FEMINISM AND APARTHEID

Historically, some women, including the richest and most prominent, have identified themselves with a feminism that ignores race and class, and thus ignores most women, who are directly impacted by poverty, racism, war and occupation, and environmental devastation in the industrial and non-industrial world. Such feminists celebrate the women who have broken the glass ceiling and moved into the 1%. For them, feminism means the right of women to be equal to men in managing capitalism with its exploitation, occupation, racism and underlying it all, sexism.

Drawing by Rana Bishara, 2015: ‘RIP Martyrs, Nour and Baby Rahaf- Gaza’

Confronting apartheid has everything to do with feminism

Rabab Abdulhadi, Suzanne Adely, Angela Davis & Selma James

Attacking the International Women’s Strike on March 8, supporters of Israel argued that the decolonization of Palestine has no place in feminism and further asked if there is a place for Zionists in the feminist movement. We turn the question around and ask if the occupation of Palestine, the bombings of Gaza, the apartheid that applies two separate and unequal systems to Israel’s relationship to Palestinians–can be compatible with feminism? While Israel’s apologists were posing such questions, the Israeli army, as reported by the Palestinian Center for Human Rights, was busy shutting down two events in Jerusalem marking International Women’s Day.

Had Zionists who call themselves feminists understood the International Women’s Strike (IWS) as reflective of an indivisible sense of justice, they would have readily realized that the IWS call cannot tolerate racism. An inclusive feminism has rightfully rejected the Zionist justification of Israel’s violation of the rights of millions of Palestinian women and girls, both refugees and those living under barbaric occupation and siege.

Historically, some women, including the richest and most prominent, have identified themselves with a feminism that ignores race and class, and thus ignores most women, who are directly impacted by poverty, racism, war and occupation, and environmental devastation in the industrial and non-industrial world. Such feminists celebrate the women who have broken the glass ceiling and moved into the 1%. For them, feminism means the right of women to be equal to men in managing capitalism with its exploitation, occupation, racism and underlying it all, sexism.

At its root, feminism is a movement demanding liberation for women. The struggle for women’s rights under the banner of feminism cannot meaningfully exist without addressing and working to eliminate oppression rooted in racism, colonialism and capitalism. This is the case for women in many countries who support the feminism of the 99%. In other words, grassroots women are not merely the backdrop but the central concern of their movement. Accordingly, the platform of the International Women’s Strike lifted up many of the most crucial issues undermining women’s survival around the world: an end to gender violence, reproductive justice for all, labor rights, social programs, and an end to environmental degradation—in short, an anti-racist and anti-imperialist agenda.

In this new climate, what is happening to Palestinian women is not a detail but a vital question. As a result, Rasmea Odeh was one of the women invited to be part of the leadership of the U.S. strike.

Rasmea Odeh is a Chicago-based Palestinian community leader who has diligently and persistently fought for the empowerment of Arab immigrant women by providing leadership development and English language services, as well as alleviating the isolation experienced by newly arrived immigrant families.

Ms. Odeh was subjected to torture and sexual assault for resisting colonization and occupation. Her life story embodies the experience of all women who have survived racist state violence. The false accusations against Ms. Odeh, repeated by self-identified Zionists are malicious and intended to criminalize Ms. Odeh and her supporters. This has the effect of legitimizing the use of torture against political prisoners as a means to coerce information to justify their imprisonment.

What has happened to Ms. Odeh at the hands of Israel is replicated all over the globe by repressive and imperialist governments. The feminism of the 99% which is now emerging rejects this persecution and torture, wherever it takes place.

Zionist feminism is an oxymoron. It may have had a shared legacy with white-women-only feminism but it does not reflect the conviction of today’s activists who refuse to stand by the notion of justice for some of us while denying justice to others. We reject Zionism and Zionist feminism. A growing number of women are recognizing that the feminism that does not confront capitalism, racism, and colonialism will not lead to liberation, just as there is no liberation possible without confronting sexism. Any way forward must overcome the voices of selective feminism that defend systems of oppression and try to silence our voices.

Rabab Abdulhadi is an Associate Professor of Ethnic Studies/Race and Resistance Studies and the Senior Scholar of the Arab and Muslim Ethnicities and Diasporas Initiative, at the College of Ethnic Studies, San Francisco State University. She is the co-editor of the award-winning anthology, Arab and Arab American Feminisms: Gender, Violence and Belonging and her work has appeared in dozens of journals on gender and justice (Syracuse University Press) and co-founder and editorial board member of the Islamophobia Studies Journal. Abdulhadi is co-chair of Feminists for Justice in Palestine, the interest group that initiated and organized that NWSA campaign for BDS in 2015.

Suzanne Adely is a global labor human rights lawyer and activist. She is a member of the International Women’s Strike (IWS) U.S. Planning Committee, co-chair of the National Lawyers Guild International Committee, bureau member of the International Association of Democratic Lawyers and an organizer with the US Palestine Community Network and the Palestine Right to Return Coalition. 

Angela Davis emerged as a prominent activist in the 1960s as a leader of the Communist Party USA, and had close relations with the Black Panther Party. She co-founded Critical Resistance, an organization working to abolish the prison-industrial complex and was a professor (now retired) at the University of California, Santa Cruz, in its History of Consciousness Department and a former director of the university’s Feminist Studies department.

Selma James is an activist, political thinker, and writer. She is the founder of the International Wages for Housework Campaign and helped launch the Global Women’s Strike. She is the author of numerous publications, including, most recently, Sex, Race and Class — The Perspective of Winning: A Selection of Writings 1952-2011. While married to and involved in political work with the late C.L.R. James, Selma wrote her seminal 1952 essay, “A Woman’s Place.” 

FROM

ISRAEL’S PROJECT OF COLONIALISM

In the following my interview with Jeremy R. Hammond of Foreign Policy Journal. I talked to him about Palestine, journalism, US foreign politics, and about Zionism as a colonialist project.

Jeremy R. Hammond – Israel was a colonialist project from the outset, and so remains today

By Milena Rampoldi

Do you believe the two-state solution is definitively buried?

Israel and the US certainly have been working hard for decades to bury it, but, no, I do not believe they have succeeded. On the contrary, I think right now there is a unique opportunity for the Palestinians to move forward and accomplishing an end to the Israeli occupation, which is essentially equivalent to implementing the two-state solution. The leadership should pursue legal remedy for the Occupying Power’s crimes against the Palestinian people through the international mechanisms that have been available to Palestine since the UN recognized it as a state in 2012; most specifically, through the International Criminal Court (ICC).

What do you believe the next moves of the Trump administration will be in Palestine/Israel and Middle East?

He’ll likely try to pick up the baton from the previous administration and make a feeble and vain effort to restore credibility to the US-led so-called “peace process”. He might, for example, try to persuade the Netanyahu government to implement some kind of limited scaling back of Israel’s illegal settlement activity in the West Bank. The good news is that with Trump in the Oval Office, it seems unlikely the “peace process” could regain any traction even among other governments of the world (it has long since ceased to have any credibility among the publics of the world).

This presents the Palestinian leadership with an opportunity. They must take advantage of the political leverage they gain so long as the “peace process” is dead on account of Israel’s refusal to even limit its illegal activities. If the Palestinian Authority (PA) won’t do what is necessary, the Palestinian people should rise up and dissolve that body – which the PLO has the authority to do – and find new leadership who will.

For me personally, Israel is a neo-colonialist project. What do you think about it?

It is certainly a neo-colonialist project. Going back to the Mandate era, the League of Nations’ Palestine Mandate was literally drafted by the organized Zionists, the aim being to implement an occupation regime that would accommodate their goal of displacing and dispossessing the Arab inhabitants with mass waves of Jewish immigration. The idea was that the right to self-determination of Palestine’s inhabitants wouldnot be respected until the Jews became a majority. This was in keeping with the British and Zionists’ concept of “the democratic ideal” (as discussed between Lord Arthur Balfour and Zionist leader Chaim Weizmann). It was a colonialist project from the outset, and so remains today.

Tell us about your books!

In late 2008, when Israel began its 22-day full-scale military assault on Gaza dubbed “Operation Cast Lead”, I watched with disgust how the US mainstream media waged a propaganda war against the public, a systematic campaign of deception that served the purpose of manufacturing consent for the US government’s support for Israel’s war crimes against the civilian population of Gaza. I became determined to write a book about it to set the record straight. (My coverage of the US’s support for Israel’s war crimes during that conflict resulted in me receiving a Project Censored Award.)

But I didn’t just want to write about that operation. I wanted to explain the whole conflict in context, to help others understand why this conflict has persisted for so long. Only by fully understanding what the greatest obstacles are can we determine how to move forward. What is required is a paradigm shift, a change in the way the public perceives this issue. We need to fight the propaganda and get the truth out. That is why I set out writing Obstacle to Peace: The US Role in the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (2016)

But before I could explain contemporary events, I would need to provide the necessary historical background and explain what the root causes of this conflict are. That would require examining the period from the rise of the Zionist movement in the late 1800s through to the establishment of the state of Israel in 1948 via the ethnic cleansing of Palestine. So I ended up splintering my book idea and writing a short book titled The Rejection of Palestinian Self-Determination: The Struggle for Palestine and the Roots of the Israeli-Arab Conflict (2009).

Obstacle to Peace presents historical context as necessary in order to understand more recent events (it focuses primarily on the last decade), but readers will even get more out of it if they first read The Rejection of Palestinian Self-Determination as a primer to understanding how the conflict originated.Obstacle to Peace will then help readers understand why the conflict persists, how the mainstream media serve to help perpetuate it, and what needs to happen for peace and justice to finally be realized.

How to engage for Palestine today as human rights activists, writer and journalists?

Everyone has their own strengths in terms of knowledge and skills, and it’s up to the individual to determine how best to apply those skills toward achieving peace and justice. My own strengths include research, analysis, and writing, so that is where I’ve focused my energy. I can’t advise others how to focus their energy without knowing their individual strengths. Generally, however, we must continually educate ourselves and then share that knowledge with others until a tipping point is reached and the necessary paradigm shift occurs at which point it will become politically infeasible for the status quo to persist any longer.

Which are the main objectives of Foreign Policy Journal?

I established FPJ to serve as an antidote to the propagandistic reporting of the mainstream media, which serve the role of manufacturing consent for government policy. I’m borrowing this phrase from Edward Herman and Noam Chomsky, from their book Manufacturing Consent; they were in turn borrowing the phrase from Walter Lipmann, who had written in the early 20th century about the need for the ruling elites to manufacture the consent of the ruled for the policies they wished to implement to pursue their own self-interests (as opposed to the interests of the public).

It’s my goal with FPJ to help others become better informed about the true nature of US foreign policy and international affairs, as this is a task at which the mainstream media have utterly failed us.

