WHEN A DUTY IS NOT A CRIME

Images by Latuff

 

There are consequences if the duty is a challenge to zion …

Another victim of the Israel Lobby: Academic and activist Marc Lamont Hill was fired by CNN after making statements in support of Palestinian liberation at the UN.

IMAGE OF THE FIRST TASTE OF FREEDOM

Our dear heroine’s first taste of freedom …

A bittersweet moment in reality ….

After eight months in Israeli prison, 17-year-old Ahed Tamimi returned home on Sunday morning to a hero’s welcome in her village of Nabi Saleh, in the central occupied West Bank. Arm in arm with her father Bassem and mother Nariman, who was also released on Sunday along with her daughter, the teenager broke down in tears as she was embraced by her younger brothers, extended family, and fellow residents of Nabi Saleh.

 

 

2nd GROUP OF YOUNG JEWS REALISE WHAT ‘BIRTHRIGHT’ REALLY MEANS

Another group of young American Jews just walked off their Birthright trip, to meet with a Palestinian family and see the reality of the Occupation for themselves, a reality Birthright actively hides

8 left-wing activists stage 2nd Birthright walkout in less than a month

Participants affiliated with IfNotNow leave trip four days early to meet with Palestinian family whose home is slated for demolition in East Jerusalem

Birthright has refused to show us the truth about the occupation’s impact on Palestinians, instead asking us to visit a site operated by a far-right settlement organization. We’ve decided instead to go meet with the Sumarin family, a family that has lived in East Jerusalem under threat of eviction for years to learn from them and hear their story.

More HERE on FacBook page

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And HERE on Twitter

A FATHER SPEAKS ABOUT HIS IMPRISONED DAUGHTER >>> MUST WATCH VIDEO

‘Why Ahed slapped the soldier’ –an interview with Bassem Tamimi

This interview with Bassem Tamimi was recorded on May 4, 2018 in the occupied village of Nabi Saleh, by International Solidarity Movement activists.

His daughter Ahed Tamimi, 17, is serving an eight-month prison sentence for slapping an Israeli soldier on the family’s property on December 15 of last year, after Israeli soldiers shot her cousin in the face.

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IMAGE OF THE DAY … JERUSALEM DAY 51 YEARS ON

 

Jerusalem Day is an Israeli national holiday commemorating the reunification of Jerusalem and the establishment of Israeli control over the Old City in the aftermath of the June 1967 Six-Day War. 

Celebrating the occupation in song and dance …

And the ‘dancing in the streets …

Hundreds of people marched through the streets of Jerusalem on Saturday, to demonstrate against the planned move of the US embassy to the city. Protesters also condemned the Jerusalem Day Flag March, scheduled for Sunday, commemorating the establishment of Israeli control over the Old City.

HOW TO PISS OFF THE FAR RIGHT IN ISRAEL

DesertPeace and Associates congratulates David Grossman on his receipt of the Israel Prize for 2018

While people can think and say what they like, not everyone deserves to be awarded the Israel Prize. It is not surprising when a Leftist writer rages against Israel at every opportunity and speaks disparagingly about Israel’s moral bankruptcy all over the world, but if a Rightest government in Israel  awards and praises him for it, that’s even more tragic.

David Grossman speaking at the Alternative Memorial Day event in Tel Aviv, April 17, 2018. credit Ofer Vaknin

Anti-Israel Prize

While people can think and say what they like, not everyone deserves to be awarded the Israel Prize.

This year, the Israel Prize for Literature was awarded to David Grossman, one of the heralded novelists of the Left, who has a long reputation for speaking out against the “occupation” of Palestinian land, against the “settlers’ and the “settlements”, and against the ideological decay and dying morality of the Israeli majority.

In the past, after the Gaza War, Grossman demanded an inquiry to investigate the IDF, Tzahal, which led to the infamous anti-Israel Goldstone Report. After the Flotilla Affair, he accused the IDF of acting like a “brigade of pirates.” When Tzahal was sent to clean out terrorist havens in Judea and Samaria, Grossman drove off to assist Palestinians with their olive harvest.

