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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
16 November, 2009

News

International Middle East Media Center

Thousands Protest Peres In Argentina
IMEMC 16 Nov 2009 - Tuesday November 17, 2009 - 01:16, Thousands protested in front of the Argentinean Congress building in Buenos Aires against the visit of Israel's President, Shimon Peres.

Israel Offers NIS 10 M. For Information About Shalit
IMEMC 16 Nov 2009 - Monday November 16, 2009 - 22:55, Israeli sources reported that thousands of residents of the Gaza Strip receive daily calls from an Israeli organization offering 10 Million NIS for information on the whereabouts and the conditions of the captured soldier, Gilad Shalit.

H1N1 patient dies in the West Bank, death toll reaches five
IMEMC 16 Nov 2009 - Monday November 16, 2009 - 16:12, A Palestinian H1N1 patient died on Monday in the West Bank bringing the death toll because of the flu to 5 since the outbreak.

The Israeli military kidnaps seven civilians from the West Bank
IMEMC 16 Nov 2009 - Monday November 16, 2009 - 14:58, Seven Palestinian civilians were kidnapped on Monday by Israeli troops during morning invasions targeting a number of West Bank communities.

Palestinian Dies In Gaza Tunnel
IMEMC 16 Nov 2009 - Monday November 16, 2009 - 12:08, Palestinian medical sources in the Gaza Strip reported on Monday morning that a Palestinian young man was electrocuted in a tunnel near Khan Younis, in the southern part of the Gaza Strip.

P.A Security Forces Arrest Seven Hamas Supporters
IMEMC 16 Nov 2009 - Monday November 16, 2009 - 10:30, Islamic Resistance Movement, Hamas, accused the Palestinian Security Forces loyal to Fateh movement in the West Bank of arresting seven Hamas members and supporters.

Ma'an News

Gaza mayor: Israel obstructing firefighters
11/16/2009 - Gaza - Ma'an - Israeli authorities impeded firefighters' efforts to extinguish a blaze that erupted at a waste site in Wadi As-Salqa, central Gaza, for the seventh day on Monday, according to a local official. Sources in the Gaza Strip suspect the cause of the fire was a homemade projectile fired toward an Israeli town. The mayor of Wadi As-Salqa, Abdul-Mahdi Abu Mugheseeb, told Ma'an that the fire started at the eastern side of the waste site near the borders between Deir Al-Balah and the Green Line border with Israel. Smoke has spread to Deir Al-Balah, which is six kilometers away, he added. Abu Mugheseeb highlighted that bulldozers from the Gaza Strip solid waste council attempted to extinguish the fire by pouring truckloads of sand, almost controlling the fire. However, he explained that civil defense vehicles could not access the area without coordinating with International. . . 

Lieberman: Settlements an excuse for Arabs to complain
11/16/2009 - Bethlehem - Ma'an - Israel's settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem are just a pretext for the Arab world to complain, Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman insisted on Friday. The foreign minister is himself a West Bank settler. "In terms of facts, our settlements are just a pretext for the Arab world to complain," Lieberman told the Russian-language REKA radio. "As we all remember, settlements have not prevented us from signing a peace agreement with Egypt. "He added, "I'd also like to call to mind that we have evacuated tens of settlements in the Gaza Strip. And what do we have now? Hamas in Gaza and Kassams in Sderot. " Lieberman also said European opposition to the settlements was "a sort of political slogan. . . there were no Jewish settlements before 1967, but terror, conflicts, and tension never ceased to exist between 1948 and 1967. 

Bargouthi dismisses ’ridiculous’ threats
11/16/2009 - Ramallah - Ma'an - Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's threat to take unilateral action against Palestinians were they to declare statehood is "ridiculous," according to Mustafa Barghouthi, the secretary-general of the Palestinian National Initiative. "There aren't any Palestinian territories left to threaten - they're all occupied," Barghouthi said in a statement on Monday. Regarding other threats to halt transfers of money collected in taxes on behalf of the Palestinian Authority, Barghouthi said taking such a step would require Palestinians first cancel the Paris economic accord. He urged the PLO Central Committee to move forward with its proposal, as well as seek international sanctions on Israel until it fulfills its obligations to remove or reroute the separation barrier as per the International Court of Justice's 2004 ruling on the wall's illegality. 

Gaza man electrocuted in tunnel accident
11/16/2009 - Gaza - Ma'an - A Palestinian man was killed as the result of electric shock inside a smuggling tunnel under the Gaza-Egypt border town of Rafah on Sunday, medics said. The victim was identified as Tawfiq Rujeila. Three others were reportedly injured. Medical sources at Abu Yousif An-Najjar Hospital told Ma'an over the phone that Rijeila was pronounced dead upon arrival. Since Israel and Egypt imposed a devastating blockade on Gaza in 2007, a vast network of smuggling tunnels has become the only reliable means of moving goods into Gaza. The industry is notoriously dangerous, and dozens of Palestinians are killed each year in tunnel-related accidents. [end] 

Media watchdog demands end to West Bank arrests
11/16/2009 - Bethlehem - Ma'an - The Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedoms (MADA) expressed concern on Sunday over what it termed an arrest campaign waged by security services in the West Bank. In a statement, the media group expressed particular concern over the arrest of former Al-Aqsa TV journalist and West Bank office director Mohammed Eshtiwi. Eshtiwi's wife said Palestinian military intelligence arrested her husband on 14 November. They came to his house last Thursday, but he was visiting the doctor for treatment. He went to PA headquarters in Tulkarem, where they arrested him, but was released to meet his brother who was himself released from Israeli jail after three years of imprisonment this week. He will have to return to prison in Ramallah, police told him. Meanwhile, security forces also arrested former Al-Aqsa TV cameraman Osaid Amarneh and former correspondents. . . 

Israel opens two Gaza crossings for aid
11/16/2009 - Gaza - Ma'an - Israeli authorities opened the Kerem Shalom and Karni crossings in Gaza on Monday, while Nahal Oz remained closed. Palestinian crossings coordinator Raed Fattuh said between 96-106 truckloads of commercial merchandize and humanitarian aid will be allowed into Gaza through Kerem Shalom. The aid will include 20 trucks carrying 600 calves for the Muslim Eid Al-Adha holiday, during which sheep and calves are traditionally slaughtered. Fattouh added that 111 truckloads of wheat and fodder would be allowed through Karni. Israel opened the Kerem Shalom crossing on Sunday and allowed 15 trucks loaded with 550 calves. Both Nahal Oz and Karni remained closed. Israel and Egypt began a near-total closure of their borders with Gaza in June 2007, causing the coastal strip's economy to collapse and trapping its 1. 5 million residents inside. 

Israeli ministers threaten to annex West Bank
11/16/2009 - Bethlehem - Ma'an - Israeli ministers continued threatening to take unilateral measures if the Palestinian Authority (PA) declares statehood without a negotiated peace agreement. According to Israeli sources, Benjamin Netanyahu's administration may even consider withdrawing from the Oslo Accords. Israeli Minister of Environment Gilad Erian on Monday threatened to stop delivering taxes collected on behalf of the PA. He also threatened to erect more military checkpoints in the West Bank. "We will not allow the Palestinians to declare a state unilaterally. "Infrastructure Minister Ozi Landao's threats were more specific. "The first step: Israel will announce the annexation of all West Bank settlements and [Area C] zones to Israel, which Israel has a religious right to annex. This must be clear because Israel should respond promptly to any unilateral step by the Palestinians. 

Bill Clinton visits Al-Aqsa compound
11/16/2009 - Jerusalem - Ma'an - Former US President Bill Clinton visited the Al-Aqsa Mosque and Dome of the Rock on Sunday, sources said. The visit surprised officials, however, as the Palestinian Authority's Ministry of Endowments and Islamic Affairs was not told in advance. "It seems it was a special visit," said Jerusalem endowments director Azzam Al-Khatib. Israeli forces suddenly imposed a number of strict security measures, and then half an hour later, Clinton entered from the Moroccan Gate, Al-Khatib added. The US Consulate opted not to inform officials of the visit ahead of time as they usually do, he said. A spokeswoman for the consulate told Ma'an that Clinton's visit to Jerusalem was personal and thus not coordinated with the Americans. Meanwhile, Israeli media reported that Clinton visited the Western Wall, as well. 

