VTJP News & Articles 10 October 2012:

10 October 2012 — VTJP


International Middle East Media Center

Two Palestinians Injured After Being Attacked By Settlers Near Nablus
IMEMC – Palestinian medical sources reported that two Palestinians were injured, on Wednesday evening, after being attacked by several extremist Israeli settlers in Burin village, near the northern West Bank city of Nablus. …

Under Claim He Stabbed Settler; Settlers Assault a Palestinian
IMEMC – Several Israeli settlers attacked a young Palestinian man from Husan town, near the West Bank city of Bethlehem, after claiming that he stabbed a settler near the Beitar Illit settlement. … 

Settlers Uproot 300 Olive Trees Near Ramallah
IMEMC – Palestinian sources reported Wednesday that several extremist Israeli settlers uprooted around 300 olive trees that belong to residents of Al-Mogheer village, east of the central West Bank city of Ramallah. … 

Army Bombards Beit Lahia, Invades Rafah
IMEMC – The Israeli Air Force fires missiles into Beit Lahia town, in the northern part of the Gaza Strip. Several children suffered anxiety attacks. The army also invaded Rafah, in the southern part of the Gaza Strip. … 

Egypt Holding Talks To Prevent Further Escalation In Gaza
IMEMC – The Quds Net News Agency reported Wednesday that the newly elected Egyptian leadership is holding talks with different armed groups in Gaza to instate a truce and prevent further escalation with Israel. …

Ma’an News

Israel launches airstrike on north Gaza, no injuries
10/10/2012 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Israel launched an airstrike overnight Tuesday on the northern Gaza Strip, Ma’an’s correspondent said. The strike targeted Beit Lahiya and caused material damage to several homes, with no injuries reported. Israel’s army said it targeted a “terror tunnel in the northern Gaza Strip,” and identified….

Committee: Settlers destroy 250 olive trees near Ramallah
10/10/2012 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Settlers destroyed over 250 olive trees in a Ramallah village on Wednesday, a local agricultural committee said. Jewish extremists from nearby Shilo settlement entered the area and cut down the trees in al-Mughayyir village, the committee added. Attacks increase around the time of the olive harvest season as settlers target olive….

Israel issues stop-work orders on 5 homes near Bethlehem
10/10/2012 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Israeli forces on Wednesday issued orders to villagers to stop construction on their homes near Bethlehem, a local official said. Israeli soldiers accompanied by officials from Israel’s civil administration distributed the orders in Nahhalin, village council chief Osama Shakarneh told Ma’an. Noman Fanoun, Ahmad Fanoun, Iyad Musallam….

Hamas military wing: 3 rockets fired at Israeli military vehicles
10/10/2012GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — Hamasmilitary wing, the Izz Addin Al-Qassam Brigades, on Wednesday claimed that it fired three rockets at Israeli military vehicles east of Rafah, a statement said. Four bulldozers and three tanks had reportedly entered a border area by Sufa crossing, east of Rafah, a Ma’an correspondent said….

Palestinian ‘stabs settler’ in West Bank
10/10/2012 – TEL AVIV, Israel (Ma’an) — An Israeli man suffered moderate injuries Wednesday after a Palestinian stabbed him near Bethlehem in the occupied West Bank, officials said. Israeli and Palestinian officials identified the attacker as a young Palestinian man, but they gave conflicting accounts of the events surrounding the incident. An Israeli police official said….

Israeli forces arrest 3 overnight
10/10/2012 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Israeli forces arrested three people overnight Tuesday, an army spokeswoman said. One person was detained in Nabi Saleh, one in Dura, and one in Sarda. [END]

Man shot dead in Idhna near Hebron
10/10/2012 – HEBRON (Ma’an) — Gunmen shot dead a 50-year-old man on Wednesday in a village near Hebron in the southern West Bank, medics said. Red Crescent official Nasser Qabaja told Ma’an the body of Hisham Arif Abu Saadoun was found in Idhna with bullet wounds to his neck, back, face and chest….

Report: Abbas to propose peace talks after UN vote
10/10/2012 – NEW YORK (Ma’an) — President Abbas told European diplomats on Tuesday that he will resume peace talks with Israel after a UN vote on the Palestinian request for non-member status in the world body, The Associated Press reported. Abbas believes that a freeze on illegal settlement building may not be necessary to engage in….

Egypt seizes fuel en route to Gaza
10/10/2012EL-ARISH, Egypt (Ma’an) — Police in north Sinai on Wednesday detained two suspected smugglers and seized 3,000 liters of fuel destined for the Gaza Strip, Egyptian security officials said. Officers arrested two men and confiscated their truck carrying 29 barrels of fuel near Bir el-Abd. The men told police they were planning to smuggle….

Erekat: Israeli elections could be cause for concern
10/10/2012 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Early Israeli elections may lead to increased violations against Palestinians, PLO official Saeb Erekat said Wednesday.” We fear that the campaign for Israeli elections could be accompanied by more attacks on the Palestinian people in the West Bank and Gaza, the expansion of settlements, and the Judaization of Jerusalem, all of….

IAEA: UN nuclear agency chief has no plans to visit Iran
10/10/2012 – VIENNA (Reuters) — The UN nuclear watchdog denied on Wednesday that its head planned to visit Iran to discuss Tehran’s disputed nuclear program. Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi was earlier quoted as saying Yukiya Amano, director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, was to visit Tehran to resume discussions with Iranian officials….

Israel attack hints Egypt has wider militancy problem
10/10/2012 – MIT KHAQAN, Egypt (Reuters) — When they left their village north of Cairo on Aug. 27, Ahmed Waguih and Bahaa Zaqzouq told their families they were going on holiday. A few weeks later and hundreds of miles away, the cousins were killed mounting a cross-border raid into Israel. Bahaa, 26, had for years spoken of his….

Gaza factions ‘coordinating response’ to Israel
10/10/2012GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — Hamas is coordinating with other Palestinian factions in Gaza to respond to Israeli aggression, Hamas official Mahmoud Zahhar said Wednesday. Palestinian factions operating in Gaza are nationally committed, he said. Zahhar made the comments during a meeting of Hamas members of the Palestinian Legislative Council, saying the Islamist group and….

TV: Nasrallah to discuss Negev drone
10/10/2012 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) – Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah will deliver a televised speech Thursday addressing the unmanned plane which penetrated Israel’s airspace on Saturday. Hezbollah’s Al-Manar TV said the address would begin at 8:30 p. m. Beirut time. Israel’s air force downed the drone shortly after it entered….

