Archive | July 15th, 2011

A. Loewenstein Online Newsletter


Our glorious wars are increasingly privatised

Posted: 14 Jul 2011

Governments know this and embrace it. As our “brave boys” come home from war zones, mercenaries replace them. Accountability?What’s that?

With U.S. and Western military forces planning to gradually withdraw their troops from Iraq and Afghanistan, there will be an increasing demand for private military contractors to provide security in both politically-troubled countries.

As a result, the number of military contractors is set to reach 5,500 in Iraq alone, according to a U.N. Working Group on Mercenaries, prompting demands for a specific international instrument to regulate their activities.

The members of the Working Group have stressed the importance of establishing international guidelines and legislation when dealing with Private Military and Security Companies (PMSCs).

Three of the five members of the Working Group on Mercenaries held a press conference Friday to discuss new legislation and the need for an international instrument to regulate PMSCs.

The Working Group has already submitted legislation on the subject, to the General Assembly and the U.N. Human Rights Council. The issue is settling on a set of regulations that countries will agree on in a timely manner.

Established in July 2005, the Working Group keeps track of mercenaries and mercenary-related activities. Its mandate is to make suggestions to protect human rights in the face of such activities.

José Luis Gómez del Prado, chair of the Working Group, spoke of necessary change, and participation of member states.

Ahmadinejad’s Iran looking to isolate itself bit by bit

Posted: 14 Jul 2011

What a paranoid and fundamentalist regime looks like:

Iran has stepped up online censorship by upgrading the filtering system that enables the Islamic regime to block access to thousands of websites it deems inappropriate for Iranian users.

The move comes one month after the United States announced plans to launch new services facilitating internet access and mobile phone communications in countries with tight controls on freedom of speech, a decision that infuriated Tehran’s regime and prompted harsh reactions from several Iranian officials.

The upgrade had at first appeared as a relaxation of the censorship machine. Iran’s online community said on Monday that filtering was temporarily lifted for the entire country, giving users access to banned websites such as Twitter and Facebook. But hopes for an end to censorship were dashed when news agencies reported later in the day that the respite was due to the process of making the upgrade.

Despite the filtering, many Iranians access blocked addresses with help from proxy websites or virtual private network (VPN) services. The upgrade is aimed at stopping users bypassing censorship.

More than 5 million websites are filtered in Iran. Media organisations including the Guardian, BBC and CNN are blocked, though access to the New York Times website is allowed. On Google, the Farsi equivalents for words such as “condom”, “sex”, “lesbian” and “anti-filtering” are filtered out.

Iran is believed to be worried about the influence of the internet and especially social networking websites as pro-democracy activists across the Middle East use them to promote and publicise their movements.

Iran’s semi-official Fars news agency quoted an unnamed official as saying: “The ministry of communications and information technology is strengthening the filtering system and recent disruptions were the result of this upgrade.”

At the same time, Nasimonline.ir, an agency that publishes short Twitter-style bursts of news, said it had received information that “a new filtering system that targets Google and Yahoo search engines” had been installed and tested on Monday.

“I think that the new upgrade in the filtering system is a signal from Iran that the regime is prepared to stop any attempt by the US to challenge the country’s online censorship,” said an Iranian who spoke to the Guardian by phone from Tehran on condition of anonymity.

Jewish rule 75421

Posted: 13 Jul 2011

Confused Jew (aren’t we all?) John Safran:

There’s this unspoken thing among Jews ‘that no matter whether you’re kosher or not, you always ask for kosher meals on aircraft to help keep the demand up.

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Yisrael Beiteinu vows ‘revenge’ on Naziyahu for opposition to investigating NGOs

NOVANEWS

Cracks appear in the governing coalition after the prime minister announces he will not enforce party discipline when voting on investigative committees bill.

Members of Yisrael Beiteinu warned Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that their ‘revenge was on its way’ after the latter announced that he opposes the establishment of parliamentary committees to investigate human rights organizations.

Contradicting the explicit request of Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman to enforce coalition discipline for the vote to establish the investigative committees, Netanyahu said on Thursday, “We don’t need investigations in the Knesset, we don’t need an investigative committee.”

Netanyahu added, “There are those that don’t agree, and therefore I will grant them the ability to vote freely.” In a speech to a conference of Jewish communities in the Former Soviet Union, Netanyahu said he would vote against the proposal. He further added that he would “defend the Supreme Court and protect its power.”

Yisrael Beiteinu MK Faina Kirschenbaum, who sponsored the bill to establish a parliamentary committee to investigate “organizations that harm the IDF and its soldiers,” responded, saying that “the struggle against the organizations that directly or indirectly support terror and harm IDF soldiers and Israel’s right to defend itself is necessary for Israel’s security and its very existence.”

