Archive | September 29th, 2015

A Sense of Despair Is Sweeping Through Iraq

This email from my driver in Baghdad proves it

I used to have a driver called Omar in Baghdad at the height of the Sunni-Shia slaughter between 2004 and 2010. He was a Sunni Arab and, at the peak of the sectarian bloodshed, he fled with his family to Damascus where they stayed for a year.

On his return, he found that his house, on which he had spent all his money and was in a religiously mixed district in west Baghdad, had been seized by Shia militiamen. When he briefly visited it, his neighbours warned him to go away as quickly as he could or he would be killed.

He sold his wife’s jewellery, borrowed some money and paid an Iraqi in Sweden a considerable sum to get him there. It was always a doomed idea because he spoke only Arabic and had no skills other than those of a driver. He flew first to Kuala Lumpur, then to Phnom Penh and finally by bus to Ho Chi Minh City where he tried to get a flight to Lithuania using a Lithuanian passport he had purchased.

A few questions by Vietnamese officials revealed that he did not speak Lithuanian and he was soon back in Baghdad where he tried to earn a living as a taxi driver. This was not easy in a city crowded with taxis, where it was not safe for him to venture into Shia districts. The situation was not quite as dangerous, however, as it had been at the height of the killings.

I lost touch with Omar, which is not his real name, until a few weeks ago when I got an anguished email in slightly broken English, which he must have got a friend to translate from Arabic, recalling that he had once worked for me. He wrote that once again Baghdad had become very dangerous, adding a plea: “I need your help in a simple way, you remember in 2006 I forced to leave my house and threatened to be killed by the shiite militia and after that time I tried to travel to Europe illegally but I failed.

“You know our situation how it is dangerous and very bad…” He asked me to help him get out of Iraq by writing a letter saying that his life is in danger, as it certainly is, and supporting his request for asylum.

I did not think that any country would give him refuge, but I suspected that, if they did not, Omar would make another disastrous effort to get to Europe illegally and either end up dead or even more impoverished than before. On the other hand, it was his choice and I wrote a letter truthfully describing his dire circumstances.

Omar is one of a tidal wave of Iraqis trying to get out of Iraq as the war continues and insecurity grows worse by the day. Kidnapping is rife in Baghdad, with victims ranging from three-year-old children to the deputy Minister of Justice.

Eighteen Turkish construction workers were abducted by a Shia militia and moved to Basra without the government being able to do anything about it. In addition there are daily bombings by Isis which a multitude of government checkpoints fail to stop.

Focus in Europe has been on refugees from the war in Syria, but a mood of desperation and despair is also sweeping through Iraq. Over the last eighteen months the surge in fighting has raised the number of people displaced from their homes to over three million or 10 per cent of the population according to the International Organisation for Migration. Even in the Kurdish north, where security is much better, one can see young men on the streets with heavy rucksacks as they start the long trek towards Europe.

The five or six million Sunni Arabs in Iraq are particularly vulnerable because they are suspected by the Kurds and Shia of secretly sympathising with Isis. Many stories may be apocryphal, but Kurds and Shia claim that wherever Isis advanced, it is aided by “sleeper cells” in Sunni districts.

If the Shia or Kurds recapture an area, the Sunni are given short shrift and, since Isis captured Mosul in June 2014, one million Sunni have fled to the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) zone from Anbar province and the provinces around Baghdad. Isis’ capture of Ramadi, the capital of Anbar, on 17 May this year, saw another 180,000 Sunni take to the roads in search of safety.

As in Syria, millions of people in Iraq are despairing of ever living a normal life with a job. The mass exodus from the country is gathering pace. “There are eighteen or nineteen planes a day leaving Iraq filled with people with one way tickets,” lamented a former senior official in Baghdad, who did not want his name published.

A foreign diplomat in KRG, who also wishes to remain anonymous, says that “there are 700 or 800 young men leaving from the two airports here every day, most of whom want to go to Europe. Some of them even have a job and a salary, but see no future here”. He added that, because there is more sympathy in the EU for Syrian refugees than those from Iraq, Iraqi refugees often throw away their passport and claim to be from Syria.

I asked Salim al-Jabouri, the Speaker of the Iraqi Parliament, who recently visited London and is the most important non-Jihadi Sunni leader in Iraq, about the fate of his community. He said that Sunni demands for fair treatment and power sharing needed to be satisfied, but he did not sound confident that this would happen soon.

In his own province of Diyala, he said that kidnappings and killings of Sunni were increasing. I asked him what advice he would give to a Sunni like my former driver Omar, a man who fears for his life, is without any prospects inside Iraq, and who wants to flee the country. Mr Jabouri said that it was “difficult for me to say, but we must create an environment in which Omar could live in Iraq”. Omar and millions like him cannot wait that long.

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sana.syThe Russian campaign is now in full swing.  Eyewitness reports indicate an active program of engagement complementing the Syrian Air Force’s brand new equipment delivered over the last three weeks by the Russian Air Force.  Aleppo is going to change very soon with areas formerly under rat control returned to the legitimate government in Damascus.  The rats are heard to complain about being abandoned – a sorry reflection of how their entire movement was coordinated and managed by NATO, Erodoghan’s Turkey and the Arabian monkeys.  It’s curtains now for them.  Read our report herein-below:

Al-Sufayra (Var: Al-Safeera):  This area was, and will be, the Syrian Army’s major research and development area.  I have incontrovertible reports of 17,000 new troops arriving here to reinforce the southern defenses and to help lift the siege around the Kuwayris Air Base.  It will then be forwarded to the Air Force Academy to end the siege there by ISIS.   It is a huge army representing over one division and 4 regiments all armed with the most advanced weaponry the Russian Federation has yet delivered to any outside military force.  I have received accurate information that the Russian Air Force is flying over this area and helping to disrupt the movements of rodents.

Tal Reemaan:  ISIS has been devastated by a series of SAAF and Russian AF (RuAF) sorties over this hill.  Intercepted ISIS communications, some in Urdu, indicate a breakdown of morale.  No other details.

Tal Balaat:  Also heavy RuAF involvement here as Sukhoi bombers dominate the air out of the Humaymeem AB southeast of Latakia.

Al-Nayrab AB:  This base is within the city’s ambit and has never been conquered by the British-handled rodents.  From last Wednesday to today, the SAA has documented the deaths of close to 70 Nusra/Alqaeda rodents:

Moussaa Khudhaari

‘Abdul-Muttalib Sahlab

Haani Zaydaan

‘Issaa Hassan

The rest were all reported to be foreigners, many Uighers from China and Turkmen.

Air Force Academy:  An effective ambush laid for the ISIS rodents on the Aleppo-Al-Raqqa Highway netted 12 rats all of whom were non-Syrians.

Heavy fighting now at the following locations: Turaydim, Khaan Al-‘Asal, Khazzaan Khawaabi Al-‘Asal, Khaan Toomaan, Al-Raashideen Number 4, Layramoon, Bani Zayd, Al-Raamoosa, Salaauhuddeen, Al-Sha’aar, Al-Fardoos, Al-Kallaasa, Al-Mashhad, Sulaymaan Al-Halabi, Al-Khaalidiyya, Al-Saakhoor, Bustaan Al-Baashaa, Tal Al-‘Alam, Al-Radhwaaniyya, Al-Rayyaan, Al-Jabbool, Tal Istabl,

Ayn Saabil: The Syrian Army has captured the southeast portion  of this town and is poised to overrun the entire area in the next few hours.

The Syrian Air Force has reported heavy bombardment at Tal Nu’aam and Al-Subayhiyya where ISIS is concentrated.  Aerial assessments indicate heavy casualties among the rats with scores of vehicles seen rushing wounded vermin to field hospitals, some in Turkey.

Al-Mansoora:  The SAA scored a direct hit using new artillery provided by the Russian Federation.  Evidence of huge casualties from frantic cellphone contacts between the rats of Alqaeda/Nusra and their leaders in Turkey.

Journalists Building in West Aleppo:  The SAAF has blasted the remaining remnants of the Nusra group here and aerial assessments indicate pure pandemonium in this area.

In Aleppo City, the rodents have admitted to losing 47 of their litter mates to the SAA and PDC.  May they burn in Hell.



بتوجيه من الرئيس الأسد.. العماد الفريج يزور وحدات الجيش بدرعا وريفها


A Gaza Centric History of Palestine: Past, Present, and Future


 Image result for GAZA MAP

[Prefatory Note: The review below was initially published in the Journal of the Contemporary Thought and the Islamicate World (SCITIW REVIEW) It is one of three remarkable books dealing with Gaza that I read this past summer. The other two are Mohammed Omer’s Shell Shocked: On the Ground Under Israel’s Gaza Assault (2015) (see my July 8, 2015 post, “Wartime Journalism: Mohammed Omer on Gaza”) and Max Blumenthal’s The 51 Day War: Ruin and Resistance in Gaza(2015). Both of these books are accounts of the 2014 Israeli attack on Gaza by normatively engaged journalists. Omer giving an insider account that stresses the day by day experience of those exposed to such an onslaught that allows one to almost feel the excruciating pain, fear, and loss that Gazans felt during the attacks. Blumenthal also gives readers the benefit of his presence in Gaza and exposure to its courageous population, but he also includes valuable interpretative material. Their normative engagement is evident from their empathy with the Gaza ordeal of the Palestinians and understandable antipathy to Israel’s tactics and overall behavior. While discarding the liberal posture of neutrality, this high quality journalism under the most difficult and dangerous conditions in the sense of conveying the unfolding reality of important events in ways that deepen awareness and understanding beyond what mainstream media reports.

What makes Filiu’s book so important, beyond its extraordinary historical depth that allows readers to better grasp the tragedy that has befallen the Gazan people, is its persuasive insistence of thecentrality played by Gaza throughout the experience of Palestinian resistance to Israeli dispossession and annexation, including the originality of the uprising known as the first intifada in 1987, and even more so an insistence that the Gaza holds the key to any kind of sustainable peace between Israel and Palestine. This is a striking view, given the extent to which both Israel and the world treat Ramallah and the Palestinian Authority as central, and Gaza as marginal if not altogether dispensable in the context of diplomatic negotiations and the outcome of the conflict.]

A Gaza-Centric View of the Palestine National Movement


Jean-Pierre Filiu, Gaza: A History, trans. John King, Oxford University Press, 2014, 440 pp., $29.95 US (hbk), ISBN 9780190201890.

The distinguished French historian, Jean-Pierre Filiu has produced a magisterial overview that recounts the ebb and flow of Gaza’s fortunes from ancient times up through the present. Although a member of the faculty of Sciences Po in Paris, Filiu is not a typical academic historian, having earlier served as a diplomat in Jordan, Syria, and Tunisia, published two novels, and even written popular songs, including one devoted to Gaza. Filiu’s pedigree training and scholarly contribution have earned him a deserved reputation as one of the world’s leading Arabists, and someone particularly expert on political trends in contemporary Islam. He has published several well-regarded books on the Middle East including The Arab Revolution: Ten Lessons from the Democratic Uprising (2011) andFrom Deep State to Islamic State: The Arab Counter-Revolution and its Jihadist Legacy (2015). The latter book poses the haunting question as to whether the political destiny of the peoples in the Middle East is to remain entrapped in the ongoing struggle between tyrannical leaders and Muslim fanatics. More than most commentators on the regional developments, Filiu perceptively realized that the democratizing hopes of the “Arab Spring” in 2011 would be short lived, and likely would be soon overwhelmed by a variety of counterrevolutionary forces intent on restoring an authoritarian status quo ante, however high the costs of doing so. The main motive of these counterrevolutionary elites was to avoid the twin fates of secular democracy and radical Islam.

Filiu’s authoritative treatment of Gaza starts with a useful background summary of its role as a trading center in the ancient world of the Middle East with a past traced back to the Hyksos people of the eighteenth century BCE. Readers are helpfully informed that Gaza, situated between Sinai and Negev Deserts and the Mediterranean Sea, became a major site of struggle for warring neighbors over the long arc of history, including Egyptian pharaohs, Persian kings, Greeks, Romans, Arabs, Fatimids, Mamluks, Crusaders, and Ottomans. Filiu emphasizes the rivalry between Baghdad and Cairo with respect to Gaza as contributing to the frequent changes of fortune confronted by the city and region. A second chapter is informative about the generally unappreciated relationship of Gaza to hallowed figures in Islamic tradition. For instance, one principal mosque in Gaza is built to honor the memory of the great grandfather of the Prophet and another is dedicated to one of Muhammad’s close followers who accompanied him on his sacred journey from Mecca to Medina. Both of these men were prosperous traders who brought caravans of goods from Arabia for sale in

September 22, 2015

the markets of Gaza. After presenting this early history, Filiu devotes the remainder of Gaza to Gaza’s experience in the continuing struggle over Palestine’s future that began in a serious way with the Balfour Declaration of 1917 and the British Mandate established after World War I under the auspices of the League of Nations lasting until 1947 when Britain turned over responsibility for Gaza’s future to the United Nations.

The remaining fifteen chapters of Gaza narrate the tortured and tormented experience of Gaza, the scene of many dreams of liberation and peace, but also a place of frequent carnage and a continuing ordeal of massive suffering. Gaza, which covers 140 square miles, the size of several middle sized American cities, still plays a central role in the unfolding Israel/Palestine conflict. In this fundamental respect, Gaza is a detailed historical narrative of past and present, which also underscores the totally unresolved future of Palestine as a whole, leaving readers free to contemplate Gaza’s future through the sophisticated optic that Filiu provides.

Filiu has produced, in a manner that I find extraordinary, a study of Gaza’s history over this incredible sweep of time that manages to exhibit at each phase of the narrative an astonishing mastery of detail. Filiu presents us with the dizzying interplay of dominant personalities interweaved with accurate depictions of the many defining incidents that give substance to the complex history and experience of Gaza. Such a tours de force of scholarly achievement does not make for easy reading given the density of the material. As a whole, Gaza is somewhat overwhelming in its cumulative impact as a result of its long succession of unfamiliar names and recitation of one detail after another that are difficult for a normal reader to keep in mind. At the same time, beyond the weight of Filiu’s facticity is a wealth of interpretative knowledge that imparts an unprecedented understanding of the contemporary experience of Gaza and the part it has played for both Israelis and Palestinians in the unfolding conflict.

Despite this challenge posed by this seeming surfeit of names and events, a kind of pre- digital example of information overload, Filiu facilitates comprehension of the main narrative motifs by framing his central interpretative analysis through reference to illuminating conceptual themes. He proceeds chronologically assessing the unfolding Palestinian ordeal in three clusters of four chapters each: “1947-1967: The Generation of Mourning,” “1967-1987: The Generation of Dispossession,” “1987-2007: The Generation of the Intifadas.” The book concludes with a final chapter entitled “The Generation of the Impasse?” as if the currently blocked situation in the underlying conflict between Israel and Palestine that has dominated the lives of the Gazan people for several generations seems likely to continue to be their fate for the indefinite future. Filiu ever so slightly lightens this gloomy prospect by putting a question mark at the end of the chapter title, perhaps acknowledging that not even a master historian should pretend to foretell Gaza’s future with confidence or indicate with confidence hopes and fears that the impasse will be broken at some point.

