VTJP Occupied Palestine and Israel: News and Articles 22 December 2013: Kerry’s Framework Agreement: US Plans ‘Gazafication’ of the West Bank

22 December 2013 — VTJP

News

International Middle East Media Center

PCHR – In Excessive Use Of Force, Israeli Forces Kill Palestinian Civilian
IMEMC – 4 Others, Including Child, injured in 2 Separate Incidents in the Northern Gaza Strip. On Friday, 20 December 2013, Israeli forces killed a Palestinian civilian and wounded his brother while working near the borderline with Israel, north of Beit Hanoun, in the northern Gaza Strip. …
Soldiers Invade Nablus, Jenin
IMEMC – Israeli Navy Attacks Fishing Boats in Gaza [Sunday, December 22, 2013] Israeli soldiers invaded the northern West Bank districts of Nablus and Jenin, and installed a number of roadblocks on various main roads. …

Ma’an News

Israeli settler runs over and kills Palestinian teen in Jerusalem
12/22/2013 – JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — A Palestinian teenager died on Saturday of wounds sustained when an Israeli setter ran him over near al-Isawiya village in Jerusalem, locals said. Amin, 13, from Anata village east of Jerusalem was riding a donkey along the bypass road adjacent al-Isawiya village when an Israeli settler ran him and the donkey over. The teen was critically wounded and transferred to Hadassah….

Israeli gunboats fire on Palestinian fishermen north of Gaza
12/22/2013 – GAZA (Ma’an) — Israeli gunboats fired two shells toward Palestinian fishing boats in the Sudaniya area in the northwestern Gaza Strip on Saturday evening, a witness said. The eyewitness added that no injuries were reported from the shelling. The Gaza Strip has been under a severe blockade imposed by the State of Israel since 2006. There are 4,000 fishermen in Gaza. According to a….

Israeli forces raid prisoner Samer Issawi’s house day before release
12/22/2013 – JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — Israeli authorities raided the house of Samer Issawi, a Palestinian prisoner who engaged in one of the longest hunger strikes in history, on Sunday. Authorities are expected to release Samer Issawi from Israeli prison on Monday, the Palestinian Prisoners’ Society said. Issawi will be released as part of an agreement in which he ended a 266-day hunger strike in….

Israeli forces prevent students from reaching school near Qalqiliya
12/22/2013 – QALQILIYA (Ma’an) — Israeli soldiers stationed near a Qalqiliya-area village prevented students from reaching school on Sunday morning, a local official said. Israeli soldiers stationed at the checkpoint at the entrance to Azzun Atma village in the northern West Bank prevented students from neighboring Beit Amin village from attending their school inside Azzun Atma, chairman of Beit Amin village council Taqi Omar told Ma….

Imprisoned brothers granted trial after 38-day hunger strike
12/22/2013 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Two Palestinian men ended a 38-day hunger strike on Sunday after Israeli prison authorities agreed to send them to court after being held for nearly two months without trial, family members said. Brothers Muhammad Salih Bader, 25, and Islam Salih Bader, 20, ended their 38-day hunger strike after Ofer prison authorities decided to transfer them to court for trial….

Israel refuses entry to 5 Arab ministers for Christmas celebrations
12/22/2013 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Israel refused entry to five tourism ministers who planned to visit Palestine from various Arab states, a Palestinian Authority official said. Israel refused to issue entry permits to five ministers who were expected to start arriving on Monday in order to attend Christmas celebrations in Bethlehem, PA Minister of Tourism Rula Maaya told Ma’an. Among other events, Maaya said….

Head of Kafr Qaddum’s protest movement detained by Israeli forces
12/22/2013 – QALQILIYA (Ma’an) — The head of the popular committee of a northern West Bank village was detained on Friday by Israeli forces and remains in custody, various organizations said in statements. Murad Eshtawi, who leads a weekly protest march in the village of Kafr Qaddum against Israeli settlement expansion and the separation wall, was arrested early Friday after Israeli soldiers warned him to stop….

Police: Explosion on Israeli bus, no casualties
12/22/2013 – JERUSALEM (AFP) — A suspicious object found on an empty Israeli bus near Tel Aviv exploded on Sunday but caused no casualties, police said.”After examining the explosives retrieved from the scene, we have concluded that this was a terrorist attack,” police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld told AFP.”An investigation has been opened and our forces have been deployed in the area to try to identify suspects….

Hamas rocket lands in Egyptian regional waters
12/22/2013 – CAIRO (Ma’an) — A Qassam rocket fired from the Gaza Strip landed in Egyptian regional waters Sunday, an Egyptian military official told Ma’an. The official said the rocket landed 300 meters off the coast of Egypt’s Rafah city and exploded in the water. There were no injuries reported. The rocket reached Egypt by mistake, he added. [END]

In video: Mandela speaks of support for Palestine during 1990 US visit
12/22/2013 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Rare video footage has emerged of late anti-apartheid leader and former South African president Nelson Mandela speaking of his “identification” with the Palestinian struggle during a visit to the United States in 1990. The video was released by BDS South Africa, a local organization of supporters of the international movement for the boycott, divestment, and sanctions of the State of Israel….

Israeli forces raid 4 West Bank cities overnight, 2 detained
12/22/2013 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Israeli forces raided four areas across the northern West Bank on Sunday morning, including the cities of Hebron, Nablus, and Yabad as well as the village of Araqa west of Jenin. Israeli forces on Sunday detained two Palestinians from Hebron after raiding their houses and causing extensive property damage, locals said. The Israeli forces raided the house of Muhanad Nayroukh and….

Refugee youths protest Tulkarem municipality electricity plan
12/22/2013 – TULKAREM (Ma’an) — Dozens of youths in a refugee camp in the northern West Bank on Saturday demonstrated against their municipality’s decision to require residents to prepay for electricity, witnesses said. Witnesses told Ma’an that young men in Tulkarem refugee camp burnt tires for several hours in protest against the Tulkarem municipality, which is set to install prepaid electricity meters….

Palestinian NGO decries Israeli ‘excessive force’
12/22/2013 – GAZA CITY (AFP) — A Gaza-based human rights group on Sunday expressed “deep concern” at what it called Israeli troops’ use of excessive force in Friday’s fatal shooting of a young Palestinian. The Palestinian Center for Human Rights said in a statement that soldiers shot dead Odeh Jihad Hamad, 27, and wounded his brother Raddad, 22, as they picked through scrap in wasteland….

Iran says ‘slow’ progress in nuclear deal talks
12/22/2013 – TEHRAN (AFP) — Technical talks between Iran and world powers on how to implement a landmark nuclear deal clinched last month are making progress, but slowly, a senior Iranian negotiator said Saturday. The negotiations began Thursday in Geneva on the accord reached in the Swiss city that is aimed at buying time for a diplomatic solution to a decade-long standoff over Iran’s nuclear drive….

Report of US snooping on Israel revives calls to free spy
12/22/2013 – JERUSALEM (AFP) — Israel’s intelligence minister called reported US wiretapping of an Israeli premier “unacceptable” as the story on Sunday rekindled calls for the release of jailed Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard.”We have of late exceptional intelligence relations with the United States and the British, it’s almost one intelligence community,” Yuval Steinitz told private television Channel 2’s “Meet the Press….

Official: Kerry to present framework peace agreement by Dec. 31
12/22/2013 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — US Secretary of state John Kerry will present Palestinian and Israeli leaders with a framework peace agreement by the end of the month, an Arab League official said. Mohammad Sbeih, secretary-general of Palestinian affairs at the Arab League, told Ma’an that Kerry would present a proposed peace agreement by Dec. 31. Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas informed the Arab….

