Israel announces major escalation in settlement expansion (Update)

Israeli settlements in the West Bank (Photo: Reuters)

Israeli settlements in the West Bank (Photo: Reuters)

Israel is using the pretense of Palestine’s new unity government to do what it always does, steal more Palestinian land and expand the Jewish only settlements.  Predictably, they’re framing this next expansion project as “part of the reaction efforts”. The Construction and Housing Ministry issued tenders for almost 1500 housing units in the West Bank yesterday, 560 of which are in east Jerusalem. Describing the plans as a “fitting Zionist response to the formation of a Palestinian terror government,” Housing Minster Uri Ariel said this was “just the beginning”.

And you know what else is entirely predictable?  Palestinians are “weighing their response” to the announcement. Which I suppose means they are contemplating their options. I’d be beating a path to the Netherlands.

I get it that Palestinians have massive sumud, but I sure don’t. I have these Hague fantasies that won’t let up. They could frame it as “part of the reaction efforts…just the beginning”.

Update:

The Guardian: Palestinians to turn to UN over Israel settlement drive

Hanan Ashrawi, a senior member of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO), said the Palestinian leadership would seek UN intervention to bring Israel to account for the new settlement expansion drive.

“The executive committee of the PLO views this latest escalation with the utmost of seriousness and will counter it by addressing both the UN Security Council and the General Assembly as the proper way of curbing this grave violation and ensuring accountability,” she said.

While visiting Jabal Al-Baba, Bedouin community in the area designated C-1 on Tuesday, Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat said Palestinians will respond to any Israeli punitive moves taken in response to the new unity government with charges of war crimes.

Jerusalem Post reports:

 

He explained the Palestinians would write letters to the member states of the four Geneva Conventions, which among other topics, deal with the issue of war crimes.

“We’ll ask them [member states] to shoulder their responsibility vis-a-vis the occupying power [Israel], vis-a-vis the atrocities and the crimes that are being committed against the Palestinian population in the West Bank, east Jerusalem and Gaza,” Erekat said. “We think Israelis and their legal [experts] know what this means.”

The Palestinians also plan to pursue Israel through the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, which deals with acts of Apartheid, he said.

In 2014, the international community should “not stomach” the use of an apartheid system, Erekat said.

“Instead of recognizing Israel as a Jewish state we should recognize Israel as the apartheid state.”

….“We are preparing ourselves for the defense of our people including the option of signing the Rome Statute,” Erekat said. While the Palestinians are prepared to turn to the international court, they are first focused on using the legal instruments afforded them under the 15 conventions they have already signed, he said.

This information is not new, and keeps being recycled.

 

 

 

About Annie Robbins

Annie Robbins is Editor at Large for Mondoweiss, a mother, a human rights activist and a ceramic artist. She lives in the SF bay area. Follow her on Twitter @anniefofani
Posted in Israel/Palestine, Settlers/Colonists

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  1. just says:

    I challenge any of the Zionists who post here to tell me that their heroes in the Israeli government are acting like anything resembling adults here. They’ve lost, and they will continue to lose.

    “I get it that Palestinians have massive sumud, but I sure don’t. I have these Hague fantasies that won’t let up. They could frame it as “part of the reaction efforts…just the beginning”.”

    Yes, I empathize with you. I just have to remember the goal!

    • Kay24 says:

      You will hear crickets…when it comes to illegal settlements, or any other crime by Israel, like water control etc., they NEVER address it, ignore it, and totally deviate from that subject, in comments.
      The hasbarcuda cannot defend the indefensible, in this case their mother ship committing crimes.

    • pabelmont says:

      just: “I get it that Palestinians have massive sumud, but I sure don’t. I have these Hague fantasies that won’t let up. They could frame it as “part of the reaction efforts…just the beginning”.”

      Agreed. They must have sumud, but we can afford dreams and fantasies. My fantasy is the EU or some other grown-up announcing sanctions to back up the 3 demands of BDS. I mean, Israel is so outrageous. Like a little kid lacking parental attention who misbehaves a bit and then a bit more, etc., until his parents finally notice him, albeit in a negative way. Question here is whether any of the world’s nations are up to parenting, tough love, or just responsible juridical behavior.

      Kay24: I love your “hasbaracudas”.

  2. Blownaway says:

    Settlement announcements are more tied to US actions. Every time someone from US government is in the are they announce a gift. Used to be when Condi Rice would show up, now Kerry is back in the area, it’s an opportunity to remind him who the shot caller is. If the Palestinians do nothing again in the face of this provocation the Abbas should resign and dissolve his administration since they are so ineffectual. Erakats bleating falls on deaf ears. The only place they are played is in Israeli press.

