And other news from Today in Palestine:
Land and Property Theft and Destruction/Ethnic Cleansing
Report: New East Jerusalem housing plans
TEL AVIV, Israel (Ma’an) — Israeli city planners will in the coming weeks discuss a scheme to build over a thousand housing units beyond the Green Line in Jerusalem, an Israeli newspaper reported Tuesday. On October 7, the Jerusalem District Planning and Construction Committee will discuss plans for 1,362 new homes in Givat Hamatos, between the Talpiot and Gilo, the Israeli daily Haaretz reported. Although Givat Hamatos is not covered by the partial settlement freeze, which excludes occupied East Jerusalem, the timing of the debate could have significant diplomatic consequences, the report noted.
Residents: Israel to demolish barns, greenhouses
TUBAS (Ma’an) — Israeli forces handed notifications to residents in the Al-Maleh area of the Jordan Valley that 16 barns and greenhouses are slated for demolition, locals said. One of these houses is owned by the municipality and is used by the public. The head of the village council, Aref Daraghma, appealed to the Palestinian Authority to stop the plan.
Settlers remove furniture from East Jerusalem home
JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — Israeli settlers have removed furniture from a Palestinian family’s home in Jerusalem, witnesses said Tuesday. Mazen Al-Qirsh, a member of the family whose house was taken over by settlers a month earlier in East Jerusalem’s Old City, said the settlers removed furniture in preparation of moving in.
Settlers build near Palestinian villages on eve of peace talks
A human rights foundation said Israeli settlers kicked off a series of new settlement activities the night of the outset of peace talks between Abbas and Netanyahu. [Hamas website, may not be accessible to all]
IOF troops bulldoze lands in southern Gaza
Israeli occupation forces (IOF) escorted huge bulldozers into southeast of Khan Younis, south of the Gaza Strip, on Wednesday to bulldoze Palestinian cultivated land. [Hamas website, may not be accessible to all]
Israeli troops hand out 16 demolition notices in northern Jordan Valley
Israeli forces handed out Tuesday demolition notices against 16 tin houses owned by Palestinian shepherds in the Jordan Valley, Save the Valley coordinator Fathi Khaddirat said. [Hamas website, may not be accessible to all]
UNGA president concerned over Mamilla desecration
NEW YORK (Ma’an) — The president of the UN General Assembly expressed “profound concern” Monday at what he described as desecration of the ancient Muslim Mamilla cemetery in West Jerusalem, the UN news agency reported. Ali Treki, in a note released by his representative, said he was “alarmed by the intent of erecting secular projects on the site of this holy sanctuary, which is the burial place of venerated religious figures for more than 14 centuries.”
Netanyahu to Abbas: Don’t let end of settlement freeze foil peace talks
Prime Minister considering trip to U.S. on Saturday for summit organized by Bill Clinton at which Abbas will also be present; Netanyahu would meet with Obama after summit.
Chief justice: State ignoring demolition orders
Supreme Court president orders state to explain why buildings built on Palestinian land were not razed.
Five largest Israeli settlements: who lives there, and why
The end goal of the current Israeli-Palestinian peace talks is two separate, sovereign states. Palestinians say that the expansion of Israeli settlements in the West Bank, deemed illegal by the United Nations, influence the outcome of such talks. With more than 300,000 Israelis now living in such settlements, Israel expects to keep at least some of them under a final peace deal – possibly as part of a land swap. An estimated three-quarters of Israeli settlers live on a relatively small percentage of the West Bank, most of them in communities adjacent to Israel proper. Some of them are ideologically driven and some are attracted by the low cost of living; many are motivated by a combination of the two. Here are the five most populous settlements in the West Bank.
Solidarity/Activism/Boycott, Sanctions & Divestment
Night raids resume in Ni`lin; one Palestinian anti-wall activist arrested
At 3 a.m. this morning the Israeli army entered the West Bank village of Ni`lin and arrested a Palestinian man, Barakat Nafi. This is the first house raid since before the Islamic holy month of Ramadan; there used to be one or two such raids every week. Soldiers came on foot and in jeeps from the nearby gate in the illegal apartheid wall and violently entered the home of the 35-year-old. He was arrested in front of his wife, who afterwards, clearly very shaken, reported hearing him cry out, saying “don’t beat me!” According to his neighbour, Nafi has always had a stoic resolve – so such signs of distress were particularly surprising. No reason was given by the soldiers for the arrest.
