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  • Israeli prosecutor calls Bil'in protest 'ideological crime' at Abu Rahmah sentencing hearing
    • Marc, I had a post up about it a few months back. It was from an English Jazeera documentary"The Architecture of Occupation" or "the Architecture of Violence" by Israeli architect Eyal Weizman. It's super informative and describes what's behind the various "architecture" items that Israel puts up with a subliminal purpose intended to provoke the Palestinians into violence. As an example, he cites the turnstiles at checkpoints purposely designed to squeeze people as they go through to thoroughly humilate them and other subtle means in mostly everything Israel does, such as the restricted highways, the water and so on. A great 25 minute video narrated by Eyal Weizman that spills the beans on all the Israeli gimmicks:

  • Three Muslim-Americans murdered in North Carolina by gunman (Updated)
    • " Adios muchachos."

      FWIW, I'm not happy to see Yonah gone. He and his merry zio-companions add colour to this site. I hope he reconsiders.

    • Just, there appears to be more smoke being thrown on the Hicks story than actual facts that should have surfaced by now. For one thing, people don't appear to be buying into the parking spot angle.

      You could say that Hicks could have randomy picked his victims from an available choice of Moslem-dressed people. I can't help thinking that the North Carolina authorities are trying to take this story away from what really happened . We are guessing at this point. Why did Hicks give himself up?

    • The day before the Chapel Hill assassinations, there was somewhat a similar shooting incident in which Mustafa Mattan, aged 28 was shot in the apartment he was sharing with his brother and other room mates in Fort McMurray, Alberta, Canada. The killer got away, but just as with the killings in Chapel Hill that did not draw much attention in the US press, the same lack of attention in Canada was seen with the Mattan killing. People-wise, Alberta reminds a lot of North Carolina.

      link to ibtimes.com

      Another experiment that shows the good-naturedness of the Canadian people with a surprising dramatic ending. I wanted to post these videos on Samah's thread but couldn't find it.

    • Just, I saw a short clip on the news but not much more on it than what you and the CBC wrote. It's looking like simply vicious people out to kill people for thrills, probably like the guy that killed the 3 we're discussing here. We'll have to wait for the investigations in both places.

    • There was a previous experiment conducted in Canada, equally interesting. After a soldier guarding Parliament was shot last fall, a woman is standing on the street with a poster saying:

      "I am a Muslim, so that makes me..."

      And passers-by are invited to complete the sentence. See what Canadians had to say:

    • A group of activists in Toronto conducted an experiment that demonstrated how good-natured are Canadian people, The project was led by a person that had received a death threat in the aftermath of Charlie Hebdo.

      A blindfolded man stood on a Toronto street with arms outstretched between 2 posters that said:

      "I am a Muslim
      I am labled as a terrorist" and

      "I trust you
      Do you trust me"
      Give me a hug"

      And many good-natured Canadians did. The Youtube of the scene received 1.2 million hits in the 15 days that ended this afternoon. I'd be curious to know how such an experiment would go in the US?

    • Just, you have to read between the lines; the scenario is being set up with the help of the press, as usual, for a major hit on Syria under the pretext of going all out to eliminate the ISIS that has been initially nurtured by the West. The burning soldier and the bombed Kayla are part of the script. We are close to having our "incubator" and " Powell"moments since it seems that the US always need such moments. The Neocon ghouls referred to them as "Pearl Harbor" moments. The "incubator" moment kicked off the first Gulf war, which lead to the second that was kicked off by the Powell false testimony moment.

      Now we just had our "Kayla" moment to coincide with Obama going to Congress for a 3-year pass on taking out ISIS with no questions asked, a bit of what Matthews was driving at.

      Expect some Shock and Awe all over Syria; Obama will be Rambo:

  • Israel: Schabas resignation cannot ‘whitewash’ bias in UN war crimes inquiry
    • “Zionism never did and does not call for “colonization” of any land (in a sense of expelling other people from it). (Benzion the Islamophobe)

      I don't know about the first Zionists but as to recent ones, what are the 600,000 Zionists doing in East Jerusalem and the rest of the West Bank?

    • Annie, tripledobe is making statements much more than asking questions"

      "... Arabs and Jews were very well getting alone there until 1930s when Arab sheikhs realized that Jews who started building a civil society, schools, hospitals, modern cities – were setting “bad” example for their fellow Arabs, and this is when they started incitement and provocations against Jews..."

      In short, tripledobe believes that the atavistic Palestinian Arabs hated the Jews for having brought modern cities, schools, hospitals and a civil society to the land and is perplexed as to why the rest of us haven't yet figured this out.

    • ” Hamas fired rockets into civilian areas and from civilian areas”

      These are Zionist buzzwords, oldgeezer. Gaza is 32 miles by 7 miles and has about a million and a alf people living on top of each other there. So there are no military bases or areas and if Hamas is to fire anything from there, it has to be from a civilian area.

  • 'She dedicated the whole of her young life to helping those in need of freedom, justice and peace': American hostage killed in Syria remembered for work in Palestine
    • "The pilot was burned to death in revenge for killing people by dropping bombs on them." (kris)

      On McClatchy, in the final video by the Jordanian pilot, he explained that the laser-guided GBU bombs were dropped by a couple of Morrocan advanced F16. The Jordanian and Emirati and a Moroccan regular F16s and a Saudi F15 did the sweep to clear the area before the GBU bombing and after the Moroccan bombing, the Saudi and Emirati planes would do the clean up.

      Contradicting the US account, the Jordanian pilot said he was shot down by anti-aircraft fire, but his statement could have been forced on him by his captors..

      link to mcclatchydc.com

      As a point of interest taken from elsewhere from last September, the parents of the lady F16 pilot, Mariam al-Mansourt, disowned her for flying bombing missions against ISIS in Syria. Seems the parents believe ISIS are heroes.

      link to dailymail.co.uk

    • Still not a word out of Jordan.

    • I can't find anything or any statement issued by Jordan on what they have done.

    • It's very sad what happened to Kayla but I can't help imagining what this girl must have been going through during her long captivity and now her suffering must be over. May she rest in peace.

  • I misremember Iraq
    • " ... a shadowy American company, the Rendon Group” was “paid close to $200 million by the CIA and Pentagon to spread anti-Saddam propaganda worldwide.” (from James Bamford book)

      In influence peddling, $200 million is not a very high cost to spread propaganda worldwide, The US, according to a State Dept official, spent $500 million over 4 years trying to sway Lebanon's few hundred thousand youths away from Hizbullah.

      The bulk of the US contribution most probably happened just before the 2009 general elections for which it was rumoured that SA also contributed $600 million and Iran $400 million. That was a lot of money for about a million actual voters. None of these monies substantially altered the final results; the pro-US faction won by a very thin margin.

  • Muslims are Nazis, 'USA Today' jokes
    • Other than having attempted killing people in California and having one its members commit the Hebron massacre, and the 2014 Paris riots, the JDL internationally is known for its other infamies.

      From Wiki:

      In 1995, when the Toronto residence of the Holocaust denier Ernst Zündel was the target of an arson attack, a group calling itself the "Jewish Armed Resistance Movement" claimed responsibility; according to the Toronto Sun, the group had ties to the JDL and to Kahane Chai.[54]

      The leader of the Toronto wing of the Jewish Defense League, Meir Halevi, denied involvement in the attack, although, just five days later, Halevi was caught trying to break into Zündel's property, where he was apprehended by police.[54][55] Later the same month Zündel was the recipient of a parcel bomb that was detonated by the Toronto police bomb squad.[56]

      In 2011, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police had launched an investigation against at least nine members of the JDL in regards to an anonymous tip that the JDL was plotting to bomb the Palestine House in Mississauga.[57]

      In 2002, in France, attackers from Betar and Ligue de Défense Juive (LDJ) violently assaulted Jewish demonstrators from Peace Now, journalists, police officers (one of whom was stabbed), and Arab bystanders.[58] At least two of the suspects in the 2010 murder of a French Muslim Saïd Bourarach appeared to have ties to the French chapter of the JDL.[59]

      In 2011, Israeli daily Haaretz reported members of the "French branch of Jewish terror group coming to Israel 'to defend settlements'."[14]

      In 2013, a French Arab man was critically injured in a "revenge attack" by LDJ, sparking calls for further attacks against the Jews and a condemnation of the militant group by the French Jewry umbrella group CRIF;[17] as of 2013, there have been least 115 violent incidents were attributed to LDJ "soldiers" since the group's registration in France in 2001, including many vigilante reprisals to antisemitic attacks. Earlier that year, two LDJ members were sentenced for an attack at a pro-Palestinian bookstore that injured two people and a LDJ propaganda video called for "five cops for every Jew, 10 Arabs for each rabbi."[60]

      In June 2014 two LDJ supporters were sentenced to prison in France for targeting the car of Jonathan Moadab, the Jewish co-founder of the blog "Cercle des Volontaires (Circle of Volunteers)", with a home-made bomb in September 2012.[61]

      link to en.wikipedia.org.

      The loudest voices heard against the JDL are coming from responsible Jewish organizations.

    • The JDL recruitment drive in Montreal happens in 3 days and we'll see which types join up.

      Both on the JDL- Canada website and in a Radio-Canada interview, it's stated that one of the objectives of JDL is to set up a security team composed of people in proper physical condition with the right skill to be be trained in self-defense. He's most probably talking about something along the lines of JDL-France that are given courses in Krav Maga martial arts by IDF or ex-IDF trainers in a Paris building hall owned by the French Ministry of the Interior. Those "security teams" in France roam the streets at night supposedly on the lookout to help Jews in distress but that are actually more involved in finding Arabs to pick fights with them. The JDL-France was very much involved in the July 2014 riots in France during Palestinian peace marches and have succeeded directly or indirectly in having caused the French government to marches for Palestine.

      In the radio interview, Meir Weinstein mentioned that another team will be set up for intelligence-gathering to be passed on to the police. Weinstein equates BDS or anti anti-Israel activity to terrorism to be addressed by the JDL. He ended by calling on all Jews to show their gratitude to Prime Minister Harper for being pro-Israel by voting for his Conservatives in the fall elections. Most of Canada's Jews usually vote Liberal.

