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

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

Resolving the Israel-Palestine conflict

Resolving the Israel-Palestine conflict

Expect nothing from Trump

By Sam Bahour and Mousa Jiryis

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

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

Independent European approach long overdue

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

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

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

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

America is part of the problem

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

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

Protected by its patron

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

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

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

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

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

 

Written FOR

ISRAELI JUDICIAL SYSTEM ~~ JOKE OR JUSTICE?

An Israeli court on Tuesday sentenced Elor Azaria to 18 months in prison, one-year probation and a demotion of his military rank, a month after the Israeli soldier was found guilty of manslaughter.

Azaria shot and killed Abd al-Fattah al-Sharif in March after al-Sharif had already been shot and injured following an alleged attempted stabbing attack in Hebron.

Image by Latuff

Elor Azaria verdict, or, how Israel court system whitewash war crimes

Elor Azaria verdict, or, how Israel court system whitewash war crimes

Palestinian who filmed shooting says Azaria sentence ‘is a joke, not justice’

An Israeli court on Tuesday sentenced Elor Azaria to 18 months in prison, one-year probation and a demotion of his military rank, a month after the Israeli soldier was found guilty of manslaughter.

Azaria shot and killed Abd al-Fattah al-Sharif in March after al-Sharif had already been shot and injured following an alleged attempted stabbing attack in Hebron.

Following the court’s sentencing, Azaria’s defense vowed to appeal the ruling, while several high-ranking Israeli politicians called for a pardon in his case.

The main evidence in the case was footage caught on camera by Imad Abu Shamsiya, a Palestinian resident of Hebron who had been provided a camera by Human Rights Defenders specifically to document instances such as the shooting and other human rights violations in Hebron.

Abu Shamsiya told Mondoweiss he is grateful he was around to film the incident, because without the camera footage he feels certain Azaria would never have been taken to court, let alone serve time in prison.

“If there was no one filming that day then this crime, just like other crimes like it that happen against Palestinians on a daily basis, would go unnoticed,” Abu Shamsiya said. “I am so grateful for the camera, and so grateful I was in the right place at the right time.”

While Shamsiya is happy the world got to see what happened on that day in March, he does not feel like justice was served.

“There is no justice for the family,” Abu Shamsiya said. “They lost a member of their family in a very brutal way, this 18-month sentence is not justice for the family, for the Palestinian people or our nation — no one got justice from this.”

Sahar Francis, the director of Addameer, a Palestinian prisoners’ rights NGO, criticized the sentencing, telling Mondoweiss that an 18-month sentence for an “extrajudicial execution” of a Palestinian “brings to light the policy of impunity and lack of accountability in a system of protracted Israeli military occupation.”

“The period of sentencing is similar to sentencing routinely given to Palestinians for ‘membership in an illegal organization’ – with all Palestinian political parties deemed illegal through various military orders,” Francis said. “The message this sends to other soldiers and police officers who extrajudicially execute Palestinians is that their actions will not be seriously accounted for and that impunity will persist.”

Meanwhile, the Israeli right has lauded Azaria as a hero who killed a Palestinian terrorist, attacking the Israeli military and the Israeli justice system for allowing the case to go forward, while calling for Azaria’s pardon.According to Israeli daily Haaretz, judges said Azaria acted with the intent to kill, outside of Israeli military protocol, which requires a threat to life before live fire can be used. The judge also said the severity of the shooting and backlash it caused to the Israeli military was mitigated since the shooting happened during an active combat situation.

After Azaria was found guilty of manslaughter January, Ido Zelkovitz, head of the Middle East studies department at Max Stern Academic College of Emek Yezreel and senior researcher at the University of Haifa told Mondoweiss that both sides of the Israeli political spectrum agreed on one thing — Azaria shot a terrorists in their eyes — which in the end, he said would indeed lead to a pardon after Azaria serves a small part of his sentence.

“Even if he was unarmed and he couldn’t put anyone in danger, the common idea among all the Israeli camps is that Azaria shot a terrorist and there is no debate about that question — it is a mutual understanding. That is why in the future the pardon will be accepted,” Zelkovitz said.

Abu Shamsiya agreed, telling Mondoweiss that he would be shocked if Azaria was actually made to serve his full sentence.

“Of course he won’t be made to serve his full sentence — the sentence is a joke, not justice, it’s 18 months in prison for murder,” Abu Shamsiya said. “Not only do I doubt he will even serve a full prison sentence, I doubt he will be put on any kind of probation or be demoted in the military.”

“This case shows us the injustice of the Israeli government,” he added. “This was just a show for the world to see because this execution was filmed, so the government felt it had to do something.”

ACTION ALERTS FOR ISRAEL APARTHEID WEEK

Happening Monday 2/27Friday 3/3

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Israeli Apartheid Week 2017

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

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

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

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

#IAW2017 SCHEDULE:

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

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

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

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

Check facebook for more information on the event and accessibility

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

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

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

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

Check facebook for more information on the event and accessibility

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

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

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

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

Check facebook for more information on the event and accessibility

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

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

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

Check facebook for more information on the event and accessibility

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

Check facebook for more information on the event and accessibility

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

IMAGE OF THE DAY ~~ THE BILLBOARD THAT WENT ASTRAY

“On Feb. 6, 2017 this ‘America First’ highway billboard was erected in Ann Arbor, Michigan by the group Deir Yassin Remembered.  A week later Adams Outdoor Advertising told the group that their billboard had to come down.  It has since been removed.”

The billboard that went astray

The billboard that went astray

Read HERE the story of  DEIR YASSIN, and why zion does not want you to remember it

zion’s new mantra is ” If you can’t re wright history, simply erase it”

ADMINISTRATIVE DETENTION AS A TOOL OF REPRESSION

Administrative Detention is widely used by the Israeli occupation regime to suppress political activity and social organizations in the West Bank. It is less known that the same (or a similar) anti-democratic law holds also inside those territories that Israel occupied and ethnically cleaned in 1948 and is used against Palestinian there, which are formally citizens of “democratic” Israel.

In a new post in Free Haifa I bring in detail the case of Muhammad Ibrahim, a 20 year old computer technician from Kabul in the Galilee, whose administrative detention was prolonged on December 2016 for a second 6 months period. The original post was published in Hebrew in January.

Israeli occupation keeps 540 Palestinians under administrative detention

Israeli occupation keeps 540 Palestinians under administrative detention

Free Muhammad Ibrahim – Administrative Detainee from Kabul in the Galilee!

Posted @ Free Haifa

When the news about the administrative detention of Muhammad Ibrahim were first published in December 2016, after he was already more than half a year in prison, it was written in some papers that this is the first case of such detention against Palestinians inside the 1948 occupied territories, who are formally citizens of Israel. But it was less than a year since Asmaa Hamdan, a woman from Nazareth, spent 3 months in administrative detention which started at the turmoil of “the third intifada” of October 2015. At the heights of the first intifada, in 1988, some ten leading members of Abna Al-Balad and related Palestinian movements were held in the same way. Several Palestinian activists inside ’48 spent times in administrative detention before and after these days…muhammad-ibrahim-with-al-aqsa

In the 1967 occupied West Bank (and previously also in Gaza) Israel is using administrative detention en-mass as a tool for political oppression. The use of administrative detention also against Palestinian in ’48 is another proof that it is basically the same occupation and the same oppressive system that is used all over occupied Palestine.

The Administrative Detention of Muhammad Ibrahim

[The following article was published in Hebrew on 23/01/2017 in “Local Call” and Haifa Hahofshit]

They say that if the police would look hard enough at the past of any person they would find a legal reason to arrest and put him or her on trial. It turns out that this rule has exceptions. One of them is the case of Muhammad Ibrahim, a 20-year-old computer technician from the Western Galilee town of Kabul. Not only the police, the Shin Bet (Israel’s notoriously harsh “internal security services”) also made every effort to bring him to trial, but they didn’t find any legal reason for this. So he was subjected to administrative detention, without indictment and without trial.

Muhammad gets into troubles

Muhammad’s troubles probably stems from his love to the Al-Aqsa mosque… He was not a political activist but used to travel frequently to Jerusalem to pray at this mosque. This mosque is the third holiest site for Islam, but some of Israel’s leaders seek to destroy it in order to build “The Third Temple” in its place.

Muhammad’s first encounter with the law was when Israeli police wanted to arrest a woman in the mosque’s yard and he threw himself before her and was arrested instead. He spent the night in custody in the “Moskubiya” (a Russian Church’s compound in the middle of Jerusalem used as a detention center). On the following day he was released by the judge in the absence of any offense.

After the first detention cops already knew Muhammad and when they saw him in the mosque’s yard they used to arrest him. He was arrested five times, and was released five times, without being accused of any offence. Occasionally he was required to sign a pledge to stay away from Jerusalem for a while as a condition for his release.

On May 11, 2016, at 3 o’clock in the morning, a police force from Nazareth, including riot squad, accompanied by a Shin Bet operative, surrounded Muhammad’s house and awakened his family. The Sin Bet agent in charge of the region did not even know the young Muhammad whom he came to arrest. He turned to Muhammad’s father and asked him “who is Muhammad?”… This is just another piece of evidence proving that the reason for the arrest belongs to a different place – to Jerusalem.

Harsh Interrogation

After searching Muhammad’s room and some other rooms in the house, the police took with them Muhammad himself and also all the computers that they found, including computers of customers who brought them for repair.muhammad-ibrahim-sitting

The terrified family spent the next day running around between police stations and detention centers to find their son. Finally, they were informed that he was detained by the Shin Bet in a special interrogation center in Petah Tikva.

During the interrogation Muhammad was not allowed to see a lawyer. He was questioned in difficult conditions and was subjected to the harsh “special interrogation methods” of the Shin Bet, including sleep prevention. Later he told how he was interrogated for 22 hours non-stop while tethered to a chair.

25 days of intensive interrogation did not produce anything; the mountain did not give birth even to a mouse. Finally came the court session in which Muhammad was supposed to be released. But then the Shin Bet people informed the judge that they are going to put Muhammad under administrative detention. The judge delayed his release for a day until the defence minister will sign the decree, which was signed by Avigdor Lieberman on June 5, 2016, for a period of six months.

