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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
Don`t Israel`s nuclear weapons count?Yasmin Alibhai-Brown - Independent - "Hubristic Israel no longer cares to deny that it has hundreds of atom and hydrogen bombs and devastating biological "tools"." 30/9/2009
Encountering peace: In the land of miracles, let`s get realGERSHON BASKIN - Jlem Post - "Israeli society lost its faith in peace and it no longer dreams of driving to have chumus for lunch in Damascus. Israelis do not want to visit Cairo or Amman and do not particularly care if Jordanians or Egyptians come to visit Israel." 30/9/2009
Hoping for a tough yearUri Misgav - Ynet - "The international circumstances and the domestic pressure will not allow Israel to maintain an endless apartheid regime in the Holy Land."30/9/2009
A Quick Burial For Goldstoneís Report on GazaNathan Guttman - Jerusalem Post/Forward - Israeli and American diplomats came to the United Nations not to praise the Goldstone Report, but to bury it. And unlike Marc Antony in his eulogy for Julius Caesar, they meant it. 29/9/2009
No freeze, no peace: week 2207 of OccupationDaniel Breslau - Occupation Magazine - A peace process while Israel is building settlements is a charade, or worse than a charade, since it provides political cover for Israelís continuing colonization. 28/9/2009
A permanent moral stainZeev Sternhell - Haaretz - "And, indeed, all the decision makers knew in advance that a terrible catastrophe would ensue in Gaza. The Israel Defense Forces carried out precisely the instructions it received from its spiritual teachers, its commanders and the government itself. The army did not intend to kill civilians with malice aforethought - it just bombed, eliminated and flattened anything that seemed necessary for purposes of reconnaissance, maneuvering and advancement. Since every building could have served as a cover for Hamas people, the targets were unlimited"28/9/2009
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The risks of de-contextualizing Gaza war crimes G. de Almeida Ribeiro, V. Kishore and N. Sultany - EI - "Through myopic attention on the symptom of the problem -- the Gaza onslaught -- the root cause is obscured, and the Israeli occupation is stripped of its true context and gravity. Thus, the manifold and interconnected ways in which oppression works to subjugate normal people in their daily lives are left unexamined. In other words, the report describes and evaluates human rights violations without paying attention to the larger factual and moral context within which they occurred"28/9/2009
What has really changed in Israel since 1973?Gideon Levy - Haaretz - "If Israel rejects our outstretched hand, I will enlist a million soldiers and we will embark on war," Sadat vowed in an interview with an Austrian newspaper. "They`re not even capable of crossing the canal," Golda Meir said. The rest is history. Even now, "quiet reigns on the banks of the Suez." Now, on the eve of Yom Kippur, in the Jewish year 5770 (2009-10), quiet reigns on the Golan Heights, the northern border, the West Bank, even in Gaza, relatively speaking. This is not the time to make a move toward peace. Why should we? Anyway, there is quiet.27/9/2009
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Mainstream Israeli analyst: only sanctions will make Israelis care Aluf Benn is a veteran Ha`aretz columnist. Don`t mistake him as an anti-Occupation maverick like Amira Hass or Gideon Levy; Aluf Benn embodies the Israeli consensus. During the 2006 Lebanon war, for example, he sucked up to then-PM Olmert so bad, it hurt. After Olmert`s war-opening speech, Benn wrote (quoting from memory): "today a politician has turned into a statesman." Ya. In short, Aluf Benn is not the type of Israeli columnist you`d expect to write this: Only one thing does bother the Israelis, according to the polls: fear of a diplomatic embargo and an international boycott.27/9/2009
The consequences of the Palestinian-Israel status quoWilliam Pfaff - Antiwar.com - If Obama allows Israel to continue to stall, and to demonstrate that it will make no end to the West Bank occupation, he will disappoint the highest hopes that have existed among both Jews and Arabs since 1967 that a positive outcome is possible between Israel and the Palestinians. In that case, there may be still another, and more violent, Intifada, and more regional violence and terrorism. Or perhaps nothing will happen. An apartheid Israel will survive, and the Palestine population will grow, whether within or without the legal frontiers of Israel.26/9/2009
Scott Horton interviews Philip WeissAntiwar Radio - Investigative journalist Philip Weiss discusses the divide between establishment foreign policy realists and neocons on Israel/Palestine issues, the Goldstone fact-finding missionís conclusion on Israeli crimes in Gaza, the ability of narrowly focused interest groups to dominate U.S. policy and the hard reality of life in the Gaza Strip.26/9/2009
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What Obama needs to do for Mideast peace Aluf Benn - Haaretz - Only one thing does bother the Israelis, according to the polls: fear of a diplomatic embargo and an international boycott. 26/9/2009
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Rattling the Cage: Played for a suckerLarry Derfner - Jerusalem Post - It`s been a terrible week for tough love.26/9/2009
Listen to Goldstone Eyal Gross - Ynet - Perhaps, during these days of self-reflection [between Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur], we can recognize that we collectively deny the fact that we have shown great wickedness towards civilians?
