VTJP Palestine/Israel Newslinks 5 December 2011: UNRWA: Israel’s displacement of Palestinians ‘doubles’

5 December 2011 — VTJP

News

International Middle East Media Center

9 Palestinians Arrested Across the West Bank
IMEMC – The Palestinian News and Information Agency (WAFA) are reporting, Monday, the detention of nine Palestinians across the West Bank by the Israeli military. …

Israeli Court Drops Charges Against Tortured Detainee
IMEMC – The Military Court at the Ofer Prison admitted Sunday that Israeli interrogators are using brutal methods to interrogate Palestinian detainees, the Palestinian Prisoners Society (PPS) reported. …

Fatah And Hamas Seek To Reassure That They Are Implementing National Unity
IMEMC – In the wake of a meeting held between the leaders of the Hamas and Fatah movements in Gaza on Sunday evening, they reconfirmed the implementation of the articles of the Palestinian national unity signed by the Hamas Political chief, Khaled Meshaal, and the Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas, the Ma’an News Agency reported Sunday evening. …

Army Arrests Three Children Near Eli’ Settlement
IMEMC – The Israeli military detained three Palestinian Children near the settlement of Eli’, built on Palestinian land near the village of al-Lubban ash-Sharqiyah, by the northern West Bank city of Nablus, the Ma’an News Agency reported. …

Hamas and Fatah Meet in Gaza to Discuss Outstanding Issues
IMEMC – Leaders of Hamas and Fatah will be holding a meeting on Sunday evening in Gaza to discuss the outstanding issues separating the two movements, the Ma’an News Agency reported Sunday afternoon. …

Ma’an News

Israeli forces destroy stone-cutting facility in Qalqiliya
12/5/2011 – QALQILIYA (Ma’an) — Israeli forces on Monday demolished a manufacturing facility used to cut stone in Qalqiliya. Witnesses told Ma’an that various military vehicles and bulldozers arrived at the village of Azzun and destroyed the structure, claiming that it was unlicensed. Hussain Ghannam, the owner of the stone-cutting plant, said that the….

PA: Settlers kidnap shepherd near Nablus
12/5/2011 – NABLUS (Ma’an) — Israeli settlers on Monday kidnapped a 60-year-old shepherd after attacking him in Orif village south of Nablus, officials said. Village council head Fawzi Shehadeh said six residents of Yitzhar settlement attacked Salim Jamil Shehadeh near the local high school and took him away in a car. The settlers stole all….

UNRWA: Israel’s displacement of Palestinians ‘doubles’
12/5/2011 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) —The number of Palestinians displaced by Israeli demolitions this year has already more than doubled that of 2010, UNRWA spokesman Chris Gunness said Monday. Research by the UN agency for Palestinian refugees found that 990 people — including 507 children — have lost their homes so far this year, Gunness told Ma’….

Hunger strike begins against travel ban for sick ex-detainee
12/5/2011 – NABLUS (Ma’an) — A group of former prisoners announced that they are beginning a hunger strike on Monday to demand that Israel allows an ex-detainee to leave the West Bank for vital medical treatment. Coordinator for female ex-prisoners Lina Jawabra told Ma’an on Monday that a number of former detainees and their….

Israel demolishes 2 homes in East Jerusalem
12/5/2011 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Israeli forces demolished two Palestinian homes in occupied East Jerusalem on Monday, locals said. In Beit Hanina, troops bulldozed the temporary residence of a man who took shelter there after he could not get a permit from the Israeli municipality to build his house, the official PA news agency Wafa reported….

Report: US, Israel covert war against Iran suspected
12/5/2011 – LOS ANGELES (AFP) — Many former US intelligence officials and Iran experts believe last month’s explosion at a military base near Tehran was part of a covert effort by the US, Israel and other states to disable Iran’s nuclear and missile programs, The Los Angeles Times reported late Sunday. The huge explosion….

Israeli forces detain 8 in West Bank, including PFLP members
12/5/2011 – HEBRON (Ma’an) — Israeli forces arrested eight people on Monday,Palestinian police and the Israeli army said. Three of the men arrested were affiliated to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine. Witnesses told Ma’an that Husam al-Ruzza, 54, Mahir Harb and Hasan Shilbaya were detained from the city of Nablus….

Report: Iran warns Hamas over Syria move
12/5/2011 – TEL AVIV, Israel (Ma’an) — Iran has threatened to cut off funds to Hamas if the organization relocates its headquarters from Damascus amidst the turmoil in Syria, Israeli media said Monday. Citing unnamed Palestinian sources, the Israeli daily Haaretz said Iran warned it would stop supplying arms and training to Hamas after reports that….

Arrigoni murder trial resumes in Gaza City
12/6/2011 – GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — The ninth session in the trial of four people suspected in the killing of Italian activist Vittorio Arrigoni was held in a military court in Gaza City on Monday. Arrigoni was found hanged in a house northwest of Gaza City on April 15, 2011. He had been kidnapped by a…. Related: Military court in Gaza holds the 9th session to consider the case relating to the death of Italian solidarity activist, Vittorio Arrigoni

Qaeda-inspired group denies link to Israel rocket attack
12/5/2011 – BEIRUT (AFP) — An Al-Qaeda-inspired group has denied claiming responsibility for a recent rocket attack from southern Lebanon against Israel, instead blaming a group linked to Hezbollah, a US monitoring group said Monday. In a statement issued on jihadist forums, the Brigades of Abdullah Azzam said the Nov. 29 attack should be seen as a warning….

King Abdullah: US must intensify efforts to achieve peace
12/5/2011 – AMMAN (Ma’an) — Jordan’s King Abdullah met on Sunday with the US assistant secretary of state for Near Eastern Affairs, a statement from the Jordanian royal court said. King Abdullah and Jeffrey Feltman discussed the latest developments in the Middle East. The Jordanian King urged Feltman to intensify US and international efforts….

Netanyahu calls for Likud vote in move linked to US outlook
12/6/2011 – JERUSALEM (Reuters) — Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has called for a snap Likud party leadership vote, officials said on Monday, a contest he is expected to win and which could pave the way for an early national election in Israel. Some commentators said Netanyahu was quietly preparing for the possibility that US President Barack Obama, with….

Fatah official: No progress on unity deal
12/6/2011 – GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — Palestinian reconciliation has failed to advance despite a recent meeting between Hamas chief Khalid Mashaal and Fatah leader President Mahmoud Abbas, a Fatah official said Monday. The official, who participated in the meeting but spoke on condition of anonymity, told Ma’an the talks were promising but said bold…. Related: Palestinian factions to visit Cairo for reconciliation talks

Palestinian factions to visit Cairo for reconciliation talks
12/5/2011 – GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — Palestinian political factions are due to meet with Egyptian officials in Cairo this week to discuss implementation of the reconciliation deal. Delegations from the Palestinian People’s Party and Palestinian Democratic Union departed on Monday for meetings in the Egyptian capital, and a Democratic Front for the Liberation of…. Related: Fatah official: No progress on unity deal

Prisoners society head accepts invite to Gaza
12/5/2011 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — The head of the Palestinian Prisoners Society said on Monday that he would accept an invitation to visit Gaza to develop a strategy of Palestinian detainees in Israeli prisons. The Prisoner Support Group in Gaza had earlier issued a statement inviting Qadura Fares and Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs in the….

Abbas: No talks until Israel abides by commitments
12/5/2011 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — President Mahmoud Abbas said Monday that peace negotiations would not resume until Israel accepted the two-state solution and stopped illegal settlement building, official PA media reported. During a meeting with US Assistant Secretary of State for Near East Affairs Jeffrey Feltman in Ramallah, Abbas said these were Israeli obligations and not….

Zakarneh: PA salaries available on Monday
12/5/2011 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Head of the government employees union Bassam Zakarneh told Ma’an that employee salaries will be available on Monday via ATM machines and on Thursday will be available from banks. Zakarneh applauded the Palestinian Authority’s efforts to distribute the money to employees on time. He confirmed that the….

Kuwait supports building of Gaza schools
12/5/2011 – GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — Kuwait’s state development fund will finance the building of five schools in Gaza run by the UN agency for Palestinian refugees, official media said Monday. The Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development signed an agreement with UNRWA in Amman to build the schools, worth $9. 55 million, the….

Report: Israeli army holds drills
12/5/2011 – TEL AVIV, Israel (Ma’an) — Israel’s army held practice drills near its north and southern borders on Monday, Israeli media reported. The army told the Israeli news site Ynet that the drills, simulating missile and chemical weapons attacks, were routine….

Earthquake felt in northern Israel
12/5/2011 – TEL AVIV, Israel (Ma’an) — A light earthquake was felt in northern Israel on Sunday night, Israeli media reported. The 3. 8 magnitude earthquake was felt across the north of the country, Israeli news site Ynet reported, with the epicenter said to be near the Sea of Galilee. No injuries or significant material damage….

Syria says expects to sign Arab League deal soon
12/5/2011 – BEIRUT (Reuters) — An increasingly isolated Syriaimposed retaliatory sanctions on former friend Turkey, but said on Monday it might agree “soon” to an Arab peace plan to avert penalties from Arab states over its eight month crackdown on protests. In a display of muscle that could be intended to deter any idea of foreign military intervention….

