Archive | June 5th, 2011

Mladic: Serbia’s ticket to EU


by rehmat1

On June 3, 2011 – Serbian war-criminal, known as “Butcher of Bosnia”, General Ratko Mladic pleaded ‘not guilty’ at the Hague tribunal (a Zionist-cnotrolled forum like Special Tribune on Lebanon) to all charges of Muslim genocide in the former Bosnia-Herzegovina in the 1990s.

Mladic is the third Serbian Christian war criminal arrested for leading Muslim genocide of Bosniak people. The other two were former Yugoslav President Slobodan (died in 2006 while being tried at the Hague) and former President of breakaway Serb Republic, Radovan Karadzic, who was arrested in July 2008 after 12 year living under Serbian government and army protection. All three of them were responsible for planning the seige of Sarajevo, which killed more than 10,000 civilians and creating 100,000 refugees and the slaughter at Srebrenica in 1995, killing more than 10,000 Muslim men and children while kidnapping hundreds of young Muslim women.

Why it took Belgrade over 16 years to apprehend Mladic? According to David Scheffer, former US ambassador at large for war crimes issues, says that NATO officials and Washington were not interested in bringing the Serb war criminals to justice.

“ The Implementation Force (IFOR) deployed to Bosnia and Herzegovina to enforce the Dayton agreement put 57,000 pairs of boots on the ground, including 20,000 U.S. soldiers. But Pentagon officials insisted that U.S. troops not be tasked with arresting indicted war criminals,” wrote Scheffer.

The news of Mladic’s arrest has brought joy to several Israel-Firsters who are calling for European Union to hug Serbia as soon as possible while keep Turkey out of the Judeo-Christian club. Crypto-Jewish French President Nicolas Sarkozy told the G8 summit in Deauville last month that “France wants the EU to this historic decision by clearly indicating that the future of Serbia is to integrate into the EU”. Catherine Ashton, EU’s Guru on foreign affairs, said four days ago in Belgrade that “we will approach Serbia’s entery to EU with renewed energy because of today. I look at the messages coming out of Brussels and European capitals to Serbia and hope that we will be able to move forward swiftly”. Johannes Swoboda, an Austrian member of European Parliament said: “The EU must react now in a possitive way. As soon as possible, the EU should give Serbia the status of EU membership candidate.

Turkey, Crotia, Macedonia and Montenegro are all EU candidates while Albania and Bosnia-Herzegovina have applied for membership.

The genocide of Muslims in NATO’s ‘safe heaven’ Srebrenica was carried out by Serb forces while the NATO’s Dutch peacekeeping forces acted as bystanders. The Muslims were forced to march on foot over mountains to reach Gorazde 60 miles away. Women were separated from their male family members – who were hauled away in trucks and systematically butchered to death.

On February 26, 2007, the International Court of Justice declared that the forces of Serb Republic in Bosnia (SRPSKA) carried out ‘act of genocide’ in Srebrenica in July 1995. Every year, the survivors and family members of the Srebrenica genocide commemorate July 11 as Rememberance Day. On this day, the remains of those that have been found in the previous year are buried after formal funeral prayers (Janazah). The ceremony is held to act as a healing process for those that lost loved ones in one of the most gruesome acts of genocide in modern history of Europe since the Nazi era.

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Dorothy Online Newsletter


Dear Friends,

Am bleary-eyed from reading emails and on-line media.  So much happening these days.  Nevertheless, don’t worry.  Only 7 items below—not 17!

The first item reports the number of Palestinian refugees from Syria who partook in the Naxa events were killed today by IOF forces.   It is not certain that the numbers are accurate, but these are what most of the media are reporting.  Apparently a number of the refugees are camping out tonight, planning either to get an early start tomorrow or perhaps to use the cover of darkness to enter Israel.  One thing seems fairly certain, although the Palestinian refugees in Lebanon did not march today, nor, apparently did Palestinians from Gaza or from Jordan, still it seems likely that the marches will continue and perhaps increase.  Will Israel commit massacres to ‘protect its borders.’  Very likely yes.  But that does not mean that it will win in the end.  Not the use of force, but agreeing to the Right of Return will end the protests.

Item 2 is a brief report on the protest in Tel Aviv last night.  Unfortunately, the number of participants was not as the report states (20, 000) but closer to 5-10,000.  Would that 20,000 had come out.  Not that that would have changed anything, but it would have given a feeling that perhaps we were getting strong enough to bring about change.  That has not yet happened.

Item 3 asks if ‘equality can exist in a Jewish State,’ and responds.  Yes, you are of course right.  It can’t, at least not in the kind of Jewish State that Israel has become.

Item 4 relates that arms firms believe that there will be an order bonanza at the upcoming arms fair, thanks largely to the wars and battles going on in this our world.

Item 5 invites you to ‘walk, bike, and summer in Palestine.

Item 6 is a speech by Fida Zeiden—a Druze–given at the alternative Memorial Day ceremony in Tel Aviv this past May.  It is a very touching speech.

Item 7 is pure speculation, but with history sprinkled in.  I won’t tell you what it is about, but will say to it, Amen,  and to you, Enjoy.

Let’s hope that no more blood will flow tomorrow.



1. Al Jazeera

05 Jun 2011 09:52

Deaths reported as Israeli troops open fire

At least 20 reportedly killed along Syrian frontier during pro-Palestinian rally marking “Day of Defeat” in 1967 war.

The protesters had gathered to observe the anniversary of the ‘Day of Defeat’ marking the end of the 1967 war

Syrian state TV says at least 20 people have died and 220 more wounded after Israeli forces opened fire along the frontier to disperse pro-Palestinian demonstrators attempting to breach the border.

The reported deaths, including that of a 12-year-old boy, occurred as the protesters marching from the Golan Heights approached the border on Sunday, a day observed as “Naksa Day” or “Day of Defeat”, marking the 44th anniversary of the 1967 war, when Israel occupied the area.

Al Jazeera’s Andrew Simmons, reporting from occupied Jerusalem, said Israeli forces opened fire in the air, but made no comment on any casualties.

“Although Syrian television is reporting casualties, there is no way of verifying it at this stage,” he said.

“But we have seen this advance of a large number of protesters who managed to breach one line of razor wire and then effectively got positioned in the centre of it all in a trench area.”

Protesters, most of them young men, eventually managed to cut through coils of barbed wire marking the frontier, entering a buffer zone and crawling towards a second fence guarded by Israeli troops.

Every so often, demonstrators were seen evacuating a dead or wounded protester.

US ‘deeply troubled’

The protests along Israel’s borders are designed to draw attention to the plight of Palestinian refugees who fled or were expelled from their homes during Israel’s war of independence in 1948.

Now, around half a million Palestinian refugees live across 13 camps in Syria.

The US state department expressed its concern over the clashes, saying: “We are deeply troubled by events that took place earlier today in the Golan Heights resulting in injuries and the loss of life.

“We call for all sides to exercise restraint. Provocative actions like this should be avoided.”

The US statement emphasized that “Israel, like any sovereign nation, has a right to defend itself”.

Reacting to Sunday’s incidents, Mustafa Barghouthi, an independent Palestinian politician, told Al Jazeera: “What we saw in the Golan Heights, in front of the checkpoint to Jerusalem, were peaceful Palestinian demonstrators demanding their freedom and the end of occupation, which has become the longest in modern history.

“And they were encountered by terrible violence from Israel. They have used gunshots, tear gas, sound bombs and canisters emanating dangerous chemicals against demonstrators.

“They also beat us. I was one of those who was beaten today by the Israel soldiers today while we were peacefully trying to reach the checkpoint to Jerusalem.”

Israeli account

Giving Israel’s version of the events, Avital Leibovich, the Israeli army’s spokesman, told Al Jazeera: “We [the military] saw near 12 noon an angry mob of a few hundreds of Syrians trying to reach the border fence between Israel and Syria.