 

Originally written FOR

THE VEIL OF APARTHEID

Apartheid has been considered in the annals of the United Nations and world public opinion to be second only to genocide in the hierarchy of criminality”,

And

Genocide and apartheid are the only two international crimes, the commission of which States have a duty to prevent.

Image by Carlos Latuff

Apartheid wears a veil

A report commissioned by the UN agency ESCWA (Economic and Social Comission for Western Asia), released Wednesday, concluded unequivocally that Israel practices Apartheid policy. It saw official daylight for two days.

The spokesperson for Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Emmanuel Nahshon tweeted “#UN #ESCWA has issued today a ‘Der Stürmer’ like report, NOT endorsed by @UNSG. Friendly advice- dont read it without anti nausea pills….” He was referring to the Nazi propaganda outlet, Der Stürmer.

The report, authored by Richard Falk, Professor Emeritus of International Law at Princeton and former UN Special Rapporteur, as well as Virginia Tilley, professor of political science at Southern Illinois University, was taken down, under harsh pressure from Israel and USA, by order of UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres. Under-Secretary General Rima Khalaf, who also heads the Beirut-based ESCWA, refused to remove the report and resigned in protest. “I resigned because it is my duty not to conceal a clear crime, and I stand by all the conclusions of the report,” said Khalaf. Fortunately, the report is available by many outlets who have saved it and reproduced it, including here.

Let me first address the ‘Nazi’ comparison.

Now, I admit I have not read Der Stürmer, and have no special intention of doing so. What I can say, nonetheless, is that I have read every word and footnote of the 74-page report. If ‘anti-nausea’ pills were necessary, as Emmanuel Nahshon suggests, it would only have been to quell the nausea arising from the reality which this report describes – in a remarkably lucid manner.

It would appear, that the typical ‘Nazi’ and ‘anti-Semitic’ accusations are a smoke-screen to avoid discussion about the actual issues brought forth in the report. The synthesis of the report is not merely an innovative intellectual exercise. As Nelson Mandela noted, the issue of Palestine is “the greatest moral issue of our time”. Had the report regarded a long-past historical event (as for example Apartheid in South Africa), the hyperbole accusations would no doubt be put aside, in light of the grave issues addressed. Yet it is precisely because the crime is current and ongoing, that every effort is made to shoot it down by those involved. As the report notes in its Conclusions (p. 50):

[T]he situation addressed in the report is ongoing. Many investigations of crimes against humanity have concerned past behaviour or events, such as civil wars involving genocides, which have formally concluded. In such cases, the international community faces no particular pressure to act in a timely way to terminate an ongoing crime prior to investigating the legal facts of culpability. In the case of Israel-Palestine, any delay compounds the crime by prolonging the subjugation of Palestinians to the active practice of apartheid by Israel. Prompt action is accordingly imperative to avert further human suffering and end a crime against humanity that is being committed now.”

That urgency means, that even if one is unconvinced that the crime of Apartheid applies in full to Israel, it is important to give this report time, rather than dismiss it as ‘propaganda’. If indeed the hat fits, then the implications are grave. As further noted in the same page (footnote 90):

[A]partheid has been considered in the annals of the United Nations and world public opinion to be second only to genocide in the hierarchy of criminality”,

And

Genocide and apartheid are the only two international crimes, the commission of which States have a duty to prevent.

Those who take such matters seriously, would thus do well to read the report in its entirety. I would nonetheless like to offer my appraisal as to why this report is so crucial.

The report is arguably a ground-breaking one, in that it cuts across all the formations which serve not only the fragmentation of Palestinians (in four domains – citizens, East Jerusalemites, occupied and refugees), but also the obfuscation of the discussion about Israel’s overall policy – of Apartheid. As noted in page 30:

By developing discrete bodies of law, termed “domains” in this report, for each territory and their Palestinian populations, Israel has both effected and veiled a comprehensive policy of apartheid directed at the whole Palestinian people. [my emphasis].

The notion of Israel applying Apartheid policy has already been brought forth by Virginia Tilley in a study from 2009 for the Human Sciences Research Council of South Africa (HSRC), at the request of the South African Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The study was coordinated, co-authored and edited by Tilley under the title Occupation, Colonialism, Apartheid? A Reassessment of Israel’s Practices in the Occupied Palestinian Territories under International Law. But this sort of comprehensive appraisal has not featured yet in any comprehensive UN report.

The methodical comparison to the 1973 Apartheid convention provides a ‘checklist’ that is satisfied almost completely on all points. Nonetheless, as noted in p. 17:

[A] check-list method alone — such as looking for the “inhuman acts” mentioned in the Apartheid Convention — would be a misreading of the [Apartheid] Convention’s intention. In article II, it explicitly establishes that such acts are illustrative, not mandatory, and are crimes of apartheid only if they serve the overarching purpose of racial domination. Hence, such acts can be considered crimes of apartheid only after the existence of an “institutionalized regime of systematic oppression and domination” has been conclusively established.

Thus, the report seeks to establish two main issues concerning Israeli Apartheid policy: overarching purpose and intention.

The notion of ‘purpose’ comes from the Apartheid convention, as cited in p. 17:

For the purpose of the present Convention, the term “the crime of apartheid”, which shall include similar policies and practices of racial segregation and discrimination as practiced in southern Africa, shall apply to the following inhuman acts committed for the purpose of (emphasis added) establishing and maintaining domination by one racial group of persons over any other racial group of persons and systematically oppressing them  (article II).

The notion of ‘intent’ comes from the Rome Statute, (article 7 (2) (h), cited same page):

“The crime of apartheid” means inhumane acts of a character similar to those referred to in paragraph 1 [i.e., “when committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack directed against any civilian population, with knowledge of the attack”], committed in the context of an institutionalized regime of systematic oppression and domination by one racial group over any other racial group or groups and committed with the intention [my emphasis] of maintaining that regime.

Purpose and Intention are obviously two very crucial words. In customary criminal law, it is intention that can mark the difference between murder and unintentional manslaughter; It is purpose that can mark the difference between a rogue massacre and genocide.

The report also qualifies (footnote 20, p. 17) that

“former special rapporteurs John Dugard and Richard Falk highlighted the problem of determining when “features of apartheid” signify that an apartheid regime is operating, which would constitute a matter that might be referred to the ICJ. For both rapporteurs, the question arose with regard to the legality of the Israeli occupation. Mr. Dugard described “road apartheid” in the occupied Palestinian territory and noted that the Israeli occupation has “features” or “elements” of apartheid. However, whether Israel is constituted as an apartheid regime remained for Mr. Dugard a question still to be legally determined (A/62/275). Mr. Falk adopted a similar position (A/HRC/25/67, p. 21).”

The report was thus set to determine whether there is a systematic, overarching, purposeful and intentional Israeli policy of Apartheid – one which goes beyond partial appraisals of it in this or that territory.

While acknowledging the different domains of Israeli policy vis-á-vis Palestinians (again: citizens, East-Jerusalem ‘residents’, occupied and refugees), the report regards them as part of a whole. While Palestinians in domain 1 (citizens) are no doubt under the least oppressive circumstances of the four, still, systematic discrimination against them exists – on an established racial basis. Besides the myriad of racist laws applying to them, there is the basic notion, that they are those who did not flee the Nakba of 1948. In the section titled ‘Demographic engineering’ (p. 31), the report notes that

“the first general policy of Israel has been one of demographic engineering, in order to establish and maintain an overwhelming Jewish majority in Israel. As in any racial democracy, such a majority allows the trappings of democracy — democratic elections, a strong legislature — without threatening any loss of hegemony by the dominant racial group.”

Theoretically, one could attempt to argue that Palestinians citizens of Israel could have enjoyed completely equal rights (as Israeli apologists misleadingly do, regularly), and still the Apartheid policy could hold – in that Israel could be using them as an ‘alibi’ or ‘aberration’ to the overwhelming majority of Palestinians upon which it practices more overt and tangible Apartheid. But Israel goes way beyond that, and the report provides examples of how Apartheid applies also for Palestinian citizens of Israel.

The report also goes to a considerable extent to exclude partial, euphemistic or generalist appraisals of ‘Apartheid’, such as (p. 13):

  1. Defining only regimes consistent with the apartheid regime in South Africa as being apartheid, so that, by definition, digressions from South African practices preclude any charge of apartheid.

  2. Treating discrete practices considered to have qualities of apartheid, such as the so-called “apartheid wall” (“separation fence” or “separation barrier” in official Israeli discourse), as signifying that a State has established a comprehensive apartheid regime.

  3. Defining apartheid as the outcome of anonymous structural global forces, such as global corporate influences or neoliberalism, as enforced by Bretton Woods institutions.

  4. Defining apartheid as the aggregate body of private racist practices by the dominant society as a whole, whereby State involvement is a contingent tool for enforcing a draconian social system based on racial hierarchy, discrimination and segregation.

  5. Treating apartheid as pertaining only to Palestinian citizens of Israel, or only to Palestinians in the occupied territory, or excluding Palestinian refugees and involuntary exiles living outside territory under Israeli control.

Hence the question applied, is whether ‘Grand Apartheid’, that is, an overarching Apartheid, is applicable to Israel, in a singular and absolute sense.

One could summate and analyze much more, but the report is available for all to read. The report concludes (final page),

“on the basis of overwhelming evidence, that Israel is guilty of the crime of apartheid”.

This is no light notion. Apartheid is a crime against humanity – as mentioned, second only to Genocide.

If the scholarly integrity of this conclusion is to be criticized, it should follow a serious, detailed and scholarly review. The tarnish campaign by Israel and USA has so far not even addressed the critical issues brought forth by the report. It would appear that the intent is to bury it altogether, and avoid the discussion.

While the report reads cogently like a book, it was not meant as a book. It was meant as a tool for political action. Although its official path through the UN appears to have been blocked, it should serve as an important tool for study, appraisal and activism.

The discussion is now in the open, whether Israel and its patrons like it or not.

DANCING THROUGH THE OCCUPATION

Let’s talk about Palestine, giving the podium to an artist who lives in occupied Palestine. He’s Maher Shawamreh, a dance teacher and director of the school of art in Ramallah. In the interview with us he explains how dance communicates peace by extending the soul, and in this way reaching beyond the walls built by intolerance and war.

Maher Shawamreh: Through dance we communicate all cultures of the world

by Antonietta Chiodo,  English Translation by John Catalinotto

He speaks of his love for the arts he teaches daily with the support of his colleagues the Orient & Dance Theatre. His students are children and teenagers. Communication takes place through the vibrations of the body and music. Maher, a man who grew up in a state of siege, managed to create in this modern era the ability to dissolve words and bring peace to life on the stage with the ability to unite different cultures and languages.