Rafidia hospital shuts down for 2 hours in protest against minister
12/22/2013 – NABLUS (Ma’an) — Doctors at the Rafidia Surgical Hospital in Nablus shut down operations for two hours on Sunday morning in protest against “punitive decisions” made by Palestinian Authority health minister Jawad Awad, doctors said. The strike was joined by several public hospitals in Salfit, Qalqiliya, Jericho, and Jenin, where doctors shut down operations for two hours in solidarity with their colleagues at the….

Factions meet in Gaza to discuss national Palestinian reconciliation
12/22/2013 – GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — A meeting between three factions was held in Gaza Saturday for a discussion about national Palestinian reconciliation, one of the factions’ leaders told Ma’an. Leaders from Hamas, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, and the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine were present, PFLP leader Kayed al-Ghoul said. Hamas called the meeting to discuss….

Bethlehem eyes tourist boom after dark decade
12/22/2013 – BETHLEHEM (AFP) — After a decade of unrest, Bethlehem has seen a surge in visits to Christ’s traditional birthplace, raising hopes of a tourism bonanza in the West Bank town despite Israel’s separation barrier. The Palestinian territories’ top tourist destination is a victim of the barrier which cuts off the town from nearby Jerusalem, just 10 kilometers (six miles) away. Israel….

Iran says Zarif, Brahimi discuss Syria talks
12/22/2013 – TEHRAN (AFP) — Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and peace envoy Lakhdar Brahimi discussed the Syria crisis after negotiators failed to agree on Tehran’s role in upcoming talks, the ministry said Saturday. Zarif and Brahimi talked by phone “about the latest on the Geneva 2 conference” — a Russian-US initiated forum scheduled for Jan. 22 seeking to end the civil war in….

Al-Qaeda apologises for deadly Yemen hospital attack
12/22/2013 – SANAA (AFP) — A deadly Al-Qaeda attack this month on a Yemeni defense ministry hospital was a mistake and the militant network is ready to pay blood money, a top commander has said. The brazen daylight attack on the defense ministry complex on December 5 left 56 people dead, including patients and foreign medics from the Philippines, Germany, Vietnam and India. Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula….

Agency: 5 Syrian schoolchildren among 7 killed in Homs
12/22/2013 – DAMASCUS (AFP) — A car bombing on Sunday in the central Syrian province of Homs killed seven people, five of them schoolchildren, the official SANA news agency reported.”Terrorists blew up a car bomb near the primary school in the town of Omm al-Amd in the countryside outside Homs, killing five schoolchildren and two workers,” SANA said. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which relies on….

Egypt court jails anti-Mubarak activists for 3 years
12/22/2013 – CAIRO (AFP) — An Egyptian court on Sunday sentenced three activists who spearheaded the 2011 uprising against Hosni Mubarak to three years in jail for organizing an unlicensed protest, judicial sources said. It was the first such verdict against non-Islamist protesters since the overthrow of president Mohamed Morsi in July, and was seen by rights groups as part of a widening crackdown on demonstrations by military-installed….

New air strikes on Syria’s Aleppo kill dozens
12/22/2013 – DAMASCUS (AFP) — Syrian aircraft bombarded residential areas of Aleppo on Sunday, killing dozens of people in the divided northern city with crude explosives-filled barrels in a tactic widely condemned as unlawful. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights singled out the barrel bombing of three opposition districts in the northern city as especially deadly, saying at least 44 people had been killed, including six children. Hundreds….

Relief Web

occupied Palestinian territory: Palestinian NGO decries Israeli ‘excessive force’
Relief Web 22 Dec 2013 – Source: Agence France-Presse Country: occupied Palestinian territory 12/22/2013 12:49 GMT GAZA CITY, December 22, 2013 (AFP) – A Gaza-based human rights group on Sunday expressed “deep concern” at what it called Israeli troops’ use of excessive force in Friday’s fatal…

The National

Police fire tear gas at Istanbul anti-government protesters
The National 22 Dec 2013 – Riot police disperse thousands of demonstrators protesting against government construction projects and corruption allegations that have ensnared cabinet ministers.

Tunisia PM chosen to pull country out of spiral
The National 22 Dec 2013 – Tunisian engineer who a year ago, was running a successful international business from Paris, appointed to steer country through elections intended to cement democracy.

Amnesty admits links to activist accused of funding Al Qaeda
The National 22 Dec 2013 – Amnesty International has admitted working with a Swiss-based human rights group whose Qatari co-founder has been accused of financing Al Qaeda. Vita Bekker reports

Iran slams European parliamentarians for meeting dissidents
The National 22 Dec 2013 – Eight-member delegation met rights lawyer Nasrin Sotoudeh and filmmaker Jafar Panahi, who both won the Sakharov prize for human rights in 2012.

Mozambican Airlines captain was kamikaze pilot
The National 22 Dec 2013 – Captain had a clear intention to crash an airplane that went down in Namibia at the end of November, killing 33, probe finds.

Saudi king appoints son to head Mecca province
The National 22 Dec 2013 – Saudi King Abdullah has appointed his son Prince Mishaal as governor of Mecca Province, one of the most prominent jobs in the country, in the latest move in a rolling reshuffle of senior ruling family members over the past two years.

Cameron says Syria must answer for sickening UK surgeon death
The National 22 Dec 2013 – British prime minister has written to the family of a British surgeon who died in a Syrian jail, saying Damascus must ‘answer for’ his ‘sickening’ death.

Tribal chief s killing stirs violence in Yemen
The National 22 Dec 2013 – Said Ben Habriche was among six tribesmen killed on December 2 in fighting that erupted when his bodyguards refused to hand over their weapons to soldiers at a checkpoint.

Dozens killed in Aleppo air strikes
The National 22 Dec 2013 – Dozens die in eighth day of air strikes on Syrian northern city, as bombing in Homs kills five schoolchildren.

Suicide bomb in Benghazi kills 13 people
The National 22 Dec 2013 – Car bomb attack on military checkpoint kills 13 and wounds several others.

Tens of thousands of Thai opposition protesters rally against PM
The National 22 Dec 2013 – Tens of thousands of protesters rally in their latest attempt to oust the prime minister, Yingluck Shinawatra.

Indian anti-graft activist Kejriwal hints at forming Delhi government
The National 22 Dec 2013 – Anti-corruption activist vows to clean up ‘dirty politics’ in speech suggesting his party will team up with the Congress to form a state government in Delhi.

Russia s freed oil tycoon Khodorkovsky surfaces in Germany
The National 22 Dec 2013 – The Kremlin critic surfaces in Germany hours after his release on Friday from a prison in an obscure corner of northern Russia, following a pardon by the Russian president, Vladimir Putin.

Egypt jails prominent April 6 activists
The National 22 Dec 2013 – Ahmed Maher, Ahmed Douma and Mohammed Adel, founders of the April 6 youth movement, found guilty of violating controversial new law passed last month.

Bangladesh police charge 13 over deadliest garment factory fire
The National 22 Dec 2013 – Bangladesh police today laid the first charges over the nation’s deadliest-ever garment factory fire 13 months ago, accusing the owners and 11 others of an offence punishable by life imprisonment.

Gazans perform a Jean Claude Van Damme epic split to highlight fuel shortages
The National 22 Dec 2013 – Parody of viral advertisement highlights shortages of fuel and electricity.