Egypt election commission cuts first-round turnout
12/5/2011 – CAIRO (Reuters) — Egypt’s elections commission on Monday lowered its turnout figure for the first stage of a parliamentary election, blaming a counting mistake that skewed numbers published last week.” The accurate percentage of attendance in the first round was 52 percent, not 62 percent,” Abdel Moez Ibrahim, head of the elections body, told….

Report: 34 Syrians seized by militia found dead
12/5/2011 – NICOSIA (AFP) — Thirty-four Syrians abducted by pro-regime “shabiha” militiamen on Monday were found dead in the flashpoint central city of Homs, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported. The Britain-based watchdog said that an activist on the ground said that he “saw the bodies of 34 civilians, in a square in the pro-regime neighborhood of….

Palestine News Network

Radio Against Apartheid, November 30
PNN – The Palestine News Network (PNN) is proud to announce a partnership with Radio Against Apartheid, two American radio journalists spreading the word about Palestinian issues. This partnership is part of a wider…

Journalists Protest as Hamas Arrests Reporters, Stops Social Media Conference
PNN – PNNOn Sunday in Ramallah, dozens of journalists protested the continuing arrests of their colleagues in the Gaza Strip at the hands of Hamas and the forced closure of a social media conference….

Op Ed: Democrats or Republicans, Same Old Stance on Israel
PNN – by Mousa al-Shanteer As the upcoming presidential election approaches, many politicians are beginning to overemphasize their support for Israel. Sadly enough, this support isn’t confined to either the Democrats or the Republicans,…

Settlers Set Fires, Separate Attack Wounds 60-year-old Man, Clashes in Shu’fat
PNN – PNNOn Sunday afternoon, a group of Israeli settlers set fire to Palestinian agricultural land in the northern West Bank. The burning, which destroyed five dunums of cultivated land, took place near Jenin…

French Cultural Center and Sunbula Organize Palestinian Handicrafts Fair in Jerusalem
PNN – PNNOn Saturday afternoon, the Palestinian fair trade organization Sunbula and the French Cultural Center in Jerusalem held a handicrafts fair to promote and sell embroidery, jewelry, and other craft work from Palestinian…

Palestinian Center for Human Rights

PLO’s Refusal to Pursue Accountability at UN Exhibits Disregard for Victims of Gaza Conflict
Palestinian Center for Human Rights Monday, 05 December 2011

IOF Arrest Two Palestinian Patients at Beit Hanoun Crossing
Palestinian Center for Human Rights Monday, 05 December 2011

PCHR Concerned Over Medical Shortages in Gaza Strip Hospitals
Palestinian Center for Human Rights Sunday, 04 December 2011

Two Children Die and Lives of Dozens of Others Endangered; PCHR Strongly Condemns Ministry of Health’s Decision to Decrease Transfers of Patients to Israeli Hospitals without Taking into Consideration Their Serious Health Conditions or Providing an Altern
Palestinian Center for Human Rights Sunday, 04 December 2011

International Solidarity Movement

Military court in Gaza holds the 9th session to consider the case relating to the death of Italian solidarity activist, Vittorio Arrigoni
12/5/2011 – International Solidarity Movement – 5 December 2011, Palestinian Center for Human Rights – On Monday 05 December 2011, the Permanent Military Court in Gaza held the ninth session in Gaza City to consider the case relating to the death of the Italian solidarity activist, Vittorio Arrigoni. Lawyers from the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) attended the session in their…. Related: Arrigoni murder trial resumes in Gaza City

Alternative Information Center

French Minister slams Israel’s jailing of Palestinian protest organizer
Alternative Information Center –   In a letter to the French-Palestine Solidarity Association, French Foreign Minister Juppé slams Israel’s treatment of West Bank protest organizer, and its settlement policy.

IN PHOTOS: Palestinians protest demolition order of school
Alternative Information Center – A Palestinian boy was arrested on Saturday, December 3, during a demonstration in the Palestinian village of Susiya, which is located in the South Hebron Hills. Organized by Susiya residents and Palestinians from nearby villages, the…

Palestinians invest in Israel and Jewish settlements
Alternative Information Center – Why are so many Palestinian investors putting their money into Israel rather than the Occupied Palestinian Territories? This summary of Issa Smeirat’s groundbreaking research on the issue reveals the reasons why and highlights how the occupation…

Relief Web

Côte d’Ivoire: Report on the activities of the Court (ICC-ASP/10/39)
Relief Web 5 Dec 2011 – Source: International Criminal Court Country: Côte d’Ivoire , Afghanistan , Central African Republic (the) , Colombia , Democratic Republic of the Congo (the) , Georgia , Guinea , Honduras , Kenya , Libya , Nigeria , occupied Palestinian territory , Republic of Korea (the) , Sudan (the) , Uganda Assembly of States Parties Tenth…

Palestine Telegraph

The Palestinian Refugees
5 Dec 2011 – Palestine, (Pal Telegraph) – Under UNRWA’s operational definition, Palestine refugees are people whose normal place of residence was Palestine between June 1946 and May 1948, who lost both their homes and means of livelihood as a result of the 1948 Arab-Israeli conflict.

Armed Jewish settlers kidnap an elderly Palestinian shepherd
5 Dec 2011 – Palestine, (Pal Telegraph) – Armed Jewish settlers Monday kidnapped an elderly Palestinian shepherd while herding his sheep in an open area east of the West Bank city of Nablus, according to a local activist.

Kuwait to re-build schools in Gaza as Israel destroyed over 250
5 Dec 2011 – Gaza, (Pal Telegraph) – The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) and the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development acting through the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) have signed an agreement worth $9,550,000 to construct five new schools in the Gaza Strip, an UNRWA statement said Monday.

Armed Extremist Jews attack Palestinians
5 Dec 2011 – Palestine, (Pal Telegraph) – Settlers from Avraham Avino  targeted Palestinians in the Old Souq in Hebron during the Saturday market on December 3rd 2011. At approximately 11 AM  Five unmasked settlers, aged around 20-30, threw concrete blocks down from a roof above the Old City at the booths outside of the shops, and at the people passing. The blocks were…

Villagers attempt to resume construction despite Israeli Settlements, army attacks
5 Dec 2011 – London, (Pal Telegraph) – One 17 year old boy from Yatta, Khalid Al Hurush, was arrested during a peaceful action in Susiya, and several people were beaten by the Occupation Forces on December 3rd, 2011. On Saturday at 10 AM, around 60 demonstrators gathered in Susiya to demonstrate against demolition orders. They proceeded towards  a road  process of being constructed…

Israeli navy shoots Palestinian fisherman who sued Israel, kidnaps at least nine others in Gazan wat
5 Dec 2011 – Gaza, (Pal Telegraph) – The Israeli navy violently seized two Palestinian trawlers in Gazan waters yesterday, shooting one fisherman in the arm, and ultimately forcing at least ten men to Ashod, Israel, where they were interrogated for several hours. Israel released all of the fishermen at 2 a.m. this morning.

The National

Oman records budget surplus as oil revenues surge
The National 5 Dec 2011 – Oman registered a budget surplus of 925.6 million rials in the first nine months of 2011.

Islamists look to extend gains in Egypt parliamentary elections
The National 5 Dec 2011 – In the individual contests, all but four of the 56 seats up for grabs went into a run-off vote being held yesterday, with about 20 of them being contested between FJP and Nour candidates.

Yemeni female protester dies in sniper attack
The National 5 Dec 2011 – The shooting came a day after relative calm in Taiz, which has seen anti-Saleh protests swell following orders by Abdurabu Mansur Hadi, Yemen’s interim leader, to remove military forces from the city.

US reacts to the rise of Islamists in Egypt elections
The National 5 Dec 2011 – Analysts say the Obama administration would be willing to work with the election outcome, as long as Islamist parties were willing to play by the democratic rulebook.

Damascus reacts ‘positively’ to plan to allow in observers
The National 5 Dec 2011 – A faltering Arab League plan to end Syria’s crisis may have been given a new lease of life, but Al Assad regime demands changes to proposal.

Iran claims it has shot down US drone
The National 4 Dec 2011 – Iranian armed forces have shot down a US drone that violated Iranian airspace along its eastern border, according to reports in the country.

British embassy attack ‘illegal’
The National 4 Dec 2011 – A prominent Iranian cleric has sharply criticised the storming of the British embassy in Tehran by hundreds of pro-regime protesters, calling the attack “illegal”.

New Egypt takes shape as Islamists win at polls
The National 4 Dec 2011 – Islamist parties captured an overwhelming majority of votes in the first round of Egypt’s parliamentary elections, setting up a power struggle with the weaker liberals.

Israel rights group attacks government for curbing freedon of speech
The National 4 Dec 2011 – Report claims security forces acted illegally during crackdowns on protesters and were stepping up measures to curb demonstrations.

Bahrain investigating blast near British embassy
The National 4 Dec 2011 – A bomb blew apart the front of a minibus in Manama, the interior ministry said. There were no injuries or other serious damage.

Nine more die as Syria stalls on Arab League peace plan
The National 4 Dec 2011 – Qatar’s prime minister expects request from the Arab League to be accepted but fears things could get out of Arab control.

Syria will sign Arab League protocol if bloc accepts conditions
The National 4 Dec 2011 – Damascus will allow Arab League observers into the country, but argues that the plan contains wording that undermines Syrian sovereignty.

Ha’aretz

Iran Revolutionary Guard raises alert ahead of possible strike, report says
Ha’aretz – Western intelligence sources, speaking with U.K.’s Telegraph newspaper, say chief of military corps issues orders to disperse long-range missile batteries, heighten security.