      Taken from the JDL About Us:

      "... HOW THE JEWISH DEFENCE LEAGUE OF CANADA IS BUILDING A TEAM TO DEAL WITH THE ISSUES:

      •Education
      ◦ by engaging professionals to relate actual facts about the issues
      ◦ to provide facts from legitimate sources
      ◦ to correct disinformation
      ◦ to spread the truth of rights according to the Torah

      •Self-Defence
      ◦ The laws of self-defence have been given to the civilized nations of the world by the teachings of the Torah.
      ◦ Professional physical trainers will be engaged to teach people how to defend themselves in any situation. We must not run from adversity because of inexperience or fear. We must be able to stand up for our rights and the rights of our people according to the laws of the country.
      ◦ We will teach appropriate response to verbal abuse.

      •Security
      ◦ The Jewish Defence League of Canada will work in conjunction with various security and policing departments to ensure the security of Jews and Jewish institutions.

      •Media Monitoring
      ◦ This is a vital aspect of JDL’s program – you can participate through this program by keeping us informed of disinformation and negative propaganda about Israel and the Jewish people that is being presented to the general public.

      •Protests
      ◦ We have all been witness to anti-Israel/Jewish protests. The vitriolic hatred is shocking. Our leaders offer little comfort to our community in their inability to gather the Jewish Community together to respond.
      ◦ JDL will protest publicly whenever and wherever necessary.
      ◦ JDL will urge our Jewish Leadership to respond effectively to these events.

      …NEVER AGAIN…"

      link to jdl-canada.com

      In the testimonials section of their website, you can see photos of their security squad that's referred to as the 'Jewish Guardian Angels"

    • "The JDL, no longer active in Montreal, is currently based in Toronto and in Israeli settlements inside occupied Palestine. ..." (Independent Jewish Voices)

      The IJV didn't mention that the JDL is very active and very legitimate in France. It was heavily involved in last summer's riots during the peace march for Palestine in Paris and the rumble in front of the de la Roquette synagogue while French police stood by like the IDF does on the WB during settler attacks. In France, the JDL has for decades maintained close ties with the French police. For the recruitment meeting in Montreal next week, they'll succeed in attracting mostly from those that had lived in Israel and that yearn for some action.

      Mondo's coverage last summer:
      link to mondoweiss.net

      The JDL is also active in the UK:
      link to jdl-uk.org

    • Jim Naureckas' letter said all what should be said.

  • Druze IDF soldier attacked by Israeli Jews for speaking Arabic
    • Piotr, I don't have sympathy but I'm not happy either that the 2 boys got hurt. I can understand the predicament they're in, but I won't accept it. At this point I'm probably mostly influenced by the Israeli campaign to recruit Palestinian Christians into the IDF.

    • Just, the real messy stuff that Israel deals in is not at Haifa but at secretive and militaristic "Israel Institute of Biological Research" at Nes Ziona, 25 km south of TA. A couple of times in the last years we read about strange and very mysterious things happening to staff at that experimental center, but the news about it would suddenly stop. Here's a bit on it from an Israeli journalist Yossi Melman/Israeli spy publication:

      "... Senior officials at Hadassah Medical Center have a role in preparing Israel for coping with possible attacks in the future by enemies using non-conventional weapons. Dr. Shapira also served in the navy as a lieutenant colonel.

      He has been a consultant to the Rand Corporation and to the U.S. government’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

      [In an earlier blog post here at IsraelSpy.com, we said that the most likely pick for director would be Shafferman’s deputy, Dr. Gadi Frishman. But the Defense Ministry went in a different direction.]

      IIBR employs approximately 300 scientists and technicians, all of whom sign secrecy agreements. Located 15 miles south of Tel Aviv, the Institute’s laboratory work is believed to include both biological and chemical weapons — as well as countermeasures that Israel might need to defend itself. Researchers there developed a vaccine against anthrax, more than a decade ago.

      Over the years, IIBR has benefited from grant money from the Pentagon and the U.S. Army and Navy.

      As reported in our book, Spies Against Armageddon: Inside Israel’s Secret Wars, IIBR also works closely with the Mossad when the spy agency needs ways of poisoning Israel’s enemies — such as in the failed assassination of the Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal in Amman, Jordan, in 1996.

      Preparing defenses against chemical and biological weapons that might strike Israel has taken on a new importance, because of the civil war in neighboring Syria. Even before America’s Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel declared (on April 25, 2013) that there is evidence that Syrian government forces used poison gas or chemicals against rebels, a senior Israeli military officer had revealed that disturbing fact.

      Brig.Gen. Itai Bron, the head of the Research Directorate of Aman — the military intelligence agency — was the first to reveal that Bashar al-Assad’s regime used Sarin gas on several occasions against the rebels.

      Dr. Shafferman’s pet project, more than a decade ago, was to develop a vaccine against anthrax. But it turned out that with the collaboration of the army’s Medical Corps, vaccine tests on soldiers were conducted in contrast to the Helsinki Convention’s guidelines for conducting medical tests on human beings.

      An inquiry committee, set up a few years ago by the ethics department of the Israel Doctors Association, hinted that the soldiers may have been abused as guinea pigs to serve “foreign interests.” As reported by the French website Intelligence On-Line, IIBR received a grant of $200 million from America — in return for providing the anthrax test results to the U.S. military. That financed a production line at Nes Ziona, where the Institute produces the anthrax vaccine and other medications. The Israeli newspaper Ha’aretz revealed the tests on soldiers."

      For links to the Haaretz story

      link to israelspy.com

    • "... so they’re not Muslims.." (jon s)

      Yes and no and as seafoid noted a couple of times, they pick and choose from everything around them. If there is something of interest to them from Islam, they'll adopt it, but if after a while it stops being useful to them, they would drop it. They blend in and they adapt. Something chameleonesque about that; some call it versatility.

    • Hi Bintiba, yes I remember, it was covered here at Mondo:

      link to mondoweiss.net

      All Palestinians, Moslem, Druze, Christian and Jews are great people as far as I'm concerned but it's like Kate said about thse Druze boys that joined the IDF, they have to earn a living. BTW, I have nieces and nephews that are half-Palestinians; my 2 brothers married Palestinians.

    • jon, you're right, the category doesn't exist; I made it up as I started writing. There are many sects within Islam but they all go back to Abraham, to the Hebrew prophets, to Jesus and to Muhammad, but each one has its own particuliarity., The Druze consider themselves seperate from others in that they have additional particuliarities taken from Gnosticism, Neoplatonism, Pythagoreanism, and other philosophies. Contrary to other Moslems, they believe in reincarnation and they have their own set of 5 books of scriptures, but these are allowed only to a very few senior sages among them. Like other Moslems, they begin their prayers by reciting the "fatiha". Like other Shia sects, they are very deep into the esoteric interpretation of the religion and unlike the Sunni that adhere strictly to the literal reading of the Quran.

      So you could say they are Moslems yet they are not but in certain areas like in Lebanon, they are constititionally grouped with Moslems. If you really want to know in detail about the Druze, you can read an essay about them wriitten by the son of the supreme clerical leader of the Druze that you'll find much more interesting and informative than my babbling here:

      link to druzenet.net

    • The odd thing about the Nusayris (now considered an unpleasant term since the French Mandate)or Alawites (followers of Ali) is that while on the surface and in parliament they constitute the elite of Syria, the "grey eminences" behind them are Sunni as are the superior military officers. So are the state's civil codes that are based on Sunni charia and the country's educational system, which is also Sunni. The country is actually run by the Sunni using the Alawites in the front office.

    • Kate, the Druze stopped taking in converts very early after their start. Since the Druze are technically Moslem as they are an offshoot of the Shia, it's the father's religion that determines the religion of the children so if Alamuddin's father is a Sunni, she has to be a Sunni and not a Druze. It's odd because Alamuddin is a very Druze-sounding name and the family home is in a very Druze area, but you could be right about the father. Usually mixed couples involving a Druze don't live among other Druze.

      As seafoid mentioned abut the taqqiya and the Nusayris, taqqiya is practiced extensively by the Druze, especially in other countries where they are actually encouraged to use it to dissimulate themselves within the social environment where they happen to live; it's all about self-preservation.

    • No sympathy from me for these Druze boys. The Druze wil never be accepted in the "Jewish state" no matter how much they kiss ass, especially this latest victim that's in the Golani that has a vicious record of beating up on Palestinians and Lebanese and proud of it. They should drop Arabic altogether.

      These incidents should serve as lesson to the very few Palestinian Christians flirting with the idea of joining the Israeli forces; when you lay with dogs,.......

  • Ari Shavit pimps AIPAC in Scarsdale
    • Bintbiba, maybe Jews don't mean much to the younger Lebanese generation, but for those older ones, the memories are very affectionate, like yours of Arlette. For those in between these 2 age groups, they have memories of their parents speaking fondly of their Jewish acquaintances. The Zionists coming on the scene spoiled everything.

    • It's not enough that Israelis have stolen or destroyed much of the Palestinians' heritage, these thieves are now stealing some of Iraq's.

      Bornajoo, because of your proud Iraqi roots, you'd be interested in the following story; It concerns the theft by Israel of one of Iraq's very ancient copies of the Torah. The article contains a photo of Lieberman holding the stolen Iraqi Torah on January 22nd. The article also describes how the US looted Iraq's 33 museums and shipped everything back to the US in just about the same way the Nazis looted European art; from al-Akhbar that describes how the US, the Kurds and Jordan participated in Israel's heist:

      "The Great Israeli Theft of Iraqi Jewish Heritage

      (Photo pf Avigdor Lieberman holding the stolen Iraqi Torah on Jan 22, 2015)

      By: Alaa al-Lami
      Published Tuesday, February 3, 2015

      Recently, Israel stole one of the symbols of Iraqi Jewish heritage, a rare ancient copy of the Torah. The incident went smoothly and quietly, with blatant collusion between Israel, the United States, the Kurdish Regional Government in Iraq, and the Jordanian authorities, amid suspicious silence from the Iraqi federal authorities and the Iraqi cultural scene, save for a few objections.