This does not absolve Hamas from its responsibility, and the Goldstone Report does not make pretenses of doing that, but will we stop being indifferent to the fact that Israel too kills many civilians Ė even more than Hamas Ė without justification?
26/9/2009
Obama`s peace effort has failed but our struggle continuesBy Ali Abunimah Source: The Electronic Intifada "The meeting hosted by US President Barack Obama with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Fatah leader Mahmoud Abbas at New York`s Waldorf Astoria hotel on 22 September signaled the complete and terminal failure of Obama`s much vaunted push to bring about a two-state solution to the Palestine/Israel conflict." 25/9/2009
How Goldstone erred By Benjamin Pogrund Ha`aretz "At least three times in his life, Richard Goldstone has gone against prevailing wisdom in taking on challenging jobs. Two were in apartheid South Africa - and he was brilliantly successful in both. The third, his Gaza inquiry, has brought down the coals of hell upon his head." 25/9/2009
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40 years of ambiguity By Avner Cohen Ha`aretz "What was a brilliant and cheap deal back then has become a prolonged and troublesome burden over the years, a Catch-22 from which it is difficult to see how to escape. The ambiguity deal made the Israeli nuclear case unique - a program reliant on a doctrine of secrecy that is inappropriate for a democratic regime." 25/9/2009
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Red Rag Weekly ColumnGideon Spiro - Goldstone: a real Jew - Pornography of mourning - Closing a circle24/9/2009
The Drama and the Farce - The Waldorf-Astoria Summit URI AVNERY - Counterpunch -THE THREEFOLD summit did indeed take place. But instead of a shining achievement for the new American administration, we witnessed a humbling demonstration of weakness. After Obama was compelled to give up his demand for a settlement freeze, the meeting no longer had any content. 24/9/2009
Israeli-Palestinian conflict: Not for faint hearts The Guardian - Editorial - The search for a basis for talks is still going on. No one who witnessed Mr Mitchell in action in Northern Ireland should doubt his determination. With their strongest ally so doggedly engaged, neither Mr Netanyahu nor Mr Abbas is in a position to walk away from anything. And while that remains the case, Mr Netanyahu is subject to steady pressure on settlements. To succeed, Mr Obama has to move the parameters of the entire debate in Israel, for moderates and hardliners alike, towards the inevitability of a Palestinian state. It will take remorseless pressure, but it will, in the end, pay dividends. 24/9/2009
Obama, you won`t make peace without talking to Hamas Gideon Levy - Haaretz - Obama needs to turn things upside-down and break with convention. That`s why he was elected. Two decisive steps would change things completely: an American effort to introduce Hamas into the negotiations and pressure on Israel to end the matter of the occupation. Simplistic? Perhaps, but the complex and gradual solutions haven`t gotten us anywhere up to now. Like it or not, without Hamas peace is not possible. The fact that Obama has put his trust only in Abbas` Fatah has guaranteed failure, which was foreseeable. History has taught us that you make peace with your worst enemy, not with those who are seen as collaborators by their own people. 24/9/2009
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The Goldstone report and the battle for legitimacy Richard Falk - The Electronic Intifada - ...there are some good reasons for Israel`s panicked reaction to this damning report. First, it does come with the backing of an eminent international personality who cannot credibly be accused of anti-Israel bias, making it harder to deflect attention from the findings no matter how loud the screaming of foul play. Any fair reading of the report would show that it was balanced, took full and sensitive account of Israel`s arguments relating to security, and indeed gave Israel the benefit of the doubt on some key issues. 23/9/2009
IDC Herzliya President Reichman Accuses Gordon of Supporting ĎMilitary Forceí Against IsraelTikun Olam - The nutcases at Israel Academic Monitor are disseminating a hysterical rant by Uriel Reichman, president of the Interdisciplinary Center (IDC) Herzliya, Israelís largest private university. It accuses the BDS movement of being a slippery slope that will lead to international military attack against Israel. 23/9/2009
Carter: Settlements hindering peaceAssociated Press/Jerusalem Post - "The key factor that prevents peace is the continuing building of Israeli settlements in Palestine, driven by a determined minority of Israelis who desire to occupy and colonize east Jerusalem and the West Bank," Carter said, also stating his conviction that withdrawal of Israeli forces from Arab territories will dramatically reduce any threats to Israel. 22/9/2009
