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Dorothy Online Newsletter

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Dear Friends,

 

I just lost the introduction to tonight’s 9 items, and don’t have the energy to redo.  I apologize.  I honestly haven’t an idea of what happened to it.  It just disappeared.

Will try not to let this happen again.  At least the items are there.  Among the 9 are 2 positive reports—7 and 8.  The others are informative and end with ‘Today in Palestine’ which also carries much information.

 

All the best,

Dorothy

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1 Don’t say we did not know #292

 

On Wednesday, 21st December, 2011, government representatives, accompanied by police forces, demolished five homes in the Bedouin village ‘Atir in the Negev.

 

They then went on to demolish two homes near the village Umm Matnan, belonging to the ‘Amrani family.

 

Sixty people were made homeless.

 

Then they demolished El’Araqib, yet again.

 

* * * * * * * *

On Wednesday, 21st December, 2011, IDF forces went to the Palestinian village Kufr A-Diq (near Salfit) and demolished three agricultural structures and two water cisterns.

Questions & queries: amosg@shefayim.org.il

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Don’t say we did not know #293

 

Due to the restrictions imposed by the Israeli navy, about two thirds of the fishermen in Gaza have quit their trade.  It is estimated that some 105 tons of fish enter Gaza through the tunnels every month.

On Wednesday, 28th December, 2011, a team of the Civil Peace Service (CPS) escorted some Gazan three nautical fishermen to sea. They were within range of miles, inside which Israel is supposed to allow the fishermen to work, when an Israeli naval vessel sailed by closely, making waves that almost overturned their boat.  The Gaza fishermen fled for their lives, but the motor of the CPS escort boat broke down, preventing them from returning to land.  The naval vessel approached within only a few metres, causing the Palestinian navigator of the escort vessel to fall overboard.  After some 20 minutes of attack, the naval vessel left, and a Palestinian boat came to tug them to shore.

 

Questions & queries: amosg@shefayim.org.il

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2 Forwarded by the JPLO List

http://mikopeled.wordpress.com/2011/12/20/ethnic-cleansing-of-invented-people-by-miko-peled/

Tear Down the Wall…

 

December 20, 2011

Ethnic Cleansing of Invented People. By Miko Peled

By Miko Peled

Mostafa Tamimi from Nabi Saleh, Bahjat Zaalan and his son Ramdan from Gaza died on my fiftieth birthday and just a few days after Newt Gingrich declared them an invented people. They were murdered by the Israeli terrorist organization, the IDF, an organization that is supported and funded by the US.  One Israeli terrorist shot the invented Tamimi in the head with a tear gas canister, and another Israeli terrorist fired a rocket that murdered the invented Zaalan and his boy Ramadan.  Both terrorists were educated and trained by Israel, and armed by the US.  The Israeli terrorists are not invented but quite real, and they are safe, protected by the apartheid regime that trained and sent them on their missions, and the Israeli court system will make sure that they are never brought to justice. This is how Israel’s well-oiled ethnic cleansing machine operates.

The Zionist ethnic cleansing of Palestine is not a thing of the past but an ongoing campaign that is executed by three arms of the State of Israel: The education system, a dedicated bureaucracy and the security forces. The education system is dedicated to indoctrinating and producing soldiers and bureaucrats who will execute and enforce the ethnic cleansing. The bureaucracy is charged with making rules that make life unlivable for Palestinians.  Rules that restrict Palestinian access to their lands, and restrict their ability to travel freely to work and school. This same bureaucracy then demands that Palestinians pay for permits to be allowed do these very same basic things that they were denied. The security forces, the most obvious of which is the IDF, are charged with enforcing the restrictions, fighting off the resistance, armed or peaceful, and terrorizing the “invented” people of Palestine.

Since my father was a general and I served as a soldier in the IDF terrorist organization, people often ask me how is it that Israeli children who are raised in a Western style democracy become such monsters once they are in uniform?  The detailed answer can be found in my book, The General’s Son due out in February 2012, but the short answer is this: Education – Racism requires a mindset that is fashioned by education.  In order to rationalize and justify the ethnic cleansing the Israeli education system portrays Palestinians as culturally inferior, violent and bent on the annihilation of the Jews, and at the same time, void of a true national identity. Palestinian national identity is but a figment of some anti-Semitic imagination.

Israeli children are educated to see the Palestinians as a problem that must be solved and as a threat that must be eliminated. They can go through life, as I did growing up in Jerusalem, without ever meeting a Palestinian child. They know nothing of the life or culture of Palestinians who quite often live only several hundred meters from them.

