VTJP Occupied Palestine and Israel: News and Articles 12 December 2012: Lieberman: “Heading To ICC, A Palestinian Declaration Of War On Israel”

12 December 2012 — VTJP

News

International Middle East Media Center

Extremist Israeli Settlers Write Racist Graffiti On Christian Monastery
IMEMC – A number of extremist Israeli settlers wrote, on Wednesday at dawn, racist graffiti attacking Christianity and Jesus Christ on the walls of a monastery in occupied Jerusalem, the WAFA News Agency reported. … 

Lieberman: “Heading To ICC, A Palestinian Declaration Of War On Israel”
IMEMC – Israeli Foreign Minister of the extremist far-right “Israel Our Home Party”, Avigdor Lieberman, stated that should the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank head to the International Criminal Court (ICC) to sue Israeli for its decision to build 3000 settlement units, the move will be regarded by Israel as a “declaration of war on Tel Aviv”. …

Dr. Barghouthi: “Army’s Use of Live Ammunition, Implementation of Israeli Government Policy”
IMEMC – Dr. Mustafa Barghouthi, secretary-general of the Palestinian National Initiative, stated that the Israeli army’s invasion of the West Bank village of Ni’lin, near the central West Bank city of Ramallah, and the use of live ammunition against the civilians, is a direct implementation of statements made by senior Israeli government officials. …

Soldiers Granted More Freedom In Live Ammunition Regulations
IMEMC – The Israeli army has modified its instructions to the soldiers regarding the use of live ammunition against Palestinian protesters in the occupied West Bank, allowing the soldiers in the field to make such decisions based on their situation, granting them more freedom in using live ammunition instead of gas bombs, rubber-coated metal bullets, concussion grenades and similar ammunition. …

Ma’an News

Israeli forces kill Hebron teenager
12/12/2012HEBRON (Ma’an) — An Israeli border guard officer on Wednesday shot dead a Palestinian teenager in Hebron’s Old City in the southern West Bank. Locals identified the victim as 16-year-old Muhammad Ziad Awad Salaymah. A local doctor, hearing shots fired, rushed to the Salaymah neighborhood, near the Ibrahimi Mosque, but was…. Related: Israeli forces murder teenager on his birthday

Jewish extremists vandalize Jerusalem monastery
12/12/2012 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Suspected Jewish extremists vandalized a Jerusalem monastery overnight Tuesday, Israeli police said. Israeli police spokesman Mickey Rosenfeld told Ma’an that “Price-tag” was sprayed on the walls of the monastery and three vehicles were damaged in the attack. Police are investigating the incident, he added. Anti-Christian graffiti such as “Jesus….

Medical official: Man dies from Gaza war injuries
12/12/2012GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — A man from Khan Younis died on Wednesday from wounds sustained in Israel’s assault on Gaza in November, a medical official said. Ashraf al-Qidra told Ma’an that Abdullah Mahmoud Asqoul, 24, was seriously wounded in his head, stomach and chest during Israel’s bombardment of….

Israel to withhold Palestinian funds until March, at least
12/12/2012 – JERUSALEM (Reuters) — Israel will withhold tax revenues from President Mahmoud Abbas’s administration until March at least in response to his statehood campaign at the United Nations, Israel’s foreign minister said. Under interim peace deals, Israel collects some $100 million a month in duties on behalf of the Palestinian Authority in the….

Prisoners protest transfer to desert jail in southern Israel
12/12/2012 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Palestinians in Israel’s Gilboa prison are protesting their transfer to a southern jail, a lawyer for the Palestinian Prisoners Society said Wednesday. The lawyer said Israel started transferring 37 prisoners from the northern West Bank to Nafha jail in the desert of southern Israel on Wednesday. Israeli authorities say….

Israel green agency backs Battir farmers on West Bank wall
12/12/2012 – JERUSALEM (Reuters) — An Israeli government environmental agency challenged Israel’s Defense Ministry in court on Wednesday over a section of the illegal West Bank wall that threatens an ancient Palestinian farming community. A letter of support from the Nature and Parks Authority was part of a petition heard by the High Court to order….

Egypt to allow Iranian aid convoy into Gaza
12/12/2012EL-ARISH, Egypt (Ma’an) — Egypt has approved the entry of an Iranian aid convoy into the Gaza Strip, a security official said Wednesday. The Iranian government had contacted Egypt to ask that the convoy be allowed into Gaza via the Rafah crossing, an Egyptian security official told Ma’an. The food and medical….

Former prisoner returns to Iraq after 35 years
12/12/2012GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — A former prisoner of Israel who is originally from Iraq has finally been granted Iraqi citizenship, the Husam association for prisoners said Wednesday. Ali al-Bayati joined the Palestinian resistance in the 1970s. He was arrested with another fighter in 1979 after an operation in Nahariya in northern Israel. Two Palestinian….

Man killed, 7 injured in Gaza family dispute
12/12/2012GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — One man was killed and seven people were injured during a family dispute in northern Gaza on Wednesday, police said. Ayman Batniji, spokesman for Gaza’s police force, told Ma’an that a 24-year-old man was shot dead and seven relatives injured during a family fight in….

Report: Jordan urges tourists not to perform Jewish rites
12/12/2012 – JERUSALEM (Ma’an) – The Jordanian tourism ministry on Wednesday warned Israeli visitors against performing Jewish rites in the country, local media reported. The ministry urged tourism agencies to notify their Israeli counterparts that Israeli visitors should not perform Jewish rites or wear religious clothing in public places in Jordan, following complaints by citizens and….

France says delay in Israel-Palestinian talks helps hardliners
12/12/2012 – MARRAKECH, Morocco (Reuters) — Israelis and Palestinians must restart peace talks quickly otherwise hardliners on both sides of the conflict will take advantage, the French foreign minister said on Wednesday. Minister Laurent Fabius also said it was imperative that France, Britain and the United States became more directly involved in peace negotiations.” It won’t….

Mashaal meets Egypt intelligence chief
12/12/2012GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — Hamas chief Khaled Mashaal on Wednesday met with Egypt’s intelligence chief Raafat Shehata to discuss national reconciliation, an official in Cairo said. Mashaal, joined by Hamas politburo members Izzat al-Rishq and Mohammad Nasser, discussed his recent visit to the Gaza Strip as well as efforts to reconcile with…. Related: Hamas official: Mashaal will not run for re-election

Hamas official: Mashaal will not run for re-election
12/12/2012 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Hamas’ chief-in-exile Khaled Mashaal will not run for re-election as leader of the Islamist movement, a group official said Wednesday, reiterating a position outlined several months ago.” It is probable that Hamas will end its internal elections at the end of this year and Mashaal’s position towards the….

