REMEMBERING LEONARD COHEN (1934-2016)

The first Yahrzeit (anniversary of the passing) of Leonard Cohen, one of the greatest Jewish poet-songwriters of the 20th century, was observed on November 7th 2017. As a tribute to his legacy, here is one of his most famous songs, Hallelujah, with the Hebrew lyrics of Psalm 150 which is recited daily in Jewish prayer. May the memory of Leonard Cohen be for an eternal blessing.

Here is Cohen’s rendition in English …

And in Yiddish …

HIDING COMPANY NAMES SUPPORTING ILLEGAL ISRAELI SETTLEMENTS

“[Israeli] officials say they are taking the so-called ‘blacklist’ seriously, fearing its publication could have devastating consequences by driving companies away, deterring others from coming and prompting investors to dump shares of Israeli firms,” AP reported.

HEBRON, WEST BANK – AUGUST 14: A bulldozer, belongs to Israeli authority demolishes three building of Palestinians in the Masafer Yatta neighbourhood of southern Hebron, West Bank on August 14, 2017 under the observation of Israeli forces. (Photo by Mamoun Wazwaz/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

Israel and US Hide Names of Companies Supporting Israeli Settlements

By Marjorie Cohn

In December 2016 the United Nations Security Council passed a resolution reaffirming that Israel’s Jewish settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT) are illegal and calling on Israel to stop settlement activities in the OPT. Resolution 2334 says the settlements have “no legal validity,” calls them “a flagrant violation under international law,” and demands Israel “immediately and completely cease all settlement activities.”

Nine months earlier, the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC), in Resolution 31/36, had ordered the Office of the High Commissioner of Human Rights to “produce a database of all business enterprises” that “directly and indirectly, enabled, facilitated and profited from the construction and growth of the settlements.”

The database was scheduled for release in December 2017. Meanwhile, the Israeli and US governments have been trying to prevent that list — which reportedly includes at least 150 local and international companies — from becoming public. “We will do everything we can to ensure that this list does not see the light of day,” Israel’s UN ambassador Danny Danon told The Associated Press. US State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert said, “We just view that type of blacklist as counterproductive.”

The UNHRC has reportedly delayed the release of the list until “early next year.”

“[Israeli] officials say they are taking the so-called ‘blacklist’ seriously, fearing its publication could have devastating consequences by driving companies away, deterring others from coming and prompting investors to dump shares of Israeli firms,” AP reported.

An Israeli official told The Washington Post that the companies include Israeli banks, security firms, supermarkets, restaurant chains, bus lines, and multinational corporations that provide services and equipment to build and maintain the settlements.

Resolution 31/36 also called on states to take “appropriate measures to help to ensure that businesses domiciled in their territory and/or under their jurisdiction, including those owned or controlled by them, refrain from committing or contributing to gross human rights abuses of Palestinians.”

Publication of the list of companies would make the UNHRC “the world’s biggest promoter of BDS,” Danon opined. In a statement, Danon said, “The Human Rights Council has turned into an accomplice of the BDS [Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions] movement and its conduct is both anti-Israeli and anti-Semitic.”

In fact, the BDS movement is not anti-Israeli, as it targets the policies, not the people, of Israel. And actions against Israel’s policies, including BDS, do not equate to anti-Semitism, as I explain elsewhere.

Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS)

Representatives of Palestinian civil society launched the BDS movement in 2005. They called upon “international civil society organizations and people of conscience all over the world to impose broad boycotts and implement divestment initiatives against Israel similar to those applied to South Africa in the apartheid era … [including] embargoes and sanctions against Israel.”

The call for BDS specified that “these non-violent punitive measures” should last until Israel fully complies with international law by (1) ending the occupation and colonization of all Arab territories and removing the barrier wall; (2) affirming the human rights of Israel’s Arab-Palestinian citizens to full equality; and (3) affirming the rights of Palestinian refugees to return to their land as required by UN General Assembly Resolution 194.

Israel seeks to suppress the identities of the companies that support the settlements because it is feeling the pinch of the BDS movement. The United States thinks publication of the list would be “counterproductive” because it would fuel BDS, thereby negatively impacting Israel, the leading US client state and biggest recipient of US foreign aid.

BDS was a major factor behind the 46 percent decrease in foreign direct investment in Israel in 2014, according to a UN report. A World Bank report revealed that Palestinian imports from Israel dropped by 24 percent in the first quarter of 2015.

Several investors, including Bill Gates, George Soros, TIAA-CREF and the Dutch pension company PGGM, have divested from companies doing business in the illegal settlements. Venezuela and Brazil cut diplomatic ties with Israel. Companies that have pulled out of the settlements and the Israeli market include SodaStream, the French telecom Orange and the French multinational corporation Veolia. G4S — the London-based security company that assists with Israeli checkpoints, unlawful detention and torture of Palestinian prisoners — is selling its Israeli subsidiary due to millions of dollars in lost contracts as a result of the BDS campaign.

The European Union promulgated rules prohibiting funding of Israeli companies based in illegal Israeli settlements and has cautioned about the risks of doing business with illegal Israeli settlements.

Israel Maintains “Apartheid Regime”

In March 2017 a UN Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia report concluded that Israel maintains an “apartheid regime” and recommended that national governments support BDS activities to challenge Israel’s illegal system of oppression of the Palestinians. The report was co-authored by Richard Falk, an international law expert and former UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in the OPT.

