US TAX DOLLARS CONTINUE TO PAY FOR CARNAGE IN GAZA

The Pentagon confirmed the Israeli military had requested additional ammunition to restock its dwindling supplies on July 20, with the US Defense Department approving the sale just three days later.

SALE ????

 Did anyone see a receipt??

This might explain why you didn’t … the weapons were already in Israel.

Two of the requested munitions came from a little-known stockpile of ammunition stored by the US military on the ground in Israel for emergency use. The War Reserve Stockpile Ammunition-Israel is estimated to be worth $1 billion.

*

US resupplies Israel with weapons as Gaza death toll hits 1384
*

*

Members of Code Pink hold a vigil of civil disobedience and conduct a “die-in”
in front of the Israeli Embassy July 30, 2014 (AFP Paul J. Richards)
*
GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — The United States confirmed it had restocked Israel’s supplies of ammunition, hours after finally sharpening its tone to condemn an attack on a United Nations school in Gaza that killed 16 people sheltering there.Israeli airstrikes and shelling continued overnight and into the morning leaving 21 Gazans dead and dozens injured, bringing the 24-day death toll to 1,384 with 8,000 injured, according to the Ministry of Health. The Israeli military confirmed that 20 “sites” had been hit overnight.

The dead included six people, including Majdi Fseifis, 22, killed in a bombing that hit a crowd of civilians near a mosque in the Abasan area east of Khan Younis.

Also in Khan Younis, one Palestinian was killed and four were wounded in a strike that hit a motorcycle in the Ma’an area south of the city.

Mahdiya Suleiman Omar Abu Luli, 58, was killed in an Israeli strike on Khan Younis as well.

Maha Abd al-Nabi Salim Abu Hilal was killed in a strike on her home that also “seriously” injured her husband and three children. She was brought to Abu Yousef al-Najjar Hospital.

Suleiman Baraka, 31, and Aref Baraka, 58, were also killed in a strike, and their bodies were both brought to the al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Hospital in Deir al-Balah.

At least 55 were wounded after the al-Hamoud house in Beit Lahiya was hit at dawn. Injuries were also reported during an Israeli strike on the home of the al-Haw family as well as against Block 7 in Jabaliya.

Israeli aircraft also targeted a house east of al-Bureij refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip belonging to Abu Abdullah Abu Huwayshal, destroying it completely.

Violent clashes broke out between Palestinian fighters and Israelis forces in the Nabahin field east of al-Bureij.

The dead overnight included Yusuf Ibrahim, 19, son of the Undersecretary of the Ministry of Social Affairs who died of wounds sustained in an Israeli attack on Nuseirat refugee camp the day before. Ahmad al-Luh died early Thursday in al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Hospital as a result of injuries as well.

The deaths in the besieged Gaza Strip come on the 24th day of an Israeli assault which has nearly topped the death toll from the 2008-9 Cast Lead, the bloodiest attack on the area in memory when Israel killed 1,400 in 22 days.

Israel launched the current assault — called Operation Protective Edge — in early July as part of what it said was an effort to combat rockets, but has since changed the focus to destroying what it say are tunnels dug from Gaza into Israel.

Rocket fire into Israel increased in late June and early July after Israel launched a sweeping assault on Hamas across the West Bank, killing nearly a dozen, injuring more than 100, and leading to more than 1,000 arrests, along with nightly airstrikes on Gaza.

Hamas has insisted that any ceasefire include an end to the eight-year Israeli blockade, which has severely crippled the tiny coastal enclave’s economy and led to recurring shortages of basic goods.

Israeli authorities, meanwhile, have signaled their refusal to end the assault without inflicting heavy damage on Palestinian military capabilities.

Palestinian paramedics move a victim of an Israeli air strike on a market to an
ambulance in Shujaiyya on Wednesday (AFP Mahmud Hams)
*

No blame for Israel

While both the White House and the State Department condemned the shelling of the UN-run school in the Jabaliya refugee camp in northern Gaza on Wednesday in which at least 16 Palestinians were killed, neither would assign blame to staunch US ally Israel.

“Obviously nothing justifies the killing of innocent civilians seeking shelter in a UN facility,” deputy State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf acknowledged, in some of the toughest US comments since the start of the 23-day fighting in the Gaza Strip.

“Innocent Palestinians seeking refuge in these schools should not have shells dropped on them, should not come under attack.”

The UN agency for Palestinian refugees UNRWA said Israeli forces had hit the school, which had been sheltering some 3,300 Gazans.

But despite heated exchanges with reporters, Harf stressed that “we don’t know for certain who shelled this school, we need to get all the facts.”

National Security Council spokeswoman Bernadette Meehan also condemned “those responsible for hiding weapons in United Nations facilities in Gaza” and warned of rising fears that thousands of Palestinians who have been told by Israel to leave their homes increasingly had nowhere to go in the blockaded narrow coastal strip.

US officials also warned that patience with “crazy” Israeli criticism of would-be-peacemaker John Kerry had snapped.

New ammunition for IsraelThe Pentagon confirmed the Israeli military had requested additional ammunition to restock its dwindling supplies on July 20, with the US Defense Department approving the sale just three days later.

“The United States is committed to the security of Israel, and it is vital to US national interests to assist Israel to develop and maintain a strong and ready self-defense capability,” Pentagon spokesman Rear Admiral John Kirby said in a statement.

“This defense sale is consistent with those objectives.”

Two of the requested munitions came from a little-known stockpile of ammunition stored by the US military on the ground in Israel for emergency use. The War Reserve Stockpile Ammunition-Israel is estimated to be worth $1 billion.

The decision to provide ammunition to Israel could fuel controversy, coming just as Washington expresses growing concern about the deaths of more than 1,300 Palestinians, most of them civilians, since the Israeli operation began on July 8.

Kirby said Pentagon chief Chuck Hagel told his Israeli counterpart that the United States was concerned about the deadly consequences of the spiraling conflict, including a “worsening humanitarian situation” in Gaza, and called for a ceasefire and end to hostilities.

He also renewed calls for the disarmament of Gaza’s Hamas rulers and “all terrorist groups.”

Relations between Israel and its staunch ally the United States have plunged in recent days after Kerry returned from a mission to the Middle East to try to broker a ceasefire between the Israelis and Hamas militants.

Anonymous Israeli officials have hit out at Kerry’s truce proposal, calling it “a strategic terrorist attack” and criticizing it for being a “Hamas wish-list” including moves to lift a long-standing Israeli blockade of Gaza while failing to address Israel’s security concerns, such as Hamas rocket fire and a network of underground tunnels.

And on Tuesday a fabricated transcript of a call between US President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu went viral on social media.

Out to hurt ties?

Stressing the “unprecedented” US support for Israel, Harf hit out at Israeli elites’ “offensive and absurd” claims that Kerry backs Hamas.

She rubbished the fake transcript as “complete crap,” adding “there’s clearly people … who are putting out false and defamatory and absurd information.”

“I don’t know what else you can assume about the intentions except that they’re designed to hurt our relationship,” she added.

Washington, which has provided billions in military aid to Israel, including funding the Iron Dome shield protecting the country from Hamas rockets, was “very committed” to Israel’s security, which is “why these vicious attacks on the secretary are just crazy,” she added.

And US lawmakers are working on a package of additional military support from Washington to commit $225 million for the Iron Dome missile defense shield.

More than 100 people died in Israeli strikes across Gaza Wednesday, medics said, including 17 at a crowded marketplace, sending the Palestinian toll from the 23 days of fighting to 1,363.

On the Israeli side, the conflict has cost the lives of 56 Israeli soldiers, and two civilians, as well as that of a Thai national.

AFP contributed to this report.