On Memorial Day, as a bereaved father whose son, sadly, was killed in the Second Lebanon War, he spoke in Tel Aviv at a controversial gathering of Arabs and Israelis who had lost children in battle. Among the Arabs were family members of terrorists. The Israel Defense Minister attempted to thwart the event, calling it a blatant affront to the feelings of the country on the Memorial Day for Israel’s fallen soldiers and terror victims, but the Supreme Court insisted that the gathering be allowed.

Here are some excerpts from Grossman’s speech, as reported by the newspaper, Haaretz:

“Finally, we have come home. But when Israel occupies and oppresses another nation, for 51 years, and creates an apartheid reality in the occupied territories — it becomes a lot less of a home.

“And when Minister of Defense Lieberman decides to prevent peace-loving Palestinians from attending a gathering like ours, Israel is less of a home.

“When Israeli snipers kill dozens of Palestinian protesters, most of them civilians — Israel is less of a home.

“And when the Israeli government attempts to improvise questionable deals with Uganda and Rwanda, and is willing to endanger the lives of thousands of asylum seekers and expel them to the unknown — to me, it is less of a home.

“And when the Prime Minister defames and incites against human rights organizations, and when he is looking for ways to enact laws that bypass the High Court of Justice, and when democracy and the courts are constantly challenged, Israel becomes even a little less of a home —for everyone… It is a dysfunctional home.

“The people and organizations who are here today, Especially the Family Forum and Combatants for Peace, and many more like them, are perhaps the ones who contribute most to making Israel a home, in the fullest sense of the word.”

While people can think and say what they like, not everyone deserves to be awarded the Israel Prize. It is not surprising when a Leftist writer rages against Israel at every opportunity and speaks disparagingly about Israel’s moral bankruptcy all over the world, but if a Rightest government in Israel  awards and praises him for it, that’s even more tragic. Announcing that Grossman was this year’s recipient, Israel’s Education Minister, Naftali Bennet, declared:

“In his novels, books, essays, documentary writing, in his extensive creations for children, he presented a series of masterpieces that excel in rich imagination, deep wisdom, human sensitivity, a poignant moral stand and a unique and resonant language.”

Bennett defended giving the Israel Prize to a writer known for his opposition to the “settlements” and his support for European boycotts of products produced by the settlers, saying he has no regrets over his decision to award Grossman the acclaimed award.

The Israel Prize committee stated: “Since the early 1980s, David Grossman has taken his place at the center of Israeli culture, and he is one of the most profound, moving and influential voices in our literature… David Grossman is one of the most famous, admired and beloved Israeli writers in the world.”

Grossman is beloved around the world because of his unquestionable literary talent, but does this love also stem from his harsh and never-ending criticism of Israel?

Fortunately, we have the Moskowitz Prize for Zionism, which awards its prizes on a far healthier basis, to builders of the Nation and not to its detractors.

Here is Grossman’s speech (Click on link)

‘Israel Is a Fortress, but Not Yet a Home’: David Grossman’s Memorial Day Speech to Bereaved Israelis and Palestinians

HOW CAN I SUPPORT THAT?

URGENT ANNOUNCEMENT for all young Jews!!!!!!!!

Meanwhile in New York …..

THESE ARE   FOTOS FRM THE ANTI-ADELSTEIN & ANTI- ZIONIST BIRTHRIGHT PROGRAM EVENT ON 4/15.

Photos © by Bud Korotzer

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Related article ~~ Click on post

Dozens of American Jews arrested protesting Gaza violence

From Boston to San Francisco, young activists from IfNotNow demonstrate outside the offices of prominent Jewish institutions and senators, demanding they condemn Israel’s violence against Gaza protesters.

FREE AT LAST, FREE AT LAST, THANK GOD ALMIGHTY SHE’S FREE AT LAST (ALMOST, SORTA, HOPEFULLY)

Ahed Tamimi, the teenager from Nabi Saleh arrested after a video of her attempting to push two armed Israeli soldiers off of her family’s porch went viral, signed a plea deal in Israeli military court on Wednesday, and will serve eight months in prison including three months time served.

Ahed Tamimi to spend 8 months in prison in plea deal

The 17-year-old from Nabi Saleh filmed slapping an Israeli soldier has already been imprisoned for three months. Her mother and cousin also sign plea deals. Activist slaps prosecutor in court.

By +972 Magazine Staff

Ahed Tamimi, the teenager from Nabi Saleh arrested after a video of her attempting to push two armed Israeli soldiers off of her family’s porch went viral, signed a plea deal in Israeli military court on Wednesday, and will serve eight months in prison including three months time served.

