal reference for our people.”

Al-Za’noun proposed to hold a session of the National Council, in which both Hamas and the Islamic Jihad will be invited with the task of reshaping, choosing or electing a new national council, as stipulated by the system of elections of the National Council.

“We respect and appreciate the position of Arabs and their support for the Palestinian cause. We demand the implementation of the decisions of the Arab summits on Jerusalem, especially the Amman summit of 1980, which called for severing all relations with any state that recognizes Jerusalem as the capital of Israel or transfers its embassy to it.”

He stressed that the sacrifices and struggles of prisoners in Israeli jails obligate Palestinians to provide all forms of support and that the dignity of Palestinians remains above any consideration.

Meanwhile, President Abbas reiterated commitment to a two-state solution based on international resolutions, the Arab peace initiative on the 1967 borders, the cessation of settlements’ expansion and unilateral actions. He affirmed that Palestinians will continue to seek the Security Council until full membership is achieved.

He stressed that Palestinians will not accept what the US attempts to impose, and that the PLO will reconsider its relations with Israel, yet engage in any serious peace negotiations under the auspices of the UN.

Following are the resolutions issued by the Central Council:

First: US recognition of Jerusalem

1. To condemn and reject the decision of US President Donald Trump, recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, and transferring his country’s embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, and work to reverse this decision.

2. The Council considered that the US administration, by announcing this decision, has lost its eligibility to function as a mediator and sponsor of the peace process and will not be a partner in this process unless the decision is reversed.

3. The Council stressed its rejection of President Trump’s policy that is aimed at presenting a project or ideas that contravene the resolutions of international community to resolve the conflict, which revealed its essence by declaring Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. The Council stressed the need to abolish the Congress’s decision to consider the PLO as a terrorist organization since 1987, and the State Department’s decision to close the Office of the PLO general delegation in Washington on November 17, 2017.

Second: The relationship with Israel (the occupation):

In light of the withdrawal of the occupying state from all agreements and revoking them by practice and imposing a fait accompli, and with the Central council stressing that the direct goal is the independence of the State of Palestine, which requires transition from self-governing to the stage of a state that is struggling for independence, with East Jerusalem as its capital and on the borders of 4 June 1967, in implementation of the resolutions of the National Council, including the Declaration of Independence in 1988, and relevant UN resolutions, including the General Assembly resolution 67/19 of 29/11/2012, as the political and legal basis for Palestinians reality, and the affirmation of adherence to the territorial unity of the State of Palestine, and the rejection of any divisions or facts imposed contrary to that;

The Central Council decided that the transitional period stipulated in the agreements signed in Oslo, Cairo and Washington, with its obligations no longer stand.

1.The Central Council calls upon the international community to assume its responsibilities on the basis of relevant UN resolutions to end the occupation and enable the State of Palestine to achieve its independence and to exercise its full sovereignty over its territory, including its capital, East Jerusalem, on the borders of 4 June 1967.

2.Assign the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization to suspend recognition of Israel until it recognizes the State of Palestine on the 1967 borders and revokes the decision to annex East Jerusalem and expand and build settlements.

3.The Central Council reaffirms its decision to stop security coordination in all its forms and to break away from the relationship of economic dependence established by the Paris Economic Agreement, to achieve the independence of the national economy. It requests the Executive Committee of the PLO and the institutions of the State of Palestine to start implementing this.

4.Continue to work with world countries to boycott Israeli colonial settlements in all fields, to work on publishing the database for companies operating in Israeli settlements by the United Nations and to emphasize the illegality of Israeli colonial settlements since 1967.

5.Adopt the BDS movement and call on world countries to impose sanctions on Israel to put an end to its flagrant violations of international law and to end its continued aggression against the Palestinian people and the apartheid regime imposed on them.

6.Reject and condemn the Israeli occupation and apartheid that Israel is trying to enshrine as an alternative to the establishment of an independent Palestinian state, and affirm the determination of the Palestinian people to resist by all means.

7.Reject any proposals or ideas for transitional solutions or interim stages, including the so-called state with temporary borders.

8.Refuse to recognize Israel as a Jewish state.

