Archive | October 5th, 2010



What Scares Fox and Other Neocons: War Brings Dire Consequences

By Bill Hare


Here is a lesson from the neocons at Fox and elsewhere.  If you cover up a war rather than covering it and refuse to show the direct results of conflict then you are a patriot.

Let us say that someone chooses to cover that same war and shows the bloodshed that resulted.  To do so is giving aid and comfort to the enemy.  In fact, such coverage should be immediately shut down.

This is precisely the scenario that occurred in the Iraq War.  This was Donald Rumsfeld’s “shock and awe” war that was supposed to inflict casualties only on the troops of dictator Saddam Hussein, the same figure that Rumsfeld visited, shook hands with, and provided weapons with which he killed his own Kurdish population.

Now the neocons of the New World Order decided that it was time to rid Iraq of former ally Saddam so that profits would not have to be shared and Halliburton, Bechtel and Monsanto would have unrestrained pickings.  In fact, the division of spoils was decided in advance through secret meetings in former Halliburton head man and then Vice President Dick Cheney’s office. 

Could the American people read the minutes of those meetings and decide for themselves what the captains of corporatocracy had to say?  The effort was made by Congressman Henry Waxman, but a Reagan appointee federal judge blocked the effort, siding with the Bush-Cheney government’s argument of the need for secrecy in the interest of “national security.”

When the first bombs rained down on Baghdad it became observable to those on the scene how spurious was the claim of Rumsfeld that the weaponry in effect had eyes and that the Iraqi citizenry would be spared while Saddam’s forces would be hit.  In fact, the carnage was devastating.

None other than Oliver North arrived to conduct interviews for Fox.  This was the same North who enhanced conflict with resulting deaths and injuries through his involvement in the Iran Contra arms for hostages tragedy and its impact on the bloody Iran-Iraq War.

Fox showed pictures of North high-fiving American soldiers.  There was no indication of death or bloodshed.  North spread the word that all was well and the “bad man” that the Republican administration and its Fox ally denounced, former neocon ally Saddam Hussein, along with his forces had been repelled.

Along came Al-Jazeera.  This international network located in Doha, Qatar dared to actually cover the war.  The picture that unfolded was of widespread death along with ambulances whisking badly bleeding civilians of all ages into overcrowded hospitals with badly overtaxed, highly pressured doctors and nurses seeking to administer to them.

Fox and the neocon New World Order had been trumped by truth and reality, a network willing to cover the war rather than deceitfully propagandize it.  What was the result?

Naturally the network dedicated to truth must give way in the interest of perpetuating deceit.  Fox must prevail and Al-Jazeera must leave.  Hence Al-Jazeera’s office was immediately shut down by the United States and it was prohibited from covering the conflict.

What was it like in the U.S. prior to the invasion?  MSNBC, the network that Bill O’Reilly and others on Fox fulminate and castigate against as a left wing propaganda organ, sacked Phil Donahue.  The official justification of bad ratings was unjustified since Donahue was drawing higher ratings at the time than Chris Matthews and other commentators on the network.

The real reason was what Donahue had dared to do, something not done on other networks.  He dared to interview knowledgeable Middle East hands, including General Norman Schwarzkopf, about the advisability of invading Iraq.  This was the one network where a host interviewed knowledgeable sources speaking out against invasion, and so he was terminated.

What frightens Fox and the neocons of the New World Order is that they are indeed like the Dutch boy of legend who ran out of fingers in seeking to plug holes in a dike in the midst of flooding water.  Citizens in the world community know about the corruption of the neocon empire and what it entails for the world’s people if not stopped.

While discussing the number of deaths from the Iraq War is verboten in America’s mainstream media the figures are mentioned elsewhere.  Just Foreign Policy is one U.S. Internet website that dares to release the figures of the prestigious British medical journal The Lancet.

The current figure stands at 1,366,350 deaths resulting from the Iraq War.  Explanations are provided for The Lancet’s calculations on the Just Foreign Policy site.

Empire as we know it will soon be dead.  It is being currently exposed and determined people throughout the world are determined to squelch it.  All that the powers that be can do is shriek “terrorism” at the top of their lungs in the midst of a dike that has broken and flooding that has commenced.        





McGeough shows how few MSM reporters tell the truth

05 Oct 2010

A masterful speech by Sydney Morning Herald journalist Paul McGeough at last weekend’s Festival of Dangerous Ideas in Sydney. He covers the non-existent Middle East “peace process”, Zionist paranoid and bullying, media coverage and the colonial project known as Israel. Such honesty is rare in the MSM. Savour it:

Since 1948, a constant in Israeli-Palestinian relations has been Israel’s coveting of Palestinian land – remember David Ben Gurion’s admonition to comrades that they not draw boundaries to their new state lest they deny themselves an opportunity to push eastward towards the Jordan River.

Take a helicopter-view of history and the bludgeon of reality emerges. It is this – it does not matter which party or coalition of parties is in power in Israel; whether the Israeli military, settlers or peace movement is ascendant; whether Democrats or Republicans are in the White House; whether Fatah rules in the Occupied Territories or has been routed by Hamas; it makes no difference whether there is a cold peace or a hot war; an intifada or a Oslo-induced new spring; it does not matter whether Areas A is the square root of Areas B and C; or whether the Arab world is spoiling for war or suing for peace. The outcome always is the same – while it goes through the motions of talking about returning the Occupied Territories, Israel takes more and more Palestinian land and the rest of the world pretty well looks the other way.

How can any Palestinian believe in a two-state solution when one of those potential states is shrunk, square metre by square metre? As Josh Ruebner, a Jew who heads the US Campaign to End the Occupation wrote in USA Today of the renewed talks: “Palestinians paradoxically will be expected to negotiate statehood with Israel while Israel – with the full support of the United States in the form of $US3 billion per year in military aid – continues to gobble up the territory designated for a Palestinian state.”

If Hamas is such a fundamentalist threat to Israel, the region and the world, then an imperative at any point in the last decade would have been an honorable deal with Fatah, a settlement that would allow Palestinians to see the successors of Yasser Arafat as leaders worthy of their respect and loyalty. As it is, these latest talks are set to fail, further diminishing Abbas and Fatah in the eyes or Palestinians and thereby creating new political and emotional space in which Hamas will say, “We told you so.”

Outsiders can see it all – Israelis have difficulty.


Ubud, Bali calling

05 Oct 2010


Bombing will continue as long as we continue bombing

05 Oct 2010

Glenn Greenwald:

Bombing Muslims more and more causes more and more Muslims to want to bomb the countries responsible.  That, of course, has long been the perverse “logic” driving the War on Terror.  The very idea that we’re going to reduce Terrorism by more intensively bombing more Muslim countries is one of the most patently absurd, self-contradicting premises that exists.


Another day of Jews abusing Arabs under their control

05 Oct 2010

At what point will Zionist humiliation of Palestinians actually register as integral to the state of Israel?

A grainy video of a male Israeli soldier bellydancing around a bound and blindfolded female prisoner which went viral overnight, yesterday provoked a furious response from the Palestinians.


Israel is slowly but surely building an army of extremist Jews

04 Oct 2010

There is growing evidence of the disastrous effects of Christian fundamentalism on the US army; “We are doing God’s work by bombing all Muslims”.

In Israel the problem is more severe, with an ever-increasing collection of settlers and Jewish extremists entering the ranks of the IDF:

Profound changes have been occurring in the officer ranks of the Israel Defense Force, and not everybody is happy about them; some, in fact, are downright alarmed. The figures tell the story: back in 1990, kippah-wearing soldiers from the country’s “national-religious” community—that is, religious Jews distinguished by their deep attachment to Zionism, Israeli nationalism, and, in many cases, the settlement enterprise—comprised a mere 2.5 percent of graduates from the army’s course for infantry officers. In 2007, the figure peaked at more than 31 percent, a number totally out of proportion with the number of religious-national soldiers serving in IDF infantry units. Similar changes are said to be happening in elite units and among senior staff.

Don’t believe anybody who says this isn’t a massive issue because far too many Jews in the army ideologically identify with the racist mentality of the settler movement.


No pressure to act on climate change

04 Oct 2010

This is quite a way to promote action on climate change (and probably not the best, most inclusive method):

Posted in Middle EastComments Off on A.LOEWENSTEIN ONLINE NEWSLETTER



October 5, 2010

by Eric L. Wattree  


The American Propaganda Machine

The American propaganda machine tells us that Muslims are a hostile people who hate American freedom. The most cursory examination of that claim reveals that the evidence the claim is based upon is highly flawed, yet the American people have been persuaded that it’s true. That suggests that the American people have learned nothing from our experience with the Nazi’s, and it also suggests that the biggest threat to America is the propaganda machine itself.

The primary argument against the claim that Muslims are inherently hostile toward America is the fact that we had absolutely no problem with Muslims at all until we, Western “Christians” and “Jews,” began our imperialistic excursion into the Middle East. Prior to that time Muslims were content to be left alone to practice their religion in their own lands.

So when we consider Muslim hostility towards America we must keep two things in mind. First, we need to consider all the hell we’re raising over the loss of 3000 citizens during 9/11. If we’ve been impacted to our core over the loss of 3000 of Americans, how do you think Muslims feel over the loss of hundreds of thousands of their people resulting from the unjust and illegal invasion of Iraq? And secondly, we must remember that while we’re quick to call Muslims aggressors, we’re invading their countries, they’re not invading ours.

Americans tend to believe that American lives are more valuable than the lives of other people. When Americans are killed we never stop talking about it. It, literally, goes down in the history books. But when we kill innocent women and children in other countries we simply say, “Oops, sorry ’bout that,” then expect the people to forget about it.

Look at what Obama said about Bush and Cheney’s war crimes – “We want to look forward, not back.” What the hell is he talking about? Bush killed close to a million people for nothing more than corporate greed. How can we expect to dismiss the killing of a million men, women, and children by simply saying, let’s let bygones be bygones? One can only wonder if Obama would have taken that position if his family had been among that million? Somehow, I doubt it.

