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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    

A Midwinter Night`s Dream Ran HaCohen - Antiwar - "None of those who always protest the "singling out" of Israel`s atrocities, who always invoke other tragedies when Israel is criticized, will bother to say a single word when the Holocaust is singled out for Israel`s benefit." 31/1/2007
No reason to celebrateAla Hlehel - Ynet - "Those who in fact do nothing for their constituency are the Arab members of the large Zionist parties" 31/1/2007
Arab minister good for Israel Rabbi Naftali Rothenberg - Ynet - "Master plans that will provide the right to housing; development, education, and welfare plans that will grant the right to make a living – those are the Israeli government`s obligation to the Arab citizens."31/1/2007
That Stubborn Iran Pot Refuses to BoilTony Karon - Rootless Cosmopolitan - `The bad news for the "1938" crowd - the bomb-Iran alarmists led by Benjamin "Newt"anyahu (who seems to have learned from Gingrich that a discredited crank can still get headlines by yelling "the sky is falling and nobody is doing anything about it" and the Washington neocons, is that Iran is refusing to play the "clear and present danger." `30/1/2007
A civilized and sophisticated argumentGhassan Khatib - - "The reason many in Israel are alarmed is that the Palestinian citizens of Israel are presenting their case in a sophisticated and respectful way that cannot be dismissed out of hand and is already raising eyebrows and sparking debate outside the borders of Israel."30/1/2007
Should Israel be in Bush`s back seat?Tony Karon - Haaretz - "Even if Washington is unwilling to engage with the realities of the region, Israel has plenty of incentive to independently and directly engage the powers that be in Damascus, Beirut, Tehran, Gaza and Ramallah, along the lines revealed by Haaretz last week in relation to Syria. The reason is simple: It`s a safe bet that Assad, Nasrallah, Ali Khamenei and Hamas will be there long after Bush, Rice and their fantasy are wheeled off the stage. "29/1/2007
As long as we impose sanctionsZvi Bar`el - Haaretz - Even if Haniyeh starts wearing a kippa and Khaled Meshal begins humming Hatikva, and even if Abbas makes it mandatory to teach the heroic story of Masada in Palestinian schools, Israel does not want and is unable to propose a diplomatic alternative that would lead to the establishment of an independent and democratic Palestinian state. It does not want to - because any such proposal would mean a withdrawal from most of the territories and the dismantling of most of the settlements.28/1/2007
"If Arafat were alive…" Uri Avnery - Gush Shalom - IF Arafat were alive, there would be a clear address for negotiations with the Palestinian people. The claimed absence of such an address serves the Israeli government as the official pretext for its refusal to start peace negotiations. Every time Condoleezza Rice or another of Bush`s parrots talks about the need to "restart the dialogue" (don`t mention "negotiations") for "the final status" or "the permanent settlement" (don`t mention "peace"), that is the response of Tsipi Livni, Ehud Olmert & Co.28/1/2007
Ilan Pappe and the Nakba deniers: The ethnic cleansing of PalestineJohn Whitbeck - Counterpunch - Unfortunately, Ilan Pappe`s new book "The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine" is highly likely to go unreviewed and largely unnoticed in the United States, a country where objective historical truth is much less popular than "revealed truth" and pure fantasy and where the Israel-First Lobby starts with a distinct home-field advantage in pursuing its successful efforts to convince US public opinion that US interests and values are identical to Israeli interests and values and to make US foreign policy and the USA`s wars indistinguishable from Israeli foreign policy and Israel`s wars.28/1/2007
Nothing new from RiceAli Jarbawi - Bitterlemons - If Palestinians and Arabs return to the same negotiating route as before, Rice, Bush and Olmert will take them for another "ride".28/1/2007
Is there a kosher way to criticize the Israel lobby?Matthew Yglesias - The American Prospect - Everything Clark said, in short, is true. What`s more, everybody knows it`s true. The worst that can truthfully be said about Clark is that he expressed himself in a slightly odd way. This, it seems clear, he did because it`s a sensitive issue and he worried that if he spoke plainly he`d be accused of trafficking in anti-Semitism. So he spoke unclearly and, for his trouble, got ... accused of trafficking in anti-Semitism. 27/1/2007
