63rd Anniversary of the Deir Yassin massacre

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Key historical events: Deir Yassin (9 April 1948)
EI: On 9 April 1948, militants of the Irgun and Stern Gang attacked the Palestinian village Deir Yassin. In all over 100 Palestinian men, women and children were systematically murdered. This massacre is often cited as sparking the panic that led Palestinians being driven from their homes. Deir Yassin stands as the starkest early warning of a calculated depopulation of over 400 Palestinian villages and cities and the expulsion of 70 percent of the Palestinian population.

The saga of Deir Yassin – massacre, revisionism, and history
Account 2: Eliahu Arbel, Haganah. Eliahu Arbel was Operations Officer B of the Haganah’s Etzioni Brigade. He was an officer in Israel’s armed forces in subsequent wars. He entered the village on Saturday, April 10.  “On the following day, after the operation, I inspected the village, in accordance with the order of Colonel Shaltiel. Accompanied by an officer of the attacking unit, I saw the horrors that the fighters had created. I saw bodies of women and children, who were murdered in their houses in cold blood by gunfire, with no signs of battle and not as the result of blowing up the houses. From my experience I know well, that there is no war without killing, and that not only combatants get killed. I have seen a great deal of war, but I never saw a sight like Deir Yassin and therefore I cannot forget what happened there. ” (YA-5-2-72)

Survivor recollections from Deir Yassin
Mr. Fahimi Zeidan, 12,:”The Jews ordered all our family to line up against the wall and they started shooting us. I was hit in the side, but most of us children were saved because we hid behind our parents. The bullets hit my sister Kadri [four] in the head, my sister Sameh [eight] in the cheek, my brother Mohammed [seven] in the chest. But all the others with us against the wall were killed: my father, my mother, my grandfather and grandmother, my uncles and aunts and some of their children.”

Palestine Remembered: Welcome to Dayr Yassin
photos of the village, articles, maps etc.

And more news from Today in Palestine:

Land, property, resources theft & destruction / Ethnic cleansing / Judaization / Settlers

Time to settle Bedouin claims / Dr. Clinton Bailey
Haaretz 8 Apr –  After 63 years of denying the Bedouin of the Negev rights to the land they acquired before 1948 and in accordance with the Bedouin law that then prevailed, Israel is about to give partial recognition to their claims, out of court. The condition is that all those still living in unrecognized locales agree to permanent settlement in government-recognized towns. There are four specific reasons why this initiative must not fail. *Because, if it fails, 110,000 Bedouin – 55 percent of the Negev Bedouin population – will be left without proper housing, continuing to live in the decrepit shanties they now inhabit, without elementary services, in about 50 “unrecognized” villages and dozens of clusters spread widely between Arad and Mitzpeh Ramon. No alternative housing exists for these people, because ownership of the 25,000 building plots needed for them is claimed by Bedouin with whom successive governments have failed to come to terms. *Because, if the initiative fails, the question of who owns large tracts of land (the Bedouin or the state ) will remain unresolved….

Israel dedicates new road near Hebron despite Palestinian dissent
Haaretz 7 Apr — Road that locals call ‘Freeway to the Tomb of the Patriarchs’ is to cost Israel NIS 25 million, but Palestinians refuse construction of portion that passes through their civilian jurisdiction.

France 24 video: Jerusalem’s ‘new Wailing Wall’ causes tensions in the Old City
6 Apr — Israel has widened access to a revered Jewish site in the heart of the Jerusalem Old City’s Muslim Quarter, to increase access for worshipers. It’s a move that threatens to inflame tensions at one of the world’s most contested religious sites. The small courtyard lies less than 100m from the Wailing Wall, one of Judaism’s most sacred places; but its proximity to the Al Aqsa mosque, the third holiest site in Islam, make the site very sensitive to both religions.

Holy Land churches protest against Israeli tax move
WCC 6 Apr — The heads of Christian Churches in Jerusalem express grave concern over new moves by the Israeli authorities to impose municipal  property tax (Arnona) on Church buildings and properties. Such imposition would constitute a radical departure from the consistent practice of every previous State to have governed any part of the Holy Land,  including the Ottoman empire, the British Mandate, the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and the State of Israel itself. It would represent a significant worsening of the condition of the Churches in the Holy Land. It would also be in direct contradiction to the mandate of the United Nations Organization in General Assembly Resolution 181, of 29 November, 1947, as it applies not only to Jerusalem but also to the two national states that it authorizes to be established in the Holy Land.

