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.

THE UN’s BLURRED VISION

They seem to see a double holocaust in Gaza last summer

Its report, published Monday in Geneva, says investigators were “able to gather substantial information pointing to serious violations of international humanitarian law and international human rights law by Israel and by Palestinian armed groups.”

blurred-vision

 

“Balance” in UN Gaza report can’t hide massive Israeli war crimes

Palestinians pray over the bodies of eight members of the al-Haj family, killed when Israel bombed their Khan Younis house on 10 July 2014. This was one of the attacks investigated by an independent UN body that found extensive evidence of Israeli war crimes during last summer’s assault on Gaza. (Eyad Al Baba APA images)

Palestinians pray over the bodies of eight members of the al-Haj family, killed when Israel bombed their Khan Younis house on 10 July 2014. This was one of the attacks investigated by an independent UN body that found extensive evidence of Israeli war crimes during last summer’s assault on Gaza. (Eyad Al Baba APA images)

There can be no surprise that the UN Human Rights Council’s independent investigation of Israel’s assault on Gaza last summer found evidence of massive and systematic war crimes.

Its report, published Monday in Geneva, says investigators were “able to gather substantial information pointing to serious violations of international humanitarian law and international human rights law by Israel and by Palestinian armed groups.”

“The extent of the devastation and human suffering in Gaza was unprecedented and will impact generations to come,” the chair of the investigation commission, Justice Mary McGowan Davis told media, adding that “there is also ongoing fear in Israel among communities who come under regular threat.”

Despite the “balanced” language that is now the habitual refuge of international officials hoping to avoid false accusations of anti-Israel bias, the evidence shows that the scale and impact of Israeli violence dwarfs anything allegedly done by Palestinians.

Israel systematically targeted Palestinian residential buildings and infrastructure without any apparent military justification. The horror of what Israel did, detailed in the 183-page report, cannot be adequately summarized here.

In total, 2,251 Palestinians were killed, including 1,462 Palestinian civilians, among them 551 children, the report states. More than 11,000 Palestinians, including 3,540 women and 3,436 children, were injured with almost 10 percent suffering permanent disabilities.

Six civilians died in Israel and more than 60 Israeli soldiers died in fighting with the Palestinian resistance.

But a key finding is that the mass destruction and killing inflicted by Israel, often amounting to war crimes, “may have constituted military tactics reflective of a broader policy, approved at least tacitly by decision-makers at the highest levels of the Government of Israel.”

This finding provides an important basis for Palestinians to pursue Israeli leaders, not just their uniformed subordinates, and bring them to justice in international courts.

The report also confirms that Israel remains the occupying power in Gaza as far as international law is concerned, because it continues to exercise “effective control” over the territory. Israel is therefore subject to all the legal obligations of an occupying power to protect civilians there.

It also found a massive escalation of Israeli violations of Palestinian human rights in the occupied West Bank including East Jerusalem in the weeks preceding and during the Gaza assault that was “overshadowed by the tragic events in Gaza.”

Israeli obstruction

The commission was made up of two independent experts: former New York Supreme Court Justice Mary McGowan Davis, who chaired it, and Senegal’s Doudou Diène, a former UN special rapporteur on racism.

The previous chair, Canadian international law expert William Schabas, resigned from the commission in February under relentless Israeli criticism and pressure.

Israel’s concern about the make up of the committee was not matched by a willingness to cooperate with its work. Israel refused to respond to any requests for information and barred the investigators from traveling to the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip or to present-day Israel.

The Egyptian military regime also colluded with Israel by blocking investigators entering Gaza through theRafah crossing.

Nonetheless, the investigators and their staff conducted hundreds of interviews with victims and witnesses, received hundreds of written submissions and obtained large amounts of data from other UN bodies. They also consulted satellite imagery, independent military experts, government documents and statements and evidence gathered by independent organizations.

Deliberate attacks on civilians

Israel carried out more than 6,000 airstrikes on Gaza last summer, the report states, including “targeted attacks on residential and other buildings.”

As a result of these attacks, 142 Palestinians families “had three or more members killed in the same incident owing to the destruction of residential buildings,” for a total of at least 742 deaths, according to UN figures.

The report examines in detail 15 attacks on residential buildings in which a total of 216 people were killed, including 115 children and 50 women. Israel refused to provide any information on what made these buildings alleged military targets.

Killed while they slept

In one of the incidents, at 2 am on 10 July, Israel attacked the house of Mahmoud al-Haj in Khan Younis. All eight members of the family were killed, including two children and three women. The bomb completely destroyed the house and damaged surrounding homes injuring 20 more people, mostly women and children.

In another attack, on the afternoon of 21 July, Israeli forces fired two missiles at the five-story building of the al-Qassas family, killing nine people, including six children and three women, one of them pregnant. Another 10, mostly children and one a baby, were injured.

The investigators could find no information to suggest “that there was a military target in the al-Qassas building.”

This was frequently the case. “In many of the cases examined by the commission, as well as in incidents reported by local and international organizations,” the report states, “there is little or no information as to how residential buildings, which are prima facie civilian objects immune from attack, came to be regarded as legitimate military objectives.”

Israeli justification debunked

The report does find that “indications of possible military objectives emerged in nine of the 15 cases” of attacks on residential buildings that it examines.

But it says that “the potential targets of the attack seem to have been mostly individuals who were or who could have been present in the building that was struck, indicating that one or several individuals were the likely target and not the building itself.”

Here, the report refutes one of the major Israeli justifications for attacking homes: that someone associated with an armed group lives in one. However, the report “underlines that the mere fact of being a member of the political wing of Hamas or any other organization in Gaza, or working for the authorities … is not sufficient in and of itself to render a person a legitimate military target.”

It adds that “under international humanitarian law, a member of an armed group has to have a continuous combat function to constitute a legitimate military target.”

Even if the person were a “legitimate military target,” Israel’s method of attacking homes is disrproportionate, indiscriminate and illegal.

The investigators also consulted military experts who found that the types of US-supplied bombs Israel dropped – such as the GBU-32/MK-82 1,000 lb bomb or the GBU-31/MK-84 2,000 lb bomb – have such a wide impact that their use amounted to indiscriminate attacks.

During the attack, Israel often boasted about its use of a smaller “warning missile” or “knock on the roof” to tell residents to get out of a building minutes before a much bigger explosion. But the report concludes “that the ‘roof-knocking’ technique is not effective” and there were many instances in which civilians were killed despite such warnings.

Destruction of Shujaiya

On 19 and 20 July, Israel carried out a massive artillery bombardment of the Shujaiya neighborhood of eastern Gaza City, killing at least 55 people, including 19 children and 14 women.

As The Electronic Intifada reported last year, the type of weapons used – predominantly heavy artillery and mortars – means the attack could not but have been indiscriminate.

Israel also used over 100 one-ton bombs in the attack which destroyed 670 buildings and damaged another 1,200.

The UN report now confirms that “these methods and means employed by the [Israeli army] could not, in such a small and densely populated area, be directed at a specific military target and could not adequately distinguish between civilians and civilian objects and military objectives as required by [international humanitarian law].”

“Therefore,” the report concludes, “there are strong indications that the IDF’s [Israeli army] Shujaiya operation on 19 and 20 July was conducted in violation of the prohibition of indiscriminate attacks and may amount to a war crime.”

Human shields

Similarly, the report examines and finds evidence of war crimes during Israel’s siege and shelling of the village ofKhuzaa between 20 July and 1 August and its massive bombardment of the southern city of Rafah after one of its soldiers was reported captured on 1 August.

Israel also used human shields in Khuzaa, a farming village in east central Gaza. On 23 July, for instance, 17-year-old Ahmed Abu Reda was abducted by Israeli soldiers from his family as they tried to flee the area.

He was kept hostage for five days during which he was interrogated and, according to his father, forced to undertake “risky tasks such as opening doors, inspecting rooms, switching the lights on and off to test whether secret explosives were being connected to the light switches, open fridges and other devices that may have detonated explosions.”

It concludes that “there are strong indications that elements of the IDF operation in Khuzaa may qualify as direct attacks against civilians or civilian objects and may thus amount to a war crime.”

In Rafah, Israel implemented the “Hannibal Directive,” a procedure which calls for massive fire to prevent a soldier being captured even if it kills the soldier.

The report cites Israel’s “military culture” resulting from this and other policies as “a contributing factor for the unleashing of massive firepower on Rafah, in total disregard for its impact on the civilian population.”

It also finds that Israeli commanders continued the attack for hours even when they must have known about the catastrophic death and injury they were causing to civilians – in itself a potential war crime.

Accusations against Palestinians

Any Israeli claim that the investigation is biased is refuted by the accusations the report levels against Palestinian resistance groups.

It says the investigators have “serious concerns with regard to the inherently indiscriminate nature of most of the projectiles directed towards Israel by these groups and to the targeting of Israeli civilians, which violate international humanitarian law and may amount to a war crime.”