Third: The internal Palestinian situation:

1.Adhere to the reconciliation Agreement signed in 2017 and its execution mechanisms, the latest of which is the Cairo agreement in 2017 and the provision of means of support for its implementation, and enable the Government of National unity to assume its responsibilities fully in the Gaza Strip in accordance with the Amended Basic Law, and then conduct general elections and hold the Palestinian National Council session no later than the end of 2018 in order to achieve political partnership within the framework of the PLO, the legitimate and sole representative of the Palestinian people, and work to form a government of national unity in order to strengthen the political partnership and the unity of the Palestinian political system.

2.Affirm the right of our people to exercise all forms of resistance against the occupation in accordance with the provisions of international law and to continue to activate, support and strengthen the peaceful popular resistance.

3.Affirm the need to support Palestinians and their steadfastness in the eternal capital of the State of Palestine, Jerusalem and affirm the need to support their struggle against the Israeli measures aimed at Judaizing the Holy City.

4.Take all measures to support our people in the Gaza Strip, who faced the Israeli aggression and the Israeli siege and provide the support they need, including freedom of movement, access to health, the reconstruction and the mobilization of the international community to break the siege.

5.The Central Council condemns the leaking of the property by the Greek Orthodox church to Israeli institutions and companies and calls for accountability of those responsible. It supports the struggle of the Palestinian people from the Orthodox community in order to preserve their rights and their role in administering the affairs of the Orthodox Church and preserving its property.

Fourth: The Security Council, the General Assembly and the International Criminal Court:

1.Continue to work to provide international protection to the Palestinian people in the territory of the occupied State of Palestine (West Bank, including East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip) based on the Security Council resolution 605 for the year (1987), 672 (1967) and (1990), 904 of (1998), and the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949 (Protection of Civilians in Time of War).

2.Continue to work to strengthen the status of the State of Palestine in international forums and activate the request for full membership of the State of Palestine in the United Nations.

3.Provide referral on various issues (settlement, prisoners, aggression on the Gaza Strip) to the International Criminal Court.

4.Continue to join to international institutions and organizations, including the specialized agencies of the United Nations.

Fifth: The Arab and Islamic levels:

1.Call for activating the resolution of the 1980 Amman Summit, which obliges the Arab states to sever all ties with any state that recognizes Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and transfers its embassy to it, which has been reaffirmed in a number of other Arab summits with the request of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation member states to do the same.

2.Adhere to the Arab peace initiative and reject any attempts to change or alter it and maintain its priorities.

3.Work with the Arab countries (The Arab League), the Islamic countries (OIC) and the Non-Aligned Movement to hold an international conference with full powers to launch the peace process and in coordination with the EU countries, Russia, China, Japan and other international groups on the basis of relevant international resolutions and benefit from the outcomes of the 2017 Paris conference in a way as to ensure the end of the Israeli occupation and the empowerment of the State of Palestine with East Jerusalem as its capital on the 1967 borders and exercise its independence and sovereignty and to resolve the refugee issue on the basis of UN Resolution 194 and other final status issues in accordance with the resolutions of the international community within a specific time frame.

4.The League of Arab States, the OIC, the Non-Aligned Movement and the African Union must stand firm in front of world countries that violated the resolutions of these collective frameworks on voting against the United Nations General Assembly resolution on Jerusalem 21/12/2017.

5.The Central council condemned US threats to cut aid to UNRWA, which is seen as a way for the US to abandon its responsibility over a refugee crisis that it has aided in creating and calls on the international community to commit itself to securing the necessary funds for UNRWA, which would put an end to the continued decline in the Agency’s services and instead improve its role in providing basic services to the victims of the Nakbah and ensure a decent life for refugees as a responsibility that the international community should fulfill in accordance with resolution 194.

6.The Central Council rejects foreign intervention in Arab countries and calls for a political solution and dialogue in order to end the crises and wars experienced by some Arab countries. It calls for maintaining the unity of these countries and defying attempts to divide and alleviating the suffering of Arabs.

Sixth: Develop mechanisms to implement the decisions of the previous Central Council to represent women by at least 30% in all institutions in the State of Palestine and to harmonize the laws in accordance with the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW).

Seventh: The Central Council salutes the masses of Palestinians in refugee camps and exile camps in Syria, Lebanon and the Diaspora who affirm their adherence to the right of return every day. The Executive Committee is mandated to continue and intensify work with the Palestinian communities in the world and to communicate with international parties to mobilize support in facing decisions that aim to liquidate the Palestinian cause.