It was that one remark that opened my eyes regarding our president. While I consider Obama the best that we’ve got, I also recognize that he’s far from an angel.  The remark served to remind me that Obama is also the product of a propaganda machine – his own. So while I continue to support Obama, I never allow myself to forget that even though he’s an impressive man, he’s also a politician, not the Messiah.

Americans need to recognize that life is not a football game. It’s not good enough to just pull for our side, regardless to whether we’re talking about the nation, political parties, or individual politicians.  We should always pull for justice, period – regardless to whose political ox it gores.  Because if we continue to allow the various propaganda machines to cloud our minds to the truth, none of us will be safe. It’s Muslims who are being demonized today, but tomorrow it may be Blacks, Hispanics, Jews, activists, the entire middle class, or whatever group is convenient to meet our rulers’ needs. And yes, I said rulers, because those who control our minds, control our destiny.

But the propaganda machine is an insidious device, because it tells us what we want to hear, and helps us hide what we don’t want to see, so it has the seductive properties of a drug. Take the issue of terrorism for example. Terrorism is defined as the killing of innocent noncombatants for political gain. Keeping that definition in mind, we must not forget that we are the ONLY country on Earth who has ever dropped an atomic bomb on not one, but two cities, killing and maiming hundreds of thousands of innocent men, women, and children. As horrible as 9/11 was, the horror of that atrocity makes 9/11 look insignificant.

But accepting the fact that we committed such a horrible atrocity is inconsistent with the image that we so passionately embrace of “that shining light on the hill,” our propaganda machine swung into action.  It helped us to justify that action by convincing us that we only did it to save the lives of thousands of American troops. But there’s a very serious flaw in that argument. By embracng that argument it affirms that we accept the fact that there are times when terrorism is justified. Thus, by our own definition the United States is, in fact, a terrorist state. So the fact is, the only difference between Muslim terrorists and American, or “Christian,” terrorists is that we have a much more efficient delivery system.

Now, before someone gets upset and start shouting that I’m un-American, please remember that truth and justice is the American way – and what I’ve just told you is both true and just. What I’ve said is not simply my opinion. Every word I’ve written is verifiable, and based on pure logic – and like mathematics, logic doesn’t lie.

Eric L. Wattree

Religious bigotry: It’s not that I hate everyone who doesn’t look, think, and act like me – it’s just that God does.





Chicago faith leaders issue statement in support of activists targeted by the FBI

Oct 05, 2010

Jennifer Bing


Chicago anti-war and international solidarity activists whose homes were raided by the FBI last month publicly declared their decision to resist government intimidation and harassment today in Chicago.  The Chicago activists decided to invoke their Fifth Amendment right not to testify in front of a Grand jury investigation.

This morning the peace and solidarity activists were surrounded by a diverse community of Chicagoans who stood outside the Federal Court building to send a clear message that FBI raids and grand jury subpoenas will not silence dissent and peace activism in the United States.  Stephanie Weiner, one of the subpoenaed activists, said to the press in Chicago, “We believe we have been targeted because of what we say and who we know. This sets a dangerous precedent and endangers the rights of every person. It goes beyond this corner and those subpoenaed.” 

Similar protests and rallies have been held in over 60 locations around the country since the late September raids on 14 activists, mainly located in the midwest. Yesterday a successful National Call-In Day was organized with thousands phoning to demand that U.S. President Obama and U.S. Attorney General Holder publicly call off the Grand Jury investigation.

People of faith and conscience were among those standing in the early Fall crisp Chicago weather, holding signs that read “FBI Raids and Grand Juries Chill the Faithful Call to Peacemaking.”  A statement prepared by Chicago’s progressive interfaith community condemned the raids as a violation of the constitutional rights of the people and organizations raided and as a dangerous step to further criminalize dissent.  Several of the 18 groups who initiated the faith statement have first-hand experiences in conflict areas including the Middle East, Colombia, Afghanistan and Iraq.

“The FBI raids chisel away and bypass fundamental constitutional rights by hauling activists before grand juries under the guise of national security. An overly broad definition of “material support for terrorism” in the June 2010 US Supreme Court ruling concerns us as people of faith who continue to be actively engaged in humanitarian work and peacemaking.”

The statement continues: “The real illegitimate activities are U.S. foreign policies that support war and occupation. We believe that peacemaking is a sacred commandment. We feel compelled to work to end military solutions that kill and maim innocent people, destroy civil society institutions, create massive poverty and dislocation of people from their homelands, militarize our own nation and continue to create more animosity against the United States, thus undermining our security.”

People who would like to view the Chicago Faith community full statement, can read and sign the petition

To follow or support the ongoing organizing work around these FBI raids, visit

Chicago group brings campaign to end US aid to Israel to transit riders

Oct 05, 2010

Adam Horowitz


EndAid Poster square

Beginning yesterday, the Committee for a Just Peace in Israel and Palestine has posted signs like the one above in Chicago Transit Authority “el cars” for the next month. The campaign website explains:

The “Be on Our Side” media and education project promotes a positive, productive U.S. policy toward the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The goals of the campaign are:

* to encourage U.S. policies that promote peace, equality, and security for Israelis and Palestinians
* to inform Americans about the scale and consequences of U.S. military aid to Israel
* to promote awareness of the importance of ending U.S. military aid to Israel

The website has a ton of information, as well as ways to get involved including bringing the ads to your town. Learn more here.

The latest entries for the Israel Project photo contest

Oct 05, 2010

Adam Horowitz


We’re helping to collect photos for the Israel Project’s ‘Best Shots of Israel’ contest. Here are some more entries:


David Ehren sent the above photo to the Israel Project with the note, “I took this in Hebron last year. The flag, security camera, and machine gun nest, together with the national slogan, all sitting on Palestinian property, really captures the essence of Israel and could double as a tourist postcard. When can I claim my prize?”


Keren Carmeli also sent in some photos from Hebron that were taken in June earlier this year.

The first photo here on the right shows an Israeli checkpoint near the Old City of Hebron.


And the second photo shows shuttered Palestinian stores in Hebron’s once thriving Old City that have now been forced to shut down due to the Israeli settler and military presence in the city.

Matthew Taylor sent this photo below:


Along with an email saying:

Palestinians in Bil’in protest against Israel’s confiscation of their farmland to expand the illegal settlement Matityahu East and build the illegal wall. Shortly after this picture was taken in June of 2005, Israeli soldiers opened fire with tear gas and rubber-coated steel bullets, severely injuring several Palestinian children. Since then, the Israeli Supreme Court has ruled that the wall must be rerouted, but the Israeli military has refused to obey the order. This is very typical of life in the Israeli-occupied West Bank.

I hope I win the prize. If so, I will donate to the village of Bil’in. Thank you so much for this glorious opportunity to contribute to making Israel a better place.

Thanks for these latest entries – keep’em coming!

Gideon Levy in NYC: Israel is ‘the only occupier in history that’s completely convinced of its own present ongoing victimhood’

Oct 05, 2010

Ahmed Moor


I was fortunate enough to see Gideon Levy speak on Tuesday at the School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University. The discussion was organized to promote his new book, The Punishment of Gaza, which covers Israel’s policy and actions there from 2005 to 2009. While Levy told a number of tortured anecdotes about encounters with Palestinians, the talk was mostly about Israelis which I appreciated. I think Levy understood that many of us in the audience were aware of the situation in Gaza and Palestine more generally.

It was easy to recognize Levy before he entered the room. Like many in attendance, I’ve seen his picture in Ha’aretz countless times. He was dressed entirely in black which made me think of Eastern European intellectuals (I’m not sure why).

Mahmood Mamdani introduced Levy with a generous tribute before the acclaimed journalist took the podium. He began by speaking with some apologetic humor about his early career and onetime role as aide to Shimon Peres decades ago. A native-born Israeli, he described the myths and Zionist inculcation of his youth which included the standard hasbara that many of us are familiar with (the Palestinians fled, etc…).

Things began to change for him when he first ventured into the West Bank some thirty years ago – that’s when he began to humanize the Palestinians in spite of his society’s insistence on the Zionist narrative.

Levy talked about Israel’s rightward lurch over the decades. He recounted an experience around one of his published stories to clarify what he meant. Early on in his career, Levy wrote about the death of a newborn Palestinian after the infant’s mother was forced to trek around three checkpoints on foot to reach a hospital. The Israeli left was outraged and the case resulted in a scandal for the army. At the time, the story demonstrated a moral dimension to Israeli political life. Similarly, he pointed out that many thousand Israelis protested in the streets after it emerged that their army was responsible for the Sabra and Shatila massacres.

By contrast, he said, if that happened today, no one in Israel would register the fact. Just the opposite: Levy recalled the horrifying experience of watching Israelis and their children cheer the phosphorous and sulfur deaths of Gazans in 2008/2009 on a hilltop overlooking the Strip. This story and others like it underscored his deep pessimism throughout the talk.

The author poignantly reminded the audience that Israel has existed for forty-two years as an occupier and existed for only nineteen years before that. His point was that Israel is the occupation and the occupation is Israel and the two are impossible to separate.

Levy made wry jokes about his own unpopularity and the shallow penetration of his work in Israel. He’s been publically harassed on some occasions. And no one would attend a lecture by him in Israel, he said, so it was nice to see that there was an international audience at least. Despite that, Levy insisted that there has never been any official censorship of his work by either the state or Ha’aretz, although the fact that he was barred from visiting Gaza restricted him professionally. He expressed concern that even Jewish democracy (Levy made a point of explaining that he was only free to work as he did because he was Jewish) was under threat.

