SHATTERING HELEN THOMAS’ DREAM

MK demands trips to death camps in Poland be suspended

At a Knesset Education Committee meeting Monday, MK Yaacov Margi insisted a solution for disadvantaged students who can’t afford to go on the trip be found; MK Itzik Shmuli: We cannot acquiesce to the fact that these trips are only for the rich.calls for the trips to be suspended until a solution that allows disadvantaged pupils to also go

The Chairman of the Knesset Education Committee, MK Yaakov Margi (Shas), demanded Monday at a committee meeting that all March of the Living trips to Poland be suspended until a budget solution for disadvantaged students who are forced to forgo the trip was found.

“We cannot continue the status quo. The Committee is strongly opposed to the fact that the Ministry of Education did not handle the issue,” said MK Margi. “This is a very important issue, but because of the costs it scars the students. We cannot continue and support this industry of trips to Poland,” he added.

MK Itzik Shmuli (Zionist Union) who participated in the Committee’s discussion of the issue noted that the protocols show that about 30,000 students out of about 120,000 students a year go to Poland. “We cannot acquiesce to the fact that these trips are only for the rich. The thought that a child who was denied the chance to go only because he has no money gives me no rest.”

The meeting was attended by MKs and representatives of teachers’ unions, student representatives and the Ministry of Education. Although the Ministry of Education allocates scholarships of 50 million shekels to students, students told the officials that the procedure embarrasses them in front of their friends. MK Shmuli added that scholarship recipients feel that they are being done a favor. “If they think it is important, they must include the trips in the curriculum with all the financial implications that entails,” he argued.

Also attending the discussion was Ohed Friedman, an eleventh grader from Yehud who said that “the trip to Poland cost 7,000 shekels, including preparations. I could go afford to go on the trip, but as a Scout I leaned the value of solidarity. I will not take care of myself and leave my friends who are less well-off remain at home. Scholarships are degrading and today there is no discretion. When a child asks for a scholarship everyone in the school knows about it and it is degrading.”

MK Yifat Shasha-Biton (Kulanu) argued that we should examine the students’ willingness and perhaps reconsider the justification for the trip during the school year in high schools. “My feeling is that over time a real investigation into what students go through while on a trip to Poland has not been carried out,” she said. “I’m not sure about the trips’ effect. We should ask ourselves if this is the only way to teach the Holocaust. Maybe we should find an alternative, perhaps even in a military framework.”

 

SOURCE

THURSDAY’S TOONS ~~ ISRAEL TO FENCE ITSELF IN

Images by Carlos Latuff

Netanyahu plans fortress Israel to protect against ‘wild beasts’

Netanyahu plans fortress Israel to protect against ‘wild beasts’

Related from HaAretz

Netanyahu: We’ll Surround Israel With Fences ‘To Defend Ourselves Against Wild Beasts’
The government is preparing a multi-year plan to surround Israel with security barriers, prime minister says.’ In the area that we live in, we must defend ourselves.’

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said during a tour to the construction site of a barrier on the eastern border on Tuesday that he wishes to surround the country with fences and barriers “to defend ourselves against wild beasts” that surround Israel.

“At the end, in the State of Israel, as I see it, there will be a fence that spans it all,” said Netanyahu. “I’ll be told, ‘this is what you want, to protect the villa?’ The answer is yes. Will we surround all of the State of Israel with fences and barriers? The answer is yes. In the area that we live in, we must defend ourselves against the wild beasts.”

Netanyahu added that the government is preparing a multi-year plan to surround all of Israel with security barriers, as well as a plan to close the breaches in the separation barrier between Israel and the West Bank.

The other fence …

Erdogan-Merkel Deal on Refugees

Erdogan-Merkel Deal on Refugees

DESERTPEACE STANDS IN SILENCE TODAY FOR THE PASSING OF A TRUE WOMAN OF VALOR

 

Anne Yellin / Photo by Matt Weinstein

Anne Yellin / Photo by Matt Weinstein

This morning I received an email from Sue, the daughter of the woman pictured above, informing me of the passing of her mother Anne Yellin yesterday, just a month short of her 99th birthday. She lived a full life and changed the lives of many who knew and loved her, including my own.

Anne played a special role in my life and I credit her more than anyone else for making me what I am today. It was she that handed me the leaflet in front of Woolworth’s in 1960 …. the leaflet that changed my life as can be seen in THIS post from the archives.

Anne was a pillar of the community I grew up in, known to all and loved by all. She was predeceased by her loving husband Jack, a veteran of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade, in his own right, a true hero. She is survived by two loving daughters and Sue and Nancy and their children. May they all be comforted in the knowledge that the memory of their mother and grandmother will live on for years to come.

Bella Ciao dear Comrade and Friend!

My dear friend Matt Weinstein adds the following …

A good friend and one of the great “old-timer” activists and champions of peace and justice passed away today: Ann Yellin. She was a friend of my parents and a doting mom to her two daughters, Sue and Nancy as well as a very loving grandma. Ann, an RN by trade who worked for many years at Coney Island Hospital, was married to Jack Yellin, a veteran of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade—those courageous premature anti-fascists who fought in Spain before WW II, standing up to Franco and his backer, Hitler. And she was very proud of him. He died a long time ago but Ann carried his memory with her as the years passed and that memory helped bolster her to carry on. Ann was active throughout her life—she was a member of the Brighton Beach and Manhattan Beach chapter of Women Strike For Peace, fighting for a world free of the nuclear threat and then later in the Shorefront Peace Committee—its successor. Strongly opinionated but never wavering in her commitment, Ann Yellin was a strong partisan of socialism and with that as her goal she was one of those rare women who translate their beliefs and world outlook into concrete action on behalf of humanity. She was a beautiful woman—inside and out. We won’t soon forget her and the larger than life contributions she made for a better world.Ann died a month before her 99th birthday.