ISRAEL WELCOMES FRANCE TO THE LEAGUE OF TYRANTS

France became the first country in the world to ban pro Palestinian demonstrations …. does this make them ‘The Only Democracy In Europe?’ (sic)

*

Image ‘Copyleft’ by Carlos Latuff

france-become-first-country-in-world-to-ban-pro-palestine-demos-middle-east-monitor

*

Israel-Gaza conflict: French minister Bernard Cazeneuve backs ban on pro-Palestinian protests in Paris

*

 The French Interior Minister argued the protest could threaten public order
*

Thousands of protesters were expected to march in Paris over the weekend and call for an end to the violence in Gaza, as it emerged on Friday that the Israeli military had killed 296 Palestinians in the renewed conflict – including a baby, four children and a 70-year-old woman since Thursday.  One Israeli civilian and one IDF soldier have died in the 11-day conflict.

Citing a “threat to public order”, Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve backed the police ban on the widely-advertised mass demonstrations, after members of the Jewish Defence League (LDJ) and pro-Palestinian groups clashed last Sunday.

He also advised other police prefects to consider banning planned rallies on a “case by case” basis.

Videos from rallies last week reportedly showed armed LDJ vigilantes attempting to tempt pro-Palestinian demonstrators into fights.

“I consider that the conditions are not right to guarantee security,” Mr Cazeneuve said regarding the main Paris march, according to theMail Online.

On Friday evening, lawyers for a number of groups responded by lodging an appeal against the ban in a Paris court.

Attending an illegal demonstration is punishable by a year in prison, and a €15,000 fine – a penalty which rises to a three year sentence and a €45,000 fine if a demonstrator covers their face to avoid being identified.

Meanwhile, publicising an illegal demonstration on social media can lead to a year-long prison sentence, and a €15,000 fine. This increases to seven years and a 100,000 fine if the post sparks violence.

*

French interior minister Bernard Cazeneuve at the National Assembly in Paris (Getty)

French interior minister Bernard Cazeneuve at the National Assembly in Paris (Getty)

*

Youssef Boussoumah, of the Party of the Indigenous of the Republic (PIR), told the website: “France is criminalising any show of solidarity with the Palestinian people.”

“This is an absolute outrage, it is a continuation of attempts to muzzle the Palestinian people and to get them and their supporters in France to surrender absolutely to Israel’s oppression,” he added.

False reports following last week’s protests claimed that pro-Palestinian demonstrators had damaged synagogues during the rally, but it later emerged none of the religious buildings had been targeted.

A judicial inquiry is to be launched into the false allegations.

TODAY’S GAZA SPOOF

Image ‘Copyleft’ by Carlos Latuff

 

Bibi and Abbas love to watch the horror show together

netanyahu-abbas-love-horror-movies-al-araby

IMAGES OF THE GAZA WAR AND THE OCCUPATION(S)

gstop

*

All Thanks to America

gs1a

COMPARATIVE NAKBAS

Palestine 1948

gs4

*

Poland 1940

gs5

*

gs1

*

Holocaust-industry

*

gs2

*

gs3

 *

12cartoon
Bibi’s Wall 2014

Bibis-Wall

Never Again OR Over Again?

3674327918

VISITING PALESTINE (WHERE OUR BOMBS FALL)

A MUST WATCH ~~~

*

*

Along with the growing Israeli settlement projects in Jerusalem and the West Bank, the siege of Gaza is part of the ongoing ethnic cleansing, community decimation and collective punishment of the Palestinian people. The 1.8 million people living in the tiny Palestinian territory of Gaza have been living under blockade for eight years and are increasingly impoverished.

The land, sea and air blockade of Gaza is enforced by both Israel and Egypt. Visiting Gaza is usually difficult or impossible. However, in the aftermath of the Arab Spring, with the Muslim Brotherhood in power in Egypt, the Egyptian government briefly eased some of the restrictions on visiting Gaza. Thus I was able to join Medea Benjamin and Ann Wright of Code Pink, Kathy Kelley of Voices for Creative Nonviolence, and other delegates from ISM and National Lawyer’s Guild on a visit to Gaza just after the eight-day Israeli attack November 14-21, 2012.

I filmed “Visiting Palestine” in the Jabalya Refugee Camp on December 3rd, my last day in Gaza. My guide was Majed Abusalama, who grew up in the Jabalya Camp, which is about a half hour north of Gaza City.

A majority of the people living in Gaza are refugees of the descendants of refugees who were forced from their homes by Europeans and into refugee camps in the Gaza Strip in 1948. Egypt administered Gaza until Israel captured it in the 1967 war. Israel withdrew its troops and settlers from Gaza in 2005, but the US and Israel imposed sanctions after the Palestinian political party Hamas won a majority of votes in the West Bank and Gaza in the election for the Palestinian Legislative Council in 2006. In the ensuing power struggle between Fatah and Hamas, the latter seized control of Gaza in 2007, and Israel imposed a siege on Gaza.

What I most like about this video is the diversity of people I meet in it: secular and religious, pacifist and more militant, those with small houses and those with larger houses. And each Gazan I meet has her or his own way of coping with the absurdity of living under the siege and the repeated attacks. The video is a first-hand and, I believe, quite authentic document of the experiences and feelings of people in one place in Palestine: it is no more than that and no less than that.

Many of the Palestinians I meet tell me — quite spontaneously — that the US plays a huge role in making their lives so difficult. The people of Gaza must live every day with the knowledge that a new attack against them, financed in large measure by us US taxpayers, could be launched at any time.

I put a bit of myself in this video just so that you can see that I myself was surprised and even shocked at some of what I saw and learned. I believe that most of us Americans have little idea of the real human impact of US policies on other peoples. And it is important that we learn as much as we can, because we as citizens are ultimately responsible for the actions of our government.

The Israeli attack in November 2012 was clearly meant to be a “collective punishment” of the Palestinians living in Gaza. As one witness tells me in the video, rather than “targeting” the supposed militants, the Israelis warned them and their neighbors to get out of their houses and then blasted whole city blocks with bombs dropped from F-16s provided by the United States.

We US taxpayers give $3 billion to Israel for their military each year — this is hardly the way to achieve peace!

ISRAELI/PALESTINIAN ‘UNITY GOVERNMENT’ ANGERS PALESTINIANS

Angered by collaboration with Israel, Palestinians stone PA police – video

*

*

Palestinian protestors turned their anger against the Palestinian Authority in Ramallah, stoning the PA police headquarters in the early hours of Sunday morning, following an Israeli incursion into the center of the city.

Muhammad Ismail Atallah Tarifi, aged 30, was fatally shot by the Israeli forces who, according to Ma’an News Agency, “invaded several neighborhoods” and “broke into several houses and stores.”

Israeli occupation forces also invaded Ramallah’s central Manara Square area, which Palestinian youths defended with stones and fire bombs, as this video from the website raya.ps shows:

*

*

The video also shows Israeli occupation forces apparently guarding the main Palestinian Authority police headquarters in Ramallah as PA personnel stare at them from second-floor windows.

 

Screenshot shows Israeli occupation forces outside Palestinian Authority police station as PA personnel observe from windows.

The Israeli incursion was the apparent spark for the protest by dozens of Palestinian youths seen in a second video, at the top of this post, who stoned the same police station following the withdrawal of the Israeli occupation forces.

Israeli army, PA join forces against Palestinians

According to eyewitnesses PA police began firing warning shots toward the Palestinian youths. In the video at the top of the post, the sound of automatic weapons fire can be heard.

The video also shows Israeli occupation forces apparently guarding the main Palestinian Authority police headquarters in Ramallah as PA personnel stare at them from second-floor windows.

 

Screenshot shows Israeli occupation forces outside Palestinian Authority police station as PA personnel observe from windows.

The Israeli incursion was the apparent spark for the protest by dozens of Palestinian youths seen in a second video, at the top of this post, who stoned the same police station following the withdrawal of the Israeli occupation forces.

