VTJP Occupied Palestine and Israel: News and Articles 30 December 2012: Marketing Israel: Is it the campaign, or does the product suck?

30 December 2012 VTJP

News

International Middle East Media Center

Soldier, Settler, Injured In Two Separate Incidents
IMEMC – Israeli media sources reported on Saturday evening that an Israeli soldier and a settler have been injured in two separate incidents after Palestinian youths hurled stones at them. …

Ma’an News

Israel court: Haneen Zoabi can run in upcoming election
12/30/2012 – JERUSALEM (Reuters) — Israel’s Supreme Court ruled Sunday that a Palestinian-Israeli lawmaker could stand in elections, overturning her disqualification by electoral officials over her participation in a Gaza-bound aid flotilla in 2010. The nine-justice court ruled unanimously Haneen Zoabi “shall be a candidate for the Knesset” in a Jan. 22 poll without giving details….

Political leaders say Arab aid failure due to [US] political pressure
12/30/2012 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Palestinian political leaders on Sunday told Ma’an they believe the failure of Arab states to deliver on aid pledges is the result of US pressure. Arab League members had agreed a $100 million monthly payment to the Palestinian Authority, but the League chief Nabil al-Arabi said on a visit….

Hamas delegation visits Cairo to discuss Gaza truce
12/30/2012GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — A legal delegation from Gaza’s ministry of justice visited Cairo on Saturday to discuss the Egyptian-mediated truce agreement between Hamas and Israel last month, as well as other bilateral issues, Palestinian sources told Ma’an. The delegation included 13 judges and counselors who took part in talks….

Witnesses: Israel arrests member of PA security forces
12/30/2012 – HEBRON (Ma’an) — Israeli forces made multiple arrests overnight in the West Bank, including a member of the Palestinian Authority security forces, locals said. Witnesses said Muhammad Gamal al-Tal, 19, was arrested in the Hebron village of al-Dhahiriya by Israeli forces after a raid on his home. Al-Tal is a member of the PA….

Fayyad signs deal for refugee camps to pay electricity costs
12/30/2012 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Palestinian Authority premier Salam Fayyad on Sunday signed a deal with representatives of refugee camps in the West Bank to start paying electricity costs. Refugees living in the West Bank had been exempted from paying for electricity bills, and Palestinian power companies said the gap in payments was a main reason….

Refugees threaten further strikes against UNRWA
12/30/2012 – JERICHO (Ma’an) — Popular committee heads in West Bank refugee camps on Sunday threatened more protests against the UN agency giving services to the camps. They wrote to UNRWA operations director Felipe Sanchez over the cutbacks which the UN agency says is necessary due to a drop in aid. Protests have blocked off UNRWA….

Official: Arab League chief’s visit a show of support for Palestine
12/30/2012 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — A recent visit to the West Bank by the Arab League’s chief demonstrates Arab support for Palestine’s UN status upgrade and right to an independent state, a Fatah official said Sunday. Fatah Central Committee member Jamal Muhaisen told Ma’an that visits by Arab officials and….

Israel allows building material to enter Gaza
12/30/2012GAZA (Reuters) — Israel allowed a shipment of gravel for private construction to enter Gaza on Sunday for the first time since Hamas seized control in 2007. A Palestinian official with knowledge of an Egyptian-brokered ceasefire that ended eight days of fighting last month between Israel and Gaza militants said the move had been expected as….

Erekat: World must stop East Jerusalem eviction
12/30/2012 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — PLO official Saeb Erekat on Sunday called on the international community to prevent the imminent eviction of a Palestinian family from their home in East Jerusalem. An Israeli court has ordered the Shamasneh family to leave their Sheikh Jarrah home by Dec. 31. The family lost an appeal against the ruling….

Israel indicts former foreign minister Lieberman
12/30/2012 – JERUSALEM (Reuters) — Israeli far-right leader Avigdor Lieberman was charged on Sunday with fraud and breach of trust, allegations that prompted his resignation as foreign minister two weeks ago, justice officials said. Lieberman, who has denied the accusations, remains head of the Yisrael Beitenu party that has formed a coalition with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu….

PA employees to strike this week
12/30/2012 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Employees of the Palestinian Authority government will strike for two days this week, in a continuation of protests against delays in salary payments. The public sector union said Sunday it would suspend work on Wednesday and Thursday. They will then decide on the program for the following week. Government employees in….

Report: Iran showcases special forces during naval drills
12/30/2012 – DUBAI (Reuters) — Iranian special forces and military diving units practiced defending their ports and coastline against attacks on Sunday, state-linked media reported during naval war games meant to warn off states threatening the Islamic republic. The highly-publicized “Velayat 91” exercises are taking place across a wide area from the Strait of Hormuz, a vital oil….

Report: Small US plane makes emergency landing in Iran
12/30/2012 – DUBAI (Reuters) — A small US commercial plane made an emergency landing in the Iranian city of Ahvaz 20 days ago after having technical problems, Mehr news agency reported on Sunday.” After landing, the crew traveled on to countries around the Persian Gulf and the aeroplane is currently being repaired,” the director of Iran‘s….