With this framework Filiu brilliantly portrays the Palestinian ordeal as it has tragically played out during the 67 plus years since Israel came into existence as a sovereign state. There is no attempt by Filiu to write this contemporary history of Gaza from a detached point of view, that is, by suspending empathetic feelings and ethical judgments. The tone of the narrative and the spirit of Filiu’s personal engagement with the Palestinian tragedy is clearly conveyed on the dedication page: “To the memory of the thousands of anonymous who died in Gaza before their time though they had a life to live en famille and in peace.” In effect, without sparing Palestinians and their leaders harsh criticism for failures of competence in the course of his narrative, including their embrace of brutality and

corruption, Filiu laments Palestinian victimization and decries Israeli oppression. With such a perspective it is not surprising that Filiu is generally sympathetic with Palestinian resistance activities over the years.

In discussing partition, the plan proposed by the UN General Assembly to overcome the tensions between Jews and Arabs in Palestine, Filiu makes clear that the Zionist movement was pushing the British hard to endorse such a division during the latter stages of the mandatory period. For Zionist leaders partition seemed at the time the only available path leading to the establishment of a Jewish homeland in Palestine, thereby achieving the basic Zionist project in accord with the Balfour undertaking. In angry contrast, the most representative Arab voices in Palestine were early united in their fervent opposition to partition ever since it began to be seriously considered by the British government, increasingly aware of rising tensions between the resident Arab population of Palestine and the successive waves of Jewish immigration. Already in 1937 Fahmi al-Husseini, the mayor of Gaza, warned British authorities against partition and any related attempt to promote the emergence of Jewish statehood. Filiu quotes al-Husseini to illustrate this depth of opposition: “It would be better for the British government to consign the inhabitants of Palestine to death and destruction, or even to envelop them in poison gas, than to inflict upon them any such plan” (46). As we know, such Palestinian wishes were ignored not only by the British, but also by the organized international community acting under the auspices of the United Nations. In response to the mounting tension in Palestine between Jews and Arabs, Britain went ahead and proposed partition, which was consistent with their typical colonial endgame and legacy in many other parts of their collapsing empire (for instance, Ireland, India, Malaya, and Cyprus). When the UN in 1947 did finally propose partition in General Assembly Resolution 181, the British surprisingly abstained, perhaps feeling that there was nothing to be gained at that point by further antagonizing the Arab world, especially given the persistence of British interests in the region, epitomized by the retention of the Suez Canal.

The focus on the complex dialectics of victimization and resistance in Gaza is at the core of Filiu’s interpretative standpoint. This emphasis likely represents the most enduring contribution of the book to our appreciation of both the scholarship and policy relevance of the Gaza Strip to the overall story of the Israel/Palestine struggle. What Filiu does convincingly is to challenge the mainstream view that Gaza is but an ugly sideshow of the main Palestinian dramas, generally regarded by both sides to be the West Bank and Jerusalem. Of course, the centrality of Gaza’s victimization has become internationally recognized, especially after the imposition of a blockade in 2007 when Hamas took over the government in Gaza and during the last seven years when Israel launched savage attacks in 2008-2009, 2012, and 2014 that eroded the carefully orchestrated public image of Israel as a benevolent political actor. What Filiu significantly adds to this image of Gazan victimization is the understanding that the broader movement of Palestinian national resistance has been centered in Gaza since the onset of the conflict with the Zionist project, and that this pattern of resistance continues in Gaza more than elsewhere in Palestine despite the severe and prolonged forms of collective punishment imposed by Israel on the Strip over the course of decades.

Even more challenging is Filiu’s controversial insistence that a sustainable peace between Israel and Palestine can only be achieved if Gaza will be accorded a decisive role in the process. Filiu underscores this belief in his drastic revision of thinking surrounding the peace process in the closing sentences of Gaza: “It is in Gaza that the foundations of a durable peace should be laid…The Gaza Strip, the womb of the fedayin and the cradle of the

intifada, lies at the heart of the nation-building of contemporary Palestine. It is vain to imagine that a territory so replete with foundational experiences can be ignored or marginalized. Peace between Israel and Palestine can assume neither meaning nor substance except in Gaza, which will be both the foundation and the keystone” (340).

Filiu’s view of a peaceful solution challenges the view of most Israelis that Gaza, without figuring in Israeli biblical claims, and containing 1.8 million Palestinians hostile to Israel’s very existence, has no place in Israel’s conception of its own final borders or of an acceptable outcome of the conflict. Israelis generally regard Gaza as nothing more than a bargaining chip in any future peace negotiations. From Israel’s perspective Gaza is the one unwanted part of occupied Palestine (in sharp contrast, with Jerusalem and the West Bank), an assessment provisionally expressed by Israel’s “disengagement” from Gaza in 2005, which involved the withdrawal of IDF forces and the removal of Israeli settlers in a plan conceived and implemented by the Israeli hardline leader Ariel Sharon. Gaza continues to be viewed as a threat to Israeli security if ever allowed to become consolidated with the West Bank in a future Palestinian state and is viewed as a threat to Israel’s ethnocratic and democratic claims if incorporated into a single Israeli state encompassing the whole of historic Palestine.

With respect to Gaza, Israelis seem now to prefer either retaining control over a subjugated and devastated Gaza or inducing Egypt to resume responsibility for administering Gaza. The Egyptian government has made clear its unwillingness to accept responsibility for governing Gaza, which makes the unfortunate present situation the most likely scenario for the foreseeable future. In this sense, the whole burden of Filiu’s assessment is at odds with the manner in which Washington framed the “peace process,” which, as might be expected, seems based on an acceptance of Israel’s view of the marginality of Gaza with respect to the final resolution of the conflict.

Filiu’s mode of highlighting Gaza also challenges the views of the Palestinian Authority, with its capital in Ramallah, that gives its highest priority to ending Israel’s occupation of the West Bank, getting rid of as many Israeli settlements as possible. The Palestinian Authority seems to care little about the fate of Gaza, especially since Gaza fell under the control of Hamas in 2007, although its formal position continues to include Gaza as an integral part of a Palestinian state.

In this respect, Filiu’s Gaza-centric interpretation of the conflict between Israel and Palestine is by far the most original and controversial part of his historical account. It rests on a carefully documented narrative of Gaza’s role as the true center of Palestinian resistance and resilience throughout more than six decades of struggle. As Filiu mentions, the most perceptive of Israeli leaders, notably David Ben-Gurion, were nervous about the developing situation in Gaza from the earliest period of Israel’s existence, especially as Gaza became the default option for many Palestinians displaced during the nakba, the occasions of massive expulsion and dispossession that caused so many Palestinians to be driven from their homes, and to seek sanctuary in Gaza, the West Bank, and neighboring Arab countries. In Filiu’s view, throughout the war that produced the establishment of Israel as a sovereign state, “…Israeli units were systematically driving the Arab population out of the combat zone even when their villages offered no resistance to the advance of the Zionists” (62). The sadness and desolation of dispossession resulted in Gaza becoming early in the conflict dominated and radicalized by refugees and their profoundly alienating experiences. In the late 1940s Palestinian refugees amounted to more than 75% of Gaza’s total population.

The large refugee camps spread throughout tiny Gaza became focal points of ferment and eventually resistance, taking the initial form of the fedayin insurgent activities from the

1950s on. It was the fedayin fighters that found ways to penetrate Israel and inflict casualties particularly on soldiers and police, and later, on Israeli settlers in Gaza. This type of armed struggle inevitably prompted Israeli reprisal raids that were from their outset deliberately disproportionate. As Filiu observes, “[i]t was in Gaza that the fedayin were moulded, and the Hebrew State would soon make Gaza pay for it dearly” (94). This prediction was fulfilled in 1956, Egypt being displaced from Gaza, and Israel occupying the Strip for four months as an aspect of the Suez War, with accompanying massacres of Palestinian civilians being carried out by the Israeli military prior to a UN protective force being inserted to monitor the border. Filiu asks this provocative question: “Is there any doubt that the history of Gaza would have taken a different turn had a Palestinian entity been established there, under UN protection, in defiance of Israel, while maintaining special ties with Egypt” (105-106)? Although Filiu seems to have meant the question to be rhetorical, I am skeptical of any supposition that Gaza might have been spared Israeli fury even if the UN had agreed to sponsor and protect Gazan self-determination and sovereignty within the less crystalized climate of opinion in 1956. The political will to confront Israel has never existed on a global level or within the United Nations except to the extent of adopting a public discourse sharply challenging Israel’s policies and practices that is reinforced by periodic censure moves that were generally softened or opposed by the West.

As dramatic as the fedayin phenomenon, the outbreak of the intifada in 1987 that witnessed an unexpected mobilization of Palestinian civil society in Gaza, later spreading to the West Bank, challenged Israel’s capacity to maintain order in occupied Palestine. As Filiu persuasively argues, it was the fedayin and intifada that finally lent credibility and inspiration to the Palestinian national struggle, somewhat overcoming the humiliating failure of the pathetic international efforts by neighboring Arab states to challenge the existence of Israel. The failure of these several regional wars, culminating in the disastrous Arab defeat in the 1967 War, which greatly expanded Israel’s territorial identity, resulted in a second and permanent occupation of Gaza, with the war having the geopolitical effect of transforming Israel in American strategic thinking from being a heavy burden on U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East to becoming a major strategic asset. Unfortunately for the Palestinians, “the rest is history.”

Filiu gives a fascinating portrayal of the rise of Islamism in Gaza, including a depiction of the charismatic leader, Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, who was assassinated by an Israeli missile in 2004. What Filiu’s discussion shows it that the early Islamic efforts in Gaza, inspired by and derivative of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood, were devoted on principle to resistance activities within the law, focusing on a long range view of liberation by way of family values and education. It was only as a result of Israeli oppression in Gaza and a growing rivalry for popular allegiance with the secular coalition, the Palestine Liberation Organization under the leadership of Yasser Arafat, that led to the formation of the militant Hamas, and with this development, to extreme violence, highlighted by suicide bombing attacks within Israel in the late 1990s, often directed at the civilian population. Israel, at first, actually encouraged the political emergence of Islam, supposing that it would weaken what was perceived to be its principal adversary, the PLO, but as time passed, and Hamas tactics shifted to suicidal violence, Israel treated Hamas as a terrorist organization, and remains unwilling to back off such a view despite Hamas’ effort to pursue a political track for reaching its national goals since it took part in Palestinian elections in 2006.

Arafat is duly presented as the leading Palestinian liberation figure and international diplomat, but also deeply criticized by Filiu for the political innocence of his deferential approach to the United States and accompanying naïve hopes that Washington would deliver

a just peace to the Palestinians after the Oslo Framework of Principles had been agreed upon in 1993. Filiu draws our attention to Arafat’s reaction to the 1995 assassination of Yitzhak Rabin, which brought tears to his eyes and the tormenting cry “It’s over, it’s over” (234)—meaning the prospect of a negotiated peace died with Rabin. Although Filiu does not evaluate Arafat’s reaction, it seems exaggerated, given Rabin’s acquiescence in expanding the settlement movement in the West Bank and Jerusalem and his “iron fist” policies in reaction to the first intifada.

One of the several virtues of Filiu’s historical approach is his willingness to employ evaluative language to describe Palestinian experience of victimization and Israeli tactics of oppression. He repeatedly refers to Israeli practices as imposing “collective punishment,” and as resulting in “massacres” of innocent Gazans, and of the experience endured by Gaza’s population as trauma, including “collective trauma.” At the same time, despite being highly critical of Israel’s approach, Filiu avoids any condemnations based on international humanitarian law or international criminal law. Filiu does not, unlike Ilan Pappé and other critics of Israel’s behavior in Gaza, speak of “genocide” or even “crimes against humanity.” In general, I conclude that Filiu’s sense of critical history with respect to Gaza does not accord significant relevance to international law.

In conclusion, Filiu provides a reader with a wealth of information, an historical perspective that greatly deepens our appreciation of the importance achieved by Gaza in the past, and above all, depicts the brutality of Israel’s behavior toward the people of Gaza and its failure to quell the spirit of Palestinian resistance. At the center of Filiu’s argument, beyond his assessment that the present period is best characterized as one of “impasse,” is the claim that Gaza remains the keystone for a sustainable peace between Israelis and Palestinians, a view shared by neither the formal Palestinian leadership nor by any influential Israeli, American, or European leaders, past or present. However this issue is resolved, Filiu is highly successful in making a reader appreciate Gaza’s illustrious past and the crucial role that recent generations of its people have played in keeping the fires of Palestinian resistance burning even in the face of Israel’s cruel, domineering, and oppressive behavior.

A few final comments on Filiu’s historiography. First of all, I wonder whether it was necessary to provide so much factual detail in narrating the history of Gaza; it seems to me that the main interpretative lines of assessment could have been developed as authoritatively, and with a gentler reading experience. Secondly, I think that the ethical forthrightness of Filiu’s approach lent added clarity to his interpretive perspectives, and was valuable as a matter of “full disclosure” of author to reader. If hidden from view, it would have raised questions about integrity and trust. And thirdly, the inclusion of prescriptive ideas in a work of contemporary history gives greater practical relevance to the understanding of the past being set forth. Policymakers on all sides would gain much from Filiu’s deeply considered argument for the centrality of Gaza to the Palestinian national struggle and to hopes for a sustainable peace that protects the rights of both peoples on the basis of equality.

Posted in Palestine Affairs, GazaComments Off on A Gaza Centric History of Palestine: Past, Present, and Future






تدمير 7 آليات للمجموعات الإرهابية واستهداف ممر لتهريب الأسلحة في ريف القنيطرةWith the Syrian Army and Hizbollah now entrenched at the critical area of Al-Naaboo’ people are forgetting the rest of the province.  For the last 10 days, the terrorist, Jordanian-American-Zionist-supported gang called the Liwaa` Al-Islam has been doing its darndest to become extinct.  For the last 10 days, at least, this gang of pests has been using three tunnels in order to invade the capital city at the eastern periphery.  The tunnels are located here:

1.  The first was dug behind the Police Hospital;

2.  The second was uncovered at the Al-Rahma Fuel Station;

3.  The third was dug all the way to the International Damascus-Homs Highway.

All tunnels have now been discovered and destroyed with many of the screaming rodents inside.

