VTJP Palestine/Israel Newslinks 8 March 2012: Despite Her Deteriorating Condition, Ash-Shalabi Continues Her Hunger-strike

8 March 2012 — VTJP


International Middle East Media Center

Cameraman Sentenced To 18 Months, 5000 NIS Five
IMEMC – The Ofer Israeli Military Court sentenced on Thursday Palestinian cameraman, from Bil’in village near the central West Bank city of Ramallah, to eighteen months imprisonment and 5000 New Israeli Shekels fine. …

Army Kills A Palestinian Youth; Injures, Kidnaps, Another
IMEMC – Twenty-two years old Zackariah Abu Arram was killed, on Thursday afternoon, while resident Mohamed Rashid, 18, was injured and kidnapped by Israeli troops as they attacked Yatta village, near the southern West Bank city of Hebron. … 

Despite Her Deteriorating Condition, Ash-Shalabi Continues Her Hunger-strike
IMEMC – Palestinian political detainee, Hana’ Ash-Shalabi, 30, is ongoing with her hunger-strike for the 22nd day in a row, rejecting her illegal administrative detention, and demanding her immediate and unconditional release. … 

Israeli Settlers Uproot and Take 100 Olive Trees Owned By Palestinian Farmers
IMEMC – Palestinian farmers, from the southern West Bank villages of Al Khadier and Beit Iskaria, announced that a group of settlers stormed on Thursday morning their lands uprooted 100 young olive trees and took it all away. …

Ma’an News

Medics: Palestinian killed near Hebron
3/8/2012 – HEBRON (Ma’an) — Israeli forces killed a young Palestinian man and injured another in a clash in the southern West Bank, Palestinian medical officials and witnesses said Thursday. Zakaria Abu Araam, 22, was killed as soldiers were raiding the village of Yatta. He was pronounced dead at the Abu al-Hasan al-Qasem Hospital, medics told….

Israel asks US for arms that could aid Iran strike
3/8/2012 – JERUSALEM (Reuters) — Israelhas asked the United States for advanced “bunker-buster” bombs and refueling planes that could improve its ability to attack Iran’s underground nuclear sites, an Israeli official said on Thursday.” Such a request was made” around the time of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s visit to Washington this week, the….

‘Temporary solution’ for Gaza electricity crisis
3/8/2012GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — Hamas and Egypt said Thursday that most shortages due to the electricity crisis in the Gaza Strip will come to an end next week, but the larger issue will take months to resolve. Hamas leader Mousa Abu Marzouq said authorities had found a temporary solution for the crisis during the….

Palestinian women march in Gaza, West Bank
3/8/2012GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — Hundreds of women marched in Gaza and the West Bank on Thursday marking International Women’s Day with a call for national unity and the release of Hana Shalabi. Women marched from the Square of the Unknown Soldier in Gaza City to the UN headquarters before heading to tents…. Related: Clashes after protest near Ramallah checkpoint

Shalabi’s mother: My daughter is dying in prison
3/8/2012 – JENIN (Ma’an) — As the world marks International Women’s Day, the mother of hunger-striking detainee Hana Shalabi appealed to the international community to save her daughter.” I demand that the world stands by her now. My daughter is dying in prison. We are also dying here. This is my appeal to the….

Study: 37 percent of Palestinian women exposed to violence by husbands
3/8/2012 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Some 37 percent of Palestinian women were exposed to violence by their husbands in 2011, says a new study revealed on International Women’s Day. ThePalestinian Central Bureau of Statisticssays the highest percentage of the phenomenon was reported in Gaza, where 58. 1 percent of women were subject to violence….

Israeli forces detain 3 overnight
3/8/2012 – TULKAREM (Ma’an) — Israeli forces detained three people overnight Wednesday, an Israeli army spokesman said. One person was detained in Tulkarem, one south of Bethlehem and one in Tubas. Witnesses told Ma’an that Ahmad Muhammad Musa was detained in Tulkarem. All those arrested were taken for security questioning, Israel’s army….

Israel ‘detains 13-year-old’ in Nablus
3/8/2012 – NABLUS (Ma’an) — Israeli forces on Thursday detained a 13-year-old boy from Nablus in the northern West Bank, relatives said. Muhammad al-Tanji Abu Thira was taken to Majedo prison in Israel, his mother Latifa told Ma’an. Latifa is a former detainee who was freed in the October prisoner swap agreement between….

Clashes after protest near Ramallah checkpoint
3/8/2012 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Clashes broke out Thursday at a demonstration near Qalandiya, as soldiers broke up a rally marking women’s day and in solidarity with hunger-striker Hana Shalabi, onlookers said. Israeli forces fired tear gas and youths threw stones at the demonstration south of Ramallah, witnesses said. Eight people suffered tear-gas inhalation…. Related: Palestinian women march in Gaza, West Bank

Settlers visit West Bank tomb
3/8/2012 – SALFIT (Ma’an) — Settlers entered the West Bank town of Kifl Haris early Wednesday accompanied by the army, witnesses told Ma’an. Locals said that around 30 military vehicles entered the Salfit village at dawn to provide settlers access to a site revered by Jews as the burial site of Joshua. An Israeli….

Israel’s ‘tunnel rats’ brace for new guerrilla war
3/8/2012 – SIRKIN SPECIAL FORCES BASE, Israel (Reuters) — Fearing a surge in tunnel and bunker construction by Lebanon’s Hezbollah and Palestinian militants, Israel is training its troops to hunt below ground with robot probes and sniffer dogs. Such preparations reflect concerns that should Israel or the United States carry out attacks on Iran’s….

Presidential spokesman: Arab delegations to visit Palestine
3/8/2012 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Presidential spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeineh said Wednesday that delegations from Bahrain, Qatar, Tunis and Jordan are set to visit Palestine. Abu Rudeinah said that President Abbas had invited the delegations to Palestine while attending the International Conference on Jerusalem in Doha in late February. The presidential spokesman said that Arab delegations….

Harvard hosts conference on one-state solution
3/8/2012 – ByFiona Tarazi – Last weekend, Harvard Kennedy School of Government hosted a sold-out two-day conference on ‘Israel/Palestine and the One State Solution’. Organized entirely by students — chiefly by a Palestinian, Ahmed Moor, and an Israeli, Elisha Baskin — the event featured a range of prestigious speakers and panelists, including historian and Professor Ilan Pappe….

Fatah official: PA preparing message on future talks
3/8/2012 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Fatah official Azzam Ahmad said Thursday that Palestinian officials were preparing the final wording of a letter to be delivered to Israel and international actors on the status of peace talks. Ahmad told Voice of Palestine radio that the message will be delivered next week. Regarding progress on the stalled reconciliation….

