DEMOLISHING THE OCCUPATION

Israeli authorities have carried out around 370 demolitions of Palestinian property in occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank since the start of 2015, displacing an estimated 432 residents, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs

Aggressive Urbanism: Urban Planning and the Displacement of Palestinians within and from Occupied East Jerusalem

Aggressive Urbanism: Urban Planning and the Displacement of Palestinians within and from Occupied East Jerusalem

Israel issues demolition order for mosque in East Jerusalem

JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — Israeli municipality officials delivered a demolition order Friday to the al-Qaaqaa Mosque, a house, and a studio apartment in the Silwan neighborhood of occupied East Jerusalem, local sources told Ma’an.

Majdi al-Abbasi, from the Wadi Hilweh Information Center in Silwan, said that Israeli municipality members delivered a demolition order to the al-Qaaqaa mosque in the Ein al-Luza area of the neighborhood.

The mosque, built three years ago, is a 110 square meter space that serves 5,000 worshipers.

Al-Abbasi added that the Israeli municipality also delivered a demolition order to a studio apartment and its facilities. The studio belongs to Iyad al-Abbasi and was built 12 years ago.

A demolition order was also delivered to a home housing six people.Earlier this week an Israeli court ruled to demolish a football field and its facilities in Silwan, a local committee said.

The ruling includes the demolition of a 1.5 dunam (.4 acre) sports field as well as a neighboring warehouse and animal shed.Silwan is one of many Palestinian neighborhoods in occupied East Jerusalem that is seeing an influx of Israeli settlers at the cost of the demolition of Palestinian homes and eviction of Palestinian families.
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Israeli authorities have carried out around 370 demolitions of Palestinian property in occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank since the start of 2015, displacing an estimated 432 residents, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.
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Thousands of Palestinian residents are at risk of losing their homes, as members of the current right-wing Israeli government continue to champion longstanding policies to obtain a Jewish majority in East Jerusalem.
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East Jerusalem was occupied by Israel in 1967 in a move never recognized by the international community, and four decades of Israeli policy in the area have neglected the Palestinian community while fostering the growth of Jewish settlement.

DAILY SPOOF ~~ ETHNIC CLEANSING … THEN AND NOW

Protests continue in Ferguson one year later …

Image by Carlos Latuff

Image by Carlos Latuff

WHY IS THE NEW WAVE OF JEWISH TERRORISM DIFFERENT FROM ALL OTHERS?

Ali Saad Dawabsha, one-and-a-half years old burned alive by extreme settlers.

Ali Saad Dawabsha, one-and-a-half years old burned alive by extreme settlers.

Israel was stunned last week by a pair of violent attacks, both apparently perpetrated by Jewish extremists, just hours apart, that seemed to suggest a country teetering on a precipice, threatened with a wave of Jewish religious violence.

Why Jewish Terror Is Different This Time

Israel was stunned last week by a pair of violent attacks, both apparently perpetrated by Jewish extremists, just hours apart, that seemed to suggest a country teetering on a precipice, threatened with a wave of Jewish religious violence.

It may indeed be on that precipice, but not in the way it appears at first glance.

The two incidents, which captured international attention, were the stabbing of six marchers during Jerusalem’s gay pride parade by an Orthodox man on Thursday afternoon; and the deadly firebombing of a Palestinian home in the tiny West Bank village of Duma in early hours of Friday morning, apparently by Jewish militants from a nearby settlement. The West Bank arson attack killed an 18-month-old toddler and left his 4-year-old brother and parents gravely wounded.

At first glance the two incidents might look similar. Both are believed to be the work of extremist Orthodox Jews. Both appeared motivated by hostility toward an out-group, gays and Palestinians. Both are relatively rare instances of Jewish extremist attacks turning to lethal or near-lethal violence.

But there the similarity ends. The suspect in the gay parade stabbing, Yishai Schlissel, is a self-appointed anti-gay vigilante who was known to the police — in fact, he’d just been released from prison a month earlier after serving 10 years for a nearly identical attack in 2005. He’s a member of Jerusalem’s Haredi or ultra-Orthodox community, which generally rejects Zionist nationalism. Most Haredi Jews believe Israel is not the promised Jewish commonwealth because the ancient kingdom can’t be restored until God sends the messiah.

The West Bank arson is believed by authorities to be the work of a group of religious nationalist militants from a nearby Jewish settlement. The settler movement historically grew out of the religious wing of Zionism, which takes the opposite view from Haredim: It holds that the founding of modern Israel is itself evidence that the era of messianic redemption is either underway or imminent.

The West Bank arson comes at a time when incidents of settler unrest are very much in the Israeli headlines, heightening the sense of crisis. On Wednesday, July 22, two brothers ages 19 and 21 from the large urban settlement of Beitar Illit, south of Jerusalem, were sentenced for the torching last November of a progressive Jewish-Arab school in the capital. They were members of a far-right organization, Lehava (a Hebrew acronym for Stop Assimilation in the Holy Land), founded by a former aide to the late Meir Kahane, which aims to prevent marriage, dating and fraternization between Jews and Arabs. The brothers were sentenced to two and two-and-a-half years, prompting protests from parents and school officials that the sentence was too lenient.

Then, on Monday, July 27, five youths were indicted in the June 17 torching of a Catholic church on the shores of the Sea of Galilee, the Church of the Multiplication of Fish and Loaves, built on the spot where Jesus is traditionally believed to have performed the miracle of fish and loaves. The suspects are described as members of the hilltop youth, a loose network of young settlers who gravitate toward illegal West Bank settlement outposts. They tend to reject authority, including the mainstream settler movement leadership, and typically follow a syncretic philosophy combining religious Orthodoxy, far-right politics and new-age environmentalism.

According to the Shin Bet security service, the five suspects belong to a secretive organization that espouses direct action, including torching churches and mosques, in order to “overturn the government and bring about messianic redemption.” The suspects’ attorney is Itamar Ben-Gvir, another prominent former follower of Meir Kahane who’s more recently been active in a far-right political party, Yachad, that failed to pass the threshold for entry into the current Knesset.

That same Monday night, July 27, rioting broke out at the settlement of Beit El, considered the flagship of the ideological settler movement, as the army moved in to secure two illegal buildings slated for demolition. The apartment buildings were built without permits on land claimed as private property by a Palestinian farmer. The Israeli supreme court had ruled in favor of the farmer after lengthy proceedings that go back to 2012, and gave the army until Thursday to complete the demolition.

Protests against the demolition drew hundreds of settlers from across the West Bank. They continued sporadically for two days, with protesters throwing stones, chairs and garbage at the troops, ending only on Wednesday morning when army brought in heavy equipment and completed the demolition.

Groups of right-wing Knesset members and at least four government ministers from the Likud and the settler-based Jewish Home party came to Beit El on Tuesday to add their voices to the protest.

Ironically, the Knesset had given final approval just a week earlier to a new law imposing draconian new punishment for Palestinians arrested for stone-throwing. Apparently it doesn’t apply to Jews doing the same thing.

Emotions surrounding the Beit El disturbances were heightened by the fact that they took place on the 10th anniversary of the disengagement from Gaza, which has remained an emotional flashpoint for settlers and their supporters ever since. One group of some 250 Israelis marked the anniversary by barricading themselves at Sa-Nur, one of the four northern West Bank settlements evacuated along with Gaza in 2005. They held out for two days before being forcibly removed by troops.

Against this background, authorities and observers were advancing several theories as to the motives of the arsonists at Duma village. Some said it was a price-tag attack, typically an act of vandalism in which settler militants respond to Israeli law enforcement actions against settler extremists with acts of vandalism against Palestinian villages. The logic may not be dissimilar to jihadi groups in Gaza that respond to Hamas disciplinary crackdowns by firing rockets at Israel. In this case, it could have been a “price tag” response to the demolition at Beit El.

It’s unusual, however, for a price tag attack to include violence against persons. If this was a price tag attack — and if the attackers knew there were people in the second building and deliberately aimed to harm them — it could represent an escalation in tactics, perhaps due to the heightened emotions surrounding the Gaza anniversary. Could the price-tag movement be turning more deadly? It’s too soon to tell.

Moreover, price tag attacks typically leave behind graffiti with the words “price tag” or tag mechir on the wall. This time the attackers left behind graffiti that said “revenge.” That’s led some sources to speculate that the attackers were from the settlement of Shiloh, just west of Duma village, where Palestinian terrorists murdered a resident, Malachi Moshe Rosenfeld, in a roadside ambush exactly 30 days before the arson attack.

But one other phrase was daubed on the wall at Duma, that’s been largely overlooked. The attackers wrote the words “ Yechi Hamelech Hamashiach ” — “long live the king Messiah.” It’s the motto of the messianist wing of the Chabad-Lubavitch Hasidic movement, which believes that the late grand rabbi of Lubavitch, Menachem Mendel Schneerson, who died in 1994, is the messiah and will return to rebuild the ancient kingdom and redeem the world.

The messianist wing of Chabad has coexisted in uneasy tension with the mainstream wing for two decades. Recently, though, there have been signs of a possible détente. Last month, according to the Haredi Israeli website Behadrei Haredim, the mainstream journal Kfar Chabad carried a rare interview with a militant leader of the messianist wing, Rabbi Yisrael Halperin of Herzliya. Is mainstream Chabad moving to reconcile with the messianists? Too soon to tell.

Chabad-Lubavitch, unlike virtually every other Hasidic or Haredi sect, supports West Bank settlement and opposes territorial compromise with the Palestinians. Members of the messianist wing have been involved at times with various settler extremist groups.

The arsonists who torched the Church of the Multiplication left graffiti, too. It read: “ Elilim karot yikaretun ” — “The false gods will surely be uprooted.” That’s a quote from the Aleinu prayer, an ancient messianist text read at the end of every synagogue service, which expresses a yearning “to see speedily” the day of divine redemption, when all humankind will accept the sovereignty of the God of Israel — that is, the messianic era.

Is it significant that the arsonists in two attacks inside two months both left behind graffiti announcing the arrival of the messianic age? Maybe — and maybe not.

It could be, as some observers speculate, that the Duma arsonists were from Shiloh and were seeking to avenge the June murder of Malachi Rosenfeld. It’s also possible that they come from another settlement in that area just south of Nablus. Three of the West Bank’s most militant settlements are in that immediate area, including Itamar, which is home to the Od Yosef Chai yeshiva, headed by a leading Chabad messianist rabbi, Yitzhak Ginsburgh; Kfar Tapuach, a stronghold of the Kahanist movement; and Yitzhar, a stronghold of the Bratslav Hasidism that’s popular among hilltop youth, known for following a rebbe or grand rabbi, Rabbi Nachman of Bratslav, who died in 1810 and had no successor.

It’s possible that none of that is relevant, and that these are merely the latest in a series of occasional outbursts by hotheads at the undisciplined edge of the settler community. It’s also possible that there’s a convergence underway on the radical, messianist fringes of the three movements. It’s been noted in recent years, mostly but not only in jest, that the three movements — Chabad, Bratslav and Kahanist — are all led by dead rebbes who aren’t around to discipline their more eccentric followers.

There are few true believers truer than those who continue faithfully following their beloved leader even in death. And there are few moments in history more volatile, and more vulnerable to the blind passions of messianists, than moments when the air all around is filled with talk of apocalypse and end times. The more the popular mood leans toward apocalyptic hysteria, the more the messianist true believers at the fringes will take it upon themselves to take action and bring the end times closer.

Israel’s leadership often complains that loose, hatelful talk by Palestinian leaders, beginning at the top with Mahmoud Abbas, bears responsibility for inciting terrorist violence on the ground. It might be time to look in the mirror.

TIME TO INVOKE THE DEATH PENALTY IN ISRAEL

All my life I opposed the death penalty and have written about its evils ….

In Israel, capital punishment is allowed only during and only for genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes, crimes against the Jewish people, treason, and certain crimes under military law during wartime. The current Arab-Israel conflict is considered a war, and the committing of any of the crimes can result in the death penalty. Israel inherited the British Mandate of Palestine code of law, which included the death penalty for several offenses, but in 1954, Israel abolished the penalty for murder. (FROM)

BUT ……

When an 18 month old is brutally burnt to death by rampaging settlers in the Occupied West Bank, is there any other punishment that fits the crime?

Relatives carry the body of Palestinian toddler Ali Saad Dawabsha, through the streets of the West Bank village of Duma during his funeral on July 31, 2015. (AFP/ Thomas Coex)

Relatives carry the body of Palestinian toddler Ali Saad Dawabsha, through the streets of the West Bank village of Duma during his funeral on July 31, 2015. (AFP/ Thomas Coex)

President Mahmoud Abbas called for an investigation by the International Criminal Court in The Hague, while senior PA official Riyad al-Maliki rejected Israeli condemnations of the attack as hollow.