Chief justice ‘won’t accept interference’
10/10/2012 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — The head of the Palestinian high court said Tuesday that he would not accept interference, after controversy erupted over a proposal to appoint the justice minister with an attorney general role. Farid al-Jallad said the High Judicial Council was not behind reports in the media about a dispute between it and….

Zakarneh: Union to consider general strike if PA does not cooperate
10/10/2012 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Head of the government employees union Bassam Zakarneh said Tuesday that the group is considering open strike action if the Palestinian Authority does not cooperate with them. The union held an emergency meeting on Tuesday to discuss recent developments and ways to cope with the financial crisis. A meeting will be….

Arab lawmakers say early vote boosts Netanyahu’s chances
10/10/2012 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Some Arab members of the Israeli parliament, the Knesset, said Wednesday that Prime Minister Netanyahu’s call for early elections was a simple political calculation. Netanyahu called on Tuesday for an early election, seeking to strengthen his political position after signalling that any military action against Iran could be months….

Olmert considers comeback as early vote looms
10/10/2012 – JERUSALEM (Reuters) — Former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, who has just received a slap-on-the-wrist sentence in a corruption case, is considering staging a political comeback in an election early next year, a former aide said on Wednesday. Such a move could shake up a race that opinion polls suggest Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, viewed with suspicion….

Minimum wage ‘to benefit 300,000 workers’
10/10/2012 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — The Palestinian Authority minister of labor on Wednesday defended the newly announced minimum wage, which workers say has been set too low. Ahmad Majdalani said the PA was aware the wage was not high enough. The cabinet on Tuesday approved a national wage committee’s proposal to set the minimum….

Anti-corruption commission pursues PLO land theft
10/10/2012 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — The Palestinian Authority’s anti-corruption commission is working to retrieve PLO-owned land registered to individual PLO leaders, commission chief Rafiq Natsha said Wednesday. So far in 2012, the commission has recovered around 400 dunums of PLO -owned land, Natsha told Ma’an. In the past, the PLO’s….

Turkey to use ‘greater force’ if further Syria shelling
10/10/2012 – HACIPASA, Turkey (Reuters) — Turkey’s military will respond with greater force if shelling from Syria continues to hit its territory, its chief of staff said on Wednesday, as clashes between the Syrian army and rebels intensified along the border. Several mortar bombs landed outside the Syrian border town of Azmarin early on Wednesday and….

Arabic makes debut at papal audience with eye on Middle East
10/10/2012 – VATICAN CITY (Reuters) — Arabic made its debut as one of the official languages at Pope Benedict’s weekly general audiences on Wednesday as part of a Vatican attempt to reach out more to Christians and Muslims in the Middle East. The Vatican is concerned about the exodus from the Middle East of Christians, many….

Jeddah shisha smokers forced out of the Saudi city’s cafes
10/10/2012 – RIYADH (Reuters) — Smokers of the hubble-bubble water pipe have until Saturday to indulge their fondness for sweet flavored tobacco in Jeddah’s cafes as the Saudi city prepares to enforce a public ban on the habit. A law against smoking the pipes, known in Arabic as shisha, in public places has been in place….

Egypt’s radical preachers enjoying freedom of airwaves
10/10/2012 – By Shaimaa Fayed and Yasmine SalehCAIRO (Reuters) — When Islamic scholar Zaghloul el-Naggar recommended the consumption of camel urine, describing it as an Islamic remedy for incurable diseases on a television show last month, the channel’s switchboard was bombarded with angry phone calls within minutes.” Medicine is based on evidence. . . Surely I don’….

US military in Jordan, eyes on Syria chemical weapons
10/10/2012 – BRUSSELS (Reuters) — A team of US military planners is in Jordan to help the government grapple with Syrian refugees, bolster its military capabilities and prepare for any trouble with its chemical weapons stockpiles, US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said on Wednesday.” We have been working with Jordan for a period of time now. . . on a….

Syria’s main opposition bloc to restructure, seek new impetus
10/10/2012 – PARIS (Reuters) — Syria’s main opposition bloc will restructure itself in Qatar next week to seek fresh impetus, Syrian National Council leader Abdulbaset Sieda said Wednesday, after months of criticism that it is too fractious and influenced by Islamists. Sieda, speaking in Paris, also said the SNC reorganization would precede crunch talks in the….

Turkey says to investigate Syrian planes in airspace
10/10/2012 – ISTANBUL (Reuters) — Turkey will continue to investigate Syrian civilian aircraft using its airspace after forcing a Syrian passenger plane suspected of carrying military equipment to land on Wednesday, Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said. [END]

Palestine News Network

Israeli Occupation Interrogates Released Prisoner Khader Adnan
Palestine News Network

Settlers Uproot 200 Olive Trees in Ramallah
Palestine News Network

Settlers Storm an Evacuated Settlement in Jenin
Palestine News Network

Israeli Forces Arrest a Palestinian, Search Houses in Hebron
Palestine News Network

European and World Day against the Death Penalty
Palestine News Network

Amnesty: Egyptian President Must Go Beyond Decree and Carry Out Greater Human Rights Reform
Palestine News Network

Rachel Corrie’s Parents Accept LennonOno Grant for Peace on Behalf of their Daughter
Palestine News Network

PNN Report: A Dream Broken for Palestinian Student Seeking to Continue Masters Abroad
Palestine News Network

Palestinian Center for Human Rights

Occupied Lives: No child should have to go through this
Palestinian Center for Human Rights

International Solidarity Movement

al-Mufaqarah Resists
10/10/2012 – International Solidarity Movement – 9 October 2012 | International Solidarity Movement, West Bank – At one in the afternoon on Monday, the 8th of October, we received a call in Arabic: “We have big problems. Can you come? “Two calls later and we were on our way. We reached al-Tawani in a service taxi. Along with two volunteers from Operation Dove….

The National

Harlem Globetrotters challenge Emirati reporters to 2-on-2 basketball
The National 10 Oct 2012 – Click video below: The National found it hard to turn down a challenge by the Harlem Globetrotters and sent two of our Emirati journalists to task – in their national dress.

Abu Dhabi Science Festival kicks off after much anticipation
The National 10 Oct 2012 – The UAE capital’s biggest science extravaganza, Abu Dhabi Science Festival 2012, opens its doors to delighted youngsters.

Delay in plans to transfer Pakistani girl shot by Taliban to UAE
The National 10 Oct 2012 – Pakistani authorities postpone plans to transfer a 14-year-old child activitist to the UAE or elsewhere abroad for medical care.