The other likely reason for issuing the administrative detention order is revenge of the Shin Bet’s failure to extort a confession from Muhammad and prosecute him. It constitutes a threatening message to all detainees: if you do not confess you can be arrested anyway, so you should better confess even if you never violated any law.

Significantly, although the investigation was concluded long time ago, and although no indictment was filed, the confiscated computers, including those of Muhammad’s customers, were not returned until this day.

Administrative Detention as a tool of the Military Regime

“Judicial supervision” on the procedure of administrative detention against Muhammad Ibrahim is being held at the Haifa District Court. At the first hearings in this procedure he was represented by the “Adalah” legal center. In fact this is not a proper judicial proceeding that allows any viable legal defence but a meaningless formal procedure. The contents of the “charges” or “suspicions” were not disclosed to Muhammad until this day, neither to his lawyer. All the Shin Bet’s claims are “secret material” submitted to the judge without the presence of the suspect or his representative. Once, when Aram Mahameed, Adalah’s lawyer, was order to leave the courtroom when confidential materials were submitted, he left behind his briefcase. State officials rushed to distance the briefcase also.

Not only that Muhammad’s lawyers are not present when secret materials are submitted, family members are not allowed at all to be in the courtroom, not even to hear the arguments of the defence. At the same time a blanket GAG order was issued to prevent the press from covering the case. Only on January 2017, following an appeal by journalist Jacky Khoury (from Radio Al-Shams and Haaretz), the military censorship confirmed that there is no reason to prevent reporting. In any case, there is nothing to report except the fact that there is nothing as there was nothing, and that this nothingness is a state secret.

On December 5, Muhammad’s six months detention was due to expire, but then the family was informed that the detention order was renewed for another six months period. This time he was represented by lawyer Omar Khamaisi from “Mizan”. The judge himself found it difficult to understand the justification for the continued detention without indictment and asked the Shin Bet representative whether, in their view, administrative detention is life imprisonment… But eventually the usual ritual was repeated: The detainee and his lawyer were ordered to leave the courtroom and the Shin Bet operatives stayed alone with the judge who finally reaffirmed the detention. The next hearing of this judicial farce, which takes place every three months, of “legally supervising” this unlawful detention, is set for March 15.

I sat with lawyer Khamaisi who explained to me the legal basis for administrative detention. The practice of detention without trial was inherited from the colonialist laws used by the British Mandate (see Wikipedia: Defence Emergency Regulations 1945). When Zionist leaders were subject to these laws they severely criticized them as draconian, but later Israel continued to use the same draconian British laws against its Palestinian Arab citizens.

Now Israel has a wholly “Blue and White” Made in Israel detention without trial, under the “state of emergency laws” from 1979, in full accordance to the Jewish and “democratic” character of the state. (The law is so new, only 38 years, that it still doesn’t have an entry in Wikipedia). The authority to issue administrative detention order is given by the Minister of Defence, stressing the fact that this is basically a military act against the “enemies of the state”. It should remind us that beneath the thin camouflage of democracy we are all subject to a regime of military occupation.

Abusive Conditions at the Families’ Visits

Although not indicted for anything, Muhammad is held in harsh conditions with “security prisoners” in the desert Ketziot prison in Nizzana sands, near the Egyptian border.

Khaled Ibrahim, Muhammad’s father, told me in detail about his harsh experiences while visiting his son in this remote prison.

khaled-ibrahim-abu-muhammad

Khaled Ibrahim, Abu Muhammad

The Israeli prisons’ authority requires that the family will register in advance for visiting, but Ketziot prison guards are not answering the telephone number designed for coordination. He only learns about the dates of the visits from families of prisoners from the West Bank which are coming in pre-arranged transportation.

Travelling from Kabul to Ketziot, almost 300 kilometers, can take three and a half hours in each direction when the road is free, so it is by itself a torture for the body and the soul. When he arrived at Ketziot he was imprisoned with his car in the parking lot of the prison and had to wait about an hour and a half to the arrival of the buses from the West Bank. The guards forbade him to extricate himself by walking in the parking lot and ordered him to stay in the car. When the buses arrived all visitors were guided to an internal courtyard and had to wait there another two hours until visits actually began. At the time of the visit, which lasted three-quarter of an hour, they were separated from their beloved ones by a glass wall and could talk only through a phone.  Later they had to wait closed in the yard until the second round of visits finished and they were allowed to return to the parking lot… Why should the guards make an extra effort and open the door twice?

The three-quarters of an hour visit lasted in total over fourteen and a half hours, from six in the morning until eight thirty at night. This systematic abuse against the families of prisoners and detainees causes many of them to reduce their visits.

Popular Struggle

The family expected that the six-month administrative detention will pass just as the 25 days of the interrogations and that Muhammad will be released… After all, he was not accused of anything. The secrecy of the hearings and prevention of media reports created an atmosphere of fear and they did not know what to do or who to contact. This secrecy has allowed the authorities to keep the entire subject far from the public awareness. The oppressive apparatus like to abuse their victims in the darkness under the cover of media blackout. However, one of the most difficult problems with administrative detention is that it has no time limit.

The extension of Muhammad’s detention for another six months resulted in breaking the isolation and silence. Over the last several years, a “popular committee” was formed and is operating in Kabul, as part of the policy of “the follow-up committee” of the Arab population inside the 48 occupied territories for the construction of the organs of popular struggle in every community. The popular committee undertook to publicize the case of Muhammad’s administrative detention and to coordinate the struggle for his release.

The activists of the “popular committee” organized protest, invited the Follow-Up Committee and Arab Knesset Members from “The Joint List” and turned to the media. They opened a special Facebook page called “Free the administrative detainee Mohammed Ibrahim from Kabul” (in Arabic). At the last hearing in the Haifa District Court there were already about 30 people who were not allowed in… My visit to Muhammad’s family in Kabul and this article are my modest contribution to this campaign.

Now the family’s sole hope is that the public struggle will expose the severe unjustified abuse caused to Muhammad by the administrative detention and will embarrass the authorities and bring about his release. At the end of our conversation the representative of the Popular Committee expressed his hope that until the next hearing, on March 15, the protest will expands, and maybe there will be a demonstration in front of the court. I expressed my wish that, even before, due to the exposure of the case, the public pressure will bring to Muhammad’s release and we’ll come to congratulate him for that. We never lose hope, but in the current public atmosphere to speak of “a danger to democracy” rings like a hollow mockery while we face a regime which prides itself for abusing democratic rights.

 

IF THE CANCER DOESN’T KILL YOU ZIONISM WILL

A Palestinian man was on his way to a chemotherapy session when he was shot by Israeli soldiers last November, his family told an Israeli journalist this week.

Muhammad Amer Jallad (via Quds)

Muhammad Amer Jallad (via Quds)

Palestinian was on way to chemotherapy when shot by soldiers

Muhammad Amar Jallad was being treated for Hodgkin’s lymphoma, his family told Haaretz reporter Gideon Levy. Jallad was reported to have died in an Israeli hospital where he was being treated for his injuries last week.

The Israeli army claimed that Jallad was attempting to attack soldiers with a screwdriver when he was shot in the northern West Bank village of Huwwara on 9 November.

A witness told the Ma’an News Agency that he saw Jallad “attempting to cross the road in Huwwara before being shot at by an Israeli soldier who then took out a knife and threw it next to the youth.”

Shot while running across road

Jallad’s father told Haaretz that his son had set out from their home in Tulkarem that morning for the nearby city of Nablus, where he was being treated at the An-Najah National University Hospital.

When Jallad realized he had mistakenly boarded a shared taxi heading to Ramallah, rather than Nablus, Levy reported, “The driver suggested that he get off at Huwwara junction, next to the checkpoint of that name, where he would be able to pick up the taxi to Nablus.”

Jallad exited the vehicle and began to cross the road.

“He did so on the run,” according to Levy. “On the other side was an [Israeli army] jeep and a few soldiers, who were guarding the busy junction. The soldiers apparently thought that he was out to attack them.”

Jallad was shot with one bullet to the stomach as he reached the middle of the road, Haaretz recounted. A Palestinian ambulance crew happened to drive by and attempted to evacuate Jallad, but Israeli forces prevented them from doing so.

He was eventually evacuated in an Israeli ambulance and taken to a hospital.

During the months of hospitalization before his death, Jallad was put under the custody of an Israeli military court. His family were kept in the dark about his condition and were prevented from seeing him.

Jallad’s father was denied a permit to enter Israel and though his mother was issued a permit on four occasions, only once was she allowed to enter her son’s hospital room.

The family looked up one of his doctors online and called him last Friday. It was only then that Jallad’s family learned that he had died, they told Haaretz. They still have not been informed of the date and cause of his death.

Israel transferred Jallad’s body to his family on 17 February. The Ma’an News Agency reported that his body will be examined in the presence of Palestinian legal officials before being buried on Saturday.

Israel has withheld the remains of dozens of Palestinians slain during alleged and actual attacks since late 2015.

Earlier this month, Israel transferred the body of Muhammad Zeidan, a 16-year-old who was shot and killed by a private security guard at a Jerusalem-area checkpoint in late November.

Medical neglect of child prisoner

The health of a Palestinian child with leukemia who is being held in an Israeli military detention center has “seriously deteriorated,” a lawyer with the Palestinian Authority committee on prisoners’ affairs stated this week.

Ahmad al-Khadour, 15, has “suffered from a stroke, feet problems, intense dizziness, and muscle contractions in his fingers,” Luay Ukka told media.

The boy has been detained since 2 January, when he was assaulted by Israeli forces who beat him with the butts of their rifles, Ukka said.

The Jerusalem Committee for the Families of Prisoners also reported that the Israel Prison Service had transferred Azmi al-Daqaq, 28, to a hospital after his health deteriorated.

Al-Daqaq is being held without charge or trial under military detention order after he was detained on 20 January “over an alleged stabbing attempt,” the Ma’an News Agency reported.

Palestinians have frequently accused Israel of medical neglect of prisoners. Last September, a prisoner died from a heart condition after reportedly receiving inadequate treatment in prison.

