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Ha'aretz 9 Nov 2009 - Lebanese official says Katyusha fired last month was arranged with Israel, to make Hezbollah take blame.
Report: Hezbollah rearming for imminent conflict with Israel
Ha'aretz 9 Nov 2009 - The British Observer quotes a Hezbollah commander as saying they expect an Israeli attack by spring.
U.S. top brass: Nuclear Iran is existential threat to Israel
Ha'aretz 9 Nov 2009 - Mullen: A nuclear Iran would undermine the stability of a region that is already highly unstable.
Lebanon authorities detain 'arms ship' crew for questioning
Ha'aretz 9 Nov 2009 - After Israel releases ship found to be carrying tons of weapons apparently to Hezbollah, crew questioned in Beirut.
Israel threat to attack Iran is not a bluff, deputy FM says
Ha'aretz 9 Nov 2009 - Danny Ayalon tells Sky News that Iran conduct regarding international efforts is bid to 'buy time and procrastinate.
Netanyahu: Iran's shipment of arms to Hezbollah - a war crime
Ha'aretz 9 Nov 2009 - PM responds to seizure of hundreds of tons of weapons believed to be Iranian shipment to Hezbollah.
ANALYSIS / Arms ship seizure just another battle in the secret war with Iran
Ha'aretz 9 Nov 2009 - Israel shouldn't congratulate itself too much for intercepting hundreds of tons of weapons apparently meant for Hezbollah.
WATCH: Video of Israel Navy commandeering arms ship
Ha'aretz 9 Nov 2009 - Ship believed to be carrying tons of weapons from Iran to Hezbollah, disguised as civilian cargo.
Israel Navy chief: Hezbollah-bound Iran ship carried hundreds of tons of arms
Ha'aretz 9 Nov 2009 - The Antigua-flagged ship was raided by the Navy not far from the coast of Cyprus before dawn Wednesday.
Police call off search for terrorist feared loose in Israel
Ha'aretz 9 Nov 2009 - The highest level of alert has been declared by security forces in the Sharon plain.
ANALYSIS / Israel preparing public for a new war in Gaza
Ha'aretz 9 Nov 2009 - Hamas has used the lull in fighting with Israel not only to restore, but improve its capabilities.
B'Tselem: IDF probes alleged cases of harm to civilians in Gaza
Ha'aretz 9 Nov 2009 - B'Tselem reports that IDF is examining 21 cases of violence against civilians during Operation Cast Lead.
Israeli settlers attack Palestinian homes in Al-Khalil
US, Novermber 8, 2009 (Pal Telegraph) - Sabri Mohammed Ghraieb has seen the olive groves that once fringed his West Bank home turn into a Jewish settlement and prison-like walls but still he refuses to leave.
Abbas Announces He Will Not Seek Re-Election
West Bank, November 5, 2009, (Pal Telegraph) - The Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, has decided not to run for the presidency in elections next year, according to reports from Ramallah.
Israel: The Army Will Fight the Next Battle Soon in Gaza Strip
Gaza, November 4, 2009, (Pal Telegraph) - Gabi Ashkenazi, chief of staff of the Israeli Army, made a statement this week that "the army will come back to face the rocket launching stages in the overcrowded areas and fight in cities, villages,...
The National 8 Nov 2009 - In a reflection of the street demonstrations sweeping Europe in 1989, the people of a Palestinian town would try to achieve liberty through non-violent means, only to be rebuffed by Israel.
Hizbollah agrees to cabinet proposals
The National 7 Nov 2009 - After five months of wrangling, Lebanon's incoming prime minister Saad Hariri may announce his new administration 'this weekend'.
Abbas move seen as gamble with US
The National 7 Nov 2009 - Mahmoud Abbas's decision not to run again for president of the Palestinian Authority sparks speculation from across the world about his motives.
Lebanon agrees on government
The National 7 Nov 2009 - Hizbollah says Lebanon's opposition has agreed to a proposed government line-up, a possible end to negotiations following a June general election.
AlJazeera 7 Nov 2009 - Lebanon's political opposition agrees to latest cabinet line-up under Saad Hariri.
Iran rejects nuclear deal, MP says
AlJazeera 7 Nov 2009 - Politician's remarks are not Tehran's official response to uranium swap, official says.
Abbas claims Israel doesn't want peace or two-state solution
Jeruslalem Post 9 Nov 2009 - PA president tells supporters in West Bank Palestinians won't make any more concessions; deputy PLC speaker urges dismantling PA.
IDF hurries on counter-Goldstone report
Jeruslalem Post 9 Nov 2009 - Army expedites probes on Operation Cast Lead; Ashkenazi appoints senior officer 'project manager.'