      ”The claim about the Torah scroll having been sent to the United States for restoration is a lie. The scroll was revealed to not have travelled to the United States, but to the Israeli embassy in Amman” -Akil al-AzrakiThe Torah manuscript in question, known as the Iraqi Old Testament Scroll, was written using concentrated pomegranate juice on deer-skin parchments. The manuscript was seized by US forces, among other Iraqi antiquities, which survived the systematic destruction by the illegal Anglo-American invasion and occupation.
      At the time, it was said that many Iraqi archaeological treasures and huge amounts of documents from the Iraqi state’s secret archives were transferred to Israel, ostensibly for restoration and preservation. In truth, however, this was the deliberate looting of Iraqi heritage.

      At a ceremony held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Israeli authorities publicly displayed that major Iraqi artifact, thus admitting that they had pirated part of Iraq’s heritage. The Israeli Foreign Minister explicitly admitted that the manuscript had been obtained from Kurdistan via Baghdad and Amman, and that it is now being used in daily prayer in the Foreign Ministry synagogue.

      According to The Times of Israel, “After it was repaired and prepared for ritual use by a Jerusalem-based scribe, the scroll was placed in a case from Aleppo, Syria and brought over to the ministry.” Avigdor Lieberman, the extremist foreign minister of Israel, did not let the occasion go without repeating old Zionist cliches, saying that “the scroll’s journey from Kurdistan to Baghdad to Amman to Jerusalem was reminiscent of the destiny of the Jewish nation.”

      Some like Iraqi writer Akil al-Azraki, one of the rare voices who commented on the affair, believe that the Israeli announcement exposed the lies of the Iraqi government. The Iraqi government had claimed the manuscript was sent along with other Iraqi artifacts to the United States for restoration....

      For full article:
      link to english.al-akhbar.com

    • Bornajoo, about Bahrainis, there was also Hoda Ezra Nonoo, the Bahraini Jewish ambassador to the UK and about those imbeciles that keep harping on the evicted Jews from Arab countries, a simple review of dates of departure of Jews from each country would easily show that the 1948 war with the Zionists was not at the root of the exodus.

      First is Lebanon where the Jewish population kept inctreasing after the 48 war and continued so until the mid 60s (which makes it 15 years after 1948) and only started decreasing in the early 70s because of the civil war, along with other Lebanese that left for economic reasons. When Israel invaded Beirut in 1982, there were still a few thousands left (which makes it 34 years after the 48 war), Jews were refusing to leave for Israel until the Israeli navy shelled the Magen Avragam Synagogue, which spooked most into leaving.

      Another was Tunisia where at its independence from France in 1956 ( that's 8 years after the 48 war), there were 100,000 Jews in the country that were offered either an Israeli citizenship or a French one. A third decided to remain in Tunisia while a third opted to emigrate to France and the other third to Israel. After the 1967 war (that makes it 19 years after the 48 war) about 7,000 Jews quit Tunisia but not to go to Israel but to France.

      In Algeria in 1962 (which makes it 14 years after the 48 war) only 40,000 Jews remained while over 100,000 moved to France. Over the years after 1962, about 25,000 Jews went to Israel

      In Egypt, where Jews were actually expelled in different waves, these came about each time Israel did something which hurt Egypt. The first big wave was in 1954 (6 years after the 48 war) after the Lavon black flag adffair, in 56 after Israel's invasion of Suez, in 67 after Israel's attack on Egypt.

      You already mentioned Iraq with the black flag bombings and these happened in the 3rd and 4th year after the 48 war.

      Just going by these dates, it becomes obvious that other than for Egypt, there were no actual expulsions of Jews,

    • NickJOCW, the Shia that I said were combining the US and Israel for their hate are all located in the Middle East. These represent about 60% of the world's total Shia population with most of the rest concentrated in India, Pakistan, Azerbaijan and Afghanistan and somewhat oblivious to what's happening to the Palestinians.

      Ironically, it's a given that if these Middle Eastern Shia states were to accept what Israel is doing to the Palestinians (somewhat as some Sunni states are are now doing), they would immdiately fall into the US' good graces and first among them would be Iran that would be allowed to play in all the nuclear stuff to its heart's desires. So it's really all about Israel and not about the US.

      How many times has Syria gotten an offer of getting back its Golan in exchange of dropping the Palestinian issue and recognizing Israel?

    • Bornajoo, Nafeez Ahmed's article that got him fired went beyond explaining what was behind Israel's successive wars on Gaza to eliminate Hamas. That Gaza has loads of offshore natural gas that Israel doesn't want to let Hamas get its hands on has been known before Cast Lead since this was most probably the cause behind Israel's assault that had come with the foreknowledge of Egypt and the PA. 2 subsequent wars on Gaza, also with the knowledge and blessings of Egypt and the PA failed to wipe out Hamas.

      The touchy point that Nafeez covered in his Guardian article was about Israel's insecurity about its own gas that everyone had believed so abundant that it would make Israel an exporter, he wrote:

      "... But this is the tip of the iceberg. A 2012 letter by two Israeli government chief scientists – which the Israeli government chose not to disclose – warned the government that Israel still had insufficient gas resources to sustain exports despite all the stupendous discoveries. The letter, according to Ha'aretz, stated that Israel's domestic resources were 50% less than needed to support meaningful exports, and could be depleted in decades:

      "We believe Israel should increase its [domestic] use of natural gas by 2020 and should not export gas. The Natural Gas Authority's estimates are lacking. There's a gap of 100 to 150 billion cubic meters between the demand projections that were presented to the committee and the most recent projections. The gas reserves are likely to last even less than 40 years!"

      As Dr Gary Luft - an advisor to the US Energy Security Council - wrote in the Journal of Energy Security, "with the depletion of Israel's domestic gas supplies accelerating, and without an imminent rise in Egyptian gas imports, Israel could face a power crisis in the next few years… If Israel is to continue to pursue its natural gas plans it must diversify its supply sources."

      Bornajoo, the above must have touched a raw nerve in Israel. Nafeez Ahmed's article in your linked Greenstein's blog is worth the read.

      This clearly shows that Israel will hit Gaza again and again and again with the knowledge and acceptance of Gaza's neighbours and that Israel to sustain its future needs, will be depending on what it can steal from the offshores of Gaza and Lebanon as well as from the West's Bank's inland where it's already conducting explorations. It's surely not exploring on the WB for the benefit of the Palestinians.

    • "Not all Sunnis are pro-American, are they?'

      In the countries I mentioned, Stephen, most of the Sunni are, and elsewhere it depends mostly on whether or not they have been clobbered by the US such as in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan. There are some minor exceptions among the Sunni like Hamas or al Qaeda, that you mentioned, for obvious reasons, that are branded simply as terrorists even by some other Sunni states. But even al Qaeda that is rooted in the mujahideen/Taliban began as pro-US and continued so for years while they were still useful. "Moderate Moslem" is a buzzword used by Americans and Israelis to describe those that are sympathetic to them. Shavit has to be knowledgeable about the Moslem world but was using the occasion to twist the knife into the Shia that as a rule are anti-Israel and by extension Anti-US. Look forward to his hate-filled speech at AIPAC

    • Thanks, Pixel, picked the following from your link; Shavit is one of AIPAC's speakers this year:

      "WHAT IS
      POLICY CONFERENCE?

      Tens of thousands of pro-Israel Americans gather in Washington, D.C. for the annual AIPAC Policy Conference to help shape U.S. policy and further strengthen the U.S.-Israel relationship.

      UNFORGETTABLE
      EXPERIENCE

      The AIPAC Policy Conference is the largest gathering of America's pro-Israel community. Through demonstrations of groundbreaking Israeli innovations, keynote speeches by American and Israeli leaders, inspiring moments on stage, and intimate educational sessions, Policy Conference delegates experience the full scale of pro-Israel activism in three powerful days.

      The conference culminates with the opportunity for delegates to lobby their members of Congress in support of legislation that enhances the relationship between the United States and Israel.

      WHO ATTENDS
      THE CONFERENCE?

      More than 14,000 pro-Israel Americans
      More than two-thirds of Congress
      More than 2,300 students from more than 490 campuses
      260 Student Government Presidents from all 50 states
      More than 275 synagogue delegations
      AIPAC members from across the country

      Pixel, in which other super gathering other than in the Capitol do 2/3 of Congress people meet?

    • Annie, on reading it again, I see that you are right, especially with $100 off special for signing up to a March convention. I'm curious to know the full cost of registering if the discount is $100.

    • What is it exactly that Priscilla expected from an event sponsored by AIPAC, the valorization of the Palestinians' RoR? She went there knowing all too well that Shavit's was promoting his concept of "Yes, we screwed the Palestinians and we're proud to have done it,"

      You're right, Marshal, AIPAC is doing the pimping.

    • No, Annie, it's a code word for Sunni states Saudia, Jordan, UAE, Qatar, Bahrain, Turkey, Egypt and so on that are decidely pro-American and have consequently normalized relations in varrying degrees with Israel, that Shavit refers to as the "moderates"; his litany continues in the same sentence, ... "against extremists and of “peace as a process” of building structures for co-existence that would take many years but should replace the failed peace process."

      Whereas the good "moderate" guys are the Sunni states dancing to Israel's tune, the bad "extremists" guys against peace as a 999-year peace process are the Shia states of Iran and Syria with Hizbullah in tow.

      American audiences have a weakness for buzz words and Shavit was toying with such an audience at the Westchester Reform Temple.

  • Gideon Levy's argument for Netanyahu
    • I agree with David on this one. Netanyahoo is a master at pulling the wool over America's eyes and a victory for him would only prolong the agony and the systematic dispossession of the Palestinians. The Palestinians have reached a point of no return and win by an even more rabbid snake like Livni or other nutjobs running against Netanyahu would throw the anti-Israel movement into overdrive and speed up the end of the evil Zionist enterprise.

    • Could you imagine what it would be like if the gun-toting settlers were made to abandon their settlements and return home to the US?

    • "Hell, this blog was started because of what Ivanka’s hubby did to Phil."

      What did he do?

