SILENCING OF THE LAMBS IN JERUSALEM

The latest attempt to erase Palestine from the map was to silence the call for morning prayers in Jerusalem ….

This is what some Israelis found offensive …. simply meaning that God is great.

Islamic Call to Prayer at Dawn

Israeli authorities ban Muslim call for dawn prayer from 3 mosques in Jerusalem town

Israeli authorities reportedly banned the Muslim call to dawn prayer from being projected over loudspeakers in three different mosques in the Jerusalem district town of Abu Dis on Friday, according to local sources.

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Lawyer Bassam Bahr, head of a local committee in Abu Dis, told Ma’an that Israeli forces raided the town just before the dawn prayer on Friday.

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According to Bahr, Israeli forces raided the al-Rahman, al-Taybeh and al-Jamia mosques in the town, and informed the muezzins, the men responsible for the call to prayer that the call for dawn prayer through the loudspeakers was banned.
Bahr added that the forces did not provide any reason for the ban, and also prevented locals living in the eastern part of the town from reaching the Salah al-Din mosque for dawn prayers.
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Bahr condemned the “unjustified ban,” saying that “Israel attacks Palestinians in all aspects of their lives,” in the form of limiting free movement through the use of checkpoints, and through the disruption of daily life in the form of nightly detention raids.
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The events in Abu Dis came a day after a number of Israeli settlers from illegal settlement of Pisgat Zeev protested in front of the house of Israeli Mayor of Jerusalem Nir Barakat over the ‘noise pollution’ caused by the Muslim call to prayer.
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A spokesperson for the Jerusalem municipality told Ma’an that Barkat, “in collaboration with the Jerusalem District police chief and local Muslim leadership, has developed a plan to protect the religious freedom of Muslim muezzin to announce the call to prayer, while ensuring reasonable quiet in Jerusalem’s residential areas.”
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The spokesperson went on to add that the municipality guidelines would include “increased instructions for muezzin operators regarding technical guidelines for optimal playback and sound amplification, increased mapping of city mosques, and continuous dialogue with local Muslim leadership.”
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Adnan al-Husseini, the Palestinian Authority (PA)-appointed governor of Jerusalem, told Ma’an at the time that the call to prayer — also known as the adhan, which is broadcast five times a day from mosques — was one of the main Muslim religious rituals and an integral part of Jerusalem’s identity. He said that Israeli demands to lower the sound of the adhan was a threat which had been issued several times before in Jerusalem.
Al-Husseini said that the sound of the adhan doesn’t rise above an agreed-upon decibel level, adding that Israeli settlers were not annoyed by the noise, but by the call to prayer as a reminder of Palestinian presence in Jerusalem.
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Meanwhile, Hatem Abd Al-Qader, a Fatah official in Charge of Jerusalem affairs, told Ma’an that Israel aimed to provoke Muslims by attempting to ban the call to prayer.
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Abd al-Qader said that the Israeli settlers’ protest against the adhan came amid constant violations and raids of the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in East Jerusalem’s Old City, and demolition of Muslim graves in Jerusalem, which he said were part of a broader Israeli plan to destroy the Palestinian Muslim and Christian identities of Jerusalem and replace them with a Jewish one, turning the Israeli-Palestinian political conflict into a religious one.
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Palestinian communities in occupied East Jerusalem — within the municipal boundaries and also beyond the wall in the occupied West Bank — and the larger Jerusalem district, have long been targeted by Israeli authorities in what has been denounced as a policy of “Judaization” of the holy city at the expense of other religious communities.
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This “Judaization” has been characterized by the continuous expansion of illegal Jewish-only settlements and a large-scale policy of demolition of Palestinian homes.
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The Al-Aqsa Mosque Compound has also been the stage of numerous tensions over the years, with Israeli forces imposing tight restrictions on Palestinian worshipers at the site.
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Many Palestinians fear that right-wing Israelis are attempting to reclaim the holy site, as it sits where Jews believe the First and Second Temples once stood.
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SOURCE

HYDRO-APARTHEID

Water shortages are not new for Palestinians. Whether in the occupied Gaza Strip or the West Bank including East Jerusalem, the supply of water flowing into Palestinian homes is strictly capped or obstructed by Israel.

Palestinians collect water from a spring, in the West Bank village of Salfit on 27 June. Villagers had been without water for days as chronic supply shortages induced by Israeli occupation authorities continue to hit many parts of the territory. Nedal Eshtayah APA images

Palestinians collect water from a spring, in the West Bank village of Salfit on 27 June. Villagers had been without water for days as chronic supply shortages induced by Israeli occupation authorities continue to hit many parts of the territory. Nedal Eshtayah APA images

Israel’s hydro-apartheid keeps West Bank thirsty

Water shortages are not new for Palestinians. Whether in the occupied Gaza Strip or the West Bank including East Jerusalem, the supply of water flowing into Palestinian homes is strictly capped or obstructed by Israel.

As temperatures climb during the summer, taps run dry. Clemens Messerschmid, a German hydrologist who has worked with Palestinians on their water supply for two decades, calls the situation “hydro-apartheid.”

This year, Israeli journalist Amira Hass published data proving that the Israeli Water Authority had reduced the amount of water delivered to West Bank villages.

In some places, the supply was slashed by half. Her records contradict official denials that water supplies to Palestinian cities and villages are cut during the summer, even though that too is not new.

Cities and small villages have gone as long as 40 days without running water this summer, forcing those who can afford it to haul in water tanks.

When Israel occupied the West Bank in 1967 it also seized control over the West Bank Mountain Aquifer, the territory’s principal natural water reserve.

The Oslo accords of the early 1990s gave Israel 80 percent of the aquifer’s reserves. Palestinians were supposed to get the remaining 20 percent, but in recent years they have been able to access only 14 percent as a result of Israeli restrictions on their drilling.

To fulfill the population’s minimum needs, the Palestinian Authority is forced to buy the rest of the water from Israel. But even then, it’s not enough.

Israel is only willing to sell a limited amount of water to Palestinians. As a consequence, Palestinians use far less water than Israelis, and a full third less than the World Health Organization’s recommendation of 100 liters per person per day for domestic use, hospitals, schools and other institutions.

The Electronic Intifada spoke with Clemens Messerschmid, who has been working in the water sector throughout the West Bank and Gaza Strip since 1997, about the engineered water scarcity for Palestinians in the West Bank.

Charlotte Silver: Is scarcity of water in the area driving the water crisis in the West Bank? Or is the scarcity engineered?

Clemens Messerschmid: Of course there is no water scarcity in the West Bank. What we suffer from is induced scarcity – it’s called the occupation. This is the regime imposed on Palestinians immediately after the war in June 1967.

Israel rules through military orders, which have the direct and intended result of keeping Palestinians short on water. It is not an ongoing gradual dispossession as with land and settlements, but was done in one sweep by Military Order No. 92, in August 1967.

The West Bank possesses ample groundwater. There is high rainfall in Salfit, in the northern West Bank, now known for especially hard water cuts.

The West Bank is blessed with a treasure of groundwater. But this is also its curse, because Israel targeted this immediately after taking control.

What we need is simple: groundwater wells to access this treasure. But Israel’s Military Order No. 158 strictly forbids drilling or any other water works, including springs, pipes, networks, pumping stations, irrigation pools, water reservoirs, simple rainwater harvesting cisterns, which collect the rain falling on one’s roof.

Everything is forbidden or rather not “permitted” by the Civil Administration, Israel’s occupation regime. Even repair and maintenance of wells requires military permits. And we simply don’t get them.

It is a simple case of hydro-apartheid – far beyond any regime in history that I am aware of.

CS: Israel has increased the amount of water it sells Palestinians, but it is still not enough to prevent villages from running dry. Putting aside the fact that Israel’s control over the aquifer’s resources is very problematic, why won’t Israel sell the Palestinians enough water?

CM: Israel first of all has drastically reduced the amount of water available to Palestinians. It has prevented all access to the Jordan River, which is now literally pumped dry at Lake Tiberias.

Then, Israel imposes a quota on the number of wells and routinely denies permits for much-needed repair of old wells from the Jordanian days – Jordan administered the West Bank from 1948 until the Israeli occupation – especially agricultural wells. That means the number of wells is constantly shrinking. We have fewer than in 1967.

Now, the only thing that has increased is the dependency on buying water from the expropriators, Israel andMekorot, Israel’s national water company.

This is reported over and over in the western press, because it is the point Israel stresses: ‘See how benevolent we are?’

So, yes, since Oslo, purchases from Mekorot have grown steadily. Ramallah now receives 100 percent of its water from Mekorot. Not a drop comes from a single well field we have.

The supply of villages by Israel was not done as a favor. It was initiated in 1980 by Ariel Sharon, then agriculture minister, when rapid settlement growth was starting. The water supply was “integrated,” in order to make the occupation irreversible.

What is important here is the structural apartheid, cemented and cast in iron in these pipes. A small settlement is supplied via large transmission pipes from which smaller pipes split off to go towards Palestinian areas.