In honour of Anne’s 90th birthday, Matt wrote the following … (Click on link)

THE GREATEST GENERATION~~ A GUEST POST

Matt and Anne in happier times ...

Matt and Anne in happier times …

And finally, a Biblical tribute to our wonderful Woman of Valor …

Eshet Chayil אשת חיל (Psalm 31 Hebrew and English text translation)

HOW ZIONISM STEALS QUOTES TO JUSTIFY EVIL

Maya Angelou stood with Palestinians, but Israeli military uses her for Black History Month hasbara ….

On the morning of February 8, the IDF spokesperson’s office tweeted this:

 To commemorate #BlackHistoryMonth, we find strength in the words of the late author & poet, Maya Angelou.


To commemorate #BlackHistoryMonth, we find strength in the words of the late author & poet, Maya Angelou.

Perhaps they have forgotten that Angelou stood in solidarity with the Palestinian people when she honored the late Rachel Corrie:

The video above was produced to be part of the Rachel’s Words event to honor the life of Rachel Corrie in 2012. Writer Jen Marlowe was involved in organizing the event and remembers:

Dr. Angelou’s reading of Rachel’s words was powerful and poignant. But I was moved for reasons beyond that. I was moved that Dr. Angelou recognized the importance of Rachel’s writings, and of why we were insisting that Rachel’s voice not be silenced. I was moved that, in participating in the ‘Rachel’s Words’ event, Dr. Angelou was making her own stand to honor not only Rachel, but the dignity and humanity of the families in Gaza that Rachel was there to protect.

There is no doubt that it was the courage of people like Corrie and Palestinians living under occupation that Angelou sought to honor, not that of an occupying military.

Thanks to Dave Reed

And to Adam Horowitz of Mondowiss for the above

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Does this poem sound like it was written by a supporter of zionism?

#FreeGaza ~~ THE WINNING LOGO

Freedom Flotilla

We are pleased to announce the final logo choice by S. African activist Atiyyah Mohamed

We are pleased to announce the final logo choice by S. African activist Atiyyah Mohamed

The Women’s Boat to Gaza (WBG) is a Freedom Flotilla Coalition (FFC*) initiative that seeks not only to challenge the Israeli blockade but to also show solidarity and bring a message of hope to the Palestinian people.

The initiative was launched with a call to all artists/designers globally for submissions of a criterion based logo for the WBG that represented the undeniable contributions and indomitable spirit of Palestinian women who have been central within the Palestinian struggle.

The deadline of logo submissions was extended to the 25th of January 2016. We received and compiled approximately 40 logo submissions from different artists and organisations, after which a shortlist was created and collectively voted on by the media and steering committee of the WBG on the 31st January 2016.

We would firstly like to thank all the artists/designers and applicants who gave their time and effort  toward the logo submissions which were carefully reviewed and considered individually.  Your creativity and drive is noted and much appreciated.

We are pleased to announce the final logo choice by South African graphic designer and activist Atiyyah Mohamed. Atiyyah’s involvement in the project was initiated through her enthusiasm for human rights and peace around the world and which centres directly around the struggle of Palestinian women in particular. Atiyyah is a member of the Palestine Solidarity Alliance youth league and is involved in digital activism as well. Her logo was selected on the base of clarity and *-representation of the core message of the WBG.

The logo may be used in all WBG related campaigns and organisations and by individuals in support of the project. Should you require the logo in a specific format, or for any other information, enquiries or to engage in the campaign please do not hesitate to contact us via email at mediawbg@gmail.com.

We encourage all participation in the Women’s Boat to Gaza – together we will break the blockade!

In solidarity!

FFC is composed of civil society organizations and initiatives from many countries. We have been challenging the illegal and inhuman Israeli blockade of Gaza for years and are committed to continue the struggle until the blockade is unconditionally lifted and the Palestinian people everywhere regain their full rights.

MR. APARTHEID LOCKS HIS DOORS RATHER THAN FACE THE MUSIC

More photos can be seen HERE

More photos can be seen HERE

On the spot observation by Chippy Dee

Our Leviev Valentine’s event was yesterday – we shut him down again – they were supposedly closed for inventory (on a Saturday?). Again there were some crazies carrying on, screaming, grabbing someones phone and throwing it.  The NYPD was there and refused to arrest him because the phone was still working.  All of us ‘law & order types’ were chanting, “Arrest him!” but they didn’t.  Of course if that was a Black kid he’d be at Sing-Sing by now or on a coroner’s gurney. 

See the ugly face of zionism here …

Some background on why we demonstrate FROM

Love Under Apartheid at Leviev in New York City, Valentine’s 2016

A week before Valentine’s Day, as couples in many countries prepare to celebrate their love for one another, at our protest at Leviev diamonds in New York City we remembered that Palestinians do not have the freedom to love whomever they choose due to Israel’s apartheid policies. We celebrated through the stories below the many Palestinians who dare to defy apartheid with love. Leviev, by building Israel settlements, contributes to Israel’s apartheid program. For more information see

Palestinians — whether living in Israel as Israeli citizens or in Jerusalem, the West Bank or Gaza, live under Israeli rule. Israel assigns separate ID cards to the Palestinians living in each area, and each ID card carries a different status and different rights. While this impacts Palestinians in many ways, one of the most intrusive and harmful results is the separation of loved ones.

