Democrats can’t oppose occupation and settlements in the Democratic platform “because Sheldon Adelson will come out against us,” Clintonites told Sanders rep James Zogby, Zogby related in Philadelphia today. He also said that Democrats support the use of boycott against Israel to end settlements overwhelmingly, by 47-14.
Monthly Archives: July 2016
The Democratic Party begins its national presidential convention in Philadelphia on Monday, under circumstances that political scientists refer to with the technical term “shitshow.” Wilson Dizard reports from the scene.
Want to know what it means for any human being to live under occupation? In The Way to the Spring, Ben Ehrenreich gives an education that will sicken you, of “the almost infinitely complex system of control that Israel exercised over Palestinians throughout the West Bank,” and of the terrible losses it imposes on those who struggle to resist it.
Israeli settlers verbally attacked Palestinian residents of the town of al-Khader in the southern occupied West Bank on Saturday, threatening them with a gun while the Palestinians were working on their land, which is situated in the Bethlehem district between the illegal Israeli settlements of Neve Daniel and El-Azar.
Amos Oz’s memoir, A Tale of Love and Darkness, about his mother’s suicide and Israel’s birth, is now a film by Natalie Portman that asks the question, Can you “be sensitive” and also be a Zionist?
Something really is breaking loose with the Donald Trump nomination. He has so frightened the establishment with his refusal to hire the usual experts and his trashing of the “media elites” and his comments against NATO that in the last week a whole crowd of neocons and liberal internationalists has made the assertion that Trump is acting in Russia’s interest. And not only that but the Russians hacked the Democratic Party emails and gave them to Wikileaks to help Trump.
Further evidence of role of Israel lobby in Democratic Party: DNC chair Wasserman Schultz found Bernie Sanders’s criticisms of Israel “disturbing,” while Hillary Clinton campaign sought to use his stance to “marginalize” him, according to DNC emails published by Wikileaks.
A group of Berlin queers against pinkwashing apartheid were attacked when they protested the fact that the annual pride day march invited the Israeli ambassador. One attacker used the Israeli flag as a club.
Israeli forces detained four people, including Oscar-nominated filmmaker Emad Burnat, as soldiers dispersed weekly protests in the village of Bil‘in in the Ramallah district of the occupied West Bank on Friday.
The National Labor Relations Board has reaffirmed its dismissal an unfair labor practice charge brought by an Israeli law firm against a U.S. union, the United Electrical Workers, over its support of protests against Israeli policies including the union’s endorsement of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement (BDS) movement. UE National President Peter Knowlton said that UE in the past had “withstood attempts by the U.S. government to silence us during the McCarthy era in the 1950s,” and was “unbowed by the latest attempt of a surrogate of the Israeli government to stifle our call for justice for Palestinian and Israeli workers.”
Israeli Defense minister Avigdor Lieberman likens Palestinian icon Mahmoud Darwish to Hitler, and in its coverage, The New York Times continues to bury the battle inside Israeli leadership over fascistic and Nazi currents in the country’s politics.
Mondoweiss intern Tamara Nassar shares a lyrical and haunting account of her family’s story during the Nakba: “The tragedy of the Nakba is that it perpetually reproduces itself with every refugee born in exile and until the last refugee returns. The Palestinian in diaspora gives birth to Nakba; her children become walking embodiments of abandonment.”
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Donald Trump has taken heretical positions on countless issues, from a border wall to John McCain’s heroism to barring Muslim immigrants, and not backed down. Except for Israel. He said he’d be neutral on the conflict in February, but dropped that stance entirely. Such is the power of the Israel lobby.
A specter is haunting Cleveland, the specter of the Alt Right. The Alt Right in the United States is a small but growing intellectual movement that seeks to resist the dilution of “White” people, both as a matter of biology and imagined culture. Wilson Dizard talks to Alt Right leader Richard Spencer, one of the people lending intellectual legitimacy to the Donald Trump campaign. Among other things they discuss Spencer’s view of Israel, “I respect Israel as a homogenous ethno-state, but I hate the meddling of the Israel lobby in American politics,” he says.
Hillary Clinton has gained the support of major neoconservative donor Seth Klarman. Klarman’s family foundation supports rightwing Zionist groups, including the David Project and the Israel Project, and has supported several Islamophobic groups, including one that “applauded” an Oklahoma law later struck down as unconstitutional, that would have discriminated against Muslim religious practices. A Democratic Party think tank has said that the organizations Klarman supports have put out “anti-Islam messages polluting our national discourse.”
Growing up in the US, the Israeli national anthem held special meaning for Steven Davidson. But after living with a Palestinian family in Hebron, the song gained a different meaning: “Hatikvah didn’t feel so close to my heart any more. Its solemn melody still aroused that sense of belonging through wandering, only now, this sense felt betrayed by the song’s words. Everyone singing Hatikvah in this room felt like they belonged in a state they barely knew of— to the exclusion of so many whose home this had once been.”
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Trump’s nomination was amazing in that it demonstrated the power of ordinary people –surely many acting out of racist and nationalist resentment — to upend a party leadership. Bernie Sanders failed in the same endeavor. One reason was that he did not seize on the material available to him, the Democratic Party’s love affair with neoconservatism and Benjamin Netanyahu.
Ahead of this week’s House of Lords debate about the health and well being of Palestinian children, Juliana Farha reports from a sold-out presentation by Defense for Children International-Palestine at the University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies: “Ayed tells us that physical torture of Palestinian children was common a few years ago, but interrogators observed that those being tortured often call up reserves of strength to resist, rendering it counter-productive. Instead, they discovered, psychological terror can be more effective: threatening to arrest the child’s family members, for instance, or to revoke his father’s work permit.”
Gaza-based activist and academic Haidar Eid responds to queries sent by some activists about international gatherings and conferences that are being organized to address BDS-related issues without acknowledging the Palestinian leadership of the movement.
A 12-year-old Palestinian boy, Muhye Muhammad Sidqi al-Tabbakhi, was killed Tuesday evening during clashes with Israeli soldiers in the occupied village of al-Ram in the West Bank after he was struck in the heart by a rubber-coated steel bullet. Police had raided the village and youths responded with bottles and stones, which were met by live fire, rubber bullets, and tear gas.
The grubby underside of US electoral politics is on show once again as the Democratic and Republican candidates prepare to fight it out for the presidency. And it doesn’t get seamier than the battle to prove how loyal each candidate is to Israel. New depths are likely to be plumbed this week at the Republican convention in Cleveland, as Donald Trump is crowned the party’s nominee. His platform breaks with decades of United States policy to effectively deny the Palestinians any hope of statehood. The question now is whether the Democratic candidate, Hillary Clinton, who positions herself as Israel’s greatest ally, will try to outbid Trump in cravenly submitting to the Israeli right.
When asked outside the Republican National Convention in Cleveland what message he has for the West Bank, Cornel West tells a Lebanese news channel: “I think our young our precious Palestinian brothers and sisters need to know that there are voices here in the United States of all colors, white and black and red and yellow and brown, some of them are young Jewish voices who are concerned not just about the plight of Palestinians, but know that the day will come when the vicious Israeli occupation will be lifted. Palestinians will be able to live lives of decency and dignity and live lives of self determination.”
Kim Jensen reports from Nazareth at the third hearing in the Israeli government’s case against Dareen Tatour, the 33-year old Palestinian poet who is being prosecuted for “incitement to violence” on the basis of a YouTube clip and two alleged Facebook status updates. Jensen writes, “The wheels of justice grind slowly in the State of Israel, at least for Palestinian activists who endure de facto and de jure inequality under the law.”