Israeli army, PA join forces against Palestinians

According to eyewitnesses PA police began firing warning shots toward the Palestinian youths. In the video at the top of the post, the sound of automatic weapons fire can be heard.

 

Screenshot shows Palestinian youths throwing stones at Palestinian Authority police station after withdrawal of Israeli occupation forces.

See on Twitter

Mondoweiss reporter Allison Deger was on the scene and tweeted that protestors werechanting slogans against the Palestinian Authority.

A short time later, she tweeted “Omg!! #Israeli army is back in #Ramallah it’s both the army and the PA attacking Palestinians from about 3 blocks distance between.”

At least one person was injured when a bullet grazed his head, Deger reported.

Deger posted a number of photos she took of damaged PA police cars on her Twitter account.

See on Twitter

Deger also saw armed PA police entering Ramallah hospital and arresting a citizen.

See on Twitter

Eyewitnesses told Wattan TV that PA police fired heavy volleys of live bullets into the air.

One eyewitness, who asked not be named, presumably due to the danger of arrest from Israeli occupation forces or the PA, told Wattan TV that the confrontation developed between the protestors and the PA police after the Israeli forces withdrew from Manara Square.

Some of the youths began throwing stones at the police station. The police began firing into the air and youths damaged five police cars parked in front of the station.

Growing anger at collaboration

The incident in Ramallah comes amid growing Palestinian anger at PA collaboration with the violent Israeli crackdown in the West Bank which Israel has launched under the pretextof searching for three Israeli youths who went missing in the West Bank on 12 June. Israel says the youths, two of them minors, were kidnapped but has offered no evidence to support its assertions that Hamas was behind their abduction. No group has claimed responsibility.

Since the assault began, Israeli forces have killed five Palestinians in the West Bank, arrested 400, including politicians and activists, and ransacked hundreds of private homes, schools, universities and social institutions.

Human rights groups say the Israeli assault amounts to collective punishment.

PA de facto leader Mahmoud Abbas has expressed sympathy for the missing settlers but many Palestinians have noted that similar empathy for the suffering of Palestinians – especially hunger striking prisoners – has been remarkably absent.

On Friday, PA police attacked and beat mothers and wives of hunger striking Palestinian prisoners.

In Hebron today, as this Wattan TV video report shows, Palestinians held a rally against PA repression and called on Abbas to end “security coordination” with the occupation:

*

*

Rally participant Alaa al-Amla told Wattan TV that the PA was acting more to reassure Israel than the Palestinian people. “The government should be standing with us, not against us,” she said.

Diaa Ighreib urged Abbas to “withdraw his insulting and shameful statements which truly reflect an attitude of surrender and defeat.”

“I say to Abbas, if he does not change his decisions, the people will say to you, ‘go, go go,’” he added.

Reeling from popular anger at its support for the assault, the PA today announced that it would go to the UN Security Council in an attempt to stop the violent Israeli campaign.

But this is likely to be understood by most Palestinians as nothing more than empty talk and an attempt to divert attention away from PA “security coordination” with Israel.

On the ground, Palestinian Authority forces, financed and trained under the auspices of the US and EU, continue to work closely with the occupation army, a duty Abbas deems “sacred.”

ISRAELI TERROR ENTERS ITS SEVENTH DAY

The view from zion …

D14622_4

*

In its quest to find three Israeli teenagers Israel has literally turned Palestine upside down. The timing could not have been more perfect as the main goal was to put a halt to the conciliatory moves of Hamas and the Palestinian Authority.

Abbas has given his full cooperation to the Israeli government, once again proving where his loyalties lie.For this he was highly praised by his fellow zionist leaders.

*

F080722KG58
President Shimon Peres and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas (photo credit: Kobi Gideon/Flash 90)

*

There was no comment from Abbas regarding THIS and other recent actions by the Israelis. For his role in helping to enforce the continuing division of Palestine and his continued cooperation with zion he was duly condemned by the leadership of Hamas. Netanyahu expects this to be the end of whatever unity government the Palestinians had hoped for. As far as he is concerned, the whole operation should now be called Operation Mission Accomplished rather than Operation Brother’s Keeper.

ENOUGH OF THIS MADNESS!

Now is the time to initiate a true Operation Brother’s Keeper and finally recognise that we ARE ALL brothers, Israelis and Palestinians. If this doesn’t happen there will be no end in sight to the madness on both side of the wall.

*

Palestinian-and-Israeli-boys

*

Screen-shot-2012-07-30-at-5.55.13-PM

*

avi-katz-ip-cartoon

*

 

STEPHEN HARPER ~~ SINGING AND DANCING FOR APARTHEID

*

As a Canadian citizen, this truly saddens and disgusts me  *

Harper Sings ‘Hey Jude’ At State Dinner In Jerusalem

*

It’s fair to say Stephen Harper has received a “rock star” welcome on his first official visit to Israel.

And on Tuesday, he rocked out.

The prime minister took the stage at a state dinner in Jerusalem to perform some Beatles tunes on the keyboard, including “Hey Jude,” with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu looking on.

And judging by the videos posted online, it seems Harper’s musical stylings were warmly received by Netanyahu and his wife, Sara.

The Jerusalem Post described Harper’s performance as courageous.

Netanyahu posted a brief clip to his YouTube account.

Harper also dusted off an old classic, “With A Little Help From My Friends.”

*

*

FROM

*

Related Report

ABBAS: PEACE PARTNER OR COLLABORATOR?

This photo was taken in 2003 … 21 years after the massacre of Palestinians in Sabra and Shatilla. If you were a Palestinian would you trust him to speak about Peace on your behalf?

Photo by Reuters

*

698509_b

ISRAEL’S LATEST HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATION CAUGHT ON VIDEO TODAY

IDF stands idly by as settlers throw stones at Palestinians

*

New video by human rights organization shows soldiers failing to intervene in standoff between Palestinians and settlers in West Bank.

Video: B’Tselem

*

See Report HERE

TIMELY TOON ~~ OBAMA’S ‘SHOE-IN’ AT UN GENERAL ASSEMBLY

Image ‘Copyleft’ by Carlos Latuff

dilma-evo-obama-united-nations
*

Related

*

reporter_shawn_092413

‘ISRAELI-ARAB SPRING’ HITS GAZA’S WATERS

Since the 3 July military coup that overthrew Morsi, Palestinian fishermen from Gaza have come under unprecedented attack by Egyptian naval forces and at least three have been injured.

*

Video: Along with Israeli attacks, Gaza fishermen face new danger from Egyptian navy

 Ali Abunimah
*
*

In this video report for The Real News Network, Yousef Al-Helou speaks to Gaza fishermen, including survivors of recent Egyptian naval attacks, and the father of two fishermen who were arrested.

Many Palestinians in Gaza depend on the sea for their livelihood, but fishing has become increasingly difficult and dangerous as Israeli attacks on fishermen have reduced the zone where they can fish to just six nautical miles from Gaza’s shore.

This is a violation of the Oslo agreement which sets the fishing zone at 20 nautical miles.

For the past few years, Gaza fisherman were allowed to cross into Egyptian waters under the supervision of Egyptian forces, according to Nizar Ayyash, head of the Gaza fishermen’s syndicate.

This helped relieve the pressure as catches shrunk.

But since the 3 July military coup that overthrew Morsi, Palestinian fishermen from Gaza have come under unprecedented attack by Egyptian naval forces and at least three have been injured.

Ayyash said the attacks came without any warning. “We never expected from our Egyptian brothers to open fire on us,” Ayyash said.

Five others were arrested and an Egyptian military court sentenced them to a year in jail, allegedly for fishing in Egyptian waters.

In a new attempt to break Israel’s tight blockade, activists in Gaza are working to transform a fishing boat into “Gaza’s Ark” which will attempt to set sail from Gaza to export goods.