Gaza deaths protest comes under heavy live fire from Israeli snipers
Click here to view the embedded video. Over 100 rounds of live ammunition were fired at peaceful protesters in a Tuesday demonstration in the Gaza strip. The protest at the Erez border area near Beit Hanoun yesterday included Palestinian activists from the Local Initiative group, local residents and 4 members of the International Solidarity Movement who marched into the site of the recent fatal Israeli incursion. The demonstrators had a view of the area where only a few days earlier, a Grandfather Ibrahim Abu Sayed and his 17 year-old grandson were killed by Israeli tank shelling.
Activists: Israel opens fire at no-go zone rally
GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — Israeli forces opened fire Tuesday at a march held to protest Israel’s imposed no-go zone along the Gaza border near the Erez crossing in the north, international peace activists said, with no injuries reported Demonstrators carried Palestinian flags toward the electric fence demarcating the buffer zone, and attempted to fill in a trench dug by Israeli bulldozers.
UK unions vote to divest from occupation, Published yesterday
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Many of Britain’s unions have thrown their weight behind a campaign of disinvestment and boycott from companies which are profiting from Israel’s occupation of the Palestinian territories., Trade unions voted unanimously at an annual conference for a motion put forward by the Transport Salaried Staffs’ Association, seconded by the GMB, and supported by UNSION, the Public and Commercial Services Union, and the Fire Brigades’ Union., The motion called for the General Council to work closely with the Palestine Solidarity Campaign to actively encourage affiliates, employers and pension funds to disinvest from, and boycott the goods of, companies who profit from illegal settlements, the occupation and construction of the separation wall.
CEO of Israeli Cosmetic Firm Ahava Rattled by Growing Boycott; False Claims Put Out by Company Are Refuted by ‘Stolen Beauty’ Campaign
WASHINGTON – September 14 – In a recent, quietly circulated letter from the desk of Yaacov Ellis, CEO of Ahava Dead Sea Laboratories—a company at the center of a growing international boycott campaign—and directed at the company’s retail partners, Ellis deploys specious information about his own company’s business practices, contradictory claims about Israel’s occupation of the Palestinian West Bank, and unfounded innuendo about boycott campaign supporters. This letter comes after a year of pressure, lead in the United States by the women’s peace group CODEPINK and their “Stolen Beauty” Ahava Boycott campaign, and total refusal by the CEO to respond to press queries about his company’s illegal business practices.
South African human rights group responds to Zionist Federation criticism of Ahava boycott
This is an open letter sent to the South African Zionist Federation (SAZF) from Open Shuhada Street (OSS). OSS recently launched a boycott campaign against Ahava products and received a pernicious response from both Ahava and the SAZF; this is their reply.
U.S. Boat to Gaza Activists Hit Fashion Week with Style
Activists organizing to send a U.S. boat to break the Israeli blockade and siege of Gaza took their case to the streets Sept. 14. Dressed in t-shirts featuring the ubiquitous “We Will Not Be Silent” slogan in various languages, including Arabic and Hebrew, plus a new design featuring the U.S. Boat to Gaza logo, they tried to hold a “fashion shoot” in front of Lincoln Center, site of New York’s Fashion Week. The plaza was filled with tourists and people with cameras taking pictures of the fashionistas coming and going from the event in Damrosch Park behind the arts center.
Chris Hedges lends support to USToGaza.org
Chris Hedges speaking at the Tabernacle Church fundraiser for www.ustogaza.org in Philadelphia on September 10, 2010. “You may have the bulldozers, the planes and helicopters that smash houses to rubble…the commandos who descend on ships and kill civilians on the high seas, as well as in Gaza.
Academic research collaboration emboldens Israeli apartheid
Israel aggressively courts research partnerships with American universities by hosting academic delegations. These academic delegations are political-educational junkets, which subliminally promote a Zionist ideology along with coordinating potential partnerships with Israeli universities. Diane Shammas comments for The Electronic Intifada.
The Siege (Gaza & West Bank)/Humanitarian/Restriction of Movement/Human Rights/Racism
Foreign Ministry official: Malaysia considering petitioning Hague over Gaza blockade
Israel is aware of the reports and preparing itself for possible row at the International Court of Justice.