The Syrian Army has not only suppressed this multipronged and persistent attack, it has now completely taken control over Tal Kurdi, a major supply route from Doumaa to the East Ghouta and Dhaahiyat Al-Assad.  With the SAA now in control of all hills overlooking Dhaahiyat Al-Assad and the International Highway, the rope is beginning to constrict around ‘Alloosh’s rat neck.

As of this morning, the SAA has mounted a massive counter-attack against Liwaa` Al-Islam.  We predict the end of this group within the next 4 days.  This process has started with the SAAF bombing the area around the Al-Bayrooni Hospital in Harastaa.  We will keep you informed.





Jeopardizing Japanese ‘Abnormality’: Rejoining the War System


by Dr: Richard Falk

[Prefatory Note: The following post was originally published as an opinion piece in the leading Japanese newspaper, Asahi Shimbun, and appears here with their permission. The link to the Japanese version: There are two converging dangers of a new Cold War—one is confronting Russia in the Middle East and Central Asia and the other is confronting China in the South China Sea and elsewhere with a containment mentality within their own immediate sphere of operations. Washington’s encouragement of Prime Minister Abe’s campaign for a ‘normal’ Japan represents a regressive move regionally and globally, and deserves critical attention from a wider geopolitical perspective as well as from the viewpoint of Japan. It may in the end do more to limit the flexibility of the American approach to China than to free Japan from Article 9 constraints, a post-1945 ‘abnormality.’]


Commenting on the Japanese National Security Debate

At its peril, most of the world is ignoring the intense Japanese debate that surrounds the passage by the Diet of national security legislation that fulfills Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s vision of Japan’s proper role in the world of the 21st century. The core of the debate is about whether famous Article 9 of the Constitution can be interpreted to permit Japan to engage in collective defense arrangements around the world. Despite various prior tests of the outer limits of Article 9, and its seeming restriction of international force to territorial self-defense, the new legislation stakes out a far broader claim to engage militarily in a variety of situations around the world.

Most profoundly at issue is whether a changed national security environment resulting from issues involving nuclear weaponry, extremist non-state actors, and cyber warfare justify this more expansive approach to the use of force. Clearly, Abe’s belief that Japan’s national interests require an expanded role for force, and specifically the option to take part in overseas collective self-defense underlies the crafting of this new national security legislation.

There seems to be other issues at stake as well. The most salient of these is the continuing primacy of the United States in shaping of Japan’s security policy. It is ironic that it was U.S. occupation policy that initially demanded an anti-war clause in the new Japanese constitution, and even more ironic that the current prime minister announced his proposed policy reform with respect to collective self-defense on a state visit to the United States prior to informing the Japanese public. This posture long urged by the U.S. was welcomed by its Secretary of Defense as signaling a Japanese shift from a ‘local’ to a ‘global’ view of national security.

Most of the internal Japanese debate, pro and con, has been focused on the constitutional issues, especially on whether Article 9 can be interpreted in a manner that is compatible with collective self-defense and other features of the new security proposals. An informed consensus appears to be a resounding ‘no’ as expressed in expert testimony in the Diet and strong statements of opposition circulated among constitutional law professors in Japan. The effective LDP control of both houses of the Diet ensured from the outset that whatever the government proposed would be approved regardless of public opinion or constitutional objections. What seems clear is that legislative endorsement is only the first step in what is expected to be a lengthy battle in court to determine whether the ‘legalization’ of this contested interpretation of Article 9 survives judicial scrutiny.

There are more crucial issues at stake than raised by the legal controversy. Abe has previously argued that Article 9 was imposed on a defeated Japan when it was a helpless country without the capacity to form a national will of its own. In effect, his new approach, presented under the banner of making Japan a ‘Proactive Contributor to Peace’ is a bid to overcome the abnormal situation that existed in Japan after 1945. Flexibility for a sovereign government in defining its security priorities should not be, according to this kind of realist thinking, subject to arbitrary and rigid territorial restrictions that Article 9 has imposed. In effect, the new legislation is not militaristic at all, but a recovery of ‘normalcy,’ a restoration of full Japanese sovereignty in a manner enjoyed by other states.

This raises the deepest and most meaningful question: Was Japanese ‘abnormality’ a good or bad thing for the people of Japan and of the world? As someone with a commitment to peace and justice I long ago found the Article 9 approach taken by Japan inspirational, pointing the way toward making the international law of the UN Charter come to life, an example that could beneficially be followed by others, including in my wildest fantasies, by the United States itself. It is also encouraging that the Japanese public appears to agree with the positive contributions of Article 9, opinion polls indicating that a clear majority of the Japanese people oppose the new national security legislation and its implicit endorsement of collective self-defense. As is often the case, society is more peace-oriented than the elected leadership, and when party politics endows those in control of the government a capacity to defy the values and opinions of the citizenry, a crisis for democracy becomes embedded in what is put forward as a revision of security policy in light of changed circumstances.

The last question contained in such reflections is whether changed regional and international circumstances justify abandoning Article 9 and the peace mentality associated with it. Although Prime Minister Abe promises to carry forward Japan postwar tradition of ‘peace and prosperity’ this effort to normalize Japan is a deliberate policy rupture, especially when tied so indiscreetly to a more active geopolitical partnership with the United States. From my perspective, Japanese abnormality remains a most precious reality, a beacon pointing toward the kind of ‘new realism’ that the 21stcentury urgently requires.

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Does India Want Nuclear War?


Image result for India Want Nuclear CARTOON

By Sajjad Shaukat

By setting aside Indian commitment to observe restraint, as agreed during the recent meeting of

the Directors-General Military Operations (DGMOs) of both the countries, India has accelerated

unprovoked firing at the Line of Control in Kashmir and Working Boundary across Pak-Indian

border. Even without bothering for nuclear war, New Delhi has continuously been ignoring

In this respect, India again cancelled National Security Adviser (NSA)-level talks with Pakistan,

scheduled to be held in New Delhi on August 23-24. In this context, Spokesperson of India’s

Ministry of External Affairs Vikas Swarup said that New Delhi opposes Pakistan’s National

Security Advisor Sartaj Aziz’s meeting with pro-independence leaders of Kashmir.

India neglected the fact that the Hurriyat leaders are true representatives of the Kashmiri people

of the Indian occupied Kashmir, and could help in finding a lasting solution of the Kashmir

dispute. During the talks between Pakistan’s Prime Minister Minister Nawaz Shariff and Indian

Prime Minister Narendra Modi at Ufa, Islamabad conveyed to New Delhi a comprehensive

agenda to discuss all outstanding issues, including Kashmir as well as terrorism. But, Indian

insistence to restrict the dialogue-agenda to terrorism or cross-border terrorism only shows that

India is not serious to resolve any issue with Pakistan. Hence, Indian firing across the LoC and

pre-conditions are part of its delaying tactics, based upon anti-Pakistan approach, followed by

shrewd diplomacy against Islamabad. In fact, by promoting Hindu chauvinism on the basis of

anti-Muslim and anti-Pakistan slogans, extremist party, BJP won a landslide victory in the Indian

elections 2014. Now, leader of the BJP and fundamentalist Prime Minister of India Modi has

been implementing its party’s agenda. He has given a free hand to the Indian forces to go on

aggressively with the border violations in wake of hostile statements by Indian leadership against

In order to defame Islamabad, from time to time, BJP-led government also orchestrates a drama

to malign Pakistan’s security agencies. In this connection, in the recent past, prior to the US

President Obama’s second visit to New Delhi, Indian intelligence agencies orchestrated a boat

drama to defame Pakistan, allegedly reporting that a Pakistani fishing boat as a Pakistan-based

outfit group Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) was intercepted by Indian Coast Guards, off the coast of

Porebandar, Gujarat. And Indian Coast Guard crew set the boat on fire and it exploded. But, its

reality exposed Indian terrorism, because, some Indian high officials admitted that there was no

such boat which came from Pakistan. Similarly, on July 27, 2015, three gunmen dressed in army

uniforms killed at least seven people, including three civilians and four policemen in the Indian

district of Gurdaspur, Punjab. Without any investigation, Indian high officials and media started

accusing Pakistan, its banned militant outfits and intelligence agencies for the incident. Indian

Police remarked that the attackers were from Indian-held Kashmir, and some stated that they

were Sikh separatists, while Indian Punjab police chief claimed that the three gunmen were

Muslim, but as yet unidentified. Contradicting speculations, India’s Home Minister Rajnath

Singh told parliament that the gunmen came from Pakistan. Recently, Indian Army orchestrated

a drama in the Indian-controlled Kashmir by killing an innocent person, showing his connections

with Pakistan. When, it was exposed, the Indian government admitted the fault of its security

Besides, New Delhi earnestly found various pretexts to cancel peace talks, while shifting the

blame to Islamabad. For example, in 2002, under the pretension of terrorist attack on the Indian

parliament, India postponed the dialogue process. Again, in 2008, India cancelled the ‘composite

dialogue’ on the pretext of Mumbai terror attacks.

Particularly, on May 27, 2014, Indian Prime Minister Modi’s meeting with Pakistan’s Prime

Minister Shariff in the oath-taking ceremony proved faultless, because, while raising baseless

issues like terrorism as pre-condition to advance the dialogue process, he said that slow pace of

trial against the terrorists of the Mumbai 26/11 terror case; being held in Pakistan is main hurdle.

But, he ignored the fact that on July 19, 2013, the Indian former home ministry and ex-

investigating officer Satish Verma disclosed that terror-attacks in Mumbai in November 26, 2008

and assault on Indian Parliament in January 12, 2001 were carried out by the Indian government

to strengthen anti-terrorism laws.

In this respect, some online reports of foreign media has revealed that Indian media has recently

been up-beating the negative theme that LeT, in connivance with Pakistan’s intelligence agency

ISI, are planning to conduct Mumbai type terror attacks inside India. It has been assessed that the

campaign against Pakistan by India is fraught with the danger of India trying to create a reason

for waging a ‘short’ and ‘swift’ war against Pakistan. Recent statements of the Indian army chief

Undoubtedly, New Delhi is destabilizing the regional countries in general and Afghanistan and

Pakistan in particular to obtain its secret designs, aimed at augmenting Indian hegemony in the

region. Therefore, India is foiling the peace process between Afghanistan and Pakistan by

managing terrorist attacks like the recent ones in Afghanistan which revived old blame game

against Islamabad. India is also thwarting the peace process between the Afghan officials and

representatives of Tehreek-e-Taliban Afghanistan, which started in Murree, Pakistan, on July 8,

2015 through a meeting, hosted by Islamabad, and in it, Chinese and American representatives

Besides, India wants to divert the attention of the international community from the involvement

of RAW which has well-established its network in Afghanistan, and is fully assisting cross-

border incursions and terror-activities in various regions of Pakistan through Baloch separatist

elements, Jundullah and Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP). On a number of occasions, these

insurgent groups claimed responsibility for their subversive acts.

It is mentionable that on September 18, this year, the TTP militants attacked a Pakistan Air Force

camp in Badaber area, Peshawar and martyred 29 people including an Army captain and

four security personnel. In this context, confirming the death of 13, militants, DG ISPR, Maj-

Gen Asim Bajwa said that valiant personnel of the security forces thwarted the attempt of the

heavily-armed TTP terrorists by stopping them to enter inside the base—and they came from

Notably, Pakistan has decided to raise the question of Indian cross-border terrorism and RAW

involvement in Pakistan at the UNO forum, with strong evidence in light of open statements of

Indian defence minister and prime minister who recently confirmed assistance to anti-Pakistan

elements including separation of East Pakistan.

Pakistan has also decided to raise the issues of Indian cross-border shelling and human rights

violations in the Indian controlled Kashmir. But, it is regrettable that the US is still showing

double standard by asking both the countries to settle these disputes through bilateral dialogue.

America should know that Dr. Subramaniam Swami, the leader of the Indian ruling party BJP

stated on July 12, 2014 that India needed only two years to defeat Pakistan militarily, and the

only solution of Kashmir was war, as “there is no peaceful, democratic solution”.

However, Indian irresponsible moves are alarming for peace-loving countries of South Asia

including those of the world. In this regard, even BBC pointed out that it seems that New Delhi

Nevertheless, it is wishful thinking of the BJP leaders that they can wage a conventional war

with Pakistan. While both the neighboring adversaries are nuclear powers, India is neglecting the

principles of deterrence, known as ‘balance of terror.’

After the World War 11, nuclear weapons were never used. During the heightened days of the

Cold War, many crises arose in Suez Canal, Korea, Cuba and Vietnam when the US and the

former Soviet Union were willing to use atomic weapons, but they stopped because of the fear of

nuclear war which could eliminate both the super powers. Therefore, the two rivals preferred to

resolve their differences through diplomacy.

Likewise, many occasions came between Pakistan and India like the post-Mumbai terror attacks

of 2008 when New Delhi started a blame game against Islamabad in wake of its highly

provocative actions like mobilization of troops. Islamabad had also taken defensive steps to meet

any Indian prospective aggression or surgical strikes. But, India failed in implementing its

aggressive plans, because Pakistan also possesses atomic weapons.

In the past too, Indian rulers had intended to implement their doctrine of limited war in Kashmir,

but they could not do so owing to Pakistan’s nuclear weapons. However, in the present

circumstances, BJP is badly mistaken, if it overestimates India’s power and underestimates

Nonetheless, in wake of dangerous developments, created by the fundamentalist Indian

government, question arises that does India wants nuclear war with Pakistan.


Sajjad Shaukat writes on international affairs and is author of the book: US vs Islamic Militants,
Invisible Balance of Power: Dangerous Shift in International Relations

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Waiting To Return Home: Palestinian Martyrs in Nazi “Cemeteries of Numbers” and Morgues


The Zionist entity is not only built on the remains of the ethnically cleansed Palestinian villages, it not only thrives on Palestinian blood, the Zionist entity excels in punishing the Palestinians it occupies and oppresses; both the living and the dead. In yet another outrageous violation of everything that is humane and in violation of all known international laws and principles, a violation to be added to the long and never-ending list of Zionist violations, the immoral Zionist entity withholds an unknown number of Palestinian and Arab martyrs whom it killed either during direct confrontations or those it executed in cold blood after being kidnapped alive. In some cases this entity of terror even tries and imprisons the Palestinian martyrs.

Some Martyrs are “kept captive” in the morgues while others are buried in what is known as the “Cemeteries of Numbers”, which are secret cemeteries in closed military areas with bare graves surrounded by stones, and each grave has only a number for identification on a metal plate.The graves are not deep enough and the bodies are buried in shallow sandy areas making them an easy prey to land erosions and stray animals. There are no tomb stones, no name, only numbers given to the humans who have names, homes and families. Of the many cemeteries, 4 have been identified[1]:

1. A cemetery located near the Banat Yacoub Bridge in a military area bordering Israel, Lebanon, and Syria. Allegedly it contains approximately 500 graves of Palestinians and Lebanese killed in 1982 and onward.