Fuel hikes may see Venezuela s gas guzzlers go thirsty
The National 22 Dec 2013 – As an economic crisis drains government coffers, President Nicolas Maduro is putting motorists on notice and taking on one of the nation’s biggest sacred cows almost free petrol.

Bomb explodes on Tel Aviv bus
The National 22 Dec 2013 – Police say it is unclear whether the bomb was planted by Palestinian militants or whether it was a criminal attack.

Al Qaeda in Yemen makes rare apology for hospital attack
The National 22 Dec 2013 – Video released on Yemen state television showing a renegade gunman attacking doctors and other hospital staff prompts unusual expression of regret from the terrorist group.

Train derails in Nairobi slum, residents feared trapped
The National 22 Dec 2013 – Cargo train derails in one of Africa s largest slums, injuring at least six people, with some residents feared trapped.

Ha’aretz

Did you know that reindeer get differently colored eyes for Christmas?
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

Arabs leasing JNF-owned land face delays in registering homes
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

Bus bombing marks slow but sure rise in Palestinian terrorism
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

State Archive publishes Mandela-Mossad document, after Haaretz report
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

High Court asks Palestinians to drop land case against settlers
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

Egypt court sentences icons of April 6 protest movement
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

U.S., Israel can relax: Spying on allies is older than the Jewish state itself
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

No Christmas tree in Israeli parliament, speaker decides
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

British police raid Lord Janner’s home in sex abuse investigation
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

NBC denies plans to shoot television show in east Jerusalem national park
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

Pollard’s release date has been known for years, but his fate lies in limbo
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

Pollard’s release date has been known for years, but his fate lies in limbo
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

Bomb explodes on bus near Tel Aviv, none hurt thanks to alert passenger
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

Israel summoning migrants in city centers to detention
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

U.S. spied on Israel? Free Pollard, demand Israeli parliamentarians
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

Cabinet backs bill giving more parity in child custody
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

Atlanta Jewish community leader killed in plane crash
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

U.S. bought nearby apartment to spy on Ehud Barak, Israel suspects
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

Netanyahu: Reports on U.S. spying don’t affect efforts to free Pollard
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

Multicolored marble shrimp – Israel s newest immigrant
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

Eritrean migrants at northern kibbutz clash over their government’s policy
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

As Syria’s civil war continues, Israel to invest nearly $60 million in Golan Druze
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

African migrants take to the streets to demand Israel consider asylum requests
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

Israeli army hopes extreme storm damaged Gaza tunnels
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

What do Israelis want? Pot! When do they want it? Now!
Ha’aretz – 22 Dec 2013

Israeli MKs request for full Histadrut vote nixed
Ha’aretz – 21 Dec 2013

British envoy warns Israel over ‘damaging’ bill targeting NGOs
Ha’aretz – 21 Dec 2013

Jerusalem Post

Reality Check: Netanyahu and Lapid: Fractured relations
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – ‘A snowball s throw away from the Knesset, Israel s political leadership indulged itself in childish spats over issues whose importance have melted away quicker than a snowman in the sun.’

Khodorkovsky s release
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – ‘At most the move is nothing more than a begrudging concession to world opinion as Russia prepares to host the Winter Olympics.’

Senate prepares major vote on Iran sanctions next month
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – White House braces for decision that will be increasingly difficult to avoid, as bill authors seek broad support.

Kerry to present ‘framework agreement’ to Israel, Palestinians later this month
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – Erekat tells ‘Al-Quds Al-Arabi’ that negotiating teams no longer talking directly, but rather through US.

Integrated schools: An island of hope for a pluralistic society
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – ‘The legal and social norms in Israel have always included a division of the educational system into state-supported secular schools and state-supported religious schools…’

Think About It: In memory of Dr. Eyad el-Sarraj
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – ‘Eyad was always first and foremost a proud Palestinian…more concerned with Palestinian responsibility for the Palestinian situation, than with blaming Israel…’

The Jewish leader who helped to let his people go
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – ‘His primary mission was to call for the release of those Jews, known as refuseniks, who had consistently been denied the right to emigrate to Israel…’

World powers and Iran pause technical nuclear talks for Christmas
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – Talks aim to settle practical details of interim deal signed in Geneva, to resume before the New Year.

Edgar Bronfman, the legend
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – “Without a doubt, Edgar Bronfman should be included in the pantheon of Jewish leaders of the modern age.”

Jews, Muslims, Christians rally in Jerusalem against price tag attacks
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – Grassroots organization calls price tags attacks “cancer,” urges gov’t to classify attacks as acts of terrorism.

Romanian FM expected to address labor disagreement during visit
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – Since 2012 Israel and Romania have been unable to reach a labor agreement.

Analysis: The race against time to find the bombers
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – Security forces received no prior warning on the Bat Yam bus bombing attempt; Intelligence, as well as ground and air searches, will be key in tracking down the terrorists.

While capital thaws residents insist city remove remaining dangerous ice patches
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – Mayor asks for continued patience, announces comprehensive review of municipality s shortcomings in recovery effort.

Netanyahu aims to ease coalition tensions
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – Prime minister meets with heads of parties, tells them he could not accept repeated insubordination in the coalition.

Man sentenced to 20 years in prison for murdering man who raped him twice
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – Man claims his Ethiopian background made it impossible for him to live while rapist still alive.

Liberman on Bat Yam bus attack: Terror never rests
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – Foreign Minister responds to attempted terrorist attack; Peres thanks driver and passenger who found the bomb.

Eight 14-year-old boys arrested for alleged gang rape of girl, 12
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – Tel Aviv police said the case is a highly sensitive and severe one which came to their attention when they received a video of the act.

Was a Brit Mila the only thing stopping McCain from becoming a Jew?
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – According to ‘New York Times’ article, McCain quipped he would convert to Judaism – until ex-Senator Lieberman brought up circumcision.

Mothers to no longer get automatic custody of kids under six
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – New bill meant to reflect and encourage Israeli fathers taking more equal part in raising children.

Autistic child diagnosed with scurvy
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – Rambam pediatrician diagnoses 18th-century seafarers disease of scurvy in autistic child who refuses to eat fresh produce.

Jewish groups probe record of Italian Schindler
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – While Palatucci is credited with having saved at least a few Jews, the number of 5,000 that is often quoted is allegedly greatly inflated.

Pixies, Soundgarden to play festival at Bloomfield Stadium
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – Cornell has performed in Israel twice as a solo artist, in 2009 and 2012; Soundgarden, which broke up in 1997, reunited in 2010.

Veteran BBC commentator David Coleman dies, aged 87
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – BBC director general Tony Hall said Coleman was one of Britain’s most respected broadcasters.

Thousands rally against racism, Nazism in Stockholm
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – The protest comes one week after demonstrators at a similar rally were attacked by neo-Nazis.

Kanye West wants to take back ‘ignorant compliment’ about Jews
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – West came under fire for November comments he made about Jewish connections in Hollywood. “I don’t know how being told you have money is an insult.”

Spanish city to open museum on its ‘forgotten’ Jews
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – Granada in southern Spain has announced the opening of a museum dedicated to the culture of Sephardic Jews.

Iranian FM says technical talks not ‘easy’
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – Zarif adds that negotiations need to go forward with “accuracy” and “good will”; meets with Italian Foreign Minister Bonino during her visit.

Jordan and the Israel-Palestine dÈtente
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – A key aspect of the evaluation is how both Israel and a future sovereign Palestine can be secured against infiltration by terrorists, or defended against future invasion by jihadists, across the Jordan valley from the east.