Japan donates $16 million to UNICEF
3/8/2012 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Japan donated $16 million to UNICEF on Thursday, a statement said.” This donation demonstrates Japan’s enduring commitment to improve the lives and well-being of children all over the world, and most especially here in the occupied Palestinian territory”, UNICEF Special Representative in the occupied Palestinian territories Jean Gough said….

Customs officials: 6 tons of expired meat seized in Hebron
3/8/2012 – HEBRON (Ma’an) — Customs officials in Hebron seized 6 tons of expired meat on Thursday morning, a statement said. The expired goods belonged to a local market stall owner, who told Ma’an that he had not intended to sell the meat once he realized it had gone off. Customs official said that….

China says told Syria to stop violence, help UN aid
3/8/2012 – BEIJING (Reuters) — China’s envoy to Syria told President Bashar Assad’s government to stop violence immediately and help the United Nations and International Committee for the Red Cross send aid to strife-hit areas, the Chinese Foreign Ministry said on Thursday. A spokesman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry, Liu Weimin, also told reporters….

Syrian minister defects from Assad regime
3/8/2012 – AMMAN (Reuters) — Syrian Deputy Oil Minister Abdo Hussameldin has announced his defection on YouTube, becoming the first high-ranking civilian official to abandon President Bashar Assad since the uprising against his rule erupted a year ago.” I Abdo Hussameldin, deputy oil and mineral wealth minister in Syria, announce my defection from the regime, resignation from my….

Turkey, Tunisia oppose non-Arab intervention in Syria
3/8/2012 – TUNIS (Reuters) — Turkish President Abdullah Gul said on Thursday his country was opposed to any force from outside the region intervening in Syria, and warned that no regime could survive by using violence against its people. Tunisian President Moncef al-Marzouki, in a joint news conference with Gul at the presidential palace, said Tunisia was also….

Tussle over gender violence law in Lebanon
3/8/2012 – BEIRUT (IRIN) — Proposed amendments to a draft law on gender violence in Lebanon have sparked demands from civil society organizations that parliament uphold an original draft criminalizing “honor crimes”, marital rape and other abuses.” The version that we came up with at first was fine,” said Maya al-Ammar, an activist with the organization KAFA, Enough….

Far more Christian than Muslim migrants worldwide
3/8/2012 – PARIS (Reuters) — Christians far outnumber Muslims as migrants around the world, including in the European Union where debates about immigration usually focus on new Muslim arrivals, according to a new study issued Thursday. Of the world’s 214 million people who have moved from their home country to live in another, about 106 million….

Iran says Arabs putting mercenaries into Syria
3/8/2012 – PARIS (Reuters) — Arab countries are sending mercenaries to Syria to thwart any chance of a negotiated settlement to end President Bashar Assad’s crackdown on a year-long uprising against his rule, Iran’s ambassador to France said Thursday. Iran, a close ally of Assad’s government, was initially very supportive of the….

Gadhafi ‘hid arms’ in Libyan embassies across globe
3/8/2012 – TRIPOLI (Reuters) — The administration of ousted Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi was running a covert program to conceal weapons in Libyan embassies across the globe, a senior official in the new government said Thursday. The weapons included handguns, grenades and bomb-making materials and were shipped using the diplomatic bag. They may have been intended for use….


Palestinian shot dead in West Bank
AlJazeera 8 Mar 2012 – Israeli army raid of Yatta village resulted in one Palestinian youth killed, and two others injured.

Palestinian Center for Human Rights

Palestinian Center for Human Rights 

International Solidarity Movement

Declaration of Support for the Global March to Jerusalem
3/8/2012 – International Solidarity Movement – 6 March 2012, Global March to Jerusalem – We, the Advisory Board of the Global March to Jerusalem, are alarmed and deeply troubled by the continuing repression of Palestinians in Jerusalem and by the deliberate and systematic attempts to expel and reduce the Christian and Muslim Palestinian population of the city as part of the policy…. Related: Global March to Jerusalem

Gaza rally for Hana Shalabi on International Women’s Day
3/8/2012 – International Solidarity Movement – By Joe Catron, 8 March 2012, Mondoweiss – Hundreds of Palestinian women filled the street outside Gaza’s International Committee of the Red Cross this morning, marking International Women’s Day by demanding the release of administrative detainee Hana Shalabi on the 22nd day of her open hunger strike. The rally contained Palestinian women…. Related: Mondoweiss

International Women’s Day Marks Hana Shalabi’s 22nd Day of Hunger Strike
3/8/2012 – International Solidarity Movement – 8 March 2012, Palestinian Council of Human Rights Organizations – We, the Palestinian Council of Human Rights Organisations (PCHRO), would like to mark International Women’s Day by expressing our solidarity with administrative detainee Hana Shalabi. Hana is today beginning her 22nd successive day of hunger strike in protest at her internment without charge or….

Israeli troops kill a Palestinian youth; Injures and arrest another
3/8/2012 – International Solidarity Movement – By Ghassan Bannoura, 8 March 2012 | International Middle East Media Center – Twenty-two years old Zakariay Abu Iram was killed while Mohamed Rashid, 18, was injured and arrested by Israeli troops as they attacked the southern West Bank village of Yatta on Thursday afternoon. Residents told IMEMC that Israeli troops stormed the village and tried to….

Thaer Abed Al Hameed Mahdi, murdered by the Siege
3/8/2012 – International Solidarity Movement – By Nathan Stuckey, 8 March 2012 | International Solidarity Movement, Gaza – Thaer Abed Al Hameed Mahdi died on Saturday, March 3rd, 2012. He was 23 years old.   A rope snapped and he plunged down a shaft to his death.   He died instantly.   His coworkers Jamal Kamel Mahdi and Raed Jaber Mahdi survived, they are still in….

The seen and unseen in the No Go Zone
3/7/2012 – International Solidarity Movement – By Nathan Stuckey, 7 March 2012 | International Solidarity Movement, Gaza – Today, like ever Tuesday, we marched into the no go zone north of Beit Hanoun.   We gathered by the half destroyed Beit Hanoun Agricultural College and marched north, towards Jerusalem.   A Jerusalem that few of the protesters have ever seen, they have never been allowed….