“It’s a shame that the heads of Likud sacrifice essential security interests, their obligations to voters, and national values, in order to satisfy the media and leftist groups,” she added.

Yisrael Beiteinu MK Moshe Matalon responded to Netanyahu’s comments on Thursday night, saying that coalition discipline is a two-way street. He said that in response, Yisrael Beiteinu is liable to demand the ability to vote freely on issues that are important to it, including making the conditions for women to acquire exemptions from the army more strict, and other issues.

Lieberman said on Wednesday, “If the coalition does not decide to apply coalition discipline on the vote to establish the committees, we will view this as an attack on Yisrael Beiteinu. Just as coalition discipline was applied in the case of the Boycott Law, there must be the same procedure concerning the parliamentary investigative committees.”

The bill’s chances of passing a vote in the Knesset are not high after the prime minister announced that he would release MKs from coalition discipline months ago, when it was revealed that some Likud ministers and members of Knesset do not intend to support it.

Lieberman and Likud MK Danny Danon announced on Tuesday the renewal of the proposal to establish parliamentary committees to investigate human rights organizations in Israel. Knesset sources said on Wednesday that the reason for the renewed efforts to promote the investigative committees bill was ‘a battle for prestige’ between Yisrael Beiteinu and the Likud in the wake of the passage of the Likud MK Ze’ev Elkin’s Boycott Law.

Lieberman threatened that Yisrael Beiteinu would not feel compelled to comply with coalition discipline on laws that it did not agree with from here on out. He made these comments in reaction to the Atzmaut Party’s decision to be absent from the Knesset floor during the vote on the Boycott Law.

“The coalition decided on coalition discipline, but there’s on faction that decides that it will not obey that discipline. In this situation, the coalition cannot demand of us to be disciplined,” said Lieberman. “If someone exempts himself from a law, he needs to realize that there are wide-ranging consequences.”

Lieberman’s first move following the development was to announce Yisrael Beiteinu’s intention to support Kadima MK Dalia Itzik’s bill that would maintain the retirement age for women at 62, in opposition to the government’s official position.

“We made it very clear that we will object to any change in the retirement age,” Lieberman said. “What should have happened first was that the senior coalition partner (Yisrael Beiteinu) should have been consulted before announcing a decision in the matter.”

After the foreign minister’s announcement, the coalition managers folded and announcement that it would allow a free vote on the bill, which contradicts its own earlier decision.

Although Lieberman was absent for the vote on the Boycott Law Tuesday, but he had supported it. “I had no other choice but to be with the President of Greece during the vote,” the foreign minister said. “If I would have been asked to dance the Zorba, I would have done it, at that point. The price was worth it.”

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Sharia law no threat to the U.S.

NOVANEWS

The Oakland Press

Michigan, like all other states, is governed by the U.S. Constitution and its state constitution, which makes the idea of “creeping Sharia” a straw man argument that pundits and 2012 presidential hopefuls use to rabble rouse among voters.

Some have pointed to the recent controversies in Dearborn as proof of this trend: The arrest of a few Christian missionaries at a Dearborn festival for allegedly disturbing the peace last year and the latest Terry Jones episode. Jones, like the Act 17 Apologetics protesters, were arrested for allegedly breaching Michigan laws, not Islamic law.

Even if they felt wrongly accused, our legal system has mechanisms for rectifying this. Nonetheless, a growing number of states have gone so far as to propose a ban on the use of Sharia in state courts. This idea of “creeping Sharia” is really just a campaign of fear mongering.

The American public should be made aware of several things: First, for Muslims, the Sharia is the word for God’s own idea of how humans should conduct themselves. Living according to the Sharia is to follow certain guidelines of properly maintaining one’s relationships with God and with other people.

These guidelines are derived from the Quran, the example of the Prophet Mohammed, and expanded upon by a vast legal tradition to make up what can be broadly referred to as Islamic Law. The aims of Sharia are to preserve the faith, life, posterity, wealth and the reason of an individual. For the average Muslim, Sharia is thus manifested by praying, giving charity and a host of other spiritually beneficial personal acts, anything that would contradict federal and state constitutions has never been advocated.

Second, interpreting the guidelines has always been a pluralistic endeavor. Muslims are compelled to follow the Sharia, but there is no one code for them to follow. When interpreting the Sharia, Muslims generally refer to the opinions of religious scholars, who go through intense training in religious sources and interpretive theories. How can the Sharia be implemented in the U.S. when it has no single code, no single human authority and a wealth of interpretive methods? This is extremely difficult for even Muslim-majority nations.