As I understood it, Levy’s take on the Israelis is that they’re completely tone deaf and insular without much hope of awakening to the misery they’ve wrought. He characterized them as the only occupier in history that’s completely convinced of its own present ongoing victimhood. How does one awaken those people to the absurdity of their self-righteousness? Levy didn’t pretend to know. He talked about his ongoing journey in search of answers.

The questions segment was probably the most illuminating portion of the talk. Members of the audience asked penetrating questions and Levy answered all of them directly.

One young man asked what Levy made of the Eden Abergil scandal. Perhaps I’m wrong, but I think Levy scoffed when he heard the name. He explained that Israelis are quick to insist on their unassailable moral standards. To do that, they capitalize on laughably symbolic instances and protest loudly and publically at the violations perpetrated by weak targets. Eden Abergil was one such instance.

Levy reminded us of the fanfare that surrounded the indictment of a soldier who stole a Palestinian credit card during Operation Cast Lead. Likewise, a senior officer was relieved of duty for allowing his son to ride an ATV, but not for bombing Palestinian homes in Jenin. All of this is part of the mythology surrounding the “Most Moral Army in the World.”

A woman to my left asked Levy whether he was a Zionist. He started to respond by saying that the meaning of Zionism is ambiguous. But then he said that if it meant occupation then he was not a Zionist and even an anti-Zionist. I don’t think he was interested in parsing words, instead preferring to categorically reject racism and apartheid whatever they might be called.

I also got to ask a question. I wanted to know what Levy’s view of the Jewish right of return was in light of his being a native-born Israeli. His response was that he supported the right of Jewish people to move to Israel while at the same time affirming the Palestinian right of return. It wasn’t my favorite answer in the world, but I understand his sentiment.

One thing that struck me as strange was the total lack of opposition voices in the audience. There were Israelis sitting to my right, but they seemed supportive. When I was an undergraduate at a similar campus, an event like the Levy talk would have seen walk-outs, signs, aggressive questions and perhaps even a jeer or two. I won’t draw any conclusions from a single discussion in New York, but I’m hoping the experience was a portentous one.

Mahmood Mamdani closed the talk with a short note. He said that as an African, Israel evoked both Zimbabwe and South Africa. Zimbabwe represents what happens when the colonial race chooses to make a difficult transition to democracy, while South Africa represents just the opposite. But either way, the transition will be made. I was impressed by the comparison.

I left Levy’s talk feeling a little depressed. Here was an Israeli telling me that Israelis are more numb, isolated, and self-righteous than I could have imagined. Furthermore, they are utterly incapable of seeing the Palestinians as fellow humans after forty plus years of suffocating themselves in victimhood and race-supremacy. Levy is a model humanist, and his society has ostracized him.

But then it occurred to me that Levy’s story was a hopeful one. He was a typical Israeli – a product of a Zionist society – and he managed to push through and beyond it. While Levy is undoubtedly an extraordinary man, his journey is replicable and accessible to anyone willing to make it. This is someone who once worked as an aide to Shimon Peres, and one day ventured into the West Bank without a gun. That’s what did it. That’s what made the difference.

What does effective solidarity with Palestinians look like in the US?

Oct 05, 2010

Jo Ehrlich


OneNationFlyerOctober 2nd couldn’t have been a more beautiful day for a rally. I had gotten on a bus at 11pm the night before to travel to Washington D.C. for the One Nation Working Together rally. Over 400 organizations endorsed the rally’s platform of Jobs, Justice and Education. By the end of the day rally organizers reported that over 175,000 people attended, perhaps that is overstating it a bit, though there were quite a lot of people gathered. The argument over how it stacked up to Glenn Beck’s rally for a homogeneous America back in August will be something that we’ll have to leave to the political pundits.

The main body of the march and the main organizers were members of unions and the NAACP. Jobs were definitely the focus. It was all very posh up towards the front with huge speakers and screens and areas cordoned off for particular group affiliations. I did a loop to take it all in and then ended up over at the corner of Constitution and 14th where a (much smaller) number of anti-war and justice organizations were doing a pre-rally, rally.

For the most part I was heartened by the thoughtful posters I saw and the speakers I heard.

It was particularly important that a number of groups had posters that made explicit the contradiction between the billions in US aid to Israel and our failing economic system here in America. Occupation, whether in Iraq or Palestine, was also on the minds and signs of many.

Michael McPhearson from Veterans for Peace, during the pre-rally, made what I thought was the most important comment of the day. He said, and I paraphrase: For the first time this progressive rally is not explicitly anti-war/anti-imperialist. We aren’t the main organizers of this rally. So, it’s up to us, when we join them to make the connections. We have to reach out to them.

Which is why as we joined the main rally it was so disheartening to suddenly be surrounded by mostly young, mostly white, anti-war activists chanting “Intifada, Intifada. Long live the Intifada!” Which is in no way to suggest that I don’t whole-heartedly support Palestinian’s continued resistance by whatever means they choose to fight the occupation. Unequivocally, I do.

And it is not to suggest that marchers were uninformed. Most chants were witty and relevant and most of the signs carried showed a well thought out analysis. Chants that made me cringe were in the minority. But I’m going to be a bit critical here. Because I think Michael McPhearson is dead right. We have to make the connections, we have to reach out, we have to educate. We can’t afford to drive people who should be our allies away.

And more importantly, I have to ask: how do these words and actions compare to the words and actions of our Palestinian brothers and sisters to whom we should always look for guidance in any solidarity activity?

During the time I lived in the West Bank I was struck, as are many people I’ve spoken with, at how extraordinarily intentional most of the Palestinians I spoke with were when discussing the occupation. Their self stated goal was to educate me so I could return home and educate my fellow Americans. From a Palestinian acquaintance who helped me organize my stay: I don’t want to tell you too many of my own ideas, you’ll go, you’ll see for yourself. To people I met on the street who would patiently, with facts, lay out their analysis of the occupation.

Now “Long live the Intifada” might be a powerful statement in certain contexts. But when you’re chanting in the context of this rally, is that really the best way to start making connections between the place of US billions in the occupation of Palestine for people who might have prime time news misunderstanding of what the Intifada represents? Are you reaching out to educate about the occupation? Or are you venting your own frustration and anger?

When you chant: “from the river to the sea, Palestine must be free” what are you trying to impart? Are you advocating for a one state solution? The right of return? Or do you want to send all non-Arab Israelis “back to Europe” which is how it could easily be misconstrued. Statements like that are totally decontextualized and most people at the main rally were probably not at all familiar the occupation of Palestine, let alone with the nuances of proposals to end the occupation.

So let’s think about why we march and remember that we have a responsibility to educate. The facts are on our side. Don’t give anyone an excuse to ignore Palestine.

Abergil redux: YouTube video shows IDF soldier dancing beside bound Palestinian woman

Oct 05, 2010


And more news from Today in Palestine:

Land/Property/Resource Theft and Destruction/Ethnic Cleansing
Israeli forces demolish 4 Bedouin homes
JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — Israeli forces demolished four houses belonging to Bedouin families in southern Israel on Monday, locals said.  Forces demolished the homes of Atef Al-Athamen, who plans to marry soon, and Nayed Abu Ghuneima, a father of six, as well as two others in Khashim Zena village in the Negev region, local residents said.

Israeli committees discuss structural plan to judaize the Buraq wall
The Israeli Local Committee for Planning and Building in Jerusalem will discuss on Monday a comprehensive structural plan to further judaize the Buraq (Wailing) Wall in Jerusalem in the coming years.

New Colonial Oupost
A new Israeli colonial outpost appeared near the colonies of Nokdim, Tekoa and El-David in the past few weeks. The new outpost consists of several caravans and semi-permanent structures in a valley to the east of the El-David colonial settlement. It sits on land belonging to people from Jib Atheib, Zaatara, and Dawahra. We toured the site October 1, 2010 with Hassan Breijiya and Mubarak Zawahra and two international observers from EAPPI. This video summarizes the situation in the area.

Israeli court welcomes pre-1948 land claims, from Jewish Israelis only, Jesse Bacon
It has been pointed out repeatedly, but now it’s official, the Israeli Supreme Court will accept your pre-1948 claim, if you are Jewish that is. In one of those cases that is a testament to presumably intelligent people’s ability to ignore the larger implications of their actions, the court has been ruling that Jews who left East Jerusalem during the founding of the state of Israel/ Palestinian Nakba/ Catastrophe have a right of return. I hope there are Palestinian refugees filing similar court cases, as many more of them were dispossessed during that time. I would love to hear an Israeli court explain why the Jewish Israelis claims are more valid.

Activism/Solidarity/Boycott, Sanctions & Divestment
Four men arrested in a night raid in Ni’lin
Tonight, around 2 am, the Israeli army entered the West Bank village of Ni`lin and arrested four Palestinian men: Muhammed Ahmed Younis Amireh, Othman Risiqe Rasheed Amireh, Tarik Hassan Tawfeeq Mesleh and Asad Muhammed Abdulfattah Nafi.  Israeli soldiers on foot arrived from the gate in the illegal apartheid wall and from the fields around Ni’lin. As they do very often, they surrounded the village and snipers from different positions made sure that nobody could leave their houses.

Action Alert: We stand with Abdallah Abu Rahmah
Seized in the night. Tortured. Held without trial, then tried in a military court where you have no rights; convicted on the coerced confessions of minors, you are facing a sentence of years in prison. All for organizing peaceful protests against the theft of your land and asserting your democratic rights.  Most of us who believe in human rights and democracy can never imagine being treated in such a way. Yet that is exactly what befell Abdallah Abu Rahmah, a democracy advocate from Bil’in in the Occupied West Bank. His town is known around the world for the determination of its residents – joined by Israelis and internationals in solidarity – to protest weekly against the theft of their land by Israeli authorities.

U.K., Spain to boycott OECD tourism conference because it’s in Jerusalem
Palestinians insist to boycott the conference which this year is meant to deal with sustainable tourism.

