- In Photos: Thousands pack Rafah streets for funeral of top … 12
- Democratic Party leader echoes Netanyahu’s new theme: Hamas equals ISIS 47
- ‘Common Dreams’ website traps Hasbara troll spewing anti-Semitism 56
- ‘The land of goodness turned upside down to the wasteland … 5
- State Dep’t says it’s ‘not OK’ that Israel detained another … 12
- Entitled ideology supporting ‘incineration’ of Gaza resonates with Nazi ideology … 12
- My personal BDS 10
- In the battle between war and dreams, dreams last longer 1
- Lobbyist tells Eliot Engel he has ‘the blood of hundreds … 0
- Mort Zuckerman claims he toured the devastation in Gaza. Really? 0
- Rob Reiner wants to pick Palestinians’ leaders for them 0
- Witnessing Gaza 0
- Gruesome tales surface of Israeli massacres against families in Gaza’s … 0
- HAMAS made me do it! 0
- With ceasefire set to expire, Palestinians aim to lift the … 0
- Hundreds of Ohioans say our gov’t is on the ‘wrong … 0
- ‘Lesson: The Jews will defend themselves even if it means … 182
- US branch of the Jewish ‘family’ owes the homeland ‘unconditional … 170
- Watch: Young Israeli Jew at Western Wall calls for ‘another … 117
- The Walzer Problem 96
- Video: Gaza forces young Jew to overcome ‘giant hostile ferocious … 89
- Tunnels-to-kindergartens propaganda Netanyahu peddled to NYT and CNN is exploded … 85
- Hillary Clinton’s 11th-hour diplomacy 80
- Air strikes and rocket fire resume as Gaza negotiations collapse 78
- RT @JWMacKenZ: Huzzah! My break-dancing friends in Gaza got featured @Mondoweiss "dancing is a means of narrating their oppression." http://t.co/7yJkWpqIs5, 2 hours ago
- RT @urihoresh: Salaita’s stellar teaching record exposes political motivation behind his firing | via @Mondoweiss | http://t.co/iDvRsoqLtk, 2 hours ago
- RT @DCIPalestine: Israeli forces use Palestinian child as human shield for 5 days in Gaza http://t.co/jYAMVQ9cTi #GazaUnderAttack http://t.co/AA4R1F9Dd9, 7 hours ago
- RT @DCIPalestine: Ahmad was just 16 yrs old when he was taken by Israeli forces in Gaza on July 23 & used as a human shield http://t.co/am711DdA8Y, 7 hours ago
- Democratic Party leader @RepSteveIsrael echoes Netanyahu's new theme: Hamas equals ISIS http://t.co/OfDoD4kxLz, 7 hours ago
Mondoweiss in your Inbox
click link to see last 100 comments
- ‘I mourn my Jewish community, which seeks to justify these inexcusable acts’ (57)
- AbigailOK: @Michtom +1 and then some!
- Despite ravages of war, Gaza supports armed resistance to lift the siege (20)
- Salaita’s stellar teaching record exposes political motivation behind his firing (33)
- ‘Lesson: The Jews will defend themselves even if it means killing children’ (140)
- Anti-occupation activists in New York blast United Jewish Appeal for supporting attacks on Gaza (11)
- just: Antony Loewenstein: “…In the global Jewish diaspora, dissent against Israel of this magnitude is a...
- Ari Shavit calls out every brutality, except the ones Israel is complicit in (38)
- jon s: Ari Shavit has a piece today on the rise of Antisemitism: http://www.haaretz.com/opinion /.premium-1.611665
- Four arrested after occupying Senator Feinstein’s LA office to protest military aid (3)
- DICKERSON3870: RE: “Four arrested after occupying Senator Feinstein’s LA office to protest military aid”...
- ‘I mourn my Jewish community, which seeks to justify these inexcusable acts’ (57)
Author Archives: Jonathan Cook
A single incident over the weekend – the reported capture by Hamas on Friday of an Israeli soldier through a tunnel – illustrated in stark fashion the layers of deception Israel has successfully cast over its attack on Gaza.