“We refuse to accept any official Israeli condemnation of the terrorist crime; they hold direct responsibility for the crime by their ongoing silence and deliberate ignoring and rejection of labeling these groups as terrorists,” al-Maliki said.

The United States Consul Donald Blome also expressed condolences to the Dawabsha family, referring to the arson as a terrorist attack and condemning what it termed a “crime of hate.”

While the US State Department’s 2013 Country Reports on Terrorism included “price-tag” attacks — attacks by extremist Israeli settlers — for the first time, it noted such attacks were “largely unprosecuted.”

Full report HERE

Well …

The time has come for these crimes to be prosecuted, and as I see it there is only one punishment that fits such crimes, the death penalty!

Khaled Amayreh adds ….

In fact, there is a striking similarity between the various aspects of Jewish Nazism and Aryan Nazism. The Germans had the Mein Kampf, the Judeo-Nazis have the Talmud, the Chesront Shas and the Tanya, and the Germans had the Ubermenschen and the Untermenschen while Jews have the goyem concept, which dehumanizes non-Jews in a nefariously shocking manner. The Germans had the Lebensraum concept and the Zionist Jews have the settlements. The German Nazis taught that non-Aryans were lesser or infra-humans, while synagogues in Israel and around the world shamelessly teach that the lives of non-Jews have no sanctity. 
 
Needless to say, this evil Talmudic indoctrination functions as the ideological underpinnings of the genocidal crimes being perpetrated by the Nazis of our time, the Israelis. This is the reason that makes thousands of Israeli Jews, gleefully and sadistically, celebrate the mass murder of Palestinian civilians. 
 
I don’t know when the world can ever call Israel “Nazi” after all that Israel has done and is doing.
 
The unspoken words of many Zionist Jews would suggest that the world must refrain from calling Israel Nazi unless Israel murders six million Palestinians?!!!!
 
But this is an expression of absolute evilness by every standard of imagination. In the final analysis, if Israel were to suffer even a fraction of what it has inflicted on the Palestinians, Israeli leaders would not hesitate to call it a holocaust and pathological Jewish liars like Binyamin Netanyahu and Elie Weisel would  immediately invoke Auschwitz, Bergen Belsen, Dachau and Mauthauzen.!!!
 
In fact, they are already doing this although less than ten Israeli settlers have been killed.
 
In light, it is perfectly legitimate to call Israel the Nazis of our time, if only because Israelis are thinking, behaving and acting in Nazi-like manner.
 
As victims of Jewish Nazism, we Palestinians are not going to die quietly in the uninterrupted Jewish holocaust against our very existence. We are not going to behave meekly at the Jewish slaughterhouse in deference of Jewish feelings.
 
Let the shipyard dogs of Jewish Nazism, from California to Sydney, let them bark as rabidly and uncontrollably as they could, but they won’t be able to suppress our voices.
 
Don’t tell us Israel has many Nobel Prize winners and talented doctors and scientists. So what? The Nazis, too, had many talented doctors and scientists! We all know the rest of the story.

Here is his full report

“The Nazis of our time won’t be able to silence the voices of truth”

I have been receiving of late several email messages, especially from North America, all critical of my propensity to compare the manifestly genocidal Israeli crimes in the Gaza Strip with Nazi atrocities in the course of the Second World War.

Many of these messages came from recalcitrant Zionist supremacists who think the entire world must move according to the Zionist compass.

Other messages, however, were sent by apparently ignorant and naïve non-Zionists, seemingly brainwashed by protracted Zionist-Jewish propaganda. As we all know, Zionist-Jews more or less tightly control the media discourse in North America and to a lesser extent in Europe and Australia.  This is  one of the main reasons behind the unrestricted and often blind backing of the evil Zionist enterprise by most western governments, especially that of the U.S.

One of the critics of the Zionist-Nazi analogy wrote: “You call the Israelis the Nazis of our time. You clearly have no knowledge of history. Let’s take one example; at Barbi Yar in the Ukraine the Nazis slaughtered 30,000 Jews in one operation. 100,000 over a period of time. If the Israelis were the equivalent of Nazis neither you nor any other Palestinian would exist in what you call Palestine.  If ever there was the big liar, like the Nazis, it is you. I hope the PA comes for you again and puts you back in a deep hole.”

Palestinians don’t have to lie to promote their cause
Well, as Palestinians we don’t accuse Israel of murdering six million Palestinians, although Israel would have annihilated (physically) our entire people a long time ago had the circumstances been more “conducive” to the perpetration of such a genocide.

It is for this reason that instead of committing a single-event mega-genocide, the Zionist entity resorted to carrying out a series of genocidal atrocities, spread out overall several decades. This way the Zionists calculated the genocidal episodes would look less dramatic and world reactions would be muted and desensitized.

None the less, the ultimate Jewish-Zionist goal remained unchanged, namely the obliteration and physical annihilation of the native Palestinians in order to take over their country.

So the Palestinians are not inventing a “holocaust industry” to voice their plight and incriminate Israel. In fact, Israeli behaviors and actions are more than sufficient to condemn Israel. To put it very simply, the Palestinians don’t need to lie to expose Israeli Nazism and evilness.

Israel, its Talmudic doctrine, and the Zionist ideology in general do exude a clear mental willingness to embark on such a diabolical crime. Any honest observer can easily reach this inevitable conclusion by merely thoroughly examining any religious edicts, statements, lectures and speeches by numerous Israeli politicians and religious leaders.

So we are by no means making any hyperbolic or far-fetched claims here.

In fact, genocide by Jews against non-Jews is perfectly compatible with Orthodox Judaism, Talmudic doctrine and Jewish history. In any case, what is practiced in reality remains more eloquent an expression of Jewish Nazism than all the books and edicts.

Here is a testimony by Nurit Peled, daughter of Matti Peled, an Israeli Major-General, a celebrated Israeli military commander and war hero who describes Gaza as a concentration camp.

Numerous rabbis, past and present, made unequivocal and unmistakable statements enthusiastically supporting the notion of genocide against the Palestinian people. A few years ago, a Jewish settler leader affiliated with the messianic Jewish movement “Gush Emunim” was quoted as saying  that “the proper way to deal with the Palestinians is the Biblical way,” an allusion to  genocide.

More to the point, there is more to Jewish Nazism than just the sheer number of its Palestinian victims, although the numbers are not small by any means. Take for example the 2000 Palestinians murdered and the estimated 11000 maimed in the ongoing Judeo-Nazi blitzkrieg against Gaza so far. In proportion to the size of population, this would be like having about a million Americans murdered and maimed, and this happens during just “one military operation.”

Besides, Nazism, whether Jewish or Aryan, is not only about the sheer number of victims. It is also about a mental depravity, a criminal mindset, an evil intent, a barbarian value-system and a satanic ideology. Just watch how Judeo-Nazi Israelis are now celebrating the mass murder and mass destruction of Gaza.

In fact, there is a striking similarity between the various aspects of Jewish Nazism and Aryan Nazism. The Germans had the Mein Kampf, the Judeo-Nazis have the Talmud, the Chesront Shas and the Tanya, and the Germans had the Ubermenschen and the Untermenschen while Jews have the goyem concept, which dehumanizes non-Jews in a nefariously shocking manner. The Germans had the Lebensraum concept and the Zionist Jews have the settlements. The German Nazis taught that non-Aryans were lesser or infra-humans, while synagogues in Israel and around the world shamelessly teach that the lives of non-Jews have no sanctity.

Needless to say, this evil Talmudic indoctrination functions as the ideological underpinnings of the genocidal crimes being perpetrated by the Nazis of our time, the Israelis. This is the reason that makes thousands of Israeli Jews, gleefully and sadistically, celebrate the mass murder of Palestinian civilians.

I don’t know when the world can ever call Israel “Nazi” after all that Israel has done and is doing.

The unspoken words of many Zionist Jews would suggest that the world must refrain from calling Israel Nazi unless Israel murders six million Palestinians?!!!!

But this is an expression of absolute evilness by every standard of imagination. In the final analysis, if Israel were to suffer even a fraction of what it has inflicted on the Palestinians, Israeli leaders would not hesitate to call it a holocaust and pathological Jewish liars like Binyamin Netanyahu and Elie Weisel would  immediately invoke Auschwitz, Bergen Belsen, Dachau and Mauthauzen.!!!

In fact, they are already doing this although less than ten Israeli settlers have been killed.

In light, it is perfectly legitimate to call Israel the Nazis of our time, if only because Israelis are thinking, behaving and acting in Nazi-like manner.

As victims of Jewish Nazism, we Palestinians are not going to die quietly in the uninterrupted Jewish holocaust against our very existence. We are not going to behave meekly at the Jewish slaughterhouse in deference of Jewish feelings.

Let the shipyard dogs of Jewish Nazism, from California to Sydney, let them bark as rabidly and uncontrollably as they could, but they won’t be able to suppress our voices.

Don’t tell us Israel has many Nobel Prize winners and talented doctors and scientists. So what? The Nazis, too, had many talented doctors and scientists! We all know the rest of the story.

My addition ….. and we all know the penalty they received!

PRIDE AND PREJUDICE

Actually, Pride and Hatred

To religious Jews, these are more powerful than mere hate speech. They classify us as criminals under Jewish law, and thus enemies of Israel who will bring divine collective punishment. Gays have even been blamed for Hurricane Katrina, tsunamis, and earthquakes. Killing us is an act of self-defense.

gay20pride20in20jerusalem20ben20heine

The Ultra-Orthodox Hatred Behind the Stabbing at Jerusalem Gay Pride

If a community’s respected religious leaders preach, over and over again, that gay people deserve to be killed, isn’t it inevitable that someone will try to kill them?

That’s one of the lessons from today’s stabbing of six people at the Jerusalem Pride Parade. Of course, it was also the lesson ten years ago at the same parade, when the same criminal did the same thing, with the encouragement of some of the same rabbis.

I was there ten years ago, marching with my boyfriend about 50 feet behind the people who were stabbed. The situation was tense from the beginning. We were pelted with rotten eggs (some reported being hit with feces), shouted at, jeered.

Like today’s parade, we didn’t march near any of Jerusalem’s holy sites. We started at the downtown pedestrian mall, not far from the Burger King, and ended in a park near my apartment in Southern Jerusalem. We didn’t go anywhere near the Ultra-Orthodox neighborhoods, or the Old City.

But yes, we were in Jerusalem – not Tel Aviv, where we “belonged.” Jerusalem, the holy city, with a 30% ultra-Orthodox population whose rabbis routinely spouted hateful words about us. I don’t mean words like “faggot” – I mean words like impure, whore, fornicator, idolater, abomination, enemy of Israel, animal, beast.

To religious Jews, these are more powerful than mere hate speech. They classify us as criminals under Jewish law, and thus enemies of Israel who will bring divine collective punishment. Gays have even been blamed for Hurricane Katrina, tsunamis, and earthquakes. Killing us is an act of self-defense.

Ten years later, none of this has changed.

It’s not just the same would-be murderer who brandished a knife at the parade. It’s also some of the same rabbis, making the same comments. It’s the same posters plastered on the walls of Ultra-Orthodox neighborhoods. It’s the same newspapers – including The Jewish Press, Hamodia, Yated Neeman, and Yeshiva World Publications – the last of which, even today, described the parade as the “Abomination Parade.” “Abomination,” by the way, is actually a poor, hateful translation of the Hebrew word Toevah, which is used in the Bible to describe not only male anal sex but idolatry, the eating of shellfish, and Israelites and Egyptians having a meal together. A better translation is “taboo.”

But then, we know that this murderer wasn’t going after shrimp-eaters.

It’s also the same mystifyingly thin police coverage. In 2005, there was no one standing between us and the protesters; it was a terrifying encounter. That seems to have been the case in 2015 as well. How could the same man who attacked in 2005, who was released from prison only three weeks ago, who wrote a “warning letter” to Pride March participants, and who even went on Haredi radio saying “these impure people want to defile Jerusalem,” not be under surveillance?

How could any man dressed in the distinctive all-black Ultra-Orthodox costume not, at the very least, be stopped and questioned by police? (Apparently, the murderer was, in fact, briefly accosted – and then let go.)

The Jerusalem police have never liked the Pride Parade – more on security grounds than anti-gay ones, although motives are always hard to discern. For several years, they refused to grant a permit at all, forcing the “parade” to take place in an athletic stadium miles from the center of town.

