Archive | April 7th, 2010

THE CORLEONES OF KANDAHAR ARE DOOMED TO FALL AFGHANISTAN

NOVANEWS
By Khalil Nouri, STAFF WRITER

Last week, president Karzai met with tribal leaders hoping for their support in his rift with Washington. Instead, his meetings were a total disaster with tribal leaders demonstrating a clear lack of confidence in, not only his policies but his personal leadership as well.  

With accusations of personal failings, from a possible drug habit, to rigged elections and close relations with narcotics operations, followed by erratic behavior culminating in threats to “join the Taliban,” President Karzai couldn’t be facing worse challenges. However, the story of the Karzai disaster starts long before his current problems.

From Left to Right: Muslimyar, Hamid Karzai & Gul Agha Sherzai

Over history since the 4th century BC, my ancestral city of Kandahar changed hands many times and was fought over by the Arabs, Greeks, Persians, Mongols, British, Russians and now the US and NATO will soon initiate a D-day that could very well decide the fate of the rest of Afghanistan.

This conservative and sacred Pashtun heartland—where Prophet Muhammad’s cloak is placed—has always played a pivotal role with all its political makeup, and now, there is a window of opportunity for control of the city—same as Marjah and Nad-Ali— that is considered an operational nightmare and an opaque situation that could possibly exhaust public opinion; swiftly resulting in a change of strategy in the US-NATO operation.

If this operation is currently considered the cornerstone of the surge effort, and the key to shifting momentum, then only time can correctly measure its success by convincing the Afghan populace that this is a viable political solution. However, in our native view, there are obstacles that could be impasses for the surge to succeed.

The Corleones of Kandahar and the Consequences to Stability

First and foremost, corruption schemes by the Afghan government are nuanced indulgence manipulations of complex tribal politics currently played out by the “Poplazai” and “Barakzai” tribal Chiefs—Ahmad Wali Karzai (half-brother to President Hamed Karzai) and Gul Agha Sherzai (current governor of the eastern province of Nengarhar and former governor of Kandahar).

Both families are allegedly linked to narco-mafia criminal gangs and to government corruption. If the U.S. continues to accommodate the existing power structure, it will appear to be regarding corruption as an acceptable status-quo—a bad message for both the Afghan and American public.

Ahamad Wali Karzai

One should bear in mind that corruption is the root cause for instability, and power grabbing by these means lies at the center of the intense political competition among the above mentioned leading tribal families and clans. Instead of seeking balance and stability, they outmaneuver their political rivals through extensive alliances to establish themselves as the undisputed leaders of the region.

These schemes have far-reaching consequences and result in damaging harmony and national unity in Afghanistan.

This behavior has immeasurably alienated other tribes who are pushed from the course of prosperity; and consequently their corrective measure for balance is the rejuvenation of Taliban recruitment into its organization. The element missing in today’s Afghanistan is a sense of mutual benefit for all tribal elements and a balance of power between the tribes reflected in the central government; without it there is no peace.

Lack of Reliable and Acceptable Afghan Leadership

Afghan President Hamed Karzai sought to rally public support for an upcoming military operation in the Taliban’s birthplace, promising that U.S. and NATO troops will push into insurgent areas only after consultations with tribal leaders.

As he was speaking to about 2,000 officials and tribal leaders in Kandahar last Sunday, in the background was a huge portrait of King Zahir Shah—the popular ex Afghan monarch— that was used to draw constituency for the support of the operation.

This clearly shows a lack of Karzai’s “Poplazai” tribal strength compared to the ex-monarch; whose tribal clan has overwhelmingly higher acceptance within the tribal hierarchies and structure in Kandahar—where all the identities are given weight—and elsewhere in Afghanistan.

One must bear in mind, if Kandahar is the key to success in Afghanistan, then a popular tribal acceptance and representation is the key to a balance of power; and consequently to an imminent restoration of peace in the Pashtun Heartland. Therefore, this has been “the” prime flaw for the West since the Bonn conference; by not recognizing this tribal phenomenon, they have wasted time, money and lives.

Although many, including some US Congressional individuals like Dana Rohrabacher and Edward Royce, had enthusiastically advocated for a balanced Afghan tribal leadership consideration prior to the Bonn agreement, an Afghan born US envoy to Afghanistan by the name of Zalmay Khalilzad had the ears of the Bush administration and manipulated the interim Afghan government process that pronounced Karzai as the leader of the post Taliban government.