Palestinians are portrayed as an existential threat through absurd comparisons like that of Yasser Arafat to Hitler, the Palestinians to Nazis, and the Palestinian resistance to Al Qaeda. Since Israeli kids never meet Palestinians what they learn in school, particularly in the school textbooks, is all that they know. In fact it is remarkable that even though they live so close to one another, much if not all of what Israelis know about their Palestinian neighbors comes from high school text books and popular racist stereotypes. Israelis don’t know that Palestinians never had an army, that they do not posses a single tank, a single warship or fighter jet, that they don’t have a single artillery battery and do not in fact pose a military threat at all.  According to a new book by Dr. Nurit Peled-Elhanan, not a single photo of a person who is a Palestinian exists in Israeli textbooks and there are millions of Palestinians in and around Israel.  Israelis don’t learn about Palestinian doctors and teachers, engineers and writers. They don’t learn Palestinian poetry or prose and they don’t read the works of Palestinian historians.

At a recent lecture I mentioned the ethnic cleansing of Palestine and someone called out: “What ethnic cleansing?” People are unaware of the ethnic cleansing taking place in Palestine because Israel hides it well and the mainstream media doesn’t care enough to ask. In mainstream peace groups and dialogue groups that discuss Palestine/Israel, a basic Israeli condition is not to bring up issues like the ethnic cleansing because Israel doesn’t like to talk about it.

But for the past 64 years ethnic cleansing of Palestine is what drives the Zionist policies towards Palestinians. All Zionist governments and all Zionist political parties left right and center support the ethnic cleansing.  The Israeli judicial system lets the Israeli authorities get away with abuse, theft and murder as long as they are perpetuated against Palestinians. Had these same crimes been committed against Israeli Jews they would have been prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

Zionist supporters like to bring up the fact that on November 29, 1947 the United Nations voted to partition Palestine into a Jewish sate and an Arab state.  What is left out of the Zionist story is that within one year of the vote Israeli forces had managed to capture close to 80% of Palestine, destroy close to 500 Palestinian towns and villages, kill scores of unarmed civilians and force the exile of some 800,000 Palestinians.

Then, when the UN passed resolution194 in December of 1948, calling for the refugees to be allowed to return to their homes, Israel proceeded to build cities and towns, parks and highways for the use of Jewish Israelis on Palestinian land. Then the Knesset began passing laws that prohibit the return of the refugees and allow the new state to confiscate their lands.

After the war was over, the Palestinians who remained within the newly created Jewish state were forced to become citizens of a state that despised them and saw them as a “problem” and a “threat.” They were designated as “The Arabs of Israel” a designation that stripped them of a national identity and denied them any rights to the land and provided them very limited rights as citizens. From being the rightful owners of their lands and their country they now existed at the pleasure of the new owner of the land, the state of Israel. Palestinian refugees were forced into concentration camps, conveniently called refugee camps, and those that tried to return were shot.  A military unit was created for the purpose of punishing Palestinian refugee who “infiltrated” back into their homeland, now called Israel.  It was called Unit 101, the notorious Ariel Sharon led it and it made a name for itself as a murderous gang with a license to kill Palestinians.

So regardless of the myth, now perpetuated by Newt Gingrich among others, that says there was no forced ethnic cleansing, we know today that the creation of Israel was made possible through a systematic campaign of ethnic cleansing, conducted by the Jewish militia, involving massacres, terrorism, and the wholesale looting of an entire nation.

Newt Gingrich, being the history buff that he is, might be interested in a story I mention in my book The General’s Son, about my mother. She was born and raised in Jerusalem and she remembers the homes of Palestinians families in neighborhoods in West Jerusalem. She told me that when she was a child, on Saturday afternoons she would go for walks through these neighborhoods, admiring the beauty of the homes, watching families sit together in their beautiful gardens. In 1948 when the Palestinian families were forced out of West Jerusalem, my mother was offered one of those beautiful, spacious homes but she refused. At age 22, the wife of a young army officer with little means and with two small children, she refused a beautiful spacious home, offered to her completely free because she could not bear the thought of living in the home of a family that was forced out and now lives in a refugee camp. “The coffee was still warm on the tables as the soldiers came in and began the looting” she told me.  “Can you imagine how much those families, those mothers must miss their homes.” She would ask and she continued, “I remember seeing the truckloads of loot, taken by the Israeli soldiers from these homes. How were they not ashamed of themselves?” there are thousands upon thousands of homes in cities all over the country that were taken.

Moving forward now to 1967 and the myth that Israel was fighting for its existence as it was attacked by Arab armies from all directions.  Much was written about this but nothing is more revealing than the minutes of the meetings of the IDF general staff from June 1967, just prior to the war. According to the generals, one of whom was my father, Matti Peled, not only was there no existential threat but the generals clearly state that the Egyptian army needed at least a year and a half before it would be ready for war and therefore this was an opportune time to attack and destroy it.  The army pressured the cabinet to authorize an attack and indeed the cabinet approved an attack against Egypt.  The IDF destroyed the Egyptian army and then went on to attack Jordan and Syria. It took the IDF six days and 700 casualties to kill an estimated 15,000 Arab forces, take the West Bank, the Golan Heights and The Sinai Peninsula.  One may like to think this was a miracle but it was a well-planned, well-executed attack against countries that had no viable military force.  The Israeli army had thus fulfilled its goal of conquering the entire Land of Israel, and the De-Arabizing of Palestine could now proceed into the West Bank and Gaza.

