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The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil,    but because of the people who don't do anything about it    
Commentary

TitleDescriptionDate
In One Word: Poof!Uri Avnery - Gush Shalom - "`Poof` is the sound of air escaping a balloon. It is a good expression, because the `peace process` was from the very beginning nothing more than a balloon full of hot air. An exercise in make-believe" [ry]14/4/2014
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Israel is led by three wicked sons, laments left-wing leaderItamar Sharon - The Times of Israel "“I believe we can replace the coalition of Netanyahu, Bennett, Liberman and Lapid: the modern variation of the four sons – wicked, wicked, wicked and the one who does not know how to quit,” Gal-On told a gathering of Meretz’s youth movement in Kibbutz Hatzor, with the last a presumed reference to Lapid." ca 12/4/2014
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Halt Peace Talks Until Israel Complies With International Law ZBIGNIEW BRZEZINSKI et.al. - Information Clearing House "We do not know what progress the parties made in the current talks prior to their latest interruption, this time over the issue of the release of Palestinian prisoners. We are nevertheless convinced that no matter how far apart the parties may still be, clarity on America’s part regarding the critical moral and political issues in dispute will have a far better chance of bringing the peace talks to a successful conclusion than continued ambiguity or silence." ca 11/4/2014
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American Studies Association adds over 700 new members since Israel boycott callAdam Horowitz - Mondoweiss "ASA President Curtis Marez stated, “Despite the backlash of the last few months, the ASA is thriving. The boycott vote is consistent with our longstanding support for human rights and opposition to war and militarism. Many Americans are now for the first time hearing about their government’s support for the occupation and discriminatory laws against Palestinians. I’m proud that the ASA helped open up discussion about BDS (Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions)..." ca 11/4/2014
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Simon Schama’s Israel whitewashJerome Slater - Mondoweiss "And on contemporary Israel, Schama is something of a whitewasher. I refer to the Story of the Jews, his current five part PBS documentary and soon to be a two volume book... the omissions and distortions steadily worsen, and while somewhat balanced by criticism of Israel, the total effect of the program is to perpetuate most of the myths of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict that serious historians have long discarded."11/4/2014
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Israel grasps at a crumbling narrativeDahlia Scheindlin - +972 "Blaming the peace talks’ failure on Palestinian ‘rejectionism’ is nothing more than a flimsy attempt at flipping reality on its head." ca 11/4/2014
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Kerry has no excuse for failure in peace talksAkiva Eldar - Al-Monitor - "The US secretary of state should now offer an accelerated timetable for the acceptance of Palestine as a member of the United Nations." - id9/4/2014
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Surrounded by fanaticsHussein Ibish - Ibishblog - "Israeli and Palestinian rhetorical extremism is old hat, but it seems to be nearing a new crescendo." - id 9/4/2014
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What Really Happened During the Talks - Distracted by the Peace ProcessJonathan Cook - CounterPunch - "In his meeting last month with Obama at the White House, Abbas unveiled a map showing that Israel had approved more than 10,000 settler homes since the talks began. That number has grown further, with Israel unveiling 2,000 more, including 700 last week in the East Jerusalem settlement of Gilo. For every settler home built, Palestinians lose territory needed not only for a state but also to keep individual families living where they are now. The innocuous term “settlements” conceals their true role: as Israel’s primary vehicle for ethnic cleansing Palestinians through dispossession and harassment" [ry]8/4/2014
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Israel must change the structure of the peace process Ami Ayalon - Ynet - The Israeli government must announce that it welcomes ongoing negotiations, but that at the same time it is working independently to create a political reality based on the future agreement`s lines. In light of this, the government will declare that Israel has no aspirations for political sovereignty east of the security fence`s route, but that the final border will be determined in future negotiations. The practical move required by such a declaration is a law to allow every settler living east of the security fence to return into Israel`s borders in exchange for proper compensation and a respectable reception. [bz]7/4/2014
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Analysis: No pity for the disappointed diplomatReuven Kaminer - Ma`an - He is not honest and he is not too smart. He was warned that there could be no progress in these negotiations as long as the US refused to ruffle the feathers on the head of the settler annexationists and challenge their veto power. (...) It is the height of hypocrisy to blame both sides for the crisis in the talks (while US-Israel is one of the sides) as the US throws the Palestinians under the bus and opens the way for new rounds of vicious sanctions against the Palestinians. [bz] 7/4/2014
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The rejectionist: Netanyahu and the peace talksNoam Sheizaf - +972 - Polling on political image and perception can be tricky, so one should take them with a grain of salt. But Kerry’s team might have saved itself some time and trouble if it had taken those numbers into consideration. At the talks’ most optimistic moment, a clear majority of Israelis believed Bibi was bluffing. As the negotiations moved forward – in time, not in substance – Netanyahu insisted on preparing the public for failure. If he made any concessions to the American team, they remain a tightly kept secret. Netanyahu rejected the idea of a Palestinian capital in East Jerusalem, rejected Palestinian sovereignty over the Jordan Valley, rejected even symbolic recognition of the right of return (while placing a very central demand for symbolic recognition of Israel as “a Jewish State”). [bz]7/4/2014