Hamed Karzai’s most recent intrigue; vote rigging, then charging foreigners and the UN for the presidential election fraud; power grabbing, by dismissing independent election monitors; siding with Ahadinejad, twice taking trips to Iran at the expense of the US; making the comment, “if the West were seen as an invader and the Afghan government its mercenaries,” he goes on to say, “the Taliban-led insurgency could become a national resistance”; and finally, he is now saying that if he is pushed too hard for reform by the West, he will join the Taliban insurgency.

This is clearly no April fool’s day joke; while politically embarrassing, Karzai’s remarks were neither unprecedented nor, in perspective, surprising. He might only be trying to create more political maneuvering room for himself, or he might be serious. Either way, the relationship between Kabul and Washington is in serious crises.

Hearsay and Personal Knowledge about Karzai

As I recall, from my youth, Karzai’s late father Mr. Abdul Ahad Karzai and my late father were very good friends and colleagues; they both had diplomatic careers with the Afghan foreign ministry. The elder Karzai seemed very charismatic and was well respected by his peers.

However, recalling Hamed Karzai from school days, he was actually a couple of grades behind me. A childhood friend’s sister and Karzai’s sister (Fauzia Karzai) were high school friends; and from that friend I learned that, Hamid often isolated himself to read philosophy books and was nicknamed “mad (or) angry Hamid” by his family.

The most recent worldwide- viewed Karzai political brouhaha has revealed that his family “nickname” truthfully portrays his mental instability and exactly as who he is. Karzai’s behavior can only lead to an unpredictable outcome; therefore, the West should not appear weak and kneel down to him. Otherwise, years of Western investment and sacrifices will have been a futile effort.

In Conclusion

Evidently, Karzai maintains a fragile grip on the leadership of his country and is seen by his critics as being too Western, and too much a puppet of Washington. But in the eyes of some Afghans, it is smart politics for Karzai to be seen as his own man by his countrymen.

To a great extent, the power of Hamid Karzai depends upon government control in Kandahar. If the province is lost to the Taliban, it will be a major blow to his government, to his personal influence, and to U.S.-NATO operations as well.

It is fairly obvious that the battle for Kandahar will be more political than military—and it will require skills and expertise that are in short supply. In hindsight, seemingly, Karzai and his tribal alliance—the “Popalzai” and the “Barakzai”—are the only ones in Kandahar who can tactically maneuver the West in the direction of failure.

Moreover, Karzai’s recent behavior seems set more on aggravating relations rather than repairing them. Even after almost a decade of fighting, the whole Afghan project is still in a fragile predicament.

Therefore, it should be clearer than ever that the strategy’s success or failure is, in large measure, up to Karzai. If he hasn’t proven to be a reliable partner by now, it’s time for the U.S. to back someone else—or else relinquish all activity and decisions to tribal Afghans.

And finally, it is unimaginable for us Americans to hear the announcement that “the last U.S. soldier came home from Afghanistan this morning, leaving behind a war that has become a domestic burden and an international embarrassment for Washington”; exactly as was the case when the last Russian soldier left Afghanistan on February 16th 1989.

 Khalil Nouri is the cofounder of New World Strategies Coalition Inc., a native think tank for nonmilitary solution studies for Afghanistan. www.nwscinc.org

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NUCLEAR DISARMAMENT FOR DECADES

NOVANEWS

Dear,

Remember me?
We’ve been working on nuclear disarmament for decades.

Ben Cohen and the bbs
Tell some friends about our latest opportunity before it’s too late.

Tell Friends

Like a lot of you, I’ve been working to reduce our dangerous and expensive nuclear weapons stockpile for a lot of years. Remember when Jerry and I first came out with the Peace Pop, back in 1988, to call attention to the need to change our priorities?

And those of you who have been reading these emails for a while know that when I started TrueMajority we always had nuclear disarmament as a top priority. Hard to improve the world for our kids if we blow it up first!

Well, unfortunately we haven’t been making much progress for a while. In fact, the country’s stack of strategic nuclear warheads has stayed at the same crazy level for nearly 20 years.

Until now. The new nuclear arms reduction treaty which President Obama plans to sign this week with Russia’s President Medvedev will start cutting those stockpiles again. It’s a fantastic step toward closing the book on the Cold War, at last. That is, IF the Senate approves the treaty.

