VTJP Occupied Palestine and Israel News and Articles 8 January 2013: Media misconceptions: Is the conflict really about Jews vs. Arabs?

8 January 2012 — VTJP


International Middle East Media Center

Abbas Willing To Cooperate With US To Achieve Two-State Solution
IMEMC – Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas, stated that he is willing to continue to cooperate with the United States and the Obama Administration to achieve a peace agreement with Israel based on the two-state solution. …

Nuland: “U.S. Will Not Refer To P.A. As State Of Palestine”
IMEMC – U.S. State Department Spokeswoman, Victoria Nuland, stated that, until peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians lead to the establishment of a Palestinian state, the United States will not refer to the Palestinian Authority (P.A.) as the state of Palestine. …

Mashal Arrives In Cairo
IMEMC – Khaled Mashal, head of the Political Bureau of the Hamas movement, arrived in Cairo on Tuesday evening following an invitation from Egyptian President, Mohammad Morsi; Mashal, and a number of senior Hamas officials who accompanied him, will remain in Cairo for a few days. …

Netanyahu Claims Settlements Do Not Threaten Peace
IMEMC – Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, claimed that Israel’s construction and expansion of Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank, mainly in and around occupied East Jerusalem, “do not pose any threat to the peace process”. …

Palestinian Home Demolished In Jerusalem
IMEMC – Israeli bulldozers of the Jerusalem City Council demolished, on Tuesday morning, a Palestinian home in Sweij neighborhood, in Silwan, in occupied East Jerusalem, under the pretext that the home was built without a construction permit. … 

Abbas, Mashal, Likely To Meet In Cairo
IMEMC – Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas, and Hamas’ Political Bureau Chief, Khaled Mashal, will likely be holding a meeting in Cairo Wednesday, Egyptian sources reported; the meeting has not been scheduled or confirmed yet. …

New U.S. Defense Secretary Vows Full Support For Israel
IMEMC – U.S. Defense Secretary, Chuck Hagel, of the Republican Party, who was named by President Barack Obama Monday, stated that he will grant Israel his utmost support under all circumstances, and slammed several Republican officials who criticized what they called “his attitudes regarding the Middle East, especially Israel and the conflict with the Palestinians”. … 

4 Palestinians Killed In Al-Yarmouk Refugee Camp In Syria
IMEMC – Four Palestinian refugees have been killed, Monday, in the Al-Yarmouk refugee camp in Syria during clashes between gunmen stationed in the outskirts of the camp, and in a number of neighborhoods on the edges of the camp. …

More Than 600 Medications Missing In Gaza
IMEMC – The Palestinian Ministry of Health in the Gaza Strip reported that more than 602 types of medications and medical supplies are not found in Gaza, including several types of essential medications such as heart medications and medications used by patients who suffer from anemia. … 

Ma’an News

Israeli forces demolish house in East Jerusalem
1/8/2013 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Israeli forces demolished a house in East Jerusalem on Tuesday on the pretext that it was being built without a permit, a local official said. Fakhri Abu Diab, head of the Committee for the Defense of Silwan, told official news agency Wafa that Israeli bulldozers arrived early Tuesday and destroyed the….

Peace Now: Israeli govt secretly approved settler outpost
1/8/2013 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — After the Israeli government gave official sanction to three settler outposts last year, a fourth illegal community has been included in the boundaries, an Israeli peace group said Tuesday. All Jewish settlements in the West Bank are illegal under international law. However, Israel distinguishes between settlements it has approved and the….

Israeli forces arrest 9 in West Bank
1/8/2013 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Israeli forces arrested 9 people overnight Monday, locals and Israel’s army said. An Israeli army spokeswoman said four people were detained in Bethlehem, two in Jenin, two in Nablus and one in Ramallah. All detainees were taken for security questioning, she added. Locals said soldiers raided al-Saf street in Bethlehem and arrested two people. [END]

Israel closes Gaza crossing, sources say
1/8/2013GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — Israel closed the Erez crossing with the Gaza Strip on Tuesday, sources in Gaza said. Travelers, patients and internationals were waiting to cross the border when Israeli authorities made the announcement. Erez is used by foreigners and the few Palestinians with permits. Israel grants some patients needing urgent medical treatment….

Teacher kidnapped in Salfit
1/8/2013 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — A school teacher was kidnapped on Tuesday in the West Bank city of Salfit, locals said. Jihad Hamid Salim was abducted by unknown assailants at 7 a. m. while on his way to work in the Salfit village of Deir Ballut, witnesses told Ma’an. The motive behind the kidnapping….

Israel muted over Obama’s Pentagon pick
1/8/2013 – JERUSALEM (Reuters) — The Israeli government kept clear on Tuesday of a brewing battle in Washington over US President Barack Obama’s choice for defense secretary, Chuck Hagel, whose record on Iran and Israel is under scrutiny. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak offered no immediate comment on the pick, announced….

Ex-security chief says Israel must return to talks
1/8/2013 – JERUSALEM (Reuters) — Israel faces the prospect of a new Palestinian uprising because of despair over the gridlock in peacemaking, a former head of the Israeli internal intelligence agency who is standing in the Jan. 22 election said on Tuesday. Yaakov Peri, running for the centrist Yesh Atid party, told Reuters in an interview that the….

Abbas appoints Fatah leadership in Gaza
1/8/2013GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — President Mahmoud Abbas on Tuesday appointed the new leadership of the Fatah committee in the Gaza Strip, its new chairman told Ma’an. Ahmad Nasar, appointed head of the committee, said that the newly formed group will work to improve Fatah’s organizational structure and increase its membership….

Fatah leader sentenced to 15 years by Gaza military court
1/8/2013GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — A military court in Gaza City on Tuesday sentenced a Fatah military leader to 15 years in jail. Muhammad al-Sakani told Ma’an that his brother Zaki was accused of terrorism and illegally possessing explosives and weapons. Muhammad condemned the verdict as unjust and vowed to appeal the decision….

Mashaal, Abbas to overlap in Cairo, no meeting confirmed
1/8/2013GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — Hamas’ chief-in-exile Khalid Mashaal arrived in Cairo on Tuesday evening, while Fatah leader President Mahmoud Abbas was set to arrive Wednesday morning, but the parties said they had not arranged to meet. Member of Hamas’ politburo Izzat al-Rishiq said a Hamas delegation, headed by Mashaal, arrived in Cairo….