In December, the Palestinian Prisoners’ Center for Studies released a report claiming that 32 Palestinian prisoners are not receiving adequate medical care for their different conditions.

Some 6,500 Palestinians were imprisoned by Israel as of January.

Teen posed no danger when killed

The Israeli rights group B’Tselem stated this month that a Palestinian teenager who was shot by Israeli forces last December posed no danger to soldiers when he was killed.

Ahmad al-Kharroubi, 19, was slain in the Jerusalem-area town of Kufr Aqab when soldiers raided in the middle of the night to seal the home of a Palestinian killed during a shooting attack.

Ahmad al-Kharroubi (via B’Tselem)

Ahmad al-Kharroubi (via B’Tselem)

Al-Kharroubi was hiding behind a low wall and “apparently attempted to throw stones at Border Police officers and soldiers” at a roadblock some 80 to 100 meters away from him when he was hit with a live bullet, according to B’Tselem.

Al-Kharroubi, who was shot in the neck, was evacuated to a hospital but was declared dead upon arrival.

B’Tselem stated that “no incendiary device” was thrown at soldiers from the area where al-Kharroubi was positioned. Given the distance the unarmed youths were from the soldiers, “they could not pose any danger,” the group added.

B’Tselem also stated that the punitive sealing of the home was an illegal act of collective punishment that “that led to the pointless death of this young man.”

IN PHOTOS ~~ NATIONAL DAY OF ACTION

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On the NATIONAL DAY OF ACTION, February 15th, at Grand Central Station NYC, 300 people met to protest the meeting of Trump And Netanyahu and what it portends. Participants held posters and gave out leaflets to commuters. Many stopped to take photos.There was chanting & singing. Then the protesters marched out of GCS going through NYC’s over crowded streets to Trump Towers. When they got there the police had cordoned off several blocks to keep the demonstrators from protesting in front of the building. The marchers were not deterred and continued around the police fences till they met up with the Palestinian protesters who were waiting for the main group to appear. Between them there was a mass vocal outburst and, with a flurry of many Palestinian flags, the marchers moved on to Columbus Circle in front of Trump’s International Hotel where they continued the protest.  

Photos © by Bud Korotzer, Report by Chippy Dee

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LATEST ROUND OF LAND GRABBING, MUSLIM HATRED AND WALLS

During the radical change in the USA, where after the US presidential election the whole world just looks at decrees and tweets by the narcissistic “national socialist” Trump, the Netanyahu regime masterfully knew how to press ahead with Zionist raids, racist laws, and the Judaisation of Palestine.

Image by Carlos Latuff

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When land grabbing, wall construction, expulsion, and Muslim hatred become reason of state!

By Evelyn Hecht-Galinski,English Translation by Milena Rampoldi

It cannot be said more appropriately than it was expressed by the right-wing Likud Member of Parliament and Minister of Science Ofir Akunis to describe Zionist politics: “Whole Israel is ours, undivided, this is beyond dispute.” (1)
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With the unjust law adopted by the Knesset last week the Zionist State wants retroactively tolegalise 4.000 settlers’ apartments built on stolen Palestinian land. This will pave the way to avoid evacuation of “illegal wild” settlements and outposts. If we consider that in reality all Jewish settlements in Palestine are illegal! In the meantime, the liberal  Israeli newspaper Haaretz reports that the illegal and just evacuated outposts Amona and Migron was financed by a Netanyahu regime fund of more than 1 million US dollars,”lent” to the extremist Aman Settlers’ Organization! For years, Amana has been one of the most dangerous and active settlers’ movement, developed from the Gush Emunim movement founded in 1978, and is behind the foundations of the “illegal outposts”. This way, the “Jewish State” purposely supports these “wild illegal” settlers. Also the Palestinian shepherds and farmers are regularly attacked and injured by Jewish settlers of the outpost, under the watchful eyes of the “Jewish Defence Army”. No Palestinian is safe from these Judaic extremists (2) (3) (4).
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With this law, the colonisation and annexation of the complete illegally occupied West Bank is definitively initiated as final solution of the Judaisation. And it is also more than beyond belief if the hypocrital community of states, including the USA, criticise the construction of settlements, but do nothing to stop this Zionist plunder. Since Trump’s inauguration as US president, more than 5000 new illegal Jewish settlers’ apartments have already been authorised. And almost every day new settlement units are planned. Apparently before this week’s trip to Washington Netanyahu wants to compete with the real estate mogul Trump to see how far he can go with Trump and Kushner, Bannon and Co. (5)
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The same can be said about the racist “Muezzin Law” rapidly adopted by the Netanyahu regime and openly opposed to Muslims and Islam while discriminating against them. Between 11 PM and 7 AM no muezzin calls from the mosques are allowed. The new provocation shows how it is about religious freedom in the “Jewish State”. However, as the Palestinian-Israeli Deputy Aiman Odeh says: “The muezzin call has been heard for a long time before the racist government of the Netanyahu, and will continue to be heard for a long time”. (6)
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Similar to the provocations of Jewish extremists and Knesset Deputies on the Haram-al- Sharif or the arbitrary prohibition by Jewish occupiers against Palestinian men who were not allowed to pray at the al-Aqsa mosque! (7) (8)
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This racism of the Netanyahu regime and its laws fit seamlessly into the desires of the right-wing populist Geert Wilder who asked for a prohibition of Islam, the Quran and for the shut-down of mosques in the Netherlands. (9)
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Another significant story: At the new inauguration of the Church of the Multiplication of the Loaves and the Fishes in the Benedictine Abbey in Tabgha at the Genezareth Lake, destroyed by an arson of young Jewish extremists, Christians and Jews met. Cardinal Woelki came from Cologne, and also the President of Israel, Rivlin, was there. A shame that the German ambassador in Israel, von Goetze, thanked the Israeli Authorities for their good protection of the Holy Sites! 
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Five perpetuators were arrested after the murderous attack. Three were released. The costs of the damage was of approximately 1,5 million Euros. The “Jewish State” paid only 370.000 Euros. 400.000 Euros were paid by the Archdiocese in Cologne, and 500.000 came from private donors. It is unbelievable, that no imam was invited because it was not part of the protocol. However, it was exactly the Muslims who provided food to the abbey after the arson, and gave money for the reconstruction! (10)
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And in Berlin the situation is similar. For the election of the new German President before the election there was a “closed” church service in the St. Hedwig Cathedral, but without Jews and Muslims. A protected church service for the Christian political elite; so much for the democratic understanding of Presidential Elections and “Berlin Values”! (11)
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So if today Trump and Netanyahu meet, we have to wonder about the meeting of these two alpha animals.
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For what concerns missing credibility, Trump and Netanyahu are very closed one to another. This makes their politics so dangerous because they recklessly present themselves to achieve their objectives. While Netanyahu’s objectives are well-known (“Eretz Israel”, combined with a bit of corruption and hunger for power), Trump has more diffused, overlapping goals. Between “America First”, self-promotion, megalomania, and his companies and the desire to promote Wall Street, this president is driven between twitter and the attempt to make world politics. And at the moment, as the prize winner and psychiatrist Paul Krugman says, this “mentally ill” president does not seem to really succeed in it. (12)
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Trump’s wall construction at the Mexican border, the ban for citizens from seven Muslim countries, and the isolation of immigrants, are rightly criticised all over the world. Drone attacks against civilians and preventive murders are executed day by day by the USA, the “Jewish State” and many “values alliances”. But for the “Jewish State” the situation is different. Even if Netanyahu constantly rebuilds the illegal Apartheid wall of more than 9 metres high cutting deeply through the illegally occupied Palestinian land, and it was even subterraneously extended to the concentration camp in Gaza, there is not open criticism. Although the “Jewish State” since its foundation has been applying the “Muslim Ban” as state policy, a Muslim/Palestinian is banned from entering the country, violations of the international and human rights laws, the genocide in Gaza and targeted assassinations and attacks against a sovereign state are execused, the “Jewish State” is part of the Christian-Jewish community of values. (13)
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For sure, Netanyahu during his visit will focus on Iran by trying to convince Trump to revoke the nuclear agreement with Iran, in particular after the recent missile test. He will present Iran as the most aggressive and dangerous country and will bring into play his favourite lie, the imminent Holocaust.  Let us hope that he will not succeed! 
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So when Trump and Netanyahu meets on 15 February, we have to be curious how they will deal with matters such as the settlements policy, the provocation of the relocation of the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, or the dying Gaza, the concentration camp forgotten by the hypocritical world community. It is to be feared that neither Trump nor Netanyahu will care about Palestinians as their ethnic cleansing is being executed with impunity by the Netanyahu regime violating Palestine more and more.
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In fact, all states represented at the UN should have immediately opposed the incredible interference of the incompetent general secretary. Since the UN general secretary Guterres should not depend on the US Trump’s mercy. His proposal to nominate the former Palestinian Premier Salam Fayyad as new UN envoy to Libya, as successor of the German Martin Kohler, which is a better choice must not be destroyed! Fayyad  was chosen because of his competency and not as representative of Palestine. And here the US envoy to the UN Haley is wrong. In the meantime it is rumoured that the former Israeli Minister of Justice Tzipi Livni, against whom in Belgium a warrant was issued because of war crimes, will be compensated with a high UN office for Israel. Incredible! (14) (15)
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While the holocaust is more and more used to justify the politics of the “Jewish State” and to distract from its own racist politics, by committing  crimes and by violating victims, Palestinians and the Nakba are more and more discredited. Norman Finkelstein, himself son of Holocaust victims, and author of the book “The Holocaust-Industry” who at the end of January gave a considerable seminar at the Max Planck Institute in Halle, described this phenomenon in a most peculiar way. And as many Israel critics he is denigrated by the Israel lobby and its Christian-Zionist supporters. In particular by the eternal “green agitators” Volker Beck and the Springer Press. (16) (17)
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The activities of the “Israel lobby and its willing sayanim become more and more bolder. This hasbara trace slashes right through the country, from Hildesheim, Halle, Göttingen, Freiburg and now also against the well-known liberation theologian and Islam expert Farid Esack, as guest professor in Hamburg. And again Volker Beck is at the Israel frontline and defends the occupiers state by protecting it from any critics. I really ask myself why the Green Party has not already initiated a party exclusion procedure against this moraliser, while the percentages in the surveys are continuously going down. In contrast to the punishable drug consumption, the authorisation of sex with minors and paedophelia, Israel critic is still exempt from punishment! (18) (19) (20)
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However, what can you expect from a “Jewish State” whose morality has sunk so deep, that even the dead body of assassinated Palestinians who died resisting the illegal occupation, are used as “negotiation mass” against any Geneva Convention? When has this occupiers’ state complied with any convention, law, or resolution? (21)
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If land grabbing, wall construction, expulsion, and anti-Muslim hatred become state policy, then it is time that the BDS campaign is supported also by the official politics to get justice in a free Palestine!
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P.S. In fact, the high EU representative Federica Mogherini declares that BDS is legal and that the freedom of expression is a precious value. (22
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Written FOR

URGENT APPEAL FROM THE WIFE, FAMILY AND FRIENDS OF A PALESTINIAN HUMAN RIGHTS ACTIVIST

To: Human rights activists all over the world.

