THE REALITY OF APARTHEID AND ITS REPRECUSSIONS

THE FACTS OF THE MATTER …..


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ZIONS RESPONSE …

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AND OUR RESPONSE

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THE LEAST YOU CAN DO ….

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THE BDS MOVEMENT WAS HONOURED ON SUNDAY WHEN OMAR BARGHOUTI WAS PRESENTED WITH THE GANDHI PEACE AWARD AT A CEREMONY IN NEW HAVEN, CONNECTICUT


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WE ARE OBVIOUSLY NOT ALONE …. AND WE SHALL OVERCOME!

FAKE NEWS IN DEFENSE OF ZIONISM

Now, almost every day inflationary targeted pro-Israel articles are published in different German media. They voluntarily hide the word “occupation” and Zionist crimes. Apparently, the more than 45 million US-Dollar spent by the Israeli ministries for the Hasbara propaganda are worth it. It is understandable that a right-wing regime like the Netanyahu regime makes use of these methods as there is nothing Zionists fear more than the truth.

Facts, instead of the diffusion of political fake news!

by Evelyn Hecht-Galinski, English translation by Milena Rampoldi

Again these days, where the Jewish Passover celebration almost coincides with the Christian Easter, the international values hypocrites use fake news to hide their mistakes and the bombs violating international law.

In this case it is useful for politicians, churches, and media to have an enemy image they can work on together. And this enemy image is “Islam” and the “Muslims” against whom prejudices and fears are created. And all the time it is “Islam” and the Muslims who are regularly connected to “terrorism”. Who wonders if in the German/European population hatred against Muslims increases?

What the Jews were in the past, today Muslims and Islam are.

Can this kind of politics where Western values politicians whitewash the state terrorism against Muslims, masked as “defence from terrorism”, last for a long time? All is authorised, because we are the “good ones” defending “our” values, while “Islam” and Muslims murder barbarically!

What a horrible “order of values” turning all upside down what makes up real values. Since a long time German politics have abandoned peaceful values. However, these values are always indicated by politics when it is about the implementation of more than questionable objectives suggesting us that only “our” way of life is the ONLY  right one.

This kind of colonization of the “Christian-Jewish community of values” has already caused so much sorrow to mankind. It does not distinguish itself from the previous crusades but it is technically more elaborated and more efficient and adapted to the contemporary epoch.

Hypocritical “Christian” German politicians, from Merkel to von der Leyen, try to justify and legalize the US aggression against Syria violating international law. Our minister of war put herself in the frontline by supporting the US propaganda which grants itself the right to bomb another country, without research and proofs concerning the alleged poison gas attack. She supports the NATO and Trump. In the Anne Will program of last Sunday, 9th of April, the minister praised the US strikes and called this brazen violation of international law a necessary “warning” against Assad. Fortunately, the former biological weapon experts and foreign politics spokesperson of the left party Die Linke van Aken was appalled because the minister applauded this aggression against international law, even if there are no proofs that Assad committed the offence. This TV program is another example of the decline of German television culture and its presenters.

What Miss Will did on that occasion, was to oppose to ANY kind of clean journalism, when she tried to discredit Michael Lüders, one of the few competent Middle East experts, by de-qualifying him as a paid “lobbyist”. However, the “steel helmet Jew” and former Bundeswehr Professor Michael Wolffsohn, a well-known lobbyist of Israel and among others a member of the advisory board of Deutsche Bank, the former US ambassador in Germany, John Kornblum, also a lobbyist for Israel and consultant of financial economists, law offices, and banks. Politics. (1) (2)

Do we deserve such politicians and presenters who lie to us in more than controversial talk shows? If German President Steinmeier attacks the brutalization of the language on the net, he should care about the brutalization of the language of politicians of all parties telling us fake news and dismissing us as conspiracy theoretics if we do not accept them as the truth!

Of course, we still have the opportunity to go to the elections. However, also this “agony of choice” is getting more and more difficult because the parties are increasingly resembling each other. And all resembles the great coalition when also SPD foreign minister Gabriel and the defence expert Arnold speak up for the US aggression against Syria, violating international law. From the left to the right, from red to green: there is not so much the party landscape can offer. Only the brave “old Green” politician Ströbele condemns the US aggression. (3) (4)

At the moment, German politics offer very few essential contents, like the woolly statement of the “SPD Shooting Star” Schulz, who even wants to be congratulated on doing it. Even SPD Federal President Steinmeier begins to flutter by asking for more German responsibility, also in the military field. While the Green Party, from Cem Özdemir to Rebecca Harms, wallow in the anti-Erdogan and anti-Putin smear campaign, Göring-Eckardt has specialised in waste separation and the elimination of the yellow bag. (5)

Under Trump, the “father of all bombs”, for the first time in Afghanistan the “mother of all bombs” was dropped. Perhaps, the Netanyahu regime has already ordered this “mother” at the US Pentagon to quickly implement the final solution of the ethnic cleansing of Palestine, and its Judaization. The Minister of Education and the “Settlements King” Naftali Bennett has already threatened to commit genocide in Lebanon, and this without the so loud outcry of the Western world value community staying silent about it! (6) (7)

Trump seems to have reached  the point to be supported by official politics; now  “Kosher Nostra” guided by his daughter Ivanka, the converted wife of Jarred Kushner, the Jewish son-in-law and main consultant of Trump has taken over the White House. (8)

In this situation the Netanyahu regime can relax, and praise further US aggressions against Syria or other countries of the Arabic-Islamic world. This is the only way for the Jewish regime to further exacerbate the eternal illegal occupation of Palestine and the Syrian Golan Hills; and in addition, shortly the US embassy guided by the hard-core Zionist Friedman will reside in Jerusalem as the official “eternally undivided“ capital of the “Jewish State”.

Again, this year, which will be the fiftieth year of the illegal occupation of Palestine, the Federal Government will celebrate the Independence Day, the “Birthday of the Jewish State”, together with the officials of the Central Council of Jews and the representatives of the “Jewish State”. This proofs the repeated total failure of democracy in Germany, since up to now all German governments and politicians of all parties have only supported the legalization of internationally condemned international law violations committed by the Zionist occupiers.

72 years after the liberation of Auschwitz this is really a shame.

If the chief rabbi of Tel Aviv, Lau, misuses the holocaust to distract from his own crimes, this is a crime all survivors of the Holocaust and their descendants should oppose to, instead of defending these crimes of the “Jewish State”! As long as Jewish citizens do not take their distance from the Zionist occupation crimes, they will never been considered as trustful. We need same rights for all: what we pretend from Muslims, should apply to ALL religions! (9)

While German politicians and the group media bash Putin and Erdogan, regimes like the ones of al-Sisi, the Saudi Kingdom or Netanyahu can continue committing their crimes against humanity and putting all “our” values upside down!

The hypocrisy has taken such incredible forms, in particular for BDS activists and their supporters, that we have to ask ourselves how this will go on and end.

Philo-Semite politicians set the tone. And a special emphasis should be put on the “Philo-Semite Anti-Semite” Volker Beck, who really seems to smell Jewish hatred and as tracking dog of the Green Party opposes to all kind of Israel critics. However, this is only possible because there is no real opposition. Like in the Nazi regime, fear, moral cowardice, and limitless gutlessness dominate when it is about critics against Israeli politics!

Would it not be adequate to take Mr Beck to the court on the basis of the article 5 of the Basic Law of the Federal Republic of Germany because of his unjustified attacks against the freedom of opinion?

However, in the meantime it seems to be part of the political tone to silence all honest Israel critics and to try to intimidate them by defamation.