Erekat: World should stand against occupation
11/16/2009 - Bethlehem - Ma'an - Saeb Erekat, the chief PLO negotiator, officially announced on Monday that efforts to issue a UN Security Council resolution recognizing the Palestinian state on the borders of 4 June 1967 has begun. At a news conference at the PLO's Negotiations Affairs Department, Erekat said the Palestinian leadership calls on the international community to support this move. Erekat has specifically called on European countries to back the Palestinian decision by expressing their commitment to international law to end the Israeli occupation and save the two-state solution, he said. Regarding Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's threats to respond with similar unilateralism, Erekat responded, "Israel's daily provocative actions are unilateral," according to a separate statement. He added, "Occupied East Jerusalem has become the key battleground on which the very future of the two-state solution hinges. 

Qureia: Turning to UN just one of many options
11/16/2009 - Bethlehem - Ma'an - Member of the PLO's Executive Committee Ahmed Qureia articulated various options available to the leadership, all the while undetered by Israel's threat of unilateral action, Israeli media reported on Monday. In an interview with the Israeli daily Ynet, Qureia stated that, "as people living under occupation, we are committed to looking into other options. Diplomacy is an option, turning to the UN is an option, the popular struggle is an option. All options are available and we have many possibilities. "The former prime minister's comments follow statements made by the Israeli leadership that they are capable of undertaking unilateral decisions - a reaction to Saeb Erekat's declaration over the weekend that Palestinians are exerting all efforts to buttress unilaterally declaring an independent state. 

Bahar: Shalit captors must stick to terms
11/16/2009 - Gaza - Ma'an - The Palestinian Legislative Council's first deputy, Ahmad Bahar, praised the steadfastness ofPalestinian prisoners, their pioneering role in leading the Palestinian resistance and their unity inside Israeli prisons during his visit to the released prisoner Younis Hussein. Bahar appealed to the factions currently holding captured Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit to commit to their terms to bring about a prisoner swap that could affect the imposed Israeli standards that currently impede the release of Palestinian detainees. Younis Hussein, released on Sunday after serving 22 years, welcomed and briefed the delegation of PLC members on the living conditions suffered by prisoners and the arbitrary actions of the prison administration against all the prisoners. He stressed the need for Palestinians to unite to bring about the release of all prisoners and not to compromise on Palestinian prerequisites. 

PLO leaders dismiss day-long threats
11/16/2009 - Ramallah - Ma'an - PLO officials responded in force to Israel's threats to seize more territory if Palestinians follow through with a plan to seek UN recognition of an independent state. Yasser Abed Rabbo, secretary-general of the PLO's Central Committee, said on Monday that "we will go to the Security Council and ask the world to recognize a symbolic declaration of independence for the Palestinian people. " "The 4 June [1967] line - which is internationally binding - will be the border of an independent state of Palestine with Jerusalem as its capital," he added, speaking at an Independence Day rally in Ramallah. Israeli officials have threatened to meet unilateralism with unilateralism if the PLO follows through, including annexing major settlement blocks or the entire West Bank, as well as withholding tax revenue or even withdrawing from the Oslo Accords. 

US backs Palestinian state through talks - not UN
11/16/2009 - Bethlehem - Ma'an - The United States backs Palestinian efforts to achieve an independent state, but only through negotiations with Israel, State Department spokesman Ian Kelly told reporters on Monday. "We support the creation of a Palestinian state that is contiguous," he said. "We are convinced that has to be achieved through negotiations between two parties. We support a Palestinian state that arrives as a result of negotiations between two parties. "Kelly also said he was unaware if the PLO had sought America's opinion, according to Agence France-Presse. [end] 

MoH says five swine flu fatalities confirmed
11/16/2009 - Nablus - Ma'an - At least five Palestinians have died from the H1N1 virus in the West Bank, the Palestinian Authority Ministry of Health announced on Monday. Health care director As'ad Ramlawi told Ma'an that two people died in Nablus, one in Ramallah, one in Hebron, and one in Bethlehem. The ministry was treating 1,100 Palestinians diagnosed with the virus, Ramlawi said, adding that cases were expected to increase throughout the fall and winter. Meanwhile, two Israeli citizens reportedly fell victim to the illness on Monday. A 51-year-old woman died of the flu in Afula, according to the Israeli daily Haaretz, while the Hebrew-language daily Yedioth Ahronoth reported that a 36-year-old man suffering from pre-existing conditions died in Holon. The second case had not yet been confirmed by the country's Health Ministry, however. 

Caretaker gov’t discusses prisoners, elections during weekly meeting
11/16/2009 - Ramallah - Ma'an - The Palestinian caretaker government in Ramallah discussed during its weekly cabinet meeting on Monday the recent Arab League decision to initiate an international and Arab campaign to highlight illegal detentions of Palestinians, in addition to rejecting a state on interim borders and condemning Hamas' refusal to proceed with elections in Gaza. The political environment The caretaker government welcomed the Arab Peace Initiative committee's support for the Palestinian appeal to the international community to exert pressure to end the Israeli occupation. Furthermore, the government applauded the UN General Assembly's social, educational, and humanitarian committee over its decision to support the Palestinian right to self determination. The cabinet further reiterated its refusal to all proposals calling for the establishment of a Palestinian state within. . . 

Az-Za’areer: ’instability and tension’ unless final talks take place
11/16/2009 - Ramallah - Ma'an - Fatah spokesman Fahmi Az-Za'areer spoke of tensions remaining in the area until the occupation is ended, playing down Israeli threats to call off Olso and tighten the siege, stating that "following the occupation there is no more disaster or punishment - its vanishing is the purpose of every Palestinian. " ¯ In a news release commenting on recent statements by the Israeli leadership, Az-Za'areer asserted that the Palestinian people do not fear the occupation but rather are struggling, trying to bring about its end. He emphasized that, fundamentally, the current tensions in the area result from the ongoing occupation, citing a lack of preparedness to affect the end of Israeli occupation and the withdrawal from Palestinian territories occupied in 1967 as effectively thwarting peace talks. The spokesman explained that it is the PLO's duty and fundamental aim to. . . 

Fatah: By accepting interim borders Hamas intent on Gaza emirate
11/16/2009 - Ramallah - Ma'an - Fatah spokesman Ahmad Assaf stated on Monday that Hamas' rejection of a sovereign Palestinian state for a state with temporary borders "can only mean they intend to establish its own emirate in Gaza. " ¯ In a news statement Assaf spoke of his surprise at Hamas leader Salah Al-Bardawil's comments that "the declaration of a one-sided Palestinian state and going to the Security Council are pointless. " ¯The spokesman further remarked that Hamas' position is akin to Israel's, particularly referring to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's statement that, "Israel will respond to any Palestinian steps unilateral especially regarding to the declaration of statehood. "In addition, Assaf stated that, "while the Palestinian leadership, represented by President Mahmud Abbas, is struggling in the battle of steadfastness and defendingPalestinian constants, Hamas. . . 

Ha'aretz Defense page

Lieberman: PA playing ugly 'double game' with Israel
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - FM accuses PA of pressuring Israel to crush Hamas, then submitting complaints to international court. 

IDF troops hang sign at base: We won't evacuate settlers
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - Move comes month after soldiers from same brigade waved pro-settler banners during graduation ceremony. 

Turkey and Israel hold joint drill, in apparent ease of tensions
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - Jordan also takes part in rescue exercise; Turkish daily 

Netanyahu: If Palestinians act unilaterally, so will Israel
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - PM tells Saban Forum there is no substitute for talks, appeals to Palestinians to negotiate at once. 

Report: Missing Iran general abducted by Mossad, being held in Israel
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - Iranian website: Ali-Reza Asgari taken to Israel to get information about Iran nuclear program, Ron Arad. 

Iran MP: We could produce our own missile defense system
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - Lawmaker says Iran will soon be able to produce system if Russia does not deliver S-300 air defense missiles. 

IDF Chief Rabbi: Troops who show mercy to enemy will be 'damned'
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - Brig. Gen. Rontzki also tells yeshiva students that religious individuals made better combat troops. 

IDF chief: Army open to looking into Goldstone claims
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - Ashkenazi says Israel must explain the war's justice as it is possible we will be forced to act again in Gaza. 

ANALYSIS / Next round of Gaza hostilities will be more intense
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - To halt rocket fire, IDF will have to combine massive firepower with deployment of ground forces. 

Hamas: Israel fabricating pretext for new Gaza war
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - Spokesman says IDF report of Hamas test-firing rocket is intended to cover up 'previous crimes' in Gaza. 

IDF Chief: Israel will fight in Gaza again if needed
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - Hamas tells Red Cross: Israel planning another war in Gaza'; Palestinian militant killed by IDF at border. 

IDF troops kill Palestinian militant at Gaza border
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - Gaza militants fire rocket into south Israel; Palestinian arrested over bid to stab cop near Temple Mount. 

Olmert: Groups using Goldstone Gaza report to attack us are 'hypocritical'
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - Former PM, who launched Gaza offensive condemned in UN report, says Israel must continue fighting terror. 