Eighth: The Central Council salutes the struggle and steadfastness of the prisoners in the Israeli jails and calls for their support in their daily confrontation and calls on national and international institutions to bring up their cases in all forums until their release. The Council condemns the arrest and intimidation of children, including Ahed Tamimi, which has become a symbol of Palestinian pride in the face of occupation as well as dozens of other children.

It condemns the deliberate killings and field executions committed by Israel, as well as the killing of Ibrahim Abu Thuraya, and condemns the continued detention of the bodies of Palestinians in the numbers graves, and calls for their unconditional release.

Ninth: The Central Council salutes Palestinians for their response to President Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and transfer the US Embassy to it. It salutes the souls of Palestinians who rose for Palestine and al-Aqsa.

January 16, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Illegal Occupation, Timeless or most popular | , , , , | 1 Comment

What’s Wrong with Liberal Jews?

Progressive except for Palestine

By Philip Giraldi • Unz Review • January 16, 2018

Jerry Seinfeld, the Jewish American comedian, who was performing in Tel Aviv Israel at the Menora Mavtichim Arena at the end of December, recently made the news over his real live adventure at an anti-terrorism tourism camp. The so-called Counter Terror and Security Academy named Caliber 3 is a tourist training camp near the Efrat settlement south of Bethlehem, which means it is, appropriately enough, actually built on land stolen from the Palestinians. The camp’s website commemorated the Seinfeld visit by posting notice of the participation of “the legendary Jerry Seinfeld and his family,” plus photos, in a vignette that has since been removed.

The Caliber 3 website describes itself as “the leading counter terror and security training academy, run by active members of the IDF.” The day visit includes a “shooting adventure” involving a simulated suicide bombing in a Jerusalem marketplace as well as a terrorist knife attack. The package, which costs $115 per adult and $85 for children, includes sniper training and a demonstration of the use of attack dogs against a terrorist suspect.

The bad guys in the scenarios were inevitably the Palestinians, invariably described as “terrorists,” and the heroes were the Israeli army and police who were, of course, protecting innocent Jewish civilians. Jerry was photographed grinning and his entire entourage cheered and waved to demonstrate what a wonderful time they were having.

Now Jerry Seinfeld is not just a funny man, he is also a hard-core Hollywood-by-way-of-New York liberal and he may actually believe nonsense like Benjamin Netanyahu really wants peace or that a two-state solution for Israel-Palestine would work just fine, not recognizing that that ship has already sailed. Most of his peers in the heavily Jewish entertainment industry are also politically liberal, though they would likely choose to be called “progressive,” the preferred nomenclature since Ronald Reagan made liberal unfashionable.

Jerry is probably full of warm and fuzzy feelings about racial injustice, illegal immigrants and voting rights in America but he is either unaware or indifferent to the fact that a fundamentally racist Israel is preparing to expel or imprison forty-thousand African asylum seekers and that hundreds of thousands of Arabs who are under the life-and-death control of the Israeli security services have no rights whatsoever apart from being tried by military tribunals where the conviction rate is 99%. Nor is Jerry or any of his Hollywood friends likely to stage a benefit for 16 year old Ahed Tamimi, who is in prison in Israel facing a possible life in prison sentence for having slapped an Israeli soldier from a patrol that had invaded her family home in her West Bank village shortly after shooting her cousin in the head.

I have to believe that Jerry doesn’t obsess much over his Israeli hosts having stolen someone else’s land and killing them if they resist. But I also have to believe that if Jerry were to witness a training camp like C-3 in the United States where the shooting of black people or illegal Mexicans were simulated he would no doubt be both outraged and disgusted, even though somehow shooting simulated Arabs and grinning while doing so does not appear to bother him one bit.

Unfortunately, Jerry the Jewish liberal is not that unusual. American Jews, who are the key to the continuing blank check American support of Israel, balk at recognizing the evil that the self-defined Jewish state represents even though both opinion polls and voting patterns suggest strongly that they are predominantly reliably liberal regarding both social and political issues. Israel does, in fact, reject the values of most diaspora Jews while also contradicting the moral and ethical tradition of Judaism itself, which it claims to uphold. It is the antithesis of what many American Jews believe to be the right way to behave.

As a theocracy that acts like every other theocracy, including neighboring Saudi Arabia, Israel exists to promote the interests and well-being of its own co-ethnoreligionists, which means that the concerns of other religious groups or citizens are basically of no interest whatsoever. And Israel is not only a theocracy, it is also a prime model of a national security state where the military and police have a relatively free hand. In its interaction with the indigenous Arabs, Israel is a settler colonial state that regards the original inhabitants as inferior creatures only fit to be ethnically cleansed or, at best, to do menial work for their Jewish masters.