Palestinians do not have the freedom to love whomever they choose because multiple Israeli policies prevent them from doing so. For instance, if someone from the West Bank fell in love with someone from Gaza, they could not be together, because one carries an Israeli government-issued “West Bank only” ID and the other a “Gaza only” ID. This is despite the fact that both the West Bank and Gaza Strip are designated as Palestinian territories.

The Israeli Citizenship Law, which was enacted in 2003, prevents Palestinian citizens of Israel from marrying the spouse of their choice. This law affects thousands of Palestinian citizens of Israel, and many couples have been forced to leave the country as a result, leaving behind their homes and their families.

Here are a couple of stories from the Love Under Apartheid campaign:

Taiseer and Lana, affected by Israeli Citizenship Law

Taiseer is a Palestinian citizen of Israel from the city of Akka and his wife Lana is a Palestinian from the city of Jenin. Taiseer is an anthropologist and Lana is a librarian. Though they were already married, once the Citizenship Law was put in place, Lana was placed in a new legal category. She lives constantly in fear that she could be separated from her husband and their three young children.

Taiseer says: “We have the right to love and live just like any other people in the world. We are not any less than any people who choose whom, how or where they love.”  

Lina, affected by Military Order 1650 

Lina’s parents met while they were college students in the West Bank in the 1980’s. They fell in love, got married and had children. Lina’s mother has a West Bank ID and her father is a British citizen and originally from Gaza. In the 1980’s, Palestinians were more free to live and travel between the Palestinian territories, but in 2009, Israeli Military Order 1650 changed everything. One day while traveling for his work as a journalist, Lina’s father was stopped at checkpoint, arrested by soldiers and deported to Gaza, without a chance to say goodbye to his family.

Lina says: “One day we found our family split right in the middle…for my parents not to see each other…it was really emotional watching the effects on them…My dad would send me text messages at the most random hours of the day. I knew he was unable to sleep, thinking ‘I had my family with me, I had a job, I had a house, and overnight that completely changed.'”

These stories offer just a glimpse into life under Israeli policies. Palestinians are forced to adjust their lives every time a new policy is in place, every time a border shifts around them. These couples and families don’t break the law, the law breaks them. Still, despite these obstacles, Palestinians choose to love, and choose to fight for their rights every day.

SUNDAY’S SPOOF ~~ PALESTINIAN HUNGER STRIKER NEAR DEATH IN ISRAELI JAIL

‘And before I be a slave I’ll be buried in my grave and go home to my Lord and be Free’

Image by Carlos Latuff

Despite his critical condition, journalist captive Mohammad al-Qiq refuses to bow.

Despite his critical condition, journalist captive Mohammad al-Qiq refuses to bow.

See the following sites … (Click on links)

#FreeAlQeeq

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#Journalismisnotacrime

NEWS AND ACTIONS THIS COMING WEEK IN HYPOCRISY LAND

palestine-360x200

Hypocrisy land news and Actions this coming week:
Compiled by Mazin Qumsiyeh, PhD

The Israeli Knesset rejected a bill that calls for equality (after all
all this must remain a state by and for Jews). And a video emerged of
Israeli prime minister Netanyahu praising Israeli Fascist Group Im
Tirtzu which believes in "Jewishness" of Palestine and acts and
supports to effect ethnic cleansing of native Palestinians in favor of
European and other Jewish colonization. The Zionist leaders attacked
Ban Ki Moon for mildly speaking about the need to end the occupation
and let Palestinians live free. The heads of the EU misssions in
Jerusalem issued a report saying that Israel must respect human
rights. They explained that 660 Palestinians are being held without
charge or trial. They also mention Mohammad AlQeeq, a Palestinian
Journalist on hunger strike for 70 days since his illegal detention.
The tragedies around us continue and we sympathize with suffering
people seeking freedom from tyranny and from terrorism (much of it
emanating from the USA through its its "protectorates" like Israel and
Saudi Arabia).

My students struggle to come to class through tear gas and other
challenges of Israeli repression. This past week I gave courses on
research, critical reading, and writing for master students in tourism
and also for diploma students in drug education and prevention at BU.
In good news, more and more people acting on their convictions to
challenge oppression and/or build a better future. For example the
boycott campaign continues to grow around the world (for examples of successes ). 
Do act to promote BDS. in the media work and other actions. We were impressed
with the action of distribution of over 10,000 "spoof" New York Times
(major US newspaper). This biased newspaper not reporting on Israeli
colonialism but parroting Israeli propaganda about terrorism was
taught a good lesson by this action and thousands of New Yorkers
appreciated the gesture (electronic version of spoof here

IDF CLAMPING DOWN ON BLOGGERS

In yet another attempt to silence the truth, Bloggers are now targeted …

i-blog-therefore-i-am

IDF clamps down on web journalists

About 30 bloggers and webmasters receive order to submit articles to the military censor for approval before publication.

Yossi Gurvitz thought he was being pranked. The blogger behind the Facebook page “Friends of George” recently received a message from the military censor demanding that he forward all material before it is published in order to get approval.

The skeptical blogger called the censor and discovered the message was accurate. In the past few days, chief military censor Col. Ariella Ben-Avraham has sent missives to about 30 bloggers and webmasters demanding that they seek approval for articles dealing with “subjects that obligate examination”, such as those dealing with the IDF, in accordance with emergency regulations.

Gurvitz was furious. “I have no intention of meeting this demand,” he wrote. “The meaning of this demand is the eradication of new media in Israel, whose core is the speed of the response. I am examining legal proceedings available to me.”

Sources in the military censor’s office said that its legally-defined authorities “apply to every type of publication relating to national security”. Ben-Avraham told Yedioth Ahronoth: “the censor’s office works to monitor public online pages. It began back under the previous censor. We do not intent to apply the instructions on private profiles, but only public pages that defined themselves as dealing with news.”