Her mother, Nariman, and cousin, Nur, also signed plea deals. Nariman will serve eight months, and Nur was sentenced to time served.

The now-famous video of Ahed was filmed shortly after Israeli soldiers shot her cousin, Mohammed, in the head with a rubber-coated bullet and fractured his skull. An Israeli military court denied bail to Ahed and her mother, Nariman — the latter charged with incitement for livestreaming the video of Ahed and the soldiers — in January.

In court on Wednesday, an activist present during Nariman’s hearing slapped a military prosecutor and was arrested. The activist, an Israeli citizen, reportedly told the prosecutor after slapping him: “who are you to judge her.”

Nariman also signed a plea deal under which she will serve eight months.

Over 70 percent of juvenile defendants accept plea bargains in Israeli military juvenile courts, which have a startling conviction rate of more than 95 percent.

The practice of pre-conviction detention (denying bail) is the default in Israeli military courts. This means that Palestinian minors are faced with a choice of either fighting the charges and remaining in prison for the duration of their trial or signing a plea deal and receiving a reduced sentence.

Given the time spent in prison awaiting trial — Ahed, for example, has been imprisoned for three months already and her trial hasn’t even begun — even a defendant who is acquitted still might spend more time in prison that they would if they had agreed to sign a plea deal.

Ahed has become an international symbol of Palestinian resistance since her arrest, her picture appearing on posters and billboards around the world. Dozens of American cultural luminaires, including Alice Walker, Rosario Dawson, Cornel West, and Danny Glover called for Ahed’s release in February.

In late February, the army arrested Ahed’s cousin Mohammed Tamimi— still awaiting surgery to reconstruct the part of his skull that was removed—in a pre-dawn raid. He was interrogated without a lawyer or a parent present, and released a few hours later after being pressured to confess that his head injury was caused by falling off a bicycle — and not by an Israeli rubber-bullet, fragments of which were extracted from his skull.

Also see THIS on Twitter

A VIDEO TO HELP YOU GET TO KNOW THE BOYCOTT

Short video for those unfamiliar with the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) Movement

GUNS ARE NOT THE PROBLEM IN ISRAEL

Armed illegal settlers are the problem

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Taught to kill and hate at an early age

Israel’s newest tourist attraction

Visitors can sign up for a variety of courses, including a two-hour “Shooting Adventure” where they learn to fire assault rifles and sniper rifles .

Teaching to kill has become a profitable business in Israel

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Those who dare resist are deemed the criminals ….

Ahed Tamimi whose only crime is standing up to an illegal Israeli occupation of her land. Her only weapons her mouth and her hands.

The real criminals have been getting away with murder for over 2000 years

THE MAKING OF THE PALESTINIAN MANDELA

Portrait of a boy with the flag of Palestine painted on his face

Recently, the struggle for Palestinian human rights gained international attention surrounding a new icon of resistance–16 year old Ahed Tamimi. While in the West Bank in late 2016, Abby Martin interviewed Ahed Tamimi about her hardships and aspirations living under occupation and it becomes clear why her subjugators are trying to silence her voice. Her brother Waad and father Bassem also talk about their experiences with Israeli soldiers harassing their village and targeting their family. In this exclusive episode, Abby outlines the Tamimi family’s tragic tale and unending bravery in the fight for justice and equality in Palestine and how the story of their village of Nabi Saleh is emblematic of the Palestinian struggle as a whole.

 

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The proud Father …..

IN PHOTOS ~~ NEW YORKERS STAND TO FREE PALESTINIAN PRISONERS

Scores of New Yorkers gathered together in a demonstration to show support for Ahed Tamimi and all other Palestinian political prisoners held illegally by the occupation.

Photos © by Bud Korotzer

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The outlawed Judeo nazis of the JDL were also there in a counter demonstration …

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NOT ALL CARTOONS ARE MEANT TO BE FUNNY ~~ A SAD CHRISTMAS IN BETHLEHEM THIS YEAR

One day we WILL celebrate!