Old Aleppo, front-line ghost town of ruined treasures
12/30/2012 – ALEPPO, Syria (Reuters) — A 13th century mosque is shuttered, its tottering minaret struck at the base by a shell. Snipers fire from nests atop the immense stone walls of the citadel, where ancient Greek, Roman, Byzantine, Arab and Turkish warriors once perched. Until a few months ago, Old Aleppo was both a living museum and….

013
12/30/2012 – CAIRO (Reuters) — The international peace envoy for Syria said the situation in the country was deteriorating sharply but a solution was still possible under the terms of a peace plan agreed in Geneva in June. He said the state would collapse without a solution, reiterating warnings that the country could turn into “hell” and a….

Court to rule on legality of Egyptian parliament
12/30/2012 – CAIRO (Reuters) — Egypt’s highest court is to examine the legitimacy of the upper house of parliament, a case likely to increase the legal uncertainty of the country’s political transition and leave it without a legislature. The Supreme Constitutional Court has already forced the lower house to dissolve under a June ruling….

Bahrain policemen jailed for beating opposition member to death
12/30/2012 – DUBAI (Reuters) — Two Bahraini policemen were sentenced to jail for seven years each on Sunday for beating to death a Shiite opposition activist in custody during last year’s crackdown on protesters. The sentences, reported by state news agency BNA, were criticized as too lenient by critics and may do little to blunt international….

Attack on Libyan church building kills 2
12/30/2012 – TRIPOLI (Reuters) — An explosion on Sunday at a building belonging to a Coptic church in western Libya killed two Egyptian men and wounded two others, a military spokesman said. Attackers threw a homemade bomb at an administration building belonging to the Egyptian Coptic church in Dafniya, close to the western city of Misrata, said Ibrahim….

Aljazeera

Israel eases ban on Gaza building material
AlJazeera 30 Dec 2012 – Shipment of gravel for private construction allowed into Palestinian enclave as part of ceasefire deal with Hamas.

Palestine News Network

On Ramallah’s-Tirah Crossroads Santa Clause Had Stood
Palestine News Network

UFree Network: Arab/European Bodies Tracked Abu Sisi, Contributed to His Kidnapping
Palestine News Network

International Solidarity Movement

Further incursions into Urif
12/30/2012 – International Solidarity Movement – 30 December 2012, International Solidarity Movement, Urif, Occupied Palestine – International Solidarity Movement, Urif, Occupied Palestine – Israeli soldiers invaded the village of Urif for the fourth time in six days on Saturday 29th December. Urif has been attacked by settlers from the nearby illegal settlement of Yizhar on every Saturday in the past few months. Armed settlers….

The National

UAE candlelight vigil for gang-rape victim cancelled
The National 30 Dec 2012 – A planned two-hour candlelight vigil at the Indian consulate this evening in memory of the rape victim who succumbed to her injuries yesterday in Singapore will now not go ahead.

Sailors ‘fought for their lives’ to survive shipwreck off UAE waters
The National 30 Dec 2012 – Two sailors stayed alive while adrift at sea for three days after their ship sank on its way to Iran from Ajman.

Dubai braces for New Year’s Eve celebrations
The National 30 Dec 2012 – As more than a million people head to Dubai for New Year’s Eve, authorities are on standby to ensure the safety of revellers.

Dubai beach evacuation sweeps clean
The National 30 Dec 2012 – An hour-long rescue drill at Mamzar Park saw the beach park cleared in less than 30 minutes.

‘Honour the workers, not me,’ says Dubai’s Ruler
The National 30 Dec 2012 – On the occasion of the seventh anniversary of his accession, the Ruler of Dubai has urged residents to celebrate the emirate’s ‘unknown soldiers’.

Indian gang-rape victim cremated amid outpouring of grief and anger
The National 30 Dec 2012 – Even as candlelight vigils were held across India to mourn her death, incidents of sexual assault on women continued to be reported across the country.

Sheikh Khalifa travels to Pakistan on private visit
The National 30 Dec 2012 – The UAE president will be accompanied by a delegation of high-level UAE officials.

Emiratis rush to become UAE ambassadors
The National 30 Dec 2012 – More than 600 Emiratis are vying for 50 places in the Abu Dhabi Ambassador Programme offeredby the Tourism and Culture Authority (TCA).

Ha’aretz

Israeli man described as ‘mentally ill’ crosses into Syria
Ha’aretz – 30 Dec 2012

Two of Israel’s most precious national institutions fall victim to Likud hysteria
Ha’aretz – 30 Dec 2012

Young woman spits at Israeli Arab MK during election panel
Ha’aretz – 30 Dec 2012

013 for the Oslo Accords
Ha’aretz – 30 Dec 2012

Livni not ruling out joining forces with Netanyahu after Israel election
Ha’aretz – 30 Dec 2012

Likud-Beiteinu: Peres ‘disconnected’ from Israeli public on Palestinian issue
Ha’aretz – 30 Dec 2012

Israel’s political parties at war over legality of entertainers at campaign events
Ha’aretz – 30 Dec 2012

Peres criticizes Netanyahu, Lieberman over Israel’s dismissal of Abbas
Ha’aretz – 30 Dec 2012

High Court rules: Israeli Arab MK Hanin Zuabi can run in upcoming election
Ha’aretz – 30 Dec 2012

Indictment served against former Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman
Ha’aretz – 30 Dec 2012

IDF completes evacuation of West Bank outpost Oz Tzion
Ha’aretz – 30 Dec 2012

Jerusalem Post

MB ‘working behind scenes to divide Salafists’
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – Egypt’s ruling party meets to discuss new law proposals while Al-Nour party head resigns to form new Al-Watan party. 