    • just says:

      You have a point. Not only should Mr. Abbas do ‘something’, Mr. Kerry should as well.

      I am sick and tired of the disrespect that Israel shows 1st to the Palestinians and 2nd to the US. I want out of the ‘special relationship’ that our elected (selected) leaders have decided for us…it only brings disgrace & shame upon all of us that care about justice.

  3. eljay says:

    >> Describing the plans as a “fitting Zionist response to the formation of a Palestinian terror government” …

    Shame on the Palestinians for terrorizing Zio-supremacists and the supremacist “Jewish State” with such horrible things as justice, equality and accountability.

  4. This causes the loathing for Israel to multiply around the world. Lets hope that Palestine will escalate too and go to the ICC. It will be better sooner rather than later.

  5. Kay24 says:

    Every stinking opportunity, every lousy excuse, and every move the Palestinians makes (even legal), like parasites feeding off a host animal, Israel pretends it is retaliating, or punishing, to extract more land for their terrorists from East Europe – and they wonder why they are disliked so much!

    • jon s says:

      Kay24, I can’t imagine the world of hatred you inhabit. (“Terrorists from East Europe”- aside from the hatred, you really don’t know what your talking about.)

      On the issue of the settlements: as a supporter of the two state solution, I vehemently oppose the settlements, and always have. On the other hand, supporters of “one state” have no business complaining about the settlements.

      • On the other hand, supporters of “one state” have no business complaining about the settlements.

        that’s bs. a one state with large jewish only settlements taking up all the prime land sitting on top of the aquifiers? are you crazy? how do that spell “equal”.

        • jon s says:

          Annie, under two states the settlers would have to be repatriated back to Israel , inside the “green line”. With one state they get to stay.
          Under one state , there is no green line to go back to, Jews and Palestinians live happily ever after in one state, with no internal borders . Palestinians will be able to move freely into Haifa and Tel Aviv, so Jews should be able to move freely into Nablus and Gaza. That’s the “logic” of one state.

          • whether one supports one state or two there is no excuse for a people being occupied while jewish only settlements steal all the land and water around them for jewish only settlements. so where you get off telling anyone supporters of “one state” have no business complaining about the settlements us beyond me. what chutzpa.

          • talknic says:

            jon s “Annie, under two states the settlers would have to be repatriated back to Israel , inside the “green line””

            ONLY IF the Palestinians are generous enough in negotiations to still apply their offer of accepting only 22% of their rightful territories, even tho they are under no legal obligation to forgo ANY of their rights!

            Israel has absolutely no legal right to any territories beyond those the Israeli Government asked to be recognized by … “within frontiers approved by the General Assembly of the United Nations in its Resolution of November 29, 1947,” link to wp.me

      • Woody Tanaka says:

        ” I can’t imagine the world of hatred you inhabit.”

        LMAO. Just look out your window, squatter. You’re living in a state that stews in hatred, paranoia and victim mongering.

        “On the other hand, supporters of ‘one state’ have no business complaining about the settlements.”

        That’s dumb. The settlements are the opposite of one state, because they are an exercise in Judeo-supremacism and Zio-fascism.

      • Hostage says:

        On the other hand, supporters of “one state” have no business complaining about the settlements.

        A third of the land occupied by the settlements is stolen Palestinan private property. Even under the Lieber code used during the US civil war, plunder, pillage, and ethnic cleansing were prohibited. The illegal Jewish-only settlements are on plundered private and public property. Who gave the Jews this government-franchised monopoly on Palestinian state land and why would that policy suddenly be legitimate under a 1SS?

        Read Oren Yiftachel if you don’t understand that Palestinian citizens of Israel are already being denied equal access to state land today under a system of bantustanization and reserved areas for ethnic groups. That was called apartheid when South Africa did it.

  6. HarryLaw says:

    Annie @ “I get it that Palestinians have massive sumud, but I sure don’t. I have these Hague fantasies that won’t let up”. I agree with you Annie, the Palestinians can resist in many ways, the first and most obvious way is to respond to the many war crimes against them by formally joining the ICC and insist the Prosecutor initiate an investigation into the situation in Palestine, with the settlement enterprise as a priority, but notice the huge crowds of Palestinian supporters led by Abbas outside the ICC in your picture demanding same, maybe they think [not without justification] that the ICC is only for Africans, unless and until all legal means are exhausted, it simply will not do to moan endlessly about Israels contempt for the law, just like segregationists in the Southern States they think they are above the law, but the segregationists were beaten not only by heroic civil rights campaigns, but most importantly these were backed by Federal law together with previous Supreme court judgments, Unfortunately Abbas has said [unbelievably] he is against using the courts, with that kind of attitude the Palestinians will wait a long time for justice.