Pro-Assad militia dump bodies of 34 civilians in Syria city center
Ha’aretz – Activists say 60 bodies taken to hospitals in flashpoint city of Homs, despite Syria statement conditionally approving an Arab League peace plan to end eight months of unrest.

Former top IDF officer: Israel will have to take military action against Gaza terror
Ha’aretz – Speaking at Tel Aviv University, Maj. Gen. (ret.) Yoav Galant says Israel neglected to root out terror infrastructure in coastal Strip since it concentrated on West Bank militants.

U.S. won’t dismiss official following anti-Semitism comment
Ha’aretz – Envoy to Belgium comes under fire after linking Israel’s policies to spread of anti-Semitism in the Mideast; U.S. official: Ambassador was expressing his own views.

Netanyahu calls for early Likud primaries, rejects party criticism
Ha’aretz – Sources close to Vice Prime Minister Shalom say the Likud strongman will object PM’s move to schedule the party primaries on January 31, in less than two months.

Report: Israeli settlers kidnap Palestinian shepherd in West Bank
Ha’aretz – Palestinian official tells WAFA news agency that Yitzhar settlement abducted Salim Shehadeh, 60, seizing 50 of his sheep.

Gilad Shalit didn’t go on hunger strike in Hamas captivity, father says
Ha’aretz – Noam Shalit says reason for son’s deteriorated physical state was conditions of captivity, adding that sporting events were a source of positive ties with Hamas guards.

German neo-Nazi cell distributes anti-Semitic version of monopoly
Ha’aretz – Neo-Nazi board game, called Pogromly, first surfaced in 1997; recently exposed cell reportedly sold dozens of units to extreme rightists across Germany.

Syria accepts Arab League plan to send observers into country
Ha’aretz – Syrian Foreign Ministry says Damascus ‘responded positively’ to demand to send in Arab monitors in effort to end eight-month crackdown on protesters.

Report: Iran blast completely destroyed major missile-testing site
Ha’aretz – Israeli and U.S. intelligence officials tell New York Times recent explosion at military base near Tehran was major setback to Iran’s long-range missile program.

Iran threatening to cut Hamas funds, arms supply if it flees Syria
Ha’aretz – Palestinian sources tell Haaretz that Hamas is abandoning its headquarters in Syria and looking at other Arab states as alternative location for its political command center.

Education Ministry cancels school trips to southern Israel over threat of terror attack
Ha’aretz – All schools and youth groups barred from area south of Highway 12, which runs along the border and was the site of a terror attack on August 18 which resulted in eight Israeli deaths.

Leading Palestinian intellectual: We already have a one-state solution
Ha’aretz – Columbia Professor Rashid Khalidi says nobody believes firing rockets is resistance that will liberate Palestine or that talking with the U.S. will deliver a just and lasting solution.

U.S. says ‘no indication’ Iran shot down reconnaissance drone
Ha’aretz – NATO’s U.S.-led mission in neighboring Afghanistan said however the Iranian report could refer to an unarmed U.S. spy drone that went missing there last week.

Knesset approves tax portion of Trajtenberg report on socio-economic change
Ha’aretz – New tax clauses, due to go into effect in Jan. 2012, expected to lower gas prices, adds fathers to existing tax breaks to mothers of children younger than 3.

By moving up Likud primary, Netanyahu out to clean house
Ha’aretz – Following Gilad Shalit’s release, and with a Labor primary in the past, the prime minister isn’t going to pass on an opportunity to strengthen his hold at home.

Family of Israeli Arab woman killed by IDF fire to get state compensation
Ha’aretz – Court finds cause to award compensation even in the absence of proof of IDF culpability.

Netanyahu moves up Likud primaries to late January
Ha’aretz – Prime Minister is seen as wanting to take advantage of his strong position in Likud, and win re-election as the party’s leader now.

Likud MK Akunis: Every word Senator Joseph McCarthy said was right
Ha’aretz – Ofir Akunis, who sponsored the bill to limit foreign funding to human rights groups, says he only meant Senator McCarthy was proven right by exposing Soviet agents in the U.S., but adds he strongly opposes McCarthyism.

Israel ‘friend requests’ its neighbors
Ha’aretz – New pro-Israel Hasbara video depicts Israel’s dealings with Egypt, Jordan, and the Palestinians; featuring many Israeli ‘friend requests,’ but no occupation.

Tel Aviv mayor: Foreign migrants in Israel for work, face no danger at home
Ha’aretz – Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai calls on PM Netanyahu to call emergency meeting on issue of foreign migrants in Israel; around 40,000 migrant workers, 20,000 asylum seekers currently live in Tel Aviv.

Vote delayed on measures to reduce cost of living for Israelis
Ha’aretz – Further Trajtenberg Committee recommendations were up for approval, but vote delayed until next Sunday; proposals include reductions in gas, petrol costs, benefits for online shopping.

Egged bus catches fire, snarling traffic on Tel Aviv-Jerusalem highway
Ha’aretz – Bus was evacuated and no passengers were hurt in blaze; police call on public to use Highway 443.

Jerusalem Post

Abbas: PA ready to present positions on final status issues
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – PA president says he will not resume negotiations with Israel unless it halts construction in settlements, accepts two-state solution.

High Court rejects petition over civil marriage
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Court makes it clear it is not the appropriate venue for the issue, deferring instead to the Knesset.

Our World: An ally no more
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Instead of warning Egypt against breaking its treaty with the Jewish state, US officials chose to criticize Israel instead.

Scary US views
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – In recent days, there has been a truly frightening articulation of the US administration’s perception of Israel vis-à-vis the Muslim world.

Religious women on the rise at IDF officer school
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – 46 religiously observant women soldiers are currently studying to become IDF officers, up from 25 in 2010.

New treaty aims at employment for the disabled
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – ‘Everyone has the right to be different, but everyone also has the right to be equal,’ says Peres.

Sunday night earthquake in North ‘less than moderate’
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – With its epicenter in the area of the Hula Valley, the earthquake was felt across the North.

‘Love’ for Israel winning Twitter war
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Jewish Agency’s social media head counters anti-Israel trend on Twitter with a message of love.

Analysis: Looking into Netanyahu’s mind
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Whenever you wonder why Netanyahu is doing something, the safest bet is to offer three reasons: Iran, Iran, and Iran.

An academic lynching
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Whoever leaked the Committee for Higher Education report to the press clearly had a political agenda.

An open letter to the president of Ben-Gurion University
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Im Tirzu challenges Prof. Rivka Carmi to implement the CHE commitee’s recommendations or resign.

Seven years too long for Katsav
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Am I possibly the only woman in Israel, apart from members of former president Moshe Katsav’s family, to still believe in his innocence?

No Holds Barred: ‘Jobs’ description for next UK chief rabbi
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Britons should look for Steve Jobs-like qualities when choosing the next chief rabbi.

The climate is changing – so should our economy
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Competition for clean water resources will increase as climate change gets worse.

Thousands protests against Putin after vote
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – After Russian election, thousands call for end to Putin rule; White House, Clinton express “serious concerns” about election.

Time to re-think climate change
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – At Durban, we need to rethink the next steps to tackling climate change.

A year of firsts, without my beloved
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – A year has passed since the Carmel fire took you away, but I still wait for you to come home.

Knesset passes first Trajtenberg-based bill
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – New law will lower income tax on middle class, includes additional proposals by UTJ MK Gafni.

Knesset passes Trajtenberg tax recommendations
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Unanimous passage of first law based on Trajtenberg Committee report increases taxes on wealthy, provides tax credit for fathers of young children.

IDF alert remains; school trips to resume
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – “People should carry on with their lives as usual,” IDF officer says, army is working to stop an attack.

EU is thinking twice about Iran oil ban
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Risks that oil price spike will eliminate sanctions impact; Saudis are working on early contingency plan.

Hamas denies its leadership is leaving Syria
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Denial comes in response to Reuters report saying dozens of activists were leaving Damascus quietly.

Hamas denies reports leaders fled Syria
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Denial comes in response to Reuters report saying dozens of activists were leaving Damascus quietly.

Analysis: Egypt’s winning Islamists are divided
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Muslim Brotherhood and Islamist Nour Party say they won’t form a coalition together, raise questions about plans.

Lebanon files UN complaint against Israel
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Officials in Beirut say IDF artillery response to Katyusha rockets was a violation of UNSC Res. 1701 and of international law.

The Supreme Court under fire
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Legislative proposals will undermine court’s ability to protect minority from majority.

Beinisch’s hypocrisy
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – The media’s veto power over Supreme Court appointments harms judicial independence.

OECD: Rich earn 14 times more than poor in Israel
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Report indicates Israeli income inequality gap widening; inequality among highest in the West.

Netanyahu confirms: Likud primaries next month
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – PM denies reports that he is holding reserve spot for Barak and Independence faction MKs on Likud list.

Syria stalls Arab League as death toll mounts
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Assad regime says it will sign deal to end violence soon, after League deadline passes, but violent crackdown continues.

‘Sorry for exploiting Winehouse death’
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Israel Anti-Drug Authority apologizes after running ad campaign invoking deaths of famous musicians, most of whom did not die from drugs.

Sights and Insights: A surprising visit to Nazareth
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Dr. Wayne Stiles was skeptical about the Nazareth Village, but it turned out to be a favorite stop for his fellow travelers.

