VTJP Occupied Palestine and Israel News and Articles 14 May 2013: Gaza: a Lie Agreed Upon

14 May 2013 — VTJP


International Middle East Media Center

Barghouthi: “Right Of Return, A Sacred Right”
IMEMC – In a statement released from his prison cell, detained Palestinian political leader, Marwan Barghouthi, stated that May 15, marks the 65th anniversary of the Nakba, when Israel was established in the historic land of Palestine, over the ruins of hundreds of displaced and destroyed villages and towns, and added that on this day, the Palestinians reaffirm their legitimate inalienable Right of Return to their homeland. …

Israeli Extremists Burn Cars, Write Racist Graffiti Near Haifa
IMEMC – Tuesday May 4 2013; the Arabs48 News Website has reported that a number of extremist Israelis attacked the Um Al-Qataf village, in Wadi ‘Ara area, torched three Palestinian cars and wrote racist graffiti against the Arabs. …

Ma’an News

Jewish extremists torch cars, desecrate mosque in Israel
5/14/2013 – TEL AVIV, Israel (Ma’an) — Suspected Jewish extremists set fire to three cars and sprayed racist graffiti on a mosque in northern Israel overnight Monday, Israeli media reported.” Price-tag” and “Eviatar,” which is thought to refer to the name of a settler stabbed to death last week, were found sprayed on the wall of….

Israeli troops attack Bethlehem rally
5/14/2013 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) – Several Palestinians were injured by tear gas on Tuesday during a rally marking Nakba Day, which kicked off from Bethlehem’s Duheisha refugee camp. A Ma’an reporter said about 300 Palestinians marched on the main road in Duheisha camp headed towards displaced Palestinian villages south of Bethlehem. Israeli…. Related: Palestinians mark Nakba day in West Bank

Palestinians mark Nakba day in West Bank
5/14/2013 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Millions of Palestinians on Tuesday will join rallies and activities in the West Bank and abroad to commemorate the eve of Nakba day, an organizing committee said. The higher committee for commemorating Nakba Day, along with the Higher National Committee for defending the Right of Return, said that a program of…. Related: Israeli troops attack Bethlehem rally

PA official: Settlers torch wheat fields in Nablus
5/14/2013 – NABLUS (Ma’an) — A group of settlers set fire to wheat fields in Nablus for the second consecutive day on Tuesday, a Palestinian Authority official said. Ghassan Daghlas, who monitors settler activity in the northern West Bank, told Ma’an that settlers from Elon Moreh set fire to fields in the Beit Furik…. Related: Setters uproot 150 trees near Nablus

Setters uproot 150 trees near Nablus
5/14/2013 – NABLUS (Ma’an) — Israeli settlers on Tuesday uprooted over 150 trees belonging to Palestinians south of Nablus, a local official said. Settler monitoring official Ghassan Daghlas told Ma’an that several settlers attacked Sbeih mountain area between Beita and Yatma villages and destroyed over 150 olive and fig trees. [END]

Israeli forces assault Ma’an staff near Bethlehem
5/14/2013 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Israeli soldiers on Tuesday assaulted two Ma’an staff members amid clashes in the Bethlehem-area village of al-Khader. Reporter Mirna al-Atrash suffered bruises to her hands and shoulders after being shoved by soldiers while covering the clashes. She received medical treatment at the scene. Photographer Ahmad Mezher suffered a minor….

ICC prosecutor opens initial probe into Gaza flotilla
5/14/2013 – THE HAGUE (AFP) — The International Criminal Court has opened a preliminary probe into Israel’s deadly raid on a Gaza-bound flotilla in 2010, the prosecutor’s office said Tuesday.” My office will be conducting a preliminary examination in order to establish whether the criteria for opening an investigation are met,” Fatou Bensouda said….

Settlers build religious school in Bethlehem outpost
5/14/2013 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Settlers from the outpost of Givat Hatamar have built a religious school on land belonging to the Bethlehem-area village of al-Khader, locals said Monday. Ahmad Salah, spokesman for a local committee against settlements, told Ma’an that the new structure measured about 1,000 square meters, and was built on a….

Israel freezes decision to transfer Jordan Valley lands to PA
5/14/2013 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) – Israeli minister of defense Moshe Yaalon has given orders to suspend construction of a new Palestinian city in the Jordan Valley after settlers protested an earlier decision to pass lands in Area C to the Palestinian Authority. The Israeli daily Maariv reported Tuesday that Yaalon passed orders to the Israeli Civil….

Israeli forces detain 2 trying to cross Gaza border into Israel
5/14/2013 – GAZA CITY (Ma’an) – Israeli forces on Tuesday morning detained two Palestinian men from the central Gaza Strip after they tried to cross through a border fence into Israel. A Ma’an reporter said 28-year-old Mahmoud Ubeid and 15-year-old Raof Ubeid managed to pass through the fence around 8 a. m….