Sharia is no more of a threat to the U.S. than are other religious laws. In the case of Dearborn, to argue that Jones or other missionaries were arrested according to Sharia propagates the false idea of Islamic intolerance. While there are plenty of examples of conflict between virtually all religions, we cannot ignore or minimize their long histories of interfaith cooperation. The Quran acknowledges the necessary plurality of religions: “We have assigned a law and a path to each of you. If God had so willed, he would have made you one community, but He wanted to test you through that which He has given you, so race to do good” (5:48).

The Constitution of Medina 1 (622 CE), among the first legislative documents of Islam, ratified by Mohammed himself, guaranteed protection to Jews, Christians and other religious minorities, as well as the right to establish their own religious courts, as long as they paid their taxes and were not openly subversive.

The misuse of the word Sharia perpetuates the imagined dichotomy between “Islamic” and “American.” We can point to the recent “birther” issue as an example of the “more American than thou” strategy of campaign politics.

There is no threat of Islamization of the U.S. legal system, but some politicians know that to piggy-back on the Sharia scare craze and manipulate the emotions surrounding this non-issue will score political points.  It might be better for their campaigns if they focus on the real problems facing this nation.

Millie Wright, Ann Arbor, is an Islamic Studies candidate at the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor and a CAIR-Michigan intern.

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Having left Amman

NOVANEWS

Now that I’ve left Amman, a nice tidbit: a prominent journalist there told me that when journalists publish anything mildly critical of the government, they get death-threats from anonymous callers (Sometimes such attacks aren’t even that anonymous). Of course all of their phones are tapped, too — he indicated that he kept his phone in his rear pocket, where the sound pick-up would be muffled. He also suggested that Arab governments love unrest and resistance in Palestine, because it diverts their populace’s attention from domestic dictatorship to the far worse repression west of the Jordan, adding that their populations postpone domestic social struggle under the premise that the Palestinians have it far worse.

So from his and others’ perspectives, the worst thing for the government  would be a “permanent” settlement, because then problems that are postponed under politics-as-usual would finally have to be dealt with. Another friend added that a lot of the commerce in Jordan is owned by Palestinians. What would happen if there were to be a just settlement? Would the Palestinian population repatriate its resources to Palestine? The treadmill peace process suits the monarchy quite well.

Also the Amman airport, whose replacement is incidentally being built by a French company, which will get to operate it for 10 years, is also using retinal scanners for departees, which the US doesn’t do, at least for nationals or under normal circumstances. US tax dollars, only the best!

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Zionist hacker blackmails 100 US girls?

NOVANEWS

American-Zionist cooperation leads to arrest of central IsraHell man on suspicion of blackmailing some 100 US girls; suspect forced victims to perform indecent acts on their webcams and then blackmailed them

A central IsraHell resident in his 20s was detained on suspicion of hacking the computers of US girls and threatening to circulate their intimate photos, unless they perform indecent acts on their webcam.

The story was cleared for publication Thursday.

Almost 100 girls aged 12 to 17 were allegedly victimized by the suspect. He is believed to have hacked their computers, seeking embarrassing photographs and later approaching them on online social networks and threatening them.

The man allegedly told the girls that should they fail to comply with his requests, he would circulate the photos among their acquaintances and relatives, and at their schools.

The girls, who were alarmed by the threats, complied with the suspect’s demands.

US may seek extradition

A complaint about the man’s actions was relayed several weeks ago by US authorities to the office of Itzik Shopen, who heads the computer crimes department in the elite Lahav 433 unit of the IsraHell Police.

The Americans had no information about the suspect’s identity or the number of victims, but IsraHelli investigators used the details handed over from the US to launch an investigation and were able to trace the man.

The suspect was arrested at the beginning of the week and his remand was extended until Friday. IsraHelli officials are now awaiting instructions from the US Administration, which may seek the man’s extradition in order to indict him in America. Police officials say that the Americans intend to indict him as though he physically committed the indecent acts, even though there was no physical contact between him and the victims.

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March in Jerusalem in support of Palestinian independence

NOVANEWS

Organizers say thousands expected to take part in Friday’s ‘March for Independence,’ the first such Jewish-Arab event in 20 years.

Haaretz

Thousands of Israelis and Palestinians are expected to take part in a march on Friday, titled ‘March for Independence’ calling for the recognition of a Palestinian state.

The organizers of the march said that the recognition of Palestine as an independent state should come before negotiations, and not as a result.

The event represents a rare cooperation between the left-wing Solidarity movement and the popular committees of East Jerusalem. The organizers claim that this is the first Jewish-Arab event of its kind to be held in Jerusalem since 1991.