‘Israel worried over Islamist gains in Egypt’
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – But J’lem respects elections, Barak says; Islamists seek gains in run-off vote; 52 of 56 individual candidate seats still up for grabs.

Alternatively Speaking: Battling bruises
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Alternative medicine enthusiast Natalie Marx answers your questions: How to stop conjunctivitus from itching?

Syria misses Arab League deadline
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Assad regime could face new economic sanctions; some Syrian secret police defect.

Military affairs reporter Yoav Limor leaving IBA
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Limor said that after nine years with the IBA, it was time for him to move on to greener pastures.

J’lem’s Greek patriarch asked to resolve split in church.
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Theophilos III inclined to accept request by Ukrainian president.

US raps envoy for anti-Semitism comments
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – US Ambassador to Belgium rejects claims that he “excused” certain types of anti-Semitism, says comments misunderstood.

‘JNF Judaizing Negev at Beduin expense’
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Beduin rights advocated express concern that JNF investment of NIS 1 billion toward further Negev development will deepen rift.

Life sentences for two brothers convicted of murder
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Wassam and Ashraf Mahajna of Umm el-Fahm shot and killed rival, then brutally beat another man.

Drunk driver sentenced to 7.5 years for manslaughter
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Naor Danino-Levy smashed van killing girlfriend instantly.

J’lem municipality gives first approval for 2 skyscrapers
Jerusalem Post 5 Dec 2011 – Libeskind’s 120m.-high ‘Eden complex’ will house hotels, apartments and theaters.

Court delays Olmert suit against Lador
Jerusalem Post 4 Dec 2011 – State prosecutor won’t file statement of defense, but no ruling made on his immunity from prosecution.

Hesder group: Defense Ministry withholding funds
Jerusalem Post 4 Dec 2011 – Association of yeshivot accuses ministry of denying money over battle with Knesset Finance Committee.

Hamas barred from international political group
Jerusalem Post 4 Dec 2011 – “Fatah is a recognized political movement, but Hamas is a terrorist organization,” says secretary-general of the IPU.

Syria tests Scud B missiles
Jerusalem Post 4 Dec 2011 – IDF sources say Syria testing missiles to show international community what Assad regime is capable of.

Triumph of life
Jerusalem Post 4 Dec 2011 – Tel Aviv exists in a bubble, blissfully apart from the sober reality that simmers a stone’s throw away.

Restrictions on anonymity
Jerusalem Post 4 Dec 2011 – “In most cases anonymity has no justification, and contributes to the growing shallowness of the public discourse.”

Reality Check: Stop the anti-Left witch hunt
Jerusalem Post 4 Dec 2011 – PM’s professed support for democracy is in contrast to a slew of bills put forth by his government.

The Guardian

Israel to forcibly remove bedouin communities in settlements push
The Guardian 5 Dec 2011 – Relocation of 2,300 people in West Bank to site near Jerusalem rubbish tip would make contiguous Palestinian state impossible Around 20 bedouin communities between Jerusalem and Jericho are to be forcibly relocated from the land on…

Israel abandons ‘insulting’ campaign calling on expats to return from US
The Guardian 4 Dec 2011 – Binyamin Netanyahu intervenes after ads meant to reverse brain drain provoke anger among US Jewish groups Israel’s government has cancelled a public relations campaign aimed at encouraging Israelis living in the US to return to the…

Inter Press Service

ISRAEL: ‘Don’t be Right, be Clever’
IPS Is his reticence vis-à-vis the Palestinians justified? Has his unsympathetic view of the convulsions gripping the Middle East conquered the world’s leaders? Is he right about Iran’s nuclear intentions?

Uruknet

Israeli military court, for first time, admits use of torture against prisoner
Uruknet December 5, 2011 – The Israeli military court of Ofer admitted that Israeli officers from the Shin Bet and the police tortured a Palestinian detainee to force him to make fake confessions to charges he had nothing to do with it. According to a report issued by the ministry of prisoners’ affairs in the West Bank,…

South African activist: “Palestine casts light on our own history”
Uruknet December 5, 2011 – Israel was declared an apartheid state during a session of the Russell Tribunal on Palestine in Cape Town on 7 November. Among those following the tribunal’s deliberations was a group of young South Africans, including Mbuyiseni Ndlozi of BDS South Africa, a group campaign for boycott, divestment and sanctions against Israel, and…

Syria will sign Arab League protocol if bloc accepts conditions
Uruknet Damascus 5, 2011 – Syria have said it will allow observers into the country as part of an Arab League plan to end months of unrest, in a turnabout which could stave off crippling regional sanctions. “The Syrian government responded positively to the signing of the protocol” on the dispatch of observers “based on the Syrian…

Russia breaks Qatar strings after envoy attack scandal
Uruknet December 5, 2011 – Russia has down-scaled the level of diplomatic relations with Qatar following an incident with the Russian ambassador to the country, who was physically attacked by Qatari customs and security officers. Ambassador Vladimir Titorenko suffered an assault at Doha Airport on November 29, on his return from a mission to Jordan. While passing…

Hamas: No plans to leave Damascus
Uruknet December 5, 2011 – The Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) on Monday categorically denied media reports about the departure from Damascus of families of the movement’s leaders. According to these reports, these families have secretly left to the Gaza Strip amid the violent events taking place across Syria. Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum said in a statement…

Saudi Arabia may join nuclear arms race: Prince Turki Al-Faisal
Uruknet December 5, 2011 – …Prince Turki, who in his speech supported the idea of Gulf countries acquiring weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) if Israel and Iran do not roll back their nuclear programs, identified 11 major fields in which GCC countries can unify their efforts and positions to make the Gulf body a force to reckon…

Iranian president invites Libyan NTC head to visit Iran
Uruknet December 5, 2011 — Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad invited the head of the Libya’s National Transitional Council Mustafa Abdul-Jalil to visit Iran, the state IRIB TV reported on Monday. Iran’s new ambassador to Libya, Hossein Akbari, on Monday submitted Ahmadinejad’s message to Jalil in Tripoli, said the report. Iran also called for the formation of a…

Arrest George W. Bush for Crimes against Peace, War Crimes and Crimes against Humanity !
Uruknet December 5, 2011 – The Kuala Lumpur Foundation to Criminalise War is serious about getting George W. Bush and Tony L. Blair arrested and prosecuted, after the milestone verdict of the Kuala Lumpur War Crimes Tribunal, where they were found guilty of Crimes against Peace, Crimes against Humanity and War crimes on 22 November 2011. Bush…

Syria News – December 4, 2011 (Warning: Graphic Videos)
Uruknet December 4, 2011 – Thus far today, 22 martyrs, including a child and a woman, have been killed by gunfire by the regime’s army and security forces. Homs: 21; Idlib: 1.. Idlib: Maaret Al-Nouman: Martyrdom of Mustafa Ahmed Alosh, 32 year old, due to security’s gunfire toward his car (Taxi), the people who were with him…

Home demolitions in Beit Hanina executed with Volvo and Hyundai equipment
Uruknet December 4, 2011 – On 24 November, Israeli forces protected the Volvo and Hyundai equipment that was used to demolish three homes in Beit Hanina, occupied East Jerusalem. Haitham Katib made a video on the action. The photo is a screenshot from his video. The destructive action left twenty people homeless, including six children. Since 1967…

Military Resistance: 9L3 Lets Move Out
Uruknet December 4, 2011 – .. U.S. weapons makers told investors this week they are doing all they can to prepare for leaner and more uncertain U.S. defense budgets, including redoubling their efforts to cut costs, drum up export sales and sell more goods to commercial clients. Industry executives and Pentagon officials say they are still sorting out…

RUSSELL TRIBUNAL ON PALESTINE Self-Determination and Occupied Palestine Today
Uruknet December 4, 2011 – …While Israel continues to systematically violate Palestinians’ right to self-determination, including through the perpetration of apartheid and the crime against humanity of persecution, it is our duty to one of humanity’s greatest achievements. Experience in South Africa and more recently during the Arab Spring, has shown that corruption, violence, and raw power…

Palestinian protest organizer stands no chance in army court
Uruknet December 4, 2011 – 99.76. That, according to a new study, is the percentage of convictions in Israeli military courts in which Palestinians in the occupied territories are tried (for some reason the translation of this piece to English has it at 99.74, perhaps trying to make things look better for the foreign audience ). It is…

HOUSE DEMOLITIONS, APARTHEID AND ISRAEL’S POLICY OF HAFRADA: SUBMISSION TO THE RUSSELL TRIBUNAL ON PALESTINE
Uruknet December 4, 2011 – Israel’s 44-year Occupation of the Palestinian Territory – not to mention its acts as a state since 1948 and as a national movement since the start of the 20th century – clearly involves “the crime of apartheid” as defined in the International Convention on the Suppression and Punishment of the Crime of…

Gaza: Samoud and the sea
Uruknet December 5, 2011 – As dire and emotionally draining as the situation and daily life in Gaza can be, I like to show it’s beauty, which does abound, when I can. Gaza doesn’t need pity, it needs strong, vocal, unhindered support and solidarity, recognition of the 1.6 million lives within who continue to be largely ignored…