And although formal investigations into the 2005 stabbing absolved them of responsibility, it seems odd that a police force charged with maintaining public safety in a country at war with three of its five contiguous neighbors can’t guard a parade that travels less than one mile along a route routinely cordoned off for politicians, holiday celebrations, even a ludicrous Formula One race.

But I don’t blame the police.

Nor do I blame the government. Agree or disagree with his foreign policy, Prime Minister Netanyahu has been the most pro-gay leader in Israel’s history, visiting an LGBT Center after an attack several years ago, and issuing strong condemnations today. Some of his pro-gay statements may be dismissed as propaganda ( “pinkwashing” ), and he has dragged his feet at times. But no one can deny the many pro-LGBT actions of the governments he has led. Considering most of those have been made up of the Right and the Far Right, that is no small feat. (Further-Right politicians such as Naftali Bennett also condemned the attack.)

Nor do I blame the mainstream rabbinic establishment. The Chief Rabbis have condemned the attack. Most poignantly, Rabbi Benjamin Lau (first cousin of Ashkenazic Chief Rabbi David Lau) addressed the parade participants directly, speaking at the end of the route and saying , “I ask forgiveness in the name of the Torah.”

Nor do I blame every Orthodox or Haredi Jew. As Tom Canning, Director of Development at the Jerusalem Open House and one of the organizers of the March, said, “We don’t see them as our enemies and we don’t think this act is a sign of the sentiment in Ultra-Orthodox Communities.”

I do, however, blame the leaders of those communities, here and in Israel, for an unremitting chorus of hate speech, hateful actions, and, at best, standing by idly while their neighbors’ blood is spilled.

It is one thing to have an expansive view of the halachic prohibition on male anal sex, or even to believe that the secular legitimation of same-sex relationships will impact public morality for the worse. It is quite another to tolerate (or promote) the kinds of statements routinely made about LGBT people in the Haredi (and sometimes, Modern Orthodox) press and public square.

Just as a torrent of anti-semitic exhortations will inevitably lead to violence – an article leads to a chant leads to a swastika leads to an attack – so too a torrent of anti-gay exhortations.

Erez Harari, a psychologist who works with gay Orthodox Jews, agreed, saying he sees the effects of communal anti-gay animus every day. “The entire Orthodox community is responsible for this attack when it cultivates a culture of hatred toward fellow Jews rather than acceptance and tolerance,” he told the Forward. “Major changes need to happen and the leaders of the Orthodox community need to step up and do more to put a stop to these atrocities. Silence is complacency.”

Indeed.

Hatred once again reared its ugly face yesterday during the Gay Pride Parade in Jerusalem ….. this time in a repeat performance.

Post-hoc condemnations are nice, but a meaningful response will have to go further than handwringing (or handwashing, as the case may be), and prevent the next attack before it happens. Specifically, individual Haredi rabbis and organizations such as the Agudath Israel, Rabbinic Council of America, and Orthodox Union should:

1) Ban as assur (forbidden) as lashon hara (evil speech) all incitement against LGBT people, by individuals or organizations.

This includes the exploitation of children by the Israeli far-right group Lehava. It includes any pashkevil (poster) that distorts our lives and encourages violence. It includes any use of the term “homo” or “toevah” to describe gay people in the media. And condemn means condemn: in a public statement, reiterating that while we may disagree about Halacha, such speech can lead to violence and must be cut off at the source.

2) Share the stories of actual Orthodox LGBT lives.

While still maintaining the halachic opposition to homosexuality, depict what Haredi LGBT people are actually like, as opposed to the horrible stereotypes common in the Orthodox and Ultra-Orthodox media. Samples: the films DevOUT , Trembling Before G-d, and Eyes Wide Open.

3) Support, or create, organizations like Eshel to provide meaningful, affirming counseling for LGBT Orthodox Jews and their families, finding ways to get along and maintain relationships.

Conversely, do not advise any family to disown their gay child, and do not accept those who do. Eshel (which, full disclosure, I co-founded) is a small, independent organization. It should be a program at every large Orthodox shul, and officially sanctioned by the RCA, Yeshiva University, and others. (Eshel does not take a position on Halacha.) Relatedly, the RCA, OU and Agudath Israel must stop standing in the way of Jewish Family & Children’s Services from helping LGBT Orthodox Jews.

4) Officially, on “letterhead,” renounce all forms of “reparative therapy.”

Interestingly, none of the Orthodox or Ultra-Orthodox press even reported that JONAH, a Jewish “reparative therapy” group, was found guilty of fraud. Meanwhile, Aish.com, one of the most visited Jewish sites on the Internet, has only three articles on homosexuality, all of which are by people who have claimed to change their sexual orientation.

5) Stop trying to use the secular government to discriminate against LGBT people .

You know that there is no halachic problem with providing health insurance to a gay family, or providing gay people healthcare and other services. So stop pushing for “religious exemptions” in order to do so. Stop pushing to delegitimize same-sex civil marriage when you’ve been fine with interfaith civil marriage for decades. And stop fear-mongering about the effects of LGBT equality on your values. When it comes to the secular government, how about you just leave gay people alone?

6) Modern Orthodox rabbis are implicated too.

Mordechai Levovitz, Executive Director of JQY and one of the tireless activists on behalf of LGBT Orthodox Jews, said today that moderate Orthodox leaders have a responsibility as well. “If a rabbi is “tolerant” and “welcoming” then he needs to take on the responsibility of caring for those hurt by his own community,” Levovitz said, “not relegate all the support work to fringe outside gay groups that they don’t want to be officially connected to. It’s offensive to hear these moderate Orthodox rabbis make themselves seem so good by saying that they are welcoming. We don’t need welcoming. We need protection, defense, healing, clinical work.”

These steps would be a productive start. But to be honest, even neutrality would be better than what we’ve got now. Since the last attack, we’ve had ten years of Ultra-Orthodox hate speech. Today we saw some of the results.

 

Source and more photos HERE

GAZA ~~ THE AFTERMATH // IN PHOTOS

Spoof by Latuff

Spoof by Latuff

As Israel continues to whine about the prospects of peace with Iran, the people of Gaza continue to suffer from the war last summer ….

A shoe belonging to Hala Bassam Madi, 3, lies in the ruins of her home in Rafah, southern Gaza, on 19 November 2014. The girl died in an Israeli air strike on 1 August 2014 that also killed her father Bassam, her mother Eman and her 2-year-old sister Jana. Her 3-year-old cousin Yousef was also killed, and a great-uncle later died of his wounds. Today, many of the ruins of destroyed homes have not been cleared and personal belongings remain scattered in the ruins.

A shoe belonging to Hala Bassam Madi, 3, lies in the ruins of her home in Rafah, southern Gaza, on 19 November 2014. The girl died in an Israeli air strike on 1 August 2014 that also killed her father Bassam, her mother Eman and her 2-year-old sister Jana. Her 3-year-old cousin Yousef was also killed, and a great-uncle later died of his wounds. Today, many of the ruins of destroyed homes have not been cleared and personal belongings remain scattered in the ruins.

Remembering Gaza’s victims

Documenting Israel’s military assault on Gaza last summer, I witnessed what can only be called atrocities: hospitals and morgues, overwhelmed by the constant flow of casualties; nights of terror under widespread and indiscriminate bombing; attacks on hospitals, ambulances and United Nations schools used as shelters; entire neighborhoods destroyed.

Of all the horrifying statistics, one is particularly shocking: 142 families lost three members or more in single Israeli strikes. I started the project #ObliteratedFamilies — now available for download and exhibitioning all over the world — to document such loss. It began as a project about the victims, but soon became also a project about the survivors. How can one cope with loss on this scale?

With the support of the Gaza-based human rights group Al Mezan, I met more than 50 families profoundly affected by Israel’s deadly attacks. I have never been exposed to such pain. Months after the end of the attacks, many Palestinians I met were still traumatized and in deep grief. Many also expressed their doubt of any prospect for justice for the crimes committed against their loved ones.

Some broke down and cried during our interview, others expressed their anger or were still in shock and unable to comprehend what had happened to them.

When I visited the homes of these mourning families, the memory of their lost kin was always present, though in varying ways. In some homes, their photos were displayed atop TV sets or on the walls. Sometimes, the victims’ clothes and belongings were as they left them, months after their death, as if they would soon return. In other homes, family members constantly looked at photos and videos of their loved ones on their mobile phones.

This collection of photographs contributes to the effort to remember Gaza’s victims, and to promote the calls for justice of the survivors.

Anne Paq is a French freelance photographer and member of the photography collective ActiveStills.

A poster honors the memory of Abbas Helmi Abu Rijeila, 20, seen in the street of Khuzaa, southern Gaza, on 16 November 2014. The business student was killed along with his father and sister in an Israeli missile attack on their home on 27 July 2014. Abbas was killed immediately; his sister Nehad was evacuated on a donkey cart as the ambulance could not reach them. She died a few day later in an Egyptian hospital.

A poster honors the memory of Abbas Helmi Abu Rijeila, 20, seen in the street of Khuzaa, southern Gaza, on 16 November 2014. The business student was killed along with his father and sister in an Israeli missile attack on their home on 27 July 2014. Abbas was killed immediately; his sister Nehad was evacuated on a donkey cart as the ambulance could not reach them. She died a few day later in an Egyptian hospital.

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A photo of Afnan Wesam Shuhaibar, 8, in her Gaza City room on 17 November 2014. Afnan was killed together with two of her cousins, aged 8 and 11, when they were feeding the pigeons on the roof on 17 July 2014. Wesam, her father, says that she was an excellent pupil.

A photo of Afnan Wesam Shuhaibar, 8, in her Gaza City room on 17 November 2014. Afnan was killed together with two of her cousins, aged 8 and 11, when they were feeding the pigeons on the roof on 17 July 2014. Wesam, her father, says that she was an excellent pupil.

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A photo stored on a mobile phone shows members of the al-Najjar family in the Bani Suheila, Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip, on 19 November 2014. Nineteen members of the family, including 10 children, were killed in an Israeli attack on the night of 26 July 2014.

A photo stored on a mobile phone shows members of the al-Najjar family in the Bani Suheila, Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip, on 19 November 2014. Nineteen members of the family, including 10 children, were killed in an Israeli attack on the night of 26 July 2014.

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The office of Ibrahim Deeb Kilani in his home in Beit Lahiya, northern Gaza, on 19 November 2014. Ibrahim, his wife Taghrid and their five young children were killed in a single Israeli air strike on a Gaza City residential tower on 21 July 2014.  They had fled their home after Israel dropped leaflets on Beit Lahiya warning residents to evacuate and go to Gaza City. Ibrahim was an architect who had lived in Germany for more 20 years and some of his buildings can be found in Köln. He and his children held German passports. As of November 2014, their home remained untouched with all their belongings inside.

The office of Ibrahim Deeb Kilani in his home in Beit Lahiya, northern Gaza, on 19 November 2014. Ibrahim, his wife Taghrid and their five young children were killed in a single Israeli air strike on a Gaza City residential tower on 21 July 2014. They had fled their home after Israel dropped leaflets on Beit Lahiya warning residents to evacuate and go to Gaza City. Ibrahim was an architect who had lived in Germany for more 20 years and some of his buildings can be found in Köln. He and his children held German passports. As of November 2014, their home remained untouched with all their belongings inside.

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Delo, the nickname of Hadeel Abd al-Kareem Balata, 17, is seen written on the wall of her room which was destroyed during an Israeli strike on 29 July 2014 which killed the girl and 10 other members of the family in the Jabaliya refugee camp, northern Gaza, 14 September 2014. According to her surviving father, Hadeel was really gifted at school and wanted to be a doctor.

Delo, the nickname of Hadeel Abd al-Kareem Balata, 17, is seen written on the wall of her room which was destroyed during an Israeli strike on 29 July 2014 which killed the girl and 10 other members of the family in the Jabaliya refugee camp, northern Gaza, 14 September 2014. According to her surviving father, Hadeel was really gifted at school and wanted to be a doctor.

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Sharifa Mustafa Baker clings to a shirt belonging to her son, 10-year-old Zakaria Ahed Baker, in her home in al-Shati refugee camp on 19 July 2014. Zakaria was killed along with with three of his cousins by a missile fired by the Israeli navy as they were playing on a Gaza City beach on 16 July 2014. The attack was caught on video as it occurred near the hotels where many foreign journalists were staying. The Israeli military exonerated itself of responsibility for the children’s deaths this June.

Sharifa Mustafa Baker clings to a shirt belonging to her son, 10-year-old Zakaria Ahed Baker, in her home in al-Shati refugee camp on 19 July 2014. Zakaria was killed along with with three of his cousins by a missile fired by the Israeli navy as they were playing on a Gaza City beach on 16 July 2014. The attack was caught on video as it occurred near the hotels where many foreign journalists were staying. The Israeli military exonerated itself of responsibility for the children’s deaths this June.