12,000 passengers hit by flight diversions in Dubai Airport
The National 10 Oct 2012 – More than 12,000 passengers experienced delays in their travels plans yesterday as the Dubai Airport was forced to shut down due to a power failure triggered by thick fog.

Dubai police catch teen driving at ‘mad speed’ despite ban
The National 10 Oct 2012 – A 19-year-old Emirati student with a revoked licence gets caught by Dubai police again for a second traffic offence.

As fog descends on Dubai hopes for winter weather rise
The National 9 Oct 2012 – Dubai wakes up to a blanket of mist and many urge caution on the roads, but others hope that winter, and cooler temperatures, is finally here to stay.

Dubai Airport shuts down amid foggy conditions
The National 10 Oct 2012 – Both runways at Dubai International airport were closed at 6.45am today following power failure during foggy conditions with 50 flights diverted. Meanwhile the weather also hit drivers with a number of accidents.

Fishermen defy UAE ban on shark hunting
The National 10 Oct 2012 – Illegal hunting of sharks continue in UAE waters despite the annual four-month ban by the government.

Video: Emirati reporters challenge Harlem Globetrotters
The National 9 Oct 2012 – Dressed in the traditional Kandoura, two of The National’s Emirati journalists challenge the Harlem Globetrotters to a two-on-two. The Harlem Globetrotters are scheduled to do two shows on October 27 at the Zayed Sports City in Abu Dhabi.


British MPs arrive for first cricket tour of Israel
Ha’aretz – 10 Oct 2012

Israel’s deputy U.S. envoy reassigned to Denmark
Ha’aretz – 10 Oct 2012

NATO commander to visit Israel
Ha’aretz – 10 Oct 2012

Massive earthquake emergency drill scheduled for next week
Ha’aretz – 10 Oct 2012

Social protest movement influences political posturing as elections loom
Ha’aretz – 10 Oct 2012

Documents show distributor of tainted drug filed misleading report
Ha’aretz – 10 Oct 2012

Olmert, Lieberman meet to parley
Ha’aretz – 10 Oct 2012

44 arrested in ‘largest illegal gambling ring in Israel’s history’
Ha’aretz – 10 Oct 2012

Forest, fauna to make way for mammoth Jerusalem water project
Ha’aretz – 10 Oct 2012

Meridor blasts Deri’s political comeback as ‘improper’
Ha’aretz – 10 Oct 2012

More than a year later, protest leaders flirt with partisan politics
Ha’aretz – 10 Oct 2012

Everything you need to know about the upcoming Israeli elections
Ha’aretz – 10 Oct 2012

Shai Agassi steps down from Better Place board
Ha’aretz – 10 Oct 2012

AG could elect to indict Lieberman before elections, legal officials say
Ha’aretz – 10 Oct 2012

Israeli court orders IMI head to testify in groundwater-pollution case
Ha’aretz – 10 Oct 2012

IDF may reinstitute Arabic translations in West Bank military courts
Ha’aretz – 10 Oct 2012

With Israel elections in sight, former PM Olmert to decide on his political future
Ha’aretz – 10 Oct 2012

Israel’s bird (watchers) of a feathers should flock together
Ha’aretz – 10 Oct 2012

Israel’s air traffic halted after unidentified craft spotted over country’s center
Ha’aretz – 10 Oct 2012

Nuclear Iran will star in Netanyahu’s bid for re-election, not Israel’s economy
Ha’aretz – 10 Oct 2012

Official to resign after fatal Eilat shooting incident
Ha’aretz – 9 Oct 2012

Haredi parties head into elections amid bitter internal struggles
Ha’aretz – 9 Oct 2012

1 dead, 9 injured in Route 31 crash
Ha’aretz – 9 Oct 2012

WATCH: Israeli policeman beats a bound resident of East Jerusalem
Ha’aretz – 9 Oct 2012

Jerusalem Post

Hotovely strikes to stop Olmert from running
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – Likud MK requests the central elections commission disqualify former prime minister from running in upcoming Knesset elections. 

High Court overturns rabbinical court ruling
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – Woman appealed rabbinical court decision in 7-year divorce case to handle financial, property issues instead of family court. 

New Better Place CEO pledges to refocus company
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – “Israel will remain at the company’s forefront,” says incoming head Evan Thornley; founder Agassi resigns from position on board. 

A-G to decide on Liberman indictment in 2-3 weeks
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – Attorney-General Yehuda Weinstein may indict foreign minister on charges of fraud, breach of trust, money-laundering. 

Turkey grounds Syrian plane, suspect military cargo
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – A Turkish fighter planes escorts a Syrian plane suspected of carrying military cargo to Ankara’s airport. 

Turkey detains Syrian plane, seizes some cargo
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – Passenger plane en route from Russia to Damascus forced by Turkish jets to land in Ankara amid intel it carried weapons. 

Eli Yishai’s ‘well-timed’ detention center visit
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – Yishai’s visit came across as a hastily arranged photo-op following Netanyahu’s announcement of early elections. 

Galilee int’l conference examines Holocaust studies
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – Holocaust educators stressed the importance of speaking about the Shoah as a means of ensuring that such a tragedy never happens again. 

Countdown: US elections and the Iranian bomb
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – PM’s refusal to sit quietly by conveys the impression of a leader who understands that his nation is confronting a dire state of affairs. 

Fundamentally Freund: Historic election is upon us
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – Netanyahu deserves another four years in power. No wonder, then, that the Israeli electorate is about to give him just that. 

Candidly Speaking: On Israeli racism and democracy
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – Nothing makes us cringe more than screaming headlines reporting racist outbursts or hate crimes in our own country. 

Center for Israel, Jewish Affairs’ misguided policy
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – It is unacceptable that CIJA continue to be given carte blanche to set, unilaterally, Canada’s Israel advocacy policy. 

Future of war in Middle East: Between Ak47s, nukes
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – The concept “Revolution in Military Affairs” (RMA) was at the height of its popularity during the 1990s.

We’re safe for now: Raising children in Netivot
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – I thought I’d share this, because some of you have no clue what’s going on halfway across your own country. 

Int’l conference opens talks on Holocaust education
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – “Holocaust Education for Democratic Values” forum addresses how to link Holocaust education and democratic education. 

Netanyahu’s speech and the Ostrich Syndrome
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – The international community has ignored for more than a decade the progress in Iran’s nuclear program. 