Gaza maternity ward closed over ‘dispute with PA’
GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — A hospital in the northern Gaza Strip warned Wednesday that it was forced to shut down its maternity ward over an insurance dispute with the Palestinian Authority Health Ministry, a statement read. The Al-Awda Hospital in the Jabaliya area north of Gaza City said the move placed approximately 7,000 pregnant women with insurance at risk. The hospital said the women all currently receive treatment at the hospital on a yearly basis.
Gaza journalists call for IFJ visit
GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — Journalists in Gaza on Wednesday called for the head of the International Federation of Journalists to make an urgent visit to the Strip. An IFJ delegation is currently visiting the West Bank at the invitation of its affiliate, the Palestinian Journalists’ Syndicate. Journalists in Gaza issued a statement after holding a meeting, and said they had not received any invitation to participate in meetings with the IFJ. The journalists said they were not informed of a conference via video-link between journalists in Gaza and the delegation in Ramallah, and accused the PJS of arranging meetings in a “secretive and selective way.” Gaza security forces prevented the meeting, the journalists added.
Hamas bans journalists from debate meeting with int’l organization
GAZA, Sept. 15 (Xinhua) — Hamas security personnel on Wednesday prevented journalists in Gaza from holding a video- conference debate with a delegation from the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), a journalist said. Yousef Al-Ostaz of the Palestinian journalists syndicate said that the deposed Hamas government sent policemen in plainclothes to the hall that was supposed to host the meeting and ordered them to cancel the video link’s booking.
Report: Due To The Israeli Siege on Gaza, 40,000 Students Refused From UNRWA Schools
Gisha – PNN – Despite Israel’s promise to ease the closure of the Gaza Strip, the Gaza school year opened this week with a severe shortage of classrooms. The Legal Center For Freedom of Movement Gisha , an Israeli not-for-profit organization, reported on Wednesday.
Divided We Educate, Mel Frykberg
QALANDIA CHECKPOINT, Occupied East Jerusalem, Sep 14, 2010 (IPS) – A thin Palestinian boy, no older than ten, darts between the piles of garbage and the congested lines of traffic which converge at the Qalandia checkpoint between Ramallah and Jerusalem.
Violence/Aggression & Provocations
Israeli soldiers open fire on handcuffed Palestinian
Israeli media sources have confirmed that an Israeli soldier shot and killed a handcuffed Palestinian youth on Tuesday morning (14.09.2010) in the city of Tel Aviv. Israel’s Channel Two television station confirmed that police forces detained four Palestinian youths in Tel Aviv during the early hours of Tuesday morning under suspicion of involvement in stealing an Israeli vehicle. One of the youths was killed and another managed to escape while the remaining two were detained by the authorities of the Israeli occupation. According to the television station, “during the arrest, the sound of gun fire was heard then one of the handcuffed detainees fell after being shot in the upper part of his body. He died shortly afterwards.” According to Channel Two, the Israeli police officer who opened fired on the youth has claimed that the bullet “was shot accidentally from his weapon” and hit the 18 year old Palestinian youth in his back killing him on impact.
Five Palestinians Wounded As Army Shells Gaza
Palestinian medical sources reported that Five Palestinians were wounded on Tuesday evening, two seriously, after the Israeli army fired artillery shells into an area near Gaza city.
Israeli shelling in Gaza wounds two Palestinians: medics (AFP)
AFP – Three Palestinians were wounded by Israeli tank fire in a clash along the volatile Gaza border on Tuesday, Palestinian sources said.
Israel army fires on central Gaza
GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — Two Palestinians were injured Tuesday after Israeli forces fired on a group of Palestinians in the central Gaza Strip, medical and security officials said. One Palestinian was seriously hurt following the incident near Juhor Ad-Dik, east of Al-Bureij refugee camp, medics told Ma’an. Israel’s military said a group of militants fired an anti-tank missile at soldiers operating near the border fence in northern Gaza. “No injuries were caused,” the army said in a statement.