    • irishmoses says:

      HarryLaw said:

      “…it simply will not do to moan endlessly about Israels contempt for the law, just like segregationists in the Southern States they think they are above the law, but the segregationists were beaten not only by heroic civil rights campaigns, but most importantly these were backed by Federal law together with previous Supreme court judgments.”

      Isn’t it ironic that Jews, moral Jews, participated and led the US civil rights movement in the 1960s and 70s in numbers far exceeding their percentage in the US population. I’ve read that as much as 50 percent of the civil rights movement was Jewish. The same holds true for the fight for civil rights for women, and for others. Jews were always at the forefront of the movements in the US to secure civil rights for oppressed minorities.

      Where are those moral Jews today when it comes to Israel’s oppression and suppression of civil rights of the Palestinian people? I suspect that most are in ostrich mode when it comes to the issue of the so-called Jewish state.

      Israel is fast becoming the moral downfall of the Jewish people. What a shame.

  7. W.Jones says:

    As I understand it, the international courts have jurisdiction to try human rights cases whether the Palestinians are members of the organizations or not.

    • HarryLaw says:

      W.Jones, I think you are right, nevertheless in the face of the ICC’s reluctance to get involved, [the Prosecutor did say 'We are waiting for the Palestinians'] and also the seeming apathy from Abbas, it is only pressure on the ICC from all sectors of the Palestinian people, that will force the court make a decision to investigate.

      • Hostage says:

        [the Prosecutor did say 'We are waiting for the Palestinians']

        That was a lame excuse at the time and it continues to be a lame excuse now. See: Disentangling the Knots: A Comment on Ambos’ ‘Palestine, ‘Non-Member Observer’ Status and ICC Jurisdiction’ link to ejiltalk.org

        Chief PLO negotiator: We’re preparing legal action against Israel, Erekat says Palestinians will meet Israeli punitive moves taken in response to new unity government with charges of war crimes. link to jpost.com

        • W.Jones says:

          Yes, it’s a lame excuse. Let’s say for a moment that the Palestinian government was in fact a collaborationist government (which I am not prepared to fully accept, but nonetheless for the sake of argument let us continue with the hypothetical) and was under a new, intensely collaborationist leader like Dahlan.

          And let’s say that the Israelis decided to lock up hundreds of Palestinian schoolchildren for suspected opposition, rock throwing, or attendance at demonstrations, including Catholic students like Rula Jebreal, and brutalize them in prison with scar-inducing canings and other abuses. And then let’s say that the Palestinian government, for whatever reason decided that it was not going to intervene to stop the imprisonment and caning of its schoolchildren.

          Would the ICC have universal jurisdiction to stop the abuses? Is there any international body that has the authority to intervene to stop the abuses?

          At the present moment, the Israeli State has outlawed parents using physical discipline on their own children and is a member of the UN and other international bodies. The UN, for its part, has an overflowing plethora of reports of Israeli abuses of children. How does the UN and its international bodies not have the ability to intervene?

          • Hostage says:

            Would the ICC have universal jurisdiction to stop the abuses?

            No, 163 countries have laws on their books granting their own courts universal jurisdiction. For example, the United States deported John Demjanjuk to Israel, although he was not accused of committing any crimes there. Likewise, Eichmann was only accused of crimes committed elsewhere, before Israel ever became a state. The ICC’s jurisdiction merely compliments the existing jurisdiction of the responsible national courts.

            The Rome Statute does not allow the Court to exercise jurisdiction over any crime, except for the very serious ones listed in Article 5 of the Statute. The Court can obtain jurisdiction over any of those acts, regardless of where they are committed, if the situation is referred to the Court by the UN Security Council. The Assembly of State Parties acts like a legislature. It adopted the consensus amendments on the crime of aggression during a review conference in 2010. If the Prosecutor and UN continue to interject politics into the process, the Assembly will have to amend the statute to provide strict supervision mechanisms, automatic jurisdictional triggers, and divorce the whole process from any involvement from the non-judicial UN political organs. If it fails to do that, many countries will withdraw from the ICC and will simply refuse to cooperate with it at all.

        • HarryLaw says:

          Thanks for this Hostage, the last sentence in the ejiltalk.org piece said it all, will the court take a political decision or one which is taken after a thorough, well -reasoned legal analysis?

        • hostage , thanks for the heads up. i had not seen that video. he said as much on monday but this is more explicit.

          • It is really hard to read the user comments on jpost. They spew so much vitriol and hatred, it is frightening to think that they may represent a significant fraction of Israeli citizenry. If they do, then no redemption is possible for Israel and we should just wash our hands and move on with dismantling it.