Israel to shut down Gaza crossing Tuesday, Wednesday
5/14/2013 – GAZA CITY (Ma’an) – Israeli authorities decided to shut down Gaza Strip’s Kerem Shalom crossing Tuesday and Wednesday. Chairman of the coordination committee for the entry of goods into Gaza Strip Raed Fattouh told Ma’an the Israelis informed the Palestinian side that the crossing would operate regularly on Thursday. The….

Abbas to visit Cairo on Wednesday
5/14/2013 – CAIRO (Ma’an) — President Mahmoud Abbas is scheduled to visit Cairo on Wednesday to hold talks with Egyptian president Muhammad Mursi, the PA ambassador to Egypt said. Barakat al-Farra told Ma’an that the “important meeting” will discuss bilateral issues, and will focus on Jerusalem and Israeli violations at the Al-Aqsa mosque compound….

Saeb Erekat: 65 years of impunity
5/14/2013 – By Saeb Erekat – Every May 15, a nation marks her historic catastrophe. In 1948, the Palestinian people were condemned to exile, and their homeland, Palestine, disappeared from the maps. Some 418 villages were destroyed and 70 percent of our people became refugees. For 65 years, our people have lived through the vicissitudes and humiliation of….

Fatah condemns attack on Bethlehem mayor’s car
5/14/2013 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Fatah on Tuesday accused members of the Bethlehem municipality of trying to sabotage the local council after an attack on the mayor’s car.”We will not stand by and watch some members of the council attempt to sabotage and disrupt the council,” Fatah said in a statement. Fatah urged….

Hamas: Unity government to be formed in 3 months
5/14/2013 – CAIRO (Ma’an) — Fatah and Hamas agreed Tuesday to form a unity government within three months, a senior Hamas official said. Moussa Abu Marzouq told Ma’an that Hamas and Fatah officials held “positive” talks in Cairo and agreed a timeline to implement reconciliation by July. Fatah and Hamas signed an agreement in….

Syria ‘rebel heart-eating video’ condemned
5/14/2013 – BEIRUT (AFP) — Human Rights Watch and the Syrian opposition National Coalition have condemned a gruesome video apparently showing a Syrian rebel fighter cutting out the heart of a regime soldier and eating it.” International news agencies and social media websites have been circulating a video clip in which a person claiming to be a member….

First Kurd rebels reach Iraq under Turkey truce
5/14/2013 – HARUR, Iraq (AFP) — A first group of Kurdish fighters pulling out of Turkey under a truce arrived in the autonomous Kurdish region of Iraq on Tuesday to handshakes and embraces after a grueling week-long journey. But the Iraqi government slammed the movement of Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) fighters into its territory as a “flagrant….

Report: Syria rebel defends gruesome video as revenge
5/14/2013 – BEIRUT (AFP) — A Syrian rebel who was filmed apparently cutting out and eating the organs of a soldier has defended his actions as revenge for regime atrocities, Time magazine reported on Tuesday. The US news weekly said it had talked by Skype with the fighter, identified as Khalid al-Hamad, who appeared in a video that….

Egypt to try Coptic teacher for ‘insulting religion’
5/14/2013 – CAIRO (AFP) – A Coptic Christian teacher in an Egyptian primary school will stand trial after colleagues and the parents of students accused her of insulting Islam and evangelizing, a judicial source said on Tuesday. The trial of Dimyana Ubeid Abdel Nour will begin on May 21, the judicial source said. She has been freed on….

Palestinian Center for Human Rights

PCHR concerned by detention and questioning of journalist Abu ‘Arqiub by GIS and PSS in Hebron
Palestinian Center for Human Rights

Relief Web

occupied Palestinian territory: UNRWA and Germany establish Mosaic-making workshop
Relief Web 14 May 2013 – Source: UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East Country: occupied Palestinian territory Snap. Pop. Snap. Bits of colorful limestone and granite scatter about the worktable as two young women clinch their wrenches, breaking bits of…


Turkey’s Erdogan to push Obama for action on Syria after bombings
Ha’aretz – 14 May 2013

International Criminal Court opens initial probe into Gaza flotilla raid
Ha’aretz – 14 May 2013

Israel’s MI chief accompanied Netanyahu to Putin meet, gave fresh intel on Syria
Ha’aretz – 14 May 2013

Dutch won’t charge company in West Bank separation fence case
Ha’aretz – 14 May 2013

Lapid accuses Shas’ Deri of lying, making cooperation difficult
Ha’aretz – 14 May 2013

Syria developments suggest Assad may go out quietly after all
Ha’aretz – 14 May 2013

Netanyahu meets with Putin in Russia to discuss Syria, Iran
Ha’aretz – 14 May 2013