  • Do we really want Benjamin Netanyahu guiding U.S. foreign policy?
    • "(French Cabinet Minister?)" (RoHa)

      The French Minister that the lout elbowed while trying to board the bus at the 00:10 mark of C&D's video above was Fleur Pellerin, Minister of Culture and Communications. She's an amazing woman having been abandoned on the streets of Seoul when she was 4 days old, taken to an orphanage and adopted by a French family 6 months later. Her academic and career accomplishments are a mile long.

      The zero-mannered Netanyahu probably figured that as an Asian, she shouldn't be getting on the bus ahead of him.

      Fleur Pellerin a couple of years ago:

  • One state in historic Palestine, but -- what kind of state?
    • SQ Debris, I chose butterflies to not use rainbows. I'm all for an egaliterian society but this is alien to Israel's vocation. The comedy has gone on for 70 years. I still hope for a free Palestine but it will never happen by way of dialogue with Israel; not much of that pizza is left..

    • Stephen, for the Palestinians, your suggestion would simply change being militarily forced to forgo their dignity to doing so voluntarily, as did the Tatars as a condition for their repatriation, as it involves accepting whatever table scraps Israel would throw their way and this at restrictive conditions imposed by Israel. I think you are being satirical, somewhat à la Modest Proposal.

    • "It is incontrovertible that the vast majority of Palestinians are enraged at the oppression and deprivation under which they live – only leadership and organization of struggle is lacking. "

      Ellen Isaacs's group is chasing too many butterflies at the same time. Before convening these conferences on how the 2 groups would work together, it would be more productive to first work out what the Palestinians want and at this point their voices are not unified. Palestinians have no effective leadership and even worse, there is no organization in place that could assume either a partnership with Israel or to go it alone in a 2-state situation. Other than a massive police force devoted to the protection of Israel since 20 years, the Palestinians do't have much in way of infrastructures. The only way of getting through to the Israelis is by hitting them with a 2x4 between the eyes by collapsing the redundant PA.

  • Pro-Israel campus activists acting as agents of state propaganda and intimidation
    • "We had denominational education and large scale fights between groups occurred.... "

      I know the feeling.

    • Oldgeezer, you mentioned the killing between Catholics and Protestants where you hail from and that new to me. I was under the impression that the conflict was about the English Protestants lording it socially and economically over the Catholic French from the days of pre-1867 up to the days of the Quiet Revolution of the 1960s, but not in your area..

  • Biden will skip Netanyahu's speech
    • WOW, what a scenario, Taxi, the gift of fear. Teheran is Berlin, our women will be their jihadi wives; doomsday.

  • We Are Not Numbers: New project helps Gaza writers tell their story
    • "When this war was over, Ayman was not the same. Now, he joined Hamas’ armed-resistance force, the Al Qassam Brigades. He vowed that he would protect his people; he swore he would defend his homeland and to never allow massacres to occur again. " (Ahmed Alnaouq)

      Clearly understandable and to be expected. I heard that soon after the end of the 2006 war and Israel's destruction of most of the Shia villages and how the resistance team of more or less 3,000 Hizbullah fighters and 5,000 part time volunteers had held back a land invasion by 30,000 Israeli soldiers, over 70,000 young Shia men enlisted in Hizbullah within a couple of months. They're not 3000-strong anymore. Israel is stupid to continue thinking it can go on destroying people's homes amd lives without lighting a fire in them. There has to be thousands and thousands of Palestinians anxious to repay the Zionists for 70 years of oppression. Pam succeeded in helping Ahmed but who's to help all the others?

  • John Lewis tells D.C. crowd he will not attend Netanyahu speech
    • JLD, the 3rd war didn't happen most probably because Iran snuffed it out because it's very close with settling with the US and doesn't need any diversions from it. Netanyahu and the Israeli people were lucky because a war would have hurt Israel (and of course Lebanon) very badly.

      Going back to 1996 and Pers wanting to prove he had big ones for the coming elections an a few weeks, at the time he had not been elected but was made interim Prime Minister after the assassination of Rabin for less than 6 months. The Grapes of Wrath election stunt backfired on him. As Cole commented, idiotic Israeli candidates always use Lebanon as a punching bag during their election campaigns.

  • Palestinian youth face psychological trauma and educational neglect following Israeli detention
    • "how stupid. about as stupid and racist as being surprised that an animal rights organization would exist in an arab land." (DaBakr)

      DaBakr, sorry you didn't catch the drift of the message: The same Israeli society that puts inadequately clothed Palestinian children in cages outside in December freezing stormy weather, also cares about animal welfare sheltering with an SPCA in TA since 1927. Something out of sync between these 2 situations. Ask someone to explain it to you.

    • "... a razor sharp mind + subtlety , young man !!!"

      Young was a long time ago, bintbiba, but happy that you liked it.

    • " Many will probably end up as dysfunctional, radicalised adults who will be prime recruitment targets for extremist groups.” -such as the IDF "

      Seafoid, the above paragraph with the "such as the IDF" left me confused. Did Amira intend saying ISIS instead of IDF or did I misunderstand it?

    • Out of curiosity, I Googled to see if such a thing as the SPCA existed in Zionist-Israel. And sure enough, it does and since 1927:

      Start Info: Founded on February 18, 1927

      Short Description: SPCA Israel—Tel Aviv-Yafo, is a non-profit philanthropic organization which was founded in the year 1927 and has been operating since to prevent suffering and pain from animals

      Company Overview: SPCA Israel takes in abandoned animals and tries to find adopting homes for them. We provide various services to the communi... See More

      Mission: The primary goal of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in Israel is to act to prevent animals from sufferi... See More

      PhoneL +972-3-513-6500

      Email: [email protected]

      Website: link to spca.co.il

      link to facebook.com

      Who who have known that Zionists have compassion for animals?

    • Remember this from a year ago as it appeared in the JPost and EI?

      "... Israel put Palestinian prisoners, including children, in outdoor cages during the severe winter storm that struck the region in the middle of last month (December 2013).

      The shocking practice was highlighted in a year-end statement by the advocacy group, the Public Committee Against Torture in Israel (PCATI) and discussed by Israel’s parliament, the Knesset, this week.

      Also detailed in a letter from the office of Israel’s National Public Defender, the practice had been going on for months, but has now supposedly been halted.

      The 16 December letter to the head of the Israel Prison Service (IPS) says that lawyers from the public defender’s office had learned of the practice during an official visit to the Ramle prison compound where Palestinian political prisoners, including children, are often transferred from the occupied West Bank in violation of international law.

      Iron cages

      During the visit by two of its lawyers “which coincided with the fierce storm that struck the country, the attorneys met prisoners who described a shocking picture: in the middle of the night, dozens of prisoners were transferred to iron cages built outside the IPS facility in Ramle,” according to a 17 December statement from the public defender.

      “In these cages, which were exposed to the weather, they spent several hours in the freezing cold and rain, until the transport arrived to take them to court around 6am,” the statement adds.

      The statement said that the practice had been going on for months, a fact “verified during other official visits and not denied by IPS.”

      The public defender launched an emergency appeal to various official bodies, including the ministry of justice, “in order to prevent another night of such grave harm to humanity.”

      The statement notes that some of the prisoners in the cages were “minors” – children.

      The Jerusalem Post reported on 31 December that Tzipi Livni, Israel’s justice minister “immediately telephoned Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch, telling him to end the practice.”

      link to electronicintifada.net

    • "Many will probably end up as dysfunctional, radicalised adults who will be prime recruitment targets for extremist groups."

      Bornajoo, you just described the Zionist Master Plan to a T.

  • Why now? Story breaks that US teamed with Israel in assassinating Iranian 'agent' in '08
    • Why now?

      It's the time of the year when Israel officials are on edge from expecting a Hizbullah payback.
      Mugniyah was assassinated on Lincoln's birthday and there's a Hizbullah promise from a few years back that it would make Israel pay dearly for it at some time in the future. This throws Israel into a nightmare that lasts about 10 days each year as the anniversary of the assassination nears. This year Israel took the initiative of doing some spooking of its own in advance of that date.

    • "Both Hezbollah and Iran privately suspected that the Syrian regime of Bashar al-Assad may have played a role in Mughniyah’s death.” (Levitt)

      Going back to 2008 when Mugniyeh was assassinated, the US had been adamant against Israel entering into negotiations with Syria that had been dormant for 8 years. But suddenly it was simmultaneously announced in Syria, Israel and the US that negotiations would start on May 21st of that same year in Turkey. For some unknown reason, the US let Syria out of the dog house 3 months after Mugniyah was killed in an a heavily guarded area very close to Syria's military intelligence HQ.

      I remember that Iranian senior reps were present at the funeral but that no Syrian high official.

  • Chair of Democratic National Committee opposes Jewish intermarriage and MSNBC showing Gaza carnage
  • Settler shoots Palestinian teenager in East Jerusalem
    • Oldgeezer, where would you situate children of settlers"; are they fair game?

    • "Palestinian leaders are now slowly but surely ensuring Israel has enough rope to hang itself "

      Talknic they're taking the slow road because if Israel goes down in the courts, there's going to be a lot of beans spilled by Israel about Cast Lead, Pillar of Fire, the cement monopoly, the Goldstone Report-Wataniya licenses and various other embarrassing situations for some Palestinians..

      I agre with you that the Palestinians that attacked civilians lost whatever legitimacy they had. They should have gone after military targets or no targets. Bombing buses, markets and pizzerias was wrong. I don't agree that settlers are valid military targets. There are plenty of actual military installations in the occupied territories that could have been attacked.

      About those legal battles, while some of the Arabs were into legal battles with the Zionists, other Arabs were actually rushing to get in bed with the Zionists. It isn't any wonder that the Arabs never got anywhere fighting the Zionists. The only Arabs that had Israel's number and got anywhere with it were Hizbullah.

    • Problem with that, talknic, is that Dov Weisglass' prediction of 2005 appears to have come true; the Palestinians have been turned into Finns, thanks in good part to the leaders they had for the past 20 years that told them to lie down and take the shit being thrown at them. Even Hamas has started to mellow.

      During last summer's mini intifada that never really took off on the WB, they were attacking the soldiers with firecrackers.

    • "Spot on, Walid"

      Yes, seafoid, except for my switching the phosphorus for sulfur.

      These 2 are truly alike.

