VTJP Occupied Palestine and Israel: News and Articles

13 June 2014 — VTJP


International Middle East Media Center

Australia’s New East Jerusalem Policy Puts Trade at Risk
IMEMC – Australia is facing the possibility of trade sanctions by Arab nations over its decision to stop referring to East Jerusalem as an occupied territory. …

PCHR Succeeds in 13-Year-Old Legal Battle
IMEMC – The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) has, after 13 years following the incident in question, succeeded in ensuring a remedy for the family of ’Ahed al-Telbani, from al-Maghazi refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip, who was killed by the Israeli forces in 2001. … 

War Planes Hoover Over Gaza, Border Terminals Closed
IMEMC – Palestinian sources, in the besieged coastal region, have reported that several Israeli war jets have been flying over various areas of the Gaza Strip, while Israel also ordered all border, and trade, terminals in Gaza shut, as the search for three Israeli settlers, missing in the West Bank, continues amidst the assumption they have been kidnapped, and might have been moved to Gaza. …

Clashes at Al-Aqsa Solidarity Protest
IMEMC – Following Friday prayers in the Old City of Jerusalem, 28 Palestinians were injured and eight detained during fierce clashes which broke out after Israeli troops stormed Al-Aqsa mosque. … 

Three Missing Israelis Feared Dead
IMEMC – [Friday, June 13, 2014] Israeli media outlets have reported, on Friday evening, that the three missing Israeli teenage settlers, might have been killed, or moved to the Gaza Strip. …

Three Teenage Israelis Missing In West Bank
IMEMC – P.A: “Israel Has No Right To Hold Us Responsible” [Friday, June 13, 2014] Israeli security officials stated that three teenage settlers, including one who reportedly holds a US citizenship, who have been missing since Thursday at night, are feared to have been kidnapped. …

Hamdallah: “We Will Investigate Attacks On Reporters”
IMEMC – [Friday, June 13, 2014] Palestinian Prime Minister, Rami Hamdallah, stated that the Palestinian Authority intends to investigate Wednesday’s attack carried out by Palestinian security officers against Palestinian reporters, and residents, and vowed to prosecute any person involved in violations. …

Shots Fired At The Ofer Israeli Prison
IMEMC – Ramallah, Occupied Palestine, June 13 2014 – Media sources in the central West Bank city of Ramallah have reported that Palestinian fighters fired toward a number of soldiers, stationed in military towers, in the Ofer prison, near Betunia town. …

Ferwana: “The Detainees Have the Legitimate Right To Use All Options For Freedom”
IMEMC – [Friday, June 13, 2014] Gaza, Occupied Palestine; Palestinian Researcher and head of the Census Department at the Palestinian Ministry of Detainees, Abdul-Nasser Ferwana, stated that the Palestinian political prisoners, held by Israel, have the legitimate right to use all options to break free and escape their illegitimate detention. …

Ma’an News

28 injured, 8 detained in fierce clashes at Al-Aqsa
6/13/2014 – JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — Twenty-eight Palestinians were injured and eight detained during clashes that broke out after Israeli forces stormed the Al-Aqsa mosque compound in Jerusalem’s Old City after Friday prayers. Israeli forces stormed the holy compound, which is the third-holiest site in Islam, after worshipers began marching in support of more than 125 Palestinian administrative detainees who have been on hunger strike….

Journalists lament PA silence as Israel bans Gaza papers
6/13/2014 – GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — Palestinian journalists on Thursday urged the newly-formed national unity government to respond to Israel’s decision to prohibit the printing and distribution of Gaza-based newspapers in the West Bank.”Do we need an Israeli presidential decree to be able to print newspapers in territories controlled by the Palestinian Authority? “editor-in-chief of al-Risalah newspaper wrote on Thursday in exasperation over…. Related: Hamdallah condemns assaults against journalists

Israeli forces raid al-Issawiya for 5th day in a row
6/13/2014 – JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — Clashes broke out in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of al-Issawiya on Thursday for the 5th day in a row, locals said. Mohammad Abu al-Homs, a monitoring committee official, told Ma’an that a large number of Israeli forces raided al-Issawiya after being deployed for hours at the entrance to the neighborhood. Israeli forces raided house, shops and physically assaulted several….

Israel deploys heavily near Hebron after disappearance of settlers
6/13/2014 – HEBRON (Ma’an) — The Israeli military has sent a large number of military reinforcements to the Hebron district in search of two missing Israeli settlers they fear may have been kidnapped, sources exclusive to Ma’an said Friday. Israeli forces raided a number of homes in the Sanjar area of Dura, a city southwest of Hebron, on Friday in search of the settlers…. Related: Israel searching for 3 missing settlers in West Bank and Israeli forces confiscate security camera footage in Hebron

Israeli military training causes widespread disruption near Yatta
6/13/2014 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Hundreds of Israeli soldiers have been undertaking military training exercises in the south Hebron hills for the past five days, causing widespread restrictions and disruptions for local Palestinian residents. Operation Dove, a peace group which works in the area, said Thursday that hundreds of soldiers have deployed by military bases near the villages of Jinba and Mirkez. The Israeli soldiers have….

3 journalists injured in Bilin protest
6/13/2014 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Three journalists were injured and dozens suffered from excessive tear gas inhalation as Israeli forces dispersed a weekly protest in Bilin village near Ramallah. Israeli forces fired rubber-coated steel bullets, stun grenades, and tear gas at protesters as they neared their lands near the wall, injuring photographer Abbas al-Momini with a rubber-coated steel bullet in the pelvis, and Palestine TV cameraman….

Israeli forces confiscate security camera footage in Hebron
6/13/2014 – HEBRON (Ma’an) — Israeli forces have seized footage from a number of security cameras from the Beit Ummar, Halhul, Ras al-Jora, and Sanjar areas in Hebron as they continue a search for three missing settlers. Locals said that Israeli force raided Beit Ummar and Halhul, confiscated the footage and searched the areas. They also erected several checkpoints in the north and south of Hebron…. Related: Kerry asks Abbas to help search for missing settlers and Israel searching for 3 missing settlers in West Bank

4 injured in accidental explosion at training site in Khan Younis
6/13/2014 – GAZA STRIP (Ma’an) — Four Hamas members were injured on Friday morning by an accidental explosion at one of the group’s military training sites west of the city of Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip. Spokesperson for the Gaza Ministry of Health Ashraf al-Qidra told Ma’an that the four individuals were taken to hospitals in the southern Gaza Strip….