It should be noted that the IDF can demand that bloggers submit their posts to the censor, but if they refuse, its ability to delete them is severely limited by the fact that Facebook controls the information. That said, governments around the world occasionally contact Facebook with a request to remove illegal content.

The company considers the requests and does make illegal content unavailable – but only in that country, which in this case means it is of limited use. On the other hand, violating the censor’s rules could lead to legal proceedings.

Source

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In depth report HERE

Israeli dissident ordered to submit Facebook posts to military censor

WEEK’S END SPOOFS OF JULIAN ASSANGE

Images by Carlos Latuff

UN Announces that Assange is Unlawfully Detained  More https://justice4assange.com/

UN Announces that Assange is Unlawfully Detained …  More HERE 

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ISRAEL ‘FEELING HEAT’ OVER SETTLEMENT BUSINESSES

The consequences of Israeli occupation and anti-Palestinian discrimination for Israel’s economy are now coming faster than ever.

In this Nov. 22, 2010, photo, Palestinian women collect scrap timber in the Mishor Adumim industrial zone near the Jewish West Bank settlement of Maaleh Adumim. Palestinian advocates contend that multinational companies will need to face "clear legal and moral liabilities" for operating in Israeli settlements. (Associated Press)

In this Nov. 22, 2010, photo, Palestinian women collect scrap timber in the Mishor Adumim industrial zone near the Jewish West Bank settlement of Maaleh Adumim. Palestinian advocates contend that multinational companies will need to face “clear legal and moral liabilities” for operating in Israeli settlements. (Associated Press)

Israel ‘feeling heat’ over settlement businesses: Sam Bahour and Edward E. Thompson (Opinion)

The consequences of Israeli occupation and anti-Palestinian discrimination for Israel’s economy are now coming faster than ever. Like so many previous military occupations, Israel is starting to feel the heat of the international community. However, this heat is not of the political kind that Israel has become accustomed to deflecting, but rather the economic kind that has a mystical way of invoking action from the political echelon. For everyone’s sake, let’s hope the message is arriving loud and clear: It’s time for Israel to end its nearly 50-year occupation and allow Palestinians to live in freedom in an independent state.

The latest thoughtful criticism of Israel’s actions is a 162-page report titled “Occupation, Inc.: How Settlement Businesses Contribute to Israel’s Violations of Palestinian Rights.” Issued by the reputable, international non-governmental organization Human Rights Watch (HRW), the report documents how settlement businesses facilitate the growth and operations of Israel’s settlement enterprise, an enterprise deemed illegal by every country in the world, except Israel. These settlement businesses depend on and contribute to the Israeli authorities’ unlawful confiscation of Palestinian land and other resources.

Human Rights Watch’s director of the Business and Human Rights Division, Arvind Ganesan, noted that “Settlement businesses unavoidably contribute to Israeli policies that dispossess and harshly discriminate against Palestinians, while profiting from Israel’s theft of Palestinian land and other resources. The only way for businesses to comply with their own human rights responsibilities is to stop working with and in Israeli settlements.”
Speaking of the stone and marble industry, Ganesan said, “Every dollar of stone that settlement businesses extract and sell from the West Bank is a dollar taken from Palestinians. The bottom line is no settlement business should be operating and profiting from land and resources illegally taken from the Palestinian people.”

In light of the clear illegality of doing business with Israeli settlements, multinational companies will need to face clear legal and moral liabilities in continuing to do business as usual. However, for those firms that have been operating in the settlements, there is another option they can pursue to compensate for their past wrongdoings; they can redirect their business investments to the Palestinian economy and become a constructive element in helping Palestinians recover from the real economic damage caused by nearly half a century of military occupation.

Making such investment and business options materialize is exactly why we co-founded Americans for a Vibrant Palestinian Economy (AVPE) as a tax-deductible organization based in Chicago, Illinois. As two Americans, one a retired Chicagoan and the other a Palestinian American from Youngstown, Ohio now based in Ramallah, we have witnessed firsthand the damage on the ground caused by Israel’s deliberate battering of Palestine’s economy. But we also have visited Palestinians’ firms, those keeping their businesses’ doors open despite all odds, and want to connect them to the U.S. market. After a year of operations, AVPE documented serious interest from Palestinian businesspersons interested in linking to American business partners.

Large-scale projects that global firms can surely relate to are taking shape. The first planned Palestinian city, Rawabi, is now witnessing its first tenants taking up residence and offers international high-tech firms the opportunity to locate their operations in the new Rawabi Tech Hub. From Dead Sea products that compete head on with similar products produced in illegal Israeli settlements to olive oil soap and Bethlehem greeting cards, Palestinians have products and services worthy of note.

This new HRW report is actually the second vital criticism that calls into question business as usual for Israel. The first was issued by the European Council on Foreign Relations and titled EU Differentiation and Israeli settlements (July 22, 2015). In this past report, Israeli banks, among other businesses, were a main target, given most have branches in settlements. The Israeli business community took note. With this new HRW report, they will take note again, and all indications are that the reports and actions against illegal business practices will continue until occupation comes to an end.

The World Bank estimated in 2013 that Israeli restrictions in Area C (the 62 percent of the West Bank under full Israeli control) cost the Palestinian economy $3.4 billion annually, approximately equal to 33 percent of Palestine’s GDP. Settlement businesses contribute to and benefit from unlawful and discriminatory policies that leave many Palestinians with no alternative but to work in Israel or settlements. As multinationals divest from illegal settlements, redirected economic activity can be a key component to further advance the Palestinian economy, while putting more Palestinians in jobs and giving them hope for a day when they will live in freedom and occupation-free.