Israel is very happy with Oslo, because now Palestinians are “responsible” for supply. Responsible but without a shred of sovereignty over resources.

The current so-called water crisis is not a crisis at all. A crisis is a sudden change, a new turn or a turning point in development. The undersupply of Palestinians is desired, planned and carefully executed. The “summer water crisis” is the most reliable feature of the Palestinian water calendar. And the amount of annual rain, or drought, has no bearing whatsoever on the occurrence and scale of that “crisis.”

I should stress that however routinely this occurs, in each and every single case, it is a conscious decision by some bureaucrat or office in Israel or the Civil Administration. Someone has to go to the field and turn down the valve at the split off to the Palestinian village. This, like every summer, was done in early June. Hence – water crisis in the West Bank.

CS: What factors may be contributing to the worsening water cuts this year?

CM: It seems settler demand rose drastically since last year. The Israeli Water Authority found 20 to 40 percent higher demand, which is quite remarkable.

Alexander Kushnir, the Water Authority’s director general, attributes this to expansion of settler irrigation in the mountains of the northern West Bank settlements, around Salfit and Nablus.

CS: How is it that people in present-day Israel are reportedly enjoying a surplus of water since the country has started using desalination, while the people under occupation in the West Bank are left with so little? Even Israeli settlers have reportedly experienced water cuts.

CM: It’s true that Israel declared for the first time a few years ago that it had a surplus water economy and iskeen to sell more water to its neighbors, from whom it expropriated water in the first place.

Palestinians are already buying water Israel stole, but as noted, not reliably or at sufficient rates.

Frankly, I don’t know. Why this special, elevated and aggravated desire of Israel not even to sell enough water to the West Bank?

In some areas, water is actively used as a weapon for ethnic cleansing, like in the Jordan Valley. Agriculture was always targeted from day one of the occupation.

But this logic does not apply to the densely populated Palestinian towns and cities in so-called Area A of the West Bank, that are still struggling. After 20 years, this still leaves me puzzled.

Another element is important to understand: Israel needs to constantly teach Palestinians a lesson. Any water procurement, any drop delivered should be understood as a generous favor, as an act of mercy, not as a right.

Israel has augmented water sales to the West Bank from 25 million cubic meters per year in 1995 to around 60 mcm/year now. Why does it not sell much more? It certainly could afford it waterwise – it has a gigantic surplus.

One of the material issues I can detect is the issue of price, and therefore meaning of water.

Israel wants to eventually get the highest price for desalinated water it sells to Palestinians. While we are only speaking about a few hundred million shekels a year [a few tens of millions of dollars] – which is not a lot for Israel – Israel wants to end the debate once and for all over Palestinian water rights.

Israel demands nothing short of a full surrender: Palestinians should agree that the water under their feet does not belong to them, but forever to the occupier.

By demanding full prices for desalinated water, Palestinians would admit and agree to a new formula.

A word on the Gaza Strip – unlike the West Bank, Gaza has no physical possibility of access to water. The confined and densely populated Strip can never supply itself. Yet, Gaza does not get such water deliveries from Israel. Only recently did Israel start selling to Gaza the five million cubic meters per year agreed in Oslo. A tiny cosmetic increase has been enacted.

In a way you could interpret this differential treatment between Gaza and the West Bank as an Israeli admission of a certain degree of hydrological dependence.

Israel receives the bulk of its water from the territories conquered in 1967, including Syria’s Golan Heights, but not a drop from Gaza.

Waterwise, Gaza has no resource to offer Israel. This is the same as with the main resource: land. Hence a very different approach to Gaza right from the start in 1967. Israel does not depend on Gaza in any material form. Ever since Oslo, Israel has demanded Gaza supply itself by its own means, such as through seawater desalination.

CS: How have donor countries acted in all this? Have they defended global minimal water standards or have they affirmed and bolstered Israel’s control over the water resources in the occupied West Bank?

CM: Unfortunately the latter. When Oslo started, we all were under the illusion that a phase of development would start. Wells that were forbidden to be drilled for 28 years would finally be put in place.

Soon, we learned that Israel in fact was never willing to give “permits … for expanding agriculture or industry, which may compete with the State of Israel,” as then-defense minister Yitzhak Rabin said in 1986.

What was needed then and now – and everybody knew it – was political pressure to extract the minimum well-drilling permits guaranteed under Palestinian-Israeli accords. This pressure never came. Never did the EU or my German government issue even a public statement in which it “deplores” or “regrets” the obstructions in the water sector. This is a true scandal.

But even worse, what was our Western answer to this? All donor-funded projects actually abandoned the vital branch of well drilling. The last German funded well was drilled in 1999.

As for the current so-called water crisis, we as donors are now busy generously funding anachronistic water tankering in the cut-off Palestinian towns and cities – adapting to and stabilizing the status quo of occupation and water apartheid.

“YOU DON’T MURDER A SLEEPING CHILD FOR PEACE”

We mourn with the family of  Hallel-Yaffa Ariel. Her murder was senseless and will only lead to more zionist terror.

You don’t murder a sleeping child for peace. We will not let barbarism defeat humanity.

(See the photos presented after this ironic video)

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Child victims of zionist terror

Israeli occupation has killed 2,079 Palestinian children since 2,000,

Israeli occupation has killed 2,079 Palestinian children since 2,000,

Here are just a few

Mourners hold posters of Palestinian Riham Dawabsheh 27 and her family Reuters ... murdered in an arson attack on their home in the summer of 2015. The zio terorists involved were arrested and released.

Mourners hold posters of Palestinian Riham Dawabsheh 27 and her family Reuters … murdered in an arson attack on their home in the summer of 2015. The zio terorists involved were arrested and released.

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Israeli soldiers shot Sabreen Abu Sneineh, 8, in the head, in Hebron, Aug. 12, 2001. She was walking to school.

Israeli soldiers shot Sabreen Abu Sneineh, 8, in the head, in Hebron, Aug. 12, 2001. She was walking to school.

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Our precious Abir Aramin, killed by Israeli soldiers in Anata refugee camp near Jerusalem, 19 January 2007.

Our precious Abir Aramin, killed by Israeli soldiers in Anata refugee camp near Jerusalem, 19 January 2007. (Age 10)

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Israel murdered 507 Palestinian children in July/August 2014

Israel murdered 507 Palestinian children in Gaza in July/August 2014

Just a few ….

4 year old Gazan child’s head

4 year old Gazan child’s head

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Two dead Palestinian children, one burned to a crisp by phosphor, the other blown apart by a grenade or DIME bomb fired by Israeli soldiers.

Two dead Palestinian children, one burned to a crisp by phosphor, the other blown apart by a grenade or DIME bomb fired by Israeli soldiers.

So no, You don’t murder a sleeping child for peace. We will not let barbarism defeat humanity.

OCCUPATION TO BLAME FOR TEL AVIV TERROR ATTACK

At least one elected official had the guts to speak the truth!

Tel Aviv Mayor Blames Terror Attack on Israel’s Occupation

“You can’t hold people in a situation of occupation and hope they’ll reach the conclusion everything is alright.”

The 'savage' himself!

The ‘savage’ himself!

The mayor of Tel Aviv blamed the terror attack that killed four Israelis on the occupation of Palestinian lands.

Hours after two gunmen opened fire in a chic shopping district, Mayor Ron Huldai said the Jewish state’s half-century rule over Palestinians was fueling the violence.

“You can’t hold people in a situation of occupation and hope they’ll reach the conclusion everything is alright,” Huldai told the Jerusalem Post.

The mayor was joined by Israeli Arab lawmakers in a plea for peace after the deadly attack.

They said civilians “on both sides” should be removed from the conflict and denounced the possibility that Israel will embark on a retaliatory campaign of collective punishment.

Even when asked about reports that West Bank Palestinians celebrated the murders, Huldai refused to take the bait. He insisted that the occupation, which he said “I know and I was a part of,” was the real culprit.

“Leaders need courage to not just talk,” Huldai said.

Israel’s right-wing government ministers wasted no time in lashing out at Huldai and other leftists, insisting that he was whitewashing terror. Deputy Defense minister Eli Ben-Dahan said Arabs were terrorizing Jews in the Holy Land even before the state of Israel was established, let alone when it seized the West Bank.

“They are the delusional ones,” Ben-Dahan said.

 

Written by The Forward Staff

 

ISRAEL FINDS A WAY TO END THE OCCUPATION

Even worse than it was before ….

78% of Israeli Jews favor extending Israeli sovereignty over Maale Adumim. Land of Israel Lobby to propose annexation bill this summer.

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Israel to annex Maale Adumim?

A whopping 78% of Israeli Jews say they support the annexation of Maale Adumim even without a final status agreement with the Palestinian Authority, along the same lines as Israel’s 1981 annexation of the Golan Heights.

The vast majority of respondents favored annexation even if Israel would be pay a steep political cost for the move, with 70% of Israeli Jews saying sovereignty should be applied to Maale Adumim regardless of the consequences.

The poll also found that 88% of Israeli Jews believe that residents of Maale Adumim deserve the same rights and benefits enjoyed by other citizens of the State of Israel, and therefore Israeli law should be fully applied to the area.