Relief Web

Palestinian girl killed in Gaza border tunnel accident
Relief Web 8 Mar 2012 – Source: Kuwait News Agency Country: occupied Palestinian territory GAZA, March 8 (KUNA) — A Palestinian girl died and her sister was severely injured on Thursday when both of them fell down inside a goods smuggling tunnel across the southwestern borders…

As session draws to close, Commission on Status of Women readies action on host of concerns, including release of women hostages, indigenous women’s needs
Relief Web 8 Mar 2012 – Source: UN Commission on the Status of Women , UN Economic and Social Council Country: World , occupied Palestinian territory WOM/1902 Commission on the Status of Women Fifty-sixth Session 16th Meeting* (AM) Meeting this morning on the penultimate day of its fifty-sixth…

Gaza biscuits to feed West Bank school children
Relief Web 8 Mar 2012 – Source: World Food Programme Country: occupied Palestinian territory KEREM SHALOM – Pallets of fortified date bars have left Gaza today, crossing Kerem Shalom to be transferred to the West Bank by the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP). This is…

Palestinian killed after stabbing soldier: military source
Relief Web 8 Mar 2012 – Source: Agence France-Presse Country: occupied Palestinian territory , Israel JERUSALEM, March 8, 2012 (AFP) – A Palestinian was shot dead by Israeli troops on Thursday after stabbing an Israeli soldier in Yatta village in the southern West Bank, an Israeli military…

Clinic to address high diabetes rate among Palestine refugees
Relief Web 8 Mar 2012 – Source: UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East Country: occupied Palestinian territory 29 February 2012 Bethlehem, West Bank With almost 15 per cent of Palestine refugees in the West Bank living with diabetes, UNRWA has…

Arab Spring and Iran Tensions Leave Palestinians Sidelined
Relief Web 7 Mar 2012 – Source: New York Times Country: occupied Palestinian territory RAMALLAH, West Bank — In the 14 months since revolution has spread across the Middle East and tension has soared over Iran’s nuclear program, the Palestinian leadership has found itself orphaned. Politically…

Human Rights Council holds interactive dialogue on arbitrary detention and on the human rights of internally displaced persons
Relief Web 7 Mar 2012 – Source: UN Human Rights Council Country: World , Algeria , Armenia , Azerbaijan , Bahrain , Bangladesh , Georgia , Kenya , Kyrgyzstan , Maldives , occupied Palestinian territory , Sri Lanka MORNING 7 March 2012 The Human Rights Council this morning heard the presentation of the report of the Special…

Nour finally gets her chance to go to school
Relief Web 7 Mar 2012 – Source: UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East Country: occupied Palestinian territory 7 March 2012 Jabalia, Gaza Strip With no birth certificate, ten-year-old Nour Defallah used to be stuck. The youngest of seven children, her…

Nine new classrooms for refugee students in Lebanon with Swiss donation
Relief Web 7 Mar 2012 – Source: UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East Country: Lebanon , occupied Palestinian territory , Switzerland Beirut, Lebanon Palestine refugee children in Lebanon will have more space for learning this year, thanks to a USD 546,259 donation…

The National

UN envoy: More force in Syria a bad idea
The National 8 Mar 2012 – “I hope that no one is very seriously thinking of using force in this situation,” said Kofi Annan, the UN and Arab League special envoy to Syria.

Palestinian elections delayed by Hamas-Fatah bickering
The National 8 Mar 2012 – The earliest feasible date to organise a Palestinian election would be after June.


WATCH: Former head of Israeli Mossad: Now is not the time to attack Iran
Ha’aretz – 8 Mar 2012

UN women’s rights panel due to culminate annual session by condemning Israel
Ha’aretz – 8 Mar 2012

U.S. denies Obama promised bunker busters to Netanyahu
Ha’aretz – 8 Mar 2012

Haredi men suspected of repeated rape of their underage sister-in-law
Ha’aretz – 8 Mar 2012

IDF soldier moderately hurt after stabbed during West Bank arrest
Ha’aretz – 8 Mar 2012

Israeli official: Satellite images back our claims Iran is developing nuclear weapon
Ha’aretz – 8 Mar 2012

Khamenei hails Obama’s remarks against Iran strike
Ha’aretz – 8 Mar 2012

Report: Mossad warned Turkey against Iranian plan to attack Israeli diplomats
Ha’aretz – 8 Mar 2012

Haaretz poll: Most of the public opposes an Israeli strike on Iran
Ha’aretz – 8 Mar 2012

The Bedouin female sports teacher that shattered all stereotypes
Ha’aretz – 7 Mar 2012

Man suspected of murdering parents accuses twin brother
Ha’aretz – 7 Mar 2012

Workers at Israel Police immigrations unit declare labor dispute
Ha’aretz – 7 Mar 2012

Keshet threatening to sue Yedioth Ahronoth over reports of drug use on ‘Big Brother’
Ha’aretz – 7 Mar 2012

Jerusalem Post

‘Superheroes’ protest against consumerism
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – Demonstration targets business ‘supervillains’ at Azrieli Mall in central Tel Aviv. 

Israeli women join ‘Slutwalk’ protest movement
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – Movement started in Canada in response to policeman’s comment that to avoid being attacked women shouldn’t dress like sluts. 

The Megila’s message
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – The Jewish people, when given the chance, have managed to foil the plans of their many enemies. 

Bird’s-Eye View: Intention is the key
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – If a pilot is locked into hitting it and nothing else, he may not know what to do when faced with a new situation. 

Savir’s Corner: Between Damascus and Tehran
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – Israel, with the shifting of the balance of powers in the region, needs to pose itself critical questions of national security. 

Netanyahu: Attack on Iran not immediately in offing
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – PM acknowledges US, Israel have different time clock on Iran; says acting against Washington’s wishes will not rupture ties, citing 1948 declaration of statehood, attack against Iraqi nuclear reactor in 1981 as examples. 

Postscript: Our own worst enemy
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – Somehow, no matter how hard our friends try, we always seem to be our own worst enemy. 

‘Arab countries sending mercenaries into Syria’
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – Iran’s envoy to France says Arab mercenaries being funded by US and Israel, preventing negotiated settlement to end violence. 

Annan urges end to Syria violence, official defects
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – Turkey rules out Western intervention, but analyst says UN consensus could prod Ankara to toe the line. 

‘J’lem could top 1 million residents by year’s end’
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – Though Interior Ministry estimate considered high, exponentially growing Arab birthrate means J’lem could have Arab majority. 

Gaddafi hid arms in Libyan embassies across world
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – Senior official in new Libyan gov’t says handguns, grenades, bomb-making materials found in EU, Asia, Africa embassies. 

‘Arrests of freed prisoners could spark intifada’
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – Hamas prisoners minister warns against arrests after IDF detains man released as part of the Schalit deal. 