    • "Very little creative energy either in Daeshsistan or Israel. It’s all fear and trauma iterations. Both black holes. (seafoid)

      Amazing the similarities between them. They both maim their victims but one uses a sharp knife and the other DIME bombs and white sulphur. They both give senseless warnings before butchering people; one drops small bomblets on roofs of people supposedly to warn them of an impending strike, but doen't really give them time to flee and the other makes videos of the victim in orange jumpsuits while holding a knife to threaten or else but more often than not always ends up killing the victim anyway. Both are on a self-proclaimed mission from God.

      Israel and Daesh are an inspiration to each other; truly birds of a feather.

    • "The illegal settlers are not ‘in’ Israel."

      Agreed 100%, talknic, I should have said a civil war between Zionists living in Israel and those other Zionists squatting on occupied territories.

    • "I have felt for some time that in Israel the year is 1859." (abc)

      That's rather modern if you compare it to the year 632 AD that ISIS wants to bring the world back to; that was the year that Abu al-Qasim Muḥammad ibn ʿAbd Allah ibn ʿAbd al-Muṭṭalib ibn Hashim (PBUH) died. Ironically, the self-declared Caliph that would take us all back to these austere days wears a Rolex. Go figure.

    • "In reality, Rahat has few jobs, few services, little infrastructure and inhabitants have turned to crime, drugs and other avenues to eke out a living. " (Silverstein)

      Bornajoo, Rahat in the Negev sounds like other dead-end ghettos that Israel created for the Palestinians it dispossessed. The Ajami ghetto on the outskirts of TA-Jaffa is the most known to the outside world because a movie by that name was made about it. It's where the Zionists cramed the Palestinians after having stolen their homes in Jaffa. It became as Silverstein described Rahat, steeped in crime and drugs.

      The Daily Star about another TA slum at Lod, from 2012:

      "Neglect, inequality drive violence in Israel’s Arab slums

      Jihan Abdalla| Reuters

      LOD, Israel: “My friend is on the floor, dying, 11 holes in his body, and I only have 10 fingers,” raps Tamer Nafar. “Don’t close your eyes, blink if you can hear me.”

      Nafar isn’t rapping about violence and crime in urban America, but murders, drugs, guns and gang warfare in his own Israeli slum.

      The backstreets of Lod, a mixed Arab-Jewish city just 20 minutes from the tree-lined boulevards of Tel Aviv, reveal a seamy underside of Israel that few visitors get to see, tucked away behind Ben Gurion airport off the main highway to Jerusalem and the occupied West Bank.

      “There’s crime pollution in this city that hits everybody. Nobody has immunity,” said Nafar, lead MC in the Arab group DAM.

      Residents, police, government officials, academics and social workers agree conditions in the areas where Arabs live have reached a crisis point, with poor schools and infrastructure fueling crime and drug abuse.

      Arab residents and analysts say that Israel’s government and the police have ignored the problem because it has stayed within the Arab community and the country’s Jewish population is largely unaffected.

      But awareness is growing, partly thanks to wider public appeals from the communities themselves.

      Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told a special Knesset meeting in mid-February organized by Arab parliamentarian Ahmad Tibi that statistics showing that 40 percent of Arab Israelis felt threatened were “intolerable.”

      “The lives of Israeli Arabs are insufferable as a result of crime, murder, the killing of women, murder in general, robbery and looting,” Netanyahu said.

      Out of a total population of 7.8 million in Israel, 1.6 million – 20 percent – are Arabs. Many live in Nazareth and Arab villages located mostly in the north and in so-called mixed cities such Acre, Lod, Ramle, Haifa and Jaffa.

      Most are descendants of Palestinians who stayed on after the 1948 war to establish Israel in which hundreds of thousands of Palestinians fled or were driven out. Many Arabs feel kinship with Palestinians in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, and Jewish right-wingers say many Arabs are disloyal to the state.

      The government estimates that just over 50 percent of Arab families live under the poverty line.

      Truly mixed Jewish-Arab neighborhoods are increasingly hard to find as Jews, often with government support, move out to more affluent neighborhoods, creating Arab ghettoes and exacerbating the feeling among Arabs that they are second-class citizens.

      Dor Shaulov, a project manager at City Without Violence, a government-funded initiative aimed at reducing violence in urban areas, said Arabs tend to be in favor of mixed communities while Jews preferred to stay separate.

      “When Arabs start to move in a Jewish neighborhood, the Jews start to move out,” Shaulov said.

      Residents in the Arab areas complain of inferior municipal services, higher unemployment rates, crowded neighborhoods, inferior health care and unfair allocation of resources in the education system and housing.

      “Since 1948, there has not been one governmental housing plan in the Arab neighborhoods of Lod ... even though there have been hundreds of plans for Jews,” said Faten Zinati, a municipal government employee working in Lod.

      As a result, she explains, Arabs have been forced to build homes without permits, many of which have been demolished, and the rest are under threat of demolition.

      The result is that today, “the Arab neighborhoods are neglected, dirty and disordered,” she said.

      Out of 141 murders last year in Israel, 62 were committed in the Arab sector, according to the latest figures cited by Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovich in the Knesset.

      Thirty percent of the prison population is Arab, and 68 percent of all gunfire incidents involve Arabs, he said.

      In Lod, where about a third of the population is Arab, most crime involves Arabs against Arabs. Residents and observers say lack of adequate policing in Arab areas is a big part of the problem.

      “The majority of the drug dealers are Arabs stationed in the Arab parts of the city, and the violent crime victims are mostly Arab too,” said Mahmoud Mohareb, a professor of Israeli studies at Al-Quds University.

      “There is no police seriousness when it comes to investigating crimes committed between Arabs,” Mohareb said.

      Police defend their record and point to success in cleaning up the drugs scene. They reckon up to 1,500 drug users a day bought narcotics in Lod’s Arab “Mahata” neighborhood two years ago using “ATMs” – holes in the walls that supplied heroin and crack cocaine – a trade that is almost nonexistent today.

      “It was like a marketplace, but for drugs and drug users,” said resident Amer Zawarkeh.

      Violence continues, the police agree, but they say the problem is due to “tribalism” in the communities. A third of Lod’s Arab population are tribal bedouin, who began migrating to the city in the 1950s in search of work.

      Israel’s police commissioner, Yohanan Danino, agreed the rate of crime solving in the Arab community is low and needed to be improved. More Arabic-speaking officers is one solution, but he said getting the full cooperation of the Arab community would be key.

      Crammed into decrepit tenement-style flats, many homes in the Arab parts remain under threat of demolition. A study by the Israeli rights group Shatil estimates that some 70 percent of Arab homes in Lod lack legal permits, which are hard to obtain.

      In their neighborhoods, the streets have no names, the houses have no numbers and GPS tracking systems go blank. There are no paved roads and rubbish is strewn everywhere.

      Municipal services such as street lighting and rubbish collection stop at the boundaries of their quarters.

      In March 2011, Human Rights Watch put out a report called “Israel: Stop Discriminatory Home Demolitions” in which the group criticized the practice of demolishing homes in Arab communities built without permits when getting permits was so hard.

      “When it comes to housing rights in Lod, Israeli officials seem to have one rule for Palestinian citizens, another for Jewish citizens,” Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director at Human Rights Watch, said in a statement.

      Israel’s government has earmarked about $46 million for a number of improvement schemes. But Netanyahu and his Cabinet argue local policing, housing and infrastructure are just part of the overall problem.

      City Without Violence’s Shaulov says that in Lod, unlike other cities in his scheme, even small changes such as picking up the trash in the Mahata neighborhood made a big impression. Locals were awed by the installation of street lighting in a district that for years had been pitch black at night.

      “There was an inequality in the allotment of funding,” Shaulov said. “Now, we aim to spend more on the Arab side in order to make up for the past. It’s horrible now, but it was a disaster before.”

      link to dailystar.com.lb

    • Very bad news out of the Negev being hidden by Israel but picked up by Richard Silverstein; 8 Palestinian women killed in the Negev.:

      Police Tractors Vandalizing Negev Bedouin Fields Cause Massive Fatal Accident, 8 Bedouin Women Killed

      by RICHARD SILVERSTEIN on FEBRUARY 4, 2015
      in MIDEAST PEACE

      police tractor causes fatal accident

      Police tractor which caused massive fatal accident (Eli Hershkovitz)

      Today, there was a massive, tragic accident in the Israeli Negev. Eight Bedouin women were killed in a bus crash with oversized agricultural vehicles. They had been returning from a pilgrimage to the Al Aqsa mosque. Unfortunately, Israeli mainstream media has concealed the most important, and shocking aspects of this tragedy.

      There is an Israeli police unit (Yoav) whose mission is to expel Negev Bedouin from their native villages. The ultimate goal is, as in East Jerusalem and the West Bank, to Judaize the thinly settled Negev with new Jewish communities modeled after settlements. Part of their responsibility is to raze villages whose residents return after they’ve been expelled. Another aspect is to destroy the ability for the Bedouin to earn a livelihood from their traditional grazing of livestock on open land. The police do this by plowing under such fields which Bedouin have planted with grain, with huge excavators.

      israeli tractors caused fatal crash
      Israeli police tractors after vandalizing Bedouin fields and bus crash killing 8 Bedouin women (Azez Alaraqib Alaraqib)
      Activist Michael Kaminer wrote on his Facebook page:

      Tractors of Death

      What they never told you on today’s newscast. The Original Sin. Israeli police brought a dangerous tractor trailer carrying tractors onto a road on which it was forbidden them to travel. Their intent was to plow up the harvest and fields of the Bedouin in order to damage their livelihood. They were attempting to advance the racist Prawer Plan and prevent the Bedouin from working their fields.

      Two police vehicles accompanied the trailers, one before and another behind. The racist Yoav police unit whose purpose is to take all measures necessary to restrict the Bedouin, is guilty for this murder and many other additional crimes over the years against them.

      This picture shows the tractors after the fatal accident, and after they’d plowed up the grain field today…You can see on the arms of the tractors fragments of the window shades of the bus which they struck killing the victims.

      Two such excavators were traveling on a road for which they had no permit (because they were oversized). In doing so, they struck the bus and sliced it completely down one side, killed eight riders and injuring 20 more. This is a micro-tragedy due to the deaths of these women, but a macro-tragedy in the ongoing ethnic cleansing of Bedouin from their ancestral lands.