Since the early days of the State of Israel the IDF made it its mission to be the most brutal bully in the region.  Today the IDF has one purpose: to conduct an all out war against Palestinians by terrorizing Palestinian civilians, kidnapping children from their homes and using brutal force against protesters. We are reminded of the intensity of IDF cruelty every so often, the latest major display being the three-week bloodbath in Gaza that began on December 27, 2008. Hundreds of tons of bombs were dropped by Israeli pilots on Gaza, followed by a massive invasion of land forces.  All this for the purpose of  terrorizing a defenseless civilian population that includes 800,000 children.

Now that Israel has been in control of the West Bank for over four decades it had built and invested there heavily.  But all of the investment and construction in the West Bank was made to bring Jews into the West Bank.  Palestinian lands are being taken at an alarming pace, their homes are destroyed and thousands are incarcerated, while industry, roads, malls, schools and gated communities with swimming pools are being built for Jews only.  Water, which is the scarcest resource of all, is controlled and distributed by the Israeli water authority, as follows: Per capita, Israelis receive 300 cubic meters of water per year.  In comparison, per capita Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza receive 35-85 cubic meters per year, while the World Health Organization recommends a minimum of 100 cubic meter of water per person per year. But what is even worse is that per capita, Israeli settlers in the West Bank are allocated 1500 cubic meters of water per year. Jews in the West Bank live with green lawns and swimming pools while Palestinians quite often get no water at all.  Perhaps invented people have no need for water.

De-Arabizing the history of Palestine is another crucial element of the ethnic cleansing. 1500 years of Arab and Muslim rule and culture in Palestine are trivialized, evidence of its existence is being destroyed and all this is done to make the absurd connection between the ancient Hebrew civilization and today’s Israel. The most glaring example of this today is in Silwan, (Wadi Hilwe) a town adjacent to the Old City of Jerusalem with some 50,000 residents.  Israel is expelling families from Silwan and destroying their homes because it claims that king David built a city there some 3000 years ago. Thousands of families will be made homeless so that Israel can build a park to commemorate a king that may or may not have lived 3000 years ago. Not a shred of historical evidence exists that can prove King David ever lived yet Palestinian men, women, children and the elderly along with their schools and mosques, churches and ancient cemeteries and any evidence of their existence must be destroyed and then denied so that Zionist claims to exclusive rights to the land may be substantiated.

Once we connect the dots it is not hard to see that the occupation of the West Bank and Gaza is only a small part of the Israeli Palestinian issue. The greater issue is the ongoing ethnic cleansing of Palestine by the Zionist state.  The way forward for Israelis and Palestinians alike is to oppose the ethnic cleansing by opposing all its manifestations. This means supporting the movement to boycott, divest and place sanctions on Israel, or BDS for short, it means actively participating in the popular non-violent struggle in Palestine and it means challenging the racist laws that govern Israel by defying them. There has to be a clear and unequivocal call to recognize that the IDF is a terrorist organization and its officers are war criminals. Furthermore, the reprehensible discrimination against Palestinians, whether they live in Israel/Palestine or not, practiced by the security officials at Ben Gurion airport and other points of entry to Israel/Palestine must be challenged. The struggle for a democracy in our shared homeland is no different than the struggle at Tahrir square and can in fact be seen as part of the Arab Spring.

_,_.___

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3. Haaretz

Wednesday, January 4, 2011

Israel allocates NIS 5 million for security of Jewish East Jerusalem residents

Court petition opposing the use of private security guards to protect the Jewish residents contends that budget ballooned from NIS 7 to 54 million within two decades.

http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/news/israel-allocates-nis-5-million-for-security-of-jewish-east-jerusalem-residents-1.405357

By Nir Hasson

  The Housing and Construction Ministry has transferred NIS 5 million from the public housing budget and other funds in order to finance security for Jewish enclaves in East Jerusalem. The ministry noted the move was ordered by the Finance Ministry, which said social welfare needs were not harmed by the transfer of funds.

Security for the Jewish enclaves in Arab neighborhoods of East Jerusalem has been provided since the early 1990s by the Housing Ministry, which maintains a large and expensive security force for this purpose under police supervision. The security force budget has grown substantially over the past 20 years as Jewish residences have spread in the eastern part of the city and as violence – in response to the Jewish presence – has intensified.