Washington Watch: Excuse for no peace process?
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – There is no denying that Netanyahu has put the Iranian nuclear program high on the international agenda. 

Obama implements additional Iran sanctions
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012US President seeks to tighten the financial screws on Islamic Republic as Romney endorses Netanyahu’s red lines. 

Mashaal admits Hamas made mistakes in governance
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012Hamas leader says it is difficult to combine governance with “resistance,” calls on Islamists to “administer” relations with West. 

Erekat: Israel could use elections to attack Palestinians
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – Chief PLO negotiator says Israel could also exploit elections to expand settlements, “Judaize Jerusalem”; PA official says decision to advance election will not affect efforts to upgrade Palestinian status at UN. 

‘Israel may use elections to attack Palestinians’
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – Chief PLO negotiator says Israel could also exploit elections to expand settlements, “Judaize Jerusalem”; PA official says decision to advance election will not affect efforts to upgrade Palestinian status at UN. 

Officials worried Iran will strike Jews in New York
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – NYPD commissioner says city could be targeted because of large Jewish population; official: Iran, Hezbollah of particular concern. 

‘Elections should decide Steinitz, Yishai fates’
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – High Court hints that the public should decide ministers’ fate over Carmel fire handling in upcoming elections. 

Lebanese MP accuses Hezbollah of assassinations
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – Fadi al-Haber of the Kataeb faction says Iran’s Shi’ite proxy also providing military support to Syrian President Bashar Assad. 

Huge int’l space conference to convene in Jerusalem
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – Israel to host its largest conference in years when it welcomes the International Space Conference in 2015. 

Mofaz considers canceling Kadima primary
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – Kadima MKs split on whether selection committee would help or harm the party in the upcoming election. 

Shisha smokers forced out of Saudi Arabia’s cafes
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – Authorities in relatively liberal Jeddah prepare to enforce public ban on smoking hubble-bubble water pipe. 

Khamenei: Sanctions not linked to nuclear program
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – Iran’s supreme leader says West won’t end pressure if Iran gives up nuke ambitions, tells EU: Our situation is better than yours. 

10th suspect indicted in attack against Arab teen
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – Tenth suspect indicted for beating of 17-year-old Jamal Julani in Jerusalem; charges include assault, racial incitement. 

A ‘nu’ lease on life
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – With a career that’s spanned worlds as varied as Yiddish song and Broadway musical comedy, Mike Burstyn is as busy as ever. 

Honoring an anti-Semite?
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – A park in NJ is being named after Grabowski, a man who called Jews “vermin,” “animals” and “Christ killers.” 

Work In Progress: ‘After the holidays’ is here
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – With High Holy Days been and gone, it’s time to get serious about the job search and focus on achieving results. 

NY Jewish doctor wins Nobel Prize in Chemistry
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – Robert J. Lefkowitz has won the Prize jointly with Brian K. Kobilka for “groundbreaking discoveries” isolating important gene receptor. 

NYT: US sends military specialists to assist Jordan
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – ‘New York Times’ report claims US secretly sent task force to help Jordanian military deal with refugees, form contingency strategies. 

LIVE: Yishai tours detention center for migrants in South
Jerusalem Post 10 Oct 2012 – JPost brings you a live blog of the interior minister’s tour of a migrant prison facility. 

Arab unemployment higher than previously thought
Jerusalem Post 9 Oct 2012 – The share of Arabs among all unemployed Israelis is around 30 percent, which is twice that of earlier estimates. 

Deadly gang war averted in South
Jerusalem Post 9 Oct 2012 – Mobsters sought to use a missile to take out underworld lord Shalom Domrani. 

The Guardian

Writers campaign for Israel-Palestine peace
The Guardian 10 Oct 2012 – Novelists David Grossman and Boualem Sansal, from Israel and Algeria, launch ‘unbelievably brave’ drive to solve the region’s chronic divisions Celebrated Israeli novelist David Grossman is working with Boualem Sansal , an award-winning Algerian writer who came…

Ehud Olmert considers comeback for Israeli election
The Guardian 10 Oct 2012 – Former prime minister may return to challenge Binyamin Netanyahu, despite recent conviction and forthcoming trial The Israeli former prime minister Ehud Olmert is considering a political comeback, despite his recent conviction for breach of trust and…

Inter Press Service

Anti-Iran Hawks Maintain P.R. Offensive
IPS When Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told the U.N. General Assembly last month that Iran’s nuclear programme was unlikely to breach his “red line” for presumed military action until next spring or summer, many observers here looked forward to some relief from the nearly incessant drumbeat for war by U.S….

New Poll Finds Shifts in U.S. Public Opinion Towards Middle East
IPS The attacks on U.S. embassies in Libya and Egypt last month shocked and scared Americans, but the majority of Americans nevertheless recognise that the violence was the work of extremist minorities and not the majority of the population, according to a new poll. The poll , conducted by the University of Maryland, was released on Monday   during an…


LEBANON-OPT: Hidden health crisis facing Palestinian refugees

Metal Contamination and the Epidemic of Congenital Birth Defects in Iraqi Cities

Yemen Says Iranian Spy Cells Smuggled Weapons for Rebels

DHS to start testing drones over US for ‘public safety’

012 National Students for Justice in Palestine Conference

Greek anti-fascist protesters ‘tortured by police’ after Golden Dawn clash

The mysterious decision to destroy the tunnels

Hussam: Palestinian Female Prisoners in Sharon Suffer Harsh Detention Conditions

Children Evicted From Five Gaza Schools Due To Israeli Bombardment

Iraq today: Continued violence, cholera, etc.

Daily Star

Video shows Tunisia’s Ghannouchi backing Salafists
Daily Star 10 Oct 2012 The head of Tunisia’s ruling Islamist party has advised radical Salafists to behave wisely in order to consolidate their gains over secularists, according to a video posted Wednesday on the Internet.

Egypt sees revenue in Suez Canal corridor project
Daily Star 10 Oct 2012 Straddling one of the world’s great sea routes, the Suez Canal corridor is set to become a bridge connecting Africa with Asia if a grand plan by Egypt’s new government comes to fruition.

Iranian minister woos Indian businesses
Daily Star 10 Oct 2012 As Western sanctions squeeze Iran and its currency tumbles, the country’s energy minister wooed Indian businesses on Wednesday for more investment and trade.

Egypt releases draft of constitution for debate
Daily Star 10 Oct 2012 The panel writing Egypt’s new constitution released a partial draft of the document on Wednesday, calling for a public debate in the face of mounting criticism over Islamists’ shaping of the charter.