      Now I’d like to offer some commentary directed at the negligent fools of this police unit who murdered these poor women. Though their unit is called “Yoav,” (יואב) it should really be called “Ahab” (אחאב). It was King Ahab who was so enamored of the vineyard of his neighbor that he had him killed in order to inherit his land. In 1 Kings, Elijah denounces Ahab: “Have you first murdered [Naboth] and stolen his land as well?” The historical record is an apt reflection on today’s horrid news: the police first steal the Bedouins lands and now they’ve even stolen their lives in an act of flagrant negligence.

      Those of you following the plight of the Bedouin may’ve thought that the Israeli government had scraped the controversial Prawer Plan to relocate 40,000 indigenous residents from their villages to slum towns like Rahat, which are meant to concentrate the Bedouin in a more western, urban environment, i.e. to civilize them. In reality, Rahat has few jobs, few services, little infrastructure and inhabitants have turned to crime, drugs and other avenues to eke out a living. Though temporarily scrapped, as the settlements have shown, lack of an official plan or authorization has never stopped a determined Israeli ethnic cleanser from pursuing plans to rid the Negev of non-Jews.

      This accident and Israel’s treatment of the Bedouin is a schandeh: a deep and shameful national disgrace.

      link to richardsilverstein.com

    • Bornajoo, easy to figure out, Jews are just as crazy as Arabs, they just dress better.

    • I'm guessing that it's about 10 to 15 years down the road. You could see the beginining of the confrontations starting to develop between the religious and the not so religious. As long as the Israeli government can keep the people spooked of the imaginary Arab threat that would push them into the sea, the civil war won't happen. This is probably why Israel is so afraid of making peace with its neighbours. Peace with the neighbours will accelerate the civil war happening.

    • "Very few Egyptians are interested in pharaonic history since it was pre Islamic."

      Seafoid, I'm surprised the museum in Cairo is left standing but maybe it's because of the Brothers that aren't as fanatical. Still there's a large segment that's Salafist in Egypt and these have no mercy on such things as pre-islamic museums. In Saudi Arabia, they destroyed the home of the Prophet Muhammad as well as graves of the Prophet's family and close followers because they don't want anyone to venerate them.

    • Of course it has to be a gimmick, abc, why would Israel arrest would-be ISIS recruits when the Israeli government is itself providing logistic cover and medical help to ISIS in Syria?

    • Bornajoo, it's a given that with all the arms in their possession, the settlers would never leave and if the government of Israel attemots to relocate them, there's a huge chance that this would result in a civil war between the Zionists. With the imbalances in Israel, this civil war will definitely happen in Israel, especially between the fanatically religious and the not so religious. Israel is going to have its own Zionist version of ISIS.

    • I fully agree, aiman.

    • Interesting article in "l'Observateur" describing why the self-proclaimed Islamic Caliphate hates book and knowledge. As per AP, in January ISIS went on a witch burning rampage looted thousands of literary works, some thousands of years old, from the university library, the Museum of Antiquities and various Christian institutions of Mosul and burned them.

      The article says that hate of knowledge is at the root of Salafist-jihadists or their Wahhabist cousins course that is part of the fundamentalist current in power. It's believed that any manuscript that predates Islam has to be treated as suspect as it may vaunt merits of various impious trends, which Wahhabism fights. In short, anything written that does not include something about Wahhabism falls in that category.

      The article also explains where the name of ISIS' distant cousins, the "Boko Haram" comes from. "Boko" is the deformation of the word "book" and "haram" means "interdiction" or "forbidden".

      Looks like the Boko Haram have ISIS' same allergy to books.

      link to bibliobs.nouvelobs.com

    • The UAE is no longer flying missions to attack Israel's pals, ISIS. It seems it quit doing so the day the Jordanian pilot parachuted into ISIS' hands but information about UAE quitting the missions surfaced only today.

      UAE advised the US that it would go back to flying attack missions against ISIS whenever the US receives the fast-flying rescue Ospreys. Didn't the US just send 5 of those to Israel? Maybe the US could borrow them from Israel.

    • Islamic cell in Israel practicing on sheep to slaughter people. Last article in Kate's compilation above. These are the people Israel is helping in Syria. Strange that Israel would arrest some of them supposedly training in Israel to join the fighting in Syria. Those picked up are claiming that they are innocent and that this is a Netanyahu election gimmick.

      Speaking of Israel's pals at ISIS, they have been burning all the books they're finding in libraries, bookstores and museums in Mosul that don't contain anything on Islam. Some of those burned date back a few thousand years.

      link to geopolis.francetvinfo.fr

  • Lawrence Summers says BDS movement is 'persecuting' Israel
    • American, that was a heck of a lot of information on how Israel's lobby is manipulating US foreign policy. I thought the India-Israel connection was a recent one but from what you posted, it goes way back.

    • Kay, just as Netanyahu is intent on making Israel all-Jewish, Modi is intent on making India all-Hindu, so it isn't any wonder that these 2 vultures get along so much and areprobably comparing notes on a regular basis. When we first discussed Modi a couple of months back, it was mostly about what he was doing to India's Muslims and glorifying the killers of Gandhi. It's worthwhile reposting a comment addressed to you last December that describe Modi's admiration for the fascists:

      Walid December 22, 2014 at 12:58 pm
      Kay, Modi was called the Sharon of India by one paper and that should give you an idea of what he's about. It isn't any wonder that he hit it off with Netanyahu and is now considering dropping India's support of the Palestinian cause. You can't be a friend of the Palestinians and of Netanyahu at the same time, and Modi has made his choice where to lie.

      His extreme-right position was established 12 years ago by his involvement in the massacre of around 1000 Moslems in Gujarat province, which was the province of Gandhi. Modi was never shy to demonstrate his anti-Gandhi feelings. Last May, Modi and his ministers turned up to pay tributes to freedom-fighter Vinyak Damodar Savarkar (1883-1966), the mastermind behind Nathuram Godse's assassination of Gandhi in 1948.

      Last Friday, Hindu Mahasabha, the extremist party that supports Modi asked the government to provide public places land all over India on which to erect statues and busts of Godse, the assassin of Gandhi.

      Last year before Modi's election, the Boston Review ran a short bio on him; a small sampling:

      "... Gujarat is known, at least outside of India, as the state that produced Mahatma Gandhi, the frail leader who wore a simple, homespun white cloth and preached nonviolent direct action and the importance of people coming together regardless of caste, religion, or political party. But within India, Gujarat has become synonymous with Modi, who has announced himself as a new type of leader: brash, stylish, prone to bragging about his large chest size, and most significantly for the Indian courts and the international community, unrepentant about his state’s role in the loss of Muslim lives. He may quote Gandhi but he is popular, in short, because he is not afraid of being un-Gandhian.

      ... Modi showed a fondness for the Hindu right wing group the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) as a child. The RSS was started in 1925 as a Hindu nationalist movement and reached infamy in 1948 when one of its members, Nathuram Godse, assassinated Gandhi. It was declared a terrorist group immediately after by the Indian government and banned for two years. But today it remains as strong—and hardline—as ever.

      There are an estimated 40,000 RSS camps, or shakhas, across the country where Hindu men and young boys gather each morning to chant slogans and perform a series of exercises, often using a long stick. In the landmark report on the 2002 Gujarat riots, “We Have No Orders to Save You,” Human Rights Watch said it was the RSS that was responsible for passing out lists of Muslim-owned business and homes to mobs at the start of the violence.

      It was at these camps that Modi’s ideas about the world were formed. Modi's brother, Somabhai, tells Mukhopadhyay that “[Modi] was always greatly impressed by the fact that only one person gave all the orders in the [RSS camp] and everyone followed the command.

      ... One Hindu nationalist in Gujarat told the authors, “Muslims will never dare to raise their heads in Surat now. They will have to learn to live in an inferior position as befits a minority.” This, Mukhopadhyay argues, is how Modi defines the Hindutva ideology that is still the core of his worldview. It is not that non-Hindus cannot and should not live in India. But if non-Hindus want to live in peace, they should adhere to Hindu traditions."

      Full article:

      link to bostonreview.net

      The last paragraph above shows how much Modi and Netanyahu think alike about non-hindus and non-Jews.

      - See more at: link to mondoweiss.net

    • Speaking of persecutions and Israelis, word coming out of India is that Netanyahu's pal, the Islamophobic Narendra Modi has been acting as if he is taking lessons in persecution from Israel. Since Modi was elected last spring, persecution of India's Catholics began and under police protection in the same way the settlers are persecuting West Bank Palestinians while Israeli police or soldiers look on to protect the settlers during their destruction sprees. Since Christmas, 5 churches have been destroyed or desecrated in New Delhi. And not a word about this from Modi. As on the West Bank, those committing the crimes are never prosecuted and events are minimized by the police. Catholics bishops intending to attend a conference in India were refused a visa. And the persecution of Moslems in India since Modi's election are also on the rise. The largest minority in India is Moslem at 140 million and second largest is the Catholic at 25 million that's mostly comprised of the lower castes.

      Details of persecutions in Delhi and elsewhere.

      link to christianpersecutionindia.blogspot.ca

    • "I believe he would be moving from Penn Valley..."

      That , combined with the militaristic Northridge brings back memories from the Haaretz talkback rumbles of 9 years ago.

    • "Sadly, those “good old days” appear to be gone. Perhaps, never to return." (JLD)

      JLD and oldgeezer, the good old days will be back, Canadians are good people; whats being seen of Canada's foreign policy is mostly Harper's personal direction and religious orientation. Next general elections are scheduled for October 19th with a small chance of the Liberals winning over Harper's Conservatives if they can't win over some of the NDP seats.. Harper's current popularity is in 37% range.

    • No, normalization is not an Arabic term. In the Arab Peace Initiative of 2002 floated by the Arab League, Israel was offered normal relations with Arab countries if it returns to the June 4th, 1967 line. Despite the Arab countries having unanimously agreed to make the offer, Syria wasn't happy to have gone along with it and neither was Lebanon, but they went along just the same. Hamas was so opposed to it that on the day the offer was made, there was the Passover suicide bombing in Netanya that killed or injured hundreds. Somewhere along the road, "normal relations" being proposed was turned into "normalization", most probably by the press.