We ran out of courageYigal Sarna - Ynet News - The greater the injustice, both inside and outside, the greater the silencing and the noise aimed at swallowing up the truth. Yet without it, in the next crisis, not only we will be crueler Ė we will also make the same mistakes we didnít correct. We will be weaker.22/9/2009
Let`s try something elseSamir Ghattas - Al-Ahram - The EU alone cannot provide adequate backing for Fayyad`s unilateral statehood strategy or stop Israel from undermining it. Nor can it guarantee that the probationary two-year period would end up in international recognition of an independent Palestinian state. There is, however, a way around that.22/9/2009
Following Publication of Report of the UN Fact Finding Mission on Gaza: Israeli War Criminals to Trial/Court! Michael Warschawski - AIC - "However, the American veto is not the end of the story: numerous countries in the world have adopted laws allowing them to try persons accused of war crimes or crimes against humanity. It is upon us, every woman and man, in Israel and abroad, who fear for international public hygiene and international law ó to unite forces in order to place before those war criminals the dilemma: risk being tried if they are found in countries in which the law permits this or remain locked in Israel, to give up tourism in Spain or a sabbatical in the UK"21/9/2009
The national choir Yitzhak Laor - Haaretz - "If anyone thought our leaders and anchors compete in their poor taste only when a pilot`s widow is burying her pilot son, he should listen to them tussle like soloists in a lousy opera that could be called `That Awful Goldstone.` Beyond the repetitive drone, the opera is remarkable for the paleness of its arguments, all of which appear to be based on one single axiom: `Everything they said is a lie, and anyway, we are allowed to.` The opera itself is built around a single motif, repeated by soloists and choir alike: `Israel was forced into Operation Cast Lead.` Was it, really?" 21/9/2009
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Settling for failure in the Middle EastStephen M. Walt - The Washington Post - Like so many of his predecessors, President Obama is quickly discovering that persuading Israel to change course is nearly impossible.20/9/2009
Shining a light on Israeli aggression in GazaHaroon Siddiqui - The Toronto Star - Goldstone`s report is a condemnation not only of Israel but also its apologists in Canada, including the media. The latter are now busy burying the report under an orchestrated avalanche of negative reaction without ever properly reporting its contents.20/9/2009
Israel`s gadflyRobert Hirschfield - In These Times - Haaretz`s Gideon Levy bucks Israeli media to report on Palestinian suffering.20/9/2009
They like to call it warMiko Peled - mikopeled.wordpress.com - 48 hours after I landed the reality of this land, a land that people like to call holy, began taking its toll on me. The movie ďBoy In Striped PajamasĒ came to mind as I played with my kids in the pool of Kibbutz Zikkim. This beautiful pastoral little kibbutz or agricultural commune, is on the Mediterranean coast just a stoneís throw from Gaza to the north. 20/9/2009
Why I can`t share in the general excitement about Asaf Ramon`s deathBenny Ziffer - Haaretz - Somehow I find it difficult, in general, to get excited about something along with everybody else. And to my sorrow, that also includes the general commotion over the death in a plane crash of Asaf Ramon, the son of Ilan Ramon.20/9/2009
UM-Shmum, UM-Boom Uri Avnery - www.gush-shalom.org - Denial is the first refuge. If things did not happen, there is no need to cope. Basically, there is no difference between the deniers of the Armenian genocide, the deniers of the annihilation of the Native Americans and the deniers of the atrocities of all wars.19/9/2009
Obama`s Israel-Palestine gambleIra Chernus - President Barack Obama boasts that he`s a good poker player. On Middle East policy, he seems to be betting all his chips on a high-stakes gamble. It`s not clear yet, though, whether the gamble is working or what the ultimate outcome will be.19/9/2009
A turning point for the US solidarity movementNada Elia - The Electronic Intifada - This weekend at the eighth annual US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation national organizers` conference held in Chicago, delegates from the approximately 300 member groups that make up the US Campaign voted in favor of an academic and cultural boycott of Israel.19/9/2009
Israel/Gaza: Implement Goldstone Recommendations on Gaza Sarah Leah Whitson - Human Rights Watch - "UN Security Council Should Ensure Justice for Victims.The fact-finding mission`s findings of serious violations by both Israel and Hamas are a significant step toward justice and redress for the victims on both sides. Now the UN, and the Security Council in particular, need to act on these recommendations and ensure that justice is done."18/9/2009