You’ve already signed the petition put together by our friends at Global Zero supporting this treaty. But we’ve only got a few days left until Obama’s big summit in D.C. And this is our best chance in almost 20 years to make tangible progress on cutting these weapons. Can you help spread the word by forwarding a link to this video I made?

http://act.truemajorityaction.org/p/7002/taf_globalzerobb?tell_a_friend_KEY=354

More than 20,000 TrueMajority members have already signed on, and Global Zero will be delivering the names to world leaders next week, so make sure yours is one of them.

There will be a lot more to do before we achieve our goal of total nuclear disarmament. But this is real, and important. Making changes like this is why we started TrueMajority — so pass the message on to your friends and seize the moment.

signature

Ben Cohen
Founder, Truemajority.org,
Co-founder, Ben & Jerry’s

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BARBARIC SAUDI REGIME

NOVANEWS

Washington DC – A Saudi writer is facing charges of apostasy and a death sentence after he characterized an alleged hadith of the Prophet Mohamed as barbaric.

Writer and columnist Yahia AlAmeer has been asked to report to the Jeddah court in June 7th to face the charge of apostasy by insulting the Prophet Mohamed, a charge that traditionally carries the death penalty.

The charges stems from an interview AlAmeer had with American television station AlHurra five years ago in which he called a purported hadith of the Prophet Mohamed characterizing women as a source of harm to men, barbaric. The Hadith stated “After me I have not left any affliction more harmful to men than women,” is reported in the two leading sources of hadith in Sunni Islam Bokhari and Muslim and are considered undoubtedly authentic by most Sunni Muslims especially those in Saudi Arabia.  

Meanwhile, Saudi government Sheikh Abdulaziz Bin Abdullatif issued a fatwa calling for the killing of AlAmeer. “He should be killed even if he repented,” said Abdullatif on his website.

The charge of apostasy by insulting the Prophet was used to sentence Hadi AlMutif, 36, to death in 1994. Al-Mutif remains in prison since then on death row. His family’s has appealed to King Abdulla for a pardon several times, a request he rejected.

Kingdom of Sorcery and Apostasy

The Saudi absolute monarchy leads the world in trying apostasy and sorcery cases, most of them occurring under King Abdulla who has been applauded by western leaders and governments as a reformer, especially in the United States. Late King Fahd signed the death warrant of Sadiq Mallah, 23, in 1993 just few weeks after it was issued by a Saudi court.  

Cases under King Abdullah included the following:

Liberal journalist and blogger Rebah Algwaie was arrested in the northern city of Hail on apostasy charges in April 3rd, 2006 after receiving death threats from unknown individuals who destroyed his car and left a message warning him to return to Islam or face the consequences. He was sentenced to death by the Wahhabi court after only three weeks in jail but released later due to direct interference by King Abdullah after international organizations such as the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists, and Paris Based Reporters Without Borders issued statements requesting his release.  He was not allowed a lawyer or any legal assistant.

In November 2005 Mohammad Al-Harbi, a high school chemistry teacher, was sentenced to three years in jail and 750 lashes – 50 lashes per week for 15 weeks – after his 12th-grade students and teachers from the same school accused him of “mocking religion”, “praising unbelievers” and preventing students from performing ablutions as well as practicing witchcraft.

Another Saudi teacher, Mohammad Al-Suhaimi, received a sentence of three years in prison and 700 lashes for allegedly encouraging students to indulge in homosexual activities and adultery.  Al-Suhaimi’s students complained to the court after told them that love was “a noble act.” When asked by a student if love was not all about marriage, he replied that a typical Saudi marriage is more about amiability and compassion.

Dr. Hamza Al-Maziani was sentenced to four months in jail and 275 lashes after his colleague claimed he described Islamic textbooks used at King Saud University as “radical.” The sentences of both men were subsequently overturned by the Crown Prince and now King Abdullah due to international pressure.

Other cases including Yemeni Hail AlMaseri whose whereabouts are currently unknown since his death sentence in 2002. Two Turkish citizens who were sentenced to death in 2007 for apostasy and insulting the Prophet but they were released after intervention by the Turkish president.