The march will begin in Jaffa Gate and end in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood, the opposite route taken by right-wing activists during Jerusalem Day last month.

The event is coordinated with the police, and the organizers have pledged to prevent any violence from breaking out, despite right-wing counter-protests expected to take place.

“After years of Israel speaking about peace and building settlements, checkpoints, walls and outposts, the young generations from both sides are starting to understand that they are being duped,” said Hillel Ben Sasson from the Sheikh Jarrah Solidarity Movement.
He added that “in Jerusalem of all places, the heart of the conflict,

Israelis and Palestinians will march together calling for independence and for an end to the running amok of the Netanyahu government, which is leading us to a political abyss.”

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A Murdoch-produced scandal

NOVANEWS

By Kourosh Ziabari

 

 

The scandalous closure of the “News of the World” tabloid after 168 years of publication once again demonstrated the Western media’s lack of adherence to codes of ethics and morality in journalism and showed to the international community that what is advertised as the freedom of speech in the West is nothing but unrestrained violation of the privacy of innocent citizens and betrayal to the common values of a civil society.

The “News of the World” was voluntarily closed down on July 10, 2011 after it was revealed that the staff and workers at the magazine had been clandestinely hacking the phone conversations of a number of high-ranking public figures in the UK including politicians, members of Royal Household and also ordinary citizens for many years. This unprecedented incident hugely damaged the reputation of the Zionist media mogul Rupert Murdoch and his News Corporation and stirred a widespread controversy all over the UK.

Controversy around the News of the World, a subsidiary of Murdoch’s News Corporation originally started in August 2006, when the Metropolitan Police of the UK sued Clive Goodman, the magazine’s royal editor, and Glenn Mulcaire, a close associate of Goodman and a private investigator for the allegation that they intercepted voicemail messages left for the cell phones of the members of Royal Family. They were both pleaded guilty and sentenced to prison in 2007. However, the allegations of phone hacking continued in the subsequent years and several public figures were targeted by the interceptions. In February 2010, The Guardian revealed that two UK telecommunication companies complained that over a hundred of their customers’ phone calls and voicemail messages were hacked by unknown sources; however, independent reports and Scotland Yard’s inquiry show that more than 4,000 people have been victimized by the phone hacking affair.

According to the Vancouver Sun, the News Corporation officials are facing demands to appear before the House of Commons “to answer allegations that they suppressed evidence of widespread illegal activity at the News of the World. The company is under mounting scrutiny following revelations that an internal inquiry in 2007 gathered “smoking gun” emails showing that several of its journalists were hacking mobile phones and making payments to police officers.”

As said by the report published on the Vancouver Sun’s July 11 issue, the News of the World editors and staff writers have been involved in stealing the British citizens’ email correspondences and phone conversations and paying bribes to the police officers since almost four years ago, but the evidence indicating these criminal activities have been seized by the Scotland Yard a few weeks ago.

“The evidence was only passed to the police last month, four years after it was collected. During that time, James Murdoch, European chief executive of News International, personally authorized at least one substantial settlement payment to a victim of phone hacking, in exchange for signing a gagging clause,” the report added.

The newspapers and news agencies have revealed that James Murdoch, the son of Zionist media mogul Rupert Murdoch and the European chief executive of News International has been personally involved in several cases of phone hacking and paid bribes to a number of victims to convince them not to publicize the matter in the media and withdraw their complaints from the national courts.

Charlotte Harris of the law firm Mishcon de Reya, which represents several of the victims seeking damages from the News of the World believe that the British tabloid will be sentenced to pay at least £20m to those whose privacy has been violated; however, according to some reports, the total amount of the compensation to be paid by the News of the World can reach to £40m.

According to The Economist, “privacy law in Britain is a late arrival, derived mainly from the European Convention on Human Rights and built up through judicial interpretation. The size of the awards against the News of the World will depend on the view taken by Sir Geoffrey Vos, a High Court judge, of the actual damage to hacking victims, as well as of the intrusion itself, when he hears test cases later this year.”

Now the whole world cautiously follows the developments in the UK to see what actions will be taken by the government to bring justice to those who have been flagrantly violating the privacy of British citizens for so many years. Unquestionably, the phone hacking scandal is not a trivial matter to be neglected irresponsibly. What has taken place is that the most private information and communications of British citizens, from the most high-ranking members of the Royal Family to the most ordinary citizen working in a restaurant have been mischievously and illegally monitored and collected by the staff and personnel of a magazine which is owned by a Zionist billionaire and media mogul. This is not something which can be gotten away with recklessly.