Brazil to buy $350 million worth of drones from Israel
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - The deal was signed during President Peres' official visit to Brazil, but negotiations began months ago. 

Israel shows papers linking Iran to seized 'Hezbollah arms ship'
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - Iran urges Russia: Ignore Israeli pressure, deliver S-300 missiles are capable of shooting down warheads. 

U.S. accuses Iran of arms shipments to Hezbollah
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - U.S. raises issue of arms shipments to Security Council; UN: Both sides violating UN Resolution 1701. 

IDF to Palestinians: Bring forth Gaza war complaints
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - IDF chief says criminal investigation division along with five committees now probing 45 Palestinian complaints. 

Alleged Jewish terrorist to be charged with murdering two Palestinians
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - Yaakov Teitel arrested a month ago on suspicion of murder, involvement in several murders and bomb plots. 

Most advanced, expensive fighter jet headed to Israel
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - The U.S. is scheduled to respond next week to Israel's request for 25 F-35 stealth fighter jets. 

Outpost residents finally admit IDF official issuing demolition order
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - Police negotiating with residents of unauthorized community, Givat Asaf, who refuse to accept decree. 

Uruknet

[uruknet.info] New Evidence Jack Straw Guilty On Torture - A Smoking Gun
Uruknet November 16, 2009 - Finally I have indisputable documentary evidence that the British government had a positive policy of using intelligence from torture in the War on Terror, and that the policy was personally directed by Jack Straw. Here are the minutes of the meeting at which I was told this ... All references to the CIA and MI6 have been...

[uruknet.info] Israel Must End Gaza Blockade, Evictions, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon: Alleged Abuse of Palestinian Children
Uruknet November 16, 2009 - Israel should end the blockade of Gaza, cease evictions and demolitions of Palestinian homes, and ensure that the rights of children are respected and that all allegations of torture and ill-treatment are promptly investigated and perpetrators prosecuted, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said in an annual report released today. "In particular, the Government of Israel should allow unimpeded...

[uruknet.info] Gazans Brace for Cold, Bleak and Miserable Winter
Uruknet November 16, 2009 - Tens of thousands of Gazans living in tents and damaged homes face a wet, cold and miserable winter as Israel's blockade of the coastal territory continues to prevent the importation of building and reconstruction material. During the last few weeks Gazans were given a brief reprieve from the oncoming winter as an unseasonal snap of warmish,...

[uruknet.info] Channel 4 Dispatches investigates The pro-Israel lobby in Britain: FULL TEXT
Uruknet November 16, 2009 - ... The Conservative Friends of Israel is beyond doubt the best connected, and probably the best funded, of all Westminster lobbying groups. Eighty percent of Conservative MPs are members. The leader of the Conservative Party is often expected to appear at their events, while the shadow foreign secretary and his team are subjected to persistent pressure by...

[uruknet.info] Israeli army kidnapped 6200 children since 2000 Official report
Uruknet November 16, 2009 - An official report, received by Arab League from the minister of prisoners' affairs in the Palestinian Authority (Ramallah), revealed that the Israeli occupation forces have kidnapped about 6,200 Palestinian children since the beginning of Al Aqsa Intifada (2000), including approximately 337 children still detained in Israeli prisons and interrogation centers. During last Saturday's meeting of the...

[uruknet.info] U.S. "would veto" Palestinian state move: Senators
Uruknet November 16, 2009 - The United States would veto a Palestinian declaration of statehood in the United Nations Security Council, U.S. senators visiting Israel said Monday. They said the threat by Palestinian officials to take the issue to a United Nations resolution was a waste of time and would go nowhere. They urged Arab states to stop it. "It would...

[uruknet.info] Campus Watch copycats close in on Israeli professors Right hopes to silence boycott call from academics
Uruknet November 16, 2009 - Right-wing groups in Israel want to create a climate of fear among left-wing scholars at Israeli universities by emulating the "witch-hunt" tactics of the US academic monitoring group Campus Watch, Israeli professors warn. The watchdog groups IsraCampus and Israel Academia Monitor are believed to be stepping up their campaigns after the recent publication in a US...

[uruknet.info] Resisting through education
Uruknet November 16, 2009 - "That was the happiest day of my life," Ahmad explained, "I was freed that day." "Come on," I laughed as we walked down the dusty Gaza street, the Mediterranean sun beating down hard on our faces. "It couldn't have been that bad. I mean, we all dislike school to some degree, but it has its nice...

[uruknet.info] Surgery okay delayed, Gaza patient dies
Uruknet November 16, 2009 - Medical opinions, appeals from humanitarian organizations, and official urgent requests - none of this helped Samir al-Nadim, a 25-year-old Palestinian heart patient who could still be alive today if he hadn't slipped between the bureaucratic cracks of the various bodies dealing with the movement of patients from the Gaza Strip to Israel or the West Bank......

[uruknet.info] The Suffering Goes On and On
Uruknet November 16, 2009 - ...Also overshadowed in the dispute about the Goldstone report is the siege of Gaza that continues today. Eleven months before the Israeli attack, Karen Koning AbuZayd, commissioner general for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East, wrote: "Gaza is on the threshold of becoming the first territory to be...

[uruknet.info] Hamas criticizes PA attempt to seek UN recognition of statehood
Uruknet November 16, 2009 - Hamas rejected Monday a Palestinian suggestion to seek UN Security Council support for unilaterally declaring a Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Such a declaration would have no meaning and was merely an attempt by the rival Palestinian camp of President Mahmoud Abbas to pretend it had an alternative to faltering peace negotiations,...

[uruknet.info] Israeli ministers threaten to annex West Bank
Uruknet November 16, 2009 - Israeli ministers continued threatening to take unilateral measures if the Palestinian Authority (PA) declares statehood without a negotiated peace agreement. According to Israeli sources, Benjamin Netanyahu's administration may even consider withdrawing from the Oslo Accords. Israeli Minister of Environment Gilad Erian on Monday threatened to stop delivering taxes collected on behalf of the PA. He also...

Palestine Telegraph

Tunnel Trade wins Noor Award for best short doc!
Gaza, November 16, 2009, (Pal Telegraph) - We have just learned that Tunnel Trade, the film I co-directed with my friend and colleague Saeed Farouky of Tourist with a Typewriter Ltd, in 2007, has won a Noor Award for Outstanding Short Documentary...

Israel Rejects Palestinian Call For Statehood
Israel, November 16, 2009, (Pal Telegraph) - Israel has rejected a move by the Palestinians to gain international recognition for an independent state, saying negotiations are the solution.

Palestinians Seek UN Help For State
West Bank, November 15, 2009, (Pal Telegraph) - The Palestinians plan to take their quest for independence to the U.N. Security Council, aiming to secure international support for a state, Palestinian officials said Sunday.

Dublin: Hundreds Attend Rally Against Israeli Apartheid in Palestine
Dublin, November 15, 2009, (Pal Telegraph)-Today Saturday 14th November 2009 hundreds of Palestinians and solidarity activists rallied in Dublin to protest against Israel's apartheid practices in Palestine.

warning of Humanitarian crisis coming due to gas depletion – Gaza Strip 
Gaza City, November 15, 2009, (Pal Telegraph) The ongoing Israeli siege has been gravely suffocating the life of people of the Gaza Strip. The fuel companies in the Gaza Strip  have been warning of the imminent humanitarian crises that...

The National

Syria’s ultimate aim is to win over the West
The National 16 Nov 2009 - Syria's aim is not to solve the 61-year-old conflict with Israel but to woo the West and prove its enemy's intention to sabotage peace efforts.

The legal legacy of a ‘hedonist’
The National 16 Nov 2009 - In an unprecedented case, the former prime minister Ehud Olmert faces trial for graft, while some of his ministers have been sentenced.

Watchdogs target left-wing Israeli university scholars
The National 16 Nov 2009 - Some of Israel's top academics are being targeted in a witchhunt because of their views on the country's policies in the Middle East.

Thousands of illegal settlers evicted from Kenyan forest
The National 16 Nov 2009 - About 30,000 people have been living in the Mau Forest illegally, felling trees for charcoal and timber and clearing the land for farming

Aljazeera

Fears grow over Iran nuclear sites
AlJazeera 16 Nov 2009 - Leaked IAEA report says visit to Qom facility raises questions of possible further sites.

Palestinians warned over UN move
AlJazeera 16 Nov 2009 - Israel says it would take "steps" if Palestinians attempt to unilaterally secure statehood.

Egypt creates Arabic web domain
AlJazeera 16 Nov 2009 - First non-Latin character domain name promises greater access for Arabic speakers.