The Sirte Massacres: Executions in the Capture of the Gaddafis
Uruknet December 5, 2011 – This post will not aim to deal with the much-discussed execution, after capture, of Libya’s leader Muammar Gaddafi and his son Mutassim. Or rather, it might, but I mainly intend to look at the many people accompanying them, some hundred or so of whom wound up dead, and some of whom were…

PA: Settlers kidnap shepherd near Nablus
Uruknet December 5, 2011— Israeli settlers on Monday kidnapped a 60-year-old shepherd after attacking him in Orif village south of Nablus, officials said. Village council head Fawzi Shehadeh said six residents of Yitzhar settlement attacked Salim Jamil Shehadeh near the local high school and took him away in a car. The settlers stole all 50 of his…

The Whistle Blower As Hero
Uruknet December 4, 2011 – Julian Assange, who might be the man most hated by the U.S. government, was given Australia’s Walkley Foundation Award for outstanding journalism last week. He accepted it from a distance, using Skype, because he is under house arrest in England pending extradition to Sweden. He is threatened with extradition because, curiously, the…

CELAC: A Washington-Controlled OAS Alternative
Uruknet December 4, 2011 – On February 23, 2010, the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States was established at the Rio Group-Caribbean Community Unity Summit in Playa del Carmen, Quintana Roo, Mexico. CELAC comprises 33 regional countries. America and Canada are excluded. In July 2010, Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez and Chile’s Sebastian Pinera were chosen co-chairs to…

PCHR Concerned Over Medical Shortages in Gaza Strip Hospitals
Uruknet December 4, 2011 – The Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) expresses concern over the extreme shortage of medicines in the Gaza Strip’s hospitals. PCHR warns of the potential catastrophic repercussions on the health of the Gaza Strip’s population, especially patients and those suffering from chronic diseases, of not having access to medicine which is currently…

Kuwait: Probe call on Barrak cash’ – Deposits from Qatar’
Uruknet December 4, 2011 : The pro-government MPs have demanded the formation of a parliamentary committee to probe into allegations that HH the Qatari Prime Minister Sheikh Hamad bin Jassem Al-Nahyan has transferred 200 million Qatari riyals to the account of MP Musallam Al-Barrak. MP Saadoun Hammad admitted he was shocked after reading a report published Sunday by…

Yemeni Deputy Information Minister accuses Emir of Qatar of seeking to spark civil war in Yemen
Uruknet December 4, 2011 – Yemeni information minister Abdo Al-Janadi accused Sunday in a press conference held in Sana’a Emir of Qatar of seeking to spark civil war in Yemen through distribution of weapons and money to anti-government militia and dissident army. Al-Janadi called on the State of Qatar to raise its hand for significant financial support…

  Campaign of Death Threats, Stalking and Vandalism Against Anti-Occupation Leaders Continues as Israeli Press Faces More Gag Rules
Uruknet December 4, 2011 – …The Israeli Knesset has either approved or is considering a raft of legislation that would fundamentally change the democratic character of the state of Israel. It has already passed a law which would criminalize public support for the Boycott Divestment Sanctions (BDS) movement. Other bills would prohibit foreign funding of Israeli nongovernmental…

Daily Star

Bombs hit Shiite pilgrims in Iraq, kill at least 32
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 A wave of bomb attacks targeting Shiite pilgrims in Iraq killed at least 28 people and wounded 78 Monday, a day before the peak of the Ashura religious commemorations…

Syria sets new conditions to admit observers
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Syria said Monday it would like to agree soon to an Arab League peace plan to end its eight-month crackdown on popular unrest…

No judicial file on record for false witnesses in Hariri assassination: source
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 The alleged case of false witnesses linked to the assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri is only a political issue and involves no judicial file on record, a senior judicial source told The Daily Star…

Palestinian admits to setting 14 vehicles, store on fire
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 A Palestinian man arrested Sunday confessed to setting over 14 vehicles and a furniture store on fire over the past two weeks, a statement by Internal Security Forces said Monday.

Lebanese Army arrested 500 people in November
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 The Army arrested 500 people of different nationalities on various charges during the month of November, according to a statement it issued Monday.

Separate road accidents claim 2 lives
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Two people were killed Monday in separate road accidents in the cities of Jbeil and Batroun, the National News Agency reported.

Minister slams rebels who preach against resistance
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 No rebel who preaches hostility toward the resistance, to the benefit of Israel, should be considered Arab, Muslim or Christian, according to the culture minister.

Judges finally receive salary increases
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Judges received Monday their increased salaries three months after a law doubling their pay was passed, a source told The Daily Star. A law to boost the salaries of judges was passed in August to improve…

Teachers threaten to strike unless pay raise is agreed
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Teachers warned Monday that they will strike and hold demonstrations within two weeks if the Cabinet does not pass a draft law to raise salaries in its session Wednesday.

Future MP: Mufti Qabbani misrepresenting himself
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 A Future bloc MP said Monday that Mufti of the Republic Mohammad Rashid Qabbani was misrepresenting himself as a mufti after he decided not to renew the term for the mufti of Akkar.

Jumblatt meets officials in Iraq’s Kurdish north
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Progressive Socialist Party leader MP Walid Jumblatt met with Kurdish officials in northern Iraq Sunday and Monday, according to a PSP statement.

Qabbani accuses finance minister of trading contract for STL funding
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Beirut MP Mohammad Qabbani accused Finance Minister Mohammad Safadi Monday of going back on his initial rejection of a $780 million contract-awarding request from Energy Minister Gibran Bassil, a move that Qabbani dubbed unconstitutional.

Unknown parties wipe evidence of third GSM network activity
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Telecommunications Minister Nicolas Sehnaoui said Monday that records for a network of more than 26 phone lines operating independently of the country’s two GSM networks were deleted by unknown individuals on the second floor of the…

Druze, Christian figures urge calm before Ashura
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Senior Druze and Christian religious leaders urged calm in the run-up to Ashura ceremonies Tuesday, following escalating tensions between Sunnis and Shiites.

Northern leaders sign protocol to uphold city’s interests
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Several professional associations signed a declaration Monday set forth by Tripoli’s municipality which calls on political and business leaders to set politics aside and work together in the best interests of the city.

Authorities to target traffic, fireworks as holidays near
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 The authorities will seek to alleviate traffic congestion and crack down on fireworks as the holidays approach, it was announced Monday.

Journalism project helps verse visually impaired in craft
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 In a room of Furn al-Shubbak’s press club Monday, students practice their radio voice with Antoine Mrad, the general manager of Radio Liban Libre, while some read sample lines out loud from their books.

Activist urges youth to finish Arab Spring
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Human rights activist Leila Sharaf implored Arab youth to become involved and finish the region’s Arab Spring movement Monday at the American University of Beirut.

Hoss slams Arab League measures against Syria
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Former Prime Minister Salim al-Hoss criticized Monday the Arab League’s economic sanctions on Syria over its brutal crackdown on anti-government protests.

Sleiman heads meeting ahead of Armenia visit
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 President Michel Sleiman chaired a preparatory meeting for his upcoming trip to Armenia Monday at Baabda Palace which was attended by MPs and ministers who will accompany him.

Britain concerned about stability, to boost aid
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 British Ambassador to Lebanon Tom Fletcher voiced his concern Monday about stability in Lebanon, but said his country would boost its assistance profile as a result of Beirut’s payment of its 2011 dues to the Special…

Beirut complains to U.N. over Israel attack
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Lebanon complained Monday to the United Nations over Israel’s response to a rocket attack, as the group suspected of launching the assault distanced itself from the incident.

Bassil blasts power plant shutdown
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Breaking a four-day silence over the incident that had plunged Lebanon into almost total blackout, Energy and Water Minister Gibran Bassil…

Netanyahu calls for snap leadership ballot, eyes U.S. outlook
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has called for a snap Likud party leadership vote, officials said Monday, a contest he is expected to win and which could pave the way for an early national election in Israel.

Israel goes on high alert along Egyptian border
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Israeli troops were on very high alert along the southern border with the Egyptian Sinai Monday over fears a cell of gunmen had crossed the border into southern Israel, a security source told AFP.

Saudi Arabia may join nuclear arms race, says former spy chief
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Saudi Arabia may consider acquiring nuclear weapons to match regional rivals Israel and Iran, its former intelligence chief Prince Turki al-Faisal said Monday.

Iraqi online jihadists vow to support Syria opposition
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Members of Iraqi online jihadist forums have called for fighters and arms to be sent to aid Syrians opposing President Bashar Assad’s regime, who have faced a brutal crackdown since March.

New cold war with Iran heats up Middle East, raises risk of conflict
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Worries of Israel striking Iran might or might not be overblown but across the region the largely hidden cold war between Tehran and its enemies is escalating fast, bringing with it wider risk of conflict.

Pro-Saleh forces kill protester despite cease-fire
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Forces loyal to outgoing Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh shot dead a woman in a protest march in Taiz Monday, witnesses and activists said, despite tanks withdrawing under a ceasefire pact.

Syrian rights lawyer to dedicate award to baby
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Human Rights lawyer Razan Zeitouneh interrupted our Skype interview from an unknown location inside Syria abruptly: Sorry, I have to move for security reasons. I will be in another place soon.

Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood party outlines its policies
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 The Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party gained the most seats in the initial round of Egypt’s first democratic parliamentary elections for six decades.

Brotherhood seeks further gains in Egypt
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Egyptians voted Monday in runoff contests for parliamentary seats, with the Muslim Brotherhood’s party trying to extend its lead over hard-line Islamists and liberal parties in a political landscape redrawn by the overthrow of Hosni Mubarak.

