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‘You don’t want us to breathe!’: Video captures everyday frustration of life under occupation in East Jerusalem

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I’ll tell you what I love about this video. It reflects perfectly how an ordinary person might respond to a constant police presence, a suffocation that’s untenable. It was only a few days ago that I first read about harassment through traffic violations in East Jerusalem. Traffic violations? Here’s a translation from the video thanks to Ofer Neiman, “I am from Jerusalem‎“:

– Israeli Policewoman (repeats herself throughout the clip) : Please give me your license

– You’ve taken our lives, what do you want ???    – We have no money to pay you

– We have no money, the [driver’s] license I can give you

– I will give you the license, and I will face you in court and everything, and I will show up at any of your requests, but enough, enough of these fines, you’ve killed us, us – you’ve killed us.

– You’ve killed us, we have no more breath

– Where will we get the money for you?

– Breathing is forbidden in this country.

– I will give you the license.

[sirens, and cars honking]

– [Israeli policewoman] : He doesn’t want to move

– [Palestinian man, angry]: I don’t want to move???!!!!

[I will run you over?] Go away, you sicko, go away.

– Starts cursing

– I wanted to move, you didn’t want me to move. Now you’re saying I don’t want to move. You people are so evil. You are crooks. You are a mafia, you’re not a police force. You are a mafia. Mafia, that’s what you are. the thing you’re based on is that you’re a mafia.Extorting people, yes, in front of the camera. This is something that exists. god sees, that’s what exists. You are extorting us, you are killing us. Breathing, you don’t want us to breathe

– Go on, give me your license.

– You don’t want us to breathe.

“We have no more breath.” Is it any wonder why people snap under these conditions? And this guy’s just screaming at a police officer. Suffocated by day with constant delays, surveillance, the army and police presence and suffocated at night while police roam the neighborhoods drenching schools and homes with putrid liquid stinking of feces and rotting animal carcass. This is the “battle of Jerusalem” Americans don’t see.

During yesterday’s interview on Democracy Now, Rashid Khalid said increased settlement activity in East Jerusalem had penetrated “neighborhood after neighborhood,  Arab neighborhoods that have never seen armed settlers, with a heavy military and police presence to guard them, are now slowly, but surely, being colonized one by one. And so, you’re basically turning up the heat on a very, very hot situation, and that’s been going on now for many months.”

Is it, by design, creating a tinderbox intended to make people snap?

In that same interview Eran Efrati said the goal has always been to oppress Palestinians so much and make their lives so miserable as to make people leave and go crazy.  “The end goal in the end to make them want to leave also made them want to do crazy things, like attacks on Jews and on Israelis.” And when Juan Gonzales asks Amira Hass, how she would characterize the tensions in recent weeks in Jerusalem, (not days mind you, not in the last few days since the synagogue killings, but the build up over the last few weeks) she says the police are “everywhere….daily confrontations with the police. There is more police, or there are more confrontations.”

The locked down by roadblocks and police patrols effects every single person. What’s it like trying to live a normal existence in East Jerusalem these days?  This is Jerusalem, as Rashid explains, “38 percent of the population of Jerusalem, Palestinian Arabs, and yet they are treated as if they have absolutely no rights.”

Democracy Now:

AMIRA HASS:……A guy who lives in the Old City told me, “I cannot go in to my own house. The police is there. There are checkpoints. They don’t let me get in from this place. They don’t get in people who do not live in the Old City.” So, you feel that the Israeli measures, to remind Palestinians in Jerusalem that they are not natural residents of the place, natural natives of the place, but they are actually there on probation. They live in Jerusalem on probation, provided they behave nicely or behave according to Israeli regulations. This is the sense that you get. You get a sense—Palestinians get a sense, more than ever, that they are here in this—in their city, natives of this city, as a gesture, not because it’s their native right. . .

RASHID KHALIDI:…….The most important statement made by an Israeli politician was made by Netanyahu this summer. He said, “We will keep permanent, perpetual security control of these territories.” So he’s basically said, “No state, no sovereignty, no independence. You can talk as long as you want. I will meet with you. But you will never get an end to occupation.”

The man in the video represents an ordinary person, a native of the city. John Fearey spent one week in Jerusalem, and I agree with him, it’s not complicated :

News flash to the inhabitants of planet earth. What I saw is an apartheid system intended to make life so intolerable for its victims that they leave.

(Hat tip Ofer Neiman)

Annie Robbins

Annie Robbins is a mom, a human rights activist, and a ceramic artist. She lives in the SF bay area and likes to garden. Follow her on Twitter @anniefofani

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64 Responses

  1. just on November 20, 2014, 4:46 pm

    sick, sick, sick

    it’s deliberate, it’s the master plan, it’s criminal and we do nothing as a nation except enable it and put our national security at risk and lose any and all of our soul with it.

    why? we owe Israel nothing– they’ve earned our contempt and worse. we owe the Palestinians so very much.

    why are we sooo stupid as a nation?