      "normalization" today is actually a dirty word for any self-respecting Arab because it has come to being associated with having a semblance of normality in dealing with the Zionists. Normalization is also a game that Israelis are forever playing to make itself appear as having been accepted among the Arabs, which of course it is not. Lately, there was the situation where Miss Israel went out of her way in Miami to get her photo taken with Miss Lebanon to show some "normalization" going on between the contestants. Some Arab leaders are into actual "normalization" with Israel, such as Egypt's, Jordan's, the UAE's. Qatar, Oman's and a few North African countries, but this is not the case among the Arab people. Normalization with Israel while Israel continues oppressing the Palestinians is truly a dirty word.

    • "Once upon a time, Canada was able to create the illusion that it was the “peaceable kingdom”, an illusion accepted domestically and arguably by most of the rest of the world." (John Miles)

      JLD, the "once upon a time" that Miles talks about is from 10 years ago before the Harper Conservatives came to power and contrary to what Miles is saying, there was nothing illusory about it. The "peaceable kingdom" was very real and in fact, before the Haper premiership, Canada and more especially under the Conservatives went out of its way to differentiate its foreign policy from that of the US. Now the Harper government is trying to outdo the US in being an Istraeli firster. Last summer, Joe Clark, a former Conservative Prime Minister was critical of Harper's foreign policies:

      " As a former Prime Minister and as the Secretary of State for External Affairs in Brian Mulroney’s cabinet, the Rt. Hon. Joe Clark is experienced and knowledgeable in foreign policy issues. He saw international affairs in a unique way, sometimes contrary to popular opinion. In 1984, he helped lead the Western response to the devastating famine in Ethiopia, which at the time had a Marxist government. Clark also pushed for tough economic sanctions against South Africa for its apartheid policies, despite American and British opposition. He was also instrumental in helping address other important issues, such as the AIDS crisis and the NAFTA negotiations.

      Since his retirement from politics in 2004, he has continued to apply that experience in various positions in academia and other organizations by engaging in activities that include the promotion of good governance, human rights, and other international issues. From time to time, he also voices his views on the current government’s foreign policy.

      Clark does not shy away from criticizing Prime Minister Stephen Harper, who he refers to as a notoriously controlling leader. Though not exactly an uncommon description, Clark’s retirement from politics affords him more freedom to express his views. Indeed, Clark’s latest book, "How We Lead", is critical of the government’s “megaphone” approach to foreign policy, which typically includes grandstanding or making bold statements rather than cooperating with others.

      Take, for example, PM Harper’s vocal opposition to holding international summits in countries that lack respect for democracy and human rights. Clark criticizes this overly simplistic treatment of such countries, citing that democratic development requires a nuanced understanding of the complex human and political dynamics of non-Western societies as well as the interpersonal skills to match. He is unconvinced the Harper government has learned this.

      Clark is similarly displeased with the handling of the stalled Keystone XL pipeline in Ottawa. He argues that the Harper government was at fault for picking fights with environmentalists over the past few years, which only served to strengthen domestic opposition to the project. Recently, he has also disapproved of the government’s refusal to allow members of the opposition parties to join a Canadian delegation to Ukraine. He describes this combative approach in the region as lacking a constructive angle that could hurt Canada’s reputation with regard to other international areas of interest.

      Overall, Mr. Clark is not impressed with the government’s confrontational tone, which he believes has damaged Canada’s international reputation. Canada once operated effectively in cooperation with others and felt no need to always sit at the head of the decision table when it could lead from behind and influence international policymaking. Presently, the government in Ottawa appears more interested in dramatic gestures and declarations that do little to impact foreign policy issues. According to Clark, it would appear that Canada’s foreign policy is trapped in a “megaphone” with little of substance coming from the rhetoric of the Harper government.

      link to opencanada.org

  • Israel gets trashed at the 92d Street Y
    • Gamal, wouldn't all the acrobatics and deletions alter the sense of the words? I'm guessing his translations can't be much different from Google's cockeyed robotic results since in his own words, he is manually doing what software is incapable of doing in Arabic.

      We need Shmuel to make sense of this.

    • " Liberal Jews don’t like Hassidics in New York either,”

      It's because they can't tell them apart because of the white shirt; in NYC, the white shirt is the best way to be incognito..

  • The status quo that suffocates Palestinians
    • I'm sure I'm not a better person than you, bintbiba, I simply thought that some may be wondering what that was about and I offered to help. Inti noor al-ayn, ya bint biba.

    • "Noor el ayn, ya akhi !"

      For non-Arab speakers scratching their heads, it's loosely translated as "apple of my eye", o my brother.

  • Palestinians to take Israeli settlements to the ICC following announcement of 450 new units
    • Annie, for the Palestinians, it's worse than hitting a brick wall and more like pissing in the wind. The ICC's 13 year dismal record as of 2 years back is 1 acquittal and 1 conviction. An abstract from a U of Washington research in 2013 on what to expect from the ICC:

      "... Since the Rome Statute entered into force in 2002, the International Criminal Court (ICC or the Court) has encountered many challenges, undermining its legitimacy and credibility in the international community. This report argues that if the first ten years of the ICC’s existence are any indication of its potential in the long run, these challenges must be confronted over the next few decisive years. This is imperative to ensuring the Court reaches its full potential to bring justice to the most serious crimes of international concern under its jurisdiction. Currently, a lack of efficiency and effectiveness in producing results has led to a serious decline in its perception of legitimacy with the international community. To date, the ICC has produced only two verdicts: one conviction and one acquittal. With this poor track record, comprehensive improvements are essential for improving the Court’s capacity to prosecute crimes that threaten international peace and security."

      link to digital.lib.washington.edu

      It gets even more depressing when you look at what happened to Lebanon's attempt of trying to get on board. It seems that the US will not let Lebanon go through with it so it's highly doubtful it would allow Palestinians to get anywhere close to where they can get Israelis prosecuted for war crimes. From the Daily Star in 2009:

      "... BEIRUT: The US government has demonstrated "intense opposition" to Lebanon joining the International Criminal Court (ICC) because the move could leave Israel liable to face war crimes accusations dating from the summer 2006 war, justice campaigners said on Wednesday.

      A week after the ICC issued an arrest warrant for Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir for his role in the Darfur conflict, a conference in Beirut heard that Washington was opposed to Lebanon signing an international treaty that would give the court powers to investigate war crimes committed in the country since 2002.

      Justice Minister Ibrahim Najjar told The Daily Star on Wednesday that there were no plans to sign the treaty in the near future. "Lebanon has not decided to join the ICC now," he said. When asked whether this was a result of US pressure, he replied: "Not at all."

      But delegates at a conference organized by Lebanese pressure group Justice without Frontiers said that the US was opposed to Lebanon signing the treaty because it believes that Israel could be accused of war crimes committed in the country. At least 1,200 Lebanese were killed during the 34-day conflict, which saw intense aerial bombardment of civilian areas.

      William Pace, Convener of the Coalition for the International Criminal Court, said that there were several reasons that Lebanon had not signed up. "The reasons we hear from Lebanese officials why they do not accede to the ICC treaty or make use of the ICC as a non-state party are 1) some factions of the government are afraid they will be prosecuted, 2) intense opposition by the USA government to Lebanon acceding to the Rome Statute, 3) fear that the ICC is just another example of international laws controlled by the big powers," he said.

      Afterward he explained to The Daily Star why he believed the US was opposed to Lebanon signing up to the tribunal. 'The vulnerability of Israel because of alleged war crimes committed on Lebanese soil is reason enough for the US to oppose Lebanon signing the treaty,' he said."

      link to dailystar.com.lb

    • "walid- You’re a fan of the captain and tenille? all is forgiven. let’s have a sulha."

      Sorry, Yonah, I liked the song and remembered it for the sarcastic occasion, but I never liked the act of Captain and Tenille. Never understood what the heck he was there for, all the work was done by Tenille. He wore the hat, but he was no captain. Never liked Louis Prima and Keely Smith either, Sonny and Cher or Donny and Marie. The only sound of duos I liked was that of Simon and Garfunkel..

    • After chopping off heads and dumping bodies in the river, Israel's pals at ISIS have surpassed themselves by burning alive the captured Jordanian aviator. Where have we seen that done lately to a young Palestinian lad?

      Jordan announced that in the next few hours, it will execute the lady-bomber in its jails that ISIS wanted to swap for the aviator (and the 2 Japanese that were decapitated) as well as 4 other terrorists on death row.

    • Seafoid, you're not giving it any credit for at least having sanctioned the West's destruction of member states Libya and Syria. When the illegitimate vote was being taken to suspend Syria's membership, Lebanon's and Algeria's foreign ministers objected on a point of order (suspensions or evictions need unanimous consent of all members), the president of the assembly in so many other words told the foreign minister of Algeria to sit down and shut up or Algeria would be next. As to the current AL envoy to Libya (something like a Tony Blair or Dennis Ross with special credentials), it's the former Palestinian foreign minister and nephew of Arafat., Nasser Kidwa.

      You're also not taking into account the beautiful pageantry whenenever there's a meeting with all the flags, the tons of decorative flowers at a cost that could probably feed a whole village for a year, and the elegant flowing robes with the gold threads. It's more colourful and chic than the night of the Oscars.

      As to ISIS and Gaza, I'm surprised with all the pain and misery in Gaza this hasn't yet happened. Hamas can only go so far with smoke and mirrors.

    • Seafoid, he didn't really say much and it was a bit of a let down as far as I was concerned. Everyone was expecting a super dramatic announcement of some sort but it never happened. In a nutshell, he bragged about the heroics of having pulled it off at Chebaa Farms, of not being at all afraid of the Israeli cobweb, he mocked the Israelis' paranoia that went on for almost a full week and in a nutshell, said that the rumble over Quneitra is over unless Israel does something in retaliation. He also said he didn't want a war with Israel but that he's not afraid of getting into one if necessary. He ended with a threat that if Israel again kills one of its chiefs or tries retaliating against the men who did the Chebaa job, Hizbullah would retaliate. Iranian top brass were in Beirut for the speech and their presence must have surely had an effect of how it was delivered.

