Two Israeli policemen face charges after striking kidney patient with rifles at roadblock

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 Two Israeli Policemen Face Charges Of Abusing A Kidney Patient
Israeli paper, Yedioth Aharonoth, reported that two Israeli Policemen are facing charges after they abused and humiliated a Palestinian kidney patient, including hitting him with their rifles, at a military roadblock in the occupied West Bank.

Border Guards indicted for abusing Palestinian
Indictment filed against two former officers paints picture of abuse against Palestinian at checkpoint. ‘I was severely beaten all over my body,’ victim says.,7340,L-4313554,00.html
Land Theft & Destruction / Ethnic Cleansing / Restriction of Movement / Apartheid & Occupation
Jerusalemite family forced to demolish own home
The Israeli-controlled municipality of occupied Jerusalem has forced the Dabash family to tear down its own house in Sour Baher village, south of occupied Jerusalem.
IOF destroys completely three mosques, damages 64 others during the aggression
The Minister of Awqaf and Religious Affairs in Gaza, Ismail Radwan, confirmed that the occupation destroyed completely three mosques during the recent aggression on the Gaza Strip.

Israeli forces prevented villagers in Jenin from performing morning prayers on Wednesday, locals said. Soldiers raided the village of Meithalun early Wednesday and stationed themselves outside two mosques in the east and west of the village, witnesses told Ma’an. The soldiers told villagers arriving for morning prayers to return home and checked several people’s identity cards. No detentions were reported.


Israeli forces late Wednesday set up a roadblock at the eastern entrance of Yaabad village southwest of Jenin in the occupied West Bank, locals said. The obstruction prevented cars from traveling in the area for four hours. The incident was the fourth of its kind since Wednesday. Previous checkpoints were set up Thursday afternoon at both rush hours and late Wednesday. Residents said they were using rugged alternative routes to reach the village.

Gaza / Israeli & Egyptian Siege on Gaza

PCHR Statement On Ongoing Attacks Against Palestinian Fishermen In Gaza
The Continued Attacks against Palestinian Fishermen Prove False Israeli Claims of Permitting Fishermen to Fish up to 6 Nautical Miles.

Tunisian Health Minister Arrives In Gaza
Tunisian Health Minister, Dr. Abdul-Latif Al-Makky, arrived in the Gaza Strip on Wednesday evening, heading a medical team in addition to the Tunisian Ambassador in Cairo, and were welcomed by the Palestinian Health Minister in Gaza, Dr. Mofeed Al-Mkhallalaty, and several health officials.

Egypt to allow construction materials into Gaza through Rafah
The Minister of Public Works and Housing in Gaza has announced that a memorandum of understanding will be signed next week to allow construction materials through the Rafah border crossing into the beleaguered territory. Yousef Algharez made the announcement at the end of his meeting with his Egyptian counterpart, Tarek Wafik, on Wednesday, during which the two discussed the practicalities of getting the much-needed materials and equipment through Rafah.

Gazan doctors calm after the storm
GAZA CITY—After eight days of bombing, shelling and terror brought on by Israel in its so-called “Operation Pillar of Defense,” doctors in Gaza were finally able to rest this weekend.

Children Face the Fallout of Gaza War, Mel Frykberg
GAZA CITY — As Israel and Hamas separately celebrate the ceasefire and their “victory” over the other following Israel’s blistering eight-day military assault on the Gaza strip, civilians continue to pay the price. According to the Palestine Center for Human Rights (PCHR), more than 160 Palestinians lost their lives by Nov. 21, the last day of the bloody confrontation between the world’s third most powerful military and Palestinian fighters. The dead included at least 103 civilians, 33 of them children. More than a thousand Palestinians were wounded, including 971 civilians — 274 of them children.
Gaza’s children suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder
The repeated exposure to violence has left many of Gaza’s children suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder. Children, who account for more than half of the 1.7 million people in Gaza, have been back to school, but there is still a long way for them to be back to normal.