Syria ‘accepts’ observers as 34 bodies dumped
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Syria said on Monday it conditionally accepts observers as part of an Arab plan, as a rights group reported militiamen loyal to the regime killed 34 civilians and dumped their bodies in a city square.

Attacks kill 21 Shiite pilgrims in Iraq
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Five bomb attacks struck Shiite pilgrims Monday during an important religious ritual for the Muslim sect, killing 21 people and wounding nearly 100 others, revealing the enormous security challenges that still beset Iraq as the U.S….

Syrian blogger’s arrest galvanizes activists
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Razzan Ghazzawi was on her way to Jordan for a conference on media freedom when she was detained by Syrian authorities near the border.

U.N. thanks Berri for role in resolving STL funding
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Interim U.N. special coordinator voices U.N.’s appreciation over Parliament speaker’s role in settling the issue of funding for the Special Tribunal for Lebanon and urges rival politicians to revive national dialogue.

Mikati, British envoy discuss ways to protect Lebanon
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Prime Minister Najib Mikati met with British Ambassador to Lebanon Tom Fletcher Monday at the Grand Serail where the two discussed ways to protect Lebanon from regional instability.

Moody’s downgrades Lebanon banking outlook
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 International ratings agency Moody’s downgrades to negative from stable the outlook on Lebanon’s banking system, due in part to upheavals in the Arab world, especially in neighbouring Syria.

Five civilians killed in new Syrian violence
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 Syrian security forces shoot dead five civilians in Homs province, a day after at least 30 people died in violence in the flashpoint central regio.

Zahrani gets 20-megawatt transformer
Daily Star 5 Dec 2011 A 20 megawatt transformer – at the root of a dispute that left much of the country in the dark over the weekend – was transported Monday from the southern city of Sidon to the power…

YNet News

‘Iranian forces go on war alert’
YNet News, 5 Dec 2011 – Growing panic in Iran? The commander of Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards has ordered his forces to raise their operational readiness ahead of a possible war or strike on … ….

Jewish, Arab teens stone buses
YNet News, 5 Dec 2011 – Wrong kind of coexistence: Police arrested 10 Jewish and Arab teens aged 13-16 on Monday on suspicion of hurling stones at city buses in Jaffa. Over the past two … ….

Israel to reward Abbas in phase 2 of Shalit deal?
YNet News, 5 Dec 2011 – Will Israel make gesture to Abbas? The second phase of the Gilad Shalit prisoner swap, which will see the release of another 550 prisoners, will be completed in the next … ….

Obama seeks Jewish vote
YNet News, 5 Dec 2011 – President Barack Obama is working to court Jewish voters leading into the 2012 election, as Republicans seek to chip away at the president’s support in the Jewish … ….

Israeli students to speak better English?
YNet News, 5 Dec 2011 – The Council for Higher Education has passed a series of reforms aimed at raising university students’ level of English, Ynet has learned. The reforms set tougher … ….

IDF: Eilat residents face terror threat
YNet News, 5 Dec 2011 – Residents of Israel’s southernmost city, Eilat, are facing a persistent terror threat from Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula, the IDF’s spokesman warned Monday. Brigadier … ….

‘Saudi Arabia may join nuclear arms race’
YNet News, 5 Dec 2011 – Saudi Arabia may consider acquiring nuclear weapons to match regional rivals Israel and Iran, its former intelligence chief Prince Turki al-Faisal said on Monday. … ….

Denmark’s foreign minister shuns Israel
YNet News, 5 Dec 2011 – Danish minister and harsh Israel critic avoids Jewish state’s envoy for two….

PM pushing early Likud primaries bid
YNet News, 5 Dec 2011 – Despite contention within his party, Prime Minister Netanyahu asks faction chair….

IDF holds emergency drills in north, south
YNet News, 5 Dec 2011 – Home Front, Northern and Southern commands hold joint exercise simulating….

Syria accepts Arab League observer request
YNet News, 5 Dec 2011 – As international pressure, Arab sanctions on Syria grow more formidable, Assad….

Egyptians head to polls for 2-day election runoffs
YNet News, 5 Dec 2011 – Turnout appears lower than expected for two days of runoffs in the country’s….

School trips in south canceled over security concerns
YNet News, 5 Dec 2011 – In unusual move, Education Ministry bars school trips south of Highway 12 due to….

Syd Cohen, legendary co-founder of IAF, dies
YNet News, 5 Dec 2011 – Dr. Syd Cohen, dubbed ‘Flying Rabbi’ of WWII passes away at the age of 90. ‘His….

‘Iran’s missile program suffered serious setback’
YNet News, 5 Dec 2011 – Recent blast at major missile-testing site was major blow to Tehran’s nuclear….

‘Israel could lose American Jewry’
YNet News, 5 Dec 2011 – Man behind efforts to have Immigrant Absorption Ministry campaign against….

‘US ready to help Syria after Assad falls’
YNet News, 5 Dec 2011 – US Vice President Joe Biden says Washington, Ankara will help Damascus through….

Netanyahu moves up Likud primaries to January 31
YNet News, 4 Dec 2011 – PM trying to solidify strong position within party; Silvan Shalom says will take….

3.8-mag earthquake felt in north Israel; no injuries
YNet News, 4 Dec 2011 – Tremor felt in Galilee, Golan Heights and further south. ‘The entire house….

Palestinian Information Center

Hamas, Fatah officials renew commitment to reconciliation
PIC – Hamas and Fatah officials concluded a meeting in Gaza on Sunday evening with assertion that the reconciliation process was irreversible.

Israeli military court, for first time, admits use of torture against prisoner
PIC – The Israeli military court of Ofer admitted that Israeli officers from the Shin Bet and the police tortured a Palestinian detainee to force him to make fake confessions.

IOA razes Palestinian industrial installation
PIC – The Israeli occupation authority (IOA) razed a Palestinian industrial facility in Zoun village to the east of Qalqilia in the West Bank on Monday, local sources said.

Mothers of prisoners protest Red Cross’ decision to close Tubas office
PIC – The mothers of Palestinian prisoners staged a sit-in on Sunday outside the Red Cross office in Tubas city in protest at the decision taken by its regional administration to close the office.

Israeli jailers deny Palestinian prisoner medical treatment
PIC – The family of Palestinian prisoner Safi Houshiya said the prison administration refuses to provide him with medical treatment and held it fully responsible for his life.

Islamists need to be vigilant, not euphoric
PIC – The sweeping victories Islamist political parties have scored in recent elections in a number of Arab countries should grant the Arab masses a lot of confidence in pursuing their goals.

IOA razes Palestinian home in Beit Hanina
PIC – Bulldozers of the Israeli municipality of occupied Jerusalem razed a Palestinian home in Beit Hanina, north of the holy city, on Monday the second in a single day.

Israeli forces detain Palestinian youth en route to hospital
PIC – Israeli occupation forces (IOF) manning the Erez crossing to the north of Gaza Strip detained a Palestinian youth while crossing the terminal en route to a hospital in occupied Jerusalem.

Rafah comes under Israeli occupation fire from land and sea
PIC – 03/12/2011 – 08:38 PM

Occupation forces set up tent next to the home of liberated captive
PIC – 03/12/2011 – 09:01 PM

1948 Palestinians demonstrate against land confiscation in Negev
PIC – 03/12/2011 – 09:12 PM

Ihsanoglu slams Israeli gov’t for new settlement plan in O. Jerusalem
PIC – 04/12/2011 – 11:29 AM

Gaza power authority: The coastal line broke down and the power deficit rose
PIC – 04/12/2011 – 11:42 AM

Israeli violent quelling wounds 15 Palestinians in OJ
PIC – 04/12/2011 – 11:51 AM

IOA blocks travel of UNESCO employee, relatives of deported prisoners
PIC – 04/12/2011 – 12:01 PM

Dweik: Contacts underway to hold a PNC session
PIC – 04/12/2011 – 12:03 PM

Abbas Tells US Official Israel Must Stop Settlements
WAFA

Gulf Cooperation Council Supports Gaza Schools, Housing
WAFA

Kuwait Fund to Build Schools in Gaza
WAFA

Official Warns of Israel’s Ethnic Cleansing Policy in Jerusalem
WAFA

Jewish Settlers Kidnap Elderly Palestinian Shepherd
WAFA

Palestine Wins 3rd Place in Dance Festival
WAFA

Newspapers Review: Syria Fails to Meet Arab League Ultimatum
WAFA

Nine Palestinians Arrested in West Bank
WAFA

Israeli Bulldozers Demolish House in Silwan
WAFA

64th Anniversary: War, Ethnic Cleaning Unleashed
Intifada-Palestine: 5 Dec 2011 – Imagine the terror and horror must have felt as they were pushed to the Sea By William James Martin , Palestine Chronicle November 29, 1947 was the date the UN passed the Partition Resolution partitioning Palestine, more or less equally, into a… more

Panetta: Israel & Palestine must ‘Get to the Damn Bed’
Intifada-Palestine: 4 Dec 2011 – Dr Ashraf Ezzat (ALEXANDRIA, Egypt) – In remarks made at the Brookings Institution in Washington on Friday, Panetta said: “The problem right now is we can’t get them [Israel's leaders] to the damn table to at least sit down and begin… more

Syria again ignores Arab League deadline to allow observers
LA Times 4 Dec 2011 – The group had warned of more severe sanctions unless a deal was signed Sunday. Syria says it is concerned about the number of monitors and how they would operate. Syria on Sunday ignored another Arab League deadline to accept observers, saying it was still negotiating…

Egypt Islamist parties win more than 60% of the vote
LA Times 5 Dec 2011 – The Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party won 36.6% and the Salafi party Al Nour won 24.4% in the first round of elections, official results show. Young revolutionaries trailed badly. Islamist parties won more than 60% of the vote in the first round of Egypt’s…

Mysterious blasts, slayings suggest covert efforts in Iran
LA Times 4 Dec 2011 – Attacks targeting nuclear scientists and sites lead some observers to believe that the U.S. and Israel are trying to derail Iran’s programs. At an Iranian military base 30 miles west of Tehran, engineers were working on weapons that the armed forces chief of staff had…

Syria Says It Will Allow Arab League Observers, With Caveats
New York Times 5 Dec 2011 – Syria said Monday it would allow an Arab mission of monitors to enter the country and oversee an Arab League peace plan to end nearly nine months of violence.