    • annie on November 20, 2014, 5:02 pm

      his voice, his exasperation. and when i read the other day the police were out in force giving everyone traffic tickets i just thought, is there no end to this harassment? be it petty or be it home invasions and demolitions and executions, it’s from every angle.

      • just on November 20, 2014, 6:59 pm

        you know what Annie? it’s a wonder, and a testament to their resilience that they have withstood this for so many decades…it’s also a testament to the rightness of their cause.

        i’m in awe of the Palestinian people, and feel so guilty and ashamed.

      • annie on November 20, 2014, 7:50 pm

        me too just. i probably wouldn’t be alive if i had to endure this for very long.

    • ivri on November 20, 2014, 5:39 pm

      Just: “Why are we sooo stupid as a nation?”
      In the name of which nation you speak here?

      • just on November 20, 2014, 7:26 pm

        in this case, the US.

      • just on November 20, 2014, 7:38 pm

        why are you asking anyway, ivri???

      • ivri on November 21, 2014, 3:11 am

        Well, Just, I admit I had another nation in mind in this regard with a far better fit

      • ziusudra on November 21, 2014, 3:52 am

        Greetings ivri,
        The Falesteeni are rich in storing the crimes & humilation they received since 48. This will all pour out one day regardless of the military might of zionists. Show yourself a precedence in history where such a continuous daily onslaught of misery for such a long time has paid off for a conqueror. Your time will come & then we will hear of all the personal supplications of Israelis, wha’ me? I had nothing to do with the nazi crimes against them!
        PS Ironically it was in the Islamic conquest of 638AD to 1099AD that Jews were allowed residency in Jerusalem after 500 rs. of denial by the Romans & Byzantines! The Crusaders came in 1099AD & banned both the Jews & Muslims for 200yrs! After Saladin, they were again allowed residency by Arabs! Pssst, Bubala the Evangelicals are waiting for you to make Jerusalen Arab-Rein before they come in & begin conversion , it ‘ain’t ‘ over yet.

      • Mooser on November 21, 2014, 12:21 pm

        “In the name of which nation you speak here?”

        Well, there you go “ivri”! Nobody will ever dare to ask you that question! After all, you’re a Zionist!

      • Mooser on November 21, 2014, 12:26 pm

        “in this case, the US.”

        Whew! Good answer, “just”. Lucky you spoke up so quickly. I think you were this close to getting excommunicated!
        There would have been a Fed Ex guy at your door demanding your tallit and tefillin and “proper attire” in a half an hour!
        And then (allowing up to ten business days for delivery) you receive a small package in the post, and that pretty much finalizes it! You’re sitting there, crying, and thinking, ‘I can’t put this goddam thing back on! Is this some kind of joke?” It’s really sad.

      • just on November 21, 2014, 1:29 pm

        yeah, and i was only speaking for my own self ~ not any nation.

        i’m not presumptuous, nor is my ego that big.

        it was close, though. phew!

      • ivri on November 21, 2014, 3:10 pm

        Mooser: “You`re a Zionist”
        I don`t particularly appreciate labels but if you insist then guilty as charged

      • Mooser on November 22, 2014, 6:50 pm

        “I don`t particularly appreciate labels but if you insist then guilty as charged”

        Yeah, I’m just aghast at the depth of your moral courage.

  2. NormanF on November 20, 2014, 6:18 pm

    Arabs always complain. They’re better treated by Israel than Jews were in any Arab country or for that matter how the Arabs treat their own people in the PA and Hamas dictatorships.

    And then there is their sheer hypocrisy. They’d have a voice in the Jerusalem city government if they cared to vote. They don’t and they have no right to complain about their situation.

    Israel is enforcing its laws. If the Arabs don’t like it, they’re always free to leave Israel. No one is forcing them to stay there.

    • annie on November 20, 2014, 7:23 pm

      LOL: If the Arabs don’t like it, they’re always free to leave Israel.

      that’s the whole point of treating them so miserably! you must think we’re really daft.

      • just on November 20, 2014, 7:32 pm

        he must be on the wrong website…

        it’s mind- boggling.

      • Mooser on November 21, 2014, 12:31 pm

        “it’s mind- boggling.”

        It’s the Ziocaine Syndrome. By tomorrow, when the excitation of the initial phase, (called “the luntz) with its periods of aggressiveness, grandiosity, and acting-out alternating with vintage whines is over, comes exhaustion, and a period of Ziocaine Syndrome Amnesia.
        He won’t remember a thing he has said, the poor schlump.

      • just on November 21, 2014, 1:31 pm

        i think you’ve diagnosed the condition, doc mooser.

    • a blah chick on November 20, 2014, 8:25 pm

      “If the Arabs don’t like it, they’re always free to leave Israel. No one is forcing them to stay there.”

