Archive | October 15th, 2010



Do Jews Dominate in American Media? And So What If We Do?

by Philip Weiss

At least a half dozen times in recent months, the suggestion has come from serious people that Jews predominate in the American media–that if we are not dominant, we are a major bloc. In a Yivo event on Jews in journalism I’ve blogged about, a questioner said that Jews’ outsize proportion in the media has granted us “a large influence over power.”

In his groundbreaking paper on the New York Times’s role in shaping American policy toward Israel, Jerome Slater spoke of “religious beliefs and identifications” that affected the Times, and cited former executive editor Max Frankel’s admission in his memoir (one also cited by Walt and Mearsheimer): “I was much more deeply devoted to Israel than I dared to assert.”

Lately broadcast reporter John Hockenberry related that he wanted to do a piece on the hijackers’ motivation after 9/11 but that NBC executive Jeff Zucker scotched the notion:

“Maybe,” Zucker said, “we ought to do a series of specials onfirehouses where we just ride along with our cameras. Like the show Cops,only with firefighters.”… [H]e could make room in theprime-time lineup for firefighters, but then smiled at me and said, ineffect, that he had no time for any subtitled interviews with jihadistsraging about Palestine. [Weiss’s emphasis]

Then last month at a forum at the Nixon Center, former Bushie Dov Zackheim said, Jews  don’t dominate the policy-making process, but the media is a different story…

I don’t know that anyone has visited the simple question raised by these statements: Do Jews dominate the media? This is something I know about personally. I’ve worked in print journalism for morethan 30 years. I’ve worked for many magazines and newspapers, and for a time my whole social circle was editors and writers in New York. I don’t know television. I don’tknow Washington journalism well. I don’t know the west coast. My sample is surely skewed by the fact that I’m Jewish and have always felt great comfort withother Jews.

But in my experience, Jews havemade up the majority of the important positions in the publications I worked for, a majority of the writers I’ve known at these place, and the majority of the owners who have paid me. Yes my own sample may be skewed, but I think it shows that Jews make up a significant proportion of power positions in media, half, if not more.

Before considering what this means, let me make my experience concrete:

My serious journalism began at theHarvard Crimson in the 70s.  A friendsaid the paper was a Jewish boys club; it was dominated by middle classJews– as apparently today there are a lot of Asians. Many of these Jews are nowpowerful presences in the media. Zucker is one of them. My first paying job was in Minneapolis. Five Harvard guys started a weekly; four of them were Jewish, including the publisher paying our meager salaries. I remember our editor walking the halls parodying thejingle we had on the radio. The jingle went: “We’ve got the news, we’ve got the sports…” He sang it as“We’ve got the Jews, we’ve got the sports.” Funny.

I was hired by a Jewisheditor at my next job, the Philadelphia Daily News in 1978, and when I started freelancing in 1981, Jewish Harvard friendsgot me work at the Columbia Journalism Review and the WashingtonMonthly. A gentile brought me in at Harper’s and the New Republic.  It was at the New Republic, a launching pad for any number of highly-successful journalists, that I briefly associated with Marty Peretz, and did a story for him mocking the United Nations, whose judgment  he seeks at every turn to nullify because the U.N. is critical of Israel.

Fastforward. In New York, I have worked for a dozen magazines. Most of my editorshave been Jewish. Both my book publishers were Jewish. At one point at onepublishing house, the editor, his boss, and her boss were all Jewish, and so was thelawyer vetting the work—I remember her saying she would never travel to Malaysia becauseof the anti-Semitic Prime minister. Oh–and the assistant editor was half-Jewish.

I should point out that I have worked with many gentile editors andwriters, and I have never been aware of any employment discrimination against them (though I may not be the best source). In fact, at Spy,the three top editors were all non-Jews and when I used the epithet WASP it wasremoved from my copy. But that is the exception. Generally it’s been Jews JewsJews.

When I hear NPR do a piece with its top political team and both are Jews…when a Jewish friend calls me and gossips about lunches with two top news execsat major publications who are both Jewish and who I’ve known for 20 years… when a Jewish editor friend tells me that Si Newhouse would be disturbed if Vanity Fair editor Graydon Carter– who has done such courageous work against the Iraq war– did anything to expose the Israel lobby… and when I say that my income has beenderived overwhelmingly from Jewish-owned publications for years—this is simply the ordinary culture of the magazine business as I know it.

I have some ideas why Jews have predominated,but that’s not the purpose of this posting. Last year Senator Russ Feingold,buttonholed on CSPAN about why so many speakers on air were Jewish, said, “Well, we’regood at talking…” That’ll do for now.

The real issue is, Does it matter? Most of my life I felt it didn’t. It’s just the way it is, at this point in history. It will change (as Clyde Haberman pointed out at that Yivo event). Jews are the latest flavorof the establishment. In his landmark book, The Jewish Century, Slezkine reports that Jews were the majority of journalists in Berlin and Vienna and Prague, too, in the late 1800s, if I remember correctly.

Now I think it does matter, for two reasons. Elitist establishment culture, and Israel. As toelitism, I worry when any affluent group has power and littlesense of what the common man is experiencing. I feel the same discomfort with my prestige-oriented “caste” that E. Digby Baltzell did with his calcified caste, the WASPs–when he called for an end to discrimination against Jews in the early ’60s. The values of my cohort sometimes seem narrow: globalism, prosperity, professionalism. In Israel the values are a lot broader. None of my cohort has served in the military, myself included. A lot of our fathers did; but I bet noneof our kids do. Military service is for losers–or for Israelis.

So we are way overrepresented in the chattering classes, and way underrepresented in the batteringclasses. Not a great recipe for leadership, especially in wartime.

Then there’s Israel. Support for Israel is an element of Jewish religious practice and more important, part of the Jewish cultural experience. Even if you’re a secular Jewish professional who prides himself on his objectivity, there is a ton of cultural pressure on you to support Israel or at least not to betray Israel. We are talking about a religion, after all, and the pressures faced by Jews who are critical of Israel are not that different from what Muslim women who want greater freedom undergo psychically or by evangelical Christians who want to support gay rights. It is worth noting that great Jewish heretics on the Israel question suffer anger or even ostracism inside their own families. Henry Siegman talked about this on Charlie Rose once, I recall–that even close family were not speaking to him over Israel.

And I have seen this for myself on numerous occasions. There is not a lot of bandwidth on this issue. Conversations about Israel even inside the liberal Jewish community are emotionally loaded, and result in people not speaking to one another.  I lost this blog at amainstream publication because the editor was Jewish and conservativeon Israel and so was the new owner, and the publisher had worked forAIPAC. And all of them would likely call themselves liberal Democrats.

As former CNN correspondent Linda Scherzer has said, “We, as Jews, must understand that we come with a certain bias …Webelieve in the Israeli narrative of history. We support the values thatwe as Americans, Westerners, and Jews espouse. Thus, we see newsreporting through our own prism.”

There are many American Jewish journalists who have done great independent work re Israel/Palestine. Richard Ben Cramer and the late Robbie Friedman leap to mind. But both these guys are exceptional, and had to overcome/ignore a ton of pressure that most of us would quail under. They had to step outside the Jewish family to do their work…

The result is that Americans are not getting the full story re Israel/Palestine. Slater says this dramatically in his paper–that the Times has deprived American leadership of reporting on the moral/political crisis that Israel is undergoing, one that Haaretz has covered unstintingly. At Columbia the other night, Jew, Arab and gentile on a panel about the human-rights crisis in Gaza all said that Americans are not getting the full story.

Ilan Pappe has marveled in his book The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine, that the Nakba is all but unmentioned in the U.S.–while Haaretz has sought at times to document it, for instance a former officer saying in 2004 that if he had not helped to destroy 200 villages in southern Israel in ‘48, there would be another million Palestinians in Israel. To repeat Scherzer’s admission: “We believe in the Israeli narrative of history…”

Why does the American press behave differently from the Israeli press? I think the answer is guilt. The Jewish cohort ofwhich I am a part has largely acceptedthe duty that Max Frankel felt, of supporting Israel. This duty is rarely interrogated, and yet consciously or not we all know that American public opinion/leadership is critical to  Israel’s political invulnerability; and we think that if we take their fingers out of the dike, who knows what will happen. That is aton of responsibility. This responsibility is not executed with special care.Generally, my cohort hasn’t been to Israel, hasn’t seen the West Bank.

But they do feel kinship with Israeli Jews, and–above all–have guilt feelings about the Holocaust, or the American Jewish silence aboutit during the event, the Jewish passivity; and they aredetermined not to be passive during Israel’s neverending existential crises. And thus they misunderstand Israel and fail to serve their readers.




The Jewish Republic of Israel

The Jewish Republic of Israel

Swearing an oath to a Jewish State will decide its fate.  It is liable to turn the country into a theocracy like Saudi Arabia.  

Excerpt:  “Over the weekend, the Association for Civil Rights in Israel issued a blacklist of legislation: a loyalty law for Knesset members; a loyalty law for film production; a loyalty law for non-profits; putting the Palestinian catastrophe, the Nakba, beyond the scope of the law; a ban on calls for a boycott; and a bill for the revocation of citizenship.


Remember this day. It’s the day Israel changes its character. As a result, it can also change its name to the Jewish Republic of Israel, like the Islamic Republic of Iran. Granted, the loyalty oath bill that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is seeking to have passed purportedly only deals with new citizens who are not Jewish, but it affects the fate of all of us.

From now on, we will be living in a new, officially approved, ethnocratic, theocratic, nationalistic and racist country. Anyone who thinks it doesn’t affect him is mistaken. There is a silent majority that is accepting this with worrying apathy, as if to say: “I don’t care what country I live in.” Also anyone who thinks the world will continue to relate to Israel as a democracy after this law doesn’t understand what it is about. It’s another step that seriously harms Israel’s image.

Prime Minister Netanyahu will prove today that he is actually Yisrael Beinteinu leader Avigdor Lieberman, and Justice Minister Yaakov Neeman will prove he is really a loyal member of Yisrael Beiteinu. The Labor party will prove it is nothing more than a doormat. And Israel today will prove that it doesn’t care about anything. Today the loyalty oath bill, soon the loyalty oath law. The dam will overflow today, threatening to drown the remnants of democracy until we are left perhaps with a Jewish state of a character that no one really understands, but it certainly won’t be a democracy. Those demanding this loyalty oath are the ones misappropriating loyalty to the state.

At its next session, the Knesset is to debate close to 20 other anti-democratic bills. Over the weekend, the Association for Civil Rights in Israel issued a blacklist of legislation: a loyalty law for Knesset members; a loyalty law for film production; a loyalty law for non-profits; putting the Palestinian catastrophe, the Nakba, beyond the scope of the law; a ban on calls for a boycott; and a bill for the revocation of citizenship. It’s a dangerous McCarthyist dance on the part of ignorant legislators who haven’t begun to understand what democracy is all about. It’s dangerous even if only a portion of the bills become law, because our fate and our essence will change.

It’s not hard to understand the Netanyahu-Lieberman duo. As sworn nationalists, they are not expected to understand that democracy doesn’t only mean the rule of the majority, but rather first and foremost that minorities have rights. It’s much harder to comprehend the complacency of the masses. Town squares should have been filled today with citizens who do not wish to live in a country where the minority is oppressed by draconian laws such as the one that forces them to swear a false oath to a Jewish state, but amazingly almost no one seems to feel affected.

For decades, we have futilely dealt with the question of who is a Jew. Now the question of what is Jewish will not go away. What is the “state of the Jewish nation”? Does it belong more to Jews in the Diaspora than to its Arab citizens? Will they decide its fate and will this be called a democracy? Will the ultra-Orthodox Neturei Karta sect, which opposes the state’s existence, along with hundreds of thousands of Jews who have avoided coming do whatever they want with it? What is Jewish? Jewish holidays? Kosher dietary laws? The increased grip of the religious establishment, as if there is not enough of it now to distort democracy? Swearing an oath to a Jewish state will decide its fate. It is liable to turn the country into a theocracy like Saudi Arabia.

True, for the time being, it’s a matter of an empty, ridiculous slogan. There aren’t three Jews who could agree what a Jewish state looks like, but history has taught us that empty slogans, too, can pave the path to hell. In the meantime, the new proposed legislation will only increase Israeli Arabs’ alienation and ultimately result in the alienation of much wider segments of the public.

That’s what happens when the fire is still smoldering under the rug, the fire of the basic lack of faith in the justice of our path. Only such a lack of confidence can produce such distorted proposed legislation as that which will be approved today, and clearly approval will be forthcoming. Canada doesn’t need its citizens to swear an oath to the Canadian state, nor do other countries require similar acts. Only Israel.

And it is being done either to provoke the Arab minority more and push them into a greater lack of loyalty so one day the time will come to finally get rid of them, or it is designed to scuttle the prospect of a peace agreement with the Palestinians. One way or another, in Basel at the First Zionist Congress in 1897, the Jewish state was founded, as Theodor Herzl said, and today the unenlightened Jewish Republic of Israel will be founded.

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Posted in PoliticsComments Off on THE ZIO=NAZI REPUBLIC



October 15, 2010

by Gordon Duff

No to Combat Veterans for Congress


By Gordon Duff STAFF WRITER/Senior Editor

COMBAT VETERANS FOR CONGRESS is a thinly veiled front organization for AIPAC, the Israel lobby, oil companies, the “bankster” and insurance lobbys and right wing extremists.  This is another rehash of the mindless hag, Sarah Palin, “Hanoi John” McCain and his front man “Bud” Day, America’s most questionable Medal of Honor holder and Wall Street money.  This is a phony organization, to its roots, un-American, destructive to honorable American values and, from top to bottom, genuinely EVIL.

Presented as “fiscal conservatives,” their candidates are slaves to special interest groups, the State of Israel and the foreign interests that are secretly financing their campaign with money that could come from anywhere.  We are looking at the drug trade in Afghanistan as the primary funder of “conservative” candidates in the upcoming election.  Their goal?  Keep American in the war,  Keep America loosing.  Keep chaos in Afghanistan and keep the drugs flowing.

These are the same “fiscal conservatives” that collapsed our banking system, ran up $8 trillion dollars in debt and put us in two wars.  Now they are running 24 candidates, really puppets, people without values and dignity who are willing to cash in on their military service, sell out their fellow soldiers and look forward to a lifetime of sleeze at the hands of the lobbyists behind “Combat Veterans For Congress.”

We encourage every veteran to visit their website.

America has hundreds of thousands of combat veterans who aren’t joined at the hip with Ed Meese’s Heritage Foundation, the “Neo-con Taliban” and the rest of the rats that looted America’s financial system, lied us into wars, torture, drug dealing and corruption.  We don’t need anymore “sell outs” that look down on veterans, vote to cut benefits and place banks and pharmaceutical companies above real human beings.

This is the gang behind “Combat Veterans for Congress.”