Three corridors Nimrod Novak - Bitterlemons - "A more gradual approach that takes account of this and other features of the regional setting may offer greater prospects for progress toward the administration`s target of January 2011 as a reality-changing benchmark in the context of a regional realignment."18/9/2009
A PALESTINIAN VIEW Last chance for a two-state solution An interview with George Giacaman - Bitterlemons - "If Palestinian-Israeli negotiations resume soon, as widely reported, is it likely to be a serious process? " 18/9/2009
It is Time for Israel to Face the Music Joharah Baker - MIFTAH - now that Judge Richard Goldstone has put concrete evidence into the hands of those who count, proving that just as everyone expected, Israel carries out the most heinous of crimes, it should not, cannot be too late. Let Israel and all those others who stand accused of war crimes, finally face the music, stand before a court and accept that they have done humanity wrong. No one country should be allowed to systematically carry out such atrocities over the course of 60 years and still be considered a respectable state among states. As Rafiki, the wise monkey of the Lion King, once so prophetically said, "It is time." 17/9/2009
Israel and the Arabs: Dangerous real estateThe Guardian - Editorial - The Israelis have also upped the ante by linking progress toward peace with relations with Iran. What they appear to be signalling, is that if the United States and other western countries put real pressure on Iran to abandon its nuclear ambitions, Israel will move on the Palestinian issue. If not, the implicit threat is not only that there will be no movement on Palestine, but that the Israelis will strike Iran militarily, which, among other things, would leave Obama`s Middle Eastern policy in ruins. That way lies madness. 17/9/2009
Justice in Gaza RICHARD GOLDSTONE - The New York Times - Unfortunately, both Israel and Hamas have dismal records of investigating their own forces. I am unaware of any case where a Hamas fighter was punished for deliberately shooting a rocket into a civilian area in Israel ó on the contrary, Hamas leaders repeatedly praise such acts. While Israel has begun investigations into alleged violations by its forces in the Gaza conflict, they are unlikely to be serious and objective. 17/9/2009
Disgrace in The HagueGideon Levy - Haaretz - For almost a year, Israel has been trying to argue that the blood spilled in Gaza was merely water. One report followed the other, with horrifyingly identical results: siege, white phosphorous, harm of innocent civilians, infrastructure destroyed - war crimes in each and every report. Now, after the publication of the most important and damning report of all, compiled by the commission led by Judge Richard Goldstone, Israel`s attempts to discredit them look ludicrous, and the empty bluster of its spokespersons sound pathetic. 17/9/2009
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Problems Defending Palestinians In Israeli Courts Stephen Lendman - Countercurrents - Addameer reported that lawyers believe "that a general boycott of the military courts would be better in the long term for Palestinian prisoners," but say to be effective should be organized by them. However, no movement exists, and the task of building one is daunting to impossible given detainees` isolation, harsh treatment, and need for help that an activist effort would compromise. For their part, lawyers feel obligated to help despite their impotence under a fundamentally unfair system. 17/9/2009
The one thing worse than denying the Gaza report Amira Hass - Haaretz - There is only thing worse than denial - the admission that the IDF indeed acted as has been described, but that these actions are both normal and appropriate17/9/2009
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REFLECTION : Childhood in PalestineJan Benvie - CPT Tuwani Team - The fate of my children was not in the hands of politicians with their incessant and meaningless prattle, and their peace was not simply a Ďprocessí. For now, the lives of Palestinian children continue to be blighted by the merciless Israeli occupation. 17/9/2009
How to Put Pressure on Netanyahu PIERRE RAZOUX - The New York Times - The Obama administration, nevertheless, has a number of effective levers that it can use to make the Israeli government give way. First, it can refrain from the systematic use of its Security Council veto in favor of Israel, and thus intensify the Jewish stateís diplomatic isolation. It can then gradually reduce the level of military cooperation in crucial areas where Israel is very dependent on the United States, such as intelligence, space, communications, detection and nuclear power. 17/9/2009