      That’s for sure!

      May I commend you for your posting. That someone living in the 21st century can dispense 19th century wisdom so effortlessly is truly amazing. How do you do it? Drugs or time travel?

      • just on November 20, 2014, 10:59 pm

        lolol, abc!

      • Mooser on November 21, 2014, 3:02 pm

        “lolol, abc!”

        Are you laughing? I can stop you, cold.
        Try this: the arguments, the rhetoric, the level of discourse offered by (let us call them) “Norman F and the Normalizers” is what they think is cogent and persuasive, and in their experience, has been so or they wouldn’t bring it here. Notta lotta boffo yoks in that, is there?

      • just on November 21, 2014, 5:46 pm

        i know, but i think it’s important to disabuse them of their mythic thinking.

        you gotta admit, abc has a gift!

        that lady can evoke hysterical laughter from me.

    • Moto on November 20, 2014, 8:36 pm

      For goodness sake, Norman. Where do you get this nonsense? Israel is nothing more than an ethnocentric, brutal, apartheid war-like nation, doing everything it can to push every non-Jew out of the land they stole in 1948 (and to continue to steal each day).

      Most of the “Jews” living in “Israel” have NO historical or ethnic connection with the original Jews of Judea. NONE. They are mostly Europeans whose earlier leader decided that “from this day forward, we shall follow Judaism.”

      There is NO God-given “right” to Palestine.

      I lived in Haifa for years and travelled widely in the Middle-East and I can tell you your comment about Jews being harshly treated in Arab nations is a nonsense. Jews in Iran, as an example are treated MUCH better than non-Jewish Israelis.

      If you are unable to identify the wrongs being perpetrated against the non-Jews by Israel, it’s time for you to up your meds.

      God bless


      • light2014 on November 23, 2014, 2:36 am

        Iran is not an Arab country and its religion is Shia- Muslim. Iran has no reason to treat its Jewish citizens badly since the Jews in Iran are not violent or in rebellion and fulfill their duties as citizens . Jews are drafted into Iran’s army; 150 Jews died fighting for Iran in the Iran -Iraq war. On the other hand after the 1979 revolution brought the Islamists into power the Jewish population which had been 80,000 dwindled to less than 9,000 today. The friendly relationship begins in antiquity with Cyrus theGreat and continues into the Middle Ages . In 614 AD after the Persians wrested Jerusalem from the Byzantine Christians and reinstalled the Jews as the rulers of the city. This Persian attitude stems from their pluralistic Zoroastrian religion. But after the Arab Muslims invade in 637 AD they gradually adopt the Islamic attitude namely that of the 3 peoples of the book Islam is superior and at most Christianity and Judaism can be tolerated but must be treated in an inferior manner. (All other faiths were considered pagan by Islam and pagans had to choose between converting or being killed .) For example Muslims pay 10% tax while Jews and Christians 30-80%. Though the Arab Caliph Umar did invite the Jews he did not return rulership to them as the Zoroastrian Persians had. Fast forwarding today Iran,under the control of the Imams has announced it will wipe Israel off the map. (that many Muslims who live in close proximity to Israel will also die in an attack doesn’t disturb them because they reason that those Muslims who die will be considered martyrs by Allah and go to paradise.(how I long for our old enemies the atheistic communists who were much more practical than these religionists.)
        Iran gives political, military, & economic support to Bashir Assad of Syria whose “government”has conducted a crackdown on dissidents that has so far has killed or led to the death of about 200,000 Syrians and creation of 3,000,000 refugees.
        In the late1940’s & 50’s the Jews of North Africa were forced to flee these Muslim countries creating about 750,000 Jewish refugees most were settled by Israel a small number went to Europe & USA
        Read “Days of Our Years “chapter 8 for a description of Jewish life in the Middle East in the 1920’s also lookup Morocco in the index.

      • Moto on November 26, 2014, 4:40 pm

        I should have stated “Islamic” nations. According to the madman of the ME, Netanyahu, Iran is a threat to the continuation of Israel.

        You mention Iran providing support for Assad in Syria. What of it? The United States of America has been supporting the apartheid, terrorist nation of Israel for decades and many tens of thousands of Arabs have been murdered by Israel in that time.

        There is NO equality in Israel. NONE. Arabs are treated worse than second class citizens.

    • Kay24 on November 21, 2014, 10:04 am

      Either you are horribly ill informed or acting naive. First and foremost over here in the zio dominated media, the complaints are always from the whiners of the ME, that would be the Israelis, who are never satisfied with anything they are given, demand more, and resort to stealing to achieve that. They have become a parasitic nation, that makes it’s victims bleed.
      The Palestinians are never given a chance to complain in the US, because that would give the American people an idea about what they have to endure, and the suffering inflicted by Israel.