We encourage every veteran to make sure that any other candidate is supported.  It would be impossible for anyone to be worse than a candidate that would sell out to this thinly veiled war profiteer and scamster organization.  Careful examination of the backers of this organization clearly show a long history of lack of support for American veterans, betrayal of American POWs and strong ties to illicit financial organizations.

In a campaign flooded with dirty foreign money, nearly every cent of which is behind politicians with IDENTICAL party affiliations and views as our “combat vets,” Americans are in real danger of becoming a colony again, this time for a vast international banking cartel. 

Real veterans have real issues.  Thousands are dead, tens of thousands or more are sick, we are almost out of Iraq, a disaster of a war that brought shame on the United States more than any conflict in our history, a shame dumped on our troops but that belongs on our politicians.

Those politicans are running “Combat Veterans for Congress,” a thinly veiled group of war profiteers, extremists and friends of the rich and powerful.  When courageous and outspoken American patriots were railroaded out of our military by Dominionist “Taliban” and the political “commissars” of the new Fascism, our military suffered most of all. 

Shame on every one of you that has gotten involved in this organization.  Thus far, of the hundreds of thousands who served and the thousands who have died, we have 24 “bad apples.




October 15, 2010

by Sherwood Ross


By Sherwood Ross STAFF WRITER

By assigning covert action roles to the Central Intelligence Agency(CIA), it is as if the White House and Congress had legitimized the Ku Klux Klan to operate globally. That’s because the CIA today resembles nothing so much as the “Invisible Empire” of the KKK that once spread terror across the South and Midwest. Fiery crosses aside, this is what the CIA is doing globally. The CIA today is committing many of the same sort of gruesome crimes against foreigners that the KKK once inflicted on Americans of color.

The principal difference is that the KKK consisted of self-appointed vigilantes who regarded themselves as both outside and above the law when they perpetrated their crimes. By contrast, the CIA acts as the agent of the American government, often at the highest levels, and at times at the direction of the White House. Its crimes typically are committed in contravention of the highest established international law such as the Charter of the United Nations as well as the U.S. Constitution. What’s more, the “Agency,” as it is known, derives its funding largely from an imperialist- minded Congress; additionally, it has no qualms about fattening its budget from drug money and other illegal sources.

It is a mirror-image of the lawless entity the U.S. has become since achieving superpower status. And it is incredible that the White House grants license to this violent Agency to commit its crimes with no accountability. The Ku Klux Klan was founded shortly after the end of the U.S. Civil War. Klansman concealed their identities behind flowing white robes and white hoods as they terrorized the newly emancipated blacks to keep them from voting or to drive them from their property. Allowing it to operate in secret literally gives the CIA the mythical Ring of Gyges. In Plato’s Republic, the owner of the ring had the power to become invisible at will. As Wikipedia puts it, Plato “discusses whether a typical person would be moral if he did not have to fear the consequences of his actions.”

The ancient Greeks made the argument, Wikipedia says, that “No man would keep his hands off what was not his own when he could safely take what he liked out of the market, go into houses and lie with any one at his pleasure, kill or release from prison whom he would, and in all respects be like a god among men.” The CIA, like Hitler’s Gestapo and Stalin’s NKVD before it, has provided modern man the answer to this question.

Its actions illuminate why all criminal entities, from rapists and bank robbers, to Ponzi scheme swindlers and murderers, cloak themselves in secrecy. There are innumerable examples of how American presidents have authorized criminal acts without public discussion that the preponderant majority of Americans would find reprehensible.

Example: it was President Lyndon Johnson who ordered the CIA to meddle in Chile’s election to help Eduardo Frei become president. If they had known, U.S. taxpayers might have objected to such a use of their hard-earned money to influence the outcome of another country’s elections. But the public is rarely let in on such illegal foreign policy decisions.

Where the KKK after the Civil War terrorized blacks to keep them from voting, the CIA has worked to influence the outcome of elections all over the world through bribery and vote-buying, dirty tricks, and worse. According to investigative reporter William Blum in “Rogue State”(Common Courage Press), the CIA has perverted elections in Italy, Lebanon, Indonesia, The Philippines, Japan, Nepal, Laos, Brazil, Bolivia, Chile, Portugal, Australia, Jamaica, Panama, Nicaragua, Haiti, among other countries.

If they had known, taxpayers might also object to the CIA’s numerous overthrows of foreign governments by force and violence—such as was done in Iran in 1953 by President Eisenhower and Chile in 1973 by President Nixon. Both overthrows precipitated bloodbaths that cost tens of thousands of innocent civilians their lives. Blum also lists the countries the CIA has attempted to overthrow or has actually overthrown. His list includes Greece, The Philippines, East Germany, Iran, Guatemala, Indonesia, Iraq, Viet Nam, Laos, Ecuador, The Congo, France, Cuba, Ghana, Chile, South Africa, Bolivia, Portugal, and Nicaragua, to cite a few.

As I write, today, October 11th, 2010, Nobel Peace Prize winner Adolfo Perez Esquivel of Argentina called on President Obama to revise U.S. (imperialist)policies toward Latin America. He questioned why the U.S. continues to plant its military bases across the region. That’s an excellent question. If the U.S. is a peace-loving nation, why does it need 800 bases the world over in addition to 1,000 on its own soil?

Americans might recoil in disgust if they knew of the CIA’s numerous assassinations of the elected officials of other nations. Is it any wonder Americans so often ask the question, “Why do they hate us?” As historian Arnold Toynbee wrote in 1961, “America is today the leader of a world-wide anti-revolutionary movement in the defence of vested interests. She now stands for what Rome stood for.

Rome consistently supported the rich against the poor in all foreign communities that fell under her sway; and, since the poor, so far, have always and everywhere been more numerous than the rich, Rome’s policy made for inequality, for injustice, and for the least happiness of the greatest number.” The CIA’s protective secrecy resembles nothing so much as the KKK, which proudly proclaimed itself “the Invisible Empire” and whose thugs killed citizens having the courage to identify hooded Klansmen to law enforcement officials. Today, it is our highest public officials that protect this criminal force, said to number about 25,000 employees.

It is actually a Federal offense to reveal the identity of a CIA undercover agent—unless, of course, you happen to be I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby, and are employed by Vice President Dick Cheney. Libby leaked the identity of CIA agent Valerie Plame to punish her husband Joseph Wilson for publishing a report that undercut the White House lie that Saddam Hussein had purchased “yellowcake” from Niger to fuel WMD. Today, high public officials direct the CIA’s criminal policies and protect its agents’ identities the better to enable them to commit their crimes.

According to journalist Fred Cook in his book “Ku Klux Klan: America’s Recurring Nightmare”(Messner), “The Klan was inherently a vigilante organization. It could commit the most atrocious acts under the guise of high principle and perpetrators of those acts would be hidden behind white masks and protected by Klan secrecy… (The Klan) set itself up as judge, jury and executioner”—a policy adopted by the CIA today.

CIA spies have conducted their criminal operations masquerading as officials of U.S. aid programs, business executives, or journalists. Example: The San Diego-based Copley News Service’s staff of foreign correspondents allegedly was created to provide cover to CIA spies, compromising legitimate American journalists trying to do their jobs. While the murders committed by the KKK likely ran into the many thousands, the CIA has killed on a far grander scale and managed to keep its role largely secret.

As Tim Weiner, who covered the CIA for the New York Times noted in his book “Legacy of Ashes: The History of the CIA” (Anchor): “In Guatemala, 200,000 civilians had died during forty years of struggle following the agency’s(CIA) 1954 coup against an elected president.” Weiner adds, “the CIA’s officers in Guatemala still went to great lengths to conceal the nature of their close relations with the military and to suppress reports that Guatemalan officers on its payroll were murderers, torturers, and thieves.” When it comes to murder, the CIA makes the KKK look like Boy Scouts. Like the KKK, CIA terrorists operate above the law. KKK members committed thousands of lynchings yet rarely were its members punished for them.

In 2009 at a speech at CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia, President Obama revealed he was not intent on punishing CIA agents for their crimes but would rather “look forward.” This seemingly charitable philosophy may be driven by the fact that Obama worked for Business International Corporation, a CIA front, at least in 1983 and perhaps longer, and allegedly is the son of a mother and father both of whom also worked for the CIA, as did Obama’s grandmother! I could find none of this in Obama’s biography when he ran for the presidency, when a gullible American public elected a CIA “mole” to the White House.

Consider this, too: an agency President Truman feared would become “an American Gestapo” when he signed the enabling legislation into law in 1947 has become just that, and it casts a lengthy shadow over the White House. Ominously, it has in Barack Obama one of its own former employees sitting in the Oval Office—a man who, according to news reports, has vastly expanded the frequency of the CIA’s assassinations by drone aircraft in Pakistan and who illegally claims the “right” to assassinate any American citizen abroad as well.

What’s more, from 1989 to 1993 George Bush Sr., the CIA’s own former Director, sat in the White House. Additionally, from 2001 to 2009, the CIA had that Director’s son, George W. Bush, in the Oval Office giving the CIA a blank check after the 9/11 massacre. Bush Jr., according to The New York Times, in the summer of 1974 worked for Alaska International Industries, which did contract work for the CIA.

The Times noted that this job did not appear in his biography when he ran for the White House in 2000, terming it “The Missing Chapter in the Bush Bio.” Thus, two presidential candidates with CIA ties— Bush Jr. and Obama—both neglected to mention them.

And in Bill Clinton, who presided from 1993 to 2001, the CIA had a go-along president who satisfied the Agency’s blood-lust when he authorized the first illegal “rendition,” a euphemism for what KKK thugs once knew as kidnapping and torture. Is there any question that the Agency has not played an influential, behind-the-scenes or even a direct role in the operations of the U.S. government at its highest level? It may indeed be a stretch to argue that the CIA is running the country but it is no stretch to say that year after year our presidents reflect the criminal philosophy of the Agency.

Other parallels with the KKK are striking. As Richmond Flowers, the Attorney General of Alabama stated in 1966, “I’ve found the Klan more than just another secret society… It resembles a shadow government, making its own laws, manipulating local politics, burrowing into some of our local law-enforcement agencies…When a pitiable misfit puts on his $15 sheet, society can no longer ignore him.” Yet the descendants of those misfits have moved up today where they feel comfortable as operatives in the shadow government run by the White House. One of the CIA’s illicit duties has been to serve as a conduit for funneling U.S. taxpayer dollars to corrupt dictators and strongmen bent on suppressing the popular will of their citizenry.

As Noam Chomsky wrote in “Failed States”(Metropolitan/Owl), in Honduras, “military officers in charge of the battalion (3-16) were on the CIA payroll.” This elite unit, he says, “organized and trained by the United States and Argentine neo-Nazis,” was “the most barbaric of the Latin American killers that Washington had been supporting.” Like the KKK, the CIA kidnaps many of its victims with no thought ever of legal procedure.

It exhibits utter disdain for the rights of those individuals, the sovereignty of foreign nations, or respect for international law. At least hundreds of foreigners, mostly from the Middle East, have been the victims of “renditions” just as the KKK kidnapped and flogged and lynched blacks, labor leaders, Catholics, Jews, or wayward wives whom it felt to be morally lacking. In September, 1921, The New York World ran a series exposing the KKK. It pointed out that, among other things, the KKK was violating the Bill of Rights wholesale.

This included the Fourth amendment against “unreasonable searches and seizures,” the Fifth and the Sixth amendments, guaranteeing that no one may be held without a grand jury indictment or punished without a fair trial. And these rights today are similarly trampled by the CIA against American citizens, not just foreigners. Apparently, only foreign courts care to rein in the CIA. The 23 CIA agents that it took to render one “suspect” in Italy are wanted there by the magistrates. (The spooks, by the way, ran up some fabulous bills in luxury hotels on taxpayers’ dollars in that escapade.)

Former President Jimmy Carter wrote in his book “Our Endangered Values”(Simon & Schuster), the CIA transferred some of those it kidnapped to countries that included Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Morocco, Jordan, and Uzbekistan where “the techniques of torture are almost indescribably terrible, including, as a U.S. ambassador to one of the recipient countries reported, ‘partial boiling of a hand or an arm,’ with at least two prisoners boiled to death.”

The KKK’s methods of punishment were often as ugly: the brutal flogging of blacks in front of vicious crowds, followed by castration and burning their victims alive, and then lynching of the corpses. As for the CIA, “Why?” asks investigative reporter William Blum, “are these men rendered in the first place if not to be tortured? Does the United States not have any speakers in foreign languages to conduct interrogations?”

That the CIA is a terrorist organization was upheld in the famous “CIA On Trial” case in Northampton, Mass., in 1987, when a jury acquitted 14 protestors who tried to stop CIA recruitment on campus, according to Francis Boyle, the University of Illinois international law authority who defended the group. The defense charged the CIA was “an organized criminal conspiracy like the SS and the Gestapo.” Boyle said, “You would not let the SS or the Gestapo recruit on campus at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, so you would not permit the CIA to recruit on campus either.”

Another shared characteristic of the KKK and CIA is greed, the desire to loot the hard-earned wealth of others. Often, Klansmen terrorized African-Americans who had amassed property to frighten them off their land. Law-abiding black citizens who had pulled themselves up by the proverbial bootstraps were cheated out of their homes and acreage by the night riders. Similarly, the CIA across Latin America has aligned itself with the well-to-do ruling class at every opportunity.

It has cooperated with the elite to punish and murder labor leaders and clergy who espoused economic opportunity for the poor. The notion that allowing the poor to enrich themselves fairly will also create more wealth for an entire society generally, including the rich, has not permeated CIA thinking. I emphasize what historian Toynbee noted: “America is today the leader of a world-wide anti-revolutionary movement in the defence of vested interests. She now stands for what Rome stood for.”(Italics added.) In sum, by adopting the terrorist philosophy of the KKK and elevating it to the operations of government at the highest level, the imperial Obama administration, like its predecessors, is showing the world the worst possible face of America.

Foreigners do not see the goodness inherent in the American people—most of whom only want a good day’s pay for a good day’s work and to educate their children and live at peace with the world. Every adult American has a solemn obligation to demand that its government live up to international law, punish the CIA criminals in its midst, and become a respected citizen of the world. This will not come to pass until Congress abolishes the CIA, putting an end to its KKK-style terrorism which threatens Americans as well as humankind everywhere.. # (Sherwood Ross is an American who has worked as a reporter for the Chicago Daily News, a columnist for wire services and as the News Director of a national civil rights organization. He currently operates the Anti-War News Service from Miami, Florida.

To contribute to his work or reach him, email

Posted in USAComments Off on THE CIA,KKK & USA



Keeping kids behind bars has become the Australian way

15 Oct 2010

With news that Australia may soon release a number of families and children from immigration detention to live in the community while their claims are processed, Mary Crock, Professor of Public Law at the University of Sydney, says how isolated our policy really is:

What strikes me is how unaware we are of what other countries are doing.

We are really by ourselves when it comes to keeping asylum seekers in detention for the length of their processing time. Every other country around the world has mechanisms for allowing people out if they don’t pose any threat to the community.