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Moscow and Ramallah: The new alliance (?)Sever Plocker - Ynet - Today, Secretary of State Kerry can threaten the Palestinians (and Israel) by warning that America will wash its hands off the attempt and effort to bring about a solution to the conflict. Tomorrow, the Palestinians will be the ones to threaten Kerry (and Israel) by inviting Russia to the negotiating table as a partner and mediator. Who knows, perhaps Russia will be a better mediator after all. [bz]7/4/2014
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On the collapse of the Kerry talks: The `outrageous hypocrisy` of Tzipi Livni & Yair LapidLisa Goldman ( +972 ) publishes the translation of Raviv Drucker`s blog in response to the claim, put out by Tzipi Livni and Yair Lapid, that the (still unofficial) collapse of the Kerry-sponsored talks is all the fault of Mahmoud Abbas: "These two representatives of the governing coalition’s so-called peace camp have set a new record in hypocrisy and revulsion. Their spin and self-delusion are nauseating, and are for only one purpose — strengthening their positions in the government. [bz] 5/4/2014
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Red Rag weekly column: false-flag naval operation? Baby Doc Lapid; Meir Har-Zion, 1934-2014; Victor Shem-Tov, RIPGideon Spiro: "The more time passes the less I understand what distinguished Meir Har-Zion from the others. Gradually I arrived at the conclusion that the secret of the legend was not his military activities but rather his blood-curdling cruelty." 5/4/2014
The danger of peace has recededAdam Keller - Crazy Country - Where Kerry`s efforts foredoomed in advance to inevitable failure, or was there a moment where a real chance for success was missed? If at all, one specific moment can be pointed at: afternoon of Saturday, February 1st, 2014, [bz]5/4/2014
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Over 1,000 rabbis urge Jerusalem mayor not to pick Islamophobe for chief rabbiHaaretz - "The letter notes that Eliyahu, chief rabbi of Safed, "made a halakhic ruling barring Jews from renting apartments to Arabs, opposed military service for women, characterized Arabs and Muslims in racist and humiliating terms, while the attorney general said his candidacy for [Sephardi] chief rabbi was inappropriate." ca4/4/2014
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The Peace Process IndustryRamzy Baroud - Counterpunch "Chances are the Americans knew well that peace under the current circumstances is simply not attainable. The Israeli government’s coalition is so adamantly anti-Arab, anti-peace and anti any kind of agreement that would fall short from endorsing the Israeli apartheid-like occupation, predicated on colonial expansion, annexations of borders, land confiscation, control of holy places and much more." ca 4/4/2014
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Bad Move on Jonathan PollardEditorial - NYT "An Obama administration proposal to free Mr. Pollard, an American intelligence analyst serving a life sentence after spying for Israel, as a political gesture toward Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel is a bad idea and would do nothing to advance progress on the core issues of a peace deal." ca4/4/2014
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How Harry Truman learned to love IsraelRod Such - EI - "Harry Truman opposed the creation of a Jewish state in Palestine early during his presidency, believing a state should not belong to any one people and that a religious state violated the principle of church-state separation." - id 2/4/2014
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Israeli-Palestinian talks are going nowhereNahum Barnea - Ynet - "Instead of peace, time. Netanyahu wants to play for time; Abbas wants to play for time too." - id2/4/2014
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Riding missiles on the Rabin SquareAdam Keller - Crazy Country - "On the occasion of The Israeli Science Day, the military exhibition for the pleasure of the city`s children returned this week to the square in the heart of Tel Aviv." - id 2/4/2014
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Peace process as an obstacle to peaceA. B. Yehoshua - Ynet - It`s interesting that the vast majority of Israelis and Palestinians, and all the mediators too of course, will outline more or less the same realistic content of the appropriate and proper peace process between Palestine and Israel; but in the meantime, it is this infinite peace process which is creating all kinds of imaginary fantasies of further possible concessions each side can get from the other side, and so within the infinite and inexhaustible creation of illusions in regards to the concessions each side might be able to achieve in the "peace process" negotiations, peace itself is wearing out and moving farther away. [bz] 1/4/2014
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Can a focus on “Palestinian narrative” be dangerous to Palestinian rights?Sarah Irving - EI - "There are two main strands to Anna Bernard’s book `Rhetorics of Belonging` (Liverpool University Press). Both have significance towards how Palestine is thought and written about in the West and how Western liberals categorize `good` and `bad` Arabs, selecting what they wish to hear and believe about Palestine" [ry]31/3/2014
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`Hello, this is Rona from the Shin Bet`Hagai El-Ad - +972 "The logic of Israel’s Security Service dictates that it can summon left wing activists and Palestinian citizens of Israel for friendly ‘chats’ about their political activities. Sounds like a movie script? Illegal? The State, it turns out, insists that this state of affairs is perfectly appropriate." ca28/3/2014
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Israel`s former Navy commander fled UK for fear of arrestMiddle East Monitor - Israel`s former Navy Commander General Eliezer Marom may have escaped from Britain last October for fear of arrest over charges of committing crimes against humanity during the Israeli attack on the Mavi Marmara freedom Flotilla in 2010, a letter issued by British police has revealed.-rh 27/3/2014
