Archive | October 31st, 2019

Al-Baghadi and the U.S. Special Ops Raid. Hurras al-Din Regrouping of Islamic State in Syria’s Idlib?

By Nauman Sadiq

Global Research,

Idlib

According to a New York Times report [1], the surprising information about the Islamic State chief Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi’s whereabouts came following the arrest and interrogation of one of al-Baghdadi’s wives and a courier in Iraq this past summer.

The report details the chronology of the US Special Ops overnight raid: “Around midnight Sunday morning — 5 p.m. Saturday in Washington — eight American helicopters, primarily CH-47 Chinooks, took off from a military base near Erbil, Iraq. Flying low and fast to avoid detection, the helicopters quickly crossed the Syrian border and then flew all the way across Syria itself — a dangerous 70-minute flight in which the helicopters took sporadic groundfire — to the Barisha area just north of Idlib city, in western Syria.”

Before the publishing of the NY Times report, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported earlier [2] on Sunday that a squadron of eight helicopters accompanied by warplanes belonging to the international coalition, had attacked positions of Hurras al-Din, an al-Qaeda-affiliated group, in Idlib province where the Islamic State chief was believed to be hiding.

Despite detailing the operational minutiae of the Special Ops raid, however, the NY Times deliberately elided over the crucial piece of information that the compound in Barisha village 5 km. from Turkish border where al-Baghdadi was killed belonged to Hurras al-Din, which has previously been targeted several times in the US airstrikes.

Although Hurras al-Din is generally assumed to be an al-Qaeda affiliate, it is in fact regrouping of the Islamic State’s jihadists in northwestern Idlib after the latter terrorist organization was routed from Mosul and Raqqa and was hard pressed by the US-led coalition’s air raids in eastern Syria.

It’s worth pointing out that the distinction between Islamic jihadists and purported “moderate rebels” in Syria is more illusory than real. Before it turned rogue and overran Mosul in Iraq in June 2014, Islamic State used to be an integral part of the Syrian opposition and enjoyed close ideological and operational ties with other militant groups in Syria.

Thus, though practically impossible, even if Washington does eliminate all Islamic State militants from Syria, what would it do with myriads of other militant outfits in Syria, particularly with tens of thousands of al-Nusra Front jihadists, including the transnational terrorists of Hurras al-Din, who have carved out a new sanctuary in Syria’s northwestern Idlib governorate since 2015?

The only practical solution to the conundrum is to withdraw all American troops from Syria and let Damascus establish writ of the state over all of Syria in order to eliminate all militant groups from Syria, including the jihadists of the Islamic State, al-Nusra Front and Hurras al-Din, though the foreign policy hawks in Washington might have objections to strengthening the hands of Iran and Russia in Syria.Manbij False Flag: The Empire Devours Its Own Soldiers

Before the evacuation of 1,000 American troops from northern Syria to western Iraq, the Pentagon had 2,000 US forces in Syria. After the drawdown of US troops at Erdogan’s insistence in order for Ankara to mount a ground offensive in northern Syria, the US still has 1,000 troops, mainly in oil-rich, eastern Deir al-Zor province and at al-Tanf military base.

Al-Tanf military base is strategically located in southeastern Syria on the border between Syria, Iraq and Jordan, and it sits on a critically important Damascus-Baghdad highway, which serves as a lifeline for Damascus. Washington has illegally occupied 55-kilometer area around al-Tanf since 2016, and several hundred US Marines have trained several Syrian militant groups there.

It’s worth noting that rather than fighting the Islamic State, the purpose of continued presence of the US forces at al-Tanf military base is to address Israel’s concerns regarding the expansion of Iran’s influence in Iraq, Syria and Lebanon.

Washington’s interest in the Syrian proxy war has been mainly about ensuring Israel’s regional security. The United States Defense Intelligence Agency’s declassified report [3] of 2012 clearly spelled out the imminent rise of a Salafist principality in northeastern Syria – in Raqqa and Deir al-Zor which were occupied by the Islamic State until October 2017 – in the event of an outbreak of a civil war in Syria.

Under pressure from the Zionist lobby in Washington, however, the former Obama administration deliberately suppressed the report and also overlooked the view in general that a proxy war in Syria would give birth to radical Islamic jihadists.

The hawks in Washington were fully aware of the consequences of their actions in Syria, but they kept pursuing the ill-fated policy of nurturing militants in the training camps located in Syria’s border regions with Turkey and Jordan in order to weaken the anti-Zionist Syrian government.

The single biggest threat to Israel’s regional security was posed by the Iranian resistance axis, which is comprised of Tehran, Damascus and their Lebanon-based surrogate, Hezbollah. During the course of 2006 Lebanon War, Hezbollah fired hundreds of rockets into northern Israel and Israel’s defense community realized for the first time the nature of threat that Hezbollah and its patrons posed to Israel’s regional security.

Those were only unguided rockets but it was a wakeup call for Israel’s military strategists that what will happen if Iran passed the guided missile technology to Hezbollah whose area of operations lies very close to the northern borders of Israel. Therefore, the Zionist lobbies in Washington literally coerced then-President Obama to coordinate a proxy war against Damascus and its Lebanon-based surrogate Hezbollah in order to dismantle the Iranian resistance axis against Israel.

Over the years, Israel has not only provided medical aid and material support to militant groups battling Damascus – particularly to various factions of the Free Syria Army (FSA) and al-Qaeda’s Syrian affiliate al-Nusra Front in Daraa and Quneitra bordering the Israel-occupied Golan Heights – but Israel’s air force virtually played the role of air force of Syrian jihadists and conducted hundreds of airstrikes in Syria during the eight-year conflict.

In an interview to New York Times [4] in January, Israel’s outgoing Chief of Staff Lt. General Gadi Eisenkot confessed that the Netanyahu government approved his shift in strategy in January 2017 to step up airstrikes in Syria. Consequently, more than 200 Israeli airstrikes were launched against the Syrian targets in 2017 and 2018, as revealed [5] by the Israeli Intelligence Minister Israel Katz in September last year.

In 2018 alone, Israel’s air force dropped 2,000 bombs in Syria. The purpose of Israeli airstrikes in Syria has been to degrade Iran’s guided missile technology provided to Damascus and Hezbollah. Though after Russia provided S-300 missile system to the Syrian military after a Russian surveillance plane was shot down in Syria on September 18 last year, killing 15 Russians onboard, Israel’s airstrikes in Syria have been significantly reduced.

Posted in Middle East, USA, Iraq, SyriaComments Off on Al-Baghadi and the U.S. Special Ops Raid. Hurras al-Din Regrouping of Islamic State in Syria’s Idlib?

“No Angels”: Kurdish Militias, “Betrayal” and the Campaign to Destroy Syria

By Adeyinka Makinde

Global Research,

It is presently fashionable, but totally erroneous to aver that the Kurds have been “betrayed”. The truth is that the Kurds and the Americans have used each other for their mutual ends in the Syrian War, a catastrophe orchestrated by the United States and its regional allies Saudi Arabia and the State of Israel.

For the Saudis, the animus against the Assad government is based on the fact that it is ruled by what is considered by mainstream Sunni Muslims to be a heretical minority, the Alawites, whose alliance with Shia Iran poses a threat to Saudi influence in the Muslim Arab world.

And for the Israelis, it is the threat posed by the Triple Entente of Iran, Syria and the Lebanese militia, Hezbollah, an alliance that is sometimes referred to as the “Shia Crescent”. The destabilisation and the destruction of Syria would, from Israel’s perspective, have achieved three goals. Firstly, the weakening of Iranian influence in the region. Secondly, the isolating of Hezbollah, the militant Shia group created out of the embers of Israel’s invasion of Lebanon in the early 1980s, which was responsible for the Jewish state’s withdrawal from the south of that country on two occasions. It is Hezbollah that has prevented the longstanding goal of colonising Lebanon south of the Litani River. Thirdly, a fractured Syria would from an Israeli view mean that no successor state would make a legal claim for the restoration of the Golan Heights, which was illegally annexed in 1981.

The object of Israel has always been to balkanise its Arab Muslim neighbours, and the enduring influence of its lobby in the United States is the overriding factor in this enterprise which provided the Saudis with the role of funding the anti-Assad jihadist insurrection begun in 2011. Israel, for its part, provided medical, logistical and financial assistance to a number of these jihadi fanatics and struck at Assad’s forces to weaken the Syrian effort in confronting them.

It is useful to be reminded of a declassified U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) document circulated in 2012 which explicitly sought the creation of a declared or undeclared Salafist Principality in eastern Syria. The so-called Islamic State (IS) and other Islamist-orientated militias functioned as the U.S.’s proxy army to achieve this end.

But Russian intervention with the help of Iranian soldiers and Hezbollah — all invited onto Syrian soil by the legitimate government of the country — beat back the threat posed by IS. The Americans, whose presence in parts of Syria is illegal, reacted by arming, training and supplying Kurdish militias such as the YPG to continue the quest of creating a statelet in oil-endowed eastern Syria.U.S. Bases Strategically Placed to Prevent Syrian Military From Advancing; Outlining Borders of Kurdistan

Those who are versed in the history of the region know that the Turks will not tolerate the creation of an independent Kurdish state on its border. Moreover, members of the Syrian-based YPG also operate as guerrillas for the Turkish-based PKK, a group designated by the Turks as well as the U.S. and the EU as a terrorist organisation.

The Turks are of course no innocents in regard to the Syrian War. They were part of the original U.S.-Saudi-Israeli effort to overthrow the Assad government. Turkey provided a route through which jihadist fighters could infiltrate Syria’s borders. The Turkish Army High Command furnished these mercenaries with encampments and training facilities, and as IS began carving out its U.S. approved principality in eastern Syria, the Turks facilitated the establishment of this nascent caliphate by buying oil exploited from oil fields previously developed by the Syrian national government. Indeed, many will recall the role played by members of the Erdogan family in this illicit trade.

But while the Turks, like the U.S., the Saudis and the Israelis are no innocents in the enterprise that was geared towards destroying the Ba’athist government of Syria, President Donald Trump described the Kurds as being “no angels”.

Do the Kudish militias have clean hands? An examination of the facts reveals that they do not. For during the quest to carve out a separate, autonomous territory in eastern Syria (Kurds represent just 8% of the population of Syria), Kurdish militias ethnically cleansed the region of its Arab Muslim population and murdered Christian Assyrian communities. As noted earlier on, their primary role was to carve out a chunk of territory and the decision to arm Syrian Kurds taken by Trump in 2017 because it was seen as the fastest way to seize Raqqa, the capital of the proclaimed caliphate. It was a decision of course which drew opposition from Turkey.

The irony is that the Kurds would have been on more secure footing had they joined forces with the legal, secular government of Syria in fighting the locally-bred jihadists, as well as the imported Islamist fighters of al-Qaeda, al-Nusra and IS.

But they have miscalculated. Some accuse Ottoman-era Kurds of having facilitated the genocide of Christian Armenians in the early part of the 20th century, as a means through which they could obtain a state of their own. But they were denied this. And now in the 21st century, they look certain to be denied this.

The famous maxim in international relations of their being no permanent friends or permanent enemies, only permanent national interests may explain Trump’s decision to withdraw U.S. forces from this area of Syria. For while the national interests of the Turks, the Saudis and the Israelis are clearly defined, the national interest on the part of the United States in pursuing the policy of balkanising Syria. If the illegal presence of the United States in Syria was indeed to fight jihadis, then it would have logically sided with the Syrian administration.

Those who claim that the Kurds have been “betrayed” do so largely out of ignorance of the wider facts. And among neoconservative figures such as US Senator Marco Rubio and former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley, the frequent references to the Kurdish role in fighting jihadis is to say the least disingenuous. Lindsey Graham, a senator from South Carolina, was perhaps more honest when assessing that the biggest losers from Trump’s decision would be the “Kurds and Israel”.

For it has been in Israel’s interests that the campaign to destroy Syria has been waged, and not, as Graham strongly, albeit inadvertently implies, in the interests of the United States.

Posted in Middle East, USA, ZIO-NAZI, SyriaComments Off on “No Angels”: Kurdish Militias, “Betrayal” and the Campaign to Destroy Syria

How Kurdish Independence Underpins Nazi Plan to Reshape the Middle East

How Kurdish Independence Underpins Israel’s Plan to Reshape the Middle East

By Jonathan Cook

Global Research,

This October 2017 article by award winning author Jonathan Cook focusses on the unspoken Israel-Kurdistan relationship.

“There has been co-operation, much of it secret, between Israel and the Kurds for decades. Israeli media lapped up tributes from now-retired generals who trained the Kurds from the 1960s. Those connections have not been forgotten or ended. Independence rallies featured Israeli flags, and Kurds spoke of their ambition to become a “second Israel”.”

***

Palestinians and Israelis watched last week’s referendum of Iraq’s Kurds with special interest. Israeli officials and many ordinary Palestinians were delighted – for very different reasons – to see an overwhelming vote to split away from Iraq.

Given the backlash from Baghdad and anger from Iran and Turkey, which have restive Kurdish minorities, the creation of a Kurdistan in northern Iraq may not happen soon.

Palestinian support for the Kurds is not difficult to understand. Palestinians, too, were overlooked when Britain and France carved up the Middle East into states a century ago. Like the Kurds, Palestinians have found themselves trapped in different territories, oppressed by their overlords.

Israel’s complex interests in Kurdish independence are harder to unravel.

Prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu was the sole world leader to back Kurdish independence, and other politicians spoke of the Kurds’ “moral right” to a state. None saw how uneasily that sat with their approach to the Palestinian case.

On a superficial level, Israel would gain because the Kurds sit on plentiful oil. Unlike the Arab states and Iran, they are keen to sell to Israel.

But the reasons for Israeli support run deeper. There has been co-operation, much of it secret, between Israel and the Kurds for decades. Israeli media lapped up tributes from now-retired generals who trained the Kurds from the 1960s. Those connections have not been forgotten or ended. Independence rallies featured Israeli flags, and Kurds spoke of their ambition to become a “second Israel”.ISRAEL: The World’s First “Bunker State”

Israel views the Kurds as a key ally in an Arab-dominated region. Now, with Islamic State’s influence receding, an independent Kurdistan could help prevent Iran filling the void. Israel wants a bulwark against Iran transferring its weapons, intelligence and know-how to Shiite allies in Syria and Lebanon.

Israel’s current interests, however, hint at a larger vision it has long harboured for the region – and one I set out at length in my book Israel and the Clash of Civilisations.

It began with Israel’s founding father, David Ben Gurion, who devised a strategy of “allying with the periphery” – building military ties to non-Arab states like Turkey, Ethiopia, India and Iran, then ruled by the shahs. The goal was to help Israel to break out of its regional isolation and contain an Arab nationalism led by Egypt’s Gamal Abdel Nasser.

Israeli general Ariel Sharon expanded this security doctrine in the early 1980s, calling for Israel to become an imperial power in the Middle East. Israel would ensure that it alone in the region possessed nuclear weapons, making it indispensable to the US.

Sharon was not explicit about how Israel’s empire could be realised, but an indication was provided at around the same time in the Yinon Plan, written for the World Zionist Organisation by a former Israeli foreign ministry official.

Oded Yinon proposed the implosion of the Middle East, breaking apart the region’s key states – and Israel’s main opponents – by fuelling sectarian and ethnic discord. The aim was to fracture these states, weakening them so that Israel could secure its place as sole regional power.

The inspiration for this idea lay in the occupied territories, where Israel had contained Palestinians in a series of separate enclaves. Later, Israel would terminally divide the Palestinian national movement, nurturing an Islamist extremism that coalesced into Hamas and Islamic Jihad.

In this period, Israel also tested its ideas in neighbouring southern Lebanon, which it occupied for two decades. There, its presence further stoked sectarian tensions between Christians, Druze, Sunni and Shiite Muslims.

The strategy of “Balkanising” the Middle East found favour in the US among a group of hawkish policymakers, known as neoconservatives, who came to prominence during George W Bush’s presidency.

Heavily influenced by Israel, they promoted the idea of “rolling back” key states, especially Iraq, Iran and Syria, which were opposed to Israeli-US dominance in the region. They prioritised ousting Saddam Hussein, who had fired missiles on Israel during the 1991 Gulf war.

Although often assumed to be an unfortunate side effect of the 2003 invasion of Iraq, Washington’s oversight of the country’s bloody disintegration into Sunni, Shiite and Kurdish fiefdoms looked suspiciously intentional. Now, Iraqi Kurds are close to making that break-up permanent.

Syria has gone a similar way, mired in convulsive fighting that has left its ruler impotent. And Tehran is, again, the target of efforts by Israel and its allies in the US to tear up the 2015 nuclear accord, backing Iran into a corner. Arab, Baluchi, Kurdish and Azeri minorities there may be ripe for stirring up.

Last month at the Herzliya conference, an annual jamboree for Israel’s security establishment, justice minister Ayelet Shaked called for a Kurdish state. She has stated that it would be integral to Israeli efforts to “reshape” the Middle East.

The unraveling of Britain and France’s map of the region would likely lead to chaos of the kind that a strong, nuclear-armed Israel, with backing from Washington, could richly exploit. Not least, yet more bedlam would push the Palestinian cause even further down the international community’s list of priorities.

Posted in Middle East, ZIO-NAZI, IraqComments Off on How Kurdish Independence Underpins Nazi Plan to Reshape the Middle East

Nazi Soldier Gives Water to Blind Elderly Palestinian Woman for Propaganda, Then Kills Her

Posted by: John Phoenix

74-year-old Palestinian woman Ghalya Abu-Rida being given water by Israeli troops, minutes before she was executed.

First published on January 21, 2015

During the Israeli bombardment and shelling of the Gaza Strip last summer, an Israeli soldier approached a 74-year-old Palestinian woman Ghalya Abu-Rida to give her a sip of water. He gave her the water, took a photo with her and then he shot her in the head from a distance of one metre. He then watched as she bled to death, the Palestine Information Centre reported.

This is how Ahmad Qdeh, a journalist in Al-Aqsa TV, described the scene that he witnessed during the latest Israeli aggression. The spokesman of the Israeli army, Avichay Adraee, shared the photo of an Israeli soldier holding the water bottle and helping the old woman drink as an example of the “humanity” of the Israeli army towards the civilians in the Gaza Strip.

The field executions were among the stories Qdeh reported during the Israeli aggression on Gaza Strip. He said: “Ghalya Ahmad Abu-Rida lived in the Khuza’a area in the east of Khan Younis city. I live in that area too and I made a television report on her story after the Israeli soldiers executed her during the aggression.”

“During the aggression, an Israeli soldier approached the old woman and took a photo for another soldier while giving her water. They then executed her by shooting her in the head from a distance of one metre and let her bleed until she died,” he added.Remembering the 2014 Israeli Offensive Against Gaza

Ghalya was born in 1941. She lived by herself in a room near her brothers’ house in the Abu-Rida neighbourhood of Khuza’a. She had no children. Her neighbourhood was one of the first places invaded by the Israeli army during the aggression.

Field Execution

Majed Abu-Rida, Ghalya’s nephew, confirmed to the media that his aunt was visually impaired and could hardly see. He said that the Israeli army had falsely claimed humanity while executing his aunt in cold blood.

Ghalya, with her weak body and white hair, refused to leave her house after the Israeli army ordered the residents of Khuza’a to evacuate. She thought her old age would protect her from being a target so she stayed in her home and refused to join the majority of the residents who left the area as the invasion began.

On 3 August, the Israeli forces announced a truce and allowed medical staff to reach the Khuza’a area. Ghalya was found dead after she bled to death as she was shot in the head near her house, Al-Aqsa TV confirmed to MEMO. Her brother confirmed that the photo shared by the Israeli army supported the family’s belief that Ghalya was in the hands of the Israeli army. The family also believed that the area in which Ghalya appeared in the photo and in which she was found asserted that the Israeli forces killed her after taking the photo for the media.

Misinformation

Professor of media at the universities of Gaza, Ahmad Al-Farra, said: “The photo the Israeli army spokesman shared is misleading propaganda by the Israeli army to present a humane portrait of its soldiers. It can enhance the opportunity to pursue the Israeli army’s soldiers as war criminals before the International Criminal Court.”

“This photo proves the confusion of the Israeli army spokesman in defending his army. It proves that they killed civilians,” he added.

He continued: “The Israeli occupation lies and misinforms in an attempt to affect international public opinion. It exploits the Arab media and Palestinian diplomacy in exposing the Israeli occupation’s crimes.” He demanded launching a large campaign to expose the Israeli lies and falsifications.

Al-Farra stressed the need for a media enlightenment campaign to go side by side with the field battles to correct the false image that Israel presents about its army and the resistance.

Israel carried out a 51-day war that claimed the lives of around 2,200 Palestinians and wounded around 11,000 others.

Posted in Palestine Affairs, Middle East, ZIO-NAZI, Gaza, Human RightsComments Off on Nazi Soldier Gives Water to Blind Elderly Palestinian Woman for Propaganda, Then Kills Her

Uninhabitable: Gaza Faces Moment of Truth

By Jonathan Cook

The only way Israelis can be made to sit up and take note of the disaster unfolding next door in Gaza, it seems, is when they fear the fallout may spill out of the tiny coastal enclave and engulf them too. Environmental experts from two Israeli universities issued a report in June warning that the imminent collapse of Gaza’s water, sewage and electricity infrastructure would soon rebound on Israel.

Gideon Bromberg, the Israeli director of EcoPeace Middle East, which commissioned the report, told journalists:

“Without urgent, vigorous action, plagues and infections will break out that could cost a great many lives, both in Israel and in Gaza, and no fence or Iron Dome [Israel’s missile interception system] can thwart them.”

Israel’s liberal Haaretz newspaper paraphrased another of Bromberg’s comments:

“If something isn’t done, the upshot could be political horror in the form of hundreds of thousands of Gazans fleeing for their lives toward Israel – for fear of catching disease.”

Bromberg and others on Israel’s left are well aware that Gaza’s 2 million Palestinians were long ago dehumanized in the eyes of most Israeli Jews, who think of them as nothing more than terrorists or terrorist sympathizers who deserve their sorry fate. Stories of Gaza’s endless suffering a short distance from Israelis’ homes are unlikely to shame them into action. They can be roused only out of self-interest – a fear for their own safety and the wellbeing of their loved ones.