Sam Bahour is a Palestinian American businessman originally from Youngstown now living in Ramallah, where he is managing partner at Applied Information Management. He is a policy adviser at Al-Shabaka: The Palestinian Policy Network and chairman of Americans for a Vibrant Palestinian Economy. Edward E. Thompson, a retired consulting psychologist with a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago, is the co-founder and president of Americans for a Vibrant Palestinian Economy.

 

Originally found AT

PHOTO ESSAY OF REBELLIOUS PALESTINIAN YOUTH

Portraits of Palestine’s youth rebellion

“Nobody organizes us. We do not want to depend on anyone or have money involved. It’s better to be independent.” East of al-Bureij refugee camp, Gaza Strip

“Nobody organizes us. We do not want to depend on anyone or have money involved. It’s better to be independent.” East of al-Bureij refugee camp, Gaza Strip

“We are here to prove to the occupier that we will not accept them. We won’t live in peace with the occupier and we will keep resisting until they leave.” Bethlehem

“We are here to prove to the occupier that we will not accept them. We won’t live in peace with the occupier and we will keep resisting until they leave.” Bethlehem

“Whoever comes here knows they will be either be arrested, or martyred or injured. But in the end, I don’t think anyone is afraid.” North of Ramallah, near the Beit El settlement

“Whoever comes here knows they will be either be arrested, or martyred or injured. But in the end, I don’t think anyone is afraid.” North of Ramallah, near the Beit El settlement

“Any rational person understands that stone throwing will not damage a military jeep or kill a soldier. However, we use stones to show they are the enemy.” North of Ramallah, near the Beit El settlement

“Any rational person understands that stone throwing will not damage a military jeep or kill a soldier. However, we use stones to show they are the enemy.” North of Ramallah, near the Beit El settlement

Bethlehem

Bethlehem

“They fire a lot of tear gas into the [Al Azzeh refugee] camp.They want families there to stop us. But the families understand that; they support us and take care of us.” Bethlehem

“They fire a lot of tear gas into the [Al Azzeh refugee] camp.They want families there to stop us. But the families understand that; they support us and take care of us.” Bethlehem

Gaza Strip, east of al-Bureij refugee camp

Gaza Strip, east of al-Bureij refugee camp

“We cover our faces because the occupying authority might [otherwise] arrest us. We also fear our own [Palestinian] authority would arrest us in the same way.” Bethlehem

“We cover our faces because the occupying authority might [otherwise] arrest us. We also fear our own [Palestinian] authority would arrest us in the same way.” Bethlehem

“The [peace] agreements didn’t work. The older generations should have changed them. Our role, you can say, is to refuse these agreements. We are against them, because they do no good to us and our land.” North of Ramallah, near the Beit El settlement

“The [peace] agreements didn’t work. The older generations should have changed them. Our role, you can say, is to refuse these agreements. We are against them, because they do no good to us and our land.” North of Ramallah, near the Beit El settlement

North of Ramallah, near Beit El settlement

North of Ramallah, near Beit El settlement

Bethlehem

Bethlehem

“There is a lot of pressure now. We look at the videos of the women in al-Aqsa who cannot enter. The occupation wants al-Aqsa. Why can Jews enter and I cannot? It’s only 10 kilometers from here, and I have not been able to go to Jerusalem since 2008.” Bethlehem

“There is a lot of pressure now. We look at the videos of the women in al-Aqsa who cannot enter. The occupation wants al-Aqsa. Why can Jews enter and I cannot? It’s only 10 kilometers from here, and I have not been able to go to Jerusalem since 2008.” Bethlehem

“In the night, at around 1am, the Israeli army comes and arrests men. They also threaten families that their homes will be demolished if their sons will continue to go to throw stones.” Bethlehem

“In the night, at around 1am, the Israeli army comes and arrests men. They also threaten families that their homes will be demolished if their sons will continue to go to throw stones.” Bethlehem

“The [PA’s] Presidential Guard stood in our way. We had an altercation with them. They were kind of embarrassed. Then they told us their work there was only for an hour and a half and then they would allow us in. We refused and kept going.” Bethlehem

“The [PA’s] Presidential Guard stood in our way. We had an altercation with them. They were kind of embarrassed. Then they told us their work there was only for an hour and a half and then they would allow us in. We refused and kept going.” Bethlehem

Gaza Strip, east of al-Bureij refugee camp

Gaza Strip, east of al-Bureij refugee camp

“This land is for everyone, not just the men. Of course the women can participate in the clashes.” Bethlehem

“This land is for everyone, not just the men. Of course the women can participate in the clashes.” Bethlehem

Bethlehem

Bethlehem

“The Palestinian Authority exists by agreement with Israel. The Palestinian Authority only exists to make Israelis feel safe. They work hand-in-hand with the Israeli military. In the West Bank, nobody loves them.” Bethlehem

“The Palestinian Authority exists by agreement with Israel. The Palestinian Authority only exists to make Israelis feel safe. They work hand-in-hand with the Israeli military. In the West Bank, nobody loves them.” Bethlehem

“Sometimes, our families try to talk to us and make us stay home. But every home has someone who has been arrested or killed. So you are also ashamed if you prevent your son from going to the clashes. My mother asked me to come back after one hour, just so she can see I am alright.” Bethlehem

“Sometimes, our families try to talk to us and make us stay home. But every home has someone who has been arrested or killed. So you are also ashamed if you prevent your son from going to the clashes. My mother asked me to come back after one hour, just so she can see I am alright.” Bethlehem

A Palestinian youth in Bethlehem wearing a t-shirt with the hashtag “Bahamish” written on it. “Some shout ‘Bahamish’ to the soldiers. It means ‘it’s ok’ or ‘nevermind.’ But if they kill us, this is not ‘bahamish;’ it’s important.”