IOF Fires at Peaceful Demonstration and Shells Agricultural lands, Killing 3 Farmers and 43 Goats
The Israeli occupation forces (IOF) killed three farmers, one of whom was an elderly man with his child grandson as they worked in their land in the north-Gaza town of Beit Hanoun, and the third was a child. The IOF fired artillery shells at the farmers who were in their land less than 500 meters from the northern separation fence between Gaza and Israel. In a separate attack, in the morning of Tuesday 14 September 2010, the IOF opened fire on a peaceful demonstration against the “security buffer zone”. As Al Mezan Center for Human Rights has frequently asserted, the IOF enforcement of the “security buffer zone” inside the Gaza Strip has been carried out by means and methods that gravely violate international law. Al Mezan condemns these Israeli violations and calls on the international community to protect civilians and stop the IOF deadly enforcement of the “security buffer zone” in Gaza.
Israeli troops assault Palestinian workers at West Bank checkpoint
Israeli soldiers stationed at Al Hamra military checkpoint in the Jordan Valley detained a group of Palestinian workers on Tuesday morning and assaulted them, a Palestinian media source reported.
Student says extremists destroyed Koran in Jerusalem
JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — Extremists desecrated a Koran in West Jerusalem on Monday, a Palestinian from Bethlehem said Tuesday. Bethlehem University student Muhammad Munir claims a group of Israeli Jews tore pages out of the Muslim holy book on Jaffa street. Munir said he saw the incident while walking from work to his home in Wadi Al-Joz.
Settlers announce rally at Nablus tomb
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Settler community leaders announced Wednesday that a rally would be held Thursday evening demanding “open access” to the Nablus area, and in particular Joseph’s Tomb. Following violence precipitated by settler visits to the site – which saw Palestinian areas closed down or put under curfew – the area was closed off to settlers in early 2000.
For many villages in Area C, landmines have become a regular feature of daily life. Israeli military training zones occupy nearly 30% of the land, often based around civilian areas, leaving unexploded ordnance (UXO) that cause horrific injuries to local residents. We spent a few days with the victims to see how they live with the constant terror. Rafat Al-Rushayida is 24, he has lived his whole life in the bedouin village east of Bethlehem that shares his name. Al-Rushayida has played host to a military training zone since 1967, which has now expanded into 50% of the village’s land. He and four young friends showed us what the soldiers left behind.
Israel’s compensation bill since start of second intifada: NIS 89 million and growing
Israel has compensated Palestinians and foreigners who suffered damages or injury from the IDF in 524 separate damage suits.
Israel accused of not probing Palestinian deaths (AP)
AP – An Israeli human rights group charged in a report released Tuesday that Israel’s military has failed to adequately investigate cases in which Palestinian civilians have been killed by soldiers.
Rocket, six mortars hit southern Israel (AFP)
AFP – A Qassam rocket and six mortar rounds hit southern Israel on Wednesday morning, the Israeli military said, with the rocket landing near the southern Israeli port city of Ashkelon.
Israeli soldiers raid Palestinian house in Hebron; one man arrested
At 21.00 on 12 September 2010, the final day of the Islamic festival of `Eid al-Fitr, eight Israeli army jeeps and armoured personnel carriers (APCs) were observed leaving the Israeli-only apartheid roads in Hebron and crossing into the Palestinian Authority-controlled “H1” region. Five international activists followed the vehicles to their destination, a house in the Tel Rumeida area. Around twenty soldiers stayed close to the jeeps, while around ten others entered the targeted house. Other soldiers closed off the area, not letting cars pass. The internationals were already in the area close to the house so they were able to document what was happening, although they were physically prevented from approaching the raided home.
Society: Israel detained 14 in Bethlehem over Ramadan
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Israeli authorities detained 14 Palestinians in the southern West Bank district of Bethlehem during the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan, the head of the Palestinian Prisoners Society in the district said Tuesday. Abdul Fattah Khalil said the detentions were carried out the Al-Arrub and Ad-Duheisha refugee camps in the district, as well as in Tuqu’, Battir and Al-Ubeidiya. Lawyers with the society said they were granted access to the detainees, who are being held in the Russian Compound in Jerusalem and the Etzyion and Ashkalon detention centers.