Gaza’s problems, however – the fact that it is one of the most densely populated, poorest and polluted places on the planet – are not an accident, or the consequences of some natural cataclysm. The crisis there is entirely man-made – and one that has been engineered over decades by Israel.

Israel effectively treated the Strip as a dumping ground – a holding pen – for the mass of refugees it created by dispossessing the Palestinians of their homeland in 1948. Nearly three-quarters of Gaza’s inhabitants are descended from the refugees of that war, Palestinians who were forced off their lands in what is now Israel and denied the right ever to return to their homes.

Having exiled them, Israel was nonetheless prepared to use the Palestinians of Gaza as a cheap labor force – for a time. It was possible until the 1990s to exit Gaza relatively easily to work in Israel’s dirtiest and lowest-paying jobs. But as the occupation entrenched, Israel was forced into a rethink by two developments.

Israel was forced into a rethink by two developments.

First, Palestinians under occupation, including in Gaza, launched a lengthy campaign of mass civil disobedience against their occupiers in the late 1980s, known as the first intifada, that included general strikes, a refusal to pay taxes, boycotts of Israeli goods and stone-throwing. And second, Gaza’s population has grown exponentially, at a pace that outstripped the capacity of this tiny territory – measuring just 25 miles in length and some 5 miles across – to accommodate them.

In response, Israeli leaders pushed for a more clear-cut physical separation from Gaza. The rallying cry of politicians of the time was: “Us here, them over there.”

Israel’s out of sight, out of mind approach was soon given diplomatic sanction in the Oslo Accords of the mid-1990s.  Israel surrounded Gaza with high-security fences and armed watchtowers, established an exclusion zone along its sea coast, and revoked the general exit policy.

Ariel Sharon’s disengagement of 2005, when the last remaining Jewish settlers were pulled out of the enclave, marked the completion of Israel’s separation policy. The occupation did not end, however. Israel still controlled Gaza’s airspace, its land perimeters and coastal waters. Israel soon imposed a blockade, preventing goods as well as people from entering or leaving, a blockade it tightened dramatically when the Palestinian faction Hamas won elections in the occupied territories in 2006.

Since then, Israel has transformed the holding center into a super-max prison. This year it finished a submarine barrier with sophisticated sensor systems along the coast. Israel is currently enlarging the perimeter fence to make it 20 feet high and fortifying it with remotely controlled gun towers, while all-seeing drones patrol the skies above Gaza.

The first dire warning about conditions in Gaza was issued in 2015, a year after Israel’s massive attack on the enclave known as Protective Edge, in which more than 2,200 Palestinians were killed, including over 550 children, and 17,000 families left homeless. A report by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) argued that Gaza would be “uninhabitable” by 2020 if the trends then current continued. None of those trends has been halted or reversed. Which means Gaza is about to slide into a fully fledged humanitarian catastrophe entirely created by Israel, and implicitly supported by the silence and inaction of western states.

But while Israel has managed to keep the Palestinian inhabitants of Gaza cooped up like underfed and abused battery chickens, it is starting to find it is much harder to contain the various crises – social, economic, political and humanitarian – unfolding in the enclave. Slowly Israel is waking up to the fact that Palestinians don’t behave like chickens.

Rockets, Kites, and Marches

Inevitably Gaza’s inhabitants have reacted to Israel slowly tightening its chokehold on their enclave. But by the time of the Palestinians’ second uprising, which began in late 2000, the kind of mass civil disobedience of the first intifada was no longer possible. By then, Gaza’s population was imprisoned behind a fence. The factions, especially Hamas, instead tried to break free of their confinement by launching primitive Qassam rockets into Israel.

Largely ineffective as a weapon of death or destruction, the rockets have nonetheless spread fear in Israeli communities close to the enclave. But their use has had mostly negative repercussions for Gaza. Israel responded with extra-judicial executions of Palestinian leaders in Gaza that typically killed many more bystanders, and used the rockets to justify ever-more severe forms of collective punishment that culminated in the blockade. What little western sympathy there had been for Gaza drained away as Israel, assisted by the western media, edited out the context for the rockets – Gaza’s imprisonment by its occupier – and presented a simplistic, ahistorical narrative of terror attacks on innocent Israelis driven, it was implied, only by the Jew hatred of Islamic extremists.

While popular support in Gaza for the rocket attacks has ebbed over time, Palestinians there have learned the hard way that they cannot afford passivity. As soon as the rockets fall silent, Israel and the world forget about Gaza. The west’s hypocrisy has been plain: it condemns the inhabitants of Gaza for struggling against their imprisonment by firing rockets, but then ignores their plight when they play according to diplomatic rules.

Over the past year and a half, the rockets have been largely replaced by a couple of popular initiatives that were launched with two aims in mind: to make Gaza’s suffering visible again, and to challenge Israeli and western prejudices about the enclave. Both initiatives mark a return to the type of mass civil disobedience exemplified by the first intifada, but recast for an era in which the Palestinians of Gaza have limited opportunities to confront their oppressor directly.

The first are incendiary kites and balloons – Israel inevitably adds the label “terror” to these balloons and kites – sent over the perimeter fence to set fire to the agricultural lands of the Israeli communities that prosper close by at Gaza’s expense. The damage caused to Israel’s local economy is intended to serve as a pale mirror of the massive economic destruction Israel has inflicted on Gaza’s economy over many decades, including, as we shall see, to its farmland. The balloons are a way, like the rockets, to remind Israelis that Palestinians are suffering out of sight, on the other side of the fence, but do so without risking the civilian deaths entailed by the rockets’ use.

The second popular initiative has been a weekly mass, largely non-violent protest, called the Great March of Return, close to the perimeter fence. The title is meant to remind observers that most Palestinians in Gaza are denied the right to return to the hundreds of villages their families were expelled from by Israel in 1948 and that are now located on the other side of the fence. Tens of thousands of marchers regularly defy Israeli restrictions that have declared hundreds of meters of Gaza’s land inside the fence as a “no-go zone.”

The protesters’ goal is to ensure that Israel and the west cannot overlook Gaza’s suffering and desperation, or shirk their responsibility for the catastrophe unfolding there, or continue to erase the deeper historical injustice caused by Israel when it dispossessed the Palestinians of their homeland in 1948. The protests are a potent reminder that this crime against the Palestinians has to be addressed before any lasting resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict can occur.

Israeli officials have every reason to want the very opposite for Gaza. They need its suffering overlooked; the Palestinians there mute, or at least violent in ways that Israel can re-characterize as terrorism; and the historical injustices forgotten. They have therefore worked hard to suggest that the protests are not a natural expression of Gaza’s anger, frustration and desperation in the face of a humanitarian catastrophe engineered by Israel, but a new, veiled terror strategy organized by Hamas. The marchers are not civilians, Israel argues, but hardcore Hamas activists who want to destroy Israel.

That has rationalized Israel’s extremely violent response, with snipers using live fire against the protesters. Those shot include large numbers of children, wheelchairs users, as well as paramedics and journalists identifiable by their clothing. Israel has executed more than 200 protesters, nearly a quarter of them children. A further 32,000 have been injured – an average of 500 a week.

One of the investigators in a UN commission of inquiry into Israel’s handling of the protests concluded that its military forces “have intentionally shot children, they’ve intentionally shot people with disabilities, they’ve intentionally shot journalists.” That was confirmed in July when the Israeli media revealed that snipers had been ordered to routinely shoot the protesters in the upper leg, in an apparent effort to deter people from attending. This order continued even when it became clear that a significant proportion of those shot were dying from their wounds or needed a leg amputated. Only very belatedly did commanders order that protesters be shot in the ankle to reduce the number of deaths.

Zionism and the Logic of Settler Colonialism

Israelis’ widespread indifference to the fate of Palestinians, most especially in the case of Gaza, is deeply entangled in the ideology Israel embodies.  Zionism is viewed in much of the west simplistically: as purely a salvation movement, one that created a “lifeboat” for Jews – in the shape of Israel – at a time of profound need as the Nazi Holocaust ravaged large parts of European Jewry. But Zionism, in both its Christian and Jewish forms, long predates that genocide. Its roots are to be found in European settler colonial ideologies that emerged from the 17th century onwards.

Settler colonialism is markedly different from traditional colonialism. The latter, illustrated by Britain’s relationship with India, is characterized by colonists arriving in another land to exploit the resources and labor of the native people. Whatever treasure was unearthed in the colonies – rubber, tea, tulips, sugar, diamonds, oil – was shipped back to the motherland, where it helped to support the lavish lifestyles of an elite. Great amounts of violence were needed to force the native population to submit. The colonists also tried to rationalize the resource grab, both to themselves and to the indigenous population, traditionally through religion and ideas of improvement – the “white man’s burden.” Colonists prospered until the native population found a way to expel them.

Settler colonialism, by contrast, has a different rationale – what scholars have termed the “logic of elimination.”  Settler societies are not there primarily to exploit the natives, though they may in part do that too for a time. They are there to replace them. And there are three possible routes by which that ambition can be achieved.

The first – what might be termed the Americas model – is to exterminate the natives, to wipe them out so there can be no local challenge to the settler colonial project. The second – what might be called the Israel model – is to ethnically cleanse the natives, to drive them out of the coveted territory to another place. And the third – what might be termed the South Africa model – is resorted to chiefly when it has not been possible to fully realize the first or second models. Apartheid regimes herd the natives out of sight into ghettoes – often called homelands, reservations or, in South Africa’s case, Bantustans – where they can be largely ignored, deprived of their rights and access to resources.

Settler societies can adopt more than one model over time, or they may experiment with different models. In the United States, for example, settlers exterminated much of the Native American population and then drove the remnants into reservations. In South Africa, apartheid also required ethnically cleansing the black population from lands coveted by white settlers.

Israel too has adopted a mixed model. In 1948, and then again in 1967, it carried out mass ethnic cleansing operations. During the 1948 Nakba,  literally catastrophe, Zionists expelled more than 80 per cent of Palestinians living inside the borders of what was about to become the Jewish state of Israel. Afterwards, Israel adopted a system of apartheid against the remnants of the native population, first inside its recognized borders (as I outlined in a previous edition of the Link) and later in the occupied territories.

In Israel today, some 93 per cent of territory has been “nationalized” exclusively by the state on behalf of Jewish people around the world, while Palestinian “citizens,” a fifth of Israel’s population, have been penned into little more than 2 per cent of Israeli territory. In the occupied territories, meanwhile, the settlers have directly seized 42 per cent of the West Bank for themselves, while the Israeli government directly controls more than 60 per cent of the territory, what was declared “Area C” in the Oslo Accords.

Israel’s Monstrous Vision

Ethnic cleansing and apartheid have been the mainstays of Israel’s approach to the Palestinians inside Israel, in the West Bank and in East Jerusalem. But over the past 15 years its policy towards Gaza appears to have moved in an additional direction – towards elements of what might be called a model of incremental genocide.

“Genocide” is an emotive term, and one few people wish to use in relation to Israel, given the extermination of many millions of European Jews at the hands of the Nazis. But it is a term that exists outside of, and apart from, the Holocaust. It has a meaning clearly defined in international law, and one that is key to analysing and evaluating political situations and their likely future trajectories. The term was coined precisely to offer tools for early detection so that genocides could be prevented from taking place, not simply labeled once the atrocity was over. To preclude genocide as a possible explanation for Israel’s behavior in Gaza is to prioritize the historic sensitivities of some Jews over the current, urgent and existential threats to a substantial part of the Palestinian people.

The United Nations adopted a Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide in 1948, the year of Israel’s creation. It defined genocide as:

“any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such:

a) Killing members of the group;
b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;
c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;
d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;
e) Forcibly transferring children of the group to an other group.”

Genocide is confirmed by only one of these five acts, and there should at least be a suspicion – as we shall see – that Israel is effecting the second and third in Gaza.

Israeli academics too have noted the need for another term – in addition to ethnic cleansing and apartheid – to describe Israel’s policy towards the Palestinians, especially in Gaza. The late Israeli sociologist Baruch Kimmerling, one of the country’s foremost scholars of Israeli and Palestinian nationalism, invented a word – politicide – to avoid the term genocide. In 2003, years before Israel’s blockade and repeated attacks on Gaza had begun, he defined politicide as having two effects:

“The first is the destruction of the Palestinian public sphere, including its leadership and social and material infrastructure. The second effect is to make everyday life for the Palestinians increasingly unbearable by destroying the private sphere and any possibility of normalcy and stability. … All of these conditions are … designed to lower Palestinian expectations, crush their resistance, isolate them, make them submit to any arrangement suggested by the Israelis, and eventually cause their voluntary mass emigration from the land.”

It hardly matters whether we describe the Israeli plan outlined by Kimmerling as incremental genocide or politicide; he accurately presents Israel’s monstrous vision of a half-life for Palestinians in the occupied territories in which they are stripped not only of their rights but also of their humanity. On this view, Palestinians are conceived of not so much as lesser beings but as non-beings whose fate should not trouble us.American Jews Have Abandoned Gaza — And the Truth. The Struggle for Human Decency

Putting Gaza on a Diet

There have been three clear signals from senior Israeli officials of the strategic shift in thinking about Gaza – of how the limits of what is imaginable – have been gradually shifting.

The first was articulated in 2006 by Dov Weissglass, an adviser to the Israeli prime minister of the time, Ehud Olmert. He alluded to Israel’s new approach to Gaza during an interview with the Haaretz newspaper. “It’s like an appointment with a dietician. The Palestinians will get a lot thinner, but won’t die,” he said, referring to Israel’s recent imposition of an economic blockade on Gaza, backed by an aid boycott by western governments. Most observers at the time dismissed his comment as hyperbolic. But later it emerged that Weissglass had actually been describing a policy that was about to be implemented by the Israeli army.

In 2012, after a three-year legal battle by Gisha, an Israeli human rights group, Israel was forced to disclose a document called “Red Lines” that had been drafted in early 2008. At that time, as the blockade was tightened still further, the Israeli defense ministry requested calculations by health officials of the minimum number of calories needed by Gaza’s inhabitants to avoid malnutrition. Those figures were then translated into truckloads of food Israel was supposed to allow in each day at the crossings.

But in practice the military authorities ignored the advice of the government’s own calorie-counters. While the health ministry determined that Gazans needed daily an average of 2,279 calories each to avoid malnutrition – requiring 170 trucks a day – military officials found a host of pretexts to whittle down the trucks to a fraction of the original figure. An average of only 67 trucks – much less than half of the minimum requirement – entered Gaza daily. This compared to more than 400 trucks that had been entering before the blockade began.

Israeli officials had deducted trucks based both on an over-generous assessment of how much food could be grown locally and on differences in what they termed the ”culture and experience” of food consumption in Gaza, a rationale that was never explained. Gisha, which fought for the document’s publication, observed that Israeli officials had ignored the fact that, as we shall see, the blockade had severely impaired Gaza’s farming industry, with a shortage of seeds and chickens that had led to a dramatic drop in food output.

Further, the UN noted that Israel had failed to factor in the large quantity of food from each day’s supply of 67 trucks that never actually reached Gaza. That was because Israeli restrictions at the crossings created long delays as food was unloaded, checked and then put on to new trucks. Many items spoiled as they lay in the sun.

And on top of this, Israel adjusted the formula so that the number of trucks carrying nutrient-poor foods like sugar were doubled while the trucks carrying nutrient-rich food like milk, fruit and vegetables were greatly reduced, sometimes by as much as a half. Robert Turner, director of the UN refugee agency’s operations in the Gaza Strip, observed at the time: “The facts on the ground in Gaza demonstrate that food imports consistently fell below the red lines.”

The question was why, if the politicians and generals were advised by health experts that Gaza needed at least 170 trucks a day, did they oversee a policy that allowed in only 67? How could such a policy be described?

A Return to the Stone Age

Another clue to Israel’s thinking was provided in early 2008, at about the time defense officials were putting Gaza on a diet. Matan Vilnai, a former army general and at that point Israel’s deputy defense minister, discussed on Israeli radio a vicious bout of bloodletting that had killed more than 100 Palestinians, on one side, and an Israeli student, on the other. For the first time Qassam rockets fired from Gaza had hit the center of the southern Israeli city of Ashkelon.

Vilnai told the interviewer: “The more Qassam fire intensifies and the rockets reach a longer range, they [the Palestinians of Gaza] will bring upon themselves a bigger shoah because we will use all our might to defend ourselves.” The comment was picked up by the news agency Reuters because the Hebrew word “shoah” – literally “disaster” – was long ago reserved to describe the Holocaust, in which millions of European Jews were murdered by the Nazis. Its use in any other context had become virtually taboo. Appreciating the potential damage the remark could do, Israel’s foreign ministry immediately launched a propaganda offensive to persuade the world’s media that Vilnai was only referring to a general “disaster”, not a holocaust.

Few Israelis were deceived. Haaretz’s cultural commentator, Michael Handelzalts, noted that “whatever connotations the word [shoah] had before the Nazis embarked on their systematic extermination of the Jews, today it means – with quotation marks or without them, with “the” preceding it or without it – just that.” Why would Vilnai select this extremely provocative and troubling word to frame his threat to the Palestinians?

At the time, few could have understood that Vilnai’s “shoah” comment would take physical form a few months later in the first of a series of horrifying military rampages by Israel in Gaza. In late 2008-09, and again in 2012 and 2014, Israel wrecked Gaza, destroyed many thousands of homes and its key infrastructure, including its power plant, and left many thousands dead and many tens of thousands wounded and disabled. Tens of thousands more found themselves homeless.

The first of these attacks, in winter 2008, came under close scrutiny from the UN through a fact-finding mission led by a South African jurist, Richard Goldstone. The panel’s report suggested that the Israeli army – as well as Hamas – had committed war crimes and crimes against humanity during Israel’s three-week Operation Cast Lead. It noted Israel’s use of unconventional weapons such as white phosphorus, the destruction of property on a massive scale, and the taking of civilians, including young children, as human shields. And significantly it concluded that Israel had targeted civilians “as a matter of policy”.

After the report’s publication, Goldstone, who is Jewish, faced an immense backlash from Jewish communities in the US and South Africa that painted him as a traitor. Jewish leaders in South Africa even prevented him from attending his grandson’s bar mitzvah. Though his jurist colleagues did not, Goldstone eventually retracted his support for parts of the report, most importantly the reference to Israel targeting civilians as policy.

However, there were plenty of reasons to conclude that this was exactly what Israel had done – as would be confirmed by Israel’s subsequent attacks, including the even more savage Protective Edge of 2014. Breaking the Silence, an organization of whistle blowing Israeli soldiers, collected many testimonies from soldiers indicating that they received orders to carry out operations with little or no regard for the safety of civilians. Some described the army as pursuing a policy of “zero-risk” to soldiers, even if that meant putting civilians in danger.

Similarly, leaflets produced by the military rabbinate – apparently with the knowledge of the army top brass – urged Israeli ground troops, an increasing number of whom are religious and from the settlements, to show no mercy to Palestinians. It characterized the Palestinians as the Philistines, the Biblical enemy of the Jews, and told them Israel was waging “a war on murderers.” In a sign of the extent to which the army is being taken over by such religious extremists, Ofer Winter, who extolled his troops in 2014 to attack Palestinians in Gaza as “blasphemers,” was appointed commander of the 98th Division, Israel’s most elite combat troops, in July 2019.

But even more significantly, in October 2008, a few months after Vilnai’s “shoah” comment and two months before the launching of Cast Lead, the Israeli army formally divulged a new military policy known as the Dahiya Doctrine. In fact, it had first been field-tested during the 2006 summer offensive on Lebanon that had left much of that country in ruins after waves of missile strikes. Gadi Eisenkot, the general widely credited with developing the doctrine, clarified its goal: “We will apply disproportionate force on [any area resisting Israel] and cause great damage and destruction there. From our standpoint, these are not civilian villages, they are military bases. This is not a recommendation. This is a plan.”

A short time later, the Israeli commander overseeing the Cast Lead attack on Gaza, Yoav Galant, echoed Eisenkot, saying the aim of the military operation was to “send Gaza decades into the past.”  Israel’s intention was to lay waste to Gaza’s infrastructure, forcing survivors to eke out a bare existence rather than resist Israel.

In early 2019, Benny Gantz, who had overseen the even more brutal Operation Protective Edge of 2014, fought a general election as head of a new party named Blue and White. He and the other generals who led the faction played up their military credentials with a series of campaign videos. One showed the wastelands of Gaza after the 2014 attack, a camera hovering over a sea of rubble as far as the eye could see. Alongside these images, the video boasted: 6,231 targets destroyed and 1,364 terrorists killed, and it concluded: “Parts of Gaza have been sent back to the Stone Age.”

An Economy in Collapse

For more than a decade Israel has pursued a consistent and barely veiled double policy: destroying Gaza’s infrastructure with massively violent military attacks – laying waste to tens of thousands of homes, the enclave’s only power station, farms, schools, universities, hospitals, factories – while at the same time putting the population on a near-starvation diet through a punishing, long-term blockade. This has been rationalized by both rabbis and army commanders using language designed to degrade the humanity of Palestinians, characterizing them as “murderers” and their communities as “military bases”.

And behind the scenes, Israel has also assisted in a third, wider strategic approach toward Palestinians under its rule that has impacted Gaza in ways that have intensified the effects of the two other policies.

Ariel Sharon pulled the settlers from Gaza in 2005 without an agreement with, or handover to, Mahmoud Abbas’s Palestinian Authority, the Palestinians’ supposed government-in-waiting. Denied the chance to take credit for Israel’s disengagement, the PA was forced on to the back foot. Its Hamas rivals presented Israel’s withdrawal as a victory for its strategy of violent resistance, in contrast to the ineffectiveness of the PA’s diplomatic approach and security coordination with Israel. Hamas leaders argued that it was they who had chased Israel out of Gaza, the occupier’s tail between its legs.