Although it is a conventional and familiar tradition in the Western countries such as the United Kingdom or the United States to listen in the phone communications or electronic correspondences of citizens on baseless allegations such as precluding terrorist activities, the NoW affair is a particular case as it implicates journalists and reporters who are supposed to be the trustees of people in the society, but unfortunately, these trustees have become traitors and trampled the principles of morality and decency underfoot.

Now, it’s the responsibility of Murdoch and his men to explain to the public opinion the reasons why they stigmatized the reputation of thousands of people and stole their personal information for commercial purposes. Even their apologizing to the victims of phone hacking whose valuable personal information and private communications have been stolen cannot appease the pains of these victims. It’s for sure that the history will not forgive Murdoch and NoW staff for this disgustful and loathsome offense.

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IsraHell’s Knesset Passes Boycott Prohibition Bill

NOVANEWS
by Stephen Lendman

 

Israeli outrages never quit. Besides lawlessly stealing Palestine, slaughtering and dispossessing its people, occupying its remaining 22% for over 44 years, blockading Gaza, committing high-seas piracy and murder to keep out humanitarian aid, and arresting European and other human rights advocates showing up to protest, another example highlights Israel’s rogue state status.

On July 11, Haaretz writer Jonathan Lis headlined, “Israel set to vote on controversial law penalizing boycotters,” saying:

Israel’s “controversial ‘Boycott Bill’ is expected to come up for its second and third (Knesset) votes” today, despite Netanyahu earlier wanting it delayed, expected criticism from Knesset Legal Advisor Eyal Yinon, and opponents holding a protest press conference.

A same day Lis update headlined, “Israel passes law banning calls for boycott,” saying:

Despite vocal opposition, the bill passed 47 – 38, criminalizing boycott supporters. Provisions include letting boycott targets sue “without having to prove they sustained damage. The court will then decide how much compensation” they’re due. Another provision prohibits boycott supporters (people and companies) from “bid(ding) in government tenders.”

Opponents call the bill outrageous, shameful and lawless. Kadima’s spokesman said:

“Netanyahu has crossed a red line of political foolishness today and national irresponsibility, knowing the meaning of the law and its severity, while giving in to the extreme right that is taking over the Likkud.”

In fact, Israel increasingly resembles a fascist police state, endangering anyone challenging state policies.

In response, Peace Now opened a Facebook page, calling for settlement products, services and activities to be boycotted. A national campaign will follow.

On February 15, the Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI) called the measure “one of the most concerning (ever) anti-democratic propositions….advanced in the Israeli parliament.”

Despite strong opposition from MKs, ministry legal advisers, NGO’s, and others, the Knesset’s Constitution Committee discussed it on February 23.

“The Prohibition on Instituting a Boycott” bill passed a preliminary July 2010 vote. It then went to a Knesset plenary first vote, on to committee, and finally to another two up or down votes, begun July 11.

At issue is prohibiting boycotting Israeli products, persons and activities connected to Israel and Israeli settlements. Moreover, the bill is politically motivated and broad, including Section 2 stipulating:

“It is prohibited to initiate a boycott of the state of Israel, to encourage participation in a boycott, or to provide assistance or information with the purpose of promoting a boycott.”

The measure aims mainly at Israeli citizens (including Arabs) and residents involved in advocating boycotts of Israeli or settlement-related goods, services and/or activities, including cultural ones.

Henceforth, persons accused of advocating or participating in boycotts will be subject to civil and criminal prosecutions. ACRI and other human rights groups warned about a broad range of affected activities, including publishing Israeli and settlement-related human rights violations, refusing to travel to settlements or do business with them, and publicly supporting consumer boycotts of their products and services.

Last winter, over 40 Israeli organizations petitioned against the bill, calling it “a dangerous piece of legislation, which tramples on basic rights, first and foremost among them the rights to freedom of expression, protest and assembly.”

More recently, 53 Israeli human and civil rights organizations wrote Knesset Speaker MK Reuven Rivlin, expressing opposition to the bill. Included were ACRI, B’Tselem, Gisha, Amnesty Israel, Physicians for Human Rights/Israel, Rabbis for Human Rights, Adalah, Yesh Din, Hotline for Migrant Workers, and the Public Committee Against Torture in Israel.

Even anti-boycott groups signed it, united in believing this type activity is “a civilian, nonviolent and legitimate tool to express opinion and advance social and political change.”

The bill’s original version included foreign citizens, prohibited from entering and conducting business in Israel for up to 10 years if found guilty. Now removed also was a provision permitting Israel to withhold debts owed other states supporting boycotts, and banning them from doing business in Israel.

ACRI calls boycotts a legitimate tool, commonplace in Israel for many reasons. Criminalizing it “would be unprecedented in any democratic regime. People may find a specific call for boycott irritating and even offensive, yet this is the real test of” free expression, protecting opposition opinions.