Mandla Mandela, grandson of Nelson Mandela, concurs. He said at a November 27 press conference in the West Bank, “Palestinians are being subjected to the worst form of apartheid.” Mandela noted, “The settlements I saw here reminded me of what we had suffered in South Africa because we also were surrounded by many settlements and were not allowed to move from one place to another freely.”

“What we have experienced in South Africa is a fraction of what the Palestinians are experiencing,” Mandela told Royal News English. “We were oppressed in order to serve the white minority. The Palestinians are being eliminated off their land and brought out of their territories, and this is a total human rights violation. I think it is a total disgrace that the world is able to sit back while such atrocities are being carried out by apartheid Israel.”

Jewish Voice for Peace and other human rights organizations have called for “increasing grassroots pressure on Israel, through Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaigns, until full human rights of Palestinians are realized.”

Nabil Shaath, a senior Palestinian official, said the forthcoming UNHRC list of companies is an “important step” in the campaign against the illegal settlements.

NETANYAHU CALLS THE KETTLE BLACK

“The pot calling the kettle black.”

War rumblings continue, as Netanhayu says Iran is another Nazi Germany

Ironic or not?

WHEN RESISTANCE BECOMES A DUTY

The occupying “Jewish State’s” politics of discrimination is something you are not allowed to talk about in the German media, in public, or in political events.

Resistance becomes a duty, if freedom of opinion is threatened!