Mosque vandalized, cars torched in suspected ‘price tag’ attack
Ha’aretz – 14 May 2013

U.S. Navy aircraft carrier makes rare visit to Eilat
Ha’aretz – 14 May 2013

Israeli cabinet passes 2013-2014 state budget
Ha’aretz – 14 May 2013

State comptroller launches investigation into enormous budget deficit amassed in 2012
Ha’aretz – 14 May 2013

State to High Court: Law that allows detention of ‘infiltrators’ without trial is valid
Ha’aretz – 14 May 2013

Jerusalem Post

Syria’s savagery will thwart reconciliation attempts
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – Gruesome images of Syrian aggression capture an extremely violent conflict that has already claimed the lives of tens of thousands; both sides are using brutality as a tool to instill fear in the other. 

Erdogan to press Obama on Syria after bombings
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – Turkish prime minister and US president to discuss Syria “chaos” and Obama’s red line for intervention. 

Video shows Jerusalem Police assault elderly priest
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – The six-minute video clearly depicts the highly-publicized assault on the 85-year-old head of the Coptic Church in Ramallah. 

Snyder accepts Guardian of Zion award
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – Innovative Israel Museum Director James Snyder accepts ward given to him on behalf of supporters of Israel Museum Museum. 

Syria peace talks look doomed in advance
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – Even its sponsors are dampening expectations that a civil war estimated to have killed well over 70,000 can be doused soon. 

Robinson’s Arch construction plans must go on hold
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – ‘It’s absolutely not an option to build anything near Robinson’s Arch,’ says HU professor of archeology. 

‘Death toll in Syria likely as high as 120,000’
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – The number represents a marked increase from the original number of 82,000 dead that was released earlier this week. 

‘I protected single-mothers during budget vote’
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – Tzipi Livni outlines her fight against tax break withdrawals for single parents in the new budget plan on her Facebook page. 

WATCH: How to make the ultimate Shavuot cheesecake
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – Pastry chef Lior Garbi from Tel Aviv’s Shulchan restaurant gives step-by-step instructions on how to make a Shavuot cheesecake. 

Polish couple posthumous ‘Righteous Gentiles’
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – Ludwika and Zygmunt Szostak hid Jewish mother and daughter from Nazis for nearly three years. 

Women to watch
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – Six Jews who have proven they are forces to be reckoned with. 

Health system budget to be both cut and expanded
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – Israel Medical Association head: ‘It’s not enough to enable all Israelis to enjoy advanced medical care’. 

Netanyahu discusses ME stabilization efforts with Putin
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – PM doesn’t touch on missile deal to Syria in opening remarks. 

The man with the knitted kippa – and many hats
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – Naftali Bennett is determined to lower the cost of living, encourage haredi employment and fight assimilation around the world. 

WATCH: A skating tour of Tel Aviv
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – Skateboarder Boaz Arrow Aquino shows off the best that Israel’s cultural and economic heartland has to offer. 

Syria want details of peace conference
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – Int’l conference to propose solution to bloodshed in Syria; Syrian officials welcome the proposal, but with reservations. 

Anat Hoffman: Fighting on holy ground for religious freedom
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – Women of the Wall’s chairwoman talks about her group’s strategy, the corruption of the Chief Rabbinate and the Jewish culture of arguing. Arrests and haredim will not stop her from carrying the banner. 

Top 50 most influential Jews 2013: Places 1-10
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – Jack Lew went from White House chief of staff to US secretary of the treasury, but he’s still every bit as influential. 

Yair Lapid: From off the list to number 1
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – In just a year, Lapid, 49, has rocketed his way to the top of the Israeli consciousness, and redefined the country’s priorities. 

Lapid tops Post’s 50 most influential Jews list
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – The head of Yesh Atid has the power to reset the national agenda, making him the most influential Jew in the world. 

Wolfson heart surgeons save Syrian girl
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – Doctors at Holon hospital perform successful open-heart surgery on Syrian preschooler as part of Save a Child’s Heart. 

UK MP resigns over accusations of anti-Semitism
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – Lord Nazir Ahmed quits Labor party a day ahead of a hearing over alleged anti-Jewish slurs. 

Cabinet handily passes 2013-2014 state budget
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – Lapid: Deri lied about cancelation of haredi education cuts; budget approved 21-1, Peretz single vote not in favor. 

Europe Unexpected: Imported rabbis and Jewish girls
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – As I mingled my way around the community, the ridiculous stereotypes dissolved, revealing compelling insights on the Jews of Stockholm. 

Tibi decries racism ahead of Nakba Day
Jerusalem Post 14 May 2013 – This year, Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld says, police are not preparing for any special deployments or reinforcements. 

