The Nobel ‘Peace’ Prize has become an annual joke …. now the Prize for Literature joins the frenzy …


A post from 5 years ago by Nima Shirazi

The Call Bob Dylan Won’t Heed:
BDS, Bullies, and Blowing Wind

A recent letter by the Israeli peace and justice group “Boycott From Within” (BfW) implores legendary singer-songwriter Bob Dylan to heed the Palestinian call for BDS and therefore not perform in Israel. The letter follows reports of Dylan’s 2011 summer tour, during which he will perform at Ramat Gan Stadium on June 20th.

The BfW letter hits all the right notes and speaks truth. It asks Dylan “not to perform in Israel until it respects Palestinian human rights,” explaining that “a performance in Israel, today, is a vote of support for its policies of oppression.” The letter speaks of ethnic cleansing, land theft, martial law, air strikes, and massacres. It beseeches the folk legend, who has “been part of a civil rights movement,” to stand with the oppressed against the aggressor. BfW writes that “BDS is a powerful and united civil initiative in the face of a brutal military occupation and apartheid. It’s a nonviolent alternative to a waning armed struggle and it has reaped many successes and instilled much hope, in the past six years.”

A Ha’aretz article proudly notes that the Dylan concert will be held “where Leonard Cohen and Elton John recently performed,” and is being promoted by “Marcel Avraham, the promoter who organized the Leonard Cohen and Elton John concerts – as well as the upcoming Justin Bieber concert that will be held over Passover.”

So, will Bob Dylan – the man who wrote “Masters of War” and “The Times They Are A-Changin’” in 1963 – heed the call? Of course not. Although Dylan would appear to be the perfect political ally, his human and civil rights bona fides have faded over time – to the point of non-existence.

In 1971, Time Magazine reported that Dylan was “returning to his Jewishness” and “getting into this ethnic Jewish thing.” A friend of his told the magazine, “He’s reading all kinds of books on Judaism, books about the Jewish resistance like the Warsaw ghetto. He took a trip to Israel last year that no one was supposed to know about and even, it is rumored, gave a large donation to the Israeli government.” The article continues:

Dylan denied giving money to Israel or to the fanatical Jewish Defense League, but he confesses great admiration for that “Never again” action group and its reckless leader Rabbi Meir Kahane. “He’s a really sincere guy,” says Bob. “He’s really put it all together.”

Yes, you read that right. Bob Dylan said Meir Kahane, who favored the forced expulsion of Palestinians from their homeland and whose racist Kach party has since been banned from Israeli politics, is “a really sincere guy” who’s “really put it all together.”

Over the past couple decades, Dylan has become a supporter of the Chabad Lubavitch movement, which holds a firm Eretz Israel line regarding the ongoing occupation of the West Bank.

In 1983, twenty years after he sang, “you don’t count the dead” and “you never ask questions, when God’s on your side,” Dylan penned a song in response to the international outrage over the devastating Israeli assault on Lebanon in 1982, which took the lives of nearly 18,000 Lebanese civilians and wounded about 30,000 others. The song did not mention the Sabra and Shatila Massacre, in which between 800 and 2,000Palestinian and Lebanese civilians were murdered. The Israeli Kahan Commission, published in February 1983, found that Israel bore “indirect responsibility” and Defense Minister Ariel Sharon “bears personal responsibility” for the massacre.

Rather, Dylan’s song, entitled “Neighborhood Bully” and featured on his Infidelsalbum (which incidentally also contains the songs “Man of Peace” and “License to Kill“), is a bitter and indignant defense of Israel’s actions, an exercise in Zionist mythology, eternal victimization, and bogus “right to self-defensehasbara, that sounds like it was written collectively by Alan Dershowitz, Abe Foxman, Benjamin Netanyahu, Anthony Weiner, and Golda Meir.

Dylan sings of a nameless (though obvious) “neighborhood bully,” labeled such by “his enemies” who “say he’s on their land” and have him “outnumbered about a million to one” with “no place to escape to, no place to run.” And that’s just the first verse.

The hasbara escalates as the song continues. Dylan sings of exile (“The neighborhood bully been driven out of every land”) and bigotry (“He’s always on trial for just being born”), of lonely survival and attempts at delegitization (“He’s criticized and condemned for being alive”), of the Osirak bombing, of deserts blooming. The only way to believe how thick the Zionist talking points are laid on is to listen to the whole song, or read the complete lyrics (here).

Unfortunately for the BDS community and the courageous activists of BfW, Bob Dylan will not be an ally in the fight for justice or international law. He made his choice decades ago. It is Dylan who can apparently no longer see “where the people are many and their hands are all empty, where the pellets of poison are flooding their waters, where the home in the valley meets the damp dirty prison, where the executioner’s face is always well hidden, where hunger is ugly, where souls are forgotten, where black is the color, where none is the number.”

And, although Dylan once claimed that he’d “tell it and think it and speak it and breathe it, and reflect it from the mountain so all souls can see it,” he has decided to stand with those who aggress and oppress, with those who starve and deprive, with those who surround and fly-over and bomb hospitals and deny, with those who steal land and resources, with those who reinvent and erase history, with those who criminalize memory and prioritize ethnicity and religion. He stands with those who erect walls and watchtowers. He seems not to care that he has been talking falsely for some time now and that the hour has never been more late. Dylan seems to have become tangled up in tribalism.

By ignoring the call to boycott and by performing in Israel this summer, Dylan is solidifying his reputation as one who – when it counted most – didn’t stand for morality and humanity. Dylan once asked, “how many years can some people exist, before they’re allowed to be free?” It seems that Dylan’s own answer to the Palestinians would be, “A while longer and don’t ask me to help.” He has become his own rhetorical character: the man who turns his head, pretending he just doesn’t see.

So, the questions remain. “How many ears must one man have, before he can hear people cry? How many deaths will it take ’til he knows that too many people have died?” The answers are no longer simply blowing in the wind, however. They are in discourse and education, flash mobs and rallies, sit-ins and walk-outs. The answers are international law and humanitarian justice. The answer is promoting basic morality and common decency. The answer is raising public awareness. The answer is opposing settler-colonialism, military aggression, collective punishment, air strikes and assassinations, drone attacks and white phosphorous, tear gas and torture, ethnic cleansing, diplomatic immunity, war crime impunity, ethnocentrism and supremacism, racism and discrimination, apartheid and occupation. The answer is BDS.

And, as Bob Dylan told us himself, the times they are a-changing‘.

Sadly, this time around, however, it seems Dylan does need a weatherman to know which way the wind is blowing.