To: peace and justice-loving people around the world

To: Freedom lovers all over the globe

To: ordinary conscientious people every where.

To: Journalists and media professionals around the globe.

Image by Latuff

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Urgent appeal from the wife, family and friends of Palestinian human rights activist and veteran prisoner Muhammad Elqiq

We  appeal to you once again (for the second time in less than a year) to do your utmost to save Muhammad Elqiq from what seems to be another vindictive  Israeli effort to kill Muhammad Elqiq  through the slow-death tactic.

Last year, Muhammad survived rather miraculously the macabre 100-day open-ended hunger strike, protesting the callous and inherently inhuman Israeli tactic of the so-called “Administrative detention.” AD  is only a mere  euphemism for open-ended incarceration without charge or trial for the purpose of humiliating suspected Palestinian activists and breaking their will to resist apartheid and oppression even through totally peaceful and non-violent means.  As it is well known, Israeli intelligence was forced last  year to release Muhammad, fearing that his death would further destabilize chronically volatile conditions in the Occupied Territories.

Steadfastness and ostensible triumph in the face of might and vindictiveness.

About two weeks ago, SS agents rearrested Muhammad, who is still recuperating from last year’s ordeal, vandalized the home and terrorized the family.

The Israeli court, which is a virtual rubber stamp in the hands of the security service, sentenced Muhammad to six months of administrative detention but without producing any shred of incriminating evidence aside from the vindictive and vengeful desire to punish, torment and kill Muhammad.

In response to this mindless vengeance and hatefulness, Muhammad decided to go on a new hunger strike. Muhammad is not a publicity hound or anything of this sort. He says he simply has no other means of protesting this form of injustice.  As this press release is being written down, Muhammad has entered day-9 in his hunger strike.

Once again, we appeal to you to contact the Israeli government agencies and embassies to protest the renewed incarceration of Muhammad Elqiq and demand his immediate release.  In a few days, Israeli PM B. Netanyahu will be in Washington D.C. to tell President Trump that Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East.  President Trump should tell Netanyahu that a true democracy doesn’t imprison people for years without charger and trial.

Thank you for your efforts

Fayhaa  Elqiq (Muhammad’s wife)

Elqiq Family and friends

14 February, 2017

 

Posted by Khalid Amayreh

PALESTINIANS THANK INDONESIA

There is no doubt that Indonesia’s adamant refusal to establish diplomatic relations with apartheid Israel will be a a significant morale booster for the Palestinians who are struggling around the clock to survive a decades-long Israeli onslaught aimed at uprooting them from their ancestral homeland.

Indonesians pray for the Palestinians who were killed in the airstrikes launched by Israel.

Indonesians pray for the Palestinians who were killed in the airstrikes launched by Israel.

Thank you, Indonesia

By Khalid Amayreh

Occupied Palestine

 

Palestinians must send a message of thanks and appreciation to the big sister, Indonesia, for her principled refusal to normalize relations with Israel. the shameless apartheid state that occupies our country and torments our people on a daily basis.

Israel has been seeking to woo Indonesia to embark on this dishonorable diplomatic feat for the purpose of further weakening the just Palestinian cause in the conscience and consciousness of Muslims world-wide.

Some utterly undemocratic Arab regimes, notorious for ignoring the feelings of their own masses, hastened to embrace the poisoned Israeli solicitations. They didn’t hesitate to swallow the Israeli bait: hook, line and sinker.

These well-known tyrannical regimes effectively committed moral adultery with their own national honor and dignity by embracing Israel and betraying Palestine.

Furthermore,   some of these entities even sought to outmatch the apartheid state by perfecting their own draconian measures against the Gaza Strip that many Palestinians began to wonder if these Arab regimes were siding with Israel or with Palestine.

But, al Handullila (thanks to God), Indonesia has demonstrated she has guarded her chastity by refusing Israel’s solicitations and venomous courting.

This feat on the largest Muslim country’s part deserves admiration and gratitude.

It shows that Indonesia is still espousing some moral principles in its foreign policy. It also shows that Indonesia is still not willing to trade her genuine concerns for Palestine and al-Masjidul Aqsa for expediency or some quick benefits that come with normalizing relations with Israel.

In fact, the government of Indonesia has  demonstrated its faithfulness to its own predominantly Muslim people who wouldn’t be comfortable with normalizing relations with the very state that practices murder, ethnic cleansing and discrimination in the ugliest form against Palestinians. Needless to say, this virulent modus operandi is pursued on no account other than that the Palestinians are not members of the “The Holy tribe,” clinging to their homeland and refusing to leave.

There is no doubt that Indonesia’s adamant refusal to establish diplomatic relations with apartheid Israel will be a a significant morale booster for the Palestinians who are struggling around the clock to survive a decades-long Israeli onslaught aimed at uprooting them from their ancestral homeland.

This means that the Indonesian decision will definitively serve the cause of Palestinian resistance, resilience and steadfastness, all considered vital prerequisites for Palestinian freedom and liberation.

Finally, the Indonesian step also shows that the vast majority of Muslims around the world still have their hearts where they properly belong, namely on the side of the Palestinian struggle for freedom and justice.

Once again, thanks, Indonesia.

PALESTINE ~~ THE RIGHT FOR JUSTICE

“Palestine First” should be the new solution for the Middle East. Since the 1948 establishment of the “Jewish State,” and the contemporaneous nakba — the catastrophic displacement of the Palestinian people — illegally occupied Palestine has been crying for justice. This is more so in this year of 2017 which marks the 50th year of the injustice committed against the illegally ceased territories in 1967.   

Image by Carlos Latuff

Netanyahu, the Thief of Tel Aviv

Netanyahu, the Thief of Tel Aviv

Palestine: Right for Justice!

by Evelyn Hecht-Galinski. English Translation by Milena Rampoldi

Since then the Zionist regime has continuously maintained its Judaisation policy with illegal settlement expansion by offering all possible incentives to Jewish settlers who planted themselves like grubs in the “kosher” speck with an incredibly luxurious lifestyle with all imaginable advantages including swimming pools, separate streets for “Jews only, “ and a security system separating them from the Palestinian environment.

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How hard-nosed must someone be to live on stolen Palestinian land without empathy for the impoverished indigenous population enduring the occupation hardships of minimum electricity and water. How small-minded must someone be not to be aware of the misery caused to Palestinians by illegal colonisers who believe they were “chosen” by God who promised Palestine. If there was a God, how could He have even wanted such a thing? No way. This Judaism has lost all sense humanity while languishing in the amoral swamp of Judaism’s “Judea and Samaria.”

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In the meantime the West Bank is host to more than 600.000 illegal Jewish settlers have spread their tentacles over stolen Palestinian land where — in the terminology of the Old Testament — they are the 11th  plight. Meanwhile, these illegal Jewish settlers are involved in the essential decisions regarding the ethnic cleansing policies of Palestine. They literally siphon off Palestinian water; they murder innocent Palestinians with impunity; and they perpetrate the terror watched over by the Jewish “Defence Force.” Such terror is particularly brutal in Hebron where a couple of hundred hard-core settlers terrorise hundreds pf thousands of Palestinians.


According to the Israeli human rights organisation “Breaking the Silence,” extremist settler civil security leaders also legally hold positions of influence within the Jewish “Defence Force.” Thanks to this notorious collaboration between the military forces and the Jewish extremist settlers, the latter are able to assume their own responsibility for security in the illegally occupied territories. This incredulous situation enables the occupation army to facilitate the settlers‘ inconceivable terror against innocent Palestinians. Such barbaric cooperation between the military and extremist Jewish civilians has become unique in the world where its injustice  and brutality has in the meantime become the norm.

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This ethnocratic “Jewish State” is not constitutional and all that can be said about it is that responsible for administrative detentions, extrajudicial killings, and continuous land expropriation through ethnic cleansing with illegal house demolitions and the destruction of infrastructure, olive trees, and harvests without regard to the norms of legality or justice.

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The fifty years illegal occupation has left an indelible mark on Palestine with its nine-metre high Apartheid wall stretching for more than 750 km across stolen and occupied Palestinian land separating, and oppressing Palestinian families; restricting movement with checkpoints protected by U.S. and European security technology; and dehumanising the already demoralized Palestinians. While such barbaric policies have been condemned, the rest of the world has, however, come to accept such conduct as the Israeli undemocratic norm.

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A network of paid Jewish Sayanim — the worldwide network of so called “Jewish State” helpers – along with Jewish diaspora brigades, are like a spider’s web spread over the world and the illegally occupied Palestine. This dedicated network creates mistrust and spreads Israeli hasbara propaganda where it has been painfully felt – by professors, students, and activists in universities — particularly in U.S., Germany, and Great Britain. Such organised support has served to the silence criticism of Israel for its violations with impunity. The freedom of opinion and the freedom of teaching which are a high good, and have not to be destroyed by these dangerous lobbyists. Nip things in the bud!

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And if the Parliament of the “Jewish State” which violates Israeli and natural international law also enforces the law for the retroactive legalization of thousands of apartments built on private Palestinian land, then the “only Democracy’ in the Middle East with this Predation policies will perpetuate the ethnic cleansing and Judaisation of Palestine as a means of achieving an “Eretz Israel.”