Yesterday’s Guardian includes an article that appears to be excusing Israel of responsibility for the massive death toll it has inflicted on Palestinian civilians. But, more significantly, it includes a lot of useful – and damning – information about just how “indiscriminate” Israel’s weapons really are.
US Secretary of State John Kerry arrived in the region on Monday to intensify ceasefire efforts, the day after a studio microphone captured his sarcastic comment that it was “a hell of a pin-point operation” by Israel. He had just been informed of a horrifying assault on the Shujaiiya neighbourhood, which left dozens of dead, taking Palestinian casualties so far to more than 650 killed and thousands wounded. Washington’s good faith as honest broker goes largely unquestioned in the US, even though the country annually provides Israel with billions of dollars in aid and military support of the kind that enables these repeated attacks on Gaza. The claim is only tenable because Washington’s actual behavior is rarely scrutinized in detail.
Neither Israelis nor Palestinians can claim to be above a culture of hate. As long as Israel’s belligerent occupation continues, their lives together in one small patch of the Middle East will continue to be predicated on bouts of violent confrontation. But that does not mean Israeli and Palestinian culpability is equal. The reality is that Israelis, unlike Palestinians, have a sovereign state that represents them and protects them with a strong army.
Belligerent occupations – especially ones where no hope or end is in sight – engender evermore creative and costly forms of resistance, as the hunger strike demonstrates. A physical act of resistance can be temporarily foiled. But the spirit behind it cannot be so easily subdued.
The appointment of a temporary Palestinian government of technocrats is likely to be the easiest phase of the Fatah-Hamas reconciliation agreed in late April. The deal has endured so far – unlike earlier agreements – because Hamas, in even more desperate straits than its rival, Fatah, has capitulated.
As marches and festivals are held today by Palestinians across the region to mark Nakba Day – commemorating the expulsion of 750,000 Palestinians from their homes and the erasure of more than 500 villages – Israelis will be watching. The size of Nakba commemorations are a gauge of how Palestinians are no longer prepared to defer to the Palestinian leadership on the refugee issue or wait for an interminable peace process to make meaningful progress.
Both the US and Israel have come to rely on the endless theatrics of the two-decade peace process. Settlement freezes, prisoner releases, rows about Palestinian Authority funding and, of course, intermittent negotiations have served as useful distractions from the main developments on the ground.
Obama seems committed to keeping the peace process show on the road for a while longer, however aware he is of the ultimate futility of the exercise. For the first time since the US launched the Middle East peace talks last summer, the Palestinian leadership may be sensing it has a tiny bit of leverage.
Israelis have grown content living in a large bubble of denial. Netanyahu and his ministers are making every effort to reinforce that bubble, just as they have tried to shield Israelis from the fact that they live in the Middle East, not Europe, by building walls on every side – both physical and bureaucratic – to exclude Palestinians, Arab neighbours, foreign workers and asylum seekers.
Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu has rarely been so politically embattled. His travails indicate the Israeli right’s inability to respond to a shifting political landscape, both in the region and globally. U.S.-led negotiations may not lead to an agreement, but they will mark a historic turning-point nonetheless. The delegitimisation of Israel is truly under way, and the party doing most of the damage is the Israeli leadership itself.
The Israeli government is hurling insults at U.S. officials and working visibly to thwart a peace process on which the Obama administration had staked its credibility. The recent diplomatic fracas over Moshe Ya’alon’s comments have added to the bad blood built up between these two allies during Netanyahu’s term. The feud is not only over Israel’s conflict with the Palestinians but on the related matter of US handling of what Israel considers its strategic environment in the wake of the Arab Spring.
Liberals can sound pretty pathetic when their back is to the wall, and liberal Zionists even more so. A case in point is Eric Alterman.
Successive Israeli governments have carefully engineered the structure of Israeli society to ensure that Jewish and Palestinian citizens, the latter comprising a fifth of the population, are kept in separate linguistic, cultural, educational and emotional worlds. The reasoning is not hard to discern. The last thing Israeli leaders want is for Jewish and Palestinian citizens to develop shared interests, forge friendships and act in solidarity. That would start to erode the rationale for a Jewish state, especially one premised on the supposed need of the Jews to defend themselves from a hostile world – “the villa in the jungle”, as former prime minister Ehud Barak once characterised Israel.