IMAGE OF THE DAY ~~ GRAFFITI FROM JESUS’ BIRTHPLACE …. UNWELCOMING TRUMP

Palestinian children look at graffiti depicting US President Donald Trump and slogans against US Vice President Mike Pence painted on Israel’s security barrier in the West Bank city of Bethlehem during clashes with Palestinian protesters near an Israeli checkpoint on December 7, 2017. (AFP/Thomas Coex)

Mary and Joseph couldn’t cross into Bethlehem today …..

 

A merry little Christmas: separating the holy family from Bethlehem in a Christmas card (art work by http://www.banksy.co.uk/)

EVERY NACHT IS KRISTALLNACHT IN PALESTINE

 On 9 November for the 78th time we commemorate the Kristallnacht and German politicians, together with Jewish officials, repeat slogans like “Never again” . . . “The Holocaust is unique” . . .  and “Against Oblivion”, then this remembrance is meaningless because for the Palestinian people in occupied Jerusalem it is “Kristallnacht” almost every night!

Image by Carlos Latuff

There is Nothing to Celebrate

By Evelyn Hecht-Galinski, English translation by Milena Rampoldi

How can we celebrate this remembrance day without thinking about the actual illegal situation in Palestine? How is it possible that in German education we correctly talk about the Holocaust as one of the greatest crimes of humanity and then completely ignore the crimes committed in Palestine? Nothing is further from my intentions than the relativisation of Nazi crimes, but it takes the breath out of me, when I see how the descendants of the victims of this Shoah crime justify today’s injustice with the injustice of that time. Injustice can never be justified, and there is no excuse for this behaviour.

I can only repeat myself and say that I cannot keep silent in the face of this injustice, and this is what I learnt from my father who is an Auschwitz survivor. When he decided to come back to Berlin to re-build Jewish life in Germany, he was opposed to Israel. And his life’s motto also became the motivating force of my actions: “I have not survived Auschwitz to keep silent about new injustice.” I do not keep silent about the crimes committed today by a “Jewish State” that justifies them with the Holocaust.

And what is even worse: Germany is driven by a misunderstood feelings of guilt and solidarises with these crimes. And this way the old guilt just becomes a new guilt they will never be able to make amends for.

The old German Republic of Adenauer, Oberländer, and Globke, the “commentator” of the race and aryanization laws, and the epoch of the “nice, brown” FDP Meinde were interfused by old Nazis, who were appointed as officials because they were needed, and then influenced the country until the 1970s. They had taken back their official positions thanks to an “anti-nazifization certificate” issued by the Allies. I remember my father struggling for his recognition as persecuted person first and then as Jewish official to be heard by German politicians and media.

It was also at that time that the USA was involved in the War in Korea and the Germans were used as a constant bulwark during the Cold War, a situation that has remained unchanged to today.

I still remember very well how in 1947 my father helped to accommodate former KZ prisoners and Jewish repatriates in empty houses. This very day, this motivated the “steel helmet Jew,” the former Bundeswehr Professor Michael Wolffsohn to persecute Heinz Galinski by his “romanticised” grandfather and home owners in various books with “hate over generations.” Wolffsohn tried anything to discredit my father, but fortunately he did not succeed.

I also felt attracted by the so called 68s, and turned away from the mendacity of certain politicians and parties. For me, the ‘German Autumn’ was the dawning of a new age. In particular in Berlin this sentiment was a glimmer of hope in times of “Springer’s incitement press.” Rudi Dutschke  was a stroke of luck for us even if he had no idea against this system. And I was also attracted by young engaged people interested in Palestine turning away from the guilt-ridden solidarity with Israel. Yes, we rose up and did not want to be involved in the Nazi-guilt anymore while old Nazis were still present at universities and in ministries.

In fact, Yassir Arafat was a hero for me and is a hero up to now, as opposed to his actual successors like President Abbas.

On 2 November, when the British Prime Minister May and her colleague Netanyahu celebrated the 100th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration during a festive dinner, you could only feel disgusted by these celebrations. The leader of the opposition Jeremy Corbyn did the only right thing and refused to participate by declining the invitation. It is a sad fact that in Great Britain and in the “Jewish State” the foundation of a national home for the Jewish people was celebrated, while the displacement of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians from their homeland and the actual misery of millions of Palestinians were simply ignored. And this event was the foundation of the myth of the “Jewish people” by declaring that the religious Jewish community is a Jewish “people” to legitimise the “national Jewish home.” This way also the horrifying dream of the Jewish State of Theodor Herzl and the “modern” solution of the Jewish question were realised.