“We did three steps. We first warned them verbally, we told them not to get close to the fence in order for them not to endanger their lives.

“When this failed, we fired warning shots into the air. When this failed, we had to open fire selectively at their feet in order to prevent an escalation.”

The Israeli military also accused the Syrian government of instigating the protests to deflect attention from its crackdown of a popular uprising at home.

“This is an attempt to divert international attention from the bloodbath going on in Syria,” Leibovich said.

Israel had vowed to prevent a repeat of a similar demonstration last month, in which hundreds of people burst across the border into the Golan Heights.

More than a dozen people were killed in that unrest, in which protesters had gathered to mark the 63rd anniversary of the “Nakba”, to mark the expulsion of an estimated 700,000 Palestinians following Israel’s 1948 declaration of statehood.


2.  Ynet,

June 04, 2011

Leftist Protest

Saying ‘yes’ to Palestine) Photo: Ofer Amram

Tel Aviv: Thousands rally in support of Palestine

Leftist organizations hold march in Central Tel Avis under the banner ‘Israel says yes to a Palestinian state’; demonstrators call on Netanyahu to recognize that establishment of Palestine serves vital Israeli interests,7340,L-4078157,00.html

Boaz Fyler

Thousands of people are taking part in a march in central Tel Aviv in support of a Palestinian state. The protest is held under the banner “Israel says yes to a Palestinian state.”

The organizers are calling Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to recognize that the establishment of Palestine serves vital Israel interests. It is estimated some 20,000 people attended the rally.

The demonstrators are carrying signs reading “Yes to peace” and “Jews and Arabs refuse to be enemies.” Giant posters featuring the image of US President Barack Obama read “Yes, we can.” Among the groups taking part in the protest are Peace Now, Meretz, Hadash, the Labor party and even representatives from Kadima.

Yenina Altman, 80, came to attend the march all the way from Haifa. “It’s important to me to voice the desire to see the Palestinians independent,” she told Ynet.

Tibi: ‘Settlement blocks are cancerous tumor’ (Photo: Ofer Amram)

“I came from Poland after my entire family perished, I was in a ghetto and a concentration camp. I would like to have my country show tolerance and respect for the Palestinians and give them the right for an independent state just as we desired.”

Makhoul Rwada from Kafr Yasif said, “We hope that such acts of protest will grow stronger and cause a change which will see an independent Palestinian state along 1967 borders with east Jerusalem as capital.”

Meretz chairman and former MK Chaim Oron said, “The total containment of the peace process led by Bibi will ruin us all. ”

MK Dov Henin (Hadash) stated “this is the most fatal battle in the peace camp’s history – there is an alternative to a terrible war. A peace of two-states and two capitals in Jerusalem is not only vital. It’s also possible.”

Various leftist groups took part in protest (Photo: Ofer Amram)

MK Ahmad Tibi stated that the “longest occupation in modern history must end and whoever refuses to negotiate 1967 will have to negotiate 1948 and one state instead of two neighboring states.”

Referring to the settlement block he said: “Blocks are metastases and both are cancerous tumors that must be removed for a possible peace and a two-state solution.”

Israel Police on Saturday prevented members of the United Arab List Ta’al party to hold a march in a Druze village adjacent to the Syrian border. The party members held a demonstration in the checkpoint where they were stopped to mark ‘Naksa Day’ – the 44th anniversary to the Six Day War which falls on Sunday.

Meanwhile, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Saturday cautiously welcomed a French proposal to convene Israeli and Palestinian negotiators in Paris to try to renew collapsed peace talks.

Israel is holding consultations with Washington on how to handle the French proposal. Jerusalem is likely to demand several amendments to the French initiative which includes the outline President Obama presented in his Middle East speech.

Moran Azoulay contributed to this report


3,  Al Jazeera,

June 4, 2011

Can equality exist in the Jewish state?

As right-wingers dominate the Knesset, Arab citizens of Israel say institutional discrimination is getting worse.

Kieron Monks

Arab citizens of Israel face discrimination in employment, education, and housing opportunities [GALLO/GETTY]

In 2005, following the arrest of several high profile Arab politicians and lobbyists living in Israel, the Shin Bet security agency made a statement justifying their actions: “The security service will thwart the activity of any group or individual seeking to harm the Jewish and democratic character of the State of Israel, even if such activity is sanctioned by the law.”

The statement highlighted a fundamental tension between democratic freedom in Israel, and the need to maintain its Jewish character. Thwarting harm to that character has been extrapolated to require controls on Israel’s Arab minority in many departments of society, from education to the right of dissent. The need to ensure Jewish demographic and institutional domination has prompted a raft of controversial policies and practises.

The conflict is most revealing at the level of political representation. Israel can point to the presence of 14 Arab Knesset members out of 120 as evidence of its civil rights credentials. Proportionally this is a reasonably fair reflection of a minority that accounts for 18 per cent of Israel’s population; given that the Arab community habitually votes in lower numbers.

In practise, the mandate to represent Arab concerns dictates that they work against – rather than with – the rest of parliament. Knesset Member Haneen Zouabi of the Balad party is open about her role being fundamentally oppositional. “I was elected to speak for those who voted for me, not to reinforce the Zionist consensus,” she says. “My role is to represent injustice and to make it more visible.” Zouabi has long argued against the legitimacy of a Jewish state for allowing “institutionalised discrimination”, instead favouring “a bi-national state not based on ethnicity”.

She has suffered for her beliefs. After participating in the 2010 Gaza flotilla, aimed at breaking the Israeli siege, a seven to one majority voted to strip her of parliamentary privileges. Likud Knesset Member Danny Danon called for her to be tried for treason, and there were attempts to disqualify her party from elections. The hostility was so great that Zouabi was forced to travel with an armed escort. A year later she remains a pariah in parliament, branded a traitor and a terrorist-sympathiser.

Exiling civil rights

Others have suffered more. Azmi Bishara, also of the Balad party, was the leading voice of the Arab civil rights campaign. Despite attempts to disqualify him, Bishara became the first Arab citizen to run for the office of Prime Minister. Throughout his career Bishara faced numerous investigations from the Shin Bet. He was forced to resign in 2007, and went into exile abroad, in the wake of spurious charges of espionage.

Such attacks on Arab politicians are not exceptional, and some have been more serious than political expulsion. A 2002 report from the Human Rights Association of Nazareth documented nine cases of Arab Knesset Members being assaulted by security services over the preceding two years, seven of whom were hospitalised. In addition, the state had opened 25 criminal investigations against Arab Knesset Members over the same time period.

In recent years, the Jewish majority in the Knesset have been pushing for a decisive end to the debate over the legitimacy of a Jewish state. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu was able to pass a bill last year requiring non-Jewish immigrants to take a loyalty oath to a Jewish state, and is seeking to make the oath mandatory for all Knesset members.

The most significant effect of the oath is to enhance Jewish demographic supremacy. It places a fresh barrier in the path of Palestinian refugees’ historic right of return, as enshrined in UN General Assembly Resolution 194, effectively terminating their claims to former homes.

By contrast, the Law of Return grants any Jew the right to make their homes in Israel without challenge. The law is supplemented by aggressive marketing campaigns in the US and other nations with large Jewish populations, often through emotive appeals to religious solidarity. Naturalising diaspora Jews has been made a formality and is often granted within 48 hours, even to those with tenuous claims to Jewish ancestry or citizens from hostile nations. Financial incentives are also offered; as of 2007, Iranian Jews making Aliyah, the so-called “return” to Israel, are entitled to a payment of $5000.

Higher education

Jewish nationalism is supplemented by a mandatory three year term in the Israeli Defence Forces. Jewish soldiers who serve are eligible for a number of benefits: a discharge payment, one-off loans of up to $3,500, and scholarships to academic institutions.