A court petition filed by the Association for Civil Rights in Israel opposing the use of private security guards to protect the Jewish residents contended that, in 1991, the annual security budget to protect these residents was NIS 7 million. This then ballooned to NIS 54 million in 2010 and NIS 76 million last year.

Due to police demands for additional funding near the end of last year, however, the Housing Ministry needed to find an additional NIS 5 million to fund security expenses, meaning that the full amount spent in 2011 on the enclave security was NIS 81 million.

The Finance Ministry refused to provide the additional NIS 5 million and instead asked the Knesset Finance Committee to approve the transfer of funds from the Housing Ministry budget.

Housing Ministry sources have said the money is being taken from the ministry’s budget for security at public institutions, for urban renewal and for maintenance at public housing projects. Ministry sources complained that the cut would hurt what they said was already limited funding for social welfare needs. The Knesset Finance Committee approved the budget transfer last month.

The Housing Ministry issued a statement saying: “Of course, the Housing Ministry strenuously objected to [the transfer]. It should be noted that the debate took place without notice.” (Housing Ministry representatives were not present at the session. )

The Finance Ministry said: “Following an increase in security expenses in East Jerusalem, which are within the area of responsibility of the Housing and Construction Ministry, the Finance Ministry transferred NIS 5 million from various [budget] lines to security in East Jerusalem. The budgets that were transferred do not relate at all to public housing or to funds from the sale of public housing units.”

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4  Haaretz

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Year of the relocated illegal West Bank outpost

The relocation approach shifts the controversy over illegal construction from the judiciary, which has spoken on the issue, back to the politicians.

http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/opinion/year-of-the-relocated-illegal-west-bank-outpost-1.405369

By Zvi Bar’el

Creativity knows no bounds, as is reflected in the new idea that illegal West Bank outposts can be relocated from one illegal location to another. This would move them from privately-owned Palestinian land to Palestinian land “owned” by the government, from one space under occupation to another, as if this made it legal.

It’s a game of musical chairs in which everybody wins and no one is left without a chair. At the illegal West Bank outpost of Ramat Gilad, nine house trailers are to be moved a few dozen meters and will become part of the “legal” settlement of Karnei Shomron. And when it comes to the illegal outpost of Migron, Minister without Portfolio Benny Begin is suggesting that the buildings be relocated to a “legal” location several hundred meters away.

“The creativity and wisdom with which Minister Benny Begin conducted the dialogue for the government, in addition to the altruism and self-sacrifice shown by the Zar family [which established the outpost] and the residents of Ramat Gilad are the required model of wisdom for the continued development of a residential presence at Ramat Gilad and other places with similar characteristics.” That’s how Kadima MK Otniel Schneller described this innovation.

Regarding Migron, by the way, no agreement has been reached on relocating buildings. They don’t grow suckers there and they won’t be tricked by kudos for altruism and self-sacrifice. And if, God forbid, the relocation invention becomes the norm, somebody might ask why everyone shouldn’t be relocated to truly legal territory; let’s say, within the borders of Israel proper.

The relocation of buildings at the expense of the Israeli taxpayer is not a compromise and does not make it right. It perpetuates the settlements’ semblance of legality, as if there were two Jewish areas in the West Bank, one legal and one not. That approach tramples on the High Court of Justice’s ruling in August that ordered the structures at Migron demolished by March this year.

The relocation approach shifts the controversy over illegal construction from the judiciary, which has spoken on the issue, back to the politicians. You only need to look at the band that’s applying pressure here, including rabbis, public figures and politicians trying to block relocation, or at least portray it as a concession in the interest of goodwill. You’ll then understand that the fight isn’t over houses, it’s over the drawing of legal borders in a place where legality is simply an invention.

Another example of illicit creativity is the legislation proposed by Zeev Elkin (Likud ), Yaakov Katz (National Union ) and David Rotem (Yisrael Beiteinu ), which would only allow the demolition of homes in accordance with a final order by a court authorized to rule on land cases. This wouldn’t include the High Court of Justice, which does not weigh evidence, and not the IDF commander sovereign on the ground. But that’s not the important thing here. In addition, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, on the recommendation of Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein, has deferred discussion on this foolish legislation.

These inventions shift the power to the settlers to decide which judicial authority suits them, dragging the government along. The origami into which the law ends up folded isn’t new. It has entered a lexicon that includes terms such as “land seizure,” “land expropriation” and “closure of the area.” It continues with terms such as “legal settlements” and “thickening of existing settlements,” and concludes with the heroic term “outpost,” which in turn is divided into “legal” and “illegal.”

These terms are simply designed to lie to the authorities, to defy the High Court and shift sovereignty from the government and the army to the settlers. These terms became Zionist through the slippery slope on which a sovereign country metastasizes into a Jewish Diaspora that dictates its laws and language.