The Land of Israel Lobby in the Knesset, which includes 20 MKs from various right-wing and religious parties, has pledged to draw up a bill for the annexation of Maale Adumim during the upcoming summer session.

“The consensus view in the public is that Maale Adumim is an inseparable part of Israel,” a statement by the Land of Israel Lobby said, “and it has even become part of the political consensus from right to left, and it is clear that Maale Adumim will remain under Israeli control in any future status arrangement. The Land of Israel Lobby will work within the new coalition framework to advance legislation extending Israeli sovereignty over Maale Adumim.”

Lobby chairman Yoav Kish (Likud) said there were precedents for the move, citing Israel’s 1967 annexation of eastern Jerusalem and 1981 annexation of the Golan Heights.

“Just as the State of Israel did in the past in Jerusalem and in the Golan Heights, we must do so also today – the idea of applying sovereignty over Maale Adumim enjoys overwhelming support among the Israeli public that crosses party lines. We will work to realize the public’s will.”

 

From

ADL Vs. JEWS OF CONSCIENCE

Police arrested seventeen activists denouncing the “Jewish establishment’s support of the occupation of Palestine” on April 20 in the lobby of the Anti-Defamation League during one of a series of Passover protests organized by anti-occupation group If Not Now.

Gili Getz

Gili Getz

17 Jewish Activists Protesting Israeli Occupation Arrested at ADL Headquarters

Police arrested seventeen activists denouncing the “Jewish establishment’s support of the occupation of Palestine” on April 20 in the lobby of the Anti-Defamation League during one of a series of Passover protests organized by anti-occupation group If Not Now.

Before they were cuffed and shuffled into New York Police Department vans, the young activists had sat cross-legged on the lobby floor, leading a larger crowd in their version of a Passover Seder.

They banged on the floor, danced in circles and sang familiar Hebrew songs. The Seder’s ten plagues included “subjecting Palestinians to daily humiliation” and “destroying the Palestinian economy.” A hand-drawn cardboard Seder plate rested next to a sculpted tinfoil goblet, reserved for Elijah.

“We act now to build a Jewish community that recognizes that we cannot be free absent the freedom for Palestinians,” the text of one handout read.

Passersby paused, snapping photos on their cameras, to take in the unusual scene — around 100 Jewish activists singing and dancing in the glass-walled lobby of a midtown office. One young woman turned to the assembled crowd as she was led away by police, so that her shirt was in full view. “No liberation with occupation,” it read.

If Not Now, which formed two years ago to protest the 2014 Israel-Gaza conflict and Israel’s military occupation of the West Bank, staged several other Passover-themed events this week.

Six were arrested in Boston, where they rallied outside the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. In Washington D.C., activists gathered outside Hillel.

But the New York protest took on another layer of significance as one prominent New York activist has been at the center of national controversy.

Simone Zimmerman, an If Not Now co-founder, made headlines last week when she was named Jewish outreach coordinator for Bernie Sanders’ campaign. Her peers celebrated. But, just days later, she was suspended from that position after an old Facebook post resurfaced, in which Zimmerman had used profanity and insulted Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Abe Foxman, former head of the Anti-Defamation League, denounced Zimmerman and the Zionist Organization of America followed suit.

“She is entitled to say what she wants, but there is something bizarre about making her the liaison for the Jewish community,” Foxman said in a Wednesday interview with the Forward. “Either she wasn’t vetted — or worse, she was.”

Foxman said he took issue with Zimmerman’s criticism of Israel during the 2014 Gaza conflict. Her comments “go to the essence of questioning and challenging Israel’s credibility.”

Foxman declined to comment about the 17 activists’ arrest, deferring to the ADL, which did not respond to requests for comment.

Zimmerman stood in the background at Wednesday’s protest. She declined to speak with the Forward, but her friends rallied around her, posing for photos and intoning her name during the rally.

“Simone speaks for my kind of Judaism,” said Gabrielle Egan, an If Not Now activist from Canada.

If Not Now first took shape online in 2014, as a rallying hash tag on social media during the latest Israel-Gaza conflict. Many participants had been involved in J Street, but had become dissatisfied with that organization’s position on the conflict. Several activists describe their involvement with If Not Now as a sort of Jewish homecoming.

“These are people who grew up in a post-peace process environment,” said Peter Beinart, a mentor to Zimmerman and a leading voice in liberal Zionism. “If you look at If Not Now, there is a deep alienation, a dissatisfaction with the Jewish community’s lack of discussion.”

GOING BEYOND CHUTZPAH

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Does Israel want the Palestinians to thank her for not exterminating them once and for all? 

Needless to say, this is a classical example of “going beyond Chutzpah” 

By Khalid Amayreh in Jerusalem

Khalid Amayreh challenges Jews to abide by the tenets of their religion:

 

Like apartheid South Africa did to Justify its repulsive approach toward its majority black citizens, Israel is making all sorts of similarly despicable arguments to justify its decades-old evil occupation  and systematic persecution of Palestinians. 

As some of us remember, the apartheid South African regime had argued that black South Africans ought to be grateful to the White regime for giving them employment and enabling them to have a semblance of decent life. 

The White regime’s PR machine would shamelessly argue that “Our black citizens have a higher standard of living than other fellow black people anywhere in the continent.” 

When I was studying in the states in the 1980s, I remember a visiting high ranking official from the apartheid regime boasting about the high living conditions enjoyed by blacks in South Africa in comparison to the rest of the continent. 

“Ask them (South African black majority): would they prefer to live in South Africa or in Zimbabwe,” the official said. 

What is wrong with this argument is that it doesn’t really distinguish between humans and animals. In the final analysis, humans, unlike animals, don’t live by bread alone. They are also entitled to freedom and dignity. This is the crux of the matter which fascist and racist regimes love to ignore. 

Today, apartheid Israel is making virtually the same arguments to justify and defend its manifestly criminal treatment of the Palestinians. 

Thus, whenever Israel’s sinister occupation is criticized, we see that big-mouthed Israeli officials and professional hasbara liars try to make black look white and the white look black by claiming that Palestinians are better off than most other Arabs. 

Now, as the BDS movement is gaining momentum to the chagrin of the Israeli establishment, Israeli officials and other hasbara mouthpieces are becoming more brazen in their defensive but mendacious discourse. 

And, yes, as usual, lying is their modus operandi. 

They are saying the Palestinians ought to be thankful to Israel for not treating them like Bashar Assad or Abdul Fattah Sissi are treating their own peoples. 

One Zionist pundit wrote recently that were Israel to follow Arab rules, all Palestinians would have been expelled from “the Land of Israel along time ago.” 

Needless to say, this is a classical example of “going beyond Chutzpah” 

After all, since when the Hitler of Damascus, who murdered half a million of his own people, and the virulent tyrant of Cairo, who usurped power from the only truly democratically elected regime in Egypt’s history, were role models for the world to be followed or emulated? 

So, Israel, “the purported light upon humanity” wants the Palestinians to thank Israel for murdering their children on the spot in the West Bank, and not burning them alive by way of dropping barrel bombs on their homes and schools as Assad is doing in Syria. 

Yes, Israel would like to see the Palestinians “thank” her for conducting slow-motion genocide whereas “human-rights unfriendly states” would pursue fast-motion genocide” and get rid of the problem once and for all. 

But it is only sick and depraved minds that are capable of making such nefarious   arguments. 

Otherwise, we should thank the Iberians Catholics for not playing by the rules of Old Testament and exterminating every Jewish man, woman and child during the inquisition!! (Israelis are embarrassed when explaining the Tsfarad Geroush” (the Spanish inquisition” because it reminds them of something they don’t like to remember, namely the golden age Jews had undergone in Islamic Spain!!! 

According to the morbid logic we hear from some Israeli officials, we should also thank the Nazis for building the concentration camps relatively later in the course of the Second World War, because had these death camps been established earlier, a greater number of Jews would have perished. 

Yes, sickening arguments are only the product of sick minds. 

Today, in its rabid reaction to the non-violent BDS movement, Israel and its hasbara shipyard dogs, from Sydney to California, are arguing that it is the BDS campaign, not the malignant occupation, that is hurting the Palestinians. That it is the BDS movement that is impeding the establishment of a viable Palestinian state, not the ubiquitous proliferation of settlements, inhabited by fanatic cutthroats who believe spilling more innocent blood would expedite and accelerate redemption and salvation!! 

I don’t what sort of Torah are those people reading and following: The Torah of Moses or the Torah of Satan? 

Well, in the Torah of Moses, Jeremiah 7:6, the God of Israel equated oppressing strangers living amongst Israelites with the greatest sin ever in Judaism, namely the unforgivable sin associating gods with God. 

And in Exodus 22:21: The Almighty commands the Israelites, telling them in straightforward manner” Do not mistreat or oppress a stranger, for you were foreigners in Egypt.” 