            Whether Israel is dismantled or not, it should cease to be a concern of the US. I don’t want my hard earned dollars being redirected to that rogue state. We need to start a national campaign to vote out every Israel-firster in government – both State and Federal.

          • Hostage says:

            hostage , thanks for the heads up. i had not seen that video. he said as much on monday but this is more explicit.

            Likewise, the US had already signaled its intention to violate its obligations to promote recognition of the Palestinian state and UN membership under Phase II of the Quartet Roadmap, together with its binding treaty obligations towards the State of Palestine under the terms of the Vienna and Geneva Conventions. But Kerry made it explicit the other day with respect to the idea of recognizing the new unity government:

            “Let me be very clear: the United States does not recognize a government with respect to Palestine, because that would recognize a state and there is no state,” Kerry said. “This is not an issue of recognition of a government.”

            Kerry: US doesn’t recognize Palestinian gov’t because there is no Palestinian state link to ynetnews.com

            I’ve pointed out the hypocrisy of that political and legal fiction in the past, e.g. link to mondoweiss.net

        • just says:

          Go Saeb! Go Palestine!

          Many thanks, Hostage.

          He was ‘dead’ serious– his voice was deep and quiet.

          “No matter what the situation, he said, Netanyahu will always find a reason not to negotiate.

          “I believe if we were to have Mother Teresa as the president of the Palestinians, Montesquieu as the speaker of the Palestinian parliament and Thomas Jefferson as the prime minister of the Palestinians, I am sure that Mr. Netanyahu would band them as non-partners.””

          (text from your JPost link)

        • W.Jones says:

          Thanks for the link, Hostage to the article EjilTalk.

          It mentions

          Procedurally, while acknowledging that the Rome Statute provides no authority for the ICC Prosecutor to define or determine ‘State’ status, the Prosecutor failed to refer the question of Palestine’s ‘State’ status to the UN, the ICC Assembly of States Parties (ASP), or the competent ICC body (the Pre-Trial Chamber).

          That is a good point that I remember hearing before.

          You know, Hostage, I have a strong sense that the whole argument over whether Palestine is a state (it is) should be unnecessary. The Israeli army took over the land from Jordan after the UN designated it for an Arab state. But whether a state forms there or not, there should not be no recourse to international bodies for human rights crimes that occur there, although I understand that “Palestine” has a stronger standing to bring an action if it is coming before the court as a state.

          If the Israeli army goes in and slaughters a dozen villages, I have a sense that the victims should have recourse to international bodies whether it is on the territory of an existing state or not. Do you believe for a minute that if one of the Nazis’ allies brutalized a dozen shtetls that the victims would not have international recourse based on a territorial issue?

          • Hostage says:

            You know, Hostage, I have a strong sense that the whole argument over whether Palestine is a state (it is) should be unnecessary. . . . Do you believe for a minute that if one of the Nazis’ allies brutalized a dozen shtetls that the victims would not have international recourse based on a territorial issue?

            Article 12 of the Rome Statute allows a “state” to accept the jurisdiction of the court on the basis of its own territorial or personam jurisdiction. But you are correct, the Court can acquire jurisdiction in other ways, without regard to questions of statehood. I think the debate over the juridical status of the victims is infantile and legally pointless. I’ve said as much and explained the reasons in other forums.

            For example, Article 7 says “For the purpose of this Statute, “crime against humanity” means any of the following acts when committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack directed against any civilian population, with knowledge of the attack.

            Under customary international law, aggression is always a crime of state. But according to the customary definition of aggression adopted by the General Assembly, the term “state” can be used to describe any victim or perpetrator without regard to the question of recognition or UN membership. That customary definition has been incorporated in the Rome Statute through pending amendments to Article 8 bis. Likewise, the organs of the Court, including the Office of the Prosecutor, are required under the terms of Article 98 of the Statute to respect multilateral treaties on immunity and extradition between members states and any “third party state”, including Palestine. Those types of treaty agreements existed before the Rome Statute ever entered into effect and were included in a list supplied to the Prosecutor as an exhibit by Arab state members of the ICC Assembly of State Parties and the League of Arab States (i.e. Jordan, Comoros, Algeria, and Djibouti). That was deliberately done to establish the legal status and standing of the State of Palestine. See League of Arab States,  Documents on the status of Palestine October 14, 2009. link to iccforum.com.pdf

            There’s no way to employ the rules of treaty interpretation contained in the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties in good faith in order to argue that the drafters intended to allow the juridical status of the victim to be employed to confer impunity or prevent investigations or prosecutions. Likewise, it can’t be argued that they intended to permit entities, like Palestine, to be considered a “state” or “third party state” for the purposes of Articles 8 bis and 98, but not for the purposes of Article 12.