Edelstein to Christian MK: Knesset won’t put up Christmas tree
Jerusalem Post 22 Dec 2013 – Knesset Speaker says inappropriate for Knesset to have tree, recommends for MK Sweid have one in his office instead.

The Guardian

Bus bomb blast in Tel Aviv suburb
The Guardian 22 Dec 2013 – Israeli authorities believe Palestinian militants behind attack that threatens to sour further peace talks resumed in summer A pipe bomb believed to have been planted by Palestinian militants exploded on board a bus in central Israel…

Uruknet

At least 13 dead in suicide attack on military post near Benghazi
Uruknet 22 Dec 2013 – December 22, 2013 – The Libyan government on Sunday declared a three-day national mourning period after the country s first suicide bombing since the fall of the Gadhafi regime more than two years ago. At least 13 people were killed…

NSA program stopped no terror attacks, says White House panel member
Uruknet 22 Dec 2013 – December 22, 2013 – A member of the White House review panel on NSA surveillance said he was “absolutely” surprised when he discovered the agency s lack of evidence that the bulk collection of telephone call records had thwarted any…

Freed Gitmo Detainee: We Were Subjected to Meticulous, Daily Torture
Uruknet 22 Dec 2013 – December 22, 2013 – Upon his return to Sudan after 11 years of incarceration at the hands of the U.S. military in Guant·namo Bay, Cuba, a frail 52-year-old Ibrahim Idris declared at a Thursday press conference in Khartoum that detainess…

Is BDS campaign against Israel reaching a turning point?
Uruknet 22 Dec 2013 – December 22, 2013 – At the height of its military – particularly nuclear – and economic power, Israel is feeling uncharacteristically vulnerable; but this time the threat is ironically coming from a nonviolent movement anchored in international law and the…

Israeli setter runs over and kills Palestinian teen in Jerusalem
Uruknet 22 Dec 2013 – December 22, 2013 – — A Palestinian teenager died on Saturday of wounds sustained when an Israeli setter ran him over near al-Isawiya village in Jerusalem, locals said. Amin, 13, from Anata village east of Jerusalem was riding a donkey…

Washington Abuses Indian Diplomat
Uruknet 22 Dec 2013 – December 21, 2013- India s New York consular official was targeted. Devyani Khobragade is Deputy Consul General. On December 12, US marshals abused her. They arrested, handcuffed, detained, and strip-searched her multiple times. India s government had to post a $…

Syria News – December 21, 2013 (Warning: Graphic Videos)
Uruknet 22 Dec 2013 – December 21, 2013 – By the end of Saturday the Coordination Committees were able to document 129 martyrs, includes 19 children, 8 women and 1 martyr under torture: 49 martyrs were reported in Aleppo;22 in Daraa; 19 in Quneitra;17 in…

9100 violent deaths in Iraq in 2013 so far
Uruknet 22 Dec 2013 – December 21, 2013- National Iraqi News Agency reports a Latifiya mortar attack left 2 people dead and seven more injured, 2 Kirkuk homes were blown up leaving 5 people dead and six more injured, Raweh City Council member Fairs Faird…

52 Killed, 66 Wounded in Iraq Attacks, Failed Military Operation
Uruknet 22 Dec 2013 – December 21, 2013 – At least 52 people were killed and 66 more were wounded in fresh violence. The one reported attack against pilgrims did not produce the high casualty figures. Instead, it was a military operation in Anbar province…

Powerful storm and power shortages fill Gaza with waste water
Uruknet 22 Dec 2013 – December 21, 2013 – Hamdi Al Shami, 54, woke up in the highly populated Zeitoun area of Gaza City, on 11 December, to find raw sewage flowing down his street at a height of more than 2m. It was just…

Minors, female prisoners suffer from extreme cold in Israeli jails
Uruknet 22 Dec 2013 – December 21, 2013 — Palestinian minors and female prisoners in Israel s Hasharon prison are suffering from extreme cold as the Israeli prison service continues to refuse to provide them with enough blankets, a prisoners representative said Saturday. Amin Ziyadah…

UK: Broken Promise on Torture Inquiry Need Full Accounting, and Justice for Abuses
Uruknet 22 Dec 2013 – December 21, 2013 – -The report of an uncompleted inquiry into UK involvement in renditions and overseas torture underscores the need for a full accounting. The government, which received the report in June 2012, finally published it on December 19,…

The US has classified people s memories of torture – Michael Ratner
Uruknet 22 Dec 2013 – December 21, 2013 -The illegal interrogation facility and indefinite detention prison camp at Guantanamo Bay continues to function as it has since the events of 9-11 and plans to build new facilities are still in place. Due to the illegality…

Will the Pope insist on seeing Gaza this time?
Uruknet 22 Dec 2013 – December 21, 2013 -CNN recently reported on Israeli PM Netanyahu s reception at the Vatican and plans for the Pope to visit Israel in May.Recalling the shabby treatment of religious leaders on previous visits to the Holy Land, let us…

Night-time raid: Military and ISA take over home of Burin principal, convert it to interrogation center
Uruknet 22 Dec 2013 – December 21, 2013 -On Wednesday, 13 November 2013, shortly before 3 A.M., the Umran family of the village of Burin, south of Nablus, were awakened by knocking at their door. Ibrahim Umran, 52, principal of the village high-school, got out…

PHOTOS: Thousands of African asylum seekers protest prolonged detention in Tel Aviv
Uruknet 22 Dec 2013 – December 21, 2013 – Approximately 2,000 African asylum seekers and Israeli activists marched from Levinsky Park in south Tel Aviv to Rothschild Boulevard Saturday night to protest the arrests that took place during two “freedom marches” earlier this week. They…

Murad Eshtewi, head of the Popular Committee of Kafr Qaddum, has been arrested
Uruknet 22 Dec 2013 – December 21, 2013 – Yesterday morning, Murad Eshtewi, the head of the Popular Committee of Kufr Qaddum and leader of the Friday demonstrations was arrested and is still being held by Israeli forces. At around 3:00 on Friday morning, Israeli…

US hypocrisy over diplomatic immunity: US Embassy and Consular Employees Deserve It, Foreign Diplomats Not So Much
Uruknet 22 Dec 2013 – December 21, 2013 -The diplomatic brouhaha between the US and India over a federal arrest and multiple strip-search and cavity search of a high-ranking Indian consular official in New York has exposed the astonishing hypocrisy of the US when it…

Yemen and Obama s drones
Uruknet 22 Dec 2013 – December 21, 2012 – The latest in the sad saga of murder-by-drone occurred in Yemen on Sunday. It has been going on since 2002, while the deposed President Ali Abdulla Saleh was in power and covering up for the U.S….

Daily Star

US may take more steps to aid Americans in S Sudan
Daily Star 22 Dec 2013 President Barack Obama told Congress on Sunday that he may take further military action to protect Americans in violence-plagued South Sudan.

Zarif: Iran nuclear talks progressing, but slowly
Daily Star 22 Dec 2013 Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif Sunday said nuclear talks with world powers were progressing slowly and urged all sides to avoid troublesome issues.

Police blame Palestinian militants for bus blast
Daily Star 22 Dec 2013 A pipe bomb believed to have been planted by Palestinian militants exploded Sunday on board a bus in central Israel just moments after it had been evacuated, police said, in the most serious attack inside Israel…

Egypt jails key figures of 2011 uprising
Daily Star 22 Dec 2013 Three leading figures of Egypt’s 2011 uprising were jailed for three years each on Sunday for their role in recent protests, as the army-backed authorities intensified a crackdown on dissent.