Basic Law of the Federal Republic of Germany, Article 5

(1)   Every person shall have the right freely to express and disseminate his opinions in speech, writing and pictures, and to inform himself without hindrance from generally accessible sources. Freedom of the press and freedom of reporting by means of broadcasts and films shall be guaranteed. There shall be no censorship. (…)
Of course this right also applies to supporters of the BDS campaign and to Israel critics!
More than six thousand Palestinian prisoners are in arbitrary and unjust detention. Many of them are in administrative detention without accusation. On Easter Monday, after a call by Marwan Barghouti, the Palestinian “Nelson Mandela”, 1300 of them started a hunger strike to struggle for better detention conditions and their liberation. This Palestinian new hope would be the right candidate for the Presidential Office in a free Palestine! However, the Jewish occupiers and the “moderate” collaborators and the PA and Abbas would like to stop him because he would question and challenge their status quo. Therefore Barghouti must remain in Judaistic detention. For Barghouti unfortunately there is no lobby and no German politicians or media engaging for him as they do it for the prisoners in Turkey … and in a particularly media-effective way for the reporter of the newspaper “Die Welt” Deniz Yücel – no wonder if we read his fervent article supporting the Israel lobby opposing to the Germans‘ right to criticize Israel, and as a consequence the right for freedom of opinion! For his work, Yücel got the Theodor Wolff Prize for Press Freedom. Remember: If you are supported by a lobby, prizes are distributed like counterfeit money. However, the numerous Palestinian journalists in Israeli detention rot down, without any award! (10) (11) (12) (13) (14)

Now, almost every day inflationarily targeted pro-Israel articles are published in different German media. They voluntarily hide the word “occupation” and Zionist crimes. Apparently, the more than 45 million US-Dollar spent by the Israeli ministries for the Hasbara propaganda are worth it. It is understandable that a right-wing regime like the Netanyahu regime makes use of these methods as there is nothing Zionists fear more than the truth.

The power of images is enormous in our time. While fake images of small, probably Syrian children are diffused all around the world, the murdered Palestinian children never get a place on the cover page of our brave media. Walter Herrmann, this unforgotten Kölner Klagemauer fighter for the justice in Palestine, who wanted to remember photos of the Gaza genocide of barbarically murdered children in Gaza, was brought to justice!

Do not let us permit to substitute the power of facts with the diffusion of political fake news!

Unfortunately, all is repeated, and about this matter the poem by Erich Fried Nicaragua is everywhere says it all.

(In German)

Wo liegt Nicaragua?

by Erich Fried

Wo liegt Nicaragua?

Dort wo Reagan seine bezahlten
Mörder hinschickt
oder seine Agenten.
Es liegt also in Angola,
wo er mit seinen weißen
politisch verlässlichen südafrikanischen Freunden
die Banden der Unita
bewaffnet und unterstützt.

Wo liegt Nicaragua?

Am Horn von Afrika,

wo er zahlt für seinen Stützpunkt
in Mogadischu.

Wo liegt Nicaragua?
Es liegt in Palästina,
es liegt im Staat Israel
dem er Geld gibt und Waffen
für den Kampf
gegen die Palästinenser
und den er zu seinem Sprungbrett
im Nahen Osten gemacht hat.

Wo liegt Nicaragua?
Nicaragua liegt in Europa
das aussätzig ist
von seinen Atomraketen
und das Kriegsschauplatz sein soll
im nächsten Krieg.

Wo liegt Nicaragua?
Nicaragua liegt in England,
aus dem er Flugzeuge
aus dem er Flugzeuge aufsteigen ließ
gegen Libyen?
Wo liegt Nicaragua?
Es liegt in Libyen,
in Tripolis und Benghazi
auf die seine Bomben fielen.

Wo liegt Nicaragua?
Es liegt überall dort,
wo die Vereinigten Staaten Geheimdienstleute einschleusen
zur Verteidigung der Freiheit der freien Welt.
Und weil Nicaragua überall ist, darum muß man
endlich etwas von Nicaragua wissen:
Daß es in Nicaragua um alle Welt geht,
und dass man Nicaragua überall helfen muß
gegen Reagen und Weinberger und ihre Agenten und Söldner
und nicht vergessen soll, dass der Internationale Gerichtshof
im Haag die Vereinigten Staaten verurteilt hat
als Angreifer und als Verletzer des Völkerrechts,
als das, was man Kriegsverbrecher genannt hätte und
Friedensverbrecher, wenn die Vereinigten Staaten
etwas kleiner wären und nicht so mächtig.

Und weil Nicaragua überall ist, darum stehen die Menschen
überall, wo sie für Nicaragua stehen,
auch für sich selbst und ihre eigenen Kinder,
für ihr Leben und gegen ihren Tod.

Und wer in Deutschland am Leben bleiben will,
soll bedenken:
Nicaragua liegt in der Bundesrepublik Deutschland,
die alle Hilfe für Nicaragua gesperrt hat,
die aber Geld schickt an die Mörderbanden der Contras.
Nicaragua liegt in Deutschland, das Asylanten
In ihrer Herkunftsländern abschiebt zu Tod und Folter
Als wären noch nicht genug Todestransporte gerollt

über deutsche Geleise
zur Erledigung jenseits der Grenzen.

Erich Fried

Zur Zeit der Verleumder

Sie nennen mich
Verräter an meinem Volk
Sie nennen mich
Jüdischer Antisemit
weil ich spreche von dem
was sie tun in Israels Namen
gegen Palästinenser
gegen Araber anderer Länder
und auch gegen Juden
die totgeschwiegen werden

Später einmal
werden Juden die übrigbleiben
wenn dieser Wahnsinn vorbei ist
zu suchen beginnen
nach Spuren von Juden
die nicht mittaten
sondern warnten

So haben Deutsche gezeigt
nach dem Untergang Hitlers
auf Deutsche die tags zuvor
noch verfolgt wurden oder getötet
Die sollten nun Zeugen sein
daß Deutsche auch anders waren

Ob dann ein Wort
noch nachlebt
von meiner Warnung
Wichtiger aber:
ob dann in Palästina noch Juden leben
entronnene jener Vernichtung
die sie selbst herbeiführen halfen
durch ihr Unrecht
zu meiner Zeit?

 

Originally appeared AT

CELEBRATING 50 YEARS OF OCCUPATION

Image by Carlos Latuff

Israel celebrates 50 years as occupier

Israel is to hold lavish celebrations over the coming weeks to mark the 50th anniversary of what it calls the “liberation of Judea, Samaria and the Golan Heights” – or what the rest of us describe as the birth of the occupation.

The centerpiece event will take place in Gush Etzion, south of Jerusalem. The West Bank settlement “bloc” enjoys wide support in Israel, not least because it was established long ago by the supposedly left-wing Labour party, now heading the opposition.

The jubilee is a potent reminder that for Israelis, most of whom have never known a time before the occupation, Israel’s rule over the Palestinians seems as irreversible as the laws of nature. But the extravagance of the festivities also underscores the growth over five decades of Israel’s self-assurance as an occupier.

Documents found this month in Israel’s archives reveal that, when Israel captured East Jerusalem in 1967, its first concern was to hoodwink the international community.

The foreign ministry ordered Israel’s ambassadors to mischaracterize its illegal annexation of East Jerusalem as a simple “municipal fusion”. To avoid diplomatic reprisals, Israel claimed it was necessary to ease the provision of essential services to the occupied Palestinian population.

Interestingly, those drafting the order advised that the deception was unlikely to succeed. The United States had already insisted that Israel commit no unilateral moves.

