Author Archives: Paul Mutter

About Paul Mutter

Paul Mutter is a contributor to Mondoweiss, Foreign Policy in Focus and the Arabist.

The light doesn’t get much greener than this: Obama admin gives Israel the go ahead to escalate in Gaza

Obama’s Deputy National Security Advisor Ben Rhodes makes a very clear public declaration the US will have Israel’s back no matter what the government decides.

Posted in Gaza, Israel Lobby, Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government, US Policy in the Middle East, US Politics | 37 Comments

Netanyahu has little to fear from Kadima’s desertion

Shaul Mofaz wants the Orthodox and Palestinian Israelis to serve in the military. But his party, Kadima, has little power to bring this about

Posted in Iran, Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government, Middle East, Occupation, Settlers/Colonists | 5 Comments

Demonstrations against Israeli leader, Palestinian police underscore PA’s legitimacy problems

Protests against the PA in Ramallah stand as apt reminders of the tension inherent in the Palestinian Authority’s very existence.

Posted in Arab Spring, Israel/Palestine, Middle East, Occupation | Comments Off

The Interior Minister’s call to expel African immigrants, in context

Eli Yishai, Israel’s Interior Minister, has a strong track record of racist anti-refugee remarks, and is representative of the “demographic threat” obsession that dominates Israeli politics.

Posted in Activism, Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government, Occupation | Tagged , | 3 Comments

It’s Good to be the King: Netanyahu scraps elections, buys off opposition and cements power with new unity gov’t

In a surprise move, Benjamin Netanyahu has cut a deal with Shaul Mofaz’s Kadima Party to join his coalition government, effectively canceling the Israeli elections he had just announced. Paul Mutter breaks down the deal and what it means for Israeli politics and a possible attack on Iran.

Posted in Iran, Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government, Occupation, US Policy in the Middle East, US Politics | Tagged | 25 Comments

‘Safe European home’?

Toulouse killings demonstrate that Identity politics is a blind alley, for radical Islamists, and the far right in Europe

Posted in Israel/Palestine, Media, War on Terror | Tagged , , , | 46 Comments

‘We Will Never Bomb You’ meme goes viral in Israel

Two Israeli designers, Ronnie Adri and Michal Tamir, came up with a Facebook campaign called “Iranians We You” intended to “humanize” the Israeli people for Iranian Facebook users and express opposition to the government’s war talk.

Posted in Activism, Iran, Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government, US Policy in the Middle East | 7 Comments

The spoils of lawfare, or please do not pet the Islamists: Shurat HaDin’s 2012 ‘Ultimate Mission to Israel’

Shurat HaDin – an Israeli “lawfare” group that set up legal roadblock after roadblock against “Gaza Freedom Flotilla II” last year – has for several years offered tours of Israel that take in the sort of sights a military fanboy would love.

Posted in Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government | 7 Comments

Why Israel freed Khader Adnan

Adnan’s case, as numerous commentators rightly note, has drawn attention to Israel’s practice of administrative detention. But by promising to release Adnan, the Israeli government headed off what could have been an embarrassing political and legal debacle.

Posted in Activism, Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government, Occupation, One state/Two states | 10 Comments

“Four days in Ramallah through the lens of dehumanization” – remembering Anthony Shadid

Boston.com just republished Shadid’s four day account of his journey through the West Bank in the spring of 2002. It’s worth quoting it at length; there’s no better way to mark Shadid’s career than letting his words speak for him.

Posted in Israel/Palestine, Media, Middle East, Occupation, US Politics, War on Terror | 4 Comments

Controversial US police chief hired by Bahraini Interior Ministry

Former police chief of Philadelphia and Miami, John Timoney, has been recruited by Bahrain’s Interior Ministry to advise the Bahrainis on policing strategies.

Posted in Arab Spring, US Policy in the Middle East | 5 Comments

2012: The year of the Bibi

Noam Sheizaf has a smart piece up at Foreign Policy forecasting the results of the upcoming Knesset elections. It looks like Netanyahu is here to stay.

Posted in Israel Lobby, Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government, Occupation, One state/Two states, Settlers/Colonists, US Policy in the Middle East, US Politics | 16 Comments

Why did Ehud Barak postpone joint US-Israeli military exercise?