So 2012 will be the “year of the relocated outpost,” which will eliminate the term “illegal outpost” once and for all. You have to be impressed by the way the special terminology that was invented for the settlements is being used as if by law or at least court order. All that remains is the marginal issue of the High Court of Justice’s standing, which would be reduced to tatters in the land of the settlers. But there’s a solution to that problem, too. Why not just establish a separate court system in the West Bank, including a high court of justice?

There’s already an executive branch of government there. And anyway, the Israeli legislature is held captive by the settlers. All that’s missing is the judicial branch. That wouldn’t require an illegal act. We’d just have to copy and relocate the court.

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5  PSCC Logo

Media advisory
Wednesday, 4 January 2012

Israeli Police Officer to Testify About  Unlawful Interrogation of a Minor in Trial of West Bank Protest Organizer
Jalal Aweida, an Israeli police inspector, will testify about his involvement in the unlawful interrogation of a 14 year-old boy as part of the trial of Nabi Saleh protest organizer, Bassem Tamimi.

When: Sunday, January 8th, 2012 at 10:00 AM
Where: Ofer Military Court*
* Entry to the military court must be coordinated with the Israeli army’s spokesperson’s office in advance.
Media contact: Jonathan Pollak +972-54-632-7736

Following recent escalation in violence employed by Israeli forces towards protesters in Nabi Saleh, including the fatal shooting of Mustafa Tamimi and the use of live sniper-fire, the Israeli Military Prosecution will resume making its case against West Bank protest organizer from Nabi Saleh, Bassem Tamimi, this Sunday at the Ofer Military Court. A previous hearing saw another police interrogator admit to having systematically infringed on the rights of Palestinian minors.

The hearing will include the testimony of Inspector Jalal Aweida of the Israeli Police. Inspector Aweida was one of the key interrogators of 14 year-old Islam Dar Ayyoub – Tamimi’s main incriminator. Aweida also served as one of the officers in charge of the broader investigation into the Nabi Saleh demonstrations.

In his interrogation the morning after his arrest, year-old Dar Ayyoub alleged that Bassem and Naji Tamimi organized groups of youth into “battalions”, assigned with different responsibilities during the demonstrations: some were allegedly in charge of stone-throwing, others of blocking roads, etc.

During a trial-within-a-trial procedure in Islam’s trial, motioning for his testimony to be ruled inadmissible, it was proven that his interrogation was fundamentally flawed and violated the rights set forth in the Israeli Youth Law in the following ways:

  1. Despite being a minor, he was questioned in the morning following his arrest, having been denied sleep.

  2. He was denied legal counsel, although his lawyer appeared at the police station requesting to see him.

  3. He was denied his right to have a parent present during his questioning.

  4. He was not informed of his right to remain silent, and was even told by his interrogators that he is “expected to tell the truth”.

  5. Only one of four interrogators present was a qualified youth interrogator.

The video recording of the boy’s interrogation also shows Aweida making threatening gestures towards him – that included Karate moves and punching his fist into his hand, mocking him, making sexual innuendo in regards to Islam and the female police officer who was in the room. The video also shows Islam bursting into tears halfway through the interrogation as well as nearly collapsing of tiredness.

Tamimi’s trial began more than nine months ago, which Tamimi has spent behind lock and key.

Legal background
On March 24th, 2011, a massive contingent of Israeli Soldiers raided the Tamimi home at around noon, only minutes after he entered the house to prepare for a meeting with a European diplomat. He was arrested and subsequently charged.

The main evidence in Tamimi’s case is the testimony of 14 year-old Islam Dar Ayyoub, also from Nabi Saleh, who was taken from his bed at gunpoint on the night of January 23rd. In his interrogation the morning after his arrest, Islam alleged that Bassem and Naji Tamimi organized groups of youth into “brigades”, charged with different responsibilities during the demonstrations: some were allegedly in charge of stone-throwing, others of blocking roads, etc.

During a trial-within-a-trial procedure in Islam’s trial, motioning for his testimony to be ruled inadmissible, it was proven that his interrogation was fundamentally flawed and violated the rights set forth in the Israeli Youth Law in the following ways:

  1. Despite being a minor, he was questioned in the morning following his arrest, having been denied sleep.

  2. He was denied legal counsel, although his lawyer appeared at the police station requesting to see him.

  3. He was denied his right to have a parent present during his questioning.

  4. He was not informed of his right to remain silent, and was even told by his interrogators that he is “expected to tell the truth”.

  5. Only one of four interrogators present was a qualified youth interrogator.

The audio-visual recording of another central witness against Tamimi, 15 year-old Mo’atasem Tamimi, proves that he too was questioned in a similarly unlawful manner.

Since the beginning of the village’s struggle against settler takeover of their lands in December of 2009, the army has conducted more than 80 protest related arrests. As the entire village numbers just over 500 residents, the number constitutes approximately 10% of its population.