By unleashing Hamas’ rage this November, Israel was able to justify an offensive designed at least in part to begin engineering conditions conducive to its control of Gaza’s offshore gas reserves, states Nafeez Mosaddeq Ahmed.
Israeli Terrorism / Violence / Aggression

Israeli military vehicles crossed near the al-Qarara town northeast of Khan Younis on Thursday in a new breach of the Gaza ceasefire, a Ma’an reporter said. Two military bulldozers crossed 200 meters inside agriculture lands but did not open fire. An Israeli army spokesman confirmed there was “routine IDF activity” in the area.


Israeli forces opened fire and injured a Palestinian man east of Jabaliya on Thursday, medics said. Wahid al-Fasis, 20, was shot in the Tal Abu Safayeh area and transferred to Awdeh hospital, medics said. An Israeli army spokesman said forces fired “in accordance with the rules of engagement” after a group of Palestinians approached a border fence “acting violently” and tried to damage it.

Eight Palestinian citizens wounded in IOF shooting
Israeli occupation forces (IOF) fired at Palestinian citizens who went to check out on their land to the east of Maghazi and Breij refugee camps in central Gaza Strip on Wednesday evening.

A member of Hamas’ military wing died Thursday from wounds sustained during Israel’s latest assault on the Gaza Strip, the group said. The al-Qassam Brigades announced the death of Hosam al-Hums, from Rafah, and said he was being treated in Egypt for serious injuries sustained in an Israeli airstrike.


Elderly farmer Ibrahim Abu Nasr was determined to harvest his last two olive trees, despite ongoing Israeli airstrikes on the Gaza Strip last Wednesday. The ceasefire between Israel and Gaza militants would come into effect just nine hours later. But as Ibrahim, 80, began prayers in the olive grove in Abassan village, east of Khan Younis in south Gaza, an Israeli missile struck the site. His 15-year-old granddaughter Amira was bringing him lunch at that moment, and was also killed when she was hit by shrapnel.

Border Guards indicted for abusing Palestinian
Indictment filed against two former officers paints picture of abuse against Palestinian at checkpoint. ‘I was severely beaten all over my body,’ victim says.,7340,L-4313554,00.html

Two Israeli Policemen Face Charges Of Abusing A Kidney Patient
Israeli paper, Yedioth Aharonoth, reported that two Israeli Policemen are facing charges after they abused and humiliated a Palestinian kidney patient, including hitting him with their rifles, at a military roadblock in the occupied West Bank.


Jewish settlers vandalize Palestinian cars under IOF protection
Dozens of Jewish settlers attacked the Sinjil village, north of Ramallah, under Israeli military protection and vandalized 26 Palestinian cars.


This is the third in a series of journal entries documenting life in Gaza during Israel’s Operation Pillar of Cloud. Previous entries can be readhere. November 16: Hearing the echoes of massive explosions caused by F-16 fighter jets bombing Rafah was the sign that it was a new day of atrocity. It was Friday, Nov. 16. Waking, all I cared about was a careful checkup trip among my family members to comfort my anguished soul by knowing they are safe. Next, thorough scrutiny of news channels and websites with a doubtful hope that the international community might have intervened with decisions of ceasefire, or decisions that would stop the vivid nightmare of an unmerciful war. I was disappointed to find out that Israel announced a reinforcement of troops on the Gaza Strip’s border and the civilian death toll had risen morosely. “What does that escalation mean? Is it possibly a preparation for a long-term war? Is Israel preparing for a ground invasion?” I hoped not as I terrifyingly stepped on that ladder of endless questions.

Illegal Arrests

Report: IOF arrests 10 thousand Palestinian women since 1948
A Palestinian organization called on humanitarian institutions and international human rights organizations to support the Palestinian female prisoners and work for their release from Israeli jails.

BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Israeli naval forces detained Palestinian fishermen off the coast of the Gaza Strip on Thursday, according to the Israeli army and rights groups., Six men aboard a boat around 5 nautical miles off Beit Lahiya in north Gaza were seized and investigated at gunpoint, the Palestinian Center for Human Rights said., The group identified the detainees as boat-owner Fahed Ziad Baker, 38, Ihab Jawad Baker, 36, Mohammad Ziad Baker, 32, Naim Fahed Baker, 16, Ziad Faged Baker, 18 and Ali Alaa Baker, 18.
Israeli Occupation Forces detained three Jerusalemites during clashes
Jerusalem. On Tuesday night the Israeli occupation forces detained three Jerusalemites among them youths, during clashed that sparked in the neighborhood of Silwan, East of Jerusalem.

IOF soldiers arrest four Palestinians in Al-Khalil
Israeli occupation forces (IOF) rounded up four Palestinians in Al-Khalil city and its nearby village of Yatta at dawn Thursday.

Other Prisoner News

An Israeli military court has issued charges against a Palestinian human rights researcher that relate to his participation in public occasions, Addameer said Wednesday. The list of charges refers to Ayman Nasser’s involvement in the annual Prisoners Day activities in 2011 and 2012, solidarity work during prisoners’ hunger strikes, and attending the anniversary of the killing of PFLP leader Abu Ali Mustafa, the group said. Nasser, 42, has been working as a researcher for Addameer since 2008, and is also a part-time lecturer in social work at Al-Quds University. He was detained in an Israeli army dawn raid on his hometown of Saffa, near Ramallah, on Oct. 15. Addameer’s legal director Mahmoud Hassan said the charges are “a desperate attempt to convict popular and official solidarity with the prisoners’ issue.”

AOHR in the UK stated that they received a complaint letter from the liberated prisoner Khadr Sarkaji’s family stating that their son is held in solitary confinement since his arrest.

Four Palestinian prisoners go on hunger strike until their release
Four Palestinian prisoners, who were taken from their homes in the recent Israeli military arrest campaign in the West Bank, have declared they would go on hunger strike until their release.


Prisoners’ center calls for supporting hunger strikers
Palestinian center for prisoners’ studies considered supporting Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails, particularly the hunger strikers, a legitimate national and moral duty.

Protests / Solidarity / Activism / BDS
Yesterday, Alex Kane reported on an anonymously sourced story from the Jewish Telegraphic Agency saying Stevie Wonder was set to pull out of a December 6 fundraiser for the Friends of the Israeli Defense Force (FIDF). The story has now been confirmed in a press release issued by the FIDF.

Today President Mahmoud Abbas will go before the UN General Assembly to request Palestinian observer status in the UN. Abbas’ initiative is an important step toward ending the oppression and the unstable situation in the region. When UNESCO voted on a Palestinian membership in 2011, Sweden was one of 14 countries that voted against it. The Swedish conservative/liberal government has also been divided on the issue of upgrading the Palestinian status in the UN. The Palestinian people have lived under oppression and occupation for too long. SSU, the Social Democratic Youth of Sweden, demands that the Swedish government supports the Palestinians by voting in favor of their request for observer status at the UN. Peace and freedom between Israel and Palestine can only be reached through a free and independent Palestinian state. As part of a peaceful solution we also welcome all demands, from among others our mother party – the Social Democratic Party of Sweden – to label Israeli settlements products. However, we as young Social Democrats want to go one step further. We want to see a total boycott of all settlement products.

Anti-Israel group hacks UN server
The UN nuclear agency says one of its computer servers was hacked by an anti-Israeli group which published the contact details of nuclear experts.

Communities in the Jordan Valley and South Hebron Hills are in grave risk of being entirely expelled from their traditional homelands. They are therefore calling on people of conscience to join them in solidarity with their struggle to remain. The March Freedom Ride will provide people from all over Palestine and abroad with this opportunity.

Join Us to Deliver 30,000 Signatures of Support to Church Leaders
Tomorrow is the UN International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. We and our friends at Kairos USA will be delivering more than 30,000 signatures of support to the 15 courageous church leaders who called on Congress to investigate Israel’s misuse of U.S. weapons.