Off the Beaten Track: Mount Tavor
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – Travel expert Joe Yudin introduces “the road less travelled”; There is no better time to hike in Israel than in March. 

Palestinian killed after soldier stabbed in W. Bank
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – IDF brigade was re-arresting Palestinian freed in Schalit deal near Hebron; soldier moderately injured. 

Pollard devastated PM returned without him
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – Esther Pollard says her husband had been hopeful that Netanyahu could persuade Obama to commute his life sentence. 

Purim revelers party, observe holiday nationwide
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – Festivals ranging from Tel Aviv’s zombie march to Holon’s Adlayada color streets as Israeli celebrate Purim. 

Chosen Bites: Breakfast for dinner
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – The simplicity and coziness of an omelet can hit just the right note after a hectic day. 

13 Israelis make ‘Forbes’ billionaires list
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – Brothers Idan and Eyal Ofer rank as the wealthiest Israelis after inheriting their father Sammy’s fortune. 

Police chief vows crackdown on soccer hooligans
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – More than 20 people arrested for hurling objects at opposing players at derby between Hapoel Tel Aviv and Maccabi Tel Aviv. 

Haifa: 6 indicted for attack on IDF soldiers
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – In hearing, judge says incident does not appear racially motivated, indictment not based on media reports. 

Arab Spring democracy: A win for women?
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – They get more of a voice in Tunisia, Libya, but Egypt seems to be marching backwards. 

China tells Syria to stop violence, help UN send aid
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – Chinese ministry spokesman says envoy promoted mediation between Syrian government and opposition groups. 

‘Hamas denies it would stay out of Israel-Iran war’
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – Iranian report directly contradicts BBC quote by Zahar, saying the group wouldn’t get involved in any regional conflict. 

Qatar punches above its diplomatic weight
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – The tiny emirate is trying to be “friends with everyone,” says INSS researcher. 

‘Worrisome rise’ in kidney disease noted
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – Rate of patients with kidney failure increased by 70 percent between 1997 and 2007. 

Rabbi Haim Druckman to be awarded Israel Prize
Jerusalem Post 8 Mar 2012 – Druckman will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award for special contribution to state and society. 

4 indicted for robbing, assaulting 82-year-old nun
Jerusalem Post 7 Mar 2012 – Father and son, as well as two W. Bank brothers in Israel illegally, charged with binding, gagging Haifa woman in her home. 

GII: 3.7 quake centered in Kinneret, Hula areas
Jerusalem Post 7 Mar 2012 – Tremor felt by residents of Metulla, Kiryat Shmona and Tiberias; police say no immediate reports of damage or injuries. 

Rate of Druse women in National Service doubles
Jerusalem Post 7 Mar 2012 – In 2012, 301 women from the sector will serve as opposed to 147 in 2011, an increase of 96 percent. 

TA-Eilat hovercraft link to open next month
Jerusalem Post 7 Mar 2012 – Nonstop journey time from Tel Aviv to Eilat will now be just over 45 minutes, with hourly service. 

PM may delay Iran strike so Sara can see Madonna
Jerusalem Post 7 Mar 2012 – “The prime minister especially takes note of activist groups on Facebook asking him for things,” a PMO source says. 

Histadrut court delays decision on Peretz, Cabel
Jerusalem Post 7 Mar 2012 – Labor MKs must wait to find out if they can challenge Ofer Eini for chairing the Histadrut. 

PM returns from DC: Israel has right to defend itself
Jerusalem Post 7 Mar 2012US envoy Shapiro says it’s not new policy and that Obama knows this. 

The Guardian

012: Families of 1972 Munich victims call for commemoration
The Guardian 8 Mar 2012 – • Relatives call on IOC to honour those killed at 1972 Olympics • Plea for speech or minute’s silence in 2012 opening ceremony Forty years after 11 Israelis were killed by gunmen at the 1972 Munich…

Hamas is making a tactical appeal to the grassroots | Tareq Baconi
The Guardian 8 Mar 2012 – Instead of declaring itself Iran’s proxy, the movement is aligning with the democratic rise of ‘moderate’ Islamic politics Hamas officials have said that in the event of a war between Iran and Israel, they will not…

Inter Press Service

Washington Struggles to Find a Path Forward on Syria
IPS As the Syrian army has stepped up its attacks against opposition strongholds in Homs and elsewhere, the U.S. and its allies have achieved little consensus in choosing a course of action to oust President Bashar al-Assad.

Syria’s Chemical Weapons Trigger New Threats in War Zone
IPS As the besieged government of President Bashar al-Assad continues to violently suppress the warring political opposition in Syria, the United Nations has expressed “concern” over reports “on the possible existence of chemical weapons” in the embattled Middle Eastern country.

Egyptian Ties with US on Civil Society Rocks
IPS Egypt’s legal campaign against a handful of foreign NGOs reached a crescendo last week with the repatriation of several U.S. nationals indicted on charges of engaging in unauthorised civil society activity. But many local analysts believe the latest developments – far from signifying the end of the crisis – portend…

No Red Lines, But No Red Light Either
IPS Intense consultations at the highest level between the U.S. and Israel on how to coordinate their respective strategies vis-à-vis Iran indicate that a strike on the Islamic Republic’s nuclear sites, if launched by Israel, the U.S., or in tandem, wouldn’t occur this spring, probably not even before November.

Arab Women Bring Spring to the Screen
IPS Women have been at the forefront of each uprising in the Arab world. Last week, the ‘8 Arab Women Filmmakers’ festival offered a platform to Arab women directors to give their perspectives on the future of the region.


VIDEO: Hana al-Shalabi’s mother speaks out about her daughter’s hunger strike and her own “On the 8th of March, This is my appeal to the world ”
Uruknet March 8, 2012 – The mother of Hana al-Shalabi, the Palestinian woman who has been on hunger strike since 16 February when she was violently seized from her home by Israeli occupation forces, has spoken out in a video interview posted by Al-Haq, the Palestinian human rights organization…

Palestinian women testify about ill-treatment and torture during their arrest and interrogation
Uruknet March 8, 2012 – The Public Committee Against Torture in Israel (PCATI) has submitted two group complaints to the Israeli authorities on behalf of nine Palestinian women detainees and former prisoners. The complaints address gender-specific types of ill treatment and torture. The evidence was collected last year by PCATI’s legal team in meetings with 29 women….