That, in part, set up Hamas for its win in the Palestinian legislative elections, as well as for its violent confrontation in Gaza with Abbas’s Fatah faction and ultimately Hamas’s takeover of the enclave in 2007. Over the next 12 years, the geographic and ideological split between the Fatah-ruled West Bank and Hamas-run Gaza has only deepened. By default, the division has turned the PA into Israel’s ally in isolating and punishing Hamas – and by extension Gaza. The PA has imposed its own form of blockade on Gaza, most significantly withholding transfers of revenues to the enclave, leaving public-sector workers, the largest employed group in the occupied territories, on severely reduced salaries. The harmful effects have been felt across the enclave, because typically the salary of each Palestinian in employment supports a much larger extended family.

Combined, these three factors have engineered the near-collapse of Gaza’s economy.

In 1999, even after Israel had sealed off Gaza from Israel with an electronic fence, some 40,000 workers – about 15 per cent of the labor force – were still employed in Israel, many of them on construction sites in and around Tel Aviv or in the Erez industrial zone. Today, those jobs are unavailable to Gaza’s besieged inhabitants.

Slightly over half the population now live below the poverty threshold, on less than $4.60 a day, and a similar number are unemployed. A third of them live in extreme poverty. The Israeli human rights group B’Tselem concluded in June that Gaza’s isolation and misery was a policy the Israeli government had chosen. Israel, it said, had brought about the enclave’s “economic collapse and trapped its residents in a small, closed job market, with no prospects of development and no future. Israel could change this stifling reality right now. Instead, it chooses to force Gaza residents to live in a state of poverty, stagnation and hopelessness.”

Meanwhile, Gaza’s private business sector has been reeling from the combined effects of the blockade and repeated military assaults. Although there were once eight crossing points between Gaza and Israel, today exports are possible only through one, the Kerem Shalom cargo terminal. Before the blockade, some 120 trucks passed out of Gaza each day to Israel, the Arab world and Europe carrying clothing, food, beverages and furniture. Today, that number never rises above nine trucks, and on numerous occasions none have been allowed through. Israel tightens restrictions at Kerem Shalom as a way to collectively punish Gaza’s population for rocket fire into Israel or protests at the fence.

Consider the following industries that were crucial to Gaza’s economy:

Textile Factories.   For many years, Gaza’s low wages encouraged Israeli clothing companies to order garments from the enclave’s factories. But after Israel tightened the blockade in 2007, it became all but impossible for these factories to get their products out. According to the Union of Palestine Textile Industries, 90 per cent of Gaza’s 930 sewing factories closed as a result, leaving 35,000 workers without jobs. A slight easing of the restrictions in 2015, which allowed exports to the West Bank and Israel, has led to the partial reopening of some 40 factories.

However, those that have resumed operation are in a precarious situation. The regular interruption in the electricity supply, and the high price of generating power privately, have added significantly to production costs. Israel still denies exit permits to most merchants and trade association heads, making it difficult to develop and expand their businesses. Israel’s refusal to allow in equipment, such as sewing machines, and supplies, such as linens, continues to damage the industry. And hanging over all the factories is the permanent threat of a new Israeli assault on Gaza, which would not only disrupt exports but could lead to any of the buildings being targeted for destruction.

Construction Industry.  Construction is Gaza’s one guaranteed growth industry, given the extraordinary levels of destruction wreaked repeatedly on the enclave by Israel. But in practice the sector is in deep trouble. Whereas once construction accounted for a third of Gaza’s Gross Domestic Production, today it supplies less than a fifth of Gaza’s now much-reduced GDP. The industry has sustained massive damage from Israel’s military operations: 2014’s Protective Edge alone destroyed some 100 steel, cement, and brick works. And the sector knows its factories are high on the hit-list in any future attacks.

Also, the so-called Gaza Reconstruction Mechanism, agreed between Israel and the UN after the 2014 assault as a way to rebuild a devastated Gaza, has imposed strict regulations on materials that can be brought into the enclave, and requires Israeli approval before any infrastructure projects can be undertaken. Given the added difficulties faced by most Palestinian families securing a bank loan without assured employment, construction firms have very limited opportunities for work.

A study published in May by the Palestinian Federation of Industries found that construction is operating at only about 15 per cent of its capacity, which is continuing to shrink. This year there were only 1,840 people employed in construction compared to 3,170 last year – a decline of 42 per cent. Many contractors are rapidly relocating their Gaza operations abroad, to Arab countries such as Jordan, Syria and Iraq.

Agriculture.  Since Israel erected a fence around Gaza, it has used heavy equipment to uproot trees and foliage, flattening and scarring a wide area of land on the Gaza side of the perimeter, leaving it desolate. A third of the enclave’s arable land falls within this Israeli-defined no-man’s land, zones that can stretch up to half a mile inside Gaza. In 2012 the International Red Cross negotiated an agreement to allow Gaza’s farmers to grow short crops up to .2 miles from the fence and taller crops up to half a mile. But the farmers are still reluctant to enter these approved areas: experience shows they risk being shot. Irrigation systems and water pumps in range of Israel’s automated gun towers are also regularly targeted.

Since 2007 the blockade has prevented farmers exporting to the West Bank and Israel, their main markets. And restrictions on imports of animal vaccines have led to outbreaks of disease among livestock. Polluted water sources mean that food is likely to be contaminated with bacteria, parasites and industrial runoff. And during Israel’s military operations, outlying farms have been repeatedly targeted. Protective Edge of 2014 caused $500 million of direct and indirect damage to the farming sector, destroying irrigation wells and greenhouses as well as killing farm animals.

In addition, Israel has regularly fumigated the farmers’ lands with herbicides to damage crops, on the pretext of increasing the field of vision along the perimeter fence. The chemicals Israel uses include Roundup, which is suspected of being carcinogenic and banned in some countries. Some 30 spraying operations took place between 2014 and 2018, damaging a total of 3,500 acres of farmland and pasture, according to Gaza’s agriculture ministry.

Forensic Architecture, a research group that has modeled the drift from the spraying operations, accuses Israel of creating “a dead zone of entire swathes of formerly arable land.” According to the Red Cross, irrigation pools as far as half a mile from the perimeter fence have been polluted, and the herbicide residues remaining in the ground pose a threat to those eating produce grown on sprayed land. Hundreds of farmers are reported to have suffered losses worth thousands of dollars each from the spraying, but compensation claims have been rejected by the Israeli courts.

Fishing Industry. Fishing is traditionally one of Gaza’s most important commercial activities – as well as providing locally sourced food. In recognition of that fact, the Oslo accords, signed a quarter of a century ago, established the fishing limit off Gaza’s coast at 20 nautical miles. Israel, however, has refused to abide by the agreement: the navy has never allowed Gaza’s boats to fish more than 15 miles from the coast. But more typically Israel has restricted fishing to 3 or 6 nautical miles, a range that makes it all but impossible to catch commercial quantities of fish.

Furthermore, closures – banning fishermen entirely from access to Gaza’s coastal waters – have been repeatedly instituted by Israel as a punitive measure, most recently over the launching of incendiary balloons and the protests at the perimeter fence. Ismail Haniyeh, the political head of Hamas, has called this “a policy of extortion.”  Israeli human rights groups, meanwhile, note that it constitutes “collective punishment” – a war crime.

According to B’Tselem, back in 2000 there were 10,000 registered fishermen, while today there are only 3,500. In practice, however, no more than half that figure actually go out in boats. The blockade means that most cannot find materials like fibreglass to repair their vessels or motor parts. Nearly all of Gaza’s fishermen are reported to be living below the poverty line of $4.60 a day. Meanwhile, the price of fish has soared, given the scarcity, leaving few in Gaza able to afford it.

Israel’s navy also regularly confiscates boats, claiming they have strayed outside its imposed fishing zone, and then refuses to return them for months or years. Many fishermen cannot afford costly GPS equipment, leaving them unsure whether they are inside the prescribed area. The navy, meanwhile, appears to enforce a “buffer zone” that makes unintentional “violations” by boat crews more likely.

The fisherman also risk being arrested or shot when they head out into Gaza’s waters. In the seven months to July of this year, Israel fired on fishing boats more than 200 times, injuring 15 crew members, according to Al Mezan, a Palestinian human rights group. Another 30 fishermen were seized and detained in Israel.

One recent story that gained some attention was the shooting of 31-year-old Khader Al-Saaidy, a father of three. Like most fishermen, he has had regular run-ins with the Israeli navy over the years. His small boats have twice been impounded and not returned, costing him some $16,000 to replace them. Then two years ago he was shot in the leg while out fishing, and a friend alongside him was shot in the face, losing the sight in an eye. On that occasion Al-Saaidy was jailed for 14 months.

In February his boat was attacked again. This time, naval commandos fired a hail of rubber-coated steel bullets from close range, hitting him 15 times in the upper body. Some of the bullets shattered his eye sockets. The boat was seized by the navy and towed to Ashdod. He was later taken to an Israeli hospital in Ashkelon, where one eye was removed. Hospital staff told him the second eye could be saved with complicated surgery. But he was dumped by the army at the Gaza crossing four days later and has been denied a permit to attend follow-up appointments in Israel ever since. Under questioning from the Israeli Haaretz newspaper, military authorities said he was not eligible to enter Israel because his injuries “did not constitute mortal danger.”

Healthcare Industry.  Al-Saaidy’s need for health care in Israel – and the military’s refusal to allow him to enter for treatment – are difficulties that have become common as Gaza’s health sector has collapsed under the combined strain of more than decade of a blockade and a series of military assaults.

The blockade has prevented medicines and basic equipment reaching Gaza, leading to severe shortages of infant formula, as well as medicines for cancer, kidney failure, diabetes and hypertension. It has been impossible for staff to keep up to date with the latest procedures and medical knowledge, and qualified medical staff are reported to be in short supply. Israel’s intermittent bombing sprees have severely damaged hospitals, medical centers, ambulances, as well killing and injuring medical staff. In 2014 Israel bombed five hospitals. Electricity shortages have made it difficult for medical centers to keep operating or reliably provide treatments like dialysis.

All of this has happened as Israel’s attacks have inflated the need for emergency medical care and rehabilitation services, stretching Gaza’s war-battered health sector to breaking point. Casualties from Protective Edge of 2014 alone included more than 2,200 dead and a further 11,000 seriously wounded, with many needing long-term treatment for disabilities. And since March 2018 some 500 Palestinian protesters a week on average – including 60 children – have needed emergency care for injuries inflicted by snipers at the perimeter fence. So far some 140 of these casualties have required amputations, including 30 children. Another 1,700 of the wounded are expected to lose a leg over the next two years because of complications Gaza’s medical centers cannot cope with, according to the UN.

Local health services also need to deal with the lasting effects of toxic environmental changes. Non-conventional weapons used by Israel during its attacks have dramatically increased the number of low birth-weight babies and birth defects over the past decade. And more of the urban population has been exposed to heavy metals as Palestinian entrepreneurs have improvised solutions to deal both with electricity shortages, by manufacturing primitive batteries, and with the blockade, by cannibalizing electrical parts. Research published in June showed that most children near such workshops had dangerously high levels of lead in their blood.

The Water Supply

Water has an intimate connection to public sanitation and health. Water pollution and the lack of sewage treatment threaten the outbreak of major diseases like cholera and diptheria, especially among children. So far such epidemics have been largely held in check by UNRWA’s vaccination program. But with the US having defunded the refugee agency since 2018, combined with a shortage of antibiotics, the risk of contagion has grown.

According to a study by the RAND corporation four years ago, gastrointestinal infections from water pollution accounted for a quarter of all illnesses in Gaza and 12 per cent of child deaths. Rates are believed to have increased since then, with the spread of rotavirus, salmonella and cholera. A recent Palestinian report suggested that up to 60 per cent of all illnesses in Gaza may be the result of water pollution. Another study showed that Gaza’s schools share one toilet between 75 students and one sink among 80 children. Hand washing and toilet flushing are necessarily kept to a minimum, further risking the spread of disease.

Most families in Gaza have to rely on purified water to drink, but that requires them to spend as much as a third of their income on water purchases. With unemployment estimated at 57 per cent of the population, more and more families cannot afford treated water, relying instead on the short periods the authorities turn on the tap in their area.

Possibly in response to fears like those expressed by Israeli researchers about the risk of epidemics in Gaza spreading beyond the fence, Israel has belatedly agreed to limited new water supplies for Gaza. After a decade of objections, Israel allowed a desalination plant in Gaza to open in 2017. However, as it can produce only a third of Gaza’s shortfall in supplies, the treated water is currently being mixed with polluted water to extend the volume of water coming out of taps.

Leaving Babies to Die Alone

Although Israel is entirely culpable for the health crisis in Gaza, and accountable for it in international law, it has taken only the most minimal responsibility for those in desperate need of treatment. Even when Israel does provide medical care for sick Palestinians from Gaza in its own hospitals, the Palestinian Authority has to foot the bill.

As the blinded fisherman Khader Al-Saaidy found, however, it is extremely difficult to get permits from Israel to leave Gaza for treatment – whether in Israeli hospitals or in Palestinian-run ones in East Jerusalem. Israel usually requires proof that without intervention from a hospital outside Gaza the patient is at serious risk of death. Even then, many of the patients approved for a permit or, in the case of children, their escorts, are subjected to intimidation to turn informer before they are allowed to leave.

Israel’s permit rules have created a spate of heartbreaking cases for the families of young children. According to Physicians for Human Rights,  Israel issued 7,000 permits for children to leave Gaza for treatment last year, but approved a parent accompanying them in only 2,000 cases. Instead a majority of the children were escorted by an elderly relative such as a grandparent or aunt. Such children with life-threatening conditions were therefore forced to travel and endure complicated and frightening treatment without a mother or father present.

Israel’s policy applies to babies too. In the first six months of this year, 56 infants from Gaza were separated from their parents while in hospital, and six died alone. Hiba Swailam, aged 24, found herself in precisely this situation after severe complications during pregnancy. She was permitted to leave Gaza to have her triplets delivered two months early at Al-Makassed Hospital in East Jerusalem. However, her permit expired long before the triplets were well enough to return with her to Gaza. She was therefore forced to leave them behind. One died after nine days, and another after two weeks. According to doctors at Al-Makassed, one of the babies could have survived if it had been breastfed. The surviving baby spent months alone at the hospital, cared for by nurses, with Swailam only able to see her baby by video. Only when the story was finally picked up by Britain’s Guardian newspaper did the Israeli authorities relent and issue Swailam with a permit to collect her baby daughter.

One of the nurses at Al-Makassed, Ibtisam Risiq, noted the psychological effects on such babies: “They need love. Their heart rates go up. They are depressed.” But soon even Al-Makassed’s services may no longer be available to patients from Gaza. The US cuts to funding implemented by Trump last year have also targeted the East Jerusalem hospital.

Gaza’s medical centers need to deal with more than the population’s physical health. The enclave’s severe isolation and a decade of repeated bombardments and devastation have taken a heavy psychological toll, especially on children. One psychologist recently told the documentary-maker Harry Fear that Gaza’s entire population was traumatized to some degree. The enclave’s limited mental health services, however, have no hope of dealing with such an epidemic of emotional and mental trauma. The task is made still harder by the fact that patients suffering from conditions like depression, anxiety, panic attacks, and PTSD cannot be reassured that the source of their trauma is behind them. Constantly hanging over Gaza is the threat of another round of destruction, another wave of bloodletting.

In March a study by the Norwegian Refugee Council found that more than two-thirds of children who live near the perimeter fence suffered from what it termed “psycho-social distress.”  Some 42 per cent had seen at least one bomb explosion, while a third knew someone who had been killed in an attack. One in 14 had lost their own home to a bomb or missile. More than half felt no hope for the future, and 81 per cent struggled academically because of the conflict.  “Gaza’s humanitarian crisis has left an entire generation emotionally damaged,” said the council’s local director, Kate O’Rourke. “It takes years of work with these children to undo the impact of trauma and restore their sense of hope for the future.”

The situation is not likely to improve soon. UNRWA slashed in half its mental health budget late last year as the loss of US funding started to bite. Counseling for children was among the services to be cut.

The Moment of Truth

By most measures, Gaza is already uninhabitable for the vast majority of its population. But as next year’s deadline set by the UN nears, Israel is faced with a stark choice. Given the “logic of elimination” at the core of settler colonial ideologies like Zionism, Israel, as previously noted, has to choose one of three paths in relation to Gaza’s inhabitants: genocide, ethnic cleansing or apartheid. But if as the UN says, and the preceding text highlights, Gaza is about to become uninhabitable, then apartheid will soon no longer be an option. Penning 2 million people up inside an uninhabitable prison amounts not to apartheid but, by default, to slow-motion genocide. So the Israeli public and the watching world are rapidly arriving at a moment of truth. Is Israel going to stand by as Gaza sinks into the terminal humanitarian catastrophe its policies have created? Can it avoid the spread of disease, or hordes of Palestinians fleeing Gaza to escape such epidemics, as its own experts have forecast? And will western states remain complicit through their silence and financial, diplomatic and military support of Israel? In an age of 24-hour rolling news and social media, death on such a large scale may prove too unpalatable.

But if this is the case – if genocide is not acceptable, and apartheid no longer sustainable – that leaves Israel and the US with only one alternative: another major episode of ethnic cleansing.

I have documented elsewhere the strenuous efforts over the past decade by Israel and the United States to force Egypt to accept the reinvention of northern Sinai, the peninsula neighboring Gaza, as a new Palestinian state, and one that would house most of Gaza’s inhabitants.

In this vision, making Gaza uninhabitable is not, as it currently appears, a dead-end strategy leading to genocide. Rather it is an accumulation of pressure on the people of Gaza and the watching international community designed to make it impossible for the Egyptian leadership to deny the enclave’s residents access to Sinai. Like a tube of toothpaste, Gaza is being squeezed ever more forcefully on the assumption that, when the cap is removed – the Egyptian land crossing into Sinai is finally open – the enclave’s inhabitants will flood out, desperate to breathe again.

In 2014 the Israeli media reported on this plan, dubbed “Greater Gaza.” At that time an Arab newspaper interviewed a former anonymous official close to Hosni Mubarak, the Egyptian president ousted in 2011. He said Egypt had come under concerted pressure from 2007 onwards – when Hamas took over the enclave – to annex Gaza to northern Sinai. Five years later, according to the same source, Mohamed Morsi, who led a short-lived Muslim Brotherhood government, sent a delegation to Washington where the Americans proposed that “Egypt cede a third of the Sinai to Gaza in a two-stage process spanning four to five years”.

Since 2014, it appears, Morsi’s successor, General Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi, has faced similar lobbying. Suspicions that the Egyptian dictator might have been close to capitulating were fuelled at that time by Abbas himself. In an interview on Egyptian TV, he said Israel’s Sinai plan had been unfortunately accepted by some here [in Egypt]. Don’t ask me more about that. We abolished it.”

But Sisi’s hand has since weakened. Both Abbas and Hamas are more isolated than ever, and the situation in Gaza more desperate. Israel has cultivated much closer ties to the Gulf states as they fashion joint opposition to Iran. Egypt is reported to have come under renewed pressure from the Gulf to concede territory in Sinai to help Trump with the long-delayed political elements of his “deal of the century”.

Since last year, indications are that the Trump administration is pursuing an Israeli plan to gradually shift the center of Gaza’s economic life into Sinai by constructing a free-trade industrial zone there as well as major infrastructure projects, such as a new power plant. That was the thrust of a document leaked earlier this year to the Israel Hayom, a free daily funded by Sheldon Adelson – a paper largely seen as a mouthpiece for Netanyahu and his government – that purported to be a leaked version, or at least a draft, of the Trump peace plan.

The advantages to Israel are that it would make the international community permanently responsible for Gaza’s economic welfare and leave Egypt and the wider Arab world in charge of pacifying, controlling, and punishing the people of Gaza should they protest their conditions. The Sinai plan would be viewed by western states as formally ending the occupation of Gaza and its 2 million inhabitants and provide a precedent for gradually relocating Palestinians from the West Bank and East Jerusalem to Sinai as well. Israel would finally be off the hook for the crimes it has committed since 1948.

Can Israel and the US really achieve all of this? Time will tell. But meanwhile, Gaza’s 2 million inhabitants are unlikely to be offered much relief from the horrifying reality of life in their prison – a prison that in only a few months will officially be judged uninhabitable.

Posted in Palestine Affairs, Middle East, ZIO-NAZI, Gaza, Human RightsComments Off on Uninhabitable: Gaza Faces Moment of Truth

Nazi regime Prepares to Turn Bedouin Citizens into Refugees in Their Own Country

Israel Prepares to Turn Bedouin Citizens into Refugees in Their Own Country

By Jonathan Cook

The decades-long struggle by tens of thousands of Israelis against being uprooted from their homes – some for the second or third time – should be proof enough that Israel is not the western-style liberal democracy it claims to be.

Last week 36,000 Bedouin – all of them Israeli citizens – discovered that their state is about to make them refugees in their own country, driving them into holding camps. These Israelis, it seems, are the wrong kind.

Their treatment has painful echoes of the past. In 1948, 750,000 Palestinians were expelled by the Israeli army outside the borders of the newly declared Jewish state established on their homeland – what the Palestinians call their Nakba, or catastrophe.

Israel is regularly criticised for its belligerent occupation, its relentless expansion of illegal settlements on Palestinian land and its repeated and savage military attacks, especially on Gaza.

On rare occasions, analysts also notice Israel’s systematic discrimination against the 1.8 million Palestinians whose ancestors survived the Nakba and live inside Israel, ostensibly as citizens.

But each of these abuses is dealt with in isolation, as though unrelated, rather than as different facets of an overarching project. A pattern is discernible, one driven by an ideology that dehumanises Palestinians everywhere Israel encounters them.

That ideology has a name. Zionism provides the thread that connects the past – the Nakba – with Israel’s current ethnic cleansing of Palestinians from their homes in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, the destruction of Gaza, and the state’s concerted efforts to drive Palestinian citizens of Israel out of what is left of their historic lands and into ghettoes.

The logic of Zionism, even if its more naive supporters fail to grasp it, is to replace Palestinians with Jews – what Israel officially terms Judaisation.

The Palestinians’ suffering is not some unfortunate side effect of conflict. It is the very aim of Zionism: to incentivise Palestinians still in place to leave “voluntarily”, to escape further suffocation and misery.