As a teacher and highly developed artist he has been allowed in recent years to get a foothold in the West through his shows, and can boast of collaborations with artists from various countries. His ability to draw comparisons and to make use of the arts has enabled him to continually outdo himself regarding technique, using bodily communication to convey freedom to the audiences.

When did you start your engagement with dance and what made you realize that was your life’s path?

As a young man I studied electrical engineering. My career in contemporary dance officially started in 1996. In 1999 I started to do some shows in various regions of Palestine and other countries. I supported myself by working in the workshops. A few years later I started doing more ambitious interpretations, supported by works by works of artists at the high level of Mahmoud Darwish and Ghassan Kanafani. Then I became definitely aware that I could no longer escape or be distracted from dance. It had taken hold of my life and filled my thoughts. To make it clearer, let me explain that dancing is not life itself, but it is my journey in search of my identity. Through dance I became part of the universe and came into contact with God (Allah). Nowadays I realized that dance is a cure, a miracle drug.

Why in human history have artists proven the most valuable ambassadors of peace?

Humans communicate with each other in different languages, in French, Arabic, Italian, Spanish … it is our job to understand each other to the end and apply outselves to the search for different semantic content. Art is a universal language and does not need a specific grammar to be understood. Dance is body language. Awakening sensations and vibrations, dance merges nature and soul. In this way it establishes a communication with the spirit, moved by Allah. At that point you realize that God loves you and through that message you find your inner peace. At the moment in which a body dances, Allah puts the universe in motion. Creating transforms itself into a movement, giving life to a permanent dance. The dance and music give rise to immortality for those who interpret it as well as for those who observe them.

How would you imagine a dance show with Western artists and Palestinians? What music would you choose?

As I mentioned before, dance is the extension of the word of Allah through the body and produces our sensations. We can share this in all the languages ​​of the world. By listening passively, we can touch our souls. We can reflect on ourselves dancing without feeling any fear. Also, dance allows us to simultaneously share different cultures and languages. That’s what I try to convey through my art. I love to dance with live music, moving not only my body but also my soul. The audience that watches my dance convinces me that dance has no boundaries. In fact, it includes the land, the olive trees, the eagle, the rocks, the sea … an elderly woman. It would be necessary to express ourselves freely in the central square of a market to overcome our own personal inner deficiencies through artistic expression. That’s my art expressed in words.

With what secret did you help your students overcome their fear of failing?

My students should be content with themselves and erase everything from their concious thoughts when they dance. Only in this way will they eliminate tensions. I learned to separate from my stress, fleeing far away. When I enter the room and see the first student, all my feelings become positive. And I exist only in that single moment. Through dance, the rage that is intrisic to human beings tends to lose itself in the movements, finally managing to completely dissolve. Dance is capable of creating tolerance. Dancing is like escape for the soul from life and from the world around us.

Have you ever been afraid that one of your students could be taken away by Israeli soldiers?

No, we are not afraid, we were born under occupation.

 

Originally posted AT

HAMMERING NAILS IN THE COFFIN OF FREEDOM

The latest Zionist nail to be hammered into the coffin for freedom of expression occurred last week when the disingenuous U.S. ambassador to the UN — the Indian American Sikh Nikki Haley —  hypocritically expressed superpower outrage and condemnation while calling for the withdrawal of a UN report that quite justifiably accused Israel of establishing an “apartheid regime.”

The Powerful Pro-Israel Lobby’s Denial Of The Inalienable Right To Freedom Of Expression Must Be Met With Obdurate Resistance For The Sake Of All Humanity

by William Hanna
“. . . recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice, and peace in the world . . . ” and “ . . . the advent of a world in which human beings shall enjoy freedom of speech and belief and freedom from fear and want has been proclaimed as the highest aspiration of the common people . . . ”
Preamble to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights as adopted by the United Nations General Assembly.
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The latest Zionist nail to be hammered into the coffin for freedom of expression occurred last week when the disingenuous U.S. ambassador to the UN — the Indian American Sikh Nikki Haley —  hypocritically expressed superpower outrage and condemnation while calling for the withdrawal of a UN report that quite justifiably accused Israel of establishing an “apartheid regime.” This abysmal denial of an irrefutable reality was followed by the resignation of Rima Khalaf — the head of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) — who had refused the subservient secretary-general’s demand that she withdraw the report. Needless to say, Israel’s resolve to censor the unpalatable truth of its criminal violations prevailed and the following report was disgracefully removed from the UN website:
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In January of last year Makarim Wibisono, the UN investigator for human rights violations in the Palestinian territories resigned because Israel had reneged on its pledge to grant him permission to enter the West Bank and Gaza with all his repeated oral and written requests for access over a period of 18 months being completely ignored. In a statement announcing his resignation, Wibisono, who reported to the U.N. Human Rights Council (HRC), voiced “deep concern at the lack of effective protection of Palestinian victims of continuing human rights violations and violations of international humanitarian law.” Israel had long rejected the post of the independent investigator for the territories, accusing the 47-member state forum of bias against the Jewish state, a position supported by its pro-Israel politically shackled and totally unprincipled so-called government of the United States of America.
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In June 2013, after Richard Falk — Special rapporteur for Palestinian territories whose annual report on Israel’s violations of Palestinian human rights was due to be presented to the HRC — said the NGO UN Watch should be investigated to ensure it was not not controlled by Israel, the ever obliging U.S representative to the Human Rights Council, Eileen Chamberlain Donahoe, called for his resignation. In his annual report, Falk condemned what he called Israel’s continued occupation of the Palestinians: “Israel continues to annex Palestinian territory; Israel persists in demolishing Palestinians’ homes and populating Palestine with Israeli citizens; Israel maintains a policy of collectively punishing 1.75 million Palestinians through its imposition of a blockade on the Gaza Strip; and Israel prosecutes its occupation with impunity, refusing to accept the world’s calls to respect international law.” Falk also repeated his previous calls for a boycott of companies conducting business with Israel or Israelis in the West Bank.
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The global extent and and well financed power of insidious Pro-Israel lobby networks, mainstream media watchdog organisations, and paid for social media activism to combat the so-called “New anti-Semitism” and the “delegitimisation of Israel” — otherwise known as stating the true facts with regards to Israeli violations — represents a zealously relentless effort to stifle any criticism of the crimes committed by an Apartheid Jewish state with blatant and unashamed impunity.
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Such unrelenting vigilance ensures that the mainstream media self-censors reports which are consequently written from the Israeli perspective; that even some of the supposed “independent” media organisations are inhibited by the fear of causing offence to Jewish sensibilities; that most Western political leaders and politicians routinely proclaim Israel’s “right to defend itself” as the “most moral” and “only democracy” in the Middle East; that pro-Palestinian events — especially on college and university campuses — are viciously besmirched or forced to cancel; that teaching professors critical of Israeli polices are either intimidated into silence or fired; and that the public’s right to freedom of expression does not extend to criticism of Israel which would be tantamount to that historic hatred for Jews on which the unprincipled ideology of Zionism is so dependent and exploits with ruthless precision.
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Apart from U.S. Congressional and White House subservience to every Israeli wish and whim, other Western governments are equally obliging in ceaselessly promoting the false premise that any pro-Palestinian activism by human rights organisations or individuals constitutes anti-Semitism. So while Apartheid Israelis continue to stand knee-deep in the blood of ethnically cleansed Palestinians, spineless bought and paid for Western leaders such Britain’s Theresa May who — despite the secretly filmed claim by an Israeli embassy official that he had persuaded the British government to adopt procurement guidelines that prevent local authorities and the NHS from boycotting Israeli goods — has continued to hypocritically regard Israel as “remarkable” and “tolerant”; Germany’s Angela Merkel whose Christian Democratic Union decried the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel as “coarse anti-Semitism”; and Canada’s Justin Trudeau who in March 2015 — in an effort to muster Jewish support — attacked student organisers and questioned their right to free speech by expressing the view that “the BDS [boycott, divestment and sanctions] movement, like Israeli Apartheid Week, has no place on Canadian campuses.” The suppression of free speech on Canadian campuses is no different to that being rigorously  implemented on U.S. colleges and universities.
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Israel’s global propaganda — otherwise known as hasbara, or “explanation” — combined with the tenacious lobbying of pro-Israel groups has been so successful that Israeli government ministers no longer feel the need to feign interest in meaningless peace negotiations for a two-state solution as a means of playing for more time to facilitate illegal Jewish settlement expansion. Many of them have now publicly proclaimed that “there will never be a Palestinian state,” with their defiance stemming from the knowledge that irrespective of what they say or do, the rest of the world will neither care nor dare to do anything about it.
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By firmly implanting and exploiting the fear of being labelled an “anti-Semite” or “Holocaust denier” within the minds of most citizens in the Western world so as to preclude any criticism of Israel, pro-Israel activism has successfully maintained an unprecedented assault against freedom of expression on three fronts — official censorship, unofficial censorship, and self-censorship — which if not opposed are all undeniable forms of contemptible complicity in Israel’s barbaric crimes against humanity in general, and the Palestinian people in particular.
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“If I were to remain silent, I’d be guilty of complicity.”
                                               Albert Einstein
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Originally published AT

IS THE MOON THE ONLY SAFE PLACE FROM THE ISRAEL LOBBY

How long can the “special” relationship to the “Jewish State” be allowed to lead to the discrimination and marginalisation of Israel’s critics and pro-Palestinian activists in Germany? 

Or must we go to the moon to be safe from the Israel lobby?

You can be safe from the Israel Lobby, but only on the moon!

by Evelyn Hecht-Galinski, Translated by Dr. Milena Rampoldi

The Holocaust, the clash of civilisations, can no longer be exploited to make us blindly accept today’s crimes by a people who were victims in the past. In replacing anti-Semitism, Philo-Semitism has assumed alarming dimensions and must not become a new, forward-pressing power.

In fact, the community of hypocritical states, and particularly Germany, will be again guilty of the dehumanization of another people.

With its Zionist state ideology, consequently practised since 1948 including dispossession, land grabbing, and ethnic cleansing of Palestine — all protected and financially supported by the U.S., Europe, and Germany in particular — the “Jewish State” has definitively abandoned all moral values so that for a long time now the term “values” has become a phrase for the values of hypocrites.

If the “Jewish State” calls itself the “only democracy in the Middle East,” then we have to strongly oppose it. How can the Israeli state, which is neither Judaic nor democratic, call itself “democratic”? Readers will certainly ask themselves why I always write “Jewish State” instead of “Israel”: Since this Zionist land grabbing state would like to be recognised as “Jewish State” instead of a state for all citizens, including Palestinians. And this is a completely anti-democratic intention!