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A photo of Issam Khalil Ammar, 4, is seen on the television in his parents’ Gaza City apartment, 25 February 2015. Issam was killed with his sister, Eman (9) and brother Ibrahim (13) during an attack on a residential building on 20 July 2014. Eleven persons were killed in the building, including six members from the Hallaq family. The Ammar family still lives in the same building and their flat is full of the photos of the three children who were killed there.

A photo of Issam Khalil Ammar, 4, is seen on the television in his parents’ Gaza City apartment, 25 February 2015. Issam was killed with his sister, Eman (9) and brother Ibrahim (13) during an attack on a residential building on 20 July 2014. Eleven persons were killed in the building, including six members from the Hallaq family. The Ammar family still lives in the same building and their flat is full of the photos of the three children who were killed there.

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Mahmoud Ashraf al-Khalili’s Gaza City bedroom, 12 November 2014. The 7-year-old boy survived the 30 July 2014 attack on his family’s home was conscious when he arrived at the hospital. But he fell into a coma and died a few days later. His father Ashraf, his mother Nida and his siblings Dima (4) and Ziyad (4) were killed. His uncle was also killed along with his wife and 4-year-old daughter. The extended family was sitting in front of the home and waiting to be evacuated when the attack occurred. The surviving family members still live in the same home. A factory belonging to the family was destroyed in the fire caused by the strike.

Mahmoud Ashraf al-Khalili’s Gaza City bedroom, 12 November 2014. The 7-year-old boy survived the 30 July 2014 attack on his family’s home was conscious when he arrived at the hospital. But he fell into a coma and died a few days later. His father Ashraf, his mother Nida and his siblings Dima (4) and Ziyad (4) were killed. His uncle was also killed along with his wife and 4-year-old daughter. The extended family was sitting in front of the home and waiting to be evacuated when the attack occurred. The surviving family members still live in the same home. A factory belonging to the family was destroyed in the fire caused by the strike.

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A portrait of Yousef Nasser Hussein Kullab, 15, drawn by one of his friends, is shown on a mobile phone in Rafah, southern Gaza, on 25 March 2015. Yousef was killed along with three members of his family, including two other children, in an Israeli attack on his home on 21 August  2014.

A portrait of Yousef Nasser Hussein Kullab, 15, drawn by one of his friends, is shown on a mobile phone in Rafah, southern Gaza, on 25 March 2015. Yousef was killed along with three members of his family, including two other children, in an Israeli attack on his home on 21 August 2014.

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Wafa al-Louh holds a photo of her daughter Eman and her secondary school examination certificate in her home in the central Gaza town of Deir al-Balah on 16 September 2014. Eman was killed in an airstrike on her uncle’s nearby home; she was struck in the head by a block of concrete while she was praying next to her bed. Her uncle Mustafa’s home, 100 meters from her own, was attacked on 20 August 2014. Eight family members were killed.

Wafa al-Louh holds a photo of her daughter Eman and her secondary school examination certificate in her home in the central Gaza town of Deir al-Balah on 16 September 2014. Eman was killed in an airstrike on her uncle’s nearby home; she was struck in the head by a block of concrete while she was praying next to her bed. Her uncle Mustafa’s home, 100 meters from her own, was attacked on 20 August 2014. Eight family members were killed.

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A letter written by 16-year-old Shireen Abu Madi mourning her father on the occasion of Eid al-Fitr, the holiday at the end of Ramadan, is glued to a poster commemorating the six members of her family killed in an Israeli attack in al-Nuseirat refugee camp, central Gaza Strip, 17 March 2015. Shireen lost her father and three brothers in the 2 August 2014 attack, as well as a 6-year-old nephew and 2-week-old niece.

A letter written by 16-year-old Shireen Abu Madi mourning her father on the occasion of Eid al-Fitr, the holiday at the end of Ramadan, is glued to a poster commemorating the six members of her family killed in an Israeli attack in al-Nuseirat refugee camp, central Gaza Strip, 17 March 2015. Shireen lost her father and three brothers in the 2 August 2014 attack, as well as a 6-year-old nephew and 2-week-old niece.

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Kites made by 13-year-old Muhammad Amjad Abd al-Aziz Uwaida rest on his bed in Rafah, southern Gaza, 17 February 2015. The boy was killed along with his 5-year-old sister Amal on 5 August 2014 when they were on the roof to feed their pigeons. According to their mother, Tahrir, Muhammad was skilled at making things with his own hands and his parents keep the objects that he made, including the kites.

Kites made by 13-year-old Muhammad Amjad Abd al-Aziz Uwaida rest on his bed in Rafah, southern Gaza, 17 February 2015. The boy was killed along with his 5-year-old sister Amal on 5 August 2014 when they were on the roof to feed their pigeons. According to their mother, Tahrir, Muhammad was skilled at making things with his own hands and his parents keep the objects that he made, including the kites.

LINEAR VIEWS OF THE WAR IN GAZA

The artist drew delicate lines over 50 photographs selected from the deluge of horrific news images of Gaza that flooded social media during Israel’s war last summer. With Scholnick’s intervention, the images are slightly abstracted, but also given further depth.

gaza2

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gaza40

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gaza30

Full report and more images HERE

GAZA ~~ A WINDOW TO HELL

A destroyed home in Khuzaa, September 2014. (Anne Paq /ActiveStills)

A destroyed home in Khuzaa, September 2014. (Anne Paq /ActiveStills)

A window to hell in Gaza

Spending the day of 17 August in Khuzaa was like peering through a window to hell. But what we witnessed in the landscape of apocalyptic oblivion paled in comparison to the experience described to me by two Palestine Red Crescent volunteers who had attempted to break through the Israeli military cordon during the siege of the town.

Twenty-five-year-old Ahmed Awad and 24-year-old Ala’a Alkusofi arrived at the edge of Khuzaa at a time when Red Cross ambulance crews refused to travel anywhere near the town. They said they had come to collect the body of a man whom soldiers had lashed to a tree by both arms and shot in the leg. When they arrived at the site, the soldiers ordered the driver of their ambulance, Muhammed Abadla, to exit the vehicle. When he obliged, they told him to walk five meters forward and switch on a flashlight. As soon as he flicked the light on, the soldiers shot him in the chest and killed him.

“It was something I’ll never forget,” Awad recalled, “seeing a colleague killed like that in front of me. I couldn’t believe what I witnessed.”

The two Red Crescent volunteers told me they later found a man in Khuzaa with rigor mortis, holding both hands over his head in surrender, his body filled with bullets. Deeper in the town, they discovered an entire family so badly decomposed they had to be shoveled with a bulldozer into a mass grave. In a field on the other side of town, Awad and Alkusofi found a shell-shocked woman at least 80 years of age hiding in a chicken coop. She had taken shelter there for nine days during the siege, living off of nothing but chicken feed and rain water. “She couldn’t believe it when we found her,” said Alkusofi. “She was sure she would die with the chickens.”

Horror stories

In nearly every shattered home I entered in Khuzaa, on every bomb-cratered street, in destroyed mosques and vandalized schools, I heard horror stories like this. Every resident I met in this town was touched by the violence in one way or another. While visiting the town, I wandered into the courtyard of a rehabilitation clinic for women and children afflicted with Continuous Traumatic Stress Disorder — a condition that affects a solid majority of youth in Gaza.

Located on a street lined with four-story apartments pockmarked with bullets and tank shells, the school was completely empty, but the signs of an Israeli presence were everywhere. As we entered, we found Stars of David spray painted by soldiers across the walls, right below colorful heart-shaped paper cut-outs bearing the names of students. In the closet of an administrative office that was neatly kept except for a few scattered papers, I found a spent M72 Light Anti-Tank Weapon. It was one of the shoulder-mounted launching tubes manufactured in Mesa, Arizona, by the Norwegian-owned Nammo arms corporation. The weapon had been used by the Israelis to rocket civilian homes across Gaza’s boundary regions.

In a classroom across the courtyard, sunrays burst through a gaping hole in the wall about the size of a 120mm tank shell. They shone light on a series of colorful posters decorated with matching ribbons that contained motivational messages. They read:

It always seems impossible until it’s done

Stay alive

Look to the future

No negative thoughts allowed

We wandered around the corner, past a group of children filling a jug of water from a truck that replaced the water tower Israeli forces detonated, past the giant dome of the Ebad al-Rahman mosque, which now sat on a pile of rubble next to the toppled water tower like the ancient ruins of some bygone empire. Nearby, we entered a small courtyard surrounded by a warren of shattered homes. At the edge of the yard, a small boy lay impassively in his bed in a room with no walls. A ceiling fan that looked as though it had been melted dangled above his head. In the center of the yard sat a gigantic olive green barrel. It was a spent Giant Viper round — one of the C4-packed mine clearing devices the Israelis fired into the center of Khuzaa during the assault on the town. A hen flapped its wings next to the barrel and chased after baby chicks bouncing through the rubble.

“Where are you from?” an old man called out to me from the road. He wore large spectacles and a morning robe, his front pocket stuffed with paper notepads, various cards and a glasses holder. He reminded me of my older Jewish relatives who came of age before the digital era and grew accustomed to carrying stacks of business cards, coupons and handwritten reminders in their shirt and coat pockets along with assorted mints and pens.

“I’m from America,” I told the man, readying for an indignant response.

“Ahhhh, Amreeka,” he grumbled. “I want to thank the American people,” the man continued, advancing to within two feet of me. “They are nice people, they give us food and bread and they give the Israelis weapons to kill us. They have different standards. It would be nice if they treated us all as humans.”

“We love life”

He introduced himself as Ali Ahmed Qudeh, the father of Kamal Qudeh, the doctor who treated the town’s wounded under heavy bombardment and in spite of being injured himself. Like his son, Ali Ahmed was a supporter of Fatah, the rivals of Hamas. And like virtually everyone I met in Gaza, he was an ardent supporter of the armed resistance of the Qassam Brigades, Hamas’ armed wing. “Our weapons are not terrorist weapons, our weapons are [for] self-defense,” he insisted. “Our weapons are to free our land. We are dignified people, we love life. We don’t hate life like they say. But we’ll die for our land.”

As a group of small children gathered in the courtyard, Ali Ahmed detailed to me how many family members each child lost in the assault on Khuzaa. Pointing at the little boy lying in bed, he suggested that the most devastating consequence of the war was not the death toll, but the psychological impact on the youngest members of his community.

“That kid wants to make an atomic bomb and obliterate Israel!” he roared. “Why? Because he saw his family members die in front of him! How can you raise kids who want to make bombs?”

When I made my way back into the road, I heard Ali Ahmed call after me again. He was rushing forward through the rubble with a tray of sweets. “I don’t mean to say that all Americans are bad,” he said, urging me to take a freshly baked cookie. “It’s the government that’s the problem, not the people.”

Just then, an Israeli squadron of American-made F-16s roared through the sky. A small girl standing beside me ducked reflexively at the sound of the jets, bracing for another missile strike. The war was far from over.

This essay is excerpted from Max Blumenthal’s new book, The 51 Day War: Ruin and Resistance in Gazapublished by Nation Books.

WHO SAID THE WAR IN GAZA WAS OVER?

And while Israel’s war on Gaza was declared over, the residents of Khuzaa remain under fire.

Israeli soldiers shot 16-year-old Islam Samir Tawfiq Abu Reda in the leg. (Ezz Zanoun)

Israeli soldiers shot 16-year-old Islam Samir Tawfiq Abu Reda in the leg. (Ezz Zanoun)

Israel shoots four boys enjoying evening walk in Gaza

On Monday, 22 June, Israeli soldiers fired on a group of four boys aged 16 to 17 in the southern Gaza Stripvillage of Khuzaa. Two of the boys were hit in the legs and one was critically injured.

The four friends had walked out to the edge of the village to spend the final hour of their fast for Ramadan.

“We were there to waste time before iftar [the meal that breaks the fast],” Muhammad Sami Abu Reda, 17, told The Electronic Intifada. Muhammad was one of the two boys who escaped injury on Monday.

“It’s a very nice area. You can see the fields and farms, and we go there because it used to be closed off but now they told us we can go there,” he explained.

Severe injuries

Last month, the Hamas-led government in Gaza announced the opening of a road that runs alongside the “buffer zone,” the no-go area imposed by Israel which covers a wide swath of land on the Gaza side of the boundary with Israel, in the east and north.