Encountering peace: A progressive new yearGERSHON BASKIN - J-lem Post - "No unholy alliance of religion and politics should be allowed to stain the Jewish heritage, alienating generations of young Israelis who would rather be Hindus or Buddhists." 16/9/2009
U.S. is blind to limits of Palestinian politics Akiva Eldar - Haaretz - "The American designers of policy, who tend to sew the peace process according to the measures of the Israeli coalition, are blind to anything having to do with the limits within which Palestinian politics operates. Over and over they offer a quilt that is too short, but which keeps the Israelis warm, only to complain that the Palestinians are the ones getting cold feet"14/9/2009
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NGO reports on Gaza war belie Israeli claimsHelena Cobban - Inter Press Service - This week, two respected human rights organisations - one Palestinian, one Israeli - each came out with very full reports into the extent of the damage caused by the assault Israel waged against Gaza last winter.13/9/2009
Obama, Israel`s friend: a cause for concernShmuel Amir - Hagada Hasmalit - We have been reading daily in the press that despite Obama`s emphatic declaration that ďconstruction in the Territories must stop,Ē the subject is now "under discussion." Should the 2500 new units already under construction be allowed to continue or should they be halted for six months or a year? Hillary Clinton has announced that an agreement for the cessation of construction in the settlements is near. One must examine the words ďagreement for the cessation.Ē What exactly does this mean? We were under the impression that the president had said that it should stop, period!13/9/2009
Norman Podhoretz`s false accusations of "dual loyalty"Glenn Greenwald - Salon - Podhoretz`s Commentary Magazine convened a "symposium" of some of the nation`s most typical war-loving neocons to discuss his new book, and virtually every one of them argued that American Jews should shift their political loyalties to the Right because the Right is "better for Israel" -- as though considerations of what`s best for a foreign country is how most American Jews (rather than just neocons) decide how they vote in American elections. Neocons have long gotten away with this manipulative game: simultaneously demanding that American Jews support the Right on the ground that the Right is allegedly better for Israel (i.e., a "dual loyalty" appeal) while branding as "bigots" and "anti-Semites" anyone and everyone who points out that neocons think this way.13/9/2009
Linda Gradstein has done it again on GazaFelice Pace - Counterpunch - NPRís reporter Linda Gradstein has done it again. She has managed to take a "must report" story on Israeli-Palestinian relations - the new report by BíTselem on the non-combatants, including children, killed by the Israeli military during the Israeli attack on Gaza - and report it in a manner which minimizes the story`s potential to create opposition to Israeli treatment of Palestinians on the West Bank and Gaza.13/9/2009
Wobbly stoolsUri Avnery - Gush Shalom - EVEN THE Romans never saw a game like this in their arena: three gladiators fighting against each other, while at the same time each of them has to defend himself against attackers from behind. All three of them Ė Barack Obama, Binyamin Netanyahu and Mahmoud Abbas Ė are fighting for their political life. The three battles are quite different from each other, yet interconnected.13/9/2009
Compromising for Gaza without compromising Palestine Gabriel Ash, Mich Levy and Sara Kershnar - The Electronic Intifada - The Context Document`s only demand is the end of the siege of Gaza. There are no other demands. Nothing in it prevents activists committed to a "two-state solution" and a "Jewish state" from participating. But the context document does mention BDS (endorsed by all Palestinian factions, including Fatah and Hamas, as well as more than 100 civil society associations) as an example of nonviolent Palestinian resistance, and it does commit the marchers to recognize the Palestinian Nakba and the historical fact that the refugees` right of return, recognized by UN resolution 194, has been denied.12/9/2009
The Tel Aviv party stops hereNaomi Klein - The Nation - When I heard the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) was holding a celebratory "spotlight" on Tel Aviv, I felt ashamed of Toronto, the city where I live. I thought immediately of Mona Al Shawa, a Palestinian women`s rights activist I met on a recent trip to Gaza. "We had more hope during the attacks," she told me. "At least then we believed things would change."12/9/2009
Dismantling the Matrix of ControlJeff Halper - Middle East Report Online - Almost a decade ago I wrote an article describing Israelís ďmatrix of controlĒ over the Occupied Palestinian Territories. Since then the occupation has grown immeasurably stronger and more entrenched. 12/9/2009