In Taiz, Yemen, New Violence Erupts
New York Times 5 Dec 2011 – Protesters said pro-government snipers opened fire on a demonstration on Monday in Taiz, Yemen, killing one woman.

Turnout Falls As Egypt Casts Runoff Ballots
New York Times 5 Dec 2011 – Turnout plunged in several cities on Monday as Egyptians voted in run-offs, with authorities adding that last week’s turnout was lower than initially reported.

Iran, Facing New Sanctions, Warns of Oil at $250 a Barrel
New York Times 5 Dec 2011 – Iran warned that crude oil prices could double if penalties that could disrupt its oil exports are implemented.

Blast That Leveled Base Seen as Big Setback to Iran Missiles
New York Times 5 Dec 2011 – A huge blast that destroyed a major missile-testing site three weeks ago was a major blow to Iran’s most advanced long-range missile program, experts and officials said.

Bombs Targeting Shiite Pilgrims Kill 22 in Iraq
New York Times 5 Dec 2011 – Three bombs tore through crowds of pilgrims in the city of Hilla on Monday, killing least 22 — most women and children — and wounding 60, police and witnesses said.

Israeli Entrepreneur Opens Online University in West Bank
New York Times 5 Dec 2011 – University of the People, an American online university started by an Israeli entrepreneur, has opened an operations center in the West Bank.

Blast Near British Embassy in Bahrain
New York Times 5 Dec 2011 – No one was injured, but the explosion damaged six cars, and Britain increased security at its diplomatic missions in Manama, the capital.

No letup in US aggression following military withdrawal from Iraq
WSWS – Under Obama, US imperialism deploys more military forces throughout southwest Asia than it did at the height of the Bush administration’s war in Iraq.

Report exposes brutality of Saudi Arabian regime
WSWS – A report by human rights organization Amnesty International records the wave of repression unleashed by Saudi authorities in response to the “Arab Spring” uprisings.

Express Tribune: No you can’t
Jewish Voice for Peace -

Welcome Annie Robbins as Writer at Large
Mondoweiss – Annie Robbins There have been lots of good changes around here in the last couple weeks, and here is another: Annie Robbins, who has long worked with us in a behind the scenes way as annie, has agreed to take on a more public role, as…

The tax-deductible Occupation
Mondoweiss – Avigdor Lieberman There are good NGOs and bad NGOs in Tel Aviv’s eyes. The new Likud-Yisrael Beitenu NGO funding legislation is aimed at the bad ones. Bad ones criticize the Occupation. Good ones help it along. This bill will limit and tax foreign governments’ funding for…

Jewish establishment gives White House cover to criticize Israel–just not on Palestine
Mondoweiss – Mild criticisms of Israeli policy towards Palestinians, like the comments made by Howard Gutman (above), have provoked the ire of the Israel lobby ( Photo: U.S. Embassy in Belgium ) The most salient lesson from the ruckus Jeffrey Goldberg and other Jewish groups created over the ridiculous ads…

Beinart says Israel must give citizenship to Palestinians under occupation
Mondoweiss – A month ago, Peter Beinart, author of the landmark piece on the Failure of the American Jewish Establishment , spoke to that establishment, the Jewish Federations General Assembly in Denver, about Israel’s p.r. crisis with young American Jews. The video of the panel, above, was lately posted….

Read the Ambassador’s speech on settlements fostering anti-Semitism that has neocons calling for his scalp
Mondoweiss – Responding to a firestorm of neoconservative criticism, Howard Gutman, US Ambassador to Belgium, has now offered a sort-of apology: Brussels, Belgium – Statement from U.S. Ambassador Howard Gutman: “I strongly condemn anti-Semitism in all its forms. I deeply regret if my comments were taken the wrong…

MK Danny Danon: Latest in Racist Legislative Fashion
Tikun Olam – Likud’s Boy Wonder: Danny Danon If you want to check on the pulse of Israeli fashion–that is the “fashion” of Israeli racism–you can do no better than study MK Danny Danon’s legislative agenda.  I don’t usually write about individual bills since there are so many far-right…

Links for 2011-12-04 [Digg]
Tikun Olam – Campaign of Death Threats, Stalking and Vandalism Against Anti-Occupation Leaders Continues as Israeli Press Faces More Gag Rules | Truthout My latest report in Truthout about the massive assault on Israeli democracy including a campaign of death threats and vandalism against Peace Now activists. The suspect in…

U.S. Continues Deadly Game: Drone Beast Busted Over Iran
Tikun Olam – U.S. Air Force’s RQ-170 stealth drone The deadly game the U.S. and Israel are playing with Iran continued today with news that a U.S. advanced technology stealth drone had fallen or been downed (depending on who you talk to) inside Iran.  The Iranians claim the vehicle…

New Truthout Story on Assault on Israeli Democracy and Peace Now Intimidation Campaign
Tikun Olam – I’ve just published a new piece in Truthout giving an overview of my latest reporting on the assault on Israeli democracy underway via the Knesset and Prime Minister Netanyahu.  The piece focuses on the death threats and vandalism directed at Peace Now by Dor Oved, who’s…

Israel Eyes Strong Ties with East African States
Voltaire Network 5 Dec 2011 – Israel is looking at Africa’s east as an important strategic interest, and trying to step up ties with nations in the region under the name of “controlling the spread of Islamic extremists”. The Associated Press reports that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu hosted the leaders of…

Iran downs unmanned US spy plane… again!
Voltaire Network 5 Dec 2011 – The official IRNA news agency reported Sunday that Iran’s armed forces have shot down an unmanned US spy plane that violated Iranian airspace along the country’s eastern border. An unidentified military official quoted in the report warned of a strong and crushing response to any violations…

Clinton in Burma: Another US move against China
Voltaire Network 3 Dec 2011 – For all its claims to be promoting democracy and human rights, the Obama administration’s mooted talks with the Burmese generals aim to counter China’s footing in the country. As part of a broad diplomatic offensive being waged by the Obama administration throughout Asia, Hillary Clinton’s recent…

South Sudan: Israeli Investor Accused of Bribery Attempt Released On Bail
allAfrica.com 5 Dec 2011 – The Israeli businessman Nathaniel Lorenzi who was arrested on Thursday in the Ministry of Petroleum and Mining allegedly accused of trying to bribe the Minister Stephen Dhieu Dau was released on Saturday on bail.

Settlers Attempt to Enter Beit Ommar After day of Demonstration
Palestine Solidarity Project 3 Dec 2011 – Today, Saturday, December 3, residents and the Popular Committee of Beit Ommar, along with international and solidarity activists, held their regular demonstration at the illegal Israeli settlement, Karmei Tsur. Demonstrations have been held at Karmei Tsur, a religious extremist settlement built on privately-owned Palestinian land, regularly…

English Class Certificates given out at Center for Freedom and Justice
Palestine Solidarity Project 3 Dec 2011 – November 30.th 2011: Center for Freedom and Justice and PSP arranged a party for all the students who have attended English classes at the center this autumn. Approximately 25 students came to the event. Both the coordinator of the Center – Younes Arar, and the two…

Syria ‘to sign Arab League deal’
BBC 5 Dec 2011 – Syria responds “positively” to an Arab League initiative aimed at ending months of deadly unrest, as activists say 34 bodies are found dumped in a city square.

Outcry at US envoy Israel remarks
BBC 5 Dec 2011 – The White House rejects Republican calls to sack the US ambassador to Belgium, Howard Gutman, over remarks he made about anti-Semitism in Europe.

VIDEO: Muslims mourn to modern tunes in Iran
BBC 5 Dec 2011 – Shia Muslims mourn the death of Imam Hussain during the first month of the Islamic calendar, Muharram, which began on 26 November.

O Captain My Captain: America’s Aid for Israel’s Political ‘Continuum’
Sabbah report 5 Dec 2011 – The question for the Obama administration, Congress, is if, the American public, who should be asked first, were informed of the extent, nature and illegality of U.S Aid to Israel, would the American public then sanction any military aid to Israel at all?

How is Palestine and Arab Jews are presented in Israeli School Books (A MUST VIEW)
Sabbah report 5 Dec 2011 – Prof. Nurit Peled-Elhanan analyzes the presentation of images, maps, layouts and use of language in History, Geography and Civic Studies textbooks, and reveals how the books marginalize Palestinians, legitimize Israeli military massacres against Palestinians and reinforce Jewish-Israeli territorial identity.