Israel’s bill also broadens the notion of boycotts to silence and persecute anti-occupation supporters. As a result, “(w)e are once again witnessing the trampling of rights at the hands of the current political majority.”

Last February, ACRI’s Executive Director, Hagai El-Ad said:

“Those sponsoring this anti-democratic bill claim its goal is to protect Israel from delegitimization. The truth is that this law will only generate more delegitimization because it will truly turn Israel into a far weaker democracy, where supporting any anti-occupation act will be considered unlawful.”

“No other democracy has ever advanced an anti-boycott law that intentionally provides a loose definition for what supporting a boycott means and turns a legal, nonviolent tool of protest into a felony, so as to achieve a greater chilling effect on society.” It also underscores Israel’s pariah status, advancing it one repressive bill and policy at a time.

On June 27, ACRI’s El Ad commented on a “more extended and harmful version of the” bill, approved for final reading, saying:

“Why should Israeli citizens be allowed to boycott Israeli cottage cheese, as we have heard and seen in recent weeks, but be barred from boycotting the occupation?”

The updated bill includes sanctions against NGOs and public companies, including stripping their tax exemptions and eligibility for benefits other laws afford. Even funds or property owed Palestinians from other “laws, agreements or governmental decisions” will be lost.

The bill allegedly distinguishes between “legitimate” Israeli criticism and delegitimizing other forms, Israel deciding which is which, some examples including:

  • – endorsing the global BDS movement;

  • – supporting universal jurisdiction to prosecute Israeli war criminals and human rights violators abroad; and

  • – refusing to recognize Israel’s status as a democratic Jewish state.

It also expects Palestinians and Israeli Arabs to accept their lost land, other property, and resources, while buying settlement products and services from Israelis who robbed them.

Moreover, EU 1995 and 1997 Israeli and PLO agreements respectively make member states Prohibition Bill violators for defining Israel as its own territory, and Palestine as the West Bank and Gaza.

EU Advocate General Pedro Cruz Villalon, in fact, believes the UN’s 1947 petition plan defined Israel’s borders, giving Jews 56% of the land, Palestinians 42%, the other 2% (including Jerusalem) under internationalized trusteeship.

Israel’s Boycott Bill criminalizes support for these definitions and advocacy if enforcement follows. As a result, European Parliament members expressed support for others opposed to this measure.

Nonetheless, Haaretz writer Lis first said “(t)he governing coalition is expected to” back it. Indeed they have.

At the same time, Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin decided Sunday to consider postponing a Knesset vote if Legal Advisor Yinon’s Monday criticism includes disturbing reasons to do so.

Now out, he said parts of the measure edge toward “illegality and perhaps beyond,” warning also that the bill “damages the core of freedom of expression in Israel.”

Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz advised changing it in committee, but supports the law in principle, saying it doesn’t obstruct free expression when, in fact, it does grievously.

Nonetheless, Knesset debate considered and passed it. Bill sponsor MK Ze’ev Elkin expected passage because Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein approved the current version and agreed to defend it in Israel’s High Court of Justice.

On July 11, extremist Knesset members compounded opposition outrage by letting demagogic hate-monger Glenn Beck address the Aliyah and Absorption Committee, saying he showed up “to speak the truth” about efforts to delegitimize Israel.

He also claimed PA demands exacerbate anti-Semitism that’s “going through the roof,” when American and European studies show it in steep decline. Notably, he once told his Fox News viewers:

“I say on the air all the time. If you take what I say as gospel, you’re an idiot.”

So are extremist MKs who invited him, making themselves resemble Beck clones.

The Bill’s English Translation Text

Proposed Bill to Prevent Harm to the State of Israel by Means of Boycott

27 June 2011

Definition:

1. In this bill, “a boycott against the State of Israel” – deliberately avoiding economic, cultural or academic ties with another person or another factor only because of his ties with the State of Israel, one of its institutions or an area under its control, in such a way that may cause economic, cultural or academic damage.

Boycott – a civil wrong:

A. Knowingly publishing a public call for a boycott against the State of Israel will be considered a civil wrong to which the civil tort law [new version] applies, if according to the content and circumstances of the publication there is reasonable probability that the call will bring about a boycott and he who published the call was aware of this possibility.

B. In regards to clause 62 [A] of the civil tort law [new version], he who causes a binding legal agreement to be breached by calling for a boycott against the State of Israel will not be viewed as someone who operated with sufficient justification.

C. If the court will find that an wrong according to this law was deliberately carried out, it will be authorized to compel the person who did the wrongdoing to pay damages that are not dependent on the damage (in this clause – damages, for example); in calculating the sum of the damages for example, the court will take into consideration, among other things, the circumstances under which the wrong was carried out, its severity and its extent.