The Battle of Tze’elimAlex Stein - False Dichotomies - ...But the news of this latest IDF innovation provides yet more evidence of the paradox of the Israeli polity – extraordinary imagination in the field of warfare, a quality that is singularly lacking in the realm of peacemaking. 27/1/2007
Journalism Under Fire Joharah Baker - MIFTAH - "On Monday night, January 22, a group of masked and armed men threw explosives into the network’s office in Gaza City, causing extensive material damage but no casualties given that the office was empty at the time of the attack. The assault was hence understood to be a “warning” to Al-Arabiyyah, which if not heeded, would lead to much more serious measures." 25/1/2007
Shifting sands and the chances for peaceReuven Kaminer - Gush Shalom - "The flag of an authentic two state solution with real sovereignty for the Palestinians and steps – both concrete and long range – to alleviate the suffering of the Palestinian masses and with effective security for Israel and its people will fly over this land. You must believe." 25/1/2007
Israel raises nuclear stakes with Iran Anne Penketh - The Independent - "The Israeli Prime Minister, Ehud Olmert, dramatically raised the stakes in the international showdown with Iran last night, with a clear warning that his country was prepared to use military force to prevent Tehran from obtaining a nuclear weapon." 25/1/2007
In Europe and in the United StatesFayssal Hourani - Palestine Times - "At the end of the day, truth will prevail. The truth is that the aggressive behaviour of Israel has now risen to a level that cannot be accepted by any decent human being. Only those who benefit from the results of this aggression and put interests over decency can accept such behaviour. " 24/1/2007
There is a need for serious third-party involvement Ghassan Khatib - Bitter Lemons - "If there was one single factor that above all else contributed to the failure of the peace process it was the settlements." 24/1/2007
Say yes to the Saudi peace planCOLETTE AVITAL - The Jerusalem Post - "In return for territories acquired 40 years ago, Israel has been offered recognition by all the Arab countries and full-fledged diplomatic relations with them."24/1/2007
Carter Doesn`t Tell the Half of It: How Israel Enforces `Demographic Separation`Jonathan Cook - Counterpunch - " Israel was creating a “Jewish fortress”, separating -- at least demographically -- from Palestinians in the occupied territories...The corollary of this Jewish fortress would be a sham Palestinian state, a series of disconnected ghettos that would prevent Palestinians from organizing effective resistance, non-violent or otherwise, but which would give the Israeli army an excuse to attack or invade whenever they chose, claiming that they were facing an “enemy state” in a conventional war."23/1/2007
Several interesting articles related to Jimmy Carter`s book `Palestine: Peace not Apartheid `1)" Carter denies his book is anti-semitic" by Charles Odum in Athens, Georgia, The Guardian; 2) "Israelis, Jimmy Carter and Apartheid", by Tony Karon, Rootless Cosmopolitan (Blog); 3) Why Carter is "good for the Jews" - by activist Deb Reich; 4) Customers` Campaign Wins Fairer Treatment for Jimmy Carter`s Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid 23/1/2007
Keeping on bloody path of peace Ines Ehrlich - Ynet - Arab Combatant for Peace activist says will not abandon path to peace despite daughter`s recent death at hands of Israeli Border Police 22/1/2007
Soldier suspended for harassment - back through revolving doorSol Salbe`s Middle East Round-up - "in the Hebrew Haaretz the headline is quite explicit: Soldier suspended for harassment returns to checkpoint on following day. Apparently only Hebrew readers are entitled to read the full story.22/1/2007
Iran motivated by fearProf Dror Zeevi-Ynet-Tehran`s pursuit of nuclear capabilities stems from fear, not hatred. Hostile Israel has nuclear arms; so do Sunni Pakistan and the US - a superpower situated on the Iranian border from the east and west - as does Russia, which borders Iran on the north. Nuclear weapons would enable Tehran to face these threats as an equal and to conduct itself as a regional superpower. In any discussion aimed at looking into Iran`s intentions, it should be noted that throughout the Islamic Republic`s years of existence, since 1979, it has not initiated a single war.22/1/2007