Israel has consequently been called an “apartheid state,” but some observers who actually experienced South African apartheid believe that what is practiced in Israel, where Palestinians are harassed at numerous military checkpoints and are routinely denied building and residency permits to force them to leave their homes, is far, far worse. “Liberal Zionist” Michelle Goldberg, writing recently in the New York Times, put it succinctly: “Supporters of Israel hate it when people use the word ‘apartheid’ to describe the country, but we don’t have another term for a political system in which one ethnic group rules over another, confining it to small islands of territory and denying it full political representation.”

Recently Israel has demonstrated its essential thuggishness by taking advantage of the Trump Jerusalem decision to legalize the expansion of its borders farther into the West Bank while also approving the building of more than 1,100 new houses. It has banned travel to Israel by representatives of twenty international organizations that have been critical of its behavior, including the Quaker American Friends Service Committee that saved many Jews during the Second World War as well as the largely Jewish Code Pink and Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP).

And the predominantly liberal highly educated and assimilated American Jews who choose to hold their noses and look the other way when Israel misbehaves exact a price on every other American. Lockstep support for Israel costs billions in U.S. Treasury provided and tax-exempt dollars annually, but does even more damage in terms of bad foreign policy choices and loss of respect from other nations due to Washington’s constant protecting of the murderous and corrupt Netanyahu government, defending the indefensible in a client state which contributes absolutely nothing to the well-being of Americans.

And then there are the wars fought at least in part on behalf of Israel, supported enthusiastically by the U.S. media and political class. Most recently, the White House and Israel have entered into a secret arrangement to destabilize Iran, which does not threaten the United States. Such pointless interventionism by Washington in the Middle East derives from the corruption of American politics and politicians due to Jewish money, a process that is currently working its way through various legislatures in seeking to define any criticism of Israel as anti-Semitism while also driving the same, labeled “hate speech,” from the internet. At the local level, government job seekers and those applying for public grants must actually agree in writing in some states not to boycott Israel, incredibly imposing rules relating to a foreign government on American citizens.

The recent bad decision to move the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem came about mostly due to the millions of dollars that Israeli/American casino billionaire Sheldon Adelson pumped into the Trump election campaign. Adelson, who regrets having once served in the U.S. Army instead of that of Israel, once claimed that the Palestinians exist “to destroy Israel.” He has his Democratic Party counterpart in Hollywood’s Haim Saban, the principal donor to the Hillary Clinton campaign, who has claimed that he is a one issue guy and that issue is Israel.

Indeed, liberal Jews understand perfectly well, just as do most other observers, that the Israel story is a tale of follow the money, even if it is not considered polite to say so. The Jewish oligarch billionaires club – Adelson, Saban, Bernard Marcus, Paul Singer, Larry Ellison – who are to a man obsessed with protecting Israel, work together with major Jewish organizations to dominate the American political class through their largesse. Inevitably, they expect a quid pro quo and they almost always get what they want.

And then there are the venal bootlicking politicians who wallow in Israel-love for tribal reasons, my favorites being Senators Chuck Schumer and Ben Cardin. Schumer has designated himself the “shomer” or defender of Israel in the U.S. Senate, leading one to ask how is it possible that the voters in New York elect someone who says openly that he will protect the interests of another country rather than the United States? And how does such a reptile become Senate Minority Leader? More money assiduously applied to the Democratic National Committee, one suspects.

Allan Brownfeld of the American Council for Judaism describes the situation with considerable clarity. He says Judaism is a religion and Israel is a country. The two should never be confused and active or tacit support for the bad behavior by Israel actually damages the ethical basis of Judaism. American Jews are first and foremost Americans and that is where their loyalty should lie, not with a foreign country.

Gilad Atzmon has a somewhat different take on the dilemma confronting diaspora Jews who are somewhat befuddled, if not completely convinced, by the Israeli government claims that it represents all Jews worldwide. He writes “if Israel defines itself as the Jewish State and decorates its F-35s with Jewish symbols, we are entitled to ask who are the Jews, what is Judaism, what is Jewishness and how all these terms relate to each other! Evidently these questions terrify some Jewish ethnic activists.”