‘More funds needed for fighting eating disorders’
Jerusalem Post 13 May 2013 – Health Ministry director-general says there are too few hospital beds and clinics to put patients on the road of proper nutrition. 

MKs, gas stakeholders spar at Knesset over energy export
Jerusalem Post 13 May 2013 – Economic Affairs Committee chairman and colleagues demand subject of gas export be transferred from the cabinet’s hands to those of the Knesset. 

Iran to chair UN nuke disarmament conference
Jerusalem Post 13 May 2013 – Western powers skeptical of Iran’s own nuclear ambition raise eyebrows at Iran’s role in Geneva conference. 

Hamas, Fatah to meet in Cairo for unity talks
Jerusalem Post 13 May 2013 – Abbas is scheduled to visit Cairo for talks with Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi aimed at ending the Fatah-Hamas dispute. 

The Guardian

Letters: Stephen Hawking, science and boycotts
The Guardian 14 May 2013 – The conference to which Stephen Hawking was invited, along with Tony Blair, Bill Clinton, Mikhail Gorbachev and hundreds of others, is not an academic meeting and his decision to decline the invitation does not constitute an…

Syria video ‘appears to show rebel mutilating corpse’, says Human Rights Watch
The Guardian 14 May 2013 – • Syrian National Coalition condemns act ‘if true’ • Assad government sceptical about peace conference • US working with UK to strengthen opposition – Obama Paul Owen

Geza Vermes obituary
The Guardian 14 May 2013 – Expert on the Dead Sea Scrolls, the historical Jesus and the origins of Christianity Geza Vermes, who has died aged 88, was one of the world’s leading authorities on the origins of Christianity. In the early…

Binyamin Netanyahu’s spending under fire again as home expenses near £1m
The Guardian 14 May 2013 – Israeli PM and wife Sara’s household spending up 80% in three years – days after revelations of double bed on chartered flight The profligacy of Binyamin Netanyahu has come under fire for the second time within…

Inter Press Service

Despite Peaceful Withdrawal, PKK-Turkey Peace Remains Uncertain
IPS A PKK soldier stands in front of a crowd gathered in the Qandil mountains. Credit: Karlos Zurutuza/IPS The peaceful withdrawal from Turkey of combatants from the Kurdistan’s Workers Party (PKK) began last Wednesday but is already at risk of being compromised following a twin car bomb explosion on Saturday afternoon….


Military Resistance 11E7 What a Surprise

“From al-Araqib to Susiya” documentary encourages new framework of resistance

Eroding Freedom in America

Growing Anger Over American Drones in Yemen

Dirty Wars, Filthy Hands: 5 Unsavory Ways America Conducts Its Global War on Terror

Syria: Let the World Shut Up

“All You Can Do is Pray” Crimes Against Humanity and Ethnic Cleansing of Rohingya Muslims in Burma’s Arakan State

The Death of Truth An Interview With Julian Assange

Beit Ommar: steadfastness and non-stop resistance against Israeli occupation

Murder Is Our National Sport

Daily Star

Deadly Benghazi blast caused by fisherman’s explosives
Daily Star 14 May 2013 A blast that killed three people in Libya’s second city Benghazi was caused by fishing explosives that detonated accidentally, not a car bomb as originally thought, a local government official said on Tuesday.

Pakistan vote count shows big Sharif win
Daily Star 14 May 2013 The vote count from last weekend’s nationwide elections in Pakistan Tuesday indicates a big win for former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s party.

Syria rebel defends gruesome video as revenge: report
Daily Star 14 May 2013 A Syrian rebel who was filmed apparently cutting out and eating the organs of a soldier has defended his actions as revenge for regime atrocities, Time magazine reported on Tuesday.

War crimes prosecutor receives Israel complaint
Daily Star 14 May 2013 The prosecutor of the International Criminal Court – the permanent war crimes court in The Hague, Netherlands – says she has received a complaint about Israel’s 2010 raid on a humanitarian aid flotilla bound for Gaza.

Saudi Arabia confirms six new cases of deadly SARS-like virus
Daily Star 14 May 2013 Saudi Arabia has confirmed six new cases of the SARS-like novel coronavirus in its Eastern Province, state media reported on Monday and Tuesday, citing the health ministry.

Bad weather to blame for power cuts
Daily Star 14 May 2013 Widespread power outages left Lebanon in the dark for hours Tuesday afternoon after high winds disconnected a major power station from the rest of the country.

Palestine Information Center

Abu Marzouk: Israeli decision to divide Al-Aqsa will not pass
PIC – Dr. Mousa Abu Marzouk, member of the political bureau of Hamas, denounced the Israeli Knesset decision to divide Al-Aqsa Mosque as an expression of “freedom of worship” as it claims.