'US attitude to Israel may be changing'
Jeruslalem Post 9 Nov 2009 - Cantor discusses climate on Capitol Hill; Obama pulls out of GA for Fort Hood memorial, will meet PM.
Court gives 2005 terrorist two life sentences
Jeruslalem Post 8 Nov 2009 - Nablus resident sentenced to additional 30 years in jail for shooting attack that left 2 soldiers dead.
Iran warns Russia over S-300 system delay
Jeruslalem Post 8 Nov 2009 - Parliament speaker: Russian failure to deliver S-300 will be "negative point in the countries' relations."
Abbas threatens to dismantle PA
Jeruslalem Post 8 Nov 2009 - PA president looks for US pressure on settlements, prepares for January vote despite desire to quit.
Assad: Turkey must mend ties with Israel
Jeruslalem Post 8 Nov 2009 - Syrian president: J'lem must keep the peace; Erdogan: Israel war crimes worse than Darfur.
Congressman to Barkat: US Embassy should move to J'lem
Jeruslalem Post 8 Nov 2009 - Sen. Joe Lieberman says six senators sponsored bill to put an end to a currently needed presidential confirmation.
Analysis: PA would breach Oslo if it declared a state unilaterally
Jeruslalem Post 8 Nov 2009 - But 'state' is in the eyes of the beholder, and other countries might recognize 'Palestine,' experts say.
IRIN CAIRO Thursday, November 05, 2009 (IRIN) - Despite a number of positive economic indicators, Egypt has a hunger problem: Nearly a third of all children are malnourished, according to a new report compiled by the Ministry of Health and the UN Development Programme (UNDP).
SYRIA: WFP pilots SMS food distribution
IRIN DAMASCUS Wednesday, November 04, 2009 (IRIN) - A new pilot project by the World Food Programme (WFP) in Syria has come up with a novel way of getting food aid to Iraqi refugees. WFP claims the project is a world first.
EGYPT: Dabbas Haile, "When life is hard, you have to be tough"
IRIN CAIRO Tuesday, November 03, 2009 (IRIN) - I come from the Gash Barka region of Eritrea, near the Sudanese border. I escaped from prison and left my country on 1 January 2004 to come to Sudan and then Egypt, where I was jailed again.
IPS UNITED NATIONS, Oct 31 (IPS) - Is the ongoing controversy over Iran's nuclear programme helping to advance the United Nations' agenda on nuclear disarmament? To a number of diplomats and experts who have participated in past U.N. discussions on the spread of nuclear weapons, the answer is, yes – although...
MIDEAST: The 'Unknown' Fight the Illegal
IPS OCCUPIED EAST JERUSALEM, Nov 8 (IPS) - "Make sure your father gets this," the municipal inspector tells a ten-year-old boy at the gate of the concrete house in an alleyway in the Al-Bustan quarter of Silwan, a Palestinian neighbourhood right under the shadow of the walled Old City.
Stop The Wall 8 Nov 2009 - In Friday’s demonstration against the illegal construction of the Apartheid Wall that is designed to steal the agricultural lands of the villages of Southern Bethlehem, the people of al-Ma'sara celebrated the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall in Germany. In chants and speeches, the demonstrators insisted on the illegality of the Wall and occupation, while international and Israeli activists showed support using percussion instruments. [
al-Ma'sara and Bil'in protest as tensions mounts in Jerusalem
Stop The Wall 8 Nov 2009 - As tensions mounts in Jerusalem over the Occupation’s assault on Al Aqsa, demonstrators in the West Bank continued their struggle last week against the Wall and the ongoing confiscation of land. [
PCHR Weekly Report
11/7/2009 - International Solidarity Movement - Indymedia UK, 6 November 2009 - Activists blockade in solidarity with Palestine - At about 6 o'clock this morning a group of London students and international activists, including members of the International Solidarity Movement (ISM), blocked the two gates leading to the depot. The activists seek to raise awareness of the UK's continued role in the purchase of goods produced in Israel's illegal settlements in the West Bank as well as Carmel Agrexco's role in the sustenance of Israel's illegal expansionist activities in Palestine. The blockaders have urged companies dependent on Carmel Agrexco's supplies, and therefore inconvenienced by this and previous blockades, to seek out new suppliers and, in so doing, show that Carmel Agrexco's continued support for Israel's aggression in Palestine will not be allowed to continue.
Israeli envoy tells U.S. Jews: Push for Iran sanctions
Ha'aretz 8 Nov 2009 - Michael Oren tells Jewish Federations annual general assembly that Goldstone report helps cast doubt on Israel's legitimacy.