Were Two Prisoners Killed at Guantánamo in 2007 and 2009?
Uruknet March 8, 2012 – My friend and colleague Jeff Kaye, a full-time psychologist who somehow also finds time to conduct research into Guantánamo and America’s post-9/11 torture program, had a fascinating – and disturbing – article published last week on Truthout, in which, after stumbling upon the autopsy reports of two prisoners who died at Guantánamo…

The Crime of Truth: Obama’s Persecution of the Peacemaker
Uruknet March 8, 2012 – If any one person can be said to have ended the direct involvement of the United States military in Iraq, it is not the man whose champions claim this deed as one of his glorious accomplishments: Barack Obama. As we all know (and 99 percent of us have forgotten), Obama fought doggedly…

UNESCO vote keeps Syria on human rights committee
Uruknet March 8, 2012 – U.N. cultural agency UNESCO condemned Syria on Thursday for its crackdown on a year-long uprising but did not expel Damascus from its human rights committee as some Western and Arab countries had demanded, diplomatic sources said. The executive board of the U.N. Education, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) elected Syria to two…

Libya autonomy declaration poses threat of civil war
Uruknet March 8, 2012 – Following a declaration of autonomy by tribal and militia leaders in oil-rich eastern Libya, the head of the Tripoli-based National Transitional Council (NTC) has threatened the use of “force” to prevent the country’s partition along regional lines. Nearly five months after the lynch-mob murder of Libya’s former leader, Col. Muammar Gaddafi, and…

012 (Warning: Graphic Videos)
Uruknet March 7, 2012 – The number of martyrs in Syria today has risen to 49 including two families, 7 children and 3 recruits. In Homs, there were 32 martyrs, 9 in Idlib, 2 in Atareb (Aleppo suburbs), 1 in Tel Rifat (Aleppo suburbs), 3 in Daraa and 2 in Damascus suburbs… Homs: Rastan: The corpse of…

On International Women’s Day, stand with Palestinian women prisoners
Uruknet March 8, 2012 – The Palestinian prisoner rights group Addameer put out a statement today marking International Women’s Day (March 8), calling for the release of all Palestinian female political prisoners. Israel currently holds seven Palestinian female prisoners in detention, including Hana al-Shalabi, who is being held without charge or trial and has been on hunger…

Shalabi’s mother: My daughter is dying in prison
Uruknet March 8, 2012 — As the world marks International Women’s Day, the mother of hunger-striking detainee Hana Shalabi appealed to the international community to save her daughter. “I demand that the world stands by her now. My daughter is dying in prison. We are also dying here. This is my appeal to the world,” Badiya Shalabi…

Taliban statement Promotion of education inside the country is one of the main objectives of the Islamic Emirate
Uruknet March 7, 2012 – … Let us say that the Islamic Emirate consider education as the need of the new generation and claims the responsibility of its generalization throughout the country. But undeniably a curriculum which manifests our Islamic and national ideals and reflects the vital needs of the nation is also a thing to be wished…

What is Qatar doing in Libya?
Uruknet March 7, 2012 – … Qatar’s continued involvement in Libya is highly contentious. It serves to fan the flames of radical Islam and disrupt the country’s tentative transition to democracy. Yet, in some respects, it is unfortunately typical of Doha’s broader approach to international relations… In Libya, they forged an alliance with the NTC while it led…

How to Fund an American Police State
Uruknet March 7, 2012 – At the height of the Occupy Wall Street evictions, it seemed as though some diminutive version of “shock and awe” had stumbled from Baghdad, Iraq, to Oakland, California. American police forces had been “militarized,” many commentators worried, as though the firepower and callous tactics on display were anomalies, surprises bursting upon us…

U.S. Weapons Claiming Palestinian Lives, Group Says
Uruknet March 7, 2012 – A new policy paper published earlier this week by the U.S. Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation documents a number of cases occurring over the past decade in which weapons and ammunition produced and financed by the U.S. have been used to kill unarmed Palestinians and U.S. citizens. “U.S. military aid to…

012 : A Video Roundup

EU Austerity Madness
Uruknet March 7, 2012 – European/American austerity assures a 1% wealth grab at the expense of all others. Prioritizing banker payments causes debt bondage, human misery, economic wreckage, and eventual collapse. What can’t go on forever, won’t. It’s not rocket science. It’s fact. Economies thrive on productive economic growth. It includes public sector infrastructure investment in transportation,…

Freedom Rider: Liberal Whores
Uruknet March 7, 2012 – Call a Georgetown law student a slut, and the liberal universe goes into supernova. Destroy Somalia and Libya, or obliterate due process of law, and the same people just yawn. Attorney General Eric Holder “asserts that the president can in fact decide to kill anyone he wants, as long as he claims…

Hana Shalabi: 20 Days on Hunger Strike
Uruknet March 7, 2012– Addameer and PHR-Israel call on the local and international communities, including the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and the European Union, to take immediate action and intervene with Israel in the strongest manner possible to pressure Israel to immediately facilitate medical visits to Hana Shalabi, unconditionally release Hana Shalabi…

Syria’s Baba Amr deserted, Red Cross says
Uruknet March 7, 2012 – The UN humanitarian chief has had the first look inside the shattered district of Baba Amr but found most people already had fled the rebellious neighbourhood in Homs following a devastating military siege. Activists have accused the government of sealing off Baba Amr for nearly a week while it tried to cover…

Eric Holder Tortures the Constitution
Uruknet March 7, 2012 – U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder made the Constitution scream, in an effort to justify his president’s claim to “the power of life and death over any inhabitant of the planet, including citizens of the United States.” Discovering presidential powers never before revealed, Holder severed citizens’ rights to “due process” from the “judicial…

UN top torture official denounces Bradley Manning’s detention
Uruknet March 7, 2012 – In December, 2010, the U.N.’s special rapporteur on torture announced a formal investigation into the conditions of Bradley Manning’s detention that endured for the eight months he was held at a Marine brig in Quantico, Virginia. The Army Private has been detained since May, 2010, on charges that he leaked classified documents…

Hamas denies it intends to stay out of Israeli war with Iran
Uruknet March 7, 2012 – A top Hamas official rejected Wednesday reports that the militant group would stay out of an armed conflict between Israel and Iran, saying that if indeed such a war erupts Hamas will retaliate with “utmost power.” On Tuesday, a report by the U.K.’s Guardian newspaper quoted two Gaza officials as saying that…

Syria and the Palestinians: ‘Almost no other Arab state has as much Palestinian blood on its hands’
Uruknet March 7, 2012 – … In late 1983, Syrian troops in Lebanon and their PFLP-GC stooges launched a monstrous attack on Palestinian refugee camps in Tripoli in northern Lebanon, while the Israeli navy joined in the same siege and bombardment from the sea. While the alleged “compromiser” Arafat was there with his people defending them against this…

Obama’s Kill Doctrine
Uruknet March 7, 2012 – What Holder is describing is a model of an imperial presidency that would have made Richard Nixon blush. If the president can kill a citizen, there are a host of other powers that fall short of killing that the president might claim, including indefinite detention of citizens — another recent controversy. Thus,…

Daily Star

High-level Syrian official defects over crackdown
Daily Star 8 Mar 2012 Syria’s deputy oil minister defected and posted his parting words to President Bashar Assad in a video on YouTube Thursday.

