Israel to block massive aid shipment to Gaza

27 May, 2010 — RT Top Stories

Israel is set to block eight ships carrying 10,000 tons of aid and 800 activists and politicians on its way to Gaza.

Organizers behind the flotilla are hoping to send a message to the world that Israel has no right to starve 1.5 million Palestinians. The Free Gaza movement has organized several other aid ships to Gaza in the past, the last three of which were stopped by Israel.

‘The people of Gaza, 1.5 million people, live today without that which is necessary to sustain life. That’s the policy of the Israeli government, to starve the people, deprive them of food and medicine, and that which they need to rebuild their homes after Israel destroyed Gaza in December and January 2008 and 2009. So, the people of the world, in fact, are taking matters into their own hands and that is what the flotilla shows,’ said Brian Becker, the director of the A.N.S.W.E.R Coalition.

The size and magnitude of the flotilla sends a strong and symbolic message, whether or not the ships are actually permitted to enter Gaza.

‘It’s a drawing attention to the world about a gaping humanitarian wound that goes unaddressed,’ said Becker.

While it is easy to blame Israel for the situation in Gaza, Becker places equal blame on the United States, citing the close ties between the US and Israeli governments.

‘If the American government, if the Obama administration wanted this to end, it would end. Israel couldn’t really stand up against the United States. But, Israel has a partner with the United States government,’ said Becker.

There will likely be a great showing of solidarity for those aboard the flotilla; however it remains clear that the US will not act. Like past administrations, including the Bush Administration, the Obama administration ‘is complicit with the starving down’ of Gaza, said Becker.

Israel is likely to use military force as they have done in the past in their efforts to prevent the ships from reaching Gaza, including sinking the ships and arresting those onboard.

‘Their [Israeli government] goal is to take this over, to drive the Palestinians out. They can use any pretext they want, but they’re the occupiers, they’re the colonial dominators of a land that they seized in 1967 and as they seized the West Bank they‘ve seized all the Arab lands. They can come up with whatever pre-text they want, but the international community is saying no to Israel and yes to the Palestinian people and their right to live,’ said Becker.”

“Jews who themselves suffered are now causing suffering to Palestinians”

27 May, 2010 — RT Top Stories

Hedy Epstein lost her parents in Auschwitz and now extends a helping hand to Gaza.

Hedy Epstein is 86. She was born in 1924 in a small German village.

She was 15 when her parents sent her off to London together with other Jewish children.

‘My parents realized that something was about to happen. They would’ve liked to go with me but Jewish organizations were inviting children under 17 only. We were separated. Thus, in May 1939 I ended up in London, and they stayed back there. And on September 1, the war began. In 1942, both of my parents were arrested and sent to Auschwitz, as well as all their neighbors who hadn’t left by then. I never saw them again. Later, they were separated and sent to different camps. They died apart from each other. And they have no graves. Ibelieve their names are written in the Israeli museum. Names of all deceased are written there.’

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Gaza flotilla ship pays tribute to fallen activist

27 May, 2010 —

The MV Rachel Corrie, a cargo ship named for the American activist who was killed in the Gaza Strip in 2003, is one of eight ships poised to carry humanitarian aid to Gaza.

“We feel really honored,” said Craig Corrie, Rachel’s father.

Rachel Corrie traveled to Gaza with the International Solidarity Movement in 2003 and was attempting to stop Israeli defense forces from demolishing Palestinian homes when she was killed by an Israeli bulldozer.

“I’m sure that Rachel would be glad. She wanted people to remember the folks in Gaza and I’m sure she’d be glad that people around the world are doing it in this way,” Corrie said.

Israel is set to block the eight ships carrying 10,000 tons of aid and 800 activists and politicians on its way to the Gaza Strip.

The Free Gaza movement has organized several other aid ships to Gaza in the past, the last three of which were stopped by Israel. Corrie hopes this time will be different.