Netanyahu visits Ariel University on campaign trail
1/8/2013 – JERUSALEM (Reuters) — It’s Bibi against the world on a campaign trail that took the combative Israeli prime minister to a Jewish settlement in the occupied West Bank on Tuesday. Enjoying a wide opinion poll lead before a Jan. 22 election, Benjamin Netanyahu has been lecturing the international community – vocal in its criticism of….

Public transport workers to strike Wednesday
1/8/2013 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Public transport workers across the West Bank will go on strike on Wednesday, saying the government failed to respond positively to their demands. Spokesman of the public transport committee Ibrahim Awadallah told Ma’an on Tuesday the ministry of transportation had stopped all contact with the union for more than….

3 Palestinians killed in car crash outside Jerusalem
1/8/2013 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Three Palestinians were killed, and another seriously wounded, in a car crash outside of Jerusalem early Tuesday, Israeli police said. Israeli police spokeswoman Luba al-Sumri told Ma’an that the accident, on Highway 1 connecting Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, occurred when the driver lost control of the car and crashed….

Heavy rain disrupts road, train access to Tel Aviv
1/8/2013TEL AVIV (Reuters) — Unusually heavy winter rains forced the closure of main access routes to Tel Aviv on Tuesday, causing gridlock in and around Israel’s commercial capital, authorities said. Traffic backed up for hours as highways into Tel Aviv were flooded, police said. Rail operator asked commuters to avoid stations in the city….

Missing persons found safe amid West Bank floods
1/8/2013 – TULKAREM (Ma’an) — Three Palestinians feared dead after their vehicle was swept away by floods in the northern West Bank were found to be safe on Tuesday evening. A taxi driver and two women were returned by Israeli authorities after the taxi was caught up in severe flooding near Anabta, east of Tulkarem. The….

Qatar says boosting aid to Egypt by extra $2.5 bln
1/8/2013CAIRO (Reuters) – Qatar said on Tuesday it would lend Egypt’s government an additional $2 billion and grant it an extra $500 million outright, extending a lifeline as the government battles to contain a currency crisis. Political strife has triggered a rush to convert Egyptian pounds to dollars over the past several weeks, sending….

Groups: Uprising verdict shows Bahrain courts can’t protect rights
1/8/2013 – DUBAI (Reuters) — An appeals court ruling confirming prison terms for 13 protest leaders in Bahrain this week shows that the Gulf Arab state’s judicial system is flawed and unable to protect basic rights, international activist groups said. Bahrain, a US ally against Iran and home to the US Fifth Fleet, has been in….

Khamenei tells Iranians: Criticizing election will help enemies
1/8/2013 – DUBAI(Reuters) — Iran’s most powerful leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, warned the Iranian public on Tuesday against helping Tehran’s enemies by criticising the forthcoming presidential election. Iranians go to the polls in June to elect a successor to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and Iran’s leadership is keen to avoid a repeat….

Jumblatt: World ignoring Syria’s systematic ruin
1/8/2013 – MUKHTARA, Lebanon (Reuters) — World powers are abandoning Syria to be “systematically destroyed” by a civil war which has already wrecked whole cities in a once-great Arab nation, Lebanon’s Druze leader Walid Jumblatt said. Accusing them of “indifference or conspiracy”, Jumblatt said none of the international players, which are deeply divided over the 21….

Tunisia frees man held over attack on US consulate in Libya
1/8/2013 – TUNIS (Reuters) — Tunisia has freed, for lack of evidence, a Tunisian man who had been suspected of involvement in an Islamist militant attack in Libya last year in which the US ambassador was killed, his lawyer said on Tuesday. Ali Harzi was one of two Tunisians named in October by the Daily Beast website as….

Turkey, Ocalan map out steps to end Kurdish conflict
1/8/2013 – ISTANBUL (Reuters) – The Turkish government and the jailed leader of a Kurdish insurgency have agreed on the framework for a plan to end a war that has killed 40,000 people since 1984, envisaging rebel disarmament in exchange for increased minority rights, a newspaper said on Tuesday. The Radikal daily said senior intelligence officials had held….

Palestine News Network

Three Palestinians Killed in Car Accident on Jerusalem-Tel Aviv Highway
Palestine News Network

Fighting Flares in Palestinian Refugee Camp in Syria
Palestine News Network

Status of Electricity in Jerusalem: It’s Complicated
Palestine News Network

State of Palestine Name Change Shows Limitations
Palestine News Network

Abbas to Meet Meshaal in Cairo
Palestine News Network

Israeli Official Strip-Search, Humiliate Prisoner’s Sister
Palestine News Network

Israeli Authorities Demolish House near Al-Aqsa Mosque
Palestine News Network

IOF Troops Arrest 4 Palestinians from Bethlehem and Jenin
Palestine News Network

Palestinian Center for Human Rights

My failure in finding employment is not because I am incapable
Palestinian Center for Human Rights

International Solidarity Movement

BDS campaigners cost Veolia 4.7bn in London
1/8/2013 – International Solidarity Movement – 8 January 2013, No 2 Veolia Action Group, London – Vociferous local campaign by the No2 Veolia Action Group leads Occupation profiteer Veolia to withdraw from colossal waste management contracts. No 2 Veolia Action Group (No2VAG) are celebrating a huge victory with the withdrawal of Veolia, a multinational company complicit in Israeli violations of international law, from….

VIDEO – Israeli forces arrest man in Palestinian-controlled area of H1, Hebron
1/8/2013 – International Solidarity Movement – By Team Khalil, 8 January 2013, International Solidarity Movement, West Bank – A Palestinian man was arrested in Tel Rumeida, Hebron. Soldiers invaded homes without permission, indiscriminately beating men and children and forcing the residents out onto the streets. At around 22:30 pm on Monday 7 January Israeli occupation forces entered the Palestinian-controlled H1 area….