Israeli envoy tells U.S. Jews: Push for sanctions on Iran sanctions
Ha'aretz 8 Nov 2009 - WASHINGTON, D.C. - Israel's Ambassador to the United States on Sunday told American Jewish groups that they must press for sanctions on Iran, and condemned the findings of a United Nations commission on the Gaza conflict between Israel and Hamas, which he said helped to "cast widespread doubts about Israel's legitimacy." ...
American Jewry kicks off annual conference, but guest star Obama cancels
Ha'aretz 8 Nov 2009 - WASHINGTON, D.C. - The annual General Assembly of the Jewish Federations of North America kicked off this year in an autumnal American capital with the disappointing news that the guest star, President Barack Obama, canceled at the last minute to attend a memorial service for the victims of a shooting at an army base in Texas last week. The president's chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, will be taking his place as keynote speaker on Tuesday. ...
Iran negotiator calls for quick nuclear deal with West
Ha'aretz 8 Nov 2009 - Iran's chief negotiator in talks with Western powers over its atomic program said on Sunday he hoped a draft deal on nuclear fuel would be reached soon. ...
Hamas rejects Mofaz call to talk as 'Zionist vulgarity'
Ha'aretz 8 Nov 2009 - The Hamas rulers of the Gaza Strip said Sunday that they would never negotiate with the "Zionist enemy", hours after Kadima MK Shaul Mofaz presented a plan to hold talks with the group and establish a Palestinian state in 60 percent of the West Bank within one year. ...
Disabled IDF vets block traffic as they demand due benefits
Ha'aretz 8 Nov 2009 - Disabled Israel Defense Forces veterans renewed their protests on Sunday for a second week outside of the defense establishment's headquarters in Tel Aviv. ...
MK Ben Simon urges Labor rebels: Don't split off yet
Ha'aretz 8 Nov 2009 - Labor MK Daniel Ben Simon on Sunday urged rebel party members to give party chairman and Defense Minister Ehud Barak "one more chance" before splitting off into their own faction. ...
Elderly Israeli dies three days after getting swine flu vaccine
Ha'aretz 8 Nov 2009 - An elderly Israeli man died unexpectedly over the weekend, three days after he was vaccinated against swine flu. ...
Settler women cry sexual harassment by Israel Police
Ha'aretz 8 Nov 2009 - Two young women who were arrested last week after being evacuated from the West Bank settlement outpost Ramat Migron on Sunday claimed they were strip-searched and harassed by female police officers. ...
Israel Air Force One? State considering official plane
Ha'aretz 8 Nov 2009 - The Prime Minister's Office and the Finance Ministry are looking into buying a plane, the Israeli equivalent of Air Force One, to serve Israeli leaders on their official trips around the world. ...
Relief Web 8 Nov 2009 - Source: Integrated Regional Information Networks
Humanitarian Update: Regional Office for the Middle East, North Africa and Central Asia, Oct 2009
Relief Web 8 Nov 2009 - Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Universal Children's Day: Feature - Let's wake to somber sufferings of children
Relief Web 8 Nov 2009 - Source: Xinhua
YNet News 8 Nov 2009 - Color Red alert sounded in Gaza vicinity shortly before rocket hits open area; no injuries or damage reported
Iran atomic negotiator wants speedy talks
YNet News 8 Nov 2009 - Islamic Republic's chief negotiator in talks with Western powers over its atomic program says hopes draft deal on nuclear fuel will be reached soon
A peek into Temple Mount excavations
YNet News 8 Nov 2009 - Western Wall Heritage Foundation holds tour of tunnels in attempt to ward off Muslim claims that al-Aqsa Mosque is in danger of collapsing. Waqf refuses offer for similar tour for Muslims, saying 'settlers won't give us approval to enter a Muslim-owned area'
PIC 9 Nov 2009 - A group of savage Israeli settlers from Ramat Yishai settlement outpost attacked Palestinian homes in the city of Al-Khalil, south of the West Bank, and tried to take over a commercial building.
Bahr: Abbas’s attempt to incite Arabs against Hamas is a shameful attitude
PIC 9 Nov 2009 - Dr. Ahmad Bahr stated that Mahmoud Abbas’s attempts to incite Arab countries to boycott Hamas are a shameful political behavior reflecting his reluctance to achieve the national reconciliation.
Students of a British university boycott Israeli products
PIC 9 Nov 2009 - The students union in the British University of Sussex has decided to boycott Israeli products within the varsity campus, sources in the University said.
Hamas: No legitimacy for occupation on our lands
PIC 9 Nov 2009 - Hamas has rejected the renewed Israeli plan proposing the establishment of a Palestinian state with "temporary" borders, describing it as "malicious".