Lord Lionel Walter Rothschild, the Zionist poster child of Great Britain, praised the agreement as the “greatest event” in the Jewish history of the last 1800 years. Did Rothschild buy his political future thanks to the support by Balfour and was the declaration the reward?

While the Arabs trusted in the British promise of 1915 as bulwark against the Ottoman Empire, and hoped to be awarded with a national Arab state, the Balfour Declaration gave Palestine to Zionism as a national home for the Jews. Today we have the same phenomenon: the “Jewish State” is the bulwark of the West in the Middle East which should defend the “Jewish-Christian values” against Islam.

The Balfour Declaration consisted of only 67 words, and their woolly formulation left room for Zionist interpretations resulting in the actual illegal occupation, ethnical cleansing, and the “modern final solution” of the Palestine question. From the beginning, the rights of the “existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine” were violated. In the end, the British colonialists had exactly the same ideas like the Jewish colonialists. These Zionists should get the chance to “civilise” the Arab population. I experienced this attitude myself during my visits in Israel, when Jewish guides or friends spoke disparagingly of the “dirty Arabs.” It was that Jewish disrespect towards the Palestinians I started to hate at that time.

Great Britain should apologise for this disaster, instead of celebrating it. In fact, the Balfour Declaration became the foundation of the ethnic cleansing and illegal occupation of Palestine. Lord Balfour, the former British Foreign Minister, is present everywhere in the “Jewish State.” Almost all former Palestinian villages, located in the illegally occupied Palestine, have their Balfour Square or Street, while the original Arabic names were effaced by the Zionists. So there was not just a physical, but also a cultural and ethnic cleansing, increasing up to now. In fact, the Netanyahu regime also tries to upstage the Arabic language.

The false promises contrived in the secret Sykes Picot Agreement by the British and French were reinforced in the Balfour Declaration. However, today the decisive sentence is simply ignored: “It being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine.“

All events after the Holocaust are inseparably linked to the foundation of the “Jewish State” in 1948. The Balfour Declaration was the beginning of the Nakba, the catastrophe for the Palestinian people. The Palestinian people have never been compensated up to now for the crimes of the displacement and confiscation of their property and lands. The “Jewish State” has proven to be totally incapable of living in peace, supported by the hypocritical community of states. An apology for the injustice would be a small, first step on the path to the recognition of Palestine within 1967-borders. However, these steps seem to be as far away as peace. So what remains is only the hope for a future justice in a common state of Palestine for all its inhabitants, ethnic and religious groups.

This should not be forgotten during the celebration of the 78th anniversary of the Kristallnacht and the Balfour Declaration of 100 years ago. A memory without these thoughts would be an empty ritual which is not in keeping with the times!

Until then there will be nothing to CELEBRATE!

 

Originally posted AT

LATEST ACTION OF THE ILLEGAL OCCUPATION

WHO IS THE CRIMINAL?

Illegal Arab neighborhood to be leveled – with explosives

Six illegal Arab high-rise buildings in Jerusalem to be demolished in controlled explosion.

The City of Jerusalem, in conjunction with Israeli security forces, is planning a massive demolition operation against an illegal neighborhood on the northern edge of the city.

According to a report by Kan 11 Sunday night, the Jerusalem municipality is taking aim at six illegally-built high-rise apartment buildings in the village of Kafr Aqab, which sits inside the municipal boundaries of the capital.

Kafr Aqab, while under full Israeli sovereignty and nominally under the authority of the City of Jerusalem, is outside of the security fence around the city and remains largely beyond the reach of Israeli law enforcement officials. Building violations are common in Kafr Aqab, and city officials say the six-building neighborhood targeted for demolition was built with no authorization whatsoever.

The six apartment buildings slated for demolition are all six stories or taller, and include a mosque built housed in a unit of one of the buildings.

The demolition will be carried out in a joint operation between city officials, Israel Police, the IDF, and the Shin Bet internal security agency. The buildings are slated to be levelled in a series of controlled explosions so powerful, hundreds of residents of other buildings in the area will have be evacuated as a security precaution.

Sources told Kan 11 that the plan has been promoted by Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat.