Alternative Information Center

Watch: Banned campaign ad of the National Democratic Assembly
Alternative Information Center – Israel’s Election Committee Chairperson, Judge Eliyakim Rubenstein, has banned a campaign ad of the National Democratic Assembly (NDA) for mocking Hatikva, the national anthem. Watch it here. About the banned ad, which was to be heard…

Israeli elections: coordination stalls in the center-left
Alternative Information Center – Speaking to Israeli Channel 2 News on Friday January 4, Tzipi Livni of “Hatnua” called for Labor’s Shelly Yachimovich and Yesh Atid’s Yair Lapid to form a “united front” toward victory over the Likud-Yisrael Beitenu joint…

Relief Web

Israel: Four dead in Israel as severe weather sweeps Middle East
Relief Web 8 Jan 2013 – Source: Agence France-Presse Country: Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, occupied Palestinian territory, Syrian Arab Republic (the) 01/08/2013 20:43 GMT JERUSALEM, Jan 8, 2013 (AFP) – Extreme weather, including torrential rains and heavy winds, killed four people in Israel and the Palestinian…

Syrian Arab Republic (the): Five civilians killed around Damascus Palestinian camp
Relief Web 8 Jan 2013 – Source: Agence France-Presse Country: occupied Palestinian territory, Syrian Arab Republic (the) 01/08/2013 20:18 GMT DAMASCUS, Jan 8, 2013 (AFP) – Five civilians were killed in heavy fighting around a Palestinian refugee camp in the Syrian capital on Tuesday as rebels…

occupied Palestinian territory: Water for Life, Water for All
Relief Web 8 Jan 2013 – Source: Grassroots Country: occupied Palestinian territory Israel’s occupation of the Palestinian territories (oPt) has not only physically dominated the land that supports the Palestinian people but also the vital water resources that feed the land. The natural cycles and recharging…

occupied Palestinian territory: Germany donates an additional EUR 7 million for food aid to Gaza
Relief Web 8 Jan 2013 – Source: UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East Country: Germany, occupied Palestinian territory 08 January 2013 East Jerusalem The government of the Federal Republic of Germany has contributed an additional EUR 7 million to the…

The National

Syrians’ choice is loyalty or mutiny
The National 8 Jan 2013 – Bashar Al Assad is either a courageous captain, or a man in denial that he is at the helm of a sinking ship – it depends on who you ask. Phil Sands reports from Damascus 

Palestinian groups call for ceasefire in Syria
The National 8 Jan 2013 – Factions urge halt to military operations to allow medical aid and food into Yarmouk.

Snow in Jordan as Middle East lashed by wild weather
The National 8 Jan 2013 – State of emergency declared in Jordan, Israel prepares for snowstorm and Lebanon struggles with floodwaters that sweep away young boy. Suha Philip Ma’ayeh reports from Amman 

Netanyahu ponders a moderate policy shift
The National 8 Jan 2013 – The nomination of Chuck Hagel as the new US defence chief could put a strain on relations between the allies if the Israeli premier maintains his right-wing stance. Vita Bekker reports from Tel Aviv 

Kerala government to offer business opportunities to tempt UAE NRIs to come home
The National 8 Jan 2013 – Self-employment opportunities on offer to encourage illegal migrants from Indian state to return. Surya Bhattacharya reports from Kochi 

Australian bushfires rage as heatwave breaks records
The National 8 Jan 2013 – Temperatures so extreme that Outback roads melt and meteorologists are forced to add new colours to their forecast charts. Kathy Marks reports from Sydney 

Move to Abu Dhabi will further strain private schools, experts say
The National 8 Jan 2013 – The executive director of the private schools and quality assurance sector at Adec expects a need for 100,000 more places in capital’s private schools by 2020.

Afghanistan’s Karzai in US to determine end to war
The National 8 Jan 2013 – Afghan president begins four-day visit that will likely decide any ‘residual’ American presence after 2014 deadline for end of combat operations.


Physicians for Human Rights: Letting doctors deny treatment to HIV carriers would ‘bankrupt’ profession
Ha’aretz – 8 Jan 2013

Tel Aviv high school principal facing dismissal for writing leftist op-ed in Haaretz
Ha’aretz – 8 Jan 2013

In Q&A with Haaretz readers, Livni rues decision to privatize Dead Sea resources
Ha’aretz – 8 Jan 2013

Second group of cyber defenders graduate from IDF
Ha’aretz – 8 Jan 2013

Former IDF navy chief Ze’ev Almog: Chuck Hagel is friend of Israel
Ha’aretz – 8 Jan 2013

Former Shin Bet chief: Palestinian ‘despair’ threatens third intifada
Ha’aretz – 8 Jan 2013

Jewish National Fund reviews Arava forestry plan following warnings from greens
Ha’aretz – 8 Jan 2013

Biggest storm in decade wreaks havoc in Israel, shuts down Ayalon Highway for 9 hours
Ha’aretz – 8 Jan 2013

Election broadcast ads start Tuesday, and so has the censorship
Ha’aretz – 8 Jan 2013

Livni: In order to safeguard Israel as a Jewish state we must divide it
Ha’aretz – 8 Jan 2013

Due to weather, Israel’s Airport Authority offers free bus service to Tel Aviv
Ha’aretz – 8 Jan 2013

Distinguished Israeli historian Zvi Yavetz dies at 87
Ha’aretz – 8 Jan 2013

LIVE BLOG: Israel paralyzed by worst storm in decade
Ha’aretz – 8 Jan 2013

Tel Aviv and its environs paralyzed as storms flood central Israel
Ha’aretz – 8 Jan 2013

Strep throat and OCD are linked, Israeli researchers find
Ha’aretz – 8 Jan 2013

An Israeli tradition that forgot to die: Television campaign ads resume
Ha’aretz – 8 Jan 2013

Shas spiritual leader threatens mass exodus if IDF drafts ultra-Orthodox
Ha’aretz – 8 Jan 2013

Jerusalem Post

Navy, IDF evacuate stranded citizens amid storm
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013IDF helicopters rescue 15 people in Baka al-Gharbiya; Navy helps families escape flood in rubber boats in Hadera. 

In Jerusalem, Let it snow!
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013 – Capital prepares for winter wonderland as rest of country suffers flooding; Barkat tours municipal sanitation headquarters. 

Ziv urges protection for young and old against cold
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013 – The elements can bring body temperatures down below 35 degrees Celsius, posing serious health dangers that could even be fatal. 

Livni may ask for rotation in Prime Minister’s Office
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013 – Talks between Livni, Lapid, Yacimovich ended before Livni had opportunity to reveal strategy for coalition talks, but sources reveal she intended to suggest bargaining tactics to advance issues on agenda of the 3 parties. 

Polish gov’t to turn Nazi HQ into educational center
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013 – $2 million project aims to educate the younger generation about “Wolf’s Lair,” Hitler’s Polish base. 

Analysis: Russia struggles to remain relevant in Mideast
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013 – Moscow has sought to balance its position by demonstrating continued support for the Palestinians and other Arab interests. 

Preparing for rain
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013 – However, along with rain’s many blessings have come casualties and damage caused by wet roads, flooding and felled trees. 

PM, US lawmakers discuss cooperation on Syria
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013 – Gov’t officials say Netanyahu talking with visiting US legislators about cooperation on Syria‘s chemical weapons. 