In addition, all criticism of its crimes against international law and human rights are denigrated as anti-Semitism and hatred towards Jews, and the activists of the BDS campaign for a Free Palestine must be silenced. And exactly for this reason, the BDS movement is a thorn in the side of the “Jewish Occupiers‘state“ and the Israel lobby. However, Federica Mogherini, the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, defends the BDS movement. In October 2016 she condemned attacks against human rights advocates and affirmed the right of European citizens to freedom of speech and assembly. Unfortunately, many EU states do not comply with this principle. (1)

In the meantime, in the “Jewish State” not only NGOs and government-critical media are restricted with undemocratic laws. Also the Palestinian citizens and Jewish activists engaging for the BDS are pursued.

Travel bans do not stop in front of prominent Jewish intellectuals like Chomsky and Finkelstein. And we are waiting for criticism in vain! People would surely scream if it was about Turkey or Russia. However, in this case it is just about the “Jewish State” . . .

How is it possible that Germany and other EU states prohibit this right and drag it into the dirt under pressure of the “Jewish State” and Israel lobby?

In the end, the BDS movement has only one goal; Israel has to comply with its obligation to recognise the inalienable right of Palestinians to self-determination; has to stop the illegal occupation and colonisation of Palestine; has to remove the Apartheid wall running through the land stolen from the Palestinians; has to recognize the basic right of Palestinian-Israeli citizens for complete equality and to guarantee, respect, protect and request the legal rights of return of the dispossessed Palestinian refugees to their homeland Palestine and to their property, as agreed in the UN Resolution 194. When will the “Jewish State” recognize and apply Resolution 194? Finally, this was the condition for the acceptance of Israel in the United Nations! (2)

All these requests and objectives were confirmed in an endless number of UN resolutions. However, the ruling of the International Court of Justice, declaring that the construction of the Apartheid Wall in the occupied Palestinian territory was illegal, was ignored by the “Jewish State” like numerous other UN resolutions against the illegal settlements, and the violations against international law and human rights. Only one resolution was recognised by the “Jewish State”: the UN resolution 181, known as UN Partition Plan of 29 November 1947.

How can it be that every Jewish citizen has to right to go back to his/her alleged “homeland,” with all civil rights, while the dispossessed Palestinians are deprived of those rights? Is that democratic? No, it is not. It is deeply ethnocratic and racist!

All talk is just about “Muslim terrorism,” forgetting Jewish terrorists and political state terrorists who promote this kind of terrorism. Where in the world is there a state calling for the “murder of Arabs,” where children throwing stones are given more severe sentences than Jewish “Defence Soldiers” murdering Palestinians and subsequently being hailed as heroes and given “Man of the year” awards? Where is there a state where the majority of the Jewish population defends these murderers?

And why does this “Jewish State” recognised by the international community which up to now refuses to determine its borders continue to insist on the recognition of its own “right to exist”? And what is worse, how is it possible that a German federal government makes of this ominous “existence right” a reason of state and in addition forces refugees to accept this “existence right” as condition for an integration which “needs values”, decreeing it an “identity-forming lead culture”?

Is it not a travesty when the Central Council of Jews in Germany asks from the Muslim refugees to recognize the existence right of a state which has been refusing for decades to recognize the existence right of an independent Palestinian state and does not distance itself from the crimes against international law and human rights and the illegal Jewish occupation? Being afraid of the refugees bringing their denial of Israel and anti-Semitism to Germany, they exactly achieve the opposite, promoting a collective prejudice against refugees. Is this part of the tasks of the Central Council of Jews in Germany?

While at the moment there is such a hot debate about Turkish ministers talking at election meetings in Germany, there has never been such a discussion for Israeli politicians calling German and French citizens of Jewish faith to “come home to their homeland Israel.” Just a second: these “returnees” are preferably housed in illegal settlements. Why does nobody among politicians or intellectuals opposed to this in Germany? Why is there a double standard when it is about Jews or Israel?

Why today are we again witnessing Israeli lobby pressure that closes BDS bank accounts, restricts activists, and denies Jewish peace activists, scientists, and teachers agreed spaces controversial events and discussions being cancelled and universities withdrawing teaching assignments and the freedom to teach. Nip things in the bud!

Again in Germany “good” and “bad” Jews are selected. However, this time this results from the cooperation of the world of politics and the Israel lobby, some media and Christian Zionists. The “Christian-Jewish community of values” is giving up all moral values, and has found its mission in the war against “Islamic terrorism” as the new bogeyman.

The insidious “Israelization” of Germany is in full swing. How can you take an occupier state as a model and forget the 50 years long illegal occupation of Palestine?

Instead of celebrating government consultations with a Jewish regime of occupiers, Germany should put pressure on the “Jewish State” and threaten it with sanctions. When it was about Russia, Merkel was in the frontline!

Does all this correspond to “our” values and to the values of our constitution? How can Mum Merkel prescribe the German reason of state for the security of the “Jewish State,” a state committing genocide during the last attack against Gaza about which there will not be any Parliamentary Session. Merkel even called the Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu and expressed her solidarity with him and the “security” of his country. A questionable security the Western nations, led by the USA and Germany, will finance

with massive military expenditures and tax gifts permitting the illegal occupation and the attacks.

Israel is a highly-armed nuclear power and is a danger for world peace. It is only waiting to attack Lebanon or Iran. Günter Grass, one of the few serious intellectuals, said this, and was damned and defamed. I can personally confirm how deeply the Nobel laureate for literature and the sincere SPD politicians were struck by this defamation campaign.

Up to now I have been missing the partisanship of the elite, the intellectuals, the officeholders, and the  “sincere ones of the socialist party,” when it is about the freedom for Palestine. They all remain cowardly silent when it is about the decades-long and well-documented crimes against the international law and human rights committed in the “Jewish State.” They simply fear to be labelled as anti-Semites.

This hypocrisy affects me a lot. If we look at the numerous wars and interventions we have been involved in up to now, including the Nobel prize for peace winner, the EU, and former US president Obama, we see how our “democratic values” have become a ridiculous parody. And the newly-elected US president Trump supports do the “Jewish State” in its rapacious settlement policies.

Because of its alleged “special” relationship, Germany and its government is obliged to convince its friends of the Jewish state to recognize international law and UN resolutions, and to guarantee to the Palestinians their inalienable right for self-determination, which should be a democratic self-evident fact for a German State, which in Article 1 of its constitution says that human dignity applies to all (Palestinians included) and is indivisible. This should apply also to a “Jewish State” being the alleged only democracy in the Middle East. However, until now, this has not occurred for decades.

The freedom of speech and teaching must apply also to the critics of the Israeli policies and must be defenced. This is what I expect from the German elite, who cowardly retreat  in silence when it is about Israel. Where is the solidarity with the universities where the Israel lobby deeply interferes with the freedom of teaching?

Do we also want that here in Germany teachers engaging for a free Palestine have to emigrate, as many Israeli intellectuals do? Let us think about Ilan Pappe, teaching in exile in Exeter today. Also he should not have a ban on speaking in Germany as a descendant of Holocaust survivors only because of the pressure by the Israel lobby.

We should oppose together to the title of my book “Das elfte Gebot:Israel darf alles” (English translation of the title: The 11th Commandment: Israel is allowed to do all).

And to the question of FAZ on the occasion of a controversy at the court with the Jewish Spiegel-Welt journalist and islamophobe porno writer H.M. Broder “What is a Jewish woman in Germany allowed to say against Israel?” I would like to answer: “All, of course, and in particular the truth!” More or less polemically, but straight from the heart! And I do not want to avoid doing that!

Or must we go to the moon to be safe from the Israel lobby?

 

Originally posted AT

‘HOW DARE THEY CONDEMN OUR APARTHEID!’

The report, titled “Israeli Practices towards the Palestinian People and the Question of Apartheid,” says that “available evidence establishes beyond a reasonable doubt that Israel is guilty of policies and practices that constitute the crime of apartheid as legally defined in instruments of international law.”

DON’T WORRY, BE HAPPY WITH APARTHEID!

Israel fumes as UN board slams its ‘apartheid, racial domination’ over Palestinians

Jerusalem’s envoy urges UN chief to reject ‘biased and deceitful’ report by Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia

Israel’s ambassador to the United Nations slammed the UN’s Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) on Wednesday after the commission released a report accusing Israel of establishing “an apartheid regime that oppresses and dominates the Palestinian people as a whole.”

The report, titled “Israeli Practices towards the Palestinian People and the Question of Apartheid,” says that “available evidence establishes beyond a reasonable doubt that Israel is guilty of policies and practices that constitute the crime of apartheid as legally defined in instruments of international law.”

The Beirut-based commission slammed Israel’s Law of Return, “conferring on Jews worldwide the right to enter Israel and obtain Israeli citizenship regardless of their countries of origin and whether or not they can show links to Israel-Palestine, while withholding any comparable right from Palestinians, including those with documented ancestral homes in the country,” as a policy of “demographic engineering” meant to uphold Israel’s status as the Jewish state.

The report further accuses Israel of “practices” that have fragmented Palestinians, arguing that it is the “principal method by which Israel imposes an apartheid regime.”

“This fragmentation operates to stabilize the Israeli regime of racial domination over the Palestinians and to weaken the will and capacity of the Palestinian people to mount a unified and effective resistance,” the report reads.

Danny Danon, Israel’s UN envoy, hit back at the report, saying the “attempt to smear and falsely label the only true democracy in the Middle East by creating a false analogy is despicable and constitutes a blatant lie.”

“It comes as no surprise that an organization headed by an individual who has called for boycotts against Israel, and compared our democracy to the most terrible regimes of the twentieth century, would publish such a report. We call on the Secretary General to disassociate the UN from this biased and deceitful report,” he said in reference to ESCWA Executive Secretary Rima Khalaf, a Jordanian national.

The report was compiled by Richard Falk, a Princeton professor emeritus with a long track record of vehemently anti-Israel rhetoric who previously was the UN’s Special Rapporteur for Human Rights in Palestine, and by Virginia Tilley, an American political scientist who authored the book “The One-State Solution” in 2005.

At a press conference accompanying the release of the report, Falk said the document and its findings “come after 50 years of frustrated diplomacy that failed to find a way to liberate the Palestinian people from oppression and denial of rights.”

Tilley said “it has become entirely clear that we’re longer talking about risk of apartheid but practice of apartheid.”

“There is an urgency for a response as Palestinians are currently suffering from this regime,” she said.

FROM

Related Post (Click on link)

US demands UN pull report accusing Israel of apartheid

Envoy Nikki Haley says Washington outraged by publication; Sec-Gen Guterres distances self from it; Israel slams it as ‘despicable’

IT’S OFFICIAL ~~ ISRAEL IS ON THE ROAD TO FASCISM

First a flashback to the 60’s …. There was a joke circulating that went something like this … An American and a Soviet were having a discussion. The American said “I live in a Democracy, I can call President Kennedy a bastard and nothing will happen to me”. The Soviet responded, “I too live in a Democracy, I can also call President Kennedy a bastard and nothing will happen to me”.