Israel’s Arab Helpers
Hamas: PA detained 60 affiliates
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Hamas accused Palestinian Authority security forces Wednesday of detaining 60 party affiliates across the West Bank. In a statement, the Islamist movement said the PA had escalated its campaign against Hamas leaders and supporters. On Tuesday, Hamas reported that 65 of its West Bank affiliates were detained by PA forces, and the party has claimed that up to 750 supporters have been arrested since the movement claimed responsibility for two shooting attacks in the West Bank which killed four Israeli settlers and injured two others.
PA’s militias kidnap husband of MP Halaiqa in Al-Khalil
The Palestinian Authority’s security militias kidnapped Mohamed Zeitoun, the husband of lawmaker Samira Halaiqa, from Al-Shyukh town in Al-Khalil city after summoning him for interrogation. [Hamas website, may not be accessible to all]
ADC fondly remembers George W. Bush
In a 9-11 related press release, the ADC looks back with nostalgia at George W. Bush. If they had any self-respect, instead of quoting what the stupid war criminal read after someone wrote it for him, they would be calling for sending him to the Hague to stand trial for his crimes in Afghanistan and Iraq.
“Peace” Talks/Political Developments
Balancing peace in the Middle East
Israeli and Palestinian leaders have entered a second round of direct Middle East talks in the past two weeks, but in the end both sides could only agree to talk again on Wednesday. The negotiations in the Egyptian resort of Sharm el-Sheikh were attended by senior US officials including Hillary Clinton, the US secretary of state, and George Mitchell, the US Middle East envoy. Clinton and Mitchell both expressed optimism over the direction of the talks, but did not say if any tangible progress had been made. Al Jazeera’s Ayman Mohyeldin reports.
No concessions in Middle East talks
Negotiations in Sharm el-Sheikh end without agreements on Israeli settlements but leaders agree to meet in Jerusalem.
Abbas to attend talks at Netanyahu’s home
TEL AVIV, Israel (Ma’an) — President Mahmoud Abbas will visit Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s residence in Jerusalem on Wednesday to continue peace negotiations, Abbas’ spokesman said. Nabil Abu Rudeineh was confirming a report first aired on Israel’s Channel 2 Tuesday. Abu Rudeineh, speaking after the second round of direct negotiations in the Egyptian Red Sea resort town of Sharm Ash-Sheikh, said the talks there were “serious” and wide-ranging. Abbas will stop in Amman, Jordan on his way to the West Bank, the spokesman said. Netanyahu’s plane touched down at Ben Gurion International Airport Tuesday afternoon, officials said. In Egypt, US special envoy George Mitchell said Tuesday that Israel must commit to extending its 10-month moratorium on illegal settlement construction the West Bank.
Israel considers prisoner release, ceding territories to PA
Despite difficulties in direct negotiations, western officials say Jerusalem considering goodwill gestures, including extending settlement freeze in areas outside settlement blocs. Netanyahu, Abbas to meet in Jerusalem Wednesday.
U.S. envoy’s upcoming Syria trip raises speculation of possible peace developments
Reports say George Mitchell will brief Syria’s leadership on Israeli-Palestinian negotiations and discuss ways in which Syria could contribute to the talks.
Report: Turkey denies Israel’s request to question Gaza flotilla captain
Ankara says it has already interviewd captain of the Mavi Marmara as part of Turkish probe and submitted testimony to the UN.
Israeli media: 3 embassies threatened
TEL AVIV, Israel (Ma’an) — An envelope containing a threatening letter and suspicious white powder was found Tuesday afternoon at the US Embassy in Tel Aviv, the Israeli news site Ynet reported. Similar envelopes were sent to the Swedish and Spanish embassies in the city, according to the report.
Israeli Arab woman suspected of trying to smuggle weapons from West Bank
Woman detained after guards performing a routine inspection of her vehicle at the Jordan Valley crossing discovered a makeshift pistol and ammunition in her possession.
Yishai: Ease weapons laws for settlers
In aftermath of West Bank attacks, interior minister says MKs must work to afford settlers firearms.
At Ben-Gurion University, student protests can lead to disciplinary action
Student who organized demonstration for maintenance workers’ rights at the campus was brought in for disciplinary hearing, and on Wednesday, several students who protested against Israel’s Gaza flotilla raid will be summoned.
High Court approves private school for Haredi girls involved in segregation row
Ultra-Orthodox network that runs the Beit Yaakov girls school in Immanuel told last year t it must pay a fine of NIS 5,000 for every day they continued to violate court order requiring it to eliminate any vestige of ethnic discrimination.