Gaza government to rebuild ministries, headquarters
12/12/2012GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — The government in Gaza will start rebuilding ministries and headquarters destroyed in Israel’s 8-day bombardment of the Gaza Strip, the cabinet said Wednesday. A ministerial committee has been appointed to survey the damage and assess reconstruction needs, cabinet secretary-general Abdul-Salam Siyam said. Offices of ministries destroyed in….

Sheikh: PA disrupts launch of new political party
12/12/2012 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Former supreme judge Sheikh Tayseer Tamimi said Wednesday that Palestinian Authority security services disrupted the launch of his new political party. Tamimi, former chief justice of the PA, announced his new party, Haris, or Guard, on Wednesday. He had earlier said the party would be called Freedom and Independence Party for….

4 laborers injured in Ramallah accident
12/12/2012 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Four laborers were injured on Wednesday when a ceiling collapsed in Ramallah’s Rawabi city, civil defense crews said. The workers were transferred to hospital with moderate injuries. [END]

World powers recognize Syrian opposition coalition
12/12/2012 – MARRAKECH, Morocco (Reuters) — World powers meeting in Marrakech recognized Syria‘s new opposition coalition as “the legitimate representative of the Syrian people” and called on President Bashar Assad to “stand aside”, according to a draft declaration obtained on Wednesday. The declaration by 130 international representatives comprising the “Friends of Syria” group of nations warned….

Pope Benedict offers blessings with his first tweet
12/12/2012 – VATICAN CITY (Reuters) — After weeks of anticipation, Pope Benedict sent his first tweet on Wednesday.” Dear friends, I am pleased to get in touch with you through Twitter. Thank you for your generous response. I bless all of you from my heart.” The tweet was sent when the 85-year-old pope tapped on a touch….

3 bombs target Syrian Interior Ministry
12/12/2012 – BEIRUT (Reuters) — A car bomb and two other explosives went off at the main gate of the Syrian Interior Ministry in Damascus on Wednesday, causing some deaths, state television said. It did not give figures on casualties. Lebanon’s al-Manar television, which supports Hezbollah, said four people were killed and more than 20 wounded….

Aljazeera

Palestinian teenager shot dead in West Bank
AlJazeera 12 Dec 2012 – Clashes reported in Hebron’s Old City after Israeli security forces kill seventeen year old at a checkpoint.

Palestine News Network

Israeli Soldier Shot Dead a Young Palestinian Near Ibrahimi Mosque in Hebron
Palestine News Network

Israeli Forces Demolish Part of a House near Ramallah
Palestine News Network

Lieberman: Ashton Should Mind Her Own Business, Not the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
Palestine News Network

US Recognizes Syria’s Opposition Group as the Sole “Legitimate Representative”
Palestine News Network

Confrontations Launch between Palestinians and Israeli Soldiers in Hebron
Palestine News Network

IOF Troops Arrest Two Palestinians from Hebron
Palestine News Network

Settlers Spray-Paint Racist Slogans on Jerusalem Monastery
Palestine News Network

President Abbas Threatens To Take Israel to ICC, Israel to Withhold NIS 1.6b. of PA Tax Revenue
Palestine News Network

Israel Must Stop Attacks on Palestinian NGOs and Human Rights Defenders
Palestine News Network

UFree Network: Baghdad Prisoner Conference is Hypocrisy
Palestine News Network

Palestinian Center for Human Rights

PCHR Condemns Raids of Three Civil and Human Rights Organisations in Ramallah by Israeli Forces
Palestinian Center for Human Rights

International Solidarity Movement

VIDEO – Bullets litter the ground in Ni’lin as soldiers granted more freedom to shoot
12/12/2012 – International Solidarity Movement – 11th December 2012, International Solidarity Movement, Ni’lin, Occupied Palestine – Overnight Israeli soldiers invaded the small village of Ni’lin, population of around 5000 people. The soldiers were attempting to make arrests as part of wave of arrests in the West Bank following protests around the recent bombing in Gaza. A local Ni….

VIDEO – Israeli forces fire on Gaza Farmers and Internationals in Khuza’a
12/12/2012 – International Solidarity Movement – 12th December 2012, International Solidarity Movement, Khuza’a, Besieged Gaza – Gaza- Israeli forces fired live ammunition and tear gas at unarmed farmers and international solidarity activists working in Khuza’a, a small village outside of Khan Younis located near the Israeli border.   At 10:30 AM, the farmers arrived and began to plough…. Related: Gazan farmers at work in Kuzaa and Jan 2009: Fresh evidence of Israeli phosphorus use in Gaza emerges

Israeli forces murder teenager on his birthday
12/12/2012 – International Solidarity Movement – 12th December 2012, International Solidarity Movement, al-Khalil (Hebron), Occupied Palestine – Mohammed Ziad Salaymeh was murdered near the Ibrahimi Mosque in al-Khalil (Hebron) on his 17th birthday. The doctor on the scene said that local women were arguing with Israeli forces who were preventing them from reaching Salaymeh.   “I followed the women and when I felt his…. Related: Israeli forces kill Hebron teenager

Relief Web

occupied Palestinian territory: Israeli border guards kill Palestinian in West Bank: police
Relief Web 12 Dec 2012 – Source: Agence France-Presse Country: occupied Palestinian territory 12/12/2012 20:01 GMT JERUSALEM, Dec 12, 2012 (AFP) – Israeli border guards shot dead on Wednesday a Palestinian teenager armed with a fake pistol in the West Bank city of Hebron, a police…

occupied Palestinian territory: Mobile Response to Gaza Crisis
Relief Web 12 Dec 2012 – Source: CDAC Network Country: occupied Palestinian territory Save the Children, UN, CHF & Souktel Partner to Enhance Relief Efforts Souktel’s ‘AidLink’ mobile platform has been used in crisis responses from Somalia to Iraq, but recent events in Gaza are a…

occupied Palestinian territory: Japan gives USD 7 million for food aid to UNRWA
Relief Web 12 Dec 2012 – Source: UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East Country: Japan, Jordan, Lebanon, occupied Palestinian territory, Syrian Arab Republic (the) 12 December 2012 Amman The Government of Japan is to give USD 7.7 million to the…

occupied Palestinian territory: The hard life and times of COGAT’s spokesperson
Relief Web 12 Dec 2012 – Source: Gisha Country: occupied Palestinian territory “The export season begins each year at the beginning of winter and ends toward the onset of spring”. Sometimes the news releases put out by the spokesperson for the Coordinator of Government Activities in…

occupied Palestinian territory: Rasha’s dreams lost in rubble after recent conflict
Relief Web 12 Dec 2012 – Source: UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East Country: occupied Palestinian territory 12 December 2012 Gaza More than half of the population of Gaza is under the age of 18. For these 800,000 boys and…

The National

Troops bag 191 tonnes of rubbish in Dubai
The National 12 Dec 2012 – The annual Clean Up UAE event attracted 42,000 volunteers who worked at 111 sites around the country.