The starkest example of this people replacement strategy is Israel’s long-standing treatment of 250,000 Bedouin who formally have citizenship.

The Bedouin are the poorest group in Israel, living in isolated communities mainly in the vast, semi-arid area of the Negev, the country’s south. Largely out of view, Israel has had a relatively free hand in its efforts to “replace” them.

That was why, for a decade after it had supposedly finished its 1948 ethnic cleansing operations and won recognition in western capitals, Israel continued secretly expelling thousands of Bedouin outside its borders, despite their claim on citizenship.The “Judaisation” of Palestine, Israel’s War on the Bedouin

Meanwhile, other Bedouin in Israel were forced off their ancestral lands to be driven either into confined holding areas or state-planned townships that became the most deprived communities in Israel.

It is hard to cast the Bedouin, simple farmers and pastoralists, as a security threat, as was done with the Palestinians under occupation.

But Israel has a much broader definition of security than simple physical safety. Its security is premised on the maintenance of an absolute demographic dominance by Jews.

The Bedouin may be peaceable but their numbers pose a major demographic threat and their pastoral way of life obstructs the fate intended for them – penning them up tightly inside ghettoes.

Most of the Bedouin have title deeds to their lands that long predate Israel’s creation. But Israel has refused to honour these claims and many tens of thousands have been criminalised by the state, their villages denied legal recognition.

For decades they have been forced to live in tin shacks or tents because the authorities refuse to approve proper homes and they are denied public services like schools, water and electricity.

The Bedouin have one option if they wish to live within the law: they must abandon their ancestral lands and their way of life to relocate to one of the poor townships.

Many of the Bedouin have resisted, clinging on to their historic lands despite the dire conditions imposed on them.

One such unrecognised village, Al Araqib, has been used to set an example. Israeli forces have demolished the makeshift homes there more than 160 times in less than a decade. In August, an Israeli court approved the state billing six of the villagers $370,000 (Dh1.6 million) for the repeated evictions.

Al Araqib’s 70-year-old leader, Sheikh Sayah Abu Madhim, recently spent months in jail after his conviction for trespassing, even though his tent is a stone’s throw from the cemetery where his ancestors are buried.

Now the Israel authorities are losing patience with the Bedouin.

Last January, plans were unveiled for the urgent and forcible eviction of nearly 40,000 Bedouin from their homes in unrecognised villages under the guise of “economic development” projects. It will be the largest expulsion in decades.

“Development”, like “security”, has a different connotation in Israel. It really means Jewish development, or Judaisation – not development for Palestinians.

The projects include a new highway, a high-voltage power line, a weapons testing facility, a military live-fire zone and a phosphate mine.

It was revealed last week that the families would be forced into displacement centres in the townships, living in temporary accommodation for years as their ultimate fate is decided. Already these sites are being compared to the refugee camps established for Palestinians in the wake of the Nakba.

The barely concealed aim is to impose on the Bedouin such awful conditions that they will eventually agree to be confined for good in the townships on Israel’s terms.

Six leading United Nations human rights experts sent a letter to Israel in the summer protesting the grave violations of the Bedouin families’ rights in international law and arguing that alternative approaches were possible.

Adalah, a legal group for Palestinians in Israel, notes that Israel has been forcibly evicting the Bedouin over seven decades, treating them not as human beings but as pawns in its never-ending battle to replace them with Jewish settlers.

The Bedouin’s living space has endlessly shrunk and their way of life has been crushed.

This contrasts starkly with the rapid expansion of Jewish towns and single-family farming ranches on the land from which the Bedouin are being evicted.

It is hard not to conclude that what is taking place is an administrative version of the ethnic cleansing Israeli officials conduct more flagrantly in the occupied territories on so-called security grounds.

These interminable expulsions look less like a necessary, considered policy and more like an ugly, ideological nervous tic.

Posted in Palestine Affairs, ZIO-NAZI, Human RightsComments Off on Nazi regime Prepares to Turn Bedouin Citizens into Refugees in Their Own Country

More Than 1,000 Palestinians in Gaza Have Bone Infections after Being Shot by ‘Israeli’ Forces

By Jewish Voice for Peace

Posted by: Sammi Ibrahem,Sr

Gaza

Treating drug-resistant infections in Gaza under the blockade

Medicin Sans Frontieres 2 Sept. 2019-More than 7,400 Palestinians have been injured by live ammunition during protests in Gaza.  About half of those suffering from open fractures, in which the bone is broken near the wound.  More than 1,000 of them have developed bone infections; these serious and complex wounds require months – if not years – of dressing, surgery, and physiotherapy. Infections prevent recovery and many of them are resistant to antibiotics.  To prevent the spread of resistant bacteria, those with resistant infections have to be isolated in a single room for six weeks. Everyone entering the room must wear protective clothing and clean their hands. MSF has developed the first lab in Gaza that is able to analyze bone samples.

Palestinian protester injured by Israeli sniper fire dies in hospital

Peoples Dispatch 2 Sept. 2019-A Palestinian protester shot by Israeli security forces during the weekly Great March of Return protests in August, succumbed to his injuries at the Gaza European Hospital. According to sources, he was shot by an Israeli army sharpshooter in the southern part of the Gaza strip. More than 6,000 Palestinians participated in the August protests.

17-year old Ali al-Ashqar killed at Gaza protest

Electronic Intifada 30 Sept. 2019-Ali al-Ashqar, age 17, a young participant of the Great March of Return, threw one stone on September 6 while standing 80 meters from the separation wall in Gaza. He was immediately shot by an Israeli sniper who prevented medics from reaching him before he bled to death.

Gaza children’s mental health rapidly deteriorating

Norwegian Refugee Council 25 March 2019-A study conducted by the Norwegian Refugee Council found that 68 percent of schoolchildren in areas close to the Israeli perimeter fence has clear indications of psycho-social distress. The majority said they were most severely affected by the sounds of nearby explosions and media images of conflict in Gaza.  One year since the start of mass protests along the perimeter fence with Israel, children have reported witnessing violence first hand, as well as knowing people who have been injured, killed or lost their homes. Fifty-four percent said they had no hope for a brighter future. Eighty-one percent of children struggle academically due to conflict-related stress.

Qatar Red Crescent backs healthcare sector in Gaza

The Gulf Times 1 Sept. 2019-Qatar Red Crescent is implementing a mega project to enhance the health sector in Gaza, by providing medical expertise and training to staff.  The multifaceted project involves hiring consultants in pulmonology, internal medicine, cardiothoracic surgery, neonatology, and urology.  Other capacity-building components of the program include MA in Mental Health at the Al Quds University (Abu Dis campus) and Diploma in Anesthesia and Intensive Care at the Islamic University of Gaza (IUG). Read more: The Peninsula

Unclaimed rockets sent across Gaza’s frontier prompt Israeli authorities to cut electrical power in sweltering summer heat

Middle East Eye 26 August 2019-The impact of power cuts is felt in almost every aspect of the life of Gaza’s residents. Food can no longer be kept in the fridge, staying at home is unbearable due to the heat, and even the simple task of visiting relatives would have to depend on the highly unreliable electricity schedule. Businesses, schools, and hospitals are disrupted and the majority of people cannot afford a generator.

West Bank

Another fatal attack on a Palestinian woman occurred near a checkpoint in Ramallah on September 28

Electronic Intifada 18 Sept. 2019-Israeli forces shot 28-year-old Alaa Wahdan in the legs and prevented Palestinian Red Crescent personnel from providing timely medical treatment.

The murder of a young Palestinian woman by her family has sparked widespread protests against misogyny, honor killings, and the Israeli occupation

+972 Magazine 23 Sept. 2019-One consequence of the murder of Israa Gharib has been a campaign for a new law against gender violence in the West Bank.

Israeli raids office of Palestinian prisoner rights group

Middle East Eye Sept. 19 2019-“Addameer sees this raid as a part of ongoing and systematic attacks against the Palestinian civil society organization,” said the Palestinian prisoner rights group Addameer in a statement published by Middle East Eye. “Addameer reassures that those constant raids will not stand in the face of any duties the organization has for Palestinian political prisoners.”

Constant fires of trash and waste, much if it acquired from Israel, is contaminating fields where sheep once grazed in the southern West Bank

The New York Times 12 Sept. 2019-In villages in the Hebron area an estimated 80% of households rely directly or indirectly on handling electronic waste to survive. On the villages’ outskirts and along the separation wall — where Israeli and Palestinian security is largely absent — the burning of cables, useless e-waste scraps and trash have blackened the soil and saturated once fertile pastures with what Dr. Garb calls a “witches’ brew” of contaminants.

UN High Commissioner should immediately release Settlement Business Database

Human rights Watch 23 Sept. 2019-Almost 4 years have passed since the UN Human Rights Council approved without opposition resolution 31/36 mandating the establishment of a database of businesses that are engaged in certain, specific activities in the occupied Palestinian territory that are either explicitly linked to Israeli settlements or form part of processes that “enable and support the establishment, expansion and maintenance of Israeli residential communities beyond the Green Line. HRW has requested that the High Commissioner release the data before the end of the current session.

Israeli Supreme Court will hear arguments against deportation of Human Rights Watch’s Israel and Palestine Director, accused of promoting boycott

NPR 23 Sept. 2019-The Israeli Supreme Court will hear HRW’s appeal of a deportation order against its Israel and Palestine Director, Omar Shakir. Israel has caricatured HRW’s call on companies to stop doing business in settlements in order to avoid contributing to rights abuses, as “promoting boycotts,” and sought to deport Shakir from the country. HRW argues that these are attempts to stifle criticism and should be a concern for all who care about democracy, human rights and freedom of expression in Israel. Amnesty International recently joined the appeal, citing potential ramifications for them and other rights groups. Read more: Haaretz

Israel’s fiscal standoff impacts environment and health of Palestinians.

Down to Earth 11 Sept. 2019-180 Palestinian communities in the West Bank (more than 20 percent) lack access to good quality water, according to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs and UN Conference on Trade and Development ((UNCTAD). Among those living in East Jerusalem, only 44 percent are formally connected to the water network. The oPt is also facing serious public health risks with Israel dumping large amounts of hazardous waste including sewage sludge, infectious medical waste, used oils, solvents, metals, and electronic waste and batteries.  The shortage of electricity, destruction, and disrepair of the sanitation infrastructure has severely affected the environment in Gaza. More than 100 million liters of untreated sewage is discharged into the Mediterranean Sea daily, causing extensive contamination of beaches — four times higher than the international environmental standards — and also impacting the fishing economy.

UN Report on fiscal crisis in Palestinian economy

UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process 23 Sept. 2019-A newly published United Nations report highlighted the urgency to resolve the continuing fiscal crisis faced by the Palestinian Authority (PA) and to support the Palestinian economy. It called for increased attention to Gaza’s health system. According to the report, an evolving health crisis in Gaza is caused, in part, by limited electricity supply to healthcare centers and hospitals, dual-use restrictions on medical equipment and a shortage of medicines and disposables.  The report called for the Palestinian Ministry of Health’s full cooperation with this effort. “To move away from humanitarian assistance, fundamental improvements to health care infrastructure, including increased electricity supply, access to clean water, upgrading of medical equipment and establishing a transparent and effective supply chain for medicines and other essential goods are key,” the report added. Read more: MENAFN, Emirates News Agency

Update on Palestinian prisoner hunger strike

Electronic Intifada 25 Sept. 2019-Some 140 Palestinian prisoners have been rejecting food for more than two weeks after Israel failed to cease jamming their phone reception, and to install public telephones, preventing them from communicating with the outside world, which Israel had agreed to do following a previous hunger strike. Some 460 are being held in “administrative detention”, under which Israel can imprison individuals without charge or trial and detainees are not allowed to see the evidence against them.

Ten-minute video by BBC gives a thorough overview of Palestinian childhood detention by the Israeli military

BBC 28 Aug. 2019-Many interviews with experts and several children themselves. This is a concise and excellent resource–pass it on to your MOC to urge them to sign onto HR 2407–Promoting Human Rights for Palestinian Children Living Under Israeli Military Occupation Act.

Israel

Israel’s highest court ruled in September that Israel can legally hold the bodies of ‘slain terrorists’ for leverage in negotiations with the Palestinians

Electronic Intifada 19 Sept. 2019-The remains of more than a dozen recently killed Palestinians are being held for such purposes.

Palestinian prisoner Bassam al-Sayih, 46, died at the Yitzhak Shamir Medical Center in Tel Aviv

PCHR 9 Sept. 2019-He was suffering from bone cancer when he was arrested and imprisoned by Israeli occupation forces on 8 October 2015 on suspicion of involvement with the killing of two Israeli settlers in the occupied West Bank. Over the subsequent four years, he was not granted a trial, never sentenced, and his medical condition neglected, according to the Palestinian Center for Human Rights. His death was “due to torture, medical negligence and stalling in giving him the medical care he needed,” prisoners rights group Addameer His is the third death within Israeli prisons in 2019.

United States

Harvard president expresses concerns about obstacles facing foreign scholars, interview on ‘All Things Considered’

NPR 3 Sept. 2019-Ismail Ajjawi, a Palestinian who was due at Harvard this fall as an incoming freshman, was denied entry to the U.S., had his visa canceled, and was sent home to Lebanon.  He was allowed to come back in time for the start of classes at Harvard following meetings between Harvard’s president, Larry Bacow, Congress members, and the Secretaries of State and Homeland Security.   Mr. Bacow sat down with NPR to discuss his concerns about immigration and visa obstacles faced by other international students and faculty.

The contested whiteness of Arab identity in the US: implications for health disparities research

Sarah Abboud, Perla Chebli, Em Rabelais, Am J Public Health, published online ahead of print, September 19, 2019: e1–e4. doi:10.2105/AJPH.2019.305285

American Journal of Public Health Oct. 2 2019-In this commentary, the authors make the case that individuals of Arab descent in the United States are classified as White in the U.S. (but do not benefit from white privilege), and are not recognized as a minority group.  This is a form of structural violence that leaves them invisible, their needs unaddressed, and their health status impacted. Health disparities due to social exclusion, stigma, and discrimination are experienced by this group.  The authors call on the National Institute of Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD) at the National Institutes of Health to acknowledge the undocumented health inequities that Arabs experience in the U.S. and to ensure their inclusion in the NIMHD’s new multi-domain health disparities research framework.International

Protests ahead of London arms fair to ‘Stop Arming Israel’

The People’s Dispatch 4 Sept. 2019-In early September, hundreds of people protested outside the venue which hosted the Defence and Security Equipment International (DSEI) arms fair in London. The protesters, from the War on Want, demanded an end to the sale of weapons to Israel, due to its occupation of Palestine and other grave crimes. The DSEI fair is supported by the UK government. The executive director of War on Want said that the British government is “rolling out the red carpet for human rights violating regimes to buy the weapons of death.”

According to the Campaign Against the Arms Trade (CAAT) the British government approved the sale of weapons and military equipment worth USD 17.8 million to Israel in 2018. In May 2018, just four days after Israeli forces massacred 68 Palestinians during the Great March of Return protests in Gaza, a deal for the sale of military training equipment to Israel worth USD 125,000 was approved.

Focus On: International Aid to Palestine, with pieces by Samer Abdelnour, Sam Bahour, Nora Lester Murad, Alaa Tartir, Jeremy Wildeman 

Al-Shabaka 4 Sept. 2019-The analysts argue that development cannot be understood as a mere technocratic, apolitical, and neutral process. Rather, it must be recognized as operating within relations of colonial dominance and rearticulated as linked to the struggle for rights, resistance, and emancipation.

Posted in Palestine Affairs, ZIO-NAZI, Human RightsComments Off on More Than 1,000 Palestinians in Gaza Have Bone Infections after Being Shot by ‘Israeli’ Forces

“Greater Israel”: The Zionist Plan for the Middle East

The Infamous “Oded Yinon Plan”. Introduction by Michel Chossudovsky

By Israel Shahak and Prof Michel Chossudovsky

Association of Arab-American University Graduates, Inc.

Introduction

The following document pertaining to the formation of “Greater Israel” constitutes the cornerstone of powerful Zionist factions within the current Netanyahu government,  the Likud party, as well as within the Israeli military and intelligence establishment. 

President Donald Trump has confirmed in no uncertain terms, his support of Israel’s illegal settlements (including his opposition to UN Security Council Resolution 2334, pertaining to the illegality of the Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank). In recent developments, the Trump administration has expressed its recognition of Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights. 

“Greater Israel” is de facto part of the election campaign.  Netanyahu has pledged to annex large parts of the occupied West Bank if he wins in the forthcoming September 17 elections.

Netanyahu, who is fighting for his political life after an inconclusive vote in April [2019], said that Israel will “apply Israeli sovereignty to the Jordan Valley and the northern Dead Sea immediately” if he secured a fifth term in the September 17 polls. (Al Jazeera, September 11, 2019

Trump’s “Deal of the Century” is supportive of the “Greater Israel” project, which also consists in the derogation of Palestinians’ “right of return” by “naturalizing them as citizens of Lebanon, Jordan, Syria, Iraq, and elsewhere regionally where they reside”.

Bear in mind: The Greater Israel design is not strictly a Zionist Project for the Middle East, it is an integral part of US foreign policy, its strategic objective is extend US hegemony as well as fracture and balkanize the Middle East.

Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital is intended to trigger political instability throughout the region.  

According to the founding father of Zionism Theodore Herzl, “the area of the Jewish State stretches: “From the Brook of Egypt to the Euphrates.”  According to Rabbi Fischmann,  “The Promised Land extends from the River of Egypt up to the Euphrates, it includes parts of Syria and Lebanon.”

When viewed in the current context, including the siege on Gaza, the Zionist Plan for the Middle East bears an intimate relationship to the 2003 invasion of  Iraq, the 2006 war on Lebanon, the 2011 war on Libya, the ongoing wars on Syria, Iraq and Yemen, not to mention the political crisis in Saudi Arabia.  

The “Greater Israel” project consists in weakening and eventually fracturing neighboring Arab states as part of a US-Israeli expansionist project, with the support of NATO and Saudi Arabia. In this regard, the Saudi-Israeli rapprochement is from Netanyahu’s viewpoint a means to expanding Israel’s spheres of influence in the Middle East as well as confronting Iran. Needless to day, the “Greater Israel” project is consistent with America’s imperial design. 

“Greater Israel” consists in an area extending from the Nile Valley to the Euphrates. According to Stephen Lendman, “A near-century ago, the World Zionist Organization’s plan for a Jewish state included:

• historic Palestine;

• South Lebanon up to Sidon and the Litani River;

• Syria’s Golan Heights, Hauran Plain and Deraa; and

• control of the Hijaz Railway from Deraa to Amman, Jordan as well as the Gulf of Aqaba.

Some Zionists wanted more – land from the Nile in the West to the Euphrates in the East, comprising Palestine, Lebanon, Western Syria and Southern Turkey.”

The Zionist project supports the Jewish settlement movement. More broadly it involves a policy of excluding Palestinians from Palestine leading to the eventual annexation of both the West Bank and Gaza to the State of Israel.

Greater Israel would create a number of proxy States. It would include parts of Lebanon, Jordan, Syria, the Sinai, as well as parts of  Iraq and Saudi Arabia. (See map).

According to Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya in a 2011 Global Research article,  The Yinon Plan was a continuation of Britain’s colonial design in the Middle East:

“[The Yinon plan] is an Israeli strategic plan to ensure Israeli regional superiority. It insists and stipulates that Israel must reconfigure its geo-political environment through the balkanization of the surrounding Arab states into smaller and weaker states.

Israeli strategists viewed Iraq as their biggest strategic challenge from an Arab state. This is why Iraq was outlined as the centerpiece to the balkanization of the Middle East and the Arab World. In Iraq, on the basis of the concepts of the Yinon Plan, Israeli strategists have called for the division of Iraq into a Kurdish state and two Arab states, one for Shiite Muslims and the other for Sunni Muslims. The first step towards establishing this was a war between Iraq and Iran, which the Yinon Plan discusses.

The Atlantic, in 2008, and the U.S. military’s Armed Forces Journal, in 2006, both published widely circulated maps that closely followed the outline of the Yinon Plan. Aside from a divided Iraq, which the Biden Plan also calls for, the Yinon Plan calls for a divided Lebanon, Egypt, and Syria. The partitioning of Iran, Turkey, Somalia, and Pakistan also all fall into line with these views. The Yinon Plan also calls for dissolution in North Africa and forecasts it as starting from Egypt and then spilling over into Sudan, Libya, and the rest of the region.

“Greater Israel” requires the breaking up of the existing Arab states into small states.

“The plan operates on two essential premises. To survive, Israel must 1) become an imperial regional power, and 2) must effect the division of the whole area into small states by the dissolution of all existing Arab states. Small here will depend on the ethnic or sectarian composition of each state. Consequently, the Zionist hope is that sectarian-based states become Israel’s satellites and, ironically, its source of moral legitimation…  This is not a new idea, nor does it surface for the first time in Zionist strategic thinking. Indeed, fragmenting all Arab states into smaller units has been a recurrent theme.” (Yinon Plan, see below)

Viewed in this context, the war on Syria and Iraq is part of  the process of Israeli territorial expansion. 

In this regard, the defeat of US sponsored terrorists (ISIS, Al Nusra) by Syrian Forces with the support of Russia, Iran and Hizbollah constitute a significant setback for Israel.  

Michel Chossudovsky, Global Research, September 06, 2015, updated September 13, 2019


The Zionist Plan for the Middle East 

Translated and edited by

Israel Shahak

The Israel of Theodore Herzl (1904) and of Rabbi Fischmann (1947)

In his Complete Diaries, Vol. II. p. 711, Theodore Herzl, the founder of Zionism, says that the area of the Jewish State stretches: “From the Brook of Egypt to the Euphrates.”

Rabbi Fischmann, member of the Jewish Agency for Palestine, declared in his testimony to the U.N. Special Committee of Enquiry on 9 July 1947: “The Promised Land extends from the River of Egypt up to the Euphrates, it includes parts of Syria and Lebanon.”“Greater Israel” and the Balkanization of the Middle East: Oded Yinon’s “Strategy for Israel”

from

Oded Yinon’s

“A Strategy for Israel in the Nineteen Eighties”

Published by the

Association of Arab-American University Graduates, Inc.