Tamimi’s arrest corresponds to the systematic arrest of civil protest leaders all around the West Bank, as in the case of the villages Bil’in and Ni’ilin.

Only recently the Military Court of Appeals has aggravated the sentence of Abdallah Abu Rahmah from the village of Bilin, sending him to 16 months imprisonment on charges of incitement and organizing illegal demonstrations. Abu Rahmah was released on March 2011.

The arrest and trial of Abu Rahmah has been widely condemned by the international community, most notably by Britain and EU foreign minister, Catherin Ashton. Harsh criticism of the arrest has also been offered by leading human rights organizations in Israel and around the world, among them B’tselem, ACRI, as well as Human Rights Watch, which declared Abu Rahmah’s trial unfair, and Amnesty International, which declared Abu Rahmah a prisoner of conscience.

Personal Background
Bassem Tamimi is a veteran Palestinian grassroots activist from the West Bank village of Nabi Saleh, north of Ramallah. He is married to Nariman Tamimi, with whom he fathers four children – Wa’ed (14), Ahed (10), Mohammed (8) and Salam (5).

As a veteran activist, Tamimi has been arrested by the Israeli army 11 times to date, though he was never convicted of any offense.Tamimi spent roughly three years in administrative detention, with no charges brought against him. Furthermore, his attorney and he were denied access to “secret evidence” brought against him.

In 1993, Tamimi was falsely arrested on suspicion of having murdered an Israeli settler in Beit El – an allegation of which he was cleared of entirely. During his weeks-long interrogation, he was severely tortured by the Israeli Shin Bet in order to draw a coerced confession from him. During his interrogation, and as a result of the torture he underwent, Tamimi collapsed and had to be evacuated to a hospital, where he laid unconscious for seven days. As a result of the wounds caused by torture, Tamimi was partially paralyzed for several months after his release from the hospital.

At the opening of his trial on June 5th, Tamimi pleaded “not guilty” to all charges against him, but proudly owned up to organizing protest in the village. In a defiant speech before the court he said, “I organized these peaceful demonstrations to defend our land and our people.” Tamimi also challenged the legitimacy of the very system which trys him, saying that “Despite claiming to be the only democracy in the Middle East you are trying me under military laws […] that are enacted by authorities which I haven’t elected and do not represent me.” (Seehere for Tamimi’s full statement).

The indictment against Tamimi is based on questionable and coerced confessions of youth from the village. He is charged with’ incitement’, ‘organizing and participating in unauthorized processions’,’ solicitation to stone-throwing’, ‘failure to attend legal summons’, and a scandalous charge of ‘disruption of legal proceedings’, for allegedly giving youth advice on how to act during police interrogation in the event that they are arrested.

The transcript of Tamimi’s police interrogation further demonstrates the police and Military Prosecution’s political motivation and disregard for suspects’ rights. During his questioning, Tamimi was accused by his interrogator of “consulting lawyers and foreigners to prepare for his interrogation”, an act that is clearly protected under the right to seek legal counsel.

As one of the organizers of the Nabi Saleh protests and coordinator of the village’s popular committee, Tamimi has been the target of harsh treatment by the Israeli army. Since demonstrations began in the village, his house has been raided and ransacked numerous times, his wife was twice arrested and two of his sons were injured; Wa’ed, 14, was hospitalized for five days when a rubber-coated bullet penetrated his leg and Mohammed, 8, was injured by a tear-gas projectile that was shot directly at him and hit him in the shoulder. Shortly after demonstrations in the village began, the Israeli Civil Administration served ten demolition orders to structures located in Area C, Tamimi’s house was one of them, despite the fact that part of the house was built in 1965 and the rest in 2005.

 


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6  Forwarded by Miriam A

 

US Troops going to Israel

January 2, 2012. Jerusalem.

In one of the most blacked-out stories in America right now, the US military is preparing to send thousands of US troops, along with US Naval anti-missile ships and accompanying support personnel, to Israel. It took forever to find a second source for confirmation of this story and both relatively mainstream media outlets are in Israel. With one source saying the military deployment and corresponding exercises are to occur in January, the source providing most of the details suggests it will occur later this spring.

Calling it not just an “exercise”, but a “deployment”the Jerusalem Post quotes US Lt.-Gen Frank Gorenc, Commander of the US Third Air Force based in Germany. The US Commander visited Israel two weeks ago to confirm details for “the deployment of several thousand American soldiers to Israel.” In an effort to respond to recent Iranian threats and counter-threats, Israel announced the largest ever missile defense exercise in its history. Now, it’s reported that the US military, including the US Navy, will be stationed throughout Israel, also taking part.

While American troops will be stationed in Israel for an unspecified amount of time, Israeli military personnel will be added to EUCOM in Germany. EUCOM stands for United States European Command.