      Secondly, your claim that they are better treated better by Israel must be the most lame comment here, because right now those “considerate” Israelis are in the process of making them voiceless citizens, going from being second class to being a nonentity. Israel is a nation of the most racist nations, pretending to be democratic.

      “Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu intends to submit to the cabinet a version of the Jewish nation-state bill that does not guarantee the equality of all Israel’s citizens in the country’s de facto constitution, as does an alternative proposal put forth by Justice Minister Tzipi Livni.

      Netanyahu’s proposal also doesn’t take as hard a line as an earlier draft that seeks to remove Arabic as an official language of the country and promote the construction of homes for Jews across the country.

      Under the Netanyahu version, which is subject to change before it goes to the cabinet on Sunday, only Jews will have the right to national self-determination in Israel, which the bill defines as both a Jewish and democratic state.”

      Are these the wonderful laws Israel is enforcing? Wow, and the Arabs are supposed to be grateful for that eh? Perhaps the Arabs should not give in to the master plan enforced by Israel, you know the terror, assassination, intimidation, cutting of social services, land confiscation, and keep staying there. The world sees Israel slowly squeezing the life out of these poor people, hoping to take over everything it’s evil heart desires. Get real, and be honest if you can.

    • eljay on November 21, 2014, 1:34 pm

      >> NormanFeee: Arabs always complain.

      And Zio-supremacists always steal, occupy and colonize Palestinian land and oppress, torture and kill Palestinians.

      >> And then there is their sheer hypocrisy.

      Yes, Zio-supremacists are incredibly hypocritical. They would not for a moment put up with the acts of injustice and immorality they’ve been committing against Palestinians for over 60 years.

    • Mooser on November 22, 2014, 6:54 pm

      “Arabs always complain….”

      Whereas Jews, as everyone knows, are astoundingly taciturn, and unwilling to make judgements about others.
      I’ve heard we got this way from being discriminated against and oppressed. It’s because we know what it’s like to be judged. Is that what you are trying to say NormanF?

  3. Bumblebye on November 20, 2014, 6:55 pm

    This goes to the first part of the headline – a high school teacher send out photo of muslim cemetary with message “In times like these it’s important to remember there are also good Arabs! And they can be found here!” To his 11 and 12 grade pupils.

    • just on November 20, 2014, 7:06 pm

      of course not– it’s how they teach their kids…

      they’ll name a stadium for him.

      we were admonished by some for not showing enough grief and rending of garments the other day…remember the IOF/GoI bombed cemeteries as well as schools, hospitals, little boys on the beach, mosques, churches, everything and anything that they wanted to.

      2100 killed~ 500 children, thousands maimed ~inside and out, tens of thousands made homeless…

    • annie on November 20, 2014, 8:01 pm

      thanks for the link bumblebye!

      • Bumblebye on November 20, 2014, 8:11 pm

        Thank you for fixing it Annie!

    • a blah chick on November 20, 2014, 8:17 pm

      His “excuse” was that he had not intended for the students to get the message. He was sending it out to others on another forum and the students got it by mistake.

      So I guess that’s…better?

  4. JLewisDickerson on November 20, 2014, 10:53 pm

    RE: And when Juan Gonzales asks Amira Hass, how she would characterize the tensions in recent weeks in Jerusalem, (not days mind you, not in the last few days since the synagogue killings, but the build up over the last few weeks) she says the police are “everywhere….daily confrontations with the police. There is more police, or there are more confrontations.” ~ Annie Robbins

    MY COMMENT: Israel’s Likudnik commissars agreed several weeks ago* to carry out a campaign of collective punishment against the Arabs/Muslims/Palestinians in East Jerusalem. The collective punishments agreed to did not include deportations (apparently due to resistance from Israel’s Attorney General, Yehuda Weinstein) but Netanyahu is quite likely applying pressure in an effort to get Attorney General Weinstein’s approval (so that Weinstein can be blamed if Israel ends up in the dock at the International Criminal Court at the Hague).

    * SEE: “Netanyahu tries to deport Arab-Jerusalemites to Gaza”, By MEMO, November 07, 2014