The “buffer zone” was supposed to be reduced in size under the terms of last August’s ceasefire between Hamas and Israel following Israel’s 51-day attack. However, it remains unclear just where Palestinians can safely walk, drive or farm.

In the month of May alone, Israeli soldiers fired on 14 people who were close to the boundary, leaving six Palestinians injured, according to the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR).

Islam Samir Tawfiq Abu Reda, 16, is one of the boys shot on Monday. Lying on his hospital bed, he told The Electronic Intifada that “everyone went to the road since it was announced on the news that it had been opened.”

Islam’s calf was struck by a bullet. While his wound required more than a dozen stitches, he is healing well.

But the other youth, Ibrahim Abu Reda, remains in intensive care. The outcome of his far more severe injuries is uncertain. Two bullets entered his right leg, one near the ankle and another below the knee, shattering his shinbone and severing veins and arteries.

The night he was shot, Ibrahim was treated by Dr. Qasim Kamel in a six-hour surgery at the European Hospital near Rafah, a city in southern Gaza. Kamel told The Electronic Intifada he hopes that he will not need to amputate the teenager’s leg.

In Ibrahim’s home, his parents showed this reporter photographs of the boy lifting weights and playing sports. His father, Jamal Ahmad Abu Reda, said Ibrahim was in Khuzaa’s soccer club and loved to go to the gym. He struggled not to cry as he described his son.

With tears streaming down her face, Safaa Abu Reda, Ibrahim’s mother, said “It’s my right to see my son walking.”

She is desperately worried that her son will not be able to receive adequate treatment in Gaza and wants him to be transferred to Israel. Doctors have told her that the likelihood that Ibrahim will be able to walk again is a slim 15 percent. She believes the odds would be higher if he could get treatment in Israel.

“Why are they doing this to my son? He had no weapons,” she said. “He just went there to walk and have fun, like everyone.”

Ibrahim is the younger brother of Ahmed Abu Reda, 18, who was used as a human shield by Israeli soldiers for five days during last summer’s war, as documented by the recent UN Human Rights Council’s independent investigation of Israel’s assault on Gaza as well as by other independent observers.

Ahmed was detained by Israeli soldiers on 23 July while attempting to flee Khuzaa with the rest of his family during Israel’s 11-day ground invasion of the small village.

“Buffer zone”

Before one reaches Khuzaa’s boundary with Israel, one must drive through cultivated farmland and greenhouses where farmers grow tomatoes, melons, peppers and zucchini on plots of land demarcated with thickets of crawling cactus.

As one approaches Israel, an inconspicuous fence appears. An Israeli watchtower stands behind. This is the boundary.

Since 2005, Israel has guarded the so-called “buffer zone” here, preventing farmers from safely accessing their lands that lie within it.

While initially the zone stretched 150 meters wide into tiny Gaza, Israel has expanded it over time. In 2010 the buffer zone grew to a 300-meter-wide area that runs alongside the boundary wall.

While the area was supposed to be reduced to 100 meters following the ceasefire, Hamdi Shaqqura, deputy director of PCHR, told The Electronic Intifada that people are fired on as far away as 500 meters from the border. “There is no guarantee from Israel or the international community that Palestinians will have access to their land,” he said.

At the beginning of this year, Gisha, an Israeli organization that monitors Palestinians’ ability to move freely in and out of Gaza, sent an information request to the Israeli military regarding its policy toward the buffer zone following the ceasefire.

Like PCHR, their data also shows that the ban was enforced on a larger area than was officially declared. They have yet to receive a response from the military.

“Silent gunshots”

At the hospital, The Electronic Intifada met the two other boys who were with Ibrahim and Islam when they were shot. Muhammad Sami Abu Reda, 17, said there was no sign that any Israeli soldiers were around. The boys had just paused for a moment while taking their walk when Islam suddenly fell to the ground. Then Ibrahim. Muhammad said the gunshots were silent.

“There were no warning shots,” Muhammad explained.

Muhammad and the other youth, Hisham Abu Mutliq, 17, tried to pick their friends up off the ground, but more shots were fired toward them.

“We ran behind a sand hill to take cover, but the Israelis kept shooting,” Hisham said.

The boys were able to use their mobile phones to call an ambulance, but help did not arrive for 15 minutes. The injured boys lay bleeding on the ground.

Kamel is hopeful that Ibrahim’s leg will heal after the surgery. When The Electronic Intifada visited him at the hospital, Ibrahim was in a deep sleep, but Kamel said he has been lucid and talking in between resting.

There has been a partial clearing of the rubble in Khuzaa, restoring a semblance of normalcy. The ruins of many of the demolished homes, of which nearly 400 were completely destroyed, have been swept into neat mounds, though some remain standing with their roofs sunken through to the ground.

The least destroyed of homes still show walls riddled with bullet holes. The molding on the minaret of a mosque in the center of the village is nearly entirely blown off.

And while Israel’s war on Gaza was declared over, the residents of Khuzaa remain under fire.

ZIO BEX ~~ IF IT WASN’T A HOLOCAUST IN GAZA, WHAT WAS IT?

Words that upset are not nearly as bad as the crimes that were committed …

“The continuation of the extermination of the Assyrians by the jihadists, the invasion and occupation in northern Cyprus, the Kurdish issue, the blockade of Gaza, the genocidal dismemberment of Yugoslavia, and the Ukraine crisis.” 

Stop the Holocaust in Gaza: A pro-Palestinian protester at a Berlin rally Friday, July 18, 2014. (Micki Weinberg/The Times of Israel)

Stop the Holocaust in Gaza: A pro-Palestinian protester at a Berlin rally Friday, July 18, 2014. (Micki Weinberg/The Times of Israel)

Greek Official Slammed for Comparing Gaza to Holocaust

A Greek official is accused of abusing the memory of the Holocaust by mentioning Gaza during a speech about the genocide, and saying that “victims become bullies.”

The criticism by The Simon Wiesenthal Center, a watchdog group, was over a speech that Panagiotis Sgouridis, a deputy minister of rural development, gave on June 7 in the northern city of Kavala during the unveiling ceremony for a monument in memory of the area’s murdered Jews.

Noting that atrocities continue today despite the lessons of the Holocaust, Sgouridis listed “the continuation of the extermination of the Assyrians by the jihadists, the invasion and occupation in northern Cyprus, the Kurdish issue, the blockade of Gaza, the genocidal dismemberment of Yugoslavia,” and the Ukraine crisis as examples.

He concluded his speech by saying that monuments like the one unveiled at Kavala are important “because unfortunately many times the roles switch and the victims become bullies.” Shimon Samuels, the Wiesenthal Center’s director for international relations, said that Sgouridis’ speech was “not only an inversion of the Holocaust by listing it alongside the blockade on Gaza, but also served to banalize it.”

The Kavala unveiling was preceded by an international uproar over reports that the city’s mayor objected to the incorporation of a Star of David in its design, though she denied this. The monument that was unveiled features that symbol.

Public discourse in Greece about Jews and Israel has become “more toxic,” said the center, amid a financial crisis and the rise of Golden Dawn, a neo-Nazi party that became Greece’s third-largest following the 2015 legislative election.

Sgouridis’ party, the rightist Independent Greeks, has called on Germany to pay Greece reparations for its invasion and occupation of the Balkan country.

“The speech, the place, the time and the back story all combine to make Sgouridis’ speech inappropriate,” Samuels said.

MY FAMILY’S JOURNEY FROM BARCELONA TO AUSCHWITZ ~~ AN OPEN LETTER TO THE PARLIAMENT OF SPAIN

News such as the following was on the front pages of  every Israeli newspaper over the weekend … (Click on link to see report)

Spain passes law of return for Sephardic Jews

Applicants to be vetted by local Jewish community, face language and history tests before securing new passport

My response, as one of those descendants follows …

Descendents of Sephardic Jews expelled in 1492 can now apply for Spanish nationality

Descendants of Sephardic Jews expelled in 1492 can now apply for Spanish nationality

Open Letter to the Parliament of Spain

It was of much interest to see that your government has passed legislation granting citizenship to the descendants of the Jews expelled from your country in 1492.

Jews leaving Spain in 1492

Jews leaving Spain in 1492

Allow me to fill you in on the ‘journey’ of my own family after the expulsion; Rather than going to one of the Muslim countries in North Africa, as many others did, they chose to go to Turkey. Those that went to North Africa received a much warmer welcome, which resulted in my family eventually going on to a new situation in Holland.

They found there that in order to succeed economically they would have to assimilate with the Eastern European Jewish Community (Ashkenazim), a fate much less severe than the forced conversions to Catholicism for those who remained in Spain.

Again, after a number of years they once again moved on, this time splitting up, some going to Slovakia, the others to Hungary. Many of those in Hungary pursued their Jewish educations and became prominent members of the rabbinical community, included was Rabbi Shlomo Gantzfried, co-author of The Code of Jewish Law.

Those in Slovakia basically worked the fields to survive. My grandfather, Yisrael Mayer, whose name I bear, was a cobbler.

In both cases, in Hungary and Slovakia, the Jewish community was rounded up and sent to various labour camps. My family wound up in Auschwitz where they were brutally slaughtered by the nazi beast, with the blessings of your Francisco Franco and your Pope, Pius Xll.

My father was spared these horrors as he immigrated to the United States when he was still in his teens. Hence, I am here today to tell this saga.

I have one question of you before I continue, Why was this ‘offer’ not granted to the descendants Of the Muslim community who were also expelled by King Ferdinand?

In 1492, simultaneous to the discovery of the New World was the start of the Spanish Inquisition, a massive expulsion of Jews and Muslims.

In 1492, simultaneous to the discovery of the New World was the start of the Spanish Inquisition, a massive expulsion of Jews and Muslims.

Today, I reside in Israel, a country which in 1948 employed the same tactics against the Palestinian population when the zionist regime stole much of their lands. Close to a million people were forced to leave their homes and country. Over a million of their descendants still languish to this day in refugee camps.

Will they have to wait 500 years for an offer to return to their land as well?

Does this look familiar? See image posted earlier.

Does this look familiar? See image posted earlier.

Fortunately, that will not be the case. A growing number of Jews, both in Israel and in the Diaspora are involved in movements which daily expose the crimes committed by the Israeli government against the Palestinians. Their day to day work in these matters will usher in changes much sooner than your government did.

There are many Jews of conscious throughout the world

There are many Jews of conscious throughout the world

Now, as for your ‘offer’, I will try to be as diplomatic as possible. Simply stated,this gesture is much too little and comes much too late. Therefore, I personally do not accept it.

Yours Sincerely,

Steve Amsel (Yisrael Mayer)

PS …. despite all of the above, or perhaps because of it, ‘my thoughts remain free’ …..

SEPARATE ~~ BUT NOT EQUAL

Statistics released this week by the Association for Civil Rights in Israel paint a devastating picture of neglect, urban blight and underdevelopment in East Jerusalem, the historic heart of Palestinian life, all a result of nearly five decades of Israeli policies, with over 75 percent of Palestinians living below the poverty line compared to the national Israeli average of 21.8 percent.

israel_wall_tower_2_UFNlj_3868

Decades of neglect leave East Jerusalem mired in poverty, violence

By: Charlie Hoyle FOR

Decades of chronic under-funding, discriminatory planning rights, and unequal access to services have left the Palestinian community in Jerusalem mired in poverty, according to statistics published by a civil rights group, with youths subject to increased police brutality and arrests since last summer’s demonstrations in the city.

Statistics released this week by the Association for Civil Rights in Israel paint a devastating picture of neglect, urban blight and underdevelopment in East Jerusalem, the historic heart of Palestinian life, all a result of nearly five decades of Israeli policies, with over 75 percent of Palestinians living below the poverty line compared to the national Israeli average of 21.8 percent.

The group released the statistics —taken from the Jerusalem Municipality, Israeli Police, the Central Bureau of Statistics, and other official agencies — to coincide with Jerusalem Day, a largely right-wing Israeli national holiday to celebrate the “liberation” and “reunification” of the city following what is internationally recognized as the illegal occupation of East Jerusalem in 1967.

For Palestinians, the day is a painful reminder of their historic loss, displacement, and on going marginalization.

Despite having lived under Israeli rule for 48 years, Palestinians are classified as permanent residents, not citizens, and lack political representation at a national level. The community largely chooses to boycott local municipal elections — in 2013 around 1 percent of Palestinians voted — and are essentially political orphans, with no Israeli or Palestinian political body representing their interests.

The result is recurring neglect of the 300,200 Palestinians in East Jerusalem, who form 36.8 percent of the city’s total population.

“These (Palestinian neighborhoods) are places where roads haven’t been repaired for years, where schools haven’t been built, where there is crime and garbage. In that sense you do wonder what the municipality thinks is the future (for East Jerusalem),”Ronit Sela,Director of ACRI’s Human Rights in East Jerusalem Project, told Ma’an.