Regulations pertaining to limitation on participation in tenders:

3. The Finance Minister is authorized, with the agreement of the Justice Minister and the approval of the Knesset’s Constitution, Law and Justice Committee, to set the regulations of this matter [special cases where it will be limited] and to limit the participation of he who knowingly published a public call for a boycott against the State of Israel, or who committed to take part in a boycott, in a tender that must to be carried out according to legislation.

Regulations pertaining to the suspension of benefits

A. The Finance Minister, with the approval of the Justice Minister, may decide in the case of someone who knowingly published a public call for a boycott against the State of Israel or committed to take part in a boycott [in special cases] that –

1. He will not be considered a public institution as to clause 9 (2) of the income tax ordinance;

2. He will not be eligible for receiving money from the council of sports gambling according to clause 9 of the law regulating sports gambling, 1967;

3. He will not be considered a public institution as far as receiving support according to clause 3(A) of the budget foundations law, 1985;

4. He will not be subject to the orders of the guaranteeing law on behalf of the state, 1958

5. He will not be eligible to enjoy benefits given according to the law to encourage capital investment, 1959, and according to the law to encourage research and development in industry, 1984.

B. Putting into practice the authority of the Finance Minister according to small clause (A)(2) will be carried out with the approval of the Sports Minister. Putting into practice the authority of the Finance Minister according to small clause (A)(3) will be carried out with the approval of the minister that the government had decided is responsible for the budget as is stated in paragraph (2) of the definition of who is “responsible for the budget clause” within the budget foundations law, 1985. Putting into practice the authority of the Finance Minister according to small clause (5) will be carried out with the approval of the Minister of Industry, Trade and Labor.

Implementation

The Minister of Justice is appointed to implement this law.

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The IsraHelli Jewish Theocracy Stomps on Democracy With a Ban on Boycotts

NOVANEWS
by Bob Johnson

Judea declares war on Germany

Less than two months after Adolf Hitler was made German chancellor the international Jewish community started a boycott of all German goods as part of their “war on Germany.” Six years latter Europe was at war and two years after that the world was at war.

When Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu on May 24th spoke to the “U.S.” Congress which Israel has bought and paid for through the Israeli lobby, he bragged about how Israel is a democracy. Yesterday the Israeli Knesset has given the world yet another example of the lie that Israel is a democracy when it passed a new law which makes boycotts against the Jewish state and its illegal settlements on Palestinian lands illegal. Any person or organization that takes part in a boycott of Israel or any of its many illegal Jewish settlements can be sued by Israelis and Israeli businesses for nearly $10,000.00 without having to show damages they suffered.

One Knesset member, a Jew, Alex Miller, is using the new anti-free speech law to silence another Knesset member, an Arab-Israeli, Ahmed Tibi. Tibi called for a boycott of the illegal Israeli settlement of Ariel. Miller lives in the illegal Jewish settlement of Ariel.

One reason Israel is so keen to stop all boycotts of Israel and its illegal Jewish settlements could be because they themselves know the potential power of a boycott. The March 24, 1933 edition of the British newspaper The Daily Express, pictured below with the headline “Judea Declares War on Germany,” contained another front page article, “Boycott of German Goods.” (A great well documented book about WWII is Pat Buchanan’s Churchill, Hitler and the Unnecessary War: How Britain Lost Its Empire and the West Lost the World.) As Americans we know what happens when Judea/Israel calls for war – their puppets in the White House and Congress make it a horrible reality as happened in Iraq. And Israel is not done with us yet as there is still Iran and Syria to be dealt with. With “U.S.” Senators such as Democrat Chuck Schumer believing they are on a mission from God to protect Israel, the future for the U.S. military looks like it will be very busy and bloody indeed!

Perhaps it’s time to take the advice of the Deist and Founding Father George Washington. He wrote in a letter to Gouverneur Morris , “My policy has been, and will continue to be, while I have the honor to remain in the administration of the government, to be upon friendly terms with, but independent of, all the nations of the earth. To share in the broils of none.”

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Sensor Network Detects Nuclear Blasts Worldwide

NOVANEWS

 

Cheryl Pellerin

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, July 12, 2011 – At any time of the day or night, on any day of the year, if a nuclear device explodes anywhere on Earth, a Defense Department network established in 1947 will know about it.

That was the year Army Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower directed the Army Air Corps to develop such a capability, and the U.S. Atomic Energy Detection System has evolved over 64 years into a one-of-a-kind global web of sensors that see, feel, hear and sniff out nuclear explosions that occur under land or sea, in the atmosphere or in space.