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ZIO=NAZI ATTEMPT TO JOIN THE OECD

NOVANEWS

From Badil 

http://www.badil.org/en/badil-news/1683-story-2

A Vote for Israel’s Accession to the OECD is a Vote in Support of
Israel’s War Crimes and Other Grave Violations of International Law and
Human Rights

Palestinian civil society urges the peoples and governments of OECD
member states to defer Israel’s OECD accession until it respects
international law and the human rights of the Palestinian people and
shows commitment to the fundamental values shared by OECD members.

BNC, Palestine, 15 March 2010 – The Organization for Economic
Co-operation and Development (OECD) is scheduled to convene in May 2010 in order to take a formal decision on Israel’s application for
membership in the Organization. A vote for Israel’s accession to the
OECD will be regarded by an overwhelming majority of Palestinians,
Arabs, and people of conscience around the world as a decisive and
far-reaching act of complicity in rewarding and perpetuating Israel’s
occupation, colonization and apartheid against the Palestinian people.
Furthermore, it will irreparably undermine the rule of law and further
entrench the culture of impunity that has enabled Israel to escalate its
commission of war crimes and what is described by some leading
international law experts as a prelude to genocide against Palestinians
in the illegally besieged and occupied Gaza Strip.
 
The Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions National Committee
(BNC) calls upon civil society organizations around the world to apply
maximum pressure on their respective governments to ensure that Israel
will not be admitted into the OECD, including by casting a vote against
Israel’s accession in the final review of its application in May.
Membership in the OECD will intensely fuel Israel’s militarism,
belligerence and aggression, further destabilizing the entire region,
undermining security as well as social, political and economic
development and making the quest for a just peace an unattainable goal.
 
The BNC deplores the OECD’s persistent disregard of evidence submitted
by human rights and civil society organizations in process of
examination of Israel’s membership application [1]. The BNC further
deplores the decision by the OECD to consider Israel’s inability to
provide economic statistics which distinguish between the state of
Israel and the Palestinian and Syrian territories it occupies as not
constituting and obstacle to Israel’s OECD accession [2].
 
We affirm that the OECD becomes complicit in Israel’s unlawful acts, if
the Organization fails to address – despite ample evidence – Israel’s
reality as an oppressive occupying and colonizing power in the West
Bank, including East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip and continues to
ignore Israel’s system of institutionalized racial discrimination which
is the root cause of the extreme poverty among its Palestinian citizens
highlighted in OECD reports.
 
In light of the persistent refusal of many OECD member states to
consider Israel’s violations of international humanitarian and human
rights law, we call in particular on OECD members that have voted in
support of the recommendations of the UN Fact Finding Mission on the
Gaza Conflict (Goldstone Report) in the United Nations – Ireland,
Mexico, Portugal, Switzerland and Turkey – to reaffirm their principled
stand also in the context of Israel’s bid for OECD membership. We urge
you to maintain and reaffirm your position that Israel, like all other
states, is to be held accountable to the standards of international law
and universal human rights and must respect them before it can be
welcomed as a member in the OECD.
 
Respect and compliance with international humanitarian and human rights
law is a requirement for members under OECD instruments. The 1960 OECD Convention, for example, affirms that “economic strength and prosperity are essential for the attainment of the purposes of the United Nations, the preservation of individual liberty and the increase of general
well-being.” In the “Road Map for the accession of Israel to the OECD
Convention” adopted by the Council in November 2007, the Council noted
that in order for Israel to accede to the OECD it must demonstrate its
commitment to “fundamental values” shared by all OECD members and meet related benchmarks. The stated OECD values include “a commitment to pluralist democracy based on the rule of law and the respect of human
rights, adherence to open and transparent market economy principles and
a shared goal of sustainable development.”
 
Condemned as a state that is practicing occupation, colonization and
apartheid by a recent authoritative legal study in South Africa
supervised by international law expert and former UN human rights
rapporteur, Prof. John Dugard, Israel is not in compliance with
international law and OECD standards and benchmarks [3]. Israel has yet
to comply with the recommendations of the UN Fact Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict and investigate and prosecute where needed those
responsible for war crimes and crimes against humanity that resulted in
the death of more than 1,400 Palestinians, most of them civilians, in
the winter of 2008/9. Israel has yet to lift its illegal blockade of the
occupied Gaza Strip which has brought to the brink of starvation almost
1.5 million Palestinians, most of whom are refugees Israel had displaced
and dispossessed back in 1948. It has yet to dismantle its illegal Wall
in the occupied Palestinian West Bank in accordance with the 2004
International Court of Justice Advisory Opinion. Israel has yet to end
its almost 43-year-old occupation of the West Bank, including East
Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip, reverse its colonial enterprise and
release Palestinians detained and imprisoned. It has yet to transform
its political and legal system in order to provide reparation for
millions of Palestinian victims, including return for the refugees, and
allow full and equal participation of its Palestinian citizens. Only
then will Israel meet the standards of pluralist democracies valued by
the OECD.
 