Director: No Hamas involvement in Tel Aviv film
GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — The director and producer of a low-budget film depicting the “liberation” of Tel Aviv has no affiliation with Hamas, he insists, despite the Israeli media’s coverage of the viral hit as a “Hamas studios” production. Gaza native Muhammad Al-Amrity says he and his friend Ayman Hijazi made the film. It was inspired by a dream he had of his family that originates in Tel Ar-Rabi, which became Tel Aviv. “I tried to go back to my city in the dream.”
Poll: Majority opposed to moratorium
Didi Remez has the results of an interesting poll from today’s Yediot Ahronoth on Israeli attitudes toward the peace process.
Pornographer sells Twitter ID to Israel
Israel’s foreign Ministry has acquired the @Israel username on Twitter, the social networking site, from the Spanish owner of adult porn sites.
Look what Al-Ahram newspaper did. They photoshopped a picture of Obama and the other Middle East leaders in the White House to show Mubarak in the front of the group.
Mideast Peace Talks: Getting Past the Settlements Issue, Tony Karon
Time.com – Netanyahu may end his settlement construction moratorium in two weeks, but the U.S. warns Abbas to find a way to fudge the issue.
Palestinians, Israelis show no sign of narrowing gaps
SHARM EL-SHEIKH, Egypt: The US gave no sign on Tuesday that Israel and the Palestinians had narrowed the gap on Jewish settlements, but said they tackled issues at the heart of their decades-old conflict.
A Circle Not Easily Squared, Jerrold Kessel and Peter Klochendler
JERUSALEM, Sep 14, 2010 (IPS) – Security first or borders first: security says Israel, borders retort the Palestinians. Israeli-Palestinian peace talks are finally again getting under way. Israel though remains adamant that the only chance the talks have to make headway is for its security concerns to be satisfactorily addressed.
‘In Whose Name Do They Talk?’; Gazans share their views on the talks, Laila El-Haddad
“The negotiations add up to a big zero. They don’t belong to us and neither does Abbas. Things are completely rotten. He doesn’t recognise the Gaza Strip – so what’s he negotiating over?
All That You Have Done: Colonialism, Ethnic Cleansing and the Web, Roger Sheety
Despite the current facade of yet another round of fake peace talks, the Israeli government and its professional apologists remain in a panic. Hardly a week passes by without complaint that Israel “is being isolated” or that it is facing a campaign of “delegitimization.” In February of this year the Reut Institute, an Israeli group-think tank, published a remarkably delusional, ahistorical piece of propaganda masquerading as a scholarly report and warning of an internationally concerted effort that seeks to “erode” Israel’s diplomatic status which “may develop into a comprehensive existential threat within a few years.” (*) In essence, any organization or individual that dares criticize Israeli policy in the Occupied Palestinian Territories in particular is a de facto member of this dreaded network of delegitmization. As with all Israeli hasbara (explanation), the Reut Institute blames primarily the Palestinian victims and secondarily those who report or publicize their plight.
From the Diary of a Binationalist, Udi Aloni
Israeli film director Udi Aloni divides his time between New York City, where he makes films, and the Jenin Refugee Camp, where he has recently moved in order to help his friend Juliano Mer-Khamis establish a school for film and multimedia production. He is currently writing a biweekly column called, Brooklyn – Jenin, about this experience for the popular Israeli news website Ynet. Mondoweiss is excited to be able to present English translations of these columns.
“FUCK YOU, GAZANS!”, Flora Nicoletta
This is the narrative of a 22-year old Palestinian who returned recently to Gaza. Among his misfortunes he was apprehended and arbitrarly detained by the mukhabarat (General Intelligence) in Jordan.
HAMDULILLAH’ OFFICIAL VIDEO
Ridwan Adhami, Shadia Mansour and I had a sit down in New York to talk about “Hamdulillah’ and how we could represent the meaning of it. People are everything in what I do, the people that come to shows, the people that listen to my music, the people that support me. My people. My family. My friends. I’m feeling very blessed and grateful these days to be able to make my music and have your support. So we reached out to people we know around the world, who knew of the music and felt the same. Ramadan this year opened me to the new friends, new ideas, new plans, new blessings.