Yemen says Iran funding rebels
AlJazeera 16 Nov 2009 - Security chief tells Al Jazeera that Houthis would have been defeated without Iran's support. 

Alternative Information Center

Israel Must End Gaza Blockade, Evictions, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon: Alleged Abuse of Palestinian Children
Alternative Information Center 16 Nov 2009 - Israel should end the blockade of Gaza, cease evictions and demolitions of Palestinian homes, and ensure that the rights of children are respected and that all allegations of torture and ill-treatment are promptly investigated and perpetrators...

Palestine News Network

Israel could annex more of West Bank: minister
PNN 16 Nov 2009 - JERUSALEM (Reuters) - An Israeli cabinet minister said on Monday Israel could annex more of the West Bank if Palestinians declared statehood without concluding a peace agreement. If the Palestinians take such a unilateral line, Israel should also consider ... passing a law to annex some of the settlements, Environment Minister Gilad Erdan, a close ally of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, told Israel...

Palestinians warned over UN move 
PNN 16 Nov 2009 - Binyamin Netanyahu, Israel's prime minister, has warned the Palestinian leadership against any attempts to unilaterally declare statehood for the Gaza Strip, the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem. West Bank-based Palestinian officials said on Sunday that they were preparing to ask the United Nations Security Council to declare their backing for the Palestinian quest for an independent state. In a radio address...

Erekat: PA may ask UNSC to recognize state on '67 borders 
PNN 14 Nov 2009 - The Palestinian Authority is considering asking the UN Security Council to recognize the existence of a Palestinian state along the 1967 lines with its capital in east Jerusalem, top PA negotiator Saeb Erekat told the Palestinian Al-Ayyam newspaper in an interview published Saturday. Erekat said that, in light of the long-stalled negotiations with Israel, the PA was currently busy enlisting the support...

Marching for peace in Bethlehem and around the world 
PNN 14 Nov 2009 - BETHLEHEM: A million people around the world are marching for peace. In the past few weeks alone, they walked through the streets of Sarajevo, Zagreb and Gendema, on the Sierra Leone-Liberia border. At the same time, halfway around the world, others marched in Mexico City. Next on the agenda? New York, Paris, Freetown and Santiago. The first-ever World March for Peace and...

Hamas criticizes PA attempt to seek UN recognition of statehood 
PNN 16 Nov 2009 - Gaza City - Hamas rejected Monday a Palestinian suggestion to seek UN Security Council support for unilaterally declaring a Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Such a declaration would have no meaning and was merely an attempt by the rival Palestinian camp of President Mahmoud Abbas to pretend it had an alternative to faltering peace negotiations, other than armed...

Jerusalem Post

Livni, Mofaz clash at Kadima faction session
Jeruslalem Post 16 Nov 2009 - Party leaders spar after Livni turns down a request by Mofaz to discuss his new diplomatic plan at meeting.

Syria to top agenda of Kouchner visit
Jeruslalem Post 16 Nov 2009 - French FM will meet with Netanyahu and Barak, as well as with Palestinians leaders.

Netanyahu: Decision on splitting A-G post is months away
Jeruslalem Post 16 Nov 2009 - Neeman 'not holding a stopwatch;' Barak declares PM's comment 'victory of common sense.'

Senators reject unilateral PA moves
Jeruslalem Post 16 Nov 2009 - Visiting US politicians say more pressure needed on Teheran; Joe Lieberman: Iran has failed the test.

IAEA: Iran may be hiding more facilities
Jeruslalem Post 16 Nov 2009 - Agency says Qom site building began in '02, not '07; says "delay in giving info doesn't build confidence."

Analysis: Soldiers' insubordination a growing concern to IDF brass
Jeruslalem Post 16 Nov 2009 - 

Barak accepts and deflects Paris Air Salon expense fiasco
Jeruslalem Post 16 Nov 2009 - 

FM: PA declaration wouldn't succeed
Jeruslalem Post 16 Nov 2009 - Foreign minister warns that if Palestinians breach agreements, Israel would be free to act as well.

Lieberman ends brief coalition threat
Jeruslalem Post 16 Nov 2009 - Netanyahu vows to resolve Absorption Ministry cuts after FM expresses outrage over haredi exemption.

IRIN

In Brief: Israel transfers calves to Gaza as a ‘humanitarian gesture’ 
IRIN TEL AVIV Sunday, November 15, 2009 (IRIN) - Israel’s Ministry of Defence has accepted agriculture minister Shalom Simchon’s request to transfer some 7,500 calves into Gaza for Eid al-Adha, a Muslim holiday on around 27 November this year and symbolised by the slaughtering of animals to distribute meat to the...

In Brief: Egypt’s Copts facing persecution - report 
IRIN CAIRO Thursday, November 12, 2009 (IRIN) - A new report on religious freedom in Egypt says Coptic Christians, who make up about 10 percent of the 80 million population (CIA factbook), face major rights violations and are being increasingly persecuted.

In Brief: Stunting not as bad as expected in Occupied Palestinian Territories
IRIN DUBAI Friday, November 13, 2009 (IRIN) - An estimated 200 million children aged under five in the developing world suffer from stunted growth due to maternal and childhood undernutrition, according to a new UNICEF report.

Inter Press Service

POLITICS: On Nuke Disarmament, It's Still "You First" 
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...

Q&A: No Unilateral Declaration of Palestinian State, Says Erekat 
IPS JERUSALEM, Nov 16 (IPS) - The Palestinian Authority has embarked on a new strategic drive to get renewed international recognition for the borders of the future Palestinian state. Last Thursday it gained backing for this approach from the Arab League.

Stop The Wall

"We are going to Jerusalem!"
Stop The Wall 16 Nov 2009 - This afternoon, exactly 20 years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, popular committees struggling against the Apartheid Wall and the settlements destroyed part of the Wall near Qalandiya. Hundreds of people, with some 30 international supporters, used a truck to pull down part of the Wall in the area east of the Qalandiya refugee camp and beyond the UN Vocational College. They also destroyed iron gates and other pieces of concrete in the same area. [

Medic beaten, youth destroy fence in Ni'lin
Stop The Wall 16 Nov 2009 - More than 200 people participated in the protest that the Ni’lin popular committee organizes every week on Friday. In response to the recent tearing down of the Wall in both Qalandiya and Ni'lin, a large contingent of soldiers were waiting for the protestors, and immediately started fire huge amounts of tear gas, rubber coated steel bullets and also live ammunition. Despite this, a group of youth managed to cut up parts of the fence and partially damage the gate. [

PCHR Weekly Report

(05-11 Nov. 2009)
PCHR During the reporting period, 6 Palestinian civilians were wounded by Israeli forces in the West Bank

International Solidarity Movement

Eighteen Palestinian protestors arrested in Deir alGussoun demonstration
11/16/2009 - International Solidarity Movement - `4 November 2009 - ISM activists joined residents of Deir alGussoun today in a demonstration against the Apartheid Wall. The Wall cuts deep through the village's land, located to the north of Tulkarem. In an extreme number of arrests, 18 Palestinian protestors were arrested by soldiers in the aftermath of the demonstration. Meeting in Deir alGussoun this morning, approximately 50 protestors marched from the village towards the Wall, where Palestinian youth succeeded in forcing open the gates on the first of the series of three high fences comprising the Apartheid Wall in the Tulkarem area. Their efforts were met with sound bombs and tear grenades from the 3 army jeeps positioned on the other side of the fences. The demonstration came to an end an hour later, after which demonstrators began constructing a stone road block on the dirt road leading back to the village, hoping to pre-empt 

Baseball team urged to cut ties with Israeli group
11/16/2009 - International Solidarity Movement - IPS News, 14 November - A coalition of 11 U. S. , Israeli and Palestinian groups are calling on the New York Mets baseball team to cancel a fundraiser by the "violent and racist" Israeli Hebron Fund which is scheduled to be held at the Mets' stadium, Citi Field, on Nov. 21. The Hebron Fund participates in "the raising of capital for the improvement of daily life for the residents of Hebron, Israel", a city in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, according to its website, but the Fund has been accused of encouraging violence towards Palestinians and participating in illegal settlement expansion. The coalition urges the Mets to reconsider their decision to rent space at the Casesar's Club, an event space in Citi Field, on the basis that, "The New York Mets will be facilitating activities that directly violate international law and the [Barack] Obama administration's call for a freeze 

Ha'aretz Diplomacy page

Argentina protesters to Peres: You deserve Nobel for murder
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - Thousands of people in Buenos Aires protested against President Shimon Peres' visit to Argentina on Monday, some of whom carried a banner telling the octogenarian he deserved a Nobel Prize for murder. ...