By Evelyn Hecht-Galinski, English Translation by Milena Rampoldi

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The occupying “Jewish State’s” politics of discrimination is something you are not allowed to talk about in the German media, in public, or in political events. Thanks to the Israel lobby the term “occupation” has become a non-existent bad word not to be mentioned. What we experience at the moment and is particularly present here in Germany is the fact that the term “occupation,” when it is about the “Jewish State,” is substituted by “anti-Semitism.” This creates an oppressive fearful mood which is intended to stop our engagement for the liberation of Palestine from the illegal Jewish-Zionist occupation. The Israel lobby and its numerous sayanim use all means to get the prerogative of interpretation in the media and in official politics; they determine what has to be said and pillory alleged anti-Semites.
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That goes so far that Jewish and Jewish-Israeli lectors and activists of obscure Israel supporters are labelled as anti-Semites and “State enemies.” This new German anti-Semitism against Jewish citizens should be a horrifying déjà-vu for everyone. A couple of days ago, a “Young Forum” of the German-Israeli Society in Heidelberg forced the cancellation of an invitation to the known Israeli peace activist and founder of the Israeli Committee against Home destructions (ICAHD), Prof. Jeff Halper, with infamous defamations and scurrilous accusations of anti-Semitism, to the “Forum of International Security” at the University of Heidelberg. We have to hope that the adult evening classes will not also bow to these occupation lobbyists. https://icahd.org/
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This is just one of many similar cases here in Germany. The whole thing seems to be epidemic. Self-proclaimed hunters of anti-Semites act in a targeted manner and try to attack Jewish activists in particular. And this is more than logical, because Jewish activists from the “Jewish State” like Jeff Halper, Gideon Levy, Moshe Zuckermann or Palestinian activists like Ahmed Schokry know perfectly what they are talking about.
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Even if the “Jewish State” and its international lobby would like to avoid it, we have to speak the truth about the internationally shunned crimes against international law and human rights, committed by the Zionist occupiers‘ regime, and this without being defamed as anti-Semites. And who, if not Jewish and Jewish-Israeli activists are obliged to do this? We have to keep in mind that Zionists do not fear anything but the truth.
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Therefore they avoid discussions between Israel critics and Israel supporters. While Israel lobbyists find their voice in the press and in the public media, even known and famous critics of Israeli occupation prefer not to speak because they are afraid of being called anti-Semites.
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This makes me think about the President of the Central Council of Jews, Josef Schuster. Last Sunday, 27 November, he called the general manager of Axel Springer SE, Mathias Döpfner, to support “non-Jewish Zionists.” This “highest” decision-making committee of the Central Council is so unified to try to lump anti-Zionism, “anti-Israeli,” and anti-Semitism together.
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Döpfner distracted from the right anti-Semitism and fantasized a left-wing anti-Semitism, often camouflaged as “anti-Zionism.” With this declaration he accused critics of Israel and Zionism of having basic anti-Semitic emotions and resentments. Of course, according to him, even the BDS movement and the product boycott is nothing else than “pure anti-Semitism!” Clearly, he did not spend one word about the decade-long illegal occupation, the daily land grab, and the deprivation of rights of the Palestinian people.
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It is really touching how sensitive his reaction is when it is about the occupiers‘ state, while his “Armada” is on the front side when it is about his favorite enemies Russia or Iran to implement boycott calls and measures.
So there is nothing to wonder about if the general manager then talks about the “phenomenon” of Muslim anti-Semitism as an alleged development having reached a totally new dimension after the immigration from Muslim countries. He talks about it by calling it an alleged political taboo subject almost never discussed in Germany. Of course, this is totally wrong, because the Springer media synchronically defame Muslim immigrants as anti-Semites. However, refugees coming from Muslim countries exactly know how their brothers and sisters are treated by Israel. This is not anti-Semitism, but a totally legitimate anti-Zionism, and an opposition to occupation! Your reminder, Mr. Döpfner, that Germany has to deal with this reality and that there is no tolerance towards intolerance, is an insult!
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At the moment in Germany I just know one TABOO SUBJECT; and it is the “Jewish State” and its illegal occupation politics and the international Israel lobby pretending to talk for all Jews. In the meantime, the  particularly contagious and dangerous  virus of the “accusation of anti-Semitism” has also involved politicians and parties just repeating without any reasoning what is told to them. In the meantime, it is not just the right-wing party AfD diffusing this right-wing ideology together with other spiritual arsonists like Beck, Broder, Weinthal, Sarrazin, Pirinci, Hamed Abdel-Samad, IM-Victoria=Anetta Kahane and many others. And more and more supporters come from media and politics so that we should ALL worry about this situation.
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The right-wing party AfD strongly supports Israel and the Jews. The liberal party FDP is getting closer to the AfD. The President of the Central Council of the Jews in Germany was one of the first to warn about refugees and Muslim anti-Semitism. So this Republic has become a country of moral cowards. Mr. Döpfner, if you call for a hard line of the constitutional state and a strong political leadership within society which do not show any spirit of compromise concerning this matter, then your attitude is more than hypocritical.
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However, your media try to intimidate and stigmatize people with moral courage. Brave and moral citizens struggling for freedom of opinion are defamed and denigrated when it is about the “Jewish State.” And also your love for Jews has its limits because you distinguish between good and bad Jews. Newspapers like Bild, Welt and Co. have always been dangerous propaganda papers in Germany. This philo-Semite brain washing has already caused enough trouble. It is true that Germany has developed into a tolerant and multi-cultural country where also Jews can live again . . .
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Just think about Berlin . . . However, this tolerance is in danger because of your attitude! This uncritical closeness to the “Jewish occupiers’ state” and to the Israel lobby is dangerous and easily comprehensible. Let us hope that readers will think and not fall into this propaganda trap as they can get their information elsewhere. There are many serious sources.
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After your performance in the Jewish council board the “big chief” of the Central Council Schuster repeated that the media are also responsible for the “increasing” hatred of Israel, and that Germany has to comply with its “historic responsibility” towards the “Jewish State.” In addition, he said that the double standard of many media and the “Israel-related anti-Semitism” are insufficiently perceived and that hatred of Israel is not sufficiently dealt with.
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Mr. Schuster is seriously concerned about it. It is a fact that actually there is a concerted action of media defamation against Israel critics, BDS supporters and events dealing with this matter. Let us just think about the Karlspreis award to journalist Ken Jebsen in Berlin the left-wing politician Lederer, a strong supporter of the Israel lobby, is trying to avoid with all means by opposing to freedom of opinion!
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For decades now, the representatives of the “Jewish State” and their diaspora supporters, who were always involved into background discussions in editorial departments, have been swearing media to the “love of Israel.” And this situation has enhanced so much that in the meantime no public channel dares to oppose this lobby. So the director of the channel feels more obliged towards the lobbyists than towards the paying public. Just let us think about the WDR director Tom Buhrow who felt obliged to cancel the broadcast of a Roger Waters (a wonderful musician and a very famous BDS and Palestine activist) concert because the Israel lobby had called for it. Tom Buhrow bowed to the Israel lobbyist Malca Goldstein-Wolf who normally moves under obscure blogs like Buurman’s blog “Tapfer im nirgendwo,” the infamous “Broder Achse,” and cancelled the presentation of Roger Waters. In Germany, we have already sunk so deep that only because of malicious suspicions of a lobbyist a music event is cancelled. Buhrow’s “clear attitude” should really give us all food for thought: Instead of researching about Roger Waters and his political ideas and then drawing his own conclusions, he just cowardly backed away because of malicious suspicions of a lobbyist. This is the situation of our public television citizens pay for to get one poor opinion instead of a variety of opinions! In the meantime, various ARD sections have become part of this boycott initiative. Here clear positions for the Israel lobby are taken. And this is scandalous. Roger Water’s actions are an important sign and not anti-Semitic at all, but the artistic and political engagement for freedom in Palestine and for the end of the illegal occupation. It would be a dream if we had similar initiatives and artists in Germany! (1) https://www.express.de/koeln/antisemitismus-vorwuerfe-koelnerin-ueberzeugt-buhrow–wdr-stoppt-support-fuer-roger-waters-28960396(2a)http://www.zeit.de/kultur/musik/2017-11/ard-pink-floyd-roger-waters-boykott
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We see the effects of this strong pressure by the Central Council and its many motivated supporters. When Schuster expressly thanks Döpfner for his constant solidarity with Israel and his continuous engagement against anti-Semitism, he is insurmountable in his hypocrisy. In fact, the Springer group is a typical German example about how people try to compensate the old anti-Semitism with a philo-Semitism which is nothing else than a new anti-Semitism!
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Exactly, President Schuster, we have a historical responsibility including the Palestinian people who were not responsible for the Holocaust and despite of this have been living for decades under a merciless Israeli occupation.
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We have had enough of your calumny campaigns against critical Jews. We also do not need any person in charge for “anti-Semitism” or a strange definition of anti-Semitism, criminalizing any Israel critic defined as hater of Jews. We do not need any new ban on speaking against Jewish speakers, no withdrawal of public spaces, by the successors of the perpetrator generation, as we had all that in the past of our German cities already.
We have to put an end to the reason of state to support Netanyahu’s state terror regime driving the “Jewish State” and Palestine to a murderous edge to save its own corrupt hegemonic power.
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Resistance is an obligation if freedom of opinion is threatened, and if Islam hatred, anti-Muslim racism and philo-Semitism becomes German reason of state and the media.
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Originally posted AT

THE ISRAELI ‘REFUZNIKS’ …. WHO ARE THEY?

