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Vermonters for a Just Peace in Palestine/Israel
www.vtjp.org/
For those interested in keeping up with events in Palestine/Israel, there is no better digest than VTJP.

VTJP Archives | VTJP 2009
12 September, 2009

News

International Middle East Media Center

Israeli forces continue escalation of night raids of non-violent anti-Wall organizers
13 Sep 2009 - Just after 2 am on Saturday morning, Israeli forces invaded the village of Bil'in, west of Ramallah in the central West Bank. The late-night raid is one of a series of similar raids carried out over the last month by Israeli troops against the village of Bil'in, which is a center of non-violent organizing against the Israeli Annexation Wall and Occupation of the West Bank. 

Israeli settlers in Hebron construct new outpost
12 Sep 2009 - International observers in the Hebron area have reported that Israeli settlers living in violation of international law in the South Hebron Hills, in the southern West Bank, have constructed five new caravan trailers in an attempt to further expand the Ma'on settlement. 

Palestinian security forces arrest 11 Hamas supporters in the West Bank
12 Sep 2009 - The Hamas movement accused the Palestinian security forces in the West Bank of arresting eleven members and supporters of the movement in Nablus, Qalqilia, and Hebron. Two of the arrestees are members of a village council, and five others are former detainees who were imprisoned by Israel. 

Report: "23 legislators, three ministers, still imprisoned by Israel"
12 Sep 2009 - The Palestinian Ministry of Detainees reported Friday that after Israel previously released 10 legislators, including PLC head Dr. Aziz Dweik, the Israeli occupation is still holding captive 26 Palestinians legislators and three former ministers. 

Settler fires at Palestinians in Jerusalem
12 Sep 2009 - An Israeli settler, in his twenties, opened fire on Friday evening at two Palestinians from Silwan neighborhood, and claimed that he ‘felt threatened’ by them. The two suffered mild injuries. 

Ban calls on Israel, Lebanon, to be committed to ceasefire
12 Sep 2009 -  United Nations secretary-general, Ban Ki-moon, called on Israel and Lebanon to be committed to the ceasefire. His statements came after two shells were fired into Israel on Friday. 

Erekat meets Mitchell’s aide
11 Sep 2009 - Dr. Saeb Erekat, head of the Negotiations Department at the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO), met on Friday with David Hale, former U.S. ambassador in Jordan and the assistant of George Mitchell, the U.S. Middle East Envoy.  Erekat separately met E.U special envoy Mark Otte. 

Ha'aretz Defense page

Tehran is wasting time
12 Sep 2009 - Iran continues its game of deception and new sanctions almost certainly will be insufficiently potent. 

Deputy PM: Time is now for action on Iran nukes
12 Sep 2009 - Meridor says 'no more time to waste' after world powers accept Iran response to offer of nuclear talks. 

Two killed, three missing in Gaza smuggling tunnel collapse
12 Sep 2009 - A Gaza human rights group says more than 100 people have died in tunnel collapses since 2007. 

Lebanese report Israeli phone threats following Katyusha fire
11 Sep 2009 - Israel files complaint with UN after two rockets hit Galilee; Ban: Parties must adhere to cease-fire. 

Ashkenazi: Mandatory national service for those who don't enlist in IDF
11 Sep 2009 - Top IDF officer also said army has a long way to go in regard to the drafting of women. 

Ma'an News

Israeli court tells settler group in Silwan to stop construction 12 Sep 2009

Abbas shuffles PLO Executive Committee, ousts Qaddoumi 12 Sep 2009

Witnesses: Israeli forces infiltrate Strip, fire at homes, detain one 12 Sep 2009

Police: Gaza murder continues revenge cycle, suspect detained 12 Sep 2009

Gazan Fatah will not boycott visit of West Bank counterparts 12 Sep 2009

PA police: Israeli forces shoot one, detain two, raid several villages 12 Sep 2009

De facto government police seize drug dealer 12 Sep 2009

PA urges social benefits recipients to collect funds before Eid 12 Sep 2009

Fatah to fund 100 USD extra for families of martyrs via PA 12 Sep 2009

Hebron police detain three drivers following night of infractions 12 Sep 2009

Arab Democracy Center calls Egyptian plan "unconstitutional" 12 Sep 2009

Hamas leader: Press on Shalit deal "just balloons" 12 Sep 2009

Israel ready for strong action if Lebanese border violence continues 12 Sep 2009

Gazan pilgrim detained by Egypt en route to Strip for smuggling ties 12 Sep 2009

Brazil may trump regional FTA with Israel, Pal BDS group says 12 Sep 2009

Rafah open for 360 Gazans set to journey to Mecca 12 Sep 2009

The National

Washington agrees to talks with Tehran
12 Sep 2009 - President Barack Obama's administration has kept its pledge to unconditional talks with Iran by accepting Tehran's offer of wide-ranging discussions.