U.S.: IAEA report shows Iran still refusing to meet nuke obligations
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - A United Nations nuclear watchdog report proves that Iran is still not meeting its obligations to the international community over its nuclear program, U.S. State Department spokesman Ian Kelly said on Monday. ...

U.S.: Best way to achieve a viable Palestine is talks
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - The United States on Monday reaffirmed its support for the resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict through negotiations, in its first official response to a Palestinian plan to declare statehood without Israeli consent. ...

IAEA deepens Syria nuclear probe over uranium traces 
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - Syria's initial explanation of uranium traces U.N. inspectors found at a Damascus atom research reactor is unconvincing and they will take more samples in a deepening probe, the International Atomic Energy Agency said. ...

'Mussolini: I'll build an island and put all the Jews there'
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - Italian dictator Benito Mussolini was a rabid anti-Semite who called Adolf Hitler "a big romantic" and despised the pope, a new book of his mistress Claretta Petacci's diaries revealed, AFP reported on Monday. ...

The Guardian

Palestinians call for EU to back independence
The Guardian 16 Nov 2009 - Frustration at impasse on 'two-state project' Israel warns of retaliation over any unilateral move Palestinians have formally asked the European Union to urge the UN security council to recognise a fully independent state in the West...

Friends in high places | Peter Oborne
The Guardian 16 Nov 2009 - Britain's pro-Israel lobby needs to be far more open about how it is funded and what it does Every year a very grand lunch is given by the Conservative Friends of Israel at a central London...

Ha'aretz National page

U.S.: Best way to achieve a viable Palestine is talks
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - The United States on Monday reaffirmed its support for the resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict through negotiations, in its first official response to a Palestinian plan to declare statehood without Israeli consent. ...

Following criticism, Netanyahu defers vote on biometric database law 
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday postponed a vote on a controversial law that would set up a biometric database with information about every citizen of the country, following heavy criticism. ...

Netanyahu puts off decision on splitting Attorney General role
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced on Monday that the role of the next Attorney General would not be split, as Justice Minister Yaakov Neeman had proposed several weeks ago. ...

Woman dies of swine flu as virus' death toll in Israel reaches 48
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - A 51-year-old Nazareth woman who suffered from high blood pressure died on Monday from complications of swine flu, becoming the 48th person to die of the pandemic in Israel. ...

Survey: 90% of Ethiopian Israelis resist interracial marriage 
Ha'aretz 16 Nov 2009 - Intermarriage between between Jews from different ethnic backgrounds has increased steadily over the past several decades, and people say that this is solving the socioeconomic gaps that existed between Ashkenazim and Sephardim in Israeli society. ... 

Relief Web

OPT: Note on UNRWA's financial situation - Nov 2009
Relief Web 16 Nov 2009 - Source: UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East

Israel must end Gaza blockade, evictions, alleged abuse of Palestinian children – Ban
Relief Web 16 Nov 2009 - Source: UN News Service

Israeli settlements in the OPT, including East Jerusalem, and the occupied Syrian Golan: Report of the UN SG (A/64/516)
Relief Web 16 Nov 2009 - Source: UN General Assembly

Israeli practices affecting the human rights of the Palestinian people in the OPT, including East Jerusalem: Report of the UN SG (A/64/517)
Relief Web 16 Nov 2009 - Source: UN General Assembly

OPT: Israel could annex more of West Bank - minister
Relief Web 16 Nov 2009 - Source: Reuters - AlertNet

OPT: Socio-economic and food security (SEFSec) survey report 2 - Gaza Strip, Nov 2009
Relief Web 16 Nov 2009 - Source: Food and Agriculture Organization, World Food Programme

YNet News

Will settlers become illegal residents of Palestine?
YNet News 16 Nov 2009 - Legal experts discuss fate of settlers if Palestinians unilaterally declare state in West Bank 

Hundreds protest Peres' visit to Argentina 
YNet News 16 Nov 2009 - Thousands gather in Buenos Aires carrying signs calling for destruction of 'Zionist-fascist Israel' 

US against unilateral Palestinian state move
YNet News 16 Nov 2009 - 'Best way to achieve contiguous Palestinian state is negotiation between two parties,' State Department spokesman says 

IAEA deepens Syria atom probe over uranium traces
YNet News 16 Nov 2009 - Nuclear watchdog's report says UN inspectors found Damascus' explanation of uranium traces at atom research plant unconvincing, adding Syria blocking follow-up access to site of nuclear reactor bombed by Israel in 2007 

IAEA: Secrecy raises fears of more Iran atom sites 
YNet News 16 Nov 2009 - International Atomic Energy Agency report claims it has evidence construction of nuclear site in Qom began in 2002, not 2007 as Iran stated. According to report, Iran failed to show plant was for civilian purposes. Tehran rep: IAEA reports repetitive 

Soldiers who protested settlement evacuation get jail time
YNet News 16 Nov 2009 - Six Kfir Brigade troops who held sign reading, 'Nachshon doesn't evict Jews either' suspended, two of them sentenced to 30 days in military prison. Rightists: Punishment will not deter soldiers from refusing to evacuate children; political evacuations tearing IDF apart 

Israel to probe Gazan's death
YNet News 16 Nov 2009 - Authorities deny involvement in death of 25-year-old heart patient who died on way to Nablus hospital 

Saudi's top cleric says Iran cooperating with Yemen rebels 
YNet News 16 Nov 2009 - Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdul-Aziz al-Sheikh says Tehran's cooperation with Houthi rebels to 'spread Shiism' in Sunni Islam's heartland 'collusion for sin and aggression' 

Daily Star

IAEA fears further secret Iranian nuclear sites
Daily Star 16 Nov 2009 The United Nations' nuclear watchdog is concerned that Iran's belated revelation of a new uranium enrichment site may mean it is hiding further nuclear activity, an agency report said on Monday. Iran President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Monday the "enemies" of his country's nuclear program had been defeated, ahead of the release of the report.

Israel threatens to annex more of West Bank
Daily Star 16 Nov 2009 Israel warned the Palestinians on Monday that declaring a state without concluding a peace agreement would lead to Israeli countermeasures that could include annexation of more of the occupied West Bank. "If the Palestinians take such a unilateral line, Israel should also consider - passing a law to annex some of the settlements," Environment Minister Gilad Erdan.

Egypt summons Algerian envoy after World Cup unrest
Daily Star 16 Nov 2009 Egypt on Monday summoned the Algerian ambassador to seek increased security for its nationals in Algeria amid violent incidents between the two countries vying for a place in the 2010 World Cup finals. Cairo wants "assurances that the Algerian authorities are doing everything necessary to ensure the safety of Egyptian nationals in Algeria," Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab affairs Abdel-Rahman Salah told reporters.

Turkey faces concern in some EU states over Iran
Daily Star 16 Nov 2009 Growing ties between Turkey and Iran are causing concern in some parts of the European Union and could provide ammunition for opponents of Ankara's drive to join the wealthy bloc. Although EU entry is Ankara's priority, the Islamist-rooted ruling AK party has increased Turkey's influence in the Middle East. In the past few weeks.

Dozens of Mali migrants disappear from Morocco camp
Daily Star 16 Nov 2009 Mali asylum seekers turned away by Morocco have disappeared from their desert camp on the border with Mauritania, humanitarian and security services said. The 34 migrants were escorted by Moroccan troops to the border on Thursday where they were held in reception tents waiting for authorization from Nouakchott, the Mauritania capital, to enter the country.

Families of US hikers in Iran worried for mental state
Daily Star 16 Nov 2009 The families of three US hikers detained in Iran voiced concern Sunday about their loved ones' mental state after weeks of semi-isolation in a Tehran prison, and are asking people to send them messages of support. "Sarah, Shane and Josh are being well treated and seem to be physically well, but we are more and more worried about their state of mind," Nora Shourd, mother of one of the detainees said in a statement.

Missing Iranian general jailed in Israel
Daily Star 16 Nov 2009 An Iranian general who disappeared in Turkey two years ago amid media claims of defection is being held inside a jail in Israel, several newspapers reported on Monday citing a conservative website. Ali Reza Asgari, a deputy defense minister under the previous government of reformist President Mohammad Khatami, disappeared after checking into a hotel in Turkey in February 2007.

Jordan charges policeman with murder
Daily Star 16 Nov 2009 A Jordanian police officer was charged with murder on Monday after the death of a man in the southern city of Maan allegedly at the hands of police, a police spokesman said. "A police prosecutor today charged the police officer, who holds the rank of second lieutenant, with blows leading to the death of an individual," the spokesman told AFP.