Cloned generalsGideon Levy - Haaretz - in the IDF General Staff, generals are only allowed to offer proposals in one direction: to assassinate more, bomb more, crush more and imprison more. The head of the IDF Central Command can make a laughingstock of the politicians` decisions to ease procedures at checkpoints, just because he opposes these easements, and he can approve an unnecessary operation in Ramallah on the day of a political summit, while the head of IDF`s Southern Command can continue bombarding Gaza with artillery even when the politicians disapprove.21/1/2007
With us or against us Ghassan Khatib - Bitterlemons - For Palestinians, the world is divided into two kinds of people: those who support Israel and those who don`t 21/1/2007
A freedom rideUri Avnery - Gush Shalom - Mahatma Gandhi would have loved it. Nelson Mandela would have saluted. Martin Luther King would have been the most excited - it would have reminded him of the old days.21/1/2007
From personal experienceGeorge Bisharat - Houston Chronicle - "It is one thing to match ideas with ideas, facts with facts, perspectives with perspectives. It is different to threaten, bully, discredit and harass opponents of one`s views -- whether they are writers, artists, Jewish dissidents, ex-presidents or anyone else. And in this case, our resulting ignorance is not bliss. It is downright dangerous. "29/1/2007
The entire political spectrum Akiva Eldar - Haaretz - " The security leadership joyfully carried out Ariel Sharon`s decision to destroy the Palestinian partner. None of them stood up and told the public and its elected officials that the greater the blow to PA institutions, the faster Hamas would take over the territories. They also didn`t warn that in the Gaza Strip, like in Lebanon and Iraq, chaos is the most fertile ground for the blossoming of Hamas, Hezbollah, and Al-Qaida. " 29/1/2007
The real origins of sectarianism [ ` Sectarianism must be blamed on despotism` ]Hassan Nafaa - AL-AHRAM - " Because we lack democratic regimes that respect citizenry, and because the US and Israel are dictating things around the region, sectarianism is becoming rife and more dangerous than ever. Unless Iran and the Arab world understand this fact, they will be torn to pieces. And Israel would climb high on their tattered remains, cheered by the world`s sole superpower. "29/1/2007
The key lies in Gaza Danny Rubinstein - Haaretz - " What is happening in Gaza therefore endangers not only the inhabitants of the Strip, but all of us, Israelis and Palestinians, who are sliding down the slippery slope of a cultural and religious battle. "29/1/2007
Yad Vashem Council Chair slams settlers for abusing Palestinians Haaretz - Reuters - The head of the council of Israel`s central Holocaust memorial on Saturday assailed Jewish settlers who harass Palestinians in a tinderbox West Bank city, saying the abuse recalled the anti-Semitism of pre-World War Two Europe21/1/2007
Dan Halutz, shooting himself in the wing Gush Shalom press release - Dan Halutz has today been thrown out of the job which he should never have gotten, and we do not feel even a slight tremor in the wing. Halutz’s successor would do well to remember that even the commander of the most powerful army in the Middle East is far from being almighty.17/1/2007
Terror and starvation in GazaJohn Pilger - New Statesman - Dr Khalid Dahlan, a psychiatrist, showed me the results of a remarkable survey. "The statistic I personally find unbearable," he said, "is that 99.4 per cent of the children we studied suffer trauma. Once you look at the rates of exposure to trauma you see why: 99.2 per cent of their homes were bombarded; 97.5 per cent were exposed to tear gas; 96.6 per cent witnessed shootings; 95.8 per cent witnessed bombardment and funerals; almost a quarter saw family members injured or killed." 20/1/2007
Stop the Jewish barbarians in HebronYosef (Tommy) Lapid - Jerusalem Post - It is unthinkable that the memory of Auschwitz should serve as a pretext to ignore the fact that living here among us are Jews that behave toward Palestinians exactly the way that German, Hungarian, Polish and other anti-Semites behaved toward Jews. When we decide, and rightly so, to never under any circumstances compare the behavior of Jews to that of Nazis, we are forgetting that anti-Semitism only reached its height at Auschwitz. It had existed, was active, frightening, harmful and disgusting - exactly like Hebron settler Yifat Alkobi`s image - in the years that preceded Auschwitz too. And behind shuttered windows hid terrified Jewish women, exactly like the Arab woman of the Abu-Isha family in Hebron. 20/1/2007