Christmas cheer for UAE Filipinas missing home
The National 12 Dec 2012 – A Filipino organisation is throwing a celebratory feast for Filipinas away from home this Christmas.

Project Abu Dhabi: Piecing together the emirate’s future
The National 12 Dec 2012 – The opening of Khalifa Port is the largest and most impressive piece so far in the giant jigsaw that is Project Abu Dhabi.

End of the road for Abu Dhabi’s golden taxis
The National 12 Dec 2012 – The last of the gold-and-white Abu Dhabi taxis will be off the road by the start of 2013.

Gulf states urge China to ‘reconsider its position’
The National 12 Dec 2012 – GCC leaders have urged China to reconsider its position on Syria.

Morsi’s opponents back off constitution vote boycott
The National 12 Dec 2012 – Egyptian president’s opponents back away from a boycott of Saturday’s referendum on a controversial new constitution, and instead urge a ‘no’ vote.

Gulf co-operation key to boosting maritime security, naval chiefs say
The National 12 Dec 2012 – Terrorism, piracy and smuggling can only be tackled if the region’s security forces unite, navy chiefs say.

Blue flag raised at Abu Dhabi’s Al Bateen Beach
The National 12 Dec 2012 – The ‘Blue Flag’ status is an international standard that measures water quality, safety amd environmental performance.

Ha’aretz

Tzohar rabbis oppose recognition of non-Orthodox Jewish movements
Ha’aretz – 12 Dec 2012

German expert turns down Israeli post in protest of decision to bar leftist professor from symposium
Ha’aretz – 12 Dec 2012

High Court raps Housing Ministry over private security for Jewish homes in East Jerusalem
Ha’aretz – 12 Dec 2012

Yacimovich: Netanyahu, cohorts, afraid to talk economics
Ha’aretz – 12 Dec 2012

Israeli NGOs petition High Court to close Tnuva slaughterhouse after TV expose
Ha’aretz – 12 Dec 2012

Police drop 5 of 14 indictments against Tel Aviv social protesters
Ha’aretz – 12 Dec 2012

Some nurses head back to clinics, as talks stall, strike enters eleventh day
Ha’aretz – 12 Dec 2012

High anxiety: wrong test mice could result in flawed drugs
Ha’aretz – 12 Dec 2012

EU: Lieberman’s Holocaust reference is inappropriate and offensive to Europeans
Ha’aretz – 12 Dec 2012

Border guard shoots dead Palestinian who attacked policeman using fake pistol
Ha’aretz – 12 Dec 2012

Israel’s Justice Ministry to announce decision on Lieberman graft case Thursday
Ha’aretz – 12 Dec 2012

Germany approves bill to keep circumcision legal
Ha’aretz – 12 Dec 2012

Israel green agency backs Palestinian farmers on West Bank wall
Ha’aretz – 12 Dec 2012

Polish minister refuses to meet Israeli envoy over West Bank controversy
Ha’aretz – 12 Dec 2012

Israeli nurses begin to ease strike, after 10 days of protests
Ha’aretz – 12 Dec 2012

Livni to Lieberman: EU policy on Israel bears no resemblance to Holocaust
Ha’aretz – 12 Dec 2012

Vandals spray ‘price tag’ graffiti on Jerusalem monastery
Ha’aretz – 12 Dec 2012

Israel and Iran both holding bases in Eritrea, global intel reports
Ha’aretz – 12 Dec 2012

Jerusalem Post

Poll: Israelis who relocate don’t want kids in IDF
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – Survey by Ocean Relocation finds only 36% of those relocating abroad for work want their children to enlist in military. 

Analysis: The wall in the court room
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – Whether the security wall near Battir gets extended or not, it appears that overall this will be just one more round between two perspectives on resolving security, human rights and cultural issues in the West Bank. 

‘Syria’s chemical weapons are ready for use’
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012US House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rogers says there is “real concern” WMDs could be deployed at “moment’s notice.” 

Musicians call on Knesset candidates to invest in culture
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – Artists call on parties to allocate 1% of state budget to culture, what they call the acceptable amount in most OECD countries. 

Kfar Saba seniors to vote from their nursing homes
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – Senior citizens in assisted living faciltiies to vote in the upcoming January election without having to leave their institutions. 

Court examines use of private guards in east J’lem
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – Civil rights group aims to block use of private security guards by Jewish residents in Arab neighborhoods of east J’lem. 

Jordan tells Israeli tourists not to wear kippas
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – The Kingdom’s Tourism Minister advises visiting Israelis in a letter to hide signs of Judaism while in the country. 

Revolution time again for Egypt?
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – Mohamed Morsi faces a massive popular uprising very similar to the one that began against Hosni Mubarak two years ago. 

Divergent paths
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – Despite their convergence at the ‘Post’ conference, the divergent approaches presented by Liberman and Livni provide two very different visions for voters to ponder when they go to the polls next month. 

Media Comment: Our media’s view of Hanukka
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – The Zionist concept of Hanukka, a celebration of Jewish independence, a memory of days which preceded the terrible diaspora, has eluded many parts of our media. 

Border Patrol officer shoots, kills Hebron ‘gunman’
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – Palestinian youth brandished a fake gun when asked for identification, shot and killed by female Border Patrol officer. 

The Sigd Festival comes home to Jerusalem
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – Jewish Ideas Daily: On the Sigd, Ethiopian Jews, before their mass immigration to Israel, would ascend a mountaintop, pray, read from the Bible, and affirm their desire to return to Jerusalem. 

Peres ‘overwhelmed’ by blue-and-white innovation
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – President visits new development department at Philips facility in Haifa where company develops innovative medical devices. 

Yisrael Beytenu candidate offers ‘bribes’
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – MK Leon Litinetsky promises gov’t-funded jobs as polling station staff on Election Day to party activist that turns out most voters. 