Due to the Israeli siege, virtually no Palestinian-produced goods are allowed out of Gaza.

 

 

Written FOR

CAPITALISM SANS FRONTIERES

burns-the-capitalist

*

The warm relations between a segment of Palestinian capitalists and Israeli capitalists, details of which have recently emerged, is one of the worst forms of normalization which provides the [Israeli] occupation a fig leaf to cover up its continued occupation, ethnic cleansing, racism, siege of Gaza, land confiscation and settlement construction, and denial of the right of return for Palestinian refugees.
*

Palestinian firms listed as clients of Israeli general who fled war crimes arrest

 Ali Abunimah 
*

A “security company” owned by an Israeli general who once fled the UK fearing a war crimes arrest boasts of major Palestinian and foreign firms in Ramallah as its clients.

The firm, Netacs Ltd., was founded and is co-owned by reserve Major-General Danny Rothschild, who commanded Israeli occupation forces in the West Bank in the 1990s.

Rothschild, who has defended the use of torture, also commanded Israeli occupation forces in southern Lebanon and worked in military intelligence.

Among the clients Rothschild’s firm lists on its website is the Palestinian conglomerate PADICO, which owns large swathes of the Palestinian economy, and whose chairman is the billionaire Munib Masri.

In 2011, Rothschild cut short a visit to London after warnings that he could be arrested in relation to war crimes.

Other clients Rothschild’s firm lists include the Ramallah Mövenpick hotel, the Bank of Jordan, Jordan Ahli Bank, Cairo Amman Bank, the Palestinian “security firm” Pal-Safe, Google and Colombia’s Bogota international airport.

In addition to security, Netacs advertises services including “Business Facilitation” and “Establishment of National Intelligence Organizations.”

Dealings date back to beginning of Oslo

Rothschild’s dealings date back to the early years of the Oslo accords, the 20th anniversary of which will be marked this week.

As Peter Lagerquist wrote in the Journal of Palestine Studies in 2003, Rothschild set up his firm in 1995, along with another officer, Gadi Zohar, and an intelligence agent named Samuel Ettinger.

Ettinger is still listed as an owner of Netacs. According to Lagerquist, “their business was based on privileged access both to the PA and the Israeli security establishment.”

In other words, they are occupation profiteers who peddle their influence with the occupation to help out Palestinian businessmen.

Zohar claimed to have very good relations with the PA and the Palestinian security services, as well as with PADICO, Paltel and other firms in Ramallah.

Netacs also worked for the now-defunct Casino near Jericho.

Close business ties

Another co-owner of Netacs is the Israeli army’s Lt. Colonel Avi Nudelman, who also heads the Israeli-Palestinian Chamber of Commerce (IPCC).

The IPCC is a body that prominent Palestinian businessmen, such as Rawabi developer Bashar Masri, and various PA figures, have worked closely with to help Israeli firms penetrate the Palestinian economy and profit even further from occupation.

“Worst forms of normalization”

Last year, the Palestinian Boycott National Committee censured PADICO’s Munib Masri for his close business ties to Israel, especially with Israeli tycoon Rami Levy, who builds supermarkets in illegal settlements.

The statement said:

The warm relations between a segment of Palestinian capitalists and Israeli capitalists, details of which have recently emerged, is one of the worst forms of normalization which provides the [Israeli] occupation a fig leaf to cover up its continued occupation, ethnic cleansing, racism, siege of Gaza, land confiscation and settlement construction, and denial of the right of return for Palestinian refugees.

The employment of Major-General Danny Rothschild by so many Palestinian firms, although apparently not new, has got to be a new low.

 

 

Written FOR

KERRY’S ‘PEACE’ PLAN ~~ A PEEK AND A LEAK

The first proclaimed leak from Secretary John Kerry’s efforts to resolve the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, as it is so often called, were published last week in the reputable London-based daily Arabic newspaper, Al-Hayat.
*
abbas-netanyahu-kerry
*
A Peek inside Kerry’s “Peace” Efforts or Propaganda?
By Sam Bahour

The first proclaimed leak from Secretary John Kerry’s efforts to resolve the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, as it is so often called, were published last week in the reputable London-based daily Arabic newspaper, Al-Hayat. The source is said to be from a posting from the website of the Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement, Hamas, who claim the information was leaked to them by someone attending the tightly closed negotiating sessions. The validity of this claim and the contents of the leak are unverifiable and the infighting between Hamas and Fatah give both a vested interest to publicly damage the other, however, a read through the supposed leaked information makes anyone familiar with this issue take a worrying note.

 

The Al-Hayat article on the leak states that Secretary Kerry obtained Palestinian President Abbas’ approval on general parameters for the restart of negotiations, at meetings between the two in Amman on 17-18 July 2013, prior to Secretary Kerry’s announcement that negotiations would restart. According to the leaked document, “Kerry set a maximum period of time ranging from 6 to 9 monthswould be dedicated to bilateral Palestinian-Israeli negotiations … without anypreconditions,” beyond the principles listed below and whereby Jordanparticipates in meetings on refugees, Jerusalem and borders where necessary:

 

1.                The Separation Wall will serve as the security borders of the ‘Jewish’ state, and the temporary border of the ‘Palestinian’ state… Both parties will acknowledge and announce this.” 

2.                There will be “an exchange in disputed territories within the plan of the Separation Wall noted above, as agreed to by both parties and with the blessing of the Arab League Follow-up Committee, as specified by this Committee to Mr. Kerry during their last visit to Washington, ranging in size from eight to ten percent of West Bank lands.”

3.                There will be also be a “freeze in the settlement projects at a number of outposts, as approved by the Israeli government, which does not apply to existing projects in large settlement communities located in the vicinity of Jerusalem and in the Jordan Valley, including the settlements of Ma’ale Adumim, Givat Ze’ev, Har Homa, Gilo, Neve Yacov, Ramat Shlomo, Ramat Alman, Kiryat Arba’, and other densely populated settlements.

4.                The document adds that “residents in frozen settlement communities will have the right to choose between Israeli citizenship, or Palestinian citizenship, or both, at the conclusion of negotiations,” and that “talks will culminate with a historic agreement … along the lines of the Oslo Agreement, during which both parties will announce the end of the historic conflict between their peoples, as well as full normalization with all Arab states, at a celebratory meeting attended by the Arab League and representatives of all Arab countries, announcing their approval of Israel’s establishment of a Palestinian state within the limits set out … above, according to agreements…. concluded by the two parties at the end of the negotiations, which will also entail Palestinian recognition of Israel as the state of the Jewish people.

5.                It adds that “at the end of negotiations some Palestinian families will be allowed to reunite in the West Bank, Rafah and Gaza, while others will have the right to compensation, or emigration … to Arab countries, especially the Gulf…” where they will be “…naturalized… utilizing the Right of Return Fund for this purpose.

6.                Concerning the status of East Jerusalem, the leaked document indicates that it will be “placed under an international administration (Palestinian-Israeli-Jordanian) for ten years, whereby  resident Israelis in East Jerusalem will have the right  to choose their identity,” i.e. citizenship. 

7.                Furthermore, “Israelis and Palestinians agree to discuss the issue of land exchanges, in the West Bank and Jerusalem, through negotiating committees despite the non-core points of contention between the two parties… especially those points that are considered important by the delegation of the Arab League, including the proposal to grant citizenship to every Palestinian who has been resident in the Gulf for more than ten years.

8.                The document indicates that there will be a “discussion of executive steps in this agreement during negotiations within the time-limit mentioned above, and that its implementation will extend to ten years from the signing of the agreement.

9.                Israel will also “release a number of Palestinian detainees have who spent twenty years or more in detention, and no longer pose a security threat.