World powers and Iran pause nuclear talks for Christmas
Daily Star 22 Dec 2013 Six world powers and Iran have suspended their expert-level talks on implementing a landmark nuclear deal until after Christmas, a spokeswoman for European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said on Sunday.

Blast on Israel bus ‘terrorist attack’: police
Daily Star 22 Dec 2013 An explosion aboard an empty Israeli bus near Tel Aviv on Sunday that did not kill or wound anyone was a “terrorist attack,” police said.

Cameron says Syria must answer for ‘sickening’ UK doctor death
Daily Star 22 Dec 2013 British Prime Minister David Cameron has written to the family of a British doctor who died in a Syrian jail, saying Damascus must “answer for” his “sickening” death, a source said Sunday.

Iraq PM vows to act against ‘Qaeda’ protest site
Daily Star 22 Dec 2013 Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki said Sunday that an anti-government sit-in has become a headquarters for Al-Qaeda, and called for protesters to depart before security forces move in.

Attacks in Iraq kill 17, including military leader
Daily Star 22 Dec 2013 A string of attacks across Iraq killed 17 people on Saturday, including a senior military commander, a colonel and five soldiers who all died during a raid on an al-Qaida hideout, officials said.

Egypt activists get 3 years in prison for protest
Daily Star 22 Dec 2013 Three of the most prominent secular activists involved in Egypt’s 2011 revolution were convicted Sunday of holding a rally without authorization and attacking police officers, receiving three-year prison terms and hefty fines in the first use…

Yemen jails Qaeda suspect for three years
Daily Star 22 Dec 2013 A Yemeni court sentences a suspected member of jihadist network Al-Qaeda to three years in prison for taking part in attacks in the capital Sanaa, state media reports.

YNet News

Color Red siren sounded in Hof Ashkelon region; no blast
YNet News, 22 Dec 2013 – ….

Apple reaches deal to bring iPhone to China Mobile
YNet News, 22 Dec 2013 – ….

Tiffany ordered to pay $449 million to Swatch
YNet News, 22 Dec 2013 – ….

Police: 3 gang suspects fatally shot in Jamaica
YNet News, 22 Dec 2013 – ….

Without prior warning, West Bank terror spills into Israel
YNet News, 22 Dec 2013 – Rising tensions, frequent incitement in West Bank, motivated by Hamas’ growing involvement, is possible explanation of bus bombing attack. Increase in number of clashes between IDF, Palestinians in West Bank bodes poorly for possible calm ….

Saudi king appoints son as new Mecca governor
YNet News, 22 Dec 2013 – ….

Big Brother Obama
YNet News, 22 Dec 2013 – Op-ed: Most troubling aspect of spying affair is extent of American addiction to any piece of information ….

Rabbi combats girls’ enlistment to IDF
YNet News, 22 Dec 2013 – Shmuel Eliyahu, chief rabbi of Safed, announces establishment of educational-informative body which will visit religious girls’ high schools to warn students against ‘dangers of military service’ ….

No secrets on the phone
YNet News, 22 Dec 2013 – Op-ed: Intelligence services have much better ways of collecting information than tapping phones or emails ….

Jewish advocate Edgar Bronfman dies
YNet News, 22 Dec 2013 – Billionaire businessman and longtime president of World Jewish Congress, which lobbied Soviets to allow Jews to emigrate and helped spearhead search for Nazi loot, passes away in New York at 84 ….

Palestinian Information Center

Hamas condemns the targeting of Palestinian refugee camps in Syria
PIC – Hamas movement strongly condemned the ‚¨ Sbrutal massacre‚¨ ù in Dira refugee camp on Saturday that killed eight refugees.

Israeli intelligence storms home of captive Issawi
PIC – Israeli intelligence elements accompanied occupation forces in storming the home of captive Samer Al-Issawi in occupied Jerusalem on Sunday.

Resistance frustrates attempt by Israeli navy to kidnap one of its fighters
PIC – The Palestinian resistance was able on Sunday morning to thwart the kidnapping of one of its members by the Israeli navy in Assudaniya area to the northwest of Gaza city.

Barhoum: Arab decision on negotiations in response to U.S. pressure
PIC – Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum denounced the decision of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Arab foreign ministers to give negotiations with the Israeli occupation additional time.

Jordan’s Islamic front calls for parliamentary reevaluation of Two Seas deal
PIC – The Jordanian Islamic action front warned of possible adverse impacts of the Two Seas canal project on Jordan’s interests and called for a parliamentary reassessment of the notorious deal.

IOF arrests seven citizens in West Bank
PIC – The Israeli occupation forces (IOF) arrested at dawn Sunday seven citizens in different provinces of the West Bank, including the son of a martyr from the Qassam Brigades.

Jewish settlers break into the Aqsa Mosque
PIC – Jewish settlers broke into the Aqsa Mosque in occupied Jerusalem via the Maghareba gate on Sunday morning.

Arab Foreign Ministers call for lifting the siege on Gaza
PIC – The council of Arab foreign ministers called for lifting the unjust siege imposed on the Gaza Strip for the seventh year unabated.

MP Abu Ras: Gaza needs equipment to deal with impacts of the rainstorms
PIC – Lawmaker Marwan Abu Ras called for necessarily facilitating the entry of all equipment needed by the municipal authorities in the Gaza Strip in order to deal with the impacts of the rainstorms.

WAFA

PEX Report: Index Up in Beginning of Week s Trading
WAFA – 22 Dec 2013

Abbas Ends 3-Day Official Visit to Egypt
WAFA – 22 Dec 2013

Israeli Army Arrests Five in Hebron and Jerusalem
WAFA – 22 Dec 2013

Israel to Demolish three houses in Jordan Valley
WAFA – 22 Dec 2013

GDP Up, Per Capita Down in Q3, says Statistics Bureau
WAFA – 22 Dec 2013

Misc

Israel irked by Snowden revelations of spying on its leaders
LA Times 22 Dec 2013 – JERUSALEM Israel is the latest country to express displeasure with reports of U.S. and British spying on its leaders, although there was not a great deal of surprise over the revelations or suggestions that they would damage relations.

Libya: Suicide bombing near Benghazi kills at least 13
LA Times 22 Dec 2013 – BENGHAZI, Libya — A suicide car bombing at a security checkpoint in eastern Libya on Sunday killed at least 13 people, the government said — a gruesome attack that left body parts strewn across a roadway. Officials declared three days of mourning.

Egyptian activists get 3-year prison terms
LA Times 22 Dec 2013 – CAIRO — An Egyptian court Sunday sentenced three prominent activists to three-year prison terms and heavy fines, state media reported, in what was seen by rights advocates as a worrying sign of the military-backed government s determination to suppress political dissent.

Bus in Israel Is Evacuated Before a Bomb Goes Off
New York Times 22 Dec 2013 – Alert passengers and a bus driver are credited with saving the lives of those aboard the bus.

World Powers and Iran Pause Nuclear Talks for Christmas
New York Times 22 Dec 2013 – Six world powers and Iran have suspended their expert-level talks on implementing a landmark nuclear deal until after Christmas, a spokeswoman for European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said on Sunday.

Egyptian Activists Sentenced to 3 Years in Prison for Protests
New York Times 22 Dec 2013 – The three well-known activists, Ahmed Maher, Mohamed Adel and Ahmed Douma, were convicted under a new law seen as part of the military-backed government s effort to curb dissent.