Wikileaks and avoiding September 11

15 Oct 2010

A provocative question in the LA Times:

If WikiLeaks had been around in 2001, could the events of 9/11 have been prevented?

Decisions to speak out inside or outside one’s chain of command — let alone to be seen as a whistle-blower or leaker of information — is fraught with ethical and legal questions and can never be undertaken lightly. But there are times when it must be considered. Official channels for whistle-blower protections have long proved illusory. In the past, some government employees have gone to the media, but that can’t be done fully anonymously, and it also puts reporters at risk of being sent to jail for refusing to reveal their sources. For all of these reasons, WikiLeaks provides a crucial safety valve.

How torture was freely used in a post 9/11 moral haze

15 Oct 2010

What the Bush administration stood for and remember how little Barack Obama has changed this mindset:

In 2002, as the Bush administration was turning to torture and other brutal techniques for interrogating “war on terror” detainees, Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz loosened rules against human experimentation, an apparent recognition of legal problems regarding the novel strategies for extracting and evaluating information from the prisoners.

Wolfowitz issued his directive on March 25, 2002, about a month after President George W. Bush stripped the detainees of traditional prisoner-of-war protections under the Geneva Conventions. Bush labeled them “unlawful enemy combatants” and authorized the CIA and the Department of Defense (DoD) to undertake brutal interrogations.

Despite its title – “Protection of Human Subjects and Adherence to Ethical Standards in DoD-Supported Research” – the Wolfowitz directive weakened protections that had been in place for decades by limiting the safeguards to “prisoners of war.”

“We’re dealing with a special breed of person here,” Wolfowitz said about the war on terror detainees only four days before signing the new directive.

One former Pentagon official, who worked closely with the agency’s ex-general counsel William Haynes, said the Wolfowitz directive provided legal cover for a top-secret Special Access Program at the Guantanamo Bay prison, which experimented on ways to glean information from unwilling subjects and to achieve “deception detection.”

“A dozen [high-value detainees] were subjected to interrogation methods in order to evaluate their reaction to those methods and the subsequent levels of stress that would result,” said the official.

Serco and friends line up for dirty and profitable work

15 Oct 2010

How many more people can we exploit for profit? Far too many, it seems:

Jimmy Mubenga died during deportation from the UK, and the first fingers of blame will undoubtedly be pointed at the Home Office-contracted private security firm, G4S. But we need to look at ourselves and ask how we became a society that will now effect deportations by almost any means possible.

Anyone employed as an immigration adviser, as I am, is aware of the use and abuse of state-sanctioned force against immigrants that lies just beneath the Home Office UK Border Agency‘s “firm but fair” rhetoric. I’ll never forget representing a 24-year-old Ugandan woman who was HIV-positive and weighed only six stone, who bravely spoke out to the BBC about her treatment by officers inside Colnbrook immigration removal centre: “Two were holding my arms, two were holding my legs and then they hit my head on the floor,” she said. “I was feeling pain and then they twisted my arms and pressed my head on the bed. “I couldn’t breathe and then I was shouting ‘I can’t breathe, I can’t breathe’ but they were just twisting it harder.”

For his part, Tom Riall, chief executive of the home affairs division of Serco, which runs Colnbrook, said staff there do their jobs “with care and decency and considerable respect for all of those in our charge”. “We only use physical restraint as a last resort,” he added.

The NGO Medical Justice has documented allegations of brutality during immigrants’ detention and removal, while the Medical Foundation for the Care of Victims of Torture provides a shocking catalogue of injuries sustained by failed asylum seekers on being removed from the UK: “Loss of consciousness; tooth coming loose, bleeding from the mouth; testicular pain; difficulty passing urine; nose bleed, sprained neck from having neck forcibly flexed (head pushed down); bony tenderness over the cheekbone from a punch to the face; abrasion over the cheekbone from being dragged along the ground; lip laceration (splitting) from having head pushed down against the ground; bruising under the jaw and tenderness over the larynx from fingers being pressed to the throat; laceration over the temple from having head banged against hard object …”


Meeting Tony Abbott in Sydney and shooting the Palestinian breeze

15 Oct 2010

Last night I attended an event in central Sydney at Gleebooks with Leader of the Liberal Opposition Tony Abbott and writer and speech-writer Bob Ellis.

The room was packed with around 200 people and the two men initially talked about the war in Afghanistan (Abbott backs it, “the best of the worst options” for the country), refugees, this year’s election campaign, the release of former Guantanamo Bay detainee David Hicks  (“I hope he’s learned his lesson and can move on with his life”) and the Labor government. He’s oddly likeable, even if his politics are laced with hardline Catholicism and conservatism. Abbott can be arrogant and deluded but also self-deprecating and charming. It’s no wonder he nearly won this year’s election against a Labor rabble of belief-free politicians.

I stood up and asked a question about the Middle East: “At what point will you, the Liberal Party and the major parties in the West recognise Israel for what it is rather than what you want it to be? Israel brutally occupies the Palestinians and the West stays largely silent. What will it take for you to look honestly at the situation and not simply mouth pro-Israel platitudes?”

Abbott said he had visited Israel a few times and believed in a two-state solution, a Jewish state and Palestinian state, and acknowledged the situation wasn’t “perfect” but remained far better than every other country in the region. He talked positively about the rights of Israeli Arabs in Israel but ignored the Palestinians in the occupied territories. I sensed he didn’t know too much about it all – at a few points he stated that he wasn’t an “expert” – but he seemed to be mouthing platitudes. The “lines” were repeated over and over again.

After, while signing books, I approached Abbott again and we talked for a few minutes about the conflict. He said he had visited Israel as a guest of the government and only been taken to where they wanted to show him. When I said that there were Jewish-only roads in the West Bank, he said that was “bad” and looked uncomfortable. I urged him to visit the region again and spend time in the West Bank and even Gaza. Abbott told me that he “admired” Israel because of its supposedly thriving democracy, free and open debate and ability of Arabs to vote and participate in the democratic process. It was a postcard version of the truth, ignoring the inherent discrimination within Israel and utterly forgetting the Palestinian territories.


Assange; the importance of making powerful enemies

14 Oct 2010

In the annual “50 People Who Matter 2010” for New Statesman, John Pilger endorses Julian Assange and Wikileaks; guts that matters and so necessary:

The arrival of WikiLeaks is one of the most exciting developments in the enduring struggle of ordinary people for the right to call secret power to account. This is what journalism should do.

For all the lip-service paid to Edmund Burke’s idea of a fourth estate, the media remain an extension of the established order. The current wars demonstrate this. Instead of exposing the lies that have led to the carnage, journalists, with honourable exceptions, have amplified and echoed them. Scott McClellan, George W Bush’s former press secretary, says his administration relied on the media’s “complicit enablers”.

WikiLeaks, says its founder Julian Assange, has “created a space that permits a form of journalism which lives up to the name that journalism has always tried to establish for itself”. This year, WikiLeaks has released tens of thousands of official documents that describe the casual, almost industrial killing of civilians, assassination squads, and attempts at cover-up.

Anyone watching the leaked cockpit video of an Apache helicopter gunning down cameramen and children in Baghdad will not forget the pilot’s reaction: “Nice.” Having witnessed the brutalising effects of war, I felt like cheering when this was exposed and I read that it was viewed 4.8 million times in one week. This is the new “space” for a truth-telling we need urgently, as great power promotes its “perpetual war” and strives for what it calls “information dominance”.

I have got to know Julian Assange, and what strikes me most about him is the unabashed morality he invests in WikiLeaks. It is unusual to hear the words: “The goal is justice, the method is transparency.” He reminds me of one of our compatriots, Wilfred Burchett, the courageous reporter who incurred the wrath of the powerful by exposing the “atomic plague” of the Hiroshima bomb. Like Burchett, Assange has made some serious enemies for blowing such a loud whistle; the Pentagon has already threatened to “terminally marginalise” WikiLeaks. And this is his great risk and his honour.

I asked him what he had learned most from his glimpses of rampant power. “In one way or another I’ve been reading generals’ emails since I was 17,” he said (he is 39), “and what I see now is a vast, sprawling estate that is becoming more and more secretive and uncontrolled. “This is not a sophisticated conspiracy; it is a movement of self-interest to produce an end result that is [the wars in] Iraq and Afghanistan, which are used to wash money out of the US tax base and back to [arms] companies like Northrop Grumman and Raytheon.” Another release of leaked documents is due soon.

I salute such principled audacity.


Using bio-fuel and chocolate to cure the world

14 Oct 2010

I met this lovely British guy, former journalist Andy Pag, in Ubud, Bali last week and he’s on quite a journey:


Serco and friends take refugees and show them the door

14 Oct 2010

Exporting misery is a nice little earner:

The scale of Britain’s largely privatised deportation industry has mushroomed as the Home Office responds to political pressure for the faster removal of failed asylum-seekers and people overstaying their visas.

There are 11 immigration removal centres across the country with space for around 3,000 detainees. Most are operated by private security companies such as G4S, GEO Ltd or Serco; several are managed by the Prison Service.

G4S – formerly known as Group 4 Securicor – runs Dungavel in Scotland, Oakington near Cambridge, Brook House and Tinsley House, both on the perimeter of Gatwick Airport, on behalf of the UK Border Agency. Oakington is due to close next month.

The company, which claims to be the second largest private employer in the world with 595,000 staff, is also the main contractor providing services to escort those removed from the UK on repatriation flights overseas.

Additionally, G4S runs the UK Border Agency’s Transport PLUS service, which shuttles asylum-seekers to and from their accommodation and key sites in the UK.

Failed asylum-seekers and deported visa overstayers are either put on scheduled commercial flights or gathered up in periodic round-ups for mass deportations on specially chartered flights. They are always accompanied by private security guards.

There are usually at least twice as many security guards as deportees. The Home Office insists that use of force is a “matter of last resort” if someone becomes disruptive or refuses to comply, or to prevent deportees from harming themselves. Handcuffs and, in exceptional cases, leg restraints can be used.


Australian unions recognise the power and necessity of BDS

14 Oct 2010

Now this is news, a growing realisation that the status-quo in Palestine is simply oppressing Palestinians. Civil society is rising:

Australian unions are signing up to an international campaign to boycott Israeli goods.

But a fight is brewing over a proposal for the Australian Council of Trade Unions to endorse the movement.

The broad-based divestment and boycott campaign is targeting companies that profit from the Israeli settlements.

The Electrical Trades Union, the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union, the Construction Forestry Mining and Energy Union, the Queensland branch of the Rail Tram and Bus Union and the Finance Sector Union have all passed a resolution supporting the international campaign of “boycott, divestment and sanctions” (BDS) against Israel.

Communications Electrical Plumbing Union national secretary Peter Tighe told The Australian the electrical branch of his union had adopted the resolution and he would now take it to the broader CEPU, then the ACTU.

“We had a 30 or 40 minute presentation from a delegate who had visited Palestine,” Mr Tighe said.

“The council decided we would support the BDS. We are not anti-Jewish; we just think the human misery over there is outrageous. We think the Israeli government is captive to some extreme views on the Right.

“We think it’s got to a stage where we are going to have to have bans across the board.

“Working people can’t sit on their hands forever.”

Mr Tighe, who sits on the ACTU executive, will take a resolution to the peak union body.

“We will use our influence within the ALP to push this position,” he said.

“Now you have a few unions with the same view and we can influence the political process more, we are not just one voice.”

Australian Workers Union national secretary Paul Howes said he would fight any plan to see the ACTU endorse the sanctions.

“We don’t believe that it’s in the interests of Palestinian or Israeli workers to seek to divide them in the peace process,” Mr Howes said.

“Unions are free to do what they wish but certainly I think it’s a bit naive. Some unions are not fully aware of what they are signing on to.”

Of course, the Australian editorial opposes any kind of BDS, simply hoping and praying that someone, somewhere, will convince Israel to give up its occupation. Without pressure and pain, this will never happen:

If there is logic behind the international campaign to boycott Israel and the decision of some Australian trade unions to back it, we are struggling to see it.

Assuming sanctions work (and that is a big assumption), there are many regimes with a far greater claim to global opprobrium than that of Israel, a nation the Left once supported. The frustrating truth is that nothing has changed on the ground to justify the international Left’s perfidy. Everyone of goodwill agrees where this conflict will end, with two states separated by borders that approximate the 1967 boundaries and Jerusalem as a shared capital. So let’s make it happen.

The starting point must be talks without precondition. The Palestinians must dump their disingenuous tactic of linking construction of West Bank settlements with a return to the negotiating table. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, meanwhile, must use the advantages of incumbency to resist pressure from the Right and orthodox religious parties and pursue a path to peace that allows room for compromise. While political chaos would be in nobody’s interests — not that of the Israelis nor the Palestinians — Mr Netanyahu should not hoard a cent of his political capital in the pursuit of peace.

Settlements, however, are not the main issue. Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian Authority leader, has negotiated with the Israelis in the past without demanding the sort of freeze on construction he now insists is a precondition to resuming talks. Any further delays would betray a basic lack of enthusiasm among Mr Abbas and his colleagues for negotiations and an attempt by them to drive a wedge between Israel and the Obama administration, which erred by allowing the settlements issue to assume the centrality that it has.

Mr Netanyahu, of course, has not helped by backing legislation in the Knesset that requires new non-Jewish citizens to take a loyalty oath to Israel as a Jewish and democratic state. The best hope is that this is part of a broader strategy aimed at shoring up essential political support that will assist him in eventually striking a peace deal. The presence of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on a state visit to south Beirut is a salutary reminder of just how urgent it is for both men to get to grips with reality.

Posted in Middle EastComments Off on A.LOEWENSTEIN ONLINE NEWSLETTER




When will Americans be informed of what is stirring in Israel?

Oct 14, 2010

Philip Weiss 

This is reportedly a Gush Shalom ad in Haaretz:

A state

That declares war

On a fifth

Of its citizens –

Can it be called “Democratic”?

A state

That persecutes

Its minority –

Can it be called “Jewish”?

Tomorrow, Saturday evening, we shall demonstrate against the racist laws. Starting at 7.00 pm from Gan Meir, Tel-Aviv.

The yearly settler festival of destroying the Palestinians’ olive trees and orchards

Oct 14, 2010


and other news from Today in Palestine

Settlers/ Land, Property, Resource Theft & Destruction/Ethnic Cleansing
Abbas pressures U.S. to aid in stopping Israel settlement building
The Palestinian president says Israel is ‘still putting obstacles’ in the path of peace talks, singles out West Bank settlement building.