Recruitment does not extend to Arabs, who are then placed at a disadvantage in the jobs market. Najwan Beredker, a graduate in political science from the University of Haifa, quickly discovered that her degree counted for little. “I spent months looking for employment,” she said. “Even for the basic service positions in shopping malls, most of the shops had a sign outside – ‘after military service’. Effectively it meant ‘we don’t accept Arabs’.” In public sector and government positions, ‘loyalty’ is an accepted criterion for employment. The policy helps to explain the disproportionately low Arab presence in these sectors – two per cent and seven per cent respectively.

Army service has also cemented divisions in higher education. In 2010, it was revealed that Haifa and Tel Aviv University, among others, gave preferential treatment to ex-soldiers seeking accommodation and tuition fees. Although a Haifa court had ruled the practise of favouring soldiers to be discriminatory, a central government amendment overruled the decision.

The Dirasat policy research centre in Nazareth reported the number of courses carrying an age restriction of 21 – the standard age of finishing army service – is increasing. They also report an entrenched practise of segregated accommodation for Jewish and Arab students.

The case of five-year old Tamir Hasnin in 2005 highlighted that segregation is also practised in primary schools. Technically admittance is determined solely by proximity to the institution, but Hasnin’s case highlighted that ethnicity is a factor. Rather than registering him with his nearest, predominantly Jewish school, Lod Municipality enrolled him at one several kilometres away that had a higher proportion of Arab students. The Municipality justified their stance by expressing “the preference that Arab children, especially in the lower grades, attend Arab schools, in order to preserve their language and culture”.

Ironically, it is one of the most long-standing grievances of Arab civil rights campaigners that they are unable to preserve their culture through control of their children’s education. All schools in Israel are bound to a strictly vetted syllabus that gives close attention to material that could be taken as incitement. In 2010, a group of Palestinian and Israeli academics submitted a ground-breaking text, Learning Each Other’s Historical Narrative, to the Ministry of Education. The book featured both sides’ accounts of historic events on the same page with a blank column for the students own thoughts. It was immediately rejected.

Beredker, the political science graduate, received little education of her own culture growing up in Nazareth, home to Israel’s largest Arab community. “In my Nazareth school I learned Jewish history but I never saw the word Palestinian,” said Beredker. “Until I was 16 I had no awareness. We were even made to study our language wrong, with many mistakes in the words and grammar.”

Nurit Peled, co-founder of Bereaved Parents for Peace and lecturer at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, believes that text books are selected to support feelings of Jewish superiority. “We never teach about the state of Israel, we teach the land of Israel, which includes all of Palestine. It is recognition by denial,” she said.

Peled’s research also revealed common stereotyping of Arabs in text books; “I could not find one picture of an Arab human being,” she said. “They are all of types. They are presented as primitive terrorists or farmers who reject modernity.”

Democratic rights?

History has been targeted through the signing into law of the Nakba bill this year, forbidding commemoration of the Palestinians’ displacement in 1948. In practise, schools were already prevented from mentioning the term, in an attempt to prevent new generations of Arabs from becoming aware of this dark chapter in their history.

The Nakba bill also touches on another thorny conflict between the “Jewish and democratic state”. A cornerstone of western democracies has always been the acceptance of dissent. By contrast, Israel’s violent suppression of the May 15 marches in Jerusalem, Qalandia and Gaza, highlighted intolerance of even peaceful protest.

That intolerance has been shown consistently through the six years of non-violent Palestinian protests that began in Bil’in, the village which has suffered injury or arrest of over half of its population.

New bills proposing the criminalisation of boycott movements indicates a further step towards the intolerance of dissent, taking Shin Bet’s diktat to a new extreme. Human rights groups operating inside Israel have expressed concern at the proposal of a new bill to deny funding to organisations that produce critical reports.

The Association for Civil Rights in Israel responded to the new laws with the worrying claim that this Knesset is “the most racist in history”. Their latest reports document the link between discriminatory legislation and deepening intolerance within Jewish society in Israel. Certainly, the discreet recent law allowing town councils to selectively admit members has been taken up enthusiastically in areas with high Arab populations. Tolerance of religious leaders calling on landlords not to rent homes to Arabs has exacerbated the trend. In 2010, polls conducted by the Israeli Democracy Institute found 53 per cent of Israeli Jews thought it acceptable to demand that Arabs leave the country, and 46 per cent would not live next to an Arab family.

For decades, Israel has been able to defend the scandals with the justification that quality of life is higher for Arabs living in Israel than it is in the Occupied Territories. Knesset Member Zouabi argues the claim is disingenuous. “We should not be compared with the West Bank after 40 years of Israeli Occupation has destroyed its economy, any more than we should be compared with Britain or the US,” she said. “We demand equality with Jews, not to live as second class citizens.”

In a recent address Netanyahu took another opportunity to stress the fortune of Arabs living in Israel. “Of the 300 million Arabs in the Middle East and North Africa, only Israel’s Arab citizens enjoy real democratic rights,” he said during his Congress speech. That may be changing: with the wave of revolutions across the Arab world, democratic reforms are being demanded and accepted. Israel seems to be heading in the opposite direction. While ethnicity continues to dominate society, there is little space for other ideals.

Kieron Monks is content manager of This Week in Palestine magazine. His freelance articles have appeared in The Guardian, Observer, New Statesman, Tribune, Ma’an News and many others.

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Al Jazeera’s editorial policy.


4.  BBC,

June 2, 2011

Arms firms eye Paris air show order bonanza

By Jorn Madslien

On the face of it, the Paris air show – to be held later this month – is all about the civil aviation and space industries.

But the biennial exhibit is at least as much about billions of dollars of military spending.

A broad range of companies, ranging from small component makers to giant defence and security firms such as Lockheed Martin, BAE Systems, Finmeccanica and Northrop Grumman, will fill the 130,000 square metres (1.4m sq ft) of exhibition space in the chalets and halls on the edge of Le Bourget airport’s runway.

With more than 200 official delegations from 88 countries, many in the arms industry are expecting their order books to be dramatically boosted this year, industry officials and military officers have told BBC News.

Military conflict obviously bolsters arms sales, because it uses up weapons and ammunition, and there has been plenty of it in recent months.

Conflict uses up weapons and ammunition, which need to be replaced

In particular, several countries that are normally not actively involved in armed conflicts are now in a position where they will need to restock bombs, ammunition and weapons following months of action in Libya and conflict elsewhere in the region, an executive at an international arms company told BBC News.

Orders from these countries could top several hundred million – and perhaps even billions – of dollars, industry officials predict.

At the same time, many procurement officers have been impressed by the accuracy of some of the weapons used in Libya, an officer involved in bombing missions told BBC News.

These include laser-guided bombs designed to hit and destroy armoured vehicles without causing much collateral damage, he said, predicting demand for such hi-tech weaponry to be strong at this year’s show.

Tense region

Many of the new orders are expected to come from countries outside the Middle East that have been involved in missions there.

But demand for weapons from the Middle East and North Africa is also expected to remain strong in the wake of the Arab Spring.

“Interstate and internal tensions provide drivers for demand,” according to Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (Sipri).

An Asian arms race and border tension have kept spending high in the region

Wealth in the region, resulting from strong economic growth on the back of soaring global oil prices, has bolstered arms sales to the Middle East in recent years.

In 2010, the region spent $111bn (£68bn) on military expenditure, a 2.5% rise on 2009, with the bulk of the purchases made by Saudi Arabia.

By comparison, global military spending rose just 1.3% in real terms last year, the slowest growth rate seen in about a decade – though the total spent remains eye-watering at more than £1.6 trillion.

Big importers

But although much of the focus will be on the Middle East this year, the industry’s biggest growth markets are actually in relatively peaceful parts of the world.

In 2010, “the region with the largest increase in military spending was South America”, according to Sipri.

“This continuing increase in South America is surprising given the lack of real military threats to most states and the existence of more pressing social needs,” observes Carina Solmirano, a Sipri Latin America expert.

In Asia, an arms race rather than outright war is driving weapons sales, with rivalries and border tension between Pakistan, India and China. India was the world’s largest arms importer in 2010.