Municipality: East Jerusalem schools to buy education materials from Israel
AIC 6 Apr — The Jerusalem Municipality is planning to force all East Jerusalem schools to purchase teaching materials from its Education Department. Palestinians perceive this as blatant intervention in the creation of Palestinian identity and yet more Judaisation of the city. East Jerusalem schools have been teaching the Palestinian curriculum implemented by the Palestinian Authority since 1998.

IOF targets journalists, medics in fresh Silwan clashes
OCCUPIED JERUSALEM, (PIC) 9 Apr — Israeli occupation forces (IOF) targeted journalists and paramedics during clashes that broke out with Palestinians after Friday prayers in the Al-Bustan community in the Jerusalem district of Silwan, the Wadi al-Halwa information center reported. The IOF troops fired random and tear gas near Shahid Samer Sarhan Street prompting civilians to respond with rocks and Molotov cocktails.
In a separate incident, Israeli bulldozers demolished two water wells and a shed belonging to Palestinians in Al-Khader village south of Bethlehem, said village councilman Mahmoud Abdullah.

Settlers torch car, assault villagers
NABLUS (Ma‘an) 9 Apr — Two incidents of Israeli settler violence were reported Saturday morning, with Urif residents waking to find a torched car and Asira villagers saying settlers entered the area and provoked a clash … Progressively overwhelming waves of settler attacks have subsided in recent weeks, falling back to average levels of vandalism and harassment

Settlers attack village, vandalize property
NABLUS, (WAFA) 9 Apr — …Meanwhile in Deir Estia, another village near Nablus, settlers and a security guard from Nofim settlement prevented farmers from reaching their land and seized their identification cards for two hours, said local residents. Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak had decided last week to approve a master plan for Nofim, which was built on private Palestinian land. Farmers are worried that settlers are planning to seize their land to expand their settlement.

Olive tree appeal for Al Farisiya
JVS 9 Apr — The village of Al Farisiya – which is surrounded by Israeli settlements – has decided to plant 2000 olive trees as soon as it is possible to do so. Each tree will cost £1, and the village is appealing to international supporters to sponsor this project. The settlements surrounding the village have gradually taken more and more land,  and planting trees will help to clearly establish the land as Palestinian. The village and JVS work together on the principle that “to exist is to resist.” … If you wish to donate by Paypal please click the ‘donate’ tab on the left.


Airstrike injures 3 in Gaza
GAZA CITY (Ma‘an) 9 Apr 20:00 — Two airstrikes injured three Palestinians late Saturday in northern Gaza, medics said, in an attack that an army spokeswoman said targeted a “squad of terrorists who had just fired missiles.” [End]

Four Hamas men killed in IDF strikes on Gaza
Haaretz/Agencies 9 Apr 05:14 — IDF strikes killed four Hamas militants and wounded half a dozen others on Saturday as Israel kept up air raids in the Gaza Strip for a third day, responding to increased rocket fire, Palestinian medics said. An Israeli air strike on a vehicle on Saturday killed a Hamas commander in the southern Gaza Strip and two of his assistants. Several hours later, another militant was killed by an IDF strike … The early morning attack brought the two-day death toll from Israel’s ongoing retaliation to 18 Gazans – 10 militants, a Hamas policeman and six civilians – amounting to the bloodiest tally since Israel and Hamas wrapped up their three-week-long war more than two years ago.