Petah Tikva man killed in suspected underworld hit
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – Local 50-year-old man is killed by explosive devise on motorcycle; victim is “known to police.” 

Feminists to protest anti-abortion group’s prize
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – Activists set to demonstrate against Jerusalem Conference for awarding a prize to Efrat, an anti-abortion organization. 

Hearing impaired call for increased gov’t services
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – Welfare and Social Services Ministry re-approves budget following public protest against cuts to services for the deaf, hard of hearing. 

Candidly Speaking: Religious Zionism at the crossroads
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – There is much to welcome from Bayit Yehudi, but Religious Zionists do not necessarily adhere to the hard right wing of the Israeli political mainstream. 

Think About It: In defense of Naftali Bennett
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – Despite my warm words about Naftali Bennett, don’t get me wrong – there is no chance I will vote for him. 

Peres causes uproar with pro-Abbas remarks
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – In response, Likud-Beytenu calls president “detached from public opinion”; Center-Left parties rush to defend president. 

Wringing my hands as an Israeli employer
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – Regardless of reason, a terminated employee is entitled to severance equal to one month of pay for each year he or she was employed. 

A Middle East Islamicized, or balkanized?
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – We see in the “Arab Spring” (or “Winter”) that elections have not been accompanied by minorities’ rights being protected, a central feature of real democracies. 

Introducing – Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – For close to a decade, I have had the privilege of working with Rabbi Mirvis at Finchley Synagogue in London. 

The chief rabbi of Canterbury
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – Lord Sacks has spoken about Judaism as a religion that begins with the universal but progresses to the particular: perhaps his successor will be the one to put that into practice. 

With hours remaining, US fiscal deal uncertain
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – In the absence of compromise, tax increases and across-the-board government spending cuts will begin on January 1. 

Police search for husband of murdered Eritrean woman
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – Woman dies of stab wound shortly after being found in critical condition in Tel Aviv apartment; husband tabbed as main suspect. 

Olmert bashes Tzipi Livni at Kadima event
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – Former prime minister says Livni “lost trust” of Kadima members when she headed faction, failed as leader of opposition. 

Steinitz: Labor would make Israel economy worse than Spain
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – Speaking to ‘The Jerusalem Post,’ Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz derides Labor’s economic platform, but refuses to lay out his own plan of necessary budget cuts; “minimal” tax increases not ruled out. 

Oren denies asking to end his run as envoy to US
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – Ambassador to Washington denies report he would return to Israel after nearly 4 years, be replaced by PM’s top aide, Ron Dermer. 

Year in Review: US Presidential elections
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – The top International story of 2011, according to ‘Jerusalem Post’ readers. 

Erekat: ‘Palestine’ should be on official documents
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – Chief PLO negotiator also calls for new constitution, reconciliation with Hamas and membership in UN conventions and agencies. 

‘No reason to disqualify Hagel for top defense job’
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – Obama reiterates support for Chuck Hagel as next defense secretary, despite backlash from Republicans, Jewish groups. 

Bennett backtracks on IDF order refusal remarks
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – Bayit Yehudi leader expresses concern over possible negative effects of his comments on youth who view him as role model. 

013
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – UN-Arab League envoy for Syria says solution still possible as Turkish PM predicts regime change, hints “end is approaching.” 

Ministry agrees to suspend cuts to deaf services
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – Welfare and Social Services Ministry re-approves budget following public protest against cuts to services for the deaf, hard of hearing. 

Justice Ministry charges Liberman in court for fraud
Jerusalem Post 30 Dec 2012 – Former FM expected to face more serious charges as court receives updated indictment for breach of public trust and fraud. 

How did Hitler really die?
Jerusalem Post 29 Dec 2012 – A new documentary claims the Nazi leader did not commit suicide in his bunker towards the end of WWII. 

The Guardian

013: the stories to watch for
The Guardian 30 Dec 2012 – With elections due in many key countries, the shifting sands of national power and global influence will be making headlines Where will the major stories of 2013 be? If your country begins with an I, the…

Israeli-Arab politician who was on Gaza protest flotilla can stand for re-election
The Guardian 30 Dec 2012 – Supreme court rules ban on Haneen Zoabi’s candidacy for being on boat stormed by commandos is unconstitutional An Israeli-Arab politician who took part in a flotilla attempting to breach the blockade of Gaza in 2010 will…

Who paid for the Log Cabin Republicans’ anti-Hagel NYT ad? | Glenn Greenwald
The Guardian 30 Dec 2012 – The gay GOP group confirms the ad was funded by outside donors, but refuses to identify them or their cause Last Thursday, the gay GOP group Log Cabin Republicans (LCR) placed a full-page ad in the…

