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Vermonters for a Just Peace in Palestine/Israel
For those interested in keeping up with events in Palestine/Israel, there is no better digest than VTJP.

VTJP Archives | VTJP 2009
28 August , 2009


International Middle East Media Center

Archbishop Tutu: "Arabs paying the price of Germany's crimes"
29 Aug 2009 - In an Interview with Haaretz newspaper, Archbishop Desmond Tutu stated that Israel must learn from the Holocaust that it cannot gain security thought fences, walls and guns. 

Egypt: "Settlement freeze must include Jerusalem"
28 Aug 2009 - Egyptian Foreign Minister, Ahmad Abu Al Gheit, stated Friday that an official Israeli declaration of a complete halt of settlement construction, including in Jerusalem, must be made in order to resume the stalled peace process. 

Hamas delegates return to Gaza after talks with Egyptian officials
28 Aug 2009 - Hamas delegates, headed by Mahmoud Zahhar, returned to Gaza on Friday after holding urgent talks with senior Egyptian security officials on the latest developments regarding a possible prisoner-swap deal. 

The Israeli military attacks the weekly protest in Nil'in
28 Aug 2009 - One young man was injured and dozens of Palestinians and internationals suffered the effects of tear gas inhalation on Friday as Israeli soldiers attacked the weekly nonviolent protest against the wall in N'ilin village near the central West Bank city of Ramallah. 

Several injuries reported in Bil'in weekly noneviolent protest
28 Aug 2009 - Three nonviolent protestors were injured and dozens were suffocated after inhaling teargas fired by the Israeli army during the weekly protest against the Annexation Wall in Bil'in village, near the central West Bank. 

U.S. backs down on settlement freeze demand
28 Aug 2009 - The United States had reportedly backed down from its demands that Israel should freeze all of its settlement activities in the occupied West Bank to restart the peace process. Israeli sources reported that the decision came as Israel remained determined on its stance rejecting settlement freeze. 

Three killed in tunnel collapse
28 Aug 2009 - Palestinian medical sources in the Gaza Strip reported that three Palestinians were killed, and a fourth was wounded, after a tunnel collapse at the border line between Rafah and Egypt. 

Ha'aretz Defense page

Can Netanyahu and Obama rein in both the Israeli right and Iran's clerics?
28 Aug 2009 - Netanyahu knows he will have to make concessions if the U.S. is to deal with the Iranian threat. 

Palestinians: Israel navy fire kills man off Gaza coast
27 Aug 2009 - Gaza health official says two Palestinian men were on land when they were fired upon by navy. 

IDF court tosses evidence given by Israeli with poor Arabic
26 Aug 2009 - Researcher finds that for decades, police who interviewed Palestinians needed only spoken Arabic. 

Hamas: Only breakthrough in Shalit deal is German mediation
25 Aug 2009 - Netanyahu nearing deal, as Palestinian pundits says Hamas may show flexiblity on Israeli demands. 

Barak vows outposts will be evacuated within weeks
25 Aug 2009 - Labor MK Ben-Simon says party will campaign in cabinet if evacuation not complete by winter session. 

Ma'an News

Abbas vows to reform PLO 28 Aug 2009

Two Old City Jerusalem families forced to demolish own homes 28 Aug 2009

Hamas, Jihad reject Fayyad plan for de facto state 28 Aug 2009

Israeli forces invade Qalqiliya-area village 28 Aug 2009

Netanyahu, Mitchell end meeting without settlement deal 28 Aug 2009

Islamic Jihad: Reform PLO before convening PNC 28 Aug 2009

Jordan king to let Mash'al attend father's funeral 28 Aug 2009

Report: US dropped demands for East J'lem settlement freeze 28 Aug 2009

Abbas to tour Arab, European countries by year's end 28 Aug 2009

Palestinian killed in car accident near Nablus 28 Aug 2009

Israel announces this week's Ramadan entry restrictions 28 Aug 2009

Three dead, another injured in Rafah tunnel collapse 28 Aug 2009

Hamas: Al-Qassam fighter killed overnight 28 Aug 2009

Gaza crossings official: Israel sealed border for Friday 28 Aug 2009

One dead, two injured in accident north of Ramallah 28 Aug 2009

Palestinian worker killed by electric shock near Ashkelon 28 Aug 2009

The National

Attack on Saudi royal highlights terror risks
28 Aug 2009 - Saudi Arabia tries to play down the attempted assassination of Prince Mohammed bin Naif, saying there was no lapse of security.