Red Rag Weekly ColumnGideon Spiro - Letter to President of Ben-Gurion University - Israel`s biggest mafia - These are our heroes - Lev Leviev11/9/2009
Rattling the Cage: The mother of all missed opportunitiesLARRY DERFNER - J-lem Post - "Have we removed even one of the countless checkpoints in our minds to let just a bit of new information pass through?" 11/9/2009
Depleting Egypt`s reservesBy: Amr Kamal Hamouda Source: Al-Ahram Weekly "explores the complexities with which the issue of selling gas to Israel is laden "11/9/2009
Look back in hope Akiva Eldar - Haaretz - ""Netanyahu, just like all the other politicians who promised to annul Oslo, honors the principles of the agreement," said Hirschfeld." 11/9/2009
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Preparing for the American peace plan Shaul Arieli - Haaretz - "The compromise must be aimed at a comprehensive package deal: Israel as the state of the Jewish nation which enjoys security, recognition and peace; and an independent Palestine alongside it." 11/9/2009
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The West Bank`s Deceptive Growth ZAHI KHOURI- The New York Times -The foundation upon which our economy rests is dangerously rotten. Israeli spreading settlements, checkpoints and roadblocks that fragment the occupied Palestinian territory; Israelís illegal Wall and its permit system that severely restrict where Palestinians can live and work; and Israelís continuing siege of Gaza all not only threaten our nascent economic recovery, but threaten the very possibility of a two-state solution. 10/9/2009
Will the Japanese Obama put pressure on Israel? Ben-Ami Shillony - Haaretz - Until now, Japan limited its support for the Palestinians to economic projects - but the Japanese opposition`s sweeping victory might bring a change. In January, then opposition leader Hatoyama expressed to the Israeli ambassador his deep concern over the Palestinian victims in Gaza, and his hope that Israel would change its policies toward the Arab world. Now Japan`s new PM, Hatoyama - outspokenly calling himself "The Japanese Obama" - might cooperate with the American Obama in ways Israel hasn`t expected. 8/9/2009
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Can we enforce international law? Israelís culture of impunitySharon Weill - Le Monde Diplomatique - Yet awareness in Israel of the possibility of being held accountable abroad does not seem to influence the treatment of war crimes allegations, as was demonstrated by the Shehadeh case, or recent war crimes committed in Gaza. If Israel does not change its practice of impunity, this indicates its unwillingness, or inability, to prosecute war crimes allegations. If Israel is not able to prosecute its own war criminals and if the International Criminal Court has no jurisdiction, the only way to get justice is through the exercise of universal jurisdiction, an obligation for all states set in the 1949 Geneva Conventions. 10/9/2009
IDF tells soldiers: Shoot at Gaza kidnappers, even if abductee is near Anshel Pfeffer - Haaretz - The commander of the Nahal Brigade, Col. Moti Baruch, told Haaretz in an interview to be published on Friday that he specifically instructs his soldiers, now deployed around the Gaza Strip, that if terrorists abduct a soldier, they should open fire, though this could put the Israeli soldier among the terrorists at risk. Baruch also makes sure the soldiers train to carry out this order. 10/9/2009
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A big thank you Ilan Pappe - The Electronic Intifada - The significance of this alas, short lived exposure of what lies behind the apartheid wall and the fences that encircle the West Bank and the Gaza Strip stems from the seniority of Kristin Halvorsen, the Norwegian finance minister who herself announced the decision to divest. It is the first official act of this kind by a Western government. It is reminiscent of the first day when governments heeded the pressures of their societies in the West to act against apartheid South Africa. 10/9/2009
How does Israel decide who gets a visa to Ramallah?Amira Hass - Haaretz - L. received a one-day visa for Israel from the Civil Administration, and set up a meeting at the Interior Ministry in Jerusalem to request a regular visa. "Once [the Interior Ministry official] noticed the visa on my passport saying `Palestinian Authority only,` she screamed that I shouldn`t be in Israel and yelled at me for entering without a visa. I tried to explain that this is why we are here, and that I have work to do in Israel as well as the West Bank. She didn`t listen, and said angrily that I have to leave and go back to the West Bank." 10/9/2009