Mitchell to attempt settlement deal
12 Sep 2009 - Press reports indicate a possible nine-month freeze on housing expansion in West Bank is unlikely to include East Jerusalem.

Egypt sends reconciliation plan to Palestinian factions
12 Sep 2009 - Before the resumption of unity talks next month, Egypt has sent a paper to Palestinian factions detailing its proposal for Palestinian reconciliation.

Israel warns Lebanon on rockets
12 Sep 2009 - Israel said today it viewed rockets fired from Lebanon as an isolated incident but would be ready to take massive action if any border violence continued. 

Aljazeera

Tehran says nuclear talks possible
12 Sep 2009 - Statement marks apparent reversal of Iran's refusal to discuss nuclear programme.

Palestinians hurt in Israeli attack
12 Sep 2009 - Israeli shoots two in East Jerusalem after stone-throwing protest, police say.

Palestine News Network

Egyptian paper issued: both Fateh and Hamas are studying the details but already have problems
12 Sep 2009 - Ramallah / PNN – Officials from the rival Fateh and Hamas parties welcomed the Egyptian paper which includes proposals to end the division. However, both are showing deep skepticism regarding real opportunities and potential application.In Ramallah, the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization announced after a meeting which was devoted to discussion of the Egyptian paper that it would deal positively with...

"Our Production" campaign to promote local companies in Gaza Strip begins with advent ...
12 Sep 2009 - Gaza / PNN – The campaign to promote local goods is ongoing in the Gaza Strip. Entitled “Our Production”, the project began with the month of Ramadan this year. Food produced by local companies in the Strip is being marketed as part of this general strike. The necessity driven by the siege is the new mother of invention with there being little choice...

Brazilian Parliament recommends freezing out Israelis from third largest export market
12 Sep 2009 - “This decision is an enormous blow for Israel’s economy and foreign relations”, says Jamal Juma’ of the Stop the Wall Campaign. The Brazilian Parliamentary Commission on Foreign Relations and National Defense has recommended that the parliament should not ratify the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between Mercosur and the State of Israel until “Israel accepts the creation of the Palestinian state on the...

Tunnels crucial for imports but remain dangerous: another man killed
12 Sep 2009 - Rafah / PNN - Another citizen was killed and three others injured Saturday in the collapse of a tunnel on the Palestinian-Egyptian border in Rafah. Medical sources report that 18 year old Mohammad Jamal Alzeriei from Khan Yunis was killed when a tunnel collapsed at the southern Gaza Strip border. Three others were injured and taken to Abu Yousef Al Najjar Hospital for...

Declaration by the European Union describes Israeli settlements as illegal and an obstacle to peace
11 Sep 2009 - In a statement issued this week the European Union expressed its serious concern over Israel’s approval of additional settlement construction. “Settlements are illegal under international law and constitute an obstacle to peace”, wrote the EU.The Europeans reiterated their call on the Israelis to immediately end settlement activities, including in East Jerusalem and including natural growth, and to dismantle all outposts erected since...

Israeli Minister of Internal Security closes Palestinian National Theater in East Jerusalem
11 Sep 2009 - Jerusalem / Maisa Abu Ghazaleh for PNN – On Wednesday night the Israeli Minister of Internal Security issued a military order to close the Palestinian National Theater in the At Tur neighborhood of East Jerusalem. The next day, Fadi Rujub was released from Israeli interrogation after being questioned regarding events related to the Palestinian Authority.Rujub denied the charges and was released after paying...

Israeli administration bans Muslim - Christian Ramadan evening breakfast in East Jerusalem
11 Sep 2009 - Jerusalem / Maisa Abu Ghazaleh for PNN – Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad attempted to sponsor a Ramadan breakfast in East Jerusalem. The Israeli Minister of Internal Security issued a an order Friday afternoon forbidding the Palestinians from dining together at the Hotel Seven Arcs in the At Tur neighborhood in East Jerusalem.The Ramadan evening breakfast, Iftar, had been planned as a gathering...