Students for Justice in Palestine held a silent protest on the Quad on Tuesday in opposition of what the group’s president called a “disproportionate use of force and indiscriminate fire” by Israel. The organization was protesting to raise awareness among college students about the conflict in Gaza, said Tariq Shihadah, president of SJP and sophomore in DGS. About 24 people attended the protest, he said. “We’re just trying to present objective information as well as an often-forgotten perspective,” he said. “We’re trying to expose the seriousness of the injustice that’s been happening in Gaza and Palestine at large.” Shihadah said the majority of the estimated casualties in Gaza were civilians and many were minors, while Israel had substantially fewer casualties.

Yesterday marked the commencement of the World Social Forum for a Free Palestine, held in Porto Alegre, Brazil. The global mobilisation is aimed at strengthening solidarity with the Palestinian people through diverse activities which encourage debate and the formulating of effective proposals. Today is the 65th anniversary of the UN General Assembly Palestine Partition Resolution, presided over by Brazil, which led to the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians from their land.

New study reveals Ikea representatives possibly knew that political prisoners were used in East Germany. Today, Ikea knows it is complicit with unlawful Israeli acts.

Yaman sent me this:  ”This is amazing, it’s like those televized confessions where they admit they were wrong all along in exchange for freedom. Now academics, lifelong thinkers, have to admit they weren’t thinking before and publicly renounce support for divestment before they can be university administrators! Now we know the cowardice Israel relies on for support.”


Israeli Racism & Discrimination

West Bank and East Jerusalem buses are already segregated,  Mya Guarnieri
Yes, the suggestion to segregate buses is disgusting. But it shouldn’t overshadow the fact that, if we consider Israel/Palestine as one continuous territory under a system that privileges Jewish Israelis, there is already de facto bus segregation on the ground in occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank.

Political Developments / Other News

Turkey’s prime minister says he may visit the Gaza Strip alongside Hamas’s supreme leader, Khaled Mashaal. Recep Tayyip Erdogan told a group of Turkish journalists on Tuesday that he could spring a “surprise” and join Qatar-based Mashaal if he visits Gaza next month. Mashaal has invited the Turkish leader, who has cultivated close ties to Hamas and has long announced his intention to visit Gaza. Erdogan’s comments were reported by state-run TRT television on Wednesday.


“If It Not For Iran, Gazans Wouldn’t Achieve Victory”


Hamas will launch its 25th anniversary celebrations on Dec. 8, spokesman Fawzi Barhoum said Thursday. ”The celebration this year will be different than any time before,” Barhoum said at a news conference outside the home of the late Hamas founder and spiritual leader Sheikh Ahmed Yassin. Barhoum said the anniversary festival would celebrate what is being hailed locally as a victory of the resistance against Israel in the recent eight-day war.


The Hamas government in Gaza will not release detainees linked to its battle with Fatah if they are accused of murder, a security source in Gaza told Ma’an. The authorities in Gaza and the West Bank both pledged last week to free political prisoners in order to ease the reconciliation process, which has repeatedly stumbled during five years of divided governments. A committee established by the Gaza government has started reviewing names of Fatah affiliates in jail and those who fled the coastal strip after the parties split amid vicious fighting in 2007. But anyone linked to killings during the fighting will not be part of the amnesty, the security official said Wednesday. It was not immediately possible to verify how many prisoners and exiles this would exclude.


Kuwait on Thursday transferred $50 million to support the Palestinian Authority’s budget, Kuwaiti media reported. Kuwait’s envoy to the Arab League Jamal al-Ghunaim told Kuwait News Agency the financial aid would help the PA face economic pressure from Israel.

Resistance’s Rockets Able to Shower all Palestine, “Ayyoub” Major Element
Questions about the Islamic resistance’s rockets increase after the new equation that Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah founded in his speech on the tenth day of Ashoura.