IDF not innocentShaul Arieli - Ynet - "Shocked by the revelations" of the Hebron incident, top officials were quick to make a distinction between the female settler videotaped cursing at a Palestinian and the soldier who stood nearby and did not prevent the incident; they made a distinction between "the radical settlers" and the IDF, which "remains on guard."20/1/2007
Implement which law?Meron Benvenisti - Haaretz - It`s easy to condemn the vulgarity of the settler from Hebron, and it`s easy to dismiss the Jewish enclave there as a gang of violent thugs. But they are only weeds that sprout from the rotten ground of the cruel regime that prevails beyond the Green Line. It`s a regime based on ethnic discrimination and separation, double standards and an absence of the rule of law. (...) It won`t be long before it`s the liberals who are seeking to have the Green Line erased from the maps, once it has been permanently transformed from a symbol of the aspiration for peace to a line delineating the realms of apartheid. 20/1/2007
A Looming Civil War in Palestine?Rafi Dajani-ABC News-"The coming days may prove to be a critical turning point for Palestinians. Will their historic national unity prevail or will the issue of the referendum light the match of wide-scale internal conflict? . ...a civil war will mean that the Palestinian national project for statehood will be dead and buried."19/1/2007
A New Chance for Peace?Jimmy Carter-Washington Post -"The premise of exchanging Arab territory for peace has been acceptable for several decades to a majority of Israelis but not to a minority of the more conservative leaders, who are unfortunately supported by most of the vocal American Jewish community."19/1/2007
Attempts at Marginalizing Carter IntensifyJuan Cole-Informed Comment-"The lobby is drawing wagons around this one, even though Carter`s book is actually very biased toward Israel and makes historical errors in Israel`s favor. "19/1/2007
This Week in Palestine … Behind the News with Hanna SinioraHanna Siniora-Jerusalem Times -"At this juncture, a permanent settlement is not possible. In Palestine, the various movements are at loggerhead and this weakens Palestinian demands. In Israel, Olmert is not secure and is still paying the price of the Lebanese war. The USA is mired in Iraq and the EU has not shown political independence."19/1/2007
What Hamas really wants Paul Delmotte - Le Monde diplomatique - The failure to form a Palestinian coalition government again raises the question of why Hamas persists, despite considerable pressure at home and abroad, in refusing to recognise Israel officially and explicitly. The first answer, which is rarely discussed, is that Hamas is convinced that recognition would be a pointless concession. 18/1/2007
Ready for Peace - What Should We Do?Gershon Baskin - IPCRI - "Enlisting and engaging the Israeli government must be undertaken by a three pronged offensive: (1) by the Arab League and by the Arab states that have peace with Israel – Jordan and Egypt; (2) by the Israeli civil society peace organizations and prominent Israeli opinion makers; and (3) by the European Union or member states of the EU. The EU or a group of EU Member states (such as Spain, Italy, France, Sweden and others) have a similar and essential role vis-à-vis President Mahmoud Abbas in providing assurances that a full fledged peace offensive would lead to bilateral Israeli-Palestinian negotiations on permanent status and not on interim agreements and Road Maps."18/1/2007
Rattling the cage: The racism of Israeli youthLARRY DERFNER - The Jerusalem Post - "To say Arabs are unclean is an expression of racism in about its purest, most virulent form. "We were not surprised by the outcome of the research," said the Education Faculty`s Dr. Haggai Kupermintz, who headed the study. "Anyone who is familiar with the field knows that these warped perceptions exist, but these findings are at the most severe extreme of a disturbing phenomenon." 18/1/2007