Terra Incognita: The CIA’s jihad against ‘Zero Dark Thirty’
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013 – It isn’t every day that members of the US Senate seek to interfere in a Hollywood production or other work of art. 

Political arithmetic
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013 – Netanyahu will be forced to choose between a coalition with Center-Left parties or a redux of his current haredi partners. 

Will real religious Zionist leaders please stand up?
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013 – Let “authentic practitioners” of Torah Judaism represent the various streams that are the beauty of our people. 

For poor TA residents, storm packs a heavy punch
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013 – Problems with sewage are common for the Argazim neighborhood in south TA, as the neighborhood runs alongside a tributary of the Ayalon River.

Fayyad: PA is on the verge of bankruptcy
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013PA prime minister blames Israel, Arab donor countries for the current crisis; int’l aid drops from $1.8 to $ 1 billion. 

EJC head blasts ‘Spiegel’ writer for ‘Israel hatred’
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013 – European Jewish Congress head Kantor accuses Augstein of using his columns to stoke hate against Israel and Jews. 

IDF plows on through rain, snow, sleet and hail
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013 – IAF Meteorological Center is working overtime to ensure the military can continue operating through worst storm in years. 

Hagel may encourage Iran’s nuclear ambitions
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013 – Hagel’s nomination will strengthen those within the Iranian leadership who think that Obama is bluffing. 

Missing the point of politics
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013 – Yuval Diskin’s latest rant is an object lesson in why defense officials often fail as politicians. 

Amid criticism, Livni calls for Center-Left vote
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013 – Livni says vote for any Center-Left party is a vote for all parties in the bloc, reasserts call to form a “countering force” to Netanyahu. 

Elections panel nixes belly-dancing Liberman ad
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013 – Rubinstein bans ads from “Election Propaganda Broadcasts,” including Balad video for “disgracing symbols of the Jewish state.” 

Shas ask PM to sign treaty to protect the status quo
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013 – Party calls on Netanyahu to clarify position on safeguarding the Jewish nature of Israel ahead of election. 

PM: Iran is greatest world danger, not settlements
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013 – Speaking at a Birthright event, Netanyahu says world must “wake up” to real challenges of Iran, Syria, not focus on building in J’lem. 

Iran hopeful in Hagel nomination; Israel ‘concerned’
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013 – Iranian foreign ministry hopes new defense secretary will lead to “changes;” Knesset speaker says Israel concerned, but not afraid. 

Tel Aviv underwater: Rain brings city to halt
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013 – River overflows onto Tel Aviv’s main artery, Ayalon Highway, causing mass closures; TA shelters receive 19 displaced residents. 

3 killed in car accident on J’lem-Tel Aviv Highway
Jerusalem Post 8 Jan 2013 – Amid heavy storm conditions, driver loses control of vehicle, hitting safety rail; MDA paramedics treat seriously injured survivor. 

Hebrew U scientists help blind ‘see with eye music’
Jerusalem Post 7 Jan 2013 – Device for sensory exchange activates visual cortex to help those born blind describe objects, letters and words. 

Ben-Gurion University to expand northern campus
Jerusalem Post 7 Jan 2013 – Additional 57-acre tract of land will double the size of the university, and new dormitories will add 1,000 beds for students. 

Activists protest granting award to pro-life group
Jerusalem Post 7 Jan 2013 – Despite rain and wind, dozens demonstrate against giving “B’Sheva” prize to anti-abortion organization Efrat. 

15-year-old girl’s donated organs save four lives
Jerusalem Post 7 Jan 2013 – Family of girl who died of edema of the brain say saving lives foremost, organ donations commemorate her life. 

Bennett: Allow Torah scholars to continue studies
Jerusalem Post 7 Jan 2013 – Camp Sucker: Anyone who serves should discount Bayit Yehudi party as voting option. 

The Guardian

Letters: Steady drift to the right in Israel
The Guardian 8 Jan 2013 – While Jonathan Freedland’s evident horror at Israel’s shift to the right is welcome ( Comment , 5 January), his explanations fail to account for the country’s steady drift to the right since its inception and the ineluctable logic…

Chuck Hagel: is the enemy of their GOP enemies the Democrats’ friend? | Ana Marie Cox
The Guardian 8 Jan 2013 – By his choice of defense secretary Obama has picked a fight with Republicans, but it won’t make Hagel a paid-up progressive In the midst of some of the most pitched partisan battles in congressional history, this…


Reclaiming the Palestinian Narrative

War and Cold Push Desperation Up in Afghanistan In Kabul, widows and orphans move up a down ladder

Nine Palestinian refugees killed in Syrian military attacks on camps

Farawna: “Palestinian Christians, Partners In Struggle, Pain And Captivity”

John Brennan’s extremism and dishonesty rewarded with CIA Director nomination

Desperate to break Samer Issawi hunger strike, Israel relentlessly targets his family

Permanent War & John Brennan’s Nomination to Head the CIA

Israel to build an electrified fence on occupied Golan Heights

Israel finalises “legalisation” of Rechalim outpost

A message from Samer Issawi on the 164th day of his hunger strike

Daily Star

Egypt, Abbas, Hamas chief to meet: Cairo
Daily Star 8 Jan 2013 Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi will meet his Palestinian counterpart, Mahmoud Abbas, and Hamas politburo chief Khaled Meshaal in Cairo on Wednesday, Morsi’s office said.

US sees Iran behind hostage photos of ex-FBI agent
Daily Star 8 Jan 2013 Two years after a hostage video and photographs of retired FBI agent Robert Levinson raised the possibility that the missing American was being held by terrorists, U.S. officials now see the government of Iran behind the…

Obama faces gun violence deadline at month’s end
Daily Star 8 Jan 2013 The former U.S. congresswoman who was shot in the head two years ago launched a national effort Tuesday against gun violence, saying she and her husband will work to counter the country’s strong gun lobby.

Israel muted over Obama’s Pentagon pick
Daily Star 8 Jan 2013 The Israeli government kept clear of a brewing battle in Washington over U.S. President Barack Obama’s choice for defense secretary, Chuck Hagel, whose record on Iran and Israel is under scrutiny.

Qatar aiding Egypt with extra $2.5 billion
Daily Star 8 Jan 2013 Qatar announced Tuesday it was doubling its financial aid to the Egyptian government with a new injection of $2.5 billion.

Yemen says US drone strikes to continue
Daily Star 8 Jan 2013 Yemen’s national security chief said on Tuesday that US drone strikes against Al-Qaeda targets will continue as the two governments keep up their counter-terrorism cooperation.