Now, a look at ‘The Only Democracy in the Middle East” ….

U.S.-born Jeff Halper, cofounder of the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions, was held after leading a tour of the E1 area across the road from the Israeli settlement of Ma’aleh Adumim.

Police Detain Prominent Israeli Activist for Alleged Possession of BDS Material
Yotam Berger

Police detained prominent left-wing activist Jeff Halper last Wednesday at the Ma’aleh Adumim settlement, for suspected incitement, saying they acted on a complaint he had “materials related to BDS” in his possession.

Halper, who moved to Israel from the United States in 1973, was picked up after leading a tour of foreigners to the E1 site across the road from the settlement and transported by police van to a nearby station then released without being placed under arrest.

Police officers photographed the posters and maps he was holding before freeing him. Halper denies handing out any material related to BDS during the tour, or even discussing the boycott movement.

Handing out such materials would not have been in violation of the law, even a 2011 anti-boycott law according to which a person or an organization calling for the boycott of Israel, including the settlements, can be sued by the boycott’s targets without them having to prove that they sustained any damage.

The law also denies a person or a company that declares a boycott of Israel or the settlements eligibility to bid for government tenders. A separate law passed this month entitles Israel to deny entry to pro-BDS activists.

Halper, cofounder of the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions, told Haaretz he was on a tour with foreign visitors in the territories last Wednesday. He took the group of 15 to a lookout over Area E1, near Ma’aleh Adumim.

“It’s a good place to show them this context of where Ma’aleh Adumim is located relative to Jerusalem. It’s a regular stop on our tours, this wasn’t the first time I was taking a group to this spot,” Halper said.

After the tour the tourists boarded a bus headed north and he headed to catch a bus to Jerusalem, but “as I ran toward a bus, I saw police in the area, and I saw them talking and contacting the group. I called the Palestinian driver (of the bus transporting the tourists) and he said he had heard a rumor that we were distributing BDS material.”

“Suddenly the bus came to a stop in the Middle of Maaleh Adumim, after two stops, the police boarded the bus and told me, you are being detained, and they took me off the bus,” Halper said.

Halper was questioned about the material he had.

“They didn’t tell me why I was being detained; they said something about BDS, but no details. They put me into a van, which is unpleasant as it is. They drove me in the direction of the police station. Just when we got to the station they stopped and asked me a few questions about what I had in my bag and whether I had any BDS material in the bag.

“We got out of the vehicle and they threw my maps on the van, the maps were of Jerusalem and the greater Jerusalem area. There was also something on which it was written BDS for BDS, it’s something that I use. I say that we have no solution to offer and I propose a binational democratic state, so I have the slogan that goes BDS for BDS. It’s not a sticker or flyer, but just a map with those words on it.

“They found it and took it, wrote up a summons or something like that, and released me,” Halper said.

Halper said the police refused to give him a copy of the ticket or explain what he was suspected of.

In response to a query from Haaretz, the Samaria regional police said:
“There is no investigation into this matter. There was information checked by a patrol once it became clear he committed no violations, he was freed.”
Police spokespeople said the suspicion against him is “incitement” but he was released after questioning, and no further investigation was expected to take place.

Jeff Halper from his Facebook page. Credit Facebook

Also this weekend ….

British pro-BDS activist barred from entering Israel

Week after Knesset passes law banning foreign nationals who call for boycotts, ex-chair of Palestine Solidarity Campaign Hugh Lanning denied entry

Full report HERE

Israel is quickly getting there …

ISRAEL’S BDS BAN IS PROOF THAT WE ARE WINNING

A new law denying entry to foreigners who call for a boycott of Israel or the settlements shows the BDS movement is gaining strength — and Israel is “panicking.”

Cornel West Says Israel’s BDS Ban Shows Boycott Push Is Winning

Cornel West says a new law denying entry to foreigners who call for a boycott of Israel or the settlements shows the BDS movement is gaining strength — and Israel is “panicking.”

“lt’s a sign of panic, a sign of hysteria, a very sad response to an intense situation,” the African-American philosopher said. “Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel would turn in his grave thinking about the spiritual blackout that is occurring in Israel.”

West has publicly supported BDS for years, and as such, is one of the prominent public figures who could be denied entry under the new law.

West, who supported Bernie Sanders in the Democratic presidential primaries, says he’s worried about Israeli democracy.

The law “shows that BDS is getting stronger but it also shows that any critique of the settlements, any critique of the ugly occupation is grounds for excluding people from the country,” he says.

“What about the people inside the country?,” he asks. “People who live right there, in Tel Aviv, are you going to say they don’t have the right to be inside their own country? That is what authoritarian regimes do. It’s just sad to see Israel move more and more in that authoritarian direction.”

 

IF YOU HATE GAYS YOU MUST HATE WOMEN AS WELL

More ‘wisdom’ from the Neanderthal Rabbinate

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Yigal Levinstein tells graduates of a pre-army religious academy that IDF turns Jewish women into unattractive ‘non-Jews’ by eroding their values

 

A controversial rabbi who runs a pre-army religious academy told new IDF recruits that military service drives female soldiers “crazy” and strips them of their Jewishness.

In footage broadcast by Channel 2 news on Tuesday, Rabbi Yigal Levinstein told several hundred graduates of a prestigious religious army preparatory academy in the West Bank settlement of Bnei Atzmon that IDF service has “driven our girls crazy.”

“They recruit them to the army, where they enter as Jews, but they’re not Jews by the time they leave,” he said. “Not in the genetic sense, but all of their values and priorities have been upset and we must not allow it.”

If you want, the report continues HERE

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Read the following to see what he said about gays …. (Click on link)

Israel Army Rabbi Calls Gays ‘Perverts’ — Says No Need To Prevent Civilian Deaths

Here’s what Morgan Freeman had to say …

 

RICHARD GERE BREAKS HIS SILENCE ON THE OCCUPATION

Richard Gere calls for an end to ‘the occupation’

Arriving in Israel to promote his new movie Norman, directed by Joseph Cedar and starring Israeli actor Lior Ashkenazi, Gere is uncertain as to how he will be received by the public given his recent comments on the political situation.

Richard Gere (center) visits Temple Mount

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Hollywood star Richard Gere is in Israel promoting his new movie Norman, by Israeli director Joseph Cedar. However, the question of how he will be received by the Israeli public is a matter of uncertainty.”In my past visits to Israel, I always heard all the viewpoints. Now it has become almost impossible. I know many people will not like what I have to say, but these are things that need to be said,” said Gere.

“The occupation must end. The occupation is ruining everyone on both sides. A bi-national state won’t solve anything, and it will only turn Israel into an apartheid state. There needs to be two states for two peoples, with Jerusalem as the capital of both nations.

In his comments, Gere also referred to the issue of settlements, saying, “Why do you need all these provocations? How is it that the settlers are running the government? And how could it be that Israel, of all nations, controls another nation? Many Israelis that I know say the state has lost its way and I think that every Israeli knows that.”

During his visit to Israel, Gere is also planning on meeting members of Breaking the Silence. He knows that this will be poorly received, but he remains undeterred. “I recently spoke to someone from the organization who served in the army, a wonderful young woman with a big heart, and they’re labeling her an enemy of the state. It breaks your heart.”

Full report HERE

TODAY’S TOON ~~ FRATERNAL TWINS

Is United States under Trump becoming a twin apartheid country of Israel?

On the same day Trump signs the new Muslim Ban, Israel passes law banning BDS supporters

ISRAEL BANS BDS SUPPORTERS AS TRUMP SIGNS MUSLIM BAN 2.0

Israel passed a bill barring foreign supporters of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement for Palestinian rights or supporters of boycotting settlements from entering the country.

 

SUNDAY’S TOON ~~ JUSTIN TRUDEAU DISAPOINTS BOTH CANADA AND PALESTINE

Recent opinion polling shows that Canadians support sanctions against Israel for its violations of international law; but the Liberal Party government of Justin Trudeau is nonetheless supporting Conservative resolutions aimed at condemning supporters of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS).

Image by Carlos Latuff

Justin Trudeau, caught between his people and the Israeli government

Justin Trudeau, caught between his people and the Israeli government

 

TRUMP FINDS COMMON GROUND WITH ZION

The unique in the world State which calls itself the “only democracy in the Middle East” and which since 1967 has been imposing military occupation on Palestinians with a system of illegal settlement policies and colonisation has continuously sought to emulate other  dictatorships such as North Korea. However, at least, North Korea does not claim to be the “only democracy” in Asia!

super-zionist-trump-640x360

What Zionists and Trump have in common: they cannot stand the truth!