Avigdor Lieberman faces fraud charges in Israeli court
The Guardian 30 Dec 2012 – Former foreign minister, who resigned after allegations were first made, faces counts of breach of trust and fraud Israel’s former foreign minister Avigdor Lieberman was formally indicted on Sunday on charges of breach of trust and…

Israeli-Arab politician who was on Gaza protest flotilla can stand in election
The Guardian 30 Dec 2012 – Haneen Zoabi candidacy was barred for being on boat stormed by commandos, but supreme court rules ban unconstitutional An Israeli-Arab politician who took part in a flotilla of ships attempting to breach the blockade of Gaza…

Uruknet

Military Resistance 10L19: What Am I Doing Here
Uruknet

The Jordan Valley
Uruknet

Bradley Manning, the small man who wrote big
Uruknet

FBI Ignored Deadly Threat to Occupiers: US Intelligence Machine Instead Plotted with Bankers to Attack Protest Movement
Uruknet

Secret CIA structure disclosed
Uruknet

012 : A Video Roundup
Uruknet

Jabhat al-Nusra accuses US of keeping Assad in power
Uruknet

Drone victim to appeal ruling over UK support for CIA strikes in Pakistan
Uruknet

Shootings of Newtown Children Provokes Outrage, Foreign Kids Killed by U.S. Drones Doesn’t
Uruknet

US drone strike kills four in Pakistan: officials
Uruknet

Daily Star

Yemen: Al-Qaeda offers bounty for US ambassador
Daily Star 30 Dec 2012 Al-Qaida’s branch in Yemen has offered to pay tens of thousands of dollars to anyone who kills the U.S. ambassador in Sanaa or an American soldier in the country.

Israel must complete peace deal with Abbas: Peres
Daily Star 30 Dec 2012 President Shimon Peres on Sunday urged Israel to resume peace talks with the Palestinians, saying their president Mahmud Abbas was a willing partner with whom an agreement could be reached.

Egypt advances, shrugs off currency fears
Daily Star 30 Dec 2012 Egypt’s stock market held up well on Sunday despite a weak currency, as foreign investors continued to buy shares – a sign that a devaluation of Egypt’s pound.

Pakistan militants kill 41 in mass execution, attack on Shiites
Daily Star 30 Dec 2012 Pakistani militants, who have escalated attacks in recent weeks, killed at least 41 people in two separate incidents, officials said on Sunday.

Bangladesh convicts 5 for murder of Saudi envoy
Daily Star 30 Dec 2012 A special tribunal in Dhaka sentenced to death five Bangladeshi men for the killing of a Saudi diplomat early this year in what appeared to be a street crime gone wrong.

Court to rule on legality of Egyptian parliament
Daily Star 30 Dec 2012 Egypt’s highest court is to examine the legitimacy of the upper house of parliament, a case likely to increase the legal uncertainty of the country’s political transition and leave it without a legislature.

Bahrain policemen jailed for beating opposition member to death
Daily Star 30 Dec 2012 Two Bahraini policemen were sentenced to jail for seven years each on Sunday for beating to death a Shi’ite opposition activist in custody during last year’s crackdown on protesters.

Iran: US plane leaves after emergency landing
Daily Star 30 Dec 2012 A small American commercial plane left Iran Sunday after it was repaired following an emergency landing at an Iranian airport this month, state TV reported.

2 Iraqi Sunni protesters wounded by gunfire
Daily Star 30 Dec 2012 Gunshots wounded at least two people Sunday at demonstrations in western Iraq when bodyguards and security forces protecting a senior Sunni politician opened fire to disperse protesters, a local official said.

Egypt pound hits record low under new currency regime
Daily Star 30 Dec 2012 The Egyptian pound hit a record low after the central bank imposed a new currency regime to try and stem a deepening economic crisis that presents a further challenge for President Mohamed Mursi.

Libya church blast kills 2 Egyptians: embassy
Daily Star 30 Dec 2012 An explosion rocked a Coptic church near the Libyan city of Misrata, killing two people and wounding two, all of them Egyptians, a diplomat told AFP on Sunday.

YNet News

013
YNet News, 30 Dec 2012 – ….

Official: Men shoot 12, kill 1 at party in Mexico
YNet News, 30 Dec 2012 – ….

Iran: US plane leaves after emergency landing
YNet News, 30 Dec 2012 – ….

Jerusalem: 100 haredim protest against IDF draft of haredim
YNet News, 30 Dec 2012 – ….

Petah Tikva blast: Man dies of his wounds 
YNet News, 30 Dec 2012 – ….

Fools from the hill
YNet News, 30 Dec 2012 – Op-ed: Despite messianic fervor and interest they generate, Hilltop Youth not changing reality ….

Politicians won
YNet News, 30 Dec 2012 – Op-ed: Ariel college in West Bank discovered shortcut to obtaining much-needed academic prestige ….

Iran’s Navy simulates enemy invasion
YNet News, 29 Dec 2012 – On second day of drill Islamic Republic tests operational capabilities of its warships and submarines, plants mines meant to target potential enemy ships ….