Officials call for entrusting Amnesty water report to int’l organizations
PIC 9 Nov 2009 - A number of water and agricultural officials in the Palestinian government in Gaza called for necessarily entrusting the water report issued by Amnesty to international organizations.
Source: Abbas attacked Mousa for his refusal to sever relations with Hamas
PIC 9 Nov 2009 - An informed Palestinian source revealed that Mahmoud Abbas launched a scathing attack on Amr Mousa, the secretary-general of the Arab League, because of the latter’s relationship with Hamas leaders.
Stranded students in Gaza appeal for solution
PIC 9 Nov 2009 - Palestinian students stranded in the Gaza Strip who could not travel via the Rafah border crossing with Egypt to follow up their studies abroad have called on the media to shed light on their plight.
Kaddoumi: Abbas is lying about his intention not to run for elections
PIC 9 Nov 2009 - Farouk Al-Kaddoumi, a senior Fatah leader, stated that Mahmoud Abbas is lying to the Palestinian people about his intention not to run for presidential elections.
HRW: IOA breaking international laws
PIC 9 Nov 2009 - The Human Rights Watch (HRW) organization has charged that the IOA continued demolition of Palestinian homes in occupied Jerusalem was in violation of the international laws.
Abu Marzouk: Hamas is the pulse of the Nation
PIC 9 Nov 2009 - Dr. Mousa Abu Marzouk, the deputy political bureau chairman of Hamas, has said that his Movement would remain the prime advocate of the resistance option against occupation.
LA Times 8 Nov 2009 - The uncle says Nidal Malik Hasan was a sensitive man who faced ethnic taunts and was haunted by soldiers' wartime disabilities. Hasan was not political, his relatives in the West Bank say. When Rafik Ismail Hamad last traveled from the West Bank to visit relatives in the United States, he was struck by the pressures one of his nephews was facing.
New York Times 8 Nov 2009 - Appealing to the president of the Palestinian Authority, who announced that he would not seek re-election, the Israeli president said: “Don’t let go.”
Call White House, Ask for Barack
New York Times 8 Nov 2009 - Until the Palestinians and Israelis are serious about the peace process, the United States should get out of the picture.
Young, Talented and Unhappy Playing Basketball Overseas
New York Times 8 Nov 2009 - Jeremy Tyler, 18, left high school in San Diego to play basketball in Israel. His goal is to be drafted by an N.B.A. team in two years, but for now he is struggling.
Goldstone and Gaza
New York Times 6 Nov 2009 - The dispute over the Goldstone Report will continue, but Gaza needs help right now.
U.N. Set to Endorse Inquiry Into Possible War Crimes in Gaza
New York Times 5 Nov 2009 - The U.N. is expected to endorse a report that found evidence that Israel and Palestinian militants had each committed war crimes during last winter’s Gaza conflict.
Israeli Navy Captures Arms Shipment
New York Times 5 Nov 2009 - Officials say a cargo ship captured off Cyprus was carrying weapons for Hezbollah but offered no proof.
11/7/2009 - China View - GAZA, Nov. 7 (Xinhua) -- A report Saturday showed that 32 Palestinian children have been killed while working in smuggling tunnels under the border between the Gaza Strip and Egypt in past three years. The report, conducted by the Palestinian National Society for Democracy and Law, said 32 children were killed since Israel imposed a blockade on the coastal enclave in mid-2006 and restricted entry of goods to little more than food and medicine. The research also focused on child labor, revealing that children, under 18 years old, work for 12 hours a day in the tunnels, and some of them take pain-killer called Tramadol and energy-giving drugs. The report said during this period, 117 Palestinians in total have been killed in the tunnels, which flourished in the Hamas-run area due to the tight blockade. The cave-ins often result from Israeli air raids, Egyptian detonation
Wasted years: Jobless youngsters collect rubbish for living in besieged Gaza
11/7/2009 - China View - GAZA, Nov. 7 (Xinhua) -- Every morning, Ali mounts a donkey carriage and heads toward one of Gaza city's rubbish dumps near a central football field to rummage with his naked hands for plastic waste. At the doorway of his house in Jabaliya refugee camp in northern Gaza Strip, Ali's donkey stands waiting to go out on a daily trip. Wearing his usual dirty work clothes, Ali said he felt "jealous watching children wearing clean uniforms on their way to school. "Ali said he felt ashamed when his friends saw him searching through the rubbish with flying insects around. He usually sells the plastic waste to recycling factories at the end of a day of hard work. Now aged 21, Ali has been doing this for four years since he was forced to leave school to support a family of 11 members, after his father could no longer do the job due to an injury.