IRIN

OPT: Gaza schoolchildren lack basic equipment
GAZA CITY Wednesday, September 09, 2009 (IRIN) - Some 1,200 students at al-Karmel High School for boys in Gaza City returned to class on 25 August without history and English textbooks, or notebooks and pens - all unavailable on the local market.

ISRAEL-OPT: New report highlights educational poverty in East Jerusalem
TEL AVIV Thursday, September 03, 2009 (IRIN) - Palestinian East Jerusalem lacks public educational facilities and many classrooms are cramped, according to a new report by Ir Amim, an NGO working in East Jerusalem, and the Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI).

In Brief: East Africa teams up over disaster management
NAIROBI Thursday, September 03, 2009 (IRIN) - At least 1,556 East African Community (EAC) military personnel are participating in a three-week joint field training exercise codenamed Ex–Mlima Kilimanjaro (Mount Kilimanjaro) 2009 in Arusha and Tanga, Tanzania, to share knowledge on the regional challenges in peace support, counter-terrorism and disaster management.

Inter Press Service

MIDEAST: To Rap Is to Resist 
GAZA CITY, Sep 12 (IPS) - In a backstreet open-air café in Gaza late at night, Khaled Harara from the Black Unit Band starts to talk about rap.

MIDEAST: NGO Reports on Gaza War Belie Israeli Claims 
WASHINGTON, Sep 11 (IPS) - 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.

MIDEAST: Israel Taking Sharp Measures Over Iran 
JERUSALEM, Sep 11 (IPS) - Questions about Iran's nuclear thrust are tumbling out, echoing around the world in several directions.

ENVIRONMENT: Desert Winds Stir New Hope 
CAIRO, Sep 9 (IPS/IFEJ) - With oil and gas reserves running dry, the most populous country in the Arab world is eyeing wind power as a solution to its looming energy crunch.

PCHR Latest

IOF Willfully Kill a Child in Beit Hanoun Town, Northern Gaza
PCHR

PCHR Weekly Report

(03- 09 Sep. 2009)
During the reporting period, IOF killed a Palestinian child and wounded 6 Palestinian civilian, a resistance activist and an Israeli journalist.

information on boycott, divestment and sanctions
IOF Willfully Kill a Child in Beit Hanoun Town, Northern Gaza 06 September

International Solidarity Movement

Benefit Sunday for former Berkeley tree sitter severely injured in Israel
9/10/2009 - International Solidarity Movement - Kristin Bender, The Oakland Tribune, 9 September 2009 - Six months after Tristan Anderson, a former UC Berkeley tree sitter and Bay Area activist, nearly died after being struck in the head with a tear-gas canister fired by Israeli troops, friends are holding a benefit Sunday to raise money for his recovery costs. Anderson, 38, remains at a rehabilitation hospital near Tel Aviv and continues to have setbacks and infections after skull surgery last month, supporters said. The operation came after doctors learned Anderson was suffering from post-traumatic hydrocephalus, a blockage of the ventricles "” open spaces in the brain "” that causes poor circulation of cerebral spinal fluid in the head, supporters said. "His girlfriend, Gabrielle Silverman, and his parents are hopeful and giving Tristan as much encouragement and support as they can, even though by all appearances he is struggling to get better," said friend Karen Pickett. 

Israeli settlement expansion in South Hebron Hills continues unabated
9/10/2009 - International Solidarity Movement - Christian Peacemaker Teams and Operation Dove - At a time when the international community is calling for a freeze on new building in settlements and the disbanding of settlement outposts, the settler community of the South Hebron Hills is continuing its expansion unabated. Israeli settlers from the illegal settlement on Ma'on, in the South Hebron Hills area, are constructingat least five new caravans on the south-west side of the settlement. Internationals based in the nearby Palestinian village of At Tuwani first observed building preparatory work in Ma'on a few days ago. Today, as the new caravans were being built, settlers began preparatory work on a nearby hilltop for further settlement expansion. Over the past three months,internationals have also observed settlers constructing numerous new buildings in the nearby illegal Israeli outposts of Havat Ma'on (Hill 833) and Avigail. 