Haneyya calls for an end to Palestinian bloodshed in Syria
PIC – Gaza premier Ismail Haneyya said on Monday that his government will not stand idle regarding the killing of Palestinians whether inside or outside Palestine.

IOF storms liberated prisoner’s house, arrests 14 in WB
PIC – Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) raided at dawn, the house of a liberated prisoner, deported to the Gaza Strip, and interrogated his family.

4 additional years to a Hamas-affiliated prisoner
PIC – Ofer Military Court has decided to add 4 years to a Palestinian prisoner sentenced to 10 years, Tadamun Foundation for Human Rights confirmed.

Baraka calls for neutralizing Palestinian refugee camps in Syria and Lebanon
PIC – The representative of Hamas movement in Lebanon Ali Baraka called for neutralizing the Palestinian refugee camps in Syria and Lebanon, and to support their right to return.

Radwan calls for confronting Israeli provocations in Jerusalem
PIC – Dr. Ismail Radwan called on the Islamic and Arab leaders and international organizations to urgently move to stop the Israeli religious provocations in Jerusalem and al-Aqsa mosque.

11th Palestinians in Europe Conference to convene in Belgium
PIC – The 11th Palestinians in Europe conference is scheduled to be held in Brussels, Belgium on Saturday 18th and 19th May 2013.

IOF soldiers quell “March of Returnâ€
PIC – Israeli occupation forces (IOF) quelled on Tuesday morning the “March of Return†organized by Palestinian refugees to commemorate the 65th anniversary of Nakba.

Jewish settlers torch three cars in Arab village
PIC – Jewish settlers stormed the village of Um Al-Qatf in 1948 occupied Palestine and torched three cars at dawn Tuesday, locals said.

IOA closes Karm Abu Salem for two days
PIC – The Israeli occupation authorities (IOA) decided on Tuesday to close Karm Abu Salem, the only commercial crossing in Gaza Strip, for two days to celebrate Jewish feasts.


Israeli Settlers Uproot 150 Trees South of Nablus
WAFA – 14 May 2013

Abbas Issues Instructions Banning Torture
WAFA – 14 May 2013

Spanish Islands Urge Israel to Remove Settlements
WAFA – 14 May 2013

Israeli Settlers Set Fire to Wheat Fields near Nablus
WAFA – 14 May 2013

On Nakba Anniversary, Refugees Make almost Half of Population
WAFA – 14 May 2013

Israeli Pressure Forces Newseum to Drop Palestinians from List
WAFA – 14 May 2013

Soldiers Suppress Demonstration Marking Nakba Day near Bethlehem
WAFA – 14 May 2013

Newspapers Review: Israeli Activities Focus of Dailies
WAFA – 14 May 2013

Consumer Price Index Down in April 2013, says Statistics Bureau
WAFA – 14 May 2013


Syria Gives Russia List of Envoys to Peace Talks
New York Times 14 May 2013 – Russia and the United States hope to convene international talks intended to end the war in Syria within a month. 

After Citizen Protests, Israel Approves Austerity Budget
New York Times 14 May 2013 – A plan for higher taxes has prompted demonstrations reminiscent of those that rocked the country in 2011, when crowds protested the high cost of living. 

Obama Dismisses New Benghazi Furor But Condemns I.R.S.
New York Times 13 May 2013 – President Obama rejected criticism of his handling of the Libya attacks as “a sideshow.” On the scandal at the Internal Revenue Service, he said the practice of singling out certain groups was “outrageous.” 

CPI up 0.4% in April
Globes Main News – The rise, in line with estimates, was mainly driven by rising rents.

Government passes budget
Globes Main News – After an all-night session, the government passed the budget, with some changes, by a majority of 20 to 1.

IDF Agrees to Forego Use of White Phosphorus…Sorta
Tikun Olam – IDF rains white phosphorus indiscriminately on civilian targets Yesh Din and other Israeli human rights NGOs sued the IDF over its use of white phosphorus during Operation Cast Lead and in similar conflicts.  It is deemed by many as a chemical weapon, especially when used as…

Israel Opens Secret Military-Intelligence Mission in United Arab Emirates to Threaten Iran
Tikun Olam – The latest Israeli budget under consideration in the Knesset reveals that Israel opened a new mission in an unnamed Gulf State in the past year.  Though the identity of the state is supposed to be a secret (the linked Haaretz article doesn’t explicitly name it) given…

New York students rally for divestment outside pension fund headquarters
Mondoweiss – Students rallied outside TIAA-CREF to call for divestment on Monday (Photo courtesy of We Divest coalition) Students from New York City colleges rallied Monday outside the headquarters of a national pension fund to pressure the company to divest from corporations profiting from the Israeli occupation. Pension…