Swiss tighten rules after grenades found in Syria
Daily Star 10 Oct 2012 Switzerland is toughening up rules to prevent weapons sold to one country being re-exported to areas of conflict after Swiss-made grenades turned up in Syria.

Shooting of Pakistan girl activist sparks outrage
Daily Star 10 Oct 2012 Schools shut their doors in protest and Pakistanis across the country held vigils to pray for a 14-year-old girl who was shot by a Taliban gunman after daring to advocate education for girls and criticize the…

Israel attack hints Egypt has wider militancy problem
Daily Star 10 Oct 2012 When they left their village north of Cairo on Aug. 27, Ahmed Waguih and Bahaa Zaqzouq told their families they were going on holiday.

French police find bomb material in terror probe
Daily Star 10 Oct 2012 French police discovered bomb-making materials in an underground parking lot near Paris as part of a probe of an “extremely dangerous terrorist cell” linked to an attack on a kosher grocery.

Panetta: US sends military personnel to Jordan
Daily Star 10 Oct 2012 The US has sent military troops to the Jordan-Syria border to help build a headquarters in Jordan and bolster that country’s military capabilities in the event that violence escalates along its border with Syria.

Iran’s spy agency finds voice in cyberspace
Daily Star 10 Oct 2012 A glimpse into the shadow world of Iran’s main spy agency is now a click away.

Turkey warns Syria against cross-border shelling
Daily Star 10 Oct 2012 Turkey’s military chief of staff said on Wednesday his troops would respond with greater force if bombardments from Syria keep hitting Turkish territory.

YNet News

Yemen holds US citizen for suspected al-Qaida ties
YNet News, 10 Oct 2012 – ….

Rocket hits western Negev; none injured 
YNet News, 10 Oct 2012 – No injuries reported as Gazans continue to fire rockets at southern Israel; Islamic Jihad, Hamas: We’re working together to better respond to Israeli aggression ….

Canada: Military officer pleads guilty to espionage
YNet News, 10 Oct 2012 – ….

21 killed in attacks across central, north Nigeria 
YNet News, 10 Oct 2012 – ….

Low key escalation 
YNet News, 10 Oct 2012 – Analysis: Despite recent rocket attacks on Israel, Hamas not interested in full-blown conflict ….

BBC: Intercepted Syria-bound plane authorized to depart 
YNet News, 10 Oct 2012 – ….

US military in Jordan, has eyes on Syria chemical weapons
YNet News, 10 Oct 2012 – ….

Lapid, Shas lock horns over ‘hate speech’
YNet News, 10 Oct 2012 – Feud between ultra-Orthodox party, Yesh Atid chairman heats up as elections near. Lapid in op-ed: I don’t hate haredim. Can’t we discuss controversial issues without crying out Gevald? ….

Israeli stabbed by Palestinian; lightly hurt
YNet News, 10 Oct 2012 – Man stabbed in neck near Beitar Illit settlement, treated on site. Assailant in custody ….

Plan to detain asylum seekers faces delay
YNet News, 10 Oct 2012 – Interior Minister Eli Yishai’s plan to jail 15,000 Sudanese migrants yet to be approved by AG; expansive detention facilities under constuction ….

As elections loom, experts debate voters’ character 
YNet News, 10 Oct 2012 – Political experts say 2013 campaign likely to focus on Iranian threat, social protest; Palestinian conflict likely to take back seat. Candidate’s personality to play big part in voters’ choice, they say ….

Netanyahu, Peres discuss early elections 
YNet News, 10 Oct 2012 – PM briefs president on decision to dissolve Knesset. Peres: Israel faces serious decisions ….

Drill to prepare home front for major quake
YNet News, 10 Oct 2012 – For first time, extensive exercise to simulate earthquake with tens of thousands of casualties ….

Palestinian Information Center

Bardawil: Palestinian resistance becomes stronger
PIC – Salah Bardawil, a leader in Hamas movement, said that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu cannot be intending to launch a new extensive war against Gaza..

MP Masri: Liberating prisoners comes before liberating Aqsa
PIC – Hamas MP Mushir Al-Masri said that his movement prioritizes the liberation of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli occupation jails over that of liberating the Aqsa mosque.

PA security apparatuses arrest seven members of Hamas
PIC – PA security apparatuses arrested seven supporters and cadres of Hamas in Nablus, Jenin, Bethlehem and al Khalil, and raided a Hamas leader’s house in Bethlehem and summoned him..

IOA prevents the liberated Wael Abu Jalboush’s family from going for Hajj
PIC – Israeli occupation authorities (IOA) prevented the liberated prisoner Wael Kamel Abu Jalboush’s family from going to the pilgrimage (Hajj). They were returned from the Krama bridge..

Hamas: Bringing forward elections prove the fragility of the Israeli situation
PIC – The Islamic Resistance Movement “Hamas” considered the early Israeli elections as evidence of the fragility of the situation inside the Israeli entity.

Israeli occupation refuses the appeal of journalist Amer Abu Arfa
PIC – Ofer Military court rejected, on Tuesday, the appeal against the decision to extend the administrative detention of the journalist Amir Abdul Halim Abu Arafa.

Two political prisoners in Salfit continue their hunger strike for the 15th day
PIC – Two political prisoners in the Preventive Security Service’s jails in Salfit continued their hunger strike, launched since 15 days, in protest at the extension of their detention..

IOF detains two civilians, stops construction of houses
PIC – Israeli occupation forces (IOF) nabbed two Palestinians in the West Bank on Wednesday and ordered a halt to construction of five houses.

IOF soldiers storm houses of Hamas leader, relatives of deported ex-prisoners
PIC – Israeli occupation forces (IOF) broke into the home of Hamas leader Abdulbaset Al-Haj in Jalkamos village to the east of Jenin after midnight Tuesday.