2. A cemetery located in a closed military area between Jericho and Adam Bridge on the Jordan River. It is surrounded by a wall with an iron gate and a billboard inscribed “A Cemetery for the Dead of the Enemy”. It contains more than one hundred graves bearing numbers from 5003 to 5007. It is unknown whether they are serial numbers assigned to individuals or, as Israel claims, administrative codes unrelated to the real number of buried bodies.

3. The Cemetery of Refedeem in the Jordan Valley. Details unavailable.

4. The Cemetery of Shuheitar, located near Wadi Al Hamam, a village north of Galilee between Mount Ariel and the Lake of Galilee. Most of the bodies in this cemetery belong to war victims killed in the Jordan Valley battles in the years 1965 to 1975. In the north side of this cemetery, 30 graves are divided between two rows, while the remaining 20 are situated in the central area. Shamefully, all these graves are sandy and shallow, which when exposed to rain, allows bodies to be vulnerable and dragged by stray animals.

There are at least 300 known Palestinian martyrs from the West Bank and Gaza whose bodies are withheld by the Zionist entity in these shameless places, in addition to martyrs withheld in Israeli army morgues. These martyrs were kidnapped after their death and their bodies withheld ever since. Many have been withheld for decades, for example Ali al-Ja’fari from Dheisheh refugee camp was killed while in Israeli detention during the Nafhah hunger strike in 1981 and his body is still withheld by the IOF. Some of the martyrs were even “tried” after their death and “are serving their sentences”, such as Mohammad Al-Mansi whose family was told that their dead son was sentenced to 14 years in jail.

Other bodies are imprisoned for no reason, families speculate because the bodies of their children show signs of execution and so the bodies are withheld to conceal that they were murdered in cold-blood or to hide the organ theft operations the Israeli army has been conducting for decades on Palestinian martyrs and which were exposed lately. Family members are either asked to identify the martyr but not allowed to take the body back home or are informed by the IOF that their child is dead and is kept in “detention”. This immoral violation is meant as a punishment, not only for the dead but as a collective punishment for families who are not given the chance to say goodbye or cry at the tomb of their beloved one.

The Zionist entity, with its “most moral army in the world”, is the only country in the world that not only punishes the living for wanting freedom, but the dead as well. It holds back these bodies and uses them as a political bargain, as a collective punishment to the families and as a warning to all Palestinians who seek freedom and fight for their legitimate rights. These “Cemeteries of Numbers” represent the disrespect the Zionist entity has to all known humane values and principles. But it is not only the Zionist entity that is the criminal here, but the so-called free world that talks continuously of human rights and of human dignity but is blind and deaf to the immoral actions of the immoral Zionist entity. The martyrs must be respected and laid to rest in a dignified manner, not be held captive in their own homeland, and the families must be able to mourn their children and give them a decent burial.

Art. 17. of the Geneva Convention states:

Parties to the conflict shall ensure that burial or cremation of the dead, carried out individually as far as circumstances permit, is preceded by a careful examination, if possible by a medical examination, of the bodies, with a view to confirming death, establishing identity and enabling a report to be made. One half of the double identity disc, or the identity disc itself if it is a single disc, should remain on the body.

Bodies shall not be cremated except for imperative reasons of hygiene or for motives based on the religion of the deceased. In case of cremation, the circumstances and reasons for cremation shall be stated in detail in the death certificate or on the authenticated list of the dead.

They shall further ensure that the dead are honourably interred, if possible according to the rites of the religion to which they belonged, that their graves are respected, grouped if possible according to the nationality of the deceased, properly maintained and marked so that they may always be found. For this purpose, they shall organize at the commencement of hostilities an Official Graves Registration Service, to allow subsequent exhumations and to ensure the identification of bodies, whatever the site of the graves, and the possible transportation to the home country. These provisions shall likewise apply to the ashes, which shall be kept by the Graves Registration Service until proper disposal thereof in accordance with the wishes of the home country.

As soon as circumstances permit, and at latest at the end of hostilities, these Services shall exchange, through the Information Bureau mentioned in the second paragraph of Article 16, lists showing the exact location and markings of the graves, together with particulars of the dead interred therein.

Palestinian Martyrs withheld by the Zionist entity in the “Cemeteries of Numbers” and in Israeli morgues:

Abdel Fattah Mohammad Ali Badeer, Tulkarim, born 1949, killed 15.07.1971

Abdel Basit Mohammad Qasem Odeh, Tulkarim, born 29.03.1977, killed 27.03.2003

Abed Ahmad Abdel-Nabi Al-Ju’ba, Hebron, born 1944

Abdel Karim Isa Khalil Tahaynah, Silet Al-Harthiyeh, Jenin, born 06.07.1981, killed 05.03.2002

Abdel Jabir Abdil Qader Abdil Jabir Khalid, Jayyous, Qalqilia, born 22.05.1980, killed 17.02.2002

Abdel Fattah Mousa Barham Daoud, Haifa, born 1948, killed 1969

Abdel Rahim Abdel Aziz Ahmad Al-Talahmeh, Khadir, Bethlehem, born 20.06.1973, killed 25.09.2003

Abdel Karim Salameh Mousa Jadallah Al-Tardah, Tafooh, Hebron, born 20.01.1952, killed 1974

Abdel Karim Omar Mohammad Yousif Ahmad, Jenin, born 13.03.1982, killed 27.11.2001

Abdallah Abdel Qader Abdallah Al-Qawasmi, Hebron, born 19.07.1960, killed 21.06.2003

Abdel Salam Sadeq Mour’e Hassoun, Beit Imreen, Nablus, born 29.10.1974, killed 17.01.2002

Abdel Rahman Hasan Abdel Rahman Khattab, Bilin, Ramallah, born 29.10.1959, killed 15.03.1979

Adel Abdel Aziz Isa Najem, Aqraba, Nablus, born 1937, killed 1967

Abdallah Hussein Saad Bani Fadhl, Aqraba, Nablus, born 1927, killed 09.10.1970

Abdallah Alayyan Amarneh, Ras Ammar, Jerusalem, born 1947, killed 03.1968

Abdallah Said Ibrahim Badran, Tulkarim, born 10.06.1983, killed 25.02.2005

Adel Mohammad Ibrahim Hadaydah, Tulkarim, born 20.01.1976, killed 05.06.2002

Adel Kahlid Mohammad Abdel Aziz, Maraqah, Jenin, born 22.01.1948, killed 28.02.1971

Adel Ahmad Ismail Awadallah, Ramallah, born 14.04.1967, killed 10.09.1998

Abdel Mu’ti Mohammad Saleh Shabaneh, Hebron, born 18.05.1985, killed 11.06.2003

Ali Munir Yousif Khalil Ja’arah, Bethlehem, born 30.01.1979, killed 29.01.2004

Awad Ratib Ayyoub Al-Noubani, Deir Ghassaneh, Ramallah, born 1948, killed 1968

Ahmad Abdel Karim Salim Hamad,  Nablus, born 05.10.1984, killed 05.02.2003

Ahmad Abdel-Afou Abdel Fattah Al-Qawasmi, Hebron, born 29.10.1970, killed 31.08.2002

Ahmad Fawzi Abdel Lateef Abu Dosh, Dura, Hebron, born 28.02.1978, killed 16.09.2003

Ahmad Ayed Ahmad Al-Faqih, Hebron, born 18.06.1982, killed 27.12.2002

Ahmad Atiyah Ahmad Khamees, Qalqilia, born 19.10.1976, killed 22.10.2003

Ahmad Ali Mifleh Abahrah, Jenin, born 05.11.1984, killed 19.06.2003

Ahmad Khairi Fathi Yahia, Kufr Ra’I, Jenin, born 1981, killed 07.07.2003

Ahmad Hafez Sa’dat Abdel Jawad, Askar rc, Nablus, born 21.04.1983, killed 28.03.2002

Ahmad Badawi Khalil Masalmah, Beit Awaa, Hebron, born 07.06.1963, killed 08.06.2002

Ahmad Mohammad Al-Haj Saleh Al-Rushdi, Ramleh, born 1925, killed 1948

Ahmad Mohammad Ahmad Khalil Amarneh, Ras Abu Ammar, Jerusalem, born 1933, killed 03.1968

Ahmad Khalid Mohammad Rida Al-Khatib, Nablus, born 25.05.1985

Ahmad Mustafa Ismail Ramadan, Tal. Nablus, born 1945, killed 1970

Ahmad Mustafa Ahmad Safadi, Nablus, born 16.12.1985, killed 09.10.2003

Ahmad Mohammad Najim Bani Maniyeh, Aqraba, Nablus, born 20.10.1926, killed 1967

Ahmad Yasir Ahmad Saleh, KSA, born 14.12.1983, killed 08.09.2002

Ahmad Sami Ahmad Ghawi, Atil, Tulkairm, born 02.01.1987, killed 12.07.2005

Ahmad Othman Shafeeq Bader, Hebron, born 20.09.1981, killed 09.09.2003

Ala’ Ibrahim Sa’oud Hasan Al-Titi, Balatah rc, Nablus, born 26.10.1983, killed 27.05.2002

Ala’ Hilal Abdel Sattar Sabbah, Jenin, born 11.04.1979, killed 25.05.2001

Akram Ishaq Abdallah Nabtiti, Bethlehem, born 14.06.1978, killed 17.03.2002

Ala’ Sleiman Zuhdi Marshoud, Nablus, born 26.10.1982, killed 17.06.2002

Ala’ Judi Raji Al-Natsheh, Hebron, born 22.4.1982

Ala’ Iddine Abdel Rahman Al-Fakhouri,Hebron, born 25.02.1987, killed 08.06.2003

Amer Abdel Rahim Ahmad Ali Abdallah, Askar rc, Nablus, born 06.05.1988, killed 01.11.2004

Amin Ali Saad Salameh Bsharat, Tammoun, Tubas, born 16.07.1985, killed 13.03.2003

Ali Yousif Ali Abu Basmah, Jordan, born 23.05.1984, killed 20.03.2002

Amjad Sleiman Hasan Abu Saleem, Nablus, born 04.07.1986, killed 18.05.2003

Amer Shaker Abdel Latif Abu Ayyash, Balatah rc, Nablus, born 19.09.1983, killed 18.05.2003

Amer Mohammad Isa Shkoukani,Bireh, born 03.07.1976, killed 24.05.2002

Ammar Mharib Hasanein, Gaza, born 1977, killed 03.03.2000

Ammar Abdel Majid Ata Al-Shakhshir, Nablus, born 13.11.1976, killed 17.03.2002

Ammar Abdel Ghaffar Mousa Al-Jadbah, Gaza, born 18.01.1984, killed 06.07.2004

Anas Mahmoud Mohammad Ajawi, Jenin, born 27.10.1985

Anas Binan Abdel Karim Abu Elbah, Qalqilia, born 25.09.1977, killed 17.07.2002

Anan Mohammad mahmoud Hanani, Nablus, born 02.11.1983, killed 05.02.2003

Anwar Mohammad Atiya Sukkar, Ash-Shaja’iyyah, Gaza, born 10.12.1972, killed 22.01.1995

Anis Rafeeq Shukri Mousa Khalil, Ein Arik, Ramallah, born 08.11.1966, killed 11.11.1991

Anis Mahmoud Mohammad Doleh, Qalqilia, born 28.08.1944, killed 31.08.1980

Ashraf Salah Ahmad Al-Asmar, Jenin, born 03.02.1984, killed 21.10.2002

Asem Yousif Mohammad Abu Rabhan, Tel, Nablus, born 02.07.1981, killed 12.12.2001

Asem Samih Mohammad Aseedah, Tel, Nablus, born 02.11.1979, killed 17.07.2002

Ahmad Ibrahim Mohammad ‘Abdeh, Bethlehem, born 24.01.1983, killed 03.10.2002

Ayat Mohammad Lutfi Al-Akhras, Dheisheh rc, Bethlehem, born 18.03.1984, killed 29.03.2002

Azhar Ghassan Fawwaz Abu Het, Beit Furik, Nablus, born 04.04.1986, killed 29.04.2003

Buraq Rif’at Abdel Rahman Khalaf, Nablus, born 21.05.1985, killed 05.01.2003

Burhan Hosni Hasan Hanani, Nablus, born 24.12.1984, killed 11.11.2002

Baker Atiyah Bani Odeh, Tammoun, Toubas, born 12.03.1983, killed 13.03.2003

Basil Akram Suleiman Al-Sardi, Nablus, born 4.10.1980, killed 09.04.2003

Basil Mohammad Shafeeq Abdel Qader Al-Qawasmi, Hebron, born 07.09.1977

Basim Jamal Darwish Al-Takrouri, Hebron, born 23.09.1984, killed 18.05.2003

Bilal Ja,il Abdel Rahman Al-Majjar, Burin, Nablus, born 17.11.1958, killed 09.03.1984

Dalal Said Mohammad Al-Moughrabi, Lebanon, born 1958, killed 11.03.1978

Dergham Izzat Mohammad Said Zakarneh, Jordan, born 15.06.1981, killed 10.03.2002

Darine Mohammd Tawfeeq Abu Eisheh, Beit Wazan, Nablus, born 21.06.1981, killed 27.02.2002

Daoud Ali Ahmad Saad Abu Swai, Beit Jala, born 26.11.1955, killed 05.12.2001

Diab Abdel Raheem Abdel Rahman Al-Shobaki, Hebron, born 03.03.1977, killed 25.09.2003

Dhiya’ Marwan Aref Dimyati, Nablus, born 06.03.1980, killed 01.10.2002

Fathi Jihad Fathi Ammerah, Nablus, born 08.08.1983, killed 30.03.2002

Fadi Mohammad Ali Shehadeh, Dheisheh rc, born 12.07.1986, killed 13.05.2002

Fadi Ahmad Hasan Ali Amoudi, Jabalia, Gaza, born 06.02.1982, killed 17.04.2002

Fou’ad Jawad Omran Al-Qawasmah, Hebron, born 26.03.1981, killed 17.05.2003

Faisal Ahmad Rajih Khatib Damayrah, Arrabah, Jenin, born 1961, killed 29.09.1982

Hafith Mohammad Hussein Abu Zant, Nablus, born 24.12.1954, killed 18.05.1976

Hasan Mithqal Mahmoud Shahrour, Bal’a. Tulkarim, born 08.04.1955, killed 13.11.1983