“They need the cement that’s coming in, we saw that. They need the medical equipment that’s coming in, they need the school supplies. I think that all of us, all the people that are listening here and the media need to stay tuned to this and it’s our job if Israel tries to intervene in this, it’s our job to get on TV, to get out on the street, to implore with our governments to intervene and let the supplies go through,” said Corrie.

Corrie also feels It is important that the United States, Europe and Russia do more to grant access to Gaza for aid supplies to help the families and children in need.

Goldman Sachs, Undeclared Enemy of the State By Stacy Herbert

25 May, 2010 — Max Keiser

Stacy Summary: We look at the scandals of naked short selling, supplementary liquidity providers and the conspiracy of banks. And we also mention the financial terrorist playing cards. In the second half of the show, Max interviews Jim Rickards about naked short selling and overwhelming the specialist system, Wall Street banks undermining Greece and Goldman Sachs as an undeclared national enemy. (**UPDATE** – See Jibber jabber thread for the latest market carnage).

Afghanistan: Reading between the lines By Eric Walberg

27 May, 2010 — Eric Walberg

The new coalition in Westminster is parsing all the words about Afghanistan and coming up with a very different interpretation, says Eric Walberg

“We have to reset expectations and timelines. National security is the focus now. We are not a global policeman. We are not in Afghanistan for the sake of the education policy in a broken 13th century country. We are there so the people of Britain and our global interests are not threatened.” — Liam Fox, Defence Secretary

The movement to “get the troops out now!” has found unlikely converts in the form of the Conservative-Liberal Democratic coalition in Britain. The election campaign suggested nothing new could be expected from any of the parties on Afghanistan, despite the fact that over 70 per cent of Britons want the troops home.

So eyebrows were raised with the news that Afghan President Hamid Karzai was Prime Minister David Cameron’s first visitor at Chequers. They went higher still when Foreign Minister William Hague made his first foreign destination Kabul, where he called for the withdrawal of troops as soon as possible.

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Palestine: Harrowing Update from Family of Ameer Makhoul

27 May, 2010 — The Only Democracy?

Ameer-Makhoul.jpgAmeer Makhoul, Director of Ittijah, a coalition of Palestinian Israeli Community Organizations, was arrested three weeks ago from his home in Haifa. Makhoul was unable to see his lawyer for the first weeks of his arrest and now his lawyers and his family, having seen him, assert that he has been tortured.

Makhoul has not yet been charged with any crime, but the Israeli government is clearly paving the way for his indictment soon, and in the process using extreme, though vague, language about “security” concerns designed to repress any public questions about Makhoul’s treatment.

Seen as part of a long line, in the past year, of arrest and persecution that includes Ezra Nawi (who went to jail on Sunday for protecting a Palestininan home from destruction), the campaign against the NIF and human rights organizations in Israel, the arrests of Jamal Jum’a and Mohammed Othman, and the ongoing arrests and raids and arrests in villages like Bil’in and Ni’alin, it is clear that Israel’s strategy in the face of its human rights violations and crackdown on dissent, is to attack, persecute, and attempt to destroy those who speak out.

What follows, in its entirety, is a press statement from the family of Ameer Makhoul on his arrest and treatment, titled, “We Accuse.” Continue reading

Israel threatens the Freedom Flotilla… extracts from the Hebrew press

27 May, 2010

The latest in today’s Yediot Aharonot with commentary:

– Except for the Naval Commandos, you should expect on the Gaza boats “Massada”, the special anti-riot unit of the Israeli Prison Authority. They were given a special permission to operate outside the borders of Israel and against people who are not (yet) prisoners.

– The Navy might start “Operation Sky Winds” already tonight, they might want to catch the different boats separately, before they all assemble.

– There will be used electronic masking devices to prevent broadcasts of the confrontation (as could be expected – I hope you have some countermeasures)

– Netanhyahu who is going off to France, Canada and the US has given authorization. He feels that he has “defeated Obama” (that is the headline in “Ma’ariv”) because he got an invitation to a meeting in the White House which would be friendlier than the one two months ago, and therefore he feels that he can do whatever he wants. 

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