Hundreds of activists from Muslim countries planning new Gaza-bound flotilla
The Turkish charity IHH, which sponsored a Gaza-bound flotilla that Israeli commandos boarded in a deadly raid last spring, say some 500 activists from Pakistan, Iran, Syria and Turkey aim to break blockade by December 27.

Asian activists to try to break Gaza siege
Turkish charity IHH says 500 activists from a dozen countries to take part in new convoy that will set off from India by land, hoping to reach Strip by Dec. 27.,7340,L-3964044,00.html

Gaza-bound convoy from Jordan lands in Syria
A humanitarian aid convoy from Jordan landed noon Monday in Syria and is scheduled to join the European Lifeline 5 convoy before heading out to the Gaza Strip.

Poet Zach: Israel apartheid state
Leading Israeli poet says he wishes to join Gaza flotilla; ‘if I were better swimmer, I would swim to Gaza,’ he says.,7340,L-3964398,00.html

Are you so afraid of offending Jewish members that you can’t take a stand?’, Rich Siegel
Last week Rich Siegel, a New Jersey musician, resigned from his union local, the Associated Musicians of Greater New York, in part over its failure to publish letters critical of the Israeli occupation in its members’ magazine, Allegro. He lately learned that Allegro wouldn’t print his resignation letter. So Siegel wrote to the president of the local Tino Gagliardi, and the two vice presidents, John O’Connor and Jay Blumenthal.

TIAA-CREF: Divest from Injustice
Occupied Palestine, October 4th 2010 – The Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions National Committee (BNC), on behalf of its constituent organizations and unions representing the majority of Palestinian civil society, calls upon the US non-profit pension fund TIAA-CREF to live up to its motto of providing “Financial Services for the Greater Good” by divesting its funds from companies that profit from Israel’s occupation of Palestinian territories and violation of Palestinian rights. As in the struggle to end South African apartheid, divestment from wrongdoing companies is not just a moral obligation; it is a time-honored, particularly effective, non-violent form of pressure that can significantly contribute to ending Israel’s occupation, racial discrimination and denial of refugee rights.

Halper: American Jews (and the Congress) don’t want an Israel at peace, Philip Weiss
For anyone who tries to imagine a life of meaning amid inhumane circumstances, Jeff Halper is a hero. The Minnesota-born founder of the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions, Halper has for decades now dedicated himself to Palestinian human rights, resisting the occupation by helping Palestinians try to defy Israeli power. Above, he drinks tea in a Palestinian friend’s house that has been destroyed by settlers five times– and that he has five times helped rebuild.

Dundee City Council flies the flag for Palestinians
Campaigners are celebrating the decision to fly the Palestinian flag from one of the most prominent council buildings in the heart of Dundee.

#BDS: ‘Boycott Israel’ protest shuts down Israeli cosmetics stall in Brisbane
Brisbane anti apartheid activists closed down the Seacret Cosmetic stall in Garden City in suburban Brisbane as part of the global BDS movement to Boycott Israeli goods.

Irish Americans must act on Siege of Gaza, Fiachra Ó Luain
It is now four months since the deadly attack on our humanitarian aid flotilla in international waters. As Second Mate on the U.S. Challenger 1 vessel, it still disappoints me that Israel could not find another way of dealing with this peace protest in a manner that could have had a positive outcome for everybody. The flotilla was an opportunity for all parties to take new and imaginative approaches to dilemmas that affect us all as human beings. There are many humanitarian crises in the world, but Gaza is at the crux of everything that is out of balance in the HolyLands and the wider Middle East.

Early front runners for the Israel Project’s ‘Best Shots of Israel’ contest,Adam Horowitz
We’ve received a bunch of entries for the Israel Project’s “Best Shots of Israel” contest. Here are some of our favorites – please keep sending then in!

Artists Against Apartheid XIV
BDS Quebec concert co-presented by AfroLatin Soul, feat Detroit MC Invincible. Saturday, October 23rd, 2010 doors 20h30. $8-10 Le Consulat, 1442 Bleury 2nd floor métro Place-des-Arts Montreal, Quebec Marking Montreal’s first international Palestine solidarity conference supporting the global boycott, divestment and sanctions movement against Israeli apartheid, the fourteenth edition of Artists Against Apartheid will feature celebrated Detroit MC Invincible.

The Siege (Gaza & West Bank)/Humanitarian/Restriction of Movement
Industrial Fuel – Needs Vs. Supply – Sep 5 – Oct 2

Human Rights/Racism

YouTube clip shows IDF soldier belly-dancing beside bound Palestinian woman
A number of IDF soldiers have over the last year faced investigation and penalty for documenting themselves performing questionable acts in front of Palestinian prisoners or while on patrol.

EU consults civil society in Gaza
GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — EU officials met with civil society organizations in Gaza on Monday to discuss the body’s European Neighbourhood Policy.  An EU statement said civil society groups were “integral contributors” to EU projects, and were invited to present their thoughts on planned joint initiatives by the EU and Palestinian Authority.


Israeli military incursion amid gunfire east of Bureij camp
A number of Israeli military armored vehicles advanced Monday morning amid sporadic gunfire into the east of Al-Bureij camp, central Gaza Strip, and bulldozed agricultural lands.

Wounded Man Kidnapped By Israeli Troops
A Palestinian man was shot and wounded, on Tuesday at dawn, after Israeli soldiers opened fire at him at a military roadblock near the northern West Bank city of Qalqilia.

Israeli fire injures fourth Gaza worker in week
GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — A man identified by medics as a laborer was shot by Israeli fores in the northern Gaza Strip on Tuesday afternoon, as he was collecting stone aggregates for a construction company.  Medical services coordinator in Gaza Adham Abu Silmiyyeh said a 27-year-old man sustained a gunshot wound in the left leg and was transferred by ambulance to the Kamal Udwan Hospital in Jabaliya.


Settlers demonstrate against Nablus village mosque
NABLUS (Ma’an) — Hundreds of settlers demonstrated on Monday evening demanding the demolition of a Nablus village mosque, locals said.  Villagers said Israeli soldiers stood between the settlers and residents to prevent clashes near the mosque in Burin village, south of Nablus.

Reactions to Mosque Arson

PA says Jerusalem shooting ‘too familiar’
RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — The Palestinian Authority condemned Monday the “cold blooded killing” of a Palestinian worker in East Jerusalem.  Israeli border guards fatally shot Izzedine Kawazbeh, from Hebron, as he attempted to enter the occupied city for work on Sunday morning.  In a statement issued by the government media center, the PA said that the shooting of the 38-year-old on Palestinian land was “a travesty that has become too familiar, expected, and accepted within Israel and the international community.”

PLO mission demands action over mosque arson
WASHINGTON (Ma’an) — The PLO mission in Washington condemned Monday’s arson attack on a mosque in the Bethlehem district.  Locals said settlers were responsible for setting fire to Al-Anbiya Mosque in Beit Fajjar, which destroyed prayer rugs and copies of the Quran.  In a statement, the PLO mission condemned the assault, adding that “Revenge” and “Mosques, we burn” had been written in Hebrew on the walls.

UN envoy ‘shocked’ by latest mosque arson
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — The UN Special Coordinator’s Office for the Middle East Peace Process expressed shock Monday following an apparent act of arson carried out by Israeli settlers against a Bethlehem-area mosque.  “This attack is shocking and completely unacceptable. Robert Serry, the UN secretary-general’s envoy here, is extremely concerned with this act of desecration. It follows a number of attacks upon mosques as well as ongoing attacks on Palestinian civilians and property,” UN Serry’s Richard Miron told Ma’an.

Ihsanoglu: Mosque burning near Bethlehem a violation of int’l law
Prof. Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu condemned attacks by extremist Jews on a mosque in the south Bethlehem village of Beit Fajjar as an outrageous violation of the Geneva Convention and international law.


Report: Israel steps up violations against juvenile detainees
The prisoners studies center in Palestine calls for the release of all minors in Israeli custody, adding that Israeli occupation authorities must be forced to stop minor detentions.

Soldiers Break Into Nafha Prison
Israeli soldiers broke on Monday evening into the Nafha Prison and searched the rooms of the detainees causing damage. The attack led to tension in the prison camp especially after the soldiers forced the detainees out of their rooms.

PCHR Condemns Continued Detention of Islamic Jihad Leader in Violation of Law
The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) condemns the continued illegal detention of Khader ‘Adnan Mousa, 32, a leader of Islamic Jihad, from ‘Arraba village southwest of Jenin, by the General Intelligence Service (GIS). PCHR is concerned over Mousa’s health condition, who had been in a hunger strike since the beginning of his detention on 29 September 2010. PCHR further reiterates its call for the Palestinian National Authority (PNA) and its security services to stop arbitrary detentions, and to release all political detainees as a step towards putting an end to the issue of political detentions.

Palestinian MP Ahmad Sa’adat passes 500 days in solitary confinement
Uruknet October 4, 2010 – The International Campaign for the Release of Kidnapped Palestinian Legislators today issued a press statement concerning the continued detention of the Palestinian leader and legislator Ahmad Sa’adat by Israel.

Israel’s Arab Helpers

Two Jordanians tortured in Egyptian jails for assisting Gaza
Relatives of two Jordanian men in Egyptian detention appealed to the Jordanian Foreign Ministry to take immediate action for their release, saying they suffer from tough conditions.

PA military court jails man and his wife for sheltering resistance fighters
The Palestinian Authority’s military court in Ramallah city on Monday sentenced prisoner Abdelfattah Shreim from Qalqiliya to 12 years in prison and his wife Mervat Sabri to one year.

Hamas: PA arrested 13 affiliates
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Hamas accused Palestinian Authority forces of arresting 13 Hamas affiliates in the West Bank on Tuesday.  The movement said in a statement that the forces arrested 13 from Ramallah, Qalqiliya, Hebron, Nablus and Tulkarem.  The accusation, which could not be confirmed independently by Ma’an, comes amid reconciliation talks between the rival parties.