Not a civil warFayssal Hourani - Palestine Times - "Isn’t it impossible, without admitting mistakes, to find a common ground for both parties for one government and one leadership with or without a new election? Is it possible to rein in those who are evading national responsibilities unless those concerned reach a common understanding and work together?" 18/1/2007
The Israeli policy in the Occupied Territories : what should one call it?V. Buch - "Let us summarize the principles governing Israeli policy: Principle 1: "The more damage to Arabs, the betterô. Principle 2: Keep the violence rolling; dodge peace initiatives. Principle 3: Bully anybody who dares to criticize Israel."1/1/2007
Obama and the Middle EastJOSHUA FRANK - Counterpunch - " Obama even embraced Israel’s brutal bombings of Lebanon last summer -- the type of complicity we’re sure to see continue if he’s successful in his political evolution." 17/1/2007
Australian Jewish author tackles the hard questionsTristan Ewins - Znet - " For those wishing to come to grips with the issues surrounding the Israeli occupation, and the work of what Loewenstein calls the ‘Zionist lobby’ in framing, limiting and influencing debate on the Middle East, and the role of the United States and Israel in the region, this title makes essential and absorbing reading." 17/1/2007
A Flag Blacker than BlackB. Michael - Yedioth Ahronoth - translation by Mark Marshall -"It is forbidden for Palestinians to ride in cars with Israelis. Palestinians are permitted to ride in an Israeli car only in order to get to work. The shame of it! The ignominy! Oh, what a short memory! How Judaism thus tramples itself into the dust!"16/1/2007
War shadowsAl-Ahram - "Deteriorating relations between Fatah and Hamas could turn the spectre of war into a reality, reports Khaled Amayreh from the West Bank "16/1/2007
Caution: War is on the Way… Michael Warschawski, Alternative Information Center - "As with last summer, Washington is pushing the Israeli government to war, supported by the Israeli military, which desperately wants a second chance to regain its sense of deterrence in the region. "16/1/2007
Palestine 2007: Genocide in Gaza, Ethnic Cleansing in the West BankIlan Pappe -- The Electronic Intifada -- "In all, the settlements, the army bases, the roads and the wall will allow Israel to annex almost half of the West Bank by 2010. Within these territories there will be a considerable number of Palestinians, against whom the Israeli authorities will continue to implement slow and creeping transfer policies -- too boring as a subject for the western media to bother with and too elusive for human rights organizations to make a general point about them. There is no rush; as far as the Israelis are concerned, they have the upper hand there: the daily abusive and dehumanizing mixed mechanisms of army and bureaucracy is as effective as ever in contributing its own share to the dispossession process"15/1/2007
New Year imperativesHassan Nafaa -- Al-Ahram -- The Arab world must be careful not to get trapped between Israel and Iran as America re-articulates its regional policy15/1/2007
Manara Square, Ramallah Uri Avnery - The routinely mendacious army press release announced that the four had been armed. Indeed? One of them was a street vendor named Khalil al-Bairouti, who used to sell hot beverages from a small cart at this place. Another was Jamal Jweelis from Shuafat near Jerusalem, who had come to Ramallah to buy new clothes and sweets for the engagement party of his brother14/1/2007
Yet another "peace process" looming? George Giacaman - Bitterlemons - Evidently, not much has been learned from the failures of the Oslo process. It is clear that open-ended "interim" arrangements have a way of extending their life expectancy until another conflagration erupts. The problem is not in principle with stages, but with the specific guarantees that the end-goal will be reached in a defined period, if such "guarantees" are at all possible or credible. The Israeli-Palestinian "peace process" attests to this. 14/1/2007
Debate? What debate? Michael F. Brown - Bitterlemons International - US-Americans are simply afraid to say anything against Israel. This fear is Israel`s best weapon. But the wall of fear is starting to be breached.14/1/2007
Hard limits and long-observed taboos Ali Abunimah - Bitterlemons International - With his book Palestine Peace Not Apartheid reaching the top of the bestseller lists, former President Jimmy Carter appears to have made a breakthrough in the ossified debate on Israel-Palestine in the United States. 14/1/2007