Palestinian Information Center

Sawasya: Israel uses Palestinian prisoners as guinea pigs to test drugs
PIC 16 Nov 2009 - Sawasya center for human rights stated Monday that Israel uses Palestinian prisoners as guinea pigs without their consent to test the efficacy of new drugs on their bodies.

IOA moves Palestinian detainee to where his wife is held
PIC 16 Nov 2009 - The IOA has moved detainee Obada Bilal, who is blind, from the Negev prison to Petah Tikva detention center where his wife has been under interrogation for the past four days.

Bardawil: PFLP initiative under careful study
PIC 16 Nov 2009 - MP Dr. Salah Al-Bardawil, the spokesman of the Hamas parliamentary bloc, has said that his Movement was carefully studying the initiative tabled by the PFLP regarding national reconciliation.

Agha warns of unfolding food crisis in besieged Gaza
PIC 16 Nov 2009 - Palestinian minister of agriculture Dr. Mohamed Al-Agha warned of what he called “the unseen famine” which started to manifest itself in the besieged and impoverished Gaza Strip.

IOF artillery shells slam farmland in Gaza, settlers attack shepherds
PIC 16 Nov 2009 - Israeli occupation forces (IOF) opened their artillery fire at a Palestinian farmland in Farahin area east of Khan Younis to the south of the Gaza Strip on Monday.

European jurists call on citizens to document violations of Abbas’s militias
PIC 16 Nov 2009 - A number of jurists in Europe called on the West Bank people to document the crimes committed by Mahmoud Abbas’s militias against them in order to prosecute the perpetrators in international courts.

Ex-detainee Hussein urges Palestinian resistance to kidnap more Israeli soldiers
PIC 16 Nov 2009 - Ex-detainee Younis Hussein on Sunday called on the Palestinian resistance factions to kidnap more Israeli soldiers in order to ensure the release of all Palestinian detainees in Israeli jails.

Arab League condemns Israeli violations of Palestinian prisoners' rights
PIC 16 Nov 2009 - The Arab League council has condemned the Israeli violations against Palestinian and Arab prisoners and suggested asking for a consultative ruling by the ICJ on the issue of those captives.

Dweik slams Zaanoun for threatening to transfer PLC’s powers to PLO
PIC 16 Nov 2009 - Dr. Aziz Dweik strongly denounced Salim Al-Zaanoun, the head of the Palestinian national council, for saying that the authorities of the PLC would be transferred to the PLO’s central council.

Muzzaini: German mediation active, but did not reach final solution
PIC 16 Nov 2009 - Dr. Osama Al-Muzzaini said that Hamas's talks with the German mediators on the prisoners' exchange deal with Israel were "vigorous" but did not yet reach the aspired end of the road.

Los Angeles Times

U.S., Russia agree on dissatisfaction with Iran 
LA Times 16 Nov 2009 - Obama meets with Medvedev at the APEC summit in Singapore, with both saying Iran has limited time to accept a proposal to outsource enrichment. Obama then moves on to Shanghai. Presenting a united front on Iran's nuclear energy program, President Obama and Russian counterpart Dmitry Medvedev warned Sunday that they were losing patience with Tehran and wouldn't wait much longer for it to accept a proposal to resolve the dispute. 

Air Jordan XI Retro Space Jams: Not just a shoe 
LA Times 15 Nov 2009 - The expected reissue by Nike has athletic shoe fans' tongues wagging. Many fashion fiends wouldn't think twice about shelling out nearly as much as a mortgage payment for Manolos or maxing out the charge card for Choos, but they scratch their heads when they see kids queued up around the block for athletic shoes. What could make a pair of second-hand basketball shoes be worth $6,000? 

New York Times

A Mideast Truce
New York Times 17 Nov 2009 - Obama should forget peace. It's unattainable. The wounds of the past decade are too deep.

Unusual Partners Study Divisive Jerusalem Site
New York Times 15 Nov 2009 - Israeli and Palestinian experts, seeking to promote understanding, collaborated on a new book about the holy site known as the Temple Mount and as Haram al-Sharif . 

Misc

10-year-old Palestinian boy jailed for 11 hours 
11/15/2009 - YNetNews - Hussam Faisal Muhana throws stones during demonstration in his village near Tulkarem, detained in Israeli prison for 11 hours, returns home shocked and in pain. IDF spokesman: Event being investigated - Hussam Faisal Muhana, 10, heeded the calls made on Saturday over the loudspeakers throughout his village of Deir al-Ghusun near Tulkarem encouraging residents to participate in a demonstration against the separation fence. Together with other children and youth from the village, he went to the demonstration. The children threw stones at the security forces that clashed with the demonstrators. Despite his young age, Muhana was arrested. "There were two soldiers there who beat me in the legs with a club. After that, they took me to Ariel," the boy told Ynet the day after his arrest. Still in shock, he didn't know whether he was taken to a police station or to a military base. 

Israel could annex more of West Bank - minister 
11/16/2009 - Reuters - JERUSALEM, Nov 16 (Reuters) - Israel warned the Palestinians on Monday that declaring a state without concluding a peace agreement would lead to Israeli counter-measures that could include annexation of more of the occupied West Bank. " If the Palestinians take such a unilateral line, Israel should also consider. . . passing a law to annex some of the settlements," Environment Minister Gilad Erdan, a close ally of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, told Israel Radio. Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman, speaking to reporters, declined to specify what action Israel might take. But he said: "It is clear any such step by the Palestinians would not pass without an Israeli response. " Without setting a timeframe, Palestinian officials said on Sunday the Palestinians planned to go to the U. N. Security Council in an effort to secure international support for an independent state in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. 

US against unilateral Palestinian statehood bid 
11/16/2009 - The Raw Story - AFP - The United States voiced opposition Monday to unilateral Palestinian moves to seek recognition for an independent state, saying negotiations with Israel were the best way forward. A State Department spokesman reiterated US commitment to a future Palestinian state but poured cold water on an initiative to ask the United Nations Security Council to recognize a state unilaterally. " We support the creation of a Palestinian state that is contiguous. . . . We are convinced that has to be achieved through negotiations between two parties," said spokesman Ian Kelly. On Sunday, chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erakat said they would "go to the UN Security Council to ask for recognition of an independent Palestinian state with east Jerusalem as its capital and with June 1967 borders. " This in turn drew a warning from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that: "Any unilateral action will 

IDF Chief Rabbi: Troops who show mercy to enemy will be ’damned’ 
11/15/2009 - Ha'aretz - The Israel Defense Forces' chief rabbi told students in a pre-army yeshiva program last week that soldiers who "show mercy" toward the enemy in wartime will be "damned. " Brig. Gen. Avichai Rontzki also told the yeshiva students that religious individuals made better combat troops. Speaking Thursday at the Hesder yeshiva in the West Bank settlement of Karnei Shomron , Rontzki referred to Maimonides' discourse on the laws of war. That text quotes a passage from the Book of Jeremiah stating: "Cursed be he that doeth the work of the Lord with a slack hand, and cursed be he that keepeth back his sword from blood. " In Rontzki's words, "In times of war, whoever doesn't fight with all his heart and soul is damned - if he keeps his sword from bloodshed, if he shows mercy toward his enemy when no mercy should be shown. " Rontzki's remarks came during a ceremony to celebrate a new Torah scroll at the yeshiva. 

Netanyahu: If Palestinians act unilaterally, so will Israel 
11/15/2009 - Ha'aretz - Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned on Sunday that Israel would respond to any unilateral Palestinian steps - particularly declarations of statehood - with one-sided steps of its own. This was the prime minister's first response to a Palestinian initiative to ask the United Nations Security Council to endorse a Palestinian state, seen as an appeal for international backing. In his address to the Saban Forum in Jerusalem, Netanyahu said that Israel wants negotiations toward a full peace accord. There is no substitute for negotiations, he said, and unilateral action would only unravel earlier agreements between Israel and the Palestinians. " There is no substitute for negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority and any unilateral path will only unravel the framework of agreements between us and will only bring unilateral steps from Israel's side," Netanyahu said. 

VIDEO - Gideon Levy on Israel’s addiction 
11/15/2009 - The Real News - Levy: Israel is in a "coma" and needs outside help to get over its addiction to the occupation - GIDEON LEVY, COLUMNIST, HAARETZ NEWSPAPER: I think that Israel needs an adult who will save it from its own addiction to the occupation. It needs a guide who'd push or lead or any other way to take us out from the impossible situation that we are stuck in. And therefore I think that this balance of power, this really twisted relationship between the United States and Israel, which is unprecedented—there's no country in the world that reacts like Israel vis-à-vis the United States vis-à-vis independence from the United States—I think that this is not a healthy pattern. Israel is addicted to the occupation because it benefits a lot from the occupation economically and politically, and above all because it doesn't pay any price for the occupation. 