In Photos: Dozens injured Friday in Israeli strikes (graphic)

Video: Death toll rises as Israel strikes Gaza Strip
Telegraph 9 Apr — graphic

Iron Dome does it again; Gaza rockets intercepted
Ynet 9 Apr 20:15 — Watch exclusive video: IDF’s first-of-its kind anti-rocket system intercepts missile fired at Ashkelon. Assault on southern Israel continues Saturday, local communities under heavy fire as dozens of rockets, mortar shells hit area. Alert level in south raised to 3 out of 4, just short of wartime deployment

Hamas has requested a cease-fire, Israeli officials say
Haaretz 9 Apr 16:38 — The political arm of Hamas passed Israel a message on Saturday afternoon requesting a ceasefire, Israeli security sources said. According to the sources, Israel is willing to agree to the request and will wait to reevaluate its position after seeing if there is indeed a halt in rocket and mortar fire into southern Israel.

Brigades claim 22 projectiles fired since Saturday
GAZA CITY (Ma‘an) 9 Apr — Israeli military officials have reported that more than 70 rockets and mortars have been launched from Gaza since Thursday, with militant groups claiming 22 incidents of fire since midnight Friday morning.  A ceasefire was announced by Hamas at 11 p.m. on Thursday, but overnight Israeli forces bombed several locations, killing five militants, and sparking a new wave of projectile fire.

Hamas says didn’t mean to target Israeli school bus
Haaretz/Reuters 9 Apr 15:38 — Hamas said on Saturday its militants did not intend to target Israeli schoolchildren when they fired a rocket at a bus two days ago, critically wounding a teenager and moderately wounding the bus driver, in an attack that sparked the latest round of border fighting. “It was not known that the bus targeted on the outskirts of Gaza carried schoolchildren,” spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri told Reuters, adding that the road where the bus was travelling was often used by Israeli military vehicles.

Israel won’t tolerate more fire from Gaza: minister
JERUSALEM, April 9 (Reuters) – Israel intends to continue its aerial strikes on Hamas targets in the Gaza Strip to halt rocket fire at its southern towns, a member of the Israeli security cabinet said on Saturday. “We shall continue. We will not permit sporadic shootings or the disruption of life” inside Israel, Education Minister Gideon Saar told Israel Radio.

Siege / Restriction of movement

Gaza MoH says medicine shortage critical
GAZA (Ma‘an) 9 Apr 07:58 — De facto minister of health Basem Na‘im announced Saturday, after four consecutive days of crossings closure, that more than 150 kinds of medicines have run out at the ministry’s warehouses.  Beyond medicines, he said from a news conference at Gaza City’s Ash-Shifa Hospital, spare parts for medical equipment are sparse, with some machines inoperable due to lack of available maintenance.
Na‘im called Israel’s recent strikes on Gaza “planned in advance,” noting the strikes which killed civilians on Thursday and Friday, and a shelling that damaged an ambulance and injured crew members. The official called on Egypt to open the Rafah crossing so patients could exit for treatment, and medical supplies be brought in. News outlets called Friday the deadliest day since Israel launched its Operation Cast Lead in the winter of 2008-9. Since Thursday afternoon, 17 have been killed and another 60 injured, 12 critically, flooding Gaza hospitals with patients.

High Court upholds Israeli policy limiting Palestinians’ access to own lands
AIC 6 Apr — Israel’s High Court upheld Israeli policy requiring Palestinians to receive permits to access their own lands bordering or just beyond the Separation Wall. This discriminatory policy, which allows unlimited access by Israelis while severely limiting that of Palestinians, aims to eventually force Palestinians to leave this area. The Israeli High Court rejected on Tuesday, 5 April a petition filed by the Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI) and HaMoked: Center for the Defense of the Individual against the government and the military for upholding the “permit regime.”


Israeli soldiers raid Tulkarem
TULKAREM, April 7, 2011 (WAFA) – Israeli soldiers raided Thursday the villages of Kufur Jamal and Aboush, south of Tulkarem, according to local residents.  Army vehicles drove through the village of Kufur Jamal while intelligence officers photographed a house.  Sources said this is not the first time soldiers do this. Previously, they broke into one house, held its residents outside for several hours and photographed it, claiming it was built on a grave of a Jewish woman who had died before the First World War.

PA condemns sweeping raids in Itamar investigation
RAMALLAH (Ma‘an) 9 Apr — The Palestinian Authority’s media center issued a condemnation Friday, for what spokesman Ghassan Khatib called “the incessant abuse campaigns held by the Israeli occupation army, against the people of Awarta village.” The statement was issued the day an estimated 100 women, many in their 60s, were taken forcibly from their homes in the village, along with an unknown number of men, and subjected to DNA testing at a nearby military base. The mass round up was the fourth, and largest such act targeting the villagers.