Hamas MP denounces security militias for storming his home
Hamas MP Mohammed Al-Tal denounced the security militias, loyal to de facto Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas, for storming his home earlier on Monday and kidnapping his brother Rami.

PA security militias kidnap Quds Press reporter in Tulkarem
The Palestinian Authority’s preventive security forces in Tulkarem city kidnapped on Sunday evening Quds Press reporter Salim Tayeh from his home without giving reasons.

Nablus resident arrested for ‘blasphemy’
NABLUS (Ma’an) — Palestinian Authority police arrested a Nablus resident Monday for “blasphemy,” a police report said.  Police said they stopped a car for reckless driving, and the driver was arrested when he shouted at officers and “cursed God.”  The detainee was not identified.

ATFP Defends Its Relationship With Zionist Groups And The PNA In the Huffington Post
The American Task Force On Palestine policy statement first released on its website, and brought to our attention through a tweet on  Hussein Ibish’s blog was published in the Huffington Post a couple of days later with a short introduction by Ziad Asali.  It’s unlikely that Asali, with his poor written, verbal, and interpersonal communications skills, wrote the policy statement.  It’s more likely to be the work of Ibish, who was hired for the abilities which Asali, and the handful of others at the ATFP nobody has heard of, or from, lack, and he can provide.  Adopting a defensive posture and tone, the ATFP attempts to fend off criticism of its relationships with a variety of racist, Zionist organizations and its role as a Washington public relations firm for the Israeli-sponsored, Western-funded, and American-supervised Palestinian National Authority (PNA).

Political Developments

Zahhar: “Hamas Doesn’t Want War With Fateh”
Dr. Mahmoud Zahhar, member of the political bureau of the Hamas movement, stated that Hamas does not want a civil war with Fateh movement, and that the movement wants national reconciliation based on the interests of the Palestinian people.

PA Cabinet urges peaceful resistance
RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Senior Palestinian Authority ministers on Monday urged Palestinians to focus on peaceful resistance against Israel’s occupation.  During its weekly meeting in Ramallah, the PA Cabinet reiterated that it held Israel’s government responsible for obstructing peace talks by refusing to extend restrictions on settlement building on Palestinian land.

PLC member: U.S. guarantees a blatant bribe for Israel
PLC member Mohammed Abu Juheisha said that guarantees made by George Mitchell hoping to freeze settlements for two additional months are “no more than a blatant bribe for Israel”.

Deadline extended in bid to keep Israel-Palestinian talks alive (The Christian Science Monitor)
The Christian Science Monitor – Sputtering Israeli-Palestinian peace talks received another reprieve over the weekend when a key Arab League meeting was postponed until Friday. It was the second delay for the meeting, which Palestinians said could mark their withdrawal from negotiations if Israeli settlement expansion continued.*

‘Abbas: Will Only Talk with Americans Until Freeze Reinstated
Speaking in Amman following talks with Jordanian King Abdallah II, Palestinian Authority head Mahmoud ‘Abbas reiterated that he will not return to talks with Israel until a freeze on building in areas acquired in the 1967 war is reinstated. ‘Abbas has looked to the Arab League for direction regarding Palestinian participation in the direct talks, and will now wait for word from the League’s meeting in Libya scheduled for Friday.  The umbrella group, the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) has already urged ‘Abbas to leave the talks over the issue of building on post-1967 land. Obama Mideast envoy George Mitchell tried to put a positive spin on developments during a visit to Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak in Cairo.

Palestinian Public Opinion Poll No (37)
After Israeli Return to Settlement Construction: Two Thirds of the Palestinians in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip Want the Palestinian Side to Pull Out of the Direct Talks.  These are the results of the latest poll conducted by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research (PSR) in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip between 30 September and 2 October 2010. The poll was conducted directly after the end of the Israeli moratorium on settlement construction and during Palestinian debate on the future of direct talks. Few weeks before the conduct of the poll, Hamas carried out an armed attack near Hebron leading to the death of four Israeli settlers. This release covers issues related to the direct talks, the withdrawal of government cars from senior civil servants, current conditions in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, elections, future of reconciliation, Hamas’s attack on settlers, and others. Total size of the sample is 1270 adults interviewed face to face in 127 randomly selected locations. Margin of error is 3%. While press release covers public response to the resumption of settlement construction as well as domestic Palestinian issues, other issues related to the peace process and Israeli-Palestinian relations will be covered in a separate joint Palestinian-Israeli press release and later in our detailed report on the poll. For further details, contact PSR director, Dr. Khalil Shikaki, or Walid Ladadweh at tel 02-296 4933 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting              02-296 4933      end_of_the_skype_highlighting or email

U.S. Scrambles to Save Peace Talks, Jim Lobe
WASHINGTON, Oct 4, 2010 (IPS) – With a key Arab League meeting delayed until Friday, the administration of U.S. President Barack Obama is scrambling to keep one-month-old direct Israeli- Palestinian peace talks alive.

Carter recovers, slams settlement building
Former US president back to life as normal after hospitalization, calls on Israel to ‘give up its ambition to occupy and control Palestine’.,7340,L-3963999,00.html

Israeli settlements undermine peace process: Saudi (AFP)
AFP – The Saudi government said on Monday that Israel’s policy of building settlements in occupied Palestinian territories undermined the US-brokered Middle East peace process.*

Other News

Study Shows Israelis and Palestinians Both Retaliate
Haushofer worked with Nancy Kanwisher of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Anat Biletzki of Quinnipiac University in Connecticut, who is a member of BT’selem, an Israeli human rights organization that collected Israeli military data used in the study. “The previous evidence suggested that Israeli attacks were often responses to Palestinian aggression, whereas this did not appear to be true for Palestinian attacks,” Biletzki said in a statement.  “This implied that the conflict was one-sided, with Palestinians attacking Israel, and the Israeli army merely responding to this aggression. Our findings suggest that the situation is more balanced than that.”

Zionist Parallel Universe:  MKs, rabbis rally against planned closure of West Bank synagogue
Some 200 rightists say government’s decision to seal shul in El Matan but not mosque in nearby Palestinian village ‘discriminatory.’ MK Eldad: Selective enforcement of laws against Jews while ignoring Arab violations’.,7340,L-3964072,00.html

Israel rabbi: Spies can sleep with the enemy
OCCUPIED JERUSALEM: Jewish law allows women to sleep with the enemy in order to get intelligence vital to Israel’s security, a rabbi was quoted as saying in a local newspaper Monday. Yediot Aharonot quoted an academic article by Ari Shvat, an expert in Jewish law, in which he said it was acceptable to have sex with “terrorists” in order to obtain information.


West Bank Oktoberfest raises a glass to Palestinian culture
A brewing company sponsors the party to have a good time and raise awareness about Palestinian Christians.,0,5488354.story

Analysis/Opinion/Human Interest
For Palestinians in Israel, “transfer” threat nothing new
Nora Barrows-Friedman reports on the response of Palestinian citizens of Israel to the Israeli Foreign Minister’s plan proposed to the United Nations to strip Palestinians of their Israeli citizenship.

Border Control /Woe betide us, Palestinian contiguity!,  Akiva Eldar
The road to the city of Rawabi spills into Area C, which is under Israeli control according to the Oslo Accords, and the settlers aren’t going to allow a violation of Oslo.

Execution at Dawn in Holy Jerusalem, Kawther Salam
The darkness was still a lowered curtain in the early hours of dawn in the holy occupied city of Jerusalem. The crows were flying in the sky, witnesses of the Israeli terrorist execution of a poor Palestinian laborer.

Gaza victims trumped by talks, Fred Abrahams
Late last week the Palestinian Authority in Ramallah sent a cruel message to the civilian victims of laws-of-war violations during the Gaza conflict: we won’t demand justice for your suffering.  The message came in the form of a resolution drafted by the Palestinian Authority at the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva. The PA had the chance to increase pressure on Israel and Hamas to punish those responsible for war crimes. Instead, it opted to tread water, stalling justice and turning its back on victims, the vast majority of whom live in Gaza.  If critics who say the Palestinian Authority is out of touch with the needs of Palestinians require evidence, last week’s resolution provided it in spades.

Shooting from Mavi Marmara: Time for Israel to Put Up or Shut Up, Richard Lightbown
The inappropriately named Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center (ITIC) is reputed to have links with Israeli intelligence. On 15 September the organization published a report that was based in part on information from ªefik Dinç. Mr Dinç had been on the Mavi Marmara for the newspaper Habertürk and has written a book on the raid entitled ‘The Bloodstained Mavi Marmara’. At present the book is only available in Turkish. Although there is no reason to doubt the ITIC translations into English, one can certainly criticise the way ITIC has blended its own material with that of Mr Dinç’s.

Why Israel’s blockade of Gaza is still here
Almost half a year has passed since the historical events surrounding the Israeli attack on the Mavi Marmara in international waters off the coast of Gaza. This crazed Israeli act of high-water piracy, the vicious violence, the cold blooded execution of wounded peace activists outraged the entire world community and many very impressive statements were made in reaction. Turkey would sever all its diplomatic relations, huge armadas of volunteers would be formed to break the blockade and even planes would be used.

Behind the Crisis in Obama’s Mideast Peace Process, Tony Karon
U.S. diplomats scurried around Middle Eastern capitals over the weekend as President Barack Obama’s efforts to broker a Middle East peace agreement risked collapse in the face of yet another breakdown over Israeli settlement construction.,8599,2023209,00.html

The Firing of Ariella Azoulay, NEVE GORDON
“Everything is political,” cultural theorists often claim. Recently, Bar Ilan University in Israel, decided to prove them right.