Neighborhood Bully

Well, the neighborhood bully, he’s just one man
His enemies say he’s on their land
They got him outnumbered about a million to one
He got no place to escape to, no place to run
He’s the neighborhood bully

The neighborhood bully just lives to survive
He’s criticized and condemned for being alive
He’s not supposed to fight back, he’s supposed to have thick skin
He’s supposed to lay down and die when his door is kicked in
He’s the neighborhood bully

The neighborhood bully been driven out of every land
He’s wandered the earth an exiled man
Seen his family scattered, his people hounded and torn
He’s always on trial for just being born
He’s the neighborhood bully

Well, he knocked out a lynch mob, he was criticized
Old women condemned him, said he should apologize.
Then he destroyed a bomb factory, nobody was glad
The bombs were meant for him. He was supposed to feel bad
He’s the neighborhood bully

Well, the chances are against it and the odds are slim
That he’ll live by the rules that the world makes for him
’Cause there’s a noose at his neck and a gun at his back
And a license to kill him is given out to every maniac
He’s the neighborhood bully

He got no allies to really speak of
What he gets he must pay for, he don’t get it out of love
He buys obsolete weapons and he won’t be denied
But no one sends flesh and blood to fight by his side
He’s the neighborhood bully

Well, he’s surrounded by pacifists who all want peace
They pray for it nightly that the bloodshed must cease
Now, they wouldn’t hurt a fly. To hurt one they would weep
They lay and they wait for this bully to fall asleep
He’s the neighborhood bully

Every empire that’s enslaved him is gone
Egypt and Rome, even the great Babylon
He’s made a garden of paradise in the desert sand
In bed with nobody, under no one’s command
He’s the neighborhood bully

Now his holiest books have been trampled upon
No contract he signed was worth what it was written on
He took the crumbs of the world and he turned it into wealth
Took sickness and disease and he turned it into health
He’s the neighborhood bully

What’s anybody indebted to him for?
Nothin’, they say. He just likes to cause war
Pride and prejudice and superstition indeed
They wait for this bully like a dog waits to feed
He’s the neighborhood bully

What has he done to wear so many scars?
Does he change the course of rivers? Does he pollute the moon and stars?
Neighborhood bully, standing on the hill
Running out the clock, time standing still
Neighborhood bully


This article originally appeared on Mondoweiss under the headline “No Surprise Dylan is Visiting the Neighborhood Bully.”


Wiesel and Peres dedicated their lives to a project that deflects Jewish culpability in the oppression of the Palestinian people. Though world leaders will gather for Peres’s funeral in the coming days, Jews need to mourn aspects of the violence Wiesel and Peres enabled. The idea of Jews simply finishing the job that Wiesel and Peres began, viewing their legacy as simply unfinished, won’t do either.

Israel has embarked wholesale on the displacement and ghettoization of the Palestinian people. The trajectory Wiesel’s and Peres’s life is a dead-end for Palestinians and Jewish history, if one believes that without an ethical center, Jewish life is truncated, if not voided altogether.

Shimon Peres never expressed regret over Qana operation that killed over 100 civilians, “[I'm] at peace with it.”

Shimon Peres never expressed regret over Qana operation that killed over 100 civilians, “[I’m] at peace with it.”

Shimon Peres, Israel’s greatest ambassador, will be remembered for enabling oppression of the Palestinians

The world is awakening to the news of the death of Shimon Peres, the last liberal lion of the founders of the state of Israel. He was 93 years old. Yet the real meaning of Peres’s life will be decided in the future. That future is troubling. It has already arrived.

As a military and political person, Peres did it all from the beginning of the state of Israel. Peres fought for the new born state of Israel, held many and varied political offices during the course of Israel’s history, including Prime Minister and President, played a key role in Israel’s development of nuclear weapons and encouraged and augmented Israel’s settlement project in Jerusalem and the West Bank.

As important was Peres’s role in portraying Israel as a Jewish and democratic state around the world. In this latter project, so important to Israel and Jews in the Diaspora, Peres succeeded magnificently during most of his long life. Yet, it is exactly here that Peres faltered in his later years, partly as his age increased but more importantly because the tide of history turned. Today, portraying Israel as a refuge for Jews, as innocent, under siege and as a beacon of light, is unacceptable. It is impossible.

From the beginning, Palestinians knew a different Israel and, with time, more and more Jews do, too. Though Peres will be widely celebrated in the upper echelons of American and European power in the coming days, like Elie Wiesel, the Holocaust sage, who died some months ago, Peres will be remembered for enabling a narrative of Jewish innocence and redemption that was, also, something much more sinister from the beginning.

With Peres’s death, the issue of the future of Israel and Jewish life becomes more urgent. Though, again like Wiesel with the Holocaust, Peres sought to create a lasting legacy enshrined in Jewish history, now their legacy and Jewish history itself are in doubt. Building on the legacy of the Holocaust and Israel seems dubious. The ground beneath our feet is uncertain.

Entering the Jewish High Holiday season, a time of reflection and confession, what are Jews to do? Wiesel and Peres dedicated their lives to a project that deflects Jewish culpability in the oppression of the Palestinian people. Though world leaders will gather for Peres’s funeral in the coming days, Jews need to mourn aspects of the violence Wiesel and Peres enabled. The idea of Jews simply finishing the job that Wiesel and Peres began, viewing their legacy as simply unfinished, won’t do either.

Israel has embarked wholesale on the displacement and ghettoization of the Palestinian people. The trajectory Wiesel’s and Peres’s life is a dead-end for Palestinians and Jewish history, if one believes that without an ethical center, Jewish life is truncated, if not voided altogether.

Was Shimon Peres’s life wasted, culpable, to be derided in Jewish history and the history of peoples around the world, including and especially the Palestinian people? In the coming days, we will hear more about Peres’s accomplishments than explore the content of these dissident thoughts. To speak about the end of Jewish innocence will be seen as a betrayal.

Perhaps a rabbi or two will parse Peres’s life during the upcoming Days of Awe. More likely, however, most rabbis, like our political leaders, will laud Peres’ life and further postpone the confession so central to the Jewish future.



Avi Mayer, spokesman for the Jewish Agency for Israel and a prolific tweeter, called the ad “awesomewashing.” He was playing on the term “pinkwashing,” an accusation often levied against Israel that the government uses its record on gay rights to hide its crimes against Palestinians.

Full-page ad featuring a family with two dads in the weekend edition of Israel's most-read newspaper, Israel Hayom.

Full-page ad featuring a family with two dads in the weekend edition of Israel’s most-read newspaper, Israel Hayom.

Israel’s Right Wing-Paper Features Ad With Gay Dads

Israel Hayom, Israel’s right-wing newspaper affiliated with the ruling Likud party, surprised some by printing a full-page ad for a Nissan Sentra with two gay fathers this week.

The ad depicted a family of four with two young fathers and their school-age son and daughter with the phrase “Put your family in the Sentra.”

Avi Mayer, spokesman for the Jewish Agency for Israel and a prolific tweeter, called the ad “awesomewashing.” He was playing on the term “pinkwashing,” an accusation often levied against Israel that the government uses its record on gay rights to hide its crimes against Palestinians.

Another Twitter user, @ledoorpink, replied, “The issue is not two dads, that’s natural, but a $34,000 for a Nissan Sentara, that’s very unnatural.”

Israel Hayom is funded by Sheldon Adelson, the billionaire Las Vegas casino magnate who donates to many pro-Israel causes, and is widely seen as a mouthpiece for the Likud Party.