But within months Israel had evicted thousands of Palestinians from the Old City and destroyed their homes. Washington and Europe have been turning a blind eye to such actions ever since.

One of the Zionist movement’s favorite early slogans was: “Dunam after dunam, goat after goat”. The seizure of small areas of territory measured in dunams, the demolition of the odd home, and the gradual destruction of herding animals would slowly drive the Palestinians off most of their land, “liberating” it for Jewish colonization. If it was done piecemeal, the objections from overseas would remain muffled. It has proved a winning formula.

Fifty years on, the colonization of East Jerusalem and the West Bank is so entrenched that a two-state solution is nothing more than a pipe dream.

Nonetheless, US president Donald Trump has chosen this inauspicious moment to dispatch an envoy, Jason Greenblatt, to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

In a “goodwill” response, Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu has unveiled a framework for settlement building. It is exactly the kind of formula for deception that has helped Israel consolidate the occupation since 1967.

Netanyahu says expansion will be “restricted” to “previously developed” settlements, or “adjacent” areas, or, depending on the terrain, “land close” to a settlement.

Peace Now points out that the settlements already have jurisdiction over some 10 per cent of the West Bank, while far more is treated as “state land”. The new framework, says the group, gives the settlers a green light to “build everywhere”.

The Trump White House has shrugged its shoulders. A statement following Netanyahu’s announcement judged the settlements no “impediment to peace”, adding that Israel’s commitments to previous US administrations would be treated as moot.

Effectively, the US is wiping the slate clean, creating a new baseline for negotiations after decades of Israeli changes stripping the Palestinians of territory and rights.

Although none of this bodes well, Egypt and Jordan’s leaders met Trump this month to push for renewed talks between Israel and the Palestinians. The White House is said to be preparing to welcome the Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas.

Some senior Palestinians are rightly wary. Abbas Zaki, a Fatah leader, fears Trump will try to impose a regional solution on Arab states, over Abbas’s head, designed to “eliminate the Palestinian cause altogether”.

David Ben Gurion, Israel’s founding father, reportedly once said: “What matters is not what the goyim [non-Jews] say, but what the Jews do.”

For nearly a quarter of a century, the Oslo accords dangled an illusory peace carrot that usefully distracted the global community as Israel nearly quadrupled its settler population, making even a highly circumscribed Palestinian state unrealizable.

Now, that game plan is about to be revived in new form. While the US, Israel, Jordan and Egypt focus on the hopeless task of creating a regional framework for peace, Israel will be left undisturbed once again to seize more dunams and more goats.

In Israel, the debate is no longer simply about whether to build settler homes, or about how many can be justified. Government ministers argue instead about the best moment to annex vast areas of the West Bank associated with so-called settlement blocs such as Gush Etzion.

Israel’s imminent celebrations should lay to rest any confusion that the occupation is still considered temporary. But when occupation becomes permanent, it metamorphoses into something far uglier.

It is past time to recognize that Israel has established an apartheid regime and one that serves as a vehicle for incremental ethnic cleansing. If there are to be talks, ending that outrage must be their first task.

TURNING HATRED TO TOLERANCE IN JERUSALEM

After finding anti-Arab slogans spray-painted near a Jerusalem park, which has come to symbolize peaceful coexistence, residents were not content with the mere removal of the hateful graffiti calling for Arabs to ‘go home’ and for ‘revenge’, resolving to head for the park to make signs bearing messages against bigotry and racism; ‘We want to live in peace and harmony.’

The racist graffiti

Anti-Arab graffiti prompts message of tolerance in Jerusalem

‘We love our neighbors’

Residents of the Baka neighborhood of Jerusalem were shocked on Wednesday to discover racist, anti-Arab graffiti sprayed near a park connecting the neighborhood with the Arab neighborhood of Beit Safafa.

“Arabs, go home,” and “We want revenge” were two of the hateful slogans sprayed on walls near the park, which was, since its establishment, a popular recreational spot for Jews and Arabs alike, thus becoming a symbol for peaceful coexistence.

“Khaneh was right” was also sprayed on the walls in reference to Rabbi Meir Kahane, the founder of the outlawed Kach movement, who was assassinated in Manhattan in 2012.

The stunned residents reported the vandalism to the city municipality, which was promptly removed.

Not content with the mere removal of the graffiti, some of the residents made their way to the park with their children—still during their Passover holiday—and made big colorful signs bearing the opposite message of the hateful graffiti: ‘We love our neighbors.’

Ilana Nelson, a resident of the neighborhood who made the sign with her kids, said “our message, the message of the residents, is that we do not tolerate racism.

“We want to live in peace and harmony with our neighbors. Just yesterday I was at the park with my husband and I saw a nice couple, an Arab Muslim and a woman wearing a Hijab, who asked a Jewish couple to take their picture,” she added.

“I thought we lived normal lives in a normal world, and then we woke up to that.”

Nelson’s son, who studies at Jerusalem’s Yad be-Yad Max Rayne Bilingual School, wrote the sign in both Hebrew and Arabic.

(Translated & edited by Lior Mor)

 

Source and more photos HERE

HUMAN RIGHTS UPDATE AND MORE

Prepared By Mazin Qumsiyeh, PhD 

Below items deal with BDS and the attack on Omar Barghouti and other human rights advocates

Image by Carlos Latuff

 
Racist Zionists are using all the guns in their arsenal from Violence
(killing activists here and attacking and beating activists abroad) to
verbal assaults (calling human rights advocates anti-semites etc).
Emboldened by a racist US government to their liking . The US government
now openly disdains human rights and considers international law irrelevant
 and will not allow discussion of the Palestine issue at the UN. "Moderate"
(read subservient) Arab leaders like coup leader Sisi are happy with Trump.
Below items deal with BDS and the attack on Omar Barghouti and other human
rights advocates

Image by Latuff



Two Jewish Activists Charged With Assaulting Arab Teacher Outside AIPAC
Conference. Police say Yosef Steynovitz and Rami Lubranicki beat up Kamal
Nayfeh after a 'verbal altercation' broke out.

Image by Latuff



A similar demonstration against the Zionist lobby in France took place/
Below is a letter from Israeli Jewish activists to the French government on
their attempts to silence free speech in obedience to the Zionist lobby.
Israel Bans Palestinian Products Inside Occupied Palestinian Territory


Efforts To Fight BDS Have Failed, Says ADL



Boycott Air Canada: Tell Them We are not On-Board with Human Rights
Violations 

Doctors with Nazi mentality torture Palestinian prisoners


On the campaign against Omar Barghouti (by Haidar Eid)


Petition: Drop the charges on Omar Barghouthi


Statement from Omar Barghouti:
Dear friends and colleagues,

Finally, I was allowed to access my email account after 12 days of being
banned from doing so during the most intense phase of the ongoing
interrogation I am subjected to by the Israeli authorities. The BNC
statement on this issue accurately sums up this latest chapter in the
Israeli regime's war on the BDS movement.

Due to a gag order, I am not allowed to delve into any facts about the
case. I am thus denied the ability to even refute the vicious lies
published by Israel's regime against me. I am in no hurry to do so, though,
as their main objective -- attempting to tarnish my reputation and, by
extension, hurting the BDS movement -- has clearly failed. Their campaign
of repression has, to an extent, backfired. By preventing me from
travelling to the US to receive the Gandhi Peace Award, jointly with Ralph
Nader, Israel's regime has inadvertently increased the publicity around
this award.