Settlers Attack Olive Groves in Jub al-Theeb, East of Bethlehem
Bethlehem – PNN – Israeli settlers with the protection and support of soldiers destroyed olive groves in a farm in Jub al-Theeb, east of Bethlehem, on Wednesday morning.  Image After being stopped by a group of international solidarity workers, one settler took revenge on Thursday morning by attacking a herd of sheep.  Mubarak Zowahera, of Jub al-Theeb, told PNN this morning that the group of settlers came to cut down his olive trees near the Israeli settlement of Zibar. A group of international solidarity activists came later to survey the damage to his fields.  Then early Thursday morning, one settler attacked a herd of sheep in Zowahera’s olive grove, which had been “cut down and vandalized” the day before. This action is believed to be in response to the solidarity activists stopping the settlers’ assault. Zowahera told PNN he was working to expose the occupation policies by taking pictures of what happened and presenting them to the Israeli human rights group B’tselem.

In photos: Settlers disrupt Burin olive harvest

Settlers Harvest Palestinian Olives, Destroy Trees
Israeli daily, Haaretz, reported that Jewish settlers in the northern part of the occupied West Bank are avoiding attempts by the Israeli army to stop them from harvesting and destroying Palestinian orchards, by sneaking under the cover of darkness into the lands and harvesting them before the Israeli army arrives.

Israel to demolish 22 Palestinian homes in J’lem to build park
The Israeli municipal council in occupied Jerusalem approved a plan to build a new Jewish park in place of 22 Palestinian homes to be demolished in Al-Bustan neighborhood.

Israel to confiscate 1000 dunams in West Bank
RAMALLAH: Israeli authorities on Wednesday decided to confiscate a large area of agricultural lands near the West Bank city of Nablus, a Palestinian official said.  Ghassan Daghlas, the Palestinian Authority official monitoring settlers’ activity in the northern West Bank, said that Israeli occupation authorities issued a military order to confiscate some 1,000 dunams (100 hectares) belonging to Palestinian farmers from the village of Jaloud, to the southeast of Nablus. Daghlas added that the order was signed by the commander of Israeli Army in West Bank.

Jerusalem mayor calls for new east Jerusalem plans
JERUSALEM — Jerusalem’s mayor on Wednesday called on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to approve a major rezoning plan for Arab east Jerusalem, a move that could fuel tensions in the flashpoint Holy City.  Nir Barkat said the project would legalise thousands of buildings in annexed east Jerusalem that Arab residents built without Israeli municipal permission.  “Barkat called on the prime minister and his government to adopt the municipality’s new re-zoning plans for Jerusalem’s eastern neighbourhoods and reiterated his demand to halt demolition orders throughout areas under re-zoning,” Barkat’s office said in a statement.  However, at the heart of the plan is a new an archaeological park in a crumbling Arab neighbourhood just outside the walls of the Old City which has drawn widespread condemnation from Palestinians and the international community.

Zionist Parallel Universe: Jerusalem municipality turned blind eye to illegal building in Silwan
State comptroller’s report finds that the Jerusalem municipality has been lax in enforcing building codes and reining in illegal construction in Silwan.

Zionist Parallel Universe:  Illegal Arab construction ignored
Damning state comptroller’s report slams ongoing increase in number of illegal structures throughout east Jerusalem; since 2000, some 1,000 such homes are being constructed annually, report says.,7340,L-3969064,00.html

Secret Israeli Drill Simulates Riots by Arab Citizens, The Transfer Scenario, JONATHAN COOK
Israel secretly staged a training exercise last week to test its ability to quell any civil unrest that might result from a peace deal with the Palestinian Authority requiring the forcible transfer of many Arab citizens, the Israeli media has reported.  The drill was intended to evaluate the readiness of the civil defence units, police, army and prison service to contain large-scale riots by Israel’s Arab minority in response to such a deal.

Israeli security makes preparations to deport 1948 Palestinians
Israeli Internal Security Minister said security forces are gearing for all potential scenarios if a decision is passed to deport all Palestinians from 1948 occupied lands into the West Bank.

Bishops Warn About the Flight of Christians from the Middle East
Bishops meetings with a Vatican synod to discuss the immigration of Christians from the Middle East have blamed the Israeli-Palestinian conflict for spurring the exodus.

Activism/Solidarity/Boycott, Sanctions & Divestment

Nabi Saleh Protester Jamal Yassin to Remain in Jail Despite Lack of Evidence,  Joseph Dana
Jamal Sameeh Yassin from the village of Beit Rimma was arrested more than three months ago in connection with Nabi Saleh demonstrations. He remains in jail without any evidence being presented in his trial to date.  Yassin was arrested from his home on July 13th, 2010, during a military night raid on the village of Beit Rimma, north west of Ramallah. He was arrested on charges of stone-throwing during a demonstration against illegal settlement expansion into Palestinian lands in the village of Nabi Saleh.

10 Oct. ’10: Dark shadow hangs over conviction of Bil’in anti-barrier protest leader
Abdallah Abu Rahma, to be sentenced tomorrow, was convicted based on questionable testimonies by minors.  Tomorrow, the Ofer military court will pronounce the sentence of Abdallah Abu Rahma, a prominent activist in the struggle against the Separation Barrier in the West Bank village of Bil’in. Abu Rahma, who has been under arrest since December 2009, was convicted of inciting demonstrators to throw stones and of organizing and participating in an illegal demonstration, according to Military Order 101 of 1967 that the army recently reinstated. Abu Rahma was acquitted of the charges of stone throwing and possession of arms. The latter charge pertained to used tear gas canisters that Abu Rahma kept in his home to illustrate the measures employed by the army against demonstrators

The legacy of Abdullah Abu Rahmeh and other human rights defenders
Oct 13, 2010– The Occupation has increased its violent and systematic campaign against the popular resistance and the grassroots activists, using several brutal methods which attempt to stop their actions.

Egypt grants passage to Gaza convoy
Viva Palestina aid convoy has been given the green light to sail to the port of Al-Arish and cross the border into Gaza.

Lifeline organizers: We will sail to Arish next Friday
Organizers of the lifeline 5 aid convoy to the Gaza Strip would not stay for long in the Syrian port of Latakia and would set sail to Al-Arish in Egypt next Friday.

President Obama: Negotiate on the Basis of Human Rights, International Law, and UN Resolutions
The Obama Administration reconvened under its auspices direct Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations on September 2.  However, the United States is not insisting on any terms of references for the negotiations, meaning that they are likely to result in similar failed negotiating efforts.  Sign the petition below to President Obama letting him know that for Israeli-Palestinian negotiations to be successful, they must be based on human rights, international law, and UN resolutions.

Join the Anti-Apartheid Media Marathon to help put a stop to illegal practices of the Occupation
Oct 14, 2010– To mark this year’s Week against the Apartheid Wall from 9 – 16 November, Palestinian and international activists will again mobilize in the streets and organize a series of events across the globe. This mobilization on the ground will be complemented by a fast paced 48 hour media marathon on 12 and 13 November. We call on media to join 48 hours non-stop coverage!

London’s Jazza Sings in Tune with Palestine, Mamoon Alabbasi – London
London’s ‘Jazza Music Festival’ kicked off Tuesday with a number of artists performing free of charge to help raise aid for the occupied Palestinian territories and highlight their plight. The event offered a mix of music genres that crossed both cultural as well as generational divides, where a diverse audience enjoyed tunes from classic Arabic oud to a touch of contemporary Palestinian hip-hop passing through styles of jazz and into a melodic portrait of England’s north east.

#BDS: Green Party Candidates Urge Divestment from Israel
October 13, 2010 — Julia Willebrand, Green Party candidate for NY State Comptroller, said that if elected, she will use her position to divest the Common Retirement Fund from Israel until such time as the government of Israel complies with international law and the human rights of Palestinians.

#BDS: An Open Letter to Boycott Opponents from Olympia BDS
As community members and peace activists, we are proud that the Olympia Food Co-op has joined a rapidly growing global movement for social justice in a conflict for which we are all complicit. It is an honor to stand with Desmond Tutu and with prominent Palestinian and Israeli activists who are risking their lives to create a just peace.

Siege (Gaza & West Bank)/Rights Violations/Restriction of Movement
Weekly Report On Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (07– 13 October 2010)

Israel’s denial of family reunification increases Palestinians’ suffering
GAZA, Oct. 13 (Xinhua) — Having been separated for 17 years from her twin sister, Hayam Shamalakh who was only 19 when she settled in Gaza after the Oslo peace accords were signed in 1993 has been appealing to the Israeli government for family unification permits.  Hayam managed to study physiotherapy in Gaza and always hoped to visit her twin sister Amany who had moved from Egypt to Denmark. Her family, living in Diaspora since 1967, came to Gaza in 1993 and decided to illegally stay here without having Palestinian ID cards.

Violence (past and present)

Israeli Settlers Attempt to Abduct a Child in Hebron
Palestinian security sources reported to Palestine News Agency, WAFA, that a group of Israeli settlers in Hebron, on Wendesday night, attempted to abduct a child.

3 beaten, 1 detained in Hebron
Oct 14, 2010– HEBRON (Ma’an) — A Palestinian security source said three Palestinians were beaten by Israeli forces overnight Monday in the At-Tuwani village in the southern Hebron district.

Teen injured by Israeli fire near Gaza border
GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — Israeli forces on Thursday shot at a Gaza teenager collecting rubble near the Strip’s border with Israel, medics said.  Yahia Mahmud Az-Za’aneen, from Beit Hanoun in northern Gaza, was transferred to the Kamal Odwan Hospital with moderate injuries to his right leg. Medics said he was collecting aggregates near the Erez crossing.

Ten years later, no justice for October 2000 killings
Ten years since 13 Palestinian citizens of Israel were killed by the Israeli police force during nonviolent demonstrations at the outset of the second Palestinian intifada, Palestinians in Israel fear the worst is yet to come. Jillian Kestler-D’Amours reports for The Electronic Intifada.


Military court reverses minor’s release
An Israeli military court reversed Wednesday a ruling granting the release of a 12-year-old last week, keeping him in detention until legal procedures are complete, his lawyer said.

Israeli Army Detains Journalists Helping with Harvest
Israeli army detained, on Thursday afternoon, a number of journalists who participated as volunteers in harvesrting olives. Their work was organized by the Palestine Mininstry of Information in Kafir Kadom, near Qalqilia.

Israeli forces detain journalists in Nablus
NABLUS (Ma’an) — Israeli forces on Thursday detained a group of journalists and government employees who were helping to harvest olives in a Nablus village, a Palestinian Authority ministry said.  The PA Information Ministry organized a volunteering day for approximately 40 journalists and 20 ministry employees to help villagers in Kafr Qaddum pick olives. A ministry statement said Israeli forces surrounded the volunteers and threatened to shoot them if they moved.

Israeli Troops Arrest 16 Palestinians During Overnight And Morning Invasions
Bethlehem – PNN – Sixteen Palestinian civilians were arrested by Israeli soldiers during overnight and morning invasions in West Bank communities in Thursday.   65-year-old Palestinian farmer, As’ad Mishaqi, was arrested by Israeli troops while he was working on his land in Al Jadedah village near Jenin in the northern West Bank. Troops also searched and ransacked homes in three nearby villages on Thursday morning.  Also this morning Israeli soldiers invaded the southern West Bank city of Bethlehem and searched homes in Duheisha refugee camp. Israeli forces also invaded the city of Tubas and nearby villages, arresting two men before leaving.  In all, troops arrested 13 civilians during the overnight raids and 12 civilians in the morning.

Protest in Bethlehem to stand by detainees
Demonstrators held a sit-in Thursday in front of the Nativity Church in Bethlehem to protest the torture of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails, organized by the local detainees’ center., Head of the center Abdul Fattah Khalil welcomed supporters who joined the sit-in, and called for the release of all political prisoners.


Poll: 45% Want Abbas to Dissolve PA    Thursday, 14 October 2010 09:49
Ramallah – A public opinion poll conducted by the independent Palestinian news agency Sama showed that 45% of Palestinians believe that President Mahmoud Abbas should dissolve the Palestinian National Authority (PA) in response to Israel’s decision to continue settlement building in the occupied West Bank.  30% of the poll respondents want President Abbas to resign while 25% see that he should continue on as leader of the Palestinian Authority but boycott talks with Israel.  Over 3400 have participated in the one-week survey.

PLO official’s recognition of Israel as Jewish state angers Palestinians
RAMALLAH, Oct. 13 (Xinhua) — Yasser Abed Rabbo, a Palestine Liberation Organization’s (PLO) official’s Wednesday statement over the Palestinians’ readiness to recognize Israel as a Jewish state outraged the Palestinians.  Abbed Rabbo was quoted by the Israeli Ha’artez Daily as saying that the Palestinians would be ready to recognize Israel as a Jewish state if Israel withdraw completely from the Palestinian territories occupied in 1967, including east Jerusalem.

Gaza government demands Abed Rabbo’s resignation
GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — The Gaza government called on Thursday for the immediate resignation of a PLO official who was quoted in the press as agreeing to a conditional recognition of Israel as a Jewish state.  Secretary-General Yasser Abed Rabbo was quoted in the Israeli daily Haaretz as saying the PLO would recognize Israel “according to the formulation of the government within the hour” if Israel agreed to 1967 borders.


IFJ condemns Hamas for attacks on press
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — The International Federation of Journalists on Wednesday condemned Hamas’ Internal Security department, which closed down the office of the Palestinian Journalists’ Syndicate in Gaza.  In a statement, the IFJ accused Hamas of “inexcusable intrusion” in the internal affairs of Palestinian journalists.

West Bank firms encounter new Hamas laws in Gaza
RAMALLAH, West Bank, Oct 14 (Reuters) – Palestinian firms in the West Bank say the Hamas group which governs the Gaza Strip is planning new business regulations that will deepen an economic and political chasm between the territories. In the last few months, West Bank-based firms have begun to rediscover the market in the Gaza Strip, home to a third of the Palestinian population, as Israel has eased restrictions on goods allowed into the territory.

Political Developments

Only smart thing they’ve done which they now deny doing…. Palestinian negotiator denies official request for border map of Israel
RAMALLAH, Oct. 13 (Xinhua) — Palestinian negotiator Nabil Shaath on Wednesday denied that the Palestinian leadership had officially requested from the United States and Israel a map that draws the borders of the state of Israel.  Shaath, who is also a member of President Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah party central committee, told Xinhua that “it is not true that we made the request” in response to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s offer to extend the settlement freeze moratorium for recognizing Israel as a Jewish state.  Earlier Israeli media reports quoted Yasser Abed Rabbo, the official in Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), as saying that he was officially authorized to apply to the U.S. and Israel and request a map for Israel.

Fatah: Netanyahu demand ‘new obstacle’ to talks
RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Fatah described Israeli premier Benjamin Netanyahu’s demand that the Palestinian Authority recognize Israel as Jewish state for the extension of a moratorium on West Bank settlement construction as a “new obstacle in reviving negotiations,” on Monday.  Party spokesman Ahmad Assaf said the condition “proves false claims by the Israeli government on the natural expansion of settlements, which it has used to resume settlement activity.”  Assaf said he “if this is the price the Netanyahu government demands for a settlement freeze, then what will be the price for the removal of all settlements on Palestinian territories or the withdrawal from East Jerusalem?”