Aleppo misery eats at Syrian rebel support
Daily Star 8 Jan 2013 At a crowded market stall in Syria, a middle-aged couple, well dressed, shuffle over to press a folded note, furtively, into the hand of a foreign reporter.

Riot breaks out in Syrian refugee camp in Jordan
Daily Star 8 Jan 2013 Syrian refugees in a Jordanian camp attacked aid workers with sticks and stones on Tuesday, frustrated after cold, howling winds swept away their tents and torrential rains flooded muddy streets.

Uprising verdict shows Bahrain courts flawed: watchdogs
Daily Star 8 Jan 2013 An appeals court ruling confirming prison terms for 13 protest leaders in Bahrain this week shows the Gulf Arab state’s judicial system is flawed and unable to protect basic rights, international watchdog groups said.

Yemen moves to reassure southerners ahead of talks
Daily Star 8 Jan 2013 Yemeni President Abdrabuh Mansur Hadi has ordered the formation of two panels to resolve the grievances of southerners, in a new move to get them to join a stalled national dialogue, state media said on Tuesday.

Lawyer: Tunisian suspect in Libya attack freed
Daily Star 8 Jan 2013 Tunisian authorities released one of the only men in custody for alleged links to September’s attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission in the Libyan city of Benghazi.

YNet News

Canada rules out Mali military intervention
YNet News, 8 Jan 2013 – ….

Matisse painting stolen in 1987 recovered in UK
YNet News, 8 Jan 2013 – ….

Who’s afraid of autonomy? 
YNet News, 8 Jan 2013 – Op-ed: New Mideast only has room for one state for Jews, another state plus autonomy for Palestinians ….

IDF refutes abduction fears
YNet News, 8 Jan 2013 – ….

US does not rule out complete pullout from Afghanistan after 2014 
YNet News, 8 Jan 2013 – ….

OIE chief calls for lifting of Brazilian beef bans 
YNet News, 8 Jan 2013 – ….

Disability not a tragedy
YNet News, 8 Jan 2013 – Op-ed: Instead of giving up on disabled kids, society should celebrate their achievements ….

State of Palestine name change shows limitations
YNet News, 7 Jan 2013 – After making transition from Palestinian ‘Authority’ to Palestinian ‘State’, Mahmoud Abbas refrains from issuing new passports fearing Israeli reaction ….

Halevy: Practical solution required to conflict with Hamas
YNet News, 7 Jan 2013 – Former Mossad chief says agreement that concluded Gaza op doesn’t mean fighting is over ….

Hagel: No evidence I’m anti-Israel
YNet News, 7 Jan 2013 – After securing secretary of defense nomination, former Republican senator says critics have distorted his positions on Jewish state. ‘My record shows total support for Israel,’ he says ….

West Bank sees rise in terror attacks
YNet News, 7 Jan 2013 – Shin Bet report for 2012’s end shows marked rise in terrorist attacks in West Bank and Jerusalem: 111 in December, compared with 28 in August ….

Obama nominates Hagel as Pentagon chief
YNet News, 7 Jan 2013US president nominates Chuck Hagel as his next defense secretary; critics say former Republican Senator is anti-Israel and soft on Iran ….

Bulgaria: Investigator of bomb attack is dismissed
YNet News, 7 Jan 2013 – Stanelia Karadzhova is fired for revealing key details about investigation without clearing her statement with supervisors ….

Gantz: Harpaz affair saw abuse of power
YNet News, 7 Jan 2013 – Day after state comptroller release report on scandal, IDF chief levels thinly-veiled criticism at his predecessor, vows to ‘dig up skeletons’ to bring wrongdoing to light ….

Egypt says foiled car bombing near Gaza border
YNet News, 7 Jan 2013 – Cairo authorities say they’ve been able to thwart terror attack in Rafah border crossing. Explosives, grenades, RPG found at scene ….

Police expose arms trafficking ring in south; 30 arrested 
YNet News, 7 Jan 2013 – Undercover agent infiltrates ring; exposes massive heroine, cocaine and weapons smuggling and trafficking operation ….

Iran backs Assad peace initiative for Syria
YNet News, 7 Jan 2013 – Tehran says Syrian president’s plan represents ‘opportunity to end crisis.’ Opposition: Plan doesn’t deserve to be called an initiative ….

Egypt’s Morsi backs calls for Assad war crimes trial
YNet News, 7 Jan 2013 – Egyptian president tells CNN Syrian counterpart’s regime will not be able to survive much longer; Assad should be tried for crimes against his people ….

Palestinian Information Center

Abu Subbah calls on Arab League for practical steps to support striking captives
PIC – The Palestinian Minister of Prisoners, Dr. Attallah Abu Subbah, called on the Arab League to take practical and urgent steps to save the lives of prisoners on hunger strike..

Hammad holds an official visit to Sudan
PIC – Fathi Hamad, Minister of Interior and National Security in Gaza, left Qatar on Tuesday and arrived to the Sudanese Republic in an official visit for several days.

New settlement scheme to build 1100 hotel rooms in Jerusalem
PIC – The Islamic-Christian Committee for the Support of Jerusalem and Holy Sites warned on Tuesday of the occupation authorities’ decision to approve building 1100 hotel rooms on the road to al-Khalil.

PA security arrest 5 Hamas cadres in WB
PIC – PA security apparatuses have arrested five members and cadres of Hamas in the West Bank and summoned four others for interrogation, while the occupation forces arrested three liberated prisoners.

14 deaths and 411 cases of H1N1 in Palestine
PIC – The Palestinian Ministry of Health stated that the total number of cases of H1N1, known as “swine flu”, has risen to 411 cases.

Report: 3 martyrs and 80 wounded by Israeli bullets during December
PIC – The Israeli occupation authorities continued last December their repressive policies against the Palestinian people killing 3, wounding 80, and kidnapping 322.

Peace Now: 100 new outposts in the West Bank
PIC – Peace Now denounced the Israeli government’s decision to approve two outposts, Rehelim and Nofei Nehemia, and to declare them as a new settlements in total violation to the Quartet’s Road Map.

Human Rights Center to Arab League: We want practical steps to support prisoners
PIC – The prisoners’ center for studies expressed its wish that the Arab League meeting, on Tuesday to discuss the situation of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails, will be distinct..

Issawi’s mother deplores preventing her from meeting Abbas
PIC – The mother of hunger striker Samer al-Issawi condemned preventing her from meeting PA President Mahmoud Abbas, and holding her in al-Muqataa in Ramallah.