Barghouti: decent camp in Israel should be bolsteredRoee Nahmias - Ynet/Yediot Aharonot - Hadash Chairman Mohammad Barakeh meets Fatah leader jailed in Israel. Barghouti says establishment of unity government is most important step, adds that `state within `67 borders is the minimum Palestinians can accept 14/1/2007
China`s Middle East journey via JerusalemM K Bhadrakumar - Asia Times - Olmert was given a red-carpet welcome in Beijing with full military honors at the Great Hall of the People facing Tiananmen Square. During the banquet in Olmert`s honor, the band played "Jerusalem of Gold"...13/1/2007
The camel rights in IsraelMohammed Mar`i - Who cares about farmers like the one who in one day lost access to his lands, which he and his fathers had worked for generations. Who cares about shepherds who were forced to sell their sheep because the fence blocked access to pasture? Who is upset that the principal of a high school like Mohammed Shahin of Ras a-Tireh, was forced to use donkeys to bring textbooks from Qalqilya since all the roads were blocked by the fence.13/1/2007
Labor Union boycott of Israel? Abraham Cooper and Yitzchok Adlerstein - Jewish World Review - "Life-saving medical equipment, standing in crates in Galveston, undelivered to waiting hospitals, because truckers refuse to handle Israeli cargo. Tons of Jaffa oranges, dumped into the waters off Long Beach, California, as a labor action against the Israeli `occupation` gets out of hand. These events have not occurred yet, but they are not merely part of a speculative doomsday scenario either. There are groups committed to make them happen, as a new front opens up in the war against the Jewish state. The shock troops have already taken their positions, in unions overseas and across America." [The only remedy not suggested in this article: to end the occupation. A.K.] 13/1/2007
Letter from JerusalemFred Halliday- Al-Hayat-" `I guess we will have to wait, and go on fighting, for another 30 to 40 years before the Middle East sorts itself out`, as one Israeli academic, ... put it to me. I could not bring myself to tell him I thought he was being a bit optimistic. "12/1/2007
Yet another "peace process" looming?George Giacaman-Bitterlemons-"..the withdrawal from Gaza was proof that Israel needs a Palestinian partner, and this requires "movement" on the political front."12/1/2007
Once bittenMustafa Barghouti-Al-Ahram Weekly-"Israel must come to the realisation that apartheid is a non-starter and that the only way ahead is that of comprehensive peace. We`ve tried Oslo once. Let`s not try it again."12/1/2007
When Hamas learns how to adapt Amira Hass - Haaretz - "The Hamas government has preserved, for example, fictive bodies like the Youth and Sports Ministry, and the Tourism Ministry, and has not established government ministries that would be fitting to its promise to fight the occupation: for example, a ministry for the struggle against the Jewish settlements in the territories or one for family reunification. " 11/1/2007
Reaping a bitter harvest Ghassan Khatib - Bitter Lemons - "To compound matters, American and European efforts not to hold Israel responsible for its illegal occupation and consequent policies, in direct contravention of international law, has further alienated the Arab masses from the international community and encouraged their isolation and inwardness." 10/1/2007
Behind the Green LineDavid Newman - IHT - "Nearly 40 years after it was removed from official Israeli maps, atlases and school books, the Green Line has made a significant comeback." 10/1/2007
Don`t Play With Maps DENNIS ROSS - NY Times -"Can Israel’s prime minister, Ehud Olmert, tell his public that demography and practicality mean that the Arab neighborhoods of East Jerusalem will have Palestinian and not Israeli sovereignty?" 10/1/2007
A New Directive from the ‘Of course not Apartheid’ Regime - Please Read, Take ActionAssaf Oron - Daily Kos - beginning January 19, Israeli residents traveling in the West Bank will be prohibited from taking Palestinian riders (except by specific permission). Eight Israeli human-rights organizations are taking the IDF to task, and have filed a Supreme Court appeal yesterday. Details of the directive - and what you can do about it - below the fold 10/1/2007