Before anything else, I read the many moving messages of solidarity that
many of you have sent, and this gave me even more strength and hope to
resist the McCarthyite witch hunt against me. I deeply appreciate your
letters and the sincere sentiments of support that they convey. I am so
grateful to everyone who wrote an article and every organization that
issued a petition in this respect.

Nothing empowers human rights defenders facing political persecution like
the warm feeling that there is a whole community of activists and people of
conscience standing with them and carrying on the struggle no matter what.

For more than a year now my colleagues in the BDS movement and I have been
warning about the "tarnishing unit" established by the Israeli Ministry of
Strategic Affairs as a key organ in fighting BDS. As I have personally
written and argued many times, this devious unit's key function is summed
up in "digging up dirt" against human rights defenders and networks
associated with the BDS movement and if no dirt is found in fabricating it.

McCarthy would be proud of his loyal heirs in Israel's regime of oppression
and repression. Many of you have asked how best you can support me to face
this latest persecution. My answer is, without hesitation ... more BDS!

We need to expand, mainstream and build on our many inspiring BDS
campaigns, academic, cultural and economic, as the most effective way to
respond to the new McCarthyism designed by Israel's regime of occupation,
settler-colonialism and apartheid and exported to states where its lobby
groups enjoy massive influence.

Further growing our movement for freedom, justice and equality is the
answer. Highlighting and popularizing the recent, unprecedented verdict by
a UN body that Israel is guilty of apartheid -- the second most serious
crime against humanity in international law -- is the answer.

Countering their racism, hate, "black lists" and ugly colonial repression
with our inclusiveness, categorical rejection of all forms of racism, and
our boundless passion for freedom and justice is the answer. Further
strengthening our principled intersectional alliances with movements for
indigenous, racial, economic, social, gender, climate and other forms of
justice is our loudest response to their xenophobic, far-right,
fascist-leaning agenda and their draconian laws.

As they desperately attempt to sow fear and despair, to chill our free
speech, to tarnish our records, and to bully us into silence, we nourish
our well-founded hope with generous doses of effective, strategic,
morally-consistent campaigns for justice and equality and insist on our
right to freely express ourselves and to defend our rights.

As humans, we need permission from no one to pursue our inherent rights. As
human rights defenders, no degree of intimidation and bullying can deter us
in our passionate, nonviolent resistance to injustice, inequality and
colonial slavery.

Alone, we fail. Together, we prevail. The latest savage, even irrational,
attacks on our movement indicate, more than anything else, that we are
indeed prevailing.

In gratitude and hope,
Omar
========
March 10th, 2017
Dear Excellencies, Mr. François Hollande, President de la Republique Mr.
Bernard Cazeneuve, Premier Ministre Mr. Michel Cadot, Préfet de Police de
Paris

We are writing to you as Jewish citizens of the State of Israel who are
opposed to the illegal and immoral practice of the Israeli governments over
the years. It has come to our attention that attempts are currently
underway in the city of Paris, to restrict and even ban altogether the
ongoing demonstrations in support of the BDS (Boycott, Divestment and
Sanctions) campaign against Israeli human rights violations. It is
therefore of utmost importance for us to state, as clearly as possible,
that the BDS campaign is not anti-Semitic and is clearly opposed to all
forms of racism. Rather than being racist, it is founded on the strong
basis of adhering to international law and universally respected human
rights. Only recently, on March 7th, 2017, the campaign unequivocally
stated1 that :

Adhering to the UN definition of racial discrimination, the BDS movement
does not tolerate any act or discourse which adopts or promotes, among
others, anti-Black racism, anti-Arab racism, Islamophobia, anti-Semitism,
sexism, xenophobia, or homophobia. We strongly condemn apartheid, genocide,
slavery, colonial exploitation and ethnic cleansing, which are crimes
against humanity that are founded on racism and racial supremacy, and we
call for the right of their victims, including descendants, to full
reparation. We equally condemn and stand in solidarity with the victims of
other human rights violations including human trafficking, workers’
exploitation, and sexual exploitation. Furthermore, we are appalled by the
false accusations made by Ms. Kosciusko-Morizet, in a letter of February
15th 2017 to Mr. Cadot, le Préfet de Police, where it is claimed that the
BDS discourse amounts to hate speech.

We are clearly opposed to Israel’s grave violations of international law,
including its practice of the Crime of Apartheid as defined in the Rome
Statute and we are unapologetic about it. Our demand to end Israeli
apartheid is a clear expression of love towards all the residents of
Israel-Palestine, along with our insistence on the most basic values of
equality, freedom and justice for all. It would be outrageous if France, of
all states, would ban freedom of expression of its population who insist on
respect of the law and on these fundamental human values which are the very
foundational elements of the French constitution and the Declaration of the
Rights of Man and of the Citizen.

We therefore urge you to respect and protect the rights of those who
challenge Israel’s severe human rights violations and to protect your
French citizens who campaign on behalf of the BDS movement to be able to
freely do so, without being intimidated with legal persecution or with
physical threats as had happened in the past.
Sincerely,
Ronnie Barkan
Einav Kaplan-Raz
Maya Rotem
Lia Tarachansky
Guy Davidi
Ron Merom
 Lizi Sagie
Tamara Traubmann De-Colonizer
Ofer Neiman
 Herzl Schubert
Michel Warschawski
Shir Hever
Lorien Newman
Stavit Sinai
Sergio Yahni
Yudit Ilany
Jonathan Ofir
Eyal Sivan
Yael Kahn

ERIN GO BRAGH! ~~ TOGETHER WITH PALESTINE!!

Israel has strongly condemned the decision by a Dublin City Council subcommittee on ceremonies to raise the Palestinian flag over city hall in solidarity with the Palestinian people “who have lived under brutal Israeli occupation.”

Image by Carlos Latuff

Dublin City Hall to raise Palestinian flag in solidarity against ‘brutal’ Israeli occupation
*
The provocative gesture is being initiated by a known pro-Palestinian councilman who claims that Israel is ‘an apartheid regime.’ Council: Event is expected to take place on May 15 to mark 50 years of ‘Israeli occupation.’

Israel has strongly condemned the decision by a Dublin City Council subcommittee on ceremonies to raise the Palestinian flag over city hall in solidarity with the Palestinian people “who have lived under brutal Israeli occupation.”According to the decision Tuesday, the flag will be raised on May 15th, marking 50 years since the territories of the West Bank and Gaza Strip came under Israeli control.

The proposal must pass another round of ratification set for May 8th before it can become an official decision. However, given the council’s composition, the chances are good that the proposal will be passed with a large majority, as it was unanimously approved in the subcommittee.

The Dublin City Council is controlled by Sinn Féin and other leftwing parties that are traditionally anti-Israel.

The initiator of the proposal, which is sure to cause international tension, is a pro-Palestinian local councilman named John Lyons.

Lyons, who has also organized pro-Palestinian protests in Ireland in the past, explained that he initiated the proposal as a gesture of solidarity with the Palestinian people.

“The Irish people have held large demonstrations to support the Palestinians in recent years. Israel is an apartheid regime. If raising the flag was to cause a bit of a debate amongst some people who are unsure of it flying over City Hall, I think that’s a welcome development. I think that today more and more people think that the way Israel behaves drastically undermines the cause of its establishment.”

In response, Foreign Ministry Spokesman Emmanuel Nahshon said, “If the Dublin City Council approves the decision, it is actually raising a white flag of surrender to terrorist organizations, hate and extortion. This is a hostile decision that first and foremost hurts the decent citizens of Dublin and marks the city with the stain of shame.”