Administrative detention of prisoner Dudeen extended for 13th time
Al-KHALIL, (PIC) 9 Apr — Al-Ahrar center for prisoners’ studies and human rights said an Israeli court extended the administrative detention of Ayed Dudeen from Dura village in Al-Khalil city, for the 13th consecutive time. Director of the center Fouad Al-Khafsh said prisoner Dudeen is the oldest administrative detainee in Israeli jails and was kidnapped on October 19, 2007. Khafsh affirmed that the Israeli higher court in recent times offered the prisoner his freedom in exchange for his exile, but he preferred to stay in prison. He noted that Dudeen, a father of six kids, was kidnapped five times before during which he spent 13 years behind bars. Prisoner Dudeen is a paramedic for the Red Crescent society and still acts as a deputy director of the ambulance and emergency service in Al-Khalil city.

Shin Bet: Israel smashed Hamas terror ring in Jerusalem area
Haaretz 7 Apr — The Shin Bet security service said Thursday that a Hamas cell believed to have planned terror attacks was arrested in Jerusalem last month, during a joint operation with Israel Police. Details of the arrests had previously been subject to a gag order. The five-strong cell, whose members are all residents of the Zur Bahar village in East Jerusalem, has allegedly been active since Cast Lead, the Israel Defense Forces operation in the Gaza Strip during the winter of 2008-2009.

Activism / Solidarity / BDS

Watch: Brutal arrest of protesters in Nabi Saleh
9 Apr — The demonstrations against the Occupation in Nabi Saleh have experienced major setbacks in recent months. The demonstrations been taking place for over one year despite serious military repression. The two leaders of the community, Bassem and Naji Tamimi, have both been arrested by Israeli soldiers along with 12 percent of the total population of the village. The demonstration yesterday saw eight people arrested among reckless and violent Israeli army behaviour.

Trial for Rachel Corrie continues with contradictory military testimony
AIC 7 Apr — The trial for Rachel Corrie, the International Solidarity Mission (ISM) activist killed in Gaza by an Israeli bulldozer in 2003, continued in the Israeli city of Haifa this week. Israeli military commanders provided contradictory testimonies and strong evidence of Israeli military negligence in protecting Rachel’s life.

Egyptians march on Israeli embassy
[VIDEO here ] Ynet/AP 9 Apr — Arab newspaper says protesters burned Israeli flags, handed out fliers calling for third intifada to be held on Nakba Day … more than 1,000 marched on the Israeli Embassy, angered by strikes on the Gaza Strip earlier in the day, and pushed for Egypt’s new rulers to close the mission and stop Egypt’s natural gas exports to Israel.  The protesters demanded cutting all diplomatic and financial ties with Israel and opening the Rafah crossing between Egypt and Gaza.

Quakers ban West Bank settler goods
Jewish Chronicle 7 Apr — British Quakers have voted to boycott goods from “illegal” Israeli settlements in the West Bank. Representatives of the pacifist movement’s 23,000 supporters said that the decision, taken at a meeting last Saturday, would give hope to Palestinians and those working for peace in Israel … British Quakers prepare volunteers for a World Council of Churches scheme intended to help “end the Israeli occupation” and bring about “a just peace based on international law”. More than a hundred volunteers for the Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel have been trained since 2002.Their new policy also reflects the growing influence of the Kairos Document, a call for action by Palestinian Christians which endorses a boycott of “everything produced by the Occupation”.

Mock walls at US universities target pro-Israel policies
Providence RI, USA (WAFA) 9 Apr — Students at Brown University in Rhode Island Friday erected a wall in the middle of their campus to highlight the separation wall Israel is building in the occupied Palestinian territories. The wall had the same name as the wall which divided the University of Arizona campus for 10 days last month, and which was erected to protest US government support for Israel and the Israeli settlements in the Palestinian Territory. 