Condi`s Savage War on the PalestiniansTony Karon - "So, Gaza will bleed. And it will starve. And it will burn. Until the Palestinians are ready to rue the day they ever dared to choose their own leaders over those chosen for them by Rice, and Bush and Blair. "9/1/2007
The IDF and the state/ Military law is back Yossi Sarid - Haaretz -"Is anyone in control of this country? Is the entire country one small no-man`s-land? Isn`t there anyone left who can tell right from left? This much is clear: There is no government. There`s no prime minister worthy of the name, no defense minister worthy of the title. The army is running things, and that`s how it looks - tedious and out of control. Israel is now an army state. Military law has taken over once again - this time in the entire country. "9/1/2007
When soldiers become teachersAdina Aviram and Hana Aviram -- YNET -- "It is dangerous to position Israel among the world`s leading democracies and of course the only democracy in the Middle East, when in practice we raise our children from young age to be combat soldiers whose loyalty to the country is measured by their willingness to attack anyone the State marks as its enemy"8/1/2007
The Independent Leading article: Israel should give diplomacy more time to workThe Independent -- "We need put little store [...] in Ehud Olmert`s denials that Israel is planning a nuclear strike on Iran [...] The denial serves the same purpose as the leak: to orchestrate and acclimatise Western public opinion to the likelihood of war. If, or when, the strike comes, it will be sanctified by an aura of inevitability. As with Iraq, the line will be: there was no alternative"8/1/2007
Two Civil Wars with Brakes OnRoni Ben Efrat -- Challenge -- "The choice facing progressive forces in the Middle East need not be between Washington and Teheran. There is room for a third alternative: a system enabling a just distribution of the world`s resources. Until we can bring this alternative to bear, we shall continue to live and die as on a darkling plain, amid the turmoil of unnecessary war"8/1/2007
The Arab states drift into irrelevanceRami G. Khouri -- The Daily Star -- "The US will continue to protect its national security interests and friends in the Middle East, but by using more sensible methods than the diplomatic and military methods it has deployed in recent years, including its Rottweiler-like approach of intimidation and overkill in Iraq. A new security system will have to emerge to ensure stability and order, thus sparing the Middle East the ignominy of becoming a failed region of the world"8/1/2007
My personal hero: Tali FahimaMichel Warschawski - Alternative Information Center - On 3 January 2007, I waited at the gate of the Ayalon prison compound in Ramle along with a few dozen friends, to welcome Tali Fahima who was released from jail after more than two years of imprisonment. ... sixteen years ago, ... my friends and relatives welcomed me, here at the same gates of the Ayalon prison, at the time of my own release. 7/1/2007
Mideast New Year ReflectionsRamzy Baroud - Zmag - Like Iraq in the passing year, Palestinians embarked on 2006 on a hopeful note. Occupied and facing the most intense Israeli state terror regime, they delivered an awesome blow to those who contended that Palestinians were morally inferior to Israel for failing to espouse democratic governance.7/1/2007
Olmert`s courtship of AbbasUri Avnery - Counterpunch/Gush Shalom - Olmert has given Abu-Mazen the kiss of death. That`s at least one thing Bashar Assad does not have to worry about. 7/1/2007
The reentry of regional rivalries Ghassan Khatib - Bitterlemons - One of the most prominent features of Palestinian politics after the election victory of Hamas is the return of the influence of regional forces on the internal Palestinian scene. 7/1/2007
Decision timeYaakov Katz - Jerusalem Post - "Deputy Defense Minister Ephraim Sneh told The Jerusalem Post in November that sanctions were unlikely to work and that Israel must be prepared to thwart Teheran`s drive for nuclear capability "at all costs," even in a preemptive strike. Since then other leaders have added their voices, including Vice Prime Minister Shimon Peres who recently declared: "Iran too can be destroyed." 6/1/2007