Palestinian driver forced to unload truck despite papers
9/10/2009 - International Solidarity Movement - Ali Waked, YNet News - The driver of a truck loaded with boulders drove last Friday to the Palestinian town, Ras Tira, to deliver his truck's contents. He was shocked to discover that, despite having all the proper documentation for delivering the goods signed by Israel's Coordination and Liaison Authority, IDF soldiers at the checkpoint asked him to unload the boulders so that the bed of the truck could be checked. The separation fence splits Ras Tira from the main bloc of Palestinian towns in the West Bank, creating an enclave on the side of the fence near Qalqilya. Ras Tira Mayor Hisham Mara'adeh told Ynet that the driver reached the entrance of the town around 6:30 am, but was detained there until 12 pm explaining the situation to the soldiers. The driver explained to the soldiers that he had no problem unloading the boulders from the truck. 

Join the 2009 Olive Harvest Campaign
9/10/2009 - International Solidarity Movement - 9 September 2009 - With rapidly escalating levels of settler violence in the West Bank, the International Solidarity Movement is issuing an urgent call for volunteers to participate in the 2009 Olive Harvest Campaign. The olive tree is a national symbol for Palestinians. As thousands of olive trees have been bulldozed, uprooted and burned by the Israeli military and settlers, harvesting has become more than a source of livelihood; it has become a form of resistance. The olive harvest is an annual affirmation of Palestinians' historical, spiritual and economic connection to their land, and a rejection of Israeli efforts to seize it. Palestinian communities are inviting internationals to support and show solidarity with this resistance by working in the olive groves with them. By doing so, activists can reduce the risk of extreme violence from Israeli settlers or army through non-violent intervention and documentation. 

Ha'aretz Diplomacy page

Netanyahu to discuss Shalit, Mideast peace with Mubarak
12 Sep 2009 - Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is to arrive this afternoon in Cairo to meet with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. Netanyahu is to ask Mubarak to put pressure on Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas to renew negotiations with Israel and to take part in a three-way summit with U.S. President Barack Obama during the upcoming United Nations General Assembly. Netanyahu and Mubarak are also expected to discuss the status of talks on the release of kidnapped soldier Gilad Shalit. ... 

U.S. disappointed by Iran response to dialogue offer 
12 Sep 2009 - The United States is reportedly disappointed by the Iranian response to the willingness of the Western powers to open dialogue with it. ... 

'Terms set for renewal of Israel-PA talks'
12 Sep 2009 - Negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians will resume next month on the basis of an understanding that the establishment of a Palestinian state will be officially announced in two years. ... 

Jailed Palestinians' relatives, Shalit activists to hold joint rally
12 Sep 2009 - Supporters of abducted Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit and relatives of Palestinian prisoners in Israel will hold a joint rally, Army Radio quoted a Kibbutz Movement official as saying on Saturday. ...

U.S. wants Iran talks to focus on nukes
12 Sep 2009 - The White House said Saturday that international talks with Iran should focus on the country's nuclear program, a topic Tehran had ruled off limits until its foreign minister opened the door. ...

The Guardian

Palestinian farmers producing exceptional food and wine
12 Sep 2009 - Palestine produces some of the finest olive oils in the world, not to mention dates, nuts, tomatoes – even wine. Now, despite the conflict, farmers are finding ways to export their produce – and show the...

Right-wing groups plan to confront pro-Palestinian march in London
12 Sep 2009 - Police on alert ahead of Al-Quds Day rally after organisation tells its supporters to 'let them know they aren't welcome' Hundreds of police will be monitoring Trafalgar Square today as extreme right-wing organisations and football-linked groups...

Roy Greenslade: Shoe-throwing journalist to get hero treatment
11 Sep 2009 - The Iraqi TV journalist who threw his shoes at George W. Bush will be showered with gifts including a four-bedroom house — and at least one potential bride — when released from jail next Monday. Muntadhar...

The Middle East after the second world war
11 Sep 2009 - Leaving Belsen: Guardian report on the emigration of Jews from Germany to Palestine Just outside the Belsen camp – now renamed Hohne – there is a railway siding with a large ramp. Ordinarily a derelict train...

Ha'aretz National page

Vishnitz Hasidim battle over a birthright and build a very big tent 
12 Sep 2009 - The Vishnitz Hasidim are preparing for an influx of the sect's followers from Israel and abroad ahead of the High Holy Days by building a 3,000-square-meter tent in a vacant lot in Bnei Brak. ... 