Israel spy agency tried to recruit alleged killer
11/7/2009 - Yahoo! News - AFP - JERUSALEM (AFP) – A Jewish settler who was arrested for allegedly having murdered two Palestinians was approached by Israel's internal security agency to be an informer after the attacks, the agency said Friday. Jack Teitel, a 37-year-old immigrant from the United States, was arrested in October on suspicions of murdering the men in 1997 while visiting Israel as a tourist, the police announced on Sunday. He is also suspected of being behind a string of bomb attacks since 2006. When Teitel returned to Israel in 2000, three years after the murders, he was questioned by the Shin Bet internal security service and the police over the killings, but no charges were filed. It was at that moment that the domestic intelligence agency asked him to serve as its informant in extreme right-wing circles, according to the mass-selling Yediot Aharonot newspaper, which broke the story.
VIDEO - Israel: Remote control occupation?
11/7/2009 - The Real News - Baum: New technologies are allowing Israel to maintain control over its occupation remotely - This week, the chief Palestinian negotiator, Saeb Erakat, announced that because Israeli settlements continue to grow (with de facto US support) and annex the land planned for a future Palestine, the Palestinians may have to abandon hopes for an independent state. He therefore urged Palestinians to fight for one democratic state where all citizens will be equal. With this announcement, many are wondering what the future of the Israeli occupation would look like. Meanwhile, Israel is continuing its technological evolution of the occupation, making it possible to institutionalize control over the occupation remotely. At the end of October, the joint Israeli-Palestinian Alternative Information Center held a conference in Bethlehem on economy of the occupation. The Real News' Lia Tarachansky attended. . . .
US Senators Act to Force Recognition of Jerusalem as Capital
11/9/2009 - Arutz Sheva - (IsraelNN. com) Seven United States senators have sponsored a bill that would abolish the “security” waiver that American presidents have used to prevent implementing a 1995 law declaring that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel. Kansas Republican Senator Sam Brownback, a long-time supporter of Israel, introduced the bill and said, "It is long overdue for America to recognize the sovereign right of Israel to choose Jerusalem as its capital city. ”The proposed Jerusalem Embassy Relocation Act law, number S. 2737, is "a bill to relocate to Jerusalem the United States Embassy in Israel" and has six co-sponsors--five Republicans, from Kentucky, Texas, Arizona, and Louisiana and Independent Senator Joe Lieberman of Connecticut. It would remove the current waiver, which gives the president authority to delay recognition of Jerusalem as the capital on the premise that doing so would endanger the security of the United States.
US Generals Flood Israel for Exercise against ‘Specific Threats’
11/8/2009 - Arutz Sheva - (IsraelNN. com) An unprecedented number of American generals, along with 1,400 U. S. army soldiers, are participating with top IDF brass in the high-level Juniper Cobra military exercise that one U. S. Navy commander said is aimed at “specific threats. ” Public affairs officials interrupted the naval commander in order to divert the conversation from the scenario of Israel attacking Iran’s nuclear facilities and defending itself from a counter-attack. One senior IDF source told BBC magazine, “I've never seen so many American generals. ”Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, Defense Minister Ehud Barak, IDF Chief of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi, along with the commander of the U. S. force in Europe and U. S. ambassador to Israel James Cunningham attended the three-week exercise on Tuesday. It is one of the largest-ever joint training drills and is fueling speculation that the United States is preparing for
Jordanian Professor: Israel Will Go to War over Water
11/9/2009 - Arutz Sheva - (IsraelNN. com) Israel will go to war against Lebanon and Egypt to solve its water crisis, a Jordanian political science professor has charged. Dr. Ghazi Al-Rababah told the Jordanian Al-Arab Alyawm newspaper that the first war would be in Shebaa farms area, a small part of which Lebanon and Syria have been trying to force Israel to surrender. Although Israel is taking steps to solve the water shortage by building desalination plants that will be in full production in four years, al-Rababah declared that Israel will wage war against Egypt within seven years in order to control the Nile River. He accused Israel of "stealing hundreds of millions cubic meters of water from the Litani water in Lebanon, which has violated agreements by diverting water from flowing across the border. The professor also repeated charges that Israel is stealing water from the Palestinian Authority and that it is sending contaminated water to Gaza.
Israel Warns IDF Ready to Roll Against Iran
11/9/2009 - Arutz Sheva - (IsraelNN. com) Israel's warnings that it will not tolerate an existential threat in the form of a nuclear Iran should be taken seriously, Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon warned in an interview with the Britain-based Sky News on Friday. " The one who's bluffing is Iran, which is trying to play with cards they don't have," Ayalon told the news network. "All the bravado that we see and the testing and the very dangerous and harsh rhetoric are hiding a lot of weaknesses. " Israel has repeatedly warned the Islamic Republic -- and the rest of the world -- that it will not allow Iran to complete its nuclear development program and create an atomic weapon to be aimed at the Jewish State. " If Iranian behavior and conduct continues as they have exhibited so far, it is obvious that their intentions are only to buy time and procrastinate," Ayalon said.