By Milena Rampoldi. In the following my interview with the pro-Palestinian activist Olivia Zemor of Europalestine about Israeli Refuzniks. In my opinion, this tiny group can change the militarist and colonialist system in the State of Israel from inside. 

The Refuzniks – a tiny hope for peace in the Middle East?

Who are the Refuzniks and from where does this term come from?

Today, the term Refuznik is used to define the young Israelis who refuse to serve in the occupation army of their country and declare this in public (while many others try to avoid the military service by leaving the country and without proclaiming their refusal in public).

The term comes from Russian (Otkaznik: “отказник” which derives from the substantive “отказ” meaning refusal, opposition). In the past, Refuzniks were the people who were denied their visa by Soviet authorities. In this case, the term refers to Soviet Jews in particular (even if not all Soviet Refuzniks were Jews).

Why are the Refuzniks important to promote a change within Israeli society?

The Israeli Refuzniks are very few, and they know that their number does not suffice to empower a real change in Israeli society. However, they have to be recognised as brave opponents who prefer remaining in custody for a couple of weeks or months instead of going against their conscience.

There are such a few Refuzniks because only very few Israelis who have been indoctrinated since their childhood by patriotic and victimhood propaganda (“we or them”) are able to distance from it and from the hatred and rubble-rousing against Arabs.

Which are the typical steps in a Refuznik’s life?

At the date of her/his calling up to the Israeli military service, the Refuznik declares that she/he does not want to serve in the Israeli occupation army and declares this in public. She/he asks for recognition as conscientious objector in Israel where this status does not exist.

First, the Refuzniks are condemned to a first time in prison of normally three weeks. Then they are brought to senior military officers who ask them to justify themselves. In general, their justifications and motivations are not accepted, and the Refuzniks go back to prison for another couple of weeks. This period in prison can be repeated several times.

How many Refuzniks are there, and who supports them?

The Refuzniks are between 1 and 3 per year being imprisoned at the same time. We know a couple of dozens of them.

They are supported by the Israeli association Masarvot.

Since a couple of years, the majority of the Refuzniks have been women. Why?  

Perhaps men – more than women – worry about being defamed as weak and as traitors to their country. Probably women are also more sensitive to any form of violence in Israeli society, perceived by them as the consequence of illegal occupation, its brutality, and its dehumanizing characteristics.

How can we support the Refuznik movement from abroad?

It is essential to support the Refuzniks to show that all Jews and all Israeli do not automatically support Israeli politics.

We have to talk about them, publish their photos, write to them, compliment and encourage them. We can also help them financially because they make important, financial sacrifices by renouncing to all the advantages related to military service (study grants, student housing…)

Many Refuzniks call for the boycott against Israel. So, if we support them, we will automatically extend the international BDS campaign.

 

Originally posted AT

EBONY AND IVORY …..

Saw this on FaceBook and loved it ….

TENS OF THOUSANDS IN MARCH OF SHAME IN TEL AVIV

THERE IS HOPE YET!

Tens of thousands rally in Tel Aviv against government corruption
Masses march from Independence Hall on Rothschild Boulevard to Habima Square, protesting ‘attempts to pass laws that enable corruption,’ according to demonstration organizers, who added, ‘The sane MKs won’t vote for the mob laws borne out of the need to silence the police and save Bibi.’

Tens of thousands of people participated in the “March of Shame” Saturday night in Tel Aviv in protest of government corruption and what demonstrators said was foot-dragging in the investigations against Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

The march, which made its way from Independence Hall on Rothschild Boulevard to Habima Square, was organized by the same people who hold the weekly protest outside the Petah Tikva home of Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit.

Protesters in Tel Aviv; top sign: ‘There will be nothing, because we’ll make sure the public knows nothing!!!’; right sign: ‘INS Corrupted’ (Photos: Motti Kimchi)

IT’S OFFICIAL ~~ ‘ISRAEL IS THE WORST APARTHEID REGIME EVER’

“The settlements I saw here [in the West Bank] reminded me of what we had suffered in South Africa because we also were surrounded by many settlements and were not allowed to move from one place to another freely.

Palestinians are being subjected to the worst version of apartheid.”

Image by Latuff

SOURCE

ETHNIC CLEANSING / GENOCIDE … ONE IN THE SAME

Recently declassified cabinet meeting transcripts show that top Israeli officials discussed ethnic cleansing tactics to deal with Six-Day War fallout.

Image by Carlos Latuff

Declassified Israeli Transcripts Discuss Ethnic Cleansing

eclassified cabinet meeting minutes show that top Israeli cabinet officials contemplated an ethnic cleansing of the Gaza Strip and Galilee, rewriting history textbooks in favor of a pro-Zionist version of history, and censoring political speech in newspapers to deal with the fallout of the Six-Day War in 1967.