Peres 'feels fine' after collapsing at Tel Aviv event
12 Sep 2009 - President Shimon Peres said he 'feels fine' Saturday night after he collapsed during a question-and-answer session for young executives at the Rabin Center in Tel Aviv hours earlier. ...

Time to hold referendum on continuing occupation
12 Sep 2009 - This charade really has to stop. Forty-two years into the Israeli occupation, it's time to find out once and for all, without caveats or reservations, what Israelis actually want. Governments deceive us, one after another, as with generation after generation of a seemingly apathetic public. Now we have a prime minister who talks about a two-state solution and simultaneously works to undermine any chance of realizing it. No one knows what he, or we, are striving for, other than his own survival. ... 

Relief Web

UN Palestinian refugee chief AbuZayd: "periods of hope have all been dashed"
12 Sep 2009 - Source: European Union

OPT: Logistics Cluster Gaza crisis consolidated situation report, 07 Aug - 10 Sep 2009
11 Sep 2009 - Source: Logistics Cluster

OPT: West Bank and Gaza update July 2009
11 Sep 2009 - Source: World Bank

YNet News

Noam Shalit: Hamas violating Islam
12 Sep 2009 - Father of IDF captive slams Hamas in Ramadan dinner with Arab pro-Shalit activists 

Hamas: Talk about Shalit deal a joke
12 Sep 2009 - Hamas denies recent media reports hinting prisoner swap will be completed within days 

Meridor: No more time to waste on Iran
12 Sep 2009 - Minister of intelligence and atomic energy says time for action on Iranian threat is now; Tehran's nuke ambitions not confined to distant future, will change balance of power if achieved, he says 

Meridor: Netanyahu visited Russia
12 Sep 2009 - Deputy prime minister confirms media rumors that the prime minister visited Moscow this week following reports tying Israel to the abduction of a Russian vessel said to be carrying arms to Iran 

Witnesses describe terrorists who fired Katyushas
12 Sep 2009 - Lebanese witnesses say four men in civilian clothing arrived with rockets, set timer, and fled scene. Residents also report receiving threatening phone calls from Israel due to rocket fire 

Palestinian Information Center

Report: One child killed and eight Palestinians wounded in one week
12 Sep 2009 - A weekly report issued by the Palestinian center for human rights revealed that the IOF troops killed one child, wounded seven civilians and one resistance fighter during one-week period.

Jewish settlers rebuild outpost hours after IOF soldiers dismantle it
12 Sep 2009 - Jewish settlers rebuilt an outpost in Susiya near the village of Yatta, Al-Khalil district, only hours after the Israeli occupation forces (IOF) dismantled it, eyewitnesses reported on Saturday.

Detainees’ families call for not allowing Fatah delegates to enter Gaza
12 Sep 2009 - The committee of families of political prisoners called on the government in Gaza to demand the release of their sons in Abbas’s jails in return for allowing Fatah delegates to visit Gaza.

Palestinian dies, three others injured in tunnel collapse
12 Sep 2009 - A Palestinian teen died and three others were injured in the collapse of a tunnel used to smuggle goods from Egypt into the besieged Gaza Strip on Saturday.

IOF soldier wounds two Palestinians including a boy
12 Sep 2009 - An Israeli soldier opened fire at a group of Palestinians in eastern occupied Jerusalem on Friday night wounding two of them including a 13-year-old boy, Hebrew press reported.

Bahar: The Palestinian people will confront any attempt to make concessions
12 Sep 2009 - Dr. Ahmed Bahar, the first deputy speaker, stated Friday that the Palestinian people would never surrender and would confront any intention to make concessions on the national rights and constants.

Two Palestinians wounded in IOF quelling of anti-wall march
12 Sep 2009 - Two Palestinians were wounded while tens others were treated for suffocation in Bil'in village when Israeli occupation forces (IOF) violently dispersed a peaceful anti separation wall march.

Abu Obaida: IOA admission proves Qassam credibility
12 Sep 2009 - The admission of an Israeli military leader that orders were issued to the soldiers not to allow the capture of any of their comrades proved the credibility of the Qassam Brigades, Abu Obaida said.

French council in J’lem on humanitarian visit to Gaza
12 Sep 2009 - French consul in Jerusalem Frederic Desagneaux paid a visit to the besieged Gaza Strip to closely see the humanitarian situation there under the siege especially after the Israel military aggression.