What Role for Law in the Palestinian Struggle for Liberation?Noura Erakat - Jadallyia - what then do Palestinians have to gain from international law and human rights? Several esteemed scholars and writers have insisted that there is in fact nothing to gain and much to lose by insisting upon a legal framework that depends on the structure of international law.-rh27/3/2014
Israel`s Wildcard: The Man Who Could Stop The Peace ProcessJulia Amalia Heyer - Spiegel online - The former businessman is the head of the nationalist-religious Jewish Home, a party that promotes settlement policies, and one of the most vocal opponents of any development even remotely connected to the "peace process". Since US Secretary of State John Kerry convinced the Israelis and Palestinians to begin negotiating with each other again, Bennett has been sparring with anyone who endorses the talks.-rh 27/3/2014
Mahmoud Abbas vs Mohammed Dahlan: The Showdown BeginsRamzy Baroud - Countercurrents - On March 16, in an ‘interview’ with privately owned Egyptian Dream 2 satellite channel that lasted hours, Dahlan was granted uncontested space to articulate his political agenda as he saw fit. Dahlan called Abbas a “catastrophe” for the Palestinians. “The Palestinian people can no longer bear a catastrophe like Mahmoud Abbas. Since the day he came to power, tragedies have struck the Palestinian people. I may be one of the people who bear the blame for bringing this catastrophe upon the Palestinian people.”-rh 27/3/2014
Israeli forces kill 2 Palestinian civilians and armed group member and wound 12 civilians in Jenin refugee campInternational Solidarity Movement - According to investigations conducted by PCHR, at approximately 02:00 on the Saturday, 22 March 2014, an Israeli special military force from “Alimam” Unit in the Israeli military, which is described as “an anti-terrorism unit” infiltrated into the south of Jenin refugee camp, west of Jenin. The Israeli force surrounded a two-storey house belonging to the family of ‘Azmi Mohammed Mahmoud al-Hasaniyah (67) in Tal’et al-Ghabes area.-rh 27/3/2014
When the "Peace" Process Grinds to a Halt, What Then?Jonathan Cook - Information Clearing House - US interests overlap with those of Israel’s prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Israel has been the chief beneficiary of the past eight months: diplomatic pressure has largely lifted, Israeli officials have announced an aggressive programme of settlement building in return for releasing a few dozen Palestinian prisoners and the White House has gradually shifted ground even further towards Israel’s hardline positions.-rh 27/3/2014
‘Nobody knew where I was, nobody… I was simply disappeared’: An Italian tourist’s Ben Gurion nightmareAndrea Pesce - Mondoweiss - They argued that I was a liar because I didn’t say that somebody was waiting for me in Bethlehem, and that those who lie at the border will be not allowed to enter the country.-rh 27/3/2014
Urgent Action: Please oppose the creation of a new settlement in Hebron.Christian Peacemaker Teams - Settlers have won a victory in their ongoing attempt to grab land for a new settlement in Hebron. On March 11 the Israeli Supreme Court agreed to hand over the Al-Rajabi building in the Old City of Hebron to settlers, despite the devastating humanitarian impacts of the decision on Palestinians living in the neighborhood. The Hebron Rehabilitation Committee (HRC) has appealed to the international community to speak out against the creation of a new settlement in the Old City of Hebron, and to appeal to the Defense minister to prevent settlers from moving into the building.-rh27/3/2014
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Israeli defense minister closes debate on US security planBen Caspit - Al Monitor - ""...the Israeli defense minister exhibited arrogance, contempt, obtuseness; he gave derogatory nicknames to the security plan and presented it as an empty plan of “gadgets” and “sensors.”" - id 26/3/2014
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The Small BangAdam Keller - Crazy Country - "...the police and government demolition teams (which) visit Arakib again and again. Next time, so they threatened, they will also demolish the village cemetery, which hitherto remained untouched." - id 26/3/2014
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Israel’s minority parties targeted by new restrictionsRAY HANANIA - Saudi Gazette - "Although Israel strives to oppress non-Jews, the real obstacle undermining Arab political empowerment has been Israel’s Arab leadership, which advocates against participation so they can complain of having no voice. The Arabs demand “all or nothing” and almost always send up with nothing." - id 26/3/2014
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Israel’s ‘war between wars’ backfiresLarry Derfner - +972 - A self-fulfilling prophecy is playing out in the north [ry]25/3/2014
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The visible rejectionism of Ari ShavitAmos Schocken- Haaretz - Will he accept a Palestinian recognition of a Jewish nation-state that is built on the ruins of 400 Palestinian villages and hundreds of thousands of refugees, who have since become millions, and where 20 percent of the citizenry are Palestinians, who are just as nationalist as he is? Those who present themselves as supporters of the two-state solution, but who insist on demanding recognition of a nation-state, are acting to perpetuate the occupation and settlement. bz24/3/2014
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A just Israeli demand, yet non-essential, and therefore unnecessary, says Israeli 2000 negotiatorGidi Grinstein - Reut Institute - As long as the Palestinian leadership declares that the establishment of the Palestinian state realizes the right of the entire Palestinian people to self-determination, and undertakes to represent its citizens and them alone, Israel can be less sensitive to whether the Palestinians simply recognize ‘the State of Israel,’ as they already did, adopt the language of ‘Jewish State’ and ‘Arab State’ as is enshrined in UNGAR 181, or accept the current Israeli demand for the more specific language of ‘Israel as the nation state of the Jewish People.’ [The writer was Secretary of the Israeli negotiation team under Prime Minister Barak in 2000-bz] 24/3/2014