Some would argue that there is growing sentiment among liberal American Jews, particularly the younger ones, to dissociate from Israel and to condemn its behavior. To be sure this would appear to be true, and there are also numerous Jewish dominated “progressive” organizations that are highly critical of Israel’s current government. Many of them are astonishingly ineffective, suggesting that there is a certain ambivalence among the critics. This arises in part, I suspect, because they ultimately want to protect Israel as a Jewish state, only demanding that it somehow behave better and be nice to the Palestinians, but there is no likelihood that that will happen in the foreseeable future given the lack of any significant political party in Israel that would support such a development.

This process of rationalizing ultimately contradictory theses has been described as working from inside the Jewish bubble and is related to the politics of Jewish identity. Groups like Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) do not really see themselves as Americans speaking to other Americans about the impact of Israel on the United States. Instead, they identify as Jews addressing worldwide Jewry over the issue of how to support Jewish supremacy in Israel/Palestine as a sine qua non of Jewish identity while doing what is necessary to avoid unpleasant consequences. The effect of this ambivalence from inside is corrosive, leading some to believe that Jewish gatekeepers will successfully misdirect grassroots movements like Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) to make sure that they do no real damage to the Jewish state just as they have already hamstrung groups demanding an end to the Israeli occupation of the West Bank.

It has also been observed that Jewish liberals who oppose Israeli policies frequently have more pity for themselves than for the people under Netanyahu’s jackboot and their proposals frequently defer to Israeli interests. And sometimes there are personal interests at stake. Rebecca Vilkomerson of JVP, who was blacklisted by Israel and will be unable to travel there, is married to an Israeli Jonathan Lebowitsch, who is a Solution Architect at Checkpoint, a cybersecurity company with ties to the Israeli military. She is now for the first time living with a reality imposed by the Israeli government that is analogous to what many Palestinians have experienced since 1948, i.e. being unable to go back to the homes that their families have lived in for generations. And she is a Jew who has broken no law, dealing with a Jewish state that is proclaimed to be the “only democracy in the Middle East.”

Other groups like J-Street veer even further in the direction of compromise with Israeli interests, basically wanting a Jewish state that is less offensive to the international audience, with some kind of fantasy concordat with the Arabs that will make the issue of what kind of place Israel really is less visible. Some time ago, I attended a J Street sponsored talk by a retired Israeli general who was supposed to be of the “peace” party. His message: “Iran must be destroyed.”

I used to believe that educating the American public about what is really going on in the Middle East would bring about a change in policy. I don’t believe it any longer because Jews control the media and the message. As Peter Beinart puts it, “In part that’s because establishment Jewish discourse about Israel is, in large measure, American public discourse about Israel. Watch a discussion of Israel on American TV and what you’ll hear, much of the time, is a liberal American Jew (Thomas Friedman, David Remnick) talking to a centrist American Jew (Dennis Ross, Alan Dershowitz) talking to a hawkish American Jew (William Kristol, Charles Krauthammer), each articulating different Zionist positions.”

And beyond the media there is the heavy hand of the agitprop being disseminated by the Trump Administration. U.S. ambassador to Israel David Friedman, who recently tried to expunge the word “occupation” from the State Department language describing Israel’s colonization of the West Bank, claimed falsely last week that the Palestinians and their leadership are to blame for the lack of a peace deal with Israel. The statement by Friedman denounced Hamas for praising a drive-by shooting that killed an Israeli Rabbi in a West Bank attack. “An Israeli father of six was killed last night in cold blood by Palestinian terrorists. Hamas praises the killers and PA laws will provide them financial rewards.” Friedman said. “Look no further to why there is no peace.” Friedman supports the fanatical settler movement and has never expressed any sympathy for the far more numerous Palestinian children killed in the past two months by Israeli security forces.

It is undoubtedly true that an increasing number of Jewish American liberals have been troubled by the Israeli police state, which politically has tilted increasingly hard right. Even with an accommodating media, the Israeli refusal to end the occupation of the West Bank and the strangling of the open-air prison that is Gaza have been very visible and have made many question the state’s democratic pretensions. The military domination of a subject population also has a demographic downside in that the land controlled by Israel includes over 6.2 million Palestinian Arabs and about 6.5 million Jews. The Palestinian birthrate is higher than the Jewish birthrate and, in twenty years, Arabs will outnumber Jews in what might be described as Greater Israel, but it is now clear that Israel as it currently sees itself will never grant those Arabs equal rights or give up its attempt to completely dominate the region from the Jordan River to the sea.