Hani Ahmad Abdel Fattah Kharboush, Nablus, born 22.11.1978, killed 05.06.2003

Hamzeh Aref Hasan Sammoudi,Nazareth, born 17.04.1984, killed 05.06.2002

Hamdan Ra’fat Daid Saleh Hamdan, Arrabah, Jenin, born 1954, killed 23.05.1974

Hasan Ahmad Hasan Abu Zeid, Qabatia, Jenin, born 05.10.1985, killed 26.10.2005

Hasan Abdel Rahman Abu Sariyeh, Jenin, born 04.11.1929, 24.11, 1969

Hani Malek Ahmad Zakarneh, Qabatya, Jenin, born 29.08.1983, killed 12.01.2003

Hanadi Tayseer Abdel Malek Jaradat, Bethlehem, born 21.09.1975, killed 04.10.2003

Hiba Azim Said Daraghmeh, Tubas, born 06.1984, killed 19.05.2003

Hazem Ata Yousif Yousif, UAE, born 02.10.1985, killed 30.07.2002

Hussein Jaber Hussein Saleh, Aqraba, Nablus, born 1926, killed 1967

Husni Basheer Ahmad Al-Hasi, Jabalia, Gaza, born 15.09.1985, killed 24.06.2004

Ibrahim Mohammad Ahed Tawfiq Daoud, Qalqilia, born 01.10.1960, killed 29.05.2002

Ibrahim Khalil Ali Abu Saifeen, Al-Yamun, Jenin, born 1949, killed 60.06.1967

Ibrahim Ahmad Hasan Al-Sarahneh, Hebron, born 17.01.1971, killed 25.02.1996

Ibrahim Saad Iddine Hamed Al-Sa’ou, Hebron, born 18.02.1982, killed 04.08.2ß02

Ibrahim Rafiq Mohammad Abdel-Hadi, Gaza, born 02.12.1984, killed 06.07.2004

Ibrahim Mohammad Ibrahim Nasr, Jabalia, Gaza, born 16.08.1989, killed 22.05.2008

Ibrahim Yaser Ibrahim Naji Khalil, Nablus, born 01.02.1984, killed 17.07.2002

Ihab Ahmad Yousif Al-Hattab, Gaza, born 14.11.1976, killed 03.03.2000

Ihab Abdel-Qader Mahmoud Abu Islim, Rantis, Ramallah, born 10.06.1984, killed 09.09.2003

Imad Nayef Atiyah Bani Odeh, Tammoun, Toubas, born 27.01.1974, killed 13.03.2003

Imad Kamel Said Zbaidi, Nablus, born 12.03.1983, killed 22.04.2001

Imad Ahmad Ismail Awadallah, Ramallah, born 06.09.1969, killed 10.09.1998

Isa Ali Mohammad Mousleh, Nablus, born 1929, killed 05.09.1969

Isa Ali Ismail Ramadan, Tel, Nablus, born 04.12.1949, killed 27.03.1969

Isa Abed Rabbo Ibrahim Bdeer, Jerusalem, born 19.09.1985, killed 22.05.2002

Is’id Salameh Abu Khuwwar, Gaza, born 1945, killed 01.10.1970

Islam Yousif Taleb Qteishat, Askar rc, Nablus, born 18.08.1985, killed 12.08.2003

Iyad Mohammad Mahmoud Harb, Balatah, Nablus, born 13.08.1982, killed 07.11.2002

Iyad Amin Mohammad Ramah, Al’ien rc, Nablus, born 27.06.1983, killed 20.06.2008

Iyad Naim Subhi Raddad, Jordan, born 15.07.1979, killed 19.09.2002

Izzidine Shaheel Ahmad Al-Masri, Jenin, born 17.08.1979, killed 09.08.2001

Izzidin Khadir Shams Aldin Misk, Hebron, born 18.09.1977, killed 09.09.2003

Jameel Khalaf Moustafa Hameed, Bethlehem, born 14.02.1986, killed 31.03.2002

Jalal Khalil Mohammad Ismail Mahameed, Deir Abu D’ef, Jenin, killed 08.02.2002

Jaber Abdel Fattah Abdel Rahman Ata, Yafa, killed 1969

Jihad Mohammad Ismail Al-Suwaiti, Bei Awwa, Hebron, born 22.03.1965, killed 30.01.2004

Khaled Abdel Latif Omar Mohammad Ahmad Isa, Nablus, born 27.06.1982, killed 26.06.2003

Khladoun Walid Aref Sha’balou, Nablus, born 29.12.1973, killed 01.08.2002

Kamel Abdallah Kamel Alawneh, Jaba’, Jenin, born 14.05.1985, killed 26.06.2003

Khalid Mohammad Ahmad Tbeel, Gaza, born 1947, killed 1972

Khalid Khalil Jibreel Al-Tal, Al-Thahriyeh, Hebron, killed 10.02.2002

Khalid Ahmad As’ad Abul-Iz, Ateel, Tulkarim, born 05.11.1968, killed 30.10.2002

Khalid Yousif Mohammad Mousa, Al-Khader, Bethlehem, born 07.10.1983, killed 26.03.2002

Khalid Soubhi Ali Sanjaq, Rameen, Tulkarim, born 20.05.1981, killed 02.12.2001

Khalid Nabeel Khamees Al-Sawalhi, Balatah rc, Nablus, born 02.07.1984, killed 04.07.2002

Khalid Mahmoud Odeh Sultan, Haris, Nablus, born 1950, killed 05.06.1967

Khamees Ghazi Faisal Jarwan, Nablus, born 15.06.1986, killed 12.06.2003

Loutfi Ameen Abdel Latif Abu Sa’dah, Nablus, born 24.02.1984, killed 05.12.2006

Mahmoud Omran Salim Al-Qawasmi, Hebron, born 22.02.1983, killed 05.03.2008

Maher Mhyiiddine Kamil Habeesheh, Nablus, born 24.01.1981, killed 02.12.2001

Mahdi Mohammad Suleiman Qaisi, Qalqilia, born 17.01.1984, killed 06.03.2002

Majdi Abdel Jawad Abdel Jabbar Khanfar, Silet Al-Thahir, Jenin, born 19.01.1981, killed 03.01.2003

Mahmoud Zuheir Mahmoud Salim, Jabalia, Gaza, born 31.12.1986, killed 14.03.2004

Mahmoud Said Abdel Rahim Salah, Beit Wazan, Nablus, killed 08.03.2002

Mashhour Talab Awad Saleh Al-Arouri, Arourah, Ramallah, born 1956, killed 18.05.1976

Marzouq Midhat Abdel Latif Ghawadrah, Jenin, born 16.01.1981, killed 18.09.2002

Majdi Mohammad Mahmoud Abu Wardah, Al-Fawwar rc, Hebron, born 11.05.1977, killed 25.02.1996

Mohammad Abdel Rahim Al-Hanbali, Nablus, born 1976, killed 050.9.2003

Mohammad Abdel Qader Abu Salim, Deir Al-Balah, Gaza, born 1946, killed 27.04.1969

Mohammad Abdel Hamid Salih Hammoudah, Jordan, born 16.03.1984, killed 17.02.2002

Mohammad Amin Mahmoud Ghalmi, Nablus, born 14.11.1980, killed 29.04.2003

Mohammad Ahmad Mahmoud Marmish, Tulkarim, born 25.01.1980, killed 18.05.2001

Mohammad Ahmad Hammad, Rafah, Gaza, born 04.03.1984, killed 02.05.2004

Mohammad Faisal Naim Al-Saksak, Gaza, born 07.11.1986, killed 29.01.2007

Mohammad Isa Za’oul, Housan, Bethlehem, born 25.02.1981, killed 22.02.2004

Mohammad Ayyoub Mohammad Sadr, Hebron, born 14.01.1987, killed 14.08.2003

Mohammad Hazza’ Abdel Rahman Al-Ghoul, Nablus, born 17.08.1983, killed 27.06.2002

Mohammad Ghazi Ridwan Mahajneh, Nur Shams rc, Tulkarim, born 30.11.1973, killed 15.12.2001

Mohammad Fawzi Mahmoud Hussein, Nablus, born 04.07.1983, killed 17.07.1983

Mohammad Kazeed Faisal Bustami, Nablus, born 17.08.1983, killed 27.06.2002

Mohammad Jamil Hussein Faraj, Nur Shams rc, Tulkarim, born 30.11.1973, killed 15.12.2001

Mohammad Ismail Hasan Atallah, Nablus, born 04.07.1983, killed 17.07.1983

Mohammad Mahshour Mohammad Hashaykah, Nablus, born 30.07.1981, killed 21.03.2003

Mohammad Mahmoud Baker Nasir, Qabatya, Jenin, born 19.10.1973, killed 12.08.2001

Mohammad Lutfi Mahmoud Hanani, Nablus, born 06.10.1982, killed 11.11.2002

Mohammad Zaki Zakariya Asfar, Askar rc, Nablus, born 14.10.1983, killed 05.08.2002

Mohammad Mustafa Hasan Shahin Al-Darabee’, Doura, Hebron, born 09.04.1983

Mohammad Misbah Abdel Fattah Al-Battat, Al-Thahriya, Hebron, born 12.12.1982, killed 10.02.2002

Mo’ayyad Burhan Amin Khalifah, Nablus, born 1952, killed 28.04.1968

Mohammad Tawfiq Awad Allah Othman Al-Shamali, Bethlehem, born 07.09.1976, killed 22.02.2002

Mohammad Ahmad Abdel Rahman Daraghmeh, Jerusalem, born 14.06.1984, killed 02.03.2002

Mohammad Hasan Sharaf Abu Ruhi, Hebron, born 1931, killed 1969

Mohammad Samih Al-Masri, Beit Hanoun, Gaza, born 24.12.1983, killed 23.11.2002

Mo’ayyad Mahmoud Ibadah Salah-Iddin, Tulkarim, born 23.12.1976, killed 09.11.2001

Mou’min Nafed Ahmad Al-Malfouh, Gaza, born 08.04.1985, killed 24.06.2004

Mohammad Ziyad Mohammad Al-Khalili, Nablus, born 14.01.1976, killed 06.02.2002

Muhannad Ibrahim Fayyad Salahat, Nablus, born 12.08.1979, killed 30.03.2002

Moufid Mohammad Ibrahim Asrawi, Allar, Tulkarim, born 26.01.1976, killed 21.02.2002

Moufdhi Ahmad Hamad Bsharat, Tammoun, Toubas, born 1924, killed 09.10.1069

Moujahid Abdel Fattah Mustafa Al-Ja’barai, Hebron, born 10.09.1984, killed 16.05.2003

Muhannad Mohammad Abdel Rahim Al-Mansi, KSA, born 22.08.1987, killed 13.11.2005

Muhammad Mahmoud Abu Zour, Balata rc, Nablus, born 04.09.1983, killed 31.05.2002

Moustafa Mazen Moustafa Hanani, Nablus, born 10.08.1984, killed 07.11.2002

Moustafa Faisal Hussein Abu Sariyah, Jenin rc, Jenin, born 06.08.1982, killed 27.11.2001

Moujahid Khalid Abdel Qader Hamadah, Jordan, born 10.08.1987, killed 04.08.2002

Murad Mohammad Abdel Fattah Abul-’Asal, Tulkarim, born 30.01.1979, killed 30.01.2002

Mustafa Mohammad Ali Abdallah Daraghmeh, Toubas, born 01.01.1928, killed 27.03.1971

Nabil Ibrahim Mohammad Mas’oud, Jabalia, Gaza, born 31.05.1987, killed 14.03.2004

Nasir Iddin Mustafa Ahmad Asidah, Nablus, born 23.02.1968, killed 18.03.2003

Nabil Mohammad Hashem Al-Natsheh, Hebron, born 16.04.1977, killed 20.03.2002

Na’el Mohammad Mahmoud Omar, Al-Shati’ rc, Gaza, born 02.03.1982, killed 18.01.2004

Nasraddine Moustafa Ahmad Aseedah, Nablus, born 23.02.1968, killed 18.03.2003

Nasim Mohammad Abdel Ghani Al-Ja’bari, Nablus, born 15.04.1982, killed 31.08.2002

Nadir Mahmoud Hasan Tayeh, beita, Nablus, born 01.01.1947, killed 21.12.1968

Nidal Tayseer Shehadeh Jabali, Nablus, born 23.03.1977, killed 28.10.2001

Nidal Ibrahim Mustafa Abu Shadouf, Jenin, born 28.02.1981, killed 16.07.2001

Natheer Mohammad Mahmoud Hammad, Jenin, born 19.03.1974, killed 04.10.2001

Nimir Mohammad Yousif Abu Saifeen, SKA, born 02.09.1983, killed 09.12.2001

Nijim Ahmad Nijim Saleem, houwwarah, Nablus, born 1946, killed 04.05.1970

Omar Mohammad Awad Abul Roub, Jenin, born 24.09.1983, killed 28.11.2002

Omar Mohammad Ahmad Zayyadah, Nablus, born 28.12.1973, killed 11.06.2002

Omar Abdel Fattah Hafez Yaseen, Nablus, born 12.08.1982, killed 19.02.2002

Osama Nimer Darwish Abul Haija, Jeinin rc, born 23.06.1979, killed 25.05.2001

Osama Adel Mohammad Bishkar, Nablus, born 06.08.1984, killed 19.05.2002

Ribhi Ahmad Mohammad Yasin Al Kahlout, Jabalia, Gaza, born 26.02.1973, killed 02,11,1995

Ra’fat Salim Najeeb Abu Dayyak, Silat Al-Thaher, Jenin, born 15.05.1978, killed 20.03.2002

Ra’ed Abdel Hameed Abdel Razaq Misk, Hebron, born 20.01.1974, killed 19.08.2003

Rami Mohammad Jameel Moutlaq Idrees, Tulkarim, born 11.11.1978, killed 31.03.2002

Ragheb Ahmad Izzat Jaradat, Jenin, born 18.12.1984, killed 10.04.2002

Rafeeq Mohammad Ali Abdel Rahman Hammad, Qalqilia, born 21.4.1971, killed 10.10.2002

Ramzi Jamal Atallah Shaheen, Ein Areek Ramallah, born 15.12.1970, killed 11.11.1991

Ramzi Fakhri Abdel Rahman Ardah, Nablus, born 04.09.1986, killed 03.04.2004

Ramiz Fahmi Izzedine Abu Salem, Rantees Ramallah born 28.04.1981, killed 09.09.2003

Ridwan Salah Hussein Qarou, Nablus, born 14.02.1983, killed 10.04.2003

Ra’id Nabil Ibrahim Dar Jabir, Ramallah, born 23.01.1975, killed 04.09.2001

Rami Mohammad Hussein Isa Al-Shu’ani, Bethlehem, born 05.07.1979, killed 01.04.2002

Rafiq Mohammad Ziyad Yacoub Iqneni, Hebron, born 25.04.1980, killed 22.10.2003

Riyad Amin Abdel Rahim Jabir, Hebron, born 03.05.1953, killed 14.06.1968

Sa’eed Hussein Hasan Houtari, Jordan, born 1979, killed 01.06.2001

Sa’eed Abdel Hafeez Sameeh Battah, Jordan, born 15.05.1982, killed 09.03.2002
Sa’di Sa’eed Khalil Al Sha’rawi, Hebron, born 1945