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The Shin Bet in our bedsOudeh Basharat--The Arabs say to themselves: Let’s resign ourselves to the discrimination - it`s more merciful than the flood of incitement we will get if we fight it.dn23/3/2014
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The Western devil wears PradaGideon Levy--The annexation of Crimea may be problematic, but it is less problematic than the occupation of the Palestinian territories by Israel. dn23/3/2014
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Palestinian PleasuresJAMES ESTRIN--Since the mid-1980s, the visual narrative of Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza has been predictable: photographs of stone-throwing teenagers confronting Israeli soldiers, refugee camps, mothers mourning children killed in conflicts, and long lines at border crossing points. Particularly dramatic variations on these visual tropes make the front pages and win awards. Tanya Habjouqa, a Jordanian-born photographer, looks for subtler strategies to explore today’s Palestinian experience.dn 23/3/2014
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Italian “expo” will showcase Israeli propagandaStephanie Westbrook - Electronic Intifada "...boasts of “120 years of agricultural research,” spiriting viewers back to times when the Zionist dream was a mere twinkle in the eye of Theodor Herzl, as well as “inventions that have helped put food on the table of millions of people around the world.” A 2012 United Nations “food security” survey shows that Palestinian families are not among the “millions” who have supposedly benefited. Some 19 percent of households in the occupied West Bank and a staggering 57 percent in Gaza are defined as “food insecure.”ca21/3/2014
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From the Diary of Rachel CorrieChris Carlson - IMEMC "n March 16th, an Israeli soldier driving a bulldozer two-stories high crushed to death 23-year-old Rachel Corrie, an American nonviolent human rights protestor. According to numerous witnesses and photographic documentation, she was killed intentionally. ~Alison Weir Counterpunch, April 13, 2003." ca21/3/2014
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Hillary Clinton: Test Iran, wait on new sanctionsBy JTA - Times of Israel " Related Topics Hillary Clinton American Jewish Congress Iran nuclear deal NEW YORK — Former US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said that nuclear negotiations with Iran should be given a chance and warned Congress against imposing new sanctions. Get The Times of Israel`s Daily Edition by email and never miss our top stories Free Sign up! Clinton, speaking Wednesday night at an American Jewish Congress gala in New York, credited international sanctions that she worked to implement with bringing Iran to the negotiating table. She stressed the importance of pursuing the current multinational talks aimed at reaching an agreement with Iran over its nuclear program." ca 21/3/2014
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WCC Expresses Concern over Knesset LawChris Carlson - IMEMC "Tveit called on "Israeli authorities to reverse this law to stop an injustice against the Christian citizens of Israel", encouraging WCC member churches to "raise this issue with representatives of Israel and with their own governments", and urging reversal of this law." ca 21/3/2014
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We should find better heroes than Meir Har-ZionYossi Sarid - Haaretz "What does Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas feel in the company of murderers released from prison, when he hugs and kisses them and praises them to the skies? After all, he himself was never actually involved in terror and certainly despises those who spill innocent blood.This week we got the answer, when the state’s top echelons gathered at Meir Har-Zion’s Shoshana Farm to take shelter in the shadow of the deceased and his legacy." ca21/3/2014
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Netanyahu Orders IDF to Prepare for Possible Strike on Iran During 2014Barak Ravid - Information Clearing House - Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon have ordered the army to continue preparing for a possible military strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities at a cost of at least 10 billion shekels ($2.89 billion) this year, despite the talks between Iran and the West, according to recent statements by senior military officers.-rh 20/3/2014
Jewish State Declaration Is Unyielding Block to a DealMARK LANDLER - The New York Times - Mr. Abbas, speaking before a meeting in the Oval Office, made clear that he was no closer to uttering the words that are a litmus test for the Israelis: that he recognizes Israel as a Jewish state.“Since 1988, we have recognized international legitimacy resolutions” on Israel, Mr. Abbas said as Mr. Obama looked on, a hand on his chin. “And in 1993, we recognized the State of Israel.”-rh19/3/2014
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One year on: the Hares BoysInternational Solidarity Movement - Yesterday the Hares Boys, who are being charged with 20 counts of attempted murder with no evidence whatsoever, have been in an Israeli prison for one year. Now is more important than ever to fully understand the circumstances surrounding the unlawful arrest and imprisonment of Mohammad Suleiman, Ammar Souf, Mohammed Kleib, Tamer Souf, and Ali Shamlawi.-rh 19/3/2014
Minister`s Temple Mount visits provoke PalestiniansMazal Mualem - Al-Monitor - Despite the tense atmosphere at the site and the riots that occurred there that very morning, Ariel turned down a recommendation by the police that he forgo this visit and decided just to shorten it. The combined religious and nationalist significance of the Purim holiday and the provocative visit by a right-wing minister at the contentious site, accompanied by a security detail as he wandered among the Muslim worshippers, could easily have caused an incident that could have gotten out of control and set the whole region aflame.-rh 19/3/2014
“We are not Pirates – we are the Israeli Defence Forces”Adam Keller - Crazy Country - It would be poetic justice if Yair Lapid’s lucky streak would fade by the next elections and his party fails to pass the threshold he had himself raised...19/3/2014