Fatah leader says peace process has failed
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Fatah Central Committee member Mahmoud Al-Aloul affirmed Wednesday that the Ramallah leadership has reached a conclusion that the political process based on two states has failed.  Meeting with Fatah officials in Bethlehem, Al-Aloul said the Palestinian side had exerted all possible efforts to reach an agreement with Israel, but Israel’s “racist policies” have eliminated the possibility of reaching an agreement.

PLO official: We reject Jewish state proposal
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — A PLO official said Wednesday that the Ramallah-based body’s position toward recognizing Israel as a Jewish state is clear and not going to happen.  Executive Committee member Wasel Abu Yusuf told Ma’an that such a move would undermine the Palestinian right of return.  On Monday, Israeli premier Benjamin Netanyahu asked the Palestinian Authority to recognize Israel as a Jewish state in exchange for a settlement freeze extension, which was rejected.

Gaza minister: Army chief seeks more destructive war
GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — Israeli chief of staff Gabi Ashkenazi’s threats to wage a “short and destructive” war on the Gaza Strip reflects his country’s intention to commit more “massacres” against Palestinians, the interior minister in Gaza said Wednesday.  “Ashkenazi is threatening to wage a short coming war to claim more lives of our people,” Hammad said during a tour of schools west of Gaza City. He was accompanied by senior figures of the ministry including spokesman Ihab Al-Ghussein.

War Crimes

ICC urged to act over flotilla raid
Lawyers of the victims of Israeli raid on Gaza-bound aid flotilla present The Hague-based court evidence over incident.

Arabs snub Turkel Committee hearing
Two Israeli Arabs slated to testify before panel probing flotilla raid fail to appear despite subpoena.,7340,L-3969075,00.html

Human rights organizations to Turkel Commission: Defense of human rights is not political
Some of the committee members focused on the political aspects of the closure, however Gisha’s representative clarified that her testimony would concern the legality of the closure and its ramifications.

Other News

Finnish foreign minister pays unusual visit to Gaza
Finland’s Alexander Stubb paid a several-hour visit to Gaza Thursday, the first European foreign minister to do so via Israel in 22 months., Adnan Abu Hasna, a spokesman of the United Nations Relief and Work Agency in the Far East (UNRWA), which hosted Stubb, told reporters he arrived from Israel and crossed into Gaza through the Israeli- controlled Erez crossing., Since Israel’s three-week war with Hamas in the winter of 2008- 2009, only selected officials – including EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton and United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon – have visited Gaza via Israel.

Woman fighting ‘kosher’ bus lines harassed over the phone
Volunteer coordinator for movement campaigning against ‘haredi coercion’ in Jerusalem says cursed by people ‘with heavy Yiddish accent’.,7340,L-3969297,00.html


Mahmoud Darwish street inaugurated in Jericho
Washington – In honor of Jericho’s 10,000th anniversary, French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner and Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad unveiled Mahmoud Darwish Street on Monday, Ma’an News Agency reported Wednesday.

Book review: diary from pre-Nakba Palestine
A Young Palestinian’s Diary 1941-1945: The Life of Sami ‘Amr is an interesting departure from the growing number of Palestinian memoirs published in English. Asa Winstanley reviews for The Electronic Intifada.

‘Budrus’ on Charlie Rose, and the Israel lobby on ‘the Good Wife’, Andrea Whitmore
I’ve taken to watching Charlie Rose online since it comes on too late here in Kansas City for me to stay awake, and I hate to miss it. Night before last (October 11), the same night that Andrew Sullivan appeared, Charlie also interviewed Brazilian filmmaker Julia Bacha and Jordan’s Queen Noor about the documentary Budrus. Rose opened the segment with a trailer for the film and asked entirely respectful questions. Julia Bacha made sure to say that people are always asking about the Palestinian Gandhi, so she answers that there have always been peaceful protests on the ground, but that the mainstream media gives “very little coverage of civil society and what Palestinians and Israelis are doing together” in the struggle for justice.  It’s well worth watching.  Queen Noor and filmmaker Bacha hope for wide exposure for Budrus following last Friday’s opening in New York. The interview is at

Analysis/Opinion/Human Interest

Palestinians consider Mideast talks trump card: declaring statehood (The Christian Science Monitor)
The Christian Science Monitor – Could the Palestinians get the attention of the Israelis and the international communitys support by leapfrogging negotiations and simply declaring a state?*

Groundwork Laid for Media Narrative of Failed Peace Talks: It’s the Palestinians’ Fault, Alex Kane
With direct “peace talks” between the Palestinian Authority and the Israeli government headed nowhere fast after the Netanyahu government let the so-called “settlement freeze” lapse, the groundwork for the media narrative on who to blame if the “peace talks” officially break off is being laid.  Predictably, it will be, and already is, a narrative of Palestinian rejectionism versus Israeli generosity.

Palestine liberation recalls anti-apartheid tactics, responsibilities and controversies
On a full-day drive through the Jordan Valley late last month, we skirted the earth’s oldest city and the lowest inhabited point, 400 meters below sea level. For 10,000 years, people have lived along the river separating the present-day West Bank and Jordan.  Since 1967 the river has been augmented by Palestinian blood, sweat and tears, ending in the Dead Sea, from which no water flows out, it only evaporates. Conditions degenerated during Israel’s land-grab, when from a peak of more than 300,000 people living on the west side of the river, displacements shoved Palestinian refugees across to Jordan and other parts of the West Bank. The valley has fewer than 60,000 Palestinians today.

PA’s challenge to Israel: Set your borders, Ira Glunts
The Palestinian Authority (PA) has offered to recognize Israel “by whatever name it applies to itself in accordance with international law” in exchange for “a map of the borders of the state of Israel which they want us to recognize.” This according to senior Palestinian official,Yasser Abed Rabbo, in an interview with Agence France-Presse (AFP).

Boston University’s Islamophobic Pro-Israeli Conference, Steve Lendman
A personal note. I grew up in Boston from the mid-1930s – mid-1950s through college. Then after military service and summer courses at BU, out-of-town grad school followed in the fall.  It was a different time, good and bad. Eisenhower was still president. Unemployment was low. Anyone wanting work found it. Most years the economy grew during a post-WW II expansion. Inflation was low. The average new car cost $1,500, a typical home under $10,000. College was affordable. Harvard’s 1952 full year tuition was $600. Four years later it was $1,000 – for a full, two-semester year. During the period, anyone could attend evenings at $5 a course and get a Harvard degree for about $175, the way my mother did it, graduating with me in the same class, the first ever mother and son to do it.

Ali Abuninah: Let the Sun Shine In: Israel lobby tries to censor my appearance at University of New Mexico
It has come to my attention that the Jewish Federation of New Mexico and Hillel at the University of New Mexico are actively trying to censor my lecture at the University of New Mexico next month by writing to departments and professors who may co-sponsor it as they co-sponsor countless other educational events on campus. Below is a copy of a letter that has been sent to departments, signed by Sam Sokolove, Executive Director of the Jewish Federation of New Mexico and Sara Koplik, Director of Hillel at the University of New Mexico.

The Smell of Apartheid: Israel`s Citizenship Law
Yacov Ben Efrat – Challenge – In fact, behind this amendment there is a hidden message regarding a debate sparked some five years ago between representatives of the Arab population and the state. The conflict began when former Knesset member Azmi Bishara set up a party under the slogan “A state for all its citizens”, which opened the way for Arab parties and institutions to challenge the state and expose the structural contradiction in its self-definition as “Jewish and democratic.” This philosophical clash between the Arab minority and the state served to oil the wheels of Avigdor Lieberman, today Israel’s foreign minister, whose party won 15 seats in the last general elections with its slogan “No citizenship without loyalty.”

Can you support the Palestinians when you live on their stolen land?, Joseph Glatzer
Every time I would tell my girlfriend (she’s Palestinian) about a famous Israeli activist or writer or she would ask why they still call themselves Israeli. She tells me things like, “See. They still call themselves Israeli. When they use that word they are automatically erasing Palestine.”  I always used to argue with her over that and try to convince her that these Israelis are good people who genuinely care and want to do something. But, for the first time I think she’s right.  If you are an Israeli, even if you disagree with your government’s treatment of the Palestinians, you’re still enjoying the sweet life of privilege. You’ll still be enjoying the privileges Palestinians aren’t able to even though it’s actually their land.

From Apartheid South Africa to Palestine, PATRICK BOND
On a full-day drive through the Jordan Valley late last month, we skirted the earth’s oldest city and the lowest inhabited point, 400 meters below sea level. For 10,000 years, people have lived along the river separating the present-day West Bank and Jordan.  Since 1967 the river has been augmented by Palestinian blood, sweat and tears, ending in the Dead Sea, from which no water flows out, it only evaporates. Conditions degenerated during Israel’s land-grab, when from a peak of more than 300,000 people living on the west side of the river, displacements shoved Palestinian refugees across to Jordan and other parts of the West Bank. The valley has fewer than 60,000 Palestinians today.

A Close Look at the Pro-Israeli Lobbies inside Britain, Ershad Abubacker
The US is considered by many as the backbone of Israel and the mother of many evils in Middle East. With the presence of various pro-Israeli lobbies and pressure groups rallying around the corridors of power in Washington to press their case, they have been highly successful not only in setting the agenda in favour of Israel, but also makes sure that the Palestine voice is not heard. Many believe that this is a typical phenomenon in Washington and hence an internal issue of the United States. But the pro-Israeli lobbies are a decisive factor in most European countries and its influence is felt manifold in Britain.

The Main Question that Israel Misses,  George S. Hishmeh – Washington, D.C.
It is generally recognized that the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), now a 100,000-member pro-Israeli lobbying group, has had an impressive record since the fifties in advocating pro-Israel policies mostly to Congress. But of late several key officials, all American Jews in sensitive government positions, have outpaced this lobbying group established in 1950.

The Zionist System Shows its True Face, Michael Khaled for MIFTAH
Recent headlines and editorials have been sounding the alarm on a new Israeli policy requiring non-Jewish immigrants to Israel to swear allegiance to a “Jewish and democratic” state. Commentators and academics around the world are calling the just-approved measure fascist and some even compare it to racist laws in Europe that lead up to the Holocaust. Within Israel, “liberal” Zionists are calling this a turning point at which Israel begins an inexorable march away from democracy. Though it is surely the most blatantly racist and discriminatory policy to come out of the Knesset, it is far from the first.  Yesterday I spent the afternoon wading through the bureaucratic labyrinth laid out by the Israeli Interior Ministry. Bouncing from office to office, building to building, on a strangely-hot October day, I had official after official tell me I was in the wrong place and I had to go talk to someone else. But the most foreboding aspect of the whole process was filling out the application itself before I arrived.

A Question for the British Foreign Secretary, Stuart Littlewood – London
‘Mr Hague, is it not your responsibility to keep seaways open?’  ‘The unbroken thread of Conservative Party support for Israel that has run for nearly a century from the Balfour Declaration to the present day will continue. Although it will no doubt often be tested in the years ahead, it will remain constant, unbroken, and undiminished by the passage of time.’ No prize for guessing which leading politician uttered these words.

Judt’s beautiful bloody mind, Philip Weiss
Last night the family of Tony Judt held a memorial service at NYU for the historian, who died at 62 in August, and I got a sense of Judt’s spirit from the movie excerpts that his family had picked out to play: scenes of class humiliation and lawlessness from The Bicycle Thief and 400 Blows, and the heroic climactic anti-fascist endings of Casablanca and Grand Illusion. Judt grew up humbly and got a lot of pleasure from life. He knew the difference between fighting over ideas in print and his successful social relationships. Was the world-class intellectual visible in his youth at Cambridge? No, said his cousin and classmate Jonathan Goldberg, he was into music and girls, and let that give hope to the rest of us. The family also showed Orson Welles’s cuckoo clock speech from the Third Man, and the Sanity Clause scene from Night at the Opera, and two Charlie Chaplin bits. Judt seems to have prized stoical humor over almost any other response to ill fortune. When Goldberg asked if he was going to turn religious after his diagnosis with a dread disease, ALS, he said it was too late; if he was wrong about god, he wasn’t going to vex the creator further by adding hypocrisy to his list of offenses.

Other Analysis and Op-ed

Dear Feds: End the Al-Arian Travesty of Justice
One of the most Kafkaesque post-9/11 cases is still going on. A hearing this Friday could determine whether the latest stage of the government’s legal campaign against him be dismissed or end in re-trial. The federal government has Dr. Sami Al-Arian under house arrest currently, stemming from an embarrassing, failed prosecution based on terrorism charges.

Arab League still struggles for credibility
Although the Arab League was formed in the aftermath of the League of Nations, its founding fathers vowed to avoid that world body’s mistakes. However, the weakness of Arab leaders in the face of conflicts in Kuwait, Palestine and Iraq and the failure to honor funding or political commitments suggest that unless the Arabs reform, their grouping faces an ignominious demise similar to that of the League of Nations. – Sami Moubayed (Oct 14, ’10)


Nasrallah says Iran no threat to region
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Hezbollah secretary-general Hassan Nasrallah said Wednesday that Iran is not a threat to the Arab world.  At an event honoring Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who arrived in Beirut Wednesday, Nasrallah insisted that Islam is a blessing and the Muslim world should “make use of it.”

Report: Iranian president extends Lebanon visit
BEIRUT (Ma’an) — Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has extended his visit to Lebanon until Friday to meet with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the As-Safir newspaper reported Wednesday.  As Safir’s report was not repeated in any other dailies in Lebanon, and the paper is known to be closely linked to Iran and Syria, the Lebanese news agency Ya Libnan reported.  “A Lebanese-Iranian-Turkish meeting is expected to take place in Beirut to discuss the Special Tribunal for Lebanon’s [pending] indictment,” As-Safir sources sources were quoted as saying.

Ahmadinejad arrives to fanfare of rose petals in Beirut’s southern suburbs
BEIRUT: President Ahmadinejad ascends the stage to the cheers of tens of thousands, a swell of noise shuddering off surrounding high rises. Every square inch of Dahiyeh’s dust-filled square is crammed with supporters.

Reports of Iranian and Aljazeera TV of Ahmadinejad trip to Lebanon : Video

Nasrallah to Ahmadinejad: ‘You are strong support for opposition’
Hezbollah Secretary General Hassan Nasrallah welcomed Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in a recorded speech during a Hezbollah general assembly held in honor of the Iranian leader’s visit to Lebanon.,7340,L-3969128,00.html

U.S. lawmakers: Lebanon’s embrace of Ahmadinejad may affect military aid
U.S. representatives renew opposition to transfer of $100 million in U.S. assistance to Lebanon in wake of visit by Iran President, Lebanese daily reports.

‘Ahmadinejad visit proves Lebanon has joined axis of extreme nations’
Top Israeli official says Iranian President visits Lebanon like a ‘commander inspecting his troops.’

Far-right MK: Assassinating Ahmadinejad today is like assassinating Hitler in 1939
Aryeh Eldad of National Union says Israel should seize the opportunity to kill Ahmadinejad while he is visiting Lebanon.