Sa’ir Kamal Jameel Sa’adeh, Nablus, killed 26.12.2003

Said Waddah Hamid Awadah, Nablus, born 17.02.1985, killed 18.06.2002

Sa’eed Ibrahim Sa’id Ramadan, Kuweit, born 18.12.1978, killed 22.01.2002

Safout Abdel Rahman Mohammad Sa’id Khalil, Beit Wazan, Nablus, born 1984, killed 25.01.2002

Sabri Theeb Mousa Ali Daraghmeh, al lubban alsharqiyyeh Nablus, born 03.08.1954, killed 1982

Sa’d Tawfeeq Hasan Hanani, Nablus, born 06.10.1982, killed 10.08.2002

Samer Emad Mohammad Ibrahim Al Noori, Nablus, born 11.10.1983, killed 15.01.2003

Salah Iddin Ahmad Abdalleh Odeh Al A’raj, Bethlehem, killed 04.06.1960

Saif Allah Basheer Tawfeeq Badran, Nablus, born 10.03.1985, killed 01.01.2003

Sami Fathi Moustafa Bsharat, Tammoun, Toubas, born 15.06.1987, killed 13.03.2003

Samer Sameeh Mohammad Hammad, Jenin, born 19.04.1984, killed 17.04.2006

Samer Omar Ahmad As’ad, Selat Al-Harthiyeh, Jenin, born 22.09.1981, killed 29.11.2002

Shadi Ali Moutlaq Najmi, Ein Beit Alma’ rc, Nablus, born 8.10.1975, killed 09.03.2002

Sarhan Burhan Hussein Sarhan, Yaman, born 1983, killed 10.04.2003

Sami Ziyad Sa’eed Salamah, Nablus, born 26.12.1985, killed 22.05.2004

Shadi Zakariya Rida Al Toubassi, Jenin rc, born 31.8.1987

Shadi Mohammad Sidqi Hussein Nassar, Nablus, born 18.08.1978, killed 07.03.2002

Shadi Ibrahim Hamamrah, Housan, Bethlehem, born 14.07.1976, killed 26.03.2003

Suleiman Mustafa Abdallah Thiab, Ithna, Hebron, born 1926, killed 09.1967

Salah Abdel Hamid Shakir, Rafah, Gaza, born 01.01.1969, killed 22.11.1995

Tawfeeq Hashem Aref Mahameed, Deir Abu D’eef, killed 08.02.2002

Tareq Samir Fareed Hussein Safaqah, Tulkarinm, born 30.10.1980,

Tareq Diab Abd Hameed, Gaza, born 24.03.1980, killed 28.04.2004

Tariq Rasmi Dofash, Hebron, born 1982, killed 27.04.2003

Talib Usamah Hirmas, Bethlehem, born 03.05.1980, killed 10.03.2002

Turki Rashid Mustafa Abu ‚Arra Al-Najjar, Toubas, born 1945, killed 1972

Wafa’ Ali Khalil Idris, Am’ari rc, Ramallah, born 22.01.1971, killed 21.01.2002

Walid Mohammad Hijazi Ebeido, Jerusalem, born 26.08.1983, killed 08.06.2003

Yousif Ibrahim Hasan Atallah, Nablus, born 04.12.1983, killed 31.08.2002

Yousif Ahmad Hasan Hanani, Nablus, born 25.05.1975, killed 01.01.2003

Yahya Ali Mansour Abdel-Rahman, Qalqilia, born 1945, killed 1968

Yousif Taleb Yousif Ighbari, Qalqilia, born 14.01.1980, killed 14.09.2004

Yousif Mohammad Ragheb Abul Roub, Jenin, born 06.10.1978, killed 27.11.2002

Yousif Mohammad Ali Sweitat, Jenin rc, Jenin, born 03.05.1979, killed 28.10.2001

Yasir Sa’id Mousa Odeh, Bethlehem, killed18.02.2002

Yousif Hussein Odeh Sultan, Haris, Nablus, killed 1967

Yousif Abdallah Ahmad Akka Abu AlAbed, Jordan, born 01.03.1963, killed 05.12.1989

Zeid Isma’il Ahmad Hanani, Nablus, born 14.12.1986, killed 06.03.2008

Zainab Ali Isa Abu Salem, Nablus, born 10.04.1087, killed 22.09.2004




Posted in Palestine AffairsComments Off on Waiting To Return Home: Palestinian Martyrs in Nazi “Cemeteries of Numbers” and Morgues

Steadfast for Palestine: The Heroes of the Battle of “Breaking the Chains”


Dheisheh refugee camp, solidarity tent with hunger strikers © Reham Alhelsi

Dheisheh refugee camp, solidarity tent with hunger strikers © Reham Alhelsi

Seven Palestinian administrative detainees have been waging the battle of “Breaking the Chains” against administrative detention; Nidal Abu Aker, Shadi Ma’ali, Ghassan Zawahreh, Bader Al-Ruzza and Munir Abu Shara are on day 31 of an open hunger strike, Bilal As-Seifi is on day 25 of an open hunger strike, Sleiman Skafi is on day 19 of an open hunger strike. With their joint hunger strike, they united Palestine: united Al-Walaje with Nablus, Al-Jora with Dura, Ras Abu Ammar with Hebron. From behind Zionist bars they raise their voice against the illegal administrative detention and against injustice. Their struggle is for all of us, their message is unanimous, their demands are clear: an end to the policy of administrative detention, establishing an international commission on arbitrary administrative detention, physical and psychological compensation for administrative detainees, and defeating the law of force-feeding hunger strikers.
I sat with Im Nidal, Im Shadi, Im Ghassan and Im Bilal in their living rooms, simple houses in the steadfast refugee camp… I hadn’t been to Dheisheh since my beloved grandfather passed away one and a half years earlier… the refugee camp was the same… Im Nidal’s living room was the same… the graffiti leading to Im Shadi’s house was the same, Dheisheh’s narrow alleys and neighbourhoods were the same… it seemed that some things never change; you could still feel the power, the strength, the struggle in the narrow alleys of Dheisheh, you could smell the resistance coming from the simple houses, the same simple houses that produced the heroes and the martyrs of the First and Second Intifadas and the time before and after. Some things never change, the steadfastness, the dream of return and the belief in victory never change… We talked about the old days, about Dheisheh, talked about family members, and exchanged greetings, talked about relatives we hadn’t seen in a while because of work and other daily matters that keep people apart even when they are so close and shared so much… we talked about the hunger strikers, about the resistance, about those who sacrifice their lives so Palestine may live free and about those who betray Palestine so they may continue to live as slaves…. And it seemed, in the sea of all things constant, something do change; to some, betrayal and treachery have become a point of view … betrayal is no more a crime against man and land, but an opinion… this more than anything else pained us and still does, but we are partly to blame, because we, the Palestinian people, as the force leading one revolution after another, we don’t hold popular revolutionary courts for the traitors who are betraying Palestine, Palestinian constants and Palestinian rights. In Dheisheh I sat with them, the mothers of the four hunger strikers; steadfast and defiant like their children, strong and patient for their children, and always present at the tent of solidarity with the hungers strikers. These four Palestinian women from Ras Abu Ammar, Al-Jora, Al-Walaja and At-Ta’amra, together with their hunger striking sons, are the heroes of the battle of “Breaking the Chains”. I asked them the same questions; what was the latest news coming from the isolation cells where their sons are held captive, how do they see the solidarity actions with their children, what messages do they have for the Palestinian people, for those standing in solidarity with their children and for their children resisting the occupation with their empty stomachs and leading the battle of “Breaking the Chains”.

Nidal Abu Aker, © google images

Nidal Abu Aker © google images

Nidal Abu Aker: 47 years old from Ras Abu Ammar, temporarily resident of Dheisheh refugee camp, is on day 31 of an open hunger strike. Nidal spent a total of 13 years in Israeli captivity, including 9 years in administrative detention. His home was raided by Israeli occupation soldiers on the dawn of 28.06.2014; and since then he’s been held in administrative detention without charge or trial. On 20.08.2015, Nidal and his comrades started an open hunger strike to protest their administrative detention and their captivity on the basis on so-called secret files. As punishment, the IPS transferred him to isolation cells in ‘Asqalan prison to pressure him to end his strike, after which he was transferred to Ela isolation. His cell is 150 x 180 cm, with a bed, a toilet and a shower, his hands and feet are shackled when he is to leave the cell, and all his personal belonging were taken from him when he was sent to isolation. On 12.09.2015, and while on hunger strike, Nidal’s administrative detention was renewed for another 3 months. It is worth noting that Nidal suffers from various health problems, including blood pressure, weakness of the heart muscle, ulcer, acute rheumatic and haemorrhoids. Since the beginning of the hunger strike, Nidal lost 12 kilos and has developed an infections in the throat. He refuses to take his medicines.

Malka Abu Aker, mother of hunger striker Nidal Abu Aker © Reham Alhelsi

Malka Abu Aker, mother of hunger striker Nidal Abu Aker © Reham Alhelsi

Malka Abu Aker (Im Nidal): Today is the 27th day of hunger strike for Nidal and his comrades… they don’t see anyone, they are not allowed to see the representatives of the Red Cross. I just came back from the Red Cross, and they told me they were not allowed to see the hunger strikers. Nidal, Allah yirda 3aleh and stand with him, and protect him, and free him and free all the young men … May God protect them and free them all. I remember the day they came to arrest him… did you see the pictures? The destruction they left in his house? They surrounded the house, beat him and beat his son Mohammad, they pointed the gun at Mohammad’s head…. There was a resistance operation in Beit Ummar or Halhoul, I don’t remember exactly, so the Israeli intelligence searched in their computers for the names of those who are often imprisoned, they searched for the names of the activists… they caught the ones who did the operation, but nonetheless they searched for names of those active in resisting the occupation… They surrounded the refugee camp on that night, at 12 am. We heard that the Israeli occupation soldiers were in the camp; the first house they raided was our house, 50 soldiers came and surrounded the house… this is our life, I knew that they will come to our house and they did… Nidal was outside, I told him that the soldiers are in the camp, he decided to stay away, so when they came, they went to his house, broke everything inside and beat his son… this was one week before his arrest. Every night since that night, Nidal would leave the house and stay away till 4-5 in the morning, because usually the soldiers leave the camp when the mosques start calling for Morning Prayer. This went on for a whole week… On the dawn of 28.06.2014, Israeli occupation soldiers raided our house; they attacked Nidal and his family and ransacked the house, before taking Nidal with them. Since then, he’d been held in administrative detention without any charge or trial.
I respect everyone who comes and feels with these young men and stands with their cause. I thank Dheisheh residents… everyone is good to us, everyone cares for our cause, the cause of the hunger strikers. Groups come from everywhere, from Aida refugee camp and from Al-Azza refugee camp, from everywhere they come… many tell me they know Nidal because they were detained with him… they met him behind Israeli bars…. Abu Mazen called me from Egypt after Nidal’s sentence was renewed for another 3 months; he said he stands in solidarity with me and with those on hunger strike… When he called, I was outside sitting in the solidarity tent, and there was much noise. I told him I wish you were here with us sitting on the chairs in the tent in Dheisheh and I thank you for your call….
We don’t know how these young men will come back home; alive or I don’t know what … May God give them strength. We don’t hear any news from them, but I know that Nidal is growing weak because of the hunger strike. The last news we received from Nidal was through Addameer; it was a letter from him written on 09.09.2015 in which he says … it was read by the young men in the solidarity tent… he says: “I am isolated in ‘Asqalan in a cell that is only 1,5 meter by 1,40 meters. I can’t leave the cell and no one is allowed to visit me. I don’t eat and I don’t take medicine; a doctor came and told me that I am sick, it’s my chest, and that I need treatment. I told him: No, I will not take any treatment until you bow to our demands.” He adds: “I ask Dheisheh residents, I ask everyone to stand with us, and I ask all those with a conscience; women, men, children, to be present at the solidarity tent, and I ask from all the institutions to talk about us and our cause, in Palestine and abroad. I ask you to be active for my mother and father. We ask you all for more mobilization.”
Don’t worry, yamma ya Nidal, even if I am sick and crawling on my knees, I will continue to support your cause and your struggle. I see that no one is failing the hunger strikers, many participate in actions in their support, even in France they have protests, in Italy, in Jordan, in Ramallah… There are sit-ins, also in Hebron…. Everywhere people stand in solidarity with the hungers strikers because these are 6 young men on hunger strike, you don’t know what will happen to them… today is their 27th day of hunger strike… to them I say: stay strong, yamma, and God willing, you will achieve all your demands, and God willing you will always stay strong and will leave the jails with your heads high, yamma, you are unjustly held in administrative detention and your hunger strike is in protest of the administrative detention, 6 months after 6 months…. I am sure they will emerge victorious and that they will hold their heads high and defeat the Zionist enemy. I ask all administrative detainees to stand in solidarity with you, and if you would follow each other and joint the strike, it would be stronger. They were six, and now there are two hunger strikers from Hebron, so they are eight. I only hope that everyone will stand in solidarity with Nidal and his comrades.

Shadi Maali © google images

Shadi Maali © google images

Shadi Ma’ali: 39 years old from Al-Jorah, temporarily resident of Dheisheh refugee camp, on day 31 of an open hunger strike. Shadi spent a total of 12 years in Israeli captivity and was tortured during interrogation. On 20.08.2015, Shadi and his comrades started an open hunger strike to protest their administrative detention and their captivity on the basis on so-called secret files. As punishment, the IPS transferred him to isolation cells in Ela prison to pressure him to end his strike. Shadi suffers from chronic ulcer in addition to the weakness of the cornea. On 11.09.2015, it was reported that Shadi was transferred from Ela isolation to Naqab isolation.