Seven Palestinians who were accused of spying for Israel and publicly executed during the latest assault on Gaza were already in jail when the war started, and several had been held for more than a year. Masked gunmen shot the alleged collaborators in two public attacks at the height of Israel’s eight-day bombardment of Gaza, killing one person on Nov. 16 and another six people on Nov. 20.  At the time, security officials said one man had confessed to aiding Israel while the six others “were caught red-handed” and “possessed hi-tech equipment and filming equipment to take footage of positions.” A Ma’an review of publicly available records as well as interviews with experts in Gaza show that all of these men had been in the custody of the Hamas government for months and in one case years before Israel launched its “Pillar of Cloud” operation.

Morsi: What do we have to lose with Palestine?
Egyptian president stresses need for Mideast stability, says Egypt is helping Palestinians gain foothold.
UN Bid
An overwhelming 138 states supported the resolution, nine states against and 41 states abstained.

The UN General Assembly overwhelmingly approved a resolution on Thursday to upgrade Palestine to a “non-member state” at the United Nations, implicitly recognizing a Palestinian state. There were 138 votes in favor, nine against and 41 abstentions. Addressing the assembly in New York ahead of the vote, President Mahmoud Abbas said the UN bid was the last chance to save the two-state solution.

Wave of EU “yes” votes heightens confidence in UN bid

Five EU states have said they will back the Palestinian Authority’s bid to enhance its status at the United Nations, defying mounting pressure from the US and Israel to oppose the move. The UK has said it would abstain because of “an absence of assurances” that the Palestinians would return to negotiations. Germany said it would not back the vote. It is unclear, however, whether the EU financial powerhouse would vote “no” or abstain. Spain, Norway, Denmark, Switzerland and France announced Tuesday and Wednesday that they would vote “Yes” when the Palestinian request for partial statehood is put before the UN’s General Assembly on Friday. Australia has said it will abstain from the vote after discussions about the bid divided the center-left government.


Former prime minister Ehud Olmert has come out in favor of the Palestinian Authority’s bid for nonmember state status at the UN, bucking Jerusalem’s steadfast opposition to the move. In a letter to Israeli-American writer Bernard Avishai published in The Daily Beast early Thursday, Olmert says the Palestinians’ request runs in line with the two-state solution concept and will help move talks along.“The Palestinian request from the United Nations is congruent with  the basic concept of the two-state solution. Therefore, I see no reason to oppose it,” he wrote. Ramallah has vowed to go ahead with the resolution on Thursday, despite heavy pressure from the US and Israel to drop the gambit.

The UN General Assembly is set to vote on upgrading the Palestinian status, but the the BBC’s Jon Donnison suggests the move will have little impact on the ground.

The US made a last-ditch effort Wednesday to convince the Palestinian Authority to pull back from a statehood gambit at the United Nations, sending two senior envoys to meet with PA head Mahmoud Abbas in New York. By all accounts, though, the Palestinians remain committed to asking for world body for nonmember state status on Thursday, and have gained powerful European support as  a bulwark against any Israeli reprisals for the move. The US deputy secretary of state, William Burns, met with Abbas in New York on Wednesday, asking Abbas again to drop the idea and promising that President Barack Obama would re-engage as a mediator in 2013, said Abbas aide Saeb Erekat. Abbas told Burns it was too late.


The Palestinian Authority foreign ministry said Thursday it would re-evaluate ties with countries that oppose Palestine’s bid to upgrade its status at the UN. A ministry statement said the Palestinians hoped foreign countries would not only vote to upgrade Palestine’s status but also pressure Israel to abide by the terms of the peace process. The ministry thanked countries that have already indicated they will support the bid when it comes up for a vote at the General Assembly later Thursday.

Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard is facing blowback from Jewish and pro-Israel groups after being forced to support an abstention in the UN ahead of Thursday’s vote on Palestinian statehood. Jewish groups in the country have asked for a sit down with Gillard following her announcement Tuesday that Australia would not vote against Palestine receiving nonmember state status at the United Nations, the country’s National Times reported Thursday. The Israeli Embassy is also reportedly angry with the move. Gillard, a normally staunch supporter of Israel, had pushed for a “no” vote, but came under heavy pressure from other politicians inside her own party, reportedly led by Foreign Minister Bob Carr, to vote “yes” or abstain, according to the news outlet. On Tuesday, Gillard reaffirmed her commitment to Israel in parliament, in a bid to blunt some of the negative reaction to the vote.