Don’t tell me I am being selective or quoting things out of context. For even the Talmud, who Orthodox Jews consider the verbal Torah, states that true Jews are not supposed to oppress non-Jews living in their midst: 

Let us consider the following Talmudic story which sums up the point I am trying to make: A heathen came to Shammai with the request to be accepted as a convert to Judaism on condition that he would be taught the whole of the Torah while he stood on one foot. The Rabbi drove him away with a yard-stick he was holding. The heathen then went to Hillel with the same request. Hillel said to the man what is hateful to yourself, don’t do to your fellow man. That is the whole of the Torah and the remainder is but commentary. “Go, learn it.” 

#AntiApartheidWeek ~~ RAPPING WITH REMI

Wonderful party last night at Columbia U.  Totally packed. Lots of young people dancing the night away to Palestinian music, many of the women in embroidered Palestinian dresses.  These young diaspora Palestinians all knew their folk dances very well, as well as their food and art.  And they seem to fully recognize the importance of keeping these memories.

This was performed by Remi Kanazi …

Nor·mal·i·za·tion: a “colonization of the mind” whereby the oppressed subject comes to believe that the oppressor’s reality is the only “normal” reality…and that the oppression is a fact of life that must be coped with.

Those who engage in normalization either ignore this oppression, or accept it as the status quo that can be lived with.

In an attempt to whitewash its violations of international law and human rights, Israel attempts to re-brand itself or present itself as “normal” — even “enlightened” — through an intricate array of relations and activities encompassing hi-tech, cultural, legal, LGBT and other realms.

Normalization applies to relationships that convey a misleading or deceptive image of normalcy, symmetry, or parity despite a patently abnormal and asymmetric relationship of colonial oppression and apartheid.

COMING SOON ~~ PULITZER PRIZE WHISTLE BLOWERS JOIN FORCES TO EXPOSE THE OCCUPATION

The project, a joint initiative by “Breaking the Silence,” Peruvian Pulitzer Prize winner Mario Vargas Llosa, Chabon, and Waldman, will host a delegation of authors on both sides of the Green Line this year to allow them to learn about the different aspects of Israel’s military presence in the Palestinian territories. The authors will visit West Bank villages and East Jerusalem, and will meet Israeli and Palestinian human rights activists, academics, and legal experts.

Surely to be a MUST read …. look for it soon

Joint initiative by ‘Breaking the Silence’ and writers brings renowned authors to Israel and the Palestinian territories for book on ’50 years of Israeli occupation’.

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Prominent international writers to write book on ‘occupation’

Pulitzer Prize-winning American writer Michael Chabon and his wife, Israeli-American author Ayelet Waldman, plan to edit a literary project bringing together writers from all over the world over the world to write a book of essays on “50 years of Israeli occupation”  The book is scheduled be published in June 2017.

The project, a joint initiative by “Breaking the Silence,” Peruvian Pulitzer Prize winner Mario Vargas Llosa, Chabon, and Waldman, will host a delegation of authors on both sides of the Green Line this year to allow them to learn about the different aspects of Israel’s military presence in the Palestinian territories. The authors will visit West Bank villages and East Jerusalem, and will meet Israeli and Palestinian human rights activists, academics, and legal experts.

The first delegation landed in Israel on Sunday and includes British author Hari Kunzru, American playwright Taiye Selasi, Irish author Eimar McBride, and Palestinian-Israeli playwright-author and journalist Ala Halihal.

Additional authors who intend to take part in the project include Nobel Prize winner Mario Vargas Llosa, American author and publisher David Vargas, Irish author Colm Toibin, American author Cheryl Strayed, Pulitzer Prize-winning author Geraldine Brooks, Norwegian author Lars Sobi Kristensen, American author Rachel Kushner, British author Tash Aw, and local authors Assaf Gavron, Raja Shahada, and Nir Baram.

So why are Chabon and Waldman participating in this project? “A short time after we met in 1992, we traveled to Israel,” Chabon told Ynet. “Even though Ayelet, the daughter of Canadian immigrants, was born in Israel, I had never visited previously.

“It was a time of cautious optimism about the Oslo Accords,” he added. “We visited friends and family and we made it to all the essential places including the Western Wall and Masada. We thought the trip would be one of many.

“In the more than 20 years that have passed since, the optimism of the Oslo Accords has disappeared, Yitzhak Rabin was murdered, and the occupation of the West Bank has expanded,” continued the prize-winning author. “We are also all shaken by the violent rhetoric from both sides and we did what many others stuck in the middle decided to do: We chose to live outside the discourse and distance ourselves from Israel.

“However, Ayelet returned to Israel and Palestine in May 2014 for the first time in two decades, and met with the courageous ‘Breaking the Silence’ group, which recently became the target of intense attacks by the Right,” said Chabon. “Its publication of soldiers’ narratives, describing their experiences in the West Bank and Gaza has made it difficult for the Netanyahu government to continue its deceitful campaign.

“And now things stand at a critical juncture,” he said. “The right-wing Netanyahu government is threatening to prosecute ‘Breaking the Silence’ for treason and forcing members of the organization to wear special tags when they come to the Knesset to meet with legislators. Jews are forcing other Jews to wear special tags. Jews are threatening other Jews with imprisonment and even death for expressing their point of view. The people carrying out these deeds do not even understand the astounding irony.

“We decided to mark 50 years of the occupation of the West Bank by collecting candid articles about life in the Palestinian Territories written by prominent authors from around the world,” Chabon explained. “We collected an amazing array of well-known stories to give life to the current situation. The articles will allow readers to understand the situation in Israel-Palestine in new and human way instead of the dark way it is portrayed in the news.”

 

Source

 

ISRAEL ‘FEELING HEAT’ OVER SETTLEMENT BUSINESSES

The consequences of Israeli occupation and anti-Palestinian discrimination for Israel’s economy are now coming faster than ever.

In this Nov. 22, 2010, photo, Palestinian women collect scrap timber in the Mishor Adumim industrial zone near the Jewish West Bank settlement of Maaleh Adumim. Palestinian advocates contend that multinational companies will need to face "clear legal and moral liabilities" for operating in Israeli settlements. (Associated Press)

In this Nov. 22, 2010, photo, Palestinian women collect scrap timber in the Mishor Adumim industrial zone near the Jewish West Bank settlement of Maaleh Adumim. Palestinian advocates contend that multinational companies will need to face “clear legal and moral liabilities” for operating in Israeli settlements. (Associated Press)

Israel ‘feeling heat’ over settlement businesses: Sam Bahour and Edward E. Thompson (Opinion)

The consequences of Israeli occupation and anti-Palestinian discrimination for Israel’s economy are now coming faster than ever. Like so many previous military occupations, Israel is starting to feel the heat of the international community. However, this heat is not of the political kind that Israel has become accustomed to deflecting, but rather the economic kind that has a mystical way of invoking action from the political echelon. For everyone’s sake, let’s hope the message is arriving loud and clear: It’s time for Israel to end its nearly 50-year occupation and allow Palestinians to live in freedom in an independent state.

The latest thoughtful criticism of Israel’s actions is a 162-page report titled “Occupation, Inc.: How Settlement Businesses Contribute to Israel’s Violations of Palestinian Rights.” Issued by the reputable, international non-governmental organization Human Rights Watch (HRW), the report documents how settlement businesses facilitate the growth and operations of Israel’s settlement enterprise, an enterprise deemed illegal by every country in the world, except Israel. These settlement businesses depend on and contribute to the Israeli authorities’ unlawful confiscation of Palestinian land and other resources.

Human Rights Watch’s director of the Business and Human Rights Division, Arvind Ganesan, noted that “Settlement businesses unavoidably contribute to Israeli policies that dispossess and harshly discriminate against Palestinians, while profiting from Israel’s theft of Palestinian land and other resources. The only way for businesses to comply with their own human rights responsibilities is to stop working with and in Israeli settlements.”
Speaking of the stone and marble industry, Ganesan said, “Every dollar of stone that settlement businesses extract and sell from the West Bank is a dollar taken from Palestinians. The bottom line is no settlement business should be operating and profiting from land and resources illegally taken from the Palestinian people.”

In light of the clear illegality of doing business with Israeli settlements, multinational companies will need to face clear legal and moral liabilities in continuing to do business as usual. However, for those firms that have been operating in the settlements, there is another option they can pursue to compensate for their past wrongdoings; they can redirect their business investments to the Palestinian economy and become a constructive element in helping Palestinians recover from the real economic damage caused by nearly half a century of military occupation.

Making such investment and business options materialize is exactly why we co-founded Americans for a Vibrant Palestinian Economy (AVPE) as a tax-deductible organization based in Chicago, Illinois. As two Americans, one a retired Chicagoan and the other a Palestinian American from Youngstown, Ohio now based in Ramallah, we have witnessed firsthand the damage on the ground caused by Israel’s deliberate battering of Palestine’s economy. But we also have visited Palestinians’ firms, those keeping their businesses’ doors open despite all odds, and want to connect them to the U.S. market. After a year of operations, AVPE documented serious interest from Palestinian businesspersons interested in linking to American business partners.