A Palestinian youth in Bethlehem wearing a t-shirt with the hashtag “Bahamish” written on it. “Some shout ‘Bahamish’ to the soldiers. It means ‘it’s ok’ or ‘nevermind.’ But if they kill us, this is not ‘bahamish;’ it’s important.”

“The resistance started 100 years ago. I hope we will get our freedom and return to our villages. There is a future for Palestine. But there is no future with occupation.” Bethlehem

“The resistance started 100 years ago. I hope we will get our freedom and return to our villages. There is a future for Palestine. But there is no future with occupation.” Bethlehem

For nearly four months, popular protests, violence and general unrest have buffeted the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip, leading some commentators to suggest a third intifada or uprising.

Most of this is driven by restive and young people tired of endless and evidently pointless negotiations between the Palestinian Authority and Israel that have brought no end to Israel’s military occupation and only seen its illegal settlements expand.

“This is our land. We must do anything to free it from occupation,” says Mahmoud, 26, from al-Azzeh refugee camp in the West Bank city of Bethlehem.

Mahmoud (not his real name, since Israel frequently arrests protesters) has been a regular participant in demonstrations against the military occupation, in which youth confront Israeli forces with stones and, less frequently, Molotov cocktails. The army tries to suppress these protests with tear gas, rubber-coated steel bullets and live ammunition.

Since the beginning of last October, which witnessed increased confrontation with the occupation, more than 160 Palestinians and approximately two dozen Israelis have been killed. A United Nations monitoring group recorded a weekly average of 1,000 Palestinian injuries at the hands of the Israeli army during the last quarter of 2015.

Approximately one-third of those Palestinians killed, and many of those injured, were hit by live ammunition while taking part in demonstrations or while they were in the vicinity of protests.

Risks

The youths confronting the Israeli army know all too well the risks involved.

“I have mixed feelings during clashes. Sometimes you are afraid of dying,” Mahmoud explained. “But it’s also good to get the anger out. I have two children. I am married. In the night, I start to think about them, what they will do if I do not come back. But during the clashes, I try not think about it.”

The protests are led by youth and not any particular political party.

Khaled (also a pseudonym), a 21-year-old student from the Ramallah area, said the Palestinian Authority’s only role has been to try to stop them.

“Their role is to bring down the spirit of the people. It does not support us,” he said.

Palpable frustration

Their frustration is palpable and has sparked a debate among analysts and journalists whether this could be termed a third intifada. But the youths themselves seem not to care much about designation.

“First intifada, second intifada, it doesn’t matter. The intifada is connected to the occupation,” said Mahmoud, “and so it will continue. It is an ongoing process.”

The above series of photographs were taken at protests in the West Bank and Gaza Strip in the past four months. The quotations included are from the two Palestinian youths interviewed, neither of whom are featured in the photos.

Images by Activestills photographers Anne Paq in Bethlehem, Ezz Al-Zanoon in the Gaza Strip, Mohannad Darabee in the Ramallah area, Oren Ziv in Bethlehem and the Ramallah area. Photo editing by Shiraz Grinbaum.

Activestills is an independent collective based in Israel/Palestine which uses photography as a tool for social and political change.

DAILY SPOOFS ~~ ‘BOMBS AWAY’

Images by Carlos Latuff

U.S.-led Coalition Airstrikes on Daesh

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UN Suspends SyriaTalks in Geneva

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AMERICA’S STRANGE BEDFELLOWS

Moral:
You Are Known by
the Company You Keep

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Obviously oil is more important than Human Rights as far as Obama is concerned

Saudi Arabia overturns execution, sentences Palestinian poet to prison, 800 lashes

A Saudi court overturned the death sentence for Palestinian poet Ashraf Fayadh on Tuesday, his lawyer announced in a statement the same day.

A Saudi court overturned the death sentence for Palestinian poet Ashraf Fayadh on Tuesday, his lawyer announced in a statement the same day.

Fayadh was sentenced to the death penalty in November for “apostasy” and allegedly emitting “blasphemous statements” in some of his poetry.

The poet’s sentence has been changed to eight years in prison and 800 lashes by the general court of the city of Abha in southwestern Saudi Arabia.

Fayadh’s lawyer, Abd al-Rahman al-Laham, hailed the downgraded sentence, while maintaining that Fayadh was innocent on all charges.

Under the new sentence, Fayadh would be subjected to 16 sessions of 50 lashes each, al-Laham said.

The lawyer added that he would appeal in the coming days.

In May, the general court of Abha sentenced had Fayadh to four years in prison and 800 lashes, but the prosecution, which had called for the death sentence, had successfully appealed. The downgraded sentence effectively adds four more years in prison to the original sentence.

Fayadh has denied all charges against him, saying that another man made false accusations to the country’s religious police following a personal dispute.

Saudi Arabia’s Committee for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice arrested Fayadh in January 2014 for poetry he had published in 2008.

Fayadh had previously been arrested in 2013 after a complaint was filed against him alleging that he spread “misleading ideas.” However, he had quickly been released due to lack of evidence.

In November, Human Rights Watch slammed the death sentence handed down to Fayadh, calling it “yet another indictment of Saudi Arabia’s human rights record.”

According to the organization, Saudi Arabia executed 158 people in 2015, the highest number of executions in the Wahhabi kingdom in 20 years.

Source

#WitchHunt ~~ McCARTHY COMES TO ISRAEL

Delegitimizing a political opponent is a sickness; informing is poison. No one is a plant, not a leftist organization that receives money from the European union, and not a right-wing organization that receives money from evangelicals or other suspect sources.