The BNC reiterates the concerns expressed on numerous occasions to the
OECD by human rights and civil society organizations and calls upon the
governments and peoples of OECD member states to say no to Israel’s bid
for membership in the OECD.
 
[1] See for example:
Letter to Mr. Angel Gurria, Secretary General, OECD (22 human rights and
civil society organizations), 28 September 2008:
http://www.arabhra.org/HraAdmin/UserImages/Files/NGO%20Letter%20to%20the%20OECD.pdf
;
Letter to the Foreign Ministers of Non-EU OECD member states (16
organizations), January 2009:
http://www.badil.org/en/documents/category/36-regional-bodies ;
and Arab Higher Monitoring Committee to the OECD, 27 Feb. 2010:
http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/1152638.html
 
[2] See for example:
http://original.antiwar.com/cook/2010/03/08/israels-oecd-bid-poses-problems-for-members/

[3] http://www.hsrc.ac.za/Document-3227.phtml

Link to this statement at:
http://www.badil.org/en/press-releases/135-2010/2100-a-vote-for-israels-accession-to-the-oecd-is-a-vote-in-support-of-israels-war-crimes-and-other-grave-violations-of-international-law-and-human-rights

 

 

 

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SHALOM FAYYAD: ARMED STRUGGLE OUT OF FAVOR

NOVANEWS

Palestinians headed to plant trees last month in the West Bank, part of a new, nonviolent approach to assert their land claims.

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/07/world/middleeast/07westbank.html?emc=eta1

Rina Castelnuovo for The New York Times

The Palestinian prime minister, Salam Fayyad, said he planted trees in the West Bank last month “to establish our presence on our land and keep our people on it.”

Something is stirring in the West Bank. With both diplomacy and armed struggle out of favor for having failed to end the Israeli occupation, the Fatah-dominated Palestinian Authority, joined by the business community, is trying to forge a third way: to rouse popular passions while avoiding violence. The idea, as Fatah struggles to revitalize its leadership, is to build a virtual state and body politic through acts of popular resistance.

“It is all about self-empowerment,” said Hasan Abu-Libdeh, the Palestinian economy minister, referring to a campaign to end the purchase of settlers’ goods and the employment of Palestinians by settlers and their industries. “We want ordinary people to feel like stockholders in the process of building a state.”

The new approach still remains small scale while American-led efforts to revive peace talks are stalled. But street interviews showed that people were aware and supportive of its potential to bring pressure on Israel but dubious about its ultimate effectiveness.

Billboards have sprung up as part of a campaign against buying settlers’ goods, featuring a pointed finger and the slogan “Your conscience, your choice.” The Palestinian Ministry of Communications has just banned the sale of Israeli cellphone cards because Israeli signals are relayed from towers inside settlements.

Prime Minister Salam Fayyad is spending more time out of his business suits and in neglected villages opening projects related to sewage, electricity and education and calling for “sumud,” or steadfastness.

“Steadfastness must be translated from a slogan to acts and facts on the ground,” he told a crowd late last month in a village called Izbet al-Tabib near the city of Qalqilya, an area where Israel’s separation barrier makes access to land extremely difficult for farmers. Before planting trees, Mr. Fayyad told about 1,000 people gathered to hear him, “This is our real project, to establish our presence on our land and keep our people on it.”

Nonviolence has never caught on here, and Israel’s military says the new approach is hardly nonviolent. But the current set of campaigns is trying to incorporate peaceful pressure in limited ways. Rajmohan Gandhi, grandson of the Indian independence leader Mahatma Gandhi, just visited Bilin, a Palestinian village with a weekly protest march. Next week, Martin Luther King III is scheduled to speak here at a conference on nonviolence.

On Palm Sunday, the Israeli police arrested 15 Palestinians in Bethlehem who were protesting the difficulty of getting to Jerusalem because of a security closing. Abbas Zaki, a senior official in the Palestine Liberation Organization, was arrested, prompting demonstrations the next day. Some Palestinians are also rejecting V.I.P. cards handed out by Israelis allowing them to pass quickly through checkpoints.