Palestinian Leaders Seek UN Endorsement of Statehood 
11/15/2009 - Antiwar.com - Israel Threatens Unilateral Actions Against Palestine in Event of Statehood - Frustrated by Israel’s hawkish government having declared the peace process dead several times in the past few months, Palestinian leaders say they are going to unilaterally ask the United Nations to endorse their independence based on pre-1967 borders. In the 1967 Six Day War, Israel attacked Syria and Egypt, and when Jordan entered the war on the basis of a defense pact with Egypt it occupied the West Bank and East Jerusalem. The territory has remained occupied ever since, and Israel has built settlements housing hundreds of thousands of Israelis in the West Bank. Years of peace efforts have yielded little in the way of progress, and while Israeli officials now concede that the Palestinians may be allowed to have a state of their own, it will only come with a myriad of conditions attached, and only in a portion of the pre-1967 West Bank. 

Obama Warns That Iran Is Running Out of Time 
11/15/2009 - Antiwar.com - Russia Hints at Sanctions as Well - Despite insistences from US diplomat Glyn Davies only days ago that America was willing to give Iran “some space” while it made its decision on a draft third-party enrichment deal, the US is again threatening new sanctions against Iran if it doesn’t quickly approve the deal. “Unfortunately, so far at least, Iran appears to have been unable to say yes to what everyone acknowledges is a creative and constructive approach,” President Obama declared, warning “we are running out of time with respect to that approach. ”Iran appears to approve of a third party enrichment deal in principle, indeed President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was the one who proposed the idea in September. But some Iranian officials see the existing draft as unacceptable, citing France’s involvement. Ambassador Davies insisted that the US understood Iran had a big decision to make and was willing to give them time. 

Reports: Iran ex-deputy minister jailed in Israel 
11/15/2009 - Antiwar.com - Iranian news reports say missing ex-deputy defense minister abducted and jailed in Israel - AP News - An Iranian former deputy defense minister who has been missing for nearly three years was abducted by Israeli agents and is now being held in Israel, several Iranian news Web sites reported Sunday. Ali Reza Asgari, a retired general who served in Iran's Revolutionary Guard, disappeared while on a private trip to Turkey in December 2006. In March of this year, a former German Defense Ministry official said Asgari had defected and was providing considerable information to the West on Iran's nuclear program. Iranian officials and Asgari's family have claimed that he was abducted. One of Sunday's Web reports, on a site called Alef, said German and British intelligence services assisted Israeli agents in abducting Asgari and taking him to Israel. 

Christians In Jerusalem Want Jews To Stop Spitting On Them 
11/15/2009 - Political Theatrics - A few weeks ago, a senior Greek Orthodox clergyman in Israel attended a meeting at a government office in Jerusalem’s Givat Shaul quarter. When he returned to his car, an elderly man wearing a skullcap came and knocked on the window. When the clergyman let the window down, the passerby spat in his face. The clergyman prefered not to lodge a complaint with the police and told an acquaintance that he was used to being spat at by Jews. Many Jerusalem clergy have been subjected to abuse of this kind. For the most part, they ignore it but sometimes they cannot. On Sunday, a fracas developed when a yeshiva student spat at the cross being carried by the Armenian Archbishop during a procession near the Holy Sepulchre in the Old City. The archbishop’s 17th-century cross was broken during the brawl and he slapped the yeshiva student. 

Pro-Israel lobby group bankrolling Tories, film claims 
11/16/2009 - The Guardian - 50% of MPs in the shadow cabinet are Conservative Friends of Israel members, according to Channel 4's Dispatches - Channel 4's film alleges that William Hague faced threats of a withdrawal of funding from CFI after he described a retaliatory attack by Israel on Lebanon in 2006 as 'disproportionate'. Photograph: Martin GodwinPro-Israeli organisations in Britain look set to see their influence increase if the Conservatives win the next election, a film scrutinising the activities of a powerful but little-known lobby warns today. At least half of the shadow cabinet are members of the Conservative Friends of Israel (CFI), according to a Dispatches programme being screened on Channel 4. The programme-makers describe the CFI as "beyond doubt the most well- connected and probably the best funded of all Westminster lobbying groups". 

Iran ’has rejected’ nuclear deal: French FM 
11/15/2009 - Yahoo! News - JERUSALEM (AFP) - Iran has in effect rejected a UN-brokered deal aimed at preventing Tehran from acquiring nuclear weapons, French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner said in an interview published on Sunday. " In practice, the answer has almost been given and it is negative. That is a shame, a shame, a shame," Kouchner told the Israeli daily Yediot Aharonot ahead of a visit to the region later this week. The comments came as both the United States and Russia expressed frustration at Iran's failure to give an answer three weeks after it received the offer in high-level talks to defuse the stand-off. The West suspects Tehran is trying to develop a nuclear weapon under cover of its civilian nuclear energy programme. Iran vehemently denies the claims. Kouchner said so far attempts to reach a deal with Iran had not gone well. "None of those meetings were particularly successful. We are waiting. It isn't good, and it is very dangerous," he told the paper. 

Palestinian groups send out feelers 
11/14/2009 - The National - RAMALLAH // Palestinians will commemorate the Palestine Liberation Organisation’s 1988 declaration of independence today and, in a rare unified act, schools in both the West Bank and Gaza will close to observe the holiday. This unusual co-ordinated measure comes amid signs that Hamas is ready to sign the Egyptian-mediated reconciliation proposal that will pave the way for a temporary rapprochement between the Islamist movement and Fatah, at least until new elections can be held in mid-2010. In announcing its decision, the ministry of education in the Hamas-administered Gaza Strip said it decided to give the day off in order to “avoid any misunderstanding with any party”. Yesterday, meanwhile, the Palestine National Council, the PLO’s parliament and the body that issued the 1988 Algiers declaration of independence, calmly exhorted Hamas to “join” the Palestinian national project and end its feud with Fatah. 


Articles

Campus Watch Copy Cats 
Jonathan Cook In Nazareth, CounterPunch 11/16/2009
      Academic Witchhunts in Israel
     Right-wing groups in Israel want to create a climate of fear among left-wing scholars at Israeli universities by emulating the “witch-hunt” tactics of the US academic monitoring group Campus Watch, Israeli professors warn.
     The watchdog groups IsraCampus and Israel Academia Monitor are believed to be stepping up their campaigns after the recent publication in a US newspaper of an Israeli professor’s call to boycott Israel.
     Both groups have been alerting the universities’ external donors, mostly US Jews, to what they describe as “subversive” professors as a way to bring pressure to bear on university administrations to sanction faculty staff who are critical of Israeli policies.
     “I have no hesitation in calling this a McCarthyite campaign,” said David Newman, a politics professor at Ben Gurion University, in Israel’s southern city of Beersheva. “What they are doing is very dangerous.”
     Last month, in what appeared to be a new tactic, IsraCampus placed a full-page advertisement in an official diary issued to students at Haifa University, urging them to visit its website to see a “rogues’ gallery” of 100 Israeli scholars the group deems an “academic fifth column”.
     “The goal is to transform our students into spies in the classroom to gather information and intimidate us,” a senior Israeli lecturer said. “It’s a model of ‘policing’ faculty staff that has been very successful in stifling academic freedom in the US.”
     Both Israel Academia Monitor, established in 2004, and the later IsraCampus, model themselves on Campus Watch, a US organisation founded by Daniel Pipes, an academic closely identified with the US neoconservative movement. more.. e-mail

Lebanese Students Advise Obama on How to Get It Right 
Franklin Lamb in Beirut, CounterPunch 11/13/2009
      "Is Your Government Stupid or Just What is the Problem?”
     If those in Lebanon watching the news on 11/12/09 blinked they might have missed an interesting news item. It appeared at approximately 4:20 pm on Narharnet.com, the pro-US/Saudi news website.
     The news item read “4:16 pm, American Ambassador Michele Sison (sp) departed Lebanon for her country.” Ten minutes later the item disappeared and, as it turned out, the ten minutes was exactly how long it took for the US Embassy security and press office to inform Beirut media outlets that “the American Ambassadors movements are to be reported at least one hour after they occur, not one minute.”
     The hasty departure of Ambassador Michele Sisson, according to the US Foreign Relations Committee office, may have been because the Obama administration is preparing for a ‘deep review’ of its 9 months effort in Lebanon and the region, debriefing key officials arriving from the area to participate.
     Ambassador Sisson will likely give the White House an earfull, including a report of what the Embassy Press Office referred to as the spectacle this week of former US friends and assets in the March 14 majority coalition warmly and very publicly embracing at various events marking the end of the five-month effort to create a government here of those “Iranian surrogates” in Hezbollah. The Ambassador may also report to the White House that Hezbollah in now the most popular and respected political party in Lebanon and the main pillar of the new government and that it is about to launch its social welfare initiatives in Parliament.
     The White House appears to know that Hezbollah is here to stay. If a plebiscite was held, polls show, the Lebanese public would agree that now more than ever the growing National Lebanese Resistance led by Hezbollah is needed as a deterrent to Israeli aggression, given the recent discovery of a vast Israeli spy network, daily violations of Lebanese sovereignty, as well as the serial threats from all manner of Israeli officials, extremist rabbis, settlers and their supporters in the US Congress who appear to be encouraging Israel to launch its seventh war against Lebanon. more.. e-mail