Normalization with Israel a stab in the back of Palestine
12 Sep 2009 - There is no doubt that any form of Arab normalization with Israel constitutes a brazen betrayal of the Palestinian people

Los Angeles Times

EU calls for nuclear talks with Iran 
12 Sep 2009 - The U.S. says it would join in 'to see if Iran is willing to engage seriously on these issues.' Earlier, in Tehran, supreme leader Ali Khamenei says Iran will not halt its nuclear program. The European Union's foreign policy chief on Friday called for a meeting of world powers with Iran "at the earliest possible opportunity" to discuss Tehran's nuclear intentions, even as the country's supreme leader insisted Iran would not halt its nuclear development program. 

Israel, militants in Lebanon trade rocket fire 
12 Sep 2009 - No injuries are reported on either side of the border. It is the first exchange of fire between Israel and militants in Lebanon since February. Two rockets were fired into northern Israel from southern Lebanon on Friday, and Israel responded minutes later by launching a barrage of 14 rockets and scrambling fighter jets across the volatile border, Lebanese and Israeli media reported. 

Protest over Israel roils Toronto Film Festival 
12 Sep 2009 - Whether you're a film festival director, a college president or a secretary of State, you know that you've landed in Media Hell when Noam Chomsky, Jane Fonda and Harry Belafonte start signing open letters complaining about your policies. 

New York Times

Iran Panel Says Charges of Prisoner Rape Are False
12 Sep 2009 - The announcement indicated the government might be ready to arrest Mir Hussein Moussavi and Mehdi Karroubi, who have assailed Iran’s leaders over the disputed presidential election. 

U.S. to Accept Iran’s Proposal to Hold Face-to-Face Talks
11 Sep 2009 - Engaging with Iran would put a senior representative of the Obama administration at the bargaining table, along with emissaries from five other nations. 

Rockets Fired From Lebanon Hit Israel
11 Sep 2009 - The rockets fired hit open areas in northern Israel on Friday, and Israel returned fire, Israeli military officials said. No injuries were reported on either side. 

Misc

The enemy of my enemy is my–
Mondoweiss - 12 Sep 2009 - In Birmingham, England, anti-Muslim rioters/skirmishers , calling themselves the English Defence League, held aloft the Israeli flag as a symbol of their antagonism. Richard Silverstein writes: it is important to understand how the racist nativists throughout Europe and the west see Israel. They see it as their...

NYT’s misstates casualties in Lebanon war
Mondoweiss - 12 Sep 2009 - Back in 2006 the New York Times ran a story saying that a Hezbollah raid across the Lebanon-Israel border that killed eight soldiers set off the Lebanon war. But the Times misstated the number of Israeli soldiers killed, and corrected its report a day later . It...

‘LA Times’ says Toronto has lit a ‘prairie fire’ against a ‘pariah’ state
Mondoweiss - 12 Sep 2009 - The LA Times’ Patrick Goldstein points out correctly that it will come as "a surprise" to an America indoctrinated in Quentin Tarantino’s righteous Jewish violence that Israel has become "something of a pariah" in international circles. But he’s against the Toronto protests. Remember what Paul Simon...

Jewish Voice for Peace tries to open debate around Toronto Film Fest, other Jewish orgs (including J Street) look to shut it down
Mondoweiss - 11 Sep 2009 - The reverberations of the protest against the Toronto International Film Festival’s City to City program with Tel Aviv continue to be felt, and American Jewish organizations have started to respond to the controversy. The first comment came from Rabbi Marvin Hier of the Simon Wiesenthal Center :...

Young Israeli Army Resisters Speak Out in National Tour
Mondoweiss - 11 Sep 2009 - "As a Jew, an American and a mother, the invasion of Gaza filled me with unbearable sadness. While Hamas’ attacks on Israeli villages are deplorable, Israel’s disproportionate response is unconscionable… In loving memory of our ancestors and for the future of our—and Palestinian—children, more American Jews...

B'Tselem: Most Palestinians Killed in Gaza War Were Civilians
Alternative Information Center - 9 Sep 2009 - Today (Wed. Sept 9th) Israeli human rights group B'Tselem published its findings on the number of Palestinians and Israelis killed in Operation Cast Lead in the Gaza Strip. According to B’Tselem’s research, Israeli security forces killed 1,387 Palestinians during the course of the three-week operation. Of...