French football legend to visit occupied Palestinian territory
JERUSALEM, (WAFA) 7 Apr — French football star Lilian Thuram will visit the occupied Palestinian territory on Monday in support of the education program funded by France through the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), Thursday said an UNRWA press release. At the Qalandia refugee camp, Lilian will see first hand the realities of life for Palestinian children under Israeli occupation. After a brief tour, he’ll visit the local UNRWA school for a friendly match with some of the camp’s young footballers.


‘Boycott campaign has no traction in Australian business’
JPost 6 Apr — The visiting head of the Business Council of Australia says the boycott campaign against Israel is “a complete and utter joke” that is being ignored by the Australian business community. “It has no credibility,” Graham Bradley, who is leading one of the highest-level Australian trade delegations ever to visit the country, told The Jerusalem Post Wednesday … The campaign against Israel has hit the headlines in Australia in recent weeks, after federal senator-elect Lee Rhiannon, of the left-wing Greens Party, pushed for a boycott to become Greens national policy.

Israeli bus company wins 8-year contract to provide Amsterdam transport services
AIC 7 Apr — Israel’s Egged bus company has won an 8-year bid to provide bus service for the city of Amsterdam. The contract, which includes an optional two-year extension, is said to be worth some €500 million (about $700 million).  “This win is a breakthrough for us, as this is our first chance to provide public transportation services in a Western European country,” said the Egged chairman Gideon Mizrahi.

Other news

UN chief to Peres: I will not retract the Goldstone report
Haaretz/dpa 8 Apr — UN General Secretary Ban Ki-moon refuses to retract the contested report, despite its authors renouncement of its allegations; President Shimon Peres tells Ban ‘UN cannot remain neutral in light of the rockets fired from Gaza to Israel.’

UNRWA workers in East Jerusalem on hunger strike
AIC 7 Apr — 22 warehouse employees of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (URNWA) have been on a hunger strike for ten days already in protest of their working conditions … The workers complain that UNRWA uses the funds intended for payment of local workers in order to employ international staff members, who receive substantially higher salaries than their local counterparts.

Worldwide Jewish communities plan TV news network to support Israel and compete against Al Jazeera
MEMO 8 Apr — Jewish community groups have announced a plan to launch a global TV news network to support Israel and compete against international satellite channels which they believe are “hostile” to the Zionist state, especially Qatar-based Al Jazeera. Alexander Machkevitch, President of the Annual Conference for Jewish Community Leaders, made the announcement at the 2011 conference being held in Washington.

the light side – this is really clever
Online Exodus – Give Moses a like
VIDEO – If Moses had Internet access, a Facebook profile and basic knowledge of English, this is probably what the Exodus would look like.


Bahrain’s secret Mossad ties revealed?
Ynet 8 Apr — New Wikileaks cables expose classified documents that include evidence of alleged cooperation between Persian Gulf state and Israeli intelligence agency

Haaretz WikiLeaks exclusive: Netanyahu’s ‘friend’ Sarkozy tried to dodge the PM
8 Apr — In their report of a June 2009 meeting between the French president and the Israeli premier − who claim to be friends − French officials said Sarkozy tried to avoid a tête-à-tête with his guest.


Iraq: Lack of mine maps hinders demining
BAGHDAD, 6 Apr (IRIN) – Lack of detailed mine maps in Iraq and the current political instability have hampered mine-clearance efforts, officials say. “Iraq is one of the most contaminated countries in the world,” Deputy Environment Minister Kamal Hussein Latif said. “It has nearly a quarter of the world’s landmines and that has become a heavy legacy hindering economic development and health.” Landmines have been laid in Iraq since the 1960s by various governments fighting pro-independence Kurdish rebels in the north; during the 1980-88 Iraq-Iran war; and in the years prior to the 2003 US-led invasion.


The ‘Arab spring’ uprisings of 2011 are being hailed in Washington as the ‘Al-Jazeera moment’
Telegraph 9 Apr – Walking back from the White House this week, Abderrahim Foukara, Washington bureau chief for Al-Jazeera television, could have been forgiven for pinching himself. He’d just met senior aides to President Barack Obama who had lavished praise on the Arab television network.

About Kate

American; political science major, M.A.; former ISM volunteer in the West Bank

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