Communication Ministry Uses ‘State of Palestine’ on New Stamps
WAFA – 8 Jan 2013

Information Ministry to Use ‘State of Palestine’ on Press Cards
WAFA – 8 Jan 2013

013 Offers New Opportunities for Peace
WAFA – 8 Jan 2013

PEX Report: Al-Quds Index Up
WAFA – 8 Jan 2013

Israelis Demolish Palestinian-Owned Home in Jerusalem
WAFA – 8 Jan 2013


Syria conflict blocks aid to 1 million needy, U.N. agency says
LA Times 8 Jan 2013 – The World Food Program says fighting has prevented deliveries of aid. In addition, hundreds of thousands are ill-equipped for the harsh winter. BEIRUT — The World Food Program said Tuesday that Syria‘s civil war has blocked the United Nations agency from delivering aid to at…

Aid Groups Report Rising Misery Among Displaced Syrians
New York Times 8 Jan 2013 – Hardships among Syria’s civilians appeared to be worsening, as the United Nations said on Tuesday that it was unable to feed a million hungry residents in combat zones. 

The Lede Blog: American Missing in Iran Was Dressed Like Guantánamo Prisoner in Photographs Sent to Family
New York Times 8 Jan 2013 – Robert Levinson, a former F.B.I. agent who went missing in Iran in 2007, was dressed like a prisoner at the American detention camp at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, in photographs sent to his family. 

Syria President’s Defiant Words Dash Hopes for a Quick Peace
New York Times 8 Jan 2013 – President Bashar al-Assad ruled out talks with the armed opposition and ignored its demand that he step down, instead using a nearly hourlong speech to justify his crackdown. 

Palestinian Authority Threatened by Fiscal Crisis, Premier Says
New York Times 8 Jan 2013 – The government’s dire straits have largely been caused by the failure of Arab countries to send aid, Prime Minister Salam Fayyad said. 

Water Minister: Rising water prices not our fault 
Globes Energy & Water – Energy and Water Minister Uzi Landau takes no responsibility for high water prices: “The price is no higher than in Europe.”

Teva raises Copaxone price another 10%
Globes Main News – The price hike will compensate for the expected drop in Copaxone sales in 2013, due to rising competition, after record sales in 2012.

SaaS provider Panaya raises $16m
Globes Main News – The Ra’anana company has recently opened offices in the US, Germany and Japan.

Globes Main News – The traffic app forecasts it will nearly double the number of its users from 34 million at the end of 2012, to 70 million at the end of 2013.

Tue: Mellanox resumes big losses
Globes Main News – Mellanox dragged the TASE down, but the banks bucked the market.

“IDB’s offer not even a basis for talks”
Globes Main News – Bondholders have given the cold shoulder to the troubled holding company’s debt rescheduling proposal.

Globes Main News – The company raised its fourth quarter 2012 guidance to include revenue from the acquisition of Sweetpacks.

Floods close Tel Aviv’s Ayalon Highway 
Globes Macro Economics – The wintry storm strengthened overnight, with strong winds and heavy rain continuing through today. Snow will fall in the Galilee and Jerusalem.

Why Netanyahu put the brakes on his plan to build in E1
Mondoweiss – The Jerusalem-area settlement of Ma’ale Adumim (Photo: Ammar Awad/Reuters) The contentious plan to build in the E1 corridor has been put on hold for now. The reason? Forging ahead with the plan would do irrevocable damage to Israel’s worldwide image and spark international consternation at a…

Rand Paul’s Israel trip funded by evangelical group that fosters hatred against gays
Mondoweiss – Rand Paul in Concord, New Hampshire. (Photo: Matt Rourke/AP) Although Rand Paul, senator from Kentucky and rumored presidential hopeful for 2016, has only been in Israel for one day he’s already making headlines. Within the first 24 hours in country he called to reduce U.S. aid…

Israel lobbyist denies he called Jimmy Carter ‘anti-Semitic,’ then Al Jazeera host confronts him
Mondoweiss – Jaw dropping. Here’s an Al Jazeera English interview (on the show The Stream) a day or so back with Kenneth Marcus , who founded the Brandeis Center “to combat the resurgence of anti-Semitism in American higher education.” The Brandeis Center includes in its definition of anti-Semitism, speech…

Wiesenthal Center calls leading German journalist ‘anti-Semite’ for criticizing Israel, then refuses to debate him
Mondoweiss – This is an amazing story that’s been unfolding over the last few days. At the end of December, the Simon Wiesenthal Center in L.A. published its top ten list of the world’s worst anti-Semites ( PDF ). Number 9 was a prominent German journalist, Jakob Augstein, whose late…

Why is Israel declaring the start of the Third Intifada?
Mondoweiss – Palestinian Throw Rocks at undercover Israeli troops attempting to arrest a suspect in the Village of Tamoun(Flickr) Two days ago, an Israeli army commander announce d a Palestinian intifada, or uprising:  “We’re no longer on the verge of a third intifada – it’s already here. We…

Hagel is right, Israel must negotiate with Hamas — Slater
Mondoweiss – Republican Senators Lindsey Graham and John Cornyn say that one of Chuck Hagel’s crimes is his urging Israel to negotiate with Hamas, the Palestinian Islamist political party which controls Gaza and which the U.S. terms a terrorist organization. Jerome Slater has been the leading American scholar on…

Bibi Runs Against World in Israeli Election Drama 
The Foward Breaking News 8 Jan 2013 – It’s Bibi against the world on a campaign trail that took the combative Israeli prime minister to a Jewish settlement on Tuesday. Click here for the rest of the article…

Shin Bet Leader Worries About Palestinian Uprising 
The Foward Breaking News 8 Jan 2013 – Israel faces the prospect of a new Palestinian uprising because of despair over the gridlock in peacemaking, a former head of the Israeli internal intelligence agency who is standing in the Jan. 22 election said on Tuesday. Click here for the rest of the article…

Egyptian Quits After Calling for Return of Jews 
The Foward Breaking News 8 Jan 2013 – Essam al-Erian, an advisor to Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi, resigned days after calling for Jews to return to Egypt and leave Israel to the Palestinians. Click here for the rest of the article…

Israel Steers Clear of Chuck Hagel Dispute 
The Foward Breaking News 8 Jan 2013 – A senior Israeli diplomat has given a positive view of Chuck Hagel’s nomination as U.S. defense secretary, though some commentators in the Jewish state expressed worries that the choice could open a new fissure in bedrock ties with Washington. Click here for the rest of the…

Israeli Candidates Vie for the (Gasp!) American Vote 
The Forward New 8 Jan 2013 – Campaigns to lure English-speakers (read: American ex-pats) aren’t new in Israeli politics. But this year’s push on both the left and right feels larger and more sophisticated. Click here for the rest of the article…

Egypt: Nation’s President Meets Qatari PM Tuesday 
allAfrica.com 8 Jan 2013 – [Aswat Masriya]Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi will meet with the Qatari Prime Minister Hamad Ben Gassem on Tuesday, reported the Middle East News Agency.