Big spenders

The US remains the world’s biggest military spender

The US remains by far the biggest military spender, however, and although spending slowed last year it grew at more than twice the rate of the global average.

The US accounted for 43% of the world’s military spending last year, up 2.8% on 2009 and a whopping 81% higher than it was in 2001.

Europe also remains a big spender, though overall military spending here fell 2.8% last year when compared with 2010.

Politically, it is becoming increasingly hard for European governments to spend vast sums on military action abroad at a time when ballooning budget deficits are forcing all sorts of spending cuts at home.

This year’s Paris Air Show will take place at Le Bourget exhibition centre on the outskirts of Paris from 20 to 26 June 2011


5. [Attachment(s) from Elana Wesley included below]

From: [] On Behalf Of George S. Rishmawi
Sent: Saturday, June 04, 2011 5:57 PM
Subject: [siraj-center] Walk, Bike, Summer in Palestine

Dear Friends,

Salaam and greetings.

Always new program and new opportunities to visit Palestine, always also we keep inviting our friends to join our annual programs starting with the Palestinian Summer Celebration 2011, below please find a number of opportunities to visit Palestine in a very special and unique way:

1-    The Palestinian Summer Celebration:  (Come and celebrate Palestine! The Palestinian Summer Celebration is a unique annual program that gives people from all over the world the chance to encounter the life, culture, and politics of Palestine. Learn Arabic and study Palestinian history at Bethlehem University, spend time with local families and volunteer with a community organization.)

For more information:

2-    Palestine Justice Network Campaign: July 8th– July 16th 2011

3-    Bike Palestine Tour September 2011 for more information

4-    Walk Palestine: we continue arranging walking a long the steps of Abraham in the Abraham Path in Palestine ( Masar Ibrahim) and we will send you more information about it soon, please view the latest video:

5-    Also walk the Nativity Trail from Nazareth to Bethlehem:

Siraj also partners with organizations and Travel Agencies globally in order to promote ethical and responsible travel to Palestine, please read below an invitation by our partner organization Global Exchange:

Meet the People – Learn the Facts – Make a Difference

Join a Reality Tour to move beyond mainstream media and contextualize socio-political issues around the globe!  For the past 21 years our delegations have strived to integrate and intimately engage participants with community struggles, by directly meeting face-to-face with local activists, individuals and organizations working for positive changes in their communities.  Commit yourself to social change and be sure to have a life changing empowering experience and recognize your own capacity to impact US foreign policy!


Environment and Occupation: Examine the affects that the Israeli Occupation has on the Environment of the Palestinian Territories and thus the livelihoods off Palestinians.  The group will explore issues such as freedom and access to water and sanitation in the West Bank, the impact of the occupation on the Jordan Valley, deforestation in relation to Israeli practices, impacts of the apartheid wall construction on environment as well as the impacts of illegal settlement construction on the environment and people.
July 15 – 25, 2011  $2,300

Prospects For Peace with Justice: Experience the Palestine/Israel conflict from both sides of the Wall.  Participants hear from a spectrum of grassroots voices and learn new views on the conflict and hopes for a just solution.  Visit, Muslim, Christian and Jewish holy sites, learning the role these places play.  Witness housing demolitions and settlement construction and the continuing toll they take on Palestinian livelihoods.  Hear and witness the non-violent resistance in many forms to counter the occupation.  Prepare to return to the US – forever changed.
July 1 – 11, 2011, December 2 – 12, 2011 and July 6 – 16, 2012  $2,450

Palestine Fair Olive Harvest: Observe the first-hand effects of occupation on the Palestinian economy, tourism and day-to-day life by joining us on this unique delegation to the West Bank.  Learn how Fair Trade cooperatives are restoring hope and providing economic alternatives to the Palestinian people.  Harvest olives with farmers who use organic practices, witness community-building traditions and cultivate a greater appreciation and understanding of Palestinian culture.
October 14 – 23, 2011 and October 26 – November 4, 2012  $2,000

For more detailed information please see our website or contact

We look forward to having you with us in Palestine,  Salaam and best regards,

George S. Rishmawi

Siraj, Center For Holy Land Studies
Beit Sahour, Schoold Street
P.O.Box 48
Tel: +972 2 274 8590
Fax: +972 2 274 8774
Mobile: 0599 180 872 or 0522 50 20 79
Skype: georgerish


6.  Forwarded by Mark Marshall

Here is a translation of a speech made by Fida Zeidan, a Druze member of the Combatants for Peace movement from Beit Jann. It was given at the alternative Memorial Day ceremony in Tel Aviv in May 2011. “ [Mark]


My name is Fida Zeidan, from the village of Beit Jann, a Palestinian village in the Upper Galilee.

Until about 60 years ago the village was best known for its grapes and its springs.

I am the youngest in my family. My father is Kamal and my mother is Salma. My brothers are Fuad, Saleh and Yamin and my sister’s name is Najwa.

I was born in 1989 and so I was unable to see Fuad, because he went into the army, and since 20 March 1996 I have seen Saleh only four times in my dreams.

And now years have passed and our high village, which is located on one of the summits between the mountains of Zabud and Jarmaq, Haidar, Jabalat al-Arus and Dedabe, is known today as the “the Druze village with more war victims than all the others,” and as the number of war victims grows, the village becomes more famous, secure, beautiful and thriving.

Not long ago I perceived contradictions in our life.

Beit Jann is a village which, if you visit it, you will see everything that you can see in any other Palestinian Arab village. But the victims from Beit Jann were killed while serving  in the Israel Defence Force. For some reason these things don’t fit together. At least, not in my eyes.

At first I thought that it was only internal conflict and that I had to choose who I am and where I belong, to which nationality, to which language or which side I’m on, because that’s how I remember things were, whether at school or in the neighbourhood: one defines himself as a Druze, the other as an Arab, or as an Arab Druze, or the other way round. Or Israeli Druze … and so on.

Fortunately, one thing was clear to me and that was my name: Fida – Fuad.

Today I know that it is a name that represents loyalty to the homeland but certainly that is not what my parents intended when they gave it to me.

Our family is a member of the Bereaved Families’ Forum for Peace, an organization of Israeli and Palestinian families who have lost loved ones as a result of the conflict. This organization acts to end the killing on both sides, for reconciliation, discussion and dialogue.

My parents joined the Forum in the first years of its existence and I am the second generation of the Forum.

In 2007 I travelled to Berlin on behalf of the Families’ Forum, in a delegation in which we met with young people from Germany, Poland, Ramallah and Jenin. I did not think that the answer or the question that would lead me to reflection and to search for myself would be waiting for me in that distant place. But that is what happened. Somebody said to me: “I do not understand how your brother, who is an Arab, could raise a gun against his Arab brothers and shoot them.”

I know my brothers, both of them, and I have confidence in the upbringing we received by my parents. My brothers were brought up to love life and respect others, they were raised on the values of honour and faith, fate and acceptance. They loyally served the State of Israel, so much so that when Saleh died the news of his death caused a commotion in the media and Israeli journalists ran to our home in search of the saddest and most poignant headline.

I remember one of the questions my father was asked: “What do you want to say to the Lebanese family whose son blew himself up and killed Saleh?”

And my father’s answer was: “I want to offer my condolences. Their son did not know Saleh personally and did not intend to kill Saleh in particular. This is war and we are paying the price.”

I think that is not what the journalists expected to hear, and I hope that on their way home they at least enjoyed the scenery and the other things that Beit Jann and the Galilee in general have to offer to visitors.

As for me, when I heard the remark, “I do not understand how your brother, who is an Arab, could raise a gun against his Arab brothers and kill them,” I felt sadness fill me, I felt pressure, I choked up and I could not answer, I cried, I was offended, nervous and angry. In the end I answered that I was sure my brothers never did such a thing in their lives.

But quite soon I asked myself the same question … how, really?