Pete Seeger’s role in ending Israeli house demolitions
11/8/2009 - Ha'aretz - Anyone who owns a radio probably knows the song "Turn, Turn, Turn" (To everything there is a season) very well. A number of versions of this song have become permanent fixtures on the play lists of most popular music radio stations. Here's what the listeners don't know: every time this song is played, the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions receives a few dollars, which accumulate to a "several thousand dollars every year," according to the committee's co-founder and coordinator. The Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (ICAHD) is a non-profit organization that uses non-violent means to oppose Israeli demolition of homes in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. Seeger has been donating some of the song's royalties to ICAHD for ten years. The banjo-playing Seeger, 90, is considered one of the pioneers of American folk music.
Israel’s New Generation Of Conscientious Objectors
11/7/2009 - Palestine Monitor - "We cannot ignore the truth - the occupation is a violent, racist, inhumane, illegal, undemocratic, immoral and an extreme condition that presents a mortal danger to both peoples… We, who were educated on the values of liberty, justice, honesty and peace, cannot accept it. " So reads the letter declaring the refusal of 150 students to join the Israeli army this year. Amongst that number is Efi Brenner, 18 years old and an active animal and human rights campaigner. His decision has resulted in ten days imprisonment, with further terms likely, and for his family to throw him out of home. Despite the fallout Efi’s commitment to his decision and the reasons underlying it remain resolute. " One of the reasons I refuse to join is because I want the Palestinians to know that not all Israelis are in favour of the occupation and that some people are willing to make a sacrifice to end it. "
Norway drops war crimes case against Israel
11/8/2009 - JTA - WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Norwegian prosecutors dropped a case alleging war crimes by 10 Israeli leaders during last winter’s Gaza military campaign. Chief prosecutor Siri Frigaard said last Friday that she is dismissing the complaint because "there is no good reason" for Norwegian authorities to investigate further and Norway should be judicious in deciding when to investigate alleged war crimes by individuals with no connection to the country. A group of lawyers had lodged the complaint April 22 under Norway's universal jurisdiction law. The 2008 law allows foreigners to face charges in Norway for war crimes committed anywhere in the world. Former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, Defense Minister Ehud Barak and opposition leader Tzipi Livni were among the Israelis named. The decision comes a day after the United Nations General Assembly, with Norway abstaining from the vote, endorsed the Goldstone report. The report alleges war crimes by Israel and Hamas during the Gaza war and recommends independent investigations into the charges.
Dispute persists over Israel’s weapons-shipment claims
11/9/2009 - Daily Star - Release of vessel and crew casts doubt on validity of claims - BEIRUT: The dispute over Israel’s claimed haul of “hundreds of tons” of rockets it said was aboard a ship bound for Hizbullah showed no sign of abating over the weekend as the Antiguan-owned vessel docked in Beirut. Israel claims that it seized cargo from a ship after naval commandoes stormed the vessel in the Mediterranean in the early hours of Wednesday morning, a bounty which consisted of more than 3,000 rockets, according to reports from the Israeli media. Israeli Army sources claimed to have obtained papers proving that the ship was destined for the port of Latakia in Syria and weapons aboard it were sent from Iran, eventually destined for Hizbullah. Both Syrian and Iranian foreign ministers denied that such a cargo existed and accused Israel of attempting to hamper legitimate trade routes between the two nations.
Berri: Israel arms-ship claims ’fabricated’
11/7/2009 - Daily Star - Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri said Friday that Israeli claims about an alleged arms ship sent from Iran to Hizbullah were fabricated by Israel to target the resistance, which he stressed had the right to obtain weapons from “anywhere in the world. ” The speaker added that Israel’s capture of a ship near Cyprus was also a bid to deflect attention away from the Goldstone report, on Israeli war crimes during the Gaza war. The Goldstone report accused Israel and Hamas militants of war crimes during the recent conflict in the Gaza Strip, which killed up to 1,387 Palestinians and 13 Israelis. The report gave Israel and the Palestinian Hamas movemnet six months to mount credible investigations into the allegations or face possible prosecution at the International Criminal Court in The Hague. On Wednesday, Israeli naval commandos stormed a ship they said was carrying hundreds of tons of weapons just before dawn in waters close to Cyprus.