In terms of public services, 36 percent of Palestinian households are not connected to the water network,43 percent of the classrooms in the municipal system are defined as inadequate, and there is a shortage of 30 kilometers of sewage pipes in Palestinian neighborhoods.

There are only eight post offices in East Jerusalem, compared to 40 in West Jerusalem. Furthermore, Palestinians can access only 9 infant healthcare centers in the city compared to 26 for Israelis, and poverty rates for children are 53 percent higher for Palestinian children, with 8,501 defined as “at risk.”

The dropout rate for Palestinian students in East Jerusalem in 12th grade — where students are 18 years old — is 33 percent, nearly 24 times higher than the dropout rate in the Hebrew education system, which stands at 1.4 percent, and despite forming 36.8 percent of the population — and paying residential and commercial taxes — only 10-13 percent of the overall municipal budget is invested in East Jerusalem,according to rights group Ir Amim.

“Palestinians in Jerusalem suffer first and foremost from the fact there is an on going conflict and Israeli authorities control every aspect of their lives,” Sela says.

Social workers in East Jerusalem say that the myriad of social and political problems can often affect individual Palestinian families directly, with many suffering from having one son in prison and another dropping out of school without qualifications, amid a backdrop of economic marginalization.

“East Jerusalem is not a tiny piece of land or territory, but Israeli policies have been to limit the space where Palestinians can reside, to limit the space where Palestinians can have commercial life or industry and, with the separation barrier, fragment the areas where Palestinians are living and where the center of the community is,” Sela says.

Police brutality, arbitrary law enforcement
 *
Alongside chronic poverty and economic marginalization, one of the major changes since ACRI’s 2014 report on East Jerusalem are the increasingly draconian police and municipal measures introduced against Palestinians following months of clashes following the murder of 16-year-old Muhammad Abu Khdeir last July by Israeli extremists.
 *
In the second half of 2014, ACRI reported that over 1,184 Palestinians were detained in East Jerusalem, including 406 children, with indictments submitted against 338 of those arrested.
 *
“Police violence is harsher and the state prosecution is asking for minors to be put under arrest for longer periods of time even before indictments. They keep them in prison custody for longer,” Sela says.
 *
Around 314 of the 338 Palestinians served with indictments — including 122 children — have been imprisoned since their detention as the charges for “disruption of public order” and riot-related offenses are processed, which adds up to months in jail before a sentence has even been passed.
 *
Israeli police forces have also provided the Jerusalem municipality with the names of hundreds of suspects wanted for alleged involvement in the demonstrations in order to increase enforcement measures against them, ACRI says, essentially a way of blacklisting Palestinian residents in civilian life.
 *
Some of the enforcement measures are childishly arbitrary, with ACRI reporting one example of municipal inspectors issuing a fine for the negligible offense of littering the streets with sunflower seeds.
 *
Other measures, however, are much more serious, with municipal officers issuing demolition orders and fines to Palestinian businesses and homes.
The Hagihon water company, theTax Authority and the National Insurance Institute are also all involved in enforcing arbitrary measures against Palestinian suspects, which were described by ACRI as “collective punishment” and the “abuse of the municipality’s enforcement powers.”
 *
In addition to the mass arrests — the largest number in East Jerusalem since the Second Intifada — police tactics have become notably more aggressive since last summer’s demonstrations, with the increased use of black sponge-tipped bullets since the summer, a harder, heavier, and more dangerous variant of the blue sponge-tipped bullet, which had been used almost exclusively before last year’s unrest.
 *
Use of the black variety of the bullets has been responsible for the loss of vision in at least one eye of five Palestinian children during the end of 2014, the youngest of whom was six-years-old.
 *
One youth, 16-year-old Muhammad Abd Al-Majid Sunuqrut, was killed in September after being struck with the riot control measure in East Jerusalem, which is used almost exclusively against Palestinians.
 *
ACRI also reported that at least three journalists clearly identified as media workers were hit in the head, face and shoulder by sponge bullets during demonstrations, in contravention against orders prohibiting aiming at the upper body, or children.
 *
The police tactic has also caused arm fractures, jaw fractures and internal injuries such as spleen tears, with one 30-year-old Palestinian born blind since childhood in one eye left completely blind after being shot with a sponge-tipped bullet.
 *
Directives for use of the more dangerous black bullet were only drafted in January 2015 after a request from ACRI, a full six months after their regular use against Palestinians.
 *
Israeli police also regularly used “Skunk” water in Palestinian neighborhoods, spraying the putrid-smelling liquid into houses, restaurants, and cars, with many residents having to temporarily evacuate their homes until the smell subsides.
 *
In October and November, Israeli forces blocked the main entrances to three major Palestinian neighborhoods — almost unthinkable in the West Jerusalem neighborhoods of Rehavia or the German Colony — restricting the movement of 50,000 Palestinians.
 *
In April, Israeli police then used cement blocks to seal the neighborhood of al-Tur following clashes, preventing the movement of residents and hindering crucial services such as ambulances and school buses.
 *
Struggling to stay in the city
 *
Alongside chronic poverty and punitive police and municipality tactics looms the constant threat of displacement, with Palestinians struggling to remain in the city amid legislation which prohibits planning and building, and punishes violations with eviction and demolitions.
 *
In 2014, 98 structures were demolished and 208 Palestinians were forcibly displaced, ACRI says.Since 2004, over 2,115 Palestinians have been left homeless by demolitions in East Jerusalem.
 *
Around 20,000 houses — accounting for 39 percent of East Jerusalem homes — lack a building permit and therefore could be issued a demolition order by the municipality at any point, leaving Palestinian families vulnerable and unable to plan for the future.
 *
The residency status of 107 Palestinian residents of Jerusalem was also revoked in 2014, adding to the 14,309 since Israel’s 1967 occupation of the city, meaning Palestinians whose families date back centuries in the city are no longer allowed to return.
 *
Despite five decades of Israeli polices designed to slowly displace Palestinians in Jerusalem, the community forms nearly 40 percent of the city’s population,leaving it unclear as to what the municipality, and indeed the government, has planned, considering that it will unlikely ever concede political control of the Old City.
 *
In 2014, Israel’s government approved for the first time in history a five year plan for East Jerusalem with a budget of 300 million shekels ($78 million).
 *
However, a third of the budget was to be allocated to “security,” with the remaining 200 million not nearly enough to reverse decades of deliberate neglect.
 *
“In order for real and meaningful changes to transpire, a fundamental change of attitude must take place among Israeli authorities,” ACRI said in the report.
 *
“They need to see the Palestinian residents of Jerusalem as human beings whose dignity must be maintained, whose lives must be protected and whose human rights must be promoted, even as the conflict continues to bleed on the streets of Jerusalem.”

THE ‘OTHER’ DEMOCRACY IN THE MIDDLE EAST

Israel shares its ‘special status’ with Egypt

El-Sisi's Scales of Justice by Latuff

El-Sisi’s Scales of Justice by Latuff

 

Related ….

US ‘deeply concerned’ by Morsi death sentence in Egypt

The United States expressed “deep concern” Sunday after an Egyptian court sentenced deposed president Muhammad Morsi and more than 100 others to death for their role in a mass jailbreak during the 2011 uprising.

“We have consistently spoken out against the practice of mass trials and sentences, which are conducted in a manner that is inconsistent with Egypt’s international obligations and the rule of law,” a State Department official said.

Noting that they were preliminary sentences, the official added: “We continue to stress the need for due process and individualized judicial processes for all Egyptians in the interests of justice.

“Many of those sentenced on Saturday were tried in absentia. The court will pronounce its final decision on June 2, since under Egyptian law, death sentences are referred to the mufti, the government’s interpreter of Islamic law, who plays an advisory role.

Defendants can still appeal even after the mufti’s recommendation.

Morsi, elected president in 2012, ruled for only a year before mass protests spurred the military to overthrow him in July 2013.

He was among dozens of Muslim Brotherhood leaders detained amid a crackdown that left hundreds of Morsi supporters dead.

Morsi, sitting in a caged dock in the blue uniform of convicts having already been sentenced to 20 years for inciting violence, raised his fists defiantly when the verdict was read.

Hours after the ruling, gunmen shot dead two judges, a prosecutor and their driver in the strife-torn Sinai Peninsula, in the first such attack on the judiciary in the region.

The US State Department official said they had been “senselessly murdered.”

“We reiterate our steadfast commitment to Egypt’s security,” the official added.

 

From

More from Latuff

Collective death sentence

Collective death sentence

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Sisi's Way: on Egypt's prisons

Sisi’s Way: on Egypt’s prisons

APARTHEID UPDATED ~~ AND REVISED

Defense Ministry decides on separate transport for Arab workers and Jewish residents, to combat overload and friction.

See reversal of decision below

Bus in Samaria (illustration).Hezki Ezra

Bus in Samaria (illustration).Hezki Ezra

Leftist Anger as Arab Workers Banned from Judea-Samaria Buses

MK Moti Yogev (Jewish Home) congratulated Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon Wednesday after the minister announced that Jews and Arabs would go back to riding separate public buses to and from Judea and Samaria, and within these territories.

The decision, two years ago, to allow Arabs on the buses that served Jews “created a situation in which tens of thousands of Palestinian laborers, including thousands of illegal infiltrators, filled the bus lines, and made it impossible for the residents of Judea and Samaria communities who require public transport to return to their homes.”

The policy also brought about a situation rife with sexual harassment, theft, and a feeling of insecurity, charged Yogev – and mostly, great overcrowding that made it impossible for people to go from and to their homes.

Yogev acused opponents of the latest decision of “hypocrisy, lies and irresponsibility.”

Labor leader MK Yitzhak Herzog attacked Yaalon’s decision and said that separation between Arabs and Jews on public transport is “an unnecessary humiliation and a stain on the faces of the state and its citizens. Unneeded fuel on the fire of hatred toward Israel worldwide.”

“This is another mistake by a prime minister who assists and surrenders to a woeful decision that has nothing to do with state security. It would bebest to avoid, at this time, steps that cause unnecessary damage to the reputation and image of the state of Israel, at such a sensitive time,” he added.

 

 

Source

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Israel cancels controversial travel ban for Palestinians after Left screams apartheid

Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon and Prime Minister  Benjamin Netanyahu have agreed to suspend a controversial pilot program, which in its execution, would have prevented Palestinian workers from traveling home on Israeli buses in the West Bank after working in Israel.

Under the edict of the three-month pilot program, Palestinians were not banned from traveling on Israeli buses.

But the program would have mandated that many Palestinians who live in the West Bank and who enter Israel in the morning through passages in the security barrier, would have to return home through those same crossings, which lack Israeli bus lines.

The pilot program would not have effected all Palestinians and was limited to four checkpoints in the center of the country.

At present Palestinians who enter Israel through those passageways take Israeli buses homes, because they allow for easier travel routes.

The impact of the program which would have separated Palestinians from Israelis on a number of central West Bank Israeli bus lines, had drawn sharp protests from Left-wing politicians and activists.

“This is what apartheid looks like,” Meretz Party head Zahava Gal-On said in response. “No there is no other polite definition that would fall more pleasantly on one’s ears.”

“Separate bus lines for Palestinians and Jews proves that democracy and occupation can not co-exist,” she said.

The Defense Ministry had already said in October that it would execute such a program, but until Wednesday, had taken no action on the matter. It did so following complaints by the Samaria Regional Council and its local community leaders who had argued the Palestinians on the buses presented a security threat to the passengers.

Opposition leader Isaac Herzog, who heads the Zionist Union party, said, “the separation of Palestinians and Israelis from public bus lines is an unnecessary humiliation. It is also a stain on the face of the state of Israel and its citizens.”

He added that at “this sensitive time it would be better to avoid steps which tarnish Israel’s name and reputation.”

“It only adds fat to the fire of hate against Israel in the world,” Herzog said. “This is yet another mistake by the prime minister who lent his hand to this unfortunate decision, which has no bearing on the country’s security.”

MK Shelly Yacimovich (Zionist Union) said the implementation was “chilling” and “there was no explanation that can erase its stain on Israel.”

“Dealing with security challenges is hard, but such blatant segregation between Jews and Arabs breaches all international moral norms and will cause the state great damage,” she added.

 

Source

WHAT DO ISRAELIS REALLY KNOW ABOUT THE NAKBA?

What do Israelis really know about the Nakba? What do they think about the right of return of the Palestinian refugees?
De-Colonizer went out to meet and asked them…

Mazin Qumsiyah, PhD adds the following ….