This is for you. Shout out to Ridwan and the whole team. Shadia and the whole fam. And every face and person in my video.
Veto Power Is an Insult to the International Community: Kenneth O’Keefe
Kenneth O’Keefe is a world citizen. As an anti-war activist and social entrepreneur, he renounced his U.S. citizenship on March 1, 2001 and burned his American passport on January 7, 2004 in protest to the United States’ Imperialism and called for the immediate withdrawal of American forces from Iraq. O’Keefe is a former U.S. Mariner who served in the 1991 Persian Gulf War and subsequently revealed the use of depleted uranium by the United States as a crime against humanity.
Hizbullah’s arms include drones, long-range rockets – Israel
BEIRUT: Hizbullah has long-range drones and rockets capable of hitting targets more than 300 kilometers from Lebanon, Israel’s counter-terrorism chief has said. Brigadier General Nitzan Nuriel also refused to rule out a pre-emptive Israeli strike on Syria, should Damascus fail to halt its alleged military support of Hizbullah.
Sayyed Looking for Court to Sue Lebanese State
15/09/2010 Former head of Lebanon’s General Security Directorate Major General Jamil Sayyed is looking for a human rights court to sue the Lebanese State. Sayyed, who is currently in Paris, said in an interview published Wednesday by Lebanese daily Al-Akhbar that he and a team of advisers were “rummaging around for a human rights court eligible to sue the Lebanese State.” Al-Akhbar said the World Council for Human Rights of 2007 which finds that the “arrest of officers was in breach of Article 9 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights” was signed by Lebanon and demanded for the “restoration of political and Judicial rights and an immediate solution to the officers’ status.” Sayyed stressed that he does not want to “open any battle,” stressing, on the other hand, that he cannot stand idle and not mention a response made by former PM Fouad Saniora back then in which he distorted facts and held the arrest to be justified according to witnesses. “This is what made me press charges against Saniora and State Prosecutor Saeed Mirza.”
Gemayel’s son places blame on Syria for father’s death
BEIRUT: Phalange Party MP Nadim Gemayel, son of late former president-elect Bashir Gemayel, held Syria responsible for a series of assassinations that started with his father and ended with figures of the March 14 coalition including former Premier Rafik Hariri.
Two steps back for Palestinians in Lebanon
“Everyone here works without a permit,” said Shatila refugee camp resident Mohammed Khalife. “Being legal and having a work permit is the strange thing, not the other way around.”
Nine Iraqi soldiers killed in roadside bomb (AFP)
AFP – Nine Iraqi soldiers were killed on Wednesday by a roadside bomb on the outskirts of the main northern city of Mosul, police said.
US-Iraq raid, roadside bombing kill 18 (AFP)
AFP – Violence killed 18 people in Iraq on Wednesday, including nine in a firefight that broke out during a joint US-Iraq raid in search of a top Al-Qaeda leader in the former rebel base of Fallujah.
Tuesday: 8 Iraqis Killed, 6 Wounded
Sarah Shourd, the American hiker arrested and accused of spying after illegally crossing from Iraq to Iran, was released on $500,000 bail. Meanwhile, at least eight Iraqis were killed and six were wounded in unusually light violence.
Seven Killed In Iraq attacks
Gunmen opened fire on the car of a government-backed Sunni militia leader, killing him and three members of his family in Latifiya town, 40 km (25 miles) south of Baghdad, a security source said.
Iraqi Deputy Minister escapes assassination
Iraqi Deputy Minister for social affairs escaped assassination attempt due to a bombing that targeted his convoy in Al Waziriya region, eastern Baghdad. 11 citizens were wounded in a special US-Iraqi forces operation on the house of former army officer Yassin Kassar, southwestern Falluja, a security source from Anbar Operations Command said. Two suspects were arrested in this operation, the source added. Anbar Provincial Council held an urgent session to investigate the operation, the source reported.
UN experts rap US over private security firms
UN experts have rapped the United States for its failure to prosecute private security personnel over violations in Iraq, citing a case against two US firms which was dismissed after they claimed immunity.
US watchdogs say Iraq has own money for security (AP)
AP – Congressional investigators estimate that Iraq has about $11.8 billion in surplus money available to use for its own security.
Iraqis outraged at payout for US victims of Saddam
Americans win $400m compensation but locals struggle with crippling poverty.