Individual politicians in Likud have supported LGBT rights, but the party was lambasted earlier this year when the government coalition torpedoed a series of pro-LGBT bills.


According to the ‘logic’ of the present day elders of zion I have always been a ‘self hating Jew’. This was merely because I refuse to hate anyone else … does that make any sense to you?

It seems that times have changed and new definitions have been added to the zio-dictionary … Now I am a terrorist. The reason being that I am a part of and supporter of the BDS Movement. Have you ever heard of a terrorist that refuses to kill? Have you heard of one that refuses to support those who do?? Now you have!

Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked (Jewish Home) participated on Sunday in a conference held by the Jewish National Fund (JNF) in New York.

Speaking during the event, Shaked slammed the BDS movement, calling it “a new extension of terrorism.”

One of Bendib's finest

One of Bendib’s finest


Justice Minister: BDS movement is a terror organization

‘BDS is the new face of terrorism,’ Ayelet Shaked says during JNF conference in New York.

Full zioreport HERE

And here you can see why we boycott terrorism!


ADL took US cops to Israel prison, occupied Hebron, settler winery in counter-terror event

Image by Carlos Latuff


ADL took US cops to Israeli prison, occupied Hebron and settler winery during counter-terror seminar

Alex Kane

The cops flew into Tel Aviv on a Sunday afternoon. Four hours later, they met with an Anti-Defamation League official and an Israeli professor, who gave them an “introduction to Israeli politics and society.” A week later, the officers got time for an “optional walk on the Mediterranean Sea,” and in between their Tel Aviv arrival and their idyllic walk, they traveled to occupied Hebron and drank settlement wine in the Golan Heights.

Those are some of the details of a recent U.S. law enforcement trip to Israel sponsored by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL). The itinerary for the 2016 ADL National Counter-Terrorism Seminar in Israel, obtained by Mondoweiss from a public records request to the Orlando Police Department, provides a look into what American cops do when they’re flown into Israel to meet with Israeli security officers. (The document is embedded at the end of this article.)

Since 2004, the ADL has taken American law enforcement on annual trips to Israel, where, the ADL says, the cops get “strategies and best practices in fighting terror” from “Israeli experts.” The ADL trips, and similar jaunts sponsored by the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs and the American Jewish Committee’s Project Interchange, are promoted as ways for U.S. law enforcement to learn how Israel deals with terrorism and to forge ties with Israeli security forces. The pro-Israel groups typically pay for the officers’ trips to Israel.

But the trips have come under withering controversy from Palestine solidarity activists and Black Lives Matter protesters. In an age of police militarization and a growing movement to combat police brutality, critics see these trips as potentially fueling harmful police tactics. And they point out that the Israeli army and police are occupying forces that have repeatedly been accused of violating Palestinian rights.

These trainings, Amnesty International’s Edith Garwood recently wrote, put U.S. police “in the hands of military, security and police systems that have racked up documented human rights violations for years”–including extrajudicial executions, torture, surveillance and excessive use of force against protesters.

The ADL and Orlando Police Department did not return requests for comment.

This year’s one-week trip began on July 31, and included members of the New Jersey State Police, the Pennsylvania State Police, the Illinois State police, and the heads of the Orlando and San Bernardino police, two cities recently hit by mass shootings.

The ADL and the police departments do not release details about what specific tactics the U.S. police learned in Israel. John Mina, the head of the Orlando Police Department, told the Orlando Sentinel that the information he received was “law enforcement sensitive,” and that he “learned about how the Israeli Police respond to and investigate terrorism.” He told the paper he liked the random Israeli checkpoints security forces set up, and that while he wouldn’t do that in Orlando,  “it did give me a few ideas about security measures here in Orlando that I won’t share.”

The itinerary Mondoweiss obtained does provide specifics on where the officers traveled and who they spoke to. On August 1, they met with Roni Tidhar, who does security work at Ben Gurion Airport. Security forces at Ben Gurion Airport routinely racially profile Arabs and Muslims, including Americans, and subject them to invasive interrogations.

The next day, after meeting with Palestinian Authority police in Bethlehem, the American officers traveled to occupied Hebron, the most distilled microcosm of the Israeli occupation, where Israeli soldiers and police protect around 800 extremist settlers who routinely abuse Palestinian residents. In Hebron, they spoke with Israeli Police Commander Ron Gertner and received a “security overview” of the Cave of the Patriarchs, a holy site in the city.

On August 4, the delegation traveled to Gilboa Prison, a site criticized by lawyers and Palestinian rights advocates as a place run by authorities who have tortured prisoners and withheld air conditioning units in extremely hot cells. Later that night, they traveled to the Golan Heights, an area taken from Syria in the 1967 war, then occupied and annexed by Israel. An estimated 20,000 settlers live in the Golan Heights. The police officers visited the Assaf Winery, a well-known winery, and drank wine and had lunch there.

U.S. law enforcement trips to Israel have come under increasing scrutiny in recent months. In July, Black Lives Matter demonstrators in Atlanta called for the end of “the Georgia International Law Enforcement Exchange (GILEE) program, that trains our officers in Apartheid Israel.” But Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed pushed back on that demand, saying he believes Israel has “some of the best counterterrorism techniques in the world” and that it “benefits our police department.”

Despite the criticism from activists, programs to forge relationships between U.S. law enforcement and Israel continue to expand. As Mondoweiss reported, Birthright recently started a program for Jewish law enforcement officers to travel to Israel.

ADL Itinerary for 2016 Law Enforcement Trip to Israel by alexbkane4538 on Scribd



Image by Carlos Latuff

 Netanyahu says, ‘I care more about Palestinians than their own leaders’

Netanyahu says, ‘I care more about Palestinians than their own leaders’

Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu heightened his row with international charities operating in Gaza in a video Thursday where he announced, “Israel cares more about Palestinians than their own leaders do.”

“Who cares more about Palestinians.” pressed Netanyahu, “Israel, that facilitates the entry of humanitarian aid into Gaza, every single day? Or Hamas, that robs Palestinian children of that very same aid?”

In wake of Gaza indictments, Netanyahu says, ‘I care more about Palestinians than their own leaders’

The prime minister continued by repeating accusations that have put international organizations under scrutiny. In the last two weeks two Palestinian aid officials in Gaza have been accused by Israel of misusing resources. 

“A few days ago, the world learned that Hamas, the terrorist organization that rules Gaza, stole millions of dollars from humanitarian organizations like World Vision and the United Nations,” Netanyahu said.

On August 3, Mohammed el-Halabi, director of the Gaza branch of World Vision, was criminally charged by Israel for allegedly funneling 60 percent of his organization’s projects budget—$7.2 million annually—to support for Hamas.

World Vision has denied the Israeli accounting. ”There is a huge gap in these numbers the Israeli government is telling and what we know,” the group’s German spokesperson Silvia Holten told the AP.

A few days later a second humanitarian worker, Waheed Borsh, a contractor with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) was also indicted for supporting Hamas. Borsh confessed to a list of ways that he had “aided Hamas,” according to a statement from Israel’s Security Agency.