10.           It also stipulates that “President Mahmoud Abbas will call for legislative and presidential elections in the West Bank after the public announcement of the Agreement, in anticipation of the possibility of the emergence of objections to it, and that the terms of the agreement will not fully be announced until after the start of negotiations and the preoccupation of Palestinians with the battles of the Legislative Council and the Presidency.

11.           It also says that “with the signing of the agreement at the end of the specified time-limit and the declaration of an independent Palestinian state, the Palestinians and Jordanians will, with the blessing of Israel and the Arabs, reach an understandings on the role of Jordanian security assistance … to the Palestinian Authority … to stand by its side and help it overcome potential internal or external dangers … as part of a Confederation, which will be announced in conjunction with a trilateral economic initiative, in which Israel will play an active role in its formation.

Shocking, to say the least!

 

If these are anywhere near the truth, the region should be preparing for yet another major fallout, this time in Palestine and Israel, again.

 

If the U.S. and Israel continue to choose the game of might is right, then they should expect, sooner rather than later, a new generation of Palestinians to lookIsrael straight in the eye and say, “You win! You get it all Israel: Israel, theWest Bank, Gaza, Jerusalem, both east and west sides, all of the settlements, all of the water, all of the Jordan Valley, all of the electromagnetic spectrum, all of the airspace, and most importantly, you also get all of us. Now, we heard you have free health care in Israel; where do we pick up our medical cards? We also want some of that free education too.”

 

In other words, if the U.S. and Israel are adamant to throw into the sea international law, humanitarian law, UN resolutions, human rights, rights of refugees, and sheer common sense, then expect the Palestinians to redefine their self-determination from a struggle for statehood to a struggle for civil rights between the Mediterranean and the Jordan River.

 

In the words of the late Palestinian (and global) intellectual, Edward Said, it’s “equality or nothing.” What is it about these three simple words that are so hard to comprehend?

 

Written FOR

ISRAEL’S GUARDIAN ANGEL

 Blue-Guardian-Angel-left
*
Apart from the political dimension, one can’t really find the right words to describe the scandal of PA willingness to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on protecting the security of Israeli settlements in the West Bank when more than 70% of Palestinians live under the poverty line.
*
Israel builds settlements, PA guards them
*
*
By Khalid Amayeh in Occupied Jerusalem
 *
PLO official Nabil Shaath threw a bombshell this week when he told Israeli reporters in Ramallah that the Palestinian Authority (PA) spends a large portion of its meager budget on guarding Israeli colonies against possible attacks by Palestinian resistance fighters.

Shaath, who is known for his honesty and candidness, said the PA was spending more funds on protecting Israeli settlements than it was on education and health in the occupied territories.

Fatah spokespersons said Shaath was trying to tell the Israeli public that the PA was doing all it could to keep the peace and honor signed agreements with Israel .

This is really a shocking, though not surprising- admission which should embarrass all Palestinians, especially those still giving the PA the benefit of the doubt and thinking that the PLO is still the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people.

We all know that the PA is filling the ether with never-ending complaints about Jewish settlement expansion. So one wonders how the world will take the PA seriously ever after this scandalous revelation, which really illustrates the moral and political schizophrenia overwhelming the PLO-PA leadership. Others, who are less diplomatic, would not hesitate to consider the matter a brazen treason to the Palestinian people and their aspiration for independence and freedom.

The PA used to call itself “the Palestinian National Authority.” Now, The State of Palestine” is replacing the PA as the official name of the semi-autonomous regime. Unfortunately both names are devoid of substance as the Israeli occupation continues to control every street and neighborhood in the West Bank .

It is really disgraceful that the PA regime always strives to appease the Israeli occupiers, not only by allocating hard-earned or politically-motivated aid money for protecting Jewish colonies but also by continuing to arrest and round up Palestinians deemed supportive of Islamic groups.

This is actually more than disgraceful. In the final analysis, we are protecting child-killers, land-grabbers, and terrorists who vandalize our mosques and torch our grain fields and live orchards.

As to terrorizing Palestinians on behalf of Israel, it shows that the PA is decidedly at Israel’s beck and call, which means that the PA is actually answerable to the Zionist regime, its whims and vagaries when the Ramallah regime ought to be responsible to the Palestinian people.

Apart from the political dimension, one can’t really find the right words to describe the scandal of PA willingness to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on protecting the security of Israeli settlements in the West Bank when more than 70% of Palestinians live under the poverty line.

More to the point, the PA, including the new government headed by Rami Hamdallah, lacks the courage to tell the truth to the Palestinian masses about its umbilical subservience to Israel.

Instead, the PA continues to indulge in cheap rhetoric and lies about Palestinian statehood when even the most casual observers have come to realize that establishing a viable and territorially contiguous state is no longer a realistic possibility in light of the massive expansion of Jewish settlements and the adamant rejection by Israel of any compromises that would allow the Palestinian people to reclaim even a small part of their usurped rights.

In fact, the PA is not only deceiving the Palestinian people. It is also deceiving Arab states and the Muslim public opinion by insisting that donated Arab aid would enhance Palestinian steadfastness and thwart colonialist Zionist schemes. Well, the truth, the naked truth, is that Arab and non-Arab aid money is used to enhance the security of Jewish settlements, not Palestinian steadfastness.

Well, the next time a PA official comes to ask for more money from Arab states; he should be asked how much money the PA spends on education as opposed to protecting Nazi-like Jewish settlers hell-bent on ethnically cleansing our people from our ancestral homeland.

The Palestinian people, thoroughly exhausted by an economic meltdown and cheated by the world community as well as its own leadership, should also bring the PA to account and ask it about the merits of keeping up and funding 70,000 security personnel whose main job is protecting Israeli settlement security.

This week, PA economy minister reportedly met with his Israeli counterpart and agreed on more “economic coordination.” This shows that the PA never learns from its mistakes.

Following the hapless Oslo Accords, the PLO promised the Palestinian people that the West Bank and Gaza Strip would soon become the Hong Kong and Singapore of the Middle East. The truth of the matter, however, is that the occupied territories effectively became the Somalia of the Arab world as poverty, economic depravity and unemployment skyrocketed as never before.

The former PA Prime Minister Salam Fayyad eventually reached the conclusion that it was impossible to build a prosperous economy under a sinister foreign military occupation.

Now, the new government in Ramallah is walking in the same path, which proved catastrophic, thinking that Palestinians can achieve economic prosperity in the absence of Palestinian sovereignty and freedom of movement.

Politically, the PLO-PA establishment is behaving like Alice in Wonderland. PA officials, including Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, continue to make daily statements claiming that there is still a chance for reaching a peaceful settlement for the protracted conflict when every observer and every pundit, Palestinian and Israeli alike, know well that time has passed peace by, due to massive settlement expansion.

So why is the PLO-PA refusing to see the obvious? Are they blind? Are they drunk? Are they stupid?

MEET BIG BROTHER’S LITTLE ISRAELI BROTHERS

The New Big Brother ‘Copyleft’ by Carlos Latuff
eua-espionam-o-mundo (1)
*
The recent exposure of National Security Agency monitoring of Americans’ emails, live voice communications and stored data cast suspicion once again on private surveillance contractors linked to Israeli intelligence services. One firm called Narus has provided the NSA with technology for almost a decade that enabled it to obtain and analyze at least 80 percent of communications made by Americans over online and telecom channels. What was Narus’ role in the latest scandal, and how far back does its history of spying go?
*

Meet the Israeli-linked firm that sold Big Brother machines to Mubarak, Qaddafi – and Washington

by Max Blumenthal 
*
prism slide 2
A slide from the National Security Agency powerpoint presentation on the PRISM program. (Image: 
Washington Post)

The recent exposure of National Security Agency monitoring of Americans’ emails, live voice communications and stored data cast suspicion once again on private surveillance contractors linked to Israeli intelligence services. One firm called Narus has provided the NSA with technology for almost a decade that enabled it to obtain and analyze at least 80 percent of communications made by Americans over online and telecom channels. What was Narus’ role in the latest scandal, and how far back does its history of spying go?