It also condemns the extrajudicial executions by Hamas of two dozen Palestinians accused of collaborating with the enemy as a war crime. These executions had already been condemned by Palestinian and international human rights organizations.

Yet in many of the specific instances examined by the committee, especially those involving mortar fire at Israeli targets near the Gaza boundary, the investigators found that Palestinians were aiming at Israeli military targets that were often deliberately placed close to civilian communities.

Military bases near civilians

The report notes “a number of military objectives are located in various parts of Israel, in some cases in the immediate vicinity of built up areas such as the Hatzor airbase, or in the case of the IDF Headquarters, in the midst of a densely populated area.”

It adds that during the attack on Gaza, “the number of IDF positions in the south of Israel around Gaza, sometimes close to civilian communities, was higher than usual.”

“Mortar fire by the Palestinian armed groups appears to have often been aimed at specific targets and is more precise than the rockets in the armed groups’ arsenal,” the report states.

On 22 August 2014, 4-year-old Daniel Tregerman, the only Israeli child fatality in the conflict, was killed by a mortar shell in his home at Kibbutz Nahal Oz, 2 kilometers from the Gaza boundary.

The report notes that this too was an area of intense military activity.

“Based on the information available,” the report states, “the commission cannot exclude that the intended target of the tragic attack of 22 August on Kibbutz Nahal Oz was the IDF Chief of Staff.”

Israeli claims hard to verify

The report acknowledges that in many cases, Palestinian armed groups warned Israeli civilians, especially in the areas near Gaza, and when they fired rockets towards Ben Gurion Airport, of impending attacks.

The investigators say they asked Israel for “detailed information” on “where the rockets and mortars fired by Palestinian armed groups in Gaza actually landed so as to make a more detailed assessment of the proportion of cases in which they were directed at densely populated areas in Israel.”

But Israel – which is always eager to tell global media about how its civilians are the main targets of Palestinian groups – refused, making it “difficult for the commission to determine the extent to which attacks [were] directed at the civilian population in Israel.”

Legitimate military targets

As for tunnels dug from Gaza into present-day Israel, the report is blunt: “during the period under examination, the tunnels were only used to conduct attacks directed at IDF positions in Israel in the vicinity of the Green Line, which are legitimate military targets.”

The report concedes, however, that “in the vast majority of individual rocket and mortar attacks, the commission does not have information on the intended targets, but notes that Palestinian armed groups announced that they intended to attack population centers in Israel and declared responsibility for launches directed at different places in Israel.”

It also notes that the “majority of projectiles fired by Palestinian armed groups consisted of rockets that at best were equipped with only rudimentary guidance systems and in the vast majority of cases had none at all.”

It acknowledges that the “limitations of the military arsenals of Palestinian armed groups was advanced as a reason for their failure to attack precisely military targets.”

“Security experts have noted that while the al-Qassam Brigades [the military wing of Hamas] may have targeted civilians in the past as part of its military strategy, in 2014 its declared official policy was ‘to focus on military or semi-military targets and to avoid other targets, especially civilians,’” the report observes.

But it notes that under the relevant international law, the “military capacity of the parties to a conflict is irrelevant to their obligation to respect the prohibition against indiscriminate attacks.”

While this may be the case, what it indicates is that if Palestinians exercising a legitimate right to resistance and self-defense were allowed access to more precise weapons, most of the activities designated as possible war crimes in the report would probably not have occurred.

This is not true, however, in the case of Israel, which boasts about its very precise weapons and yet inflicted massive amounts of death, injury and destruction on civilians as a result of its policy of targeting them.

Instead, Palestinian resistance groups are designated as “terrorists” and barred from obtaining more accurate weapons, while the United States, European Union and other governments continue to supply Israel’s massive arsenal.

The report, if anything, displays a distinct anti-Palestinian bias, using the word “resistance” only between quotation marks as if the right to resist belligerent military occupation is not a well-recognized right in international law.

Analysis

The report looks at the events in Palestine through the strict lens of international humanitarian and human rights law. In doing so it finds evidence that both Palestinians and Israelis committed war crimes and other violations.

But the crimes allegedly committed by Israel are massive compared to anything allegedly done by Palestinians.

There can also be no moral equivalence between the legitimate self-defense and resistance of a people under occupation and the aggression of an occupier whose aim is to subject millions of people to its unopposed military tyranny.

It is also apparent that most, though not all, of the transgressions alleged against Palestinians are an artifact of the inferior and unguided weapons, often locally made in Gaza, that are available to resistance groups.

But the approach of the so-called “international community” has been to deny Palestinians the means to resist against Israeli occupation forces and then to condemn them for using what they have.

Despite this, the fact remains that while Israel mostly killed civilians, Palestinians mostly killed Israeli soldiers. Indeed, 65 percent of those killed by Israel were civilians, while 90 percent of those killed by Palestinians werearmed combatant soldiers.

Nothing is more legitimate than Palestinian resistance and nothing is more illegitimate than Israeli occupation. And yet it is to Israel that weapons of massive destruction continue to flow, often from the countries that preach loudest about human rights and international law.

Means of resistance

It is clear that many governments and international organizations tacitly reject the Palestinian right to resist militarily even if they do not say so openly. Many supporters of Palestinian rights and many Palestinians prefer nonviolence, believing that in the long run it will make a just peace more feasible.

If that is the case, then everyone must be proactive in offering support for nonviolent alternatives that can help redress the balance of power between a tenacious belligerent occupier and its victims.

Boycott, divestment and sanctions, for instance, must be recognized and promoted by the so-called international community as a legitimate means of resistance supplementing other forms of legitimate resistance to colonial occupation.

As for Israel, its strategy with this investigation as in others, was to try to obstruct it and then to whine that it is unfair and biased. If Israel is so certain that its actions were legal and correct, it should have nothing to hide.

Given the consequences if the report’s call for accountability were to be implemented, it is no surprise that the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and its staunch ally, the US administration of President Barack Obama, have attacked and delegitimized the UN investigation from the very start.

It remains to be seen if others will have the courage to demand accountability and ensure this report is not buried like the Goldstone report into Israel’s 2008-2009 massacre in Gaza.

Without such accountability, another Israeli massacre in Gaza is only a matter of time.

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NON LETHAL MURDER

First, see THIS post from last week ….

Non-lethal ammunition used by the IDF

Non-lethal ammunition used by the IDF

Now, see the results …

A Palestinian child was critically injured after Israeli forces shot him with a rubber-coated steel bullet near the Shufat refugee camp on Thursday, witnesses said..

Palestinian boy, 10, critically injured by rubber bullet in Jerusalem

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A Palestinian child was critically injured after Israeli forces shot him with a rubber-coated steel bullet near the Shufat refugee camp on Thursday, witnesses said.

Yahiya Sami al-Amudi, 10, was walking near a checkpoint by the East Jerusalem refugee camp when he was shot by the bullet.

He was taken to the Hadassa hospital in Ein Karem with a fractured skull, jaw, and left ear and had surgery to remove his left eye.

Medics said he is in a critical condition.

A spokesman for Fatah in the camp, Thaer Fasfous, condemned the targeting of children with tear gas, stun grenades and rubber-coated bullets.

Israeli police spokesperson Micky Rosenfeld said that there were “disturbances” in the Shufat area after locals threw stones at municipality workers.

Israeli border police used “non-lethal” weapons and a 10-year-old boy was moderately injured and taken to hospital, he added.

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Source

SETTLERS MOURN THE PASSING OF ARCH CRIMINAL MOSHE LEVINGER

May he
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For eternity!

As I write this, preparations are underway to lower the body of Rabbi convicted murderer Moshe Levinger into a grave in the ancient Jewish cemetery in Hebron. Jewish Law prohibits cremation so Satan himself will light the fires when the burial is complete…

Settler leader Rabbi Moshe Levinger will be laid to rest in the West Bank city of Hebron on Sunday at 12:30pm, a day after he died at the age of 80. He had suffered from health problems in recent years, after a serious stroke some seven years ago. 

Levinger, who helped reestablish Jewish settlement in the heart of Hebron, will be buried close to the Tomb of the Patriarchs, one of the holiest sites in Judaism. 

The rabbi led the first settlers back to Hebron in 1968, a year after Israel captured the city from Jordan in the Six-Day War. Jews had lived in the city for centuries until Arab riots drove most of them out in 1929. Today around 800 settlers live in heavily guarded areas of Hebron alongside 180,000 Palestinians. (From)

FIRE

Levinger has been arrested and charged at least 10 times starting in 1975 in relation to incidents in Hebron or Kiryat Arba.

In 1984, Rabbi Levinger was arrested on suspicion of involvement with the Gush Emunim Underground. In July 1985, Levinger was fined approximately $15,000 and given a three-month suspended sentence for trespassing in the house of a Hebron woman and attacking her six-year-old son. Levinger told the Jerusalem Magistrate Court that the boy had thrown a stone at his son.