“Last year he helped build a military jetty in the northern Gaza Strip – utilizing UNDP resources – to be used by Hamas’ naval forces,” the statement said. “Also in 2015, he acted to persuade UNDP managers to prioritize the rehabilitation of housing in areas populated by Hamas members… Borsh was acting in response to a request by Hamas.”

The Israel Securities Authority (ISA) alleged that Borsh admitted knowing the location of Hamas military facilities, and said when he found weapons stowed in UNDP facilities he allowed Hamas to “confiscate the arms and other materials.”

The actual indictment against the UN worker filed lesser charges than the offenses alleged by Israel’s security agency, a source who has seen the indictment told Mondoweiss. 

The court document indicated Borsh will be prosecuted for “communicating with a foreign agent, providing services to a foreign group, dealing with properties in an attempt to be used against Israel,” the source said, adding that the one-page indictment does not assert Borsh aided any “illegal organization,” Israeli legal-speak for terror organizations and Hamas.

Laith Abu Zeyad, an advocacy officer with the Palestinian legal rights group Addameer said the language of the criminal case is typical for those charged after traveling abroad and meeting with representatives of governments at odds with Israel.

Abu Zeyad said that “spying of having connection with a foreign agent” is a “a very common accusation used by the Israeli government” merely in cases where an individual has traveled to an enemy country such as Lebanon.  

“The accusation are really vague,” he went on, saying that there are difficulties in distinguishing between a resident of Gaza interacting with Hamas as the ruling civil administration, and interacting with its military wing. 

“Even if they provide evidence, even if they provide a pictures of him shaking hands with a Hamas militant, it cannot be used as evidence because it could be his relative or something,” Abu Zeyad continued.

This is the second recorded message from the prime minister in recent weeks in which the subject was the well-being of Arabs and Palestinians. In the first he said he hoped for greater inclusion of Palestinian citizens into Israeli society. The message was timed after his government passed a series of economic-improvement programs.

The medium of goodwill clips is a staple of Israeli public relations for ceremonial greetings and religious holidays. It is far less common when the subject is the Israeli conflict with Palestinian armed groups and their backers.


Pokemon Go Banned in Iran Due To “Security Concerns”

Pokemon No. For real this time.

Full report HERE

Fleeing from Morality Police:  Cartoon on Iran's #PokemonGO  Ban  Posted by Linda Hemby

Fleeing from Morality Police: Cartoon on Iran’s #PokemonGO
Posted by Linda Hemby



Israel buying gas masks from companies that worked with the Nazis

The Defense Ministry, Israel Police, Israel Prison Service and the Firefighting Commission have all for years been using HazMat gear manufactured by two German companies that also provided gas masks to Nazi soldiers operating the gas chambers at Auschwitz.

Since the 1967 Six-Day War, Israel has been acquiring gas masks and filters from two German companies, which, it now transpires, also provided the Nazis with the masks used to protect themselves at the gas chambers in Auschwitz.

The companies are Dräger, a family-owned company from Lübeck, and another formerly known as Auer, which was acquired in 1958 by the American company MSA, but its Berlin factory remains active.These companies have been selling gas masks and filters to the Israeli market for years and are exempt from having to participate in a tender.

Among their clients are the Defense Ministry, the Firefighting and Rescue Commission, Israel Railways, the Israel Police and the Israel Prison Service.

The companies’ involvement with the Nazi regime was revealed in a study by the Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum in Jerusalem, which is based on a book by French scholar Jean-Claude Pressac, who researched the gas chambers in Auschwitz. The book describes in great detail how the SS soldiers operated the gas chambers and what substances and equipment they used.

According to Pressac, every Nazi soldier who was involved in the extermination of the Jews was equipped with a gas mask. The Nazi army used type GM 38 masks manufactured by Dräger, while the filter for the mask was manufactured at the Auergesellschaft (Auer) factory in Berlin.

The GM 38 masks were used by the Nazi army starting in 1938 to protect the soldiers from chemicals on the battlefield. The masks were produced in different colors—for example, sand-colored for the troops stationed in Africa—and were very advanced for the time, as they were also equipped with microphones. Some of the masks were also used by Nazi pilots.

The mask’s J type filter was used to protect the Nazi soldiers from Zyklon-B, the gas used for the extermination of the Jews.

A German document found in the book, titled “Directives for the use of prussic acid (Zyklon) for the destruction of vermin (disinfestations),” provides safety instruction to the Nazi soldiers: “When fumigating with Zyklon use only special filters, e.g. the filter insert ‘J’ (blue brown) of the Auergesellschaft Berlin or of the Draegewerke, Luebeck. Should gas seep through the mask, leave the building immediately and change filters after also checking the mask and its fit to see whether they are tight.”

Business with Israel

The dark chapter in the two companies’ history did not stop government and public institutions in Israel from acquiring masks and filters from them for dozens of years. The Israel Police, for example, purchased the breathalyzers from Dräger.

Some of these government and public bodies also issued tenders for the maintenance and inspection of the equipment that indicate it was manufactured by the two companies. The Israel Railways, for example, issued a tender for the “maintenance and routine inspection of self-contained breathing apparatuses manufactured by MSA.”  The Firefighting and Rescue Commission issued a tender for “kits and parts for audio and speaking for self-contained breathing apparatus masks manufactured by MSA.”

The Israel Police, meanwhile, issued a bid for “the maintenance of HazMat self-contained breathing apparatus equipment manufactured by Auer,” “maintenance of self-contained breathing apparatus by Dräger,” and “maintenance of HazMat gear, protective suits, self-contained breathing apparatus masks from Dräger.”

A book by Amos Gazit, whose company distributes Dräger’s products in Israel, reveals more details about Israeli acquisitions from the two companies.

Amos Gazit Ltd. began importing gas masks and other HazMat gear from Germany back in the 1950s. Four days before Israel’s Independence Day in 1967, as tensions were mounting in the country in the months that preceded the Six-Day War, Gazit was in Copenhagen. He writes in his book that he received a phone call from a senior official in Israel’s Defense Ministry who told him, “Drop everything and go immediately to the Dräger factory in Lübeck. Within 48 hours, you will receive a list of equipment we need immediately. On Tuesday, you will be joined by someone at breakfast who will identify himself using a codename. This is a sensitive matter; we don’t want to fall into any traps.”

Gazit changed his travel plans and arrived in Lübeck the next day. A man with a codename handed Gazit a long “shopping list” during breakfast at the hotel and explained to him the importance of acquiring the items on it. At another table at the back of the room waited a representative from Dräger—Mr. White.

“The difficulty was in getting gas masks and filtration systems for the larger shelters and equipment for the NBC protection system at the IDF high commander’s bunker, where Chief of Staff Yitzhak Rabin was situated. Among the items were also gas masks for civilians,” Gazit wrote.

The Dräger representative refused to fulfill the order, claiming that company CEO Dr. Henrik Dräger did not approve of the deal. Gazit asked to speak to Dräger, and the two met in the CEO’s home. During their meeting, Dräger showed Gazit a letter signed by a senior official in the German government that read, “Dear Henrik, I ask you to not provide even one gas mask to Israel.” Gazit asked him when was the letter from, and received the answer: “Last night,” to which Gazit responded: “Excellent. We agreed on the deal on Monday, and today is Friday.”