I returned from Berlin, and of course it is impossible not to mention the delays at the airports that were caused by my beautiful name. Despite the hardship, for the most part those who delayed me pronounced my name exactly as I pronounce it.

I understood that in order to know, I have to rely only on myself, not on what they taught me in school; that I cannot rely on content and messages that stem from political interests, or on what I heard in my society that let its eyes be closed in comfortable conditions, or who knows, maybe it is my society that chooses to close its own eyes?

After going from book to book, reading newspapers and archives of documents from 1948 to the present, I managed, at least in my own eyes, to get out of the abyss.

I am a Palestinian Arab, my brothers are victims of the realization of the Zionist dream.

I did not come here to express a political opinion. Politics do not preoccupy me or interest me.

I am talking about the truth that people do not see or want to see, the truth that we are not allowed to see. I am talking about reality.

The right of every soul to a sense of belonging and even to choose its belonging, and along with that to receive the values of its culture and its history as they are and not to be fed teachings that are aimed at creating a new generation of ignorant people, who do not recognize their reality or their history, and are subject to the perceptions of reality as it is seen by those who rule over them.

For years now I have not participated in the Memorial Days that are conducted in the village. The ceremonies are so nicely planned, there is time to talk, then to shoot, then time for prayer, then more shooting, and time is also allocated for crying. In recent years I would only go to visit the graves of my brothers so that my parents would not think that another child was missing (by the way, among the Druze it is forbidden to visit graves, but on Israeli Memorial Day we do visit them!!!).

And so I vacillated whether to come or not this evening and I was also hesitating, what language I should speak: Arabic? Hebrew?!

In the end, despite the intense pain and the anger that is hard to deal with, I did not let those factors or any external factors influence my faith and my love of life and peace between human beings.

I am here to strengthen the human objective of this evening.

To remember every soul that has passed from this world as a victim of violence in all its varieties.

To recall that there are people who love life and want to live in a peaceful world, who do not want to see and hear about more victims and violence, about the conquest of more lands or about the subjugation of the human spirit.

Translated from Hebrew by George Malent


7.  Haaretz,

June 6, 2011

Netanyahu’s success in Congress may come with a price

If Obama is re-elected next year, don’t be surprised if he treats Netanyahu as a member of the Republican-Likud team.

By Leon Hadar

On a sunny day in May, the leader of an important U.S. ally from an unstable region of the world where critical American interests were at stake addressed a joint meeting of Congress presided over by the speaker of the House and the vice president.

The foreign leader, who reiterated in his address the interests and values shared by the United States and his country in containing the threat posed by global anti-Western aggression, received a standing ovation. And his speech was persistently interrupted by the legislators’ loud applause, with lawmakers from the two major parties lavishing him with praise.

Seven years after speaking before the U.S. Congress, Ngo Dinh Diem, the president of South Vietnam, was assassinated on November 2, 1963, in a military coup sanctioned by the administration of President John F. Kennedy. And on May 9, 1975, the same body that Diem addressed 12 years earlier refused to continue supporting the government in Saigon, leading to the collapse of South Vietnam.

No one should of course compare Diem’s despotic and corrupt regime to Benjamin Netanyahu’s democratically elected government. And while South Vietnam was an artificial entity and unreliable client state that was entirely dependent on American military and economic largesse for its survival, Israel’s existence as an independent nation-state is based on solid historical and legal foundations and is sustained by a robust economy and strong military.

Yet one cannot but draw parallels between the enormous symbolism attached to the addresses delivered by Diem and Netanyahu before Congress as the two leaders asserted their countries’ role in helping the United States fight the enemy du jour – communism in 1957, Islamic terrorism in 2011 – while resisting calls for changes in their policies. The authoritarian and Catholic Diem dismissed demands for reforming the political system and integrating the Buddhist majority, while Netanyahu refused to accommodate pressure to soften his position on the Palestinian-Israeli peace process.

In fact, unlike Netanyahu, who seemed to go out of his way to antagonize U.S. President Barack Obama, Diem had enjoyed strong backing from the occupant of the White House at the time, Dwight Eisenhower, as well as from Congress, where the respected Democratic Senator Mike Mansfield hailed the “the determination, the courage, the incorruptibility, and the integrity of President Diem,” while Republican Senator Jacob Javits dubbed him “one of the real heroes of the free world.”

Indeed, the grandiose rhetoric displayed by Diem and his American hosts could not by itself transform the strategic realities that started to unravel the relationship between Washington and Saigon during the Kennedy administration. To put it in simple terms, the interests of the United States and South Vietnam ceased to converge, with Diem and his successors failing to adjust Saigon’s policies in response to American demands.

While Israelis should be proud that Netanyahu, like Winston Churchill, was invited to address Congress, they should recall that the list of more than 110 foreign leaders and dignitaries who have delivered speeches before joint meetings of Congress included, in addition to Diem, the Shah of Iran, President Ferdinand E. Marcos of the Philippines, and military dictators like President Syngman Rhee of South Korea and President Sukarno of Indonesia. These leaders were also welcomed to Washington as staunch allies, only to be dumped by the Americans later on when their interests changed.

Many of the invitations to foreign leaders to address Congress were seen at the time as expressions of gratitude for promoting policies that seemed to be in line with U.S. interests and values. But the Bibi Spectacle on Capitol Hill was engineered by the Republican leaders as part of an apparent political strategy aimed at embarrassing President Obama and weakening his hands as he tries to revive the Israeli-Palestinian negotiations and prepares for the 2012 re-election campaign.

In a way, this Republican-Likud-produced gimmick recalls another dramatic address before a joint meeting of Congress. After being dismissed for insubordination by President Harry Truman from his UN command in the Korean War, General Douglas MacArthur was invited to address Congress on April 11, 1951, with the Republicans hoping that the event could help launch MacArthur into the White House in the coming elections.

That did not happen. And while what became known as MacArthur’s farewell address is still regarded as a masterful exercise in rhetoric, it had no major political impact on Truman, who told his advisers that the speech was “100 percent bullshit.”

We will probably have to wait for a memoir by an Obama aide to discover if he felt the same way about Netanyahu’s speech. But if Obama is re-elected next year, don’t be surprised if he treats Netanyahu as a member of the Republican-Likud team – who also happens to be the prime minister of Israel.

The writer is a research fellow in foreign policy studies at the Cato Institute.

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Zio-Nazi Media Propaganda

Paid To Get Shot

I think anyone that follows the Middle East would appreciate how the despots and dictators in that region have manipulated, exploited and used the Palestinians as a political football, for their own purposes, but even I was surprised at this story in the Guardian:

“Israeli troops have clashed with protesters on the Syrian border for the second time in less than a month, with several dozen reported injured and claims that up to 20 had been killed.

The violence had been widely predicted after organisers called for a symbolic March on Israel to mark 44 years since the beginning of the six day war in 1967.

However, the clashes were smaller in scale than the last time pro-Palestinian activists confronted Israeli soldiers along borders with Syria, the West Bank, Gaza and Lebanon.

The Syrian village of Majd al-Shams was again the focal point with an estimated 1,000 Syrians and Palestinians surging to within 20 metres of the fenced off border over six hours. They threw stones and molotov cocktails at Israeli troops as snipers fired rubber-coated bullets and live rounds at some activists,

One demonstrator who was wounded that day told the Guardian the Lebanese militia Hezbollah had given him $50 to turn up at the border and $900 to have his gunshot wounds treated by physicians.He said he had been planning to return to Maroun al-Ras yesterday until the rally was cancelled.

” It is clear that Zio-Nazi learn from the Nazi’s media Propagand” Shoah 

But as the Syrian government’s brutal crackdown on protests show, protesters are only allowed to gather when the state allows them. The Golan area of Syria is off-limits without state permission.