The material posted to the Israeli archives website shows hundreds of pages of previously classified cabinet meeting minutes, including those between August and December of 1967, which followed closely after the Six-Day War in June. From this archive, Israeli officials demonstrated a lack of direction following the war in which the Israeli military conquered and illegally occupied East Jerusalem, the West Bank, the Gaza Strip, the Golan Heights, and the Sinai Peninsula.

Officials initially contemplated the difficulties of administering the illegally occupied lands.

“At some point we will have to decide. There are 600,000 Arabs in these territories now. What will be the status of these 600,000 Arabs?” Prime Minister Levi Eshkol asked.

“I suggest that we don’t come to a vote or a decision today; there’s time to deal with this joy, or better put, there’s time to deal with this trouble,” he said. “But for the record I’m prepared to say this: There’s no reason for the government to determine its position on the future of the West Bank right now. We’ve been through three wars in 20 years; we can go another 20 years without a decision.”

Later documents show that Eshkol felt the pressure of ethnic diversity in the occupied lands which were under the illegal administration of the ethnocentric occupying forces.

“The strip of this country is like a miserable, threatening neck for us, literally stretched out for slaughter,” he said. “I cannot imagine it — how we will organize life in this country when we have 1.4 million Arabs and we are 2.4 million, with 400,000 Arabs already in the country?”

Eshkol and his cabinet later floated a covert ethnic cleansing policy by “working on the establishment of a unit or office that will engage in encouraging Arab emigration.” The prime minister added, “We should deal with this issue quietly, calmly and covertly, and we should work on finding a way from them to emigrate to other countries and not just over the Jordan [River].”

Eventually the cabinet discussed more extreme plans.

“Perhaps if we don’t give them enough water they won’t have a choice, because the orchards will yellow and wither,” Eshkol said in one meeting. The prime minister also discussed the idea of initiating a war of aggression against Palestinians to force them to leave their ancestral lands.

“Perhaps we can expect another war and then this problem will be solved. But that’s a type of ‘luxury,’ an unexpected solution.”

Realizing the optics of the illegal occupation and ethnic cleansing, Education Minister Zalman Aranne remarked:

“I do not for one minute accept the idea that the world outside will look at the fact that we’re taking everything for ourselves and will say, ‘Bon Appetit,’” he said. “After all in another year or half a year the world will wake up; there’s a world out there and it will ask questions.”

After 50 years, Israel has instituted a “apartheid regime” in Palestine, according to a landmark United Nations report that has since been retracted following political backlash.

Rima Khalaf, the former UN Under-Secretary General and ESCWA Executive Secretary, affirmed the report’s findings by saying that the report “clearly and frankly concludes that Israel is a racist state that has established an apartheid system that persecutes the Palestinian people”.

 

SOURCE OF REPORT

ROGER WATERS IS PUTTING HIS MONEY WHERE HIS MOUTH IS … WILL SERENADE IN PALESTINE FOR CHRISTMAS

Now THIS is a man of conviction!

The results are starting to pour in starting with THIS …

Roger Waters broadcasts cancelled in Germany over support for Israel boycott

Decision not to air Ex-Pink Floyd member’s concerts due to his support for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement branded ‘ridiculous’

German public broadcasters have dropped plans to air concerts next year by ex-Pink Floyd musician Roger Waters, citing what they call “accusations of antisemitism against him”.

Waters, part of one of the world’s most critically acclaimed and commercially successful rock bands from 1965 to 1985 before going solo, is a member of the Palestinian-led Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement (BDS) that targets Israel over its occupation of territories where Palestinians seek statehood.

Five state television and radio affiliates of the national ARD network have pulled out of broadcasting concerts by the 74-year-old Waters in Berlin and Cologne scheduled next summer “in reaction to anti-Semitism accusations against him”, Berlin and Brandenburg public radio (RBB) said.

RBB, part of the ARD network, said it wanted to send a message to other artists who, heeding the BDS, refused to perform in Israel. Waters joined the movement in 2011.

“Taking a clear position here is an important signal for RBB to the Jewish communities in Berlin and Brandenburg,” RBB director Patricia Schlesinger said in a statement.

“The quick and decisive reaction by the broadcasters … is an important signal that rampant antisemitism against Israel has no place in Germany,” said Josef Schuster, president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany.

Marek Lieberberg, Waters’s tour director, said German Jews were right to be concerned about “clearly visible and growing antisemitism” in Germany – alluding to the far right’s surge in recent German elections – but the broadcasters’ decision was “absolutely ridiculous”.

Lieberberg, the son of Holocaust survivors, told the Mannheimer Morgen daily that while he rejected the BDS, he separated personal opinions from work. “I cannot and do not want to deny [Waters] his right to freedom of opinion,” he said.

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s rightwing government has long campaigned against the BDS, describing it as antisemitic and an attempt to erase Israel’s legitimacy.

The movement – launched in 2005 as a non-violent campaign to press Israel to heed international law and end its occupation of territory held since a 1967 war – has gathered momentum in recent years even if its economic impact remains negligible.

Germany has long sought to distance itself from the Nazi Holocaust and become one of Israel’s closest allies.