Located on the outskirts of Tel-Aviv, Bar Ilan likes to boast that it is the largest university in Israel. Its official goal is to cultivate and combine “Jewish identity and tradition with modern technologies and research.”  Fifteen years ago, however, the university became infamous after one of its students assassinated former Prime Minister Yitzchak Rabin in what turned out to be a successful attempt to arrest the Oslo peace process. The administration was appalled by the criminal act and consequently appears to have adopted a strategic decision to temper its conservative and right-wing proclivities. On the one hand, Bar Ilan continued to provide accreditation for two colleges located in illegal West Bank settlements, yet, on the other, it also developed an excellent gender program and hired a number of faculty members with well known left-wing credentials. It aspired to become a liberal institution guided by ostensibly neutral professional processes and regulations, like all major universities around the world.

Jeffrey Goldberg Smears Goldstone, Mischaracterizes B’Tselem’s Position on Report, Alex Kane
Jeffrey Goldberg, a writer for the Atlantic magazine and a former soldier in the Israeli Defense Forces, has been pounding the center-left lobby group J Street at his blog lately.  In a Sept. 30 post, Goldberg criticizes J Street for allegedly arranging visits for Judge Richard Goldstone to Capitol Hill, smears the Goldstone report and mischaracterizes the Israeli human rights group B’Tselem’s position on the report.

Where is the Gandhi of Israel?, Philip Weiss
In the National Interest, Paul Pillar, former CIA analyst, looks at the recent Indian judicial ruling on the Ayodhya site, sharing it between Muslims and Hindus, for both of whom it is holy, as a departure point for a meditation on Why Israel, unlike India, is so intolerant of its minority? Note that the url for this post includes the words, “the-lobby-must-not-be-named.” Part of his very intelligent answer, which only obliquely mentions the lobby.

Al Gore, Donald Graham, and David Ignatius signed letter flogging Marty Peretz fund, Philip Weiss
I like the Marty Peretz story, and praise the lord, so does the Muslim Brotherhood; its website is now covering his racist statements about Muslims. And here is Eric Alterman, who has long denounced Peretz’s bigotry, asking the right question: “how many liberals will join The Atlantic’s James Fallows in announcing, loudly and clearly, of Marty Peretz: ‘He does not speak for us.'”

What Obama hasn’t changed about the peace process, Maggie Sager
Forgive my cynicism, but you will not see me holding my breath in anticipation of a comprehensive and just conclusion to the Arab-Israeli conflict, not this time around, not even with Mr. Change himself at the helm of negotiations. To illustrate my point, and for the benefit of all of you following along at home, let me recap what hasn’t changed with the most recent incarnation of peace talks.

Hasn’t ‘demographic bogey’ argument for Zionism passed its sell-by date?, Philip Weiss
Arnon Soffer, a former adviser to Sharon, offers the Zionist answer to rightwinger Moshe Arens’s call for a binational state, in Haaretz. Note that his entire argument for the two state solution is based on various notions of ethnic supremacy, including at one point imagining the possibility of “erase”-ing 1.5 million Palestinians. You’re an American with liberal ideals. Are you down with this? Shouldn’t liberal Zionists be condemning this kind of talk? And if they are condemning it, what sort of vision are they offering in response? I am not a slam-dunk one-stater (no I’m a waffler; I think there are a lot of ethnocratic places in the world that thankfully I have nothing to do with) but those who hope to redeem Israel have to come up with better ideas than this filthy demographic talk, and ethnic ferocity. Seems very 19th century.

Israeli feminism and liberalism
I wouldn’t have thought this video of international importance if it were not to the relentless hasbara effort to portray Israel as a feminist oasis in the patriarchal Middle East. It is in Hebrew, without subtitles (if anybody wants to transcribe, I could post a copy with English subtitles). So it is a special treat for the Hebrew reading/speaking visitors. But below is a summary for the rest. Watch and choke!  So, the story: in 2006, a ring of rapists was busted on an air force military base. For a year, they kept a 13 year old girl on the premises as a communal sex slave. Surely, thacan happen anywhere, right? The two videasts impersonate two officers from the base, and take to the streets of Tel Aviv to ask for sympathy for the rapists. They ask people whether they would give them a certificate of honesty (a police document required by some job applications) or a jail sentence, symbolized by handcuffs. The poll is on the beach of Tel Aviv, allegedly the most progressive part of Israel society.  Watch what happens!

Indigenous Resistance, from Colombia to Palestine, Anna Baltzer – Lopez, Colombia
“They only see our water, our land, our trees. They don’t care about us. They want the land — without the people on it.”  These words are not of a Palestinian farmer but of Justo Conda, governor of Lopez Adentro Indigenous Reserve in southwestern Colombia, whose community was repeatedly threatened with displacement under former president Alvaro Uribe Velez. Uribe, recently appointed by the United Nations to investigate Israel’s fatal attack on the Gaza Freedom Flotilla, has a notoriously horrific track record on human rights. Less explored are the clear parallels between his government’s mistreatment of indigenous peoples of Colombia and Israel’s abuses of the indigenous people of Palestine.

The Rick Sanchez dust-up: it’s a mirror, Max Ajl
So am I concerned with Sanchez’s rhetorical stupidity? No. I am concerned with the racism of the culture that excoriates Sanchez’s verbal clumsiness while celebrating far worse racist stupidity when it’s against a more politically vulnerable target. A racist culture is a racist culture. Jews of all people should be aware, at the level of self-interest if not of morality, that a culture willing to incite pogroms against Arabs and Muslims is one that could turn on Jews when a fundamentalist group, furious at the occupation, cites it as the reason for setting off a thermonuclear detonation in an American city. In that respect, the Jewish cultural elite are not merely morally corrupt. They are fools.

Canada and Israel – Book Review, Jim Miles
(Canada and Israel – Building Apartheid. Yves Engler. RED/Fernwood Publishing, Canada. 2010.)  While much is made of U.S. support of Israel, its unstinting rhetoric and its similarly unstinting financial generosity, Canada has likewise been a strong supporter of Zionism and Israel. Not only has Canada been strong, they have in certain respects been stronger and more faithful to Israel than the U.S. In an enlightening little book, Canada and Israel – Building Apartheid, Yves Engler documents the strength of the Canadian tendency to give full support to Israel regardless of international law.


Lebanese PM says Syria’s arrest warrants over Hariri’s killing disappointing
BEIRUT, Oct. 4 (Xinhua) — Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri said on Monday that he was disappointed by Syria’s issuing of arrest warrants against 33 individuals, who allegedly misled investigations into the assassination of his father, former Prime Minister Rafic Hariri.  During the cabinet session on Monday, Hariri told the ministers that he had hoped progress so far achieved on the level of bilateral ties between Lebanon and Syria would have prevented the issuing of such warrants, but he stressed that he will continue to work towards building “excellent ties with Syria”.

Syria Issues Arrest Warrants against Mehlis, Hamade, Hasan, Khashan and Others
The repercussions of the false witnesses’ case in the assassination of former premier Martyr Rafiq Hariri are still coming to light with the Syrian judiciary issuing 33 arrest warrants against judges, officers, politicians and journalists of Lebanese, Arab and other nationalities; many considered to be close to Prime Minister Saad Hariri.

Cabinet refrains from discussing hot STL topics
BEIRUT: The Cabinet refrained Monday from discussing the Justice Ministry’s proposal on the issue of false witnesses as well as funding of the UN-backed tribunal as Syrian arrest warrants allegedly issued Sunday against prominent Lebanese officials close to Premier Saad Hariri became the focus of deliberations.

Lebanon heading toward crisis over Hariri killing – analysts
BEIRUT: Lebanon is facing a full-blown crisis as tensions over a UN-probe into the murder of its ex-premier mount with Syria, and a standoff between rival parties escalates, analysts warned on Monday.

Tehran, Beirut to cooperate in oil and gas exploration
TEHRAN – The Iranian oil minister said that Tehran and Beirut had agreed to cooperate in oil and gas exploration in Lebanon.  IRINN quoted Masoud Mirkazemi as saying here after a meeting with his Lebanese counterpart that the two sides agreed on building oil refineries and exporting gas to that country.  He added that soon there would be a meeting among Iran, Iraq, Syria and Lebanon to discuss details of purchasing gas from the Islamic Republic.

77 couples, Lebanese-Palestinians, wed in Saida
154 Palestinians and Lebanese hosted their group weddings at The Rafik Hariri Sports City in Said on September 30th celebrating mixed marriages in Lebanon as a sign of openness and acceptance to others.  This is the third annual wedding ceremony hosted by the Palestinian Lebanese Association for Dialogue, Development, Nearby and the Refugee Camps with the presence of the MP Bahia Hariri who offered $2000 for each couple.  During the ceremony, singer Fadel Shaker entertained the crowd along with a Zaffe for the brides and grooms.


Monday: 13 Iraqis Killed, 59 Wounded
Updated at 8:23 p.m. EST, Oct. 4, 2010 At least 13 Iraqis were killed and 59 more were wounded in numerous attacks across the country. While Baghdad suffered significant violence, particularly towards government employees, predominantly Kurdish areas of the country also saw many attacks. In political developments, a new deal that could end the deadlock preventing the new government from taking power could be in the works for Iraqiya.

Iraq’s Sunni-backed bloc pledges united stance against premier
BAGHDAD: A Sunni-backed bloc that came first in elections seven months ago is united against the bid by Shiite Premier Nouri al-Maliki to remain in office, a party spokesman said Monday, in another clear sign of deep divisions over efforts to end Iraq’s political impasse.

Progress doesn’t end Iraq’s paralysis | Ranj Alaaldin
Nouri al-Maliki has been backed as PM, but the ‘national unity’ government will remain a collection of fiefdoms.  Iraq remains without a government seven months on from the elections last March, a record-breaking impasse beating the previous record held by the Dutch in 1977. On Friday, however, progress was finally made after the Iraqi National Alliance (INA) – a Shia coalition – backed Nouri al-Maliki for the position of prime minister.