          • W.Jones says:

            Thanks for writing back, Hostage.

            There’s no way to employ the rules of treaty interpretation contained in the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties in good faith in order to argue that the drafters intended to allow the juridical status of the victim to be employed to confer impunity or prevent investigations or prosecutions.
            I can imagine the Israelis arguing that it was not an intention, but an “unfortunate oversight” by the drafters.

            But I don’t understand the logic of the ICC’s decision that the victims have to belong to a “state” before it can intervene to stop war crimes. How about if Israelis did not belong to a “state” and were victimized? You can bet your bottom dollar that they would not accept that kind of excuse. It is so ludicrous.

          • Hostage says:

            How about if Israelis did not belong to a “state” and were victimized? You can bet your bottom dollar that they would not accept that kind of excuse. It is so ludicrous.

            That’s not a hypothetical question. The Arab states that came to the assistance of Palestine in 1947 to restore law and order, did not recognize the competence of the Jewish government officials or the State of Israel. Abba Eban responded by saying that:

            “the theory that the Charter forbids acts of aggression only against States is utterly without foundation. Indeed, neither Chapter VI nor Chapter VII, in defining threats to the peace or acts of aggression, shows the slightest interest in the juridical status of the victim. The word “State” does not occur in either of those chapters. There is no provision whatever that the attacked party must be universally recognized as a State before an armed attack upon it can be determined as an act of aggression.

            Article 2, paragraph 4, of the Charter forbids the use of force not only if it is directed against the integrity of a State but also if it is used “in any other manner inconsistent with the purpose of the United Nations”. See the minutes of the 340th meeting of the UN Security Council, S/PV.340, 27 July 1948, page 12

          • W.Jones says:

            Hostage,

            you made a good point that the Israeli delegate said:

            the theory that the Charter forbids acts of aggression only against States is utterly without foundation… Article 2, paragraph 4, of the Charter forbids the use of force not only if it is directed against the integrity of a State but also if it is used “in any other manner inconsistent with the purpose of the United Nations”.

            So would the ICC respond that even though the Israelis may be violating Article 2 in harming potentially “nonstate” victims, the ICC lacks jurisdiction, or the Palestinians lack “standing”, because Palestinians are not a state? Is this an issue of standing, then?

            Again, you can bet your bottom dollar that the Israelis would not accept that, as the speech you cited presumes, even if the speech doesn’t mention standing.

            Is the importance of what Phil is getting at regarding the Palestinians’ accession to the international bodies that it would make it more difficult politically for the ICC to continue to ignore the ongoing severe Israeli abuses of Palestinians?

            I wish we had more time to develop this important issue Phil raised for Palestinians.

          • Hostage says:

            So would the ICC respond that even though the Israelis may be violating Article 2 in harming potentially “nonstate” victims, the ICC lacks jurisdiction, or the Palestinians lack “standing”, because Palestinians are not a state? Is this an issue of standing, then?

            Yes. The article at the EJIL explains that that is exactly what happened, even after the UN had removed the grounds for any such legal challenges (which were admittedly beyond the powers of the Office of the Prosecutor from the outset).

  8. amigo says:

    Slightly OT ??.

    The folks daan under have decided to no longer refer to East Jerusalem as “Occupied Territory”.

    In policy shift, Australia declares East Jerusalem is not occupied
    Attorney general and foreign minister say ‘occupied East Jerusalem’ is a ‘term freighted with pejorative implications, which is neither appropriate nor useful.’

    link to haaretz.com

    • straightline says:

      You have to be aware that under either Labor or Liberal administrations, Australia is one of the most pro-Zionist governments in the world. Gillard (former Prime Minister) received the Jerusalem Prize for her efforts on behalf of Israel. One of the first trade missions of the new Liberal regime was to Israel – led by the Assistant Minister of Defence. Another is planned in July. From the blurb
      on this website:

      link to aicc.org.au

      “The Trade Mission, specifically designed for senior leaders from business, government, policy and academia, will expose delegates to key Israeli influencers and enable a sharing of innovative business ideas and opportunities. In addition to the business program, the visit also includes geo-political briefings, cultural experiences, networking events and visits to some of Israel’s most iconic tourist destinations, including the Old City of Jerusalem, the Dead Sea and Masada. ”

      Bob Carr (Minister for Foreign Affairs under Labor) has been pilloried in the Australian media for suggesting in his autobiography that the Zionist lobby in Australia had a significant influence on Australia’s foreign policy.

      • seafoid says:

        Australia would be far better off engaging with climate change.
        Even if Moshiach turns up with a red heifer Australia is not going to avoid serious climate damage the way things are going.