Deep Packet Inspection

Back in 2011, when Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak attempted to quell the Tahrir Square uprising by ordering telecommunications companies to shut down the Internet, the Obama administration slammed his regime, demanding that it immediately open up social media channels. The US also took the opportunity to promote the State Department’s $30 million Internet freedom project, which was aimed at providing dissidents with technology to stifle online surveillance in repressive states.

Tim Karr, the campaign director for the online freedom advocacy group Free Press, wondered what tools the Mubarak regime was using to target online dissidents. He discovered that Egypt had purchased Deep Packet Inspection (DPI) technology from Narus, a Silicon Valley-based high tech firm.

DPI is a computer network packet filtering system that allows administrators to collect any data that passes through an inspection point. Governments around the world rely on it to conduct spying and data mining on a massive level. “[DPI] is often called dual use because it can be used for legitimate purposes, by cops to ID terrorists, or for commercial purposes,” Karr told me. “But in the wrong hands it can be a tool that can be used to suppress online dissent, identify dissidents and even hunt them down.”

The information about Narus’ sales to Egypt was not hard to find; Karr discovered it right on the company’s website. Narus has also boasted about sales of DPI technology to serial human rights violators like the governments of Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and telecom subsidiaries of the Chinese government. Through a third party reseller, Narus was in negotiations to provide spying devices to the Qaddafi regime, but the deal fell through when Qaddafi was overthrown by the very people he had sought to monitor.

nss
A diagram from a Narus demo showing its network management product, which can be used to manage network traffic or provide surveillance over all network activity.
(Image: 
The Berkman Center for Internet & Society)

The exposure this month of the US National Security Agency’s Prism program, which uses DPI technology to monitor the phone and online communications of American citizens, eroded the credibility of US calls for Internet freedom abroad. “The Obama administration has tried to play both sides of this equation and the rhetoric it used during Arab Spring doesn’t square with our practices domestically in spying on our own citizenry,” Karr remarked. “There seems to be a double standard here.”

He added, “When people fear that their communications are being monitored, there is a chilling effect. So this is not just about privacy, it’s a freedom speech issue.”

Room 641A

In 2006, an AT&T technician named Mark Klein discovered a secret room inside the company’s windowless “Folsom Street Facility” in downtown San Francisco that was bristling with Narus machines. The now notorious Room 641A was controlled by the NSA, which was using it to collect AT&T customer data for data mining and real-time analysis. Thanks to the powerful NarusInsight system, the NSA was able to monitor 108 billion emails from AT&T customers per day.

 

att micurs ccsa 20
AT&T’s windowless Folsom Street Facility in downtown
San Francisco, the home of Room 641A where the NSA
used Narus machines to spy on millions of Americans.

 

The revelations set off a national scandal, confirming that the US government was spying on millions of citizens, and that major telecom and service providers were complicit. But no one was held accountable. Following a lawsuit filed against AT&T by the Electronic Freedom Foundation, Congress passed the FISA Amendments Act in July 2008, giving retroactive immunity to telecom corporations that assisted the NSA, and relieving them of any consequences for spying on Americans.

Cass Sunstein, an informal advisor to Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign who now heads the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, and who has urgedfederal law enforcement to “cognitively infiltrate” anti-government groups, was anoutspoken supporter of the retroactive immunity bill. With Sunstein by his side, Obama reversed his initial objections to the NSA’s domestic spying operations, voting as a Senator for retroactive immunity.

The vote allowed the NSA to expand its domestic spying operations, clearing the legal hurdles obstructing the creation of PRISM. The stage was set for the second term scandal that would leave Obama reeling.

“You have to demonize the source”

Well before Edward Snowden was a household name, there was William Binney, a high level NSA official who resigned in protest on October 31, 2001 after learning of the birth of a massive, post-9/11 domestic spying operation. I spoke to Binney three days after Snowden revealed himself as the latest NSA whistleblower.

“I couldn’t stay there [at the NSA] and be a party to that collecting data and spying on American citizens,” Binney told me. “And that court order from Verizon [that revealed the PRISM program] is a continuation of that.”

Like Snowden, who has been roundly demonized by pundits and Obama supporters, and may face an extradition order, Binney encountered a severe backlash when he resigned. “They want to avoid facing up to what the government was doing so you have to demonize the source,” Binney said. “We [NSA whistleblowers past and present] were all attacked. They attempted to indict us and frame us, they raided us with the FBI, they attempted to discredit us with all the standard tactics they use. It went nowhere but it allowed them continue doing what they were doing. And that’s the problem – they refused to recognize there even was a problem and now we won’t solve it.”

Binney told me that throughout the United States there are currently as many as 20 NSA black sites like Room 641A. Narus devices, he said, have been placed at fiber-optic convergence points, allowing the NSA to retrieve about 80 percent of data carried through telecom and online service providers. Binney emphasized that the devices do not only retrieve so-called metadata, which only offers general records of data, but that they gather the actual content of emails and calls. (“We can reconstruct all of their e-mails along with attachments, see what web pages they clicked on; we can reconstruct their (Voice Over Internet) calls,” said Steve Bannerman, the marketing director of Narus).

Thanks to PRISM, the NSA bas been able to “fill in the gaps,” Binney explained, gathering bulk data from communications the NSA might have missed with the NarusInsight system, especially those made between Americans and foreign countries.

The Israeli Connection

Binney told me that while he worked at the NSA in 1998, a freebooting agency colleague with pronounced pro-Israel views “shared” DPI technology with Israeli intelligence agencies. At the time, Binney was the chairman of the NSA’s Foreign Relations Advisory Council (FRAC), a board charged with reviewing the transfer of technology to foreign allies. To his chagrin, he was only made aware of the transfer to Israel after the fact.

“Usually when you share things you discuss them and have approval from FRAC – you have an agreement,” Binney said. “I was supposed to know about all the sharing that goes on. So when I found out about this I said, ‘Hey, if we’re gonna share it with Israel we should share it with other allies too and save them the money of having to develop it on their own. I didn’t have a problem with it, and I don’t know how he did it, but we had a process and he circumvented it.”

Enter Narus, the company named for the Latin word for “all knowing.” Founded in the Silicon Valley in 1997 by Israeli expatriates with alleged ties to Israel’s intelligence services, Ori Cohen and Stas Khirman, Narus has been shrouded in mystery since its inception.

A 2006 investigation by Haaretz into Cohen’s background was unable to establish a clear portrait of its subject, concluding that he was “hard to pin down.” Khirman, according to journalist James Bamford, worked in the past for Elta Systems, a subsidiary of Israel Aerospace Industries that specialized in advanced eavesdropping systems for Israel’s military-intelligence apparatus. (In 2010, Narus was sold to the Boeing Company, a multinational defense corporation that clearly saw a future in the online surveillance industry).

Sometime around 2002, Narus pioneered state-of-the-art DPI devices. “The timeline shows [DPI technology] was shared with Israel about five years before Narus came out with its devices,” Binney commented. “It certainly was a suspicious timing sequence.”

Another Israeli-linked tech company, Verint, is a subsidiary of the Israeli firm Comverse, which boasts a reputation as “the world’s leading provider… of communications intercept and analysis” technology. Among the many Comverse executives plucked from the ranks of Israeli army intelligence is the company’s founder, Jacob “Kobi” Alexander, an ex-Israeli intelligence agent who cashed in through Israel’s high-tech surveillance industry. Alexander’s lucrative careercollapsed in dramatic fashion when he was arrested for fraud in Namibia in 2006 after an international manhunt, and wound up handing over bank accounts worth $46 million to US authorities.