The Air Force detection system and the job of monitoring three nuclear treaties — the 1963 Limited Test Ban Treaty, the 1974 Threshold Test Ban Treaty and the 1976 Peaceful Nuclear Explosions Treaty — in 1980 became a responsibility of the U.S. Air Force Technical Applications Center, called AFTAC, at Patrick Air Force Base, Fla.

When the system detects a nuclear event, AFTAC scientists analyze it and report findings to national command authorities through U.S. Air Force headquarters.

David O’Brien is AFTAC’s chief scientist.

“Our responsibility is to ensure that foreign nations are adhering to the provisions of those treaties,” O’Brien told American Forces Press Service.

To monitor the atmosphere and space, he said, the U.S. Atomic Energy Detection System, called USAEDS, has sensors aboard more than 20 satellites that make up the Global Positioning System and the infrared-sensing satellites that make up the Defense Support Program.

“The latter,” O’Brien said, “are what the United States uses to detect launches of intercontinental ballistic missiles.”

Multiple sensors on all those satellites “look for phenomenology from a nuclear explosion that occurs in space or in the atmosphere,” he added, “whether it’s nuclear radiation or the flash from the fireball.”

The network’s five hydroacoustic stations detect undersea nuclear explosions.

“Those are just underwater microphones, and they listen for the explosion that goes off underwater,” the scientist said. “By detecting the explosions on more than one underwater microphone, we can triangulate where it occurred.”

But the workhorse since the treaties came into effect to ban atmospheric nuclear testing, O’Brien said, has been the underground nuclear monitoring capability.

“Those sensors are seismic, and the reason they’re seismic is that when a large explosion occurs underground, it creates a signature that looks just like an earthquake,” he said.

Infrasound sensors measure changes in the atmosphere generated by very-low-frequency acoustic waves that can come from above-ground nuclear explosions.

USAEDS still supplements some of its 40 seismic stations with infrasound, the scientist said, and in the 1960s used infrasound as the main way to detect nuclear explosions in the atmosphere.

“But once we were able to get sensors on satellites,” he said, “that gave us a much better capability.”

When the program first began, its only sensor, an air sampler, flew on a B-29 aircraft over the Pacific Ocean. In 1949, flying between Alaska and Japan, the sampler detected debris from the first Russian atomic test.

Today the system uses another aircraft, a WC-135 in a program called Constant Phoenix to collect air samples from areas where nuclear explosions have occurred.

If there is a nuclear explosion, O’Brien said, “we will [use meteorology] to project where radioactive debris would go. Then when it gets into international airspace, the aircraft can go to that spot.”

The plane collects particles so analysts on the ground can test them to see if they contain radionuclides, or radioactive elements.

The plane also collects radioactive gases, especially radioactive xenon, which is a good indicator that a nuclear explosion has occurred.

With all these sensors, the U.S. Atomic Energy Nuclear Detection System is the only network that operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week, but it isn’t the only global detection system.

In 1996, the United Nations General Assembly adopted the provisions of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty. One major provision prohibited nuclear explosions anywhere, by anyone.

Another provision described a 337-facility International Monitoring System that would scan the earth for nuclear treaty violations. The IMS facilities include seismic, hydroacoustic, infrasound and radionuclide stations, but no satellite sensors.

Most of the world’s countries have signed and ratified the treaty. Three countries that have not signed the treaty have since tested nuclear devices — India and Pakistan in 1998 and North Korea in 2006.

The treaty has not yet entered into force — several more countries must ratify the treaty before that happens. Until it does enter into force, some of the IMS monitoring stations operate 24 hours a day, but many do not.

The United States has signed, but not yet ratified, the treaty, and it has helped develop the International Monitoring System, O’Brien said.

The IMS architects “were starting from scratch in the mid-1990s, and we had many years of experience in these kinds of systems,” he said.

“So they came to us asking for any advice that would help them avoid the pitfalls of putting a new system in,” the scientist added.

The experts at USAEDS advised the monitoring system builders on worldwide logistics involved in establishing such a system and onsite installations.

USAEDS contributes the data from many of its seismic and hydroacoustic stations to the International Monitoring System.

“Outside of the USAEDS,” O’Brien said, “the United States through the Office of the Secretary of Defense contributes seismic, infrasound and radionuclide stations to the IMS.”

As a signatory to the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty, the United States is entitled to and receives all the data that the International Monitoring System produces.

“We participate in all their international meetings, and we have since [the system’s] inception. They occasionally come here and visit,” O’Brien said. “I think both the IMS and ourselves are right at the state of the art of any technology that is practical for use in detecting nuclear explosions.”

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