Cop indicted for seeking to sexually harass girls online
YNet News, 29 Dec 2012 – Police detective accused of making sexual advances at undercover agent posing as 13-year-old girl; ‘I imagined you naked,’ he told her ….

Report: Fearing for his safety, Assad lays low
YNet News, 29 Dec 2012 – Syrian president changes bedrooms every night, steps up controls over food preparation to foil assassins, according to activist accounts ….

Palestinian Information Center

Dissolve the PA today, not tomorrow 
PIC – There is no doubt that the dissolution of the PA would be good news for most Palestinians. Yes, some people would lose their jobs and some corrupt robber barons in Ramallah would suffer temporarily..

Settlers attack farmers east of Salfit
PIC – Israeli settlers attacked on Sunday Palestinian farmers from the village of Yasuf, east of Salfit, while planting wheat and barley in their land, near Za’tara military checkpoint.

Beit Egza inhabitants to contest confiscation of their land
PIC – Inhabitants of Beit Egza village, north west of occupied Jerusalem, have decided to go to court to contest the Israeli occupation authorities (IOA) confiscation of most of their land.

IOF soldiers arrest, summons West Bankers
PIC – Israeli occupation forces (IOF) arrested three Palestinians and summoned a liberated prisoner in the West Bank over the past 24 hours.

Bardawil denies electing successor to Mishaal
PIC – Hamas leader Dr. Salah Bardawil denied that a successor for Khaled Mishaal, the political bureau chairman of Hamas, was elected.

Palestinian symposium on Israel’s impoverishment policy held in J’lem
PIC – Specialists in Jerusalem affairs tabled in a symposium held in the holy city on Saturday the impoverishment policy pursued by the Israeli occupation regime in east Jerusalem.

Judicial decision allows Zoabi to run for Knesset elections
PIC – The Israeli Supreme Court has overturned the Central Election Committee’s decision to disqualify MK Hanin Zoabi (Balad) from running for a Knesset seat in the upcoming elections.

Al-Khudari: allowing construction materials into Gaza is not enough
PIC – MP Jamal Al-Khudari head of PCAS said that the Israeli occupation’s permission to allow some building materials into Gaza for the first time since the siege is not enough..

France prevents a solidarity event with prisoners
PIC – The Palestinian Center for Prisoners’ Studies condemned the French refusal to allow the holding of a solidarity event in support of the Palestinian prisoners in Israeli occupation jails.

Calls to halt the escalating Israeli attacks on “Issawiya”
PIC – The follow-up committee in the village of Issawiya denounced the arrests and raids campaign carried out by the occupation forces in recent times, which led to terrorizing the residents and children.

WAFA

Fayyad Condemns Israeli Seizure of Land near Jerusalem
WAFA – 30 Dec 2012

PA Suffers Severe Financial Crisis, says Arab League Chief
WAFA – 30 Dec 2012

Israeli Policies Aim to Weaken PA, says Official
WAFA – 30 Dec 2012

Confrontations Erupt near Jenin, Leading to Suffocation Cases
WAFA – 30 Dec 2012

012, says Statistics Bureau
WAFA – 30 Dec 2012

PEX Report: AL-Quds Index Up
WAFA – 26 Dec 2012

Misc

Al Qaeda Places Bounties on Americans in Yemen
New York Times 30 Dec 2012 – Al Qaeda’s branch in Yemen has offered bounties worth tens of thousands of dollars to anyone who kills the American ambassador or an American soldier in the country. 

In Shift, Israel Lets Building Materials Into Gaza
New York Times 30 Dec 2012 – The easing of restrictions on imports is a result of continuing talks in Cairo meant to anchor the cease-fire between Israel and Hamas. 

U.S. Group Raises Funds for Syrian Scholars
New York Times 30 Dec 2012 – A New York-based organization coordinates efforts to help students and academics left stranded by the conflict. 

Russia Says Bashar al-Assad Won’t Leave Syria
New York Times 30 Dec 2012 – Russia’s foreign minister, Sergey V. Lavrov, said there was “no possibility” President Bashar al-Assad of Syria could be persuaded to leave, suggesting slender hope for a breakthrough. 

Gasoline prices unchanged in January 
Globes Energy & Water – The price of self-service 95 octane gasoline will stay at NIS 7.52 per liter (including VAT) in January.

TACount wins Massachusetts water industry competition 
Globes Energy & Water – TACount provides real-time microbiological test results for the water, food, and beverage, micro-electronics, cosmetics and pharmaceutical industries.

Tamar production platform inaugurated 
Globes Energy & Water – Located 24 kilometers west of Ashkelon, the offshore platform is a critical step toward the start of gas deliveries from Tamar, scheduled in April.

Treasury official: Fischer lacks focus
Globes Main News – A senior treasury official has hit back at repeated sharp criticism of government fiscal policy by Bank of Israel Governor Stanley Fischer.

Former Psagot execs set to be indicted
Globes Main News – The prosecutor is about to make its decision on which suspects are to be indicted, including former Psagot CEO Roy Vermus.

Traffic fatalities hit 50-year low
Globes Main News – Transport Minister Yisrael Katz: 287 people were killed in traffic accidents in 2012, 25% fewer than 2011.