Belmont, Massachusetts, 1982

Special Document No. 1 (ISBN 0-937694-56-8)

Table of Contents

  Publisher’s Note1

The Association of Arab-American University Graduates finds it compelling to inaugurate its new publication series, Special Documents, with Oded Yinon’s article which appeared in Kivunim (Directions), the journal of the Department of Information of the World Zionist Organization. Oded Yinon is an Israeli journalist and was formerly attached to the Foreign Ministry of Israel. To our knowledge, this document is the most explicit, detailed and unambiguous statement to date of the Zionist strategy in the Middle East. Furthermore, it stands as an accurate representation of the “vision” for the entire Middle East of the presently ruling Zionist regime of Begin, Sharon and Eitan. Its importance, hence, lies not in its historical value but in the nightmare which it presents.

2

The plan operates on two essential premises. To survive, Israel must 1) become an imperial regional power, and 2) must effect the division of the whole area into small states by the dissolution of all existing Arab states. Small here will depend on the ethnic or sectarian composition of each state. Consequently, the Zionist hope is that sectarian-based states become Israel’s satellites and, ironically, its source of moral legitimation.

3

This is not a new idea, nor does it surface for the first time in Zionist strategic thinking. Indeed, fragmenting all Arab states into smaller units has been a recurrent theme. This theme has been documented on a very modest scale in the AAUG publication,  Israel’s Sacred Terrorism (1980), by Livia Rokach. Based on the memoirs of Moshe Sharett, former Prime Minister of Israel, Rokach’s study documents, in convincing detail, the Zionist plan as it applies to Lebanon and as it was prepared in the mid-fifties.

4

The first massive Israeli invasion of Lebanon in 1978 bore this plan out to the minutest detail. The second and more barbaric and encompassing Israeli invasion of Lebanon on June 6, 1982, aims to effect certain parts of this plan which hopes to see not only Lebanon, but Syria and Jordan as well, in fragments. This ought to make mockery of Israeli public claims regarding their desire for a strong and independent Lebanese central government. More accurately, they want a Lebanese central government that sanctions their regional imperialist designs by signing a peace treaty with them. They also seek acquiescence in their designs by the Syrian, Iraqi, Jordanian and other Arab governments as well as by the Palestinian people. What they want and what they are planning for is not an Arab world, but a world of Arab fragments that is ready to succumb to Israeli hegemony. Hence, Oded Yinon in his essay, “A Strategy for Israel in the 1980’s,” talks about “far-reaching opportunities for the first time since 1967” that are created by the “very stormy situation [that] surrounds Israel.”

5

The Zionist policy of displacing the Palestinians from Palestine is very much an active policy, but is pursued more forcefully in times of conflict, such as in the 1947-1948 war and in the 1967 war. An appendix entitled  “Israel Talks of a New Exodus” is included in this publication to demonstrate past Zionist dispersals of Palestinians from their homeland and to show, besides the main Zionist document we present, other Zionist planning for the de-Palestinization of Palestine.

6

It is clear from the Kivunim document, published in February, 1982, that the “far-reaching opportunities” of which Zionist strategists have been thinking are the same “opportunities” of which they are trying to convince the world and which they claim were generated by their June, 1982 invasion. It is also clear that the Palestinians were never the sole target of Zionist plans, but the priority target since their viable and independent presence as a people negates the essence of the Zionist state. Every Arab state, however, especially those with cohesive and clear nationalist directions, is a real target sooner or later.

7

Contrasted with the detailed and unambiguous Zionist strategy elucidated in this document, Arab and Palestinian strategy, unfortunately, suffers from ambiguity and incoherence. There is no indication that Arab strategists have internalized the Zionist plan in its full ramifications. Instead, they react with incredulity and shock whenever a new stage of it unfolds. This is apparent in Arab reaction, albeit muted, to the Israeli siege of Beirut. The sad fact is that as long as the Zionist strategy for the Middle East is not taken seriously Arab reaction to any future siege of other Arab capitals will be the same.

Khalil Nakhleh

July 23, 1982

Foreward

by Israel Shahak

1

The following essay represents, in my opinion, the accurate and detailed plan of the present Zionist regime (of Sharon and Eitan) for the Middle East which is based on the division of the whole area into small states, and the dissolution of all the existing Arab states. I will comment on the military aspect of this plan in a concluding note. Here I want to draw the attention of the readers to several important points:

2

1. The idea that all the Arab states should be broken down, by Israel, into small units, occurs again and again in Israeli strategic thinking. For example, Ze’ev Schiff, the military correspondent of Ha’aretz (and probably the most knowledgeable in Israel, on this topic) writes about the “best” that can happen for Israeli interests in Iraq: “The dissolution of Iraq into a Shi’ite state, a Sunni state and the separation of the Kurdish part” (Ha’aretz 6/2/1982). Actually, this aspect of the plan is very old.

3

2. The strong connection with Neo-Conservative thought in the USA is very prominent, especially in the author’s notes. But, while lip service is paid to the idea of the “defense of the West” from Soviet power, the real aim of the author, and of the present Israeli establishment is clear: To make an Imperial Israel into a world power. In other words, the aim of Sharon is to deceive the Americans after he has deceived all the rest.

4

3. It is obvious that much of the relevant data, both in the notes and in the text, is garbled or omitted, such as the financial help of the U.S. to Israel. Much of it is pure fantasy. But, the plan is not to be regarded as not influential, or as not capable of realization for a short time. The plan follows faithfully the geopolitical ideas current in Germany of 1890-1933, which were swallowed whole by Hitler and the Nazi movement, and determined their aims for East Europe. Those aims, especially the division of the existing states, were carried out in 1939-1941, and only an alliance on the global scale prevented their consolidation for a period of time.

5

The notes by the author follow the text. To avoid confusion, I did not add any notes of my own, but have put the substance of them into this foreward and the conclusion at the end. I have, however, emphasized some portions of the text.

Israel Shahak

June 13, 1982


A Strategy for Israel in the Nineteen Eighties

by Oded Yinon

This essay originally appeared in Hebrew in KIVUNIM (Directions), A Journal for Judaism and Zionism; Issue No, 14–Winter, 5742, February 1982, Editor: Yoram Beck. Editorial Committee: Eli Eyal, Yoram Beck, Amnon Hadari, Yohanan Manor, Elieser Schweid. Published by the Department of Publicity/The World Zionist Organization, Jerusalem.

1

At the outset of the nineteen eighties the State of Israel is in need of a new perspective as to its place, its aims and national targets, at home and abroad. This need has become even more vital due to a number of central processes which the country, the region and the world are undergoing. We are living today in the early stages of a new epoch in human history which is not at all similar to its predecessor, and its characteristics are totally different from what we have hitherto known. That is why we need an understanding of the central processes which typify this historical epoch on the one hand, and on the other hand we need a world outlook and an operational strategy in accordance with the new conditions. The existence, prosperity and steadfastness of the Jewish state will depend upon its ability to adopt a new framework for its domestic and foreign affairs.

2

This epoch is characterized by several traits which we can already diagnose, and which symbolize a genuine revolution in our present lifestyle. The dominant process is the breakdown of the rationalist, humanist outlook as the major cornerstone supporting the life and achievements of Western civilization since the Renaissance. The political, social and economic views which have emanated from this foundation have been based on several “truths” which are presently disappearing–for example, the view that man as an individual is the center of the universe and everything exists in order to fulfill his basic material needs. This position is being invalidated in the present when it has become clear that the amount of resources in the cosmos does not meet Man’s requirements, his economic needs or his demographic constraints. In a world in which there are four billion human beings and economic and energy resources which do not grow proportionally to meet the needs of mankind, it is unrealistic to expect to fulfill the main requirement of Western Society, 1 i.e., the wish and aspiration for boundless consumption. The view that ethics plays no part in determining the direction Man takes, but rather his material needs do–that view is becoming prevalent today as we see a world in which nearly all values are disappearing. We are losing the ability to assess the simplest things, especially when they concern the simple question of what is Good and what is Evil.

3

The vision of man’s limitless aspirations and abilities shrinks in the face of the sad facts of life, when we witness the break-up of world order around us. The view which promises liberty and freedom to mankind seems absurd in light of the sad fact that three fourths of the human race lives under totalitarian regimes. The views concerning equality and social justice have been transformed by socialism and especially by Communism into a laughing stock. There is no argument as to the truth of these two ideas, but it is clear that they have not been put into practice properly and the majority of mankind has lost the liberty, the freedom and the opportunity for equality and justice. In this nuclear world in which we are (still) living in relative peace for thirty years, the concept of peace and coexistence among nations has no meaning when a superpower like the USSR holds a military and political doctrine of the sort it has: that not only is a nuclear war possible and necessary in order to achieve the ends of Marxism, but that it is possible to survive after it, not to speak of the fact that one can be victorious in it.2

4

The essential concepts of human society, especially those of the West, are undergoing a change due to political, military and economic transformations. Thus, the nuclear and conventional might of the USSR has transformed the epoch that has just ended into the last respite before the great saga that will demolish a large part of our world in a multi-dimensional global war, in comparison with which the past world wars will have been mere child’s play. The power of nuclear as well as of conventional weapons, their quantity, their precision and quality will turn most of our world upside down within a few years, and we must align ourselves so as to face that in Israel. That is, then, the main threat to our existence and that of the Western world. 3 The war over resources in the world, the Arab monopoly on oil, and the need of the West to import most of its raw materials from the Third World, are transforming the world we know, given that one of the major aims of the USSR is to defeat the West by gaining control over the gigantic resources in the Persian Gulf and in the southern part of Africa, in which the majority of world minerals are located. We can imagine the dimensions of the global confrontation which will face us in the future.

5

The Gorshkov doctrine calls for Soviet control of the oceans and mineral rich areas of the Third World. That together with the present Soviet nuclear doctrine which holds that it is possible to manage, win and survive a nuclear war, in the course of which the West’s military might well be destroyed and its inhabitants made slaves in the service of Marxism-Leninism, is the main danger to world peace and to our own existence. Since 1967, the Soviets have transformed Clausewitz’ dictum into “War is the continuation of policy in nuclear means,” and made it the motto which guides all their policies. Already today they are busy carrying out their aims in our region and throughout the world, and the need to face them becomes the major element in our country’s security policy and of course that of the rest of the Free World. That is our major foreign challenge.4

6

The Arab Moslem world, therefore, is not the major strategic problem which we shall face in the Eighties, despite the fact that it carries the main threat against Israel, due to its growing military might. This world, with its ethnic minorities, its factions and internal crises, which is astonishingly self-destructive, as we can see in Lebanon, in non-Arab Iran and now also in Syria, is unable to deal successfully with its fundamental problems and does not therefore constitute a real threat against the State of Israel in the long run, but only in the short run where its immediate military power has great import. In the long run, this world will be unable to exist within its present framework in the areas around us without having to go through genuine revolutionary changes. The Moslem Arab World is built like a temporary house of cards put together by foreigners (France and Britain in the Nineteen Twenties), without the wishes and desires of the inhabitants having been taken into account. It was arbitrarily divided into 19 states, all made of combinations of minorites and ethnic groups which are hostile to one another, so that every Arab Moslem state nowadays faces ethnic social destruction from within, and in some a civil war is already raging. 5 Most of the Arabs, 118 million out of 170 million, live in Africa, mostly in Egypt (45 million today).

7

Apart from Egypt, all the Maghreb states are made up of a mixture of Arabs and non-Arab Berbers. In Algeria there is already a civil war raging in the Kabile mountains between the two nations in the country. Morocco and Algeria are at war with each other over Spanish Sahara, in addition to the internal struggle in each of them. Militant Islam endangers the integrity of Tunisia and Qaddafi organizes wars which are destructive from the Arab point of view, from a country which is sparsely populated and which cannot become a powerful nation. That is why he has been attempting unifications in the past with states that are more genuine, like Egypt and Syria. Sudan, the most torn apart state in the Arab Moslem world today is built upon four groups hostile to each other, an Arab Moslem Sunni minority which rules over a majority of non-Arab Africans, Pagans, and Christians. In Egypt there is a Sunni Moslem majority facing a large minority of Christians which is dominant in upper Egypt: some 7 million of them, so that even Sadat, in his speech on May 8, expressed the fear that they will want a state of their own, something like a “second” Christian Lebanon in Egypt.

8

All the Arab States east of Israel are torn apart, broken up and riddled with inner conflict even more than those of the Maghreb. Syria is fundamentally no different from Lebanon except in the strong military regime which rules it. But the real civil war taking place nowadays between the Sunni majority and the Shi’ite Alawi ruling minority (a mere 12% of the population) testifies to the severity of the domestic trouble.

9

Iraq is, once again, no different in essence from its neighbors, although its majority is Shi’ite and the ruling minority Sunni. Sixty-five percent of the population has no say in politics, in which an elite of 20 percent holds the power. In addition there is a large Kurdish minority in the north, and if it weren’t for the strength of the ruling regime, the army and the oil revenues, Iraq’s future state would be no different than that of Lebanon in the past or of Syria today. The seeds of inner conflict and civil war are apparent today already, especially after the rise of Khomeini to power in Iran, a leader whom the Shi’ites in Iraq view as their natural leader.

10

All the Gulf principalities and Saudi Arabia are built upon a delicate house of sand in which there is only oil. In Kuwait, the Kuwaitis constitute only a quarter of the population. In Bahrain, the Shi’ites are the majority but are deprived of power. In the UAE, Shi’ites are once again the majority but the Sunnis are in power. The same is true of Oman and North Yemen. Even in the Marxist South Yemen there is a sizable Shi’ite minority. In Saudi Arabia half the population is foreign, Egyptian and Yemenite, but a Saudi minority holds power.

11

Jordan is in reality Palestinian, ruled by a Trans-Jordanian Bedouin minority, but most of the army and certainly the bureaucracy is now Palestinian. As a matter of fact Amman is as Palestinian as Nablus. All of these countries have powerful armies, relatively speaking. But there is a problem there too. The Syrian army today is mostly Sunni with an Alawi officer corps, the Iraqi army Shi’ite with Sunni commanders. This has great significance in the long run, and that is why it will not be possible to retain the loyalty of the army for a long time except where it comes to the only common denominator: The hostility towards Israel, and today even that is insufficient.

12

Alongside the Arabs, split as they are, the other Moslem states share a similar predicament. Half of Iran’s population is comprised of a Persian speaking group and the other half of an ethnically Turkish group. Turkey’s population comprises a Turkish Sunni Moslem majority, some 50%, and two large minorities, 12 million Shi’ite Alawis and 6 million Sunni Kurds. In Afghanistan there are 5 million

Shi’ites who constitute one third of the population. In Sunni Pakistan there are 15 million Shi’ites who endanger the existence of that state.

13

This national ethnic minority picture extending from Morocco to India and from Somalia to Turkey points to the absence of stability and a rapid degeneration in the entire region. When this picture is added to the economic one, we see how the entire region is built like a house of cards, unable to withstand its severe problems.

14

In this giant and fractured world there are a few wealthy groups and a huge mass of poor people. Most of the Arabs have an average yearly income of 300 dollars. That is the situation in Egypt, in most of the Maghreb countries except for Libya, and in Iraq. Lebanon is torn apart and its economy is falling to pieces. It is a state in which there is no centralized power, but only 5 de facto sovereign authorities (Christian in the north, supported by the Syrians and under the rule of the Franjieh clan, in the East an area of direct Syrian conquest, in the center a Phalangist controlled Christian enclave, in the south and up to the Litani river a mostly Palestinian region controlled by the PLO and Major Haddad’s state of Christians and half a million Shi’ites). Syria is in an even graver situation and even the assistance she will obtain in the future after the unification with Libya will not be sufficient for dealing with the basic problems of existence and the maintenance of a large army. Egypt is in the worst situation: Millions are on the verge of hunger, half the labor force is unemployed, and housing is scarce in this most densely populated area of the world. Except for the army, there is not a single department operating efficiently and the state is in a permanent state of bankruptcy and depends entirely on American foreign assistance granted since the peace.6

15

In the Gulf states, Saudi Arabia, Libya and Egypt there is the largest accumulation of money and oil in the world, but those enjoying it are tiny elites who lack a wide base of support and self-confidence, something that no army can guarantee. 7 The Saudi army with all its equipment cannot defend the regime from real dangers at home or abroad, and what took place in Mecca in 1980 is only an example. A sad and very stormy situation surrounds Israel and creates challenges for it, problems, risks but also far-reaching opportunities for the first time since 1967. Chances are that opportunities missed at that time will become achievable in the Eighties to an extent and along dimensions which we cannot even imagine today.

16

The “peace” policy and the return of territories, through a dependence upon the US, precludes the realization of the new option created for us. Since 1967, all the governments of Israel have tied our national aims down to narrow political needs, on the one hand, and on the other to destructive opinions at home which neutralized our capacities both at home and abroad. Failing to take steps towards the Arab population in the new territories, acquired in the course of a war forced upon us, is the major strategic error committed by Israel on the morning after the Six Day War. We could have saved ourselves all the bitter and dangerous conflict since then if we had given Jordan to the Palestinians who live west of the Jordan river. By doing that we would have neutralized the Palestinian problem which we nowadays face, and to which we have found solutions that are really no solutions at all, such as territorial compromise or autonomy which amount, in fact, to the same thing. 8 Today, we suddenly face immense opportunities for transforming the situation thoroughly and this we must do in the coming decade, otherwise we shall not survive as a state.

17

In the course of the Nineteen Eighties, the State of Israel will have to go through far-reaching changes in its political and economic regime domestically, along with radical changes in its foreign policy, in order to stand up to the global and regional challenges of this new epoch. The loss of the Suez Canal oil fields, of the immense potential of the oil, gas and other natural resources in the Sinai peninsula which is geomorphologically identical to the rich oil-producing countries in the region, will result in an energy drain in the near future and will destroy our domestic economy: one quarter of our present GNP as well as one third of the budget is used for the purchase of oil. 9 The search for raw materials in the Negev and on the coast will not, in the near future, serve to alter that state of affairs.

18

(Regaining) the Sinai peninsula with its present and potential resources is therefore a political priority which is obstructed by the Camp David and the peace agreements. The fault for that lies of course with the present Israeli government and the governments which paved the road to the policy of territorial compromise, the Alignment governments since 1967. The Egyptians will not need to keep the peace treaty after the return of the Sinai, and they will do all they can to return to the fold of the Arab world and to the USSR in order to gain support and military assistance. American aid is guaranteed only for a short while, for the terms of the peace and the weakening of the U.S. both at home and abroad will bring about a reduction in aid. Without oil and the income from it, with the present enormous expenditure, we will not be able to get through 1982 under the present conditions and we will have to act in order to return the situation to the status quo which existed in Sinai prior to Sadat’s visit and the mistaken peace agreement signed with him in March 1979. 10

19

Israel has two major routes through which to realize this purpose, one direct and the other indirect. The direct option is the less realistic one because of the nature of the regime and government in Israel as well as the wisdom of Sadat who obtained our withdrawal from Sinai, which was, next to the war of 1973, his major achievement since he took power. Israel will not unilaterally break the treaty, neither today, nor in 1982, unless it is very hard pressed economically and politically and Egypt provides Israel with the excuse to take the Sinai back into our hands for the fourth time in our short history. What is left therefore, is the indirect option. The economic situation in Egypt, the nature of the regime and its pan-

Arab policy, will bring about a situation after April 1982 in which Israel will be forced to act directly or indirectly in order to regain control over Sinai as a strategic, economic and energy reserve for the long run. Egypt does not constitute a military strategic problem due to its internal conflicts and it could be driven back to the post 1967 war situation in no more than one day. 11

20

The myth of Egypt as the strong leader of the Arab World was demolished back in 1956 and definitely did not survive 1967, but our policy, as in the return of the Sinai, served to turn the myth into “fact.” In reality, however, Egypt’s power in proportion both to Israel alone and to the rest of the Arab World has gone down about 50 percent since 1967. Egypt is no longer the leading political power in the Arab World and is economically on the verge of a crisis. Without foreign assistance the crisis will come tomorrow. 12 In the short run, due to the return of the Sinai, Egypt will gain several advantages at our expense, but only in the short run until 1982, and that will not change the balance of power to its benefit, and will possibly bring about its downfall. Egypt, in its present domestic political picture, is already a corpse, all the more so if we take into account the growing Moslem-Christian rift. Breaking Egypt down territorially into distinct geographical regions is the political aim of Israel in the Nineteen Eighties on its Western front.

21

Egypt is divided and torn apart into many foci of authority. If Egypt falls apart, countries like Libya, Sudan or even the more distant states will not continue to exist in their present form and will join the downfall and dissolution of Egypt. The vision of a Christian Coptic State in Upper Egypt alongside a number of weak states with very localized power and without a centralized government as to date, is the key to a historical development which was only set back by the peace agreement but which seems inevitable in the long run. 13

22

The Western front, which on the surface appears more problematic, is in fact less complicated than the Eastern front, in which most of the events that make the headlines have been taking place recently. Lebanon’s total dissolution into five provinces serves as a precendent for the entire Arab world including Egypt, Syria, Iraq and the Arabian peninsula and is already following that track. The dissolution of Syria and Iraq later on into ethnically or religiously unqiue areas such as in Lebanon, is Israel’s primary target on the Eastern front in the long run, while the dissolution of the military power of those states serves as the primary short term target. Syria will fall apart, in accordance with its ethnic and religious structure, into several states such as in present day Lebanon, so that there will be a Shi’ite Alawi state along its coast, a Sunni state in the Aleppo area, another Sunni state in Damascus hostile to its northern neighbor, and the Druzes who will set up a state, maybe even in our Golan, and certainly in the Hauran and in northern Jordan. This state of affairs will be the guarantee for peace and security in the area in the long run, and that aim is already within our reach today. 14

23

Iraq, rich in oil on the one hand and internally torn on the other, is guaranteed as a candidate for Israel’s targets. Its dissolution is even more important for us than that of Syria. Iraq is stronger than Syria. In the short run it is Iraqi power which constitutes the greatest threat to Israel. An Iraqi-Iranian war will tear Iraq apart and cause its downfall at home even before it is able to organize a struggle on a wide front against us. Every kind of inter-Arab confrontation will assist us in the short run and will shorten the way to the more important aim of breaking up Iraq into denominations as in Syria and in Lebanon. In Iraq, a division into provinces along ethnic/religious lines as in Syria during Ottoman times is possible. So, three (or more) states will exist around the three major cities: Basra, Baghdad and Mosul, and Shi’ite areas in the south will separate from the Sunni and Kurdish north. It is possible that the present Iranian-Iraqi confrontation will deepen this polarization. 15

24

The entire Arabian peninsula is a natural candidate for dissolution due to internal and external pressures, and the matter is inevitable especially in Saudi Arabia. Regardless of whether its economic might based on oil remains intact or whether it is diminished in the long run, the internal rifts and breakdowns are a clear and natural development in light of the present political structure. 16

25

Jordan constitutes an immediate strategic target in the short run but not in the long run, for it does not constitute a real threat in the long run after its dissolution, the termination of the lengthy rule of King Hussein and the transfer of power to the Palestinians in the short run.