Israeli Forces Attack Palestinian Funeral, Injuring Many
WAFA – 10 Oct 2012

Settlers Uproot 300 Olive Trees near Ramallah
WAFA – 10 Oct 2012

EUPOL COPPS: Palestinian Police Participate in Study Trip to Interpol
WAFA – 10 Oct 2012

Settlers Storm Evacuated Settlement, Harass Residents
WAFA – 10 Oct 2012


Palestinian voters skeptical about value of elections
LA Times 10 Oct 2012 – Fatah faces challengers in the West Bank, but some residents express doubt that the party’s dominance can be broken and that anything will improve. HEBRON, West Bank — Stumping for votes in the first Palestinian election since 2006, Hebron City Council aspirant Maysoun Qawasmi strides…

Egypt unveils draft of new constitution
LA Times 10 Oct 2012 – The proposed draft states Egypt will be guided by the principles of sharia , or Islamic law. Critics say loopholes could mean limits on basic rights or freedoms. CAIRO — Egypt unveiled a proposed draft of a new constitution Wednesday amid criticism from liberals and human…

Turkey Escalates Confrontation with Syria, Forcing Syrian Plane to Land
New York Times 10 Oct 2012 – Turkey sharply stepped up its confrontation with Syria, forcing a Syrian plane to land on suspicion of carrying military cargo and warning of more forceful responses. 

Hearing Focuses on Attack that Killed Ambassador
New York Times 10 Oct 2012 – House Republicans on Wednesday accused the State Department of shortchanging security at the American diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya. 

Promoting Entrepreneurship in the Gulf Region
New York Times 10 Oct 2012 – SeedStartup, a venture capital fund and start-up accelerator program, and “The Entrepreneur’’ TV show are among efforts to promote entrepreneurship in United Arab Emirates and nearby countries. 

Netanyahu Calls for Early Elections in Israel
New York Times 10 Oct 2012 – Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel said he was forced to order the vote, arguing that his coalition partners proved it would be impossible to pass a budget with deep cuts. 

Jordan Struggles to Absorb Refugees From Syria
New York Times 10 Oct 2012 – The flood of refugees from Syria is straining the limited resources of both the Jordanian government and aid agencies. 

At War Blog: French Cluster Munitions in Libya, and a Call for Help
New York Times 10 Oct 2012 – Cluster bombs manufactured in the former Soviet Union, China and Spain have all made their way into Libya. Now, evidence has surfaced for the presence of French-made submunitions as well. 

U.S. Military Sent to Jordan on Syria Crisis
New York Times 10 Oct 2012 – The United States military has secretly sent a task force to Jordan to help handle a flood of Syrian refugees and be positioned should the turmoil in Syria expand into a wider conflict. 

Iran: I.M.F. Data Prove Sanctions Aren’t Working
New York Times 10 Oct 2012 – Iran has insisted that a forecast by the International Monetary Fund shows that the country’s economy is growing, but some economists said that didn’t account for the recent fall of Iran’s currency. 

Tax Authority sets sights on “wallet companies”
Globes Main News – The companies are set up by high earners to avoid high tax rates.

New Better Place CEO: We’ll make new partnerships
Globes Main News – Evan Thornley says that the electric car company will establish major new partnerships, beyond Renault.

44 arrested in $1b money laundering ring
Globes Main News – Police: The gambling ring was a financing channel, which replaced the financing from Trade Bank, before it crashed.

Wed: Mellanox fails to drag down flat TASE
Globes Main News – Mellanox fell sharply for the second straight day, but energy exploration companies rose.

Zim brothers part from Kimat Hinam with NIS 420m
Globes Main News – The chain, which began 13 years ago as a single grocery store, is being sold to Yaynot Bitan, to form Israel’s third largest supermarket chain.

Hapoalim cutting HQ staff by 30%
Globes Main News – The bank will transfer 400-650 head office employees to the operating center in Beit Dagan and to branches.

IDF, Elbit Systems developing logistics UAV 
Globes Aerospace & Defense – The Flying Elephant is a giant unmanned paraplane capable of carrying a ton of supplies to combat troops.

Bibi Calls New Elections: Meet New Boss, Same as Old Boss
Tikun Olam – There’s hardly a better, more cynical analysis of political power relationships than the Who lyric, Won’t Get Fooled Again , which closes with the words: “meet the new boss, same as the old boss.”  That’s about the size of today’s announcement that Bibi Netanyahu has called new…

Has Israel Passed Its Sell-By Date?
Tikun Olam – No, I didn’t devise that title in case there are any pro-Israel folk out there seeking further proof of my perfidy toward Israel.  It happens to have been written by prominent Israeli satirist, film and TV writer Kobi Niv, in a column in today’s Haaretz . He…

Complaint alleging anti-Semitism at UC Berkeley claims Palestine activism creates ‘echo’ of ‘Nazi regime’
Mondoweiss – A mock checkpoint at Columbia University (Photo: Mondoweiss) The U.S. Department of Education has opened an investigation into allegations that officials at the University of California, Berkeley (UC Berkeley) have allowed an anti-Semitic climate to develop on campus. The allegations have been voiced by two recent…

Goldberg ignores decades of consistent Iranian statements on nuclear weapons for the sake of propaganda
Mondoweiss – Jeffrey Goldberg Jeffrey Goldberg  is confident in Barack Obama’s oft-stated commitment to stop Iran from building the nuclear weapon that everyone, including his own intelligence agencies (and others ) and  Defense Secretary  know  it  isn’t  building .  Why?  Well, basically because Obama’s said so.  A lot. Explaining that…

Romney’s stark contradiction on pushing for a Palestinian state
Mondoweiss – In recent days Chris Matthews, Steve Clemons and others have both pointed out the complete flipflop Mitt Romney performed on a Palestinian state: between his comments to a rightwing Zionist crowd back in May during his secretly-taped fundraiser in Boca Raton, FL, when he said, Forget…

Iran is so irrational it would invite its own destruction (Inside the mind of the anti-anti-Semites)
Mondoweiss – Normal 0 false false false ENUS X-NONE X-NONE /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:”Table Normal”; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-priority:99; mso-style-qformat:yes; mso-style-parent:””; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin-top:0in; mso-para-margin-right:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:10.0pt; mso-para-margin-left:0in; line-height:115%; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:11.0pt; font-family:”Calibri”,”sans-serif”; mso-ascii-font-family:Calibri; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-fareast-font-family:”Times New Roman”; mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-fareast; mso-hansi-font-family:Calibri; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;} As it looks like Netanyahu and his…

The Peleds and Abulhawa appear in NY
Mondoweiss – Susan Abulhawa On Monday night, nearly a hundred people crammed into a small room at All Souls Church in Manhattan to hear siblings Nurit Peled-Elhanan and Miko Peled discuss their recently published books in a talk moderated by novelist/activist Susan Abulhawa. Sitting on the floor with…

Rome Marks Anniversary of Synagogue Bombing 
The Foward Breaking News 10 Oct 2012 – Italy’s President Giorgio Napolitano participated in a ceremony marking the 30th anniversary of a terror attack on Rome’s main synagogue that killed a toddler. Click here for the rest of the article…