Sun: Tamar Partners lead market rise
Globes Main News – Delek Group and Isramco led the market up after the Tamar production platform was completed but Teva fell again on the day’s biggest turnover.

Perrigo buys remaining Cobrek stake for $45m
Globes Main News – The two companies collaborated on the development of foam-based generic drugs.

AFI Development in talks to buy Moscow project
Globes Main News – Lev Leviev’s Russian development arm is in talks to buy the rights to the real estate project at a value of $200-230 million.

Israel’s population on 8 million threshold
Globes Macro Economics – With the population growing 1.8% million annually (145,000 in 2012), the 8 million threshold will be passed during February 2013.

Rising rightwing in Israel is using violent provocation in West Bank to push annexation
Mondoweiss – Since Mahmoud Abbas went to the UN for the Palestine Observer State status upgrade a month ago, nearly everything on the Israeli Foreign Ministry’s list of ways to threaten Palestinians has been initiated. Notably: Haaretz reporting that “Israel may initiate a building drive in West Bank “…

Scene on an Israeli bus
Mondoweiss – Editor’s Note: The following story was told by Mondoweiss contributor David Sheen over Twitter and compiled on Storify by SAHenryKrinkle . [ View the story “@davidsheen rescues Palestinian citizen of Israel from Jewish supremacist” on Storify ]

Watch: California bill equating student activism with anti-Semitism is rubber-stamped with no debate
Mondoweiss – One of the many complaints about HR 35, a California bill that conflates activism in solidarity with Palestinians with anti-Semitism, is that it passed quickly with no debate. Now, video has emerged from the vote in late August that shows just how little discussion preceded the…

Settlers’ new tactic: Building wooden benches Palestinians can’t sit on
Mondoweiss – JERUSALEM (WAFA) 29 Dec – The Israeli authorities Friday issued a number of notices to seize 456 dunums of land in the village of Beit Iksa northwest of Jerusalem to build a barrier that will separate the West Bank village from the nearby settlement of Ramot, said local officials. …

White House to announce Hagel nomination shortly, Republican Jewish Coalition reports
Mondoweiss – Matt Brooks, executive director of the Republican Jewish Coalition, just tweeted the following : Jewish leaders are starting to say they have been called by WH that Hagel nomination is a done deal. Announcement shortly.

Hoenlein says Obama will pick Hagel for ‘Ministry’ of Defense — whoops, make that Defense Department
Mondoweiss – Politico reports that Obama hints that Chuck Hagel is in the running for Secretary of Defense, in speaking to David Gregory on Meet the Press today: President Barack Obama says he hasn’t decided on a nominee for defense secretary, but suggested former Sen. Chuck Hagel is…

New York Boy’s Hoops Mitzvah 
The Foward Breaking News 30 Dec 2012 – A new basketball court in Beersheba, Israel, came to life as part of a bar mitzvah project by New Yorker Daniel Klosk. Click here for the rest of the article…

Avigdor Lieberman Hit With Fraud Charge 
The Foward Breaking News 30 Dec 2012 – Israeli far-right leader Avigdor Lieberman was charged on Sunday with fraud and breach of trust, allegations that prompted his resignation as foreign minister two weeks ago, justice officials said. Click here for the rest of the article…

Israel Denies Dermer Ambassador Reports 
The Foward Breaking News 29 Dec 2012 – Israeli officials have denied newspaper reportes that Ron Dremer, an aide to Benjamin Netanyahu with close ties to Republicans, would be taking over as Israel’s ambassador to the U.S. Click here for the rest of the article…

Syria troops retake Homs district 
BBC 30 Dec 2012 – Syrian government forces push rebels out of the Deir Baalbeh district of the city of Homs after days of fighting, amid allegations of a massacre.

Two killed at Libya Coptic church 
BBC 30 Dec 2012 – Two Egyptians have been killed and two injured in an apparent attack on a Coptic church building near the Libyan city of Misrata, officials say.

Egypt hopeful on IMF loan talks 
BBC 30 Dec 2012 – Egypt will soon resume talks with the International Monetary Fund over a crucial $4.8bn (£3bn) loan to shore up the economy, the prime minister says, as the currency weakens further.

Egypt allows Gaza supply convoy 
BBC 29 Dec 2012 – Egypt allows a shipment of construction materials to enter the Gaza Strip from its territory for the first time since 2007.

Latest News From the Revolution 
Al-Akhbar Opinion 30 Dec 2012 – A supporter holds a Syrian opposition flag during a demonstration at the Ennahda party “Youth Festival” organized by the Renaissance Movement at the Conference Palace in Tunis 23 December 2012. (Photo: Reuters – Anis Mili) A supporter holds a Syrian opposition flag during a demonstration at…

Internal Syrian Refugees Dream of an End to the Impasse 
Al-Akhbar News 30 Dec 2012 – A Syrian refugee child plays on a motorcycle outside his family tent at Bib Salam refugee camp in Syria, near the Turkish border 28 December 2012. (Photo: Reuters – Ahmed Jadallah) A Syrian refugee child plays on a motorcycle outside his family tent at Bib Salam…