    [EXCERPT] Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu seeks to move Arab Jerusalemites to the Gaza Strip to reduce tensions in the occupied city, an Israeli newspaper has claimed.
    According to Yedioth Ahronoth, during an emergency meeting held by Netanyahu on Wednesday evening, there was a feeling that a “new and effective security operation” should be embarked upon, “something that changes the rules of the game at once, otherwise we will enter into an Intifada”. They agreed that “what doesn’t succeed using force, succeeds using greater force!”
    The newspaper added that the head of the Shin Bet Yoram Cohen, who supports Netanyahu’s plan, has the hardline approach to the situation in Jerusalem. It said he is ” strongly convinced by the effectiveness of [collective] punishments: the imposition of prison sentences and fines for parents whose children throw stones, the demolition of houses, deportation to the Gaza Strip, the collection of taxes by force.”
    The Israeli police headquarters, the newspaper reported, supports Cohen’s position, as does the Mayor of Jerusalem Nir Barkat.
    Israel’s Attorney General, Yehuda Weinstein, opposed the idea of collective punishment, saying he is not convinced that the imposition of such sanctions on relatives and neighbours would be a deterrence, and it may have the reverse effect: “The escalation of hatred and the search for revenge.”
    During the recent war on Gaza, Weinstein supported plans to deport top Hamas leaders from the West Bank to Gaza.
    Recent discussions held at the Israeli Ministry of Justice, with the participation of top experts in international law, concluded with the decision that “deportation is not possible”, because such a step would put Israel in the dock at the International Criminal Court in the Hague.
    Subsequently, Weinstein summoned Professor Yoram Dinstein, an expert in international law who holds right-wing views, he told the Shin Bet chief: “You should not even think about deportation.”
    Netanyahu asked Weinstein to respond regarding the deportation of Jerusalemites to Gaza, to which the latter replied: “Do not put pressure on me. If you force me to answer, the answer will be negative.”
    The newspaper said that during deliberations yesterday, Netanyahu broached the subject again and Weinstein said that “the subject is complex and thorny”. Netanyahu asked: “Do you still think about it?” Weinstein replied: “Yes.”

    SOURCE –

    • just on November 21, 2014, 9:14 am

      Uh– like most things Israel does, it is ILLEGAL.

      these folks rocks in their cavernous heads.

      sounds like they really, really, really want to further break the law re deportation.

      ‘eh, what’s one more step? we’ve gotten away with it so far…’

      “Israel’s Attorney General, Yehuda Weinstein, opposed the idea of collective punishment”

      How did he feel about Gaza?

    • JLewisDickerson on November 22, 2014, 2:54 pm

      P.S. ALSO SEE: “Interior minister mulls revoking residency of ‘terror promoters’”,, November 22, 2014
      Following Har Nof terror attack, Gilad Erdan instructs staff to advise whether his authority can be widened to include such a move

      [EXCERPT] Israel’s new interior minister, Gilad Erdan, said Saturday he was reviewing the possibility of revoking the Israeli residencies of East Jerusalem Arabs who support terror.

      Earlier this month, Erdan, a member of governing party Likud, replaced fellow party member Gideon Sa’ar, who announced his departure from political life in September.

      “I have instructed the staff at the Interior Ministry to assess and advise me on how my authority may be widened…to nullify the permanent residency and accompanying social rights of East Jerusalem Arabs who promote terror and incite violence,” Erdan said at a conference in Ness Ziona.

      It was not clear what constituted promotion of terror in Erdan’s view, but his statements appeared to follow similar ones made by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Earlier this month the premier said he would “instruct the interior minister to evaluate revoking the citizenship of those who call for the destruction of the State of Israel,” in response to widespread protests and riots among the Israeli Arab community following the police killing of a 22-year-old man in the Galilee town of Kafr Kanna.

      While theoretically possible, changing the law to allow for such action has been described by experts as ethically problematic and a threat to freedom of speech.

      In 2011, the Knesset passed a law, proposed by Yisrael Beytenu MK David Rotem, that allows the Supreme Court to revoke the citizenship of Israelis convicted of terrorism or espionage. At the time, Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman praised the move as a step toward “contending with the phenomenon of exploiting democracy in order to subvert it.”

      That law, however, does not apply to people who only speak out against the state.

      Yet more problematic is the prime minister’s apparent intention to transfer the authority to revoke a person’s nationality from the courts to the cabinet. A judge is meant to be an independent arbiter of the law; the interior minister is a political figure who worries chiefly about his party and his popularity.

      The initiative has been described as a radical threat to freedom of expression by Debbie Gild-Hayo, director of policy advocacy at the Association for Civil Rights in Israel.

      “As is known, the importance of freedom of expression lies precisely in protecting extreme and controversial expressions,” she said earlier this month.


  5. Taxi on November 20, 2014, 11:53 pm

    Honk if you love Apartheid.

    … And a great honking cacophony erupts in israel.

    • just on November 21, 2014, 9:20 am

      various tunes emanating from the horns, too! yech.

      hey Taxi.

    • Kay24 on November 21, 2014, 11:34 am

      Israel is one of the most racist nations in the world. Much as we keep criticizing their right wing government, we should also keep in mind that according to their own polls, the majority of Israelis show a disgusting attitude when it comes to non Jews. Their policies and actions show racism, and a strong show of encouragement for violence against Arabs (Christian and Muslims), which surfaced even during the bloody massacre in Gaza recently.
      For a nation that holds up the holocaust card, and declares never again, the thirst for violence against other human beings is unbelievable.