Israel Lawmaker Seeks To Block Olmert Run 
The Foward Breaking News 10 Oct 2012 – Likud Party lawmaker Tzipi Hotovely reportedly petitioned Israel’s Central Elections Committee to prevent former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert from running for office. Click here for the rest of the article…

Italian Women Object to Monument to Fascist 
The Foward Breaking News 10 Oct 2012 – A new Italian women’s group has added its voice to protests over a publicly funded monument honoring the World War II-era fascist leader Rodolfo Graziani. Click here for the rest of the article…

Olmert Hasn’t Decided on Bibi Challenge 
The Foward Breaking News 10 Oct 2012 – Former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert hasn’t yet decide whether to stage a political comeback by challenging Benjamin Netanyahu in an election early next year. Click here for the rest of the article…

Egypt: U.S. Department of State Press Briefing: Egypt 
allAfrica.com 10 Oct 2012 – [State Department]Washington, DC -Excerpt from the United States Department of State daily press briefing:

Current Job Opening: Website Manager and IT Systems Consultant 
Rachel Corrie Foundation 10 Oct 2012 – The Rachel Corrie Foundation for Peace & Justice is seeking a committed individual with excellent computer, communications and media skills. The position would be responsible for managing the organization’s information systems including website and database development, computer operations, and networking. In addition, work will include attending…

Rachel Corrie’s Parents Accept LennonOno Grant for Peace on behalf of their Daughter 
Rachel Corrie Foundation 9 Oct 2012 – Lady Gaga, John Perkins, and Christopher Hitchens also Recognized (Olympia, Washington – October 9, 2012) – On behalf of peace activist Rachel Corrie, her parents Craig and Cindy Corrie today accepted the 2012 LennonOno Grant for Peace presented by Yoko Ono in Reykjavik, Iceland.  Ono also…

Egypt ‘camel’ officials acquitted 
BBC 10 Oct 2012 – An Egyptian court acquits 24 ex-officials, including top Mubarak-era figures, of sending men on camels and horses to attack Cairo protesters in 2011.

ICC warned on Gaddafi Libya trial 
BBC 10 Oct 2012 – The defence lawyer for Saif al-Islam Gaddafi tells the International Criminal Court its reputation would be harmed by a trial inside Libya.

Terror suspects face kidnap probe 
BBC 10 Oct 2012 – Two people are arrested at the UK’s Heathrow Airport as part of an investigation into travel to Syria in support of alleged terrorist activity.

Why Hugo Chavez’s Re-Election Matters to the Arab World 
Al-Akhbar Opinion 10 Oct 2012 – Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez speaks during a news conference after winning elections in Caracas 9 October 2012. (Photo: Reuters – Jorge Silva) Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez speaks during a news conference after winning elections in Caracas 9 October 2012. (Photo: Reuters – Jorge Silva) Caracas -…

Four Hours at Amman Airport 
Al-Akhbar Opinion 10 Oct 2012 – Riot police keep guard during a demonstration demanding political reforms, in Amman on 5 October 2012. (Photo: Reuters – Muhammad Hamed) Riot police keep guard during a demonstration demanding political reforms, in Amman on 5 October 2012. (Photo: Reuters – Muhammad Hamed) At around 7pm last…

Muslim Brotherhood Adapting to Life as a Party 
Al-Akhbar News 10 Oct 2012 – Saad al-Katatni, secretary general of Egypt’s Freedom and Justice Party (FJP), waves after being nominated by the FJP for the post of the parliament speaker during the newly elected parliament’s first session in Cairo on 23 January 2012. (Photo: AFP – Khaled elFiqi) Saad al-Katatni, secretary…

STL Registry: Nashabe Poses “Threat” to Tribunal 
Al-Akhbar News 10 Oct 2012 – People visit the grave of Lebanon’s assassinated former prime minister Rafik al-Hariri, in downtown Beirut 30 June 2011. (Photo: Reuters – Jamal Saidi) People visit the grave of Lebanon’s assassinated former prime minister Rafik al-Hariri, in downtown Beirut 30 June 2011. (Photo: Reuters – Jamal Saidi)…

US dispatching troops to Jordan-Syria border 
Al-Akhbar News 10 Oct 2012 – The United States has sent military troops to the Jordan-Syria border to help build a headquarters in Jordan and bolster that country’s military capabilities in the event that violence escalates along its border with Syria, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said Wednesday. Speaking at a NATO conference…

Syria rejects UN call for unilateral ceasefire 
Al-Akhbar News 10 Oct 2012 – Damascus on Wednesday rejected a call by UN chief Ban Ki-moon for it to declare a unilateral ceasefire, insisting that rebels fighting the government must stop the violence first. “We told Ban Ki-moon to send emissaries to the countries which have influence on the armed groups,…

Lebanon: Election Year Spending Hits State Coffers 
Al-Akhbar News 10 Oct 2012 – These payouts also raise many questions about whether some ministries serve any real purpose other than channeling political money (Photo: Marwan Tahtah) These payouts also raise many questions about whether some ministries serve any real purpose other than channeling political money (Photo: Marwan Tahtah) In 2011,…

Pope delivers prayer in Arabic 
Al-Akhbar News 10 Oct 2012 – Pope Benedict XVI has delivered a prayer in Arabic during his weekly general audience in a new effort by the Vatican to show support for Christians in the Middle East. A priest read a summary of the pope’s remarks on Wednesday in Arabic. The pope then…

Tug of War for Aleppo Neighborhoods 
Al-Akhbar Politics 10 Oct 2012 – Abu Mahmud, a 20-year-old technician, looks at a laptop at a news station in the northern Syrian city of Aleppo on 7 October 2012. (Photo: AFP – Tauseef Mustafa) Abu Mahmud, a 20-year-old technician, looks at a laptop at a news station in the northern Syrian…

A Shadow State in Lebanon for the Syrian Opposition 
Al-Akhbar Politics 9 Oct 2012 – Lebanese protesters take part in a demonstration lead by Lebanese Salafist figure Sheikh Ahmad al-Assir (unseen) to protest against the Syrian regime in the southern city of Sidon on 7 October 2012. (Photo: AFP – Mahmoud Zayyat) Lebanese protesters take part in a demonstration lead by…