(Translated and edited by Fred Goldberg)

SOURCE

SARAH SILVERMAN ~~ ‘THE OCCUPATION IS NOT A LAUGHING MATTER’

OR …. WHY IS THIS NIGHT PASSOVER DIFFERENT FROM ALL OTHER NIGHTS PASSOVERS?

Comedian Sarah Silverman spoke out against Israel’s military occupation in a new Passover Haggadah timed with the 50th anniversary of the 1967 Six Day War, when Israel conquered the West Bank.

As millions of Jews gather around their Passover seder tables next week to commemorate the liberation of their forbearers from slavery in Egypt more than 3,000 years ago, many will be pondering the relevance of this story for modern times.

Silverman writes: “Of all people, Jews know the bitterness of being oppressed – and not being in our own country. That’s what makes the occupation all so ironic.”

“The Jubilee Haggadah,” released as part of a new Israel-Diaspora initiative called Save Israel, Stop Occupation, March 2017. Credit Irit Hemmo/ Michal Sahar Studio

Sarah Silverman Condemns Occupation in Passover Haggadah

From Trump to refugees to police brutality – how are this year’s new Haggadahs different from others? In a word: politics.

Judy Maltz

As millions of Jews gather around their Passover seder tables next week to commemorate the liberation of their forbearers from slavery in Egypt more than 3,000 years ago, many will be pondering the relevance of this story for modern times.

They need not rack their brains too hard.
From the recent U.S. crackdown on immigrants and refugees, to the soon-to-be-marked 50th anniversary of the Israeli occupation of the Palestinians, the daily news cycle offers a plethora of oppression-themed topics to draw from at the holiday meal.

To help those seeking to incorporate contemporary political and social issues into their seder-table conversations, several progressive Jewish organizations have recently published updated versions of the Passover Haggadah – the book read at the meal, which relates the story of the ancient Israelite Exodus from Egypt – as well as special supplements and inserts.

Some address big global themes, like refugee rights and hunger, while others make do with purely local matters – police brutality in Chicago being a case in point.

To mark the 50th year of the Israeli occupation, a new Israel-Diaspora initiative called Save Israel, Stop Occupation has just released “The Jubilee Haggadah,” which features contributions from 30 prominent artists, activists, rabbis and scholars. Among them are Jewish-American comedian Sarah Silverman, Israeli author Amos Oz and Israeli singer Achinoam (“Noa”) Nini. Jessica Montell, who spearheaded the new initiative, says her inspiration was the biblical commandment to return all land to its original owners in the jubilee year.

“It seems natural to link the jubilee mitzvah with the festival of freedom and to use the story told in the Haggadah to help explain why the occupation must end,” she says.

The printing of the English version of “The Jubilee Haggadah” was made possible by the New Israel Fund.

In her comments in the book, Silverman writes: “Of all people, Jews know the bitterness of being oppressed – and not being in our own country. That’s what makes the occupation all so ironic.”

The excerpt from Oz is culled from a column he penned (for the now-defunct Davar newspaper) in August 1967 – two months after the Six-Day War, which marked the beginning of Israel’s occupation, in which he warned: “I have fears about the kinds of seeds we will sow in the near future in the hearts of the occupied. Even more, I have fears about the seeds that will be implanted in the hearts of the occupiers.” Oz was one of the first prominent Israelis to speak out against the occupation.

The introduction to “The Jubilee Haggadah” calls for an immediate end to Israel’s oppressive control over the lives of Palestinians. “Our world was sustained with the justified establishment of the State of Israel, yet this very event compels us to pursue justice for our neighbors as well,” it reads. “The Palestinian people yearn for their own escape from bondage. In the 50th year of Israel’s rule over them we must raise our voices and cry out for freedom.”

HIAS, the Jewish-American organization that has helped refugees from all over the world for 130 years, has produced a new Haggadah supplement that incorporates the personal stories of some of the thousands of newcomers it has helped resettle in the United States in recent years. The supplement includes a special new introduction to the seder that is meant to be read out loud by the person leading the ceremony.

“As we step into this historical experience, we cannot help but draw to mind the 65 million displaced people and refugees around the world today fleeing violence and persecution, searching for protection,” the suggested text reads. “Like our ancestors, today’s refugees experience displacement, uncertainty, lack of resources, and the complete disruption of their lives.”
HIAS’ new introduction to the Haggadah points a finger at the new Trump administration. “In the United States, in particular, we have experienced a devastating closing of doors to refugees,” it says. Aside from readings, the HIAS supplement also suggests interactive activities and offers a guide for those interested in advocating for refugees.

Every year, Mazon (the Hebrew word for “food”), a Jewish organization that fights world hunger, proposes a fifth question to add to the traditional Four Questions (“Ma Nishtana”) that appear in the Haggadah and are typically recited by the youngest participant at the seder meal. This fifth question addresses concerns about the new U.S. administration’s proposed cuts in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. It reads as follows: “On all other nights we ask, ‘How can I help feed the hungry?’ Tonight we ask, ‘How can we protect the precious safety net that supports those who are hungry?’”

Bina, a Tel Aviv-based institution that promotes social change and operates several secular yeshivas, has created new downloadable and printable Hebrew Haggadah bookmarks that provide a modern twist on key themes in the traditional seder readings. Each bookmark includes new texts that can be added and interactive activities designed to engage children. One of the bookmarks, which addresses the theme of “For you were strangers in the land of Egypt,” urges Israelis to treat the strangers among them kindly – whether they be migrant workers, refugees, asylum seekers, converts or immigrants.

“Our sages claimed that feeling alien is part of our DNA as a nation,” it says. “This can be interpreted as an expression of our obligation to always keep an eye on the strangers and the weak in our midst and to come to their assistance.”

The Jewish Council on Urban Affairs, a Chicago-based nonprofit that fights anti-Semitism and poverty, this year created an updated version of the classic Haggadah song,“Dayeinu” (“It would have sufficed for us”) that addresses police brutality, a well-known problem in this large Midwestern city. Here’s how it begins: “If Chicago Police officers did not use force 10 times as often against black people as compared to white people – Dayeinu!

“If more than one in six officers was able to articulate the Chicago Police Department’s use of force policy properly – Dayeinu!
“If more than $500 million in Chicago taxpayer money had not had to be spent on lawsuit settlements for police misconduct since 2004 – Dayeinu!”
And here’s how it ends: “All the more so will our cause for gratitude, celebration, praise, relief, and song be manifold when all police protocols are structures to maximize accountability to the public it serves. Helleluyah!”

Meanwhile, In Israel today …..

Click on link to read post from the archives

CLEANSING THE LAND OF BREAD AND ARABS

FINALLY SOME POSITIVE ACTION ON THE STREETS OF JERUSALEM

Anti-occupation peace demonstration in Jerusalem

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Some 2,000 mostly Jewish protestors march in Jerusalem. The event was organized by Meretz, the Joint List and left-wing NGOs.
Several hundred mostly Jewish protesters marched in Jerusalem late Saturday to denounce nearly 50 years of what they consider to be Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories, police said.
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The demonstration’s organizers and media estimated that some 2,000 people marched from west Jerusalem to near the Old City’s Jaffa Gate to a platform bearing both Israeli and Palestinian flags.

The event was organized by the secular left-wing opposition party Meretz and the Arab-dominated Joint List, parliament’s third largest bloc with 13 seats, and left-wing NGOs.

Slogans such as “Jews and Arabs are not enemies” and “No to a government of annexation” were among chants heard in Hebrew and Arabic.

The protest came at a time when those who back the creation of a Palestinian state find it harder for their voices to be heard under a government considered to be the most right-wing in Israeli history.

Police said the demonstration passed off peacefully, despite tensions over an incident earlier in the day.