International Education: Tension Rises at Egyptian Universities
New York Times 22 Dec 2013 – Clashes between police and students in Egypt have intensified in recent weeks, partly shutting down some of the country s top universities.

Analysis: Netanyahu Seeks to Slow Iran-U.S. Thaw by Ramping Up Demands of Deal
New York Times 22 Dec 2013 – By ramping up his demands of any final nuclear deal between Iran and world powers, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu appears determined to stem the tide of international diplomacy which has turned against him in recent weeks.

Netanyahu Moves to Calm Clamor Over U.S. Spying Allegations
New York Times 22 Dec 2013 – Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu moved on Sunday to avoid friction with the United States over allegations it spied on Israeli leaders, slapping down demands in his cabinet to press Washington for redress.

Israeli Lawyer Is Effective Voice for Palestinians
New York Times 22 Dec 2013 – Growing up in Jerusalem, Michael Sfard had no contact with Palestinians who lived just across the street from him in the Arab part of the city. In high school, he studied French and English, not Arabic. It was a fairly typical Israeli upbringing, largely insulated from the harsh realities of Israel’s half century of rule over the Palestinians next door.

Saudi King Appoints Son as New Mecca Governor
New York Times 22 Dec 2013 – Saudi Arabia’s official news agency says King Abdullah has appointed his son, Prince Mishaal, as the new governor of Mecca, home to Islam’s holiest site.

Saudi King Appoints Son to Head Mecca Province
New York Times 22 Dec 2013 – Saudi King Abdullah on Sunday appointed his son Prince Mishaal as governor of Mecca Province, one of the most prominent jobs in the country, the latest move in a rolling reshuffle of senior ruling family members over the past two years.

Explosion on Israeli Bus, No One Hurt: Police
New York Times 22 Dec 2013 – A bomb hidden in a bag exploded on a bus near Tel Aviv on Sunday after passengers were evacuated from the vehicle, and no one was hurt in the blast, a police spokesman said.

Police: Bomb Explodes on Israeli Bus; No Injuries
New York Times 22 Dec 2013 – Police in Israel say a small explosion has struck on a bus in central Israel.

Egypt Activists Get 3 Years in Prison for Protest
New York Times 22 Dec 2013 – Three of Egypt’s most prominent secular activists from the 2011 revolution against Hosni Mubarak were convicted Sunday of holding a rally without authorization and attacking police officers, receiving a three-year prison term in the first use of a highly criticized new law.

Egypt Jails Symbols of 2011 Uprising
New York Times 22 Dec 2013 – Three leading Egyptian activists were sentenced to three years in prison each on Sunday in a case brought over their role in recent protests, escalating a crackdown on dissent by the army-backed government.

The Turning Tide: The ASA, scholarly responsibility and the call for academic boycott of Israel
Mondoweiss – I have followed with great interest the events of the past several weeks, as the American Studies Association put forward its historic resolution to honor calls from Palestinian civil society for an academic boycott of Israel . The process underwent more democratic engagement of membership than any…

A Jewish Christmas message to the unsaved world
Mondoweiss – Pope Francis This is part of Marc H. Ellis s Exile and the Prophetic feature for Mondoweiss. To read the entire series visit the archive page. It s the Sunday before Christmas. Pope Francis has already delivered his Christian message to the world. Some have described his message…

3D printer co Stratasys share price up 250% since merger
Globes Main News – Some of the company’s Israeli shareholders having been cashing in on the share’s record price.

Treasury raises reserve budget 2,300%
Globes Macro Economics – Chairman of the Knesset State Auditing Committee MK Amnon Cohen (Shas) charges the Ministry of Finance with “hiding billions.”

Snowstorm could mean 5% electricity hike
Globes Main News – Israel Electric Corp. CEO Eli Glickman said the storms could cost the utility up to NIS 1 billion.

Will sex in the toilets really renew Zionism?
Mondoweiss – Ari Shavit. (Photo: Spiegel & Grau/NPR) We have given a lot of attention to the Israeli journalist Ari Shavit s book, My Promised Land , because so many leading American media have embraced his revivalist-Zionist themes, from the New York Times to NPR. Just the other night, PBS…

Sun: Opko Health recovery boosts market
Globes Main News – Opko Health and Oil Refineries clawed back some of their recent losses while Tower Semiconductor soared on news of its Panasonic joint venture.

Treasury plans firing 2,000 postal workers
Globes Main News – The government wants to comprehensively reform the post office prior to privatization.

Public transport fares to rise next week
Globes Main News – Prices of tickets on buses and trains will rise 4.7% on January 1.

GetTaxi exposes tax evading drivers
Globes Main News – The Tax Authority compelled the taxi cab app to hand over records and dozens of taxi drivers were caught not reporting income.

“Panasonic deal will bring new Japanese customers”
Globes Main News – Tower CEO Russell Ellwanger told “Globes” that the joint venture with Panasonic is a major breakthrough in the Japanese market.

Givot to carry out Meged 6 bypass drilling
Globes Main News – The bypass drilling will be from a depth of 3,620 meters after efforts failed to release the drilling pipes that were trapped at 3,860 meters.

Steinitz slams Lapid over deficit
Globes Macro Economics – “He should apologize; he misled the government and the country.”

IDB board pulls support for Dankner-Granovsky
Globes Main News – Under the threat of lawsuits, the directors have announced that no more company cash will be used to promote the consortium’s bid.

Elbit Systems wins $229m order in Australia
Globes Aerospace & Defense – Elbit Systems is the prime contractor of the Australian Defence Forces Battle Management Systems.

EMA defers decision on Teva’s Laquinimod
Globes Main News – Teva and Active Biotech hope to launch their oral treatment for MS in Europe in 2014.

Israel’s Knesset Speaker Nixes Christmas Tree
The Foward Breaking News 22 Dec 2013 – Israeli Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein said it would be inappropriate to place a Christmas tree on prominent display in the Knesset following a request from a Christian lawmaker. Click here for the rest of the article…

U.S. Rented Israel Apartment To Spy on Ehud Barak
The Foward Breaking News 22 Dec 2013 – The United States in 2007 rented an apartment directly across the road from then-Defense Minister Ehud Barak, it was reported in the wake of revelations that the U.S. and British intelligence were spying on Israeli leaders. Click here for the rest of the article…

Assad aircraft pound Aleppo district
BBC 22 Dec 2013 – Syrian government helicopters bomb a district of Aleppo, killing at least 25 people, as fighting for the country’s second city rages.

Syria should answer for death – PM
BBC 22 Dec 2013 – In a letter to the mother of a British surgeon who died in a Syrian prison, David Cameron says her son’s death is a “sickening and appalling tragedy”.

Israel Hopes To Undermine Iran Nuclear Thaw
The Foward Breaking News 22 Dec 2013 – By ramping up his demands of any final nuclear deal between Iran and world powers, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu appears determined to stem the tide of international diplomacy which has turned against him in recent weeks. Click here for the rest of the article…

Egypt jails three leading activists
BBC 22 Dec 2013 – Three prominent Egyptian pro-democracy campaigners are sentenced to three years in jail for organising an unauthorised protest.

Benjamin Netanyahu Seeks To Calm U.S. Spy Storm
The Foward Breaking News 22 Dec 2013 – Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu moved on Sunday to avoid friction with the United States over allegations it spied on Israeli leaders, slapping down demands in his cabinet to press Washington for redress. Click here for the rest of the article…

Libya first suicide bomb kills seven
BBC 22 Dec 2013 – Seven people are killed at a security checkpoint near Benghazi in the first known suicide attack on Libya soil since the fall of Colonel Gaddafi.