Senior German official says Germany tried to help Israel on Palestinian issue for a long time, but it has not taken necessary steps to advance peace; Italy, Sweden will aslo support Palestinians at UN.
Israel / American Reactions to UN Bid

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu condemned President Mahmoud Abbas’s strong critique of Israel in his speech at the United Nations on Thursday as “hostile and poisonous”, and full of “false propaganda”. ”These are not the words of a man who wants peace,” Netanyahu also said in a statement released by his office after Abbas spoke at the General Assembly ahead of an expected vote to implicitly recognize Palestinian statehood.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday said the Palestinians had to recognize Israel as a Jewish state and prepare to end the conflict with Israel. ”Israel is prepared to live in peace with a Palestinian state, but for peace to endure, Israel’s security must be protected. The Palestinians must recognize the Jewish state and they must be prepared to end the conflict with Israel once and for all,” he said in remarks in Jerusalem.


Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said Wednesday that Palestine’s bid to upgrade its status at the UN “pushes both sides further apart.” In New York, Lieberman said that “Even though the Palestinians are guaranteed a majority of the votes in their favor, in reality they will end up being the greatest losers.” ”This move only enhances the dispute and pushes both sides further apart,” he said, according to Israel’s Ynet news site.

Official: Palestine established on PM, Lieberman’s watch
Day before UN expected to approve non-member state status for Palestinians, top Israeli official says ‘when Lieberman butts heads with Abbas, this is the result.’ MK Tibi: Historic event ahead of independent Palestinian state.
Labor Party chairwoman Shelly Yachimovich slammed the ruling government and the Palestinian Authority Thursday for getting to the point where Ramallah felt it needed to turn to the UN to push forward the two state solution. Yachimovich spoke to Channel 10 as some 60,000 party members took to the polls to determine Labor’s slate in the January general election. Saying that any unilateral measure was problematic, she also chided Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for not preventing the move. “Every political process needs to be a dialogue,” she said. “it’s a shame that we got to this point.”


A bipartisan group of senators warned the Palestinians on Thursday that millions in US financial aid and its Washington office are in jeopardy if they use upgraded UN status against Israel. Hours before the expected UN vote to admit Palestine as a nonmember state, four senators called the move provocative and introduced legislation threatening to cutoff US assistance. “The biggest fear I have is that the Palestinians achieve this status it won’t be very long before the Palestinians use the United Nations as a club against Israel,” said Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C. The measure, which the lawmakers plan to offer as an amendment to a far-reaching defense bill, would cut off assistance to the Palestinian Authority if they file charges against Israel in the International Criminal Court. As a nonmember state in the UN, the Palestinians could join the court and press war crime charges against Israel.


The United States called on the Palestinians and Israelis on Thursday to resume peace talks after the UN General Assembly overwhelmingly approved a resolution that implicitly recognized a Palestinian state. ”The United States calls upon both the parties to resume direct talks, without preconditions, on all the issues that divide them and we pledge that the United States will be there to support the parties vigorously in such efforts,” US Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice said. ”The United States will continue to urge all parties to avoid any further provocative actions in the region, in New York or elsewhere,” she said after voting against the resolution.

Analysis / Op-ed / Human Interest

The convulsions of the Arab Spring may be driving the American public’s support for Israel to new highs, according to a poll released Wednesday by the Washington-based group The Israel Project. Americans who say the United States should support the Jewish state in the conflict with the Palestinians increased from 60 percent a year ago to 68% today, a survey of voters taken November 6-8 by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner has found. Those who said they supported the Palestinians dropped from 8% to 7% in that time.