Why is all this obsessing over the paradoxical behavior of Jewish liberals important? It is important because American Jews are hugely over-represented in the places that matter: in the media, in entertainment, in politics, in financial services, in the professions, in the arts and in education. It has been my own personal experience that some prominent Jewish critics of Israel resent identical criticism coming from non-Jews and tend to use their resources to marginalize it, frequently alleging that it is motivated by anti-Semitism. That means that the goyim will never be able to shift the press or congress or the White House about how awful the connection with Israel really is, no matter what we say or do, but as soon as Jewish American liberals get on board and convince themselves that they cannot stand any more of the lying about Israel change will come. It is all about Jewish power in America, but this time as a potential positive force. Guys like Jerry Seinfeld will have to figure out that performing in Israel and playing around for a laugh at their counter-terrorist indoctrination centers that simulate shooting Arabs is not exactly acceptable. We might even get Hollywood on board to produce an honest movie about the plight of the Palestinians.

Philip M. Giraldi, Ph.D., is Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest, a 501(c)3 tax deductible educational foundation that seeks a more interests-based U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. Website is http://www.councilforthenationalinterest.org, address is P.O. Box 2157, Purcellville VA 20134 and its email is inform@cnionline.org.

January 16, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Progressive Hypocrite, Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

No charges for Israel soldier who killed Palestinian child returning from swimming

MEMO | January 12, 2018

An Israeli army officer who opened fire on a car of Palestinian civilians, killing a 15-year-old boy, will not be prosecuted, it was reported today.

Mahmoud Badran was killed, and four friends wounded, after returning from a swimming pool on the night of 21 June 2016.

At the time, the Israeli military claimed the forces responsible believed the car of youngsters were responsible for throwing stones at Route 443 in the occupied West Bank.

An investigation by the Military Police Criminal Investigation Division (MPCID) has now concluded that the “mistake” was a reasonable one to make in the circumstances, despite the fact that the officer opened fire in violation of the regulations.

According to Haaretz, the officer in question is a platoon commander in the Kfir Brigade, which is based in the occupied West Bank. He, and two colleagues, were driving towards Jerusalem in plain clothes when they noticed stones and an oil patch on the road, and a bus parked up on the side.

After driving to where they believed the stones had been thrown from, the officer and soldiers got out and opened fire on a car driving on a road under Route 443. Open-fire regulations in the West Bank state that when a vehicle does not endanger the soldiers, shots must be fired in the air.

According to Israeli rights group B’Tselem, “massive fire” was directed at the vehicle of Palestinian youngsters, despite the fact that there was zero indication its occupants were responsible for the stone-throwing (and even if there had been, lethal force was unjustified).

The MPCID investigation similarly concluded that the officer had not seen the stone throwers, and targeted the car purely due to its proximity to the site. Despite such findings, no indictment will be filed against the officer, not even for causing death by negligence.

According to Haaretz, the officer faces dismissal for his conduct during the incident. The army spokesperson told the paper that the findings were still being examined by the Military Advocate General’s office ahead of a final decision.

At the time, B’Tselem predicted that the investigation would produce no results, slamming “the military law enforcement system” as “a whitewashing mechanism”.

January 13, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Subjugation - Torture, Timeless or most popular | , , , , | 4 Comments

Yes, Palestinians Teach Their Children to Hate the Jewish State

By Rima Najjar | Palestine Chronicle | January 9, 2018

Zionism is an insidious ideology. Its ideologues often gain traction by well-placed and oft repeated constructs – in films and TV series, in posts and comments on social media, and even in academia. So, it is no wonder that people end up having ideas about certain things, like the nature of Israel, the Zionist Jewish state, or the nature of Palestinian Arab culture and identity, or the nature of Jewish culture and identity, as if by osmosis.

One of these “memes” in the air, if you will, is the oft repeated comment by hasbara agents on social media that says Palestinian children teach their children to hate Jews. This notion can also be found in numerous attacks on the Palestinian Authority curriculum with the same accusation of “teaching children to hate Jews”, when in fact, the opposite is true, as is often the case with Zionist propaganda (see Nurit Peled-Elhanan’s Palestine in Israeli School Books: Ideology and Propaganda in Education – Library of Modern Middle East Studies).

An experience that caused me to be suspended from posting on Facebook for three days illustrates the above.