Stop The Wall

Stop the Wall: World Bank acknowledges failures in Red Sea – Dead Sea Channel project
Stop The Wall – Palestinian Grassroots Anti-apartheid Wall Campaign The Palestinian Stop the Wall Campaign welcomes the fact that the World Bank management has acknowledged the concerns raised by the Stop the Wall Campaign, the Palestinian Farmers Union and the Global Initiative for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in their Inspection Request to the…


Obama’s brilliant speech
YNet News, 8 Mar 2012 – Op-ed: President’s AIPAC speech was not meant for Bibi, but rather, for Israel’s concerned citizens ….

Shahar Peer loses Indian Wells tournament
YNet News, 8 Mar 2012 – ….

HIV pill for prevention debated as FDA ruling nears
YNet News, 8 Mar 2012 – ….

British, Italian hostages killed in Nigeria
YNet News, 8 Mar 2012 – ….

UN names German diplomat to disarmament job
YNet News, 8 Mar 2012 – ….

Iran says Israel, US help put mercenaries into Syria
YNet News, 8 Mar 2012 – ….

Soldier kills Palestinian after being stabbed near Hebron
YNet News, 8 Mar 2012 – Soldier sustains moderate wounds after being stabbed in the neck by Palestinian terrorist in village of Yatta; wounds terrorist, shoots dead other Palestinian ….

Kirya base leaving Tel Aviv?
YNet News, 8 Mar 2012 – Defense Ministry promoting project that aims to move army buildings to national priority areas and create new neighborhood in their place ….

A stronger UN needed
YNet News, 8 Mar 2012 – Op-ed: For a body tasked with maintaining world peace, Security Council has dismal record ….

Peres receives 3D tour of his life at Google
YNet News, 8 Mar 2012 – Google founder provides president with virtual tour of important milestones in his life during his visit to Silicon Valley. Peres asks Brin to ‘deepen cooperation with Israel’s R&D centers’ ….

PA steps up security measures at Joseph’s Tomb
YNet News, 8 Mar 2012 – Nablus holy site equipped with CCTVs, fence in attempt to prevent Breslovers from entering compound illegally ….

The Rachel Corrie myth
YNet News, 8 Mar 2012 – Op-ed: Killed ‘peace activist’ one of the most powerful tools in anti-Israel propaganda campaign ….

State indicts suspects in soldiers’ assault
YNet News, 8 Mar 2012 – Prosecution pursues criminal action against six suspects in brutal beating of two soldiers in Haifa, but drops claim of nationalistic motive ….

Palestinian Information Center

IOF soldiers gun down Palestinian boy
PIC – Israeli occupation forces (IOF) gunned down a Palestinian boy during confrontations in Yatta village, south of Al-Khalil, on Thursday when the soldiers were trying to arrest a liberated prisoner.

World VIPs unite for global march to Jerusalem
PIC – The advisory board of the global march to Jerusalem reiterated its deep concern over Israel’s Judaization and ethnic cleansing activities in Jerusalem and urged all humanity to take part in the march.

Janba and Bir Al-Ad villagers receive demolition orders
PIC – The Israeli occupation forces stormed Janba and Bir Al-Ad villages south of Al-Khalil city and handed most of the Palestinian families there demolition notices issued against their homes.

Israeli authorities raze Araqib village in Negev for 36th time
PIC – The Israeli authorities continued their demolition streak in the Negev, occupied since 1948, and razed two houses in Laqiya village and the entire village of Araqib for the 36th time.

Ofer court decides to solve case of Shalabi amicably
PIC – The military court of Ofer asked the Israeli prosecutor and the defense to negotiate to reach a compromise regarding the case of Hana’a Shalabi, a hunger striker for nearly three weeks.

Gaza health ministry: Hospital stock severely depleted
PIC – The Palestinian ministry of health warned that the pharmaceutical crisis in the besieged Gaza Strip has aggravated very badly threatening the lives of all patients.


Japan Donates $16m to Support Palestinian Children
WAFA – 8 Mar 2012

Weather Forecast: Mild Weather through Saturday
WAFA – 8 Mar 2012


Syria detainee’s account offers glimpse of prison system
LA Times 7 Mar 2012 – A Syrian opposition activist says he was taken from Aleppo to Damascus to Homs and back last year. He describes beatings, interrogation and torture by President Bashar Assad’s forces. Al Deen occasionally let out a goofy, drawn-out laugh when he recalled some of the absurdities…

Libya militias pose threat to precarious stability
LA Times 7 Mar 2012 – Libya’s former rebels have become a law unto themselves. They have refused to disarm, fearing they will be marginalized in the post-Kadafi political order.  

Syrian Kurds Flee Into Iraqi Refugee Limbo
New York Times 8 Mar 2012 – The number of Kurds fleeing to Iraq from Syria has so far been small, but if Syria’s largest ethnic minority were to unite, it could shift the momentum against President Bashar al-Assad. 

Syrian Official Says in Video He Is Joining Uprising
New York Times 8 Mar 2012 – A man identifying himself as the deputy oil minister, Abdo Hussameldin, appeared in a video posted to YouTube on Wednesday and said he had left his post. 

American in Egypt, Robert Becker, Appears in Court
New York Times 8 Mar 2012 – An American charged for his work with United States-backed nonprofit groups refused an offer to leave the country, instead appearing Thursday in an Egyptian criminal court. 

Iran Pressed to Give Nuclear Inspectors Full Access to Sites
New York Times 8 Mar 2012 – In insisting on access to suspected nuclear sites like Parchin, six world powers signaled a unified resolve in renewed negotiations with Iran, which were suspended in frustration more than a year ago. 

Afghan Officer Sought in Killing of 9 Colleagues
New York Times 8 Mar 2012 – Nine Afghan police officers were killed as they slept on Wednesday, and a 10th was suspected of assisting Taliban insurgents in the attack. 