White House engaging in Sectarianism: Ahmadinejad visit exposes Hezbollah values (AFP)
AFP – The White House said on Wednesday that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s “provocative” visit to Beirut proved that Hezbollah cared more about Iran than the people of Lebanon.*

Police racism in Lebanon
Dr. AbdelMeneem is a Sudanese community leader and refugee in Lebanon for the past 23 years+. He went on huger strike for 16 days in Sep/ Oct 2010 to demand an end to racist policies and arbitrary detention against Sudanese people and other marginalized communities in Lebanon. Throughout those 16 days, he was visited daily and hourly by certain security forces who were harassing him to stop his hunger strike and leave the strike place. Harassment and annoyances extended to visitors of the Dr. too. This is only a portion of what is happening to refugees, migrant workers, asylum seekers and other vulnerable communities.–2Yo

For Israel “war is the continuation of national suicide by other means”
I have recently referred to the Israeli nuclear weapons as “useless” and that Hezbollah would eventually be in a position to force a solution on Israel. I was then asked the following question:  Why wouldn’t Israel use nukes? Because it would guarantee a nuclear counter-response in the future? Because they wouldn’t be effective against spread out missile launchers? Also, I’d like to hear your thoughts on how a future war with Hizballah, Israel, Syria and Iran might play out? How could Hizballah get to a position in which it could “force a solution”?

Inside Story – Will Ahmadinejad use or support Lebanon?
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Iran’s president, is in Lebanon for his first official state visit. But why is he visiting now? Is it a visit to express support to Lebanon or a celebration of rising influence there? And why is the West so concerned?

Master and Pupil, Qifa Nabki
That’s right. Such is the mystique of Hizbullah in Lebanon that it wouldn’t be completely outlandish for someone to claim that the Iranian president’s rise was facilitated by the influence of his Lebanese allies. Nasrallah, after all, was a regional rock star while Ahmadinejad was revoking parking tickets as mayor of Tehran. (This was the gist of the discussion that followed, between me and Abbas).

Centuries-old ties anchor Ahmadinejad tour of south Lebanon
The Lebanese villages Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is visiting today were once home to Shiite scholars who shaped Iran’s emergence as a Shiite nation.


Roadside bomb in Baghdad kills 4, wounds 6 (AP)
AP – Iraqi officials say a roadside bomb has hit a senior politician’s convoy, killing four people and wounding six others, including the politician.*

Wednesday: 24 Iraqis, 7 Iranians Wounded
At least 24 Iraqis were wounded in the latest violence. No deaths were reported today, but one attack also left seven Iranians injured. Meanwhile, a Dutchman of Iraqi decent, who was found guilty of planning attacks against U.S. soldiers, had his jail sentence cut short in the Netherlands.

Return to Baghdad: Sunnis Warn of a Revived Insurgency ( – A TIME reporter meets two old Sunni contacts and discovers the bitterness that remains.*

Iraq: Treatment of Sunnis including those who or their families were in the Ba ath party

Iraqi police seize gang specialized in smuggling of girls
Iraqi police have apprehended a gang specialized in the smuggling of girls and selling them abroad.  The gang was based in the southern Province of Basra and most of the girls who had been smuggled and sold belonged to impoverished families in the city of Basra, the provincial city.  Smuggling of girls is a booming business in Iraq and the crime is as rampant as the smuggling of narcotics, antiquities and weapons that has spread widely in the country since the 2003-U.S. invasion.  “This (smuggling of girls) is a phenomenon that is totally strange and unacceptable in a traditional society like Iraq,” a security officer, who refused to be named, said.  He said this was not the only gang the policed had seized. “The gangs are after small girls. They forge their documents and facilitate their travel abroad.”\2010-10-14\kurd.htm

Breast cancer cases in Iraq in mounting numbers
Iraq’s General Health Ministry affirmed that the percentage of breast cancer cases in Iraq is still high despite awareness campaigns. For more details, click on play movie.

Other Mideast/World News

Chile miners’ rescue accomplished
All 33 workers trapped for more than two months in a collapsed mine have been lifted to safety.

Chilean Miners Rescue: This is a Rare Moment of Global Joy
Alas, the world is more often united in grief or horror by modern mass media than it is by joy or a quiet smile of satisfaction on the way to work. So today provides a rare sense of shared enjoyment. The 33 Chilean miners we feared were lost are being saved after all.

Report: Afghans allege abuse at secret US jail
Report alleges abuse of Afghan detainees at secret US detention center A report issued Thursday by a U.S. foundation details allegations of detainee abuse — some as recent as this year — from Afghans who say they were held at a secret detention center inside the main American military base in Afghanistan.

Karzai bid to placate angry Afghans
Afghan president meets villagers in Laghman province after civilians were killed in Nato raid last month.

US Kills 9 People in Pakistan
According to local media reports and sources in North Waziristan, the U.S. drones fired six missiles at a residential area in the village of Lataka in the Datta Khel area of North Waziristan which borders Afghanistan.

Ex-top soldier: Iraq war ‘fiasco’ due to Rumsfeld’s ‘lies’
The US had no reason to invade Iraq in 2003, and only did so because of “a series of lies” told to the American people by the Bush administration, says Gen. Hugh Shelton, who served for four years as the US’s top military officer.  Shelton, who was the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff from 1997 to 2001, makes the comment in Without Hesitation: The Odyssey of an American Warrior, a soon-to-be-published memoir reviewed at Foreign Policy by Thomas E. Ricks.

In new memoir, Condoleezza Rice cites personal relationship with the Netanyahus
In the first of two planned volumes, ex-U.S. secretary of state describes her path to the upper echelons of the American administration while avoiding thorny issues like the Iraq war.

Carl Paladino Loses Support From New York Rabbi After Apologizing For Anti-Gay Comments
NEW YORK — An Orthodox rabbi says he’s withdrawing his endorsement of New York gubernatorial candidate Carl Paladino because the Republican apologized for comments he made about gays.  Rabbi Yehuda Levin, who represents an umbrella organization of ultra-Orthodox clerics, accused Paladino on Wednesday of bowing to political pressure when he apologized for a speech in which he said children shouldn’t be “brainwashed” into thinking homosexuality is acceptable.

South Carolina mosque defaced with bacon slices
The FBI should investigate the defacement of a South Carolina mosque as a hate crime, according to the advocacy group Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR). On Sunday afternoon, someone spelled out “PIG CHUMP” using slices of bacon on a brick walkway leading up to the Florence Islamic Center.

Behind Egypt’s Deep Red Lines
For six weeks, Egypt has been sitting on top of a sectarian volcano. Protesters, men and women, have been exiting mosques following prayers almost every single Friday since the beginning of September to demand the “release” of Camillia Shehata, a Coptic priest’s wife who they believe has converted to Islam and is now incarcerated by the Coptic Orthodox Church…..

Chinese authorities must reveal whereabouts of wife of peace prize winner
Liu Xia, the wife of 2010 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Liu Xiaobo, is reported to have been detained by police and forced to leave Beijing to visit her husband in prison in Liao Ning province. The Chinese authorities must immediately disclose the whereabouts of Liu Xia, the wife of 2010 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Liu Xiaobo, Amnesty International said on Monday. Amid reports that she has been detained by police and forced to leave Beijing to visit her husband in Jinzhou in Liao Ning province, where he is imprisoned by the authorities, Catherine Baber Deputy Amnesty International deputy director of Asia Pacific said.

Brooklyn-Jenin: ‘The Messiah will only come the day after his arrival.’

Oct 14, 2010

Udi Aloni 

Jenin State of Emergency: Subject

I finished off my last post with a heartfelt cry to the residents of the Occupation Matrix to help Mustafa get to New York, for a film festival which could dramatically promote him, and help establish a cinema center for young Palestinians at the Jenin refugee camp.

And indeed, the best of the Matrix rose to the challenge, and two days after publication Ynet editors received a response from the Israeli army saying that Mustafa’s request to enter Jerusalem and present himself for the interview at the American embassy [sic. Wasn’t that the consulate? Having an embassy in Jerusalem would be big news.] on the 14th of the month. The permit had been transmitted to the Palestinian side of the Jenin liaison office.

But wait. That’s not the end of the story. The embassy interview was scheduled for 10 a.m., on the 15th. However, Mustafa received the longed-for permit the next day. It arrived somewhere between the 14th and the 16th, depending on who tells the story. Was it a clerk on the Israeli side, who went home early due to a head-cold? Or was it a Palestinian clerk, who didn’t think the mail was interesting enough to be opened until the next day, so why bother? We’ll never know.

A willingness was expressed for him to be permitted to enter Jerusalem for another interview scheduled for him at the consulate, on September 22nd. Only then everyone found out, to their distress, that it was the eve of a holiday, and a full closure had been imposed on the Occupied Territories. Indeed, even the best of people were not able to help against an act of God. The consulate could not offer another interview appointment in the time-frame preceding the New York Film Festival, which seemed to be fading out of reality.

In this story there was actual, true willingness on the part of the Israeli army to help Mustafa come to America (because we are all united by a hidden desire to come to one America or the other) – but all I could think of was Kafka’s immortal phrase, “The Messiah will only come the day after his arrival.” We could not find a better example to demonstrate that the iniquities of the occupation lie in the occupation itself, not in the individuals running it.

“Why the hell is it clear to everyone that a Palestinian refugee who lives under allegedly Palestinian rule cannot arrive at the U.S. embassy [consulate?] to ask for a visa only because the Jews are celebrating the festival of Sukkot, which was set up in the first place to remind the world of the fragility of the life of the refugee and the homeless?” wonders Mustafa. And all of the cannons an all of the soldiers, and all of the great and all of the wise stood, pale, and could not find the answer.

In any event, there are some angels in New York who believe that what happens in the Jenin theater of liberty is too important to leave it to the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, so they are pulling strings a the U.S. embassy in Amman. Mustafa is on his way to Jordan at the moment. Maybe he will get the longed-for visa there.

So why, in fact, don’t the Americans – with all the noise they make about actually caring about the Palestinians – not open a consulate at a location where the rights-deprived subjects of your client state can get to?

We’re all keeping our fingers crossed for Mustafa. Meanwhile you can get to know him a bit better. I asked my students to describe internal family conflict in six minutes. Mustafa chose to show the meaning of a pluralist family (video above). I’m not talking about a middle-class liberal family but rather, a refugee couple who fought to raise children in Palestine – his father is a devout Muslim and his mother, a courageous fighter for women’s rights. This is the stuff he is made of: the ability to contain contrasts and allow them to coexist respectfully under a single roof.

Brooklyn State of Emergency: Citizen

An aging Italian crooner stood on a little stage on Elizabeth Street, his hair dyed and his suit fancy. He sang New York, New York to an excited audience: “If I can make it there/I can make it anywhere.”

The restaurants served cannelloni and meat balls, and the speakers echoed with the scratchy voice of an Italian entertainer. “It’s true the ‘Little Italy’ has been made even littler because of the Chinese occupier,” he opines, “but I’m only leaving when the Chinese can make ravioli like my mama did.”

He’s still talking and an orchestra of wind instruments started playing the music from the Godfather, and New York suddenly felt like an exciting, nostalgic movie about New York. The rain started dripping down, an umbrella was opened up against it, a hand reaches out to hail a yellow taxi. What better to end a scene. But the plot thickens, as plots do.

The rain gets stronger. I, having recently had surgery to remove kidney stones, had to urinate – and the taxi wasn’t coming. Anyone who has ever had kidney stones knows that you have drink and dispose of copious quantities of water. I manage to find a hidden corner for a municipal emergency, cast a bashful glance to make sure no living soul is around, and under a not-too-heavy New York rain I suddenly change from respected citizen to fragile pisser against the wall.

As soon as the zipper was open two evil-doers appeared, looking like policemen and armed from head to toe, pointing a mighty lamp at me and my member. In mythological terms, I felt like the city dog marking New York as his home territory, while the country dog steps up to speak visit him. But New York, in its usual way, insists on showing him that it belongs to no person, and gave me a sign once and for all to let me know who is the master in our years-long love-hate relationship.

I apologized with a heavy Israeli accent and explained that I had never committed a crime and that I’d never do it again. In response, they threatened that if I keep resisting they would arrest me by force. I immediately switched to a Jewish Brooklyn accent, and said, and pleaded with the humility of a Satmer Hasid: “don’t you see that I’m begging, not resisting?” I felt just like John Turturro in Miller’s Crossing, pleading for his life before being executed, waving his hands in Jewish hand motions, and immediately felt like a victim of secret anti-Semitism. I didn’t even have time to tell them about the kidney stones.

And I want to ask: what would happen if I’d have found myself in jail for 48 hours, like a friend of mine did, who didn’t have ID when pissing in public? Would I have confessed to having committed some murder I had never committed, to a police informer impersonating a prison rapist? If only I could have held it in like an adult, as the cop noted contemptuously, when he handed me the court summons.

The Democratic Dictatorship

“An emergency” is defined by the Western democracy as a situation where the sovereign regime, out of concern for maintaining the liberties and rights of the individuals composing it, denies the freedom of other individuals, or even of its own individuals.

Several intellectuals currently claim that “emergency” is not the extraordinary that proves the ordinary but that it is, rather, the essence of the Western democracy.

Italian philosopher Giorgio Agamben argues, for instance, that democracy as we know it is in a constant state of emergency, where the rights of some of its residents – or in fact, of all of its residents – are always held back.

It is odd that it is Western democracy, which ascribes to itself a theory of political realism and enlightenment, ideologically functions exactly like a religious theology of “a messiah who will come someday in the future.”

What we call a democracy, nowadays, is in fact a dictatorial rule whose subjects-citizens cooperate with it voluntarily, via two false hopes which derive from religion. The first is that the person or community have been chosen by divine will. In other words, that the fury of the emergency state will skip over them and only hurt another subject (and preferably, one who is not a citizen); the other is, of course, the promise of the Utopian paradise of “the democracy that is yet to come.”

This article is from Udi Aloni’s Brooklyn-Jenin column he is writing for the Israeli website Ynet about his experience living between New York City and the Jenin refugee camp, where he is teaching a film production class. You can read the entire Brooklyn-Jenin series here. This article was translated by Dena Shunra.

Blogging for the enemy

Oct 14, 2010

Yonah Fredm 

The author has done a couple of earlier posts. First here, then here.   With this post I include my name and not just my nom de blog, wondering jew.   Weeks ago when I informed a right wing Israeli friend of mine that I had visited a West Bank settlement for a Shabbat, he commented that unlike the theatrical artists who were at that time boycotting the theater in Ariel, I apparently disagreed.  I demurred that my visit was exploratory rather than an advocacy of policy and offered that maybe the boycotters of Ariel were right.  He then asked, “If Ariel asked you to recite your old poetry at their theater would you refuse?”  