    • Mooser on November 21, 2014, 12:36 pm

      Taxi, I’ve said this before, but I don’t like to say it to often. But I get the distinct, hell, the unshakable impression that Israelis think the world will thank them for getting rid of the Palestinians.!! Yes, it is almost impossible no to feel that.

      Of course, they may find out differently, and that’s when the Palastemkin villages will go up.

      • Walid on November 21, 2014, 1:58 pm

        “Israelis think the world will thank them for getting rid of the Palestinians.!! :

        Mooser, there is more truth in that statement than you can imagine, at least as far as some Arab leaders are concerned. George Friedman at Stratfor has said so on more than one occasion. on one of them in which he did not include Syria and SA, he wrote:

        “… For this reason, the entire peace process — including the two-state solution — is a chimera. Neither side can live with what the other can offer. But if it is a fiction, it is a fiction that serves U.S. purposes. The United States has interests that go well beyond Israeli interests and sometimes go in a different direction altogether. Like Israel, the United States understands that one of the major obstacles to any serious evolution toward a two-state solution is Arab hostility to such an outcome.

        The Jordanians have feared and loathed Fatah in the West Bank ever since the Black September uprisings of 1970. The ruling Hashemites are ethnically different from the Palestinians (who constitute an overwhelming majority of the Jordanian population), and they fear that a Palestinian state under Fatah would threaten the Jordanian monarchy. For their part, the Egyptians see Hamas as a descendent of the Muslim Brotherhood, which seeks the Mubarak government’s ouster — meaning Cairo would hate to see a Hamas-led state. Meanwhile, the Saudis and the other Arab states do not wish to see a radical altering of the status quo, which would likely come about with the rise of a Palestinian polity.

        At the same time, whatever the basic strategic interests of the Arab regimes, all pay lip service to the principle of Palestinian statehood. This is hardly a unique situation. States frequently claim to favor various things they actually are either indifferent to or have no intention of doing anything about. Complicating matters for the Arab states is the fact that they have substantial populations that do care about the fate of the Palestinians. These states thus are caught between public passion on behalf of Palestinians and the regimes’ interests that are threatened by the Palestinian cause. The states’ challenge, accordingly, is to appear to be doing something on behalf of the Palestinians while in fact doing nothing.

        The United States has a vested interest in the preservation of these states. The futures of Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states are of vital importance to Washington….

      • Mooser on November 21, 2014, 3:12 pm

        Thanks, Walid. for response and link. I can still hardly believe how effectively and in how short a time Israel has mentally barricaded itself against not just the world, but the rest of the Jewish world, too.

    • bintbiba on November 22, 2014, 2:23 pm

      Hey Taxi, where have you been?!! We’ve missed you.

      • Taxi on November 22, 2014, 10:48 pm

        Hey Just! Hey bintbiba! Hey everybody! (No not you mister and missus zionist!!)

        I’ve been waiting for Adam and Phil to reinstall the ‘edit’ function and put away the duct tape.

        Till that happens, I’m around only in snippets and once every blue moon. Me still fighting the cause in other places here and there, but me never forgetting my cute buddies-in-arms here on MW. Big fat yankee howdee to y’all!

      • annie on November 22, 2014, 11:47 pm

        we miss you taxi! i really miss you. and i miss hostage too.. and others missing in action…

        and let this be a reminder to everyone. please write phil and adam instead of(or along with) making your voice heard about the edit function missing from the comments.

      • Taxi on November 23, 2014, 12:09 am

        Hi annie, you little braveling! I’ve written to Phil about the edit function a couple of times but got no response. I mean why would a ten-minute edit function bother them so much that they’d remove it? I’d love to know the reason. The current design sure whacked off a heckalotta excellent contributors – to mw’s detriment, I fear.

      • annie on November 23, 2014, 1:05 am

        not sure they “removed” it per se. i think when they went w/the new design everything had to be added, from scratch, and for some reason that wasn’t. not sure what or why of that.

      • Taxi on November 23, 2014, 1:47 am

        Thanks for the clarification, annie. Still, it’s within their power to reinstate it by popular demand and they haven’t – yet. I think this oversight/neglect is detrimental to the ‘dynamic’ reputation of MW – as evidenced by the departure of many extraordinary commentators who collectively lit up MW with serious wattage and distinguished it from the rest of the I/P media pack.

      • Walid on November 23, 2014, 2:03 am

        “The current design sure whacked off a heckalotta excellent contributors – to mw’s detriment, I fear.”

        Hi Taxi and Annie, although I don’t consider myself in the “excellent” category, the new format whacked me off too for a while. I came back but not with the same assiduity; I felt that I was interacting with a magazine rather than with people. But perhaps this is Phil’s vocation for MW to turn it mostly into a magazine format with commenters occupying a secondary role rather than the contrary as in the former format. Now I see some articles written by faceless, meaningless and impersonal “Mondoweiss Editors” and navigationally, it’s torture chasing posts from “100 Recent Comments” to respond to them. But then again, we’re guests here and it’s Phil’s site and he’s free to do with it whatever he likes.