In 1988, Levinger was indicted on two separate criminal charges involving events in Hebron. On September 30, 1988, Levinger, who had been hit a week before by a rock, was attacked by stoners who smashed his windshield, injuring his son. He reached an Israeli checkpoint. Levinger pulled out his pistol, turned round and went back down the streets shooting at shop windows, killing Palestinian store owner Hassan Abdul Azis Salah. A customer was also wounded. Levinger claimed he had been surrounded by Palestinians who threatened his life, and only to have shot into the air to defend himself against stone throwers. In a press conference following the shooting, Levinger said, “Regarding the actual deed, I will respond when the time comes. I have already said that as far as the substance of the case goes, the State Attorney’s Office knows that I am innocent and that I did not have the privilege of killing that Arab. Not that I may not have wanted to kill him or that he did not deserve to die, but I did not have the privilege of killing that Arab.” He was charged with “manslaughter, causing bodily harm in aggravated circumstances and intentionally damaging property”. His trial began in August 1989, despite protests by 13 right-wing Knesset members and hundreds of supporters. Levinger pleaded not guilty to the charges but accepted a plea-bargain to the lesser charge of negligent homicide. He was sentenced to 5 months imprisonment and 7 months suspended, of which he served 92 days. During his imprisonment, he was given leave to attend a public event in Hebron. On his release in August 1990, he told Israel Radio, “If I’m in a situation of danger again, I’ll again open fire. I hope that next time, I will be more careful and I won’t miss the target.”

In another case, which related to an event five months before the first, he was alleged to have assaulted a Palestinian woman and her two children after other Arab children had “made fun of” his daughter. At his trial in May 1989, the magistrate dismissed the evidence of the Arab witnesses on the grounds that they were interested parties and wanted to see Levinger in prison for ideological reasons, and also dismissed the evidence of two IDF soldiers who testified to the assault. Six weeks after Levinger’s release from prison on his separate negligent homicide conviction (see above), the Jerusalem District Court overturned his acquittal on the earlier assault charges. He was sentenced to 4 months imprisonment, plus an additional 10 days for an outburst in court. He served about two months. On his release in March 1991, he said “Over the years, I’ve carried out dozens of actions and all of them were against the law. It was worthwhile to violate the law, as all these actions advanced the whole Land of Israel.”

In July 1995, Levinger was sentenced to seven months imprisonment for a violent altercation in the Tomb of the Patriarchs in September 1991. The court found that Levinger had pulled down the partition separating Jewish and Muslim worshippers and assaulted an IDF officer. He served four months in prison in 1996.

In December 1995, Levinger was sentenced to six months in prison and six months suspended for an incident in June 1991. He was found guilty of rioting in the Hebron market, of overturning stalls, forcing other merchants to close their shops, and of firing his pistol. His defense was that he was attacked by Palestinians throwing rocks.

In December 1997, Levinger was sentenced to six months jail and fined $2,300 for disturbing Muslim prayers at Hebron’s Tomb of the Patriarchs in 1994 and of blocking an army commander from entering Kiryat Arba.  (FROM)

For those of you who have not had the pleasure of meeting his ‘beloved’ wife and fellow criminal, here she is … 

And here is his long awaited for obituary from Ynet

Leading settler rabbi Levinger passes away at the age of 80

Moshe Levinger was among the leaders of the renewed Jewish settlement in Hebron and one of the founders of Kiryat Arba.

Rabbi Moshe Levinger, who has been a leading figure in the movement to settle Jews in the West Bank, passed away on Saturday at the age of 80.

The official announcement of his passing said, “the Jewish yeshuv in Hebron expresses deep sorrow over the death of the father of the community, Rabbi Moshe Levinger. Rabbi Levinger was the bearer of renewed Jewish settlement in the city, and for many years was a symbol and a respected figure in Hebron and the settlements in Judea and Samaria in general.”

Rabbi Levinger, who was one of the principals of the now defunct settler movement Gush Emunim, grew up in Jerusalem, served in the Nahal, studied at the Mercaz haRav yeshiva in Jerusalem and at Kfar Haroeh. He served as a rabbi at Kibbutz Lavi in the Lower Galilee and in Moshav Nehalim near Petah Tikvah.

On Passover eve 1968, a group of religious families led by Rabbi Levinger gathered at Park Hotel in Hebron, with the help of several Israeli ministers, to celebrate Seder night, and then refused to leave. In a deal with the Israeli government, he moved with his family and followers to a former army base on a hill just northeast of Hebron, where, with the state’s cooperation, they established the settlement of Kiryat Arba.

In 1975, Levinger led the attempt to establish a settlement on the ruins of the Sebastia train station. When then defense minister Shimon Peres demanded the settlers to evacuate the place, Rabbi Levinger said there was “nothing to talk about.” He was photographed, alongside former MK Hanan Porat, carried on the shoulders of the settlers.

In 1979, the rabbi’s wife Miriam entered Beit Hadassah in Hebron, and the family later moved to the Avraham Avinu neighborhood in Hebron.

In 1988, Rabbi Levinger shot to death a Palestinian, after he was pelted with rocks. The court sentenced him to five months imprisonment after he was convicted of negligent homicide.

Before he started serving his sentence he said: “I was faced with two possibilities: Open fire, or not. It is better that I sit five months and even five years in prison than to be led, along with my four children, to burial.”

In recent years, Levinger suffered from health problems after a serious stroke some seven years ago.

SEE FOR YOURSELF ~~ MORE ‘LOVE’ ON THE STREETS OF JERUSALEM

This disturbing video shows Israeli youths, escorted by police and occupation forces, marching through the Old City of Jerusalem chanting “mavet la’aravim” – “death to the Arabs” – and other cries of hate.

“Death to the Arabs” march forces its way through occupied Jerusalem

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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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.
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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.
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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.
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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….
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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.
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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.

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

IN PHOTOS ~~ REMEMBERING THE NAKBA AND THE WAR IN IRAQ

Remembering the Nakba

"Facing the Ongoing Nakba” tour schedule

“Facing the Ongoing Nakba” tour schedule

 

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zion wants us to forget about it …

On the eve of an important event to discuss the Nakba* scheduled to take place this evening, the Executive Director of a tony uptown synagogue in New York City where the event was contracted to take place has attempted to cancel the event with no explanation in what can only be perceived as an effort to shut down discussion of the “ongoing Nakba” within the Jewish community.

The event was to feature the Palestinian human rights organization, Badil (whose timely recently released Corporate Complicity in Violations of International Law in Palestine [pdf] is a must read), and Israeli human rights organization Zochrot. It is part of multi-city speaking tour, and was sponsored in New York by four organizations: Jewish Voice for Peace-New York; Nakba Education Project; Jews Say No!; and the National Lawyers Guild Palestine Subcommittee.

*Nakba, means “catastrophe” in Arabic and refers to the forced displacement of Palestinians that began with Israel’s establishment in 1948, and continues to this day.

Read the full report at Mondoweiss

The cancellation results …

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Photos © by Bud Korotzer

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On the other side of town, the 12th anniversary of Bush’s catastrophe was remembered

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83 YEAR OLD PALESTINIAN THROWN TO THE WOLVES IN JERUSALEM

yes-you-can

Let’s see how Bibi explains this to Congress …

Israeli authorities on Sunday ordered 83-year-old Palestinian grandfather Ayyub Shamasnah and his family to voluntarily evacuate their home in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah before next Sunday in compliance with a final supreme court decision.

Israel orders Palestinian family to evacuate Sheikh Jarrah house

(MaanImages)
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JERUSALEM (Ma’an) – Israeli authorities on Sunday ordered 83-year-old Palestinian grandfather Ayyub Shamasnah and his family to voluntarily evacuate their home in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah before next Sunday in compliance with a final supreme court decision.

Shamasnah lives with his wife, 75, children and grandchildren in a two-room, 65-square-meter house targeted by Jewish settlers who have already evicted several Palestinian families.

The family moved to Sheikh Jarrah after they were displaced from Qatanna village in northwest Jerusalem during the creation of Israel in 1948. They initially paid rent to Jordanian authorities, who were responsible for East Jerusalem until 1967 when Israel occupied the city.

Since 1968, the family has paid rent to Israeli authorities as protected leaseholders.

In 2011, the Israeli government’s Custodian for Absentee Property started legal proceedings to evict the Shamasnah family, claiming their rental contract expired in 2008. In May 2013, an Israeli court postponed the eviction until further discussions.

The court suggested during a hearing in May that the family could remain in the property until the elderly parents die, but settlers who are targeting the property once the family is evicted refused the proposal, according to the owner’s son Muhammad.