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In fact, the inhuman and unjust law of the prohibiting Palestinians in the occupied West Bank and the blockaded Gaza Strip from accessing other territories, even within the illegally occupied Palestine, makes them an errant people without rights, breaks up their families, and makes normal family life impossible. Meanwhile the hypocritical international community despite of being aware of such violations, remains tolerant and keeps silent.

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The Palestinians in the illegally occupied West Bank are without rights, but not without justice, even if the representatives of the Knesset are not allowed to vote about these occupied people. This new and severe violation against international law represents another increase of the lawlessness. If this law was adopted, it would be time to bring all perpetuators to the International Court in The Hague, and to sentence all involved politicians of the “Jewish State” as international law criminals, Gaza genociders, war criminals, and land grabbers of the worst kind.

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The International Penal Court the German government puts at disposal more than 135 million Euros is an important institution Palestine should refer to. However, what does Germany and some EU states – all Nobel Peace Prize laureates do? They want by all means to prevent Palestine becoming a Member of the International Criminal Court. You can imagine the reason. Because of its “particular” relationship to the “Jewish State”? Or because the Zionist occupiers‘ regime threatens again and again to stop the non-existing peace talks? However, because the world keeps silent about this blackmailing, the “Jewish State” is encouraged to commit illegal occupation, human rights violations, and war crimes.

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Now the hypocritical world community is challenged. How long will it continue to look at this situation without opposing it and even by financially supporting it? The politics of the Netanyahu regime repeatedly resorts to scaremongering and agitation against other countries such the “destroyer” Iran so as to distract from their own crimes, scandals, and attacks.

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The “Jewish State” employs resentment politics and has found an engaged friend and helper in the new US president. The Zionist occupiers regime has already passed all red lines, without any consequence. How long can this continue with impunity?

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In the actual constellation with US president Trump who seems to be willing to create a new world order according its daily changing inspirations without any political understanding, the perspectives of a future peace and international understanding are more than sombre. With this President, there will be no state.

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Netanyahu and Trump employ the same methods of scaremongering and agitation which fall on fertile ground with populists along with the traumatized, the isolated, and the unsatisfied. It is a horrifying phenomenon while in the meantime the cost for the arms race increases without any proportion because of invented threatening, a brutal “value hypocrisy,” regime change and drone politics. If US president Trump, Merkel, Gauck, and von der Leyen, and the EU supports this aggressive expansion politics, there is danger ahead. Not just the “bad Russian,” but also the cold and perhaps even real war are ahead. It is a horrifying NATO strategy pursuing one objective connected with the “Christian-Jewish community of values”: the maintenance of power by the so called anti-terror alliance spreading terrorism by itself. However, this “terror” is always for the “good”; and all this has been pursued by the regime of the “Jewish State” with impunity since decades through its occupation, expansion, and oppression politics. Why should something change with the US-politics started under Trump and his Jewish consultants and Wall street billionaires?

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Trump is a dangerous narcissist who believes he has reached his destination and has discovered the U.S. as game of his longings. All his promises are insubstantial and “his people,” almost 30% of U.S. citizens, who were taken in by him and his cheap, misogynist, racist, and islamophobic election campaign slogans and elected him, will wake up one day and have a bad surprise. To say nothing of us who saw through him from the beginning and would have never voted for him.

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The right for justice for Palestine for me seems to move further and further, but exactly in belligerent Trump times this campaign for a free Palestine should be conducted always more urgently.

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Originally written FOR

THE SETTLEMENT EXPANSION IN TOONS

The Israeli Knesset on Monday passed a controversial new law that allows the Israeli government to expropriate private Palestinian land in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, making more than a dozen Israeli settlements legal under Israeli law. 

Images by Carlos Latuff

 Knesset passed bill legalizing Israeli land theft in West Bank

Knesset passed bill legalizing Israeli land theft in West Bank

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The Green Light to expand that Israel was waiting for

The Green Light to expand that Israel was waiting for

Land Grab: Israeli Knesset passes law legalizing expropriation of privately-owned Palestinian land

The Israeli Knesset on Monday passed a controversial new law that allows the Israeli government to expropriate private Palestinian land in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, making more than a dozen Israeli settlements legal under Israeli law.

The unprecedented bill passed late Monday night with 60 votes in favor to 52 against, according to Palestinian government news agency Wafa. The legislation, refered to as the “Regularization Bill,” legalizes more than 4,000 settler outpost units under Israeli law, and has been dubbed the first step toward de facto annexation.

It is the first time in history that the Knesset has imposed Israeli civil law the occupied West Bank, which is under Israeli military and civilian rule.

Bayit Yehudi party MK Bezalel Smotrich, one of the sponsors of the bill, said the law was “a historic step toward the completion of a process that we plan to lead; the application of full Israeli sovereignty on all the cities and communities in Judea and Samaria,” according to the Jerusalem Post.

Following the bill’s passing, Education Minister Naftali Bennett tweeted one word: “Revolution.”

The law is in direct contravention with international law, which deems all Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem illegal.

Following the vote, international and local human rights groups strongly condemned the new legislation.

Meanwhile, the European Union canceled a summit between Israel and the European Union scheduled for Feb, 28, according to Israeli daily Haaretz. The daily reported that France, Sweden, Ireland, The Netherlands and Finland publicly “expressed their reservations regarding the summit,” and that “some countries argued that holding a meeting at this time would be akin to rewarding Israel for its bad conduct.”

B’Tselem, an Israeli human rights NGO, called the bill a “slap in the face of the international community.”

“The Knesset today proved yet again that Israel has no intention of ending its control over the Palestinians or its theft of their land. Lending a semblance of legality to this ongoing act of plunder is a disgrace for the state and its legislature,” the group said in a statement.

Omar Shakir, Israel and Palestine Country Director at Human Rights Watch, said the legislation, “reflects Israel’s manifest disregard of international law.”

“The bill further entrenches the current reality in the West Bank of de facto permanent occupation where Israeli settlers and Palestinians living in the same territory are subject to ‘separate and unequal’ systems of laws, rules and services,” Shakir said. “Israeli officials driving settlement policy should know that the Trump administration cannot shield them from the scrutiny of the International Criminal Court, where the prosecutor continues to examine unlawful Israeli settlement activity.”

On Monday, the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) said passing such a law would amount to a “declaration of war.”

After the vote,  PLO Executive Committee Member Dr. Hanan Ashrawi expressed concern for what the law could mean for future land annexation by Israel.

“Such a law signals the final annexation of the West Bank.  Not only does it attempt to retroactively legalize the settlements and outposts built on Palestinian private property, it also gives clear license to the settlers to embark on a land grab in the occupied West Bank with impunity,” she said.

“Israel is authorizing the unlawful act of land theft and its illegal settlement activities which are a war crime under the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court and an egregious violation of international law and conventions,” she said. “ All settlements are illegal, whether on private property or on state land that belongs to the Palestinian collective as a whole.”

“This also proves beyond doubt that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his extremist, racist coalition government are deliberately breaking the law and destroying the very foundations of the two-state solution and the chances for peace and stability.”

Xavier Abu Eid, a spokesperson for the PLO’s Negotiations Affairs Department said the law essentially “legalized theft of Palestinian land” adding that the legislation “negates peace and the possibility of the two-state solution.”

“Looting is illegal,” Abu Eid said. “All Israeli settlements in Occupied Palestine are illegal and a war crime regardless of any law passed by the Israeli parliament or any decision taken by any Israeli judge.”

Peace Now, an Israeli NGO aimed at promoting a two-state solution, strongly condemned Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for being “willing to compromise the future of both Israelis and Palestinians in order to satisfy a small group of extreme settlers for the sake of his own political survival” and called on the Israeli Supreme Court to overturn the legislation.

“By passing this law, Netanyahu makes theft an official Israeli policy and stains the Israeli law books. By giving a green light to settlers to build illegally on private Palestinian land, the legalization law is another step towards annexation and away from a two-state solution. In light of this madness, we must act as the responsible adults and turn to the Supreme Court in order to strike down this dangerous law,” the group said in a statement.

ISRAEL HAS HAD A ‘MUSLIM BAN’ FOR SEVEN DECADES

We’re experts in bans. We’ve banned Palestinians, who we said didn’t even exist, from returning to their homes, for 7 decades.

Where there is no wall there is a barbed wire fence

Where there is no wall there is a barbed wire fence

Israel has had a ‘Muslim ban’ from the start

Jonathan Ofir FOR

Israel has had a ‘Muslim ban’ from the start.

Sure, we didn’t say ‘Palestinian ban,’ just like Trump didn’t say ‘Muslims’. But it meant what it meant, and it still does. Just like Trump offered a certain preference for the Christians, we tended to prefer them for cynical alliances. In Lebanon we used this alliance to wreak havoc and massacre Palestinians.

Now we’re even on steroids with these bans. Since 2003 our ‘equal citizens’ can’t even marry someone from those occupied or ‘enemy’ territories or states. That family unification ban , which prevents Palestinian citizens from marrying and uniting with people from West Bank, Gaza and other ‘enemy’ states, was also ostensibly about preventing ‘terror’– just like the Trump ban. But in 2005, then Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, spilled the beans and said it was just about a preserving a ‘Jewish State’. He said “There is no need to hide behind security arguments. There is a need for the existence of a Jewish state”.    

That ban was also ‘temporary’, but we’ve been renewing it, every single year.

We’re experts in bans. We’ve banned Palestinians, who we said didn’t even exist, from returning to their homes, for 7 decades. We just had to. Jewish State, you know.

And yes, we have the ‘Israeli Arabs’ (2/3 of them already define themselves as Palestinians), just like you have your American Muslims. We’ve tried it all, we know exactly what to say when they question our ‘Jewish democracy’. We even have a ministry of Propaganda to take care of that, I kid you not, the Ministry of Hasbara led by Gilad Erdan. Hardly anyone in the world knows this, because we mostly only call it ‘Ministry of Strategic Affairs’ and omit the Hasbara, but it’s official: Ministry of Strategic affairs and Hasbara. You’ll hardly find this mentioning, but when it does appear in the very odd case, ‘Hasbara’ will be translated as ‘public diplomacy’, and Hasbara put in brackets, as here . When you go to the Israeli Government site and look for government offices, in Hebrew it says ‘Ministry of Strategic affairs and Hasbara’, but the English version just says ‘Minister of Strategic affairs.’ How convenient. The world doesn’t need to know.