According to Gazit, “Dräger withdrew into himself, poured a glass of wine, picked up the phone and said, ‘Please start packing up the masks.'”

The Israeli Defense Ministry then sent an El Al plane to Hamburg to pick up the equipment.

During the first Gulf War, soon after Iraq’s invasion to Kuwait in 1991, Gazit ordered gas masks from Dräger. “I bought the entire stock and even before the IDF started distributing masks, I sold everything I had,” Gazit wrote.

About three months after the war broke out, the IDF needed to change six million filters, purchase protection kits for babies and protective airhoods, and restock its warehouses with more masks. Military representatives sent by then-IDF Chief of Staff Dan Shomron met with Dräger representatives, including with Dr. Dräger himself in Germany, following which a contact was signed for an order of 2.1 million filters from the company.

In 1992, Dräger opened a factory in Israel to service the protection kits. Dr. Dräger, Israeli officials and senior officials in the Defense Ministry attended the factory’s opening. After the servicing project was complete, the factory was closed down and moved back to Germany.

MSA, meanwhile, aided in setting up factories in Israel to manufacture gas filtration systems for the defense establishment.

‘Some of the best products in the world’

Dräger said in response, “Since our establishment in 1889, we have developed equipment, systems and services that protect, support and save human lives. These products are being used for security and public safety purposes. After the Nazi party came to power in 1933, Dräger received a growing number of orders from the German Defense Ministry to develop what was then said to be gas masks for civilians.”

MSA said in response: “As a company whose foundations are based in ethics, decency and the commitment to protect people, MSA strongly condemns the horrors Nazi Germany committed against humanity. For over 100 years, our sole mission has been to protect the well-being and safety of people worldwide. MSA’s masks helped in keeping firefighters, police officers, emergency teams, industrial workers and soldiers—including in the Israeli army—from harm. The American MSA did not provide the Germans with equipment during World War II, it acquired the Auergesellschaft factory in 1958, long after it was no longer providing gas masks to the German army.”

The Firefighting and Rescue Commission said in response: “We acquire life-saving breathing equipment from the two companies because these are quality products, among the best in the world. The Firefighting and Rescue Commission does not issue recommendations to security bodies to acquire this gear.”

The Defense Ministry said in response: “The two companies are licensed providers of the Defense Ministry. We are unfamiliar with the claims about their past history.”

Likud MK Oren Hazan is currently working on a bill to prevent in the future the purchase and use of equipment from companies that worked with the Nazis.



First read THIS post from yesterday

“In Arab culture, it is customary to bring lunch or dinner to the pool and when, usually, when it’s crowded, mess is left behind. My Jewish residents don’t make a mess and don’t leave trash behind.”

Aftermath of a Palestinian picnic

Aftermath of a Palestinian picnic

Did Israel Lawmaker Just Call for Swimming Pool Apartheid?

An Israeli mayor from the Galilee apologized for causing offense by saying that he does not want Arabs to use swimming pools of predominantly-Jewish towns and cities.

Speaking on the Kol Rega radio station Thursday, Motti Dotan, head of the Lower Galilee Regional Council, said: “I don’t hate Arabs, but I don’t want them at my pools. I don’t go to their pools, either.”

His statement, published prominently by Haaretz and other media, provoked outrage and accusations of racism against Dotan, a member of the Likud party and a board member of the Foundation for the Benefit of Holocaust Victims in Israel.

In Thursday’s radio interview, he ascribed his opinion to “cultural differences” and not racism. He cited different dress norms. In an interview for 103FM, he said: “I apologize if anyone was offended by what I said.”

Dotan noted that no Jews swim at an Arab-owned private pool near Kibbutz Beit Rimon, one of several Jewish communities and towns represented by his council. Neighboring Arab towns and villages are represented by a different regional council. But he also said “no one checks bathers at the entrance” to pools and that Arabs are free to enter any of them.

In the 103FM interview, he said Arab bathers tend to leave a mess behind them.

“In Arab culture, it is customary to bring lunch or dinner to the pool and when, usually, when it’s crowded, mess is left behind. My Jewish residents don’t make a mess and don’t leave trash behind,” he said.

“If [Arabs] would behave according to our norms, then I’d have no problem. But that doesn’t happen, so I generalize,” he said in the Kol Rega injterview. “When Jewish men and women will feel comfortable in an Arab town, then I will be happy to have them over. But until that happens, I don’t want them.”

Yousef Jabareen a Knesset member with the Joint Arab List party slammed Dotan’s comments, telling Haaretz: “In addition to being morally unacceptable, they constitute a criminal offense, and I am contacting the attorney general to open a criminal investigation.”

In a statement, the Abraham Fund Initiatives, a nonprofit that promotes coexistence between Israeli Jews and Arabs, quipped: “Motti Dotan .., isn’t a racist. He simply doesn’t want dirty Arabs in his pool. For his part, he promises not to go to ‘their’ pools (the imaginary pools existing in all of the Arab communities in the Lower Galilee).”

In April, a right-wing Knesset member was slammed for saying Arab and Jewish mothers in Israel’s maternity wards should be placed in separate rooms. In a Twitter post, Bezalel Smotrich of the Jewish Home party said, “It’s natural that my wife wouldn’t want to lie down [in a bed] next to a woman who just gave birth to a baby who might want to murder her baby twenty years from now.”

Smotrich added that “Arabs are my enemies and that’s why I don’t enjoy being next to them.”

Soon after their posting, the tweets were criticized by party leader Naftali Bennett.

The leader of a local Israeli government council said Thursday that he doesn’t want to see Arabs using public swimming pools in his locality.

“I don’t hate Arabs, but I don’t want them at my pools,” Lower Galilee Regional Council head Motti Dotanhe told a radio station. “I don’t go to their pools, either.”


This one takes the cake …..


Netanyahu urges Arabs to ‘take part in our society’

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu apologizes for controversial election statements about Arab voters – then ‘goes one step further.’

And the reactions to the above …

“When I saw you chose to contact us in English,” he continued, turning directly to Netanyahu, “I understood exactly where this message is intended and for what purpose. So I say to the Prime Minister on behalf of the Arab public that we are not buying his show of hypocrisy.”

Arab MKs blast Netanyahu video to Israeli Arabs

Arab Knesset members unimpressed with Prime Minister’s appeal to Israeli Arabs to take full part in Israeli society, call it a “spin”.

Arab Knesset members on Monday night blasted Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu after he released a video urging Israeli Arabs to take full part in Israeli society.

Joint List chairman MK Ayman Odeh responded to the video and said, “I watched the video tonight and I asked myself whether this is the same person who tried desperately to prevent the economic plan for Arabs, who tried to add more conditions to the program so that it would not be implemented? Is this the same Prime Minister who incited against us in the elections and since then has only worsened his inciting statements?”