Violent protests that shocked Jordan this month have mostly subsided, but unprecedented chants for the “fall of the regime” suggested a deeper malaise in a kingdom so far spared the revolts reshaping the Arab world. Anger over fuel subsidy cuts undoubtedly drove the unrest, in which police shot dead one man during a confrontation at a police station. The government’s planned electricity price rises starting next year may well ignite more popular fury. King Abdullah has made some constitutional reforms and his counselors say turnout at a parliamentary poll in January will test public support for the pace of political change amid an acute financial crisis that has forced Jordan to go to the IMF. However, the model that has kept Jordan relatively stable for decades is cracking, nowhere more so than in the tribal East Bank provinces long seen as the bedrock of support for the Hashemite monarchy installed here by Britain in 1921.


Palestine UN bid and Arafat exhumation: Ali Abunimah on WBEZ’s Worldview, Ali Abunimah
Will today’s UN vote help the Palestinian cause or set it back?
The General’s Son traces how an Israeli liberated himself from racism.

Editor: Following the recent controversy over the New York Times correspondent’s statements  about Palestinian culture, we asked Pamela Olson, the American author of Fast Times in Palestine, how she had dealt with issues of culture shock as a western woman when she went to Palestine. Her response follows.
There was some culture shock, of course, but by the the time I went to the Middle East I had spent time in about two dozen countries, so I was used to acclimating to other people’s contexts.  A lot of things were new, and some were irritating or perplexing at first, but I knew better than to make snap judgments of others based on a mix of ignorance and my own particular sensibilities.  Plus my impressions were overshadowed by how kind and welcoming people were, and how politically aware they were compared to Americans.  

Jewish Voice for Peace video seeks to explain the conflict in 6 minutes, pass it along. “What would happen if you built a refuge for a persecuted people in a place where another people already lived?” Persecuted Jewish refugees from Europe found a home; another group of refugees was created. Israeli expansion has created “Jewish only cities” in an occupation that is “permanent and entirely unjust.” And Israel has bombed a captive population in Gaza. “All to gain maximum land.”


Gordon sent me this:  ”The recent radio 4 program More or Less looks at the use and abuse of statistics. Tim Harford quoted a tweet from an IDF spokesman “Unbelievable but true 111 Israelis injured today.”   He looked into the numbers of Israelis treated by the ambulance service on that day & there were in fact 112 but the definition of injury is interesting: 3 shrapnel, 27 hurt while running for cover and 82 for ‘shock’.   I wonder if anybody was counting the ‘shock’ victims in Gaza?
Harford gave the only meaningful figure up to that day (before the ceasefire) which was deaths: Israelis 5 Palestinians 162.”


Israel’s War on Palestinian Children, VIJAY PRASHAD
On 18 November, the Israeli armed forces bombed a house and killed the al-Dalou family, all ten members that were present and two neighbors. When the dust and fires settled, it became clear that amongst the dead were five children and five women. Among them was Mohammed Jamal al-Dalou, 29, who his neighbors said worked at a grocery store. The Israeli military (IDF) said at the time that there was an error: either its ground operatives failed to laser-paint the correct target or its munitions misfired (as reported by Gili Cohen at Ha’aretz). Hamdi Shaqqura of the Palestine Centre for Human Rights in Gaza noted, “There is now a complete disregard for human life, shown by the attack on the Dalou family home in the middle of a residential area. This was not the home of a militant.”

Why do Israeli pollsters, media ignore the Palestinians?,  Noam Sheizaf
Underneath a new Knesset election poll published today by Haaretz, there was a surprising disclaimer: “due to lack of time, the Arab parties weren’t surveyed.” The reference is to the three non-Zionist and mostly Palestinian Knesset parties: Ra’am-Ta’al, Balad and Hadash, which were nowhere to be found in the charts Haaretz published. Together, they have 11 Knesset seats, including one held by a Jewish member of Hadash. Some polls published in the Israeli media tend to group those parties into one entry, titled “Arab parties.” At other times, they ignore them completely. Often pollsters do include Palestinian citizens in their surveys but the media organization that publishes the results groups or ignores them.