There’s so much Trump and USA could still learn from us – and they do. We are masters of deception, and we can turn exclusivist nation-states into ‘enlightened democracies’ by the sheer power of our Hasbara propaganda. So Netanyahu congratulates Trump for the wall: “Great success”, “Great idea”. It’s already success because it’s not an ordinary wall, it’s a racist wall, like ours. It’s a great idea because walls are our thing.

And we call the ‘other’ refugees ‘infiltrators’. Actually, our deputy Defense minister Eli Ben Dahan says that “they don’t need to be extended a helping hand or be pulled out of the sea and saved from drowning.”  Yes, he’s an orthodox Jew you see, he knows what Jewish values are.

But now the ‘liberal Zionists’ are protesting against Trump. This doesn’t look good, he’s gone too far. So now J Street, Americans for Peace Now and many other organizations who are ideologically against the Palestinian refugees’ right to return, are shedding crocodile tears. 

And across the Atlantic, the head of the UK Jewish Labour Movement Ella Rose tweets straight from the anti-Trump Ban: “we were all refugees once.” How touching. But other times, Ella Rose is not so soft and kind. When Asa Winstanley exposed the fact last year that Rose had stepped into the JLM outfit straight out from her Public Relations office at the Israeli Embassy , Rose wanted him to “die in a hole” and vowed to use “Krav Maga” –Israeli hand-combat techniques–  to take down Jackie Walker, a leading critic and member of Labour. 

Trump is no wake-up call for ‘liberal Zionists’. They simply exploit the mainstream outrage in order TO BE in the mainstream, in order to whitewash their racism, in order to obscure the fact, that their darling Jewish State is far ahead of Trump in so many ways, and they have been supporting it all along. Maybe they don’t even realize that themselves. And you couldn’t really blame them that much, because, as Israeli former head of Military Intelligence, Major General Shlomo Gazit once said, “The trouble with us Israelis is that we’ve become the victims of our own propaganda.” 

TRUMP IS CHOCK FULL OF SURPRISES

The administration of US President Donald Trump surprised many observers on Thursday by issuing a public warning to Israel over its accelerating construction of settlements in the occupied West Bank.

The latest statement is another signal from the new US president that Israel will not get everything it wants – at least not right away.

The Israeli settlement of Tzofim seen behind amputated olive trees near Qalqilya, in the occupied West Bank, 15 January. Hundreds of olive trees on private Palestinian agricultural land were cut as part of an Israeli plan to build a bypass road for settlers in the area. (Keren Manor) / ActiveStills

The Israeli settlement of Tzofim seen behind amputated olive trees near Qalqilya, in the occupied West Bank, 15 January. Hundreds of olive trees on private Palestinian agricultural land were cut as part of an Israeli plan to build a bypass road for settlers in the area. (Keren Manor) / ActiveStills

 

In surprise move, Trump warns Israel against settlements

The administration of US President Donald Trump surprised many observers on Thursday by issuing a public warning to Israel over its accelerating construction of settlements in the occupied West Bank.

“The American desire for peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians has remained unchanged for 50 years,” the White House said in a statement from press secretary Sean Spicer. “While we don’t believe the existence of settlements is an impediment to peace, the construction of new settlements or the expansion of existing settlements beyond their current borders may not be helpful in achieving that goal.”

Spicer reiterated that Trump “hopes to achieve peace throughout the Middle East region.” He added that the “administration has not taken an official position on settlement activity and looks forward to continuing discussions, including with Prime Minister Netanyahu when he visits with President Trump later this month.”

Benjamin Netanyahu is scheduled to be in Washington on 15 February for what will now be a closely watched meeting for any signs of tension with Trump.

Aggressive land theft

Since Trump took office, Israel has announced plans for some 6,000 new settler housing units in the occupied West Bank.

This includes more than 550 in occupied East Jerusalem, and plans for an entirely new settlement deep in the West Bank.

The new settlement is intended as “compensation” to the settler movement after Israeli police this week implemented the court-ordered removal of settlers from Amona, a colonial outpost built on privately owned Palestinian land north of Ramallah.

But Israel had already promised to move the settlers within the West Bank, replacing one land theft with another.

“Shot across the bow”

Taken on its own, the White House statement is weak – although US policy has always been very tolerant of Israeli settlements in practice, rhetorically the previous administration was tougher, dubbing them “illegitimate,” and allowing the passage of December’s UN Security Council Resolution 2334 that confirmed they constitute a “flagrant violation under international law.”

The Trump statement may signal a return to the policy of the George W. Bush administration which approved settlement construction as long as it did not extend beyond existing settlement boundaries.

But context is everything here. As Chemi Shalev, a commentator in the Tel Aviv newspaper Haaretz observes, “the main importance of the statement is that it was put out at all.”

“Israelis had assumed that Trump would swallow just about anything their government would do, if only to be different from President Barack Obama,” Shalev adds. “The White House statement was a shot across the bow to Netanyahu that there’s a limit to everything.”

Netanyahu and his ministers have not concealed their glee at Trump’s rise to power, with some seeing it as an opportunity to annex most or all of the occupied West Bank outright.

And triumphant settler leaders found a warm welcome at Trump’s inauguration ceremony last month.

But the latest statement is another signal from the new US president that Israel will not get everything it wants – at least not right away.

Despite expectations that he would immediately fulfill a campaign promise to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, Trump poured cold water on the idea.

“I don’t want to talk about it, yet,” the president told a Fox News interviewer days after taking office.

The warning about settlements came after Trump met with Jordan’s King Abdullah, on the sidelines of the so-called National Prayer Breakfast in Washington on Thursday morning.

According to The Jordan Times, the pair discussed “the importance of intensifying efforts to revive Palestinian-Israeli peace negotiations” and other regional issues.

European complicity

While he has proven erratic and unpredictable, it would be foolish to expect Trump to do what none of his predecessors have done: make Israel pay a price for its settler-colonization of Palestinian land.

So in the absence of action from the US, might European leaders who have been sounding increasingly urgent warnings about the danger settlements pose to the so-called two-state solution step up?

So far there is no sign of that. On Thursday, Federica Mogherini, the EU’s top foreign policy official, put out a mild statement calling Israel’s latest settlement push “a very worrying trend, posing a direct challenge to the prospects of a viable two-state solution, which is increasingly difficult and risks becoming impossible.”

The EU noted the UN Security Council’s recent confirmation that the settlements are “illegal under international law,” but the pro forma statement gives Israel no cause to worry that it might face any real consequences for its brazen violations.

SIGNING OFF ON THE FINAL SOLUTION FOR PALESTINE

 If the Israeli Knesset approves the legalisation of Jewish settlements on stolen Palestinian land, then the Zionist concept of a “Greater Israel” is getting closer to becoming a reality. All the more so since Donald Trump’s election as U.S. president will apparently support the Netanyahu government’s unscrupulous ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian people as the “final solution” for the judaisation of all Palestine. 

final-solution-palestine

The “Final Solution” (Endlösung) of the Palestinian Question is coming closer and closer!

by Evelyn Hecht-Galinski, English Translation by Milena Rampoldi

170124113704-02-trump-exec-order-0124-screengrab-large-169

The Zionist concept of a “Greater Israel” can only be achieved by hijacking Judaism and exploiting Biblical narratives to legitimise claims to the “Promised Land” as a state exclusively for Jews.  Since its establishment, Israel has in its quest for the Judaisation of the Holy land left a trail of death and destruction in its barbarous wake. Announcements of new settlements are now an almost daily occurrence without there being even a token hypocritical protest from a Trump administration packed with neoconservative Zionists.

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So yet again it is the forgotten Palestinians who suffer while the hypocritical West with its Israel induced Islamophobic obsession remains focussed on the phony “War on Terror” instead of addressing Israel’s irrefutable crimes against humanity.

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It has always been the “White Race” with its racist capacity to articulate that has entrenched the premise of “White Superiority.” What right do Aryans have to wage wars against the Black, Red, and Yellow races; what makes Aryans superior to non-Aryans of different colours and ethnicity; and why should such racist perceptions be fostered and tolerated from childhood, through to adolescence and adulthood? All genocides have stemmed from racist perceptions of superiority – be it by a “master race” or a “chosen people” – that have variously resulted in the mass murder the world over including American Indians, the Herero people in Africa, the victims of the Indian caste system, and Jews during the Holocaust.

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Even if my list is incomplete, I would like stress the importance of remembering a subject that has concerned me for years — and which should not be allowed to descend into oblivion—because it involves almost 70 years of continuous barbarous displacement and ethnic cleansing of the Palestinians to make way for an insidiously  illegal occupation by Zionist Jewish colonisers.

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This long history of colonisation by the “only democracy in the Middle East” – which outrageously claims to speak for all Jews in diaspora – is appalling especially when supported by the newly elected so-called President of the United States who has wasted no time in undermining all democratic principles and values. Such amoral U.S. presidential support has unleashed an unprecedented acceleration of settlement building with thousands of more apartments.

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One of the very few who people who was happy to welcome the change of occupant in the White House was Benjamin Netanyahu who was also the only Western leader to welcome Trump’s intention of constructing a wall along the border with Mexico and discriminating against Muslims and refugees. Israel’s applause for Trump’s conduct, however, is understandable considering the fact that the “Jewish State” has for many decades been embracing similar policies with equally arrogant impunity.

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When it comes to building separation walls; illegally encroaching on Palestinian land; and segregating Palestinians while expelling refugees and asylum seekers, Israel is second to none and reigns as the undisputed champion of Apartheid.

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Jews fleeing Nazi persecution were given refuge in many countries including the United States which more than any other country became the home of millions of persecuted refugees and immigrants including Donald Trump’s Scottish mother. Have Kushner, and Friedman, and their friends forgotten this fact? While seven Muslim states were included in Trump’s ban, Saudi Arabia, the Gulf States, Pakistan, and Turkey were excluded. Saudi Arabia is an important partner for the real estate Mogul Trump; is involved in several companies and Joint Ventures; and is notorious for exporting terror – like bombing bad Houthi rebels in Yemen — with weaponry generously supplied for the “War on Terror” by Germany and the U.S. who require Saudi oil.