Israeli army: Gunman fires 8 bullets at Beitunia checkpoint
6/13/2014 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — A border guard unit stationed at the Beitunia checkpoint came under fire by unknown assailants on Friday morning, the Israeli military said. An Israeli military spokeswoman said that “a suspect approached the military post and opened fire at the soldiers, who fired back.”She added that no casualties were reported in the incident, which occurred around 7:30 a. m. The….

Israel searching for 3 missing settlers in West Bank
6/13/2014 – HEBRON (Ma’an) — The Israeli military said Friday it was searching for three teenagers who disappeared from a settlement the night before in the occupied West Bank. An Israeli army spokeswoman confirmed earlier reports that the settlers were missing and said an operation was ongoing to retrieve them. The military had earlier sent a large number of reinforcements to the Hebron district in search…. Related: Kerry asks Abbas to help search for missing settlers and PA ‘not responsible’ for safety of settlers

Australian trade at risk over East Jerusalem decision
6/13/2014 – SYDNEY (AFP) — Australia could face trade sanctions by Arab nations over its decision to stop using the term “occupied” when referring to East Jerusalem, the head of the Palestinian delegation to Canberra warned Friday. Izzat Abdulhadi said Australia’s new stance on East Jerusalem, which was annexed by Israel in a move never recognized by the international community, was a “substantial policy shift.” “We….

Qatar pledges $20 million to Hamdallah for Gaza salaries
6/13/2014 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Qatar promised to transfer $20 million to the Palestinian national unity government on Friday in a bid to offer a short-term solution to a crisis over wages that has plagued the administration since a banking crisis in Gaza last week. The spokesman for the unity government and director of the government media center Ehab Bsiso said that Qatari Prime Minister Abdullah….

PA ‘not responsible’ for safety of settlers
6/13/2014 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — A spokesman for the Palestinian Authority security services denounced Israel’s efforts to blame the PA for the disappearance of three settlers in the occupied West Bank on Friday. Adnan Dmeiri said the PA was not responsible for the safety of settlers and had no way to prevent the possible kidnapping of the teenagers. He said the PA “is used…. Related: Israel searching for 3 missing settlers in West Bank and Kerry asks Abbas to help search for missing settlers

Hamdallah condemns assaults against journalists
6/13/2014 – RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah on Thursday condemned police brutality on journalists that occurred during a protest in Ramallah the day before, promising that the responsible parties would be held accountable. Hamdallah stressed his support for the freedom of the press in Palestine in a meeting with a delegate from the Journalists’ Syndicate, adding that the Palestinian media are “partners…. Related: Journalists lament PA silence as Israel bans Gaza papers

Kerry asks Abbas to help search for missing settlers
6/13/2014 – BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — US Secretary of State John Kerry on Friday asked President Mahmoud Abbas to assist in Israel’s search for three missing settlers in the occupied West Bank. Israel’s Channel 2 reported that Kerry phoned Abbas to discuss several issues including the missing settlers. A spokesman for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netenyahu’s office said the Shin Bet…. Related: PA ‘not responsible’ for safety of settlers and Israeli forces confiscate security camera footage in Hebron

Palestinian prisoners hunger for freedom
6/13/2014 – By Daoud Kuttab – Since April 24, 120 out of the 189 Palestinians held without charge or trial have refused taking any food. Hundreds, and on some days thousands, of fellow prisoners also joined them. he usefulness of the protest was made clear by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s call on Israel to either charge or release the Palestinian detainees. Among the Palestinians held….

US says not in talks with Iran on Iraq crisis
6/13/2014 – WASHINGTON (AFP) — The United States has not begun talks with its traditional foe Iran on the renewed crisis in Iraq, the State Department said Friday, despite Washington and Tehran’s shared interest in supporting Baghdad.”No, we are not talking to the Iranians about Iraq,” spokeswoman Marie Harf told reporters in response to a question at her daily briefing. [END]

Alitalia board gives green light to Etihad deal
6/13/2014 – MILAN (AFP) — The board of struggling Italian airline Alitalia has approved a tie-up with the Emirati carrier Etihad Airways, a company statement said on Friday. Alitalia chairman Roberto Colaninno and chief executive Gabriele Del Torchio are charged with negotiating details of the deal with the Abu Dhabi airline, which has for months been negotiating to buy up to 49 percent of the stricken Italian flag….


Israel searches for ‘kidnapped’ students
AlJazeera 13 Jun 2014 – Massive search under way for three teenagers who disappeared from Kfar Etzion, an illegal West Bank settlement.

International Solidarity Movement

Israeli military trains close to the Palestinian villages of Jinba and Al Mirkez (Masafer Yatta)
6/13/2014 – International Solidarity Movement – Operation Dove, Jinba and Al Mirkez, Occupied Palestine – From the 8th June until three hours ago, the Israeli military has been training in Palestinian-owned fields, close to the Palestinian villages of Jinba and Al Mirkez, in Masafer Yatta. Hundreds of soldiers have occupied the land in front of the nearby Israeli military base with tents and military equipment, and were scattered in groups around the villages….

Photo story: Prisoner solidarity protest in village of Bil’in
6/13/2014 – International Solidarity Movement – Ramallah team, Bil’in, Occupied Palestine – Today, Bil’in held its weekly protest in solidarity with the Palestinian prisoners on hunger strike. As part of the protest, and in support of the current situation in Brazil, due to the football world cup, some of the protesters dressed as prisoners and decided to hold a game of football, using the apartheid wall as the….