Jordanian trial sends message to Iran
28 Aug 2009 - The prosecution reflects concern in the kingdom about the growing support for Islamic militant groups such as Hizbollah and Hamas.

Israel and US close to deal' 
27 Aug 2009 - A settlement construction freeze could pave the way for further negotiations between Palestinians and Israelis.

Baathists say they only attack Americans
27 Aug 2009 - Exiles dismiss televised confession of suspect in bombings who said he took his orders from Baath Party officials in Syria.


UAE 'seizes N Korea arms shipment'
28 Aug 2009 - The ship was carrying a secret cache of arms bound for Iran, diplomats say.

IAEA: Iran has slowed nuclear work
28 Aug 2009 - The UN nuclear watchdog says Iran has slowed uranium enrichment, but bomb suspicions stand.

Palestine News Network

World Council of Churches declares occupation a sin against God 
28 Aug 2009 - Geneva (ENI). The general secretary of the World Council of Churches has said that Israel's occupation of Palestinian territories should be declared a sin against God . Occupation along with the concomitant humiliation of a whole people for over six decades constitutes not just economic and political crimes but, like anti-Semitism, it is a sin against God, said WCC general secretary the Rev....

Nonviolent resistance pushes through volley of gas and explosives in protest of Wall
28 Aug 2009 - Na'lin / PNN – After Friday prayers, the first of this year’s Ramadan, nonviolent activists from western Ramallah’s Na’lin Village took to the streets and fields. They were protesting the Israeli confiscation of their land, the building of the Wall and encroaching settlements.Prayers were held today on land adjacent to that being confiscated for the Wall. Sheikh Murad Amira said that resistance to...

Human rights organization reports on continued Israeli violations that includes attack on media
27 Aug 2009 - PNN - The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights issued its report for the period of 20 through 26 August 2009, which includes Israeli forces wounding nine Palestinians in the Gaza Strip and killed three. The full report follows:PCHR - Israeli Forces Continue Systematic Attacks against Palestinian Civilians and Property in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT) and Continue to Impose a Total Siege...

European Commission: Fayyad plan shows willingness to continue fulfilling Road Map responsibilities
27 Aug 2009 - Ramallah / PNN - After Prime Minister Salam Fayyad announced his plan for resistance to occupation that includes a clear program of development, many lauded his initiative. European Commission Representative, Christian Berger, issued his statement in response: The European Commission welcomes Prime Minister Fayyad's government programme and we are looking forward to further discussions with our Palestinian partners on how we can best...

Amidst settlement expansion and increases in evictions and demolitions, women work for justice
27 Aug 2009 - Jerusalem / Sona Arouri - The Jerusalem Center for Women is among tens of groups working to save Jerusalem from being entirely overtaken and its Palestinian character destroyed. A new plan to build 104 Israeli housing units in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Ras Al Amud will further displace the 14,000 Palestinians currently living there. The occupying Israeli administration recently served 55 families...

They wore hoods and black clothes, shouting: This is Israel here, not Palestine
27 Aug 2009 - Jerusalem / Jérôme Anconina - While the US administration and the main EU Foreign Ministries seem to be in favor of slowing down the colonization process of occupied or annexed territories, the Israeli government is still responding to those efforts with a flat refusal. We were asleep. I didn’t hear them come in the house. I opened my eyes, they were wearing hoods...

Number of Palestinians in Israeli prisons for more than 20 years reaches 106
27 Aug 2009 - Gaza / PNN – Prisons affairs expert Abdel Nasser Ferwana issued new statistics today indicating that there are now 106 Palestinians who have spent more than 20 years in Israeli prisons. A former political prisoner himself, Ferwana said that the passing of 20 years by Ra’ed Al Sa’adi brings the number to 106.In his role of Director of the Department of Statistics in...