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Iran’s nuclear warhead test is aimed at IsraHell



Kenneth Timmerman (‘I’m not Jewish’), the Israel-First founder of‘Foundation for Democracy in Iran‘ in his latest anti-Iran crap published in one of Neocons’ (mostly Jewish) propaganda outlets, the Newsmaxcom, entitled‘Iran Test Nuclear Warhead Design‘, has claimed: “Iran has built and tested all the elements of a nuclear weapon design similar to the bomb dropped on Nagasaki, Japan, in 1945, and is actively working to fit it onto a ballistic missile capable of reaching Israel, nuclear experts told Newsmax this week”.

And Ken’s ‘nuclear experts’ include Dr. Dr. James McNally, a PhD holder in Biophysic with expertise in imaging, Dr. Peter Pry, former CIA nuclear weapons analyst, Paula Desutter of neocon Huffington Post, Gary Milhollin of ‘Iran Watch’ hasbara spolesperson and last but not the least, Reza Kahlili, a former CIA/Mossad mole inside Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) which was blacklisted by the ZOG in Washington for training Lebanese Hizbullah resistance fighters against Israel.

That sums up Ken Timmerman’s phony journalism wrapped inside his born hatred of Islam and Muslims. Ken is author of book ‘Preachers of Hate: Islam and the War on America’. Obviously, Ken doesn’t believe that September 11, 2001 was a ‘Jewish War on America’.

I feel sorry for Ken. He fired his smoking gun ten months after British Prime Minister David Cameron (he claims to have Jewish ancestry) claimed that the Islamic Republic is in possession of nuclear bombs. The Opposition party members not only laughed at David’s ignorance but called him “a foreign policy klutz with his feet firmly planted in his mouth”.

On June 2, 2011, former Israeli Mossad chief, Meir Dagan, warned Israelis including naming both Ehud Barak and Netanyahu in particular that an pre-empt Israeli attack on Iran’s nuclear sites will open military change reaction which Israel will not be able to control.

“It is important to know that that war would not just be against Iran. It would be a regional war that would include Syria – if we needed to attack Hezbollah targets in Syrian territory. The regional challenge that Israel would face would be impossible.”

“I decided to speak out because when I was in office, (Generals) Diskin, Ashkenazi and I could block any dangerous adventure. Now I am afraid that there is no one to stop Bibi and Barak,” Dagan added.

So why every successive US administration has preferred to live under Iran’s bogus nuclear threat? The reason is that whoever questions the utterly unproven postulate that Iran has an active, effective nuclear weapons program risks political disaster. “To accept the reality that Iran is not the most dangerous nation on the planet is obviously a political third-rail in the United States. It triggers an avalanche of other accusations, Anti-Israeli attitudes or worse, Antisemitism, being among the most common and also the most irrelevant,” wrote William O. Beeman in New America Media.

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Salih flees and Washington nervous (have we not seen this film before?)



“Mr. Saleh’s sudden departure stunned Yemenis and could pose a serious challenge for the United States, which has been deeply concerned about Yemen’s rising chaos, analysts say.”

Citing Medical Needs, Yemeni Leader Goes to Saudi Arabia

Ammar Awad/Reuters

Anti-government protesters celebrated President Ali Abdullah Saleh’s departure to Saudi Arabia, in Sana on Sunday.

By H

WASHINGTON — Yemen’s embattled president, Ali Abdullah Saleh, arrived in Saudi Arabia on Saturday for urgent medical treatment of wounds sustained in a bold attack on the presidential compound, Saudi officials said, abruptly shifting the political calculus that has allowed him to cling to power despite months of protest and violence.

President Ali Abdullah Saleh in May.

Mr. Saleh’s sudden departure stunned Yemenis and could pose a serious challenge for the United States, which has been deeply concerned about Yemen’s rising chaos, analysts say. The government has already lost control of some outlying provinces, and Al Qaeda and other jihadists appear to be exploiting the turmoil to solidify their base in the country.

Saudi officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said Mr. Saleh had agreed to leave only when his condition worsened after Friday’s attack. President Obama’s top adviser on Yemen, John O. Brennan, spoke by phone Saturday with the Yemeni vice president, Abd al-Rab Mansur al-Hadi, who news reports said became acting president under the Yemeni Constitution.

The Saudis are likely to make sure Mr. Saleh, who has been in power for 33 years, does not return as president, analysts said — a goal they and other regional Arab leaders have tried unsuccessfully to arrange for weeks.

But even though his departure could ease tensions in Sana in the short term, there is no clear plan in place for a lasting political transition. In that vacuum, many fear that Yemen’s opposition factions and youth protesters might begin fighting among themselves, adding to the troubles of tribal violence in the north and secessionist efforts in the south.

The threat of more political disorder puts tremendous pressure on Saudi Arabia, the country’s powerful neighbor and patron, and on the United States, which had counted on Mr. Saleh as an ally against terrorists. The Saudis have seemed unsure about how to handle Yemen in recent months, as they struggled to calm the revolutionary energies across the region. For years, Mr. Saleh had kept the peace in a country riven by tribal jealousies, but the Saudis — prizing stability above all — have grown anxious as his control slipped in the face of protests inspired by the so-called Arab Spring.

The brazen attack Friday, which Mr. Saleh blamed on longtime tribal rivals, the Ahmars, allowed the Saudis to intervene decisively. The Saudi leadership not only choreographed Mr. Saleh’s treatment and departure but also accepted six other high-ranking Yemeni officials wounded in the attack and brokered a cease-fire with the Ahmars’ powerful tribal militia.

The militia and the government began fighting in the streets two weeks ago after Mr. Saleh reneged for the third time on a Saudi-led deal to leave office, though it remains unclear who initiated the hostilities. Although relations between Mr. Saleh and the Ahmars soured several years ago, the rift widened recently as the Ahmars began supporting the street protesters, doling out payments to keep their movement alive despite a government crackdown.

It was unclear Saturday night if the truce with the militia was holding, with some reports saying Sana, the capital, was mostly quiet and others saying the boom of artillery fire could be heard again in a neighborhoods that is an Ahmar family stronghold.

The details of Friday’s attack, as well as information about Mr. Saleh’s health, remain somewhat murky. Yemeni official say either a rocket or mortar shell struck a mosque in the presidential compound where Mr. Saleh and other top officials were praying. Government officials insisted that Mr. Saleh suffered light injuries or “scratches,” even though the president himself noted that the blast was strong enough to kill seven guards.

But Mr. Saleh delayed a speech to the nation for several hours Friday, then issued only a two-minute audio recording that ran on state television with an old photo of him. He sounded weary and sedated as he told the country the Ahmars were behind the strike. Since then, rumors about the nature of his wounds have abounded, and some Arab news reports said he had pieces of wood embedded in his body.

Reporting was contributed by Laura Kasinof from Hagerstown, Md.; Neil MacFarquhar from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; Scott Shane from Washington; and Nasser Arrabyee from Sana, Yemen.

Soon after the attack, government forces began firing rocket-propelled grenades and mortar shells on the house of Hamidh al-Ahmar, the Ahmar family’s political standard-bearer. A spokesman for Mr. Ahmar said that 19 people were killed in the attacks on his house on Friday. The Ahmars have denied any responsibility for the strike on the presidential compound.

A civilian was treated at a makeshift clinic outside Sana on Saturday. Fierce fighting has raged on in the capital for almost two weeks, but it was quiet on Saturday.

Sadeq al-Ahmar, the eldest of the Ahmar brothers, confirmed Saturday that the Saudis had arranged a cease-fire and said he would respect it. But he added that the government had not followed through on its promises to remove security forces from the area surrounding the Ahmar compound in the Hasaba neighborhood in northern Sana, where the fighting has been concentrated in the past two weeks.

South of Sana on Saturday, government forces appeared to withdraw from Taiz, a major city in Yemen’s central highlands where protesters and tribesmen sympathetic to their cause have taken up arms against government troops. Tanks had been deployed in the city on Friday, and many residents feared a repeat of the brutal crackdown that took place last week, in which many protesters were killed. But after more clashes between armed tribesmen and troops, the military appeared to have retreated to their bases.