Su’ad Ma’ali, mother of hunger striker Shadi Ma’ali © Reham Alhelsi

Su’ad Ma’ali, mother of hunger striker Shadi Ma’ali © Reham Alhelsi

Su’ad Ma’ali (Im Shadi): Shadi was first arrested when he was 15 years old, now he is 40. He has 2 girls and 3 boys, but was not able to spend much time with them because he was often held captive in Israeli jail, he spent more than 10 years in Israeli jails, and was also detained once by the PA. Shadi had been released from Israeli captivity only one and half month earlier, when on 28.06.2014, Israeli occupation forces raided and ransacked his home before detaining him. Since then, he’d been held in administrative detention, which was renewed 3 consecutive times for 6 months each. We knew about the hunger strike 3 months before it started; Shadi told us when we visited him in jail. I told him: for God’s sake, the strike is difficult. The decision to start a hunger strike is not an easy one, and they had been preparing for this for 3 months. Yesterday, we were told that Shadi sent a letter through the lawyer, in it he tells us that he is steadfast and will continue the strike until the last breath… its either victory or martyrdom. He has been on hunger strike since 30 days now… imagine, when you fast one day, in the evening, when it is time to break the fast, you feel very tired and frail, so imagine someone fasting and not eating at all for 30 days. So, without anyone telling us, we know that their health is deteriorating and that they are getting weaker by the day. But the lawyer tells us that Shadi and his comrades are steadfast and their spirits are high, they are determined to continue the battle of “Breaking the Chains” until victory, thank God, but they are very tired and fatigued. The IPS resorts to various means to pressure the hunger strikers to end their strike, such as isolating them, and placing food in front of them and telling them individually that their comrades have broken their strike. The hunger strikers say that, in case of any agreement with the IPS, one of their conditions is that all hunger strikers and their lawyer be present to discuss the agreement. Issa Qaraqe’ (Prisoners’ affairs Minister) told us that they spoke with the Red Cross in order to demand that the hunger strikers be transferred to a hospital, but till now we haven’t heard anything from the Red Cross. The Red Cross calls us asking for information about our children, they know nothing and they do nothing, they call us when they want information about our detained children instead of giving us information. You know, I don’t want money, or houses, or high positions or anything, I just my son back, I want him to come back home… everything can be compensated, but not a son…
I want to thank everyone who stands in solidarity with our children, and I call on everyone to show a real stand of solidarity with our children, because, as they say, a rubble supports a stone, and I ask Arab and foreign countries and all organizations to stand in solidarity with our children. We wish that the PA officials would support the hunger strikers, we ask them to stand with our children now and not wait for the last minute. Bethlehem governor didn’t even bother to come to the solidarity tent in Dheisheh, they don’t care. In Dheisheh there is a solidarity tent, in Ramallah there is a solidarity tent, we hear of support actions in Gaza, in France, in other places… On the popular level, there is support and solidarity with the hunger strikers, but it is not enough and the mobilization is not enough, the tent in Dheisheh is full every night, but, in general, there is still not enough mobilization everywhere. I ask everyone to stand in solidarity with our children and not wait till they reach the point of danger. We don’t want them to wait till the hunger strikers are close to death and then everyone remembers them. Our children are struggling to defeat the policy of administrative detention, not only for themselves but for everyone… they are struggling for the freedom of every detainee. They are fighting with their stomachs only, they have no weapons but their stomachs. I have another son in Israeli captivity; Mohammad received 21 life sentenced. Palestinian political prisoners resist the occupation inside jails, and the only means to resist the jailor is their empty stomachs. I pray that the Palestinian people, as a whole, stand with them. Wherever there is a solidarity action we go; to Ramallah, to Dura, to Bethlehem… for the sake of the hunger strikers we will walk on our eyelashes, for their sake we will walk on water
My son Shadi is the eldest; I have 9 sons. When he was resisting the occupation as a 12 year-old, I used to follow him and beat him in front of the people and in front of his friends so he be ashamed and stop going and resisting the occupation, but he never listened to me. I used to hide his sneakers so he can’t leave the house, but he used to wait till when I am not paying attention, and he would run out of the house barefoot and go and resist the Israeli occupation soldiers and throw stones at them. Resistance is in his blood since he was a kid; he was first imprisoned as a 15 year-old. They locked him behind bars as a 15 year-old and they still lock him behind bars. Shadi is stubborn; one time the Israeli occupation forces came to arrest him, and he ran up to the roof. There is some distance between our house and that of our neighbours. He jumped to the neighbour’s roof, and then from one roof to the other, and he escaped. The Israeli occupation soldiers were mad, but later they arrested him after someone informed them about his hideout. Shadi loves to smile, he loves to joke, but to him his homeland and resistance are the most important thing. To Shadi I say: May God give you and your comrades the strength to continue and make you victorious over your jailors… continue your battle and, God willing, victory is yours… We are with you all the way. To me a life sentence and a 100-year detention is the same. God is the judge, but, God willing, they will all be free… soon… we are always full of hope.

Hunger striker Ghassan Zawahreh © Reham Alhelsi

Hunger striker Ghassan Zawahreh © Reham Alhelsi

Ghassan Zawahreh: 34 years, temporarily resident of Dheisheh refugee camp, on day 31 of an open hunger strike. Ghassan spent a total of 10 years in Israeli captivity, including 3 years in administration detention. He was detained on 08.04.2015 at a flying checkpoint in Bethlehem, and has since been held in administrative detention, which was renewed 3 times for 4 months each. On 20.08.2015, Ghassan and his comrades started an open hunger strike to protest their administrative detention and their captivity on the basis on so-called secret files. As punishment, the IPS transferred him to isolation cells in Eshel prison to pressure him to end his strike. His cell his cramped, dirty, with only one mattress and the IPS confiscated all his personal belongings. On 04.09.2015, Ghassan stopped consuming any liquids or medicine for 3 days. He suffers from ulcers and arthritis. It was reported lately that Ghassan’s health deteriorated and his weight dropped sharply due to the strike, but he is steadfast, has strong belief that they will beat the jailors and be victorious, he is in high spirits and is determined to continue until the end.

Najiyyeh Zawahreh, mother of hunger striker Ghassan Zawahreh © Reham Alhelsi

Najiyyeh Zawahreh, mother of hunger striker Ghassan Zawahreh © Reham Alhelsi

Najiyyeh Zawahreh (Im Ghassan): Ghassan is my eldest son, he is 33 years old, married and father to 2 boys and 1 girl. He studied Social Service at the university, and has only one semester left till graduation. Ghassan was detained by the Israeli occupation forces several times; the first time was in 2002 and he was sentenced to 7 years in jails, he was detained at Al-Qubbe checkpoint. The second detention was in 2009, the Israeli intelligence sent Ghassan an order to go for an “interview” at the detention center, where he was held and received an administrative detention order for 6 months, which was renewed twice afterwards totalling 18 months without charge or trial. The thirds time was in 2014, the Israeli soldiers came to our house searching for Ghassan, he wasn’t home, they cut off the telephone lines and raided his and our houses. They later arrested him at a flying checkpoint in Al-Khader while he was coming back from Hebron. Ghassan was sent to administrative detention for 4 months, which were renewed another three times, totalling 16 months. Ghassan started his hunger strike together with his comrades on 20.08.2015, he stopped drinking water for two days. We were informed about the hunger strike during our latest visit to Ghassan; he told us they were planning a hunger strike, but did not tell us when the strike will start. The Israeli Prison Service (IPS) separated the hunger strikers in various jails and placed them in isolation cells, but they are all steadfast and they all are in high spirits. The lawyer tells us that Ghassan is still strong. The hunger strikers boycott the Israeli courts and the medical tests, a doctor comes once every two days but no real medical treatment is provided to the Palestinian political prisoners, so the hunger strikers boycott the doctors. We ask all administrative detainees to stand in solidarity with the hunger strikers. Ghassan’s father and grandfather were also former detainees; his father was held captive in Israeli jails and his grandfather was held captive in jails of the British Mandate. I used to visit Abu Ghassan in Israeli jails carrying 7-month-old Ghassan on my arm.
The level of solidarity is acceptable, but not the level we want, and the level of solidarity from the Palestinian Authority (PA) and the civil society organizations is still below acceptable. We follow up the solidarity actions; in France, in Gaza, there are always solidarity sit-ins in Gaza. We see the pictures, and we hear they will have solidarity tents in all Palestinian cities, tents in solidarity with the hunger striking prisoners. We have organized to go to Ramallah and deliver letters to the foreign consuls and a letter to Abu Mazen. I ask everyone to take action to help the hunger strikers.
Ghassan sent us a letter about the demands of the hunger strikers; the demands of our brave children have a high ceiling, there are 4 demands:
1. To break the administrative detention.
2. To boycott Israeli courts; already 70 administrative detainees have joined the boycott.
3. Material and psychological compensation for administrative detainees because they were detained without charge or trial.
4. In case of an agreement with the Israeli Prison Service, the hunger strikers should be brought together to discuss the agreement, and sign a joint agreement and not separate ones, and that the decision to break the hunger strike should be unanimous.
But to be honest with you, we are afraid from the forced feeding… they can bring any doctor who can force feed the hunger strikers. Issa Qaraqe’ frightened us the other day; he told yes he was afraid, and that the IPS is isolating every hunger striker in a separate cell. They are singling them out to try and trick them, but the men are stubborn and have a strong will. You know, the decision to start a hunger strike is very hard; before a prisoner decides to go on hunger strike, he thinks a million times because he know he is walking to death… either death or life… They can’t back down. Sometimes I cry alone, but I tell myself to remain strong for Ghassan, I tell myself to remain strong in front of the occupation soldiers, I want them to see that we are steadfast, and that we don’t surrender.
We encourage the hunger strikers because their demands are just and they have the right to be free and be released from jail. There are no charges against them, their demands are just and God willing they will be free. I call their battle the “Battle of Steel Stomachs”. You know, they are not asking for freedom for themselves only, when they went on hunger strike the first week, the Israeli intelligence personnel sat with them and told them: “give us a week to study your files and decide whether or not to renew your administrative detention”. The hunger strikers replied that this was not their demand; “Our demand is to end administrative detention for ALL”. You see, we support them and clasp their hands, and encourage them… and God willing, they will be victorious… I ask the administrative detainees to join the hunger strike and not to leave our children alone, I ask them to join the hunger strike in waves. When their numbers increase, the Israelis will be confused and will not know what to do. I ask everyone to support the hunger strikers, everyone should support them; every Palestinian, the PA, the organizations, the Red Cross, everyone, because the hunger strikers continue through our support… they receive the news about our solidarity and they continue with their struggle through our support. Although our hearts are breaking for them, although we can’t eat or drink while they are on hunger strike, isolated, held captive, but we stand with them… even if I have to step on my heart, I have to encourage Ghassan till the last minute.

Bilal As-Seifi © google images

Bilal As-Seifi © google images

Bilal As-Seifi: 26 years old from Al-Walaje, temporarily resident of Dheisheh refugee camp, on day 25 of an open hunger strike. Bilal has been held captive in administrative detention since 01.03.2015, which was renewed twice for six months. On 27.08.2015, Bilal started an open hunger strike to protest his administrative detention and his captivity on the basis on so-called secret files. As punishment, the IPS transferred him to isolation cells in Naqab prison to pressure him to end his strike. He suspended his hunger strike for two days, following promises from the Israeli intelligence to reconsider his administrative detention order, but resumed the hunger strike after turning down an “offer” to be deported for two years. According to latest reports, Bilal stopped drinking water since 18.09.2015, to protest against his continued detention without charge or trial. He refrains from taking supplements and medicine, despite the seriousness of his health condition, as he suffers from epilepsy and has to take a total of 13 pills a day. He described his situation in isolation as extremely bad, and that the jailers were deliberately humiliating and insulting him, he remains shackled throughout the day and that his weight dropped from 94 to 72 kg.

Nawal As-Seifi, mother of hunger striker Bilal As-Seifi © Reham Alhelsi

Nawal As-Seifi, mother of hunger striker Bilal As-Seifi © Reham Alhelsi

Nawal As-Seifi (Im Bilal): This is not Bilal’s first detention, it is his fourth: the first time he spent three years in Israeli jails, he was 15 years old at the time. The second detention was when the Israeli occupation soldiers came to arrest his brother Hamza, and they detained both, he spent one and a half years in administrative detention. The third detention was when Bilal was working in Ramallah, there were problems at Qalandia checkpoint and the Israeli occupation forces stopped the car he was travelling in and detained him. He didn’t stay long in detention, only a couple of days, but they beat him on his head and caused him fractures in the skull.

The fourth detention, the current one, started when the Israeli soldiers came to detain his brother Mohammad who was wanted at the time. They took Bilal instead, and sent him to 6 months in administrative detention, which was renewed for another 6 months. Bilal is 26 years old now, he has been on hunger strike since 26.08.2015 and he is currently held in an isolation cell. He suspended the hunger strike for two days following promises from the IPS to reconsider his detention, only to resume it when his demands were not met. The latest information we got is that he sends his greetings and that he is still on hunger strike and in isolation. He received only two visits from the lawyers, and they are the only ones who inform us about his situation. His situation is getting difficult, he refuses medicine, and this is all the information we have.

Bilal was beaten several times on the head while in Israeli detention, but during his third arrest, he was beaten so badly that he had to go and see a doctor. The doctors said that he has a “problem” in the head as a result of the beating. The last time, when the Israeli soldiers took his brother, they beat Bilal violently, everyone saw how they were beating him. They wanted to arrest Mohammd, they shot at Mohammad but he ran away, this made them angry and they beat Bilal violently on the head.

I find that the popular interaction with the cause of the hunger striker is not good, but I would say acceptable. Those who are active, those who come to the protest and the sit-ins are those who have a detainee in the family, or those who passed through the experience of detention, or the relatives of detainees, or human rights institutions, that is all… simple people…. But it is not the needed level of interaction… I can only say it’s acceptable, no more.

Today everyone is busy with one’s issues… I remember during the First Intifada, the women would surround the occupation soldiers to free the young men and prevent their detention… today, no one…. no one at all cares…. no one. I send my thanks and appreciation to all those standing in solidarity with us, when I hear that people stand in solidarity with us in Italy or elsewhere, I can’t say thank you enough, they are far away and they care, and here some who are in the country and who are close and don’t care about the prisoners. I hope that the other administrative detainees will stand with the hunger strikers. I hope that everyone will stand with them. I ask everyone to stand with us in the struggle against administrative detention.

Yamma ya Bilal, to you and your comrades I say: God willing you will come out victorious, may God give you strength. Yamma ya Bilal, I send you messages of love and appreciation, and may God give you strength… Yamma, listen, I say this because you are sick, as a mother I speak, I say this because you are sick… if you can yamma, if you can break the hunger strike, then break it… I say this because my son is in jail and one day, no matter how long it will take, the doors of the jails will open and he will be free, but, God forbid, the grave doesn’t open its door once it’s closed… I am talking as a mother, not talking slogans, die or don’t die… no… no mother tells her son to die… Yes, I stand with him, I support him, but I tell him at the moment when you feel it’s enough, then it’s enough… you did what you can, every person and their abilities. I tell him: you will be free from jail one day, it will never close its doors on you forever, but the grave closes its doors forever and I don’t want you to reach the grave.

I would like to send a message to all Israeli mothers, I just want to ask them: if someone comes and places your son in a jail without charge or trial, what we call administrative detention, how would you feel? What would your reaction be? We are no terrorists… to detain someone without charge or trial, to imprison someone according to your whim, to renew the detention two, three, six months… why? I tell you my son is held unjustly, they held him for 6 months in administrative detention and renewed it for another 6 months, and before that, he spent one and a half years in administrative detention, without any charges, without any trial… I ask Israeli mothers that they put themselves in my place… I am a mother and they are mothers: Would they accept that someone should detain their sons and imprison them without any charge? Without being tried in a court? My son is held unjustly… would they accept that their sons be held unjustly? Without a charge? Injustice has a name: Administrative Detention, being locked up behind bars without charge, without court trial, without a court case.