Just as AT&T relied on Narus systems, Verint’s DPI devices have been used to fulfill NSA requests for data from Verizon’s subscribers. And as Bamford explained in his 2008 book on the NSA, “Shadow Factory,” much of the data Verint and other private Israeli contractors gather from can be remotely accessed from Israel. “The greatest potential beneficiaries of this marriage between the Israeli eavesdroppers and America’s increasingly centralized telecom grid are Israel’s intelligence agencies,” Bamford wrote.

Journalist Christopher Ketcham speculated in a 2008 article that Israeli-linked firms like Verint and Narus could have implanted Trojan spy technology into their devices, providing Israeli intelligence services with a backdoor means of reviewing and analyzing data stored in secure NSA systems. Boaz Guttmann, an Israeli national police cybercrimes investigator, told Ketcham, “Trojan horse espionage is part of the way of life of companies in Israel. It’s a culture of spying.”

However, Binney dismissed the possibility of backdoor Trojan spying. “With any foreign equipment we bought we would make sure that there wasn’t anything planted in it like backdoors,” he told me. “I don’t think backdoors are a problem since they don’t have the bandwidth capacity and if it started happening it would have immediately showed up in service providers records.”

But no matter how much control the NSA exerts over the spying technology it procures from private contractors, there is little guarantee it can control the thousands of people who work in their offices. To understand how acute the problem could be, look no further than Edward Snowden.

 

 

Written FOR

‘ONE STATE SOLUTION’ WORKED OUT IN SYDNEY AUSTRALIA

Hopefully dying together will lead to living together ;)
*
With both communities facing a severe shortage of burial space at Rookwood Necropolis, believed to be the largest cemetery in the Southern Hemisphere, the New South Wales State Government officially opened the last available land there to be shared by the two faiths.
*

Sydney’s Muslim, Jewish communities to share burial space in local cemetery

New 3.3-hectare site will have enough burial space for both communities for the next decade or more.

By Dan Goldberg
*
Lakemba Mosque’s Sheikh Safi and Yair Miller.
Lakemba Mosque’s Sheikh Safi and Yair Miller at Rookwood General Cemetery.Photo by Courtesoy of Rookwood General Cemetery.

*

Sydney’s Muslims and Jews may not see eye to eye on certain matters, especially those involving Israel, but last week the two communities found some much-needed common ground. Burial ground, that is.

With both communities facing a severe shortage of burial space at Rookwood Necropolis, believed to be the largest cemetery in the Southern Hemisphere, the New South Wales State Government officially opened the last available land there to be shared by the two faiths.

The Harbor City’s Muslim population, which numbers more than 150,000, would have run out of burial space within months, according to officials.

The city’s 45,000-plus Jewish community would have managed in the short term.

The new 3.3-hectare site will have enough burial space for both communities for the next decade or more.

Half of the new lot will be reserved for about 4000 double-depth Islamic graves; the other half will be for around 2,700 single Jewish burial plots, said Katrina Hodgkinson, the Primary Industries Minister.

The two sections will be divided by small roads inside the cemetery, she added.

The development comes amid allegations of Hezbollah sleeper cells operating in Australia and a controversial call for an academic boycott of the Technion in Haifa by students at the University of Sydney.

Yair Miller, president of the New South Wales Jewish Board of Deputies, said the new burial site was proof of the healthy relationship between the two faiths in New South Wales.

“It needs to always be worked on but we have a very cordial relationship in NSW with most of the mainstream Muslim groups,” Miller said.

“The Jewish community is still in need of a long-term solution but we’re very, very thankful.”

Ahmad Kamaledine, the Muslim representative on the Rookwood General Cemeteries Trust, told local media: “Being able to see [members of] the Jewish and Muslim community being buried side by side and sharing the same ground will demonstrate the willingness of the community in Australia to work together.”

It was “vitally important for cultural and religious reasons” that the two communities had some certainty about where their loved ones would be buried, said Victor Dominello, the Minister for Citizenship and Communities.

Miller said he was not aware of any opposition within the Jewish community to the plan. “The model of a multi-faith cemetery is one we’ve lived with here in the last 200 years.

“These plots happen to be next to each other but are not intertwined. There are still roads between the sections, it’s a very big plot divided by internal roads so there’s no inter-burying.”

But Michael Burd, a vocal critic of Islamic extremism in Australia, said he was horrified. “When I read about this decision I very disappointed,” he said.

Referring to Lebanese-born Sheikh Yahya Safi, the Imam of Lakemba Mosque who was at last week’s official opening, Burd added: “Sheikh Safi presides over a mosque that is notorious for espousing hatred of Israel and Jews in Sydney. Our Jewish community representative who agreed to this joint venture should be ashamed of himself,” he said.

“I am not exactly happy about it,” added a Jewish woman from Sydney, who wished to remain anonymous.

“But then I am not happy either with all the Muslim interfaith rubbish the Board of Deputies gets up to either.”

Jeremy Jones, a former president of the Executive Council of Australian Jewry and a founder of the Australia National Dialogue of Christians, Muslims & Jews, said the local media’s interest in the story was out of context with decades of Jewish-Muslim relations.

“The biggest story here is that some journalists seem surprised that Jews and Muslims work together on such matters. It was more than 30 years ago when I began working with Muslims (and vegetarians) due to a mutual interest in having food ingredients labeled.”

The two faiths have collaborated on many other matters, such as anti-discrimination legislation, he added.

But Jones conceded that “extra special care” will have to be exercised by cemetery officials for certain high-profile burials.

“But there is no reason for any group to disturb or dismay one another,” he said.

 

Source

ISRAEL AND AMERICA’S LATEST THREAT TO WORLD PEACE

Seeking to appease his Israeli hosts, Hagel said maintaining Israeli military superiority was a top priority for the Obama administration. “President Obama has made not only maintaining but improving Israel’s military qualitative edge a top priority,” he said.
*

New US-Israel arms deal a threat to peace

 

 

The latest arms deal between Washington and Tel Aviv not only puts Tehran in the crosshairs, but will also underline Israeli intransigence on Palestine, writes Khalid Amayreh in occupied Jerusalem
*

 

New US-Israel arms deal  a threat  to peace
US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel is greeted by Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem (photo: Reuters)
*

A new major US arms deal with Israel is intended to further enhance the Hebrew state’s ability to strike Iran, even without direct American operational involvement. The multi-billion dollar package include anti-radiation missiles designed to take out enemy air defences, new sophisticated radar for fighter jets, KC135 aerial refuelling tankers and Osprey V-22 tilt-rotor transport aircraft.

The deal, however, will not include laser-guided bunker-buster bombs, according to The New York Times.

The deal was announced this week during the visit of US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel to Israel. Hagel reassured Israeli officials of America’s traditional commitment to Israel’s security and to maintaining its qualitative military edge over all its neighbours.

The KC135 tankers are reportedly capable of being used in long-range operations by Israel against Iran. The sale of the V-22’s would also mark the first time the aircraft have been released to any country outside the United States. The deal will be implemented in several months.

Seeking to appease his Israeli hosts, Hagel said maintaining Israeli military superiority was a top priority for the Obama administration. “President Obama has made not only maintaining but improving Israel’s military qualitative edge a top priority,” he said.

Hagel reiterated earlier statements concerning Iran, saying that all options for dealing with that country were on the table. The American official also said his country would continue to help Israel develop the Iron Dome anti-missile defence system.

According to intelligence reports published by the Israeli media, the Iron Dome performed “much worse than expected” during last year’s brief war between Hamas and Israel. Israeli officials claimed then that the costly defence system scored an 80 per cent success rate, a claim strongly contested by the Hebrew media.

It is widely believed the continued funding by the US of further research pertaining to the anti-missile system vindicates reports about its dismal performance.