Im Tirtzu protests ‘nakba bullshit’ at Tel Aviv University
Mondoweiss – Nakba commemoration at Tel Aviv University, 13 May 2013. (Photo: Lazar Simeonov/ Palestine Monitor) For the second time in two years, students at Tel Aviv University (TAU) commemorating the 1947-49 Palestinian expulsion and the destruction of villages were met with a counter-protest. At last year’s event…

Dershowitz should stop lying about Tutu’s record
Mondoweiss – Dershowitz At the risk of publicly acknowledging my unhealthy obsession with the lies of Alan Dershowitz, here is yet another installment in his seemingly endless repertoire of mendacity.  If you think that Dershowitz’s smears of his ideological opponents are venomous and even hyperbolic in tone -…

Beinart’s challenge, Beinart’s fear
Mondoweiss – The other day I did a post on the debate between Alan Dershowitz and Peter Beinart at the City University of New York that focused on Dershowitz’s outlandish remarks. Now I want to focus on the liberal Zionist leader, Beinart, his challenge and his fear.  1….

Exile and the prophetic: Jump-starting the prophetic
Mondoweiss – Marc H. Ellis – Predictions about who will go all-in or leave the Israel/Palestine playing field when the going gets rough are tricky.  Sometimes I’ve been right.  Sometimes I’ve been wrong. Usually the tipping point has to do with the individual.  For some Jews there’s a prophetic trigger.  The prophetic has to come out….

BDS and Its Agenda 
Al-Akhbar Blogs 14 May 2013 – Speaking at a conference on Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) in Stuttgart, I came to realize that the movement is growing although it still faces many obstacles. The BDS movement is growing in the Western world and may have become more mainstream than its enemies may…

Israel attacks Nakba march near Bethlehem 
Al-Akhbar News 14 May 2013 – A Palestinian demonstrator near the occupied West Bank village of Bethlehem on 14 May 2013 holds up a flag reading in Arabic: “Return” as Israeli soldiers try to prevent demonstrators from reaching their villages which were stolen from them in the 1948 Nakba. (Photo: AFP -…

Mortal Moments: A Conversation with Cartoonist Joe Sacco 
Al-Akhbar News 14 May 2013 – Joe Sacco (left) and Mazen Kerbaj (right) signing autographs and speaking to the audience after their discussion at the Beirut Art Center on 8 May 2013. (Press photo from the Beirut Hay Festrival) Joe Sacco (left) and Mazen Kerbaj (right) signing autographs and speaking to the…

Monday’s deadly Benghazi blast likely “accidental” 
Al-Akhbar News 14 May 2013 – Bystanders and residents gather at the site of an explosion in the parking lot of a Benghazi hospital in Libya’s east, on 13 May 2013. (Photo: AFP – Abdullah Doma) A blast that killed three people in Libya’s second city Benghazi was likely caused by fishing…

Iran: Rafsanjani Fights His Last Battle 
Al-Akhbar News 14 May 2013 – Former Iranian president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani arrives to register his candidacy for the upcoming presidential election at the interior ministry in Tehran on 11 May 2013. (Photo: AFP – Behrouz Mehri) Former Iranian president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani arrives to register his candidacy for the upcoming presidential…

Lebanon: Constitutional Crisis Threatens Institutional Void 
Al-Akhbar News 14 May 2013 – The coming days will determine whether Lebanon can safely cross the minefield before it and avoid the gaping void that threatens to swallow up its core governmental institutions. (Photo: Marwan Tahtah) The coming days will determine whether Lebanon can safely cross the minefield before it and…

Moroccan street vendor dies after self-immolation 
Al-Akhbar News 14 May 2013 – A Moroccan street vendor in the southern city of Marrakesh died in hospital after setting himself on fire in protest at having his goods confiscated by the authorities, various sources said on Tuesday. Mbarek al-Karassi, 32, died on Monday evening from severe burns to the face,…

Syrian Opposition “Rearranging Cards” in Preparation for Geneva II 
Al-Akhbar Politics 13 May 2013 – US Secretary of State John Kerry, Syrian Opposition Council Chairman Moaz al-Khatib and Turkey’s Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu enter the press conferance at the Friends of Syria meeting on 20 April 2013 in Istanbul. (Photo: AFP – Ozan Kose) US Secretary of State John Kerry, Syrian…

Caught in a Bind: Syrians in the Gulf 
Al-Akhbar Politics 13 May 2013 – UAE Ambassador to Jordan Abdullah Nasser Al Ameri talks with Syrian refugee children as he tours the newly built UAE funded Mrigb al-Fuhud refugee camp, east of the Jordanian city of Zarqa, in Jordan on 15 April 2013. (Photo: AFP – STR) UAE Ambassador to Jordan…

Anger at Syria ‘heart-eating video’ 
BBC 14 May 2013 – A video which appears to show a Syrian rebel eating the heart of a dead soldier is condemned by the opposition and Human Rights Watch.