Joseph McCarthy. A danger to democracy, then and now. (Photo: Getty Images)

Joseph McCarthy. A danger to democracy, then and now. (Photo: Getty Images)

Israel’s McCarthys 

Op-ed: As Im Tirtzu’s supporters saw last week, the fervent quest to implicate others as traitors can quickly go too far. Israel’s witch hunters need to stop now, before it’s too late.

“Let there be no hope for informers”, says the Shemoneh Esrei prayer. That harsh saying has many different and interesting religious interpretations, but when I was young, me and the other kids at a secular school in Tel Aviv took it literally: Bad things are in order for people who inform on their buddies. We wrote the words on a large piece of cardboard paper, and hung it on the wall next to the principal’s office.

Since his office was near the restrooms, one child made a slight change to the sign, switching the Hebrew words to mean “Let there be no hope for those who pee.” It created a small controversy, one of many. The school itself closed down years ago. Its restrooms now service the coffee shop that has since opened nearby. Whenever I schedule a meeting there, I make sure to give that wall a respectful visit. Not because of the restroom: Because of the informers.

Today’s Israel perhaps shows no hope for informers, but it provides plenty of work for them. Right-wing organizations are tracking left-wing organizations, digging into their garbage cans, sending undercover members to infiltrate them, grabbing quotes from Facebook and Twitter. The funding for all this usually comes from outside, from foreigners, or from the state treasury, through a chain of intermediary channels. The stated intention is to display these leftist organizations’ activists as foreign agents, and their activities as treasonous. That’s just the official story. The real point is to eliminate any internal criticism of the status quo in the Palestinian territories. Anyone who raises their head shall see it lopped off.

Im Tirtzu is but one of the organizations that make a living off of informing on leftist organizations, perhaps the one with the most nerve. There are others, some of whom put on a respectable front – half academic, half journalistic. In fact, they all strive for the same exact goal. The all swim in the same filth; they all inform on all the rest.

Last week, Im Tirtzu went a step further in its witch hunt: It published the names of authors, creators, and artists whom its people believe to have sinned by showing support for human rights organizations. These people are referred to as “plants,” meaning traitors, foreign agents. The list featured the cream of the Israeli cultural crop, the nation’s most precious assets in that area, multiple recipients of the Israel Prize.

This time they went too far. The publication was heavily criticized by other right-wingers, and the Im Tirtzu director general was forced to take a half step back. Next time he’ll be more careful. He wasn’t the only one who was frightened: Ben-Dror Yemini – who is conducting an impressive anti-leftist-organization campaign on many platforms (including this website) – saw that there was a problem as well. “I must repent,” he wrote in Yedioth Ahronoth last Friday, “I could have been wrong.” The mistake he’s willing to admit is that he did not understand that the shaming he used against Amos Oz, David Grossman, and others might lead to censorship and the cutting of funds by the state.

Sadly, he still doesn’t understand. Yemini attacked Oz with the Im Tirtzu method: Oz’s great sin is that he’s registered as a member of the B’Tselem public council. According to Yemini, the same council has in it an Arab member who supports Israel’s destruction.

That technique is called shaming – targeting by way of association. If someone who sits with you in the same room, was in the same discussion as you, is a suspect – then so are you. That’s the method Joe McCarthy used to tarnish American democracy in the 1950s. McCarthy also thought he was clensing the state of traitors, that he was fighting for its existence against its foes worldwide. He made the American society paranoid. McCarthy was tossed out of politics shamefully, but the virus he spread wreaked havoc on US society for years after he was gone.

The lesson from the Im Tirtzu affair is simple: Delegitimizing a political opponent is a sickness; informing is poison. No one is a plant, not a leftist organization that receives money from the European union, and not a right-wing organization that receives money from evangelicals or other suspect sources.

The reliance on foreign money is angering; it weakens the moral strength of right- and left-wing organizations, perhaps also corrupts them from time to time. But it does not make them into traitors. It’s better to stop with the McCarthyist campaigns in advance – someone might start taking them seriously.

 

The above was an OpEd AT

Also see this ….. (Click on link)

The New McCarthyism

By Michael Rivero

DAILY SPOOF ~~ #FabricatedInjustice

Image by Carlos Latuff

Despite total lack of evidence, Israeli court sentences Hares Boys to 15 years in prison

Despite total lack of evidence, Israeli court sentences Hares Boys to 15 years in prison

Full report from Mondoweiss HERE

NEW APP TO SEARCH THE WEB FOR ANTI-SEMITISM (OR CREATE IT WHEN NECESSARY)

Big Brother has finally made it big time …. on the WEB!

As in most cases, if real anti-Semitism is not located, it will merely be created.

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New search engine to target anti-Semitism

Meet the Sniper, an app that will scan the net using a new algorithm, looking for anti-Jewish content. Individuals will be able to check the content and take action as needed.

The World Zionist Organization (WZO) is expected to launch its Sniper app, which it says is a search engine for anti-Semitic content.

The Sniper system is set up to scan the internet using an algorithm that will identify certain keywords in different languages. A crew of WZO members will scan the results, confirm the cases that actually show real anti-Semitism, and respond with direct replies or contact authorities in the offending party’s country.

WZO emphasizes the fact that the app will be monitored and supervised, so that its use will be proper, and not aimed at shaming individuals or groups without proper evidence.

“The Sniper will create deterrence,” say the entrepreneurs behind it, “it won’t be so easy to publish a status calling for the murder of Jews, or pictures of burning Israeli flags.”

The Sniper’s first users will be members of the WZO’s global network for combating anti-Semitism, at the WZO’s communications center. Later, other users are expected to join in.