Outing Israeli Liberals from Their Political Closet: A Letter to Eytan Fox and Gal Uchovsky 
Alternative Information Center - 8 Sep 2009 - To Gal Uchovsky and Eytan Fox, In two weeks your film The Bubble will be screened in the “City to City” tribute to Tel Aviv, which will open the prestigious Toronto Festival (mabruk!). In left-wing circles in Toronto and the film world there is an unpleasant...


Articles

Electronic Intifada
The Elders' visit to Bilin
11 Sep 2009 - Thursday, 27 August was a special day in Bilin. Dozens of blacked-out SUVs approached the village, disturbing the quiet of a usually peaceful morning. However, unlike the Israeli occupation forces who come at night to arrest boys from the village, this arrival was extremely welcome. The SUV passengers were a truly respected group of international diplomats, known as the Elders. Jody McIntyre writes from Bilin, occupied West Bank. 

Gaza's disabled cut off from payments
11 Sep 2009 - Yunis al-Masri was severely injured in a car wreck as he and his brothers traveled to work in Israel 24 years ago. He is entitled to a monthly allowance of $800 from Israel's National Insurance Institute, out of which he has supported his wife and 10 children in their home in Gaza. In early January, however, the transfers of disability benefits stopped arriving in his bank account in Gaza. About 700 other injured workers are in the same situation. Jonathan Cook reports. 

Israel targeting fishermen, farmers in Gaza
11 Sep 2009 - On 31 August, Israeli gunboats shot at and shelled the fishing trawler of Khaled al-Habil, destroying it completely and leaving the boat's 18 fishermen and their families without a source of income. One week earlier, on 24 August, Israeli soldiers along Gaza's northern border shot dead a young farm worker, Said al-Hussumi. Sixteen-year-old al-Hussumi was killed while working on land a few hundred meters from the border with his cousin Masoud Tanboura, who was seriously wounded. Eva Bartlett reports for The Electronic Intifada. 

Shebaa Farms "real issue" is water
11 Sep 2009 - BEIRUT (IRIN) - The politics of the Israeli-occupied Shebaa Farms, a rugged sliver of mountainside wedged between Lebanon, Israel and Syria, have long overshadowed what some Lebanese environmentalists call "the real issue" of the disputed area: its water resources. Now activists are calling for hydro-diplomacy to take precedence over political maneuvering as the most effective solution to one of the key stumbling blocks to Middle East peace. 

In Gaza
humbled: Gaza Ramadan day 22
12 Sep 2009 - Three months ago the wail of Ahmed Abu Hashish’s father echoed again and again in my ears, long after we’d left him. The grieving father –having finally found his son’s corpse ( missing for 54 days by that point) and endured Israeli occupation soldiers’ shooting at the time of searching for, locating, and removing the body–cried with abandon, lamented his son’s murder, screamed his sorrow. *listen for the father’s anguished lamentations, the brother’s shrill wail (at the end of the clip) [from: 54 Days ] * ISM-Gaza Strip footage At the time, one of our strongest responses to the recovery of the nineteen year old Ahmed’s body was indignation: -Ahmed, from a very...

Palestine Chronicle
Israel Blocks Money to Gaza's Disabled
11 Sep 2009 - By Jonathan Cook - Nazareth Yunis al Masri was luckier than his two brothers from Gaza. Although the truck that ploughed into their car as they travelled to work in Israel 24 years ago killed Jaber and Kamal instantly, Mr al Masri survived with shattered bones, internal bleeding and brain damage. Today, aged 49 and after many operations, he has difficulty walking and problems remembering to do things. Any hope of working again was crushed in 1985 amid the car wreckage. Like tens of thousands of other Palestinian manual labourers who worked inside Israel before Gaza was progressively sealed off to the outside world from the early 1990s, Mr. Al Masri had paid regularly into Israel's social security fund from his salary. Certified as disabled by an Israeli medical committee, he is entitled to a monthly allowance of $800 from Israel's National Insurance Institute, out of which he has supported his wife and 10 children in their home in Beit Hanoun, in northern Gaza. In early January, however, the transfers of disability benefits stopped arriving in his bank account in Gaza. About 700 other injured workers are in the same situation. The reason, they have learnt, is that while the Israeli army was rampaging through the Gaza Strip during its winter assault, the Bank of Israel severed ties with Gaza's banks. The ending of financial relations between Israel and Gaza, in a deepening of the three-year blockade of the Hamas-ruled enclave, means Mr. al Masri and other disabled workers have...