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PHOTOS: 13 days without water in East JerusalemRyan Rodrick Beiler - Locals say that Ras Shehada has had problems with water for more than two months, and Ras Khamis for more than 15 days, generally with low pressure and occasional cut-offs, and that this is the worst extended outage that these neighborhoods have ever experienced. With the rooftop reserve tanks now emptied, residents have no choice but to buy water at high prices from local vendors.-rh19/3/2014
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Gaza residents fear new warAsmaa al-Ghoul - Al-Monitor - During interviews with Al-Monitor on the morning of March 13, Gazans expressed their fears of a new war. "We were struck by terror last night after local rockets were launched [at Israel]. We were awaiting an Israeli response, and thought the sound of thunder was shelling. However, every time [we heard a sound], the sky would light up confirming it was thunder, thus we breathed a sigh of relief," said Khitam al-Hamayda.-rh 19/3/2014
Gaza refugees learn of food aid cuts by text messagesRami Almeghari - The Electronic Intifada - Through a text message on her mobile phone, Naima Abu Hasanin learned that she will stop receiving food aid. The message came from the UN agency for Palestine refugees (UNRWA), which told the single middle-aged woman from the southern Gaza Strip city of Rafah that she was no longer categorized as poor.-rh 19/3/2014
Time to recognize Hamas government Giora Eiland - Ynet - There is a Palestinian (and also Egyptian and Jordanian) interest that the West Bank and Gaza will be one political entity, but that is not an Israeli interest at all. In this state of events, and in order to achieve our interests, it`s important for Gaza to have a stable government with the responsibility of a state. [Eiland was Sharon`s strategic adviser... bz]19/3/2014
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Israeli opposition fails to oppose controversial billsAkiva Eldar - Al-Monitor - Not a day goes by without us hearing the prime minister calling on the Palestinians to recognize Israel as a Jewish state. But is it possible to recognize Israel as a democratic state, as a state that makes every effort to treat all of its citizens as equals, regardless of religion, race, nationality or gender?-rh 19/3/2014
Analysis: Saji was not a victim, and neither am IWa`d Abbas - Ma`an News - There is no shame in fighting back against the occupation. What is shameful is not fighting back and fabricating stories only to fit the victim role that will never help nor change the reality we`re living in. bz18/3/2014
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Peace Now: `How great it is to be right-wing!`Ynetnews--Peace Now launches satirical video poking fun at right-wing, slamming West Bank policy and new legislation. So, is it so much fun being part of the right-wing? dn16/3/2014
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A Counter-Coalition Uri Avnery--SOMETHING VERY important happened this week in the most unlikely of places: the Knesset. dn16/3/2014
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Israel’s nation-state talk means the return of the yellow starGideon Levy--Israelis are judging people by their ancestors and withdrawing into a ghetto-state whose nature will be determined by its purity. dn16/3/2014
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Cameron at the Knesset: helping to burst the bubble of Israeli politics?Nicholas Blincoe--If Cameron learned anything from his visit, it ought to be that Israelis are fully engaged in arguing with other Israelis; the rest of the world does not get a look in. Israel`s political class exists inside a bubble in which only their views matter, no matter how detached from reality they might be. dn 16/3/2014
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How many times must the Palestinians recognize Israel?Hussein Ibish--Netanyahu’s new `Jewish state` mantra negates the fact that Palestinians recognized Israel more than twenty years ago. They’re still waiting for Israel to recognize Palestine. dn15/3/2014
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Why John Kerry’s peace mission should worry liberal Zionists Peter Beinart - Haaretz - Kerry and the rest of the Obama foreign policy team know that if they present a framework that Benjamin Netanyahu dislikes, he and the right-leaning American Jewish establishment will make their lives miserable. If, on the other hand, they present a framework that tilts against the Palestinians, the resulting Palestinian outrage will be far easier to withstand. That’s partly because Palestinians wield little influence in Washington. And it’s partly because we liberal Zionists—desperate to see Kerry succeed—have given every indication that we’ll support whatever he serves up, the particulars be damned. The consequences of this political imbalance have been quietly playing themselves out for months now. Numerous press reports have suggested that Kerry is contemplating a framework that offers the Palestinians substantially less than what Bill Clinton offered them in December 2000 and what Ehud Olmert offered in 2008. bz15/3/2014
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EU envoy to Israel: You shouldn’t have released prisonersDavid Horovitz - The Times of Israel "Robustly rejecting the notion that Europe was disproportionately critical of Israel, he said the EU had “basically only one quarrel with Israel as far as the peace process is concerned, and that is the settlements,” which he said were “particularly destructive for creating the kind of confidence and negotiating environment that is necessary to succeed.” The EU, he noted, considered settlements to be “illegal under international law and unhelpful on top of it.” ca 14/3/2014
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How can you tell that Israeli refuseniks are scaring the system?Moriel Rothman- +972 "This week, a group of 50+ Israeli high schools students and youth penned a letter to Prime Minister Netanyahu declaring their refusal to enlist in the army as an act of protest against Israel’s 47-year old military occupation of the Palestinian Territories.And the system is scared." ca14/3/2014