Financial markets demand sharper crackdown against Egyptian workers
WSWS – The Middle East Ratings and Investor Service (MERIS) has threatened that renewed political upheaval in Egypt will result in further credit downgrades.

Egyptian junta lifts travel ban on NGO operatives
WSWS – On Thursday, a US military plane flew several American NGO operatives out of Egypt following the lifting of a travel ban by the ruling military junta.

At the heart of the Palestinian struggle, a spirit she won’t surrender
Mondoweiss – (Photo: Sixteen Minutes to Palestine) This article was originally published on March 8, 2012 on the blog Sixteen Minutes to Palestine as part of its series on International Women’s Day . When I imagine the struggle for Palestine, it always has a female face. No, I don’t…

Al Jazeera asks, ‘What role does the pro-Israel lobby play?’
Mondoweiss – From the Al Jazeera English website : The American-Israeli Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), the most powerful pro-Israel lobby in the US, is holding its biggest annual conference yet with around 13,000 delegates in Washington. For all those bidding to become the next US president, it has become…

Connecting the West Bank to solar energy: A day at the Abu Kbeta family compound
Mondoweiss – (Photo: Tomer Weinstein) It was early morning Wednesday, exactly at 6:54am when I boarded the train from Tel-Aviv to Beit Shemesh. I was on my way to meet Noam, co-founder of Comet-ME (Community Electricity and Technology Middle East), one of only a handful of Israeli NGOs…

NIAC’s Jamal Abdi: AIPAC-backed resolutions are ‘blank check for war’
Mondoweiss – Occupy AIPAC protesters gather near the White House during the Obama-Netanyahu meeting ( Photo: Paul E. Talbot/Flickr ) Amidst the incessant Israeli war mongering over Iran last weekend, the Occupy AIPAC counter-summit tried to insert some reality into the discussion. A March 5 press conference at the National…

Freedom Funnies: ‘You Can’t Just Continue’ Part II
Mondoweiss – Here is the second part of Ethan Heitner’s interview with Palestinian filmmaker and writer Annemarie Jacir. You can read the first part here . (Click on the first image below to view it larger, and then click in the upper right hand corner to scroll to the…

Israeli Soldiers Murder Palestinian Youth in Yatta
Palestine Solidarity Project 8 Mar 2012 – On Thursday, March 8th, 2012, a 17-year-old Palestinian resident of the southern West Bank, Zakariah Jamal Mohammad Abu Aram, was killed by Israeli soldiers. At approximately 4:30pm, over 100 Israeli soldiers entered the town of Yatta in an attempt to re-arrest one of the Palestinians who…

Netanyahu Takes on Iran at AIPAC
Arab American Institute 6 Mar 2012 – By Jeffrey Wright Overall, Netanyahu?s speech sounded like that of a man eager for confrontation.

Selling Purim to Progressives One More Time
The Magnes Zionist 7 Mar 2012 – It has been my custom to reproduce this Purim post every year, with some modifications. This year I do it a day after Prime Minister Netanyahu gave a megillah/Scroll of Esther to President Obama.The scroll, read twice on the holiday of Purim, relates the victory of…

‘Fresh massacre’ in Syria’s Homs
BBC 8 Mar 2012 – Syrian security forces kill dozens of people in a ‘new massacre’ in Homs, activists say, a day after the UN‘s aid chief visited the city.

Powers urge ‘serious’ Iran talks
BBC 8 Mar 2012 – Diplomats from six countries urge Iran to enter “serious dialogue” on its nuclear programme, as they meet in Vienna to discuss their own approach.

Women ‘injured’ in Saudi protest
BBC 8 Mar 2012 – An investigation is launched after at least 50 women are reportedly injured after a protest at a university in Saudi Arabia turns violent.

Rae Abileah and Josh Ruebner on Arab Voices
US Campaign to End the Occupation 8 Mar 2012Arab Voices, broadcast on 90.1 FM Houston, featured Rae Ablieah, of Occupy AIPAC and Code Pink and National Advocacy Director Josh Ruebner, on its March 7 show. Click the link below to listen to the broadcast, which covered AIPAC, Occupy AIPAC, the campaign to end military…


Videos: The seen and unseen in the No Go Zone
Nathan Stuckey, International Solidarity Movement 3/7/2012
Today, like ever Tuesday, we marched into the no go zone north of Beit Hanoun. We gathered by the half destroyed Beit Hanoun Agricultural College and marched north, towards Jerusalem. A Jerusalem that few of the protesters have ever seen, they have never been allowed to go to Jerusalem, it is forbidden to them, just as the land in the no go zone is forbidden to them. Jerusalem and Al Aqsa are unseen. We demonstrated for Al Aqsa and the prisoners. The prisoners too are unseen; Gazans are not allowed to visit their sons and brothers and held in the prisons of the occupation. As we walked down the road toward the no go zone a giant balloon rose over the wall. We are the seen, watched from giant balloons, watched from soldiers in the towers that line the wall, seen from the sights of guns, an Apache helicopter roars in the distance. Local herders tell us that there are tanks behind the wall. For us, the soldiers who look at us through rifle scopes are yet unseen. Later, they will make their appearance. In the sky floats the black flag which flies over the occupation, most of the world refuses to see it, they refuse to recognize it for what it is, but for the people of Palestine it always floats in the sky, like the second moon in a Murakami novel.
We enter the no go zone and walk toward the flags that we have left during previous demonstrations. There are about forty of us, we have no guns, only our voices and our flags. We stop by row of flags we left last week. Sabur Zaaneen from the Local Initiative of Beit Hanoun starts to speak, “Khader Adnan told us that honor is more important than food, Hana Shalabi reminds us that freedom is more important than food, we will continue the struggle.” Both of them are held in Israeli prisons, neither of them have been charges with any crime. Three months ago few people knew who either of them were, they were unseen, but they still existed, within them both was a great power and a great determination. Both of them refuse to be oppressed in silence, their hunger strikes are calls for justice, for honor. They are inspirations to us all. more.. e-mail