Speaking to Ma’an Sunday, Muhammad said that the Israeli supreme court decided in August 2013 that his family should evacuate the property before Jan. 3, 2015 to be delivered to the Israeli settlers.

“Thus, the family received a letter last Thursday from the settlers’ lawyer demanding that they comply with the court decision, or otherwise they will be evacuated by force.”

According to Muhammad, the Israeli authorities claim that the house was a Jewish property before 1948, and after the Palestinian Nakba all Jewish properties were entrusted to the Jordanian government’s Custodian for Absentee Property.

Then after the annexation of Jerusalem in 1967, the properties were entrusted to Israeli government’s Custodian for Absentee Property.

He added that his father had paid rent to both the Jordanian and Israeli authorities as protected leaseholders.

Then in 2011, he added, the family was surprised with the Israeli government’s Custodian for Absentee Property starting legal proceedings to evict the family claiming their rental contract expired in 2008.

In response, the family submitted court documents which proved they paid rent according to a contract signed in 1977. The family also submitted evidence that they had lived in the house since 1972, but “failed to give evidence they had lived in the house before 1968.”

 

Source

ABORIGINES IN ISRAEL ~~ PAST AND PRESENT

Definition of aborigine in English:

NOUN

A person, animal, or plant that has been in a country or region from earliest times.
A young Palestinian marks Land Day in Jaffa, present-day Israel, March 2014. (Keren Manor / ActiveStills)

A young Palestinian marks Land Day in Jaffa, present-day Israel, March 2014. (Keren Manor / ActiveStills)

The Palestinian citizens of Israel stand at the crossroads of hope for peace in the Middle East, their achievements uncelebrated and their promise untested. As a member of this indigenous group, I try to bring our existence to light, to sing out our pleasure and pain, to echo our sense of alienation and dispossession, to face up to the dilemma of our identity, and to hail our occasional successes and our trust in the future.

Since the establishment of the state, we have endured systematic dispossession and ghettoization. Of late, the process has turned vicious: fundamentalist messianic Zionists and settler leaders, the abrasive curse of occupation, have assumed advanced positions in Israel’s political and military leadership.

The long struggle of the Palestinians in Israel

Concomitant with Israel’s founding in 1948, its armed forces systematically expelled Palestine’s native population and razed some 500 of their communities to the ground in the largest and most successfully denied ethnic cleansing campaign in modern times.

A mere six and a half decades later, who knows about Damoun, for example? Who remembers it except for its surviving refugee sons and daughters and their descendants?

Imprisoned in Gaza’s open-air jail or in Lebanon’s camps, they are terrorized daily by Israel’s sonic booms or real air raids to force on them an alternative narrative of history. Yet Damoun was another Palestinian village, of an equal size to that of Arrabeh, my home village.

Like Arrabeh, it was continuously inhabited for some 4,000 years, since the days of the Canaanites who first founded it. And like the rest of Palestine, each had absorbed into itself one conquering invader after another, adapted to a softened version of their dictates, practiced an altered version of their beliefs, and survived on the gifts of its good earth and its hardy crops, its olives, figs and wheat.

Now Damoun is forever gone, replaced by a jealously exclusive Jewish settlement named Yasur in an open, premeditated and so far successful revision of history.

The fate of Damoun, and of the other hundreds of erased and largely forgotten Palestinian villages, serves as a lesson to us, members of the Palestinian minority in Israel.

No-one to trust?

Ethnic cleansing still looms large on the horizon. Every time we hear the saber rattling of an impending war with Syria, Lebanon or Iran, the threat of being driven across an altered border comes alive.

Whom can we trust to stop that from happening? Not “the international community” — not after its media correspondents stood on that emblematic Hill of Shame north of Gaza and watched the white phosphorous light show in winter 2008-09, reporting to their evening news viewers at home what the Israeli army fed them, not to mention its continued inaction in the face of the bloodier carnage of the summer of 2014.

The Palestinian citizens of Israel stand at the crossroads of hope for peace in the Middle East, their achievements uncelebrated and their promise untested. As a member of this indigenous group, I try to bring our existence to light, to sing out our pleasure and pain, to echo our sense of alienation and dispossession, to face up to the dilemma of our identity, and to hail our occasional successes and our trust in the future.

In 1948, on the morrow of the Nakba, the group destined to become the Palestinian citizens of Israel woke up to a new and disturbing reality. Some 85 percent of the Palestinian residents of what was to become Israel had been forced to cross the borders and become refugees in neighboring countries.

The remaining 15 percent found that “a brutal border crossed them,” as Dr. Hunaida Ghanim, one of their descendants, puts it. They became Israeli citizens through no choice of their own. Those Palestinians, together with residents of East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights, now make up more than one-fifth of the total population of Israel.

Tactics of control

In 1948, between one-fourth and one-third of us were internally displaced to become what is officially known in Israel as “present absentees.”

Laws were promulgated to deprive members of this subgroup of their homes and private property, including their land and bank accounts. The rest of us gradually lost most of our land to confiscation by the state through dozens of specifically designed and finely tuned laws and ordinances that claimed to serve the “public good” or the security needs of the state.

The tacticians of the new state were inventive in applying all types of control and dispossession tactics to the group of defeated, thinly dispersed and leaderless peasantry. They adapted the British Mandate emergency regulations, originally promulgated to deal with Jewish underground movements, including a draconian military rule that denied “Israel’s Arabs” — as the state liked to call us — freedom of movement and occupation for two full decades.

In 1967, the entire system was moved lock, stock and barrel to the newly occupied territories of the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem.

Simultaneously, the Jewish majority population proceeded to define the state it dominated as coterminous with itself, thus defining us, the Palestinian minority, for all practical purposes, out of the emerging “public good” and the state’s security concerns. We now own less than three percent of Israel’s land and are essentially exempted from utilizing any of the remainder because it is owned by the Jewish National Fund or defined as state lands, the very essence of the Zionist enterprise.

In contrast, about half of the constituent Jewish population of Israel arrived from the countries of the Middle East and North Africa with socioeconomic attributes not unlike those of the Palestinians. The main difference was that the state, backed by the world Jewish community, invested massive funds and efforts in well-coordinated programs for the socio-economic betterment of one group.

Not only did no parallel programs exist for us, the Palestinians, but also our agrarian communal underpinnings were undercut with massive land confiscations and limitations on crop selection and marketing, and on irrigation schemes for the benefit of Jewish cooperative farms. As the Eastern Jews (Sephardim) in Israel were corralled into Ashkenazi cultural hegemony, members of our community were further marginalized to become day laborers in construction and agriculture in Jewish cities and new settlements.

Isolation

We lost our agricultural self-sufficiency while lacking an alternative base for development such as industry or commerce. The image of our villages as peripheral enemy locales added to our isolation.

Our towns and villages became bedroom communities to which men returned nights and weekends. This was the actualization of Zionist biblical dreams of using us, the Palestinians, as “hewers of wood and carriers of water.”

Adding insult to injury, fellow Arabs across the malicious border portrayed us as a collection of lackeys of the Zionist state who chose to stay and hobnob with the enemy. This malformed image only started to fade with Israel’s 1967 occupation of the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and Gaza, a process that put us in touch again with fellow defeated Palestinians.

Our politicians stepped in to offer what little favors they had within their means, our entrepreneurs assumed the ranks of subcontractors and middlemen between occupier and occupied, and our literary figures glowed in the new limelight of the national and literary fidelity they had never abandoned — witness the likes of Mahmoud Darwish, Samih al-Qasim, Taha Muhammad Ali, Tawfiq Zayyad and Emile Habibi.

Since the establishment of the state, we have endured systematic dispossession and ghettoization. Of late, the process has turned vicious: fundamentalist messianic Zionists and settler leaders, the abrasive curse of occupation, have assumed advanced positions in Israel’s political and military leadership.

Education is our strong card

With this, the process of our exclusion has gathered greater speed and legitimacy, buttressed by racist legislative steps and a vindictive public mood verging on consensus.

In the face of the current wave of distrust and enmity culminating in lynch mobs, I struggle to draw courage from my social surroundings. I ask a village neighbor about his family and he proudly announces that his firstborn is studying biochemical engineering in the United States. I wonder about the high expenses, and he raises the electric saw high in his right arm and gives a proud buzz in response, his sweaty brow glistening in the light of the setting sun.

I pay a visit to a younger colleague, seeking his reassurance in the face of some compromised bodily functions of mine. He reminisces about his own father, a refugee who put his three boys, now a doctor, an architect and a physiotherapist, through university, relying solely on the power of his biceps as a plasterer.

My colleague flexes his arm in a proud show of sumud, steadfastness. A half dozen young doctors and nurses, all grandnephews and nieces, surround me for a photo at a relative’s wedding, and I feel proud beyond the fidelity and solidarity this implies: yes, in the “State of the Jews,” education is the Palestinians’ strong card; we are proud sumud and education freaks.