Two months ago officials from Israel and Texas made an unexpected announcement, unveiling an ambitious plan to build in Israel the first branch of an American university, at a probable cost of $100 million. Jonathan Cook reports from Nazareth that Israel hopes to accomplish several things from the venture: silence international criticism over the country’s high level of inequality; drive a wedge further between Palestinian Christians and Muslims; stymie efforts by Palestinians in Israel to win educational autonomy; and strike a powerful blow against mounting pressure from the movement for an academic and cultural boycott.
In recent days, US and European diplomats have been engaged in a frenzy of activity on the Israeli-Palestinian front. In a last desperate effort to break the logjam in negotiations, Washington plans to unveil its so-called “framework proposal” for the creation of a Palestinian state next month. The outlines of the US vision of an agreement are coming into focus, and as many expected the picture looks bleak for the Palestinians.
As United States envoys shuttle back and forth in search of a peace formula to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, a matter supposedly settled decades ago is smouldering back into life. In what was billed as a “day of rage” last month, thousands of Palestinians took to the streets to protest against a plan to uproot tens of thousands of Bedouin from their ancestral lands inside Israel, in the Negev (Naqab). The stakes are high, not least because Israel views this battle as a continuation of the 1948 war that established a Jewish state on the ruins of Palestine.
It is important to recognize Mandela’s huge achievement in helping to bring down South African apartheid. But it’s also important to acknowledge that Mandela was rehabilitated into an “elder statesman” in return for South Africa being rapidly transformed into an outpost of neoliberalism, prioritising the kind of economic apartheid most of us in the west are getting a strong dose of now.
Jonathan Cook responds to critics about his opposition to launching yet another “humanitarian intervention” in Syria.
It seems there are still plenty of parties who would prefer that Arafat’s death continues to be treated as a mystery rather than as an assassination. It is hard, however, to avoid drawing the logical conclusion from the finding last week by Swiss scientists that the Palestinian leader’s body contained high levels of a radioactive isotope, polonium-210. It is time to state the obvious: Arafat was killed. And suspicion falls squarely on Israel. Israel alone had the means, track record, stated intention and motive. Without Israel’s fingerprints on the murder weapon, it may not be quite enough to secure a conviction in a court of law, but it should be evidence enough to convict Israel in the court of world opinion.
The ongoing Israeli-Palestinian peace process is easy to forget about: there’s been barely a peep about it since the revival of talks was greeted with great fanfare back in July. But last week, it flitted briefly back on to the radar when the US Secretary of State, John Kerry, met Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Rome. Whatever Netanyahu told Kerry in private, few believe the Israeli prime minister is really ready to seek peace. Earlier this month he set out in public his hardline vision for the talks: no peace until the Palestinians recognize the “Jewish state” and give up on the right of return.
Uri Avnery has achieved many great things as a journalist and a peace activist. Nonetheless, it is important to challenge the many fallacious claims Avnery makes to bolster the arguments in his latest article, dismissing the growing comparisons being made between Israel and apartheid South Africa.
A recent World Bank report highlights how Israel is gradually whittling away the foundations on which the Palestinians can build an independent economic life and a viable state. The report’s focus is on the nearly two-thirds of the West Bank, known as Area C, that is exclusively under Israeli control–and which contains almost all the resources a Palestinian state will need to exploit.
The furor over the recent chemical weapons attack in Syria has overshadowed disturbing events to the south, as Egypt’s generals wage a quiet war of attrition against the Hamas leadership in Gaza. And, as ever, Israel is far from an innocent bystander. Above, an empty tunnel connecting Egypt and Gaza.
President Obama may have drawn his seemingly regretted “red line” around Syria’s chemical weapons, but it was neither he nor the international community that turned the spotlight on their use. That task fell to Israel. Israel still desperately wants its chief foe, Iran, crushed. And if it can find a way to lever the US into doing its dirty work, it will exploit the opening – regardless of whether such action ramps up the suffering in Syria.