March 14 Christians to still agree on seat distribution
11/9/2009 - Daily Star - No dispute’ over Hizbullah’s arms in policy statement - BEIRUT: Senior political leaders have approved the distribution of ministries in a new government, five months after June’s parliamentary elections, but further negotiations await to appease March 14 Christian politicians, officials said Sunday. While the hurdles between Premier-designate Saad Hariri and opposition politician Michel Aoun appear to have been cleared, the Free Patriotic Movement (FPM) leader’s camp must now put forward the names of individual ministers for the new cabinet. As for the formulation of the cabinet’s policy statement, opposition groups stressed on Sunday that no disagreement governed the issue of Hizbullah’s weapons since the matter would be subject to discussions during upcoming National Dialogue sessions, while March 14 Christian figures expressed their rejection of legitimizing the party’s weapons. . . . -- Links: Rival Lebanon factions agree on unity government and Rival Lebanon factions agree on unity government
Hezbollah gears up for new war
11/8/2009 - The Guardian - Fighters rearm and reinforce positions in valleys amid fears that Israel is about to launch attack on Islamic group - Hezbollah is rapidly rearming in preparation for a new conflict with Israel, fearing that Benjamin Netanyahu's government will attack Lebanon again prior to any assault on Iran's nuclear facilities. Last week, Israeli commandos seized a ship in the Mediterranean loaded with almost 400 tonnes of rockets and small arms – which Israel claimed was being sent from Iran to its Hezbollah allies. In dramatic further evidence of growing tensions, the Observer has learned that Hezbollah fighters have been busy reinforcing fixed defence positions north of the Litani river. Having lost many of its bunkers in the south, Hezbollah is preparing a new strategy to defend villages there. Although the organisation denied last week that the weapons were intended for its use, senior commanders have done little to disguise the scale of rearmament.
UN-proposed nuclear deal still on table: Iran MP
11/8/2009 - The Raw Story - AFP - Proposals from world powers to supply nuclear fuel for a research reactor in Iran are still on the table, a leading MP said on Sunday, a day after suggesting that Tehran could reject the deal. " Our first option is to buy fuel of 20 percent (enrichment)," ISNA and Mehr news agencies quoted Alaeddin Borujerdi, the head of parliament's national security and foreign policy committee, as saying. " But if we cannot buy it we could make a limited exchange on condition that first we get fuel of 20 percent," he added. Borujerdi on Saturday said that Iran had decided to reject proposals from major powers for the supply of nuclear fuel, in what was seen as a serious setback for UN-brokered efforts to allay Western concerns about Tehran's atomic ambitions. Under the plan thrashed out in talks with France, Russia and the United States, Iran was to have shipped out most of its own stocks of low-enriched
Arab echoes of grassroots protest
11/8/2009 - The National - . . . . . On November 5, 1989 – four days before the Berlin Wall fell – the people of the Palestinian town of Beit Sahour decided they would no longer pay for Israel’s occupation of their land. A coalition of Arab armies inspired by Nasser’s Pan-Arabist dream had failed in 1967 to expel Israel from the same soil; now, in an echo of the grassroots street protests sweeping Europe, the people of Beit Sahour would try to achieve it by refusing to pay their taxes. “No taxation wut representation!” their leaflet cried. In reply, Israel did not follow the path of Mikhail Gorbachev. When told on March 3, 1989, of the decision of the Hungarian Central Committee to “completely remove the electronic and technological defences from the western and southern borders of Hungary”, the Soviet leader did not condemn the move or order retaliation.
J’lem mayor finds support for united city in Congress
11/7/2009 - YNetNews - Barkat warmly received in Washington, with Congress members presenting to him legislation proposal to have US embassy moved from Tel Aviv to capital without need for president's consent - WASHINGTON - Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat met with Democratic and Republican Congress members in Washington on Friday, and was pleased to find wall-to-wall support of the need to keep Jerusalem united. The mayor, who is on a two-week visit to the United States and Canada, arrived at Congress accompanied by Israeli Ambassador to Washington Michael Oren. Barkat was received warmly, and learned that it is seemingly easier to run Jerusalem from the US capital than from the Israeli one. One example of the support Barkat found for his position on Jerusalem can be found in the Senate, where a group of seven senators are working on legislation that will support maintaining a united Jerusalem.
A line in the sand
Uri Avnery, Ma’an News Agency 11/8/2009
Mahmoud Abbas is fed up. The day before yesterday he withdrew his candidacy for the coming presidential election in the Palestinian Authority. I understand him. He feels betrayed. And the traitor is Barack Obama.
A year ago, when Obama was elected, he aroused high hopes in the Muslim world, among the Palestinian people as well as in the Israeli peace camp. At long last an American president who understood that he had to put an end to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, not only for the sake of the two peoples, but mainly for US national interests. This conflict is largely responsible for the tidal waves of anti-American hatred that sweep the Muslim masses from ocean to ocean.