By Evelyn Hecht-Galinski, English Translation by Milena Rampoldi
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And as “involved“ people we have long known how the “Jewish State” uses violence against human rights activists and organisations who are critical and tell the truth about its human rights and international law violations. The way the “Jewish State” treats Jewish and foreign human rights organisations should prompt us to ask ourselves: How long should we accept our tax money being used to support the maintenance of this Zionist occupation and oppression? And how long should the double standard apply for the “Jewish State“? The “particular” relationship must finally be normalised!
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How should we react to the fact that German banks, under the threat of pressure from outside, cancel accounts of Jewish groups only because  they support the legal and non-violent BDS campaign? Jewish activists are denigrated by the representatives of the “Jewish State” as traitors and Capos! It is simply outrageous and unbearable that today again and again Jewish activists are denunciated by the Israel lobbyists and their political and “Christian-Jewish“ helpers as “bad Jews“. They are prohibited from speaking because the Israeli campaign journalists make sure that German politicians and bankers are opposed to BDS supporters and Israel critics. On the other hand, all politicians and supporters of the “Jewish State” are guilty because they defend an illegal occupation policy violating international law!
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In the meantime, Trump again and again goes away from the democratic rules of the game in the USA. After his lost court decision, he tried to impose an even harder entry ban against Muslims (let us hope that his jurists will not succeed!). In his dangerous national-socialist world order Muslims are divided into not convenient and convenient Muslims according to the principle: “We determine who is a Muslim, and who is not!” And the “Jewish State” and the Israel lobby follow the same patterns; to critics entry stops and deportation are imposed. And also Jews, if they criticise Israel or support the BDS campaign, are divided into “good” and “bad” Jews.
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The collision course started by the Netanyahu Regime also against U.S. organisations and U.S. citizens, and actually against Human Rights Watch (HRW), proves only how safe this regime feels, reinforced by the support of the Trump Administration. A particularly blatant case is the one of the regional director of Human Rights Watch, U.S. citizen and Muslim Omar Shakir being refused entry permission toIsrael. This case is a new dimension of the internationalisation of the Jewish occupation regime in its struggle against the U.S. human rights organisation.
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In the letter published by the Israeli Immigration Office about HRW, HRW is accused of being in the service of Palestinian propaganda while mendaciously working under the flag of human rights. (1)
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A speaker of the Israeli Foreign Ministry called HRW an “anti-Israeli organisation,” while HRW referred to the fact that it had just written critical reports about the Israeli human rights violations, but also about Hamas and the Palestinian Authority of Abbas.
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From this point of view, the “Jewish State” is seamlessly integrated in the list of countries, from North Korea to Sudan and Uzbekistan, also refusing working permits and visas to international human rights organisations. Also the “Jewish State“ violates all the democratic rules it never complied with. HRW works in more than 90 countries all over the world. This shows that Zionists are afraid of the truth proving their human rights and international rights violations.
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Also creative artists in the “Jewish State” have for a long time been persecuted by the Netanyahu regime and the Ministry of Culture’s Miri Regev. They face the threat of not getting subsidies if they do not parry, or if they refuse to perform in illegal settlements to entertain settlers.
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While Regev started a cultural war against artists and famous Israeli artists like Davi Tartakov who call the “Jewish State” a fascist country, the Netanyahu regime and its right-wing minister go on with their fascist laws and methods. The Ministry of Education’s Naftali Bennett even put the recommendable book Borderlife by Dorit Rabynian on the index and prohibited for discussions in class because  it talks about the love of a Jewish woman towards a Palestinian. Of course, Bennett considers this reprehensible because it promotes the assimilation, and so it is not acceptable! (2) (3)
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If the outrageous, right-wing, Zionist, extra-parliamentarian  movement “Im Tirtzu” (“if you will it”) wants to strengthen Zionism by offering a free interpretation of Herzl, by denigrating artists, authors, and intellectuals, this is more than alarming. Since “Im Tirtzu” finances fifteen colleges and is represented at universities in the “Jewish State.” The organisation is structured like a fascist organisation and has woven its Zionist spider web. One of the main objectives of „”m Tirtzu” is to present the Nakba — the catastrophe of the Palestinians — as a lie – and for that they should classified as holocaust deniers! As my friend Steve Amsel says: Zionists do not fear anything more than they fear the truth.
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Also the Israeli veteran organisation “Breaking the Silence” is persecuted by Regev. What happened recently in a small art gallery in the artists‘ quarter Nachlaot in Jerusalem, reminds me the procedure of the Israel lobby in Germany! There a representative of “Breaking the Silence” should make a conference about the anonymous statements of former comrades of the “Jewish Defence Forces.” It was about IDF soldiers who were not able to deal with their conscience and the crimes they had committed in the illegally occupied West Bank and in the Gaza Strip. Immediately Regev requested from the mayor of Jerusalem, Nir Barkat, to prohibit this event in the Barbur Gallery because the speaker was the member of an “anti-Israeli” propaganda organisation spreading lies about the State of Israel and the IDF. Since the Likud member Nir Barkat could not find any reason, he invented that the municipality needed these gallery rooms for another purpose and therefore the gallery should be shut down. (4)
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However, what may be expected from a colonialist Apartheid State, whose leading politicians, from Netanyahu, Bennet, Shaked to Lieberman, defended the murderous “Jewish defence soldier“ who assassinated in cold blood a defenceless Palestinian lying on the ground with a headshot at close range. For this crime, he has been sentenced by the Israeli Military Tribunal ONLY for manslaughter for only 18 months, while Palestinian children throwing stones as an act of desperate resistance are punished more harshly than Jewish murderers! 
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Netanyahu, Bennett, and Lieberman asked for the murderer’s pardon, and it may be feared that Azaria will be pardoned after a short time in prison. More than 80% of the Jewish-Israeli population supports the IDF soldiers and call on these to immediately kill Palestinians because a “dead” Palestinian/terrorist cannot kill Jews any more, according to the Mossad principle “Kill as first!” Settlers from the illegally occupied West Bank came in droves  to free the “brave” soldier and per Internet a crowd-funding was organised for the defence of the hero, so that the parents could afford the most famous lawyers in Israel, Yoram Shettel who had already worked for the defence of the Ukrainian Demjanjuk, for the concentration camp supervisor suspect “Ivan the Terrible,” and the most spectacular case of the “rapist-President” Moshe Katzav. Azaria was even acclaimed as man of 2016. All this only shows the deep abasement of morality of this Jewish occupiers‘ regime.
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This was just the prelude, since when the Belgian Prime Minister Michel was visiting Israel, he “dared” to meet representatives of civil society, of B`Tslem and Breaking the Silence. For Netanyahu the red line was crossed, and he summoned the Belgian Ambassador on the grounds that Belgium had to decide if it would like to maintain the “anti-Israeli line.” Such a meeting organised by Merkel with the NGOs in the “Jewish State” would never be possible or desired! (5) (6)
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Since the Netanyahu regime is working on a law tightening, that obliges Israeli organisations which receive donations from abroad, to publish this in their budget every three months. This concerns in particular the left-liberal human rights organisations, in contrast with the right, subsidised organisations. Also the European government leaders like the British Theresa May and the Belgian Charles Michel, were called to do anything within their power to dry out these NGOs.
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How would it be if Jewish organisations in Germany and Europe would be obliged to publish their budget every three months and to make public their national and international donors?
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In the last edition of “Spiegel” I was alarmed by the interview with Amos Oz, who from the German point of view is the second so called peace activist after David Grossmann, and this gives me serious doubts about a normal “Jewish thinking.” Oz and Grossmann cannot imagine living as a “minority”in Palestine/Israel, and this deeply shocks me. And the frank commitment by Oz that after Trump’s election he wrote a letter to Chancellor Merkel to tell her that she is the “leader” of the free world, makes simply stuns me. This Israeli intellectual payed homage to a chancellor who made of the security of the “Jewish State” a state policy which showed solidarity with Netanyahu when he committed genocide in Gaza and whose party wants to criminalise the BDS movement and is overwhelmed with awards and honorary doctorates by the Israel lobby.
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Oz is right when he says that the Hitler-Stalin Pact has brought 60 years refusal of armament and violence. However, exactly in the “Jewish State” we have been experiencing 69 years of armament, violence, racism, and militarism. Oz is right only in one thing: the Israelis did not come as liberators, but as occupiers. If he still believes in the mantra of the Two-State-Solution because he cannot imagine a cohabitation in a State as Jewish minority, then we can imagine how beautiful the new future of Palestine will be under the guideline of Zionism over the head  of the Palestinian, local population. It will be the evil and it will be careless of the suffering of the others! (7)
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Trump and Netanyahu both use the vocabulary of totalitarian regimes, they both use compliant media for themselves, and silence “enemies” of their politics, they introduce legal entry bans, build walls, and promote racism. So it is time to be alert. Yes, the “leading media“ are right. Trump is a dangerous splitter and warmonger. Trump plans the “historical increase” of the recent military budget of 51 billion Euros, so that America will not just be great, but also the strongest nuclear power. This should make all his left and right supporters fear. It is planned to reduce international cooperation, the budget of the Foreign Ministry and the budget of the Environmental Authority EPA. The same applies to social support programs! Trump will also frustrate all those who would like to see him through the Putin glasses, since nothing will change with Russia. Also for Palestine no hope was born. On the contrary, thanks to Trump, Netanyahu feels winged to finally feel free to judaise Palestine and to engage for “Eretz Israel.”
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Also Chancellor Merkel has reacted with understanding to the request by the Trump Government to increase the German defence expenses. Germany has to meet its obligations.
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Which obligations does Merkel mean? To “lead” the provocations of the NATO in the frontline or to conduct military campaigns all over the world in order to bomb “our hypocritical values” into the world, 70 years after the liberation of Auschwitz?
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I am always critical towards media, if they write tendentious reports, or even worse, if they do not talk about something at all. For what concerns omissions, the German media are masters. In fact, US media, from New York Times to Washington Post, are definitively ahead of us in research and  clarification. Fake news media and fake politicians should be unmasked, since they are the enemies of the people. So what do Trump and Netanyahu have in common? They are dangerous racists and militarists, who cannot stand the truth.
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Originally posted AT

THE LORD EXPRESSES HIS CONCERNS ABOUT THE BDS MOVEMENT

Don’t let the title fool you ….. we are NOT talking about THE LORD, but rather the former Chief Rabbi of Britain.

What he has to say in this animated video is pretty pathetic.

Lord Sacks releases anti-BDS animation video

Former Chief Rabbi says the growing boycott campaign is not about human rights but eliminating Israel.

Full report HERE

And here is why WE support the BDS Movement

NOTHING IS NO LONGER SACRED IN THE HOLY LAND

The LED light blinks every time a program accesses a computer's hard drive. That means cyber predators can get into the hard drive through it.

The LED light blinks every time a program accesses a computer’s hard drive. That means cyber predators can get into the hard drive through it.

FRIGHTENING, BUT TRUE

Any passing drone can read your worst secrets — even if you aren’t linked to the internet.

Israeli Drone Can Read Your Computer’s Secrets

If your computer is “air-gapped” (i.e. not plugged into any network) it’s safe, right?

Well, as the Stuxnet virus that infected Iranian computers and destroyed their nuclear centrifuges showed — not so much. The real trick is to infect the air-gapped computer, and there are plenty of human weak links.

However, if the aim is to steal information, rather than just destroy hardware, software or data, things are trickier.

That’s where Mordechai Guri and his team at the Cyber Security Research Center come in. From the guys who brought you US Bee where malware causes a regular USB thumb drive to emit particular electromagnetic waves that another computer with a simple antennae can pick up and decode, comes LED-It-Go.

The system is outlined and contextualized in an article by Wired, but essentially, the malware convinces the blinking LEDs common to Windows system computers to blink super-fast and to reveal information to a drone with a video camera that is as far away as video contact can be effectively established.

So the wrong card in your computer and any passing drone can read your worst secrets — even if you aren’t linked to the internet.

Fortunately the security patch for this is as simple as a pair of scissors and some duct tape to tape over the LEDs. But next time might be more difficult.

ILLUSIONS OF DEMOCRACY

More than 200 European legal scholars have signed a statement affirming that the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement for Palestinian freedom, justice and equality represents “a lawful exercise of freedom of expression.” 

I see democracy hanging on by a mere thread in most places where democracy is claimed to be exercised.

I see democracy hanging on by a mere thread in most places where democracy is claimed to be exercised.