Large-scale projects that global firms can surely relate to are taking shape. The first planned Palestinian city, Rawabi, is now witnessing its first tenants taking up residence and offers international high-tech firms the opportunity to locate their operations in the new Rawabi Tech Hub. From Dead Sea products that compete head on with similar products produced in illegal Israeli settlements to olive oil soap and Bethlehem greeting cards, Palestinians have products and services worthy of note.

This new HRW report is actually the second vital criticism that calls into question business as usual for Israel. The first was issued by the European Council on Foreign Relations and titled EU Differentiation and Israeli settlements (July 22, 2015). In this past report, Israeli banks, among other businesses, were a main target, given most have branches in settlements. The Israeli business community took note. With this new HRW report, they will take note again, and all indications are that the reports and actions against illegal business practices will continue until occupation comes to an end.

The World Bank estimated in 2013 that Israeli restrictions in Area C (the 62 percent of the West Bank under full Israeli control) cost the Palestinian economy $3.4 billion annually, approximately equal to 33 percent of Palestine’s GDP. Settlement businesses contribute to and benefit from unlawful and discriminatory policies that leave many Palestinians with no alternative but to work in Israel or settlements. As multinationals divest from illegal settlements, redirected economic activity can be a key component to further advance the Palestinian economy, while putting more Palestinians in jobs and giving them hope for a day when they will live in freedom and occupation-free.

Sam Bahour is a Palestinian American businessman originally from Youngstown now living in Ramallah, where he is managing partner at Applied Information Management. He is a policy adviser at Al-Shabaka: The Palestinian Policy Network and chairman of Americans for a Vibrant Palestinian Economy. Edward E. Thompson, a retired consulting psychologist with a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago, is the co-founder and president of Americans for a Vibrant Palestinian Economy.

 

Originally found AT

WHO PROFITS FROM ISRAEL’S ILLEGAL SETTLEMENTS?

 

For the finest in settlement living try Airbnb Judea and Samaria

Image by Katie Miranda

 

 

Airbnb told to cease profiting from Israel’s war crimes

Airbnb, the popular travel website, is the target of a new campaign against its listings of accommodation in the settlements built by Israel in the occupied West Bank.

Five organizations launched a campaign called Stolen Homes on Wednesday calling on Airbnb “to immediately stop listing vacation rentals in Israeli settlements, all of which were built on stolen Palestinian land and deemed illegal under international law.”

A petition notes that “through earning fees from settlement vacation rentals, Airbnb is directly profiting from the continuing occupation and dispossession of Palestinians.”

The petition is supported by the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation, American Muslims for Palestine,Jewish Voice for Peace, the US Palestinian Community Network and Codepink.

Earlier this month, +972 Magazine reported that not only does Airbnb list accommodation in Israeli settlements, but that without exception the listings do no mention that they are located on occupied land.

Settlement profiteering

The issue has since been covered in the Israeli and international media.

The California-based Airbnb has declined to comment, apart from releasing a short statement which read: “We follow laws and regulations on where we can do business and investigate concerns raised about specific listings.”

The Palestinian Boycott Divestment and Sanctions National Committee (BNC) has denounced Airbnb. Omar Barghouti, a founder of the BNC, said recently that “Airbnb can and should immediately exclude all Israeli settlements from its offerings as a significant first step towards complying with its human rights obligations under international law.”

Also this week, Human Rights Watch released a report calling on international businesses to cease all cooperation with Israeli settlements in the West Bank.

Airbnb earns a 3 percent fee from its hosts and a further fee — usually 6-12 percent — from guests. So the company profits every time someone makes a reservation using its settlement listings.

Human Rights Watch this week argued that companies cannot mitigate their contribution to Israel’s human rights violations so long as they operate in settlements. It stated that companies must cease working with the settlements in order to honor their human rights obligations.

Sensitive to bad publicity?

As it promotes the concept of “community-driven hospitality,” Airbnb may be sensitive to publicity that harms the company’s reputation.

The company depicts itself as environmentally friendly and has claimed to care about people in need bylaunching a “disaster response initiative.”

The wider campaign for boycott, divestment and sanctions has persuaded a number of firms to cease their activities in Israel and the occupied West Bank lately.

As Barghouti told Al Jazeera, “much larger corporations — of the caliber of Orange, Veolia and CRH — have been eventually compelled by BDS campaigning to end their complicity in Israel’s human rights violations after losing massive contracts.”

Airbnb is likely to come under a great deal of pressure until it ceases trying to profit from Israel’s illegal activities.

*Ryan Rodrick Beiler is a freelance photojournalist and member of the ActiveStills collective who lives in Oslo, Norway.

The Stolen Homes campaign is calling on Airbnb to stop listing vacation rentals in Israeli settlements. (Ryan Rodrick Beiler /ActiveStills)

The Stolen Homes campaign is calling on Airbnb to stop listing vacation rentals in Israeli settlements. (Ryan Rodrick Beiler /ActiveStills)

TOON FOR THE WEEK’S END ~~ DEFENDING THE OCCUPATION

Image by Carlos Latuff

 Netanyahu responds to Ban Ki-moon’s criticism of the Israeli occupation

Netanyahu responds to Ban Ki-moon’s criticism of the Israeli occupation

*

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Related FROM

Update: UN’s Ban Rejects Netanyahu’s Criticism: Count on Me to Speak Up

The United Nations says Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon stands by every word of his criticism of Israeli settlement-building this week and rejects Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s comment that the remarks justify terrorism….

Ban spoke out again Wednesday, telling a General Assembly committee that the Palestinians “watch as Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem, expand and expand.”

The UN chief, who is in the final year of his term, also said that “you can count on me to speak up” to help achieve an Israeli-Palestinian peace.

Original:

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu didn’t like U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s speech to the Security Council criticizing the Israeli occupation on Tuesday.

From the Times of Israel article “Furious Netanyahu slams Ban Ki-moon for ‘stoking’ Palestinian terrorism“:

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday accused the United Nations chief of “stoking terror” after Ban Ki-moon said, in connection with the wave of Palestinian deadly terror attacks, that it was “human nature to react to occupation.”

“There is no justification for terrorism,” Netanyahu said. “The Palestinian terrorists don’t want to build a state; they want to destroy a state, and they say that proudly. They want to murder Jews everywhere and they state that proudly. They don’t murder for peace and they don’t murder for human rights.”

The UN has “lost its neutrality and its moral force, and these statements by the Secretary-General do nothing to improve its situation,” Netanyahu said in a furious video statement. Ban’s remarks, said Netanyahu, “stoke terror.”

DON’T BUY APARTHEID FOR YOUR VALENTINE

Valentine’s Protest at Leviev NYC

Saturday, February 6
1-2:30

“A Diamond Is Forever” but Apartheid Has to End!

1366-levievheart

Join Adalah-NY in front of occupation-profiteer Lev Leviev’s diamond store in NYC to demand Leviev stop taking Palestinians’ land, rights, and lives!

This Valentine’s shopping season join us in supporting Palestinians as they shake off Leviev’s practices of hate.

There’ll be parodies, signs, chanting!

For two years in a row, Leviev’s store has been closed for our December Anti-Apartheid Holiday Carols protest. Come out to see if we can shut him down right before Valentine’s Day as well!

RSVP on Facebook

Adalah-NY’s campaign to boycott Leviev is part of the growing movement for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) against Israel.

Event Location:

Leviev NYC

700 Madison Ave Between 62nd and 63rd Sts

New York , NY

 

HOW CAN WE BE LOYAL TO THE OCCUPIER?

A new bill to be introduced in Israel’s parliament, the Knesset, next week would permit the cancellation of a person’s permanent residency on grounds of “disloyalty” to Israel.

A proposed law would allow Israeli authorities to expel Palestinians from occupied Jerusalem on grounds of “disloyalty.”( Mahfouz Abu Turk APA images)

A proposed law would allow Israeli authorities to expel Palestinians from occupied Jerusalem on grounds of “disloyalty.”( Mahfouz Abu Turk APA images)

Why should Palestinians in Jerusalem be loyal to their occupiers?

A new bill to be introduced in Israel’s parliament, the Knesset, next week would permit the cancellation of a person’s permanent residency on grounds of “disloyalty” to Israel.

Last October, the prime minister’s office announced that the government had decided to revoke the residency of “terrorists,” a policy that would almost exclusively affect Palestinians living under military occupation in East Jerusalem.

When Israel occupied East Jerusalem in June 1967, formally annexing it in 1980, it decreed that Palestinians living there were “permanent residents,” as if they had moved to Israel as immigrants, rather than Israel violently imposing itself on them.

This residency status is vulnerable to revocation and requires Palestinian Jerusalemites to fulfill certain conditions to maintain it that are never applied to Jews.

Under international law, Israel’s annexation of East Jerusalem is null and void.

“Disloyalty”

While more than 14,000 Palestinians from occupied East Jerusalem have had their residency revoked since 1967 – usually because they might have temporarily moved elsewhere to study, work, be closer to family or get married – none has yet lost their residency for alleged acts of “terror” or disloyalty.

In 2011, Israel did expel several members of the Palestinian Legislative Council from Jerusalem on the grounds that they belong to Hamas. It also regularly bans Palestinians from the city on grounds of “security.”