Relief Web

occupied Palestinian territory: Water and Energy Crisis in Gaza: Seeking a multi-stakeholder partnership for solutions
Relief Web 13 Jun 2014 – Source: UN Children’s Fund Country: occupied Palestinian territory KEY ISSUES 1- There is a lack of adequate clean water resources for human use in Gaza 2 – Current supply of energy is insufficient to operate 281 WASH facilities and unsustainable…

occupied Palestinian territory: A Garden in Qalqilya
Relief Web 12 Jun 2014 – Source: UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East Country: occupied Palestinian territory West Bank What can a principal do to make every morning even better for her students? AmalHasanein, principal of the UN Relief and…

Lebanon: Qatar Supports Lebanon Scholarships
Relief Web 12 Jun 2014 – Source: UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East Country: Lebanon, occupied Palestinian territory, Qatar Brussels In Brussels, the Commissioner-General of the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA), Pierre Krähenbühl, accepted a contribution…

Syrian Arab Republic: Zakat Foundation Supports Food for Yarmouk Families
Relief Web 12 Jun 2014 – Source: UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East Country: occupied Palestinian territory, Syrian Arab Republic Washington, DC The Zakat Foundation of America (ZF) and American Friends of UNRWA (UNRWA USA) have partnered to provide immediate…

The National

In pictures: George HW Bush celebrates 90th birthday by skydiving
The National 13 Jun 2014 – Former US President George HW Bush marked his 90th birthday by skydiving out of a helicopter above Kennebunkport, Maine on June 12, 2014

George HW Bush takes 90th birthday celebration to new heights
The National 12 Jun 2014 – ‘It’s a wonderful day in Maine – in fact, nice enough for a parachute jump,’ tweeted the 41st US president, who first jumped from an aircraft almost 70 years ago in World War Two.


U.S. citizen among 3 teens feared kidnapped in West Bank
Ha’aretz – 13 Jun 2014

Iraqi crisis is unexpected prize for Kurds
Ha’aretz – 13 Jun 2014

United Methodist Church’s pension board divests from Israel-linked company
Ha’aretz – 13 Jun 2014

U.S.: Russia is providing tanks, rockets launchers to Ukraine separatists
Ha’aretz – 13 Jun 2014

Has the ISIL infiltrated the West Bank?
Ha’aretz – 13 Jun 2014

Queen Elizabeth II to honor former Haaretz editor David Landau
Ha’aretz – 13 Jun 2014

Ukrainian troops drive pro-Russians out of eastern city
Ha’aretz – 13 Jun 2014

Obama rules out re-sending U.S. troops into Iraq
Ha’aretz – 13 Jun 2014

Missing teens: Time is not on their side
Ha’aretz – 13 Jun 2014

Hamas calls for intifada against Israel
Ha’aretz – 13 Jun 2014

Al-Qaida linked organization takes responsibility for alleged kidnapping
Ha’aretz – 13 Jun 2014

Pope Francis: Virtually all Vatican officials opposed joint Peres/Abbas prayer
Ha’aretz – 13 Jun 2014

Oy Vey! Untranslated Yiddish tapes may delay NY senator’s trial
Ha’aretz – 13 Jun 2014

Tel Aviv Gay Pride Parade draws 100,000
Ha’aretz – 13 Jun 2014

For gay right-wingers, life is doubly difficult
Ha’aretz – 13 Jun 2014

World Cup Diary / What’s Portuguese for ‘dodgy ref?’
Ha’aretz – 13 Jun 2014

Word of the Day / Rahit: Making a word part of the furniture
Ha’aretz – 13 Jun 2014

Without passports to leave or work permits, many Africans are in limbo
Ha’aretz – 13 Jun 2014

Palestinian public apathetic toward hunger strike
Ha’aretz – 12 Jun 2014

Western Wall plaza facilities cut to size
Ha’aretz – 12 Jun 2014

Jerusalem court indicts hate crime suspects using circumstantial evidence
Ha’aretz – 12 Jun 2014

No charges against IDF soldier who killed 21-year-old Palestinian bystander
Ha’aretz – 12 Jun 2014

End of presidential elections heralds tectonic shift in coalition
Ha’aretz – 12 Jun 2014

The Guardian

Palestinian professor: no regrets over taking students to Auschwitz
The Guardian 13 Jun 2014 – Mohammed Dajani resigned amid row highlighting darkest taboos of conflict with Israel and each side’s sense of victimhood in Holocaust and Nakba Mohammed Dajani knew he was on sensitive ground when he took a group of…

Press freedom watchdog accuses Israeli police of harassing broadcaster
The Guardian 13 Jun 2014 – The International Press Institute (IPI) has criticised the Israeli authorities for raiding the studios of a Palestinian broadcaster. Israeli security forces entered the east Jerusalem studios of the Palestinian Broadcasting Corporation (PBC) last Friday and demanded…

Australia may be hit with sanctions over ‘occupied’ East Jerusalem policy change
The Guardian 12 Jun 2014 – Eighteen nations, including Indonesia, have protested against decision to stop calling East Jerusalem ‘occupied’ Australia could be hit with trade sanctions over the Abbotts governments decision to stop calling East Jerusalem occupied, a term used in…


Omidyar and the Oligarch s Code: Enabling Extremism, Monetizing Dissent
Uruknet 13 Jun 2014 – June 6, 2014 – India is now in the hands of Narendra Modi – a lifelong member of an unabashedly neofascist paramilitary group. His chief claim to fame is presiding over the wanton slaughter of more than 2,000 Muslims as…

Fighting this year in Iraq s Anbar province displaces almost 500,000
Uruknet 13 Jun 2014 – June 6, 2014 – The UN refugee agency on Friday said that violence in central Iraq s restive Anbar province has displaced close to half-a-million civilians so far this year. “With a deteriorating security situation, it is also becoming harder…

One Year of Snowden Leaks (Video) 
Uruknet 13 Jun 2014 – June 6, 2014 – … And it s, of course, a different world that we now have in front of us. We know about crimes, we know about diplomatic chicanery. We know about private intelligence surveillance. We know a lot more…

Syria Protests June 6, 2014 : A Video Roundup 
Uruknet 13 Jun 2014 – 

Memo to Potential Whistleblowers: If You See Something, Say Something
Uruknet 13 Jun 2014 – June 6, 2014 – Blowing the whistle on wrongdoing creates a moral frequency that vast numbers of people are eager to hear. We don t want our lives, communities, country and world continually damaged by the deadening silences of fear…