The crisis of violence in the Arab street
Assaf Adiv, Challenge 3/6/2012
The window of opportunity doesn’t exist
Um al-Fahm’s residents live in fear. Every day sees another violent brawl. Just ten days ago, a 16-year-old was stabbed to death. Last October, a father and his two sons were shot, and they were not even involved in the criminal underworld. In February, MK Ahmad Tibi initiated a Knesset debate on violence in the Arab sector. Data presented during the debate were deeply worrying. Some 67% of murders, 70% of murder attempts, and 38% of serious assaults are carried out by Arabs, who make up just 20% of the population.
Testimony from Siham Agbarieh, who lost her husband and two sons in the Um al-Fahm murder, shocked the participants – including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, ministers, senior police officers and Arab leaders. Siham called for urgent action: “As a citizen, I demand to know who murdered my husband and two children in the house four months ago. I haven’t been home since. I am scared. I and the children sleep with the neighbors. Do I need to sleep at the police station to feel safe?” (NRG, Feb. 13, 2012)
Tibi brought all those with a connection to law enforcement, education and budget allocation together with Arab MKs, local authority heads and members of the families of victims. According to a report by Megafon correspondent Nurit Kartan (Feb. 23, 2012), Tibi was the main speaker during the meeting. “We aren’t passing the buck – we are denouncing the murders in a louder voice, a stronger voice, and bolder voice,” he said. The article continues, “Responsibility for the violence is both Arab society’s and the government’s,” say Arab leaders. “The Arab leadership calls on you (the government) to take firm, focused action – to go from house to house, to take away weapons.” This call, from their point of view, is directed also at themselves, Arab citizens, to “strengthen mutual support as a society.” more.. e-mail

Women at the heart of struggle
Electronic Intifada: 8 Mar 2012 – Roqayah Chamseddine 8 March 2012 Women have been at the heart of liberation struggles in the Middle East and North Africa, contrary to Orientalist misrepresentations.more

War on Iran: Surrendering to the Lobby?
Palestine Chronicle: 8 Mar 2012 – By Ludwig Watzal Having perceived the hype around the yearly gathering of the Israel Lobby organized by ‘The American Israel Public Affairs Committee’ (AIPAC) in Washington, D. C., and having listened to President Obama’s speech to the AIPAC audience, I was flabbergasted by the twists and turns taken by the leader of the sole “hyper power” to please the well organized bunch of lobbyists who advocate a war of aggression against Iran. Despite knowing better, Obama kowtowed before this propaganda event. Instead of confronting Netanyahu and the Israel Lobbyists head-on with the political consequences of a unilateral Israeli attack on Iran, he gave a lesson in political opportunism and begged for his job. “Over the last three years, as president of the United States, I have kept my commitments to the State of Israel. At every crucial juncture, at every fork in the road, we have been there for Israel….more

Flying into Tel Aviv? ‘Welcome to Palestine!’
Palestine Chronicle: 8 Mar 2012 – By Stuart Littlewood The other day someone kindly sent me an old link to an aviation forum where an irate passenger had written: ‘This morning (6 May 2003) on a flight from Rome to Tel Aviv, after landing the pilot announced in the microphone: ‘Welcome to Palestine’. I think this is the most disgusting thing for a pilot to say.’ It led to a long and acrimonious argument with many demanding dire punishment for the Alitalia pilot. But he had a valid point. Ben Gurion airport, which serves Tel Aviv, was formerly Lydda airport. Lydda, a major town in its own right during the British mandate, was designated Palestinian in the 1947 UN Partition. In July 1948 Israeli terrorist troops seized Lydda, shot up the town and drove out the population. In this report by Donald Neff we’re told how, as part of the ethnic cleansing, the Israelis massacred 426…more

Iran War: Ready But No Go?
Palestine Chronicle: 8 Mar 2012 – By Iqbal Jassat – Pretoria After all the hype surrounding calls for war on the Islamic Republic of Iran by Israel and its powerful US-based lobby AIPAC, it all came down to nothing more than bluster. Contrary to all expectations that President Obama would use the soapbox provided to him by AIPAC to announce America’s declaration of war alongside Israel, he went through the usual mumbo-jumbo talk of support but not what the lobbyists were waiting to hear. In a subsequent press conference, Obama not only rubbished war-talk emanating from his Republican political foes, but in a veiled signal to Israel to back-off, he punted renewed talks with Iran as a wiser alternate to war. While it’s been clear to many political analysts that America’s appetite for war is at an extreme low given dismal failures in Afghanistan and Iraq and a range of other compelling factors, it boggles the…more

China’s Rise, Fall, and Re-Emergence as a Global Power
Palestine Chronicle: 8 Mar 2012 – By James Petras The study of world power has been blighted by Eurocentric historians who have distorted and ignored the dominant role China played in the world economy between 1100 and 1800. John Hobson’s brilliant historical survey of the world economy during this period provides an abundance of empirical data making the case for China’s economic and technological superiority over Western civilization for the better part of a millennium prior to its conquest and decline in the 19th century. (1) China’s re-emergence as a world economic power raises important questions about what we can learn from its previous rise and fall and about the external and internal threats confronting this emerging economic superpower for the immediate future. First we will outline the main contours of historical China’s rise to global economic superiority over West before the 19th century, following closely John Hobson’s account in The Eastern Origins of Western Civilization….more

Netanyahu’s Gift Book of Esther
Dissident Voice: 8 Mar 2012 – According to press reports, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gave President Obama a gift during his visit to Washington, as he urged the U.S. to attack Iran: a copy of the Old Testament Book of Esther. Officials around Netanyahu referred to the text as “background reading” on Iran for Obama, comprising as it does a story of a plot by Persians (Iranians) to exterminate the Jewish people. The book is traditionally read on the Jewish holiday of Purim, which begins tonight (March 7). According to the Oxford Companion to the Bible , Esther is “best understood as a novella.” Its date cannot “be determined with any precision,” but is “clearly one of the latest books in the Hebrew Bible.” It’s apparently set during the reign of the Persian king Xerxes, who reigned between 486 and 485 BCE, although some suggest it’s set during the later reign of Artaxerxes. In any case,…more

Back to Basics in Palestine: Redefining Our Relationship to a People’s Struggle
Dissident Voice: 8 Mar 2012 – The Winter 2012 edition of Palestine News features a photograph of an old man. His white beard and traditional jalabiya give him the appearance of any Palestinian grandfather. His name is not given; he could be a Muslim or a Christian. We know that he comes from the West Bank village of Qusra, and that he is holding the broken branches of his olive trees. According to the accompanying report, the destruction of Palestinian olive trees by Jewish settlers -under the watchful eye of the Israeli occupation army – cost farmers over $500,000 in 2011. It isn’t only income that the settlers are targeting. They know the land is also a source of empowerment to millions of Palestinians. Their ultimate aim is to break the bond that has united the native inhabitants of Palestine since time immemorial. But will they succeed? Suheil Akram al-Masri, a 26-year-old political prisoner from Gaza,…more

More material available from Vermonters for a Just Peace in Palestine/Israel – www.vtjp.org
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