In preparation for anticipated Iranian missile attacks upon Israel, the US is reportedly bringing its THAAD, Terminal High Altitude Area Defense, and ship-based Aegis ballistic missile systems to Israel. The US forces will join Israeli missile defense systems like the Patriot and Arrow. The deployment comes with “the ultimate goal of establishing joint task forces in the event of a large-scale conflict in the Middle East”.

The Jerusalem Post reports that US Lt.-Gen Frank Gorenc was in Israel meeting with his Israeli counterpart, Brig.-Gen Doron Gavish, commander of the Air Defense Division. While there, the US General visited one of Israel’s three ‘Iron Dome’ anti-missile outposts. The Israeli Air Force has announced plans to deploy a fourth Iron Dome system in the coming months. Additional spending increases in the Jewish state will guarantee the manufacture and deployment of three more Iron Dome systems by the end of 2012. The Israelis are hoping to eventually have at least a dozen of the anti-missile systems deployed along its northern and southern borders.

In a show of escalated tensions in the region, Iran test fired two long range missiles today. One, called the Qadar, is a powerful sea-to-shore missile. The other was an advanced surface-to-surface missile called the Nour. According to Iranian state news, the Nour is an ‘advanced radar-evading, target-seeking, guided and controlled missile’. Additionally, the Iranian military reportedly test-fired numerous other short, medium and long-range missiles. Yesterday, Iranian authorities reported that they test-fired the medium-range, surface-to-air, radar-evading Mehrab missile. Today is supposed to be the final day of Iranian naval drills in the Straits of Hormuz.

Iran recently made global headlines when it threatened to blockade the Straits of Hormuz if Europe and the US went ahead with their boycott of Iranian oil and the country’s central bank. One-quarter of the world’s oil passes through that waterway every day. President Obama has announced that a closure of the Straits was unacceptable and vowed to take whatever measures are necessary to keep the vital shipping lane open.

In response to the Iranian missile tests this weekend, French authorities were the first to respond, calling it a, “very bad signal to the international community. “We want to underline that the development by Iran of a missile program is a source of great concern to the international community,”the French Foreign Ministry said in a written statement. Israeli officials suggested the flamboyant Iranian military drills this weekend were a sign that international sanctions on the country were taking a heavy toll and that any additional boycotts, on its banks or oil industry, would be crippling.

Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak said the large missile tests showed, “the dire straits of Iran in light of the tightening sanctions around her, including the considerations in the last few days regarding the sanctions of exporting petroleum as well as the possibility of sanctions against the Iranian Central Bank.” While the chances of Iran going through with its threat of closing the Straits of Hormuz are slim, the deployment of thousands of US troops and naval ships to Israel shows the US isn’t taking any chances.

 

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7 Haaretz

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Palestinians block New Year’s Eve show by Druze Israeli singer

Cancellation is latest in string of cancellations due to threats and other pressure tactics by Palestinian groups promoting boycott of anything connected with Israel.

http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/news/palestinians-block-new-year-s-eve-show-by-druze-israeli-singer-1.405353

By The Associated Press

A popular Druze singer had to cancel a New Year’s Eve show in Ramallah because of threats from Palestinian activists opposed to coexistence with Israel, the performer and police said.

It was the latest in a string of cancellations due to threats and other pressure tactics by Palestinian groups promoting a boycott of virtually anything connected with Israel. The boycott movement says its tactics are a nonviolent way to protest Israeli policies. Israeli officials denounce the efforts as “delegitimization” of Israel’s right to exist.

Sharif, who uses only one name, said he was expecting to perform before thousands of Palestinian fans at a New Year’s Eve concert in Ramallah, but he was told the day before that his concert was being canceled because of a threat to his life.

“I’m an artist and I want to sing before all audiences,” said Sharif, who considers himself a bridge between the two sides. “I’m a man of peace, not politics. I just want to bring my music to my fans.”

Palestinian activists campaigned against his concert because he has performed for Israeli soldiers.

Palestinian police said the decision to cancel the show was based purely on security concerns. They said once they became aware of the opposition, which was organized in a Facebook campaign, they ordered the concert canceled.

“When we see people bracing to bar a controversial party like this, we interfere to prevent any tension or violence,” said Adnan Damari, a police spokesman.

Sharif said he separates his performances from politics, noting he has played in the West Bank and Gaza before and dreams of performing in Syria and Lebanon.

“I’m surprised that this was done against me … I belong to both sides,” said Sharif, 32. “I’ve got to get back there and I hope it happens soon.”

It wasn’t the only controversy in Ramallah on New Year’s Eve.

Palestinian singer Basel Zayed was prevented from completing his concert after he performed a song that mocked the Palestinian leadership. Under pressure from Palestinian police, organizers shut down the event.