“We do aid not politics”, has been the traditional mantra of the mainstream humanitarian community. But that division is not always easy to maintain, perhaps nowhere more so than for those working in the occupied Palestinian territory, something that was brought into sharp relief by the recent seven-day bombardment of the Gaza Strip. NGOs such as Oxfam quickly condemned the escalation, saying that “real security for people in Gaza and southern Israel comes when all parties to the conflict put people before politics.” But if politics is recognized as the problem, then can humanitarians ignore it in their search for solutions? For some, the line between humanitarian aid and political advocacy is increasingly blurred.

Perpetual Conflict by Israeli Design, GRAHAM PEEBLES
And so for a moment or two the slaughter of Palestinian civilians and the destruction in Gaza City has ceased; the oppression, intimidation and terror throughout the Occupied Palestinian Territories though continues unabated. The ‘Pillar of Cloud’ has done its destructive work and blown over, until the next time Israel feels the urge to wreak chaos, kill civilians and tear families apart. How many times must we watch this slaughter, how many more tears will be shed, lives ruined, futures denied, as the peace activist Izzeldin Abuelaish in The Observer 18/11/2012 asks “How many more massacres can Palestinians stand? How many can onlookers tolerate?”

Israeli Terror: The “Final Solution” to the Palestine Question, James Petras

For the past forty-five years the state of Israel has been dispossessing millions of Palestinians living in the Occupied Territories, confiscating their lands, destroying homes, bulldozing orchards and setting-up ‘Jews-only’ colonial settlements serviced by highways, electrical systems and water works for the exclusive use of the settlers and occupying soldiers. The process of Israeli territorial expansion throughout the West Bank and East Jerusalem has greatly accelerated in recent years, converting Palestinian-held territory into non-viable isolated enclaves – like South Africa’s Bantustans – surrounded by the Israeli soldiers who protect violent settler-vigilantes as they assault and harass Palestinian farmers at work in their fields, beat Arab children on their way to school, pelt Palestinian housewives as they hang their laundry and then invade and defecate in Palestinian mosques and churches.

The confidence scam that Israel and the United States have been running on the Palestinians, of a “peace process,” is finally about to meet a well-deserved demise. There are now over 600,000 Israeli settlers on the Occupied Palestinian territory of the West Bank (including the areas unilaterally annexed by Israel to its ‘district of Jerusalem’).

With Palestinians near certain to win UN recognition, Israel increasingly isolated
At least 150 countries expected to vote in favor of recognizing Palestine as non-member observer state at General Assembly; U.S., Canada to vote with Israel against resolution, Germany to abstain.

Why Palestine Will Win Big at the UN, Karl Vick
An instructive week after Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip tested Israel on the battlefield, the pacifist politicians who govern the West Bank are poised to notch a significant diplomatic win without much of a fight at all.

Obama tells Palestinians to choose between crumbs from the table or freedom
On the 65th anniversary of the UN partition resolution which allotted to a minority of Jews most of the land of Palestine, the Palestinians have returned to the world body. Still without their oft-promised state, they seek only recognition as a non-state member, a status barely higher than that of an observer. Even that, though, is too much for the United States, Britain and Germany to countenance.

On 21 September 2012, the International Day of Peace, the Nomadic Memorial Cast Lead was first performed in The Hague, City of Peace and Justice. From the 30st October till the 2nd of November 2012, the nomadic monument was shown in Bozar, Centre for Fine Arts in Brussels. For the finissage on the 2nd of November 2012 – All Souls’ Day –  the acknowledged Palestinian playwright and actor, Taher Najib gave a lecture-performance. Reminiscent of a graveyard, the Cast Lead installation consists of 1430 unique books ‘floating’ above the floor in battle-array. Each copy of the book has the name of one of the casualties of Operation Cast Lead, carried out by the Israel Army in Gaza during 2008/2009, on its cover. The books contain texts by writers, artists and thinkers from both the East and West. Each of these books is a monument filled with knowledge that proved incapable of changing the course of events.

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