Freedom for ALL Palestinian and Arab political prisoners and detainees held captive in Zionist dungeons.

Posted in Palestine Affairs, ZIO-NAZI, Human RightsComments Off on Steadfast for Palestine: The Heroes of the Battle of “Breaking the Chains”

Deserting Libya: The Rhetoric of British Foreign Policy


If you care to read the British Government’s official advice to potential or actual visitors to Libya, which as at 26th September, 2015 is “Still Current”; you will find the following bleak message:

Latest update: Summary – intense fighting continues in Benghazi, Sirte, Darnah and parts of southern Libya; the situation remains dangerous throughout the country.

More specifically the grim picture painted by the Foreign Office continues as follows:

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advise against all travel to Libya due to the ongoing fighting, threat of terrorist attacks and kidnap against foreigners (including from ISIL-affiliated extremists), and a dangerous security situation throughout the country.

British nationals still in Libya are strongly urged to leave immediately by commercial means. The British Embassy in Tripoli has temporarily closed, and is unable to provide consular assistance.

There is a high threat from terrorism. There have been a number of attacks and threats against westerners, western interests and symbolic targets throughout Libya. ISIL-affiliated groups have stated an intention to target foreigners. There is clear evidence that groups within Libya have both the intent and capability to carry out kidnappings and are specifically targeting foreign nationals.


The advice goes on with similar warnings regarding the high risk of kidnapping, of car bombs and heavy fighting in residential areas of Benghazi and elsewhere: on 27th July “a British diplomatic convoy was subject to an attempted car-jacking on the road between Tripoli and the Ras-al Jadir border crossing with Tunisia. Like many other parts of Libya, roads in this area are vulnerable to criminal gangs”. The official advice confesses that the fighting includes the involvement of major, well-known international middle-eastern extremist jihadi groups, and acknowledges, as if at last to underscore the FCO’s own remote detachment and complete ignorance: “it’s unclear in some areas which faction has control.”

Meanwhile we have a flow of refugees, gathering from across the Middle East’s or Africa’s worst war-torn or anarchic states, circuitously moving in an arc from East or South before consolidating through Libya, which discreetly funnels them from frying-pan to fire; into the hands of the operatives of the few non-hydrocarbon international trades (along with gun-running) Libya now specialises in: people-smuggling to Europe. The journey, like any war-zone taken over by criminals, has its own rate of morbid attrition for all who venture to take their chance of surviving the Mediterranean crossing or the inhumanity of the smugglers; and yet so nightmarish (we can only imagine), is the road the refugees have traversed to reach this Dantean Inferno in Libya, or so desperate their predicament; on they come, regardless. The fall of Gaddafi has brought together on the edge of Europe the worst of all possible worlds, and opened the flood-gates to exacerbate the greatest human refugee migration since World War II, and direct it toward Europe.

How did this happen? Let us begin with an examination of David Cameron’s view of the British contribution in 2011 to Gaddafi’s momentous fall in Libya, and the triumph Cameron’s government had achieved in leading the regime-change project. A quite clear statement of critical factors may be found by happenstance in the bold assertions Cameron allowed himself on BBC Radio 4, 2nd September, 2011 promoting the objectives the Libyan rebels (the National Transitional Council) had achieved, and which Cameron had directly backed with military air-strikes (and which RUSI described as “crucial air support”), simultaneously cementing Britain’s role in regime-change by the PM making bullish claims for the Libyan revolution’s success and prospects, while co-chairing a major international summit in Paris to build support for the Libyan regime that replaced Gaddafi. Supported by Britain, the new Libyan regime promised the Paris summit a speedy transition to democracy and early elections in Libya (the elections were held, but the rest proved completely illusory).

All of this British policy rhetoric, we should remember, was offered to the British people as triumphant and decisive, permanent proof of success, at a time when the disastrous example of Iraq was still raw in the public memory, even in the FCO; and both the military and political policy in Afghanistan was slowly descending into the incomprehensible political enigma it remains to this day.

Cameron said this to the British people on 2nd September, 2011 in support of the overthrow of Gaddafi, and as a scornful rebuff to the critics:

A lot of armchair generals who said you couldn’t do it without an aircraft carrier, they were wrong. A lot of people who said Tripoli is completely different to Benghazi, the two don’t get on, they were wrong. People who said this is all going to be an enormous swamp of Islamists and extremists, they were wrong. People who said we were going to run out of munitions, they were wrong. (Source: International Business Times report of the PM’s 2nd September, 2011 statement)

This much remains true: they didn’t run out of munitions, and the Libyan militias, extremists, gangsters, jihadists and terrorists haven’t run out of munitions ever since. Indeed it is now claimed that Libya is a significant source of armaments supply in this unstable area of the world, reaching as far as Mali or Syria.

The Prime Minister, however loftily claimed that Tripoli was “getting itself back together again in relatively good order” and the new regime (the National Transitional Council) was “rapidly mending” Libya. He went on:

If we have the opportunity to do the right thing and you can see that what you are about to do is achievable and doable, then there’s a very strong case for going ahead, and that was my view about Libya. It was something we ought to do and it was something we were able to do.

He also claimed that the revolution was in the UK National Interest, presented the British intervention as a “moral imperative” (now given a grand title in diplomacy, ‘Responsibility to Protect’ – R2P); with the rebel success inflated to a point that it would allow continuation of the ‘Arab Spring’: but in a moment that perhaps establishes Cameron’s authentic place in the history of British foreign policy as the most ill-judged PM since Anthony Eden; he suggested that Britain remained a “full-spectrum player” (whatever that means).

More alarmingly Cameron claimed there were “many similarities” between Libya and Syria, presumably implying that he would now wish to apply his uncanny Napoleonic talent for both intervention and for military strategy and tactics in Syria; and of course we have subsequently seen references to drone and air strikes in Syria, but no claims to quick victories, or indeed anything that looks like victory – or even a clear and distinct idea of the identity of the enemy in this labyrinthine myriad of over-lapping, interconnected, warring parties that provide a bewildering tapestry of changing alliances, dubious relationships, contradictory militias, sects, tribes, jihadists, ideologists that we are either ‘fighting’, or perhaps allied with, against some other equally uncertain ‘enemy’ who was last year’s ally, based on who knows what unreliable or shifting intelligence (or even identify who our friends are?); in a non-war that Parliament has not approved.

Notice that Cameron cannot claim now (2015) that nobody in 2011 saw the deep flaws in his Libyan regime-change campaign at the time; his case openly rested on the decisiveness and finality of the British-backed rebel triumph in producing regime-change and the promise of stability, of final victory and even democracy it ensured. All of this failed spectacularly. Yet, as Cameron’s 2nd September statement demonstrates, he could not even stop there; and in the moment of irresistible hubris to which he wretchedly succumbed, deliberately resorted to florid rhetorical devices to emphasise his heavy scorn (a derivation of symploce: here repetition of ‘people’ and ‘they were wrong’ – see quotation above), the PM dismissed with excessive relish the many dire and acutely prophetic warnings he had been given that his action would at best only produce chaos in Libya, and open the Mediterranean (and therefore both friendly North African states like Tunisia, to say nothing of Europe itself) to a variety of serious threats and refugee problems for which no single country, nor even the EU, has subsequently proved itself adequately equipped to resolve, or even face.

I do not claim to be an expert on Libya. There are many established sources for evidence of the current state of Libya (and I here carefully restrict myself narrowly to offering only those likely to be favourable to the UK, or at least not likely to be dismissed by UK Government apologists) although there are few Western sources currently operating within Libya, for it is so dangerous for correspondents, as the travel advice reveals.

Such sources of evidence include the Middle East Monitor (Samira Shackle, 5th August, 2014 tellingly titled a paper “Libya’s descent into anarchy” and went on to describe the country as “in a state of civil war; violence between rival militias is out of control; arms proliferate; and the rule of law and order is practically non-existent”); the Royal United Services Institute [RUSI] (which has been cautiously but very persistently critical of UK policy, notably of the R2P formula); the Quilliam Foundation (which has doggedly supported UK action as late as 2014, but Noman Benotman, in a briefing paper on 25th March, 2014 at the same time described Libya as facing “a disastrous lack of security and law and order”, and acknowledged a “total failure in Libya’s defence and security sectors, both of which are essential for governments to exercise their power”); or Chatham House (a supporter of UK policy as late as 2012 but which now seems curiously [?] quieter and quieter on Libya briefings since then); or best of all simply read the British Government’s Travel Advice to Libya, under the sub-heading “Security”, as I have done and there discover the stark message of black failure presented by the Government in its own words, four years after Cameron claimed to have delivered secure success – that he was right; ironically, for the British people to read now, absorb and whatever they do – in all costs avoid Libya.

It seems clear that the Libyan security position in 2015 is no better than 2014, and indeed (certainly from a UK policy perspective), much worse. None of the sources listed above now offer convincing evidence that Libya may be described as anything other than a failed state, war-torn, divided, reduced to civil war, anarchistic and overwhelmed by tribal factionalism, jihadists and criminals. The Libyan government writ does not run, and it appears it was the collapse of security and order in Libya that opened the route through the porous Libyan border for terrorists to mount their appalling attack on foreign tourists (principally from the UK) in Tunisia earlier this year. What alone surprises, is the relative lack of detailed attention that Libya (and Britain’s catastrophic intervention) has received from public ‘expert’ opinion and think-tanks since 2011, in the middle of all the ‘hand-wringing’ over the Middle East, given the nature of the current crisis and the problems for Europe that Libya presents.

All I have done here is to present the British Government’s own assessment (pre-and-post the Coalition, for Government policy has remained apparently unchanged, like the PM responsible for the policy), principally in the words of the Government or the PM, and to contrast this with the established, and generally undisputed facts, again drawn largely from Government or uncontentious sources.

The picture is no better the closer we look at the unfolding policy catastrophe, from beginning to end, that was managed as a joint-Western military-operation-of-the-willing in 2011 (including France and a notably reluctant US), but led by David Cameron; and not forgetting William Hague, who paid for his part in the blunder by being sacked. Be in no doubt: Libya was a major British blunder, led by two men (David Cameron and William Hague) who were, frankly out of their depth and far beyond their manifestly limited competence. For the avoidance of doubt my case here is not a defence of the brutal Gaddafi regime; it is an examination of an obvious British political foreign policy disaster in 2010-11 (by no means the first in our long and very chequered history in the region) that has had appalling consequences not only in Libya, but extending far beyond its borders, and affecting people throughout a widening region of the world, and in almost unimaginable numbers.

I make no claims to solve the world’s problems (and I hold that some problems cannot be solved), nor do I claim that Gaddafi was not a tyrant (only that Britain is not capable of fixing Libya – it hasn’t done so; and worse, it has effectively walked away from the mess it facilitated so ably in doing so much to remove him), but I would prefer if Britain did not make the world both a worse and more dangerous place by pursuing interventionist policies that are quite obviously both beyond its capacities and transparently doomed; and I make that claim without relying on hindsight.

Bella Caledonia published an article titled ‘Walking Away: the Formation of British Foreign Policy’ on 24th February, 2015: I attempted very carefully only to use Government sources or sources/evidence that could scarcely be challenged by Government, in order to explore the failure and self-delusion of British Foreign Policy in Libya. I believe the Government’s position on Libya was annihilated by the swiftness and the scale of the catastrophe it recklessly invited upon its botched policy; and not least by the fact that the clear and manifest opposition of wiser and more experienced judgement (or simple attention to obvious facts and bitterly earned experience) was ignored by irresponsible and too easily influenced British politicians who quite clearly lacked either judgement or experience.

Posted in LibyaComments Off on Deserting Libya: The Rhetoric of British Foreign Policy

France Bombs Syria

Global Research

France is part of the problem, not the solution, in Syria. It supported Obama’s war from inception. It partners in all US imperial wars, a key member of NATO’s killing machine, smashing one nation after another.

On Saturday, Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius lied, blaming Assad for four-and-a-half years of war, ignoring Obama’s full responsibility and French complicity, backing his aggression on another independent country, using ISIS and other takfiri terrorists to do his dirty work.

“There has been a lot of comment in the last few days on the role of Assad and whether he can or should be a stabilizing element in Syria,” said Fabius. He lied calling him “the main person guilty of the current chaos. If we were to say to the Syrians that the future of Syria lies in Assad, then we’ll expose ourselves to failure.”

“We have to redouble our efforts” to oust him – ignoring his overwhelming popularity along with core international law, prohibiting interfering in the internal affairs of other nations for any reason, except in self-defense if attacked.

Syria doesn’t threaten its neighbors. Assad wants peace, not war. He responsibly defends his country and people against foreign invaders – disgracefully bashed for doing his job.

On Sunday, France partnered with America, Britain, Canada, and Australia in bombing Syria. The objective: support ISIS terrorists. Ravage the country into submission.

Continued war assures more harm to long-suffering civilians than already, exacerbating, not diminishing human floods fleeing for safe havens.

A Hollande government statement lied, saying: “Our country thus confirms its resolute commitment to fight against the terrorist threat represented by Daesh (the Islamic State). We will strike each time that our national security is at stake.”

France is using the refugee crisis as an excuse to continue terrorizing Syrians, forcing more to flee for their lives, using the tired old national security canard, a phony reason to pursue its regional imperial interests along with America.

The way to insure regional and European security is by ending wars, not continuing them endlessly, creating an endless cycle of violence, chaos and instability, the opposite of good policy – except for hegemons wanting things their own way unchallenged, no matter the cost in human lives and suffering.

Putin’s agenda is polar opposite, criticizing Western “double standards and selfishness,” urging world leaders to unite against ISIS, go all-out to eliminate its scourge.

Russia, Iran, Iraq and Syria established Baghdad-based a joint information center. According to an unnamed military-diplomatic source, the initiative’s “main goal…will be gathering, processing and analyzing current information about the situation in the Middle East – primarily for fighting IS.”

An official from each country will head the center on a three-month rotating basis. Its objective is coordinating plans to defeat IS, waging legitimate war on terrorism, polar opposite US policy.

Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem said “Moscow is acting within the framework of international law, respecting the sovereignty of our county…”

We do not hide anything under the table. We regard Russia as our friend and strategic ally which is honest in its actions.

Its commitment to defeating IS and restoring regional peace and stability runs counter to Washington’s imperial agenda.

Expect no change in its permanent war policy. Ignore meaningless rhetoric claiming a commitment for regional peace.

Posted in France, SyriaComments Off on France Bombs Syria

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