Palestinian political analysts say it is too early to assess the prospects of the nonviolent approach. Generally, they say, given the division between Hamas, the rulers of Gaza, and the Fatah-dominated Palestinian Authority here, nothing is likely to change without a political shakeup and unified leadership. Still, they say, popular resistance, combined with institution-building and international appeals, is gaining notice among Palestinians.

“Fatah is living through a crisis of vision,” said Mahdi Abdul Hadi, chairman of the Palestinian Academic Society for the Study of International Affairs in Jerusalem. “How can they combine being a liberation movement with being a governing party? This is one way. The idea is to awaken national pride and fulfill the people’s anxiety and passion. Of course, Hamas and armed resistance still remain a real option for many.”

Khalil Shikaki, who runs the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research in Ramallah, said: “The society is split. The public believes that Israel responds to suffering, not to nonviolent resistance. But there is also not much interest in violence now. Our surveys show support for armed resistance at 47 percent in March. In essence, the public feels trapped between failed diplomacy and failed armed struggle.”

Israeli military authorities have not decided how to react. They allow Mr. Fayyad some activity in the areas officially off limits to him, but on occasion they have torn down what he has built. They reject the term nonviolent for the recent demonstrations because the marches usually include stone-throwing and attempts to damage the separation barrier.

[Remember that the so-called barrier steals Palestinian land—lots of it.  Furthermore, stone-throwing usually occurs after IOF soldiers start shooting tear gas and using other ‘dispersal’ means. Dorothy]

Troops have responded with stun grenades, rubber bullets, tear gas and arrests. And the military has declared that Bilin will be a closed area every Friday for six months to halt the weekly marches there.

“We respect Salam Fayyad,” one military official said, speaking under the army’s rules of anonymity. “But we don’t want him to engage in incitement. Burning goods is incitement. Destroying the fence is incitement and is not nonviolent. [constructing the fence is incitement and is not nonviolent!!!] They are walking a thin line.”

One reason a violent uprising remains unlikely for now, Palestinian analysts say, is that in the two years that Mr. Fayyad’s security forces and ministries have been functioning, daily life inside West Bank cities and their surroundings has taken on much greater safety and normality.

The police and the courts are functioning again after the intifada of 2000 that led to many deaths on both sides. Traffic tickets are now routinely handed out. Personal checks, long shunned, are increasingly in use.

Of course, the presence of Israeli forces outside the cities and at checkpoints, the existence of the barrier and continued building inside Israeli settlements send most Palestinians into despair and make them doubt that a sovereign state can be built.

One effort to increase a sense of hope is a new push to ban goods made in the settlements, symbols of occupation. A $2 million project called the Karama National Empowerment Fund, jointly financed by Palestinian businesses and the government, aims to spread the message through ads and public events.

Mr. Abu-Libdeh, the economy minister, said a law was likely to go into effect soon barring the purchase of settlers’ goods, a trade worth at least $200 million a year. Efforts to end Palestinian employment in settlements will not carry penalties, he said, because the government does not offer unemployment insurance and it is unclear whether the 30,000 Palestinians who work in settlements could find new jobs.

Palestinian industrialists have financed the settlers’ goods ban partly because they hope to replace the goods with their own. They do not single out other Israeli goods, which are protected under trade agreements between Israel and the Palestinians.

Mr. Fayyad, the prime minister, a political independent, said his notion was to build the makings of a state by 2011.

“It’s about putting facts on the ground,” he said in an interview. “The occupation is not transitional so we need to make sure our people stick around. If we create services, it gives people a sense of possibility.

I feel we are on a path that is very appealing both domestically and internationally. The whole world knows this occupation has to end.”

 A version of this article appeared in print on April 7, 2010, on page A1 of the New York edition.

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: ZIO=NAZI SETTLERS DESTROY AL-KURD PROPERTY

NOVANEWS

From Pal Reports <palreports@gmail.com>

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Settlers Destroy Al-Kurd Property: Two Palestinians Arrested

7/4/2010

Sheikh Jarrah, Occupied East Jerusalem, 12AM – Right-wing Zio=Nazi settlers began to dismantle a fence the Al-Kurd family erected around their garden shortly after midnight Wednesday morning. Palestinians and internationals in the Al-Kurds protest tent, where the family has have lived in for four months, placed themselves between the fence and the settlers.