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Right-wing NGO reports on Israelis taking part in Israeli Apartheid Week eventsAriel Ben Solomon - Jerusalem Post "Alon Schvartzer, the head of policy at Im Tirtzu, told The Jerusalem Post in an interview, “We wanted to show that Israeli organizations and individuals are justifying the BDS movement, giving it legitimization, even if they are not on the front lines." ca14/3/2014
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A kingdom of two halvesThe Economist - "Indigenous Bedouin from Jordan’s East Bank, who number about 3m, worry that America’s plans to persuade Palestinian leaders to strip generations of refugees of their claimed “right of return” to what is now Israel would reduce Jordan’s original inhabitants to a permanent minority." ca14/3/2014
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Abbas questions rival`s role in Arafat deathAl-Jazeera - Source: Reuters "Palestinian leader accuses former Fatah man Mohammed Dahlan of roles in murders and questions relationship with Arafat.Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian president, has accused one of his main Fatah rivals, Mohammed Dahlan, of involvement in six murders, and questioned his role in the death of former leader Yasser Arafat." ca14/3/2014
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Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) and the American Jewish Community Donna Nevel - MuzzleWatch "Criticisms, even extremely harsh ones, of the Israeli state or calls to make a state democratic and adhere to equal rights for all its citizens are not anti-Semitic. Rather, anti-Semitism is about hatred of, and discrimination against the Jewish people, which is not anywhere to be found in the call for BDS, and these kinds of accusations also serve to trivialize the long and ugly history of anti-Semitism." ca14/3/2014
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Advocating for Palestinian Rights in conformity with International Law: GuidelinesCivic Coalition for Palestinian Rights in Jerusalem - International law, when integrated with broader popular resistance, can challenge the apartheid system that Israel has imposed on the Palestinian people since 1948. Unfortunately, international law is not self-executing, and Palestinian officialdom has been lax in exploiting it. Thus it falls to civil society to ensure that principles of international law and human rights are realized in Palestine today.-rh13/3/2014
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Human rights groups agree: Israel is shooting Palestinian civiliansBen White - Middle East Monitor - Human Rights Watch, Palestinian Centre for Human Rights, Amnesty International, DCI-Palestine, Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre, B`Tselem - these different human rights group agree on one, disturbing truth: Israeli soldiers are shooting Palestinian civilians.-rh 13/3/2014
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Iranian weapons shipment no `tiebreaker`Akiva Eldar - Al-Monitor - The rollout of Israel`s seizure of a ship carrying Iranian arms may have disappointed Israeli leaders looking for a public relations windfall.-rh 13/3/2014
Why the Kerry Middle East Peace Framework Will FailMichael Lerner - The Huffington Post - And it will fail, because Kerry`s plan will be "realistic" rather than visionary, and de facto that means speaking more to the power of Israel and its domestic lobby (not only AIPAC, but the tens if millions of Christian Zionists) than to the aspirations of the Palestinian people.-rh 13/3/2014
Women behind the lens: Palestinians filming the occupationManal Ja’bri - +972 - Three years ago, I read a wanted ad in the newspaper for field researchers for B’Tselem, an Israeli organization dedicated to documenting human rights violations in the occupied territories. B’Tselem trains Palestinians in specific locations in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, where tensions are high and clashes are commonplace, to use video cameras to capture those violations. The footage exposes the Israeli and the international public to the reality of life under occupation.-rh 13/3/2014
Updated: Free the Nabi Saleh threeInternational Solidarity Movement - An Israeli military judge ruled that six demonstrators who were kidnapped from their homes three weeks ago, could be released on bail of 2500 shekels each. With the help of the Popular Struggle Coordination Committee and the villagers, three of the prisoners, Fadel Tamimi (54) Mohammed Tamimi ( 24) Basel Tamimi (16) have already been released. We need your help to raise the remaining 7000 shekels to release Jihad Tamimi (25) Mahmud Tamimi (21) Rami Tamimi (36). Any amount will help.-rh 13/3/2014
International Women`s Day : 22 Palestinian women held in Israeli jailsUFree - Palestinian female political and detainees suffer harsh detention conditions due to the Israeli prison administration`s deliberate medical negligence, ill-treatment, humiliating strip search, and ban on family visits in a clear violation of basic human rights and international law.-rh13/3/2014
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Decency Without HopeDavid Shulman - NYR - It is hard to fathom how the Israelis themselves can stand to live with the ongoing misery and cruelty they have inflicted, and it’s not so easy to understand how the rest of the world has let them get away with it. Then there is the shadowy space of infinite suspicion and distrust that the occupation naturally breeds among those who live under or in it.-rh12/3/2014
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Israeli killing of judge at border provokes backlash in JordanDaoud Kuttab - Al-Monitor - The killing took place just two weeks after Amnesty International produced a report detailing how "trigger-happy" Israeli soldiers often abuse their firepower. The shooting of Judge Zeiter very much fits the profile of the way well-armed Israeli soldiers conduct themselves, likely due to the impunity provided by the Israeli establishment.-rh12/3/2014
Israel fears it has lost world attention on IranBen Caspit - Al Monitor - "Netanyahu and Ya’alon know that they have lost the West’s attention. They know that US President Barack Obama is not lending an ear to this news and that the Europeans are rather indifferent, too." - id 12/3/2014