A spokesperson from the mayor’s office noted that “The demolition orders were issued months ago against [the buildings] which had been built illegally and without building permits and which had no residents [when the orders were issued] and which today are still largely empty. Time and again, the courts, including the Jerusalem District Court and the Israeli Supreme Court, issued [demolition] orders.”

According to the mayor’s office, the demolitions will pave the way for a new highway which will benefit reisdents of Kafr Aqab.

“Demolition of the illegal buildings will enable the City of Jerusalem to pave a highway, improving the lives of tens of thousands of residents. The new road is absolutely necessary, and it will benefit all of the residents of Kafr Aqab.”

At least one coalition member, however, condemned the plan, calling it a political ploy to gain support from the right.

“Nir Barkat has been mayor for nine years, and nothing like this was ever done,” said Rachel Azariya (Kulanu), a former Jerusalem city council member from the Yerushalmim (“Jerusalemites”) faction.

“He knows that he is playing with fire by pursuing this. No one argues with the fact that illegal construction in Jerusalem is a problem that must be dealt with, especially in eastern Jerusalem. But a show of force like this will lead to a dangerous confrontation.”

Home demolitions of illegal Arab structures in Jerusalem were few and far between during the President Obama’s eight years in office, owing in part to the administration’s opposition to such demolitions.

Following President Trump’s election last November, however, the left-wing Ir Amim organization measured a significant increase in the number of illegal Arab buildings demolished.

 

Source

REVERSING ISRAEL’S DIVIDE AND CONQUER TACTICS

Palestinians are 12 million in number, and stuck in institutional paralysis. The nearly 25-year-old Oslo Peace Process successfully, and sadly, facilitated Israel’s strategic desire to utilize the age-old divide and conquer strategy to reduce Palestinians to disparate fragments, each with their own challenge to merely survive.

Palestinian youths force open a gate in the Israeli separation wall, built on land belonging to the village of Bil’in, which leads to the Israeli settlement of Modi’in Ilit, also built on village land, February 17, 2017. (Oren Ziv/Activestills.org)

How Palestinians can reverse Israel’s divide and conquer tactics

Oslo allowed Israel to reduce Palestinians to disparate fragments, each with their own challenge to merely survive. It’s time to reset that reality and view the Palestinians for what they are — physically fragmented, politically divided, but a whole people.

By Sam Bahour

Most veteran observers, including Israeli security authorities and Palestinian leadership, were dumbfounded by recent events in Jerusalem, where tens of thousands of Palestinians mobilized non-violently in response to the Israeli closure of the Old City and placement of metal detectors at the entrance of the Dome of Rock and Al-Aqsa Mosque. What was the secret ingredient that made such a mass action take place and be a successful example in Palestinian non-violent resistance to the 50 years of Israeli military occupation? How did it happen so spontaneously, non-violently and with seemingly no leadership?

A new report by the group, titled, Relations Between Palestinians Across the Green Line (Arabic here, English translation forthcoming), in the works for over two years, may hold the answer to some of these questions. For months, a group of dedicated Palestinian analysts, activists, intellectuals and politicians working with the Palestine Strategy Group (PSG) have been meeting to explore an angle of the Palestinians reality that is many times ignored—the relationship between the Palestinians living inside Israel, today coined as Palestinian citizens of Israel, and Palestinians living under Israeli military occupation in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip.

Transcending artificial boundaries

The report identifies Jerusalem as a place where, paradoxically, the boundaries of Israel and Palestine collapse — a site for joint work, cooperation and struggle against Israel’s colonial policies. Many political leaders (Palestinian members of Knesset, as well as Jerusalemites, Fatah members, Hamas-affiliated academics, etc.) who were part of the group that produced the report testified to the existing, nascent cooperation and possibility and need to further develop it.

Even beyond the recent developments in Jerusalem, there are also indications of grassroots and bottom-up engagements transcending conventional and formal realms of political engagement elsewhere. The cross-border mobilization and cooperation to address the Prawer Plan, for instance, a 2011 Israeli government plan to forcibly relocate some 40,000 Bedouin citizens living in dozens of villages in Israel’s Negev desert, was identified as additional proof to this growing phenomenon of Palestinians on both sides of the Green Line finding common ground.

The PSG report starts with stating an obvious, but no less bold, fact that “Fifty years after the Israeli occupation and forced annexation of Palestinians under Israel’s discriminatory ruling regime, political projects associated with ending the occupation and attaining full citizenship have ended in stalemate.”