Police arrived soon after and arrested two young Palestinian men of Sheikh Jarrah. No Zio=Nazi settlers were taken into custody. Despite pleas by the Palestinians and internationals who witnessed the event, officers refused to look at the destroyed section of the fence.

The Al-Kurd family, assisted by residents across east Jerusalem, recently reclaimed their garden during a commemoration of Land Day. The reclamation included the seeding and transplanting of plants and erecting the fence that the settlers attempted to destroy this evening.

“The settlers actions in Sheikh Jarrah are a perfect example of the total power disparity between the Jewish and Palestinian populations of Israel and Palestine,” said Nina Mackay. “With the police behind them, the young settlers can make up any story in an attempt to incarcerate Palestinian residents of Sheikh Jarrah,” the Scottish ISM volunteer concluded.

Approximately 475 Palestinian residents living in the Karm Al-Ja’ouni neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah, located directly north of the Old City, face imminent eviction from their homes. All 28 families are refugees from 1948,, whose houses in Sheikh Jarrah were built and given to them through a joint project between the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) and the Jordanian government in 1956.

So far, Zio=Nazi settlers occupy four Palestinian families, displacing around 60 residents, including over 40 children. they have all been left without suitable housing but only some protest on the street continue to protest against the unlawful eviction from the sidewalk across the street from their homes, facing regular harassment from the Zio=Nazi settlers and racist police forces.

 Ryan Olander – Media Coordinator

International Solidarity Movement

054-883-8369

www.palsolidarity.org

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AIRPORT HUMILIATION

NOVANEWS

Ynet

Airport Humiliation 

El Al to compensate 2 Arab passengers

http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3872794,00.html

Two brothers from Galilee complain airline put them through series of humiliations while waiting to board flight to Israel. Judge rules behavior is ‘infringement of civil rights under mantle of sacred security cow,’ orders company to pay NIS 30,000 in damages

Ahiya Raved Published:  04.07.10, 18:18 / Zionist News 

The price of humiliation: El Al Airlines will pay NIS 30,000 (about $8,000) in damages to two brothers from the Galilee who claimed the company humiliated them while they were waiting to board a flight to Israel. 

The two said that after going through an unusually long security check, a female security office was instructed to follow them while they were waiting to board the flight. When one of the brothers lost his temper and confronted the guard, a supervisor approached him and demanded that the brother apologizes to the guard – or else he will not be allowed to board the plane. 

El Al claimed one of the brothers threatened to hit the security guard, but the claim was dismissed in court. A Haifa Magistrates’ Court justice ruled that the airline’s measures were not in line with what is allowed by law and called them “abusive and unnecessary.” 

In the beginning of February, a group of insurance agencies from Menora insurance company traveled to the United States. Two of the group members, brothers Abd al-Wahab shalabi and Abd al-Aziz Shalabi from the village of Iksal arrived at the New York airport four hours prior to the scheduled Israir flight to Israel.

During the security check, which was conducted by El Al personnel, the two were asked to leave their luggage and carry-on bags at the security counter and come back to retrieve them in two hours. When they returned to pick up their bags, they were asked to come back again in half an hour.

After 30 minutes the brothers returned the second time, and were told that a female security officer will escort them until boarding. After the flight was delayed, an argument errupted between Abd al-Wahab and the security guard. 

According to the lawsuit, after Wahab spoke on the phone and went to the restroom, the security guard “scolded” him for “roaming freely and not letting her keep an eye on him.” At this point, Wahab told her that “as long as she is not arresting him for any offence, she can ‘get lost’.”

‘Security constraints’

The lawsuit stated that at this stage the security officer’s supervisor approached Abd al-Wahab and demanded that he apologizes to the security guard, or else he will not be allowed to board the flight. Wahab, who broke down sobbing due to the series of humiliations, eventually apologized and was allowed on the plane.

El Al’s statement of defense said that the company’s actions were in line with security constraints. The company claimed that the security guard was told to escort the passengers in order to spare them from having to go through an additional security check at the boarding gate. 

The defense also stated that the supervisor demanded an apology after the plaintiff threatened to hit the security guard. The supervisor later denied telling the plaintiff he couldn’t board the flight if he didn’t apologize.