Daniel Ellsberg: Both Manning & Snowden Exposed Government Secrecy to Proper Debate
Uruknet 13 Jun 2014 – June 6, 2014 – Everyone is writing and thinking about NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, whose first revelations were published one year ago today. But it was also one year ago that Chelsea Manning s trial began at Fort Meade in…

As Pawns of the Occupation, Palestinian Children Face Regular Abuse and Torture
Uruknet 13 Jun 2014 – June 6, 2014 – In ratifying the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1991, Israel vowed to respect the dignity of all children, Palestinian and Israeli alike. But according to two human rights observers who spoke at…

Iraqi resistance – Weekly report from Iraq (May 30- June 5, 2014 ) 
Uruknet 13 Jun 2014 – June 6, 2014 – In a brazen well-planned attack by the Iraqi Resistance this last week the city of Samraa in Salah ElDein province fell into the hands of the resistance. Official Arab media falsified news of the attack in…

Haaretz: US accuses Israel of hypocrisy
Uruknet 13 Jun 2014 – June 6, 2014 -At a time when the Israeli government threatened to impose increasing sanctions against the Palestinians, the US has accused it of hypocrisy, after Benjamin Netenyahu s government transferred great amounts of money to the Palestinian Authority on…

Kerry legitimizes Hezbollah 
Uruknet 13 Jun 2014 – June 6, 2014 -Secretary Kerry, following a few hours visit to Beirut, was reading a statement saying (below link to the entire statement and interview): “So all of us, all nations, have a responsibility to try to end this conflict….

On Democracy Now! Andy Worthington Discusses the Cynical Hysteria About the Guantánamo Prisoners Released in Exchange for Bowe Bergdahl
Uruknet 13 Jun 2014 – June 6, 2014 – I was delighted to be invited onto Democracy Now! today to discuss the ongoing hysteria in the US about the Obama administration s decision to release five Taliban prisoners at Guantánamo in exchange for the sole…

Shmuel Rosner s RX in the NYT: Occupation forever
Uruknet 13 Jun 2014 – June 6, 2014 I find this New York Times op-ed by Shmuel Rosner, “Don t Annex the West Bank,” pretty radical. Here are its main points: 1. The settler right of Uri Elitzur and left of Reuven Rivlin are ready…

US Culpability in the Failure of Israeli-Palestinian Peace Talks
Uruknet 13 Jun 2014 – June 6, 2014- The Obama administration deserves much of the blame for the failure of the latest round of Israeli-Palestinian peace talks. It had originally been hoped that the United States would present a binding framework along the lines of…

Meet Aryeh King: The brash right-wing settler bent on evicting Jerusalem s Palestinians
Uruknet 13 Jun 2014 – June 6, 2014- When the phone call came as we were driving to the Qalandia checkpoint separating Ramallah from Jerusalem, I grew worried. I thought the Israel Land Fund (ILF) was about to cancel my appointment with Aryeh King, the…

Settlements as punishment prove Palestinian lives are bargaining chip
Uruknet 13 Jun 2014 – June 6, 2014 – By using settlements as a punitive response to Palestinian political actions, Israel proves they come at the direct expense of Palestinian statehood, and that it holds all the power in this conflict. Here we go again….

Netanyahu threatens to force-feed hunger striking Palestinian prisoners
Uruknet 13 Jun 2014 – June 6, 2014 – The ongoing silence of international bodies and the Palestinian Authority has contributed to the deteriorating situation of approximately 125 Palestinians being held by Israel without charge or trial who have been on hunger strike since 24…

G4S “to end” Israel prison contracts as pressure mounts over torture complicity Submitted by Ali Abunimah on Fri
Uruknet 13 Jun 2014 – June 6, 2014- British-Danish multinational security and prison profiteering firm G4S is to pull out of Israeli prisons completely, the Financial Times reports this morning.Campaigners have given a cautious welcome to the news, but emphasize that pressure on the company…

Why did The New York Times ignore Palestine s Christians during Pope s visit?
Uruknet 13 Jun 2014 – June 6, 2014 – The New York Times coverage of the Pope s recent visit to the Middle East demonstrates yet another facet of how the US most important media outlet obfuscates Palestinian identity and realities and misinforms the public…

Syria News – June 5, 2014 (Warning: Graphic Videos) 
Uruknet 13 Jun 2014 – June 5, 2014 – By the end of today Thursday, LCC has documented 66 martyrs including 11 women, 8 children & 3 martyrs under torture. 18 martyrs were reported in Aleppo, 28 in Damascus & its suburbs, 4 in Idlib,…

Daily Star

Lebanon makes it to the World Cup via J Lo
Daily Star 13 Jun 2014 Unsure what to wear, Jennifer Lopez turned to her 2.8 million Instagram followers to help her pick the right sparkly dress for Thursday night’s performance.

Iran FM warns against scuttling nuclear deal
Daily Star 13 Jun 2014 Iran’s foreign minister warned critics Friday not to let “illusions” about his country’s nuclear program scuttle a deal, voicing hope that a historic agreement will be reached soon.

Obama phones Canada’s Harper about crises in Iraq, Ukraine: White House
Daily Star 13 Jun 2014 President Barack Obama phoned Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper on Friday while traveling aboard Air Force One to discuss the crises in Iraq and Ukraine, a White House spokesman said.

Syrian-born artist now helps child war refugees
Daily Star 13 Jun 2014 When Lina Safar moved from her native Syria to Florida with her U.S.-born husband in 2010, she assumed she would return occasionally, see her family, walk in her neighborhood and shop at her favorite markets.

YNet News

Police join search for missing teens
YNet News, 13 Jun 2014 – ….

Netanyahu to hold fresh security consultations over missing teens
YNet News, 13 Jun 2014 – ….

US State Department: We’re working with Israel and PA over missing teens
YNet News, 13 Jun 2014 – ….

Vagueness has become the new politics
YNet News, 13 Jun 2014 – Op-ed: Compared to a person who knows how to simplify ideas, Yair Lapid’s statements on Israeli-Palestinian issue are quite awkward. ….

Roadblocks set up in on southern highways to prevent teens being transferred to Gaza
YNet News, 13 Jun 2014 – ….