Their role will be to create a kind of “wall” on the site, on which they will write the personal details of anti-Semitic content publishers, as well as what they published (quotes, screen grabs, pictures, videos, and more).

The app is set to be launched Sunday, during a WZO conference aimed at combating anti-Semitism in the modern era, which will be attended by Israel’s Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon and Knesset Speaker MK Yuli Edelstein.

It will initially operate on a trial basis in countries in Latin America, which has seen a recent rise in anti-Semitism that has not been as well-publicized as European anti-Semitism.

 

Source

SPOOFS OF THE DAY ~~ WELCOME TO RIO …

Images by Carlos Latuff

Welcome to Rio de Janeiro, Land of @Rio2016 @Olympics, Dengue Fever, Zika Virus, Gentrification and Corruption

Welcome to Rio de Janeiro, Land of @Rio2016 @Olympics, Dengue Fever, Zika Virus, Gentrification and Corruption

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Rio de Janeiro, The Olympics, City Of Zika Virus, Dengue Fever!

Rio de Janeiro, The Olympics, City Of Zika Virus, Dengue Fever!

CLOSING YOUR EYES TO THE REALITY OF PALESTINE WON’T MAKE IT DISAPPEAR

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When my son was about four years old he played a little game; if he saw someone or something that he didn’t want to see he would close his eyes and imagine that they were gone.

He was four at the time but thankfully outgrew this as he got older and learned to accept the reality of situations. Israel is almost sixty eight and still plays that game in regards to the existence of Palestine. Will they ever grow up?

Despite the fact that most of the world now recognises Palestine as a state (as can be seen in the following image), Israel still closes its eyes to that reality …

GRAPHIC: Countries that currently recognise 'Palestine' as a state. FROM

GRAPHIC: Countries that currently recognise ‘Palestine’ as a state.
FROM

The reality I speak of is that Palestine is HERE and is HERE TO STAY! Whether or not Israel refuses to open its eyes to that FACT will not change the situation.

On the other hand, see how Palestine is seen when it is opportune for the zionists to almost acknowledge its existence …. (a post from the archives)

SUDDENLY THERE IS A PALESTINE AND PALESTINIANS

Did you ever notice that one of the hardest words for a zionist to utter or put into print is Palestinian? The word itself confirms that there is a Palestine. 

News reports in the zionist media refer to Palestinians as Arabs, or at best, Israeli Arabs.

BUT, if any of the above are involved in a suspected terrorist attack there suddenly is a Palestine and Palestinians, except in the extreme right media as seen below.

Did you ever notice that?

Below the images presented are some examples of what I am talking about

First some images … and a short video

The infamous zio mantra

The infamous zio mantra

*

How do they explain the birthplace  of the first Palestinian terrorist?

How do they explain the birthplace of the first Palestinian terrorist?

*

Monopoly money?

Monopoly money?

*

The video contains pictures of different Palestinian cities during the 1920’s and 1930’s, before the creation of the state of israel by the zionists in 1948.

How the right wing ziopress usually refers to Palestinians … 

Indictment Filed Against Jerusalem Arab for Incitement to Terrorism Using Social Media 

Arab Terrorists Hurl Rocks at Bus Near Ofra

*

The following are examples from the Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs

*

Recent examples of Palestinian incitement to terror

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A Palestinian terrorist used his car to deliberately drive into a crowd of Israelis near a light-rail train station in Jerusalem. Three Israeli soldiers were injured Wednesday evening in the day’s second vehicular terror attack.

*

Whereas Israel takes measures to maintain public order and uphold the delicate status quo on the Temple Mount, many on the Palestinian side exploit the holy sites to inflame passions and undermine the long-standing modus vivendi in the city.

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You might find this post from the archives of interest …. be sure to click on the highlighted links.

ISRAELI ARABS ARE NO MORE

SUNDAY MATINEE ~~ PALESTINIAN ART OF STEADFASTNESS

The history of modern Palestine can be traced through the work of its artists.

Sliman Mansour and the art of steadfastness

After the 1948 ethnic cleansing of Palestine, what has become known as the Nakba, the theme of refugees — “hopeless, helpless and without homes” — dominated.

But, as veteran artist Sliman Mansour explains, after the emergence of the armed struggle in the 1960s, “Palestinian art became proud.”

“The Palestinian woman with her nice dress, flowing hair and long neck: the woman is a symbol of the revolution,” he says.

Jerusalem soon became a symbol for Palestine, and Mansour is perhaps best known for his painting of an elderly man carrying its walled Old City, with the Dome of the Rock as its crown jewel, on his back.

“The main idea behind our work was to try to promote and develop and show that there is a Palestinian people and Palestinian identity and culture,” he says.

Political

Artists like Mansour didn’t choose to be political, but were only responding to their environment, he adds.

Mansour and his comrades in the Palestinian Art League printed their work on posters to reach the widest audience possible.

Their work was wildly successful.

“You can find Palestinian art posters in every home,” he says.

“This sudden fame also made the Israeli authorities aware of our existence,” he adds. “They confiscated some artwork. What happened to these artworks, we don’t know until now.”

Censorship

Israel began censoring Palestinian artists, and banned the colors red, white, black and green — the colors of the Palestinian flag.

During this time in the late 1980s known as the first intifada, Palestinian artists began working with natural materials, in observance of the boycott of Israeli products.

“Instead of painting a landscape, I will use the land to paint,” Mansour recalls thinking.

Mansour was once part of an initiative to try to change Israeli public opinion through art, under the banner of ending the occupation.

“We came to a conclusion that it is not working … so we stopped,” he says.

*Linda Paganelli is a visual anthropologist based in Palestine.

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