“When I saw you chose to contact us in English,” he continued, turning directly to Netanyahu, “I understood exactly where this message is intended and for what purpose. So I say to the Prime Minister on behalf of the Arab public that we are not buying his show of hypocrisy.”

MK Ahmed Tibi blasted the video as well, saying, “Mr. Netanyahu’s passionate appeal to the residents of Rahat and Taybeh in English brings upon a smile and raises questions about the background of this spin. If you saw some shaking in the video it’s because the video guy couldn’t stop laughing. Netanyahu did not even apologize for his past racist remarks, and only ‘apologizes if his words were misunderstood.’ Again the Arabs (and Jews) did not understand his thoughts.”

“I wonder whether the motive is criticism by the OECD or another international body. He and his government are personally responsible for the huge disparities between Arab and Jewish communities and he is the one who boasts about destruction of homes rather than real integration. This spin will not hold water either,” said Tibi.


Let’s see Netanyahu explain this to the ‘Arabs’

Image by Carlos Latuff

Mother Palestine and the Israeli settlements

Mother Palestine and the Israeli settlements






Avigdor Liberman speaks during a party faction meeting at the Knesset, on May 23, 2016. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)

Avigdor Liberman speaks during a party faction meeting at the Knesset, on May 23, 2016. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)

See yesterday’s related post HERE


Image by Carlos Latuff

Same US that now exalts Mandela as hero, was responsible for his imprisionment

Same US that now exalts Mandela as hero, was responsible for his imprisonment


Nelson Mandela has been honored at his memorial by President Obama and countless other world leaders, but a piece of information about his historic life was largely overlooked during the tributes to the late-South African president: The role of the CIA in his imprisonment. A CIA agent inside the ANC provided the South African apartheid government with the location of Mr. Mandela so they could arrest him decades ago. 


Related report and photos HERE ….

Former diplomat admits CIA involvement in Nelson Mandela arrest

Revelations from a CIA operative indicate that the American spy agency was behind the arrest of Nelson Mandela in 1962. Mandela was perceived to be a risk to the US due to alleged ties with the Soviet Union.


Isaac Herzog, member of the Knesset and Chairman of the Israeli Labor party, revealed that Saudi king Salman bin Abdulaziz financed the election campaign of Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu.

Let’s see if Bibi can wiggle his way out of this one ….

New Panama Papers Data Leak has revealed that the king of Saudi Arabia Saudi king Salman bin Abdulaziz gave  eighty million dollars to support Netanyahu’s campaign

New Panama Papers Data Leak has revealed that the king of Saudi Arabia Saudi king Salman bin Abdulaziz gave eighty million dollars to support Netanyahu’s campaign

Panama Papers: Saudi Arabia King Sponsored Netanyahu’s Campaign

“In March 2015, King Salman has deposited eighty million dollars to support Netanyahu’s campaign via a Syrian-Spanish person named Mohamed Eyad Kayali. The money was deposited to a company’s account in British Virgin Islands owned by Teddy Sagi, an Israeli billionaire and businessman, who has allocated the money to fund the campaign Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu”, Herzog cited a leaked Panama Paper.

Around eleven million documents were leaked from one of the world’s most secretive companies, Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca as it worked for 40 years without suspicion. The leaked documents showed how Mossack Fonseca firm has helped clients launder money, dodge sanctions and evade tax.

The documents held by the Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca have been delivered to the German newspaper Sueddeutsche Zeitung, which then shared them with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists. Later, around 107 media organisations in 78 countries have been analysing the documents. Among the media agencies are the BBC, Panorama and UK newspaper the Guardian. The BBC said that it does not know the identity of the source.

However, the director of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), Gérard Ryle said the documents covered the day-to-day business at Mossack Fonseca over the past 40 years. He said it will be one of the biggest blows offshore,”I think the leak will prove to be probably the biggest blow the offshore world has ever taken because of the extent of the documents.” The blow will extend offshore the world,even middle east leaders were linked to this company.

The documents show 12 current or former heads of state with at least 60 people linked to current or former world leaders in the data. It also contains secret offshore companies linked to the families and associates of Egypt’s former president Hosni Mubarak, Libya’s former leader Muammar Gaddafi, Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad and Saudi Arabia’s king Salman.

Moreover, the documents include the Icelandic Prime Minister, Sigmundur Gunnlaugson, who had a hidden interest related to his wife’s wealth and is now facing calls for his resignation. The files also unveiled suspected money laundering ring with billion dollars involving close associates of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The documents also show how the company offered financial assistances and services how it helped business clients hide their wealth or to do illegal many transactions.





‘Kosher Irony’


'Kosher for Passover'

‘Kosher for Passover’

Above is a photo I just took of a pack of Israeli cigarettes. The box at the bottom of the box is a warning from the Israeli Ministry of Health stating that ‘Smoking is hazardous to your health’ ….


The yellow pull tab at the top claims that these cigarettes are ‘Kosher for Passover’ ….

Suicide might be painless …. but cancer or heart disease isn’t! 

Death is NOT KOSHER …. apparently neither are some rabbis!


Various reforms in recent years have led to a significant improvement in the life of Holocaust survivors, but 60,000 of them still can’t afford food, medical care or heating; ‘It is shameful what they give us,’ says 85-years-old Shmuel Shteiner.


Third of Holocaust survivors in Israel live below the poverty line

Lea Karsik, a Holocaust survivor who escaped the horrors of war with her mother, hasn’t got enough money to buy meat. Shmuel Shteiner, whose father was murdered in Auschwitz, said that last winter he slept wearing two coats to keep warm in the cold because he didn’t have enough money for heating. He suffers serious vision impairment and is worried that he will not be able to afford new glasses either.

“It’s a disgrace that the state took money for Holocaust survivors, but didn’t give it to us,” he told Ynet.Lea Karsik, a Holocaust survivor who escaped the horrors of war with her mother, hasn’t got enough money to buy meat. Shmuel Shteiner, whose father was murdered in Auschwitz, said that last winter he slept wearing two coats to keep warm in the cold because he didn’t have enough money for heating. He suffers serious vision impairment and is worried that he will not be able to afford new glasses either.

For many Holocaust survivors, this is the reality they deal with. Despite a significant, and even historic, improvement in their socio-economic situation brought about by government reforms, many of them continue to live in poverty.

There are 200,901 Holocaust survivors living in Israel. Data from the Welfare Ministry and the Finance Ministry’s Authority for Holocaust Survivors’ Rights shows that almost a third of them, some 60,000 people, are living under the poverty line while some 65,000, receive income support benefits.

Holocaust survivors’ situation is not unlike to that of many senior citizens in Israel. Indeed, the poverty rate among the elderly rose by one percent in 2014, reaching 23.1 percent. Similarly, despite the increase in old-age benefits and the income support provided to the poor elderly – which amounts to hundreds of shekels per month – the rate of poverty among them remains among the highest in the Western world.

“The government needs to look Holocaust survivors in the eye. What they’re giving us is not enough. We need more help,” said Lea Karsik, an 83-year-old childless survivor who lives alone in a small two-room apartment in Ashkelon.