Everybody believed that a new era had begun. Instead of the Clash of Civilizations, the Axis of Evil and all the other idiotic but fateful slogans of the Bush era, a new approach of understanding and reconciliation, mutual respect and practical solutions. Nobody expected Obama to exchange the unconditional pro-Israeli line for a one-sided pro-Palestinian attitude. But everybody thought that the US would henceforth adopt a more even-handed approach and push the two sides toward the two-state solution. And, no less important, that the continuous stream of hypocritical and sanctimonious blabbering would be displaced by a determined, vigorous, non-provocative but purposeful policy. As high as the hopes were then, so deep is the disappointment now. Nothing of all these has come about. Worse: the Obama administration has shown by its actions and omissions that it is not really different from the administration of George W. Bush.
From the first moment it was clear that the decisive test would come in the battle of the settlements. It may seem that this is a marginal matter. If peace is to be achieved within two years, as Obama’s people assure us, why worry about another few houses in the settlements that will be dismantled anyway? So there will be a few thousand settlers more to resettle. Big deal. more.. e-mail
Israeli settlements could cause one-state solution
Juan Cole, Salon 11/5/2009
PLO leader warns that settlers in the West Bank are making a free-standing Palestinian state impossible - includes video.
Saeb Erekat, chief of the Palestine Liberation Organization Steering Committee, said Wednesday that Palestine Authority president Mahmoud Abbas should be frank with the Palestinian people and admit to them that there is no possibility of a two-state solution given continued Israeli colonization of the West Bank.
It is morally and ethically unconscionable to leave millions of Palestinians in a condition of statelessness, in which they have no rights. (Warren Burger defined citizenship as the "right to have rights" as my colleague Margaret "Peggy" Sommers pointed out in her new book.) Therefore, if there isn’t going to be a two-state solution, there will have to be a one-state solution, in which Israel gives citizenship to the Palestinians. (As it is, 20 percent of Israelis are Palestinian Arabs and that proportion will grow to 33 percent by 2030, if they are not expelled by sometime-Moldavian-night-club-bouncer and now foreign minister of Israel, Avigdor Lieberman.)
Al-Jazeera English has a video interview with Saree Makdisi [and Khalil Jahsan] on Erekat’s statement [link follows].
The Israeli colonies in the West Bank are actively encouraged by the Israeli government. Haaretz reported last winter on a hitherto secret database on the settlements kept by the Israeli government [link follows]:
An analysis of the data reveals that, in the vast majority of the settlements -- about 75 percent -- construction, sometimes on a large scale, has been carried out without the appropriate permits or contrary to the permits that were issued..... -- Links: VIDEO - Al-Jazeera interview with Saree Makdisi and Haaretz report on secret settlements database -- See also: VIDEO - Al-Jazeera interview with Saree Makdisi and Haaretz report on secret settlements database more.. e-mail
In Beit Sahour, Squeezed Between a Rock and a Hard Place
Awatef Sheikh, Washington Report on Middle East Affairs 11/7/2009
2009 September-October Edition
The Nakba Continues
The only way to reach Said Zawahry’s house now is to go through Har Homa, a Jewish-only colony built on the confiscated Palestinian Abu Ghneim mountain, just between Bethlehem and Jerusalem. I reach a traffic circle that leads into this massive colony, a residential fortress accommodating 30,000 settlers, built on this imposing, once-green hill. I phone a friend who visited the Zawahry family last summer to get directions to the house. “Take the first dirt road you find and the house is just opposite the colony, standing alone,” he says. “You won’t miss it.”
I leave the wide, built-up road and follow the first dirt road that I find. I drive down a hill, but suddenly I’m face to face with a construction truck. Oh damn, I say to myself, they’ve started construction work on Said’s confiscated land. The driver in the truck, who ironically is a Palestinian laborer, looks at me, puzzled about my presence here. I drive past him and take the road down to overlook a huge space that’s been leveled. I wonder: have they demolished Said’s house?
The flattened area looks awkwardly naked and is covered with white soil. A weird feeling of dryness and exposure hits me. It’s an alien landscape. I call my friend again and describe what I see. Wrong spot, he explains; this is where the Israelis are constructing a campus. It’s all Palestinian land, but I’m at the wrong spot. I head back to the paved road that circles the colony from its southwest side. I drive by the edge of the hill overlooking Bethlehem and Beit Sahour, both very close. There’s still no sign of Said’s house to my right, where my friend says I’ll find another dirt road that is used by bulldozers and cement trucks. “You’ll be able to see Said’s home through two new housing towers,” he says. But I see nothing. more.. e-mail