That statement is not groundbreaking in and of itself. When coupled with the following realization, however, it provides more than just food for thought — it also sheds light on this rather invisible phenomenon which has the potential to rejuvenate the entire Palestinian national liberation movement. The report continues: “In light of different political projects, national cohesion among the Palestinian people on both sides of the Green Line is a key tool to create a unified, collective umbrella that allows networking, empowerment and development. While it does not abolish political specificities, this umbrella will seek to integrate political projects. Every component of these projects will support the other with a view to realizing respective demands, including ending the occupation of the 1967 territory, return of the refugees, full citizenship, and individual and collective equality inside the Green Line.”

A new Palestinian agency?

The strategy presented is premised on two hypotheses. First, is the need to maintain a clear distinction between the national and the political realms. That means an inclusive Palestinian national project that brings together all Palestinian people — those under occupation in the (New) State of Palestine, those in Israel, and those refugees and diaspora abroad. Secondly, discrepant political interests and perceptions of Palestinian groups need to be viewed as complementary, rather than contradictory to one another. Doing so means embracing diversity, transforming it from a source of divisions into a foundation for rebuilding a national project.

It is important to emphasize that support, networking and joint action of Palestinians across the Green Line have always been in place. The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and Palestinian party leaders inside Israel have acted in concert and coordinated with and supported each other on innumerable occasions. However, coordination always took place beyond any institutional frameworks. Oftentimes, the report notes, “collaboration was arbitrary, individual [and not] bona fide.” Today, this cross-border cooperation is not only targeted, collective and authentic, but has within it the seeds of a new type of Palestinian leadership.

In this context, namely the lack of institutional networking, PSG discussants proposed several potential options to institutionalize relations between Palestinians on both sides of the Green Line. A major thrust of the report entertains the “creating an inclusive, apolitical framework for all Palestinians.”

Palestinians are 12 million in number, and stuck in institutional paralysis. The nearly 25-year-old Oslo Peace Process successfully, and sadly, facilitated Israel’s strategic desire to utilize the age-old divide and conquer strategy to reduce Palestinians to disparate fragments, each with their own challenge to merely survive. It’s time to reset that reality and view the Palestinians for what they are, physically fragmented, politically divided, but a whole people nonetheless, from Ramallah to Santiago.

Sam Bahour is a Secretariat member of the Palestine Strategy Groupand policy adviser to Al-Shabaka, the Palestinian Policy Network. He blogs at www.epalestine.com. @SamBahour. The PSG report was implemented in cooperation with the Palestinian Forum for Israeli Studies (MADAR) and the Oxford Research Group (ORG). It was supported by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Representative Office of Norway to the Palestinian Authority (2015-2017) and Konrad Adenauer Stiftung (2016-2017).  This latest report is the most recent of a series of important and influential documents the PSG has issued since its founding in 2008.

 

Originally appeared AT

THE TEMPLE MOUNT ~~ ISRAEL’S MIGHT, BUT NOT ITS RIGHT

The claim that the Haram al-Sharif belongs to Israel has as much legitimacy as a rapist’s claim that the body of his victim belongs to him.

Image by Carlos Latuff

The best cartoon to describe the Israeli brutality against unarmed Palestinians…

Temple Mount belongs to Israel……but only by the standard of might, not the standard of right
By Khaled Amayreh  in Occupied East Jerusalem
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An Israeli cabinet minister has repeated the stale Zionist propaganda claim that the “Temple Mount” belongs to Israel. He is correct in a certain sense. Israel has been in control of the Haram al- Sharif (Noble Sanctuary)  as well as the entirety of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip since the six-Day war of 1967.  This  means that the holy site, which has been an exclusively Muslim place of worship for the past 1400 years, now “belongs” to Israel by the standards of might, not by the standards of right  But right, not might, comes first because right is a constant whereas might is a variable.
 
In fact, the claim that the Haram al-Sharif belongs to Israel has as much legitimacy as a rapist’s claim that the body of his victim belongs to him.
 
In fact, the historical and even religious claims often cited to prove that the holy  site belongs to Jews are dubious and erroneous.
 