She was a young child when Nazi forces came to Ukraine, forcing her family to flee. “We dealt with hardships. Dad fought, and we ran away with mom when there were bombings, even on a train full of people. Mom was wounded, and we hid. For a long time we didn’t have food at all. In a situation like that, your body goes mad,” she recounted.

Lea says that while she has food, her monthly salary of a mere NIS 3,000 does not enable her to pay for other basic commodities.”I don’t buy fish or beef, it’s too expensive,” she said.

She lives on the third floor of a building without an elevator, in a public housing apartment, and moves around using a cane. Despite her condition, she has been volunteering for many years in aiding other Holocaust survivors. “I translate for other elderly people who don’t speak Hebrew, and try to help them,” she said.

Karsik asked that she is approved more nursing care hours because of her deteriorating health and difficulty climbing up the stairs and leaving her home.

Reforms for the survivors

About two years ago, the government approved a national plan to aid Holocaust survivors, led by then welfare and finance ministers Meir Cohen and Yair Lapid. The plan included significant changes to the two main laws dealing with Holocaust survivors: The Victims of Nazi Persecution Act and the Holocaust Survivors’ Benefits Act. Among other things, the 18,000 survivors who made aliyah after 1953 were granted the same rights as the survivors who made aliyah before that time. In addition, survivors were ensured free medicine and an annual grant of NIS 3,600 was allocated to survivors of the second circle (refugees who fled as a result of the Holocaust but were not in the extermination camps or ghettos).

Since the institution of that plan, several other measures were taken, including increasing the old-age benefits by hundreds of shekels every month for poor seniors. Approximately three months ago, the Finance Ministry, led by Minister Moshe Kahlon, recognized Holocaust survivors from Morocco, Algeria and Iraq, as well as survivors from Romania who endured hard labor during World War II. This recognition means these survivors will now be entitled to free medical treatment and annual grants as well.

Last month, Welfare Minister Haim Katz announced a plan to “give back” money to some 20,000 survivors that he says did not exercise their full rights, losing out on over NIS 100 million in benefits.

Earlier this week, Finance Minister Kahlon announced a NIS 500 million plan to increase old-age and income support benefits to poor seniors, including Holocaust survivors. The Finance Ministry said the plan will be part of the next state budget.

However, these plans all failed to right some historical wrongs, including giving some 90,000 survivors of the second circle the same benefits as other survivors, or improving government bureaucracy that puts many different bodies in charge of Holocaust survivors.

26,000 survivors turn to aid center

Despite a significant improvement reported, data from the Social Equality Ministry obtained by Ynet indicate the bureaucracy with which the survivors still have to deal.

Out of 100,000 elderly people who called the *8840 aid call center to receive assitance, 26,000 were Holocaust survivors.

“The data indicates that the center serves a major need for Holocaust survivors, and makes it easier for them to deal with bureaucratic and financial issues and exercise their rights,” said Social Equality Minister Gila Gamliel.

Despite these improvements, the fact remains that 90,000 Holocaust survivors, many of whom suffer dire economic hardships, receive neither monthly stipends nor pensions.

The vast majority of the survivors are immigrants from the former Soviet Union who receive meager annual grants of NIS 3,600. They also include elderly people, without acceess to pension or other rights, who immigrated to Israel in the 90s. Others include immigrants from Romania, Bulgaria, Libya and Tunisia who came after 1953 along with immigrants from Morocco, Iraq and Algeria.

Shmuel Shteiner, 85, who was born in Romania and now lives in Netanya, receives a sum total of NIS 4,000 per month. “It is shameful that this is what they give,” he said. Shteiner moved to Israel in the 70s and worked for many years as a photographer but did not accumulate pension rights. “This is the money that there is today. I am trying to get by with but it isn’t enough,” he continued.

International Fellowship of Christians and Jews (IFCJ) President Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein said that “tens of thousands of Holocaust survivors live without the means to support themselves with the most basic necessities such as food, dental treatment, heating in the winter and adequate roofing. Most of them are too exhausted or too sick to make themselves heard. Most of them live in terrible solitude far from the public eye, they cope alone with difficult memories, with loss and, most fundamentally, with the terrible feeling that nobody cares about them,” Eckstein said.

“The time has come to place the treatment of Holocaust survivors at the top of the agenda. When each day 40 of them pass away, we don’t have any more time to wait,” he continued. “We are obligated to to act here and now and therefore we invite the public to donate so that there will be no more deprived Holocaust survivors in Israel.”

Each year the IFCJ assists 20,000 Holocaust survivors who lack food, panic buttons, urgent medical services and dental treatment and who suffer the burden of loneliness.

Deputy Finance Minister Itzik Cohen insisted that his ministry places Holocaust survivors at the top of the agenda: “The ministry allocates vast resources in order to assist Holocaust survivors and to expand their rights. The allocated budget for 200,000 survivors stands at NIS 4.2 billion. We are continuing to initiate and to advance additional programs,” he said.






Former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke told his radio audience Wednesday that Jewish opposition to Donald Trump shows that Jews are “the real problem” and the “reason why America is not great.”

Once a hater, always a hater!

Same logic as Duke's

Same logic as Duke’s

Jews Are ‘Real Problem’ — and Opposition to Donald Trump Proves It

Former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke told his radio audience Wednesday that Jewish opposition to Donald Trump shows that Jews are “the real problem” and the “reason why America is not great.”

The comments, first noted by the website Right Wing Watch, came the day after the New York businessman all but secured the Republican nomination with a decisive primary victory in Indiana.

Duke praised Trump’s win, calling it an “amazing victory.”

One of the nation’s most prominent white supremacists, Duke is a former member of the Louisiana House of Representatives and has run unsuccessful campaigns for Louisana governor, the U.S. Senate, the U.S. House of Representatives, and the presidency. Trump declined to disavow Duke’s support in a February CNN interview, saying that he didn’t “know anything about David Duke.” (Trump later claimed he “could hardly hear” the CNN reporter who had asked him the question.)

In his May 4 comments, Duke blamed Republican Jews for efforts to keep Trump from becoming the Republican nominee.

“Jewish chutzpah knows no bounds,” Duke said, butchering the pronunciation of the Yiddish word.

Later, Duke continued: “I think these Jewish extremists have made a terribly crazy miscalculation, because all they’re going to be doing by doing a Never Trump movement is exposing their alien, their anti-American, anti-American majority position… They’re going to push people more into an awareness that that the neo-cons are the problem, that these Jewish supremacists who control our country are the real problem, and the reason why America is not great.”

Ironically, Duke’s comments came as prominent Jewish Republicans were lining up in support of Trump, with former George W. Bush spokesman Ari Fleischer tweeting that he would “vote for Trump over Hillary any day.”

Republican Jewish Coalition chairman David Flaum issued a statement Wednesday afternoon congratulating Trump, and saying that Hillary Clinton is “the worst possible choice for a commander in chief.”



When Palestinians fight against occupying troops on their soil, they are denounced — and often killed — as “terrorists.” Meanwhile, nonviolent campaigns to end the occupation through a South Africa-style boycott are demonized as “anti-Semitism” and officially barred — censored — in all sorts of ways, in numerous countries around the world.