To which I answered, “No, I would ask ‘What time is the next bus?'”  I then added a reference to Amiri Baraka who when asked about sellling out had replied, “It remains to be seen how much they might offer.”   I was attracted to participating in this blog by the immediate unmoderated comments that allowed a free for all spontaneous discussion, but also the immediate gratification of the appearance of my nom de blog (first yonahred and then after the institution of some new mondoweiss policy- wondering jew) in the comments column.  Since my participation was primarily as heckler or disloyal opposition, there seemed nothing wrong with it. 

But now that editors have seen fit to invite me to post I need to come to terms with my participation.   I favor a two state solution, but as is amply demonstrated by the weighted term “demographic problem” and by the recent rightward turn of the Netanyahu-Lieberman government, my advocacy of a 2ss is vulnerable both as , insufficient to solve certain basic elements of the conflict and also vulnerable to the reality of the unlikelihood of a Palestinian- Israeli agreement. 

The purpose of this blog is to advocate some solution to the conflict that redresses all the wrongs the Palestinians have suffered, which on its face seems reasonable, unless one considers Jewish statehood to be a value and that the dangers involved in attempting to redress all the wrongs may ultimately involve by design or accident the loss of not only Jewish statehood, but also the loss of Jewish lives and the “exile” of many of the Jews currently living in Israel.   There is another question involved with this blog’s attitudes: its general attitude towards Jewish continuity. 

Although I am wifeless and childless at this late stage of my life (I am 55) I am uncle to 23, (without an evil eye), nieces and nephews, 12 of whom were birthed by my three modern Orthodox Zionist sisters and 11 of whom were fathered by my ultra Orthodox nonZionist brother.  Despite my lack of contribution to this plethora of “Be fruitful and multiply” my current residence in Israel and generally passive stance and attitude allows full participation in family celebrations and the general encouragement of continuity involved in those family celebrations.  

This blog’s advocacy of assimilation is “reasonable”: I understand the reason behind the desire to become part of the large American collective that is offered through intermarriage.  The idea of peace on earth established through the disappearance of nations, races and religions through intermarriage and assimilation is not foreign to me.  It seems slightly perverse that Jews would wish to be at the forefront of this movement given the recent physical attempt to wipe us off of this planet and also given the fact that most of the planet’s humans are not interested in the disappearance of their collective groups, Its advocacy seems freighted with possibilities of self hate. 

To combine antiZionism with anti continuity and to advocate the blog as a new basis for Jewish identity seems strange, to say the least.   So then why blog for the enemy?   1. Communication with Palestinians is valuable.  As a Jewish Zionist, they may be our enemies, but they are also our neighbors.  Communication is essential if a positive outcome is to be reached (and useful no matter what outcome is reached.)  Thus this blog is a venue for me to communicate with Palestinians.   2. I like to argue.   3. I like to see my name spelled right.  

‘The Palestinians have won’

Oct 14, 2010

Philip Weiss 

A friend in Jerusalem just told me: The Israelis won’t negotiate because they won’t give up land. They’ll fudge and fret but this time their intransigence will be made plain to the world. The world is behind the ’67 borders, and Israel can’t go near that position. The world sees that. And the Palestinians have won, it’s going to be one-state.

How long will that take? Four or five years, said my friend.

And how much blood? She sighed.

Can you support the Palestinians when you live on their stolen land?

Oct 14, 2010

Joseph Glatzer 

Every time I would tell my girlfriend (she’s Palestinian) about a famous Israeli activist or writer or she would ask why they still call themselves Israeli. She tells me things like, “See. They still call themselves Israeli. When they use that word they are automatically erasing Palestine.”

I always used to argue with her over that and try to convince her that these Israelis are good people who genuinely care and want to do something. But, for the first time I think she’s right.

If you are an Israeli, even if you disagree with your government’s treatment of the Palestinians, you’re still enjoying the sweet life of privilege. You’ll still be enjoying the privileges Palestinians aren’t able to even though it’s actually their land.

There are so many Israelis who are prominent in the media, who work hard to fight for justice for Palestinians. I don’t need to name them, you all know who they are.

But I have to ask Israelis the question: “If you feel so strongly about what is being done to the Palestinians, how can you continue to live in their stolen country?”

How can you go from a West Bank protest back to your Tel Aviv home, which very well may have belonged to a family member of your friends in the West Bank? Can you really be supporting someone when you live on the land which was violently seized from them?

If these Israeli activists truly believe what they say they should move to the occupied territories and live as a Palestinian. Give up your life of comfort and privilege in the posh neighborhoods of Tel Aviv and live in the Bethlehem ghetto with the people of Aida camp.

Drop out of Ben Gurion University and enroll in Birzeit. Trade Starbucks in Haifa for Stars and Bucks in Ramallah. Now THAT’s solidarity.

Many would say that Israeli dissidents help by staying inside Israel to fight the system from within, and that without them there there would really be no hope for Israeli society. I’ve got news for those people: there is no hope for Israeli society to change from the inside. This is the whole premise of the very popular BDS movement.

The more Israelis of conscience jump ship the quicker the whole Zionist apartheid operation will self-destruct; and the sooner the dispersed Palestinian people of the world can finally be reunited with their land and families.

I’ve been to Gaza and met a teenage boy who watched his brother get blown up in front of his eyes in the first attack of Operation Cast Lead. A year later he was still wetting himself and was unable to sleep at night due to the trauma.

I’ve seen a pregnant woman in Qalandia checkpoint fall to the ground in pain. I’ve met the loving father of a family in Aida Camp who has to beg internationals for money for new glasses. He’s going blind because Israel won’t allow him to get laser eye surgery in Israel, which is just minutes away.

I’ve been inside a home in the old city of Hebron when it was overrun with IDF troops yelling at Palestinian mothers.

I’ve met a family in Sheikh Jarrah who had their house stolen by settlers; and I’ve seen the tent they have to live in.

So, I’m out of patience. I don’t care about the feelings of the morally righteous land thieves anymore.

If you claim to support the Palestinians start calling yourself Palestinian instead of Israeli and permanently live among Palestinians under occupation.  This is the definition of solidarity.

Cold Turkey

Oct 14, 2010

Philip Weiss

Amazing that it was once controversial for Mearsheimer and Walt to write The Israel Lobby. They drove the golden spike of mental connection, and now hundreds of us journalists can fly across state lines without thinking about it. Here is Jonathan Broder, CQ Staff, writing about the ferocious response of American Jewish groups to Turkey saying a word in favor of the Gazans. Picked up by MJ Rosenberg:

American Jewish groups that make up the pro-Israel lobby are putting their muscle behind Greek-American causes on Capitol Hill, angering Turkey but reflecting new strategic shifts in the eastern Mediterranean….

Pro-Israel powerhouses such as the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), the Anti-Defamation League and the American Jewish Committee, all of which had advocated effectively for Turkey before relations between Jerusalem and Ankara began to fray, were among the organizations that joined forces with several Greek-American groups to lobby for passage of the Cyprus resolution. Bilirakis said Jewish lawmakers and members of the pro-Greece caucus teamed up to get the resolution passed.

Quips Rosenberg: The piece “is about the new lobby position on Cyprus, a subject about which it previously showed no interest. But the new anti-Turkish position applies across the board. (The American Jewish Committee should be calling for renaming Istanbul any day now. Why not Constantinople?).”

Donna Edwards’s pro-Israel identity

Oct 14, 2010

Philip Weiss 

Good reporting by the Washington Jewish Week‘s Adam Kredo on the Donna Edwards flap we reported on yesterday. Notice the pressure on gritty tough Donna Edwards to toe the line. I think you can’t bend that lady’s mind; so t’s inevitable that we’re going to have a conversation about one state in the media, which New points out is purely a logical development. How long will it take? 

The Democratic source, who was not authorized to be interviewed, added that while Edwards has a relatively solid pro-Israel voting record — repeatedly voting in favor of foreign aid packages that benefit Israel — her participation in a fundraiser with a group viewed as far left leaves the pro-Israel community confused as to where she stands. 

“I’ve got to believe these actions don’t benefit her politically, so I’ll give her the benefit of the doubt that she’s taken a principled stand and actually believes in these sort of fringe causes,” the Democratic source said. 

Edwards also has been one of J Street’s most high-profile congressional supporters — the group secured around $30,000 for her last year during a fundraising blitz — and the organization went to great lengths last week to affirm what it says is Edwards’ mainstream views on Middle East peace.

“JStreetPAC supports only candidates that are 100 percent committed to a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and to the existence of Israel as a democracy and as the homeland of the Jewish people,” J Street founder Jeremy Ben Ami said in a statement provided last week to WJW.

“Rep. Donna Edwards has repeatedly reaffirmed her commitment to both of these principles and her opposition to the concept of a ‘one-state solution’ based on a single, secular state for Israelis and Palestinians,” the statement continued, adding that “JStreetPAC disagrees fundamentally on this issue with New Policy PAC, as does Donna Edwards — that is the basis of our organization’s pro-Israel identity and the basis of our support for candidates like Donna Edwards.”

By engaging with this group, Hadar Susskind, J Street’s director of policy, added last week in an interview, Edwards has “put herself in a position where she needs to make clear that her position” on a two-state solution being the only legitimate avenue to peace “has in no way changed.” …’s executive director, Sama Adnan, defended his groups’ assessment of the Middle East peace process, saying, “Basically, we have the same positions as J Street; we just introduce the next logical step.”

Adnan, who previously has worked with the Council for the National Interest (CNI), the Arab-American Institute and Jews for Peace in Palestine and Israel, said that while his organization primarily supports and lobbies for a two-state solution, “it’s getting more and more difficult to imagine.” 

He added that “if we can’t divide what is know as Eretz Yisrael” into contiguous parcels of land due to the growth of Jewish settlements, “would not be opposed to a one-state solution agreed to by the Palestinians and Israelis.”

Jewish groups seek to bar Abunimah from campus

Oct 14, 2010

Ali Abunimah 

Editors’ note: You don’t think BDS is having an effect? Here two New Mexico Jewish org officials seek to smear Ali Abunimah as an anti-Semite, and bar him from speaking, because he supports BDS, which they say is about demonizing and destroying Israel. Laughably, they say that describing Israel as a colonial project is anti-Semitic. What has happened to the intellectual tradition in Jewish life? Ali Abunimah at his blog:

It has come to my attention that the Jewish Federation of New Mexico and Hillel at the University of New Mexico are actively trying to censor my lecture at the University of New Mexico next month by writing to departments and professors who may co-sponsor it as they co-sponsor countless other educational events on campus. Below is a copy of a letter that has been sent to departments, signed by Sam Sokolove, Executive Director of the Jewish Federation of New Mexico and Sara Koplik, Director of Hillel at the University of New Mexico.

Typically, they throw in everything to try to defame and tar me: Hamas, Hizbullah, anti-Semitism, making Jewish students feel uncomfortable — all the usual defamatory silencing tactics to try to suppress debate and discussion about Israel’s apartheid and the alternatives that respect everyone. As they surely know, I have been an unflagging advocate of full equality and human rights for all Palestinians and Israeli Jews and others living in historic Palestine, and am guided by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Why do they not want students at the University of New Mexico to hear this message?

Instead of trying to censor my speech and intimidate departments from co-sponsoring it with the most lurid, false and manipulative charges, I invite them to attend and to urge students to attend and listen and ask me any questions they want.


It has come to our attention that the XXXXXXXXXX Department at UNM is co-presenting an appearance by Ali Abunimah, co-founder of the Electronic Intifada at the University of New Mexico campus on Sunday, November 7th. We are deeply troubled by the implications of the XXXXXXXXXX Department lending its support to this presentation.

As you are likely aware, Abunimah is a representative of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, a global movement intent on destroying Israel and her credibility in the world. It is an adjunct to what Hamas and Hezbollah are doing frontally, and according to the Anti-Defamation League, “BDS is about the three ‘D’s: “Demonization, Deligitimization, and applying a Double Standard.”

This movement is disinterested in peace, the exchange of ideas or legitimate dialogue. Its tactics deny Israel’s cultural products; deny Israel’s emissaries the right to be heard; delegitimize the Jewish historical ties to Israel; and portray Zionism not as an expression of peoplehood, but as an extension of European colonization.

This is all anti-Semitism in its clearest, most noxious form.

Whatever your personal views are on this matter, you should be aware of two things:

  • The XXXXXXXXXXX Department’s support of this speaker sends a tacit message of support for the anti-Semitic message of BDS;

  • The department’s endorsement sends a chilling message to the Jewish students and faculty of this public institution that the legitimacy of Israel within your department is questioned.

For those who care deeply about true peace, this is not an issue of “equal time” or “balance” on behalf of the pro-Israel perspective. Nor do we oppose Abunimah’s right to speak. Rather, we oppose the patina of respectability that your sponsorship provides to the message of demonizing The Other that is part and parcel of the BDS movement.

We ask in the strongest terms that you reconsider your department’s presentation of Ali Abunimah.

Sam Sokolove
Executive Director
Jewish Federation of New Mexico

Sara Koplik, PhD.
Hillel at the University of New Mexico.

Judt’s beautiful bloody mind

Oct 14, 2010

Philip Weiss 

Last night the family of Tony Judt held a memorial service at NYU for the historian, who died at 62 in August, and I got a sense of Judt’s spirit from the movie excerpts that his family had picked out to play: scenes of class humiliation and lawlessness from The Bicycle Thief and 400 Blows, and the heroic climactic anti-fascist endings of Casablanca and Grand Illusion. Judt grew up humbly and got a lot of pleasure from life. He knew the difference between fighting over ideas in print and his successful social relationships. Was the world-class intellectual visible in his youth at Cambridge?

No, said his cousin and classmate Jonathan Goldberg, he was into music and girls, and let that give hope to the rest of us. The family also showed Orson Welles’s cuckoo clock speech from the Third Man, and the Sanity Clause scene from Night at the Opera, and two Charlie Chaplin bits. Judt seems to have prized stoical humor over almost any other response to ill fortune. When Goldberg asked if he was going to turn religious after his diagnosis with a dread disease, ALS, he said it was too late; if he was wrong about god, he wasn’t going to vex the creator further by adding hypocrisy to his list of offenses.

My friendship with Judt was very small but it was political. He encouraged writers who opposed the edifice that Zionism had created on our journalistic/military/ideological/religious landscape, and so I listened for political statements in the many august speeches in the big formal hall, packed with people in dark suits.

Robert Silvers, the editor of the New York Review of books, said that Judt had contributed more pieces to “the paper” than anyone else in the last 17 years, beginning with a piece about Vichy and the Jews. How could intellectuals blind themselves to the atrocities that were being committed right next door? Silvers remembered that piece asking. And he said this question, of intellectual and moral failure, engaged Judt throughout his labors. Silvers spoke mostly of Judt’s engagement in Jewish history. He mentioned Judt’s “feuilleton” about the relative he was named after, a woman killed in Auschwitz, and also his most famous piece, the sensational 2003 piece calling for a binational state, Israel: The Alternative, and the charges of betrayal that it brought. Silvers spoke movingly of the occupation, then walked the bold piece back in front of the establishment audience, saying that Judt had affirmed during the ensuing controversy that a “binational state” was an idea for a “utopian future” not the here and now.