SYRIA: Precarious existence of Iraqi Mandaean community
DAMASCUS Wednesday, September 15, 2010 (IRIN) – Among the estimated 1.2 million Iraqi refugees in Syria are several thousand Mandaeans, a small religious minority on the verge of extinction in Iraq, and lacking support in Syria.
U.S. and Other World News
UN chief: Ahmadinejad to attend disarmament meeting
A U.S. official told Reuters in Washington that President Barack Obama would probably not attend the disarmament talks, since he will be participating in a UN summit meeting on Sudan and other meetings that same day.
U.S. diplomat fears condemnation of Israel
The U.S. ambassador to the U.N. nuclear watchdog fears Arab ambassadors may condemn Israel at the next board of governors meeting, Asharq al-Awsat reported.
What does Israel get for not objecting to this deal? U.S. to sell up to $60 billion of arms to Saudi Arabia
U.S. defense official says Congress will soon be notified of arms sale to Saudi Arabia, including 84 F-15 fighter jets and 72 Black Hawk helicopters.
US-Saudi arms deal aimed at Iran
Analysts say US arms deal gives Saudis advantage over all regional states except Israel.
US Soldier Committed Suicide Rather Than Take Part in Torture, Greg Mitchell
Alyssa Peterson was one of the first female soldiers who died in Iraq. Her death under these circumstances should have drawn wide attention. It’s not exactly the Tillman case, but a cover-up, naturally, followed.
Ex-CIA Agents Confirm Torture at Polish Black Site, Spiegel
Former CIA agents have confirmed rumors that the agency tortured terror suspects at a detention center in Poland. One agent allegedly held a drill to a prisoner’s head while he was naked and hooded.
Dutch soldiers accused of war crime
Dutch soldiers stationed in the Afghan province of Uruzgan allegedly violated the laws of war when they carried out a raid on a hospital in the provincial capital Tarin Kowt in 2009.
Nato urged to allow partition of Afghanistan
Afghanistan should be allowed to partition along ethnic lines by pulling back Nato forces and acknowledging that the Taliban will not be defeated in their heartland, a senior former American national security adviser has warned.
Thousands of Afghans stage anti-US protest in Kabul
KABUL, Sept 15 (Reuters) – Police fired into the air to disperse thousands of angry anti-American protesters in Afghanistan’s capital on Wednesday, witnesses and police said, with at least two people suffering apparent gunshot wounds. Protesters chanted “Death to America”, “Death to Christians”, and “Death to Karzai”, the latter referring to President Hamid Karzai.
Bombshell from London, Eric S. Margolis
The report, presided over by the former deputy director of Britain’s foreign intelligence agency, MI-6, says the threat from al-Qaeda and Taliban has been “exaggerated” by the western powers.
Egyptian party boycotts elections
Egypt’s al-Ghad party announces it is going to boycott parliamentary elections amid divisions in the opposition camp.
Islam in the West
French Senate overwhelmingly votes to ban face veils in public
The French Senate on Tuesday overwhelmingly passed a bill banning the burka-style Islamic veil in public, but the leaders of both parliamentary houses said they had asked a special council to first ensure the measure passes constitutional muster amid concerns its tramples on religious freedoms.
Is Muslim life actually “cheap”?, James North
New Republic editor-in-chief Martin Peretz’s anti-Muslim slanders have finally gotten him into trouble in the mainstream, after years during which the major opinion-makers pretended not to notice his chronic racism. Here again is the second half of his latest slur, the part he didn’t apologize for: “Frankly, Muslim life is cheap, especially for Muslims. . . This is a statement of fact, not value.” The racism is obvious. But underneath it is a dangerous and inaccurate assumption – that the Muslim world today is exclusively or mainly violent.
A note of apology to readers
We made a news decision on Friday that offended many readers and we sincerely apologize for it. Many saw Saturday’s front-page story and photo regarding the local observance of the end of Ramadan as offensive, particularly on the day, September 11, when our nation and the world were paying tribute to those who died in the 9/11 terrorist attacks nine years ago. We have acknowledged that we erred by at least not offering balance to the story and its prominent position on the front page.
Is Fox News the dog from “Up,” and the lower Manhattan Islamic community center its squirrel? Jon weighs the evidence in last night’s episode.