Egypt: General Union of Egyptians Abroad Branch to Be Established in Saudi Arabia
allAfrica.com 22 Dec 2013 – [Egypt Online]Egypt’s Ambassador in Saudi Arabia Afifi Abdul-Wahab has approved the establishment of a branch of the General Union of Egyptians Abroad in the Saudi Kingdom.

Assad aircraft pound Aleppo district
BBC 22 Dec 2013 – Syrian government helicopters bomb a district of Aleppo, killing at least 25 people, as fighting for the country’s second city rages.

Syria should answer for death – PM
BBC 22 Dec 2013 – In a letter to the mother of a British surgeon who died in a Syrian prison, David Cameron says her son’s death is a “sickening and appalling tragedy”.

Egypt jails three leading activists
BBC 22 Dec 2013 – Three prominent Egyptian pro-democracy campaigners are sentenced to three years in jail for organising an unauthorised protest.

Five dead in East Lebanon clashes
Al-Akhbar News 22 Dec 2013 – Updated 5:15pm: Five people were killed and several others wounded in East Lebanon during weekend gun battles between neighbors, a security source told Al-Akhbar on Sunday. Off-duty army soldier Mohammed Sa’id Janbeen and his uncle Faraj were killed on Saturday in clashes with the Shouman family…

Egypt jails three secular activists for three years
Al-Akhbar News 22 Dec 2013 – Three leading Egyptian activists were sentenced to three years in prison each on Sunday in a case brought over their role in recent protests, escalating a crackdown on dissent by the army-backed government. Ahmed Maher, Ahmed Douma and Mohammed Adel are symbols of the protest movement…

Libya first suicide bomb kills seven
BBC 22 Dec 2013 – Seven people are killed at a security checkpoint near Benghazi in the first known suicide attack on Libya soil since the fall of Colonel Gaddafi.

South Sudan fighting rages into day seven
Al-Akhbar News 22 Dec 2013 – World leaders stepped up efforts Sunday to pull South Sudan back from the brink of all-out civil war, as fighting raged across the country including in a key oil-producing region. Special envoys from the United States and Nigeria were flying into the capital Juba, following on…

Qaeda claims Yemen hospital attack a mistake, offers compensation
Al-Akhbar News 22 Dec 2013 – A nurse checks a wounded Yemeni man as he lies in bed at a hospital in the Yemen capital Sanaa, the day after a suicide bomber rammed an explosives-packed car into the Yemeni defense ministry complex which included a hospital, on December 6, 2013. (AFP -…

Suicide bomber kills seven at Benghazi checkpoint
Al-Akhbar News 22 Dec 2013 – Hundreds of Benghazi residents demonstrate in front of the Tibesti hotel in support of the Libyan Army and Police and against militia groups on November 29, 2013 in the eastern city of Benghazi, Libya. (Photo: AFP – Abdullah Doma) A suicide bomber rammed an explosives-laden vehicle…

VIDEO: Turkey-Syria border trade growing
BBC 22 Dec 2013 – Business on the Turkish-Syrian border is bustling, despite the lengthy delays faced by traders, as Howard Johnson reports.

Articles


Is BDS campaign against Israel reaching a turning point?
Omar Barghouti, Al Jazeera 12/22/2013
The movement calling for the boycott, divestiture and sanction of Israel is gaining momentum globally.
At the height of its military – particularly nuclear – and economic power, Israel is feeling uncharacteristically vulnerable; but this time the threat is ironically coming from a nonviolent movement anchored in international law and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Last June, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu effectively declared the Palestinian-led global Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement a “strategic threat” to Israel’s regime of occupation, colonisation and apartheid by deciding to assign the overall responsibility for fighting against the BDS to the ministry of strategic affairs.
This dramatic shift reflects the failure of Israel’s well-oiled “Brand Israel” campaign, run by the foreign ministry since BDS was launched in 2005, which sees culture as a propaganda tool and whose logic is to use Israeli artists and writers to show the world “Israel’s prettier face”.
The realisation by many people of conscience around the world that Israel’s impunity can be brought to an end only through popular internal resistance coupled with effective, morally-consistent and sustained international pressure and accountability, has given great impetus to BDS campaigns. Israel’s brutal and illegal blockade of Gaza; its untamed construction of illegal settlements and a separation wall in the occupied West Bank; its “strategy of Judaisation” in Jerusalem, the Galilee, the Jordan Valley and the Naqab (Negev), as a ranking UN official reports; its adoption of new racist laws; and its denial of the rights of refugees, have all alienated many of its hitherto supporters.
BDS’ successes in the last couple of years may be the factor that has rattled the Israeli regime…. more..e-mail

And Now This Filthy Flood
Mohammed Omer, Antiwar.com 12/21/2013
GAZA CITY, Dec. 20 2013 (IPS) Wearing tattered shoes and hopping between dirty puddles, 14-year-old Sabeh manages to find his way to the market at the Al Shati refugee camp, one of Gaza s most heavily populated and poor areas.
He asks a man selling socks if he can buy a pair for one shekel (29 cents). Sabeh looks despondent when the salesman says, three shekels and no less.
The boy protests and says his feet are freezing, but the salesman is adamant. Sabeh tries again: But I m freezing and this is all I have. Both know the socks won t help as long as Sabeh s shoes are torn and soaked in cold, slushy sewage water.
A torrent of heavy rain over Gaza this week forced 40,000 residents out of their homes 5,000 of them had to be evacuated by Palestinian rescue crews in boats. Two people were killed and at least 108 injured, according to Dr. Ashraf Al Qedra, spokesman for the Gaza health ministry.
Storm Alexa that hit Gaza is a once-in-a-century storm . Israeli meteorologists have called it the worst since 1879.
Beginning a week ago, Alexa crossed Syria, Palestine, Israel and some parts of Sinai. A thick blanket of snow covered the West Bank and some areas in Gaza too experienced snow something that hasn t occurred in years.
The 1.8 million people of the Gaza Strip, who struggle every day under an Israeli blockade, were unprepared for a storm that has affected every aspect of their life. Low-lying areas are the hardest hit, with thousands of homes flooded.
The flimsy door of Noor Pharmacy at Al Nafaq Street can t stop the water and it pours in, inundating the cupboards and drenching the medicines. The owner seems to be at a complete loss as to where to begin repairing the damage, but is well aware that his losses may never be adequately compensated. more..e-mail

Snow job about Israel-Palestine
Lawrence Davidson, Redress 12/22/2013
The subtle Zionist propaganda of the New York Times
In our house we get the New York Times (NYT) because the Philadelphia Inquirer s (that is our city paper) coverage of international affairs is very limited. Sometimes I wonder why we bother. One can find a more thorough and certainly more balanced coverage on the web. However, we still enjoy the tradition of perusing a newspaper at the breakfast table.
It is important to keep in mind that a newspaper, or really any media source, really, is a reflection of the political and cultural sensibilities of its owners and managers. So you can politically and culturally peg those who
run a media outlet such as a newspaper by what makes up its content as well as what is left out.