Justice Ministry set to close Liberman case
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – In fateful decision, ministry expected to remove cloud over Foreign Minister, but indict him for breach of public trust. 

Washington Watch: Evading peace
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – Many countries were probably voting with the Palestinians because they’ve become weary of what they see as the endless conflict that no one is really trying to resolve. 

Assertive Turkey key to US in shifting Middle East
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – Differences over Israel, Syria strain relationship; closer Turkish ties with Egypt seen forming new axis. 

It’s nothing but a power play
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – We’re back to square one, but with a more level playing field. The risk to Obama will be rising and the debt ceiling will be looming. 

A war-wary terrorist
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – By all indications, these days Nasrallah is sweating bullets under his turban. 

Israel pays PA electricity debts with withheld taxes
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – Finance Minister transfers of NIS 435 million of Palestinian financial forfeiture to the Israel Electric Corporation. 

NYT: Assad forces fire Scud missiles at rebels
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – “Friends of Syria” recognizes Syrian coalition; opposition calls on US to review designation of Jabhat al-Nusra as a terrorist group. 

PA to request ICC membership over Israeli settlements
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – Palestinian Foreign Minister Riad Malki says other avenues of diplomacy preferable, so “no rush to go to the court,” but warns of strong response if Israel proceeds with building in E1. 

PA to request ICC membership over settlements
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – Palestinian FM Malki warns of strong response over E1; PA condemns as “piracy” Israel’s withholding of tax revenues. 

Germany passes new law to protect circumcision
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – After a court ruling against circumcision, German parliament passes law providing legal protection for brit mila in the country. 

‘Likud-Beytenu prefers coalition without haredim’
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – MK Kirschenbaum: Party prefers coalition with larger Center-Left parties, to avoid “political extortion” from smaller parties. 

Egyptian army abruptly postpones ‘unity’ talks
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – Opposition expected to vote “no” to referendum, not boycott it, says chaotic protests are a sign to postpone referendum. 

State may destroy Bar Kochba era site for barrier
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – Petitions seek intervention on West Bank fence; Nature and Parks Authority calls the site as important as Masada. 

Abraham, Isaac, Jacob… and Snoop Dogg?
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – Which is better: Hanukka or Christmas? Moses, played by Snoop Dogg, battles it out with Santa in a duel of rhymes. 

Israel introduces stamp picturing gas reserves
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – In honor of Israel’s 26th Philately Day, ministry produces NIS 4.20 stamp featuring a drilling rig at sea. 

FM: World would have no problem sacrificing us
Jerusalem Post 12 Dec 2012 – Speaking at ‘Jerusalem Post’ conference, Liberman says Israel “will not be a second Czechoslovakia.” 

The Guardian

Journalist held in Syria faces execution by her kidnappers
The Guardian 12 Dec 2012 – The captors of a journalist in Syria are threatening to execute her tomorrow (13 December) unless their demands for a $50m ransom are met. Anhar Kochneva, a reporter with Russian and Ukrainian dual nationality, was kidnapped…

Inter Press Service

Syria Opposition Wins International Backing
IPS More than 100 countries have recognised a new Syrian opposition coalition, opening the way for greater assistance to the forces fighting to topple President Bashar al-Assad, including possibly military aid. Backing for the Syrian National Coalition, formed in Qatar in November, was given at an international conference of the “Friends…

Dreams of a ‘Green Utopia’ Wither in the Maghreb
IPS When the Desertec Industrial Initiative (DII), an alliance of 21 major European corporations, first unveiled plans to install a network of solar thermal, photovoltaic, and wind plants across the North African Maghreb region to generate electricity, the project was greeted as a ‘green utopia’. Expected to generate 100 gigawatts by…

Changing the Game to Achieve Nuclear Disarmament
IPS Twenty-five years ago, on Dec. 8, presidents Mikhail Gorbachev and Ronald Reagan signed the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty. This historic agreement eliminated a modern class of land-based “theatre” weapons – the SS20s, cruise and Pershing missiles – that had been brought into Europe in the early 1980s. Credit: Empty…

Uruknet

Israeli prisons equipped by notorious security firm G4S hold Palestinian teens in solitary confinement
Uruknet

Syrian rebels defy US and pledge allegiance to jihadi group
Uruknet

U.S. Places Militant Syrian Rebel Group on List of Terrorist Organizations
Uruknet

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Uruknet

WATCH: Three Palestinian NGO offices raided by IDF overnight
Uruknet

WikiLeaks editor denounces mass internet surveillance and US attacks on democratic rights
Uruknet

AP tries to put “wipe Israel off the map” into Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal’s mouth
Uruknet

Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike “until freedom or death”
Uruknet

Aleppo is Starving
Uruknet

Gaza operation over, but emergency remains
Uruknet

Daily Star

Ex-VP candidate Lieberman bids farewell to US Senate
Daily Star 12 Dec 2012 Retiring US Senator Joe Lieberman, who infuriated Democrats when he turned independent and backed Republican John McCain for president, urged colleagues Wednesday to overcome partisan gridlock and forge fiscal compromise.

Clinton still ill from ‘vicious stomach virus’
Daily Star 12 Dec 2012 The normally indefatigable, globe-trotting US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was Wednesday still laid low by a nasty stomach bug which has kept her out of the public eye since the weekend.

New UN, international efforts to engage Iran
Daily Star 12 Dec 2012 International officials engaged in a two-pronged effort Wednesday to engage Iran over concerns the country may have worked on nuclear weapons, with a U.N. team seeking access to a site linked to such suspected activity and…

Libya bomb wounds 4 policemen: security
Daily Star 12 Dec 2012 Four Libyan policemen were wounded on Wednesday when a bomb exploded in front of their station in the eastern city of Benghazi, security sources said.

Civil war splits Syria’s artists
Daily Star 12 Dec 2012 Syrian filmmaker Joud Said was planning to attend the world premiere of his latest work at the Dubai International Film Festival when the bad news came: his movie had been yanked from the program.

Syria’s Assad reported to use Scud missiles against rebels
Daily Star 12 Dec 2012 Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s forces have fired Scud-style ballistic missiles against rebels in recent days, U.S. and NATO officials said on Wednesday, in what U.S. officials described as an escalation in the 20-month civil war.

Israeli police: Palestinian shot dead after attack
Daily Star 12 Dec 2012 An Israeli police spokesman says a Palestinian was killed after he threatened officers near a holy site in the West Bank.

YNet News

US, Syria opposition disagree over terrorist label
YNet News, 12 Dec 2012 – ….