Articles


The reconciliation train is back on track, but beware of further derailment
Oraib Rantawi, Middle East Monitor (MEMO) 12/5/2011
      The obstacles remain huge but conciliation must not be derailed.
     The meeting in Cairo between Mahmoud Abbas and Khaled Meshaal can be best described as “an important step in the right direction”, not least because reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas appears to be more likely. It has set the stage for dialogue which, it is hoped, will move beyond discussion about power sharing towards the development of strategies for action on a national level.
     From what we understand, the Cairo meeting looked at three main issues: a unified action programme; consensus about the forms of the national struggle (and on this it was noticed that Abbas and Meshaal agreed on the right of return, self-determination and state-building on the 1967 borders with a capital in Jerusalem); and agreement on the structuring of the Palestinian Liberation Organisation as the unified and sole representative of the Palestinian people. The two men also agreed on the slogan “Peaceful Popular Resistance” in the spirit of Tahrir Square in Cairo, Habib Bourguiba Street in Tunis and Change Arena in Sana’a.
     The reconciliation meeting should not be seen in terms of winners and losers; everyone left Cairo as a winner, especially the people of Palestine. Theirs is a just cause and they are now in a win-win situation.
     Hamas has moved towards Fatah and the PLO programme; Fatah has moved towards what might be called “Hamas resistance”. The Islamic Resistance Movement started to accept the concept of a state in the West Bank, Gaza Strip and Jerusalem years ago, and has sent many signals out in this regard, albeit with “ifs” and “buts”. Fatah, the PA and the President may have taken the option of popular resistance before now, but did not take it forward very seriously. However, in Cairo, the two parties’ positions crystallised in a consensus about the way forward, including the rebuilding of the PLO and the PA. more.. e-mail

Joint resistance strategy
Saleh Al-Naami, Al-Ahram Weekly 12/1/2011
      Finally, the leaders of Hamas and Fatah appear to be reading from the same page.
     Hassan Ouda, 21, was unable to call his mother on his cell phone because of the heated debate between his colleagues on the bus on their way to university Saturday morning. They were discussing statements by Ezzat Al-Reshq, member of Hamas’s politburo, after a meeting between the group’s chief Khaled Meshaal and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in Cairo. It was the first time that Hamas declared its support for “peaceful resistance” against the Israeli occupation. The students were divided over Al-Reshq’s declaration which marked a clear shift in the group’s position that had previously insisted on armed resistance as the only means to liberate Palestine.
     It was clear that the majority of students supported the statement. Indeed, agreement between Meshaal and Abbas to focus on peaceful resistance or “popular resistance” is the most significant understanding that Fatah and Hamas have reached since a rift opened between them after the Oslo Accords were signed in 1993. Publicising this agreement confirms what Al-Ahram Weekly reported last week that the meeting between Meshaal and Abbas would essentially focus on reaching consensus on a joint political agenda in the coming phase.
     Hence, although Meshaal’s meeting did not result in an announcement about the identity of the candidate who will form the next government, agreement on prioritising peaceful resistance in the coming phase demonstrates flexibility in Hamas’s position. At the same time, Fatah’s admission that negotiating with Israel is no longer viable and that the next phase requires that the reconciliation agreement is implemented to augment the ability of Palestinians to isolate Israel on the international stage indicates that the leaders of the Palestinian Authority (PA) have finally realised the futility of negotiations and settlement. more.. e-mail

More haste, less speed Mr Abbas
Middle East Monitor (MEMO) 12/2/2011
      Britain wrote the dubious Balfour Declaration, France gave Israel nuclear military capability and Germany has paid billions in reparations for the Nazi Holocaust.
     If there is anything that the Palestinian Authority is good at, it’s proving to Israel how “flexible” and “generous” it is. This week, the Ramallah Authority did just that when it submitted, well ahead of the 26 January 2012 deadline, its proposals on borders and security issues which it feels should be the basis for renewed negotiations with Israel. Although the PA has agreed to Israel’s demands for a land exchange and a demilitarised Palestinian state, Benjamin Netanyahu’s right-wing government rejected the offer outright; Israel, apparently, prefers direct and confidential negotiations. Needless to say, Israel has given no indication that it will respect the Middle East Quartet’s timeline for submitting its own proposal.
     What prompted the PA to submit its proposals now? Clearly, finance is a factor. Just one week after Mahmoud Abbas made his foray at the UN seeking membership of the world body, the US Congress decided to block a transfer of $200 million to the Ramallah Authority. Israel complemented this collective punishment by Washington when it, in turn, froze the transfer of tax revenues valued at well over $100 million, leaving the PA in a serious economic mess.
     Politically-speaking, the timing of the PA move is extraordinary, and that’s an understatement; it coincided with the conclusion of the UN General Assembly’s annual debate on the Question of Palestine, during which the world gathering expressed overwhelming support for the Palestinian leadership’s application for full UN membership. The General Assembly stressed the detrimental impact on the peace process of Israel’s settlement policies in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem. In six recorded votes, the Assembly adopted resolutions covering Palestine and the wider Middle East; the texts referred to the illegal Israeli settlements in East Jerusalem as well as the Golan Heights…. more.. e-mail

South African activist: “Palestine casts light on our own history”
Electronic Intifada: 5 Dec 2011 – Adri Nieuwhof The Electronic Intifada South Africa A South African activist working for the global boycott movement against Israeli apartheid connects the ongoing anti-colonialist struggles from Johannesburg to Palestine.more

Israel jails asylum seekers, labels them “infiltrators”
Electronic Intifada: 4 Dec 2011 – Jillian Kestler-D’Amours The Electronic Intifada Tel Aviv An amendment to Israel’s “Prevention of Infiltration” law will mean prison time for asylum seekers and their children — as well as for those who offer them humanitarian aid.more

samoud and the sea
In Gaza: 5 Dec 2011 – As dire and emotionally draining as the situation and daily life in Gaza can be, I like to show it’s beauty, which does abound, when I can.  Gaza doesn’t need pity, it needs strong, vocal, unhindered support and solidarity, recognition of the 1.6 million lives within who continue to be largely ignored by the corporate media and of the continued Israeli occupation and siege. There are people and voices and stories here, of tragedy yes and of amazing resilience as well. Take Mona and Amal Samouni , 2 young girls from the extended Samouni family which endured a massacre during the 23 day Israeli massacre of the entire Gaza Strip in 2008-2009.  Amal’s 4  year old brother and her father were shot point-blank by Israeli soldiers, she herself injured with shrapnel to the head which may still be in there (it had not been removed as of December 2009 ). And Mona,…more

A Persian Response to Brinkmanship
Palestine Chronicle: 5 Dec 2011 – By Deepak Tripathi Perils of brinkmanship with Iran are now on open display. As Libyans struggle after the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi, and the rebellion against the Bashar al-Assad regime in Syria continues, the campaign of sanctions against Iran has triggered events which echo the 1980s crisis between post-revolution Iran and the West. The recent International Atomic Energy Agency report, a controversial document censoring Iran, Britain’s decision to severe links with Iran’s central banking system and further sanctions by France, Canada and the United States were all too much. The Iranian parliament retaliated by downgrading relations with the United Kingdom and told the new British ambassador to leave. Soon after, angry protesters stormed two British embassy compounds in Tehran. Property was damaged and documents were reported to have been taken away. What secrets they may contain is a matter of speculation. They are likely to fuel the Iranians’ anger and…more

Jewish Identity and Palestinian Rights – Book Review
Palestine Chronicle: 5 Dec 2011 – Reviewed Jim Miles (Jewish Identity & Palestinian Rights – Diaspora Jewish Opposition to Israel. David Landy. Z Books, London/New York, 2011.) The mainstream media does not cover this kind of topic and only hints at it in the form of criticism of those calling for boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) against Israel. David Landy’s academic study of the trends within the Jewish diaspora provides a beginning insight into the social climate within the Jewish community, in particular in Great Britain, Europe and the United States, and the nature of the discussions in opposition to Zionism. The study is pretty much a current affair, recognizing that while there have always been voices within Judaism that counter the Israeli/Zionist expressions of the religion, the true opposition started after the second intifada. In short, Landy says that there is a slowly growing number of Jewish diaspora members who are successfully questioning the Israeli/Zionist…more

Inside the Egyptian Revolution
Dissident Voice: 5 Dec 2011 – Dr. Ashraf Ezzat, medical doctor and journalist ( Pyramidion ) was one of  hundreds of thousands Egyptians occupying Tahrir Square  in late January/early February of 2011.   Ten months later Egyptian people are once again back on the streets despite a deadly crackdown by security forces.  I interviewed Dr. Ezzat via e-mail about the revolution then and now Angie Tibbs:  Dr. Ezzat, let’s start at the beginning.  In January 2011 hundreds of thousands of Egyptians began their Tahrir Square occupation; you were on the ground there as a journalist and as a medical doctor. Would you recreate the mood of the demonstrators, and, in fact, of the country? Ashraf Ezzat :  Egyptians still refer to those 18 days (January 25- February 11) as the glorious days of the revolution. Those days will undoubtedly carve their place in the modern history of Egypt. And contrary to what the mainstream media concluded, the Tahrir Square…more

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Posted 8th December 2011 by InI in category VTJP Palestine/Israel

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