A Palestinian attacker from the West Bank who stabbed and wounded three Israelis was shot dead by police near the Old City’s Damascus Gate.

On Wednesday, a Palestinian woman who attacked border guards with scissors was shot dead in the same area.

 

SOURCE

ZIONIST CREATED ANTI-SEMITISM

Freedom of speech and academic freedom are much cherished freedoms and must also be applicable to critics of politicians of the “Jewish State.” However, the relentless pro-Israel lobby thwarts this important right in Germany and in the world by using infamous and groundless accusations of anti-Semitism. We cannot and must not permit it!

How Zionist Anti-Semitism threatens Freedom of Opinion in Germany!

By Evelyn Hecht-Galinski, English translation by Milena Rampoldi

Just 72 years after the liberation of the Auschwitz concentration camp, Jewish citizens in Germany and foreign Jews are prohibited from speaking, and are accused of Anti-Semitism. At the moment, Jewish speakers like Ilan Pappe and Moshe Zuckermann are prohibited from speaking at the conference “50 Jahre israelische Besatzung” (50 years of Israeli Occupation) which will take place in June in Frankfort. (1)

Freedom of speech and academic freedom are much cherished freedoms and must also be applicable to critics of politicians of the “Jewish State.” However, the relentless pro-Israel lobby thwarts this important right in Germany and in the world by using infamous and groundless accusations of anti-Semitism. We cannot and must not permit it!

Again, an organiser, this time the Ökohaus in Frankfort, was put under pressure by the Israel Lobby, the Jewish Community, and in its wake by the unspeakably philo-Semite mayor Becker, to cancel the rooms to the organizers of the conference. Thanks to the “special” relations to the “Jewish State” and its lobby, in Germany, it is really difficult for everyone to bear the pressure and the defamation campaigns of this lobby for a long time. (2)

There is a Jewish Community led by its president Leo Latasch, full of satisfaction after the cancellation of the rooms, hoping that the conference will not find new rooms because he fears the activities of the conference members.

Where does this person live? In the “Jewish State” where Knesset members hit each other sometimes? About what should Pappe, Zuckermann, or Paech hit each other? About their anger to collectively oppose to the illegal Zionist occupation of Palestine?

And when the mayor Becker from his office tells everyone and their dog: “Who wants to create the scene in Frankfort, is not welcome to our city,” I realize that there is anti-Semitism again in Frankfort, and that this anti-Semitism is directed against Jews who engage for the end of the decades-long illegal occupation of Palestine. This is a shame for the alleged open-minded Frankfort!

In particular the leading media are obliged to uncover the lies, instead of supporting and covering them up.

All this already happened in the past: media, artists, and intellectuals remained unjustly silent and cringed away, when it was about persecuted Jews. However, this should not be a reason to close our eyes again when Jewish perpetrators in the “Jewish State” have been ethnically cleansing, illegally occupying, and judaizing Palestine for more than half a century now under our eyes without being held accountable for it!

These endless attacks of the Israel lobby against the freedom of expression is a hit against democracy, and cannot be accepted!

However, the editor-in-chief of the Frankfurter Rundschau, Arnd Festerling, opposed it with an exceptional and brave article. And Daniel Bax did the same, by writing several articles about anti-Semitism and Islam hatred. Two of the few rays of hope in the German media landscape: (3) (4) (5) (6)

In the following the chronology of the philo-Semite destructors of freedom of opinion: (7) (8) (9)

It cannot be that a philo-Semite clique decides about political opinion leadership by excluding Jews because they raise their voice against the Apartheid regime in the “Jewish State.” It is particularly reprehensible that Jews and Christians, in short “Christian Zionists,” cooperate so profitably in this field. And again, there is an “anti-Jewish sentiment“ in Germany, produced by Jewish Anti-Semites who want to avoid any criticism of the crimes against international law and human rights committed by the “Jewish State.” Is it not a case for the International Court of Justice in Den Haag when Jewish citizens in Europe, who engage for non-anti-Semite, nonviolent BDS campaign (boycott, disinvestment, sanctions), are muzzled or get a travel ban from the alleged “democratic Jewish State?”

The new Capos are Jews against Jews, with the zealous support of “Christian-Zionist” politicians. (10)

How history is being repeated: There already were Jewish Capos, closely cooperating with Fascists. Today these new Capos – and the majority of them are Holocaust survivors – cooperate with the grandchildren of National Socialists as “values’ hypocrites” of the “German leading culture.”

What an absurd, German leading culture, pretending from Muslim refugees and immigrants to recognise the existence right of an Apartheid State, guilty of an illegal occupation for decades, by ethnically cleansing and  land-grabbing from another people, and by ignoring all requests of the UN Security Council, and which does not shy away from mistreating and arresting Palestinian children and women, and which with the blocked Gaza maintains an open-air prison, like a concentration camp, with approximately 2 million people.  (11) (12)

What does this “leading culture” of “Christian-Jewish” values connect? Common enemy images to hide their own crimes. The new common enemy image and object of hatred: Islam and Muslims! Palestinians and Muslims are collectively labelled as terrorists, and categorised as suspects and “dangererous.” Can this marginalization be sustained in the long term? Surely not, as it produces justified anger and hatred.

This atmosphere causes senseless prejudices against Muslims and also makes life difficult for well-intentioned people to feel well in Germany. A good integration can only be achieved, if we do not only pretend from Muslims, what we would never pretend from other religious communities like Jews.

While the Central Council of Jews, the Jewish Communities in Germany, and many international organizations, in particular in Berlin, have never distanced themselves from the “Jewish State” and its crimes against international law and human rights and from the illegal occupation of Palestine, they absurdly hold Muslim and Islamic organizations and communities collectively liable for crimes they are not liable for  and with which, in opposition to Jewish representatives, have never expressed their solidarity  because they refuse them.

On the other hand, Jewish Israel critics and occupation opponents are medially silenced with the support of official German politics and are denied freedom of speech. In this point, Germany 2017 is very similar to Nazi Germany.

Is this what we learnt from German history; that we have to marginalize and silence alleged “bad” Jews with the help of “good” Jews? Germany has slid from anti-Semitism into a fatal philo-Semitism, and we have to oppose all together this dangerous situation. We are not willing to accept the threat of freedom of speech by Zionist anti-Semitism.

A Jew to Zionist Fighters

by Erich Fried

What do you actually want?

Do you really want to outdo

those who trod you down

a generation ago

into your own blood

and into your own excrement
Do you want to pass on the old torture

to others now

in all its bloody and dirty detail

with all the brutal delight of torturers

as suffered by your fathers?
Do you really want to be the new Gestapo

the new Wehrmacht

the new SA and SS

and turn the Palestinians

into the new Jews?
Well then I too want,

having fifty years ago

myself been tormented for being a Jewboy

by your tormentors,

to be a new Jew with these new Jews

you are making of the Palestinians
And I want to help lead them as a free people

into their own land of Palestine

from whence you have driven them or in which you plague them

you apprentices of the Swastika

you fools and changelings of history

whose Star of David on your flags

turns ever quicker

into that damned symbol with its four feet

that you just do not want to see

but whose path you are following today

 

Originally posted AT

PALESTINIANS ARE NOT PEOPLE!

There is a strange headline in the Israeli Press today …. (Click on link to see report)

‘Over a thousand innocent people in prison’

What about these ‘PEOPLE’? Are they all guilty? Somehow I tend to doubt it.