The comment cited in the Facebook warning is clearly out of context – the fourth word (bolded in what follows) indicates a continuity with something that came before it:

“It’s true, though, Palestinians teach their children to hate the Jewish state, as So they must.”

Zionist hasbara about Jewish identity is so ingrained that Facebook takes an attack on the Zionist Jewish state to be synonymous with attacking “people based on their religion, etc. …”

The censured comment was in response to an assertion during discussion that Palestinians teach their children to hate. I objected to that, making the distinction between hating Jews and hating Israel, the Jewish state that continues to dispossess and oppress Palestinians, to “exist” on stolen Palestinian land and property, keeping Palestinians languishing in refugee camps for close to 70 years now (See Palestine refugees, UNRWA), its politicians stating shamelessly that Palestinian children are a “demographic threat”. (See To understand the history of Palestinian dispossession look to the words of Zionist and Israeli leaders)

Put another way, as Rafeef Ziadeh, the Canadian-Palestinian spoken word artist and activist, put it in a powerful poem, we teach our children life, we teach them to survive.

Sari Nusseibeh, professor of philosophy at Al-Quds University in Jerusalem and president of the University for seventeen years, wrote an article titled Why Israel can’t be a ‘Jewish State’. He cites several implications for why not, the most important of which is the following:

“In short, recognition of Israel as a “Jewish State” in Israel is not the same as, say, recognition of Greece today as a “Christian State”. It entails, in the Old Testament itself, a Covenant between God and a Chosen People regarding a Promised Land that should be taken by force at the expense of the other inhabitants of the land and of non-Jews. This idea is not present as such in other religions that we know of. Moreover, even secular and progressive voices in Israel, such as former president of the Supreme Court of Israel, Aharon Barak, understand the concept of a “Jewish State” as follows:

“”[The] Jewish State is the state of the Jewish people … it is a state in which every Jew has the right to return … a Jewish state derives its values from its religious heritage, the Bible is the basic of its books and Israel’s prophets are the basis of its morality … a Jewish state is a state in which the values of Israel, Torah, Jewish heritage and the values of the Jewish halacha (religious law) are the bases of its values.”” (‘A State in Emergency’, Ha’aretz, June 19, 2005.)

Palestinian parents do not teach their children to hate Jews; they teach their children to hate the Jewish state – for their own survival.

– Rima Najjar is a Palestinian whose father’s side of the family comes from the forcibly depopulated village of Lifta on the western outskirts of Jerusalem. She is an activist, researcher and retired professor of English literature, Al-Quds University, occupied West Bank.

January 11, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular | , , | 2 Comments

Open Letter from Academics at Birzeit University in Palestine

IMEMC News – January 9, 2018

We at Birzeit University call on the academic community to protest the Israeli government’s deliberate harassment of international students and academics who travel to Palestine in order to study or work in Palestinian academic institutions.

The past few years have seen many international students and academics stopped, interrogated, and/or deported by Israeli security as they tried to enter Palestine through the entry points controlled by Israel.

These excessive measures violate academic freedom, the right to education, and the free exchange of students and academics. Such actions are often pursued without charge and include interrogation techniques, many of which constitute verbal assault. Thus, it is another flagrant violation of basic human rights by the Israeli occupation.

We call upon the international academic community – especially universities – to stand in solidarity with both their own students and academics, as well as Palestinian institutions, in common condemnation of these unjust practices and violations. We also call upon you to intensify your efforts in boycotting Israel and its academic institutions till it ends its violations of the human rights of the Palestinians.

The right to access Palestinian academic institutions is denied through systematic abuse of power designed to discourage prospective members of the academic community, coupled with an implied threat of retaliation should members of that community persist in seeking their rights. Human rights conventions state that access to education should be granted based on merit and ability. But in this unique situation, Israel is denying academic access and unjustly punishing those seeking it.

The decision of some international institutions to stop their students from engaging with their Palestinian counterparts is giving the Israeli authorities a helping hand in implementing these violations. Condemnation should be directed instead towards the Israeli authority’s harassment of these institutions’ own students and academics in Palestine.

Such a decision reflects the sad reality that punishes the victims of Israeli discrimination and human rights violations, as well as the Palestinian academic institutions. Students and academics who experience discrimination, harassment, and denial of entry at the hands of the Israeli authority should receive support and protection from their own states and academic institutions.

January 10, 2018 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Full Spectrum Dominance, Solidarity and Activism, Timeless or most popular | , , | Leave a comment