  9. amigo says:

    On the issue of Abbas going to the ICC , what is he waiting for.Israel to change , ???.

    Book a flight now,today,this minute.Put the zionist criminals on notice that every illegal squat they plan,build or otherwise will be treated as a war crime and those leading or partaking in such crimes will be dealt with.

    It is time to quit pi–ing around and hit Israel right in the solar plexus.Lets see some zionist leaders in chains in the dock at the Hague.

    Enough already.

  10. seafoid says:

    What is the point? When they lay the foundations for housing for Jews in the West Bank they are actually building the infrastructure for an explosion in anti-Semitism.

  11. Citizen says:

    Build the wall and let it cave in on you?

  12. As “amigo” pointed out, icc is the only solution. What are palestinians waiting for?!

  13. seafoid says:

    Israel announces major new settlement push. Over 1500 homes will be built in Har ShootyourselfinHaFoot, a new plane of idiocy and Jewish insanity just outside Jerusalem.

    It is believed something was added to the water in late 1966 and the entire Jewish population of Israel is now fucking nuts.

    They expect the goys to fall over every time they see a picture of Anne Frank.

    • “Har ShootyourselfinHaFoot.” Priceless!

      I agree it is past time for Palestine to join and file complaints against Israel in the International Court of Justice or ICC, and for the US to double down the pressure on Netanyahu.

      Note reports on Buzzfeed that the US has been in back channel talks with Hamas for months. link to buzzfeed.com
      No confirmation yet for what is sourced at Buzzfeed as an anonymous official. If true, it is a further sign of the Obama administration’s complete break with Netanyahu, and an internal discipline to do so under AIPAC’s radar.

      It is possible to look at this as a contest for control of Netanyahu between his right-wing settler groups, who vowed to bring down his government if he concluded a peace agreement, and more progressive elements, including the Obama Administration, who claimed Netanyahu was personally ready to make hard choices for peace (but unable to retain his government, if he did). In this calculus, there have to be adverse consequences for Israel that weaken and isolate Israel’s right-wing, in order to create space for Netanyahu or a successor regime to make peace. And the lines need to be drawn around issues of justice and international law as aggressively and persistently as the hasbaraists seek to paint them as Anti-Semitic. Harsh international truth-seeking-and-reporting on some of Israel’s atrocities and cover up will be important in fueling BDS, which will do the trick, eventually.

    • amigo says:

      “Israel announces major new settlement push. Over 1500 homes will be built in Har ShootyourselfinHaFoot, a new plane of idiocy and Jewish insanity just outside Jerusalem.” seafoid

      It,s like a rapist threatening to rape his victim again if she goes to the police.

      It beggars belief , how these swine assume it,s A ok to do what they are doing.

      When is someone in power going to call these bastards to task.

    • bintbiba says:

      ” @ seafoid… Har shootyourselfinHaFoot ….. ;-))

  14. I continue to think the international community should do its best to make clear to Israel it cannot change borders by growing illegal colonies of Jews in occupied Palestine.

    • libra says:

      We can all dream James but if I was a Palestinian I wouldn’t count on it happening. The reality is the longer they wait for a third party to act, the worse it gets.

  15. biorabbi says:

    The Jews are building houses? The horror. What’s next… another nobel prize in science? Their utter audacity. 1500 houses, 1800 houses. Why the Jews are just as bad as Assad. I say, hang ‘em up by their stiff necks. End sarcasm.

    • Hostage says:

      The Jews are building houses? The horror. What’s next…

      Correction: The Zionist criminals are plundering and pillaging again. Anyone familiar with the situation knows that the Zionist elites are now stealing tax revenues they have collected on behalf of the Palestinian government, because they just won’t be satisfied until they have actualized every single one of the medieval European stereotypes that led to the expulsion edicts.

    • Cliff says:

      @Biohazard

      So do you support a 1ss? Or do you believe only Jews get to build ‘houses’ (wherever they want, even during a military occupation of someone else’s land)?

      Do you think your chickenshit passive-aggressive dishonest trolling is fooling anyone?

      Do you think the issue is that JEWS (as if this matters, the colons are colons) are MERELY building HOUSES?

      You’re ****ing shameless.

    • a blah chick says:

      Since you mention Syria at every opportunity I’m sure you have given a great deal of money to Syrian relief. Please also mention the fundraising you and other Zionists have done to alleviate the hardships of the ONLY group of Arabs whose misery you feel free to exploit.

      P.S. your sarcasm needs work.

    • talknic says:

      biorabbi “The Jews are building houses? The horror. “

      Israeli citizens actually, in non-Israel territory. Non-Jewish Israelis are also prohibited from illegally settling in non-Israeli territories under the occupation of the Jewish state.