Entire families pool their combined labor wages to support a student through college. Young professionals are hard at work to guarantee their community a future and measure up to the high expectations of their hard-slugging artisan fathers and mothers, descendants of land-stripped subsistence farmers. The practice and the tradition should be enough to sustain us in the face of the gathering storm.

Dr. Hatim Kanaaneh is the author of Chief Complaint as well as A Doctor in Galilee: The Life and Struggle of a Palestinian in Israel (Pluto Press, 2008).

This essay is an excerpt from the new book Chief Complaint: A Country Doctor’s Tales of Life in Galilee, by Hatim Kanaaneh, reprinted with permission. Chief Complaint will be published by Just World Books on 24 February.

21 YEARS LATER ~~ #JeSuisHebroni

Twenty one years ago this week terror struck out in Hebron. Thirty Palestinians at prayer were slaughtered by one Judeo nazi. There were no solidarity marches, there were no massive outcries in the Western Press, after all, the dead were only Palestinians. Instead there were graveside ceremonies glorifying the terrorist and his acts. Twenty one years later a compatriot of the terrorist is a candidate for the Knesset

ISRAEL MUST HANG ITS COLLECTIVE HEAD IN SHAME!

The following is by far the best account of the massacre itself. It was originally posted seven years ago…..

21 Years of Lessons after Al-Ibrahimi Mosque Massacre – A Memorial History for the 30 Palestinian Martyrs

The story:

The dawn of Friday 15 Ramadan 1414 a.h. / 25 February 1994 marked the first of three massacres perpetrated by Israeli settlers accompanied by the Israeli Army. There were more than 30 martyrs and 270 injured. The main massacre took place while the victims were performing al- Fajr (Dawn) Prayer at Al Ibrahimi mosque.


(Al-Ibrahimi Mosque – Al-Khalil, Occupied Palestine)

At 05:00 on February 25, around eight hundred Palestinian Muslims passed through the east gate of Al-Ibrahimi mosque to participate in al-Fajr prayer, the first of the five daily Islamic prayers. At that time of the holy month of Ramadan, there were many people who flocked the Ibrahimi Mosque to perform their prayers. The mosque was under Israeli Army guard.


That same day, a Jewish American Zionist physician decided to materialize the dream of the typical Zionist movement of annihilating the Arab existence in Palestine. Dr. Baruch Goldstein prepared for the move. It was during Ramadan when Dr. Goldstein decided to execute his old plan of vengeance.

Goldstein passed two army checkpoints at the dawn of February 25, 1994 from the northeastern gate of the mosque near privy. That privy could be the reason why Goldstein decided on that gate because he, probably, received his contemplation about Arabs from the Rabbis of Kach in Kiryat Arab where the Arabs were described as the demons of the privy. The privy of the mosque is important not only because it has two Israeli army checkpoints on its nearby mosque’s gate, but also because it is surrounded by Israeli army posts from the east and army patrols in the west. So Goldstein was acting from the deepest parts of the Zionistic ideology in liquidating the demons.

Goldstein was carrying his IMI Galil assault rifle, four magazines of ammunition, which held 35 bullets each and hand grenades. He thought about the best moment to execute the plan, maximize the number of casualties and secure the escape or rescue. The best moment, of course, was when the Muslim worshipers knelt on the floor with their backs towards Goldstein.

It was first a hand grenade that he threw among the worshipers causing casualties, confusion, and possibly an invitation to the Israeli soldiers in the halls and outside of the mosque to intervene for rescue. And in no time, the automatic massacre took place with the same kind of mercy that other Zionists like Goldstein shows all the time toward Arabs.

Standing in front of the only exit from the mosque and positioned to the rear of the Muslim worshipers, he opened fire with the weapon, killing 29 people and injuring more than 125. He was eventually overwhelmed by survivors, who beat him to death.

An eyewitness said that when Goldstein was executing the massacre and people attacked him, there was a soldier who attempted to come closer to the scene. But instead of “rescuing” Dr. Goldstein, the Israeli soldier shot his bullets in the air and then escaped from the inside eastern door of the northern hall to the previously known “women praying area.” In the opinion of the eyewitness, the soldier could have rescued Goldstein by killing 5 or 10 more Palestinians, but it appeared that his personal safety was above any blood value.

Al Ibrahimi massacre (a.k.a Hebron massacre) is not the last one. Muslims and Jews are and will remain candidates for victimization. But the cause will always be the same: “The Nazi style laws of the Zionists occupation in Palestine.”

Reports after the massacre were inevitably highly confused. In particular, there was uncertainty about whether Goldstein had acted alone; it was reported that eyewitnesses had seen “another man, dressed as a soldier, handing him ammunition.” The Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat said that the attack was the work of up to 12 men, including Israeli troops. However, Israeli Army denied that and confirmed that Goldstein had acted alone without the assistance or connivance of the Israeli guards posted at the mosque.

News of the massacre immediately led to riots in Hebron (Al-Khalil in Arabic) and the rest of the occupied territories. Additional Palestinian Muslims were crushed to death in the panic to flee the mosque and in rioting that followed.

Now that was history, a bloody history that marked Feb 25 of every year with memorials of the Palestinian Martyrs massacred that day for nothing but being Palestinians. So, what are the lessons learned from this?

First we will look at the ideology behind this massacre (and all the Zionist massacres), then how it is treated among Zionists. And last but not least, how does the media look at Zionist (terrorists) and how do they handle such massacres compared to other terrorist acts and massacres.

Prof. Israel Shahak wrote – The Ideology Behind Hebron Massacre:

The sympathy which Baruch Goldstein enjoys among the Gush Emunim, whose influence is more pervasive than that of the Kahanists, can only be explained by a shared ideology. However, Gush Emunim leaders enjoy Rabin’s friendship and strong influence in wide circles of the Israeli and diaspora Jewish communities. Therefore it is their version of this ideology which is more important. Gush Emunim’s thinking assumes the imminence of the coming of the Messiah, when the Jews, aided by God, will triumph over the Gentiles. Consequently, all current political developments call be interpreted by those in the know as destined either to bring this end nearer or postpone it. Jewish sins, the worst of them being lack of faith in Gush Emunim ideology, can postpone but not alter the predestined course of Redemption. The two world wars, the Holocaust and other calamitous events of modern history serve as stock examples of such a curative punishment for Jewish sins. Such explanations can go into a lot of specific detail. The rabbi of Kiryat Arba, Dov Lior (who attended Goldstein’s funeral and praised him), blamed Israel’s relative failure in its 1982 invasion of Lebanon on the lack of faith manifested through signing a peace treaty with Egypt and “returning the inheritance of our ancestors [i.e Sinai] to strangers”.[…]

The fundamental tenet of Gush Emunim’s thinking is the assumption that the Jewish people are “peculiar”. Lustick discusses this tenet in terms of their denial of the classical Zionist claim that only by undergoing “a process of normalisation”, by emigrating to Palestine and forming a Jewish state there, can the Jews become like any other nation. But for them this “is the original delusion of the secular Zionists”, because they measured that “normality” by applying non-Jewish standards. According to Gush Emunim, “Jews are not and cannot be a normal people”, because “their eternal uniqueness” is “the result of the covenant God made with them at Mount Sinai”. Therefore, according to Rabbi Shlomo Aviner, one of their leaders, “while God requires other normal nations to abide by abstract codes of ‘justice and righteousness’, such laws do not apply to Jews”.

Harkabi quotes Rabbi Israel Ariel, who says that “a Jew who kills a non-Jew is exempt from human judgement, and has not violated the prohibition of murder”. The Gush Emunim rabbis have indeed reiterated that Jews who kill Arabs should be free from all punishment. Harkabi also quotes Rabbi Aviner, Rabbi Zvi Yehudah Kook and Rabbi Ariel, all three of whom say Arabs living in Palestine are thieves because since the land was once Jewish, all property to be found on that land “really” belongs to the Jews. In the original Hebrew version of his book Harkabi expresses his shock at finding this out. “I never imagined that Israelis would so interpret the concept of the historical right.”

Gush Emunim’s plans for governing non-Jews in Israel are also based on “theological” principles. According to Rabbi Aviner; “Is there a difference between punishing an Arab child and an Arab adult for disturbance of our peace? Punishments can be inflicted on Jewish boys below the age of 13 and Jewish girls below the age of 12…But this rule applies to Jews alone, not to Gentiles. Thus any Gentile, no matter how little, should be punished for any crime he commits.” From this dictum, it is only a short step to slaughtering Arab children.

Even Israel’s Supreme Court compared Kahane to the German Nazis. The prominent Orthodox dissident, Professor Yeshayahu Leibovitz, said that the mass murder in Hebron was a consequence of “Judeo-Nazism”. But Gush Emunim’s ideology is no less like that of the Nazis than Kahane’s.

Celebrating the Hebron massacre:

Why do we hate them?