Netanyahu meets with security officials in Tel Aviv
YNet News, 13 Jun 2014 – ….

Iraq crisis caught Obama unprepared
YNet News, 13 Jun 2014 – Analysis: Obama says he’s not ruling out any options, but no one is buying it anymore. As the Iraqi army abandons its posts to Islamists, the Obama administration is not left with many options. ….

Palestinian Information Center

IOF soldiers scouring southern al-Khalil in search of missing settlers
PIC – Israeli occupation forces (IOF) have reportedly expanded their search operations in southern al-Khalil by Friday evening for three missing settlers.

Palestinian refugee dies of wounds in Syria
PIC – One Palestinian refugee in Syria on Thursday evening died of wounds he had sustained during a previous projectile attack on Damascus countryside.

Hebrew sources: Livni met with Riyadh al-Maliki in London
PIC – Hebrew press sources said that Israeli Justice Minister Tzipi Livni on Thursday met with Palestinian minister of foreign affairs Riyadh al-Maliki in London.

Netanyahu and Peres continue incitement against Hamas
PIC – Shimon Peres and Benjamin Netanyahu continued on Thursday to incite against Hamas as part of an Israeli position that has escalated since the signing of the reconciliation agreement late April.

Blast wounds four Palestinian resistance fighters
PIC – Four Palestinian resistance fighters suffered injuries on Friday following an accidental blast in a resistance training post west of Khan Younis, south of the Gaza Strip.

Israeli minister claims “Israel incomplete without al-Khalil and Nablus”
PIC – Rabbi Shai Piron, the Israeli minister of education, said that Israel is incomplete without al-Khalil and Nablus.

Shatta prison shut down after discovering tunnel
PIC – The Israeli prison authority have shut down Shatta prison in Beisan city and evacuated all Palestinian prisoners on Thursday, claiming the discovery of an underground tunnel leading to the jail.

IOF rounds up three Palestinian young men in Al-Khalil and Jenin
PIC – The Israeli occupation forces (IOF) on Thursday rounded up two Palestinian young men, including one with a disability, from Beit Ummar, north of al-Khalil, and another youth from Jenin.

88 US senators oppose supporting Palestinian unity government
PIC – 88 US senators out of 535 congress members have opposed US financial aid to the Palestinian unity government.


At War Blog: Reactions to the Turmoil in Iraq From Those Who Served
New York Times 13 Jun 2014 – The New York Times asked veterans of the war in Iraq to share their reactions to the news this week that Sunni extremist militants had seized broad stretches of the country. 

News Analysis: Obama Finds He Can’t Put Iraq Behind Him
New York Times 13 Jun 2014 – Iraq continues to shape Barack Obama’s presidency, as he concludes that American interests there prevent him from fully leaving Iraq to the Iraqis themselves. 

Can General Linder’s Special Operations Forces Stop the Next Terrorist Threat?
New York Times 13 Jun 2014 – As the fight against terrorism broadens to Africa, the United States faces a tricky balance: how to fight an enemy without actually doing the fighting. 

Where ‘Hello’ Means ‘Goodbye,’ Baghdad Residents Book Flights
New York Times 13 Jun 2014 – Baghdad residents with money are looking for flights, anywhere, to ride out the uncertainty of the Sunni militant advances to the north. 

Open Source: Iraq Reportedly Blocks Social Networks
New York Times 13 Jun 2014 – Seeking to stem the flow of militant propaganda, Iraq on Friday reportedly cut off access to social networks, including Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. 

Iraq May Turn to Iran for Help, Maliki Aide Says
New York Times 13 Jun 2014 – The aide also criticized what he called the Obama administration’s failure to better prepare the Iraqi military for an emergency. 

Three Teenagers Said to Be Kidnapped in West Bank
New York Times 13 Jun 2014 – Initial reports said the Israeli teenagers, one with American citizenship, were last heard from on Thursday on their way to a hitchhiking area south of Jerusalem. 

Obama Says He Will Decide on Military Support for Iraq in ‘Days Ahead’
New York Times 13 Jun 2014 – With Iraq in crisis, President Obama made a statement about the situation on Friday before leaving on a trip to North Dakota and California. 

Iraqi Shiite Cleric Issues Call to Arms Against Sunni Militants
New York Times 13 Jun 2014 – The most senior Shiite cleric in the country, Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani, called on Iraqis to assist the government’s fight against the Sunni militants who have seized broad stretches of Iraq. 

U.N. Warns of Rights Abuses and Hundreds Dead in Iraq Fighting
New York Times 13 Jun 2014 – The top human rights official at the United Nations expressed “extreme alarm” over extrajudicial killings, rape and the shelling of civilians. 

Fears About Iraq Continue to Push Up Oil Prices
New York Times 13 Jun 2014 – For a second day, prices are rising modestly as traders worry over instability in the Middle East. 

Building Nuclear Weapon Would Take Years, Not Months, Iran Says in Report
New York Times 12 Jun 2014 – The estimate contradicts both classified assessments by the United States government and many outside experts. 

Diplomatic Memo: As Sunni Militants Threaten Its Allies in Baghdad, Iran Weighs Options
New York Times 12 Jun 2014 – Islamic State of Iraq and Syria fighters pose a direct threat to the pro-Iranian government of Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki, vowing to massacre Shiites and destroy their shrines. 

Iraqis Who Fled Mosul Say They Prefer Militants to Government
New York Times 12 Jun 2014 – As many as 500,000 Iraqis fled Mosul after a militant group swarmed the city, many of them Sunnis who seemed less fearful of the group than their own government. 