Israel fires tear gas in West Bank raids 
Al-Akhbar News 30 Dec 2012 – Several Palestinians were injured after Israeli soldiers fired tear gas at them in a West Bank town on Sunday, media reported. Witnesses from the village of Yamoun, near Jenin, said a number of residents had choked on tear gas fumes after confronting soldiers who were launching…

Indian gang-rape victim cremated 
Al-Akhbar News 30 Dec 2012 – An Indian protester lights candles as another prays during a rally in New Delhi on 30 December 2012 following the cremation of a gang-rape victim in the Indian capital. (Photo: AFP – Andrew Caballero-Reynolds) The victim of a gang-rape which triggered an outpouring of grief and…

Israeli court overturns ban on Arab electoral candidate 
Al-Akhbar News 30 Dec 2012 – The Israeli Supreme Court on Sunday overturned a decision by the Central Elections Committee banning Arab Member of Knesset (MK) Haneen Zoabi from standing in next month’s snap general election. “Following a hearing on 27/12/2012, it was decided unanimously to reject the Central Elections Committee’s decision……

Israel’s Lieberman charged with fraud 
Al-Akhbar News 30 Dec 2012 – Pictures of Israel’s far-right Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (L) and Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman (R) are displayed as the latter leaves after a speech on 25 December 2012 in Jerusalem. (Photo: AFP – Gali Tibbon) Israel’s far-right former minister Avigdor Lieberman was charged on Sunday with…

Syria troops retake Homs district 
BBC 30 Dec 2012 – Syrian government forces push rebels out of the Deir Baalbeh district of the city of Homs after days of fighting, amid allegations of a massacre.

Two killed at Libya Coptic church 
BBC 30 Dec 2012 – Two Egyptians have been killed and two injured in an apparent attack on a Coptic church building near the Libyan city of Misrata, officials say.

Egypt hopeful on IMF loan talks 
BBC 30 Dec 2012 – Egypt will soon resume talks with the International Monetary Fund over a crucial $4.8bn (£3bn) loan to shore up the economy, the prime minister says, as the currency weakens further.

Egypt allows Gaza supply convoy 
BBC 29 Dec 2012 – Egypt allows a shipment of construction materials to enter the Gaza Strip from its territory for the first time since 2007.

VIDEO: Syria troops retake Homs district 
BBC 30 Dec 2012 – Opposition activists claim that Syrian government forces have summarily executed 220 people, including women and children.

Articles


Supreme Court allows Palestinian MK Zoabi to participate in elections 
Noam Sheizaf, +972 Magazine 12/30/2012
      The court unanimously decided to reverse the Central Election Committee’s decision forbidding MK Zoabi (Balad) from running. In response, a Likud spokesperson vowed that the PM’s party would work to amend the law in order to ensure such disqualifications before the next elections. 
     The Israeli Supreme Court decided this morning (Sunday) to reverse the Central Election Committee’s decision to prevent MK Haneen Zoabi (Balad) from participating in the coming Knesset elections, due to take place on January 22. The decision was unanimous, with all nine judges – including Supreme Court Chief Justice Asher Gronis – ruling to allow Zoabi to run.
     MK Zoabi, the only Palestinian woman in the Knesset, became a target for the Israeli right following her participation in the first flotilla to Gaza. Despite the fact that no charges were brought against her, Zoabi was stripped of some of her parliamentary privileges, and was even attacked in the Knesset by some right-wing members. Immediately after the elections were called, several Members of Knesset from the right announced they would try to ban Zoabi and her party, Balad, from running. The motion to prevent Balad from running failed at the elections committee, but the right won a victory in the effort to ban Zoabi herself, which was even supported by Kadima representatives on the committee.
     However, just like in previous attempts to ban Arab MKs from participating in the elections, the decision was reversed by the Supreme Court. Zoabi and her supporters were attacked again by supporters of the right during the hearing of her case at the Supreme Court.
     Following the ruling today MK Zoabi said:
     “The attempts to disqualify me were part of a political and personal persecution against me, my party and the entire Arab public….” more.. e-mail

Palestinian family in Sheikh Jarrah days away from eviction 
Mya Guarnieri, +972 Magazine 12/27/2012
      On December 31, as Americans celebrate New Year’s Eve and Israelis lift a glass to “Sylvester,” a Palestinian family will be evicted from their East Jerusalem home to make way for Jewish settlers.
     The Jerusalem District Court has ruled that the Shamasneh family must leave the house they have been living in 1964—three years before Israel’s occupation of East Jerusalem began—by 2:00 PM on Monday afternoon. Ten people currently live in the home, including six children.
     The court has granted ownership to the Israeli Custodian for Absentee Property, which was represented by lawyers who also represent settlers’ organizations, including the Israel Land Fund.
     According to the Israel Land Fund’s website, the organization’s goals include “acquiring all the land of Israel for the Jewish people.” The ILF “strives to ensure that Jewish land is… reclaimed and in Jewish hands” rather than “hostile, non-Jewish, and enemy sources.”
     The ILF has been behind a number of different settlement projects in East Jerusalem. Activists believe that the Shamasnehs’ home will be handed over to Jewish settlers after the family is evicted.
     The Jerusalem District Court’s decision breaks a three year lull in such evictions in Sheikh Jarrah. The al-Kurd family was evicted from their house in Sheikh Jarrah in 2008 and were left homeless; two more families were dispossessed in 2009. Jewish settlers now occupy all of the houses. more.. e-mail