Historical records show that King David conquered Jerusalem from the Jebusites around 1100 BC.  The Jebusites, a Canaanite people believed to be, at least partly, the ancestors of modern-day Palestinians, had been in Jerusalem for some 2000 years.
 
Indeed, for fifty years of intensive excavations, Israeli archeologists  left no stone unturned   underneath  the Islamic shrine, but utterly failed to find  any credible evidence corroborating the gigantic canard that the Aqsa Mosque stands right on top of the Temple of Solomon.
 
 
A few years ago. George Wesley Buchanan, Professor Emeritus of New Testament Theology at Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, published a meticulously researched scholarly monograph titled “What if the ruins of King Solomon’s Temple are NOT under the Dome of the Rock?” http://www.ameu.org/Current-Issue/Current-Issue/2014-Volume-47/In-Search-of-King-Solomons-Temple.aspx
 
 
According to the research, which this writer had the honor to translate into Arabic; archaeologists have discovered no ruins in the Haram area that might have belonged to the temple.
 
 “Instead they have found an image of a soldier on a horse, a brick with the mark of the 10th Roman legion on it, and an image of Mars, the Roman god of war.
 
“They have also found in the an inscription once carved over an arch, honoring Titus, Vespasian, and probably Silva for their leadership in the war of AD 66-72.”
 
 According to the scholarly monograph, published in the Journal “Americans for Middle East Understanding” (AMEU) in 2014, another inscription that was intended to fit on the interior wall of the Haram,  honored Hadrian, the Roman emperor who defeated Bar Kochba in the revolt that ended in 135 AD.
 
  In conclusion, Buchanan  asks the most  central question:  “Is there any evidence that the Haram was ever the Temple Mount?”
 
Here is his answer: (clearly, “No!”).
 
Finally, it is true that Jews were in control of Jerusalem more than 2500 years ago.  But so what?   Most of the cities of the world were then inhabited by peoples unrelated to their current inhabitants.
 
Today, the manifestly pyromaniac Israel government, made up of Talmudic fanatics and Zionist jingoists, is striving to set Jerusalem and the entire region on fire under the rubric of Jewish Messianism and millenarianism.  This madness must be stopped immediately because madness breeds madness and blood breeds more blood.

GLOBAL SILENCE ON GAZA MUST BE BROKEN

After 10 years of Israeli siege, the United Nations says Gaza is effectively unlivable.

Israel has consigned the people of Gaza to “living in abject poverty under practically inhuman conditions unparalleled in the modern world,” the human rights group B’Tselem said last month.

Video: Break the silence on Gaza with people power

In recent weeks the situation has deteriorated even further, as Israel has sharply cut the electricity supply, bringing available energy in Gaza to the lowest level ever.

Health, water and sewage treatment systems are breaking down, making life unbearable.

“This is not a natural disaster. This is a policy choice by Israel to do this to 2 million people, and it’s a policy choice the so-called international community are supporting,” I told Aaron Maté of The Real News.

“At best the so-called international community scrambles to do an appeal to various donor governments to patch up, to do palliative care,” for people in Gaza, I told Maté. “What they don’t do is challenge Israel and hold it accountable.”

By refusing to provide people in Gaza with basic health and other services, Israel, as the occupying power, is committing war crimes, I argued.

And it’s happening in silence – even Democracy Now, a flagship progressive outlet, has mentioned the situation only in brief and infrequent headlines.

The humanitarian catastrophe is also the result of collusion between Israel and the Palestinian Authority of Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah.

Abbas wants to put political pressure on Hamas, which governs the interior of Gaza, by inflicting additional suffering on the 2 million Palestinians who live there.

This pressure has included curtailing medicine supplies to Gaza and refusing medical referrals for hundreds of patients who need urgent treatment outside the territory, leading to more than a dozen deaths.

“It’s up to us to challenge the institutional complicity and silence,” I told Maté. If regime media don’t make noise about Gaza, “people should be demonstrating, holding protests at the UN and Israeli embassies, at Palestinian Authority embassies, because they’re all complicit in this siege.”

Watch the video above.

Image by Latuff

MUST SEE VIDEO ~~ ‘THIS IS PALESTINE’

 

Nothing new here for anyone aware of ground zero in Palestine or has been awake the past 50 years, but footage of some heart-wrenching scenes reminds us all that there are real people behind the daily headlines and statistics.

Shared by Sam Bahour, with thanks

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