26

There is no chance that Jordan will continue to exist in its present structure for a long time, and Israel’s policy, both in war and in peace, ought to be directed at the liquidation of Jordan under the present regime and the transfer of power to the Palestinian majority. Changing the regime east of the river will also cause the termination of the problem of the territories densely populated with Arabs west of the Jordan. Whether in war or under conditions of peace, emigration from the territories and economic demographic freeze in them, are the guarantees for the coming change on both banks of the river, and we ought to be active in order to accelerate this process in the nearest future. The autonomy plan ought also to be rejected, as well as any compromise or division of the territories for, given the plans of the PLO and those of the Israeli Arabs themselves, the Shefa’amr plan of September 1980, it is not possible to go on living in this country in the present situation without separating the two nations, the Arabs to Jordan and the Jews to the areas west of the river. Genuine coexistence and peace will reign over the land only when the Arabs understand that without Jewish rule between the Jordan and the sea they will have neither existence nor security. A nation of their own and security will be theirs only in Jordan. 17

27

Within Israel the distinction between the areas of ’67 and the territories beyond them, those of ’48, has always been meaningless for Arabs and nowadays no longer has any significance for us. The problem should be seen in its entirety without any divisions as of ’67. It should be clear, under any future political situation or military constellation, that the solution of the problem of the indigenous Arabs will come only when they recognize the existence of Israel in secure borders up to the Jordan river and beyond it, as our existential need in this difficult epoch, the nuclear epoch which we shall soon enter. It is no longer possible to live with three fourths of the Jewish population on the dense shoreline which is so dangerous in a nuclear epoch.

28

Dispersal of the population is therefore a domestic strategic aim of the highest order; otherwise, we shall cease to exist within any borders. Judea, Samaria and the Galilee are our sole guarantee for national existence, and if we do not become the majority in the mountain areas, we shall not rule in the country and we shall be like the Crusaders, who lost this country which was not theirs anyhow, and in which they were foreigners to begin with. Rebalancing the country demographically, strategically and economically is the highest and most central aim today. Taking hold of the mountain watershed from Beersheba to the Upper Galilee is the national aim generated by the major strategic consideration which is settling the mountainous part of the country that is empty of Jews today. l8

29

Realizing our aims on the Eastern front depends first on the realization of this internal strategic objective. The transformation of the political and economic structure, so as to enable the realization of these strategic aims, is the key to achieving the entire change. We need to change from a centralized economy in which the government is extensively involved, to an open and free market as well as to switch from depending upon the U.S. taxpayer to developing, with our own hands, of a genuine productive economic infrastructure. If we are not able to make this change freely and voluntarily, we shall be forced into it by world developments, especially in the areas of economics, energy, and politics, and by our own growing isolation. l9

30

From a military and strategic point of view, the West led by the U.S. is unable to withstand the global pressures of the USSR throughout the world, and Israel must therefore stand alone in the Eighties, without any foreign assistance, military or economic, and this is within our capacities today, with no compromises. 20 Rapid changes in the world will also bring about a change in the condition of world Jewry to which Israel will become not only a last resort but the only existential option. We cannot assume that U.S. Jews, and the communities of Europe and Latin America will continue to exist in the present form in the future. 21

31

Our existence in this country itself is certain, and there is no force that could remove us from here either forcefully or by treachery (Sadat’s method). Despite the difficulties of the mistaken “peace” policy and the problem of the Israeli Arabs and those of the territories, we can effectively deal with these problems in the foreseeable future.

Conclusion

1

Three important points have to be clarified in order to be able to understand the significant possibilities of realization of this Zionist plan for the Middle East, and also why it had to be published.

2

The Military Background of The Plan

The military conditions of this plan have not been mentioned above, but on the many occasions where something very like it is being “explained” in closed meetings to members of the Israeli Establishment, this point is clarified. It is assumed that the Israeli military forces, in all their branches, are insufficient for the actual work of occupation of such wide territories as discussed above. In fact, even in times of intense Palestinian “unrest” on the West Bank, the forces of the Israeli Army are stretched out too much. The answer to that is the method of ruling by means of “Haddad forces” or of “Village Associations” (also known as “Village Leagues”): local forces under “leaders” completely dissociated from the population, not having even any feudal or party structure (such as the Phalangists have, for example). The “states” proposed by Yinon are “Haddadland” and “Village Associations,” and their armed forces will be, no doubt, quite similar. In addition, Israeli military superiority in such a situation will be much greater than it is even now, so that any movement of revolt will be “punished” either by mass humiliation as in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, or by bombardment and obliteration of cities, as in Lebanon now (June 1982), or by both. In order to ensure this, the plan, as explained orally, calls for the establishment of Israeli garrisons in focal places between the mini states, equipped with the necessary mobile destructive forces. In fact, we have seen something like this in Haddadland and we will almost certainly soon see the first example of this system functioning either in South Lebanon or in all Lebanon.

3

It is obvious that the above military assumptions, and the whole plan too, depend also on the Arabs continuing to be even more divided than they are now, and on the lack of any truly progressive mass movement among them. It may be that those two conditions will be removed only when the plan will be well advanced, with consequences which can not be foreseen.

4

Why it is necessary to publish this in Israel?

The reason for publication is the dual nature of the Israeli-Jewish society: A very great measure of freedom and democracy, specially for Jews, combined with expansionism and racist discrimination. In such a situation the Israeli-Jewish elite (for the masses follow the TV and Begin’s speeches) has to be persuaded. The first steps in the process of persuasion are oral, as indicated above, but a time comes in which it becomes inconvenient. Written material must be produced for the benefit of the more stupid “persuaders” and “explainers” (for example medium-rank officers, who are, usually, remarkably stupid). They then “learn it,” more or less, and preach to others. It should be remarked that Israel, and even the Yishuv from the Twenties, has always functioned in this way. I myself well remember how (before I was “in opposition”) the necessity of war with was explained to me and others a year before the 1956 war, and the necessity of conquering “the rest of Western Palestine when we will have the opportunity” was explained in the years 1965-67.

5

Why is it assumed that there is no special risk from the outside in the publication of such plans?

Such risks can come from two sources, so long as the principled opposition inside Israel is very weak (a situation which may change as a consequence of the war on Lebanon) : The Arab World, including the Palestinians, and the United States. The Arab World has shown itself so far quite incapable of a detailed and rational analysis of Israeli-Jewish society, and the Palestinians have been, on the average, no better than the rest. In such a situation, even those who are shouting about the dangers of Israeli expansionism (which are real enough) are doing this not because of factual and detailed knowledge, but because of belief in myth. A good example is the very persistent belief in the non-existent writing on the wall of the Knesset of the Biblical verse about the Nile and the Euphrates. Another example is the persistent, and completely false declarations, which were made by some of the most important Arab leaders, that the two blue stripes of the Israeli flag symbolize the Nile and the Euphrates, while in fact they are taken from the stripes of the Jewish praying shawl (Talit). The Israeli specialists assume that, on the whole, the Arabs will pay no attention to their serious discussions of the future, and the Lebanon war has proved them right. So why should they not continue with their old methods of persuading other Israelis?

6

In the United States a very similar situation exists, at least until now. The more or less serious commentators take their information about Israel, and much of their opinions about it, from two sources. The first is from articles in the “liberal” American press, written almost totally by Jewish admirers of Israel who, even if they are critical of some aspects of the Israeli state, practice loyally what Stalin used to call “the constructive criticism.” (In fact those among them who claim also to be “Anti-Stalinist” are in reality more Stalinist than Stalin, with Israel being their god which has not yet failed). In the framework of such critical worship it must be assumed that Israel has always “good intentions” and only “makes mistakes,” and therefore such a plan would not be a matter for discussion–exactly as the Biblical genocides committed by Jews are not mentioned. The other source of information, The Jerusalem Post, has similar policies. So long, therefore, as the situation exists in which Israel is really a “closed society” to the rest of the world, because the world wants to close its eyes, the publication and even the beginning of the realization of such a plan is realistic and feasible.

Israel Shahak

June 17, 1982 Jerusalem

About the Translator

Israel Shahak is a professor of organic chemistly at Hebrew University in Jerusalem and the chairman of the Israeli League for Human and Civil Rights. He published The Shahak Papers, collections of key articles from the Hebrew press, and is the author of numerous articles and books, among them Non-Jew in the Jewish State. His latest book is Israel’s Global Role: Weapons for Repression, published by the AAUG in 1982. Israel Shahak: (1933-2001)

Notes

1. American Universities Field Staff. Report No.33, 1979. According to this research, the population of the world will be 6 billion in the year 2000. Today’s world population can be broken down as follows: China, 958 million; India, 635 million; USSR, 261 million; U.S., 218 million Indonesia, 140 million; Brazil and Japan, 110 million each. According to the figures of the U.N. Population Fund for 1980, there will be, in 2000, 50 cities with a population of over 5 million each. The population ofthp;Third World will then be 80% of the world population. According to Justin Blackwelder, U.S. Census Office chief, the world population will not reach 6 billion because of hunger.

2. Soviet nuclear policy has been well summarized by two American Sovietologists: Joseph D. Douglas and Amoretta M. Hoeber, Soviet Strategy for Nuclear War, (Stanford, Ca., Hoover Inst. Press, 1979). In the Soviet Union tens and hundreds of articles and books are published each year which detail the Soviet doctrine for nuclear war and there is a great deal of documentation translated into English and published by the U.S. Air Force,including USAF: Marxism-Leninism on War and the Army: The Soviet View, Moscow, 1972; USAF: The Armed Forces of the Soviet State. Moscow, 1975, by Marshal A. Grechko. The basic Soviet approach to the matter is presented in the book by Marshal Sokolovski published in 1962 in Moscow: Marshal V. D. Sokolovski, Military Strategy, Soviet Doctrine and Concepts(New York, Praeger, 1963).

3. A picture of Soviet intentions in various areas of the world can be drawn from the book by Douglas and Hoeber, ibid. For additional material see: Michael Morgan, “USSR’s Minerals as Strategic Weapon in the Future,” Defense and Foreign Affairs, Washington, D.C., Dec. 1979.

4. Admiral of the Fleet Sergei Gorshkov, Sea Power and the State, London, 1979. Morgan, loc. cit. General George S. Brown (USAF) C-JCS, Statement to the Congress on the Defense Posture of the United States For Fiscal Year 1979, p. 103; National Security Council, Review of Non-Fuel Mineral Policy, (Washington, D.C. 1979,); Drew Middleton, The New York Times, (9/15/79); Time, 9/21/80.

5. Elie Kedourie, “The End of the Ottoman Empire,” Journal of Contemporary History, Vol. 3, No.4, 1968.

6. Al-Thawra, Syria 12/20/79, Al-Ahram,12/30/79, Al Ba’ath, Syria, 5/6/79. 55% of the Arabs are 20 years old and younger, 70% of the Arabs live in Africa, 55% of the Arabs under 15 are unemployed, 33% live in urban areas, Oded Yinon, “Egypt’s Population Problem,” The Jerusalem Quarterly, No. 15, Spring 1980.

7. E. Kanovsky, “Arab Haves and Have Nots,” The Jerusalem Quarterly, No.1, Fall 1976, Al Ba’ath, Syria, 5/6/79.

8. In his book, former Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin said that the Israeli government is in fact responsible for the design of American policy in the Middle East, after June ’67, because of its own indecisiveness as to the future of the territories and the inconsistency in its positions since it established the background for Resolution 242 and certainly twelve years later for the Camp David agreements and the peace treaty with Egypt. According to Rabin, on June 19, 1967, President Johnson sent a letter to Prime Minister Eshkol in which he did not mention anything about withdrawal from the new territories but exactly on the same day the government resolved to return territories in exchange for peace. After the Arab resolutions in Khartoum (9/1/67) the government altered its position but contrary to its decision of June 19, did not notify the U.S. of the alteration and the U.S. continued to support 242 in the Security Council on the basis of its earlier understanding that Israel is prepared to return territories. At that point it was already too late to change the U.S. position and Israel’s policy. From here the way was opened to peace agreements on the basis of 242 as was later agreed upon in Camp David. See Yitzhak Rabin. Pinkas Sherut, (Ma’ariv 1979) pp. 226-227.

9. Foreign and Defense Committee Chairman Prof. Moshe Arens argued in an interview (Ma ‘ariv,10/3/80) that the Israeli government failed to prepare an economic plan before the Camp David agreements and was itself surprised by the cost of the agreements, although already during the negotiations it was possible to calculate the heavy price and the serious error involved in not having prepared the economic grounds for peace.

The former Minister of Treasury, Mr. Yigal Holwitz, stated that if it were not for the withdrawal from the oil fields, Israel would have a positive balance of payments (9/17/80). That same person said two years earlier that the government of Israel (from which he withdrew) had placed a noose around his neck. He was referring to the Camp David agreements (Ha’aretz, 11/3/78). In the course of the whole peace negotiations neither an expert nor an economics advisor was consulted, and the Prime Minister himself, who lacks knowledge and expertise in economics, in a mistaken initiative, asked the U.S. to give us a loan rather than a grant, due to his wish to maintain our respect and the respect of the U.S. towards us. See Ha’aretz1/5/79. Jerusalem Post, 9/7/79. Prof Asaf Razin, formerly a senior consultant in the Treasury, strongly criticized the conduct of the negotiations; Ha’aretz, 5/5/79. Ma’ariv, 9/7/79. As to matters concerning the oil fields and Israel’s energy crisis, see the interview with Mr. Eitan Eisenberg, a government advisor on these matters, Ma’arive Weekly, 12/12/78. The Energy Minister, who personally signed the Camp David agreements and the evacuation of Sdeh Alma, has since emphasized the seriousness of our condition from the point of view of oil supplies more than once…see Yediot Ahronot, 7/20/79. Energy Minister Modai even admitted that the government did not consult him at all on the subject of oil during the Camp David and Blair House negotiations. Ha’aretz, 8/22/79.

 10. Many sources report on the growth of the armaments budget in Egypt and on intentions to give the army preference in a peace epoch budget over domestic needs for which a peace was allegedly obtained. See former Prime Minister Mamduh Salam in an interview 12/18/77, Treasury Minister Abd El Sayeh in an interview 7/25/78, and the paper Al Akhbar, 12/2/78 which clearly stressed that the military budget will receive first priority, despite the peace. This is what former Prime Minister Mustafa Khalil has stated in his cabinet’s programmatic document which was presented to Parliament, 11/25/78. See English translation, ICA, FBIS, Nov. 27. 1978, pp. D 1-10.

According to these sources, Egypt’s military budget increased by 10% between fiscal 1977 and 1978, and the process still goes on. A Saudi source divulged that the Egyptians plan to increase their militmy budget by 100% in the next two years; Ha’aretz, 2/12/79 and Jerusalem Post, 1/14/79.

 11. Most of the economic estimates threw doubt on Egypt’s ability to reconstruct its economy by 1982. See Economic Intelligence Unit, 1978 Supplement, “The Arab Republic of Egypt”; E. Kanovsky, “Recent Economic Developments in the Middle East,” Occasional Papers, The Shiloah Institution, June 1977; Kanovsky, “The Egyptian Economy Since the Mid-Sixties, The Micro Sectors,” Occasional Papers, June 1978; Robert McNamara, President of World Bank, as reported in Times, London, 1/24/78.

 12. See the comparison made by the researeh of the Institute for Strategic Studies in London, and research camed out in the Center for Strategic Studies of Tel Aviv University, as well as the research by the British scientist, Denis Champlin, Military Review, Nov. 1979, ISS: The Military Balance 1979-1980, CSS; Security Arrangements in Sinai…by Brig. Gen. (Res.) A Shalev, No. 3.0 CSS; The Military Balance and the Military Options after the Peace Treaty with Egypt, by Brig. Gen. (Res.) Y. Raviv, No.4, Dec. 1978, as well as many press reports including El Hawadeth, London, 3/7/80; El Watan El Arabi, Paris, 12/14/79.

 13. As for religious ferment in Egypt and the relations between Copts and Moslems see the series of articles published in the Kuwaiti paper, El Qabas, 9/15/80. The English author Irene Beeson reports on the rift between Moslems and Copts, see: Irene Beeson, Guardian, London, 6/24/80, and Desmond Stewart, Middle East Internmational, London 6/6/80. For other reports see Pamela Ann Smith, Guardian, London, 12/24/79; The Christian Science Monitor 12/27/79 as well as Al Dustour, London, 10/15/79; El Kefah El Arabi, 10/15/79.

 14. Arab Press Service, Beirut, 8/6-13/80. The New Republic, 8/16/80, Der Spiegel as cited by Ha’aretz, 3/21/80, and 4/30-5/5/80; The Economist, 3/22/80; Robert Fisk, Times, London, 3/26/80; Ellsworth Jones, Sunday Times, 3/30/80.

 15.  J.P.  Peroncell  Hugoz,  Le  Monde,  Paris  4/28/80;  Dr.  Abbas  Kelidar,  Middle  East  Review,  Summer  1979;

Conflict Studies, ISS, July 1975; Andreas Kolschitter, Der Zeit, (Ha’aretz, 9/21/79) Economist Foreign Report, 10/10/79, Afro-Asian Affairs, London, July 1979.

 16. Arnold Hottinger, “The Rich Arab States in Trouble,” The New York Review of Books, 5/15/80; Arab Press Service, Beirut, 6/25-7/2/80; U.S. News and World Report, 11/5/79 as well as El Ahram, 11/9/79; El Nahar El Arabi Wal Duwali, Paris 9/7/79; El Hawadeth, 11/9/79; David Hakham, Monthly Review, IDF, Jan.-Feb. 79.

 17. As for Jordan’s policies and problems see El Nahar El Arabi Wal Duwali, 4/30/79, 7/2/79; Prof. Elie Kedouri, Ma’ariv 6/8/79; Prof. Tanter, Davar 7/12/79; A. Safdi, Jerusalem Post, 5/31/79; El Watan El Arabi 11/28/79; El Qabas, 11/19/79. As for PLO positions see: The resolutions of the Fatah Fourth Congress, Damascus, August 1980. The Shefa’amr program of the Israeli Arabs was published in Ha’aretz, 9/24/80, and by Arab Press Report 6/18/80. For facts and figures on immigration of Arabs to Jordan, see Amos Ben Vered, Ha’aretz, 2/16/77; Yossef Zuriel, Ma’ariv 1/12/80. As to the PLO’s position towards Israel see Shlomo Gazit, Monthly Review; July 1980; Hani El Hasan in an interview, Al Rai Al’Am, Kuwait 4/15/80; Avi Plaskov, “The Palestinian Problem,” Survival, ISS, London Jan. Feb. 78; David Gutrnann, “The Palestinian Myth,” Commentary, Oct. 75; Bernard Lewis, “The Palestinians and the PLO,” Commentary Jan. 75; Monday Morning, Beirut, 8/18-21/80; Journal of Palestine Studies, Winter 1980.

 18. Prof. Yuval Neeman, “Samaria–The Basis for Israel’s Security,” Ma’arakhot 272-273, May/June 1980; Ya’akov Hasdai, “Peace, the Way and the Right to Know,” Dvar Hashavua, 2/23/80. Aharon Yariv, “Strategic Depth–An Israeli Perspective,” Ma’arakhot 270-271, October 1979; Yitzhak Rabin, “Israel’s Defense Problems in the Eighties,” Ma’arakhot October 1979.

 19. Ezra Zohar, In the Regime’s Pliers (Shikmona, 1974); Motti Heinrich, Do We have a Chance Israel, Truth Versus Legend (Reshafim, 1981).

 20. Henry Kissinger, “The Lessons of the Past,” The Washington Review Vol 1, Jan. 1978; Arthur Ross, “OPEC’s Challenge to the West,” The Washington Quarterly, Winter, 1980; Walter Levy, “Oil and the Decline of the West,” Foreign Affairs, Summer 1980; Special Report–“Our Armed Forees-Ready or Not?” U.S. News and World Report 10/10/77; Stanley Hoffman, “Reflections on the Present Danger,” The New York Review of Books 3/6/80; Time 4/3/80; Leopold Lavedez “The illusions of SALT” Commentary Sept. 79; Norman Podhoretz, “The Present Danger,” Commentary March 1980; Robert Tucker, “Oil and American Power Six Years Later,” Commentary Sept. 1979; Norman Podhoretz, “The Abandonment of Israel,” Commentary July 1976; Elie Kedourie, “Misreading the Middle East,” Commentary July 1979.