The West’s Comforting Illusions Of Democracy — But Without Any Significant Political Representation

by William Hanna
Despite legal recognition of that fact, however, the BDS movement as it gathers momentum and becomes more effective, is having its activities criminalised while being increasingly attacked — in order to discredit its lawful and peaceful support for the legal and human rights of the Palestinian people — for allegedly promoting discrimination and/or anti-Semitism.
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A recently released Ekos poll has, however, discovered that 46 percent of Canadians, including a majority of those supporting every party except the Conservatives, had a negative view of Israel. The Canadian government was regarded as having a pro-Israel bias by 61 per cent of respondents, while 91 percent did not think criticism of Israeli government policies was necessarily anti-semitic. The results suggest that Canada’s major political parties are out of step with the Canadian people on those issues. Furthermore, during almost 18 months in office, the Trudeau government had voted against no less than sixteen UN resolutions critical of Israel.
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The apparent discrepancy between how people view Israel’s Apartheid policies and the unconditional support provided for such policies by their elected representatives is not a conundrum requiring  exceptional powers of deduction: the answer is simply “blackmail, bribery, and bullying.”
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In his insightful book, They Dare to Speak Out, Paul Findley stated that during J.F. Kennedy’s campaign for president in 1960, he had a meeting with some prominent Jews. Kennedy was very insulted when one of the Jews said they knew Kennedy’s campaign was in financial difficulty and that he and his Jewish friends would “help and help significantly” John Kennedy’s campaign if, as president, Kennedy “would allow them to set the course of Middle East policy over the next four years.”
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That meeting convinced JFK that he should seek a law that would have the U.S. Treasury pay a set and equal amount for all politicians running for president who secured a to be determined percentage of signatures of the people supporting their campaign. In his 1991 book The Samson Option: Israel’s Nuclear Arsenal and American Foreign Policy, Seymour Hersh stated that Kennedy  “saw this as the only way to prevent the nightmare of today, which has not only the President, but the overwhelming majority of people in Congress bought and paid for by the very powerful Israeli lobby.”
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Such brazen subversion of American democracy by the Jewish lobby had already been ongoing long before the 1960s because shortly after his inauguration in March 1913 as the 28th President of the United States, Woodrow Wilson was visited in the White House by Ashkenazi Jew, Samuel Untermyer, of law firm, Guggenheim, Untermyer, and Marshall. Untermyer tried to blackmail Wilson for $40,000 with regards to an affair Wilson had with a fellow professor’s wife at Princeton University. As Wilson did not have the money, Untermyer offered to pay the $40,000 himself to the woman in question on condition that Wilson promised to appoint a nominee recommended by Untermyer to the first available vacancy on the United States Supreme Court which subsequently occurred when Louis Brandeis became the first Jewish Justice on the highest U.S. federal court.
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Brandeis then became active in the Federation of American Zionists thereby providing the nascent American Zionist movement with a most distinguished man in American life and a friend of the next president; devoted a great deal of his time, energy, and money to championing the Zionist cause; and was elected president of the Provisional Executive Committee for Zionist Affairs which was established after the outbreak of World War One in Europe when the divided allegiance of the World Zionist Organisation’s membership had made it impotent. As the leader and spokesperson of American Zionism from 1914 to 1918, Brandeis embarked on a speaking tour in the fall and winter of 1914–1915 to trump up support for the Zionist cause by emphasising the goal of self-determination and freedom for Jews through the development of a Jewish homeland. Similar self determination and freedom, however, are concepts forbidden to the American people with the ghost of Brandeis  — in the form of the Louis D. Brandeis Centre — actively supporting Apartheid Israel while working tirelessly to oppose the effectiveness of BDS.
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Unlike most American Jews at the time, Brandies felt that while the re-creation of a Jewish national homeland was one of the key solutions to antisemitism and the “Jewish problem” in Europe and Russia, it would also be a way to “revive the Jewish spirit.” He explained the importance of Zionism in a famous speech to a conference of Reform Rabbis in April 1915 in which he also felt obliged to mention that Zionism and patriotism were compatible concepts and should not lead to charges of “dual loyalty.” Nonetheless — it was felt by many Americans — that his first allegiance was not to “we the people” of American democracy.
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“The Zionists seek to establish this home in Palestine because they are convinced that the undying longing of Jews for Palestine is a fact of deepest significance; that it is a manifestation in the struggle for existence by an ancient people which has established its right to live, a people whose three thousand years of civilisation has produced a faith, culture and individuality which enable it to contribute largely in the future, as it has in the past, to the advance of civilisation; and that it is not a right merely but a duty of the Jewish nationality to survive and develop. They believe that only in Palestine can Jewish life be fully protected from the forces of disintegration; that there alone can the Jewish spirit reach its full and natural development; and that by securing for those Jews who wish to settle there the opportunity to do so, not only those Jews, but all other Jews will be benefited, and that the long perplexing Jewish Problem will, at last, find solution.”
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Finding the solution to that “long perplexing Jewish problem,” has unfortunately come at a colossal cost not only to U.S. taxpayers with hundreds of billions of U.S. dollars in aid to Israel, but also to the Palestinian people whose almost seven decades of ethnic cleansing has included the barbaric obliteration of their heritage, history, and human rights by a mighty military machine subsidised by the U.S. government on behalf of the American people despite the fact that 46 percent of them support imposing sanctions on Israel because its defiant settlement policies.
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It would appear America’s subjugation by the Jewish lobby was also a source of amazement to the Jewish lobbyists themselves who could not believe the ease with which the goyim were hoodwinked and manipulated. In a 1976 confidential and controversial interview, Harold Wallace Rosenthal — a Jewish administrative assistant to one of America’s ranking senators, Jacob Javits R-NY — after admitting Jewish dominance in all significant national programs, said “it is a marvel that the American people do not rise up and drive every Jew out of this country.” Rosenthal added that “we Jews continue to be amazed with the ease by which Christian Americans have fallen into our hands. While the naive Americans wait for Khrushchev to bury them, we have taught them to submit to our every demand.”
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When asked how a nation could be taken over without their knowing it, Rosenthal attributed success to the absolute control of the media. He boasted of Jewish control of all news with any newspaper refusing to submit to Jewish control of news being brought to its knees by withdrawal of advertising. Failing in that, “It’s a very simple matter,” the Jews wouldstop the supply of news print and ink. As to the question of men in high political office, Rosenthal replied that no one since 1976 had achieved any political power without Jewish approval. “Americans have not had a presidential choice since 1932. Roosevelt was our man; every president since Roosevelt has been our man.”
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Whether or not the current occupant of the White House is “Israel’s man” is of no real consequence because Donald Trump’s innate racism, deranged tendencies, and undisguised promotion of Islamophobia are in any case compatible with Israel’s arrogant and arbitrary policies of barbaric discrimination, displacement, and destruction. The one potentially positive aspect of Trump’s presidency, however, is that his self obsessed insanity might hopefully wake up the otherwise somnambulant American people; alert them to the dangers threatening their fundamental rights as prescribed in the U.S. Bill of Rights; and prompt them to rise up with a righteous indignation that forcefully demands Congressional removal of a dangerous and deluded demagogue.
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In the meantime European nationals must shed their fear of being stigmatised as anti-Semites and finally take responsibility for ensuring that their political leaders — who as “Friends of Israel” are invariably susceptible to pro-Israel lobby blackmail, bribery, and bullying — refrain from their usual mealy mouthed hypocrisy regarding the “only democracy in the Middle East” and its right to “defend itself” with the “most moral army in the world,” and instead start representing both the interests of their own countries and the sovereignty of the people who elected them.
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Sovereignty exists within and flows from the people of a country. Their collective right to choose their governmental, political and electoral systems is a vital aspect of their self-determination. The authority of government also derives from the will of the people who having chosen those systems have a right to participate in their government through genuine elections that determine who will legitimately occupy governmental offices.
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Such precepts are incorporated in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and in modern constitutions the world over where they formed the basis for the well known formulation that democratic government is “of the people, by the people and for the people.” In essence, that means that governments, governmental processes, and elections, all belong to the people. There can be no democracy without citizen participation which is consequently both a right and a responsibility of the citizens in establishing and developing a sustainable democracy wherein a free press must go hand in hand with Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights: “Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.”
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“Without an unfettered press, without liberty of speech, all of the outward forms and structures of free institutions are a sham, a pretence — the sheerest mockery. If the press is not free; if speech is not independent and untrammelled; if the mind is shackled or made impotent through fear, it makes no difference under what form of government you live, you are a subject and not a citizen.”
William E. Borah (1865 – 1940), prominent Republican attorney and longtime U.S. Senator known as “The Lion of Idaho.” 
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William Hanna is a freelance writer with published books the Hiramic Brotherhood of the Third Temple, The Tragedy of Palestine and its Children, and the forthcoming Hiramic Brotherhood: Ezekiel’s T.emple Prophesy Purchase information, sample chapters, other articles, and contact details at:
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THESE HOLLYWOOD STARS DESERVE A SPECIAL OSCAR

Let’s call it the ‘I DON’T ENDORSE ISRAELI APARTHEID AWARD’

Israel invited 26 Hollywood stars on all-expense paid trips to the Holy Land around the 2016 Academy Awards, but a year later none of them have visited, Agence France-Presse reported.

Leonardo DiCaprio (R) and Matt Damon were amongst Oscar celebrities who were offered luxury trips to Israel. (Photo: via Youtube)

Leonardo DiCaprio (R) and Matt Damon were amongst Oscar celebrities who were offered luxury trips to Israel. (Photo: via Youtube)

These 26 Hollywood Stars All Shunned $55K Israel Junket In Oscars Swag Bag

Israel invited 26 Hollywood stars on all-expense paid trips to the Holy Land around the 2016 Academy Awards, but a year later none of them have visited, Agence France-Presse reported.

Activists with the movement to boycott, divest from and sanction Israel are calling it a victory that Leonardo DiCaprio, Matt Damon and two dozen other stars have failed to make a Holy Land appearance.

“I think it is clear the objective of using the actors to whitewash Israel has failed,” said Yousef Munayyer of the US Campaign for Palestinian Rights.

The trips, estimated to be worth $55,000 each, were given as part of a gift package to the stars, which also included luxury toilet paper.

The only star to take advantage of the trip was Hunger Games star Jennifer Lawrence, who reportedly gave it to her parents.

This month, eight out of 13 members of delegation of American pro football players dropped out of an Israel visit over concerns that Israel was using them to score public relations points.

Let's see if the award mentioned above really happens ;)

Let’s see if the award mentioned above really happens 😉

PALESTINE HOPED TO BE GREAT AGAIN UNDER TRUMP ~~ IT AIN’T GONNA HAPPEN

While the US continues to turn a blind eye to settlement expansion, the international community and the EU in particular are left with the responsibility of ensuring that everyday life in the Palestinian enclaves does not collapse. Time for a rethink, argue policy analysts Sam Bahour and Mousa Jiryis

Resolving the Israel-Palestine conflict

Resolving the Israel-Palestine conflict

Expect nothing from Trump

By Sam Bahour and Mousa Jiryis

If Donald Trump′s statements about abandoning the two-state solution are actually true, then a sovereign Palestinian state is no longer consistent with US foreign policy. Indeed, most commentators would be inclined to agree that this era will witness an unprecedented acceleration in settlement building and retroactive licensing of outposts built on private Palestinian land. Donald Trump, it appears, will do nothing to stop or rebuke such a policy, having watered down the tired old US rhetoric of ″settlements are an obstacle to peace″ to settlements ″may not be helpful″ to peace. So their construction can continue, indefinitely.