What the MLA vote showed: Israel is losing the battle for liberal support
Mondoweiss – North America’s largest association of scholars in the humanities, the Modern Language Association, announced the results of its membership ballot on Resolution 2014-1 last week. The resolution called on the US Department of State to contest Israel’s denials of entry to the Palestinian West Bank to…

Feinstein, Baldwin, Kaine, Paul among 12 senators who didn’t sign AIPAC letter blasting Palestinian gov’t
Mondoweiss – Dianne Feinstein, official Senate portrait As the American Israel Political Affairs Committee is crowing today , a “supermajority” of 88 senators have sent a letter to President Obama, initiated by Ben Cardin and Susan Collins, denouncing the new Palestinian government and suggesting that no aid should be…

‘We know best how to liberate you’ — the misguided attack on Presbyterian divestment
Mondoweiss – Logo for Presbyterian GA this month in Detroit The Presbyterian Church (USA) will soon embark upon a set of votes that will affect the denomination’s involvement in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The Church’s 221 st biennial General Assembly, in Detroit next week, will examine, among other measures,…

‘Atlantic’ runs unblinking account of Palestinian persecution in Hebron
Mondoweiss – The Atlantic website has published an excellent account of visiting Hebron’s ethnically-cleansed Shuhada Street– shown in my video above– by Ayelet Waldman, a novelist and member of Peace Now. The piece does not use the word apartheid, but it conveys the horror of the situation. Haaretz…

Mondoweiss – Union Theological Seminary, from Wikimedia Commons This is part of Marc H. Ellis’s “Exile and the Prophetic” feature for Mondoweiss. To read the entire series visit the archive page. Before the uproar begins and emails accuse me of betraying the side of justice or for not…

Autopsy reveals Nakba Day protester killed by live ammunition
Mondoweiss – Nadim Nuwara The body of Palestinian teenager Nadim Nuwara, 17, killed by Israeli live fire on Nakba Day , was exhumed on Wednesday. At the request of the Nawara family an autopsy was performed witnessed by an international group of pathologists which revealed Nuwara was killed by…

‘Landmark divestment action’: United Methodist Church Divests from G4S
Mondoweiss – United Methodist Kairos Response In a landmark decision, The United Methodist Church, the largest mainline Protestant church in the United States, will be pulling all its investment from G4S, a British company highly complicit in Israel’s military occupation of Palestine profiting from gross human rights violations against Palestinian…

American Citizen Among 3 Jewish Teens Believed Kidnapped in West Bank 
The Foward Breaking News 13 Jun 2014 – Israeli forces are searching for three Jewish teenagers who went missing in the occupied West Bank late Thursday, the military said on Friday, amid reports the trio might have been kidnapped by Palestinian militants. Click here for the rest of the article…

Methodist Pension Board Divests From Company That Aids Israeli Occupation and Prisons 
The Foward Breaking News 13 Jun 2014 – The United Methodist Church’s pension board is selling its shares in a British company that supplies security equipment to Israel for use in prisons and in the West Bank. Click here for the rest of the article…

Egypt asks YouTube to remove video 
BBC 13 Jun 2014 – Egypt asks YouTube to remove a video of a woman being sexually assaulted during a rally supporting the country’s newly elected president.

Kenya: Kenya, Israel to Revive Relations 
allAfrica.com 13 Jun 2014 – [CAJ News]Nairobi -ISRAELI Foreign Minister, Avigdor Lieberman, is expected to oversee the launch of direct flights between Nairobi and Tel Aviv when he visits the country next week.

Largest US Protestant Church divests from Israeli prison contractor G4S 
Global BDS 13 Jun 2014 – The largest mainline Protestant church in U.S has divested from British security company G4S over the key role it plays in Israel’s military occupation and the prison system at which Palestinians are held without trial and subjected to torture. The General Board of Pension and Health…

Lebanon deports Berlusconi ally 
BBC 13 Jun 2014 – A former business associate of Italy’s ex-PM Silvio Berlusconi is extradited from Lebanon to serve a prison term for Mafia links.

Bitcoin Makes Aliyah as Virtual Currency Gains Favor in Israel 
The Forward New 12 Jun 2014 – Nimrod Gruber’s Tel Aviv ATM looks like any other cash machine. But instead of dispensing dollars, euros or shekels, it dispenses Bitcoin. Click here for the rest of the article…

G4S “to end” Israel prison contracts as pressure mounts over torture complicity 
Global BDS 12 Jun 2014 – British-Danish multinational security and prison profiteering firm G4S is to pull out of Israeli prisons completely, the Financial Times reports this morning . Campaigners have given a cautious welcome to the news, but emphasize that pressure on the company must continue until the abuses it is…

VIDEO: What is behind the struggle for Iraq? 
BBC 13 Jun 2014 – As Sunni insurgents move closer to Baghdad, Allan Little looks at the background to the tensions in Iraq.

Obama to ‘review options’ on Iraq 
BBC 13 Jun 2014 – US President Barack Obama says he will take several days to decide what action to take over the Iraq crisis, but says no US troops will be deployed.

VIDEO: How might US help Iraqi government? 
BBC 13 Jun 2014 – As Barack Obama reaffirms that he will not send US troops into Iraq, Frank Gardener reports on what can be done to halt the Sunni militants.

Fifa bans Beckenbauer for 90 days 
BBC 13 Jun 2014 – Fifa provisionally bans World Cup winner Franz Beckenbauer from all footballing activities for 90 days.

Week Ahead: Congress debates return to Iraq 
Al-Monitor 13 Jun 2014 – A look at the Middle East issues Congress will be addressing the week of June 16.

Lebanon: Migrant workers face ignorant officials, negligent prosecutors in battle for justice 
Al-Akhbar News 13 Jun 2014 – Migrant domestic workers call for an end to the slave-like sponsorship system at a labor day rally in 2012 in Beirut. (Photo: Marwan Tahtah) Migrant domestic workers call for an end to the slave-like sponsorship system at a labor day rally in 2012 in Beirut. (Photo:…

Iraqi choppers fire on Tikrit mosque 
Al-Akhbar News 13 Jun 2014 – Iraqi army helicopters fired rockets on one of the largest mosques in the city of Tikrit on Friday, local officials and witnesses said. It was unclear if there were any casualties in the strikes on Tikrit, the hometown of late dictator Saddam Hussein which was overrun…

Egyptian policeman shot dead at Islamist rally 
Al-Akhbar News 13 Jun 2014 – A policeman was killed in one of several small Islamist protests that erupted across Egypt on Friday, days after former army chief Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, who toppled Islamist president Mohammed Mursi after demonstrations, was sworn in as president. Islamist protests, a daily occurrence in the immediate…

Week in Photos (June 7- June 13) 
Al-Akhbar News 13 Jun 2014 – Artists perform during the international D-Day commemoration ceremony in Ouistreham, in Normandy, marking the 70th anniversary of the World War II Allied landings in Normandy.(Photo: Damien Meyer – AFP) Artists perform during the international D-Day commemoration ceremony in Ouistreham, in Normandy, marking the 70th anniversary of…

A three-part plan for US-Egypt ties 
Al-Monitor 13 Jun 2014 – A member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee offers a blueprint for rebuilding the US-Egyptian relationship after the election of President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.