UK police: Jimmy Savile is suspect in 199 crimes
YNet News, 12 Dec 2012 – ….

NATO sets up new HQ for allied special forces
YNet News, 12 Dec 2012 – ….

Former Israeli found dead in Canada home
YNet News, 12 Dec 2012 – ….

Iraq stays execution of man allegedly held at 16 
YNet News, 12 Dec 2012 – ….

Message to hypocritical world 
YNet News, 12 Dec 2012 – Op-ed: Israel will be left tiny and defenseless if it continues to try to appease international community ….

How Israel lost PR war
YNet News, 12 Dec 2012 – Op-ed: Repeated lies turned 360 million Arabs into David and six million Jews into Goliath ….

Palestinian Information Center

Human rights body: death of any striking prisoner will exacerbate the situation
PIC – Head of the High Committee on Palestinian prisoners’ affairs, Amin Shoman, held the Israeli occupation authorities responsible for the hunger striking prisoners’ lives inside the jails.

Tension in Polish- Israeli relationships due to demolition policy in West Bank
PIC – Hebrew media sources revealed that the diplomatic relations between Poland and Israel are witnessing tension because of the settlement policies pursued by the Israeli authorities..

120 prisoners to be transferred from Gilboa to Nafha desert prison
PIC – A Palestinian human rights source reported that a state of extreme tension prevailed at the Israeli Gilboa prison due to the prison administration’s decision to transfer 120 prisoners..

70 settlers storm al-Aqsa Mosque under protection of soldiers
PIC – Al-Aqsa Foundation for the Waqf and Heritage said that about 70 settlers, stormed on Wednesday morning the Al-Aqsa Mosque from the Mughrabi Gate, under the protection of the occupation forces.

Nassif: Hamas’s popularity rises in West Bank
PIC – The leader of the Islamic Resistance Movement Hamas in the West Bank, Rafat Nassif, stated that the movement will hold a number of festivals and marches in several governorates in the West Bank.

Calls to save the lives of hunger-strikers Issawi and al-Sharawna
PIC – The families of the two strikers Ayman Sharawna and Samer al-Issawi called on the official and popular parties to move urgently to save the lives of their two sons “before it is too late”

IOA sentences MP Qaraawi to administrative detention
PIC – The Israeli occupation military court at Ofer endorsed an administrative detention sentence against MP Fathi Qaraawi, from Change and Reform bloc, according to Human rights and media sources. 

Ahrar denounces the settlers’ attack on prisoners’ families
PIC – Ahrar center for Prisoners studies and human rights denounced the settlers’ attack against the relatives of the Palestinian prisoners who were returning back from visiting them in Nafha prison.

IOA extends detention of 61-year-old lecturer
PIC – The Ahrar center for prisoners’ studies and human rights has lashed out at the Israeli occupation authorities for extending the administrative detention of 61-year-old lecturer Dr. Mohammed Salibi.

WAFA

Japan Donates $7.7m to UNRWA Programs
WAFA – 12 Dec 2012

Britain Announces New Aid to Gazaþ
WAFA – 12 Dec 2012

Israeli Forces Demolish Part of House near Ramallah
WAFA – 12 Dec 2012

Newspapers Review: Settlement Expansion Focus of Dailies
WAFA – 12 Dec 2012

Confrontations Erupt Near Hebron
WAFA – 12 Dec 2012

Settlers Spray Anti-Christians Graffiti on Monastery in Jerusalem
WAFA – 12 Dec 2012

Weather Forecast: Weather Service Warns of Low Horizontal Visibility
WAFA – 12 Dec 2012

PEX Report: Al-Quds Index Up
WAFA – 11 Dec 2012

Abbas Arrives in Ankara
WAFA – 10 Dec 2012

Misc

Egypt opposition group urges ‘no’ vote on draft constitution
LA Times 12 Dec 2012 – The referendum stance by the National Salvation Front is a crucial test of its popularity against President Mohamed Morsi and his Islamist supporters. CAIRO — Egypt’s leading opposition group urged its followers Wednesday to vote against an Islamist-inspired draft constitution, ending weeks of indecision over…

Egypt’s proposed constitution spurs competing protests
LA Times 11 Dec 2012 – Islamist supporters of President Mohamed Morsi rally at a Cairo mosque as opposition activists mass at the presidential palace. CAIRO — Egypt’s volatile political fault lines were shaken Tuesday as rival protests echoed across the capital over the fate of a proposed constitution drafted by…

U.S. designates Syria rebel group a terrorist organization
LA Times 11 Dec 2012 – The Obama administration hopes to marginalize Al Qaeda affiliate Al Nusra Front. It also will formally recognize the newly formed Syrian opposition coalition. WASHINGTON — The Obama administration has formally designated a rebel group fighting in Syria as a terrorist organization in an effort to…

Syrian rebels gaining ground against Assad’s air power
LA Times 11 Dec 2012 – Their seizure of shoulder-fired missiles from a site known as Base 46 was a ‘game-changer,’ one analyst says. Terrorists’ access to such arms remains worrisome. BEIRUT —The rocket man vows that his hometown will never again face aerial bombardment.

Avigdor Lieberman Vents Anger at Europe, Invoking Nazi Era
New York Times 12 Dec 2012 – Now effectively the prime minister’s No. 2, Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman invoked the Nazi era in castigating European leaders over support for the Palestinians. 

Assad Fires Scud Missiles at Rebels, U.S. Says, Escalating War in Syria
New York Times 12 Dec 2012 – Forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad fired the Soviet-era missiles in recent days, officials in the Obama administration said, in a significant escalation of the nearly two-year-old war. 

Egypt’s Opposition Urges Vote Against Draft Constitution
New York Times 12 Dec 2012 – After a prolonged debate, Egypt’s main opposition coalition urged followers on Wednesday to vote against an Islamist-backed charter rather than boycott it. 

IHT Special: Gas Field Off of Cyprus Stokes Tensions With Turkey
New York Times 12 Dec 2012 – As it signs contracts for a new gas field, Cyprus has gained the backing of international powers while often angering Turkey, which claims its citizens are owed part of the gains. 

IHT Special: Internet-Driven Fame and Fortune for Mideast Comedians
New York Times 12 Dec 2012 – With deep-pocketed sponsors coming in, entertainers are able to make money and delve into areas of content that never appeared on traditional media outlets. 

IHT Special: Turkey Plans to Lift Bans on Hundreds of Publications
New York Times 12 Dec 2012 – But the question of how significant the repeal of the prohibition is for free speech in Turkey has provoked a debate. 