Multiple analysts have suggested that the postponement demonstrates the Israeli government’s contempt for Obama and an ongoing effort to back the president into a corner in an election year over Iran.

Posted in Iran, Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government, Middle East, US Policy in the Middle East, US Politics | 38 Comments

Hey Quartet, Netanyahu left a note for you on the door

Posted in Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government, Occupation, One state/Two states, Settlers/Colonists, US Policy in the Middle East | 9 Comments

Mixed messages from Syrian National Council on U.S., Israel

This article first appeared on the Arabist. According to Reuters, the Syrian National Council and the National Coordination Body for Democratic Change in Syria – the two largest opposition coalitions in Syria – signed on the last Friday of 2011 … Continue reading

Posted in Arab Spring, Iran, Israel/Palestine, Media, Middle East, One state/Two states, US Policy in the Middle East, US Politics | 14 Comments

Mossad Chief: Stop calling Iran an ‘existential threat’

Wouldn’t it be nice if the heads of our own national security agencies spoke truth to power like this? Tamir Pardo, head of Mossad, had this to say to a roomful of Israeli ambassadors last week: “What is the significance … Continue reading

Posted in Iran, Israel Lobby, Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government, Media, Middle East, Neocons, US Policy in the Middle East, US Politics | Tagged | 14 Comments

Occupation economy: taking from the very land they stand on

Dispossession of Palestinian land means theft of resources, unending

Posted in Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government, Occupation, Settlers/Colonists | 3 Comments

Israel vs Israel: night-time arrests of rightists

Nighttime arrests of Israel rightwing activists for alleged actions against Israeli army

Posted in Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government, Occupation, Settlers/Colonists | Comments Off

Three years later, IDF happy with ‘Cast Lead’, wants to have another go

From Haaretz:  Israel Defense Forces Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz marked the three-year anniversary of Operation Cast Lead on Tuesday by hailing it “an excellent operation that achieved deterrence for Israel vis-a-vis Hamas.” However, he warned, cracks have … Continue reading

Posted in Gaza, Iran, Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government, Middle East, US Policy in the Middle East, US Politics | 8 Comments

UK, France, Germany and Portugal condemn Israeli plan to build 1,000 new settlements homes

The UK, France, Germany and Portugal issued a joint statement today requesting that Israel cease all settlement construction in both East Jerusalem and the West Bank.

Posted in Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government, Occupation, One state/Two states, Settlers/Colonists | 33 Comments

Virtual Appeasement: Obama’s iMunich?

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announces a “virtual” U.S. Embassy for Tehran.

Posted in Iran, US Policy in the Middle East, US Politics | 6 Comments

The tax-deductible Occupation

There are good NGOs and bad NGOs in Tel Aviv’s eyes. The new Likud-Yisrael Beitenu NGO funding legislation is aimed at the bad ones. Bad ones criticize the Occupation. Good ones help it along. This bill will limit and tax … Continue reading

Posted in Activism, American Jewish Community, BDS, Israel Lobby, Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government, Occupation, One state/Two states, Settlers/Colonists, US Politics | 17 Comments

Netanyahu throws in with Lieberman on legislation targeting dissident NGO’s

Netanyahu aligns with the far right on bill cracking down on foreign donations to dissident organizations

Posted in Activism, BDS, Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government, Occupation, One state/Two states, Settlers/Colonists | 7 Comments

Settlers are excluded (sort of) from hasbara campaign on college campuses

Faces of Israel is a p.r. campaign for Israel on American campuses. It emphasizes diversity, and tries to keep settlers in the time-out room

Posted in Activism, Israel Lobby, Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government, Occupation, Settlers/Colonists, US Policy in the Middle East, US Politics | 2 Comments

Updated: Will Tel Aviv and Washington play it safe Egypt and Syria?

Rather than intervene in Egypt or Syria, Obama and Netanyahu will look to uphold the status quo of military control in both countries.

Posted in Arab Spring, Egypt, Gaza, Israel/Palestine, Israeli Government, Middle East, Neocons, Settlers/Colonists, US Policy in the Middle East, US Politics | 6 Comments