      “What’s next… another nobel prize in science? “

      If they’re as stupid as you are, I doubt it

    • talknic says:

      @ biorabbi ” Why the Jews are just as bad as Assad. I say, hang ‘em up by their stiff necks. End sarcasm”

      A) Correction … The Israeli citizens aided by the State of Israel who’re illegally settling in non-Israeli territory outside the extent of the sovereignty of the State of Israel are:
      B) worse than Assad who, until such time as an opposition majority emerges, has the right and duty to attempt to maintain order within the sovereign extent of the State of Syria on behalf of the majority of Syrians against the armed uprising of a minority.
      C) End facts

    • seafoid says:

      Nice try

      Actually, it really reminds me of this

    • Shingo says:

      The Jews are building houses? The horror.

      In that case, you should have no problem with the refugees returning to their homes in Israel and Palestine. No problem right bio?

  16. just says:

    “EU slams new Israeli settlement push”

    BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — The European Union expressed its “deep disappointment” on Thursday about Israel’s announcement of a new move to build around 1,500 homes in Jewish-only settlements across the occupied West Bank.

    “We call on the Israeli authorities to reverse this decision and to direct all their efforts towards an early resumption of the peace talks,” the EU said in a statement, stressing that the move was “unhelpful” for peace efforts.”

    link to maannews.net

    (they should ‘slam’ harder! stop pussyfooting around!)

    • Kay24 says:

      I agree. Enough of the slamming, and whimpering, NOW is the time for TOUGH action, and doing what the Israelis are unfairly doing to the Palestinians, retaliate.
      There are so many actions the EU and even the US can do – from cutting the aid, to BDS.
      Time the out of control brat learned the consequences of it’s crimes, and disregard for international laws.

  17. ritzl says:

    Yep, show Obama/Kerry, the PA, and the World how wrong they were about blaming Israel for this latest process failure, by proving how pristinely right they were.

    • seafoid says:

      Israel is such a train wreck. Building settlements IS the system.
      They lie to us and then they lie to themselves about lying to us. And then they call us anti-Semites.

      link to haaretz.com

      “The crack teaches about the whole. The testimony of a Palestinian, his life experience, the field work of journalists that is based on witness accounts and their corroboration, on millions of such “stories” – all this does not matter. The Arab is lying until proven otherwise, and when proven otherwise it’s presented as a regrettable and unusual instance that calls for investigation, and is quickly forgotten. And even if not forgotten – it is never perceived as a link in an ongoing chain, a continuum, as a detail in an existing, thriving pattern. We see the results of this pattern in the abundant vineyards and expanding neighborhoods of the settlements, and in the warning signs placed at the entrance to reservations – those parts of the West Bank from which we haven’t managed to expel the Palestinians. “

  18. just says:

    A good article about another displaced Palestinian:

    “Annemarie Jacir: an auteur in exile
    Palestinian film-maker Annemarie Jacir lives in Jordan and can see her homeland but cannot go there. Like the protagonist of her film, When I Saw You, she is an outsider – with a clear view”

    link to theguardian.com

    Phil wrote about the film in January:
    link to mondoweiss.net

  19. seafoid says:

    link to haaretz.com

    ” Two weeks ago I attended a memorial for my old Knesset colleague Victor Shem Tov. I told them that Victor, who like me had opposed the first Lebanon war, said to me in the midst of the fighting, “You know, Yossi, this war is also a personal tragedy for me. I, unlike you, believed them, but from now on I won’t be able to believe anymore. How can you take their word when the defense minister and chief of staff sit with us here, in the Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, and lie to us brazenly. I’ve had enough. I’m finished.”

    link to youtube.com

    And that was 36 years ago, although the song is a bit older.
    And the lies have built a massive YESHA, haven’t they ?
    And what are they going to do now ? Scream at the world ?

  20. seafoid says:

    link to 972mag.com

    Netanyahu explains how he stood up to the U.S., kept building settlements
    ‘Peace talks? What peace talks,’ the Israeli prime minister jokes with supporters from his party.
    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu boasted of his settlement building achievements in a recent meeting with young Likud supporters. Responding to a question from the audience, Netanyahu said: “I was threatened in Washington: ‘not one brick’ [of settlement construction] … after five years, we built a little more than one brick…”
    Asked “about peace talks with the Palestinians,” Netanyahu reportedly replied, “about the – what?” to which the audience responded by breaking out into laughter.

    • Kay24 says:

      It does not take a rocket scientist to realize that Israel has hoodwinked the world, and especially the US, with lies, acting the victim, and being deceptive, by pretending it wants peace. This should make our leaders, and congress, feel ashamed that they have been used, abused, aided, and abetted, the most blatant crimes of land theft, for years, at the blood, sweat, and tears, of indigenous people, who still suffer the consequences. Being conniving, and devious, seems to be second nature to zionists.