Deadly Benghazi blast an ‘accident’ 
BBC 14 May 2013 – A deadly blast outside a hospital in the Libyan city of Benghazi may have been an accident caused by men transporting explosives, ministers say.

ICC inquiry into Israel flotilla raid 
BBC 14 May 2013 – The International Criminal Court launches a preliminary inquiry into Israel’s deadly raid on a Gaza-bound flotilla in May 2010.


A life of uncertainty under occupation 
Team Khalil, International Solidarity Movement 5/13/2013
      Beit Ummar, Occupied Palestine
     At 3am on 13th May, Nasri Sabarna of Beit Ummar woke up to the sound of Israeli soldiers kicking down his front door. The sound of them shooting tear gas, rubber bullets and sound bombs at people passing his house on their way to the Mosque for morning prayer also woke up his 3 year old granddaughter, whose crying in turn woke up the rest of the Sabarna household.
     The 6 jeeps full of soldiers had come to arrest his 21 year old son Achmed – for the fifth time. Achmed is a 21 year old student who has yet to be charged with any crime. As Achmed was not home at the time the soldiers invaded his home, the whole family were ordered to go to the police station in the illegal settlement of Gush Etzyon the following morning at 9am. It was here that Achmed was taken into interrogation. Despite not being guilty of committing any crime, his father does not expect to see him anytime soon. Achmed has already been forced to miss two years of university because of similar incidents, which have cost his family alot of money – Achmed was arrested for the first time when he was 13 years old.
     His father, Nasri is no stranger to the Israeli culture of injustice practiced against Palestinians. At the age of 13, he himself was arrested by Israeli soldiers without charge and imprisoned for 10 months. His whole life has been shaped by the occupation around him. He remembers seeing Israeli bulldozers demolish three historic homes in his village of Beit Ummar at the age of 10 – such events inspired him to become politically active. In 1978 he established the first student council in Palestine, going on later to become mayor of his home village of Beit Ummar. In Israel’s bid to crush any Palestinian political organisation, Nasri was imprisoned for 6 years between 1988 and 1994 for the sole reason of being a member of the political party Fatah. more.. e-mail

Gaza: a Lie Agreed Upon 
Karen English, CounterPunch 5/13/2013
      Why Israel is Becoming a Pariah State
     In New Guinea there is a word for a truth that everybody knows but nobody speaks: Mokita. In the official discourse surrounding Palestine—Gaza in particular—politicians, President Obama, and the media speak from a phony script full of false vocabulary, false assertions, and deliberate omissions…all lies agreed upon.
     As soon as a “crisis” erupts in the region, the phony narrative clicks into place and the Sunday morning roundtables commence with everyone speaking their lines from the official script. Israel’s aggressions, the cruel economic blockade of Gaza resulting in malnutrition or anemia in nearly half of the region’s children, the targeted assassinations… Everything is ignored. Noam Chomsky calls Gaza, “the world’s largest open-air prison.”
     We’re subjected to words like conflict as if the systematic oppression and brutalization of an entire people is just a disagreement between two equal parties.
     Then are those calls for a truce. Pure political theater. Imagine calls for a truce between blacks during the time of apartheid and the white apartheid government. Would such a phrase have applied?
     Often there’s the discussion of the two state solution: Another phony phrase. There is no real possibility of that. And the term implies that there’s legitimacy in the illegal, criminal land grab that’s been going on for decades. As an innocuous, superficial model of this theft, imagine you have a house. Guests have come to visit. Little by little they begin to take over your house until you’re left with a fourth of the kitchen, half of the bathroom, and a corner of a bedroom…. more.. e-mail

65 years of impunity 
Saeb Erekat, Ma’an News Agency 5/14/2013
      Every May 15, a nation marks her historic catastrophe. In 1948, the Palestinian people were condemned to exile, and their homeland, Palestine, disappeared from the maps. Some 418 villages were destroyed and 70 percent of our people became refugees.
     For 65 years, our people have lived through the vicissitudes and humiliation of being treated as strangers, both in exile and in their own land. Today, we are still struggling to return Palestine to the map and attain justice based on international law for Palestinians everywhere.
     This solemn commemoration, which pains the heart of every Palestinian, should be a cause for shame on an international level. After decades of unfulfilled resolutions calling for the achievement of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, Israel continues to act with impunity.
     Twenty-five years after Palestine’s historic and painful compromise of recognizing the State of Israel on 78 percent of our historic homeland, Israel has not only failed to recognize the State of Palestine, but continues to expand its colonies throughout our occupied country.
     Moreover, Israel benefits from its illegal and oppressive enterprise while maintaining good relations with countries throughout the world.
     In 1949, the international community accepted Israel’s UN membership upon two conditions: That they respect resolutions 181 (two states) and 194 (refugee rights). Neither has been honored. In fact, 65 years later, Israel has not even acknowledged what it did in 1948. more.. e-mail