“There are no soldiers in the streets today; no checkpoints inside the city. It’s only the armed tribesmen who came to protect us,” an activist, Riyadh al-Adeeb, said.

Some analysts said that Saudi Arabia would not have agreed to allow Mr. Saleh to come to Riyadh without extracting a promise that he would finally resign as president.

In recent weeks, King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia personally urged Mr. Saleh to sign the deal sponsored by the Gulf Cooperation Council, a six-nation body of Yemen’s Arab neighbors. The agreement called on him to cede power in exchange for immunity from prosecution for himself and his family.

The United States has also pressed Mr. Saleh to step down, seeing an orderly departure as the start of a transition that would ease Yemen’s political crisis and allow authorities to regain control of Yemen’s outlying provinces and the jihadists there.

Last week, President Obama sent Mr. Brennan to Saudi Arabia to try to help find a way to ease Mr. Saleh out. The visit underscored the United States’ lack of leverage with Mr. Saleh, who — despite his cooperation on counterterrorism — has for years been a frustratingly inconsistent partner.

Now, Saudi Arabia finds itself in a position of power, with the wounded Yemeni president more dependent than ever on his oil-rich neighbors. But the Saudis — always uncomfortable with Yemen’s complex and poisonous politics — face difficult choices.

If Mr. Saleh steps down, they are left with the responsibility of fostering a new political order in a country with democratic aspirations but few working institutions, even as they struggle to beat back the revolutionary currents in Bahrain and elsewhere in the Middle East.

“It’s a real irony: the Saudis usually oppose change, but in Yemen they have become the midwives of change,” said Bernard Haykel, a scholar of Middle Eastern studies at Princeton who has written extensively on both Yemen and Saudi Arabia. “They will have to decide what change means in this context, and it will not be easy.”

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Saudi government explains its hosting of another Arab dictator



A Saudi official explains the decision (that will reinforce the image of Saudi Arabia as the asylum and refuge of Arab dictators) to host `Ali `Abdullah Salih.

He said that hosting “Yemenis who were hit in the clashes in Yemen” was due to “humanitarian motives.

The official added that funding Al-Qa`idah and chopping of heads in public squares were decisions that are also due to humanitarian motives.

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Zio-Nazi scared and jittery, eh?


“The security forces’ fear of an infiltration of hostile elements into Israel appears to be so deep, that air traffic controllers recently sent two warplanes and two assault helicopters towards suspicious lights in the sky, which turned out to be… stars.  Weekly magazine Bamahane, published by the Israel Defense Forces, reports that on the evening after the ‘Nakba Day’ events two weeks ago, the control tower at the Air Force’s Haifa base spotted a number of unidentified aircraft.

Stars mistaken for enemy aircraft

Air Force control tower sends out two warplanes, two assault helicopters towards suspicious lights, which turn out to be Cassiopeia constellation

Reuven Weiss

The security forces’ fear of an infiltration of hostile elements intoIsrael appears to be so deep, that air traffic controllers recently sent two warplanes and two assault helicopters towards suspicious lights in the sky, which turned out to be… stars.  Weekly magazine Bamahane, published by the Israel Defense Forces, reports that on the evening after the ‘Nakba Day’ eventstwo weeks ago, the control tower at the Air Force’s Haifa base spotted a number of unidentified aircraft.

The Air Control Unit immediately sent out warplanes and assault helicopters to search for the intruders. As they were scanning the sky, the pilots began suspecting that the flashing lights mistaken as aircraft were in fact a Cassiopeia constellation formed by five bright stars in the northern skies.  One of the helicopters landed near the control towers, and after observing the threat with the air traffic controllers, the pilot confirmed that the suspicious “enemy aircraft” were indeed stars.  

The pilots told Bamahane that they handled the situation with the utmost care until it became clear that the State of Israel was not in any danger.

“Many things seem unnecessary in retrospect, but in real time it’s important not to take any risks,” one of them said.





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Bahrain dictatorship also oppresses Sunnis?


US media wanted so bad to promote the notion that opposition in Bahrain is purely sectarian–very much like the notions spread in vulgar Saudi media.  This may be the first one that argues otherwise.  “Emergency law was lifted Wednesday in Bahrain but Mohamed Albuflasa remains in jail. Albuflasa Imprisoned the first week of Bahrain’s demonstrations when the protest movement believed it might extract reforms from the island’s monarchy.

What makes him different from the other imprisoned demonstrators is his unique status as a conservative religious Sunni Muslim. Most of those detained as a result of the recent demonstrations are Shiites along with some secular Sunni politicians. Albuflasa is a follower of the fundamentalist Salafist school in Islam.

BAHRAIN: Sunni detainee still held under mysterious circumstances

Emergency law was lifted Wednesday in Bahrain but Mohamed Albuflasa remains in jail. Albuflasa Imprisoned the first week of Bahrain’s demonstrations when the protest movement believed it might extract reforms from the island’s monarchy.

What makes him different from the other imprisoned demonstrators is his unique status as a conservative religious Sunni Muslim. Most of those detained as a result of the recent demonstrations are Shiites along with some secular Sunni politicians. Albuflasa is a follower of the fundamentalist Salafist school in Islam.

The 34-year-old shared a belief with the protesters that the country needed greater democracy and reform, so he stood among the country’s Shiite majority on the first days of the protests at the Pearl Square roundabout.

But as he soon as he spoke of solidarity with the protesters, a security agency detained him. Now nearly four months later, he remains in detention. He had been brought before a military court with no access to a lawyer or witnesses in late February. At the time, his family believed Albuflasa was sentenced to two months in jail, but long afterwards he continues to be held.

Albuflasa called his wife a few days ago and told her he would no longer be allowed to make phone calls from jail and was starting a hunger strike in response, his brother Rashed told The Times.

Albuflasa’s family believes he is being punished because the government wants to reprimand Sunnis who had supported the pro-democracy demonstrations in Manama that were led by the island’s Shiite majority. “When Mohamed came to the roundabout, it was like a surprise and a big attack for the government. They thought, ‘How could one of our guys go to the roundabout?’ Now they are making him pay the consequences,” his brother Rashed said.

— Ned Parker in Baghdad

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Zionist puppet Al-Baradi`i grovels to Saudi Arabia


Muhammad  Al-Baradi`i gave an interview to a Saudi newspaper and he heaped praise on the C.I.A Saudi King, and even claimed that the king had sensed that there was a crisis between Arab regimes and their people. As for Saudi support for Zionist Mu-Barak, Al-Baradi`i said that he never heard of this.

لن تقوم نهضة عربية إلا بمصر والسعودية

البرادعي: الملك عبدالله استشعر أزمة الثقة بين الشعوب والحكام قبل وقوعها


العاهل السعودي لدى استقباله البرادعي (أرشيف)
العاهل السعودي لدى استقباله البرادعي (أرشيف) 

دبي – العربية.نتأكد محمد البرادعي، رئيس الجمعية الوطنية للتغيير بمصر، والمرشح للرئاسة، أن العاهل السعودي كان مدركاً منذ سنوات طويلة للمشاكل التي تعاني منها بعض الأنظمة العربية الآن ونرى نتائجها في تونس واليمن وليبيا بل وفي مصر. 

وقال إنه يرى المصداقية في الملك عبدالله والرؤية الثاقبة، ويرى فيه نموذجاً للقيم العربية الأصيلة.

وقال البرادعي في حوار مع جريدة “المدينة” السعودية: “لي تقدير كبير لخادم الحرمين الشريفين نابع من معرفتي وتحدثي إليه ومقابلتي له أكثر من مرة. والحق أنني رأيت فيه رؤية ثاقبة لجميع المشاكل والقضايا العربية ولمستقبل العرب.. إن لديه رؤية عربية واضحة لأن تكون الأمة متكاملة ومتضامنة في إطار من الثقة والتعاون”.