Syria: Will “accidental” detainees be covered by the general amnesty? 
Al-Akhbar News 13 Jun 2014 – Men are freed from the central jail in the Syrian city of Homs on June 13, 2014 after Syria begun releasing prisoners under the new Syrian amnesty. (Photo: AFP) Men are freed from the central jail in the Syrian city of Homs on June 13, 2014…

Sistani calls on Iraqi civilians to fight ISIS 
Al-Akhbar News 13 Jun 2014 – Iraqi men who volunteered to join the fight against a major offensive by jihadists in northern Iraq stand on army trucks as they leave a recruiting center in the capital Baghdad on June 13, 2014. (Photo: AFP – Ali al-Saadi) Iraqi men who volunteered to join…

Year in review 
Al-Monitor 13 Jun 2014 – Our interactive timeline shows the stories that shaped the region.

VIDEO: Mosul residents flee to refugee camp 
BBC 13 Jun 2014 – Hundreds of thousands of people who were forced to flee Mosul after an attack by Islamist militants, take refuge in a transit camp in northern Iraq.

Khatib blames regional countries for prolonging Syria war 
Al-Monitor 13 Jun 2014 – Former Syrian opposition leader Moaz al-Khatib says he’s open to negotiations with both the Syrian and Iranian governments as a matter of “principle” to help end the bloodshed in Syria.

Iraq violence kills hundreds this week: UN 
Al-Akhbar News 13 Jun 2014 – The number of people killed after jihadist militants overran the Iraqi city of Mosul earlier this week may run into the hundreds, UN human rights spokesman Rupert Colville said on Friday. He said his office had reports the killings included the execution of 17 civilians working…

Khamenei rep blames Saudi Arabia, Qatar for Iraq insurgents 
Al-Monitor 13 Jun 2014 – In a rare moment of directness, a representative of Iran’s supreme leader has directly named Saudi Arabia and Qatar as the cause of the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham’s surge in Iraq.

Lebanon extradites “mafia-linked” Berlusconi ally to Italy 
Al-Akhbar News 13 Jun 2014 – Lebanon extradited to Italy on Friday a 72-year-old ally of former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi who is wanted by Rome over mafia links, airport officials said. Former senator Marcello Dell’Utri, who was arrested in Beirut in mid-April on an Interpol warrant, landed in Rome’s Fiumicino airport…

Michel Suleiman “secretly” naturalized 644 individuals as Lebanese citizens 
Al-Akhbar News 13 Jun 2014 – Michel Suleiman at a cabinet meeting on May 23, 2014. (Photo: Haitham Moussawi) Michel Suleiman at a cabinet meeting on May 23, 2014. (Photo: Haitham Moussawi) Before the end of his presidential term, former Lebanese President Michel Suleiman’s team prepared a decree granting Lebanese citizenship to…

Bassiouni: Bahrain’s progress limited by ‘piece-meal’ approach to reforms 
Al-Monitor 13 Jun 2014 – In an exclusive interview with Al-Monitor, International human rights lawyer Cherif Bassiouni, who headed the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry in 2011, says Bahrain needs to address the core socioeconomic problems that are fueling continued unrest.

Brothers strangle sister to death in North Lebanon “honor killing” 
Al-Akhbar News 13 Jun 2014 – Lebanese police have arrested two teenage brothers suspected of strangling their sister to death in an “honor killing,” the Internal Security Forces said in a statement Friday. The body of the 24-year-old Syrian woman, identified by her first name Diala, was discovered Thursday near a school…

Is this the end of Iraq? 
BBC 13 Jun 2014 – Lightning offensives by jihadist militants have pushed Iraq to near break-up. How has it happened so quickly?

Why did the Iraqi army collapse in Mosul? 
Al-Akhbar Politics 13 Jun 2014 – A picture taken with a mobile phone shows an armoured vehicle belonging to Iraqi security forces in flames on June 10, 2014, after hundreds of militants from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) launched a major assault on the security forces in Mosul. (…

Turkey’s failures in Iraq, Syria linked to Davutoglu 
Al-Monitor 13 Jun 2014 – The advance of Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) forces in Iraq is forcing a re-evaluation of Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu’s policies and priorities.

Israeli minister estimates new opposition grouping in fall 
Al-Monitor 13 Jun 2014 – In an interview with Al-Monitor, Israeli Environmental Protection Minister Amir Peretz foresees possible changes in the makeup of the government in October or November, and emphasizes the important role of Hatnua Chairwoman Tzipi Livni in preventing a premature collapse of the diplomatic negotiations.

Israelis ask whether Obama has given up on Iraq 
Al-Monitor 13 Jun 2014 – The crisis in Iraq has only sharpened the perception by Israelis that Barack Obama is now willing to act with resolve in the Middle East.

Israel’s settlement tourism 
Al-Monitor 13 Jun 2014 – Following a vast campaign designed to rebrand the West Bank settlements as tourist attractions with guided tours to biblical sites, and to open it up to the Israeli mainstream, the region has become popular with tourists from Israel and overseas.

Sudan is bombing civilians – US 
BBC 12 Jun 2014 – Samantha Power, the US ambassador to the UN, accuses Sudan of stepping up its attacks on civilians in South Kordofan and Blue Nile states.