 21. According to figures published by Ya’akov Karoz, Yediot Ahronot, 10/17/80, the sum total of anti-Semitic incidents recorded in the world in 1979 was double the amount recorded in 1978. In Germany, France, and Britain the number of anti-Semitic incidents was many times greater in that year. In the U.S. as well there has been a sharp increase in anti-Semitic incidents which were reported in that article. For the new anti-Semitism, see L. Talmon, “The New Anti-Semitism,” The New Republic, 9/18/1976; Barbara Tuchman, “They poisoned the Wells,” Newsweek 2/3/75.The original source of this article is Association of Arab-American University Graduates, Inc

Copyright © Israel Shahak and Prof Michel Chossudovsky, Association of Arab-American University Graduates, Inc., 2019


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Posted in Palestine Affairs, ZIO-NAZIComments Off on “Greater Israel”: The Zionist Plan for the Middle East

Palestine: Detailed Report on Nazi Human Rights Violations

Detailed Report on Israeli Human Rights Violations

Israeli violations of human rights in the occupied Palestinian territory October 10-16, 2019

By If Americans Knew

Reposted from PCHRGaza (which publishes these detailed reports every single week): 

  • Great March of Return in Eastern Gaza Strip: 78 civilians injured, including 31 children.
  • West Bank: 4 civilians injured, including a child in the West Bank
  • During 74 incursions into the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem: 65 civilians arrested, including 5 children and 5 women
  • Israeli forces raided the Public Administration office of the Union of Health Work committee 
  • 4 houses demolished in Hebron and Bethlehem, and a civilian was forced to self-demolish his house in Jerusalem
  • Hundreds of settlers raided al-Aqsa Mosque yards in occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City and performed prayers
  • Settlers attacked 2 volunteer foreigners in Burin village, in Nablus and farms in Bethlehem
  • 6 shootings reported against Palestinian agricultural lands, eastern Gaza Strip, and 4 shootings reported against Palestinian fishing boats off Gaza Strip Shore
  • Israeli forces closed the Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron for 2 days due to Jewish holidays
  • Complete closure imposed on the Gaza Strip and the West Bank for Jewish holidays                                             
  • 49 temporary checkpoints erupted in the West Bank, where 2 Palestinian civilians were arrested. 

Summary 

During the reporting period, PCHR documented 157 violations of the international human rights law and international humanitarian law (IHL) by Israeli forces and settlers in the occupied Palestinian territory.

As part of the Israeli violations of the right to life and bodily integrity, Israeli forces wounded 78 Palestinian civilians, including 31 children, on 78th Friday of the Great March of Return in the Gaza Strip. Meanwhile in the West Bank, the Israeli forces wounded 4 Palestinian civilians, including a child near the annexation wall.

It was notable that for the past two weeks, shooting incidents against Palestinian civilians attempting to sneak into Israel without permits through the annexation wall, north of the West Bank, escalated. Israel had left gateways in the wall for Palestinian farmers to access their lands behind the wall; however, Palestinians use these gates to sneak into Israel for work. PCHR’s investigations affirm that Israeli occupation forces could have arrested those young men or keeping them away from the annexation wall without resorting to fire.

As part of the Israeli incursions and house raids, Israel carried out 74 incursions into the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem, and raided civilian houses, attacking and enticing fear among residents in addition to shooting in many incidents. As a result, 65 Palestinians were arrested, including 5 children and 5 women. During this week, as part of its policy to restrict the work of civil society organizations, Israeli occupation forces raided the office of UHWC in al-Birah, Ramallah and damaged its equipment and contents. Two weeks ago, the Israeli occupation forces raided the head office of ADDAMEER Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association in Ramallah.

As part of Israeli attacks against Palestinian fishermen in the Gaza Strip, 4 shootings were reported by the Israeli gunboats against the Palestinian fishing boats at sea within the allowed limited area for fishing while 6 shootings were reported against the agricultural lands in eastern Gaza Strip in addition to one limited incursion into the northern Gaza Strip.

Under the settlement expansion activities in the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem, PCHR documented 4 violations relevant to house demolitions, including 5 houses in Hebron and Bethlehem and 8 attacks by settlers, including attacking 2 international volunteers in Burin village in Nablus and a famer in Bethlehem in addition to puncturing vehicles’ tires in Salfit.

In terms of the Israeli closure policy, the Gaza Strip still suffers the worst closure in the History of the Israeli occupation in the oPt as it has entered the 14th consecutive year, without any improvement to the movement of persons and goods and ongoing isolation of the Gaza Strip from the West Bank and the rest of the world. Meanwhile, the West Bank is divided into separate cantons with key roads blocked by the Israeli occupation since the Second Intifada and with temporary and permanent checkpoints, where civilians’ movement is restricted and others are arrested.

Moreover, during the reporting period, Israel imposed a complete closure on the West Bank and the Gaza Strip for Jewish Holidays that will start on Sunday morning, 13 October 2019, and end on Monday, 21 October 2019.  According to Israeli occupation forces’ declaration, the West Bank and Gaza strip crossings, will be closed during this period except for urgent cases that includes people, who have special permits.

First: Violation of the right to life and to bodily integrity 

  1. Excessive Use of Force against the Great March of Return in the Gaza Strip

Israeli occupation forces continued its excessive use of lethal force against the “Great March of Return” peaceful demonstrations organized by Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip and the peaceful protests in the West Bank against Israeli occupation forces’ crimes and settlement activities.

According to fieldworkers’ observations, the 78th Friday titled: “Our Martyr Children,” witnessed large participation of civilians aced with excessive and lethal force by Israeli forces despite the peaceful nature of the demonstrations. At approximately 15:00 on 04 October 2019, protests started across the five GMR encampments until 19:00, and involved activities such as speeches and theatrical performances. Hundreds of civilians protested at varied distances from the border fence across the Gaza Strip, and threw stones, firecrackers and Molotov Cocktails at Israeli forces. As a result, 78 civilians were injured, including 31 children. PCHR’s fieldworkers documented thar 2 civilians, including 2 children, sustained serious wounds while 22 others were shot with live bullets and their shrapnel in addition to others being shot in the upper body due to targeting them directly with rubber bullets and tear gas canisters.

The incidents were as follows:

  • Northern Gaza Strip: Israeli occupation forces’ attacks against protestors resulted in the injury of 21 civilians, including 8 children: 6, including a child, were shot with live bullets and shrapnel; 11, including 4 children, were shot with rubber bullets; and 4, including 3 children, were hit with tear gas canisters. Samer Wael Rajab al-Refi (23), from al-Toufah neighborhood, sustained serious wounds after being shot with a live bullet in his neck.
  • Gaza City: Israeli forces’ attacks against protestors resulted in the injury of 6 civilians, including 2 children: 3 with live bullets and shrapnel; and 3 with rubber bullets.
  • Central Gaza Strip: Israeli shooting and firing tear gas canisters at protestors resulted in the injury of 15 civilians, including 10 childrenone of them deemed in critical condition: 10 were shot with live bullets and shrapnel, and 5 were hit with tear gas canisters. All of them were then taken to al-Aqsa Hospital, where their injuries ranged between minor and moderate. Furthermore, dozens of civilians suffocated due to tear gas inhalation and received medical treatment on the spot while others were taken to hospitals. Bahaa’ Mostafa Salama Abu Rokaab (17), from al-Zawayda village, sustained serious wounds after being shot with a live bullet in his abdomen.
  • Khan Younis: Israeli forces fired live and rubber bullets and tear gas canisters at the protestors, wounding 11 civilians, including 3 children; one of them deemed in extremely critical condition. All of them were transferred to hospitals. Among those wounded, a civilian was shot with a live bullet, and 5 were shot with rubber bullets and hit with tear gas canisters. In addition, many civilians sustained superficial bullet wounds and suffocated due to tear gas inhalation. They received treatment on the spot. ‘Alaa Hani al-‘Abasi (13) sustained serious wounds after being hit with a tear gas canister in his head. He was then taken to the Gaza European Hospital to receive treatment.
  • Rafah: Israeli shooting and firing tear gas canisters at protestors resulted in the injury of 25 civilians, including 8 children; 4 of them were shot with live bullets and shrapnel, 20 were shot with rubber bullets, and one was directly hit with a tear gas canister.
  1. Excessive use of force in the West Bank:
  • At approximately 13:30 on Friday, 11 October 2019, Palestinians from Kufor Qaddoum village, northeast of Qalqiliyah launched their weekly peaceful protest and headed towards the village’s eastern entrance that has been closed by Israeli forces for the past 16 years in favor of “Kedumim” settlement. The demonstrators chanted national slogans demanding end of the occupation and protested the Israeli forces’ crimes against Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. The protestors threw stones at the Israeli soldiers stationed behind sand berms while the soldiers fired live and rubber bullets, sound bombs and tear gas canisters at them. As a result, Ahmed Emad Shtaiwi (19) was shot with a live bullet to the chest. Moreover, a number of civilians suffered tear gas inhalation.
  1. Shooting and other violations of the right to life and bodily integrity
  • At approximately 06:00 on Thursday, 10 October 2019, Israeli forces assigned to guard the annexation wall fired live bullets at Mahmoud Bahjat Amin Jaradat (39), from al-Silah al-Harithiyah village, west of Jenin while. As a result, Mahmoud was shot with a live bullet to the right leg while attempting to sneak into Israel through the gate in the wall established on lands Thuhor al-‘Abed village, west of Ya’bud village, southwest of Jenin. He was then taken to Khalil Suleiman Hospital in Jenin to receive medical treatment.
  • At approximately 09:00, Israeli occupation forces stationed in eastern Khan Younis border area fired live bullets and tear gas canisters at agricultural lands in eastern Khuza’ah village. The shooting sporadically continued for half an hour; no casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 09:30 on Friday, 11 October 2019, Israeli forces assigned to guard the annexation wall fired live bullets at Ahmed Bassam Mohammed Kamil (25), from Qabatiyah village, southeast of Jenin. As a result, he was shot with a live bullet in the foot while attempting to sneak into Israel through the gate established on lands of Thuhor al-‘Abed village, west of Ya’bud village, southwest of Jenin.
  • At approximately 07:45 on Friday, 11 October 2019, Israeli gunboats stationed northwest of Beit Lahia in northern Gaza Strip, opened fire and chased Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles. The shooting continued until 10:00 on the same day. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee fearing for their lives; neither casualties nor material damage was reported.
  • At approximately 06:40 on Saturday, 12 October 2019, Israeli gunboats stationed northwest of Beit Lahia in northern Gaza Strip, opened fire and chased Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee fearing for their lives; neither casualties nor material damage was reported.
  • At approximately 06:40 on Sunday, 13 October 2019, Israeli gunboats stationed northwest of Beit Lahia in northern Gaza Strip, heavily opened fire and chased Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee fearing for their lives; neither casualties nor material damage was reported.
  • At approximately 14:30 on the Same day, Israeli forces stationed along the border fence, in eastern al-Shuhada’a cemetery, east of Jabalia in northern Gaza Strip, opened fire at Jabalia Municipality crew, who were working in the landfill area. As a result, a live bullet hit the equipment; no casualties were reported. It should be noted that the municipality crew obtained a permit from the Palestinian General Authority for Civil Affairs (GACA) for their equipment, which include 2 bulldozers. It should be noted that at approximately 12:00 on Wednesday, 09 October 2019, Israeli occupation forces opened fire at the same crew in the same area despite obtaining a permit from the GACA.
  • At approximately 10:00 on Monday, 14 October 2019, Israeli gunboats stationed in western Rafah shore in southern Gaza Strip, opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats sailing within 3 nautical miles. As a result, the fishermen were forced to flee fearing for their lives; neither casualties nor material damage was reported.
  • At approximately 08:00 on the same day, Israeli forces stationed in eastern Kahn Younis border area opened fire at agricultural lands in eastern ‘Abasan al-Kabirah for few minutes; no casualties were reported. At approximately 15:10, Israeli forces opened fire again at agricultural lands in eastern Khuza’ah and al-Fukhari villages; no casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 11:30 on the same day, Israeli soldiers stationed in eastern al-Shoka border area, east of Rafah, opened fire at the agricultural lands; no casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 16:00 on Tuesday, 10 October 2019, Israeli soldiers stationed along the border fence in eastern al-Shoka village, east of Rafah, opened fire at Shepherds. As a result, the shepherds were forced to leave the area; no casualties were reported.

At approximately 07:00 on Wednesday, 16 October 2019, Israeli forces opened fire at Bara’a Mohammed Fareez Te’mah (17), from Qifin village, north of Tulkarm. As a result,  Mohammed was shot with a rubber bullet to the right hand while attempting to sneak into Israeli through the annexation wall’s gate established on lands of Thohur al-‘Abed village, southwest of Jenin.

Second: Incursions and Arrests 

Thursday, 10 October 2019:

  • At approximately 02:15, Israeli occupation forces moved into Jenin. They raided and searched a house belonging to Sultan Kamal al-Sa’di (27) and then arrested him.
  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli occupation forces, reinforced by heavy military vehicles, moved into Dura village, southwest of Hebron and stationed in al-Hijra neighborhood. They raided and searched a house belonging to Ahmed Ishaq Abu Hushhush (33). He was then arrested and taken to an unknown destination.
  • At approximately 01:30, Israeli occupation forces, reinforced by heavy military vehicles, moved into Beit Owa village, southwest of Dura, southwest of Hebron. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Bara’ Isma’el al-Masalma (24) and Eyad Ra’ed al-Masalma (27). He was then arrested and taken to an unknown destination.
  • At approximately 07:00, Israeli occupation forces moved into al-Auja village, northeast of Jericho. They raided and searched a house belonging to Abdullah Khaled Ajouri (33) and then arrested him.
  • At approximately 11:20, Israeli occupation forces moved into Deir Nizam village, northwest of Ramallah, and stationed in al-Hadeeqa area, where there was event organized by Deir al-Nizam high School in cooperation with al-Ro’ya International Foundation. Dozens of school students and young men gathered on the main street and threw stones and empty bottles at the Israeli soldiers, who fired in response teargas canisters. As a result, a number of students and teachers suffered teargas inhalation and they were treated on the spot. Furthermore, they arrested Ramiz Mohammed Yehya al-Tamimi (13) and took him to “Helmish” investigation center. He was released at approximately 23:40 on the same day.

Note: Israeli occupation forces carried out (9) incursions in Hebron and Dora villages in Hebron; Jeious and Qalqilya in Qalqilya; Beit Led in Tulkarm; ‘Aboud and Deir Abu Mesha’al in Ramallah. No arrests were reported.

Friday, 11 October 2019:

  • At approximately 01:30, Israeli occupation forces moved into Balata refugee camp, east of Nablus. They raided and searched a house belonging to Mohammed Samir Hasan Hashash (22) and then arrested him.
  • At approximately 03:00, Israeli occupation forces, reinforced by heavy military vehicles, moved into Bani Na’em village, north of Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to Mahmoud Mohammed al-Khadour, and then handed his two sons; Mohammed (24) and Khalil (27) summonses to refer to the Israeli Intelligence service in “Ghosh ‘Etzion”, south of Bethlehem.
  • At approximately 05:15, Israeli occupation forces, reinforced by heavy military vehicles, moved into al-Bira village and stationed in Sateh Marhaba neighborhood. They raided and searched head office of UHWC in Sateh Marhaba neighborhood, and fired teargas canisters. Ali Ahmed Mahmoud Abdulrahman, the Chairman of the Board of Directors of UHWC said to PCHR’s fieldworker: “At approximately 07:00, I was at my house in Abi Ghoush village in Jerusalem; I received a phone call telling me that the Israeli occupation forces broke the doors and stormed UHWC head office in Sateh Marhaba. I immediately headed there and saw the two main doors were forcibly opened; they ransacked the office, disabled the phone lines and the elevator, ruined two drugs refrigerators and threw the drugs on the ground. The neighbors told me that the Israeli soldiers packed by 17 military machines stormed the head office and fired teargas canisters at approximately 05:15, and left at 06:00. Finally, there’s no justification to storm such charitable organization which does not pose any threat or danger, and its objectives are clear for serving citizens”.
  • At approximately 05:30, Israeli forces moved into Ramallah, and stationed in al-Irsal neighborhood, they raided and searched a house belonging to Hadi al-Tarsha (20) and then arrested him. Around the same time, another Israeli occupation force moved into al-Teera neighborhood, they raided and searched a house belonging to Mais Waleed Hanatsha (20) and then arrested her. It should be noted that Hadi and Mais are students at Birzeit University, and Mais’s father is a prisoner in the Israeli jails since 03 October 2019.
  • At approximately 11:00, Israeli occupation forces stationed in the Council Gate (Bab al-Majlis), in the occupied East Jerusalem’s old city, arrested Mohammed Musbah Abu Sbaih (17) while coming out from al-Aqsa Mosque and took him to “al-Qishla” investigation center in the old city of Jerusalem. A few hours later, he was released, provided that banned his entry to al-Aqsa Mosque for 15 days.
  • At approximately 15:00, Israeli occupation forces stationed on Beit Foriq checkpoint at the northeast entry to Nablus arrested Mohammed Ahmed Hanani (16) and ‘Aref Nazeer Hanani (15), from Beit Foriq. They arrested and took them to an unknown destination. On the morning of the next day, ‘Aref was released while they kept Mohammed arrested.
  • At approximately 18:30, Israeli occupation forces moved into Qalqilya. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Mahmoud Mostafa Zaid (23) and Mahmoud Yoused Zaid (18), and then arrested them.
  • Israeli occupation forces carried out (9) incursions in Hebron, al-Samou’, and Beit Umor villages in Hebron; Kafr Zibad, Deir al-Qhusoun, Anabata, Anteel, and Tulkarm in Tulkarm. No arrests were reported.

Saturday, 12 October 2019:Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory

  • Israeli occupation forces carried out (2) incursions in the northern Dora village and al-Fawwar refugee camp in Hebron. No arrests were reported.

Sunday, 13 October 2019:

  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli occupation forces moved into al-Issaweya village, northeast of occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched several houses and arrested (11) civilians including a child namely: Mo’tasim Hamza Obaid (16); Mohammed Ibrahim Darweesh (26); Khaled Mousa Mostafa (21); Adam Shafeeq Obaid (19); Mohammed Marwan Obaid (19); Khaled Waleed Obaid (22); Deya’ Ayman Obaid (23); Hatem Hasan Zumorod (19); Nadeem Mostafa al-Safadi (19); Mohammed Mousa Hamdan (19); and Firas Akram Zagheir (24).
  • At approximately 01:30, Israeli occupation forces, reinforced by heavy military vehicles, moved into Bani Na’em village, north of Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to Yehya Ali Mousa Manasra (45) and then arrested him and his daughter Maryam (21), and took them to an unknown destination.
  • At approximately 03:30, Israeli occupation forces, reinforced by heavy military vehicles, moved into Dora, southwest of Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to Bassam Hamad al-Zeer (54), and no arrests were reported.
  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli occupation forces moved into Anabta village, north of Tulkarm. They raided and searched two houses belonging to Zaher ‘Amer abdulkarim Barakat (27) and Yazan Tyseer Sobhi Abduldayem (21), and then arrested them.
  • Israeli occupation forces carried out (3) incursions in Deir Samit village, al-Fawwar refugee camp, and Dora village in Hebron. No arrests were reported.

Monday, 14 October 2019:

  • At approximately 03:00, Israeli occupation forces moved into Salwan village, south of occupied East Jerusalem’s old city. They raided and searched a house belonging to Adnan Tawfeq Ghaith (45), the governor of Jerusalem. And then they arrested him and took him to “al-Maskoubeya” investigation center. Lawyer Rami Othman said that Adnan Ghaith was arrested at dawn on charge of working with the Palestinian Authority (PA) inside Jerusalem, and he was released in the evening of the same day on bail of 5.000 NIS.
  • At approximately 04:00, Israeli occupying forces moved into Beit Hanina, north of occupying East Jerusalem’s old city. They raided and searched a house belonging to Shady Abdullah al-Mtour (42), the secretary of Fateh Movement in Jerusalem, and then he was arrested and taken to “al-Maskoubeya” investigation center. It should be mentioned that al-Mtour was accused on charge of working with the Palestinian Authority (PA) inside Jerusalem, and he was released at approximately 23:00 of the same day on bail of 5,000 NIS.
  • At approximately 21:30, Israeli occupation forces moved into al-Issaweya village, northeast of occupied East Jerusalem, and stationed around al-Arba’een Mosque in the center of the village, and then arrested Nasrallah Ibrahim Mhmoud (17) and Munir Darbas (23).
  • Israeli occupation forces carried out (4) incursions in Beit Umor, Surif, Karma, Beit Oula villages in Hebron. No arrests were reported.

Tuesday, 15 October 2019:

  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli occupation forces, reinforced by heavy military vehicles, moved into Beit Umor, north of Hebron and stationed in al-Shaikh neighborhood. They raided and searched a house belonging to Ali Mohammed Ali al-Allami (38) and took him to an unknown destination. It should be noted that the Israeli Construction and Organization Department demolished the abovementioned house two weeks ago, claiming that the building is non-licensed.
  • Around the same time, Israeli occupying forces moved into Deir Abu Misha’al, northwest of Ramallah. They raided and searched a house belonging to Mohammed Ali Zahran (20) and then arrested him.
  • At approximately 04:00, Israeli occupation forces moved into al-Sa’deya neighborhood, one of the Jerusalem’s old city neighborhoods. They raided and searched a house belonging to Rawhi Mahmoud al-Kalghasi (22) and then arrested him.
  • Israeli occupation forces carried out (2) incursions in Sa’eer and al-Shoyoukh villages in Hebron. No arrests were reported.

Wednesday, 16 October 2019:

  • At approximately 01:00, Israeli occupation forces moved into Bal’a village, north of Tulkarm. They raided and searched a house belonging to Ibrahim Abdul Qader Salama searching for weapons. The soldiers handcuffed Salama, and blindfolded him and then detained him in the military vehicle. They also stole NIS 10,000 from the house without giving the family a confiscation notice. Salama said to PCHR’s fieldworker:

“At approximately 01:00 on Wednesday, 16 October 2019, we heard sound of knocking on the door while we were sleeping. When I got up from the bed, I was startled with Israeli soldiers in front of me as they opened the door with a special tool. They raided the house, entered all room, and detained my wife and children in a room and me in another room. They then handed cuffed me and blindfolded my eyes and took me to the military vehicles outside the house. When the soldiers finished searching the house at approximately 03:30, they brought me back to the room and kept me hand cuffed and blindfolded. We found out that the soldiers stole about NIS 10,000, which belongs to my job as I own a Shawarma Restaurant and it is not strange that I have that amount of money on a daily basis.”