When you see the Israelis and Zionists from different parties and sections of the Israeli society, including their army, as well from around the world, gathering annually at the grave of Baruch Goldstein to celebrate the anniversary of his massacre of Muslim worshipers in Al-Khalil (Hebron), how can you but “LOVE” them?

Here is a sample of the news stories from BBC –Graveside party celebrates Hebron massacre (21 March, 2000):

Militant Jews have gathered at the grave of Baruch Goldstein to celebrate the sixth anniversary of his massacre of Muslim worshippers in Hebron.

The celebrants dressed up as the gunman, wearing army uniforms, doctor’s coats and fake beards.

Goldstein, an immigrant from New York City, had been a physician in the Jewish settlement of Kiryat Arba.

Waving semi-automatic weapons in the air, the celebrants danced, sang and read prayers around his grave.

“We decided to make a big party on the day he was murdered by Arabs,” said Baruch Marzel, one of about 40 celebrants.

The tribute was a macabre twist on the Jewish festival of Purim, when it is a custom to dress in costume and celebrate.

Massacre in mosque

In 1994 on Purim, Goldstein stormed a mosque and fired on praying Muslims in the West Bank city’s Tomb of the Patriarchs – a shrine sacred to both Muslims and Jews.

Twenty-nine people died in the attack, and the angry crowd lynched Goldstein in retaliation.

Israeli extremists continue to pay homage at his grave in the nearby Jewish settlement of Kiryat Arba, where a marble plaque reads: “To the holy Baruch Goldstein, who gave his life for the Jewish people, the Torah and the nation of Israel.”

About 10,000 people had visited the grave since the massacre, Mr Marzel said.

Note: the above news story is ten years old.

Not only that. The Israeli government allocated a special site for the grave, in the Tourist Park in Kiryat Arba settlement. Over the years, the grave has become a site of pilgrimage. Tens of thousand people from all over the world go to pray and honor this terrorist memory. The local religious council of Kiryat Arba settlement declared the grave site a cemetery. During the Feast of Purim, Goldstein friends celebrate the feast near his grave to honor him, in appreciation of what he did!

Last but not least, on the biased media side, Leon T. Hadar wrote:

Following the bombing of the World Trade Center in New York and the arrest of several Muslims who were charged with the crime, the American media were flooded with news stories, analyses and commentaries that warned of the coming “Islamic threat.” “Investigative reporters” and “terrorism experts” alleged on television talk shows and op-ed pages that the accused perpetrators of the bombing were part of an “Islamic terrorism network” coordinated by Iran, Iraq, Libya, Sudan, or other Middle Eastern bogeymen.
[…]
Contrast those reactions with the media’s response to the massacre in Hebron. No analyst suggested that the event reflected the emergence of a global “Jewish threat. ” No terrorism expert was invited to discuss on “Nightline” or the “MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour” the rise of a “global Zionist terrorism” organization manipulated, say, by the Israeli Mossad. No scholar alleged that the massacre by a Jewish settler suggested that Western and Jewish values were somehow incompatible.

If one really had wanted to apply the journalistic methods that were used in the case of the World Trade Center bombing, it would not have been so difficult, after reviewing the biography of Rabbi Meir Kahane by Robert I. Friedman, to point to the strong ties between Baruch Goldstein and the other “fanatics” in the Jewish settlements and members of the Israeli political establishment, especially in the Likud party. One could even have reminded American readers that Kiryat Arba, where Goldstein resided, was actually the brainchild of a pre-1977 Labor government.

Any analysis of public statements and writings by some of the major political and spiritual leaders of the Jewish settlers, including the rabbis who head the movement, would reveal a fanatical hatred and racist attitudes toward non-Jews in general, and Arabs and Palestinians in particular.

Instead, most journalists and analysts adopted the official Israeli line and described the massacre as an “isolated” case of Jewish “extremism,” an act of a “lone gunman,” a “lunatic,” a “madman” who does not represent Israeli society or, for that matter, Jewish settlers in the occupied territories. Journalists, like the Israeli government, stressed that killing of innocent civilians violates the moral tenets of Judaism.

The above was originally posted by Haitam Sabbah seven years ago.

‘CELEBRATING’ THE NEW YEAR OF TREES IN ISRAEL

TREES ARE HOLY OBJECTS IN ISRAEL … UNLESS …

.... they are owned by Palestinians

…. they are owned by Palestinians

Tu B’Shvat was celebrated a week ago in Israel.

This holiday has its origins not in the Bible, but rather in the Mishna, which was written in the early 3rd century CE. It is primarily an agricultural holiday, as evinced by its other name, New Year of Trees.

This holiday is celebrated in the midst of the rainy season (late January or early February). It was originally a holiday with halakhic (Jewish legal) significance, as it was used to mark the age of a tree for the purpose of harvesting and tithing its fruit – tithes that were given to the priests who served in the Temple and did not own any land.

After the Jewish people were scattered in the Diaspora and were no longer involved primarily in agriculture, Tu B’Shvat became a holiday symbolizing the connection between the Jewish people and the Land of Israel. It is not a holy rest day and businesses are open as usual.

Planting saplings – This is a custom that developed relatively recently – in the late 19th century, with the renewal of Jewish settlement in the Land of Israel. The initiative to plant trees began in the schools and spread throughout the country and became a deeply rooted custom. Today it is customary to take children on tree-planting outings on Tu B’Shvat. Preschools and schools hold special ceremonies to mark the holiday. In the past few years, an ecological element has been added to this holiday: the conservation and nurturing of trees (and the green landscape in general) as a symbol of the importance of nature in our lives.

(From)

For Palestinians, the tree is also a holy object, especially the olive tree … Attacks on olive trees are a key way that Palestinians are forced out of their homes and their lands confiscated for settlement construction, as the loss of a year’s crop can signal destitution for many.

The olive industry supports the livelihoods of roughly 80,000 families in the occupied West Bank.

Here is how the settlers ‘celebrated’ Tu B’Shvat on the stolen lands …

Settlers destroy 70 olive trees near Hebron
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(MaanImages/File)
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HEBRON (Ma’an) — Settlers cut down over 70 Palestinian olive trees in the Hebron district on Monday, locals said.Witnesses told Ma’an that the settlers destroyed over 70 tree saplings near the town of Sair.

The trees had been planted a week ago in an area threatened with annexation near the illegal settlement of Metzad, located in the Gush Etzion bloc west of Bethlehem.

Locals have organized a campaign to replant the trees.

Attacks on olive trees are a key way that Palestinians are forced out of their homes and their lands confiscated for settlement construction, as the loss of a year’s crop can signal destitution for many.

The olive industry supports the livelihoods of roughly 80,000 families in the occupied West Bank.

Since 1967, approximately 800,000 olive trees have been uprooted in the occupied West Bank, according to a joint report by the Palestinian Authority and the Applied Research Institute Jerusalem.

ETHNIC CLEANSING: ISRAEL’S ULTIMATE STRATEGY TOWARD THE PALESTINIANS

The ubiquitous proliferation of Jewish settlements in the West Banks has simply made the establishment of a Palestinian state, one that is worthy of the name, quite impossible.

Ethnic cleansing: Israel’s ultimate strategy toward the Palestinians

By Khalid Amayreh in Occupied Palestine

In a farewell speech, outgoing UN Special Coordinator for the so-called “Middle East peace process” Robert Serry has warned the apartheid state of Israel that continued settlement building in the West Bank was killing any remaining chances for the two-state solution.

Serry said the killing of the two-state solution strategy would transform Israel into a bi-national state.

Israeli leaders, with the exception of some isolated voices, scoffed at Serry’s remarks, with some spokespersons calling these remarks “stale and stupid.”

It is widely believed that Israel has already killed any remaining chances for the establishment of a viable Palestinian state, especially one with Jerusalem as its capital.

The ubiquitous proliferation of Jewish settlements in the West Banks has simply made the establishment of a Palestinian state, one that is worthy of the name, quite impossible.

PA leader Mahmoud Abbas has met virtually all Israeli demands, including putting tens of thousands of Palestinian security personnel in the service of Israeli security whims.

Moreover, Abbas’s Gendarme has killed, tormented and repressed Palestinian citizens on Israel’s behalf. Moreover, PA security agencies seriously violated Palestinians’ human rights and civil liberties in order to receive a certificate of good conduct from Israel and her guardian-ally, the United States.

In fact, on numerous occasions, Abbas humiliated himself and his people by pandering to Israeli insolence and arrogance, in the hope that this would make Israel relent and come to terms with legitimate Palestinian rights.

However, every time Abbas made a concession to Israel, without any Israeli reciprocation, of course, the Israelis would humiliate him even further.

For example, for many weeks now, Israel has adamantly refused to transfer to the PA coffers hundreds of millions of dollars of Palestinian customs’ revenues levied by Israel pursuant to the hapless Paris Protocol of 1994, which effectively enabled Israel to hold the Palestinian economy hostage to Israeli whims and blackmail.