وتابع: “وأذكر له الكثير من عباراته التي تلخص جراح العرب وتشخص قضاياهم بموضوعية وصراحة متناهية.. ولن أنسى له كلماته في إحدى القمم باعتبارها أول تصريح علني لزعيم عربي عن خطورة فقدان أنظمة الحكم العربي للثقة بينها وبين شعوبها.. وعندما قابلته بعدها قلت له إنني سأستعير كلماتك القوية والواضحة على لسانكم وأرددها دائماً لأنني لو قلتها من جانبي سأتعرض لكثير من المشاكل”.

وأضاف “لقد كان مدركاً منذ سنوات طويلة للمشاكل التي تعاني منها بعض الأنظمة العربية الآن ونرى نتائجها في تونس واليمن وليبيا بل وفي مصر.. انني أرى المصداقية في هذا الرجل وأرى الرؤية الثاقبة فيه.. ولا أكون مبالغاً إذا قلت إنني على المستوى الشخصي أرى فيه نموذجاً للقيم العربية الأصيلة”.

ومضى يقول: “أما بالنسبة للعلاقات المصرية السعودية فأقول إذا كانت للعرب ركيزتان فهما مصر والمملكة ولن تقوم أي نهضة عربية إلا على هاتين الركيزتين.. ليس لأسباب مادية وإنما لأنهما دولتان ذاتا ثقل كبير.. وهما تكملان بعضهما البعض”.

وتابع: “حتى في هذه المرحلة الحرجة التي تمر بها مصر فإنني أعرف كم تسعى السعودية للدعم ليس لمجرد النخوة العربية وإنما لأن مصر لا تستطيع العيش دون السعودية والعكس صحيح”.

وقال البرادعي إن مصر والسعودية ركيزتا العالم العربي، مبيناً أنه إذا كانت للعرب ركيزتان فهما مصر والمملكة، ولن تقوم أي نهضة عربية إلا على هاتين الركيزتين، وأن ذلك ليس لأسباب مادية وإنما لأنهما دولتان ذاتا ثقل كبير، وتكملان بعضهما البعض.

وأضاف البرادعي أنه حتى في هذه المرحلة الحرجة التي تمر بها مصر، فإنه يعرف كم تسعى السعودية لدعم مصر، مشيراً إلى أن ذلك ليس لمجرد النخوة العربية، وإنما لأن مصر لا تستطيع العيش دون السعودية والعكس صحيح.

وحول قرار ترشيحه للرئاسة قال البرادعي إن القرار أصبح جدياً بعد الثورة مباشرة، بينما كان الهدف قبل الثورة هو التغيير، حيث لم يكن من اللائق أن تصل مصر إلى ما وصلت إليه نتيجة سوء الإدارة وفساد الحكم.

وأشار إلى أنه لم يكن يعلم بمدى الفساد المستشري في مصر إلا بعد الثورة حيث تكشفت الأمور، موضحاً أنه كان منذ البداية يعمل بين الشباب بصورة مباشرة أحياناً وغير مباشرة في أحيان أخرى، وأن رهانه كان دائماً على الشباب.

وأضاف “أن التغيير الذي ننشده هو تغيير سلمي ثم حدثت الثورة وجاء ممثلو الشباب وطلبوا مني أن نكمل معاً ما بدأناه قبل الثورة”.

وقال البرادعي إن التطور السياسي المصري لا بد أن يتم بالتدريج ودون تسرع، مستشهداً بتجارب مماثلة في إندونيسيا وشرق أوروبا وأمريكا اللاتينية، بحيث نلتف جميعاً حول مجموعة من المبادئ والقيم التي سنعيش معها وبها في المستقبل، وهذا لا يتأتى إلا من خلال دستور جديد للبلاد يحظى باتفاقنا جميعاً عليه باختلاف توجهاتنا وأيديولوجياتنا، ثم نعطي الأحزاب الجديدة الفرصة كي تنافس بجدية في ملعب سياسي متساو.

وأبان البرادعي أن مخلفات النظام القديم في عدم القدرة على توحيد الصفوف ما زالت قائمة، وأن كل المرشحين يتفقون معه في هذا الطرح، وكذا الشباب الذين رفضوا المشاركة في الحوار القائم، لأنهم جميعاً يرون أن خطة الطريق غير واضحة، وأنه ما زالت هناك محاكم عسكرية.

ورأى البرادعي أن الخيار الأنسب لمصر حالياً أن يشكل مجلس رئاسي يحكم لعامين، وأشار إلى تجارب قامت بها دول عديدة، مثل سلوفينيا وحققت نجاحاً كبيراً، بحيث ينشأ مجلس رئاسي يشارك فيه المجلس العسكري مع عدد من المدنيين لإدارة المرحلة الانتقالية، وكتابة الدستور والإشراف على الانتخابات، لكن هذا الطرح لم يجد ترحيباً من جانب المجلس العسكري.

Posted in EgyptComments Off on Zionist puppet Al-Baradi`i grovels to Saudi Arabia

Egypt: The same Zionist’s Tantawi and the siege of Gaza


“NO SOONER had Egypt lowered the drawbridge at Rafah, letting the people of the Gaza Strip cross into Egypt and from there to the rest of the world, than its ruling military council began winding it up again. On May 31st Egypt’s transitional government imposed a quota of no more than 400 passengers a day, insisted that they register the day before they cross, and declared that it was reinstating a blacklist of 5,000 Gazans who would not, for security reasons, be allowed to come over.

This cut the flow to little more than when Hosni Mubarak, who was ousted as president in February, co-operated with Israel to keep Gaza under siege.  After a brief bout of jubilation at the restoration of the freedom to travel, the cutback brought back the Gazans’ old sense of imprisonment. Busloads of passengers who had waited all day to cross into Egypt trundled back, defeated, their bags in tow. Among them was a couple in their 60s trying to get medical treatment in Egypt; a 40-year-old who had waited 16 years to see his mother in Cairo; and a Palestinian in a brown Islamic robe trying to return to his home in Libya’s eastern town, Darna, which has a reputation as a jihadist haunt. To his fury, the Egyptian authorities let his brother with a shorter beard enter.”

The Gaza Strip

Let (some of) those Palestinians out

The Egyptians have opened their border with Gaza—with restrictions

NO SOONER had Egypt lowered the drawbridge at Rafah, letting the people of the Gaza Strip cross into Egypt and from there to the rest of the world, than its ruling military council began winding it up again. On May 31st Egypt’s transitional government imposed a quota of no more than 400 passengers a day, insisted that they register the day before they cross, and declared that it was reinstating a blacklist of 5,000 Gazans who would not, for security reasons, be allowed to come over. This cut the flow to little more than when Hosni Mubarak, who was ousted as president in February, co-operated with Israel to keep Gaza under siege.

After a brief bout of jubilation at the restoration of the freedom to travel, the cutback brought back the Gazans’ old sense of imprisonment. Busloads of passengers who had waited all day to cross into Egypt trundled back, defeated, their bags in tow. Among them was a couple in their 60s trying to get medical treatment in Egypt; a 40-year-old who had waited 16 years to see his mother in Cairo; and a Palestinian in a brown Islamic robe trying to return to his home in Libya’s eastern town, Darna, which has a reputation as a jihadist haunt. To his fury, the Egyptian authorities let his brother with a shorter beard enter.

Egyptian officials say they could further lift the restrictions if only the Palestinians’ two main factions, Hamas and Fatah, would form a unity government as recently agreed under Egyptian mediation. Still, the reopening, however controlled, illustrates the warming of relations between Palestine and the new Egypt. Travel agents in Gaza say people have asked about package holidays in Egypt’s Sinai desert. Palestinian businessmen are preparing to head for trade fairs in China. And unemployed Gazans are dreaming of getting jobs abroad.

The bottom line is that Gazans can now enter Egypt without visas—except for men aged between 18 and 40. And even they may be let in, if accompanied by wives or mothers.

Posted in EgyptComments Off on Egypt: The same Zionist’s Tantawi and the siege of Gaza

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