How To Create A Terrorist 
Political Theatrics 11/16/2009
      Going from Ramallah to Jerusalem by bus should only take about twenty minutes, but since Israel constructed the separation wall it usually takes up to one hour. In addition to the wall one has to negotiate Qalandia checkpoint, a hi-tech airport/border security style military facility. Everyone has to disembark from the bus, pass through the checkpoint and, assuming that everything went as planned, get back on the bus on the other side of the wall and continue on their journey to Jerusalem.
     The last Sunday of October 2009 it took me and a friend who was accompanying me more than three hours because of a dramatic incident that is going to change one girl’s life forever.
     After getting out of the bus, we arrived at the checkpoint’s entrance and went through a narrow, barred passageway that could be the entrance to hell. Then we passed through the first turnstile under the watch of a bored looking Israeli security guard and several sophisticated video cameras, and entered the heart of the checkpoint, it’s security area—where you are trapped until the Israeli soldiers allow you to exit.
     To do so, you have to proceed through several steps. The first is going through one of the six lanes, where you have to pass through a second turnstile before arriving at the lane’s “checking area”. There you have to put all your belongings through an x-ray machine, walk through a metal detector, present an identity document to a teenage Israeli soldier sitting in the lane’s control room behind bullet-proof glass.
     Of course, you can only pass if you have a foreign passport with a valid Israeli visa, an Israeli passport, a “Blue ID card” (for Palestinians who live inside the current borders of Israel but not in East-Jerusalem) or a “Jerusalem ID card” (for Palestinians who live in East-Jerusalem). This means that the vast majority of Palestinians living in the West Bank, who hold a “Green ID”, are not allowed to cross the checkpoint and go to Jerusalem. However, even if you have all the needed documents and everything goes right until that point, you are still at the whim of whichever young, generally female, soldier who is present in the control room that day..... more.. e-mail


Electronic Intifada
Resisting through education
Electronic Intifada: 16 Nov 2009 - Ahmad's first day of school was in 1991 during the first Palestinian intifada. Then six years old and living in the northern Gaza town of Beit Hanoun, Ahmad was a good student who enjoyed school. He worked hard and was always the first in his year. However, he was to have a different attitude towards education as frequent Israeli violence made completing his studies a struggle. Marryam Haleem writes from Beit Hanoun. 

Right-wing groups creating climate of fear at Israeli universities
Electronic Intifada: 16 Nov 2009 - Right-wing groups in Israel want to create a climate of fear among left-wing scholars at Israeli universities by emulating the "witch-hunt" tactics of the US academic monitoring group Campus Watch, Israeli professors warn. The watchdog groups IsraCampus and Israel Academia Monitor are believed to be stepping up their campaigns after the recent publication in a US newspaper of an Israeli professor's call to boycott Israel. Jonathan Cook reports. 

Interview: "My film makes you part of Gaza's reality"
Electronic Intifada: 15 Nov 2009 - Directed by Alberto Arce and Mohammed Rjuailah, To Shoot an Elephant is a documentary film that offers an eyewitness account from the Gaza Strip during Israel's assault last winter. During the attacks, when the Israeli military banned foreign journalists from entering the Strip, Arce managed to stay inside Gaza and filmed how medical teams and hospitals were targeted by Israeli forces while performing their duties. The Electronic Intifada contributor Adri Nieuwhof met with Arce and interviewed him about the motivation behind his film. 

In Gaza
threads of potential
16 Nov 2009 - Embroidery lives on in Palestine, a tradition passed down through the generations.  While Palestine is as modern as a choking, all-encompassing 3 year siege (since soon after Hamas was elected in early 2006) and numerous Israeli wars and attacks will allow, the traditions from generations ago are not forgotten: songs, dabke (dance), food, farming and fishing techniques, clothing…and embroidery. In recent years, the art has taken on a new role in occupied Palestine, re-affirming Palestinian identity in proudly embroidered kuffiyehs (scarves) and bracelets, along with traditional dresses and shawls. And in both the occupied West Bank and siege-occupied Gaza Strip, Palestinians face the obstacle of having goods but no market:...

Palestine Chronicle
The Suffering Goes On and On
15 Nov 2009 - By Ron Forthofer This past September, the UN Fact Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict issued its report. Richard Goldstone, a South African Justice and a strong supporter of Israel, headed the effort. During the period under investigation, Israeli forces killed over 1400 Palestinians, the majority of whom were defenseless civilians, while 13 Israelis were killed. Although the report was well covered elsewhere, the U.S. corporate media did not give much attention to its findings. Excerpts from the press release of the report provide an overview: "Following its 3-month investigation, the four-person Mission concluded that serious violations of international human rights and humanitarian law were committed by Israel in the context of its military operations in Gaza from December 27, 2008 to January 18, 2009, and that Israel committed actions amounting to war crimes, and possibly crimes against humanity. The Mission also found that Palestinian armed groups had committed war crimes, as well as possibly crimes against humanity. "The report concluded that the Israeli military operation was directed at the people of Gaza as a whole, in furtherance of an overall and continuing policy aimed at punishing the Gaza population, and in a deliberate policy of disproportionate force aimed at the civilian population. The Report states that Israeli acts that deprive Palestinians in the Gaza Strip of their means of subsistence, employment, housing and water, that deny their freedom of movement and their right to leave and enter their own country, that limit their rights to access a court of...

Patriot- A Poem
15 Nov 2009 - By Deepak Sarkar In war time, truth is so precious that she should always be attended by a bodyguard of lies - The Right Honourable Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill, Nobel Laureate (Former British Admiral and Prime Minister who passionately participated in both World Wars) No soldier must go beyond border unless in peace mission or rescuing world citizens from calamities! - Kolki Though we come in the world as citizens - Boundary beyond our control makes us limited! Assigning a country with a border well guarded - Making us patriot to protect land inherited! Soon we learn about Fatherland or Motherland! Heroes who fought in many heroic stands Died like patriots guarding skies and barriers - Often for freedom, sometimes for invasions as intruders! We become adult inspired by 'Us' versus 'Them' From sports to jobs to economy to military race! Competition grows to beat neighbouring state - Who can build the military to fight for Supremacy the best! Defence industries survive on profits a war generates Hurriedly spreads media rumours-gossips to build a case! Politicians helplessly rally around momentum for election ease End up authorizing, supporting, 'Unjust Illegal War' aggressive! A true patriot can never send another beyond border While hiding in the White House or Parliament or Palace shelter Knowing well war means killings among brothers and sisters Join soldiers proudly to defend country from attackers!

An Open letter to President Obama
15 Nov 2009 - By Professor Haidar Eid - Gaza Strip Dear Mr. President, You will probably not read this letter due to your busy schedule and the huge number of messages you receive from Presidents, Kings, Princes, Sheiks, and Prime Ministers. Who is a Palestinian academic from Gaza, after all, to have the guts and write an open letter to the President of the United States of America? What has triggered this letter is a picture of your Excellency sitting with the late Palestinian intellectual Edward Said. That, of course, happened before 2004.i.e, before you underwent a process of metamorphosis which I personally think is unprecedented in history. Seeing you with Edward Said, I must say, surprised me. Said, a true public intellectual must have said something to you about the suffering of the Palestinian people. In the picture, you and your wife seem to be listening attentively, and admiringly, to him. But the point remains; did you really understand his eloquent, passionate defence of the rights of the indigenous inhabitants of Palestine? Judging from your recent policy shifts, I very much doubt it. It is precisely the incongruity between the photograph and these policy shifts that has prompted this letter. Mr. President, The whole world celebrated your election as the first African-American president of the US. I did not. Neither did the inhabitants of the concentration camp where I live. Your sympathetic visit to Sderot—an Israeli town which was the Palestinian village of Hooj until 1948 when its people were ethnically cleansed--...

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