      • Taxi on November 23, 2014, 7:22 am


        You’re too modest my friend. Your contributions are always of immense value and indeed most “excellent”.

        Personally, I initially actually liked the design – on face value – but in practice I found it tedious and confusing to navigate the site with ease and speed. I quickly found that all that extra wide white space as well as the choice and size of font was interfering with my focus after only a couple of minutes. For sure this latest design is the least blogger-friendly that MW has ever had. Perhaps you’re right here to call it a regular ‘magazine’ and not a pioneering blog. The spirit of Phil’s initial vision has certainly been replaced with a staid corpo look and direction.

      • annie on November 24, 2014, 1:58 am

        But perhaps this is Phil’s vocation for MW to turn it mostly into a magazine format

        primarily, as always, phil writes. he’s not really into making these kinds of decisions or changes. in a perfect world this “conflict” for total lack of a better word (war on palestinians perhaps) is over and done with, phil just wants to go write a novel. the changes happening here are not by his initiative. the ultimate goal is to reach as many people as possible. sometimes, and perhaps so,that comes at the expenses of our commenters. for this i am very very sorry. for me, the comment section is very important. but ultimately my goal too has always been to expand our readership. but these decision, i am not sure how they are made. but i am pretty sure they are not made by phil. he’s not exactly ferdinand under the tree, but he’s beyond concerning himself with the formatting.

        it gets frustrating i know, but inthe long run lets hope it serves to attract more readership.i hope you and everyone hangs in there. change is …difficult..challenging.but there’s only one goal,to reach more people. xx cross your fingers.

      • Taxi on November 24, 2014, 2:14 am

        It would be interesting to look at mw traffic stats to see if less commentary activity has any impact on site traffic.

        My guess is that a dynamic commentary section can only add to site traffic. And if this is the case, then why do the ‘decision makers’, if their main aim is to ‘reach as many readers’, show such clear disregard to the commentators’ basic needs?

        You don’t have to answer this, annie – I’m just putting it out there for the ‘decision makers’ because it doesn’t make sense to undercut the commentary section if indeed it’s bringing in extra site traffic.

      • Walid on November 24, 2014, 4:02 am

        “but these decision, i am not sure how they are made. but i am pretty sure they are not made by phil. he’s not exactly ferdinand under the tree, but he’s beyond concerning himself with the formatting. ” (Annie)

        Whoever that mysterious party is, Annie, I’m guessing it has eyes set on Alexa et al. These web rating outfits that value sites based on readership stats and revenue-generating potentials from ads, put valuations on MW ranging from a low of $36,000 to a high of $600,000 depending on the various methodologies used by the different companies. Richard Silverstein got on the ad bus a while back and so has many other blogs. The logical and sane outcome for Mondo would be to join the pack to earn some money while having some fun and perhaps this is where the new format is taking us. In spite of a few warts like the missing edit function and the ability to navigate directly to a post, I think MW is still a great site and my favourite. I also hope those missing like Hostage, Woody, Danaa and many others return soon.

  6. just on November 21, 2014, 9:07 am

    “BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — A spate of anti-Palestinian hate attacks have been reported since late Thursday in Jerusalem and northern Israel, police and Israeli media said.

    In Jerusalem, four Israeli girls attacked a Palestinian taxi driver with pepper spray in King George Street late Thursday, Israeli police said.

    Another Palestinian claimed he was also attacked by a group of Israeli girls in the center of the city.

    Police said they arrested four girls, settlers from the occupied West Bank, and a court ordered that they be banned from Jerusalem for 15 days.

    In northern Israel, unknown assailants threw acid on the car of an Imam in Acre late Thursday. An Israeli police spokesman said they are looking into the background of the incident.

    Israeli news site Ynet reported that a 53-year-old man was arrested near Haifa after threatening Palestinian workers with a knife. The man was disarmed by one of the workers at the restaurant and police arrested the suspect.

    Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported Friday that Palestinian taxi drivers in Jerusalem have stopped working at night due to verbal and physical assaults.”

  7. Kathleen on November 21, 2014, 3:32 pm

    I think it was MSNBC’s Chris Hayes who did a piece on how traffic violations etc (unpaid because people can not afford) escalate into huge fines, arrest then jailing. How towns like Ferguson etc thrive on police writing up tickets for small violations and then grow into huge fines, complications. Way to beat all ready beaten down people even further.