      I got the feeling that while he was not at all afraid of Israel, he was holding back possibly because of the warm feelings currently happening between the US and Iran, and that this situation should not to be jeopardized by anything Hizbullah would say or do. Nettanyahu got off relatively easy on his stupid caper.

    • Hi Annie, the information by WINEP is obviously anti-Hizbullah propaganda that made the Hizbullah of the 1980s much more important than it actually was, but this is what WINEP is there for. Of course over time, Hizbullah grew into the formidable force that it is today but at the time, the Shia heavyweight was the Amal organization with which Hizbullah competed and at times actually fought.

      The 1987 incident you asked about was a small side note that happened during the 1985- 1987 battle of the camps. The Palestinian militias that had been expelled out of the country after Israel's invasion of Beirut had crept back and set up anew their state within the state in Beirut and especially in the south from where they attacked Israel and the Shia there were bearing the brunt of the Israeli counter-attacks, so the Shia wanted the Palestinians out of their lives. Lebanon was occupied by Israel and Syria that both wanted to wipe out the Palestinian militias, at times working together to do it. Pro and anti-Palestinian militia forces in Lebanon got involved in the fighting with Palestinian militias’ strongholds in the camps that broke out in the spring of 1985. The very strong Shia militia at the time was Amal that sided with Syria, as did the Druze and Christian militias. Amal's Shia laid siege to the camps while Syria shelled them and turned them to rubble. The Sunni militias took the side of the Palestinians as did the smaller Hizbullah Shia militia. It didn’t take much for Syria to neutralize the Sunni militia and on February 25, 1987, Syria attacked and destroyed the Hizbullah HQ in West Beirut. It was shortly after that date that the battles of the camps ended and Amal loosened its siege over the camps, the Palestinian militias were neutralized and Hizbullah regrouped and set up its new HQ in Dahieh. The following year in 1988, Hizbullah fought fierce battles with Amal for neighbourhoods in Beirut and succeeded in becoming an alternative strong Shia force in Lebanon. Before joining Hizbullah, Sayyed Nasrallah was a member of Amal.

      A couple of years after that, the civil war ended and the deal was to have Syria pull back its troops but the First Gulf War came along and the US desperately needed Arab token participation so Syria joined the US, got a huge loan written off by the US for it and was given an extension by the US to remain in Lebanon. That lease ran out in 2003 when the US passed its Syria Accountability and Lebanese Sovereignty Restoration Act (SALSRA) demanding that Syria leave Lebanon, but Syria held on until the assassination of Hariri in 2005 when mostly everybody in Lebanon demonstrated for Syria to get out. Israel was kicked out in 2000 and Syria in 2005 ending 30 years that had included Palestinian, Syrian and Israeli occupation.

    • Some of the support this cold-blooded reptile is getting is coming indirectly from the Arabs that keep the PA afloat and thereby ensuring its existence. Israel now withholding a second taxes remittance to the Palestinians of a second $100 million simply because Palestinians knocked on ICC's door and it's starting to reduce electricity to the Palestinians by 2 hours a day until the Palestinians pay their owed electricity charges of $450 million to Israel. The monies that Israel is holding back will mean that government-paid employees will only be receiving 60% of their regular salaries. The oil Arabs will surely come to the PA's rescue to avoid its disintegration, which would spell bad news for Israel.

    • Jordan's 3-months long temper tantrum over Israel's nefarious actions at al Aqsa are officially over and today Jordan's ambassador to Israel is being asked to return to TA. Happy days between Jordan and Israel are back again.

  • Israeli drone company won't release export data, so case against 9 Gaza activists is dropped
    • About roofs and occupying them, you're surely recalling Elbit's roof that was occupied last August in Port Melbourne that was discussed at Mondo.

      link to theage.com.au

      Speaking of Elbit, it wouldn't come as a surprise to hear that it could be involved in the proposed 600-mile barrier to separate Saudia from its Iraqi neighbour and if it it does happen, it would be with a Saudi partner of course. Elbit in addition to killer drones has specialized in building the towers on the apartheid wall on the WB and is currently building the ones in New Mexico and Arizona to keep the Mexicans out.

      So far, only Australian and UK activistists have done something serious against Elbit. a few years back, the Norwegian Sovereign Fund divested $1 million from Elbit and for both Elbit and the Fund, that amount was a sick joke.

  • 'Great American villain' Henry Kissinger faces citizen's arrest inside a Senate hearing room
    • Bravo, bravo, bravo, Code Pink. Too bad they skipped Lebanon in the accusations and his involvement in Lebanon's civil war and its take over by Syria and Israel; From the Daily Star:

      "BEIRUT: A new set of declassified documents on the run-up to the Syrian intervention in Lebanon’s Civil War sheds light on American diplomacy during the crisis, including contacts with late President Hafez Assad’s regime and U.S. hopes that a Syrian intervention would weaken Yasser Arafat’s Palestine Liberation Organization. The documents, minutes of meetings involving U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, reveal the top U.S. diplomat’s open contempt and frustration toward Israeli policymakers for threatening to invade south Lebanon in response to a Syrian intervention.

      “You know these Israelis really are shits,” Kissinger said at a meeting in March 1976, expressing anger at the possibility of an Israeli attack.

      The archival documents show the U.S. administration had foreknowledge of a possible Syrian intervention, deciding it was in accordance with U.S. interests but refraining from supporting it publicly in fear of the invasion sparking a broad Middle Eastern war.

      “Now if I could design the solution, I would go to Assad and say, ‘If you could move in quickly, and if you could give us an iron clad guarantee that you will get out again quickly and that you will not go south of the [Litani] river, we will keep the Israelis out,’” he said in one meeting.

      The minutes show a Kissinger deeply involved in Middle Eastern politics, conferring on an almost daily basis with top advisers and closely following Lebanon’s descent into violence while trying to grapple with the insurmountable complexity of its civil war politics.

      Kissinger saw benefits to a Syrian intervention, guessing that it would weaken Arafat’s PLO, but he refrained from backing it publicly and in talks with Syrian officials.

      The documents paint an image of an irreverent, sharp and sometimes profane man, who was also prone to generalizations, for instance describing Egyptian negotiators as “duplicitous.”

      They are also striking because they show the relatively close relationship between the Assad regime and the U.S.

      The documents are part of a multi-volume series called “Foreign Relations of the United States.” The volume dealing with the Arab-Israeli dispute includes a set of archival files on meetings concerning Lebanon at the start of the Civil War.

      American officials had a low opinion of Lebanese politicians at the time. Former President Suleiman Franjieh is described as “a disaster,” Druze leader Kamal Jumblatt as “crazy” and political leaders as “warlords.”

      Syrian intervention in Lebanon was discussed in a meeting on Oct. 13, immediately sparking talk of a likely Israeli retaliation.

      “There is no way – no way – in which the Israelis will sit still while the Syrians send in their troops. I am sure of that,” said Kissinger, who sought to find out from the Israelis what level of Syrian activity in Lebanon would be acceptable to them.

      Kissinger was also dismissive of the Israeli government, describing former General and premier Yigal Allon as a “sweet fool” and Yitzhak Rabin as “weak,” while lamenting the U.S. failure to influence its ally.

      The secretary said he was ready to support Syrian efforts to achieve a political solution in Lebanon.

      “We have to go back to Assad ... Ask him what he is up to and, if we agree with him, we will do our best to help him,” he said. “But warn him what he does must be done without the use of Syrian regular forces.”

      “Also have him give Assad my best personal regards,” he said to a diplomatic envoy.

      In March 1976, as the Americans gleaned more details of the extent of Syria’s potential involvement, American officials sought clarity from Syria over its intentions in Lebanon and how long it would stay there.

      Kissinger said the Israelis would intervene because they wished to strike a mortal blow to PLO strongholds in Lebanon, which he referred derisively to as “Fatahland.”

      “Their position is that they cannot trust the Syrians,” Kissinger said. “They are not at all sure that the Syrians would leave if they go in, so that if they do go in, the Israelis would then quietly take over strategic points in southern Lebanon and in effect hold them hostage till the Syrians leave.”

      But in a meeting with President Gerald Ford in late March, Kissinger said the U.S. might benefit from a Syrian intervention that strikes at the PLO.

      “If Syria could go in quickly and clean it out, it would be good,” he said.

      Kissinger floated the idea at the time that the Syrians could be replaced by a U.N. force after destroying the PLO.

      But Kissinger was frustrated by Israel’s objections, and decided it was not worth the risk to greenlight a Syrian invasion of Lebanon if it risked sparking a regional war.

      “If we had freedom of action we could perhaps act differently,” he said. “We could let the Syrians move and break the back of the PLO.”

      Such an intervention would unite the Arab world, Kissinger lamented.

      “The end result would be exactly what we have worked all these years to avoid: It would create Arab unity.”

      He decried what he called “those idiots in Tel Aviv,” saying Israel would not acquiesce to U.S. pressure against invading south Lebanon unless America threatened to end military assistance and support sanctions in the U.N. against Israel.

      Even after Syria’s intervention and the ensuing stalemate with the PLO, Kissinger said Syrian failure in Lebanon would mean the country’s fall under the sway of the PLO and the possible overthrow of Hafez Assad.

      “I want to make it clear that a Syrian defeat in Lebanon would be a disaster,” he said at a meeting in the summer of 1976.

      But he also described Syrian ambitions in Lebanon in hegemonic terms, agreeing that they sought “ancestral” ambitions. “I started with the assumption the Syrians would succeed. I forgot the infinite capacity of the Arabs to screw things up,” he said at a June 1976 meeting. “I thought they’d weaken the PLO, make it an appendage of Syria, bring in Jordan, and create a Greater Syria. I still think this is what [Assad] has in mind.”

      Kissinger also excoriated the Israeli lobby in Washington for trying to shape American foreign policy.

      “The Israelis used to lobby for their own interests,” he said at a meeting in August 1976. “Now they are lobbying to change the entire course of our policy to coincide with their own policy rather than our interests.”

      A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on September 23, 2013, on page 3.

      link to dailystar.com.lb

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