Needless to say, there were no reports in the Israeli Press about these PEOPLE ….. Leading one to believe that they are not considered people by the Israeli Press…

Political Prisoners in Israel/Palestine

Statistics

January 2017

Total Number of Political Prisoners

Administrative Detainees

Child prisoners

Female prisoners

1948 Territories prisoners

East Jerusalem prisoners

Gaza prisoners

Palestinian Legislative Council members

Prisoners before Oslo

30

Prisoners serving a sentence above 20 years

459

Prisoners serving life sentences

458

Prisoners serving more than 20 years

40

Prisoners serving more than 25 years

17

“Since the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territory in 1967, more than 800,000 Palestinians have been detained under Israeli military orders in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt). This number constitutes approximately 20 percent of the total Palestinian population in the oPt and as much as 40 percent of the total male Palestinian population… 8,000 Palestinian children have been arrested since 2000.”

Breakdown of Palestinian Prisoners

Type of Prisoner Number of Prisoners
Total Number of Political Prisoners 7000
Administrative Detainees 750
Female prisoners 70
Child prisoners 438
Palestinian Legislative Council members 6
East Jerusalem prisoners 450
1948 Territories prisoners 70
Gaza prisoners 343
Prisoners serving life sentences 458
Prisoners serving a sentence above 20 years 473
Prisoners serving more than 20 years 30
Prisoners serving more than 25 years 15
Prisoners before Oslo 30

Source

ZIONISM AS A BACKDROP TO HATRED AND VIOLENCE

I regard Zionism as being the antithesis of everything that is decent, humane and just. As for anti-Zionism, to me, it has no special meaning because I am opposed any individual or organisation — irrespective of ethnicity, religion, or political ideology — that in any way violates the rights of others.

“I regard Zionism as being the antithesis of everything that is decent, humane and just”: William Hanna

By Milena Rampoldi. In the following my interview with the author William Hanna about his new novel entitled Hiramic Brotherhood: Ezekiel’s Temple Prophecy. Set against a backdrop of hatred and violence in the Middle East,the novel delves into the issue of Israel’s ethnic cleansing and addresses racism in the Middle East.

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This novel follows journalist Conrad Banner who is intent on filming a documentary in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. Inspired by his father — an author and foreign correspondent with numerous journalism awards for his coverage in the Middle East — Banner’s documentary presents a factually impartial account of the conflict.
*
Hatred and violence was also being continually provoked by Israel’s ethnic cleansing of the indigenous population which was whitewashed by a form of propaganda known as hasbara, or ‘explanation’. Such propaganda was aimed at an international audience to portray Israeli action and policies — past and present — in a positive light while providing a negative portrayal of Arabs in general, and Palestinians in particular.
*
Along with Jewish activist Adam Peltz and Palestinian guide Sami Hadawi, Banner finds himself unwelcome, resulting in some hazardous and ultimately fatal consequences.
*
Hiramic Brotherhood is motivated by the blatant denial of human rights to millions of people, and in particular children, by the double standard of Western democracies. Exploring the themes, of culture, racism, religion, and violence, Hanna brings to the fore a compelling story of struggle and divide.
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Milena Rampoldi: What is the main reason why you have been engaged for Palestine for years now?
William Hanna: Having grown up as member of a colonial family in Kenya, I recognised — despite being relatively young — the appalling injustice of a system wherein the indigenous population was economically marginalised, maligned, maltreated, and even massacred while white settlers gobbled up more of their land holdings. It was a situation that led to the Mau Mau uprising so that by October 1952 the British declared a state of emergency and sent army reinforcements to Kenya to fight an aggressive counter-insurgency against the rebels.
*
After leaving school, and during what was then compulsory military training with the Kenya Regiment, I witnessed a more pronounced form of White settler racism towards the Black population — from the sons of White farmers including some Afrikaners — who were determined at any cost to hold onto their farms.
*
Subsequent to my leaving Kenya, I followed current events including the international community’s boycott of Apartheid in Afrikaner South Africa which eventually caused its demise. That same international community of “humanitarians” — ridden with guilt and hypocrisy over the Holocaust — were being easily blackmailed, bribed, and bullied into ignoring the crimes of Apartheid Israel including its barbaric oppression and ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian People.
*
With time it also became apparent — as noted in my latest book — that while indigenous African people’s were between the 1870s and 1900 subject to European imperialist aggression, diplomatic pressures, military invasions, conquest, colonisation, and the exploitation of their natural resources, they were nonetheless eventually given their independence by the European colonisers. Jewish settlers in Palestine, on the other hand, have no such intention and their sole purpose is to ethnically cleanse and displace the Palestinian people whose land they are gradually but surely stealing. This policy of achieving a state for Jews only through barbaric oppression of the Palestinian people is what motivated me to take up the Palestinian cause.
*
What happened between your first novel and this one? What changed in Palestine?
The only thing that has happened since my first novel is that I am a few years older and still none the wiser. As for Palestine, the status quo of an illegal Jewish settler land grabbing occupation remains unchanged with a regrettable and incessant escalation in the barbaric oppression and denial of all basic human rights to the Palestinian people by ruthless Jewish occupiers who insist they were “chosen by God” to live in the “Promised land.”
*
The most harmful changes affecting the hapless Palestinian people are therefore not those occurring in Palestine, but in those taking place in the so-called Western democracies who in the past had staunchly opposed the heinous concept of Apartheid in South Africa. Such changes which have been selfishly instigated by Israel and its supporters include increased coercion — by means of blackmail, bribery, and bullying — of Western leaders and politicians into supporting Israel while ignoring its blatant violations of international law; the intensification of hateful traducement of any individual or organisation critical of Israeli crimes; the escalation of efforts by Israel and its supporters to suppress the right to freedom of expression; the heightening of hysterical accusations of “anti-Semitism” coupled with a dishonest Jewish failure to recognise that “in the struggle against anti-Semitism, the frontline begins in Israel; the surge in Western legislation that criminalises both the criticism and boycotting of Israel; the recent disgraceful withdrawal of a UN report that justifiably accused Israel of establishing an apartheid regime; and the recent U.S. opposition with unprecedented UK criticism of the adoption by the United Nations Human Rights Council of five resolutions critical of Israel. Such changes imposed by Israel and its supporters within the very core of Western “democracies” not only entrenches Israel’s ethnic cleansing in Palestine, but also undermines the universally declared and inalienable rights for all humanity.
*
Give us a summary of the content of this new novel.
This question is perhaps best answered by the publisher’s intended Advance Information:
*
Set against a backdrop of hatred and violence in the Middle East, Hiramic Brotherhood: Ezekiels Temple Prophesy delves into the issue of Israels ethnic cleansing and addresses racism in the Middle East.
*
This novel follows journalist Conrad Banner who is intent on filming a documentary in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. Inspired by his father — an author and foreign correspondent with numerous journalism awards for his coverage in the Middle East — Banner’s documentary presents a factually impartial account of the conflict.
*
Hatred and violence was also being continually provoked by Israels ethnic cleansing of the indigenous population which was whitewashed by a form of propaganda known as hasbara, or ‘explanation. Such propaganda was aimed at an international audience to portray Israeli action and policies — past and present — in a positive light while providing a negative portrayal of Arabs in general, and Palestinians in particular.
*
Along with Jewish activist Adam Peltz and Palestinian guide Sami Hadawi, Banner finds himself unwelcome, resulting in some hazardous and ultimately fatal consequences.
*
 Hiramic Brotherhood; Ezekiel’s Temple Prophesy is motivated by the blatant denial of human rights to millions of people, and in particular children, by the double standard of Western democracies. Exploring the themes, of culture, racism, religion, and violence, Hanna brings to the fore a compelling story of struggle and divide.
*
Which is the main objective you pursue with this new book?
The main objective is hopefully to help people — particularly those in the West — realise the catastrophic consequences of continually doing nothing and allowing their political and religious leaders to be corrupted and influenced by the well financed and globally organised pro-Israel lobby.
*
In 2013, the professor of international law Francis Boyle testified that the Palestinians have been the victims of genocide as defined by the 1948 Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide . .
*
For over the past six and one-half decades, the Israeli government and its predecessors in law — the Zionist agencies, forces, and terrorist gangs — have ruthlessly implemented a systematic and comprehensive military, political, religious, economic, and cultural campaign with the intent to destroy in substantial part the national, ethnical, racial, and different religious group (Jews versus Muslims and Christians) constituting the Palestinian people.
*
How can this book contribute to the discussion around human rights in Palestine?
By making as many people as possible understand that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights cannot be discriminatory or selective, but must be applicable to everyone without exception; to make them understand that Israel’s denial of human rights to the Palestinian people is not just a crime against Palestinians, but also a transgression against all humanity; to make them understand that their failure to act against Israel’s subversion of humanity’s moral values will ultimately result in the destruction of everything they hold dear including their own inalienable rights such as the right to freedom of expression; and to make them understand being pro-Palestinian is not anti-Semitic, but pro-human rights: the same human rights that hypocritical Jews demand for themselves. It is for that reason that I hope that theHiramic Brotherhood: Ezekiel’s Temple Prophesy will be translated into other languages because upholding human rights is the responsibility of all peoples.
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What does Zionism and Anti-Zionism mean to you personally?
I regard Zionism as being the antithesis of everything that is decent, humane and just. As for anti-Zionism, to me, it has no special meaning because I am opposed any individual or organisation — irrespective of ethnicity, religion, or political ideology — that in any way violates the rights of others.
*
Further information at http://www.hiramicbrotherhood.com
*
Originally posted AT