Israel Refuses to Prosecute Settler as Attacks Continue in Beit Ommar Area 
Palestine Solidarity Project 8 Jan 2013 – Two days ago, on January 6th, Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported that the Jerusalem District Attorney had decided not to move forward with the prosecution of an Israeli settler who threw a firebomb into a Palestinian taxi north of Beit Ommar last August, which severely wounded 6…

US Benghazi raid suspect ‘freed’ 
BBC 8 Jan 2013 – The sole suspect held over the deadly attack on the US consulate in Benghazi, Libya, has been freed in Tunisia due to lack of evidence, his lawyer says.

Qatar helps ease Cairo cash crisis 
BBC 8 Jan 2013 – Qatar doubled its financial aid to Egypt in an effort to control a currency crisis prompted by the country’s ongoing political turmoil.

Syria’s jihadist group profiled 
BBC 8 Jan 2013 – A new report casts unprecedented light on Jabhat al-Nusra – the shadowy al-Qaeda-linked group in Syria that has become a key player in the conflict.

Watch: Banned campaign ad of the National Democratic Assembly 
AIC: Israeli Society 8 Jan 2013 – Israel’s Election Committee Chairperson, Judge Eliyakim Rubenstein, has banned a campaign ad of the National Democratic Assembly (NDA) for mocking Hatikva, the national anthem. Watch it here. About the banned ad, which was to be heard on Israeli radio from Tuesday, Judge Rubenstein said that “from…

Israeli elections: coordination stalls in the center-left 
AIC: Israeli Society 8 Jan 2013 – Speaking to Israeli Channel 2 News on Friday January 4, Tzipi Livni of “Hatnua” called for Labor’s Shelly Yachimovich and Yesh Atid’s Yair Lapid to form a “united front” toward victory over the Likud-Yisrael Beitenu joint list. The subsequent meeting did not provide Livni with the…

A Practical Route to Palestine 
Al-Akhbar Opinion 8 Jan 2013 – Palestinian youths gesture during a demonstration next to the security fence standing on the Gaza border, east of Khan Yunis, in the Gaza Strip, on 23 November 2012. (Photo: AFP – Said Khatib) Palestinian youths gesture during a demonstration next to the security fence standing on…

Assad’s Speech and the Backstage Plan 
Al-Akhbar News 8 Jan 2013 – Syrian government on 8 January 2013, during a meeting in Damascus to discuss the President’s speech which set out his terms for peace earlier in the week. (Photo: AFP – SANA) Syrian government on 8 January 2013, during a meeting in Damascus to discuss the President’s…

A State of Shock: Lebanon Surveys Storm Damage 
Al-Akhbar News 8 Jan 2013 – A number of houses were inundated in the Saint Simon suburb of Beirut. (Photo: Marwan Tahtah) A number of houses were inundated in the Saint Simon suburb of Beirut. (Photo: Marwan Tahtah) The storm that hit Lebanon over the weekend has killed four people and injured…

On the Ground, a New Military Strategy for the Regime 
Al-Akhbar News 8 Jan 2013 – TV monitors broadcast the live feed from a camera situated on an electrical car (unseen), used by fighters for spying on Syrian forces in the Bab al-Nasr district of Aleppo’s Old City, on 7 January 2012. (Photo: AFP – STR) TV monitors broadcast the live feed…

Saudi beheads Syrian, to execute Sri Lankan 
Al-Akhbar News 8 Jan 2013 – Saudi authorities on Tuesday beheaded a Syrian convicted of trafficking a large amount of narcotic pills, the interior ministry said, in the first execution in the kingdom this year. Mohammed Darwish was arrested “as he was trafficking a large amount of narcotic pills into the kingdom,”…

Iran expresses hope regarding Pentagon nomination 
Al-Akhbar News 8 Jan 2013US President Barack Obama smiles at his nominee for Secretary of Defense, former Republican Senator Chuck Hagel at the White House in Washington on 7 January 2013. (Photo: Reuters – Kevin Lamarque) Iran’s foreign ministry said it was hopeful that appointing former Nebraska Republican Senator Chuck…

One million Syrians going hungry: UN 
Al-Akhbar News 8 Jan 2013 – A father and son return home with vegetables in the al-Amaria neighborhood in the city of Aleppo, Syria on 6 January 2013. (Photo: AFP) The UN food agency said Tuesday that it is unable to help an estimated one million Syrians who are going hungry, as…

US firm pays out over Abu Ghraib 
BBC 8 Jan 2013 – A US defence contractor settles with former inmates of Abu Ghraib for $5m (£3m), after a subsidiary is accused of conspiring to torture prisoners.

‘No food aid’ for million Syrians 
BBC 8 Jan 2013 – One million Syrians are going hungry and helpless due to the 22-month civil conflict in the country, says the UN food agency.

US Benghazi raid suspect ‘freed’ 
BBC 8 Jan 2013 – The sole suspect held over the deadly attack on the US consulate in Benghazi, Libya, has been freed in Tunisia due to lack of evidence, his lawyer says.

Qatar helps ease Cairo cash crisis 
BBC 8 Jan 2013 – Qatar doubled its financial aid to Egypt in an effort to control a currency crisis prompted by the country’s ongoing political turmoil.

Syria’s jihadist group profiled 
BBC 8 Jan 2013 – A new report casts unprecedented light on Jabhat al-Nusra – the shadowy al-Qaeda-linked group in Syria that has become a key player in the conflict.