U.S. views sought in Iraqi contractor torture case (Reuters)
Reuters – The Supreme Court on Monday asked the U.S. government for its views about a lawsuit claiming that employees of two defense contractors took part in the torture and abuse of Iraqis at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq.*

What is the fate of Iraqi street dwellers?
Some children don’t know where to go. They have no home to go to and no family to care for. Are Some Iraqi children destined to dwell streets and beg for money? Or are they abandoned because of shortcoming?

The Iraqi holocaust
Arab media’s main concern today is the formation of the new Iraqi government. Otherwise, Iraq would have been a totally neglected topic, particularly by television news and current affairs. Arab television’s main target is paying attention to superficial events.  As Iraqi factions squabble over posts, assassinations have taken a new dimension in the country, turning into a phenomenon world has never seen before.  The number of Iraqis being assassinated every day is probably ten times as much as that of the early years of U.S. occupation of the country which started in 2003.\2010-10-04\kurd.htm

Iraqis flock to Baghdad’s 4D cinema
After years of sanctions and conflict which almost killed off a once thriving industry, a new sort of cinema has opened up in the Iraqi capital, Baghdad. Its owners hope the 4D experience will tempt people back to the movie theatres, some of which are standing derelict.  The BBC’s Gabriel Gatehouse reports from Baghdad.

U.S. and other world news

“Everyone Just Wants to Kill People at any Cost”; U.S. soldiers accused of killing civilians in Afghanistan
“The Army really let me down when I thought I would come out here to do good maybe make some change in this country I find out that its all a lie (sic).”

Nato strike kills three Afghan civilians
The raid comes only a day after another air strike by foreign forces targeting insurgents in Helmand which Afghan police said killed civilians.

U.S. Military Apologizes for Civilian Deaths in Afghanistan
One of the dead was an 8-year-old girl. Two boys, ages 6 and 9, were wounded, he said. The American military issued a statement apologizing for the deaths.

NATO head regrets killing Pakistani soldiers
Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen spoke in person with Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi at a meeting in Brussels.

Foreign Minister shows deep concern over border violations by NATO forces
The Foreign Minister said that Pakistan would only reopen the supply route for coalition troops in Afghanistan once public anger eases and security improves. “Unless the reaction cools down and we make sure that the supply line is secured, we cannot reopen it,” the Foreign Minister added.

Court: NSA can keep mum if it wiretapped Gitmo lawyers: The Supreme Court won’t make the super-secret National Security Agency divulge whether it has records of the warrantless wiretapping it did of lawyers representing Guantanamo Bay inmates.

US Army Embeds Active-duty PSYOPS Soldiers at Local TV Stations, John Cook
The relationship between PSYOPS, Training With Industry, and television news operations has stirred controversy in the past. In 2000, after a Dutch newspaper reported that PSYOPS troops had been placed in CNN’s newsroom under the program, CNN discontinued the internships and admitted that they had been a mistake.

Pa. homeland security boss quits over Israeli firm: Pennsylvania’s homeland security director quit in the wake of revelations that he hired an Israeli-American agency that reported peaceful protests as potential terrorist threats.

‘Bosniaks’ bring piece of home to Boise in newly opened mosque
While controversy has raged elsewhere surrounding Islam, a new mosque has opened quietly in Idaho.

War on Terror Logic, Glenn Greenwald
The very idea that we’re going to reduce Terrorism by more intensively bombing more Muslim countries is one of the most patently absurd, self-contradicting premises that exists.

Anu Kumar: Does the U.S. Care about Women? That Depends on Where They Live
The Department of Health determines that contraception is not preventive care for women in the US, but USAID continues to expand access to contraception in the developing world? Talk about a split personality!

The Dark History of Medical Experimentation From the Nazis to Tuskegee to Puerto Rico
Medical historian Susan Reverby, author of “Examining Tuskegee: The Infamous Syphilis Study and Its Legacy” discusses the history of medical experimentation at home and abroad. We also play excerpts of the documentary “Deadly Deception: The Tuskegee Study.”

Erdogan: EU is holding up Turkey’s membership
SOFIA: Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has complained that the European Union is putting up hurdles to Turkey’s accession to the 27-member bloc. “Turkey is constantly being held up and various hurdles are being put in our path. This is not right,” Erdogan told a news conference after meeting his Bulgarian counterpart, Boyko Borisov on Monday.

Inside Story – A resumption of diplomatic ties?
Iranian and Egyptian officials meeting in Cairo signed an accord to begin 28 weekly flights between the two countries. Is it a strictly business deal or the beginning of a thawing of relations? And what could it mean for a region torn by competing powers?

Egypt’s Journalists Accuse Government of Crackdown
The Egyptian Journalists’ Union has accused the government of cracking down on media critical of authorities after two popular talk shows were closed down.

Egypt authorities urged to prevent forced evictions in city slums
Amnesty International Secretary General Salil Shetty has warned in a letter to the Egyptian Prime Minister Ahmed Nazif that plans to redevelop Greater Cairo’s poorest areas risk leaving thousands in inadequate housing or homeless.  Amnesty International Secretary General Salil Shetty has warned in a letter to the Egyptian Prime Minister Ahmed Nazif that plans to redevelop Greater Cairo’s poorest areas risk leaving thousands in inadequate housing or homeless.

Syrian teenager ‘held for spying’
Syria has accused a teenaged girl, held without charge for nine months, of spying for a foreign power, officials say.

Saudi prince beat servant to death in London hotel, court hears
Saud Abdulaziz bin Nasser al-Saud killed man in ferocious murder with a sexual element, prosecution alleges.  A Saudi prince killed his servant in a murder of “ferocity” that had a sexual element, a court heard today.  Saud Abdulaziz bin Nasser al-Saud had previously subjected Bandar Abdulaziz to physical assaults and mistreatment, the Old Bailey was told.  The 32-year-old victim was found on 15 February beaten and strangled in bed at the London hotel room he was sharing with the prince.  A series of injuries, including bite marks to Abdulaziz’s cheeks, revealed the “ferocity of the attack to which he had been subjected”, the jury heard.

Al Jazeera calls for jamming probe
Network calls on Jordan for a full investigation into disruptions of its signal during the football World Cup games.

Interview with Robert Fisk: we preach democracy yet befriend dictators
There is a great understanding in the Middle East of what history has done to it and what we [the West] have done in history. So I’m not really sure that they always want to buy our products, like human rights or democracy ñ because we have not always demonstrated them to them. Very often we’ve bombed them, in fact.

French women cause a stir in niqab and hot pants in anti-burka ban protest
Two French female students have made a film of the pair of them strolling through the streets of Paris in a niqab, bare legs and mini-shorts as a critique of France’s recently passed law.

Not in the NYT: Israeli poet says Israel is apartheid state

Oct 05, 2010

Philip Weiss 

Once again, the Israeli discourse shows itself to be far more open than the American one, why? Because of diaspora Jews’ presumed responsibility to guard Israel from all criticism in front of the goyim. Here is Israeli poet Natan Zach, quoted in Ynet: Israel is an apartheid state and “I don’t want to live in such a state.” And this:

“If I were a better swimmer, I would swim to Gaza. There are things that need to be done, like the release of Gilad Shalit, but we have boosted the jihad with our refusals” he said.

 Zach further explained that in his opinion, the only possible solution to the current situation is to see “the Israeli people wake up, the current government falls, and a government of peace is established in its place – to save ourselves, not the Arabs. I don’t care much about the Arabs. How can we take on the entire Arab world for eternity?” he said. 

In response, Knesset Member Miri Regev (Likud) called for Zach’s poems to be removed from Israel’s high school exams if he does in fact participate in a flotilla to Gaza.

Al Gore, Donald Graham, and David Ignatius signed letter flogging Marty Peretz fund

Oct 05, 2010

Philip Weiss 

I like the Marty Peretz story, and praise the lord, so does the Muslim Brotherhood; its website is now covering his racist statements about Muslims. And here is Eric Alterman, who has long denounced Peretz’s bigotry, asking the right question: “how many liberals will join The Atlantic’s James Fallows in announcing, loudly and clearly, of Marty Peretz: ‘He does not speak for us.'”

Which reminds me of something. I wrote about this back in July, but it came up again recently when I was out of the country. Jamie Gorelick, a politically-wired former dep’y attorney general who now works at a big DC law firm on the BP account, sent out the email I republish below the jump back on July 23, soliciting funds for that Marty Peretz research fund at Harvard. “Several of us have gotten together to collect the initial funds to jumpstart the effort,” the note says. It is signed by some well-known folks:

With thanks and best wishes for a wonderful summer,

Bill Ackman, Michael Alter, Linc Caplan, Gerry Cardinale, Susan Carney, Jim Cramer, Alan Dershowitz, EJ Dionne, John Driscoll, Daniel Dusek, Dan Ertel, Joe Finder, Frank Foer, Donald Gogel, Russell Goldsmith, Al Gore, Jamie Gorelick, Larry Grafstein, Don Graham, Marc Granetz, Amy Gutmann, Glenn Hutchins, David Ignatius, Janno Lieber, Donal Logue, Charles Nesson, Fern Nesson, Rob Oden, Steve Pinker, Lisbet Rausing, Henry Rosovsky, Nitza Rosovsky, Abigail Thernstrom, Stephan Thernstrom, Craig Turk, Sherry Turkle, Judith Walzer, Michael Walzer, Rich Waldhorn, Leon Wieseltier, Tom Williamson, Juan Carlos Zarate, Leonard Zax, Edward Zwick, and Jesse Zwick

At least one of these people has said that while he is a friend of Peretz’s, he did not give his permission to have his name used in a fundraising letter. I asked Gorelick about the signatories and she indicated that a draft of the note was circulated and everyone who was on the letter wanted to be on the letter.