WAR ON BDS INTENSIFIES

Palestinian society has condemned Israel’s arrest and interrogation of Omar Barghouti, a co-founder of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement as the next step in Israel’s fight against the BDS movement as a whole.

Image by Carlos Latuff

BDS co-founder: Israel’s arrest and interrogation of Omar Barghouti next step in ‘war against BDS movement’

Palestinian society has condemned Israel’s arrest and interrogation of Omar Barghouti, a co-founder of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement as the next step in Israel’s fight against the BDS movement as a whole.

Israel arrested Barghouti on Sunday, raided his family home in Acre, Israel, held him for 16 hours and released him — however the BDS co-founder has been subjected to daily interrogations with Israeli authorities since then, according to a statement released by the Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions National Committee (BNC).

Israeli tax authorities are accusing Barghouti of tax evasion on the sum of $700,000 in alleged hidden income from National Computing Resources, a business he heads in Ramallah, which sells ATM machines and other equipment in the occupied West Bank, as well as income from his book, Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions: The Global Struggle for Palestinian Rights and money he received as speaking fees for speeches.

The BNC on Wednesday released a statement challenging the charges.

“Omar Barghouti, has for years been subjected to intense threats, intimidation and repression by various arms of the far-right Israeli government, particularly after it considered the movement a ‘strategic threat’ to its entire system of injustice against Palestinians,” the movement said in a statement.

In March 2016, Israeli Interior Minister Aryeh Dery threatened to revoke Barghouti residency in Israel. Barghouti, born in Qatar, gained permanent residency through marriage to his wife, a Palestinian citizen of Israel.

“I received information that his life is in Ramallah and he is using his resident status to travel all over the world in order to operate against Israel in the most serious manner,” Israeli Daily Haaretz quoted Dery as saying.

“He was given rights similar to those of a citizen and he took advantage of our enlightened state to portray us as the most horrible state in the world,” said Dery.

During the same conference, Israeli Minister of Transport, Intelligence and Atomic Energy Yisrael Katz who called on Israel to engage in “targeted civil eliminations” of BDS leaders with the help of Israeli intelligence, meaning to tarnish one’s reputation and character among civil society.

The Minister of Public Security, Strategic Affairs and Minister of Information, Gilad Erdan, also described BDS activists and leaders as threats and called for them to “pay the price” for their work, which he clarified did not mean “physical harm.”

A month later, Amnesty International released a statement, calling on Israel to “cease intimidation of human rights defenders and protect them from attacks.”

“Amnesty International is concerned for the safety and liberty of Palestinian human rights defender Omar Barghouti and other [BDS] activists, following calls alluding to threats, including of physical harm and deprivation of basic rights, made by Israeli ministers,” the report read.

“Barghouti is a founding member and a prominent spokesperson of the BDS movement. He campaigns to hold Israel accountable for human rights and other international law violations and advocates for the use of non-violent means in doing so. He was personally attacked in comments and statements by conference participants including ministers, including by describing him as a threat who should be stopped,” the report continued.

Earlier this month, the Israeli Knesset passed a controversial law barring BDS activists from entering the country. The law banned people who call for BDS against Israel, as well as its settlements.

A fellow co-founder of the Palestinian BDS movement, Adnan Ramadan, told Mondoweiss that Barghouti’s arrest and interrogation was just another step in Israel’s strategy against the BDS movement.

“All of this tax evasion business is just an excuse to pressure the BDS movement as a whole, Ramadan said. “In general, it’s part of their war against the campaign, but it won’t work. They can arrest whoever they want, they can do more than that, but that won’t prevent people from continuing to use BDS as a tool in the struggle for Palestinian freedom.”

“This kind of targeting won’t work simply because the BDS campaign isn’t one person or two people or ten people, it’s an organized movement of hundreds of thousands of people, if not more than that, who feel strongly about their fight against the occupation and feel strongly about their motivations in resistance,” Adnan continued.

Adnan stressed that this move against Barghouti is not the first time Israel has targeted particular BDS activists for their work.

“They have been arresting people since the beginning, and it’s all to pressure the people, but the people won’t be silent,” he said. “Palestinians have been resisting for more than 60 years, Israel can kill people, they can assassinate and detain leaders, but it won’t and can’t stop the struggle. All they are doing is holding the body of someone inside a wall, but they can’t hold ideas, or souls of people who believe in the importance of their role of humanity against occupation and injustice.”

ARE WE SEEING A NEW EXODUS FROM ISRAEL?

A growing exodus of young Israelis to Berlin has not only shocked Israel’s far right leadership but has highlighted the growing disillusionment with Zionism …

Watch this video first, then read the article …

LANGUAGE WARNING: Gavin McInnes of TheRebel.media winds up his first visit to Israel by sharing what he’s learned about its people!


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Why Do A Third of Israelis Want To Leave The Country?

A third of Jewish Israelis would leave the country if they could, according to a poll conducted by Masa Israeli, a group looking at the divisions of Jewish society in Israel.

It found that secular Jews were the most likely to want to immigrate, with 36% saying they would leave the country if they could. Orthodox Jews were the least likely to want to immigrate; only 7% said they would leave.

The poll, which was reported by the Walla! news site, found that while 44% of secular Jewish Israelis identify as Israelis foremost, 83% of traditional and 90% of religious Jewish Israelis identify as Jews foremost.

The poll was conducted ahead of a conference called the “Israeli Journey to Change” in the Knesset which is looking for common ground in Israel.

“The survey data indicates a problem with a sense of identity, connection and belonging to the people, to the land and to the state among a growing part of society in Israel and that reality already has created a rift and split in all of Israeli society,” said Masa Israeli director, Uri Cohen.

 

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

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