Russell Tribunal: Israel’s crimes not Possible without US support 
Russell Tribunal on Palestine, New York Session, Israeli Occupation Archive 10/9/2012
      Angela Davis, Alice Walker et al: Israel’s Crimes Not Possible Without US Support
     Pulitzer Prize-winner Alice Walker, civil rights icon Angela Davis and the rest of the jury of international figures of note for the Russell Tribunal on Palestine presented their findings today to a committee of the UN General Assembly, the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People.
     After two days of expert testimony by notables such as public intellectual Noam Chomsky and Israeli historian Ilan Pappé, heard before a packed crowd that included actors Harry Belafonte and Wallace Shawn at Cooper Union’s Great Hall, jurors concluded, “Israel’s ongoing colonial settlement expansion, its racial separatist policies, as well as its violent militarism would not be possible without the US’s economic, military, and diplomatic support.”
     The jury’s initial draft of the Executive Summary of the Findings of the Fourth Session of the Russell Tribunal not only takes on US complicity with Israel’s human rights violations of the Palestinian people, but also finds the United Nations in violation of international law for its failure to take action against Israel’s “(war crimes, crimes against humanity, crime of Apartheid, genocide), and by not exhausting all peaceful means of pressure available to it.”
     Juror Angela Davis stated at this morning’s press conference that “people are shocked to discover that conditions in Palestine not only replicate apartheid in South Africa, they are far worse” and urged civil society to take action in supporting and spreading the boycott, divestment, and sanctions campaign against Israel. more.. e-mail

Hidden health crisis for Palestinian refugees in Lebanon, says new study 
IRIN, South Africa, Electronic Intifada 10/10/2012
      JOHANNESBURG (IRIN) – New research has uncovered the hidden health toll that refugee life in Lebanon has taken on more than 400,000 Palestinians.
     British medical journal The Lancet has published a series of papers drawn from a meeting of public health researchers, The Lancet-Palestine Health Alliance, in Beirut in March 2012 (“Health in the Occupied Palestinian Territory 2012,” 8 October 2012).
     The alliance aims to “strengthen and expand the capacity of Palestinian scientists to study, report and advocate for the health of their own people,” explained Richard Horton, The Lancet’s editor-in-chief.
     While much of the research investigates the negative physical and mental health impacts of living in the West Bank and Gaza, several studies also explore the health and well-being of Palestinians living in Lebanon, which has hosted Palestinian refugees for more than 60 years. Poor living conditions
     According to one of the studies, by researchers from the American University of Beirut, “discriminatory laws and decades of marginalization” have left Palestinian refugees in Lebanon socially, politically and economically disadvantaged. More than half of them live in increasingly overcrowded camps, where “the provision of housing, water, electricity, refuse and other services are inadequate and contribute to poor health.”
     Out of 2,500 households surveyed, 42 percent had water leaking from their walls or roofs, and 8 percent lived in homes made of dangerous building materials such as asbestos. — See also: 012 more.. e-mail

Whatever Happened to that Iranian Bomb Plot Case? 
Michael Kaufman, CounterPunch 10/10/2012
      This Is Not a Film
     “…it reads like the pages of a Hollywood script.” – FBI director Robert S. Mueller III
     You’ve probably forgotten the plot: Mansour Arbabsiar, an Iranian-American used car salesman living in Texas, is arrested and charged with acting on behalf of high ranking officials in Iran’s government to conspire with a Mexican drug cartel to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to the U.S.
     This case begins dramatically, with Attorney General Holder announcing the arrest, stating that the plot was“directed and approved by elements of the Iranian government and, specifically, senior members of the Quds Force.” This is followed by President Obama asserting that “we know that he had direct links, was paid by, and directed by individuals in the Iranian government.” Thus, the utmost importance is conferred upon the arrest of Arbabsiar.
     So, we have international intrigue spanning three countries, well-known villains mixed together in fresh combination and charismatic, award-winning stars hitting their marks in supporting roles—all indications point to a critically acclaimed blockbuster. Then Arbabsiar shuffles in front of the camera. Noooo! He’s all wrong for the part! Although his antics in a second tier reality show had once made him briefly popular, he can’t convey the cunning and menace necessary for the role of terrorist mastermind. This jarring bit of miscasting immediately brings greater scrutiny to the whole production and a realization that the entire plot doesn’t make any sense at all.
     It becomes hard for the audience to concentrate on the intended theme – The Iranians are plotting against us – when fundamental questions of common sense are crowding the mind…. more.. e-mail

Hidden health crisis for Palestinian refugees in Lebanon, says new study
Electronic Intifada: 10 Oct 2012 – South Africa 10 October 2012 Medical services and mental health needs for Palestinians in Lebanon’s refugee camps have been sorely neglected.more

Arab Awakening Triggers Saudi-Qatari Rivalries
Palestine Chronicle: 10 Oct 2012 – By Giorgio Cafiero – Washington, D.C. The demise of secular autocratic regimes in the Middle East and North Africa has heralded a renaissance for Islamist parties in the region, igniting a rivalry for the hearts and minds of the Sunni world between the Gulf powers of Saudi Arabia and Qatar. These neighboring petro-monarchies have sought to influence political transformations in the Levant and North Africa on their own respective terms, both to advance geopolitical interests and to ensure that their own populations do not initiate popular uprisings. Although neither country is a bastion of democracy at home, Qatar has proven much more amenable than Saudi Arabia to bolstering democratic Islamist movements abroad. The resulting Saudi-Qatari rivalry undermines Saudi Arabia’s historic role as the “self-proclaimed bulwark of Islamic conservatism” in the Middle East and the powerhouse of the Gulf Cooperation Council. Historical Tensions Historically, the Saudi-Qatari relationship has been defined by…more

Canada’s Muslim Problem: Who’s Demonizing Who?
Palestine Chronicle: 10 Oct 2012 – By Eric Walberg After 10 years in Guantanamo, former child soldier Omar Khadr, the last Western national being held there, was finally repatriated last week after years of mistreatment. The illegality of the procedures used against Khadr from day one mean that the Canadian government faces a multi-million dollar law suit for damages. Various court cases against the government failed to convince it to expedite his return, until the US government finally pulled the plug, forcing the Canadian government to take him after his plea of guilty to various charges, clearly made as the only way to end his ordeal and give him hope of eventual release. At the same time, Egyptian Prosecutor General Abdel Meguid Mahmud has issued arrest warrants for Canadian Egyptians Nader Fawzy Jacques Attalla of Montreal, claiming they were involved in the production of the film “Innocence of Muslims”, which defames Islam and led to the…more

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