SO …


Fighting Israeli Occupying Forces Is “Terrorism.” Boycotting Is “Anti-Semitism.” What’s Allowed?

By Glenn Greenwald FOR

THAT “TERRORISM” IS a malleable term of propaganda, with no fixed meaning or consistent application, is now quite well-established. Still, its recent application to a spate of violence targeting Israel’s occupying soldiers in the West Bank is so manipulative and extreme that it’s well worth highlighting.

Israel has militarily occupied the West Bank for decades (it’s also still functionally occupying Gaza, as this two-minute video proves). The West Bank “occupation is illegal under international law and the United Nations has repeatedly told the country’s government to vacate Palestinian territory.” Even ardent defenders of Israel admit that “the West Bank is under a legal regime of belligerent occupation” and “Israel’s settlement enterprise is, and has always been, grossly illegal under international law.” Despite this world consensus, Israeli settlements continue to grow rapidly. Israel is not engaged in any meaningful efforts to negotiate an agreement to end the occupation, and leading Israeli ministers now openly oppose such efforts.

In response to this, there has been a series of attacks over the past year by Palestinians on Israeli occupying soldiers in the West Bank. In the Israeli and American press, the Palestinians attacking these occupying soldiers areinvariably calledterrorists” and their attacks are denounced as “terrorism” (“The two soldiers were stabbed while at a guard post at the Har Bracha settlement, located in the northern West Bank. … Troops were searching for the terrorists”).


For those (such as myself) who have long contended that the term “terrorism” now has little meaning beyond “violence by Muslims against the West and its allies,” and no purpose other than to delegitimize violence by one side while legitimizing the other side’s, can there be any better proof than this?

There have been Palestinian attacks on Israeli civilians of course (while far more Palestinian civilians have died at the hands of the Israeli army), but inthese specific cases, these Palestinians are attacking purely military targets, not civilians. Those military targets are soldiers deployed to their soil as part of an illegal occupying army. In what conceivable sense can that be “terrorism”? If fighting an occupying army is now “terrorism” simply because the army belongs to Israel and the attackers are Palestinian, is it not incredibly obvious how this term is exploited?

The U.S. has frequently done the same: invade and occupy countries such as Iraq and Afghanistan and then label anyone who fights their occupying armies as “terrorists,” even putting some in Guantánamo for that. Similarly,attacks against military bases of the U.S., U.K., and other Western countries are routinely labeled “terrorism.

Needless to say, both Americans and Israelis (along with most others in the world) reserve for themselves the absolute right to fight against any foreign army that occupies their land. Indeed, Hollywood, in the 1980s, produced a film called Red Dawn, which imagined an occupation of the U.S. by the Soviet Union and its Nicaraguan and Cuban allies. It told the story of the heroic U.S. citizens, led by high school students, who waged a guerrilla war against the occupying troops, killing dozens upon dozens of them. Imagine the widespread confusion, and outrage, that would have resulted if someone accused the filmmakers of glorifying “terrorism” by demonizing the fictional American resisters as “terrorists”:

The film was updated in 2012 with a sequel depicting “one group of unlikely [American] heroes” who waged guerrilla warfare against North Korean forces who had invaded and occupied the U.S. (the film originally depicted these American heroes attacking and killing an occupying army from China, but, in post-production, the producers changed the identity of the occupiers to North Korean in order to preserve access to Chinese theaters):

When Americans resist military occupation by fighting against occupying troops on their soil, they are noble heroes. But when Palestinians do this, they are “terrorists.” This discourse, by design, equates Palestinians resisting occupation by fighting against an occupying army with al Qaeda and ISIS, and thus posits that any use of force by Palestinians to resist Israeli occupation — even when done on Palestinian soil, aimed exclusively at Israeli military targets there — is illegitimate.

So if violent resistance is illegitimate “terrorism,” what about other alternatives for resisting the decades-old, still-expanding illegal Israeli occupation? The nonviolent route embraced by Palestinian activists and their anti-occupation allies around the world is a campaign of boycott, sanctions, and divestment (BDS) aimed at Israel, modeled after the campaign that helped end South Africa’s apartheid regime in the 1980s (a regime that, just by the way, was a close ally of both the U.S. and Israel).

But there is a highly successful campaign by Israel and its U.S. allies not only to decree this nonviolent boycott campaign illegitimate, but literally tooutlaw it. Official bodies are enacting rules to censor and officially suppress it by equating the campaign with “anti-Semitism” even though, as fervent Israel supporter Eric Alterman wrote in the New York Times this week, “it is filled with young Jews.”

The Intercept and other outlets have repeatedly reported on official governmental and university actions to ban BDS activism by equating it with “anti-Semitism.” In California, the regents of the nation’s largest university system just enacted a resolution strongly implying that BDS activism is anti-Semitic and thus in violation of university rules. In New York last week, dozens of state legislators, from both parties, have demanded the de-funding of a pro-Palestinian group at CUNY, a move denounced by the campus free speech group FIRE. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, when running for office, announced that BDS “has no place on Canadian campuses.” In France, people are literally arrested as criminals under “hate speech” laws for wearing T-shirts advocating BDS. Measures in the U.K. have been enacted to legally bar support for such boycott movements. Laws and proposed bills in Israel ban advocacy of the movement and bar supporters from entering Israel.

So look at what has happened here. When Palestinians fight against occupying troops on their soil, they are denounced — and often killed — as “terrorists.” Meanwhile, nonviolent campaigns to end the occupation through a South Africa-style boycott are demonized as “anti-Semitism” and officially barred — censored — in all sorts of ways, in numerous countries around the world.

If fighting Israeli occupying forces is barred as “terrorism,” and nonviolent boycotts against Israel are barred as “anti-Semitism,” then what is considered a legitimate means for Palestinians and their allies to resist and end the decadeslong, illegal Israeli occupation? The answer is: nothing. Palestinians are obliged to submit to Israeli occupation in a way that none of the people demanding that would ever themselves submit to occupation of their land. All forms of resistance to Israeli occupation are deemed illegitimate. That, manifestly, is the whole point of all of this.


Most people I spoke with energetically condemned racist statements attributed to Trump. However, when I revealed the statements had actually been made by Israeli leaders, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, respondents immediately excused, justified or supported the rhetoric they had just condemned.


See full report (Click on link)

AIPAC attendees slam Netanyahu’s racism when they think it’s Trump’s

And here’s how Katie Miranda of Mondoweiss sees ‘what if Bernie Sanders spoke at AIPAC ....

Unlike the other four presidential candidates, Democrat Bernie Sanders declined the invitation to speak at the AIPAC– American Israel Public Affairs Committee conference– in Washington on Monday, and instead delivered a foreign policy address in Utah. The speech has gotten wide circulation because of its affirmations of Palestinian human rights.




First a post from yesterday ….

Now the images of the day



And in Russia …

Statue of 'Mother Russia' guards the graves of those martyred in the Battle of Stalingrad

Statue of ‘Mother Russia’ guards the graves of those martyred in the Battle of Stalingrad

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