As a result, more than a hundred thousand Palestinians have not received their meager salaries for the third consecutive months, causing a virtual widespread suffering to tens of thousands of Palestinian households.

The Israeli message to Abbas and his people is amply clear: Either you do what we order you to do or else you will suffer, you will starve.

For their part, the Americans know the facts very well. But they feel too week to even rebuke Israel, thanks to the overwhelming domination of the Jewish lobby over the American government, especially Congress.

One Israeli commentator told this writer recently that Binyamin Netanyahu had more clout in Washington D.C. than did Barack Obama.

Ethnic cleansing

A few days ago during an acrimonious Tel Aviv debate involving Israeli intellectuals on the various platforms presented by Israeli political parties contesting the upcoming elections, slated to take place on 17 March, a leftist college professor tried to challenge the mostly right-wing audience on the issue of bi-national statehood. One right-wing leader from a settlement near Hebron in the West Bank responded to the leftist’s remarks. And without patting an eyelash, he said Israel would eventually expel the Arabs.

“We will expel them when the time for that comes. We will never allow the perceived Arab demographic advantage to destroy Zionism. Call this apartheid or even Nazism, I don’t care.”

“Do you think the world would allow you to get away with this,” retorted the leftist.

“The world would be furious initially, but eventually it would come to terms with reality. The world is hypocritical. Eventually, the world would side with the strong, and we are the stronger side in this conflict.”

I believe I wouldn’t exaggerate much if I claimed that the settler leader’s remarks more or less encapsulate the ideology and political program of Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.

Yes, Netanyahu doesn’t spell out his views publicly. But all his actions and behaviors, including the seizure of huge areas of West Bank territory, vindicate the view that Netanyahu and peace are an eternal oxymoron.

As a Palestinian who has been observing Israeli conduct since 1967, I am inclined to believe the above-mentioned settler leader rather than the leftist intellectual.

Yes, the world probably wouldn’t move to rein in Israeli Nazism. Yes, it might issue strong-worded condemnations, but it wouldn’t go any further.

As to the US, the most it would probably do is to call on the two sides to show self-restraint.

70 YEARS AFTER AUSCHWITZ, GAZA AND FERGUSON STILL WAIT TO BE FREE

Click on Google today and you will be directed to stories and exhibitions about the liberation of Auschwitz 70 years ago. This week the entire Web is full of the same …. including one from the greatest profiteer of the holocaust himself.

LogoBut

What about the horrors of today? Where are those stories??

Image 'Copyleft' by Carlos Latuff

Image ‘Copyleft’ by Carlos Latuff

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Also by Latuff

Also by Latuff

And now in song …. 

Naima Shalhoub – Ferguson-Gaza Blues

I wrote this song in August for the people in Ferguson, Gaza and elsewhere rising up against horrific racial injustice, and for those that continue to grieve, rage and rise. As an artist I’d like to make it clear that the tragedies in Ferguson and Gaza are not isolated nor limited to these regions, but are parts of a greater evolution of racism that continues to isolate, confine and destroy lives and communities. Resistance and resilience of the people are not new either, but are hopefully making an impact that is is received differently today because of the daily struggle that has been happening for years prior.

This video captures the first live performance of this song on November 28, 2014 at The Sound Room in Oakland, as well as various clips from moments in Gaza, Ferguson, Oakland, and elsewhere.

Written and sung by Naima Shalhoub
Bouchaib Abdelhadi – Oud
Jeremy Mitchell – Drum kit
Timothy Wat – Piano

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See this report by Alex Kane (click on link)

Delegates on the Dream Defenders delegation pose in front of Israel's West Bank wall, near Qalandia checkpoint (Photo: Christopher Hazou, IMEU)

Delegates on the Dream Defenders delegation pose in front of Israel’s West Bank wall, near Qalandia checkpoint (Photo: Christopher Hazou, IMEU)

The growing ties between #BlackLivesMatter and Palestine

HAVE A HAPPY THANKSGIVING ~~ IF YOU DARE!

Can you remember the times
That you have held your head high
and told all your friends of your Indian claim
Proud good lady and proud good man
Some great great grandfather from Indian blood came
and you feel in your heart for these ones

Oh it’s written in books and in song
that we’ve been mistreated and wronged
Well over and over I hear those same words
from you good lady and you good man
Well listen to me if you care where we stand
and you feel you’re a part of these ones

When a war between nations is lost
the loser we know pays the cost
but even when Germany fell to your hands
consider dear lady, consider dear man
you left them their pride and you left them their land
and what have you done to these ones

Has a change come about my dear man
or are you still taking our lands
A treaty forever your senators sign
They do dear lady, they do dear man
and the treaties are broken again and again
and what will you do for these ones

Oh it’s all in the past you can say
but it’s still going on here today
The governments now want the Navaho land
that of the Inuit and the Cheyenne
It’s here and it’s now you can help us dear man
Now that the buffalo’s gone.

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On the lighter side, here’s one for the ‘over the hill’ crowd …

A VIDEO BECOMES A WITNESS FOR THE PROSECUTION

A sophisticated and compelling analysis of video and other evidence has pinpointed the Israeli occupation soldier who shot and killed seventeen-year-old Nadim Siam Nuwara six months ago.

Video analysis pinpoints Israeli killer of Palestinian teen

A HINT OF JUSTICE IN THE EMPIRE OF INJUSTICE

Let’s wait and see what the sentence will be …. if any at all.

Meanwhile the murderer’s attorney claimed …

At a remand hearing in a Jerusalem court on Wednesday, Benny Katz, the suspect’s attorney, told reporters his client says he fired only rubber bullets during the protest and denies using live ammunition.

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Israel Police Officer Arrested in

Videotaped Killing of Palestinian Teen

Probe Trashes Rubber Bullet Claim in Nakba Day Clash

By Reuters

Israeli police have arrested a paramilitary border policeman over the fatal shooting of a Palestinian teenager in the occupied West Bank in May, a spokesman said on Wednesday.

Nadim Nuwara, 17, and Muhammad Abu Thahr, 16, were killed during a May 15 demonstration in which Palestinians hurled stones at Israeli forces. Video from security cameras suggested they were shot despite posing no immediate threat to the troops.

Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said the policeman was arrested in connection with Nuwara’s death, but not Abu Thahr’s, because an autopsy was only carried out on Nuwara’s body.

All other details of the investigation were under a gag order, he said.

At a remand hearing in a Jerusalem court on Wednesday, Benny Katz, the suspect’s attorney, told reporters his client says he fired only rubber bullets during the protest and denies using live ammunition.

At the time, Palestinian medics said the boys were killed by live bullets. The Israeli military said its forces fired only rubber bullets that day and that border policemen, who are also armed with assault rifles and carry out security duties in the West Bank, were present at the scene as well.

Violence between Israelis and Palestinians has spiraled in the last few weeks, raising fears of a new uprising. Peace talks collapsed in April and Israeli forces and Palestinian militants fought a 50-day war in July and August.

In June, the Palestinian attorney-general said an autopsy, requested by Nuwara’s family, showed the youth was killed by live fire. U.S., Danish and Israeli pathologists were also present at the autopsy.

Footage from security cameras on Palestinian properties near the demonstration showed each of the youths, about an hour apart according to the time stamp, walking at some distance from the protest and then falling to the ground, apparently shot.

“Hopefully God willing there will be justice in the case of my son,” said Siam Nuwara, the boy’s father. “I believe there is law in Israel, but the question is whether they will apply it for a Palestinian the same way they would for an Israeli.”

The protest took place outside Israel’s Ofer Prison near the Palestinian town of Beitunia.

In an incident in Beitunia on Wednesday, Israeli troops shot and seriously wounded Ahmed Hassouneh, a 25-year-old Palestinian, during an arrest raid, medics said. Israeli authorities had no immediate comment.

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As the ziopress reported this …. (in two paragraphs)

An obvious attempt by them not to discourage murders in the future by Israeli police

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Officer Suspected of Shooting Arab Rioter Arraigned

The Border Guard officer who allegedly shot dead a 17-year-old Palestinian Arab rioter on Nakba (Catastrophe) Day was arraigned on Wednesday.

The officer will remain behind bars for the next six days.

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And from the Palestinian Press

Israeli policeman arrested in

connection with Nakba day

killings

A Palestinian protester carries a wounded comrade during clashes with Israeli forces on May 15, 2014 (MaanImages)

A Palestinian protester carries a wounded comrade during clashes
with Israeli forces on May 15, 2014 (MaanImages)

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An Israeli border policeman has been arrested in connection with the fatal May 15 shootings of two Palestinian teenagers, an Israeli police spokesman told Ma’an Wednesday.