So how many of these folks have distanced themselves from Peretz’s bile? What about Al Gore, did he say anything re Peretz? Or Donald Graham, chairman of the Washington Post? David Ignatius of the Post? Ed Zwick the film producer? Or does all this just wash away?

Dear Friends,

For those of us fortunate enough to know Marty Peretz as a teacher, a colleague, a mentor, or a friend (or any combination), the opportunity to express our appreciation for all that he has done is presented: the 50th anniversary of the Social Studies Program at Harvard – where he was such a seminal force.

Some of Marty’s former students, his friends, business colleagues, fellow faculty and journalists are going to be endowing the Martin Peretz Undergraduate Research Fund, “in honor of Dr. Martin Peretz, AM 1965, PHD 1966, an inspiring teacher, mentor, and scholar who was an architect and steward of the Social Studies program from the 1960s through the early 1990s.” The purpose of the Fund is “to strengthen the College’s commitment to rigorous intellectual inquiry through significant research experiences.” The Fund will support undergraduate thesis research, special projects and the kinds of intellectual inquiry that Marty encouraged in his students. We will honor Marty at the 50th anniversary celebration in Cambridge on September 25, 2010.

Several of us have gotten together to collect the initial funds to jumpstart the effort, but we are eager to have as many as possible of Marty’s friends, students, former protégés, and colleagues contribute at whatever level you can – the number of contributors will mean the most to him, we are confident, while each contribution will grow the fund to a meaningful size. We will list all contributors (names, not gifts) as part of the presentation to Marty this fall. These gifts can count toward a class gift if you plan to make one by June 30, 2011.

To make a gift to the Martin Peretz Undergraduate Research Fund, please respond to [name removed]….
If you wish to make a gift online directly, please visit, find the shield for “College” and click “Give Now”. Fill out the electronic form and select the following:

“Gift Designation” should be marked as “Unrestricted”
Under “Additional Information” please type “Martin Peretz Undergraduate Research Fund”

If you wish to pay by check, you can send it to the address below:

Martin Peretz Undergraduate Research Fund
c/o Cara Angelopulos
Harvard College Fund
124 Mount Auburn Street
Cambridge, MA 02138

We look forwaing to seeing you in September.

With thanks and best wishes for a wonderful summer,

Bill Ackman, Michael Alter, Linc Caplan, Gerry Cardinale, Susan Carney, Jim Cramer, Alan Dershowitz, EJ Dionne, John Driscoll, Daniel Dusek, Dan Ertel, Joe Finder, Frank Foer, Donald Gogel, Russell Goldsmith, Al Gore, Jamie Gorelick, Larry Grafstein, Don Graham, Marc Granetz, Amy Gutmann, Glenn Hutchins, David Ignatius, Janno Lieber, Donal Logue, Charles Nesson, Fern Nesson, Rob Oden, Steve Pinker, Lisbet Rausing, Henry Rosovsky, Nitza Rosovsky, Abigail Thernstrom, Stephan Thernstrom, Craig Turk, Sherry Turkle, Judith Walzer, Michael Walzer, Rich Waldhorn, Leon Wieseltier, Tom Williamson, Juan Carlos Zarate, Leonard Zax, Edward Zwick, and Jesse Zwick

Marty Peretz internship nominee

Oct 05, 2010

Philip Weiss 

The College Zionist magazine of Fall 2009, article on Avigdor Lieberman by Samantha Vinokor, University of Pittsburgh:

Lieberman thinks outside the box, and his ideas certainly aren’t mainstream when it comes to how to deal with the Israeli-Arab conflict. However, that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Various administrations, both liberal and conservative, have tried to solve the Israeli-Arab conflict, but to no avail. With this in mind, why is everyone so hesitant to listen to a new perspective?

….Lieberman says what he means, and while not everyone likes it, one must appreciate his honesty….

If a loyalty requirement applies to everyone, both Jew and non-Jew, then it is hard to sustain the accusation that Lieberman is being racist. It is easier to view his position as encouraging patriotism to the State of Israel.

One thing is for sure: Whether people love him or hate him, Avigdor Lieberman has a mark to make. With his determination and convictions, it is clear that he will do all that he can to live up to his beliefs.

More on Jewish racism towards Palestinians

Oct 05, 2010

Philip Weiss 

Going to Israel for a third time has made me more focused than ever on Jewish life– because I am planted in it, and because I see changing Jewish attitudes as crucial to changing the dynamics of the conflict. The other night at an event in NYC about this new book, I said that the simple problem in the Jewish discourse on Israel/Palestine is racism, the Jewish failure to grant Palestinians humanity. After citing Erica Jong’s chapter title in the bestseller Fear of Flying, “Arabs and Other Animals” as a generational example, I noted that the New Yorker (which yes reflects the Jewish presence in the establishment) has run two very big pieces in the last year on the conflict that derived their standing from the suffering of Israeli Jews. The magazine’s Gaza piece, by Lawrence Wright, was basically all about Gilad Shalit’s imprisonment; and its recent profile of David Grossman, which conventionally and mistakenly describes Grossman as a moral leader against the Israeli grain (just compare him to Gideon Levy or Amira Hass or Yonatan Shapira), took its moral authority from the fact that Grossman’s son Uri was killed during the 2006 Lebanon war. Let’s be clear about the double standard: There are about 10,000 Palestinians in Israeli jails whose fate and families are never the subject of New Yorker pieces, and hundreds and hundreds of Lebanese and Palestinian youths have been killed in conflict with Israel in recent years, some of them nonviolently resisting occupation, as we would resist occupation, and they and their families are also not the subject of big pieces in the New Yorker. As I said this the other night, Rashid Khalidi, who was also speaking, broke in to point out that Uri Grossman was killed in a war of aggression on Lebanon. I am sure the New Yorker piece didn’t get into that. And of course Khalidi is a one-time friend of Barack Obama’s whose insights the president could actually use now but who was mugged during the election campaign of 2008 on a largely-racial basis…

I do believe, prayerfully, that young Jews look at this discriminatory system, which is based on fear, and want nothing to do with it, but seek a more respectful and hopeful engagement with the Arab world. 

Posted in Middle EastComments Off on MONDOWEISS ONLINE NEWSLETTER


QIRESH FAMILY EVICTION: 1948 Ethnic Cleansing Continues

October 5, 2010

by Debbie Menon  

By Antoine Raffoul

This post is to show that the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians continues to this day. In 1948 it went unobserved by most of the world media. Today, it continues despite of the presence of world media. Add to this the farcical indifference of the world community. If this is acceptable today, then we are bystanders. 



Little Tala infront of her house from which she was evicted with her family as Israeli soldiers look on. 

Israeli soldiers display the V for Victory-sign

Israeli soldiers refuse to carry out the Court Order to allow the Qiresh family to return to their home 

Antoine Raffoul is a Palestinian architect living and practising in London. He was born in Nazareth and was expelled with his family from Haifa in April 1948. He is the Founder and Co-ordinator of 1948: Lest.We.Forget. a campaign group for truth about Palestine. He can be reached at

Also See:

As Simple As A, B, C! 

One-State, Two-State and the American Task Force on Palestine





By Grattan Puxon,


While last minute attempts are being made to stave off the eviction operation at Dale Farm, it now looks certain that a violent confrontation is being forced upon residents by a merciless council motivated by blatant anti-Gypsy racism of the same kind seen virulently at work across Europe.

No one could misread the message given out by Basildon District Council through its bully-boy bailiffs at the recent Hovefields evictions. Appeals by two pregnant mothers, the cries of a lad with learning difficulties and children who just want to go to school – all were evicted with nowhere to go in what the council called a dry run before Dale Farm.

Many eyes have been opened by events in France and Italy. Less has been published about the expulsions by Germany, which is transplanting tens of thousands of Roma back to Kosovo – from where they were ethnically-cleansed in l996. Is such treatment taking place in Britain? Thousands here have been driven from their own land, more shifted relentlessly on by police simply because they have no-where legally to live.

In the midst of events on the continent Al Jazeera called this writer to ask just that question: how does the UK fair in the table of neo-fascist-style behaviour towards an already marginalised and vulnerable minority.The reporter was recommended to look at the Traveller Times website where Jake Bowers has posted his shots of jackboot justice, including the bulldozers at work in Wickford and the brutal Essex police move-ons in the aftermath, using the notorious s61 of the Criminal Justice Act 1994

In what is rapidly deteriorating into a no-holds barred contest between Dale Farm families trying to save their homes and the stamp-on-the-camps policy led by Communities secretary Eric Pickles, some interesting dirt appears to have come to the surface regarding Basildon’s nonadherence to law and order.

According to one researcher it seems that this district council’s solicitors may have failed to comply with s55 of the Land Registration Act 2002. It is not alone in doing so, if this is the case. Possibly up £90 billion worth of contracts made with private developers before the financial crash have yet to show up on the Land Register, as required for mortgage deals.

That failure could play havoc with council business and it’s a matter legal eagles are keen to exploit, in defence of the exploited when it comes to push and shove. But meanwhile more conventional political means are being pursued, maybe including a meeting with Pickles himself at the House of Commons.

Those of us toiling at ground level in this David and Goliath dispute continue to meet up each Thursday at Dale Farm and Hovefields to see what can be done. The latest is a call for rolls of chicken-wire which nonviolent resident defenders say could be useful in impeding the progress of the opposition. No further information for public release.

Enough to say that on the weekend before the expiration of Dale Farm’s 28-day quit Notice (not yet served) Camp Constant, a permanent support camp will come into being at what is one of the oldest and presently most peaceful of Travellers’ settlements in rural Essex.

Still with some residual faith in the law, despite centuries of kicks and knocks, Travellers will be attending Southend County Court for a housing and homeless test case on 20 and 21 October. The issue is should ethnic nomads be forced to live in houses – or will they be permitted (as in planning permission) to continue community life in their mobile-homes. Supporters are invited to come along.

For more information on all this and more email:




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