  21. just says:

    Turns out it is not ‘just’ 1500…

    “Israel unveiled plans for 3,200 settler homes Thursday in retaliation for the formation of a Palestinian unity government backed by Hamas and the international community, raising the Palestinians’ ire.

    Tenders for nearly 1,500 new settlement houses and plans to advance some 1,800 others were issued just 72 hours after the new Palestinian government was sworn in, ending seven years of rival administrations in the West Bank and Gaza.

    Western states have shown support for the Palestinian line-up, but Israel says it will boycott what it denounces as a “government of terror”.

    The news drew a furious reaction from the Palestinians, who pledged to seek an anti-settlement resolution at the UN Security Council for the first time in more than three years.

    UN chief Ban Ki-moon was “deeply concerned” by the reports of the new tenders.

    “The secretary general calls on Israel to heed the calls of the international community to freeze settlement activity and abide by its commitments under international law and the roadmap,” Ban’s spokesman said.

    The European Union said it was “deeply disappointed” by Israel’s plans.

    “We call on the Israeli authorities to reverse this decision and to direct all their efforts towards an early resumption of the peace talks,” it said.

    Of the 1,454 tenders, 400 homes are to be built in Israeli-annexed east Jerusalem and the rest in the occupied West Bank in what Housing Minister Uri Ariel described as “a fitting Zionist response to the establishment of the Palestinian government of terror”.

    “I believe these tenders are just the beginning,” he added, his remarks becoming reality hours later when an Israeli official confirmed the government had moved to unblock plans for another 1,800 homes.

    “The political echelon has ordered the Civil Administration to advance 1,800 new units,” the official told AFP, referring to a defence ministry unit responsible for West Bank planning issues.

    Walla news website said the order, which relates to 10 settlements, had come directly from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu who had given the green light for plans “that he had ordered frozen some three months ago”.”

    link to afp.com

    No surprise there– BDS now!

  22. just says:

    “Long accused of passivity, and an inability to take the initiative, the Palestinians appear to have finally decided to act in their own interest without seeking prior permission from friend or foe.

    This new move chimes with other “unilateral” moves designed to upgrade the Palestinians’ status at the UN. This will change little on the ground, but the leadership believes it may slowly build up sufficient political and diplomatic momentum to help define a final resolution based on the two-state solution, otherwise unobtainable via the current negotiations. The appeal to the UN is not intended as a substitute for negotiations, but as a parallel track that involves neither threats nor force. It is also a path that Israel itself trod as a means to its own independence in 1947.

    Binyamin Netanyahu may fulminate about Palestinian terrorism (a total of three Israeli civilians have been killed on the West Bank in the past three years, none directly ascribed to Hamas) but the fact is that Mahmoud Abbas, the PA president, is dedicated to non-violence, as is his new government.

    Like its predecessors, this Israeli government simply seems unable or unwilling to confront the basic truth that it is an occupying force in the eyes of the world; and that 47 years of colonial expansion and oppression of another people, let alone dispossessing them in the first place, do not provide it with the moral credit to reject Abbas and the rest of the Palestinian leadership’s pursuit of the Palestinian national interest.

    This explains in part the US administration’s decision to continue to work with the new Palestinian government, despite Netanyahu’s protestations and the rising chorus of complaints from Israel’s friends in Congress. None of the major world powers are now likely to take a contrary stand. The Palestinians, for once, seem to be getting their act together and are seeking to determine their own destiny on their own land.

    But what we may be witnessing are the first signs of a “Palestinian summer”, and a more positive approach to a people determining its own fate.”

    link to theguardian.com

  23. HarryLaw says:

    The Australian Foreign Minister herself questioned the illegality of Israeli settlements on a visit to Israel in January, during the interview to the Times of Israel she said “I would like to see which International Law has declared them illegal.”
    Your wish is my command, 1949 Geneva Convention Article 49 para 6. The occupying power shall not deport or transfer parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies.

  24. Hostage says:

    I would like to see which International Law has declared them illegal . . . 1949 Geneva Convention Article 49 para 6. The occupying power shall not deport or transfer parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies.

    Those settlers aren’t living on mountains suspended by a hair. They and their government officials are guilty of violating Articles 28 & 46 of the 1907 Hague Convention rules and Article 33 of the 4th Geneva Convention which prohibit pillage of public or private property. They are being aided and abetted in that criminal enterprise by transnational and other businesses, and even some Hollywood celebrities who are earning income from the proceeds of the crime, while the Palestinians displaced by the settlements and illegal industrial zones are living in garbage dumps and bantustans.