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Messing with the Public MindYael Lotan - Hagada Hasmalit - "Perhaps the power of the myth that whatever the Jews do, they will always be considered innocent victims and lambs to the slaughter, is still going strong"7/9/2009
Israeli unilateralism and the peace processGhassan Khatib - Ma`an News Agency - "... it is useful to remember that the Gaza withdrawal was one component of a package that was presented by Prime Minister Ariel Sharon [...] in early 2005 and was described as a new unilateral approach to relations with the Palestinians. That approach was based on two assumptions. The first was that there was no Palestinian partner to negotiate with. This assumption aimed at discrediting the Palestinian leadership and escaping Israeli obligations to engage it. The second was the notion that by force rather than negotiations, Israel would better achieve its objectives"7/9/2009
Netanyahu`s creativity / A slap in the faceYossi Sarid - Haaretz - "If you permit construction in Jerusalem, and you permit the completion of projects already underway in the West Bank, and now you permit hundreds of new housing units as well, this is nothing less than slipping off the leash with American approval. Then go try to monitor and count, to figure out what was built with the proper permission and what by trickery - as if lies do not have legs, which have already taken them a good long way since 1967; as if the settlers and their guardians have never before caused the truth to stink"7/9/2009
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Weissglas, Sharon`s pro-settler warrior: `Every single settler will have to go`Richard Silverstein - Tikkun Olam - ÔŅĹNow that weÔŅĹve left the Gaza Strip, we will give back the rest of the territories sooner or later, and every single settler will have to leave,ÔŅĹ he said.6/9/2009
The Swedish canard Ė not only smoke, but also fireShraga Elam - The controversy over the racist Swedish article on the trade in organs of Palestinians should not obscure the fact that that slovenly report has a scandalous basis in fact, which calls for a serious discussion. 6/9/2009
A big thank youIlan Pappe - The Electronic Intifada - Today was a unique day in the history of media coverage and discussion in Israel. All the electronic agencies, radio and television alike, discussed the occupation and the oppression of the Palestinians and more importantly, the possible price tag attached to it. And it was all due to the decision of the Norwegian government to withdraw its investments in the Israeli hi-tech company Elbit (due to the latter`s involvement in the construction and maintenance of the apartheid wall).6/9/2009
Letter to Uri AvneryAbraham Simhony - Gush Shalom - I must admit that writing these word to you doesnít come easy to me and I am doing so with some trepidation. To me, as I am sure to many peace loving people in Israel and abroad, you have been for more than the last 40 years an inspiration and a reason to keep hoping for a change to the better in the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. However, your article of 29th August titled Tutuís Prayer, seems to me to be based on a number of incorrect facts.6/9/2009
The boycott revisitedUri Avnery - Gush Shalom - I HAVE no argument with people who hate Israel. Thatís entirely their right. I just donít think that we have any common ground for discussion. I would only like to point out that hatred is a very bad advisor. Hatred leads nowhere, but to more hatred.6/9/2009
The Elders` view of the Middle EastJimmy Carter - The Washington Post - During the past 16 months I have visited the Middle East four times and met with leaders in Israel, Egypt, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Syria, the West Bank and Gaza. I was in Damascus when President Obama made his historic speech in Cairo, which raised high hopes among the more-optimistic Israelis and Palestinians, who recognize that his insistence on a total freeze of settlement expansion is the key to any acceptable peace agreement or any positive responses toward Israel from Arab nations.6/9/2009
Scott Horton interviews Eugene Bird (audio)Antiwar Radio - Eugene Bird, president of the Council for the National Interest Foundation, discusses Obamaís leaked plan for a Palestinian state, evictions and house demolitions in non-Jewish areas of East Jerusalem, increasing agreement among foreign policy elites that Israel must make concessions and how Iranís nuclear issue is exaggerated by Israel to divert attention away from the Palestinian issue.5/9/2009
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Is it anti-Semitic to defend Palestinian human rights?Edward C. Corrigan - Dissident Voice - The view that it is anti-Semitic to criticize Israel, or its actions, is pure and simple racism against Palestinians.5/9/2009