The New Year’s incidents follow two other events in which Israeli-Palestinian dialogue meetings were thwarted because of Palestinian pressure. The activists behind the move oppose any “normalization” between Palestinians and Israelis as long as peace talks between the sides are deadlocked. Negotiators sat down in Jordan yesterday for their first meeting in 15 months.

“The movement in Jerusalem will always demonstrate against any joint meeting as long as the peace process is stalling,” said Hatem Abdel Qader, an adviser to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Jerusalem affairs.

Palestinian government spokesman Ghassan Khatib said the meetings were local initiatives; his government was not involved and did not oppose them. Even so, among the Palestinians who objected to the Israeli-Palestinian meeting were senior members of Abbas’ Fatah movement.

Palestinian activists have long called for boycotts of Israel, hoping such pressure will achieve what years of negotiations and violent uprisings have not: end Israel’s occupation of the West Bank and east Jerusalem and bring about creation of a Palestinian state.

In recent years, the Palestinians have scored several small victories, persuading some European pension funds to divest themselves of firms involved in West Bank settlement construction, for example. Several international artists, including Elvis Costello and the Pixies, have canceled performances in Israel to protest Israeli policies.

 

Another band, Boney M, was ordered by Palestinian concert organizers not to sing its hit “Rivers of Babylon,” which quotes a biblical passage referring to the Jewish people’s yearning to return to the biblical land of Israel.

Israel says the economic impact of the boycott campaign has been negligible and accused the activists of promoting hatred against the Jewish state.

Yossi Kuperwasser, the director general of Israel’s Strategic Affairs Ministry, said “anything happening to promote peace,” such as musical performances or academic conferences, “should be accepted by the Palestinians.” Instead, he said the cancellation of such events reflects a campaign by the Palestinians to delegitimize Israel.

“They don’t accept Israel as a Jewish state as a fact, let alone its right to exist,” said Kuperwasser, whose office monitors what it says is incessant incitement against Israel in Palestinian society.

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8 Haaretz

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Israeli parents urge minister to cancel school trips to West Bank

Petition signed by 500 parents as of Tuesday night, was started after Education Minister announced school trips would visit archaeological site of Shiloh in the West Bank.

http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/news/israeli-parents-urge-minister-to-cancel-school-trips-to-west-bank-1.405348

By Talila Nesher

Tags: Jewish Education West Bank Israel Settlements Israel archeology

Hundreds of parents have signed a petition over the past two days refusing to allow their children to attend school field trips over the Green Line.

The petition, signed by 500 parents as of Tuesday night, was started after Education Minister Gideon Sa’ar announced recently that school trips would now visit the archaeological site of Shiloh in the northern West Bank. Some months ago, Sa’ar made the controversial decision that school children would be taken to visit the Tomb of the Patriarchs in Hebron.

 

“Your political agenda is clear to us and it should be said in your favor that you do not bother to hide it. But your political positions are different and in fact in opposition to ours and therefore we cannot allow our sons and daughters to take a trip to Hebron, Shiloh or the rest of the sites and settlement beyond the agreed-on borders of Israel,” the petition states.

The petition was signed “Concerned Mothers and Fathers throughout the country.”

The petition also called on Sa’ar, as “education minister of all Israelis” to “direct school trips to areas that our children can visit. If you do not, our children will be excluded from an important social and educational experience.”

Jerusalemite Tamar Verta started the petition. “If we don’t inform the school administration that they must plan trips within the Green Line, we will find our children visiting Yitzhar and Havat Ma’on,” she said, referring to two Jewish settlements in the West Bank.

One parent, Ehud Inbar of Modi’in, said he did not oppose trips to Hebron and the Tomb of the Patriarchs, “but only after a Palestinian state has been established with which we have a peace treaty. Then the children can visit there the way people visit Egypt or Jordan. I oppose holding trips like this under the current situation where there are citizens ‘grade b or c’ there.”

Inbar also said he would consider changing his mind about the visit to Hebron, “if the Palestinians were at least allowed to present their side. But these trips are not innocent. They are intended to strengthen students’ relationship to places that, to me at least, it’s clear won’t remain under Israeli control.”

Rafi Getenyo, a father of two from Rishon Letzion, said he saw two problems with the trips.

“The first is security and the second is moral,” he said. “I don’t think a face of normalcy should be given to the occupation, and that is after all the intent of the organizers of these trips.”

Getenyo said he thought the children were being cynically used for political purposes.

“I don’t want my children to be taken on apartheid roads, with a jeep in front and a jeep behind, and for them to feel that this is totally normal,” he said, referring to a military escort.

Getenyo said his children understood his position, but did not always agree. He said when other parents allow their children to go “with their eyes shut to institutional reasons, that places a bulldozer of pressure on me. They feel different and they don’t like it,” he said.

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9.  Today in Palestine

January 3, 2012

http://theheadlines.org/12/03-01-12.shtml

 

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