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In the meantime, even the “Jewish State” has initiated a “community of values” with the Saudis, all for the purpose of the war against terror. In a phone call the Saudis convinced Trump to limit a strict implementation of the nuclear deal with Iran. Trump and King Salman absolutely agreed to commonly move against the “destabilizing activities” of Iran.

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Let us see how the friend Netanyahu will react during his forthcoming visit to Washington.

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Now Trump wants to comply with the refugee agreement made with Australia. However, I am asking myself how Trump will distinguish between Christian and Muslim refugees.

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Actually the worst characteristic of Trump seems to be his dangerous unpredictability. In no time at all he has signed “Executive Orders” which do not mean anything positive for the world peace. Trump continues at the point where his predecessor Obama started: and drone flights and assassinations of civilians are the sad result. But in the end “we are the good ones” fighting for our values.

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Trump operates according to the notorious German slogan of all National-Socialists saying “I decide who is Muslim and who is not”.

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What Palestine needs, is an alliance complying with the Declaration of Human Rights. Palestine also needs a broad civil rights movement, able to struggle for new elections for a free Palestine with an undivided capital Jerusalem. Only after that the relocation of the embassies can start, not now as unilateral provocation of US-Christian-Zionist Trump hardliners, guided by Netanyahu’s regime.

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In the end, I would like to refer to an interview in DLF in which the so applauded David Grossman, who in Germany is called “peace activist” exposes more than racist ideas. Grossman stressed on the importance of a strong army to defence Israel. Does he want to defence the occupation? Grossman considers himself as more hungry for peace as the people in Europe because in his life he has not lived one day of real peace. Why does Grossman not ask about the reasons of this absence of peace? Israel could have lived in peace for a long time now, but it did all to promote illegal occupation and wars. Mr Grossman your claim for a normal life can only be achieved if you do not brutally oppress another people! For Grossmann the idea of leaving in a state which is not a “Jewish State” in which he would be part of a minority, is horrifying! He only believes in a Jewish Home and cannot imagine that in a common state they could be a Palestinian as finance minister, as minister of education, as police chief, or as chief of the national secret service Shin Bet. Yeh, what to say about it? Grossman admires Merkel for her refugees’ acceptance, and Germany should stay relaxed. Grossmann does not lose one word about the “Jewish State” and his treatment of refugees. Oh yes, Grossmann would not like to be in a minority among Palestinians.  

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This interview showed once against the racist Apartheid mentality of Jewish Israelis! They feel superior and are walled in their Apartheid life. It was a sad and scaring interview, appropriate to new US president Trump and his politics. (1)

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Yes, the “Final Solution (Endlösung)” of the Palestinian Question is coming closer and closer, and it does not mean anything good for Palestine!

*

Originally written FOR

CHILDREN OF PEACE ~~ A DIALOGUE

In the following our interview with Richard Martin, President and Founder of Children of Peace. The organisation struggles for children to be safe from criminality and terrorism in the Middle East, in particular in Palestine. Richard talked to us about the history of his organisation, about how to work for peace by challenging all kind of racism, discrimination of all monotheistic religions, by personal contact and dialogue. Dialogue is the magic word to promote peace. Richard told us: “Children of Peace is a UK based non-partisan, conflict resolution organisation, that aims to protect children and build friendship, trust and reconciliation between Israeli and Palestinian children, aged 4 -17 through arts, education, healthcare and sports projects and programmes, so that a future generation and their communities might live in peace, side-by-side.” 

11

Richard Martin of Children of Peace – peace needs contact and face-to-face dialogue

By Denise Nanni and Milena Rampoldi

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How do you identify the organizations you cooperate with?
When I founded Children of Peace in 2004, we sent a delegation from the UK to Israel and Palestine on a fact find. We discovered – to our incredulity – that there were over 50,000 NGOs in Israel & Palestine. This is a huge industry and since the early 1950s we estimate that 7 trillion dollars has reached the region from world organisations and donors.

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Yet, despite all this funding, almost nothing has changed. Only six organisations actually made contact with each other. We wanted to change the culture and focus on dialogue – on making contact, of listening to each community’s narrative, respecting each other’s heritage and those things that we all share – a yearning to protect our children, to build a better life, to be in a safe and hopeful place.

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That’s why we established the Coalition of Peace.

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Essentially all groups – CBOs or NGOs – must apply to join us as affiliates or partners. Most groups approach us or are researched by our team. The application is scrutinised by our Compliance Committee to check the group’s track record and connections to protect the children and our work from criminal or terrorist fronts. If accepted, groups go through a monitoring process for two years before applying for funding.

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Today, the Coalition of Peace is now the single, largest peace network across the Middle East with affiliates in Bahrain, Egypt, Gaza, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Oman, Turkey and the West Bank.

*
Since 2005 we have helped over 120,000 children in Israel and Palestine.

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How has civil society been responsive so far? 
Right from the get-go our position has been to welcome a diverse range of religious, secular and political supporters who shared our non-partisan position. As a conflict-resolution organisation we focus on reconciliation, simply refuse to take sides or bring our own agendas into the region. We take our cue from the communities themselves. We are proud of the support we receive from Christians, Jews and Muslims both in the region and worldwide.

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Taking sides says more about you. It does not advance peace one jot.
As part of our backstory – although we are not a religious organisation nor have any connection with faith based groups – we challenge Christianophobia, Antisemitism and Islamophobia – now on the rise throughout Europe right now – often used as a cover to take sides in this conflict.

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Across the region Children of Peace enjoys the respect of communities in Gaza, Israel and the West Bank. We are the go-to organisation if contacts need to be made. We act as a conduit or peace channel for groups or communities who wish to connect across the divide but cannot do so through direct means.

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Our projects and programmes focus on alleviating poverty within disadvantaged communities, bringing children together from Israel and Palestine through the arts, sports, healthcare and education.
Every year – with Israeli affiliate Humans Without Borders – we help bring dozens of sick or disadvantaged Palestinian children and their families to the seaside in Israel from towns and villages in the West Bank. This is one of the cherished dreams of many landlocked West Bank children – just to see the sea.

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We just funded the refurbishment of the Leir Peace Pre-School in Jerusalem where Christian, Jewish and Muslim children learn and play together. Through another affiliate Rabbis for Human Rights we have provided grants to assist the resource centre for the Negev Bedouin. In Gaza, we work with various groups funding clinics, hospitals and education facilities.

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A few months ago, for example Celtic FC contacted us days before playing a match in Israel. As part of their commitment to diversity in soccer they wanted our help in linking them up with Israeli and Palestinian youth sports groups and within hours the Chairman of Celtic FC Foundation met up with three groups in Israel and Palestine in Jerusalem to gift them football kit and other resources.

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None of this would be possible without the commitment of our extraordinary team at Children of Peace from the Board of Trustees to the Regional Representatives to the volunteers.

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This trust is reflected by the support we receive from world leaders including Pope Francis, former US Vice President Biden, French President Hollande, the Palestinian Envoys to the UK and Washington and the last four British Prime Ministers including Theresa May.

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What are, according your experience, the most effective strategies in order to promote tolerance and democratic values among children? 
It’s simple……contact, contact, contact. And dialogue. Meeting people face-to-face and developing a relationship with a real person from a “group” or “community” that you have been brought up to distrust or be suspicious of….changes everything.

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I recall a magic moment when some young Palestinians who were staying here in the UK as our guests were busy texting their Jewish friends in Israel, following an incident….concerned for their safety.
Once you break bread together, everything changes.

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Can you tell me more about the researches on children health issues? What were their findings and conclusions?
Richard: In 2007, Israeli-Palestinian Kassim Baddarni and myself completed a huge research study on the impact of conflict and the presence of violence on Israeli and Palestinian children. We looked at the effects of stress and tension on the physical and mental health of children – on their educational attainment, on family life, on relationships, on their own sense of well-being and adjustment. It is too complex to spell out here but the findings confirm that children from all communities are seriously and adversely affected by the dire situation.

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Israeli children have excellent healthcare but suffer from worrying levels of morbidity whilst Palestinian children have poorer healthcare – they have the highest levels of childhood diabetes, for instance – they too suffer from fear and anxiety. Too many children know of someone in their lives who has died or been injured or negatively affected by sudden and unexpected acts of violence.

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Do you cooperate with any local authority or institution? If yes, how?
Children of Peace is a UK based non-partisan, conflict resolution organisation, that aims to protect children and build friendship, trust and reconciliation between Israeli and Palestinian children, aged 4 -17 through arts, education, healthcare and sports projects and programmes, so that a future generation and their communities might live in peace, side-by-side.
As an entirely independent organisation we will cooperate with local government or national governments to further our aims in helping the children, promoting tolerance and building a better place for the next generation.

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Israeli and Palestinian supporters talk about the ‘Children of Peace family’. I like that.

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Original source and more photos HERE

#NotMyPresident ~~ ON WALLS

Philosophically and morally, I find walls repugnant. Some who support them
say you have to be realistic and accept our divisive human nature and look
to protect "our country". But history tells us that nationalism and
protectionism lead to catastrophe.