Source

HAPPY THANKSGIVING ….. IF YOU DARE

Can you remember the times
That you have held your head high
and told all your friends of your Indian claim
Proud good lady and proud good man
Some great great grandfather from Indian blood came
and you feel in your heart for these ones

Oh it’s written in books and in song
that we’ve been mistreated and wronged
Well over and over I hear those same words
from you good lady and you good man
Well listen to me if you care where we stand
and you feel you’re a part of these ones

When a war between nations is lost
the loser we know pays the cost
but even when Germany fell to your hands
consider dear lady, consider dear man
you left them their pride and you left them their land
and what have you done to these ones

Has a change come about my dear man
or are you still taking our lands
A treaty forever your senators sign
They do dear lady, they do dear man
and the treaties are broken again and again
and what will you do for these ones

Oh it’s all in the past you can say
but it’s still going on here today
The governments now want the Navaho land
that of the Inuit and the Cheyenne
It’s here and it’s now you can help us dear man
Now that the buffalo’s gone.

After watching this you might consider roasting a duck this year 🙂

YET ANOTHER PALESTINIAN VILLAGE TO BE ERASED BY ZION

And Abbas remains silent ….

Image by Latuff

Historical village perched in Jerusalem’s hills may soon vanish

Lifta residents protest government plans to build villas, hotels, in historical village.

A small but picturesque village on Jerusalem’s hillside may soon be transformed forever.

Lifta, an historic village in a bucolic spot at the entrance to Jerusalem, is at the center of a preservation fight over an Israeli plan to build villas there.

The village, located on the outskirts of Jerusalem, is on a tentative list of UNESCO World Heritage sites, and the World Monuments Fund organization has put it on its list of sites under threat.

Lifta (Flash 90)

ARAB COMPLICITY IN THE LIQUIDATION OF PALESTINE

If you do not want to read and consider difficult political issues, please
ignore this post (it is merely an opinion which you may not share).
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Will Palestine be liquidated with Arab complicity?

By Mazin Qumsiyeh, PhD

Zionism is a colonial movement invented in the 19th century to transform a multi-religious Palestine to the apartheid “Jewish state of Israel”. It was to be “a rampart of Europe against Asia, an outpost of civilization against barbarism” (Herzl in the Jews’ State). This colonial racist idea remained unchanged since founding of the “Jewish Colonization Association” in 1891 and the World Zionist Congress in 1897. Like all colonial movements, it focuses on the dual task of destroying native life and creating new exclusivist racist regimes and it gets support from empires and from complicity.

Britain put the Al-Saud family in charge of the area of Hijaz (which was to become the kleptocracy of “Saudi Arabia”). Abdul Aziz Al-Saud responded in 1915 to British requests by writing in his own hand: “I the Sultan Abdel Aziz Bin Abdel Alrahman Al-Faysal Al-Saud decide and acknowledge a thousand times to Sir Percy Cox the representative of Great Britain that I have no objection to give Palestine to the poor Jews or to others as seen [fit] by Britain that I would not go outside [disobey] its opinion until the hour of calling [end of the world].” The good relations at the expense of Palestinians by the Saud ruling family remained to this day with a brief period when Arab nationalism was strong and the Royal family suspended oil shipments to the US in the October 1973 war.

The PLO began its long process of “compromise” with colonizers in 1974. Israel then signed a “peace treaty” with Egypt in and had good working relations including cooperation in crimes against humanity in isolating and besieging the Gaza strip. There was a brief period when Morsi was elected President of Egypt when there was the potential of relieving the blockade but that soon ended when the military retook power in Egypt. Egypt is however trying to play a role in mediation between Hamas and Fatah now which could help end the blockade and may help reclaim a liberation struggle.

Israel has maintained efforts to break-up the (already fragmented) Arab world for example in developing proxy militias and aligning with extremist right wing Christian leaders in Lebanon in the 1970s and 1980s. Working through proxies or directly, Israel and its Arab stooges committed massacres such as at Sabra and Shatila refugee camps in Lebanon in 1982. “Israel” maintained good relations with separatist movements in Northern Iraq and in South Sudan and helped arm the South Sudanese army. Israel’s relationship to Barazani and attempts to break-up Iraq is now well known. In the 1990s at the behest of the Israel lobby, Iraq was subjected to sanctions led by the US and Arab regimes that resulted in the death of one million Iraqis half of them children. At the same behest, the US attacked Afghanistan, Iraq, and Yemen (see http://qumsiyeh.org/connectingthedotsiraqpalestine/).

In 1986, King Hassan II of Morocco invited the Israeli Prime Minister for talks and following the Oslo disastrous accords, Morocco accelerated its economic ties and political contacts with Israel opening of bilateral liaison offices in 1994. As the late Edward Said showed eloquently that the Oslo Accords were a second Nakba for the Palestinian creating a Palestinian authority whose task was designated as protecting the occupiers from resistance and normalizing the occupation. After Arafat and Abbas signed these surrender treaties, Israel’s economy and its foreign recognition grew rapidly. The agreements also gave the occupying power the green light to grow its illegal activities in the occupied areas not turned over to the Palestinian authority (area C is the majority of the land).

Economic relations existed between Qatar and “Israel” between 1996 and 2000. In 2005, Saudi Arabia announced the end of its ban on Israeli goods and services. Diplomatic and other ties between Tunisia and Israel fluctuated between strong ones in the 1990s to weaker ones during 2000-2005 to pick up again until the Tunisian revolution. In 1919 King Faisal Al-Hussain (Hashemite leader) signed an agreement with Zionist leader Chaim Weizmann but one of his sons was later removed (by France) from power in Syria because of his opposition to Zionism. Israel signed a “peace treaty” with Jordan in 1994. However public sentiment in Jordan (among Jordanians of Palestinian or of Trans-Jordan heritage) remains strongly opposed to normalization efforts including in saddling Jordan with huge debts that serve Israeli interests (e.g. of the Red Sea-Dead Sea canal).