Micky Rosenfeld told Ma’an via telephone that no other information was available regarding the arrest except that it was related to the Nakba day killings of 15-year-old Muhammad Abu al-Thahir and 17-year-old Nadim Nuwarah in Beituniya.

Additionally, the Israeli news site Ynet reported that an Israeli investigation had revealed that live fire was used while Israeli forces were dispersing the protests. Israeli forces had initially insisted that live fire was not used, but Palestinian medical sources told media at the time that the wounds that killed the two teens were from live bullets.

Israeli forces shot and killed the teens during a protest rally marking the 66th anniversary of the Nakba, and Palestinians across the occupied territories and elsewhere were also commemorating the “catastrophe,” when more than 760,000 Palestinians — estimated today to number more than 5 million with their descendants — fled or were driven from their homes in 1948.

The killings were caught on camera, as CCTV footage showed that the two teens were not participating in clashes when they were shot dead, and posed no threat to Israeli forces.

Amnesty International condemned the killings, saying the Israeli army has “repeatedly resorted to extreme violence to respond to Palestinian protests against Israel’s occupation, discriminatory policies, confiscation of land, and construction of unlawful settlements.”

Rifat Kassis, executive director of Defense for Children International — Palestine, said at the time that “the images captured on video show unlawful killings where neither child presented a direct and immediate threat to life at the time of their shooting.”

“These acts by Israeli soldiers may amount to war crimes, and the Israeli authorities must conduct serious, impartial, and thorough investigations to hold the perpetrators accountable for their crimes,” Kassis said.

The US State Department had also urged Israel to conduct a “prompt and transparent investigation.”

WOULD YOU BELIEVE THERE IS NOT CAPITAL PUNISHMENT IN ISRAEL

BUT ….

Neither is there a fair Judicial System for Palestinians living here …. THEY not only get the death penalty, it is usually for alleged crimes they are not even charged with. Either the police or the army act as the Judge, Jury and executioner in most cases.

See THIS

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Just a few of the latest examples …. from today’s press. (Click on links)

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Israeli forces shoot, kill Palestinian teenager near Ramallah

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Israeli forces kill Palestinian suspect in Jerusalem shooting 

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Will US demand truth about Israeli killing of Palestinian-American child?

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Still believe that Israel is the ‘only Democratic country in the Middle East’?

 

DID ELIE WEISEL LEARN ANYTHING FROM THE HOLOCAUST?

IF SO, WHY IS HE SUPPORTING A NEW ONE??
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TO ANYONE!

TO ANYONE!

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Of all the organizations in Israel, he chose Elad, the most controversial, a group with no truth, grace or compassion. It’s all too clear why they chose him as chairman, but not at all clear why he agreed.

Wiesel has garnered enormous respect from the Jewish people and Gentile nations for surviving and becoming a mouthpiece for Holocaust victims. How about sharing some of that respect? Won’t you reconsider, identify with them and sign their cursed blessings?

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Elie Wiesel hides ethnic cleansing behind a prayer shawl

This ostensible messenger of peace supports an organization that evicts Palestinians from their homes in East Jerusalem.

By Yossi Sarid FOR
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Obama Wiesel

President Barack Obama hugging Elie Wiesel. Photo by Reuters
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Much have I learned from gossip columns, which for reasons of propriety are also called “social columns.” Without them how would we know who’s going with whom and for what gain?

Before turning to the news pages, cast an eye on the yellow stuff. It will help you understand how the system works.

The special ads – not those intended to sell chocolate pudding – also provide important information and develop your awareness. According to the numbers, under 10 percent of readers look at them, but that’s a mistake to be corrected.

So last Friday, this paper of all papers carried an ad in Hebrew blessing the “dozens of new families joining the Jewish community in the City of David.” According to the ad, “We salute the Zionist action of those involved; we all share the challenge of strengthening the Jewish presence in Jerusalem. With you we’ll receive the pilgrims who visit over the holiday.”

This is followed by the signatures of people linked to settler group Elad. Some of the names are unfamiliar, but some are astonishing. After all, this organization is notorious for making trouble in the City of Eternal Peace.

I wasn’t surprised to see singer Yehoram Gaon’s name, for example. He sees a flag in every rag and takes every broomstick for a flagpole.

But what are former Military Intelligence chief Amos Yadlin, former police chief Shlomo Aharonishki and former Hadassah University Hospital chief Shlomo Mor-Yosef doing there? What’s a former director general of the Prime Minister’s Office, Ilan Cohen, doing there? Maybe they should explain why they’re willing to sponsor people who evict people and take over their homes?

As they say in Isaiah 5:8, “Woe unto them that join house to house, that lay field to field, till there be no room, and ye be made to dwell alone in the midst of the land.”

And who’s their chairman? You’ll never guess. Not casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, not Jewish organization leader Malcolm Hoenlein. Not even U.S. businessman Irving Moskowitz and his wife Cherna.

It’s somebody identified more than anyone with the memory of the Holocaust — a winner of the Nobel Peace Prize and U.S. Presidential Medal of Freedom — Elie Wiesel. The Nobel Prize Committee in Oslo wrote: “Wiesel is a messenger to mankind; his message is one of peace, atonement and human dignity.”

This is a man expected to show special sensitivity to the suffering of the other, whether in Romania’s Sighetu Marmației, where he’s from, or Jerusalem’s Silwan neighborhood. This is the man who portrays himself as a friend of Barack Obama, but who lends a hand to those who insult the president publicly.

Before every meeting in Washington, these people prepare another invasion in Jerusalem, sabotaging others’ laborious efforts. Maybe Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu knew why he offered Wiesel Israel’s presidency at the time, but we didn’t.

He’s the man who declared he was keeping himself out of Israeli politics, anointing himself with pure olive oil. Every time he was asked to respond to some injustice in our midst, reminiscent of some injustice far away, he evaded the question.

He of all people burst into one house after another, houses bought in shady deals, fit for the night to be carried out before the sheets and coffee cups have cooled. He of all people is hiding creeping ethnic cleansing behind a prayer shawl.

Of all the organizations in Israel, he chose Elad, the most controversial, a group with no truth, grace or compassion. It’s all too clear why they chose him as chairman, but not at all clear why he agreed.

Wiesel has garnered enormous respect from the Jewish people and Gentile nations for surviving and becoming a mouthpiece for Holocaust victims. How about sharing some of that respect? Won’t you reconsider, identify with them and sign their cursed blessings?

BENEFITS OF BEING A PALESTINIAN IN JERUSALEM

In Jerusalem, however, the majority of Palestinians are not Israeli citizens but residents of Jerusalem who fell under Israeli military occupation in 1967 but unlike West Bank Palestinians were given permanent residency cards entitling them to certain benefits.

Read the report below to see one of those ‘benefits’ …

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Young Palestinian ‘beaten by Jewish mob’ in Jerusalem hotel

(MaanImages)
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JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — A mob of Jewish men assaulted a young Palestinian on Friday evening while he was working at a hotel in Jerusalem in an attack apparently motivated by racial hate, the victim’s father told Ma’an.

Faysal Azzam told Ma’an that 11 “extremist” Jews yelling racial epithets attacked his son Muhammad, 20, at his place of work at the Rimonim Shalom Hotel in West Jerusalem.

The attackers tried to strangle the young Palestinian man, he said, and as a result the youth suffered bruises and cuts in the face and hands.

He was also left bleeding from his nose and mouth, his father added.

Azzam said that before the “extremists” attacked his son, they insulted him and shouted racist curses against Arabs.

After verbally assaulting him, they attacked him with steel bars and tried to strangle him using a piece of rope, Azzam added.

The attack took place on the 8th floor, he said, adding that his son was rescued by security guards who heard his screams from the fourth floor.

The victim was taken to Shaare Zedek Medical Center for treatment.

“It wasn’t just an attack, but rather a murder attempt by spiteful extremists. The signs of (attempted) strangulation are clear on his neck,” Azzam said.

The father said that Israeli police had summoned his son for questioning and he had filed a complaint against the attackers.

Cities across Israel have witnessed a string of attacks against Palestinians since early summer, as a “price tag” crime wave that targeted Palestinians inside Israel for perceived slights against Jewish settlements in the West Bank has evolved into recurring mob attacks and anti-Arab rallies.

Over the summer, Palestinian passerby have been repeatedly assaulted in majority-Jewish West Jerusalem, while right-wing Jewish campaigns to prevent mixing among Jews and Arabs have held numerous rallies and covered public areas in anti-Arab fliers.

Although the majority of Palestinians were expelled from their homes inside Israel during the 1948 conflict that led to the creation of the State of Israel, some Palestinians managed to remain in their villages and their descendants today make up around 20 percent of Israel’s population.

In Jerusalem, however, the majority of Palestinians are not Israeli citizens but residents of Jerusalem who fell under Israeli military occupation in 1967 but unlike West Bank Palestinians were given permanent residency cards entitling them to certain benefits.

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