On the eve of the 67th year anniversary of the Nakba (the catastrophic
ethnic cleansing of Palestine), Benjamin Netanyahu finally formed a
“coalition government” a group of ministers who are honest about their
racist and genocidal tendencies (see article by Gideon Levy below). It
includes a “Justice” who called for murdering Palestinian mothers so that
they do not bring out more “snakes”. It includes the head of “civil
administration” who openly supports ethnic cleansing and genocide. A
government more right wing in its composition than Germany was in 1933-1939
or South Africa in the 1970s and 1980s but an honest one indeed without
double talk or hypocrisy. What is disappointing is not the make-up of the
government but the hypocritical response to it. Words from the “Palestinian
Authority” wining about the new government were accompanied by continuing
security coordination with Israel and the PA arrest of dozens of
Palestinians simply for having different political affiliation (e.g.
students who against all odds were voted to student councils at Palestinian
Universities). Geopolitically, there are now two choices: US/Israel that
attempt to dominate the Arab World and Western Asia through a class of
puppet dictators (Saudi Arabia, Qatar, UAE, Egypt) and the axis of Russia,
China, Iran, Yemen, Syria, Lebanon (led by Hizbollah) and large segments of
Iraqi society. It would be nice to have a third axis (like the non-aligned
movement led by Egypt and India in the 1960s) but it does not currently
seem possible.

Yasser Arafat managed to steer the PLO leadership to semi-neutrality or at
least flexibility in building alliances as need arose. But even acting as a
good honest broker to solve some regional disputes many times by asking
people to put the interests of their people ahead of their superpower
sponsors (then it was Soviet Union and the USA/NATO). In the time of Abu
Mazen, we see more a definitive side-taking (e.g. with Saudi Arabia against
Yemen) in a fashion that actually weakened the Palestinian cause
dramatically. The black and white attitude was applied in a way that is
like George Bush “you are either with us (USA right wing government) or
with the terrorists. In this case you are either with us (Fatah) or with
the terrorist Hamas.  There seems no room left for nuances or indeed for
diplomacy. From the agreement with Hamas, there is only the part about
holding elections for the PA that Abbas wants to implement. Other parts of
the agreement (holding elections for the PLO, economic issues etc) were
supposed to happen synchronously but they are now off the table. Meanwhile
Gaza was devastated and is still under siege (civil society is responding
and a flotilla of ships is moving to break the siege). Last time this
happened, there were martyrs and some high level PA officials ridiculed the
Free Gaza movement. Instead, it would have been nice to see PA officials
join Haneen Zoabi and Raed Salah on the boats. Alas wishful thinking for
change.

The old definition of madness still apply: repeating the same (failed)
tasks and expecting different results. And we live in a mad, very mad
world. US/Israel still fund terrorists, support dictators, and support
ethnic cleansing. Those who bet on them to help them achieve “independence”
still do not understand and still hope somehow magically, things will
change. They would be wise to listen to Russian President Putin. He was
speaking at the 70th anniversary of the win over Nazi Germany (26 million
Russian lives were lost) and was flanked by other world leaders including
China (though noticeably absent where key NATO leaders). He said, the
attempt at creating a unipolar world is failing and that we should look
towards a new system. Iran, China, most of Latin America and other
countries which long suffered from Western Colonialism agreed. President
Abbas was there but had no comment. I was reminded of Naji Al-Ali 1964. I
was reminded of Orwell 1984. I was reminded of the book Majanin Beit Lahmem
(the crazy people of Bethlehem) published 2014.

Life goes on in occupied Palestine. A Palestinian community (Susya) is
about to be uprooted. Colonial settlers and soldiers still attack native
Palestinians with impunity. Corruption and heroism happen, poverty and
greed happen, cooperation and collaboration happen, resistance and
normalization happen. Poor people struggle and rich get richer. It is hard
to cope sometimes but we keep going against all odds.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the wall….*

Stop whining. Long live Israel’s new and honest government

Israel’s new government won’t spout hollow slogans about peace, human rights, and justice. The truth will be thrust in the faces of Israelis – and the world.

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The 34th government will deserve Israel; Israel will deserve the 34th government. This is an authentic and representative government, the true manifestation of the spirit of the times and the deepest feelings of most Israelis. It will be a true government, without pretense, without makeup and without self-justification. What we’ll see is what we’ll get. Welcome to the fourth Benjamin Netanyahu government.

They won’t talk haughtily and they won’t spout hollow slogans. Not about peace and not about human rights; not about two states and not about negotiations; not about international law, justice or equality. The truth will be thrust in the faces of Israelis and the world. And the truth is this: The two-state solution is dead (it was never born), the Palestinian state will not arise, international law does not apply to Israel, the occupation will continue to crawl quickly toward annexation, annexation will continue to crawl quickly toward an apartheid state; “Jewish” supersedes “democratic,” nationalism and racism will get the government stamp of approval, but they’re already here and have been for a long time.

Neither Netanyahu, nor Habayit Hayehudi’s chairman MK Naftali Bennett nor that party’s faction members MK Ayelet Shaked and MK Eli Ben-Dahan, started this whole thing. They only expedited things. And there should be no shock or outrage, no bewailing the bitterness of fate. This government is a government of continuation, not a government of change.

True, some of its members are more extreme than their predecessors, but that is mainly about rhetorical differences. Even the most inflammatory appointment, of Shaked as justice minister, which reverberated throughout the world over the weekend, is less revolutionary than it seems. Shaked is blunt and violent, whereas Zionist Union MK Tzipi Livni, her predecessor, was delicate and proper. But Justice Minister Shaked will not have to work hard to break open cracks in our democracy; they opened a long time ago.

The best test of the nature of the regime in Israel is the test of the occupation and the war crimes: the foundations of apartheid are already deep and the war crimes remain uninvestigated. From her office in the heart of occupied Jerusalem, Livni has not made Israel more just in that respect. True, Shaked’s ideas are more nationalistic and her understanding of the essence of democracy is nil. True, many in the world were shocked that a person who identified with one of the most violent articles ever written here against the Palestinian people (by Uri Elitzur), was appointed minister of Israeli justice. But there’s no place for such sanctimoniousness. Elitzur expressed what many people are thinking.

The appointment of another racist, Eli Ben-Dahan, as deputy defense minister, responsible for the Civil Administration, should not be earth-shattering either. True, Ben-Dahan said that “the Palestinians are animals, they are not human, they are not entitled to live” – but don’t these statements reflect the true attitude of many Israelis? Ben-Dahan will speak for them. That is how Israel has been treating the Palestinians for almost 50 years; Ben-Dahan is only saying things overtly. Now he will be responsible for the Civil Administration and the whole system of “humanitarian gestures” will be torn up. Ben-Dahan is the right man in the right place at the right time. An excellent appointment.

A person who proudly says “I killed masses of Arabs” and calls them “shrapnel in the buttocks” will be education minister – and who in Israel doesn’t think that? The general of Operation Cast Lead, with its crimes, the man who contravened building restrictions, Yoav Galant, will be construction minister. Is that not a fine appointment? MK Uri Maklev of United Torah Judaism is to head the Knesset Science Committee? Does that not correctly reflect the attitude of some Israelis to science?

Stop whining. Maybe Israel’s shadow government should be more enlightened, but not its real government. It is what the Israelis chose, it reflects their true stands. And so, long live the new government.

ZIOLOGIC ~~ ‘YOUR RACISM IS WORSE THAN OURS’

Image 'Copyleft' by Carlos Latuff

Image ‘Copyleft’ by Carlos Latuff

So say some apologetic zionists …. who had the same to say about South African Apartheid …. ‘their’s was worse than ours is …’

Twisted ziologic!

“What we’re doing now has nothing to do with what’s going on in Baltimore,” Maya Tzagay, a 19-year-old Ethiopian-Israeli protester and soldier told Haaretz. “They have their issues. We have ours. But we understand them — we both suffer from racism. There, it’s more extreme.”

Another protester, 46-year old Zemene Melesse, also told Haaretz, “What’s happening here today has nothing to do with what’s happening in Baltimore, but as a black man, I identify with them.”

Stop Comparing the Tel Aviv Protests to Baltimore

The comparison is irresistible.

In Tel Aviv — just like in Baltimore and Ferguson — thousands of black citizens took to the streets to protest racism and police brutality. And in Tel Aviv — just like in Baltimore and Ferguson — the urban streets became akin to a war zone, with water cannons and stun grenades, police cars with windows smashed, dozens of arrests and injured protesters and officers.

And just like in cities around America, the Israeli demonstrations were sparked by a video showing senseless police violence against a black man, Damas Pakado, an Ethiopian-Israeli who also happened to be a soldier in uniform.

Yet, despite the shocking scenes of chaos in typically pleasant Tel Aviv, both protesters and police are generally rejecting the readily available American analogy.

“What we’re doing now has nothing to do with what’s going on in Baltimore,” Maya Tzagay, a 19-year-old Ethiopian-Israeli protester and soldier told Haaretz. “They have their issues. We have ours. But we understand them — we both suffer from racism. There, it’s more extreme.”

Another protester, 46-year old Zemene Melesse, also told Haaretz, “What’s happening here today has nothing to do with what’s happening in Baltimore, but as a black man, I identify with them.”

Micky Rosenfeld, a spokesman for the Israel Police, also downplayed the similarities to Baltimore and Ferguson in comments to the New York Times, arguing that while the protests were sparked by a video showing Israeli cops beating up an Ethiopian-Israeli soldier, the underlying complaints were “not a police issue” but rather “social and economic issues.”

All of this raises the question: What is the difference, really, between what’s going on in Tel Aviv and in Baltimore? And why are the Israeli protesters and police both reluctant to conflate the two?

Image: Getty Images

Image: Getty Images

The answer, I think, lies in the fundamentally different postures of the American authorities and their Israeli counterparts.

Mike Brown was shot. Eric Garner was strangled. Walter Scott was gunned down from behind. Freddie Gray was left bound and bouncing around in a police van until his body literally snapped.

Yet after each of these cases of black men being killed by officers, both police and elected officials refused to immediately condemn the officers and admit that there is a significant problem of police brutality against blacks. Instead, they urged everyone to await the outcomes of various internal investigations and potential courtroom trials. Some of those cases, outrageously, never even lead to indictments. And when the officers do get charged with murder, as occurred belatedly in the Freddie Gray case, the police are stunned.

The contrast to the reactions of Israeli officials is stark, and is chiefly this: they are willing to listen.

After the video surfaced showing the beating of the Ethiopian soldier, the Israeli chief of police, Yohanan Danino, announced promptly that the officers would be fired. Danino also met with representatives of the Ethiopian-Israeli community, as did Israel’s prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, and president, Reuven Rivlin.

All of the officials immediately acknowledged that there is a deep-rooted problem of racism and that profound social change is needed.

President Rivlin was particularly forthright.

“Protesters in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv revealed an open and bloody wound in the heart of Israeli society,” he said today, in his latest remarks on the issue. “This is a wound of a community sounding the alarm at what they feel is discrimination, racism and disregard of their needs. We must take a good hard look at this wound.”

Of course, rhetoric is one thing and actions quite another. But the swift and sweeping recognition of the problem by top Israeli officials — including at police HQ — opens the door for hope. And, the recent violence notwithstanding, this basic attitude stands a far better chance of convincing the protesters that their voices are heard than the shameful stalling and pussyfooting of American officials.

“We’ve erred,” President Rivlin continued. “We have failed to see and listen enough. Among those protesting in the streets, there can be found the best of our boys and girls, excellent students and former soldiers. We must give them answers.”

And that is why Tel Aviv is not Baltimore.

 

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website.

TIME ONCE AGAIN TO CLEANSE THE LAND OF BREAD AND ARABS

Jewish mothers used to go into a cleaning frenzie a week or so before the Festival of Passover. All traces of leaven (chametz) had to be removed from the home before the onset of the holiday.
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Modern folk have determined that dust is not chametz, so there is less madness involved in the cleaning process, but Israel has added a new dimension to the situation; Arabs must be removed as well as the leaven.
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IMG_1880
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Following this report dealing with the realities of Apartheid you will find a post from the archives that I reblog every Passover eve…
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Just  one of many attempts to cleanse the land of Arabs ….
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Here is how Palestinians ‘celebrate’ the holiday … it’s Bibi’s Two State Solution, with one behind locked gates.
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                                                      (Click on link)

West Bank closure goes into effect for Passover 

These 'enemies' must be locked out!

These ‘enemies’ must be locked out!