    Systematic oppression of Palestinians by Israeli’s has amassed into internal anger that clearly has to escape in some way.
    Crimes against humanity in mass over decades adds up to some pent up responses

    Israeli soldiers breaking the bones of a Palestinian – YouTube

    Video for israeli soldiers breaking bones► 0:33► 0:33

    Israeli Cop Kicks Palestinian Child – YouTube

    Video for Israeli soldiers kicking young Palestinian child in alley you tube► 0:47► 0:47

    Israeli Military child detention of a young boy in … – YouTube

    Video for Israeli soldiers humiliating young boy you tube► 2:13► 2:13

    And at the Breaking the Silence website you can read and hear many Israeli soldiers telling about how they have been trained, told to humiliate, and injure Palestinians all sanctioned by the Israeli army and government. Systematic Crimes against humanity.
    Breaking the Silence › Israeli soldiers talk about the …

    • annie on November 21, 2014, 5:19 pm

      how traffic violations etc (unpaid because people can not afford) escalate into huge fines, arrest then jailing. How towns like Ferguson etc thrive on police writing up tickets for small violations and then grow into huge fines, complications.

      omg, i wonder if there was some cross cultural influence trveling in the opposite direction when american cops got ‘security-trained’in israel.

      • Walid on November 21, 2014, 5:47 pm

        I wonder if it’s still like it used to be decades ago in North America with the quota system under which each policeman needed to write up a minimum number of tickets each month because a substantial share of the towns’ revenues came from traffic fines, as Kathleen wrote about Ferguson. It used to be something like 3 tickets a day. That’s where month-end blitzes used to come in when a group of policemen would lay in wait in a good spot to write up a massive amount of tickets for various violations to make up the monthly quota if they loafed all month in writing up the required number of tickets. With the electronics stuff today, it probably only still applies in small towns.

      • Kathleen on November 22, 2014, 12:05 pm

        Not sure about that Annie…do know that cops, city structures in the U.S. have been beating and shaking down economically poorer folks for decades through these means.

        One of the anti violent and police brutality protest that I attended in Cinci almost 15 or so years ago I talked with tons of black males and females who have been burdened heavily by these economical strangleholds. Systematic methods of oppression and racism have been used in the US for hundreds of years. Just that now not able to get away with it so easily. Laws and legislation. More subtle and under the carpet now.

        Have watched poor white Appalachian’s (where of course poverty, lack of a quality education, lots of drugs etc) in court rooms who are unable to pay for fines and how it escalates into jail time instead of school time etc. In Ohio local taxes are distributed for schools in a constitutionally proven unfair way. Systematic oppression for those economically challenged

      • Kathleen on November 22, 2014, 12:06 pm

        Walid police, highway patrol officers etc will not answer you if you ask them questions about whether they have to meet quota’s

      • Walid on November 24, 2014, 3:36 am

        Kathleen, I was talking about municipal cops. Mentioning state troopers brought back memories from way way back when troopers caught me in a speed trap on I-87 near Newburgh at 2 am and took me to a county judge’s house someplace where they woke up the nightcap-wearing judge that fined me on the spot with something like $40 and let me go on my way after I paid. A scene straight out of a black and white movie.

  8. just on November 22, 2014, 6:37 am

    “JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — A Palestinian youth was attacked and beaten by a group of Jewish settlers at Damascus Gate near the Old City of occupied East Jerusalem on Friday night, a local political activist who was present at the time of the incident said.

    22-year-old Ahmad Yaqub al-Ghoul lost consciousness as a result of bruising and bleeding he suffered after three Jewish settlers described as being in their 20s hit him with an iron bar and belts in the al-Musrara area just north of Damascus Gate.

    Head of the Fatah youth movement in Jerusalem, Ahmad al-Ghoul, said that he was walking with Yaqub at the time of the attack, which he described as completely unprovoked.

    “Three settlers blocked our car’s path. … We stopped at a red light in al-Musrara heading to Damascus Gate when they started hitting the car and cursing us. We could not continue our way since they were standing in front of the car.”

    “We stepped out of our car and they hit Ahmad on his eye. He fell down and his head hit a rock,” Al-Ghoul continued.

    He said that the police arrived in the area but detained their companion Fadi Maragha and took him for interrogation.

    Al-Ghoul said that two of the settlers were also detained, but that the settlers claimed that the Palestinian youths had launched the attack.

    Ahmad Yaqub al-Ghoul was taken to a hospital for treatment, where his condition was said to be moderate.

    The attack comes amid a wave of anti-Palestinian hate crimes across Israel and in occupied Jerusalem, including at least six in a 24-hour period beginning Thursday evening.”

    settlers have run over a woman, settlers fired on a Palestinian taxi in Hebron, settlers get in fight with Palestinians– the 2 settlers were injured…….will anyone in MSM report any of this?


  9. joemowrey on November 22, 2014, 1:03 pm

    Is it possible to view this video somewhere other than Facebook? I don’t do Facebook.

    • annie on November 22, 2014, 6:17 pm

      joe, just scroll on and click the middle of the video. it works for me.

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