The Netanyahu game plan 
George S. Hishmeh, Arabic Media Internet Network (AMIN) 5/9/2013
      Israel’s unexpected aggressive bombardment of military sites near the Syrian capital last week has complicated matters both regionally and internationally, raising serious doubts about the intentions of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who, immediately after the raids on Friday and Sunday, left directly for Beijing for talks with new Chinese leaders.
     Netanyahu’s trip followed immediately after Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas had concluded his talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping, who revealed a four-point proposal for settling the decades-long Palestinian-Israeli conflict. The proposal endorsed full Palestinian sovereignty on the basis of the 1967 armistice lines and occupied East Jerusalem serving as the Palestinian capital, underlying the fact that this “is an alienable right of the Palestinian people and the key to the settlement of the Palestinian Question”. At the same time, the four-point proposal said: “Israel’s right to exist and its legitimate security concerns should be fully respected.”
     Whether the Chinese proposal that has also endorsed the amended 2002 Arab Peace Initiative will be a catalyst in the anticipated negotiations remains to be seen. The amendments were revealed in Washington during a visit by an Arab League delegation in order to placate the Israelis.
     However, the motive behind Israel’s aggressive actions in Syria, which the Obama administration said was undertaken without prior consultation with the White House, had been seen as an attempt by the Netanyahu government to shelve any talks about a resumption of Palestinian-Israeli negotiations and focus all attention on the bloody upheaval in Syria
     The Israeli prime minister was reported earlier this month to be worried that the US Secretary of State, John Kerry, who seemed determined to focus immediately on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, has been “drifting” towards the Arab League stance on the two-state solution. more.. e-mail

Oslo Freedom Forum founder’s ties to Islamophobes who inspired mass killer Anders Breivik
Electronic Intifada: 14 May 2013 – Norwegian government and Amnesty International co-sponsor “human rights” forum produced by group funded by big donors to Islamophobes who were cited by murderer.more

Are Israelis Now Appropriating the Nakba?
Palestine Chronicle: 14 May 2013 – By Susan Abulhawa Al Jazeera Stream contacted me a few days ago asking if I would participate on a show commemorating the Nakbe.  I would be the only Palestinian, the producer said, “to balance things out” amidst various Israeli voices.  Here’s the exact excerpt of the email: “We are looking for a unique angle with which to cover this and one we were thinking of was looking at the Nakba through Israeli eyes and competing Israeli perspectives. We would also like to have a Palestinian guest join us on set however, to balance things out. As you noted, it would be 3-4 Israelis and just the one Palestinian – but as I said, the Israeli’s will include those very critical of Israeli society on this issue. We certainly wont have anyone in the discussion who flat out denies the Nakba.” After thoughtful consideration and rumination on my initial impulse to…more

Will the Church of Scotland Cave in to Zionist Bullies?
Palestine Chronicle: 14 May 2013 – By Stuart Littlewood “The political and humanitarian situation in the Holy Land continues to be a source of pain and concern for us all,” says the introduction to the Church of Scotland’s report The inheritance of Abraham? A report on the ‘promised land’. It is the Church’s latest reflection on the “questions that need to be faced”. The report was intended for discussion at the Church’s General Assembly this week and it questions the assumption many Christians and Jews that the Bible supports an essentially Jewish state of Israel. Current Israeli policies towards the Palestinians, it suggests, have “sharpened this questioning”. The report goes on to examine the issues in a measured and non-inflammatory way. The conclusion arrived at is that Christians should not support claims, by Jews or anyone else, to an exclusive or divine right to particular territory. “It is a misuse of the Bible to use it…more

Pakistan’s Elections: Turning over a New Leaf
Palestine Chronicle: 14 May 2013 – By Eric Walberg Pakistan’s elections come at a key junction in the region’s geopolitics, with the public firmly opposed to the US ‘war on terror’ being conducted on Pakistani soil with no regard for its sovereignty. Pakistan’s new prime minister has a mandate to take his country in a new direction, but will he use it? Steel magnate Nawaz Sharif is the country’s fourth wealthiest citizen, a protégé of General Zia ul-Haq, toppled in a 1999 military coup, sentence to life imprisonment and exiled to Saudi Arabia. His Muslim League (PML-N) has enough seats to avoid the need for a coalition with second-place former cricketer Imran Khan’s Tehrik-i-Insaf (PTI), and/or the Bhutto family’s Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), which until last week presided over Pakistan’s first full-term civilian government. Despite pre-poll violence that killed at least 40 people, voter turnout was a robust 60%. On the surface, a win-win for Sharif,…more

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