If I were a Palestinian Uri Blau - Haaretz - "If I were in the Palestinians` situation, I would make our lives bitter. I would not blow up women and children. I`m totally opposed to that. But yes, I would fight against the foreign occupier. When you take a person and put him up against the wall and don`t leave him many options, then what do you want him to do? (...) In this battle soldiers are legitimate targets. My father was in the Etzel [Irgun]. There was the British occupier and he fought against it. The Palestinian is fighting against the Israeli occupier. When you come and call someone a `terrorist,` the definition is totally subjective. I consider the Etzel fighters freedom fighters, and the British considered them terrorists..." 6/1/2007
Ending the Israel/Palestine ConflictLiam Bailey-Arab Media Internet Network - "Just three days later Israel announced its authorization for a new West Bank settlement...Palestinians must have wretched at Israel behaving like a god over them; Israel giveth --slightly more freedom and money that was rightfully theirs-- and Israel taketh away --yet more land from any future Palestinian state--."5/1/2007
Ramallah provocationGush Shalom-"Either somebody deliberately intended to create a deadly provocation, or it was an unbelievable show of stupidity and incompetence. In both cases, the dire result is the same, as is the conclusion: this is not the way to build a ceasefire, and certainly not the way to advance towards peace."5/1/2007
The Future Vision of the Palestinian Arabs in Israel – Initial Response to an Extraordinary Document Reuven Kaminer-email distribution-"..only a few words discuss the impact of the occupation and its relation to the development of the Palestinian Arabs in Israel". "..any analysis that fails to deal with the impact of the overall struggle of the entire Palestinian people at this stage would be painfully incomplete."5/1/2007
At least two more yearsYossi Alpher-bitterlemons-"After six years, before and after 9/11, the Bush/Rice pattern of (not) dealing with this conflict should be clear. Anyone expecting or hoping for a genuinely active American role will have to wait at least two more years. "26/1/2007
Life under Hamas a rough rideJeremy Bowen-BBC-"Israel is not ready to give up the entire West Bank and to allow a Palestinian capital in east Jerusalem. Even if it was, mainstream Israelis and their friends abroad do not have much time for what they view as the weasel words of spokesmen for a terrorist organisation."26/1/2007
Hebron: A Rabbi and a Politician: ReflectionsBill Baldwin- CPT-"The way they see this vision may lead to what, for now, are irreconcilable differences. These differences might lead some to want to label either one or both of them as extremist." 12/1/2007
“A War Made in Israel”? : Israel, the Lobby and Plans to Attack Iran Gary Leupp - Dissident Voice - "President Bush lacks the political power to attack Iran," the general [Oded Tira] suggests (I assume on the basis of some pretty sound Israeli intelligence procured in the US), due to his weakened political position. But since "an American strike in Iran is essential for our existence, we must help him pave the way by lobbying the Democratic Party (which is conducting itself foolishly) and US newspaper editors. We need to do this in order to turn the Iran issue to a bipartisan one and unrelated to the Iraq failure." 11/1/2007
Hamas softens Israel stance in calls for Palestinian state Eric Silver - The Independent - "Hamas yesterday appeared to soften its long-standing refusal to recognise Israel. Khaled Meshal, the Islamic movement`s political leader in exile in Damascus, said that Israel was a "reality" and that "there will remain a state called Israel, this is a matter of fact". "11/1/2007
The Answers Have Changed Miko Peled - ZNet - "This option of a constitutional democracy that includes both Israeli Jews and Palestinians under one state is without a doubt one of the more difficult answers. After 2000 years in exile and having survived the Nazi holocaust, the Jewish people rose from the ashes like the phoenix to create a state they can call their own. Now it seems that securing the future of the people of Israel in the land of Israel will require not only vision but also genuine political compromise. " 11/1/2007
Dr. Mansour: Israel Must Cease Military Aggressions against the Palestinian PeopleWAFA News Agency-"The international community must demand that Israel, the occupying Power, cease its military aggressions and violations against the Palestinian people and comply with its obligations under international law, including international humanitarian law and human rights law."5/1/2007
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