A blueprint for peace in the Middle EastSummits don`t work in isolation: Obama`s peace process must adopt the Northern Ireland model, inviting all parties to the tableCarlo Strenger - The Guardian - The Arab League will also have to be involved for a very practical reason. Its member states house millions of Palestinian refugees, many of whom will not move into the new Palestinian state. Their Arab host countries will have to guarantee that they will give the refugees citizenship and the possibility to integrate into their society. 3/9/2009
Nine Hamas legislators released from Israeli detention centersSaed Bannoura - IMEMC & Agencies - The Israeli Authorities released on Wednesday nine of the illegally detained Hamas legislators and elected officials after a long captivity without any legal grounds. The release officials are Khaled Suleiman, Khaled Yahya, and Ibrahim Dahbour from Jenin, Riyadh Raddad from Tulkarem, Imad Nofal from Qalqilia, Nasser Abdul Jawwad from Salfit, Yasser Mansour and Hasan al Burini from Nablus, and Mohammed Abu Juheisha from Hebron. 3/9/2009
Can Hubris End Up Destroying Israel ?Zeki Ergas - Media for Freedom - Can it be stopped from happening? Yes, but it will require a fundamental change. The world itself is going through a transitional period, in which the old paradigm based on unlimited growth and extreme and excessive profits for a small oligarchic elite will come to an end.1/9/2009
The Beginning of the End of the Middle East Crisis - Resolving the Displaced Persons ProblemDan Lieberman - dissidentvoice.org - No matter how far ‚Äėnegotiations‚Äô go, the displaced person solution will be the show stopper. Overcoming the problem at the beginning permits the show to continue. Saving it to the euphoric ‚Äėend‚Äô predicts neglect or a severe compromise that will endanger all previous agreements. 1/9/2009
A Palestinian State Within Two Years?Yacov Ben Efrat - Challenge - Fayyad`s plan to prepare the ground for a Palestinian state within two years appears, in the light of all this, as no more than an additional item in a long wish-list, beginning with the celebration in Algeria in 1988, when Arafat accepted a two-state solution and the Palestinian national anthem was unveiled (lyrics by Mahmoud Darwish, music by Mikis Theodorakis), then continuing to Oslo with its successors: the Mitchell plan, the Road Map and Annapolis. Nothing remains of these castles in the sand. 3/9/2009
Did Leviev`s Empire Succumb to Boycott?Shir Hever - Alternative Information Center - While it would be irresponsible to contend that Africa Israel accumulated a significant amount of its Euro 1.4 billion debt as a result of the boycott movement, this does not mean that the boycott movement did not play a key role in toppling the company. After all, a company doesn`t go into crisis because of heavy debts, but only when it cannot refinance its debts and borrow money to cover previous commitments. 3/9/2009
Another Ramadan Under Occupation Joharah Baker - MIFTAH - The Ghawi family, along with the Hanoun family, are homeless this Ramadan and must break their fast each night with the haunting reminder that they can no longer cook a meal in their kitchen or sleep in their own beds. Instead, they can discern the silhouettes of Jewish settlers roaming the rooms of their houses without a single thought to the rightful homeowners, the families they threw out on the street. 3/9/2009
Liberation, not a fictitious Palestinian `state` Hasan Abu Nimah and Ali Abunimah - The Electronic Intifada - But what is really taking shape in the West Bank today is a police state, where all sources of opposition or resistance -- real or suspected -- to either the PA regime, or the Israeli occupation are being systematically repressed by US-funded and trained Palestinian "security forces" in full coordination with Israel. Gaza remains under tight siege because of its refusal to submit to this regime. 3/9/2009
Boycotting Those Calling for Boycott Against Israel: The More the Merrier Michael Warschawski - AIC - Abiding by international law is actually in Israel‚Äôs interest because the alternative to international law is ‚Äúlaw of the strongest‚ÄĚ and this, sooner or later, will prove fatal to the Israeli people.5/9/2009
After the summit - What we can understand from what happened in NYGershon Baskin - IPCRI - "Peace must pay and failure to make peace must have a price tag." 23/9/2009
So what if Obama wants to move peace process forward? Akiva Eldar - Haareta - "Alas, what is most noteworthy about the summit in New York is who was not there - the Israeli peace camp, which has withered away, and Hamas, which is celebrating." 23/9/2009
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Israel should learn from U.S. how to pace diplomacy Aluf Benn - Haaretz - we must view the New York summit as a step - not as a dramatic event 22/9/2009
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