The additional military aggrandisement is expected to further enforce the arguments of those in Israel who advocate striking Iran’s nuclear facilities unilaterally, ie without cooperation and coordination with the US.

Following talks with Hagel, Israel’s War Minister Moshe Yaalon, was quoted as saying: “One way or another, Iran’s nuclear programme will be stopped.”

Yaalon is no stranger to war given his role in murdering and maiming thousands of Palestinian civilians when he was chief of staff of the Israeli army in the mid-1950s.

Hagel’s visit to Israel is the first leg of a tour that will also take him to Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Both Saudi Arabia and the Emirates will also sign arms deal with Washington. Washington has always sought to promote Arab-Iranian contradictions at the expense of the Arab-Israeli conflict.

According to informed Israeli sources, the weapons these two countries will purchase from Washington will be of an inferior quality in comparison to those sold to Israel. Moreover, Washington will see to it that both countries will not try to transfer these weapons to a third country, especially one hostile to Israel.

 

FULL-FLEDGED ALLIANCE AGAINST IRAN: It is uncertain if the highlighted American-Israeli alliance against Iran will be brought to fruition by carrying out an Israeli or joint-Israeli-American strike against Iranian nuclear facilities.

Some commentators in Israel contend that US reluctance to supply the Hebrew state with more strategic weapons, such the bunker-buster bombs, may indicate that the US is trying to pacify Israel, and to convince Tel Aviv to give diplomatic efforts a chance to succeed.

However, one of the main goals — if not the main goal — of the current Israeli government is “to neutralise the Iranian danger”.

Israel, which possesses a large arsenal of nuclear weapons, along with their delivery systems, doesn’t face a real existential threat from Iran. This means that the hyperbolic and often phobic language used by Israeli officials and leaders to highlight the “Iranian danger” is intended largely to maintain the Israeli state’s military supremacy and hegemony in the region.

Moreover, it is widely believed that if Iran were to be allowed to possess nuclear weapons, this would trigger a nuclear arms race involving countries such as Saudi Arabia and Egypt. One Saudi official was quoted as saying in a press interview several months ago that “if Iran got the bomb, we would get it a few weeks afterwards.”

Thus, if this nightmarish scenario found its way to reality, Israel would then face not one Iran but many, as the possession of a nuclear deterrence by Arab countries would change the rules of the game of politics in the region to Israel’s disadvantage.

Earlier this month, the former head of Israeli Military Intelligence, Amos Yadlin, said that while an Israeli attack on Iranian nuclear facilities would only delay Iran’s nuclear capability, “this delay could be important because we may have a regime change”.

Yadlin added: “Israel has defined what the trigger is, what the red line is. Iran is already there.”

Nonetheless, most observers and experts doubt whether regime change in Iran would lead to a degradation let alone disappearance of the country’s nuclear programme. Other pundits argue that Iran’s nuclear programme has already reached the point of no return.

A final point: It is very likely that the new arms deal will further embolden Israel with regards to the Palestinian issue.

Last week, US Secretary of State John Kerry warned that the two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict would be dead within two years if action were not taken now.

“I believe the window of the two-state solution is shutting,” Kerry told the US House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee. “I think we have some period of time, a year, a year-and-a-half. Or two years, or it is over.”

Past experience has proven that the aggrandisement of Israeli military might at the expense of Arab and Muslim countries in the region makes Israel more intransigent, and much less prone to make peace.

 

Written FOR

 

PALESTINIANS TO PAY FOR GOOGLE’S FREE WI-FI IN NEW YORK NEIGHBOURHOOD

Photo © by Bud Korotzer
SONY DSC
*
Just where is the Palestinian connection?
Perhaps after you read THIS post from the other day you will see …
*
Google has been working with New York to foster a technology hotbed in the city. Last year it agreed to donate office space to Cornell University and the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology for an engineering school while the institutions build a permanent home on Roosevelt Island.
*
The following report from Bloomberg’s Businessweek gives the details;
*

Google to Offer Free Wi-Fi in Chelsea

By Sarah Frier and Henry Goldman

Google Inc. (GOOG), the world’s biggest Internet-search company, plans to offer free wireless Internet access in parts of New York’s Chelsea neighborhood, creating the largest public outdoor network in the city.

The Wi-Fi network, which doesn’t require a password, is available today, Google said in a statement. U.S. Senator Charles Schumer, Mayor Michael Bloomberg and other officials attended an event to announce the service in Chelsea, where Google has offices.

Google has been working with New York to foster a technology hotbed in the city. Last year it agreed to donate office space to Cornell University and the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology for an engineering school while the institutions build a permanent home on Roosevelt Island.

“New York is determined to become the world’s leading digital city, and universal access to high-speed Internet is one of the core building blocks of that vision,” Bloomberg said at the Manhattan news conference. “Free Wi-Fi across this part of Chelsea takes us another step closer to that goal.”

Google also benefits from wider access to the Internet, which it uses to deliver services to customers and advertisers.

The new network is part of an effort to cultivate Silicon Alley, a concentration of startups in Manhattan. Wi-Fi will be available to thousands of New Yorkers between Gansevoort Street and 19th Street from 8th Avenue to the West Side Highway, according to a statement.

“We all know New York’s next job-growth engine is the tech industry,” Schumer said at the event. “This is the future.”

‘Digital Divide’

The project with Google is a small step in a city that has a long way to go before it can boast about its Wi-Fi service, said Gale Brewer, who heads the City Council’s Government Operations Committee and has advocated for free Internet service for more than 10 years. Thick walls in older buildings will prevent Wi-Fi signals from penetrating inside, she said.

“The city’s digital divide is growing, with people packing libraries to use computers because they can’t afford $50 subscription fees for Internet at home,” the councilwoman said. “We have citywide service for first responders; we should be able to create a firewall for use by civilians and provide this service citywide.”

Pilot Program

The network will cost $115,000 to build and $45,000 a year to maintain. Google will cover two-thirds of those costs, with Chelsea Improvement Co., a nonprofit neighborhood development group, paying the rest. The service will be operated as a pilot program for two years, said Dan Biederman, Chelsea Improvement’s president.

The service will be free of advertising except for a message that Google is the provider, said George Townley, director of information systems for Chelsea Improvement.

Google has been hosting a free Wi-Fi network in its home town of Mountain View, California, since 2006. Last year, it introduced a fiber network in the Kansas City, Missouri, area to deliver connections the company says are 100 times faster than typical high-speed Internet lines.

New York would like to extend Wi-Fi to all neighborhoods eventually, said the mayor, who is the founder and majority shareholder of Bloomberg LP, the parent company of Bloomberg News.

BIBI SOLVES THE WORLD’S PROBLEMS (WITH A LITTLE HELP FROM HIS FRIENDS IN THE US SENATE)

“Building in Jerusalem is not the problem of the world. A nuclear Iran is the problem of the world,” Netanyahu told the senators during the meeting, which took place in his office in Jerusalem.
*
img398807
Netanyahu and McCain
Flash 90
*
“History will not forgive those who do not stop Iran’s nuclear program,” was Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s message during a meeting with top U.S. senators on Saturday evening.

The delegation is led by Sen. John McCain of the Senate Armed Services and Homeland Security Committees and the 2008 Republican Presidential candidate and also includes Senator Kelly Ayotte (R-NH), Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Senator Christopher Coons (D-DE), and Christian Brose, a senior advisor on the Senate Armed Services Committee.

“Building in Jerusalem is not the problem of the world. A nuclear Iran is the problem of the world,” Netanyahu told the senators during the meeting, which took place in his office in Jerusalem.

According to a statement issued by the Prime Minister’s Office, the meeting dealt with the intensification of the sanctions against Iran.

It added that the Prime Minister Netanyahu thanked the Republican and Democratic senators for the “unwavering support of Israel in the Senate.”

*

*

Taken FROM

« Older entries

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,119 other followers