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Until the last secular soldierAdam Keller = Crazy Country = "So for quite a long time still the Ultra-Orthodox Modi’in settlers can continue, on Bil`in lands, to study the holy Scriptures under far from holy army protection." - id 12/3/2014
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It`s not the boycott that`s anti-Semitic Larry Derfner - +972 - It’s the occupation and Israeli bigotry. What we do to the Palestinians and Israeli Arabs – in the last two days, for example – has caused more damage to the Jewish people than anything since the Holocaust [ry]11/3/2014
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God Bless Putin Uri Avnery - Gush Shalom - "Binyamin Netanyahu is very good at making speeches, especially to Jews, neocons and such, who jump up and applaud wildly at everything he says, including that tomorrow the sun will rise in the west. The question is: is he good at anything else?" [ry]11/3/2014
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If I were an American Jew, I’d worry about Israel’s racist cancerDaniel Blatman--Amid the awareness that Israel is sliding toward an apartheid regime, the silence of Jews worldwide is deafening.dn9/3/2014
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When Arab Jews forget who they are DAVID SHASHA--Given the dearth of Arab Jewish voices in the media, it is sad to note that Ms. Lagnado, like André Aciman, another angry Egyptian Jew who has become prominent in the larger discourse, has chosen to turn her back on her cultural heritage and act the part of a typical paranoid Ashkenazi Jew of the New York City variety rather than remain loyal to the rich cultural heritage of Middle Eastern Judaism. dn9/3/2014
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American Israel Public Affairs Committee and My Favorite Israeli GrandmothersPhilip Farah--Today, Israeli leaders don`t need an economic crisis in order to rattle their sabers because they have a chronic political crisis: What to do with the Palestinians under their control, a population whose numbers may have already exceeded those of Jews in Israel. The leaders` answer is, again, to point the finger elsewhere: Iran is the Boogie Man, with its (Muslim) bomb that threatens not only Israel, but all of the West`s Judeo-Christian civilization.dn9/3/2014
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Defining the Jewish StateAli Jarbawi--RAMALLAH, West Bank — Secretary of State John Kerry is preparing a “framework” for peace and Palestinians are worried. They know it will define the American position and set the new parameters for resolving the conflict. When published, this document — whether Palestinians accept its contents or not — will become the reference point for all future negotiations. dn8/3/2014
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Netanyahu asks the impossible of AbbasBen Lynfield--Israeli PM demands the Palestinian President recognises the state of Israel as legitimate to progress in peace talks. dn8/3/2014
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Recognizing Israel is enoughHaaretz Editorial--Israelis live in a Jewish state, which is the realization of the Zionist vision; they need no Palestinian recognition. dn8/3/2014
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Defining the Jewish StateAli Jarbawi - New York Times - Is the acknowledgement of the Jewishness of the Israeli state an implicit acceptance of the Jewish-Israeli narrative, and a rejection of the Palestinian one? In the interests of justice and fairness, will Israel be asked to acknowledge the Palestinian Nakba, or “catastrophe,” of 1948 and its responsibilities regarding that event? bz8/3/2014
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Palestinians respond to Obama: Nothing left to make concessions onJack Khoury and Barak Ravid - Haaretz "The Palestinians responded Wednesday to U.S. President Barack Obama`s promise to pressure Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas "to make tough decisions" in their March 17 meeting, saying they have nothing left to make concessions on." ca7/3/2014
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The America that Netanyahu ignoresAri Shavit - Haaretz "The PM hasn`t been paying attention: outside the AIPAC conference very few people were listening." ca7/3/2014
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Jordan Valley essential for a viable Palestinian stateDr. Ibrahim Sharqieh and Dr. Ghassan Shabaneh - Al-Monitor "This past December, again using security justifications, Israel for the first time revealed a plan for permanently keeping the territory when the Ministerial Committee for Legislation passed “a bill to annex the Jewish settlements in the Jordan Valley to Israel and apply Israeli law to them.” ca 7/3/2014
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The Final Nail in the Coffin of the US-led `Peace` Talks: Netanyahu demands Palestinians recognize Israel as `Jewish state`Ma`an News Agency - Information Clearing House - For the Palestinians, the issue is intimately entwined with the fate of their refugees who were forced out of their homes or fled in 1948 when Israel became a state. They see Netanyahu`s demand as a way to sidestep a negotiated solution to the refugee question.-rh 6/3/2014
Netanyahu`s Anti-Iranian RantPAUL PILLAR - The National Interest - Benjamin Netanyahu`s tiresome vilification of Iran has taken on the characteristics of a rote obsession that diverges farther and farther from truth, reality, and his own ostensible objective.-rh5/3/2014
Not an Apartheid State? Bennett will take care of it.Adam Keller - Crazy Country - " And what about an Arab who dares to raise his voice in protest? The minister made it clear: zero tolerance." - id 5/3/2014
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Good news: Obama gives the Palestinians an insurance policyLarry Derfner - +972 - "Netanyahu and Israel come out looking like Goliath again, Abbas and the Palestinians like David, and the fight against the occupation gathers strength dramatically." - id 5/3/2014
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Netanyahu`s world Jewry dilemmaAkiva Eldar - Al Monitor - "Statements by Israeli officials against the two-state solution confront members of world Jewry with their latest dilemma: supporting Israel even when it endangers their interests in their countries of residence." - id 5/3/2014