Justice Amir Toubi ruled that El Al’s conduct exceeded its authority and what was allowed by law. “There is no argument about the need for strict security measures, especially due to the increasing terror threats in recent years. However, the law has certain boundaries pertaining to security, which do not include surveillance, escort or restriction of the passenger’s freedom of movement in any way, without a substantial suspicion,” he said. 

“There is no justification for infringement of civil rights under the mantle of the sacred security cow,” Toubi added. 

Addressing the supervisor’s demand for an apology, the judge said it was the product of “arrogance and obtuseness.” He then instructed the airline to pay Abad al Wahab NIS 20,000 ($5,400) and Abd al-Aziz NIS 10,000 ($2,700) in damages, in addition to NIS 6,000 ($1,620) in expenses and fees.

El Al Airlines said in response that “Israeli aviation security is solely the responsibility of the State of Israel. El Al was asked by the State to conduct security checks abroad on behalf of Arkia and Israir airlines, and is acting under the security guidelines set by official elements of the State.

“El Al is not interested in providing security services, in general or for other airlines, and has requested the State to be relieved of providing this service.”

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BARRIERS AT BEN-GURION AIRPORT

NOVANEWS

Haaretz

Barriers at Ben-Gurion 

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/1161366.html

 By Haaretz Editorial 

 Three Jewish Israelis were deported from New York’s JFK Airport last weekend after telling border control agents they were considering visiting a friend seeking political asylum in the United States. Despite the Israelis’ protestations and the attempts by attorneys to post bail for their release, the three travelers were unceremoniously boarded on the first plane back to Tel Aviv.

Anti-Semitism, racism, xenophobia? No, just a fictional inversion of an incident revealed by Amira Hass in yesterday’s Haaretz. The actual event, which took place last Thursday, involved three American tourists (Christian pilgrims), all born in Ethiopia or Eritrea. All three were held for hours at Ben-Gurion International Airport after one of them told an Israeli official that they planned to visit an African refugee seeking asylum in Israel. Rather than review the case, the Interior Ministry’s Population and Immigration Authority summarily deported all three.

It seems immigration officials have had a busy Passover holiday, having expelled three Swedish citizens of Palestinian origin several days earlier who had arrived as part of an educational group. The group also included four Jewish Swedes who were allowed to remain. Such incidents are only becoming more commonplace.

The explanations offered by immigration officials for the incident are unconvincing. A more compelling reason is required to prevent someone bearing the appropriate documents from exercising his right to enter Israel, just as every Israeli expects other countries to grant him entry. Any security concerns that could prevent the entry of dangerous passengers are supposed to be aired before the traveler boards his plane for Israel, not after he lands;

[one would think so, but in Israel the visa in a passport is not the final word.  That is left for the Shabak, the Israeli über Ministry of Interior. Dorothy] this was not the case with the three Americans. If Israeli immigration authorities had even the slightest suspicion that the tourists were planning to join their friend in requesting refugee status, they should have proved as much with substantive evidence. Instead, they acted merely on assumptions, offering no justification for their decision to order a deportation – one based on information willingly and innocently proffered, not gleaned from a criminal or intelligence file.

 The authorities’ conduct was both unjust and injurious to Israel’s good name. David Ben-Gurion, who lent his name to the gateway by which most visitors enter the country, hoped to see Israel become “a light unto the nations,” not a red light with a towering barrier closed arbitrarily.

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SAY NO RACIST ATKINSON & MAKE RACIST BNP HISTORY IN BALSALL HEATH

NOVANEWS

Zio=Freemason  RACIST Dick Atkinson of Balsall Heath Company ‘Forum’ inviting prospective Parliamentary candidates and Councillors inmcluding the Racist BNP candidates to a public meeting on the 8th of April.

Please  get involve and call RACIST Atkinson say to him:  BNP Councillor should be thrown into the dustbin of history on 6th May.

Together we can STOP RACIST Atkinson and  make a difference.

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THE CHEAP ZIO=NAZI PROPAGANDA

NOVANEWS
I mean, is there a limit to the stupid and cheap propaganda ploys of the Zio=Nazi  entity? Who are they fooling? ” Zionist Tuesday began distributing millions of protection kits against biochemical warfare, Deputy Defence Minister Matan Vilnai announced, stressing the campaign was not linked to any imminent threat.
Would silly Western media cover a story in which an Arab country–any Arab country–announces measures against Zionist chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons?

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