This was a claim. Seven long years have passed and what has the here and now done for the Jim Crow conditions of the occupation? Nothing. Judt supported a binational state because it accorded with the choices that he had made in his life and the historical cultural changes he saw around him– the mixing of races and traditions, the safety of Jews in the west. Judt’s piece was postracial. It spoke at the start of a

world that has moved on, a world of individual rights, open frontiers, and international law. The very idea of a “Jewish state”—a state in which Jews and the Jewish religion have exclusive privileges from which non-Jewish citizens are forever excluded—is rooted in another time and place. Israel, in short, is an anachronism.

When I heard Judt attacked for the piece in 2007, he did not describe it as utopian.

The Holocaust was several times mentioned. So were seders, and “the Jewish people,” by Judt’s college friend Goldberg, who said that he had urged Judt to arrange a funeral service at Temple Emanu-El, the big social uptown synagogue, but Judt would not hear of it. Joy in the gallery.

Goldberg was a true friend, and his speech was the most personally affecting and sincere. His grandfather Pinchas and Judt’s grandfather were brothers in the East End of London. Pinchas was pious and Judt’s grandfather was a freethinker, and these different strands persisted into the grandsons’ generation.

Goldberg went into the law, and had little to do with his cousin until 2003 when he was at an antisemitism conference for Jewish lawyers and Efraim Halevi, the former Mossad chief, said that Tony Judt should be shot for writing “Israel: The Alternative.” Goldberg went up afterward to remonstrate with Halevi that the man was his cousin. Soon the boyhood friendship was renewed, and Goldberg often twitted Judt that he could take credit for the stream of books and articles that Judt had produced since 2003 as it was only through his intervention that Judt had not accidentally fallen off the Brooklyn Bridge or the Empire State Building. Good, a Mossad joke. And I thought of who Israel kills.

Goldberg did not say a word of judgement against “Israel: The Alternative,” and evidently this unconditional love was so meaningful to Judt that he had had Goldberg at his side, along with his wife, when he got news of his death sentence from a “professor” at Columbia hospital, in September 2008.

As much as I enjoyed Goldberg, he spoke in the parochial spirit of Pinchas. He said that Judt had cared most about leaving a good name, a shem tov, in the Jewish tradition, and that he was a latter day Koestler and Arendt. Jewish Jewish!

I was thankful to Timothy Garton Ash, who grew up in the same dreary London neighborhood, Putney, in the same era as Judt, though they had not known one another as boys. While conceding diplomatically that Judt’s “Jewish identity was the deepest,” the lions would have been set on him had he contradicted that, Ash said that Judt also had strong English identity to the end, in his pragmatism, his restraint, his humor and his “bloody-mindedness, and I mean that as a compliment.” To understand their father, Ash said, he would like to take Judt’s sons some day to the Church of St Mary the Virgin in the High Street in Putney.

Where 300 years before Judt and Ash came along, Colonel Rainsborough had given a famous speech on behalf of the “Levellers” movement. Ash quoted:

..for really I think that the poorest he that is in England hath a life to live, as the greatest he; and therefore truly, Sir, I think it’s clear, that every man that is to live under a government ought first by his own consent to put himself under that government; and I do think that the poorest man in England is not bound in a strict sense to that government that he hath not had a voice to put himself under…”

It was the most moving political statement in the service. It spoke to the sweep and worldliness of Judt’s political values, his feel for democratic history. With a bloodymindedness that his timid New York friends could not fully appreciate, and the heroism of Bogart in Casablanca, he had stood up in his maturity when he was called upon, and the inequality he had denounced most strongly was the persecution of the Palestinians by Israel, a utopia he long ago stopped believing in.

Posted in Middle EastComments Off on MONDOWEISS ONLINE NEWSLETTER


15 October, 2010 

PSC Weekly update

15th October 2010 

War criminals not welcome

Convoy to sail to Egypt this Sunday

Israel’s racist Loyalty Oath

No OECD meeting in Jerusalem

Veolia demo and more…


Also in this week’s update: 

DUMP VEOLIA DEMO: SATURDAY 23 October, 3 – 5pm, Natural History Museum, Cromwell Road, London, SW7 5BD – Join us for an ‘Alternative Exhibition’. 

BDS French activist update – case dropped!

Thank you for responding to last week’s action alert

MEMO/PSC meeting with Professor Richard Falk: The Israeli assault on human rights in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, Dec 1st – plus interview 

Israel’s loyalty oath: Discriminatory by design 

Gideon Levy: The Jewish republic of Israel 

Breaking the silence nominated for Peace prize 

Ireland PSC victory – Irish government scraps ‘Israeli bullets’ deal

BDS Success: Unilever to Move Factory out of West Bank

No to Stolen Beauty – Ahava demo, Sat 23rd, Covent Garden

Can you run 100 metres for Gaza?Gaza 100: World Record Run, 23rd October £25 and FREE entry to Global Peace and Unity event



UJ: War criminals not welcome – Take two minutes to send an email to your MP


No change to Univesal JurisdictionFollowing the successful issuing of an arrest warrant for Tzipi Livni last December for committing war crimes during Operation Cast Lead, the Conservative government made an election pledge to change the law on Universal Jurisdiction.


PSC has set up an easy to use e-tool that allows you to send a model letter to your MP, urging them to sign EDM 108 ‘Human Rights and the Law’ – calling on them to make public their opposition to any change in the law on Universal Jurisdiction. The new proposals adds a political dimension to a legal decision and introduces a source of delay when urgent action may be required to stop a suspected war criminals escape justice.


Email your MP now:


Follow up your email by arranging a meeting with your MP at their next surgery. You can find your MP’s contact details at:  

For more information on Universal Jurisdiction, and why we are calling for ‘no change’ to the law, read the PSC briefing at:  

Convoy to Gaza prepares to sail to Egypt this Sunday


PSC to Gaza Following week long negotiations with the Egyptian government, the Viva Palestina convoy has been given permission to sail to Egypt and logistical preparations for travel to Al-Arish are now underway.


The ship will pass the exact place in international waters where Israel boarded the Mavi Marmara in May and killed nine Turkish humanitarians on board as they attempted to sail to Gaza to deliver aid.


Those on board the ship, including 40 survivors of the Mavi Marmara attack, will throw a wreath into the sea to commemorate those killed by Israeli troops.


For regular updates and news on when they are on the high seas, keep visiting the PSC to Gaza blog  and follow @pal_s_campaign on twitter. 

Action Alert : Demand The OECD Cancel Their Planned Tourism Conference in Jerusalem

Between the 20th and 22nd of October, the Organization of Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) plans to hold its bi-annual tourism conference in Jerusalem – a city whose indigenous Palestinian residents suffer from systemic discrimination and expulsion.

Despite Israel’s persistent violations of human rights and disregard for International law, the OECD – whose member countries include the majority of the world richest countries – granted Israel membership on May 27th of this year.

Tourism plays an important role in Israel’s colonization of occupied East Jerusalem. The state and right wing settler organizations cooperate in expelling Palestinians residents from East Jerusalem neighborhoods such as Silwan and Sheikh Jarrah for the creation of colonies and biblically theme parks for tourists.

Please follow this link to send an email to Angel Gurría, the Secretary General of the OECD, and demand that his organization respect International law by canceling the planned OECD tourism conference in Jerusalem.

Read the full update here >>

Posted in Middle EastComments Off on PSC NEWSLETTER


October 15, 2010

by crescentandcross


Dear God in heaven I wish these people would come down from their high just long enough to at least be consistent in their statements. One day it’s “this” and the next day it’s “that”.

But then, what more are we to expect from junkies? Depending on their blood/Zionism level, reality can be a constantly-changing stream of consciousness for them where a beautiful woman suddenly turns into Godzilla or a flower morphs into the giant man-eating Venus Fly Trap from the movie Little Shop of Horrors.

Take for example the latest slurred speech coming from Sarah Palin who–under the influence–envisions herself as the next Queen of Planet Earth and who had the following to say in an interview with one of the more notorious of the many Zionist crack houses around town, Newsmax–

“We have to realize that a nuclear weapon in the hands of that country (Iran) is not just Israel’s problem — it is the world’s problem. It could lead to Armageddon. It could lead to World War III that could decimate much of this planet.”

COULD lead to Armageddon and WWIII?

Reality check here, Your would-be Highness–WE’VE BEEN IN THE MIDDLE OF ARMAGEDDON AND WWIII SINCE 1948…

COULD decimate much of the planet???


What we are to draw from statements such as these is that words such as ‘decimate’ only take on relevance when it happens at home. Typical junkie logic. Crack whores like Queen Sarah don’t think about the suffering of others while on cloud 9 and in 7th heaven. They get doped up, get behind the wheel of some vehicle of state and wipe out entire families without an ounce of remorse and then when hauled into court to answer for it, blame the car, the road, and the victims themselves.

Likewise with the millions of people killed in the Middle East since Israel was raised from the grave as well as the continued suffering from the THOUSANDS OF TONS of depleted uranium we left there as our “giant footprint“. Obviously, as far as the Queen and her court are concerned, “Charity begins at home”, as the old saying goes, as well as its twin sisters–compassion and empathy.

Keep in mind also as we consider Queen Sarah’s recent “speaking in tongues/a quakin’ and a shakin’ episode that our would-be empress has been quoted time and again saying that Armageddon (and all the innocent human suffering it represents) was a GOOD thing, being that it was the harbinger of “Jesus’ return”.

REMEMBER SARAH? SNAP OUT OF IT. You and the rest of the gang have been saying this FOR YEARS and now you want to do an about-face? Remember when the rest of us clean, sober and productive members of civilized society were warning that the war in Iraq (based as it was on a pack of Jewish lies deliberately injected into the collective bloodstream of Americans like a highly-addictive narcotic to stupidize them and lower their inhibitions to mass murder) was a BAD THING and the start of Armageddon? Remember the epileptic fits you and your cohorts went through in selling all of us on the idea of the impending bloodbath with “JESUS A’COMIN’ BACK! JESUS A’COMIN’ BACK! JESUS A’COMIN’ BACK!”

You said it. I heard it. We all heard it. And now you are changing the seasons to fit your mood, as “Armageddon” becomes a nasty, 4-letter word coming right out of the mouth of Satan himself?

Oh, wait, I think we have it. Yes…yes…Mystery solved as to why Queen Sarah’s going through the DT’s and jitters here–


She said it, I heard it. We all heard it.

Israel. That’s the reason for us suddenly worrying about ‘da bomb’ and Army-geddon. Think about it–here we are, in a near-orgasmic state of anticipation waiting for the big one–the return of Jesus–and the next thing you know–WHAM, BAAM–

“We interrupt our regular Apocalyptic programming to bring you our concerns for Israel…”

Oh ye of little faith Queen Sarah…Have ye not read your bible dear? Go back and look at all those books of the Old Testament–Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Deuteronomy, etc, etc, etc. We’re talkin’ about YAHWEH here baby, the one who turned all the waters of Egypt to blood, sent locusts and gnats and frogs and hemma-rhoids and plague after freakin’ plague and who killed the first-born of every household and parted the Red Sea and gave His Chosenites victory after victory in mass-murdering all the people who got in their way! God’s hand is on all of this! Iran getting the bomb?

No dear, as we are reminded on a regular basis, Yahweh not just wants, but DEMANDS the Jews be in that same land He drove them from in 70 AD. They–the EYE-ranians and the rest of those AY-rabs–don’t stand a chance. It’s simply NOT POSSIBLE for any other scenario other than the “Great Passover” of the angel of death. He will not allow a hair on their head to be harmed. Relax, Highness.

Not that we can expect Queen Sarah to do anything of the sort. As she has made plain in recent years, she is Israel’s bitch and as such is going to strut her stuff out there on the street corner in seducing the masses (both the men who’d love to sample her goods and the women envious of them) into doing whatever the hell necessary in protecting the Jewish state. After all, that’s the way it is with junkies who will do ANYTHING to get their fix and whatever they have to in keeping Big Daddy happy.

Remember that old commercial from the 80’s, back when Nancy Reagan was doing her “Just say no” thing, warning about the dangers of drugs? The commercial went like this–they take an egg, hold it up to the camera and say “This is your brain” and then crack the egg, drop its contents into the hotter-n-hell skillet, scramble it and then say “This is your brain on drugs”.

I say we revive that old “Just say no” campaign, only instead of concentrating only on the street drugs being peddled in the seedier parts of town we expand it to include the most dangerous substance we have ever dealt with as a people–Zionism and Jewish thinking. We recognize it for what it is–the most dangerous threat we face as a civilized society and then declare the manufacturers, dealers and pushers as public enemy #1, send them to the gallows where they belong and then burn their crack houses down–the synagogues, churches, and board rooms at places such as AIPAC, the offices of the ADL et al, where the stuff is manufactured and then distributed–forcefully.

A little rough, you say? Reality check–This is war baby, and just as the old saying goes, “all’s fair”. The people pushing this stuff on society have declared their intention of destroying us as well as everything and everyone of any meaning in our lives, and as recent history has proven, you can’t reason with them. Morality means nothing. Fair means nothing. The only law of any consequence to them is that of the jungle–”kill or be killed”.

Welcome to the “world on Zionism”, a nightmare of not just broken eggs but broken humanity–scrambled, burned, destroyed, decimated, and like all systemic poisons, starting with the brain and then moving outward, slowly, creeping, silent as death, just like the infamous angel whose name, coincidentally or not, is named Izrael.

© 2010 Mark Glenn

Posted in PoliticsComments Off on YOUR BRAIN ON ZIONISM



In Uncategorized

October 15, 2010

by crescentandcross  Quantcast

You must think I’m at it again, using sarcasm to illustrate an inversion of reality.  But it wasn’t me who made that statement.  That was actually a quote by Rupert Murdoch; from a speech he delivered Wednesday night, at the annual Anti-Defamation League banquet in New York City. 

You remember who Rupert Murdoch is, right?  He’s the Australian born, multi-billionaire media magnate who’s niched out a pretty comfortable life for himself—here in the colonies—at the expense of a gullible American audience.

–Read the rest of this typically-brilliant piece of writing from Keith Johnson here




The Ugly Truth Podcast Oct 14, 2010

crescentandcross | October 14, 2010 Categories: Uncategorized | URL:

Alex Jones the most dangerous man in the ‘truth movement”?

THINK AGAIN. For all Jones’ danger as an agent of disinformation, at least he is not ready, willing and able to send armed thugs to the home of someone he disagrees with over politically.

Come listen to today’s program as we discuss Jeff Rense’s recent threats to have agents of the FBI and Department of Homeland Security visit the home of Mark Glenn, where he resides with his wife and 9 children over a personal dispute.

Posted in WorldComments Off on AGENT OF DISINFORMATION

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