Beyond “conversations:” confronting anti-Blackness among Arab-Americans 
Al-Akhbar Series and Features 12 Jun 2014 – The Muslim Anti-Racism Collaborative (MuslimARC) initiated the ‘drop the A-word’ campaign, calling on Arabs to stop using the anti-Black slur, in February, 2014. (Photo: ‘Muslim ARC’ Facebook page) The Muslim Anti-Racism Collaborative (MuslimARC) initiated the ‘drop the A-word’ campaign, calling on Arabs to stop using the…

Bashar al-Assad: Dialogue is the cornerstone of my third term 
Al-Akhbar Politics 12 Jun 2014 – A handout picture released by the official Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) on June 10, 2014, shows President Bashar al-Assad (R) welcoming former presidential candidate Hassan al-Nouri in Damascus. (Photo: AFP-SANA) A handout picture released by the official Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) on June 10,…


Palestinian prisoners hunger for freedom 
Daoud Kuttab, Ma’an News Agency 6/13/2014
Since April 24, 120 out of the 189 Palestinians held without charge or trial have refused taking any food. Hundreds, and on some days thousands, of fellow prisoners also joined them.
The usefulness of the protest was made clear by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s call on Israel to either charge or release the Palestinian detainees.
Among the Palestinians held without charge or trial are doctors, legislators, university professors and teenagers.
Israel adopted the 1945 British emergency regulation and extended it to apply to anyone it wants in jail but is unable to prove anything against.
The sheer injustice of being held without charge and for an indefinite period takes on an even wider dimension when knowing that it is practiced by, allegedly, the only democracy in the Middle East, which for an unbelievable 48 years has been holding an entire population under a military occupation that is also supporting and protecting the colonial Jewish-only settlement campaign.
The number of those on hunger strike that are hospitalized tends to grow with each additional day. The past week witnessed an unprecedented transfer of 13 Palestinian hunger striking prisoners to various Israeli hospitals, bringing the total of Palestinians hospitalized to 80.
These are the ones whose lives, Israel’s prison authority feel, are at risk. Many others are kept in jail despite their deteriorating condition. more.. e-mail

Ten years after world court ruling, widening the crack in Israel’s wall 
Jamal Juma, Electronic Intifada 6/12/2014
For the past twelve years, a long shadow has been cast over occupied Palestine. It is an ever-growing shadow, consuming lands and livelihoods as it slices through cities and villages, boxing an indigenous population into tiny bantustans as it encompasses more and more terrain, forming the backbone of a settler-colonial project.
This shadow emanates from Israel’s apartheid wall, looming over the Palestinian landscape — an amalgamation of concrete, guard towers and razor wire; of checkpoints, buffer zones and motion sensors. A wall that has withstood an intifada, round after round of farcical negotiations, and countless condemnations from human rights groups far and wide.
Despite its seeming immutability, a crack in the wall appeared ten years ago, when on 9 July 2004, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled that the wall constructed in the occupied West Bank was illegal, must be torn down, and that Israel was obliged to pay reparations for the damage caused by its construction.
Furthermore, the ICJ underlined the obligation of governments around the world not to recognize, aid or assist the wall or Israel’s settlement enterprise, and for it to compel Israel’s compliance with the ICJ ruling.
Ten years have passed, and as powerful governments have shirked their responsibilities, the wall has expanded with impunity. Seventy percent completed already, when finished the wall will stretch 800 kilometers and will enable the de facto annexation of 46 percent of the West Bank.
In the face of official inaction, dozens of Palestinian organizations recently issued a call for ordinary people around the world to mark ten years since the ICJ ruling by making July the month of action against the apartheid wall. more.. e-mail

Israel: an Army That Has a State 
Uri Avnery, CounterPunch 6/13/2014
A Coup? Nonsense!
The existence of the army in a truly democratic state represents a paradox.
The army is supposed to obey the elected government. This obedience is unconditional.
But the army (including land, sea and air forces) is the only potent armed force in the country. It can carry out a coup d’etat and grab power at any given moment.
In r
ecent months alone, army commanders have carried out coups in Egypt and Thailand, and perhaps in other places, too.

So what prevents army commanders carrying out coups everywhere? Just the democratic values, on which they were raised.
In Israel, a military coup is unthinkable.
Here is the place to repeat the old Israeli joke: the Chief of Staff assembles his senior commanders and addresses them: “Comrades, tomorrow morning at 0600 hours we take over the government.”
For a moment there is silence. Then the entire audience dissolves into hysterical laughter.
A cynic might interrupt here: “Why should the army bother with a coup? It governs Israel anyhow!”
In civics classes, we learn that Israel is a democracy. Officially: “a Jewish and democratic state”. The government decides, the army follows orders.
But, as the man said: “It ain’t necessarily so.” more.. e-mail

Gaza farmers grow watermelon on former Israeli settlements
Electronic Intifada: 13 Jun 2014 – Traders say that business is down compared to last year. more..

“They don’t want to hear these stories, it doesn’t suit their narrative.”
In Gaza: 13 Jun 2014 – On Wednesday, I had the pleasure of meeting with Dr. Ali Haidar today, in the course interviewing. Trained as an eye doctor, Dr. Haidar became Syria’s Reconciliation Minister when the Ministry was formed 2 years ago. Before we officially began he asked about my necklace. “Is this the map of Palestine?” Yes (well, he knew, but was politely asking). “You know, for us, Palestine is a part of Syria,” he said, a comment I’ve heard from many other Syrians, also from Palestinians. Later, driving back through a Damascus area, S pointed out the neighbourhood nearby where President Assad lives. The street is blocked off but otherwise it is a completely normal area. “He lives in an apartment, not a house,” S said. I ask if he’s got a bunker or something. “He lives with other families in the building, like anyone else. Sometimes he walks to work.” S mentioned a…more

Zarif Reveals Iran’s Proposal for Ensuring against “Breakout”
Dissident Voice: 13 Jun 2014 – TEHRAN, IPS — Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif has revealed for the first time that Iran has made a detailed proposal to the P5+1 group of states aimed at ensuring that no stockpile of low-enriched uranium would be available for “breakout” through enrichment to weapons grade levels. In an exclusive interview with IPS, Zarif described an Iranian plan, presented at the meetings with the P5+1 last month in Vienna, that would exclude weapons grade enrichment. “The parameters of the proposal would be set to continue Iran’s enrichment but to provide the necessary guarantees that it would not enrich to anything over five percent,” said Zarif. The proposal, which was later published by the Iranian government, included a series of “technical guarantees” against nuclear weapons proliferation. The plan would involve the immediate conversion of each batch of low-enriched uranium to an oxide powder that would then be used to make fuel…more

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