A handful of Palestinians have been threatened with revocation for breach of loyalty, but their cases are still subject to court proceedings.

In advance of a legislative meeting on 17 January, when the new bill is to be discussed, the Israeli human rights organization HaMoked has written to Yehuda Weinstein, Israel’s attorney general, to emphasize the illegality of the law.

HaMoked warned that the bill, proposed by lawmaker Oren Hazan, will not only seek to legalize the revocation of the permanent residency of those convicted of “disloyalty,” but also of their relatives and spouses.

Hazan, who admitted last year to fabricating information in an attempt to discredit a group that documents Israeli abuses against Palestinians, is a member of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party.

Disloyalty is not defined in Hazan’s bill, nor is it clear why Palestinians living under military occupation owe any duty of loyalty to their occupiers.

The Fourth Geneva Convention prohibits an occupying power from forcibly transferring civilians from their homes.

In 2011, Israel approved the Citizenship Law, that allows courts to revoke the citizenship of those convicted of treason, terrorism or espionage.

However, citizenship can only be revoked in cases where the person has dual citizenship.

Palestinians in East Jerusalem with permanent residency are not citizens of Israel and often carry no other citizenship or passport.

Under threat

In the meantime, Israel’s high court has refused to intervene on behalf of four Palestinians from East Jerusalem whose residency Israel is threatening to revoke.

In November, Silvan Shalom, then interior minister, notified four Palestinian young men, who are currently in Israeli custody for allegedly committing attacks, that he intends revoke their residency under the 1952 Law of Entry, which he claimed allows him to revoke the residency of individuals who “breach allegiance to the State of Israel.”

HaMoked filed a petition with the high court on behalf of the four men to challenge the revocation. Israel responded that the petition was premature since the interior ministry had not yet made a final decision regarding their cases.

Punishment without trial

The four Palestinians whose residency is in jeopardy are currently in prison awaiting trial. Two of them carry Jordanian citizenship, according to HaMoked’s court filings, while two are stateless.

But the threatened loss of residency does not depend upon their conviction, HaMoked attorney Dalia Kersteinpreviously told The Electronic Intifada.

Three of the Palestinians are accused of manslaughter by throwing stones at cars, allegedly causing one driver to have a heart attack and fatally crash his vehicle.

The fourth is accused of an armed attack on a bus in West Jerusalem which left three dead.

Blatant discrimination

The policy of revoking the Jerusalem residency of Palestinians is as blatantly discriminatory as Israel’s practice of punitively destroying the homes of relatives of Palestinians accused of attacks. Neither revocation of residency, nor punitive demolitions are ever applied to Jewish suspects or their relatives, no matter what crimes they commit.

On 7 January, the high court ruled in favor of the state, that the men’s court challenge could not take place before the interior ministry had issued a final decision on their expulsions.

At the same time, the court acknowledged the serious implications of such a move.

“There is no doubt that the revocation of permanent residency visas of East Jerusalem residents raises constitutional and administrative issues of great weight,” the court wrote.

It remains to be seen whether these legal concerns will stand in the way of Israel’s ever harsher measures against Palestinian Jerusalemites.

As it has with the punitive demolitions, Israel’s highest court has often acted as an enabler and champion of Israel’s abuses of Palestinians rather than a check on them.

KERRY’S LATEST EXERCISE IN FUTILITY

During his meeting with Netanyahu in West Jerusalem, Kerry, probably out of naivety, asked the Israeli premier if there was still any possibility Israel could temporarily freeze the unrelenting settlement expansion in the West Bank.
 
Netanyahu’s reply came soon. “No, there will be no settlement freeze.”!!

Kerry’s half-hearted visit, another exercise in futility

By Khalid Amayreh in Occupied Palestine

The latest visit to Israel-occupied Palestine by US Secretary of State John Kerry this week is a clear-cut exercise in futility.

It is also inconceivable that Kerry himself had not realized the futility of his visit, even before it began.

I really feel sorry for the American tax-payers who get robbed by an administration whose policy in the Middle East is based on cheating the American people as well as pandering to a criminal racist state, 10,000 kilometers away, a state that teaches its people that non-Jews are virtual animals, created by God for a sole reason, namely in order to serve the Jews.

While in West Jerusalem, Kerry babbled the few usual platitudes which he and other American officials babble in such circumstances.

He called on both Israel and the Palestinians “the criminal and the victim” to exercise self-restraint. He also reiterated his country’s commitment to Israel’s security.

However, during his meeting with Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah, Kerry made no such commitment, as if only Israel, a nuclear power which also is in tight control of US domestic politics, deserved and needed security.

Kerry renewed his support for the two-state solution, giving the impression that such a solution was still possible or feasible, especially in light of the cancerous growth of Jewish settlements in the West Bank and Jerusalem.

Needless to say, all meaningful observers now agree that this expansion of Jewish colonies has killed any realistic prospects for the establishment of a viable Palestinian state.

I don’t know why Kerry is still insisting on regurgitating this stale lie every time he comes to the region. Do his advisors not tell him that the two-state solution is dead?

Or Does he invoke the lie deliberately and knowingly in order to boost the morale of  the likes of Mahmoud Abbas and Sa’eb Ereikat in order  to  keep their futile day- dream alive, even if that dream is no better than chasing the mirage of  the desert?

I don’t know why Palestinian and Arab leaders continue to view Kerry and his boss in Washington as capable of recovering Palestinian rights from Israel’s criminal hands. Are these so-called leaders idiots or imbeciles? Haven’t they learnt from more than 60 years of experience with US policy in the region? Haven’t they internalized Walid Khalid’s iconic remark that “America is the ultimate tormentor of the Palestinian people?”

Indeed, if successive and more powerful administrations from Nixon’s to Bush’s couldn’t convince Israel to keep the purported two-state solution alive, is it logical to expect this impotent administration to do it?

After all, Obama has been standing silent, watching Bashar Assad murder nearly half a million of his own people rather passively, pretending that the slow-motion holocaust was occurring on a distant planet.

Similarly, the Obama administration is the same administration that has been watching Israel decapitate whatever chances there may have been for the establishment of a true Palestinian state.

In fact, the Obama administration, far from punishing Israel for its aggressive anti-peace policies, rewarded the criminal entity by providing it with the latest and most advanced aircraft in the American arsenal.

During his meeting with Netanyahu in West Jerusalem, Kerry, probably out of naivety, asked the Israeli premier if there was still any possibility Israel could temporarily freeze the unrelenting settlement expansion in the West Bank.

Netanyahu’s reply came soon. “No, there will be no settlement freeze.”!!

I don’t know if Kerry felt he had to apologize for having had the audacity to ask the question in the first place. He must have felt his utter insignificance vis-à-vis Netanyahu whose behaviors vis-à-vis Washington often gives the impression that the US is actually Israel’s vessel state.

But this is an old story which was explained in meticulous details by the late American Jewish author and intellectual Alfred Lilienthal in his book of the century, the Zionist Connection.

In fact, I invoked this story in order to remind a new generation of Palestinian leaders that things pertaining to the US, Israel and the Palestinian issue have effectively remained unchanged.

Israel remains the proverbial organ grinder and the US remains the proverbial monkey. (The adage goes “why speak to the monkey when you can speak to the organ grinder.”)

And, as we all know, the Palestinians remain the proverbial day-dreamer who cry out for justice, thinking that the two devils will eventually come to their senses and internalize the language of justice.

But they will not.

POLLARD AND PALESTINE …. AND MORE

Pollard's useless Israeli passport

Pollard’s useless Israeli passport

VIEWS FROM PALESTINE

Prepared by Mazin Qumsiyeh, PhD


 

Spy for Israel Jonathan Pollard was released from US prisons. He did so
much damage to US security and could still do more damage that he should
have never been released. He is to stay in the US for five years and then
want to move to Palestine to settle on stolen lands as part of apartheid
colonial regime. He divorced his American wife while in prison and married
an Israeli wife. I would not be surprised to see him become an Israeli
minister. After all, Israel rewarded those who even killed US Citizens 
(see for example and). 
Yet, Israel continues to infiltrate the US 
at the highest levels 
(see for example these troubling incidents )

Sunday as almost every day, Palestinian natives were murdered by colonial
settlers. In an incident Sunday morning Israeli colonial settlement leader
Gershon Mesika rammed a teenage girl with his car, claiming 'she had a
knife'. When the girl, Ashraqat Taha Qatanany, 16, from Nablus, fell to the
ground, another Israeli paramilitary settler pulled over and shot her
multiple times.As in many similar incidents, eyewitness (and in some cases
video evidence) showed there was no knives and knives are planted later
near the victims. Later Sunday Taxi driver  Shadi Mohammad Mahmoud Khseib
from al-Bireh was killed when he had an accident and he was murdered by
colonial settler as soon as he stepped out of his car to deal with the
accident. A third Palestinian was also murdered. Several young people were
kidnapped by occupation forces and children continue to be held and abused
in Israeli gulags.