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AREA C : Vulnerability ProfileUnited Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs occupied Palestinian territory - Vulnerability Profile Project - The Vulnerability Profile Project (VPP), launched in 2013, is an inter-agency exercise designed to identify vulnerabilities in Area C1. This feature provides previously unavailable data on Area C of the West Bank, including the most comprehensive information on physical protection, access to land and livelihoods, water and sanitation, education and health.-rh 5/3/2014
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Borders Are Becoming A Bit Odd In The Middle EastRobert Fisk - Information Clearing House - For last week, the Strategic Affairs Minister – is there any other nation on earth which has such a ministry, I ask myself? – of Israel, warned Lebanon that it must prevent Hezbollah (Iranian-armed, Syrian-supported, you know the usual and true clichés) from attacking Israel in reprisal for Israel’s attack on a weapons convoy – an attack which, as is often the case, Israel didn’t actually admit to having carried out.-rh 5/3/2014
Palestinian government may soon pass transparency lawDaoud Kuttab - Al-Monitor - Access-to-information laws are credited the world over with improving transparency and fighting corruption. Countries` rankings in the transparency index are improved once a country passes such a law. Transparency International makes the connection very clear, using a quote from its late co-founder, Jeremy Pope: "There is an obvious link between access-to-information and low levels of corruption," he said in 1998.-rh 5/3/2014
Palestinians in Israel reject "colonial, sectarian" lawPatrick Strickland - Electronic Intifada - A group of 18 Palestinian NGOs in present-day Israel subsequently released a joint statement that denounced the law as “sectarian” and “similar to the approaches adopted by the apartheid regime in South Africa, and by the French in its colonial rule in Algeria, among others. It is a policy that seeks to fragment the original people of the land into small groups with narrowed identities to replace their national identity.”-rh 5/3/2014
How ‘trigger-happy’ soldiers killed an unarmed man walking to workAllison Deger - Mondoweiss - What the case of Jihad Aslan, Yunes Jahjouh, Rubin Abd al-Rahman Zayed shows, is that even when soldiers are at risk, this “trigger happy” mode of conduct trumps army regulations. Zayed posed no threat. He had a family, a mortgage and a steady job in a bad economy.-rh5/3/2014
Gaza Access and Movement: 2013 SummaryGisha - Israel’s closure of Gaza reached the six year mark. Corresponding with the changes on the Egyptian border, more goods entered Gaza via Kerem Shalom Crossing and more exits were recorded at Erez Crossing, connecting Gaza to Israel and the West Bank. Nonetheless, sweeping and indiscriminate restrictions on travel and on movement of goods between Gaza and the West Bank and Israel remained nearly unchanged in 2013.-rh5/3/2014
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Open-fire regulations at Gaza border sanction lethal force against civilians who pose no threatSarit Michaeli - B`Tselem - Amneh Qdeih, 57, died of a gunshot wound to her abdomen fired at her when she approached Gaza`s perimeter fence. Her relatives told Qdeih, who was mentally ill, had been at a family wedding not far from the perimeter fence and did not return home. Family members realized she was missing, and began searching for her. They heard gunshots and saw flares. At 6:00 AM, they found Qdeih`s body close to the perimeter fence. ak 4/3/2014
Netanyahu`s last tango in WashingtonShimon Shiffer - Ynet - The Central Bureau of Statistics released figures pointing to a massive increase of roughly 120 percent in settlement construction within the future Palestinian state`s territory. As long as this is the situation, one can understand why Abbas and his men refuse to join the dance – and one can equally understand why American President Barack Obama`s remarks Monday evening contained a strong whiff of despair. bz4/3/2014
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Red Rag weekly column: Barkat: Occupation Mayor - Bedouin death-march - Pete Seeger RIPGideon Spiro - Nir Barkat, Mayor of the Occupation - water apartheid - death-march in Sinai, 1972 - Adam Verete and the Israeli Stasi - Pete Seeger, RIP - A bouquet for Achinoam Nini4/3/2014
Is AIPAC doomed? Philip Giraldi - AlJazeera - The Israel lobby demonstrates its power but is it in decline? [ry] 3/3/2014
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Stifling Discussion about Palestinian Human Rights Ron Forthofer--For too long in this country, people supporting human rights and international law in relation to the Palestinian/Israeli issue have been reluctant to speak out. Many university faculty members didn’t want to get involved in an issue that they believed might cost them their jobs or tenure. dn2/3/2014
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We do not rule the worldYoel Marcus--The good news from Merkel’s visit is that there is no deep crisis between her and Bibi. The bad news, in the eyes of Israeli leaders, is that she and Obama believe the time for decision is here. dn2/3/2014
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Countering Israel Boycotts, With GlamourMARK LANDLER--In speeches by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and other officials next week, Aipac plans to pound the drums about what it regards as the pernicious motives of the anti-Israel campaign, known formally as the boycott, divestment and sanctions, or B.D.S., movement.dn1/3/2014
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Two blushing pilgrims: A Palestinian love story Hamid Dabashi--Can Palestinian filmmakers afford telling a love story, in the midst of their historic trauma of dispossession and national liberation, without appearing to belittle or compromise the historic fate of their people? dn1/3/2014
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You’re an Arab? StripHaaretz Editorial--The unnecessary, humiliating treatment that multitudes of Arab Israelis suffer routinely in Israel`s airports must be done away with for good.dn1/3/2014
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