SYRIA: Cleansing the olive oil business
DAMASCUS Thursday, August 27, 2009 (IRIN) - Syria’s huge olive oil industry is leaving its mark on the environment. Waste products from olive oil processing mills which are not properly disposed of are causing soil and water pollution, and killing plant and animal life.

YEMEN: IDP camp situation worsens
SANAA Thursday, August 27, 2009 (IRIN) - The humanitarian situation in IDP (internally displaced persons) camps in war-ravaged Saada and neighbouring governorates in northern Yemen is worsening due to a lack of basic services - water, sanitation and food - UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) Executive Director Ann Veneman said in...

YEMEN: Upcoming flash appeal to tackle IDP problem
SANAA Thursday, August 27, 2009 (IRIN) - The UN and international aid organizations are calling for more help to tackle the worsening humanitarian crisis in northern Yemen as a result of clashes between government forces and a Shia rebel group.

Inter Press Service

MIDEAST: Can Final Peace Deal Overcome Settlements Roadblock? 
WASHINGTON, Aug 28 (IPS) - The Barack Obama administration - perhaps the president himself - will reportedly be launching a new round of authoritative Palestinian-Israeli peace negotiations sometime during the upcoming U.N. General Assembly session, which is scheduled to start in New York on Sep. 15.

MIDEAST: 'United' Jerusalem Has Two Faces 
EAST JERUSALEM, Aug 28 (IPS) - Israel says "united" Jerusalem will be the eternal capital of the Jewish state. However, a quick walk across the Green Line which marks the international border dividing the two parts of the city reveals a city very much divided.

MIDEAST: Obama Steers the Peace Train On 
JERUSALEM, Aug 27 (IPS) - It isn't formal yet, but it's bound to be soon - within the coming six weeks, Palestinians and Israelis will again be sitting down around the peace table.

TAJIKISTAN: Recalling the Good Old Soviet Union 
PAMIR MOUNTAINS, Tajikistan, Aug 27 (IPS) - The collapse of the Soviet Union has brought misery to Tajikistan's remote eastern half. People are being driven once again to live as nomads.

Stop The Wall

Join the annual Palestinian olive harvest!
26 Aug 2009 - The Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign and its popular committees are coordinating collective efforts to safeguard the annual olive harvest and are calling on volunteers to stand in solidarity with Palestinian communities and join in the harvest, which will begin 15 October 2009. [

Jerusalem in July: Bulldozers strike Silwan and Beit Hanina
26 Aug 2009 - Conditions did not improve for Jerusalem residents in July. Occupation forces continued to destroy Palestinian homes, especially in the hot spots of Beit Hanina and Silwan, while issuing threats promising more of the same in the coming months. Palestinian civil society was also targeted, with police closing down the Nidal Center in Jerusalem. [

PCHR Latest

Israeli Escalates Violence: At Least 4 Palestinians Killed by Israeli forces in the Gaza Strip

PCHR Weekly Report

(20 - 26 Aug.  2008), information on boycott, divestment and sanctions
During the reporting period, Israeli forces killed 3 Palestinian civilians, including a child, and wounded 9 others in the Gaza Strip.  Another Palestinian is also missing.  In the West Bank, one Palestinian civilian was wounded.

International Solidarity Movement

The 'Elders', Jimmy Carter and Archbishop Desmond Tutu visit the Apartheid wall in Bil’in
8/27/2009 - International Solidarity Movement - Bil'in village, West Bank: Former US president Jimmy Carter, Mrs. Carter and Archbishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa visited the site of the Apartheid Wall on the land of the village of Bil'in. The Carters and Archbishop Tutu came to Bil'in together with their colleagues from The "Elders" delegation, former Brazilian president Fernando Henrique Cardoso, former Norwegian prime minister Gro Brundtland, former Irish president and former United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Mary Robinson, Indian human rights activist Ela Bhatt, and renowned businessmen Richard Branson and Jeff Skoll. Former president Carter pointed to the land on the other side of the wall where the settlement of Modi'in Illit is being built: "This is not Israel; this is Palestine and settlements must be removed from Palestinian land so that justice will be restored in the area. 