Snowy sky in Jerusalem
For instance, take the front page of the NYT for Saturday 14 December 2013. There, above the fold, we find a large picture of what looks like a resort in the middle of a snowstorm. The description under the picture orients us: Under a snowy sky in Jerusalem, Laps in a pool. A snowstorm around Jerusalem disrupted travel and electricity on Friday but did not deter a swimmer at the David Citadel Hotel. Beyond these few words there is no story. There is just the picture of what is an unusual climatic occurrence. Yet the photo also presents an image of Israel as a well-developed place. Some might see the photo as proof of their conviction that the Israelis really have made the desert bloom with swimming pools.
What is left out?
One thing you will not learn from the NYT is that Israeli development is always balanced by Palestinian de-development…. more..e-mail

The enduring power of Zionism s propaganda lies
Alan Hart, Redress 12/22/2013
Evidence that the mainstream media is not prepared to balance Zionism s propaganda lies with the truth of history as it relates to the making and sustaining of the conflict in and over Palestine that became Israel was on display in the BBC s obituary tribute to David Coleman who died on 21 December at the age of 87. The face and voice of BBC television s sports coverage for the best part of half a century, he was in Munich for the 1972 Olympics where, according to the commentary of the BBC s tribute to him, Arab gunmen held hostages and then killed the Israeli athletes .
The truth about the killing of the nine Israeli athletes who were taken hostage by Fatah s Black September terrorists after they had killed one is as summarized in Chapter 8 of Volume Three of the American edition of my book Zionism: The Real Enemy of the Jews, which is subtitled Conflict Without End? Here now is that summary which contains some context and runs to two and a half book pages.
Prevented from directing Palestinian anger and bitterness away from violence and into positive political action in partnership with Jordan, Yasser Arafat, Khalad Hassan and their mainstream Palestine Liberation Organization leadership colleagues lost control of events to those in the rank and file of their liberation movement who favoured the terror option, including a growing number of Fatah s own supporters the Black Septemberists for whom use of the terror weapon was a new experience.
One of Fatah s junior officers who helped to bring the BSO [Black September Organization] into being from the grassroots up was a young man whose nomme de guerre was Ben Bella. (At the time I talked with him, he was Abu Iyad s most trusted aide). Ben Bella told me their anger and despair was inflamed by the knowledge that after the PLO s expulsion from Jordan, many Arab regimes were celebrating the end of the organisation. He said: We came to the conclusion that it was only by playing the terror card that we could make our voice heard in the world. …. more..e-mail

solidarity with Gaza
In Gaza: 22 Dec 2013 – *Awni Farhat For those concerned about the sewage overflow, heavy rains, cold temperatures and siege-manufactured misery in Gaza, here are some links for solidarity actions/support: [via Joe Catron]: If you want to send money for disaster relief in Gaza, please consider the Palestine Red Crescent Society , always on the frontlines. Medical Aid for Palestinians (MAP-UK) : Our team in Gaza are working hard to source the most urgent medicines but without immediate help, these stock levels will drop even lower before the end of the year. It is staggering to think that as we approach the end of 2013, children, separated only by their ethnicity, are dying from a lack of basic medical care; medical care that is freely available to other children just a few miles from their homes. DONATE HERE [via Haithem al Zabri]: KinderUSA is distributing sweaters and shoes to children in the areas hardest hit by the…more

Video: Ramzy Baroud on Gaza, Resistance and Need to Retell History
Palestine Chronicle: 22 Dec 2013 – Video English with French subtitles [Comprenez, de l’intÈrieur de Gaza, comment le peuple palestinien a vÈcu la signature des Accords d’Oslo : les espoirs suscitÈs et immÈdiatement dÈÁus, la dÈsillusion et la colËre suscitÈe par l’occupation et la colonisation israÈliennes qui continuent… La seconde Intifada, et la montÈe politique du Hamas…]more

To Keep Gaza on Brink of Disaster is Security Interest of Israel
Palestine Chronicle: 22 Dec 2013 – By Iqbal Jassat A startling new revelation by Wikileaks claims
that Israeli officials told their American counterparts of a secret policy to keep Gaza on brink of humanitarian crisis. Classified Secret it is addressed from US Embassy in Israel to Department of the Treasury, Secretary of State as well as Egypt, Cairo. Though the revelation is 5 years old [dated November 3, 2008] the shocking decision to punish Palestinians in Gaza is as raw and brutal as today. In its summary, it records that since the Hamas takeover, Israel has designated Gaza as a hostile entity and maintained an economic embargo against the territory. This designation is used to justify a vicious stranglehold by keeping the Gazan economy functioning at the lowest level possible. In line with this, the report claims that Israeli currency of shekels as the only currency of the Palestinian Territories is in Israel s security interests and…
more


Conversation with Ilan Pappe: We Don t Have the Luxury to Wait Any Longer
Palestine Chronicle: 22 Dec 2013 – (For The Wall has ears; conversations for Palestine – Follow us on facebook here ) Florent Barat: Ilan, you are an historian, you ve published numerous books, amongst them the famous and controversial for some people Ethnic cleansing of Palestine in 2006. In 2007 you moved to England where you are currently teaching history at the Exeter University. You are part of what is called by some people the new historians who gives a new analysis and narrative of the history of Zionism and the history of the creation of Israel. You ve taken some radical positions against the state of Israel. Why and when did you decide to stand on the Palestinian s side? And what were the consequences for you being Israeli? Ilan Pappe: Changing point of view on such a crucial issue is a long journey, it doesn t happen in one day and it doesn t happen because of one event. I ve…more

BDS: Permanent Address for Palestinian Solidarity
Palestine Chronicle: 22 Dec 2013 – By Ramzy Baroud The intellectual dishonesty of Israel s supporters is appalling. But in some odd way, it is also understandable. How else could they respond to the massively growing Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign? When a non-violent campaign empowered by thousands of committed civil society activists from South Africa to Sweden and most countries in between leads a moral campaign to isolate and hold into account an Apartheid country like Israel, all that the supporters of the latter can do is spread lies and misinformation. There can be no other strategy, unless of course, Israel s friends get their own moment of moral awakening, and join the BDS flood that has already broken many barriers and liberated many minds from the grip of Israeli hasbara. According to their logic, and that of the likes of Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, writing in the New York Observer on Dec 12, legendary…more

Northern Ireland and the Israel/Palestine Peace Process
Palestine Chronicle: 22 Dec 2013 – By Richard Falk I visited Belfast the last few days during some negotiations about unresolved problems between Unionist and Republican (or Nationalist) political parties, I was struck by the absolute dependence for any kind of credibility of this process upon the unblemished perceived neutrality of the mediating third party. It would have been so totally unacceptable to rely on Ireland or Britain to play such a role, and the mere suggestion of such a partisan intermediary would have occasioned ridicule by the opposing party, confirming suspicions that its intention must have been to scuttle the proposed negotiations. In the background of such a reflection is the constructive role played by the United States more than a decade ago when it actively encouraged a process of reconciliation through a historic abandonment of violence by the antagonists. That peace process was based on the justly celebrated Good Friday Agreement that brought the…more

Kerry s Framework Agreement: US Plans Gazafication of the West Bank
Palestine Chronicle: 22 Dec 2013 – By Jonathan Cook Nazareth In recent days, US and European diplomats have been engaged in a frenzy of activity on the Israeli-Palestinian front, before they settle down for the usual two-week Christmas hibernation. A sense of urgency looms because Washington is supposed to unveil next month its so-called framework proposal for the creation of a Palestinian state, in a last desperate effort to break the logjam in negotiations. For this reason, the outlines of the US vision of an agreement are finally coming into focus. And, as many expected, the picture looks bleak for the Palestinians. John Kerry, the US secretary of state, who has invested much of his personal standing in a successful outcome, has grown increasingly forthright that an agreement hinges on satisfying Israel s security concerns, however inflated. During a speech to the Saban Forum in Washington this month, Kerry said President Barack Obama s highest priority was…more


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