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CLEANSING THE LAND OF BREAD AND ARABS

My maternal grandmother was a simple Shtetel Jew. She came from a place not much different than the small town portrayed in Fiddler on The Roof.
 *
Traditionally the womenfolk from those areas were uneducated in matters of anything other than home making and child raising, while the menfolk studied their Holy Books for hours on end. Life was simple for them, and they themselves were basically a very simple folk.
 *
I remember my grandmother going through the frenzie of cleaning the house this time of year…. the traditional Passover cleaning. All traces of leaven had to be removed from the home before the start of the Holiday. To her, that process included the removal of any trace of dust or smears on the window panes. The house sparkled when she was finished. Most of our non Jewish neighbours were going through the same process, but simply called it ’spring cleaning’, ridding the house of all unwanted matter, including broken furniture and junk.
 *
I remember asking my grandmother why she was going through such a frenzie…. her answer was simple and to the point…. “If a Jew eats bread during Passover he will die!” That was what she was taught, that’s what she taught us….
 *
In Israel today, things are not much different than life in the Shtetel when it comes to Passover preparations. But today there is a growing number of non observant Jews as well as a growing number of non Jews. This is a threat to the lifestyle of the self imposed Shtetel Jew living here today.
 *
Christian Pilgrims from abroad, as well as local Christians are denied access to their Holy Sites. Where is the uproar against this?
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Where is the uproar against the Neanderthal rabbis that have recently called for the expulsion or the genocide of the Palestinians? WHERE??? As in previous years, the Palestinians living on the ‘other side’ of the great wall of apartheid will be sealed in for the duration of the Holiday (8 days), literally making the State of Israel Arabrein for that period of time. Where is the uproar against this? WHERE???
Israel does need a cleansing… a good one; not only of bread during the Holiday season but also of hatred. Both are violations of the Holy Teachings.

WHAT NETANYAHU’S ‘APLOLOGY’ MEANS TO THE CHILDREN OF PALESTINE ~~ IN VIDEOS

Netanyahu ‘apologised’ to the ‘Arabs’ in Israel for the racist remarks he made on Election Day.

He was worried that the ‘Arabs were voting in droves’ to unseat him. The following two videos might explain why they wanted him unseated … 

Where is the apology to these children?

This video was shot during a night raid on ten homes in the occupied West Bank city of Hebron. B’Tselem does not say who shot the video, but typically the videos it releases are made by Palestinians.

Children terrorized

Masked soldiers enter Palestinian homes in Hebron in dead of night, order residents to wake their children, and photograph the children.

Late at night on 23 Feb. 2015 Israeli troops entered 10 neighbouring apartments in Hebron. They demanded that the children be awakened, asked their names and photographed them. B’Tselem volunteers who live there filmed the incident. The military cannot treat civilians–and certainly not children–as potential criminals. Not only is this policy of entering Palestinian homes by night unjust and terrifying. It illustrates how casually and arbitrarily the lives of Palestinians under occupation are disrupted and their rights violated. B’Tselem calls on the military to discontinue this policy without delay.

 

Read Ali Abunimah’s full report HERE

NETANYAHU’S TWO STATE SOLUTION ~~ ONE WITHOUT PEOPLE

zions mantra in establishing the State of Israel was “A land without a people for a people without a land”.

The mantra of today in reference to a State of Palestine is simply “A land without people”.

The Nakba of 1948 is an ongoing process

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Latuff ~~ The ongoing Nakba

Latuff ~~ The ongoing Nakba

Click on the following links to read what has been happening since Israel’s election …

The illegal settlers and the IDF are working hand in hand

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And President Obama remains silent

"Not my problem"

“Not my problem”

His silence speaks volumes

ISIS // ZIONISM ~~ CAN YOU SPOT THE DIFFERENCE?

             THREE POSTS IN ONE ...

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Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman has taken his campaign of violent incitement against Palestinians to new extremes with a call for those disloyal to Israel to have their heads chopped off.

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Israeli foreign minister calls for beheading Palestinians

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman has taken his campaign of violent incitement against Palestinians to new extremes with a call for those disloyal to Israel to have their heads chopped off.

He also repeated his long-standing demands for expulsion of Palestinian citizens of Israel.

“Anyone who’s with us should be given everything – up to half the kingdom. Anyone who’s against us, there’s nothing to do – we should raise an axe and cut off his head; otherwise we won’t survive here,” Lieberman said at an election event Sunday, in reference to Palestinian citizens of Israel.

According to Israel’s Mako news website, Lieberman made his comments in an interview with journalist Udi Segal during the “Electing Democracy in 2015” conference at IDC Herzliya, an Israeli college.

There are about 1.5 million Palestinians, survivors and descendants of those who escaped expulsion from present-day Israel in 1948, who are nominally citizens of Israel. Palestinians commemorate this ethnic cleansing, which they call the Nakba (Arabic for “catastrophe”) every year on 15 May.

While they have a vote in Israel’s upcoming election, Palestinian citizens of Israel face relentless legal and social discrimination and violent incitement and calls for expulsion.

Lieberman wants ethnic cleansing

“There’s no reason for Umm al-Fahm to be part of the State of Israel,” Lieberman said in reference to a large town in the north of present-day Israel with a predominantly Palestinian population. “Citizens in the State of Israel who fly a black flag on Nakba Day – as far as I’m concerned they should go away, and I’ll donate them to Abu Mazen with great joy.”

Lieberman’s reference to “donating” Palestinian citizens of Israel to “Abu Mazen” – the Palestinian Authority’s leader Mahmoud Abbas – amounts to a renewed call for ethnic cleansing.

The Israeli foreign minister, who heads the extreme anti-Palestinian Yisrael Beiteinu party, has a long history of violent incitement. In a recent Facebook posting, Lieberman called for the execution of Palestinian prisoners held by Israel.

According to polls, Lieberman’s party is set to lose seats at the upcoming 17 March parliamentary election. His comments may be an effort to galvanize Israel’s anti-Arab vote, which has been drifting to other openly genocidal parties such as Naftali Bennett’s partyHabayit Hayehudi (Jewish Home).

It is not only Israel’s right-wing politicians who appeal to voters with incitement to violence against Palestinians; Israel’s ostensible left does it as well. In a recent election ad, Yitzhak Herzog, head of Israel’s allegedly dovish Labor Party, accused Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of not hitting Gaza hard enough.

In a 51-day assault last summer, Israel committed numerous war crimes, devastating Gaza and leaving more than 2,200 people dead.

Lieberman’s latest violent incitement will feed comparisons frequently made between Israel – the self-declared “Jewish state” – with ISIS (or ISIL), the self-declared “Islamic State” notorious for its brutal beheadings of hostages in the areas it occupies in Iraq and Syria.

With thanks to Dena Shunra for translation.

 

If the Moldavian bouncer gets his way ...

If the Moldavian bouncer gets his way … MK Zoabi is surely on his list.

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 Response …

Tibi: Liberman is a ‘Jewish ISIS’

Arab MK fires back at Foreign Minister who advocated “cutting of the heads” of Arabs who were not loyal to Israel.
MK Ahmed Tibi  Flash 90

MK Ahmed Tibi Flash 90

Balad MK Ahmad Tibi said that Minister Avigdor Lieberman’s statements calling to decapitate “disloyal Israeli Arabs” are severe and require a police investigation.

Tibi, who made the statements while addressing some 1,000 Israeli Arabs studying in Jenin University, called Lieberman a “Jewish ISIS,” and said that if an Arab MK would have made a similar statement, police and the attorney general would have opened proceedings against him immediately.

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Meanwhile, zion’s entity in the West bank ….

Once again, the PA is ganging up on its own citizens in order to receive a certificate of good conduct from the likes of Binyamin Netanyahu, Avigdor Lieberman and Naftali Bennet.

PA is arresting Palestinians to please Israel

By Khalid Amayreh in Occupied Palestine
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Once again, the PA is ganging up on its own citizens in order to receive a certificate of good conduct from the likes of Binyamin Netanyahu, Avigdor Lieberman and Naftali Bennet.According to the latest news from the West Bank, PA security agencies, including the Preventive Security and General Intelligence (Mukhabarat) have been raiding homes and businesses of supporters of the Islamic liberation group, Hamas.Reliable sources in the West Bank reported that as many as a hundred activists have been rounded up in the still-ongoing sweep, including college students, university professors, and former detainees just released from Israeli jails.No specific charges have been leveled against the detainees, widely believed to be innocent of any wrongdoings.The PA didn’t spell out the exact motives behind the latest campaign, which targeted families said was carried out with “vengeance and vindictiveness.”

A PA spokesman in Ramallah said Monday the arrests were a reprisal for the arrest by Hamas’s security apparatus in Gaza of a local Fatah leader, reportedly accused of “indulgence in improper behavior.”

However, the large scope of the arrest campaign in the West Bank seems to suggest that the PA is hell-bent on persecuting its own people on Israel’s behalf.

A few days ago, the PLO Central Council, decided to terminate all security coordination with Israel. However, a huge question mark is drawn over the willingness of the PA leadership, e.g. Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, to halt security collaboration with Israel.

Abbas has been quoted repeatedly as saying that security collaboration with Israel is “a sacred commitment”, and an “ultimate red line.” Hence, most Palestinians and observers are skeptical about Abbas’s willingness to carry out the decision.

From the Israeli view point, the PA would lose its very raison d’être should it halt full security collaboration with the Jewish state.

Hence, stopping the one-sided security collaboration between the PA and Israel could possibly spell the end of the very existence of the PA.

However, the elimination of the PA goes against the wishes of the US, Israel’s guardian ally, EU, as well as regional states such as Jordan and Sissi’s Egypt.

Israel, too, views the continued survival of the PA regime as a paramount Israel interest. Israel views the PA very much as a sub-contractor for managing the occupation, on Israel’s behalf. The disappearance of the PA would create a huge security and financial burden for Israel as the Jewish state would be forced to cater for the livelihood and welfare of more than four million Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza. Israel would also be forced to redeploy tens of thousands of its troops throughout Palestinian towns.

Needless to say, the PA has been doing the job rather faithfully on behalf of Israel ever since the conclusion of the hapless Oslo Agreement in 1993. And this was done with minimal Israeli obligations toward the Palestinians.

More to the point, under the umbrella of this ignominious arrangement, which was supposed to expire by 2000, Israel continued to confiscate Palestinian land, build and expand Jewish settlements and use every conceivable method to persecute, repress and torment Palestinians in both the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

Real irony

The continuing arrest of dozens of innocent Palestinian activists comes at a time when the PA is being thoroughly humiliated and blackmailed by the occupying power, Israel. The Zionist entity has been withholding hundreds of millions of dollars of Palestinian tax and customs revenue, levied by Israel on behalf the PA pursuant to the Paris protocol of 1994.

The freezing of these funds has caused a virtual financial collapse of the PA, which has not been able to pay the salaries of its estimated 140,000 civil servants and security personnel in full.

The PA has appealed to western countries, especially the US, to pressure Israel to release the funds. However, it is unlikely that Israel will unfreeze the funds anytime soon, especially before the Israeli elections, slated to take place on 17 March.

The Israeli government is worried that unfreezing the Palestinian funds now would be a sign of weakness to the Israeli Jewish public, which has a clear propensity to support right-wing and extreme-right wing parties, such as Netanyahu’s Likud.

In addition to withholding Palestinian funds, Israel has been waging a murderous campaign against ordinary Palestinians.

On 7 March, the Israeli occupation army murdered a Palestinian fisherman. Tawfik Abu Rayala, 34, was killed when an Israeli navy patrol strafed Palestinian fishermen in northern Gaza with machinegun bullets, killing the young fisherman and injuring a number of other fishermen.

Several other Palestinians have also been killed in various parts of the West Bank as the Israeli occupation army adopted a shoot-to-kill policy in dealing with Palestinian protesters.

A few months ago, Israeli troops near Ramallah, murdered Ziyad Abu Ein, prompting widespread indignation.

Israel, whose navy routinely opens fire on impoverished Gaza fishermen, had murdered more than 2000 Palestinians, mostly innocent civilians during its last summer blitz against Gaza. The victims include some 300 children.

In fact, the Israeli killing machine never stopped murdering and maiming Palestinians as the Zionist entity continued to narrow Palestinian horizons politically and economically.

Awarding Israel for its crimes

In light of all this, many ordinary Palestinians are openly accusing the PA of being at Israel’s beck and call and even awarding Israel for murdering and persecuting Palestinians.

Ahmed Suleiman, a Palestinian professor at Hebron University, described the PA behavior of arresting pro-Hamas activists in the West Bank as “a treasonous act par excellence.”

“We all know that Israel considers Hamas its archenemy. So by cracking down on Hamas in the West Bank, the PA is effectively telling Israel that ‘ your enemy is also our enemy.'”

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