Marketing Israel: Is it the campaign, or does the product suck? 
Ami Kaufman, +972 Magazine 12/30/2012
      A study shows that Israel’s tarnished image has nothing to do with its Hasbara mechanism. Actually, the reason for the failure is pretty straightforward.
     Some ad companies can do miracles. They can actually do the impossible: sell a bad product.
     The easiest examples come from the food industry. Take Coke, or McDonald’s burgers. These are products that are known to be unhealthy. Yet, the Mad Men still somehow get these companies to sell, sell, sell.
     Israel has its own ad company. It’s an enormous, cross-ministry-organization apparatus known as Hasbara.
     Yet, despite being one of the most successful propaganda machines ever made, Israel’s image in the world is tarnished. So, is there a problem with Hasbara? According to a study published today by the Molad think tank… no!
     “It is clear from an analysis of the data that the commonly held belief, obsessively reiterated by senior officials, that Israel has a “hasbara problem”, is fundamentally incorrect. The success or failure of the hasbara apparatus must be evaluated based on the relevant goals and standards of such an apparatus. This paper shows that, in light of the Israeli hasbara apparatus’s efficiency and sophistication as evaluated based on its goals and standards, one cannot attribute Israel’s poor international status and image to insufficient and inefficient hasbara.
     “The conclusion of this study is that the “hasbara problem” is a myth that diverts focus from Israel’s real problems which are the results of problematic policy, not flawed hasbara of appropriate policy.”
     Apparently, there’s just no way to spin Israel’s policies in a good way. more.. e-mail

West Bank reconstructed at London’s Nour Festival 
Lauren Pyott, London, Electronic Intifada 12/29/2012
      “The creative Palestinian must create his flexible margin between the patriotic, the political, the daily, the cultural and the literary. But what am I to do? … Will I be able to write a book of love when color falls on the ground in autumn?”
     The Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish asked this question in his 1988 essay “Before I Write My Resignation.” It is a question which has struck artists the world over, but one which came especially to the fore in London’s recent Nour Festival, a celebration of North African and Middle Eastern culture. The theme was played out by its selection of Palestinian artists, performing across a rich literary, artistic and musical program.
     The festival’s writer-in-resident, the British-Palestinian Selma Dabbagh, tackled the issue head-on in her series of lectures and workshops entitled “Who Are You To Write That?” which focused on the relationship between politics and literary aesthetics. She explored the expectations placed upon writers to work within certain fields, challenging notions of the writer’s “role” and literature’s function in a political context. Recurring doubt
     Using her own work as a blueprint for analysis, she raised issues of place, identity and the role of perspective in writing, in which doubt was a recurring motif. “The voices told me that I would not be able to communicate a complex political situation in a fictional work, that it was impossible to … create a sense of pace and speed when the atmosphere and history were extraordinarily dense” she said of her most recent novel Out of It, a narrative which connects Gaza, London and the Gulf. Yet this persistent questioning is surely what allowed her to carve out such a raw and honest novel.
     Palestinian poet Ghassan Zaqtan, who gave a reading from his new collection Like a Straw Bird It Follows Me, reiterated the necessity of questioning through literature. His work, haunting and compelling, is testimony to the power of literary abstraction. more.. e-mail

Israeli Politics: A Person Called Nobody
Palestine Chronicle: 28 Dec 2012 – By Uri Avnery – Israel Suddenly, I realized that a new star had appeared on the political firmament of Israel. Until yesterday I did not even know of its existence. A respected public opinion poll posed a Nixonesque question: From which politician would you buy a used car? The answer was stunning: not a single politician reached the mark of even 10%. Except one who would be trusted by a massive 34% of potential voters: a certain Nobody. This was not the only question to which the voters showed a marked preference for this mysterious candidate. When asked with which candidate they would like to spend an evening, only 5% preferred Shelly Yachimovitch, and even the smooth Binyamin Netanyahu attracted only 20%, while Nobody easily headed the list with 27%. Whom do you trust most? Again Nobody won with 22%, followed by Netanyahu with 18%. Who cares most for you…more

Political Grinchs Stole Christmas from Palestinian, Syrian Refugees
Palestine Chronicle: 28 Dec 2012 – By Franklin Lamb – Church of Norte Dame, Damascus Church officials in Damascus advanced the hour of last night’s traditional Christmas Eve midnight service to 6:00 p.m. because few Damascenes’ venture out past sunset these days. The reasons include ubiquitous checkpoints, security fears and the fact that there are few taxis and no buses around. Plus most shops and cafes close early and the thuds and whining of artillery and bomb blasts from this ancient city’s suburbs tend to sound more menacing at night. But that does not mean that Notre Dame and other churches in Damascus were not over-flowing with Christians and Muslims for Christmas Eve service, which has become an ecumenical event in this secular country where Syrian and Palestinian refugees of both faiths attended from Yarmouk camp and elsewhere. One Palestinian friend, who had been turned away at the Lebanese border at Maznaa just three days earlier,…more

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