In other news, the Israeli Knesset is considering more racist laws to add
to the dozens of laws already making life hell for us native Palestinians.
One new law will allow actual prison sentences for children under age 14
(ofcourse only if they are Palestinian and do something to resist colonial
occupation). Another law will force taxation of Israeli non-governmental
organizations and apply draconian measures to them if they speak out for
human righst and receive funding from abroad (of course Zionist
organizations will be exempt from this law).

THE REAL WAR AGAINST TERROR ~~ NEW VIDEO

‘I endorse the cultural boycott of Israel’: Prominent artists support New York-based campaign for cultural boycott of Israel

 

 

A new video released by Adalah-NY: The New York Campaign for the Boycott of Israel features eight leading artists stating, “I endorse the cultural boycott of Israel.” The artists include Tony-nominated stage and television actress Kathleen Chalfant; musician Roger Waters, a founding member of Pink Floyd; musicians Kyp Malone and Tunde Adebimpe of TV on the Radio; musicians Kool A.D and Tamar-kali; artist and author of Drawing Blood, Molly Crabapple; and visual artist Swoon.

The movement for a global boycott of Israel — launched by a coalition of over 170 Palestinian trade unions, political parties and human rights groups in order to advance their movement for freedom, justice and equality — has steadily gained support worldwide over the last decade. The video was released by Adalah-NY: The New York Campaign for the Boycott of Israel and is accompanied by an appeal for more cultural workers to pledge their support for the boycott of Israel.

When asked why she participated in the video, Kathleen Chalfant said: “The Israeli government and army restrict the freedom of Palestinian cultural workers almost daily. A growing movement for the cultural boycott of Israel helps to amplify the voices of Palestinian artists who are struggling under occupation, and will help to pressure Israel to respect the rights of Palestinian artists, and of all Palestinians.”

The Israeli government launched a Brand Israel public relations campaign in 2006, which attempts to use art and music to distract attention from Israel’s violations of Palestinian rights. Nonetheless, a growing number of artists have declined to perform or participate in cultural events in Israel or with institutions complicit with Israeli rights abuses, including Ms. Lauryn HillRoger WatersElvis CostelloSantanaTalib Kweli, the late Gil Scott HeronCassandra WilsonCat Power,Stevie WonderMira NairKen LoachAlice WalkerMike Leigh,Arundhati Roy, and Jean Luc Godard.

Tunde Adebimpe of TV on the Radio commented, “With Israel heightening its repression of the Palestinian people in the last weeks, we hope that our speaking out will help encourage others to support the boycott by refusing to perform in Israel, and refusing to participate in activities funded by the Israeli government or supported by institutions complicit in Israeli human rights abuses.”

The video begins with Kyp Malone, Roger Waters and Kathleen Chalfant citing three of many recent examples of Israel’s repression of Palestinian cultural workers.

The eight artists then speak in turn about the expulsion of 750,000 Palestinians from their homes by Zionist forces in 1948, and Israel’s ongoing demolition of Palestinian homes, theft of farmland, arrest of Palestinian children, and siege and blockade of Gaza, activities subsidized by $120 billion in US aid since 1967.

Kyp Malone calls for action, “where governments have failed,” and Tunde Adebimpe follows up, noting that, “In 2004, Palestinian civil society called for a cultural boycott of Israel.” Swoon then explains, “Cultural boycott is an ethical rights-based tactic with historical precedent.” The video concludes with all eight artists stating their support for the boycott, after Roger Waters implores viewers to “join the cultural boycott of Israel.”

Riham Barghouti, a member of Adalah-NY and a former dancer with the Palestinian dabke troupe El-Funoun, added, “With this video, which features prominent artists with connections to New York City, Adalah-NY is also launching a call for more cultural workers in New York, the US and around the world to publicly pledge to support the Palestinian boycott call. This is the most significant, proactive initiative for the cultural boycott of Israel ever undertaken in New York City.”

Ninety New York City cultural workers and groups have already signed a New York City-focused pledge to support the cultural boycott, including the musician Sonny Singh, the illustratorSeymour Chwast, and the band the Shondes. On the national level, over 400 US cultural workers have endorsed a statement supporting the cultural boycott that is hosted by the US Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (USACBI).

Click HERE to sign appeal

CROSSING OVER TO BDS

How one artist saw the truth when he refused to boycott Israel ….

Veloso describes how his visit to the Palestinian village of Susiya in the occupied Palestinian territory helped to shed light on the grim reality of living under Israel’s decades-old regime of occupation and colonization. What Veloso heard there from Palestinian villagers being subjected to daily violent attacks by fanatic Israeli settlers, under protection from the Israeli occupation forces, made him reach the conclusion that, “all complaints from BDS [activists] have ground”.

Brazilian Music Legends Caetano and Gil Will Perform in Israel Despite Calls to Cancel · Image by Carlos Latuff

Brazilian Music Legends Caetano and Gil Will Perform in Israel Despite Calls to Cancel ·
Image by Carlos Latuff

Brazilian star Caetano Veloso announces he will never go back to Israel

After performing in Tel Aviv, in defiance of Palestinian appeals not to help Israel use his name to cover up its regime of oppression, Caetano Veloso has now concluded that he will “never go back” to Israel. In an article entitled, “To visit Israel to never go back to Israel”, published on November 8, the prominent Brazilian artist reveals how he reached his decision after seeing the reality of Israel’s occupation and systematic, violent suppression of Palestinian human rights.

Veloso describes how his visit to the Palestinian village of Susiya in the occupied Palestinian territory helped to shed light on the grim reality of living under Israel’s decades-old regime of occupation and colonization. What Veloso heard there from Palestinian villagers being subjected to daily violent attacks by fanatic Israeli settlers, under protection from the Israeli occupation forces, made him reach the conclusion that, “all complaints from BDS [activists] have ground”.

Revealing that “the peace I had believed [to exist] inside Tel Aviv” was all along “fragile, superficial and illusory”, Veloso writes that he now wants real peace, which Palestinians have always argued must be based on justice and full respect for international law. He writes, “But now I want it feeling much closer to the Palestinians than I had ever imagined myself – and further away from Israel than my heart could not even [imagine] just a little more than a year ago”.

Veloso says he consulted with the Palestinian director of “Paradise Now,” Hany Abu-Assad, about BDS appeals to cancel the concert, and his advice was to “heed the BDS demands”.

The views of Yeshayahu Leibowitz, the late Israeli scientist and philosopher who was deeply critical of Israel’s occupation and who compared some of its policies not only to those of apartheid South Africa, but also to Nazi practices during World War II, “impressed me the most,” writes Caetano Veloso, “I would have dedicated our concert to his memory”.

Mahmoud Nawajaa, general coordinator of the Palestinian BDS National Committee (BNC), which leads the global BDS movement, reacted to Caetano Veloso’s article saying, “We are glad that Caetano is committing not to perform again in Israel. We sincerely hope that all Brazilian and Latin American artists will also heed the cultural boycott of Israel, called for by the absolute majority in Palestinian civil society, including the Palestinian artists”.

“International artists are all welcome to come and see the reality of Israel’s brutal regime of occupation, settler-colonialism and apartheid under which Palestinians live and against which they are waging the current wave of popular resistance. But they can do that without crossing the international picket line, without performing in Tel Aviv, the capital of Israeli apartheid and war mongering”.

Earlier this year Caetano Veloso and Gilberto Gil refused to cancel a concert in Tel Aviv despite wide Brazilian, Palestinian and international appeals. Major figures like Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Roger Waters, Brazil’s former Human Rights Minister and UN rapporteur Paulo Sérgio Pinheiro, wrote to the Brazilian stars at the time asking them not to do business-as-usual with a state that is committing horrific crimes against the Palestinian people.

In its appeal to Caetano and Gil, the Palestinian Campaign for Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) wrote, “Your Tropicalia Way stands against racism and for social justice, so do not offer Israel a fig leaf to cover its human rights violations with”.

In his letter to them, Arch. Desmond Tutu wrote, “I have myself witnessed the apartheid reality that Israel has created within its borders and in the occupied Palestinian territory (…) If we cannot, at the very least, heed the appeals of Palestinian society, to refrain from undermining their peaceful resistance and aspirations for a life without oppression, we will be abandoning our moral obligations. In situations of oppression, neutrality means taking the side of the oppressor”.

Roger Waters wrote, “Just as musicians weren’t going to play Sun City, increasingly we’re not going to play Tel Aviv. There is no place today in this world for another racist, apartheid regime”.

Captura-de-Tela-2015-11-09-às-17.41.20-600x372

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WHAT AMERICANS DON’T KNOW ABOUT THE OCCUPATION AND WHY

It is a shame that the average American remains completely in the dark about what it means to live under military occupation. The Israeli “occupation” that Palestinians have been living under for 48 years is a brutal military rule that reaches into every corner of every Palestinian’s life. It controls where we can go and when, where we can live, how we practice our religion, and so many other vital matters, including whether we live or die.