Media misconceptions: Is the conflict really about Jews vs. Arabs? 
Mya Guarnieri, +972 Magazine 1/5/2013
      In the second post of my three-part series about media and publishing, I examine some misconceptions about the Israeli-Palestinian ‘conflict,’ and the ways in which the media feeds into a binary that leaves non-Jews and non-Palestinians out of the spotlight.
     When my agent and I shopped my book about Israel’s migrant workers and African refugees around, we got a lot of those “We love it but it’s not right for us” and “This is an important book that needs to be published. But there’s no audience for this” kind of responses.
     But perhaps the most common response was, “Where are the Palestinians?”
     The Palestinians are there, of course. They are discussed directly and indirectly. As migrant workers were first brought to Israel during the First Intifada to replace Palestinian day laborers—a fact I take care to mention in my book—you can’t talk about the state’s treatment of foreign workers without alluding to those they replaced. And with most Palestinians locked behind the separation barrier, migrant workers and African refugees—the “new” non-Jewish “others” in Israel—have become more convenient stand-ins for the racist sentiments that have long been channeled towards Palestinian.
     But, no, publishers who haven’t set foot in Israel—much less covered it as a journalist for years on end—insist that the “conflict” is about Jews vs. Arabs, Israelis vs. Palestinians, not Israel versus all non-Jewish others. Tell that to the families of migrant workers who are being deported by the state; tell the African refugees who face prison without trial that Israel’s conflict is with the Arabs. more.. e-mail

Ethnically cleansing Palestinians the ‘nice’ way 
Alan Hart, Redress 1/5/2013
      Moshe Feiglin, one of the most deluded and racist of those who make up the extreme right of Israeli politics and who is guaranteed his first seat in the Knesset after the upcoming election, has proposed what I imagine he regards as a “nice” way to complete Zionism’s ethnic cleansing of Palestine.
     At a recent settler-organized conference in Jerusalem, he said Israel should pay Palestinian families to leave the West Bank, using funds earmarked for security measures. “We can give every family in Judea and Samaria 500,000 US dollars to encourage them to emigrate… This is the perfect solution for us.”
     I imagine he regards it as a “perfect” solution because it would save Israel from having to create a pretext to drive the Palestinians off the West Bank by military means.
     The question somebody should ask him is this. “For the sake of discussion, let’s assume that such an offer is made to the Palestinians on the West Bank and they reject it, what then?”
     Feiglin lives in a West Bank settlement and heads Likud’s Jewish Leadership faction. He believes that the Bible, interpreted literally, should form the basis of Israel’s legal system. “This is just the beginning. Eventually, we will build the temple and fulfill our purpose in this land.” And his credentials as a racist are impeccable. In an interview with Jeffrey Goldberg for New Yorker, he said:
     “Why should non-Jews have a say in the policy of a Jewish state? For two thousand years, Jews dreamed of a Jewish state, not a democratic state. Democracy should serve the values of the state, not destroy them. In any case, you can’t teach a monkey to speak and you can’t teach an Arab to be democratic…” more.. e-mail

Israeli elections round-up: Image of the next Netanyahu government emerges 
Noam Sheizaf, +972 Magazine 1/6/2013
      Recent attempts to form an ‘anti-Bibi’ bloc among the centrist parties may very well drive right-wing voters back to the prime minister’s hands.
     Yair Lapid, leader of the centrist Yesh Atid party, announced over the weekend that he intends to join the right-wing government that Prime Minister Netanyahu is expected to form. (photo: Yotam Ronen / Activestills.org)
     One outcome of the unusually short election cycle that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu imposed on the Israeli political system – in an attempt to prevent any serious challenge to his position – is the rapid developments and changes we have been witnessing in the last few weeks. I will deal with some of those issues in this round up, but it is important to note first that nothing too major has actually happened: our poll tracker, which was updated this weekend with seven recent polls, still shows Netanyahu’s right-Orthodox bloc with at least five seats above the magic number of 60 – the minimum required to form a coalition. It is a very big lead, especially given the small margin of error that the aggregation of seven polls produces.
     So what did change?
     1. Likud-Beitenu is losing ground. Netanyahu’s joint ticket with Lieberman is now polling under 34 seats (the two parties currently hold 42 seats), which means that the Likud itself can end up with as little as 22-23 members of Kensset, while the rest will belong to Lieberman. This will make life incredibly hard for Netanyahu, especially given the fact that many of those future Knesset members will work together with the hard right. Some observers assume that if the Likud ends up with 33-34 seats or less, the next government won’t hold for more than a year or two. I am not so sure. — See also: Endless ‘debate over two-state solution’ is cover for the real story, annexation of West Bank and Denying Palestinian rights is the core issue in Israeli elections more.. e-mail

Iranians in Latin America spook US 
Ramzy Baroud, Asia Times 1/5/2013
      The text of a bill signed into law by US President Barack Obama would likely instill fear in the hearts of ordinary Americans. Apparently, barbarians from distant lands are at work. They are gathering at the US-Mexico border, cutting fences and preparing to wreak havoc on an otherwise serene American landscape.
     Never mind that crazed, armed to the teeth, homegrown American terrorists are killing children and terrorizing whole cities. It is the Iranian menace that we are meant to fear, according to the new law. When compounded with the other imagined threats of Hezbollah and Hamas, all with sinister agendas, then it seems the time is right for Americans to return to their homes, bolt their doors and squat in shelters awaiting further instructions. Evidently, “The Iranians are coming.”
     It is as comical as it is untrue. But “The Countering Iran in the Western Hemisphere Act”, which as of December 28 became official US law, is not meant to be amusing. It is riddled with half-truths, but mostly complete and utter lies.
     Yes, Iran’s influence in Latin America is on the rise. However, by US standards, the expanding diplomatic ties, extending trade routes and such are considered a threat to be “countered” or as per Forbes magazine’s endless wisdom, “confronted”.
     Language in politics can be very dangerous as it can twist reality, turning fictitious scenarios into facts. Despite its faltering economy, the US continues to experience a sharp growth in its think tank industry – men and women whose sole purpose is to invent and push political agendas, and who often belong to some foreign entity; in this case Israel. Ian Barman, Vice President of the American Foreign Policy Council reflected that sentiment exactly in a recent article in Forbes. more.. e-mail

Palestinian children’s photography showcased in Scottish Parliament
Electronic Intifada: 8 Jan 2013 – Lauren Pyott Edinburgh 8 January 2013 We Teach Life, Sir exhibition aims to forge international solidarity.more

Syria – A Prize For…?
Palestine Chronicle: 8 Jan 2013 – By Iqbal Jassat While Syria has become synonymous with death and destruction and an enormously costly struggle for control of arguably the most strategic country in the Arab world persists, it is amazing how much of the world’s media fails to provide context. For starters, it has reduced the battle as one where warring factions are projected as being unanimous in their demand for Bashar Assad’s head on a platter. It implies that Syria is not any different to Tunisia, Egypt or Libya and that removing its leader is all that’s required for a successful revolution. In the absence of reference to the fact that the Assad regime has been built on a dynasty that is deeply entrenched in the military and economy of the country, it would be naïve to believe that a couple of defections will loosen Bashar Assad’s ruthless grip and lead to his fall. The regime’s…more

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