IHT Special: Lebanese Port Drifts Amid Conflicts
New York Times 12 Dec 2012 – Tripoli is no longer known for its meandering souks, its commerce or its culture: Modern day Tripoli is known for its widespread poverty, high levels of corruption and repeated bouts of violence. 

U.S. Will Recognize Syrian Rebels, Obama Says
New York Times 12 Dec 2012 – Declaring Syria’s opposition as its legitimate representative, marks a new phase of engagement for President Obama in a nearly two-year bloody struggle. 

IEC threatens to cancel Tamar gas contract 
Globes Energy & Water – Israel Electric Corporation says it will reconsider the contract unless the Gas Authority reverses its decision on supply to small manufacturers.

Israel seeks tax pact with US on FATCA
Globes Main News – The Finance Ministry is in talks on an agreement with the US Department of the Treasury on reciprocal transfer of bank account information.

India wants license to produce Iron Dome – report
Globes Main News – “Defense News”: Israel is uncertain whether to let India have the technology to produce the rocket interception system.

Teva’s strategy day fails to excite analysts
Globes Main News – Recommendations are largely unchanged, but some analysts have cut price targets.

Wed: Teva slumps
Globes Main News – Teva fell hard after publishing its strategy, but the banks continued to rise.

Oramed raises $5.6m in private placement
Globes Main News – The funds are for financing advanced clinical trials of the company’s oral insulin capsule.

IDB reaches new understanding with bondholders
Globes Main News – If the sides reach final agreement by May 2013, Ganden will invest a further NIS 60 million in IDB.

Imports down 16% since January 
Globes Macro Economics – In November, the decline in imports cut across industries and sectors.

Barclays comes into line with 3% growth forecast
Globes Macro Economics – Barclays expects the Bank of Israel to cut the interest rate to 1.75% during the first quarter of 2013.

Election halts Concentration Bill 
Globes Macro Economics – The legislation will not go forward during the election recess.

Israeli Cyber-War, Hackers and the “Fire Next Time”
Tikun Olam – God gave Noah the rainbow sign, No more water, the fire next time ! –African-American spiritual Over the past few years, my blogging and freelance journalism has exposed Israeli national security secrets.  I’ve revealed that Israel’s intelligence services along with those of Ukraine and Jordan conspired to…

Poet Joy Harjo responds to boycott demands over Israeli performance by adding a West Bank visit
Mondoweiss – Joy Harjo. (Photo: Racialicious.com) After initially defending her decision to appear in a Tel Aviv University performance on Monday, Native American poet Joy Harjo now states she was too quick to speak against the academic and cultural boycott of Israel and has scheduled a visit to…

Israel violates Gaza ceasefire again, attacks unarmed farmers and solidarity activists
Mondoweiss – For immediate release 12 December 2012 International Solidarity Movement Khuza’a Besieged Gaza Gaza- Israeli forces fired live ammunition and tear gas at unarmed farmers and international solidarity activists working in Khuza’a, a small village outside of Khan Younis located near the Israeli border. At 10:30a.m., the…

ACLU: Lawsuit targeting Palestine activism on campus raises ‘constitutional red flags’
Mondoweiss – Students for Justice in Palestine protesters at a mock checkpoint in Berkeley (Photo: Tony Zhou/The Daily Californian) An American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) branch has sent a letter to the U.S. Department of Education addressing what the civil liberties group calls “constitutional red flags” contained in…

Palestinian teenager shot dead by Israeli soldiers in Hebron
Mondoweiss – Palestinians confront heavily armed Israeli soldiers in a nonviolent demonstration in Hebron, West Bank, on June 5, 2012. Photo by RRB/Activestills.org Reports are coming in that a teenager in the Old City of Hebron has been killed by Israeli soldiers.  The Associated Press has an initial…

Israel raze Al-Araqib for the 45th time
Mondoweiss – link to www.palestine-info.co.uk ‘–> link to english.wafa.ps http://blog.theheadlines.org/ Araqib village razed for the 45th time The Israeli authorities razed the Araqib village in the Negev desert for the 45th time running claiming that the houses were built without permit. link to www.palestine-info.co.uk Land Theft & Destruction /…

Palestinians in Israel have used the contradiction between Zionism and democracy to reconstruct their national project
Mondoweiss – “Traitor”, “fifth column”, “terrorist sponsor” – these are just some of the words that have been used to attack and incite against Member of Knesset Haneen Zoabi, by her own Knesset colleagues. Now there are renewed attempts to disqualify her from the upcoming elections, efforts that…

Aborigines Reenact Aussie March Against Nazis 
The Foward Breaking News 12 Dec 2012 – Descendants of an Aboriginal elder who staged a unique protest against the Nazis in 1938 re-enacted his famous march to the German consulate in Melbourne. Click here for the rest of the article…

Environmental Agency Backs Palestinians on Wall 
The Foward Breaking News 12 Dec 2012 – An Israeli government environmental agency challenged the Defence Ministry in court on Wednesday over a section of the controversial West Bank wall that threatens an ancient Palestinian farming community. Click here for the rest of the article…

Israel To Keep Palestinian Cash Till March 
The Foward Breaking News 12 Dec 2012 – Israel will withhold tax revenues from Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’s administration until March at least in response to his statehood campaign at the United Nations, Israel’s foreign minister said. Click here for the rest of the article…

Morocco: Nation Hosts International ‘Friends of Syria’ Conference in Marrakech 
allAfrica.com 12 Dec 2012 – [Moroccan American Center for Policy]Urges political will to build peace, curb violence, extremism in region

Gambia: Solidarity With the Palestinian People 
allAfrica.com 12 Dec 2012 – [The Point]Today, November 29th 2012, countries in many parts of the world, will be observing the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People.

South African Christian Church delegation “traumatised” by Palestine-Israel visit 
Global BDS 12 Dec 2012 – A delegation of South African Christian Church leaders has just returned from a one-week solidarity visit to the holy cities of Bethlehem and Jerusalem in Palestine-Israel. On their return, they released this joint statement [extracts]: “Being South African, it felt like walking into another apartheid ambush. …

Egypt opposition backs ‘No’ vote 
BBC 12 Dec 2012 – Egypt’s opposition urges a “No” vote in a disputed constitutional referendum but may still boycott it if its demands on running the ballot are not met.

Syria ‘fires Scud-type missiles’ 
BBC 12 Dec 2012 – Forces loyal to the Syrian government have fired “Scud-type missiles” at rebels, media quote US officials as saying.