The Axis of Evil and the Great Satan 
11 Sep 2009 - By Deepak Tripathi 'America is the Great Satan, the wounded snake.' - Ayatollah Khomeini, November 5, 1979. 'States like [Iran, Iraq, North Korea] constitute an axis of evil, arming to threaten the peace of the world.' - President George W Bush, January 29, 2002. Spoken two decades apart, these words sum up the troubled history of the relationship between Iran and the United States. The German philosopher, Friedrich Nietzsche, once said, 'There are no facts, only interpretations.' His observation holds true about the manner in which Tehran and Washington remain preoccupied with each other. No significant event in Iran can go without repercussions for relations with the West. Almost 30 years after the overthrow of Iran's autocratic ruler and America's policeman in the oil-rich Gulf, Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi, the legacy continues to haunt both countries. The presidential election of June 2009 has been no exception. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the conservative incumbent, was seeking reelection after four turbulent years. A range of internal and external peculiarities surrounded the campaign that was both exciting and unique. In a country of 72 million people, two-thirds are under 30 years of age and the rate of literacy exceeds 75 percent. Iran's economy has suffered a steady decline. Oil revenues have failed to benefit the population. The downturn in the world economy has affected Iranian oil exports particularly hard and its balance of payments difficulties are acute due to low financial reserves.[1] Inflation was over 30 percent during the summer of 2008, when the Central...

Make Peace, Not War With Iran
11 Sep 2009 - By James Gundun Defense spokesman Geoff Morrell had told reporters that his boss, Secretary Robert Gates, was keen to address Al Jazeera. The Arab media giant couldn’t be ignored he said in a backhand way. With such a high platform, Gates unfortunately cast himself into the sweeping tide of war against Iran when peace is the only feasible solution in the Middle East. ‘One of the pathways to get the Iranians to change their approach on the nuclear issue is to persuade them that moving down that path will actually jeopardize their security,not enhance it,’ Gates said in wide ranging interview. ‘The more that our Arab friends and allies can straighten their security capabilities, the more they can strengthen their cooperation, both with each other and with us, I think sends the signal to the Iranians that this path they're on is not going to advance Iranian security but in fact could weaken it.’ Gate’s plan falls in line with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s recent slip of a Eurasian defense umbrella. The Pentagon is similarly considering speeding up development of its bunker busting 30,000-pound Massive Ordnance Penetrator (MOP). Under stifling pressure from Israel, US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs William Burns admits that the Obama administration is preparing Iranian sanctions for 2010 in return for a temporary settlement freeze. Israel is trading 1 apple for 5 apples and fleecing America, but the reason holds a key to why Iran’s nuclear program isn’t about Iran’s nuclear program. Israel...

What Role Did the US-Israeli Relationship Play in 9-11?
11 Sep 2009 - By Jeff Gates On the day of the 9-11 attacks, former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was asked what the attack would mean for US-Israeli relations. His quick reply was: “It’s very good….Well, it’s not good, but it will generate immediate sympathy (for Israel).” Intelligence wars rely on mathematical models to anticipate the response of “the mark” to staged provocations. Reactions thereby become foreseeable—within an acceptable range of probabilities. When Israeli mathematician Robert J. Aumann received the 2005 Nobel Prize in economic science, he conceded that "the entire school of thought that we have developed here in Israel" has turned "Israel into the leading authority in this field." With a well-planned provocation, the anticipated response can even become a weapon in the arsenal of the agent provocateur. In response to 9-11, how difficult would it be to foresee that the U.S. would deploy its military to avenge that attack? With fixed intelligence, how difficult would it be to redirect that response to wage a long-planned war in Iraq -- not for U.S. interests but to advance the agenda for Greater Israel? The emotionally wrenching component of a provocation plays a key role in the field of game theory war planning where Israel is the authority. With the televised murder of 3,000 Americans, a shared mindset of shock, grief and outrage made it easier for U.S. policy-makers to believe that a known Evil Doer in Iraq was responsible, regardless of the facts. The strategic displacement of facts with induced beliefs, in...

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