Image by Ismael Shammout

Image by Ismael Shammout

What Americans Don’t Know About the Middle East Conflict and Why

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu knows better than anyone else that if we Palestinians are permitted to engage non-violently, odds are we will expose Israel’s military occupation for what it is, a system of modern-day apartheid or worse. This is why, following his March election victory, Netanyahu assembled an extreme right-wing cabinet that would work to ensure that Palestinians were provoked to the point of turning violent.

He did this thinking that such violence, and the backlash he could unleash, would have limited international repercussions since Americans have been actively, thoroughly, and consistently deprived of the context necessary to understand the conflict.

For decades, every time violence has broken out, Israel has simply switched on its well-oiled public relations campaign designed to discredit Palestinians. In a new twist, the Israeli government recently began giving scholarships to university students who are willing to sit at their computers posting endless streams of comments on news sites and social media, engineered by Israeli experts to counter any criticism of Israel. Addressing western audiences, mainly American, Israel decontextualizes the violence.

A prime example is how Israel links every act of Palestinian violence to religious fervor, without any suggestion that Israel’s military occupation since 1967 and annexation of Jerusalem in 1980 could give grounds for legitimate political grievance. For decades, Palestinians in Jerusalem have been systematically humiliated, discriminated against, and even stripped of their Jerusalem residency status. Instead of providing a context that might help explain and stem the attacks, Israel goes to the extreme to make it seem as if Palestinians were just a different breed of people, bent on inexplicable violence. It has worked brilliantly, until now.

Today, after years of developing effective non-violent tools to resist the occupation, everything from a boycott, divestment and sanctions campaigns all the way to challenging the occupation in venues of the United Nations, such as the International Criminal Court, Palestinians have built a solidarity movement that can be found in every corner of the globe. We are finally giving the occupation a run for its money.

However, in America, despite widespread educational efforts on the issue in almost every state, change has been slow. Context is key, and Americans have been consistently deprived of the relevant context for understanding this conflict. Is it any wonder that so many Americans rush to contextualize Palestinian behavior by borrowing whatever negative Middle Eastern tags happen to be fashionable at the moment — from Osama bin Laden to ISIS, from Saddam Hussein to Hezbollah. If the comments online are any indication, a common response in the USA to the recent tragic events in and around Jerusalem is to call into question our very humanity.

Completely missing from this discourse is that the United States is the leading player in the actions, or inactions, of the international community that have allowed the situation to boil over once again. It is the U.S. that monopolized the peace process, that substantially arms Israel and that covers for it diplomatically like no other state in the world. Moreover, an annual $3 billion in American tax dollars flow to Israel in aid and goods. These rewards are carrots to keep Israel strategically allied to the U.S. but the weapons and equipment, not to mention the freeing up of Israeli tax dollars, are used as sticks to systematically oppress Palestinians on both sides of the Green Line.

For the average American citizen, in 2015, to still view Palestinians as creatures from Mars, their all-too-human desperation seen without any historic context and independently of any relation to the Israeli military occupation which runs their lives, is no longer acceptable. The American education system and media must do better, for the sake of us all.

Theoretically, American politicians and lawmakers could compensate for Americans’ lack of knowledge of the conflict but, alas, little hope is to be found in that direction: U.S. politics has long been allied with the pro-Israeli lobby and Congress has become an echo chamber for Israeli state propaganda.

It is a shame that the average American remains completely in the dark about what it means to live under military occupation. The Israeli “occupation” that Palestinians have been living under for 48 years is a brutal military rule that reaches into every corner of every Palestinian’s life. It controls where we can go and when, where we can live, how we practice our religion, and so many other vital matters, including whether we live or die.

The acts of violence we are witnessing against Israelis are horrifying — as are less publicized and more numerous Israeli attacks against Palestinians. We can remain appalled by the violence but can nevertheless understand what is motivating the actions. Indeed, to have any chance of stopping them, we are obliged first to understand why they are happening. For Palestinians, the names and places in the Bible, holy to so many Americans, are more than words we recite at church on Sundays: Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Nazareth and Jericho are our homes and when violence breaks out in those places, it is we and our children who have the most to lose.

Israeli and Palestinian casualties are a loss to us all and their memories should serve as an eternal reminder to all sides — that without an end to the Israeli occupation there can be no winners or losers, only more mourners on both sides.

 

Written for The Forward

RAISING THE FLAG OF PALESTINE AT THE UN WAS NOT THE SOLUTION

More than a flag is needed to end the cycle of madness

More than a flag is needed to end the cycle of madness

The US, Israel’s guardian-ally, has used its veto power at the UN Security Council numerous times to kill dozens of UNSC resolutions that would have forced Israel to withdraw from the occupied territories and allow for the establishment of a viable Palestinian state.

UN failure in Palestine

By Khalid Amayreh in Occupied Palestine
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UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has arrived in Israel-Occupied Palestine, in an effort to defuse mounting tension between Israel and the Palestinians as the Israeli occupation army killed five more Palestinians Tuesday, bringing the number of Palestinian victims of Israeli repression to as many as 51 in less than three weeks..

More than 3000 other Palestinians are thought to have sustained varied injuries from live bullets, rubber-coated bullets, and stun grenades or from tear-gas inhalation.

Moreover, Palestinian eyewitnesses and some human rights groups have accused Israel of executing in cold blood a number of Palestinian youngsters on the mere suspicion that they were planning to stab Israeli soldiers and settlers.

Around nine Israeli soldiers and settlers were also killed and dozens injured in the same period.

The violence, often dubbed as the Third Palestinian Intifada or uprising, started after government-backed Messianic Jewish fanatics carried out forced encroachments, nearly on a daily basis, into the Aqsa Mosque, one of Islam’s holiest sanctuaries.

Messianic Jewish groups, including government ministers, make no secret of their desires to see the Islamic Shrines at the Haram al-Sharif destroyed by whatever means necessary in order to build a Jewish Temple in the area.

Most Palestinians consider the Aqsa Mosque a matter of life or death since it symbolizes their national existence. Hence, the repeated storming of the Mosque by fanatical Jewish groups is viewed by most Palestinians as the ultimate provocation.

On the other hand, Israel seems thoroughly intoxicated with arrogance of power as a result of Israel’s military might and also by Jewish domination over the American government, especially Congress.

Following his arrival in Tel Aviv, Moon reiterated platitudes, repeated ad nauseam, about the Palestinian question.

However, the UN Chief avoided blaming Israel for effectively killing the proposed two-state solution through settlement expansion which most observers contend  has eliminated any remaining prospects for the establishment of any viable Palestinian state.

“It is not too late to avoid a broader crisis,” Moon insisted. “In my meetings today and tomorrow with the Israeli and Palestinian leaderships, I will be appealing to all to take concerted steps to limit new incidents on both sides. Violence only begets violence.”

Moon added that extremists on either side, or those who think violence is the answer, must not be allowed to further fuel the conflict.

“Beyond the immediate tensions, what is missing is the resolve to restore a political horizon for talks, and a political process that delivers real results and hope,” Mr. Ban noted. “Violence only undermines the legitimate Palestinian aspirations for statehood and the longing of Israelis for security.”

Underlining that “the status quo is only making things worse,” the Secretary-General stated that this conflict has gone on for far too long.

“We must, for the future of our children, turn back from this dangerous abyss, safeguard the two-state solution and lead people back onto the road towards peace,” he urged, adding that the UN, and himself as Secretary-General, will continue to support all efforts to create the conditions for a return to meaningful negotiations and a just and lasting peace.

Moon’s visit is unlikely to contribute to the restoration of calm, especially in light of Israel’s failure to stop tampering with the delicate situation at the Aqsa Mosque.

Moreover, the deadly Israeli response to Palestinian protests over the Aqsa crisis and also the vanishing of real hopes for Palestinian statehood seem to have created an incendiary situation which can only be contained by drastic UN action against Israel’s lebensraum policies in Palestine, namely the settlement expansion.

However, such an intervention by the UN is highly unlikely due to US hegemony over the international organization.

The US, Israel’s guardian-ally, has used its veto power at the UN Security Council numerous times to kill dozens of UNSC resolutions that would have forced Israel to withdraw from the occupied territories and allow for the establishment of a viable Palestinian state.

Moreover, the virtually unlimited military support for Israel by the US has made the Zionist state a virtual military superpower that is capable of defying the entire international community, including the U.S.  Hence, the UN failure to resolve the Palestinian question.

Israeli Prime Minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, who is notorious for his dishonesty and mendacity, has been saying that Israel will not seek to change the status quo in Jerusalem’s al-Haram al-Sharif.

However, those familiar with Netanyahu’s mindset and twisted language realize too well that Netanyahu, when referring to the status quo, is only alluding to the fait accompli where fanatic Jews are allowed, with army escort and protection, to enter the Islamic sanctuary, not to visit the place as Israeli propaganda alleges, but rather to hold Talmudic rituals, in order to desensitize Muslim objections and to arrogate a foothold at the 1400-year Islamic sanctuary.

Hence, Israel bears absolute and full responsibility for the current violence engulfing the  area, first for knowingly killing all prospects for peace due to unrelenting settlement expansion and, second, for tampering with the powder keg at the Aqsa Mosque.

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