  • At approximately 01:30, Israeli occupation forces moved into Qalqiliyah. They raided and searched 3 houses belonging to Wesam Bilal Duweiri (27), Wasfi Mohammed Dawoud (56), Hasan Ibrahim Melhem (46) and then arrested them.
  • At the same time, Israeli occupation forces backed by several military vehicles moved into Beit Ummer village, north of Hebron and stationed in al-Bayadah area. They raided and searched 3 houses and then arrested Montaser Abdul Hamid Moheisen (26), Ward Ibrahim Yusuf ‘Awad (19) and ‘Ala’a Mahmoud al-‘Awawdah (26).
  • At approximately 02:00, Israeli occupation forces moved into Abu dese village, east of occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched a house belonging to Yusuf Ahmed ‘Ariqat (20) and then arrested him.
  • At the same time, an Israeli occupation forces backed by several military vehicles moved into Bani Na’im village, east of Hebron. They raided and searched a house belonging to Ayoub Mohammed Rashid Tarairah (29) and the arrested him.
  • At approximately 02:15, Israeli occupation forces moved into Balata refugee camp, east of Nablus. They raided and searched a house belonging to Omer Salamah Hashash (20) and then arrested him.
  • At approximately 02:30, Israeli occupation forces moved into Betunia village, west of Ramallah. They raided and searched a number of houses and the arrested Tha’er Mohammed ‘Ali Bader (43), his brother Ashraf (39) and Tamer (30).
  • At approximately 03:30, an Israeli occupation force backed by several military vehicles moved into Dura, southwest of Hebron and stationed in Rajm Abu Hilal area. They raided and searched 2 houses after which they arrested Saddam Husein Masharqa (28), Hamzah Nader ‘Azmi Abu Hleil (28).
  • At approximately 13:30, Israeli occupation forces moved into al-‘Issawiyah village, northeast of occupied East Jerusalem. They raided and searched several houses after which they arrested 7 civilians namely: Mohammed Mousa Mustafa (20), Mohammed Zakaria ‘Eliyan (19), Yazan Zakaria ‘Eliyan (22), Ahmed Khalid Abu Shamala (21), Younis Mohammed Abu al-Humus (23), Abdul Qader Mahmoud Abu Saimah (19) and Qasem Monir Derbas (20).
  • At approximately 08:20, Israeli occupation forces backed by a number of military construction vehicles moved about 100 meters into the south of the border fence, northeast of Jabalia in northern Gaza Strip. The vehicles leveled lands that were previously leveled along with sporadic shooting at the area. At approximately 11:00 on the same day, Israeli occupation forces withdrew from the area; no casualties were reported.
  • At approximately 12:00, Israeli forces stationed at Qalandiya military checkpoint, north of occupied East Jerusalem, arrested Ismail Amin Nawahdah (71), al-Aqsa Mosque Khatib, and took him to al-Mascubiyah detention center for investigation.

Lawyer Khaldoun Najem said that Israeli Intelligence Services released Sheikh Nawahdah at approximately 18:00 on the same day, on condition to deny him access to al-Aqsa Mosque for 11 days after investigation with him about last Friday’s speech in al-Aqsa Mosque. Israeli authorities claimed that Nawahdah incites people against them. Sheikh Nawahda stressed through investigation with him that all laws ensured the freedom of expression. Nawahdah also denied that the Friday speech was inciteful. Lawyer Najem was concerned that by arresting, Sheikh Nawahdah, Israeli occupation forces might intend to intervene in Friday’s speeches in al-Aqsa Mosque. Najem also pointed out that Israeli occupation forces adopt escalating policy towards the condition in Jerusalem, including their attempt to intervene in Friday prayer’s speeches, which is un acceptable.

  • Israeli occupation forces carried out (3) incursions in Qabatiya village, southeast of Jenin; Tal village, west of Nablus; Beit Furik village, north of Nablus. No arrests were reported.

Collective Punishment:

  • At approximately 05:00 on Friday, 11 October 2019, an Israeli force backed by several military vehicles accompanied by a vehicle of the engineering unit, moved into Birzeit village, north of Ramallah. They raided and searched a house of prisoner Yazan Husein Maghames (25), which is comprised of one floor. The soldiers detained the family members in the house’s balcony, searched the house contents and then took its measurements and made holes in the walls to demolish the house. The soldiers verbally informed the family that they will demolish the house. Maghames was arrested on 11 September 2019, by Israeli soldiers, who arrested him from his house and took him to “Ofer” prison where he was interrogated in al-Mascubiyah detention centre in Jerusalem. Maghames was charged with participation in the attack at Ein Bubin near Deir Bzai’a village, west of Ramallah on 23 August 2019, which caused the killing of Israeli female settler and injuring her father and brother.

This decision is part of the collective punishment policy adopted by the Israeli forces against families  of Palestinian individuals accused of carrying out attacks against Israeli forces and/or settlers.

Settlement Expansion and settler violence in the West Bank including occupied East Jerusalem

Demolition and Confiscation of Civilian Property for Settlement Expansion Activities

  • At approximately 01:00 on Thursday, 10 October 2019, Israeli forces backed by military construction vehicles and accompanied with a vehicle of the Israeli Civil Administration, an excavator and a bulldozer moved into Sha’b al-Haratheen area in southern Hebron. The military construction vehicles demolished two 20-sqaure-meter houses built of tin plates and sheds, under the pretext of non-licensing. The demolished houses belong to Jameel Mahmoud al-Ka’abnah (55) and his son Mahmoud (24). A solar panel was confiscated as well.
  • At approximately 11:00, Israeli forces demolished 2 houses; one of them was under-construction, in Kisan village, east of Bethlehem, under the pretext of non-licensing. Head of Kisan village council, Sadam ‘Abiyaat, said that Israeli forces moved into the village and demolished Ayman Ya’qoub Ghazal’s 150 square-meter house, which sheltered 4 people. The Israeli forces also demolished another 120-sqaure-meter under-construction house belonging to Sadam’s brother, Amjad. ‘Abiyaat added that the Israeli authorities moved into the village 20 days ago and notified the two siblings to demolish their houses. He pointed out that clashes erupted between the village’s residents and Israeli forces, who fired tear gas canisters and sound bombs at them during the demolition.
  • At approximately, 09:00 on the same day, Israeli forces moved into Wadi al-Makhrour area, west of Beit Jala, and raided a demolished restaurant belonging to Ramzi Qisiyah. It should be noted that the Israeli forces demolished the restaurant few weeks ago and confiscated its contents. They then returned and demolished the restaurant’s floor. Wadi al-Makhrour lands were lately attacked by the Israeli forces and settlers. Moreover, Israeli settlers set up a mobile house in the center of the area. All these attacks aim at building a settlement outpost in the center of Wadi al-Makhrour area.
  • At approximately 10:00 on Tuesday, 15 October 2019, Mohamed al-Atrash self-demolished 2 under-construction floors of his building in Wadi al-Humus neighborhood in Surbaher village, south of occupied East Jerusalem. The Israeli Supreme Court issued the demolition decision under the pretext that the building overlooked a security street established on the village’s lands. Hamada Hamada, Head of the Defense Committee of Wadi al-Humus Lands, said that the building is located in an area classified as Area A, according to Oslo Agreement, and its owner obtained a license from the Palestinian National Authority (PNA). However, the Israeli military governor issued a demolition decision against the building, under the pretext that it is located near a security street. He pointed out that the Israeli Supreme Court did not approve the demolition decision. Hamada added that al-Atrash self-demolished parts of his building, comprising of 4 floors built on an area of 400 square meters. Al-Atrash clarified that he was forced to implement the demotion for fear of damaging the other floors.

It should be noted that on 22 July 2019, the Israeli authorities demolished 10 residential buildings, comprising of 72 apartments; 3 of them were inhabited while the others were under-construction, in Wadi al-Humus neighborhood. They also blow-up 4 floors of Mohamed Idrees Abu Tair’s 7-floor building, under the pretext of overlooking a security street. The Israeli authorities claimed that the construction in Wadi al-Humus neighborhood obstructs the Israeli security officers’ work. Moreover, the Israeli forces refused residents’ proposed alternatives to the Israeli court, such as removing the fence and turning it into a wall or using advanced technology to prevent sneaking incidents. It is noteworthy that the Palestinian citizens in Jerusalem are living a real construction crisis, as they could not meet the complex procedures required by the Israel Municipality, in exchange for granting them construction permits. These procedures take years and cost tens of thousands of dollars.  The municipality deliberately obstructs Palestinians’ construction efforts in order to expand the Israeli neighborhoods by allocating large amounts of money to build them and create “Greater Jerusalem”.

Israeli Settler Violence

  • At approximately 16:30 on Friday, 11 October 2019, a group of Israeli settlers, who were present in Zohar hill near Jenasafout village, on Nablus-Qalqiliyia Road, threw stones at a taxi driven by Jehad Mostafa ‘Ali Ramadan (47), from Tal village, southwest of Nablus. As a result, the vehicle’s windshield was broken.
  • At approximately 01:30 on Sunday, 13 October 2019, a group of Israeli settlers moved into Merda village, north of Salfit, where they punctured the tires of 6 vehicles and wrote slogans against Arabs on them. They also wrote slogans on the walls of 2 houses. Head of Merda village council, Bassam Ebdah, said that a group of Israeli settlers moved into the village from the eastern side, through the Bypass road. They then attacked Palestinian civilians’ houses and vehicles, noting that the village residents did not woke up, but they later saw them via surveillance camera recordings. The recordings showed that the settlers were masked and carrying bags on their backs. The affected vehicles belong to: Shawqi ‘Emad Abu Baker, Mohamed ‘Aref Ebdah and Monther Ahmed Mohamed Ebdah. The settler wrote slogans on the walls of Zahi and Zohdi Rashid Masour’s houses.
  • At approximately 10:00, a group of Israeli settlers severely beat Fadel Ahmed Hamdan (68) while harvesting olive trees in al-Walaja village, southwest of Bethlehem. He was then taken to al-Hussain Hospital in Beit Jala to receive treatment. Fadel’s son, Wesam, said to PCHR’s fieldworker that his father was harvesting olive trees from his plot of land in “Biet ‘Ail” settlement; meanwhile, 10 Israeli settlers brutally beat him with sticks. As a result, his father’s hand was fractured while his head was wounded. He was then taken to al-Hussain Hospital for treatment.  It should be noted this was not the first time that the settlers attack the village’s farmers while harvesting olive trees. The Israel authorities annually gave the residents permits allowing them to access their lands for harvesting olive trees, but this year the famers did not get permission, so they were forced to harvest the trees for fear of stealing the crop by the settlers or damaging it due to bad weather.
  • At approximately 11:00 on Monday, 14 October 2019, at least hundreds of Israeli settlers raided al-Aqsa Mosque’s yards in occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City, from al-Maghareba Gate, under the tight Israeli forces’ protection. This coincided with arresting 5 Palestinian worshipers from the mosque’s yards and transferring them to investigation centers. Eyewitnesses said that the Israeli police issued in the morning a decision to evacuate Bab al-Rahma Mosque, coinciding with storming the mosque’s yards by settlers and intelligence officers. Furthermore, Israeli police arrested 5 Palestinian civilians, who came from Israel to perform prayers, and later released them.
  • At approximately 10:00 on Tuesday, 15 October 2019, hundreds of Israeli settlers raided al-Aqsa Mosque from al-magharebah Gate, under the tight Israeli forces’ protection, on the Jewish Sukkot Holiday. The Islamic Endowment (Awqaf) Department stated that at least 400 Israeli settlers raided al-Aqsa Mosque and wandered in its yards, under tight Israeli forces and intelligence officers’ protection. The department clarified that the settlers performed prayers in the mosque while Israeli police imposed tight restrictions on Palestinians’ entering to the mosque, checked their IDs and detained some of them. Furthermore, Israeli police arrested Belal Mohamed ‘Ali (43), while present near al-Rahma Mosque in eastern al-Aqsa Mosque and took him to an investigation center.
  • On the same day morning, the Israeli Municipality opened ‘Ain Haninah site, west of al-Walaja village, west of Bethlehem, to Israeli settlers and prevented Palestinians ‘entering. Haaretz Newspaper pointed out that the site was opened amid tight security measures by Israeli police officers and border guard officers, who closed a road leading to Palestinian villages.
  • At approximately 04:25 on Wednesday, 16 October 2019, a group of Israeli settlers moved into Dir ‘Ammar village, northwest of Ramallah, where they punctured the tires of 5 vehicles and wrote slogans on them, in addition to writing slogans against Arabs on the village’s walls. Head of the Dir ‘Ammar village council, Hasan Rushdi, said that the attack occurred in “al-Maghshi” area, near “Talmoun” settlement and that was the first time that the settlers attacked the residents’ properties. The affected vehicles belong to: Yaser Felfel ‘Awda, Thair Felfel ‘Awda, Khaled Abu ‘Arifah, Isma’il al-Ja’ouni, and ‘Abed al-Elah ‘Awda.
  • At approximately 11:30 on Wednesday, 16 October 2019, at least 20 Israeli settlers, from “Yatizhar” settlement, moved into the south-eastern of Nablus, where they attacked an international solidarity group comprising of 15 members with stones and sticks. The international solidarity group was helping Palestinian farmers in harvesting olive trees. As a result, 2 of them sustained wounds. The settlers also set fire to the area, burning dozens of dunums planted with olive trees. The wounded were identified as:
  1. Izaik Jasmin Histoun (32), from Chicago, who sustained wounds in his head.
  2. Jim Kohen (71), from United Kingdom, who sustained wounds in his right hand, back and leg.
  • At approximately 13:00 on the same day, hundreds of Israeli settlers raided al-Aqsa Mosque in occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City, on the 3rd day of Israeli Sukkot Holidays. In addition, Israeli forces arrested 3 Palestinian women while present near al-Selselah Gate and beat them. The Islamic Endowment (Awqaf) Department stated that at least 900 Israeli settlers raided al-Aqsa Mosque in the morning while over 200 other settlers raided it in afternoon via al-Magharebah Gate, under the tight Israeli forces and police officers’ protection. Among those raided the mosque were the Israeli Minister of Agriculture, Uri Ariel, and dozens of extremist settlers. The settlers performed prayers in the mosque yards and at its gates, especially near al-Selselah Gate. The settlers attempted to attack and cursed journalists and Palestinians banned from entering the mosque. The Israeli forces arrested 3 Palestinian women identified as Madleen Mohamed ‘Issa (27), Hanadi Mohamed Saleh al-Helwani (38), ‘Aydah al-Sidawi (59), noting that all of them were banned from entering the mosque for 4-6 months.

Closure policy and restrictions on freedom of movement of persons and goods

West Bank

In addition to permanent checkpoints and closed roads, this week witnessed the establishment of more temporary checkpoints that restrict the goods and individuals movement between villages and cities and deny civilians’ access to their work. Israeli forces established 49 temporary checkpoints and arrested 2 civilians.

The military checkpoint were as follows:

Ramallah:

  • On Thursday, 10 October 2019, Israeli forces established 2 checkpoints at the entrances to al-Nabi Saleh and Dir Abu Mish’al villages. They stopped Palestinains’ vehicles and checked the passengers’ IDs.
  • On Friday, 11 October 2019, Israeli forces established 2 checkpoints at the entrance to al-Nabi Saleh village and in ‘Ain Sinah square. They stopped Palestinains’ vehicles and checked the passengers’ IDs.
  • On Saturday, 12 October 2019, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance to al-Jalazoun refugee camp. They stopped Palestinains’ vehicles and checked the passengers’ IDs.
  • On Sunday, 13 October 2019, Israeli forces established 3 checkpoints at the entrance to Biet ‘Ur al-Foqah village, at the intersection of al-Taiba village, and in “Hemlish” settlement square near al-Nabi Saleh village.They stopped Palestinains’ vehicles and checked the passengers’ IDs.

On Monday, 14 October 2019, Israeli forces established 4 checkpoints at the entrances to ‘Ain Yabroud, ‘Ain Sinah and Sinjel villages, at the main intersections of city (al-Nabi Saleh- ‘Aboud- Dir Abu Mish’al- Beit Rima). They stopped Palestinains’ vehicles and checked the passengers’ IDs.

  • On Tuesday, 15 October 2019, Israeli forces established 2 checkpoint in “Hemlish” settlement square near al-Nabi Saleh village, and at the intersection of al-Jeftlik village, north of Jericho. They stopped Palestinains’ vehicles and checked the passengers’ IDs.
  • On Wednesday, 16 October 2019, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance to Dir Baziegh village, west of Ramallah.They stopped Palestinains’ vehicles and checked the passengers’ IDs.

Jericho:

  • On Thursday, 10 October 2019, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the northern entrance to Jericho. They stopped Palestinains’ vehicles and checked the passengers’ IDs. No arrests among them were reported.
  • On Friday, 11 October 2019, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the northern entrance to Jericho. They stopped Palestinains’ vehicles and checked the passengers’ IDs. No arrests among them were reported.
  • On Tuesday, 15 October 2019, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the northern entrance to Jericho. They stopped Palestinains’ vehicles and checked the passengers’ IDs. No arrests among them were reported.
  • On Wedneday, 16 October 2019, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the intersection of al-Jeftlik village, north of Jericho. They stopped Palestinains’ vehicles and checked the passengers’ IDs. No arrests among them were reported.

Hebron:

  • On Thursday, 10 October 2019, Israeli forces established 4 checkpoints at the entrances to Samou’a, bani Na’iem, al-Moreq, and Ethna villages. They stopped Palestinains’ vehicles and checked the passengers’ IDs, No arrests among them were reported.
  • On Friday, 11 October 2019, Israeli forces established 2 checkpoints at the entrance to al-Dahiriyia village and at the southern entrance to Hebron.
  • On Saturday, 12 October 2019, Israeli forces established 4 checkpoints at the entrances to al-Shayyoukh, Sureef and Beit Ummer villages, and on Abu Risha Road.
  • On Sunday, 13 October 2019, Israeli forces established 4 checkpoints at the southern entrance to Halhoul, at the entrance to Yatta, at the southern entrance to Hebron, and at the entrance to Beit Kahel village.
  • On Monday, 14 October 2019, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the southern entrance to Halhoul and no arrests among Palestinians were reported.
  • On Tuesday, 15 October 2019, Israeli forces established 4 checkpoints at the entrances to al-Fawar and al-‘Aroub refugee camps, and at the entrances to Samou’a and Beit Ummer villages.
  • On Wednesday, 16 October 2019, Israeli forces established 3 checkpoints at the northern entrance to Halhoul village, at the southern entrance to Hebron, and at the entrance to Yatta village.

Jenin:

  • At approximately 13:00 on Tuesday, 15 October 2019, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the intersection of the American University, southeast of Jenin. They stopped Palestinians’ vehicles and checked the passengers’ IDs; No arrests among them were reported.

Nablus:

  • At approximately 13:30 on Thursday, 10 October 2019, Israeli forces established a checkpoint on Road (17), on ‘Asirah-Nablus Road. They stopped Palestinains’ vehicles and checked the passengers’ IDs, No arrests among them were reported.
  • At approximately 16:30 on Friday, 11 October 2019, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at al-Tota intersection northwest of Nablus.
  • At approximately 10:30 on Tuesday, 15 October 2019, Israeli forces established a checkpoint on Nablus New Road, south of Nablus, at the southern entrance to the city. They stopped Palestinians’ vehicles and checked the passengers’ IDs, No arrests among them were reported.

Qalqiliyia:

  • At approximately 13:45 on Friday, 11 October 2019, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance to ‘Azoun village, east of Qalqiliyia. They searched Palestinians’’ vehicles and checked the passengers’ IDs. The checkpoint was later removed.
  • At approximately 20:0 on Saturday, 12 October 2019, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance to ‘Azoun village, east of Qalqiliyia. They searched Palestinains’ vehicles and checked the passengers’ IDs. The checkpoint was later removed.
  • At approximately 21:45 on Saturday, 12 October 2019, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the intersection of Amateen village, north of Qalqiliyia. They searched Palestinains’ vehicles and checked the passengers’ IDs. The checkpoint was later removed.
  • At approximately 18:00 on Sunday, 13 October 2019, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance to Qalqiliyia. They searched Palestinains’ vehicles and checked the passengers’ IDs. They then arrested Riyad ‘Ali al-Taneeb (27), from Qalqiliyia.
  • At approximately 17:20 on Sunday, 13 October 2019, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance to Izbit al-Tabeeb village, east of Qalqiliyia. They searched Palestinians’’ vehicles and checked the passengers’ IDs. The checkpoint was later removed.

Salfit:

  • At approximately 19:30 on Friday, 11 October 2019, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance to Hares village, north of Salfit. They searched Palestinians’’ vehicles and checked the passengers’ IDs. The checkpoint was later removed.
  • At approximately 20:00, Israeli forces established a checkpoint at the entrance to Kaful Hares village, north of Salfit. They searched Palestinians’’ vehicles and checked the passengers’ IDs. The checkpoint was later removed.

*

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Featured image: Israeli soldier aim at Palestinians protesting confiscation of their land by Jewish settlements in Kufr Qadoom vsillage near the West Bank city of Nablus, Oct. 11, 2019. (Photo by Nidal Eshtayeh/Xinhua)The original source of this article is If Americans Knew BlogCopyright © If Americans KnewIf Americans Knew Blog, 2019


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Malaysian prime minister, Mahathir Mohammad, announced on Friday that his country is to open an accredited embassy to Palestine, Anadolu News Agency reported.

“We know that Israel will not allow Malaysia to open an embassy in the Occupied Territory. As such, we will open the embassy in Jordan,” Mohammad announced.

Mohammad revealed that the embassy would be accredited to Palestine, and it would more freely facilitate the extension of aid to Palestinians.

Addressing the 18th summit of Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) in Azerbaijan, Mohammad criticised the silence of the international community for “doing nothing” against Israeli actions.

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“I would also like to bring to this occasion the fate that awaits our poor Palestinian brothers. Palestine remains occupied by a brutal regime. This regime continues to expand illegal settlements on land that rightfully belongs to the Palestinians,” he stated.

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