Egypt blogger guilty of blasphemy 
BBC 12 Dec 2012 – A court in Egypt sentences an atheist blogger from a Coptic Christian family to three years in prison for blasphemy and contempt of religion.

Hebron ‘fake gun’ teenager killed 
BBC 12 Dec 2012 – Israeli troops shoot dead a Palestinian teenager carrying a fake gun near a holy site in the West Bank city of Hebron.

Mohamed Khodr: Does Israel Have the Legal Right to Exist? 
Sabbah report 12 Dec 2012 – General Assembly has no legal right or basis to Partition any land, especially against the wishes of the majority population. Also, given that Israel did not meet Resolution 273’s “conditional” requirements for admission, its membership in the U.N. is illegal. Mohamed Khodr: Does Israel Have the…

Story from Gaza: “I just want to live a peaceful life and be able to fish freely” 
Sabbah report 12 Dec 2012 – In confiscating fishing boats, Israel denies Gaza fishermen the right to livelihood by removing their means to make a living. The right to not to be arbitrarily deprived of property is protected under Article 17 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Story from Gaza: “I…

The Misleading Association of Islam and Revolution 
Al-Akhbar Blogs 12 Dec 2012 – Cairo – Islam and revolution are used interchangeably. Islamists in Egypt justify President Mohamed Mursi’s controversial decrees as vital to protecting the revolution, while demonstrations organized in his support are labeled as defense of both “legitimacy” and “Islamic sharia ”. In the meantime, the words gradually…

012: Palestine’s Long Walk to Freedom 
Al-Akhbar Opinion 12 Dec 2012 – A Palestinian school girl walks past members of al-Qassam brigades, the armed wing of the Hamas movement, as they take part in an anti-Israel parade in Gaza City 2 December 2012. (Photo: Reuters – Mohammed Salem) A Palestinian school girl walks past members of al-Qassam brigades,…

The Myth of Neo-Ottomanism 
Al-Akhbar Opinion 11 Dec 2012 – Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan sits in the Parliament as lawmakers debate the government’s budget for 2013 in Ankara, on 10 December 2012. (Photo: AFP – Adem Altan) Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan sits in the Parliament as lawmakers debate the government’s budget for…

The Gradual Takeover of the Southern Coast 
Al-Akhbar News 12 Dec 2012 – That’s how things are done in the South. (Photo: Hasan Bahsoun) That’s how things are done in the South. (Photo: Hasan Bahsoun) The looming Israeli threat to South Lebanon since liberation in 2000 has tended to keep big-time investors away from its alluring shore. But a…

Iman Said: Celebrating the Margins 
Al-Akhbar News 12 Dec 2012 – The story centers around the lives of Palestinian and Iraqi refugees as well as Syrians displaced from the Golan and the countryside. The story centers around the lives of Palestinian and Iraqi refugees as well as Syrians displaced from the Golan and the countryside. Like most…

Jerusalem religious sites targets of Jewish extremist hate crimes 
Al-Akhbar News 12 Dec 2012 – Greek Orthodox Abbot of the Monastery of the Holy Cross in Jerusalem, Archimandrite Claudius, looks at a car sprayed with anti-Christian graffiti reading “price tag” and slashed tires outside his monastery on 12 December 2012. (Photo: AFP – Gali Tibbon) Updated 6:45pm: A monastery and an…

Tripoli Development Claims Prime Coastal Real Estate 
Al-Akhbar News 12 Dec 2012 – The project calls for reclaiming, or landfilling, the sea in the area to create between 750,000 and 2,000,000 square meters of real estate. (Photo: Al-Akhbar) The project calls for reclaiming, or landfilling, the sea in the area to create between 750,000 and 2,000,000 square meters of…

Tunisia: Al-Nahda’s Deadly Mistakes 
Al-Akhbar News 12 Dec 2012 – Tunisian security forces and protestors clash in the town of Siliana, in central Tunisia, on 29 November 2012 (Photo: Fethi Belaid) Tunisian security forces and protestors clash in the town of Siliana, in central Tunisia, on 29 November 2012 (Photo: Fethi Belaid) In the coming days,…

Yemen executes second child this year 
Al-Akhbar News 12 Dec 2012 – Chairperson of the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child Wednesday expressed ‘deep dismay’ concerning the execution of another child in Yemen. “According to the information we have received, Hind Al-Barti was around 15 years old at the time of the offense,” the Chairperson Jean…

Aleppo and Damascus Without Gas and Bread 
Al-Akhbar Politics 11 Dec 2012 – A Syrian man, who set up up a business outside a destroyed petrol station, sells petrol in plastic containers in the al-Fardos neighbourhood of the northern Syrian city of Aleppo on 9 December 2012. (Photo: AFP – Odd Andersen) A Syrian man, who set up up…

Egypt opposition backs ‘No’ vote 
BBC 12 Dec 2012 – Egypt’s opposition urges a “No” vote in a disputed constitutional referendum but may still boycott it if its demands on running the ballot are not met.

Syria ‘fires Scud-type missiles’ 
BBC 12 Dec 2012 – Forces loyal to the Syrian government have fired “Scud-type missiles” at rebels, media quote US officials as saying.

Egypt blogger guilty of blasphemy 
BBC 12 Dec 2012 – A court in Egypt sentences an atheist blogger from a Coptic Christian family to three years in prison for blasphemy and contempt of religion.

Hebron ‘fake gun’ teenager killed 
BBC 12 Dec 2012 – Israeli troops shoot dead a Palestinian teenager carrying a fake gun near a holy site in the West Bank city of Hebron.

Yemen juvenile execution deplored 
BBC 12 Dec 2012 – The UN Committee on the Rights of the Child expresses dismay at the Yemen execution of a woman who was a minor at the time of her alleged offence.

Obama recognises Syria opposition 
BBC 12 Dec 2012 – President Obama says the US formally recognises Syria‘s opposition coalition as the sole “legitimate representative” of the Syrian people.