The CIA and the British intelligence services toppled the elected Mosaddaq government in Iran in 1953 to bring a more Israel friendly regime. This lasted until the Iranian revolution ended the Pahlavi criminal regime in 1979. Israel had good working and cooperation with Turkey from 1949 to 2011 when Israeli leaders engaged in a series of affronts and blunders including murdering Turkish citizens on the Mavi Marmara ship in International waters.

In 2015 Israel opened a diplomatic mission with the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and has helped Saudi Arabia and the UAE launch the war on Yemen in order to control the strategic Bab Al Mandeb strait (Red Sea to Indian Ocean). Egypt has also agreed to give two of its Islands in the Strait of Tiran to Saudi Arabia on Israel’s behest.

The above is only the tip of the iceberg in terms of Zionist collusion with Arab leaders to destroy Palestine. Much remains hidden. Yet, understanding this history helps understand why rulers of “Saudi Arabia” and the UAE and others are colluding with Israel and the USA in a feverish attack on resistance forces in the Arab and Islamic world. While such collusion with colonialism is common in all parts of the world, the collaborators fail to read history to understand the fate of all tools of colonialism. They will face the same fate as other collaborators. As tools of colonialism, they are discarded as soon as they fulfil their designated roles.

Much of the developments after 1973 would not have happened had the PLO remained true to its principles. This is indeed a historic moment in our part of the world. Zionists feel emboldened like never before and intend on ending the Palestine question once and for all with collusion especially the key issue of refugees (would be forced to settle outside of Palestine). Developments in Saudi Arabia, UAE, Syria, Iraq, Lebanon, Yemen, and the rest of our region need to be watched in the context of this struggle and with the centrality of the issue of Palestine since it is the reason for all this. It is a struggle between those who think they can guarantee their thrones and positions by dong Zionist bidding and those who challenge colonialism. The choice is between mayhem that will spare no one (including those who collaborate) or rejection of division and then unity to fight imperialism, colonialism, and Zionism. Palestine remains the litmus test, the Achille’s heel of imperialism, and the key to peace. Each of us should take a clear stand. I am optimistic because 12.7 million Palestinians and hundreds of millions of others who follow their conscience will not let Zionism (and its complicit Arab and American rulers) liquidate the most just cause in human history. It is wise of complicity leaders to rethink their positions if for nothing else than for their own interests since colonial powers use tools and discard them and are never true to their words to those that do not belong to their “tribe”. This is amply illustrated with history of Israel itself and its collaborators (e.g. in Lebanon in the 1980s). Now we need to all work together towards a peace with justice, the inevitable outcome.

 

ROGER WATERS RESPONDS TO NICK CAVE ABOUT HUMAN RIGHTS

 Roger Waters responded to criticism from Australian singer Nick Cave over the former Pink Floyd frontman’s prominent advocacy of an artists’ boycott of Israel, telling him it “isn’t about music – it’s about human rights.”

Image by Carlos Latuff

If you respect our peaceful BDS picket line, you will be in the excellent company of fellow celebrated musicians like Elvis Costello, Lauryn Hill, the late Gil Scott-Heron and Tunde Adebimpe

Roger Waters responds to Aussie singer: Boycott of Israel ‘isn’t about music – it’s about human rights’

Roger Waters responded to criticism from Australian singer Nick Cave over the former Pink Floyd frontman’s prominent advocacy of an artists’ boycott of Israel, telling him it “isn’t about music – it’s about human rights.”

Cave and his band, The Bad Seeds, played to sold-out crowds on Sunday and Monday in Tel Aviv.

Prior to his concerts, Cave told a news conference that he was performing in Israel to take a stand against the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement against Israel, or BDS.

He took a dig at Waters, saying, “If you play Israel, you have to go through a sort of public humiliation from Roger Waters and Co., and no one wants to be publicly shamed. It’s the thing we fear the most, in a way, to be publicly humiliated.”

Waters has been active in urging fellow artists to boycott performing in the country.

“Nick thinks this is about censorship of his music? What?” Waters wrote in a statement following Cave’s concerts in Israel. “Nick, with all due respect, your music is irrelevant to this issue. So is mine, so is Brian Eno’s, so is Beethoven’s. This isn’t about music – it’s about human rights.

“We hurl our glasses into the fire of your arrogant unconcern, and smash our bracelets on the rock of your implacable indifference,” Waters also wrote, adding that “if at some point in the future you want to climb out of the dark, all you have to do is open your eyes, we, in BDS will be here to welcome you into the light.”

Eno, a British musician, also commented in a statement posted with Waters’ on the website of the Artists for Palestine organization.

“I admire Nick Cave as an artist and I know he has been generous in his support for Palestinian humanitarian causes. I think he has every right to come to his own conclusions about whether or not he supports BDS,” Eno wrote. “However, I think I also have the right to present him with another side to this argument.”

 

SOURCE

TOOSDAY’S TOON ~~ PUNISHING PALESTINE FOR ISRAEL’S CRIMES

The State Department threatened to close the Palestinians’ Washington office unless they enter into direct negotiations with Israel, and drop requests to ICC to prosecute Israelis for crimes against Palestinians.