In light of this reality, Europe must recognise that ″the US leads″ approach to resolving the conflict is doomed to failure. There appears little possibility of the elusive peace happening anytime during Trump′s presidency. Historically, the US-leads approach has typically served to give Israel′s settlement enterprise time and space to further entrench itself, thereby making the realisation of a two-state solution increasingly impossible. It is blindingly clear – in light of two decades of failed negotiations under US auspices – that US leadership of conflict resolution efforts is pointless and counter-productive.

Independent European approach long overdue

If Europe′s policy is to achieve two states for two peoples, it will have to pursue an independent policy position that circumvents the Americans. Europe′s political influence in this arena has long been negligible, given US primacy in conflict resolution.

In short, Europe has relied on the wrong leadership for too long. This tragic, historic mistake has not only cost European taxpayers billions, but has also led to a reality that is the diametric opposite of what European policy-makers intended. After 24 years, reliance on American ″leadership″ has led to the creation of numerous Palestinian Bantustans, surrounded by an occupying military power that continues to occupy with impunity, bankrolled by European taxpayers: the EU and its member states are by far the largest donors to the Palestinians.

Israel – delighted that another party is willing to subsidise its military occupation – continues to expand and consolidate its settlement enterprise, with the support of large sections of the American public and government.

Historically, the US and EU have shared a common objective of resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict through the framework of a two-state solution. With the assumption of Trump to the presidency, the Republicans now control all three branches of US government, with majorities in both the House and Senate. This has coincided with a significant shift to the right in the GOP′s policy to Israel-Palestine. By contrast, Europeans have moved towards recognition of the State of Palestine. Sweden′s recognition is now official while parliaments in the United Kingdom, Ireland, Spain, France, Luxembourg, not to mention the European Parliament, have all approved recognition.

America is part of the problem

America supports occupation. Europe inadvertently subsidises occupation. This regrettable logic is an accurate description of current reality. The Trump administration will do little to antagonise its own party or risk the wrath of Israel′s influential pro-settlement lobby in the US. Trump will continue to advocate a hands-off, ″it′s up to the two parties to decide″ approach. As a result, Israel, which has all the power, has little incentive to concede, while the Palestinians, who have no power, and are supposedly ″protected″ under international law, are left to their despair.

The continuing domination of mediation efforts by the US has created a perverse reality which dictates that there is no peace; and no traction towards peace at any time in the near future. While commentators have busied themselves picking at the rotting carcass of the so-called peace process and apportioning blame for its failure, few have dared to state the obvious: America is part of the problem, not the solution.

Protected by its patron

Israeli intransigence and blatant violation of international law is fuelled by its belief that, no matter what it does, the US will always insulate it from meaningful rebuke. Palestinian desperation is driven by a conviction that America′s overwhelming support to Israel makes negotiations pointless, as Israel has little incentive to concede when it receives so much money, weapons and political support for its settlement project.

In summary, under Trump′s leadership, the US will undoubtedly turn a blind eye to settlement expansion, while the international community and the EU in particular will be left with the responsibility of ensuring that everyday life in the Palestinian enclaves does not collapse, through massive injections of aid monies – a state of affairs inspired by Israeli excesses ad infinitum made possible by US support or indifference.

So what can Europe do? Europe can ′roll up its sleeves′, play power politics and take on the occupier, without waiting for American leadership to produce results. If the experiences of Bosnia, Kosovo, East Timor and South Africa are anything to go by, an occupier or an apartheid regime will only change its ways with a nuanced combination of sanctions, international isolation and, as a last resort, military force.

The EU must rise to the occasion and demonstrate to its constituents that European money and credibility are more important than indulging in American charades of impartiality. It is clear that America has no moral or political qualms with Israel remaining an occupying force.

Once Europe finally acknowledges this reality and moves on, it will find the strength and legitimacy to propose policies of its own, in line with its European neighbourhood objectives and its own moral standards.

 

Written FOR

ACTION ALERTS FOR ISRAEL APARTHEID WEEK

Happening Monday 2/27Friday 3/3

unnamed-59

Israeli Apartheid Week 2017

Israeli Apartheid Week (IAW) is an international series of events meant to shed a light on the settler colonial project and apartheid policies of Israel and build the growing Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

This year will mark 100 years of Palestinian resistance against settler colonialism, since the inception of the Balfour Declaration. IAW will be an opportunity to reflect on this resistance and further advance BDS campaigns for the continued growth and impact of the movement. Despite all the legislative attacks on BDS internationally, IAW and the BDS movement continue to build linkages and solidarity with other struggles to achieve freedom, justice, and equality.

For IAW at Columbia, we’ve organized a week of programming meant to educate about Palestine, its history and struggles, as well as how it intersects with other indigenous struggles around the world.

As per tradition, Columbia Students for Justice in Palestine will be installing our mock apartheid wall for display on Low Plaza Mon-Fri, Feb 27-March 3rd from 11am to 4pm. Columbia/Barnard Jewish Voice for Peace will be tabling at the Sun Dial. Drop by for fact sheets, information on events, and for answers to any other questions you have.

#IAW2017 SCHEDULE:

Mock Apartheid Wall
11am-4pm
Mon-Fri
Low Plaza
Check facebook for more information on the event and accessibility

Zionists are Racists
Monday, February 27th
8-10 pm
Math 203

In November, 1975 the United Nations passed the United Nations General Assembly Resolution 3379, a resolution that declared “Zionism is Racism.” With the support of newly liberated African nations, the bill recognized the supremacist ideology of the Israeli nation-state that had predicated its settler colony upon racial apartheid and ethnic cleansing.

Come learn about Israel’s racist and imperialist policies and hear Barney Pityana, leading figure in the Black Consciousness Movement and the South African Students’ Organisation, as well as a close comrade of Steve Biko, will discuss what the BDS struggle looks from the perspective of South Africa.

Check facebook for more information on the event and accessibility

No Peace on Stolen Land: From Standing Rock to Palestine 
Tuesday, Febuary 28th
7-9 pm
James Room, Barnard Hall

Say no to the DAPL, no to the occupation of indigenous lands from the U.S. to Palestine, no to the plunder of native resources by imperialist corporations with no regard for our sovereignty, what we hold sacred, and our planet.

Hear from Maile Hampton, a genderfluid afro-native organizer from the Bay Area who has spent years in the student movement and anti-racist movement, about what it means to fight for the self-determination of all oppressed people. This skype conversation will cover organizing strategies, experiences from the struggle against the DAPL at Oceti Sakowin and across the U.S., police repression, cultural resistance, and people’s power. Learn from a water protector how we can best support front line communities in the struggle against environmental destruction and settler colonialism here in the U.S. and how to build international indigenous solidarity with Palestine. From Standing Rock to Palestine, Settler violence is a crime! Resistance is justified! Mni Wiconi!  #NoDAPL  #FreeAllWaterProtectors #FreeAllPoliticalPrisioners  #FreeRedFawn  #FreeLeonardPeltier

“When so many people and the system are going after you, you know that the things you’re saying are powerful and true. And you know that they know the things you’re saying are powerful and true.” Maile Hampton

Check facebook for more information on the event and accessibility

50 Years of Occupation: The 1967 Naksa with Prof. Rashid Khalidi
Wednesday, March 1st
7:30-9:30pm
Roone Arledge Cinema, Lerner Hall
NON CUID MUST RSVP TO THIS EVENT

On June 5th, 1967, Israel launched a massive unilateral airstrike on Egyptian territory, destroying the Egyptian Air Force and initiating the Six-Day War between Israel, Jordan, Syria, and Egypt. By the end of the war, the Israeli military had occupied the Gaza Strip, the West Bank, and East Jerusalem, as well as the Egyptian Sinai Peninsula and the Syrian Golan Heights. Immediately after occupation, Israel initiated the “second wave” of the ethnic cleansing of Palestine – the Naksa, or “setback” – beginning with mass village demolitions and resulting in the displacement of 300,000 Palestinians and 100,000 Syrians from their homes, adding to the 750,000 Palestinians who had been displaced from their homes in the 1948 Nakba, or “catastrophe.”

To this day, the Gaza Strip, the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and the Golan Heights remain subjugated under a brutal Israeli military occupation, denied basic human needs like water, electricity, and medical care, and subject to regular civilian massacres by the occupation forces. Most recently, the 2014 assault on Gaza left 2,235 Palestinian civilians dead, including more than 500 children, over the course of 51 days.

As part of Israeli Apartheid Week, join Columbia University Apartheid Divest in remembering the victims of the Naksa, recognizing the 50th year of subsequent military occupation, and discussing its lasting impact on the 69 year Palestinian freedom struggle. Learn how the UN Security Council’s 1967 Resolution 242, condemning Israel’s actions and calling for the right of return for all displaced Palestinian refugees, laid the groundwork for the Palestinian civil society call for Boycotts, Divestment, and Sanctions against Israel – a call we hope to honor by pressuring Columbia’s administration to divest its $10 billion endowment from companies that profit from the occupation.

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Palestine in U.S. Politics: Israel, AIPAC, and American Foreign Policy
Thursday, March 2nd
6-9 pm
Broadway Room, Lerner Hall
NON CUID MUST RSVP TO THIS EVENT

Israel commands a very strategic role in American foreign interests, representing an integral ally to the US in the Middle East. Israel is the largest recipient of American foreign aid and, just recently, President Obama signed a $38 billion military aid package, solidifying the close relationship between the two nations. President Trump has continuously cited Israel as an inspiration for his racist immigration policies and Prime Minister Netanyahu reciprocally voiced his support for Trump’s plan to build a wall.

Join Columbia University Apartheid Divest as we discuss the place of Palestine in the American political discourse. We are proud to host Professor Joseph Massad from the Middle Eastern, South Asian and African studies department who will share his views on the discourse about Palestine in US Politics, the unique role that Israel plays in US national interests, and the significance of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) in determining the US’ foreign policy towards Palestine and the Middle East region more generally.

Check facebook for more information on the event and accessibility

Teaching Palestine: Scholarship and Resistance 
Friday, March 3rd
3-5 pm
Hamilton 717
Join us for a panel discussion between MESAAS PhD candidates Rana Baker, Nasser Abourahme and Matan Cohen who will share their experience in bringing together their academic research and Palestine activism. Their talks will focus on how their scholarship has changed, inspired or hindered their solidarity work on Palestine as well as ideas and strategies for the future.

Check facebook for more information on the event and accessibility

These events are all free and open to the public. Individuals without Columbia U IDs MUST RSVP for Wednesday andThursday’s event by 2/26. RSVP here.

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