Articles


Gaza doctors rebuild medical center destroyed by Israel 
Eva Bartlett, Gaza City, Electronic Intifada 12/11/2012
      GAZA CITY (IPS) – The Abu Shabaan complex in eastern Gaza City hosted a medical center. The center was severely damaged when eight Israeli bombs struck a government compound 10 meters across the road on 21 November.
     The bombings also took a considerable toll on the homes and businesses nearby, including the Gaza bureau of Al Jazeera.
     More than 50 percent of the private medical center in the Abu Shabaan building was destroyed, said Dr. Naim Shariff, 42, owner of the Benoon In Vitro Fertilization clinic.
     Two weeks after the bombing tore apart the sixth floor and ravaged the fifth floor, Shariff put new panes in the windows, ordered new specialized machinery, and re-opened for clients.
     “The problem with replacing my machines and equipment is that most of it doesn’t exist in Gaza. It takes months to arrive and costs more money than it would elsewhere,” he said.
     “What else can I do but start again? There’s no insurance here for war damages.”
     Three floors down, a privately-run dentist’s office has replaced broken windows and office glass, and installed a new reclining dental chair in place of the destroyed one.
     “The walls were completely black before,” says Doaa Moshaawi, 32, a dentist. “Everything was damaged here, all the jars of medicine and instruments we use in our practice were destroyed.”
     The blown-out Abu Shabaan building, and the testimonies of its tenants, add to the mounting body of evidence that Israel’s bombing sprees in the Gaza Strip disproportionately affect civilian property, homes and lives. more.. e-mail

A matter of choice: Why optimism is integral to anti-occupation activism 
Tom Pessah, +972 Magazine 12/12/2012
      Often times pessimism is caused by choosing to remain a spectator, and pretending to remain powerless instead of taking responsibility and deciding to act according to what one believes. But what does this mean, and how do you do it?
     In a recent +972 post, Noam Sheizaf wrote that “there is something extremely grotesque – for lack of a better word – in hearing Israelis (or Zionists) explaining that the effort to end the occupation is simply not working, or beginning to seem pointless. Israelis are in power. They can end the occupation with a simple decision. Palestinians can’t.” Another way of putting this is that expressions of pessimism by the privileged side amount to a justification of those privileges – an irresponsible and immoral position. A man who tells a woman he is pessimistic about her chances of being paid equally, while doing nothing to further this cause, would rightly be perceived as a sexist: he is accepting her inequality.
     It’s worth thinking about the alternative: regarding optimism as a moral duty for the powerful side. I came to realize this gradually, especially after the dark days of the Second Intifada, with its daily news of slaughter on both sides. I had dealt with this by isolating myself, making my world small, sticking to everyday routines. Watching TV shows may have felt safer, but it did not make me any happier. In retrospect, I realize that my pessimism was caused by choosing to remain a spectator, to pretend I really was powerless, instead of taking responsibility and deciding to act. But what does this mean, and how do you do it?
     As a middle-class, well-educated, light-skinned, straight, Jewish-Israeli man, I am privileged: there are no government plans to demolish my home; mine is not a dangerous working environment where I am likely to get injured at any moment; I will not be deported to a foreign country because of my “foreign” skin color, or beaten for my sexuality; I can walk around freely late at night in most parts of my city…. more.. e-mail

The dirty dozen: Israel’s racist ringleaders 
David Sheen, Jaffa, Electronic Intifada 12/12/2012
      Does Israel refuse to grant equal rights to Palestinian citizens of the state because it is based on an ideology of racism towards people who are not Jewish? Or does Israel refuse to grant equal rights to Palestinian citizens because, since some of them are opposed to the Jewish sectarian nature of the state, it prioritizes state security over racial equality?
     While this debate has raged for decades, new evidence has come to light which would seem to suggest that the former is more true. Because if Jewish Israelis are only antagonistic to Palestinian citizens because they supposedly represent security risks, then why do they also despise sub-Saharan Africans, with whom they have never had any conflict?
     Approximately 60,000 people from sub-Saharan African countries have migrated to Israel in recent years, fleeing persecution and requesting asylum. Instead of providing them with aid or permitting them to support themselves, the Israeli government refuses to grant them any rights, forces them into abject poverty, and seeks to deport the lot of them.
     Although Israel is a regional superpower, it has the second-highest poverty rate among developed countries. After last year’s Arab uprisings, hundreds of thousands of Israelis took to the streets, demanding a higher standard of living. In response, public officials scapegoated the Africans for Israel’s economic problems and launched a racist campaign to expel them.
     If there is to be justice, these leaders must be brought to trial to answer for their crimes. Maybe Israelis will come to their senses, cancel all the laws that discriminate against African asylum-seekers and call for a truth and reconciliation commission. Sadly, that is unlikely to happen in the near future, because the hatred of African asylum-seekers has become so widespread in Israel. more.. e-mail

Bashar al-Assad, Syria, and the truth about chemical weapons 
Robert Fisk, The Independent 12/8/2012
      Bashar’s father Hafez al-Assad was brutal but never used chemical arms. And do you know which was the first army to use gas in the Middle East?
     The bigger the lie the more people will believe it. We all know who said that – but it still works. Bashar al-Assad has chemical weapons. He may use them against his own Syrian people. If he does, the West will respond. We heard all this stuff last year – and Assad’s regime repeatedly said that if – if – it had chemical weapons, it would never use them against Syrians.
     But now Washington is playing the same gas-chanty all over again. Bashar has chemical weapons. He may use them against his own people. And if he does…
     Well if he does, Obama and Madame Clinton and Nato will be very, very angry. But over the past week, all the usual pseudo-experts who couldn’t find Syria on a map have been warning us again of the mustard gas, chemical agents, biological agents that Syria might possess – and might use. And the sources? The same fantasy specialists who didn’t warn us about 9/11 but insisted that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction in 2003: “unnamed military intelligence sources”. Henceforth to be acronymed as UMIS.
     Coup de théâtre
     And now, the coup de théâtre. Someone from the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation called me up this week to talk about the use of chemical weapons by Hafez al-Assad in Hama during the Sunni Muslim uprising in the city in 1982. Their sources were the same old UMIS. But I happened to have got into Hama in February 1982…. more.. e-mail

Navigating Egypt’s Revolutionary Crisis
Dissident Voice: 12 Dec 2012 – As chaos again envelopes Egypt, the revolution is evolving in new directions, along contradictory and confusing channels. It’s tempting to immediately support the “opposition” to the Muslim Brotherhood’s apparent “power grab,” but the situation in Egypt is more complex. The recent events in Egypt are not simply signs of a healthy revolution, they also include immediate dangers. Making sense out of a constantly changing, frantic revolution involving millions of people involves unpeeling layers of outer turmoil until the inner motives of different interest groups are exposed. At bottom, the groups vying for power have economic interests at stake; asking “who benefits” is still the best way to navigate a revolution. For example, in Egypt the freshly-formed “opposition” — to the democratically elected Muslim Brotherhood government — is a motley crew. After the President announced “emergency powers,” an opposition coalition formed, calling itself the “National Salvation Front,” consisting of different groups united with…more

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