8e619f2d6a15c3ca99daf87ad4529dfaON WALLS

By Mazin Qumsiyeh, PhD


Donald Trump in explaining how effective “the wall” between Mexico and the
US would be said to “ask Israel”. This is one liar asking us to ask another
liar! The facts are very clear:

-After most of the residents were ethnically cleansed, a temporary wall of
fences was built around remaining 3500 Palestinians in Al-Majdal to starve
them until they agreed to leave ‘voluntarily’ in 1951 (long after the end
of the 1948 war).  The city was renamed Ashqelon
-The wall around Gaza was completed before even the first Palestinian
suicide bombings started and it was a clear failure. Hundreds of tunnels
were dug underneath and used to transport everything from people to camels
to cars.
*
-The wall in the West Bank was less than 25% complete when Hamas made a
political decision to stop bombings and run for elections in 2006.  Hamas
held to its end of this even though they were not allowed to govern after
being elected.
*
-The International Court of Justice ruled the wall illegal since it is
built in the occupied areas (just like the Israeli colonies are illegal and
subject to 4th Geneva convention)
*
-Even today in 2017, the wall is actually less than 70% complete; nearly
10,000 Palestinians cross to the Israeli side without Israeli permission to
work DAILY and so any person interested in doing violence could do it
-The wall zigzags in ways clearly intended to capture maximum agricultural
lands and natural resources instead of being more secure straighter lines
in most of its currently built course. (what Zionists call ‘maximum
geography with minimum demography’)
*
-The Israeli wall was slated to cost $2.5 billion and be finished in three
years and here we are 14 years later and it cost $8 billion and is not even
finished yet! Imagine the US wall (expected to cost $15-20 billion but will
cost 3-4 times more). US taxpayers are already burdened with $20 trillion
public debt (roughly $60,000 for each of us)
*
-There are Palestinians on both sides of the wall (hundreds of thousands on
the so called "Israeli side"). There are also Israelis on both sides of it.
Thus, it cannot be a security issue.
- See also

From The Sunday Times

From The Sunday Times



Philosophically and morally, I find walls repugnant. Some who support them
say you have to be realistic and accept our divisive human nature and look
to protect "our country". But history tells us that nationalism and
protectionism lead to catastrophe. You cannot have it both ways: think of
your-self as morally superior while also thinking of 'countries' and
'nations' as fighting in a zero sum game. Actually the competition itself
maybe the only zero-sum when you are thinking of sates. The latest spat
created by Trump with Mexico will hurt both countries. Trump and his
Zionist handlers are also trying to prop-up India (as a balance to Islamic
countries); see appointment of the only Indian-American in Trump's cabinet
(Nikki Haley, ardent Israeli apologist). This will surely also backfire
hurting India, USA, and Islamic countries (opening more roads to Daesh and
its like minded terror groups to recruit).  It is exactly like when
Zionists pushed for the US war on Iraq that damaged Iraq but also damaged
the US ($3 trillion cost and thousands of American lives) and Israel
(because removing Saddam strengthened Lebanon, Hizbollah, Syria, and Iran).
China will come out a winner because it is working to keep good relations
with everyone.

#NotMyPresident ~~ A NATIONAL SOCIALIST AS MESSIAH OF JEWISH OCCUPIERS

With Trump as the new US president in the White House, a Messiah for the illegal Jewish occupation politics of judaization and ethnic cleansing of Palestine, a freezing and unpredictable tweeting business man with a horrifying cabinet of the worst kind is at the top of the US administration.

trump-und-israel-promosaik

Trump, a National-Socialist as Messiah of Jewish Occupiers and Third-Position Populists!

by Evelyn Hecht-Galinski, English translation by Milena Rampoldi

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When I hear “America First”, a dread rises up in my soul, and I remember dark, past times. It sounds fatal and reminds me “Deutschland über alles”! Were it not the US corporate bosses and politicians who with the slogan “America First” opposed to a military intervention against Hitler and Nazi Germany? By blaming the US  Jews for wanting to take USA into war? They saw an alleged danger coming from the Jews as bigger than the danger coming from Nazi Germany. Now Trump, who stands for politics in plain language, doesn’t see any problem in “America First”, and stands for this more than controversial term. This way he seamlessly integrates into the past, as it said in the book, even published in German in 2015 entitled “Great Again!” Also this title reminds me of “Mein Kampf” by Adolf Hitler. “How I will save Amerika”. However, it seems that the book published in 2000 and entitled “The America We Deserve” matches much better with Trump. Sarcastically speaking, do we deserve Trump or Netanyahu? How can it be that such a National-Socialist was elected? And precisely by a clientele who in the end despises Trump, who surrounds himself with a group of Jewish spin doctors and billionaires. While saying that he is struggling against the lobbies he builds upon the financial Wall Street lobby, the Israel lobby, the army lobby, the oil lobby, and other like-minded people. His awkward, more than inflammatory inaugural speech reminded of his dirty election campaign. Which small group does he mean when he talked about a small group profiting from the government in Washington, at the expense of the people he just wants to give back the power to? Does he mean himself, a more than controversial real estate speculator who until today refuses to disclose his tax return? (1)

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If he wants to make the people “the rulers of the nation again”, it is not in the interest of the people to be governed by a gang of billionaires. When Trump talks about a historical movement the world has never seen before, this fatally reminds me the sayings of the German movement who governed a “Thousand years’ reign” for 12 years until the bitter end. Hitler too was democratically elected! When Trump speaks about a massacre, ending thanks to him on 20 January, the Trump massacre to be expected is even more unforeseeable and more than frightening. He wants to support the “Jewish State”, build walls, block refugees, and give travel bans to Muslims. While he considers himself in a war against the media, the war against Islam has already started. His “Jewish-Christian-Zionist-Evangelical” worldview is as small as his vocabulary. Instead of presenting a presentable program, he prefers the war against the press, against Muslims and all “enemies” who do not share his ideology. Also Hitler attracted his people with highways and jobs. Buy American, and Hire American hire, as illuminating example for ALL! Also the “Jewish State” which sees itself as the “light of the nations” and on the path to “Great Israel” follows this maxim! If Trump wants to form alliances to wipe out the “radical Islamic” terrorism, then these are sentences which neither match with an inaugural speech nor with a democratic politician. These sentences are to be understood as a declaration of war against the Muslim world. This speech was a unique demagogic battle cry of a National Socialist under the motto “America is absolutely unstoppable”! (2)

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It is totally unmasking if you go to the website of the White House. There you can finally understand Trump’s true goals. There he clearly talks about a police state, all structured according to different political sections. Read here:

*

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It is worth to visit the new website of the White House to check the National Socialist New Trump World! A horror vision!

*

If we look at Netanyahu it sounds logical: a nationalist Jewish society being at the moral deep point in its occupiers’ status needs a Führer like Netanyahu and his regime. But the US-Americans who live in a society which is unimaginable for us, and where more than 48 millions must live in mobile homes, or have no health insurance and no sufficient basic income, are of course susceptible for supposed saviours like the reckless billionaire Trump. But the US-Americans had to choose between Cinton and Trump, it means between plague and cholera. The situation which is arisen in the meantime is only a joy for the “Jewish State” which had been waiting for Trump in such a yearning way. However, also Clinton’s election would have not caused any disadvantage to the “Jewish State”. One day after Trump’s investiture, the building authorisation for 566 new apartments in the illegally annexed East-Jerusalem was announced. And it was said that this was just the beginning as there were already plans for other 11.000 Jewish settlers’ apartments waiting for authorisation.

*

In the meantime, the planned annexion of the settlement block Maale Adumim in the illegally occupied Westbank, not far from Jerusalem, where approximately 40.000 Jewish settlers live, was put on ice until Netanyahu’s announced visit to his friend Trump in Washington. At the moment, approximately 430.000 illegal Jewish settlers live in the occupied West Bank, and more than 200.000 illegal Jewish settlers in the annexed East-Jerusalem. On Monday Trump and Netanyahu talked on the phone. Trump reassured his unlimited support to his friend Netanyahu,  and invited him to the White House for February, after that Trump and Netanyahu agreed on their estimation about the dangers coming from Iran. They announced to struggle together against Iran and the nuclear deal agreed during the Obama administration. In addition, Netanyahu and Trump decided in a “warm-hearted” phone call to work for their common vision for “peace and stability”. They also demonstrated this will with the announcement of negotiations about the relocation of the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, into the “undivided” capital of a “Jewish State”. A crossing of the red line, an affront against the UN, the international community, and in particular against Palestinians and Muslim states, which claim East  Jerusalem with the Haram-al-Sharif as the capital of a Palestinian State. A violation against all diplomatic practices and international law. All this is in the sense of both Fuehrers, Netanyahu and Trump! (4)

*

Netanyahu thanked Trump for his friendship and his challenge against “Islamic extremism”. Since the first fears come true, this struggle means a carte blanche in the struggle against Palestinian resistance fighters. It is the hour of the hardliners, who see an opportunity, like the Education Minister and leader of the settlers’ party Bennett who directly tweeted that for the first time since 50 years there was the choice between “sovereignty or Palestine”. Netanyahu already had made the proposal to annex Maale Adumim in the illegally occupied West Bank as the beginning of a new era!

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With Trump as the new US president in the White House, a Messiah for the illegal Jewish occupation politics of judaization and ethnic cleansing of Palestine, a freezing and unpredictable tweeting business man with a horrifying cabinet of the worst kind is at the top of the US administration. According to Forbes, his cabinet has a worth of $4,5 billion, the future Minister of Agriculture and veterans not yet included. Also Trump with its 3,7 billion and his wealthy advisers are not included. Part of the Cabinet are the designated Minister of Commerce and hedge fonds manager Wilbur Ross, with a property of approximately $2,5 billion, the Minister of Education Betsy De Vos, with a property of approximately $5 billion, Rex Tillerson, nominated State Secretary and for years the chief of the oil group Exxon Mobil, with a property of $325 billion and particularly spicy, Steven Mnuchin, the nominated Treasure Secretary and previous hedge fonds manager at Goldman Sachs  with a property of approximately $300 million ! (5)

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The left fans and supporters of this president should think about if they really want to be among  more than obscure Third Position populist supporters! Nobody should say they knew nothing about it!

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Originally posted AT

TIMELY TOON ~~ ISRAEL GETS GREEN LIGHT FROM TRUMP TO EXPAND SETTLEMENTS

Image by Carlos Latuff

Israel approves 2,500 West Bank settlement homes, signaling new approach under Trump.

Israel approves 2,500 West Bank settlement homes, signaling new approach under Trump.

Mum’s the word so far …..

(Click on link to see report)

Marking New Era, Trump Administration Avoids Condemning Israeli Settlement Expansion

OUR DREAMS ARE DEMOLISHED WITH OUR HOMES ~~ VIDEO

“To finish building this house and get married – these are my dreams, that’s it, but apparently they don’t want it.”

Related Post (Click on link)

Demolished dreams

 

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