Image by Carlos Latuff


More here (Click on link)

Trump administration threatens to close Palestinians’ office in Washington DC

 

EVERY NACHT IS KRISTALLNACHT IN PALESTINE

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

Image by Carlos Latuff

There is Nothing to Celebrate

By Evelyn Hecht-Galinski, English translation by Milena Rampoldi

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Until then there will be nothing to CELEBRATE!

 

Originally posted AT

POETIC TRIBUTE TO MY FRIEND RICKY EISENBERG

Earlier in the year one of my oldest and dearest friends passed away. This past Saturday a memorial was held for him in New York City. Here is a report of the event written by another dear friend, Matt Weinstein…

Hundreds filed into the Church of the Redeemer on West 83rd Street for a fitting tribute and memorial to Ricky Eisenberg who died on February 3, 2017 after doing battle with a protracted illness.

The hundreds included friends, old and new, fellow activists and comrades, beloved family members and others who came into contact with Ricky through the years. Dedicated to a better world, one free of war and injustice, Ricky Eisenberg fought his entire life with a passion and a principled, uncompromising determination to forge change for his fellow human beings.

The afternoon was presided over by Rickly’s sister Nora who introducted us to speaker after speaker who regaled the gathering with anecdotes and stories of their relationship with the man. Daughters brought Ricky to life in front of our eyes by recounting his great humor (which we all knew and loved), his caricatures of multitude personalities, his love of music and food (pastrami was most often noted) and more .

We were treated to performances that inspired us. Particularly moving were the several pieces by the great NYC Labor Chorus, including John Lennon’s Imagine. That was especially relevant to this memorial because it envisioned a new world, something that Ricky stood and fought for. A newly-formed group of young girls, the Riverdale Youth Chorus, were also wonderful and they brought down the house with a charming performance of one of Ricky’s favorites: Didn’t My Lord Deliver Daniel?

Later we heard from the family: both daughters joined with granddaughter Grace to perform a song she had written. Though the program ran on for several hours, we were entranced throughout because Ricky was such an important part of our lives and because he was truly “larger than life” as was said in one of the speeches. This was a moving memorial to a man who had an impact on everyone who knew him. We then celebrated Ricky’s love of good food by repairing to another room for sandwiches, wine and dessert. A great way to finish the day. Ricky—we love you and will not forget you. This we promise.

*

And finally a poetic tribute to Ricky written by my dearest friend, Tom Karlson…

Ricky
73 years, a life
too short
two years of war,
every day a battle
the weapons, laughter and courage
Gracie, Jackson, Annie, Julie, Sara, Nora, and Katie
and a battalion of family, friends, and comrades
life lengthened and sweetened by that great thirst
to right all things wrong
with eye and brain and heart and body
to do wht must be done

it is late August 1960
West Harlem CCNY Convent Avenue 133st
meeting of the Marxist Discussion Club
we Don Quixotes are declaring war
war on the ban against communist speakers
STRIKE!
and strike we did
10,000 students on the street
a call for Ban the Ban
a call for Free Speach
Ben Davis and Herbert Aptheker came to speak

this, the beginning
marches, demonstrations, strikes, meets, Mayday

our position no tuition
Hands off Cuba, Cuba Si Yankee No
and when the CIA murdered Lumumba, Congo prime minister
down to the UN we went
chanting who’s the man who’s got to, go Dag Hammarskjold

a bus ride to Washington
to support Cuba
a time for song story and joke
a time where
art politics struggle mate gyrate
a time of incubation
when Cuba, antiwar’ civil rights, 
student’s rights, labor’s rights, women’s rights 
set the stage for a half a century 
of friendship, food, love, and class war

*

Here is a photo of Tom reciting the poem at the memorial

Photo by Matt Weinstein

ACTIONS AND REALITY

Compiled by Mazin Qumsiyeh


"Watch your thoughts; they become words. Watch your words; they become
actions. Watch your actions; they become habits. Watch your habits; they
become your character. Watch your character; it becomes your destiny." Lao
Tzu

Cowardice asks the question - is it safe? Expediency asks the question - is
it politic? Vanity asks the question - is it popular? But conscience asks
the question - is it right? And there comes a time when one must take a
position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular; but one must take
it because it is right. ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

"A scholar without activism is only a mercenary of knowledge. An activist
without knowledge is just a mercenary of charity. Beware, it is neither
knowledge nor charity, but justice that brings the kingdom." Santiago
Slabodsky

Corollary: Action without rational thought based on critical thinking can
be dangerous, but education, rational thought, and spoken words remain
sterile without ACTION  (my words)
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And the reality of what has to be changed ..... (Click on link to see photos)

16 children – 16 photos

 

THE ROOTS OF THANKSGIVING

After watching this you might consider roasting a duck this year 🙂

JUST WHO WON WW2?

One can’t help but wonder …

The US plans to vote against a yearly resolution at the United Nations that condemns the glorification of Nazism, State Department officials said Wednesday.

Thank you America for letting my message live on

Click on link to read full report

US opposes Nazi speech, but will vote no at UN to banning it

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As it does every year, Washington will have to vote against resolution introduced by Russia as it calls for restrictions on speech and assembly, which are protected by the First Amendment; US also reportedly pressured Israel to vote ‘no’ or at least abstain this year.

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