Ha'aretz Diplomacy page

'U.A.E. seized North Korea arms ship bound for Iran'
28 Aug 2009 - The United Arab Emirates seized a ship several weeks ago that was bound for Iran and carrying North Korean weapons in violation of a UN embargo, Western diplomats said on Friday. ...

U.S. Army chief: U.S. bungling Muslim outreach
28 Aug 2009 - The U.S. military is bungling its efforts to win over Muslim friends and squandering good will by failing to live up to its promises, the nation's highest-ranking military officer wrote Friday. ...

IAEA extends probe into alleged Syria reactor bombed by Israel
28 Aug 2009 - United Nations inspectors are analyzing further evidence taken from a nuclear research plant in Syria's capital Damascus where unexplained uranium traces were found, the UN's nuclear watchdog said on Friday. ...

Report: Meshal to fly to Cairo to approve Shalit deal
27 Aug 2009 - Hamas politburo chief Khaled Meshal is expected to fly to Cairo next week to approve a deal that includes the release of captured Israel Defense Forces soldier Gilad Shalit, the London-based Arabic language newspaper al-Hayat reported on Friday. ... 

U.S. mayor demands to shut down construction on Gadhafi's local mansion
27 Aug 2009 - A New Jersey mayor said Friday he's going to court to stop renovation work at the mansion where Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi wants to stay next month when he addresses the United Nations General Assembly. ...

The Guardian

Letters: Back to the future in the Middle East
27 Aug 2009 - Jonathan Freedland offers no hint of a solution to the conflict between Israel and Palestine, only unhelpful brooding over much-disputed interpretations of the past ( Comment , 26 August). While he mentions the dispossession of the Palestinians, he...

Playing ball on the West Bank
27 Aug 2009 - Basketball is popular among Palestinians, but the conflict in the region means the league there lacks competitors. So US players have been invited over to make up teams. Film-maker Hannah Murphy reports from the bleachers It...

US peace plan gives Israel too much | Peter Beaumont
27 Aug 2009 - The Middle East talks look like an act of grand displacement unless Obama stops giving Israel an unequal say It may be early days in the hammering out of the details of a new US-sponsored plan...

Letters: Palestinians let down by the west
26 Aug 2009 - Your special reports on the West Bank (24-26 August) should be essential reading for western diplomats and politicians who failed to take any effective action to end settlements. Besides making a peaceful solution more complex, settlements...

Ha'aretz National page

Israel arrests 5 Palestinians ahead of Ramadan prayers
27 Aug 2009 - Jerusalem Police on Friday arrested five Palestinians in the vicinity of the Al-Aqsa Mosque and Temple Mount ahead of Ramadan prayers, Israel Radio reported. ...

Ultra-Orthodox protester dragged under car in Jerusalem 
27 Aug 2009 - An ultra-Orthodox Jew threw himself under the wheels of idling car and was moderately injured Saturday during a protest against the operation of a Jerusalem parking garage on the Jewish Sabbath, police said. ...

Seven injured, two seriously, in road accidents throughout Israel
27 Aug 2009 - At least seven people were injured Friday in car accidents throughout Israel. Two hit-and-run accidents left a 72-year-old woman seriously wounded in Ashkelon, sustaining head wounds when a car hit her as she was crossing at a pedestrian walkway. In addition a 6-year-old boy was moderately injured in Bnei Brak. ...

Relief Web

WFP hunger hotspots: OPT - 28 Aug 2009
28 Aug 2009 - Source: World Food Programme

CAFOD: Review of the year 2008/09
28 Aug 2009 - Source: Catholic Agency for Overseas Development

OPT: Protection of civilians weekly report, 19 - 25 Aug 2009
28 Aug 2009 - Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs

YNet News

J'lem: Haredi injured in parking lot protest
28 Aug 2009 - After mass prayer at controversial parking lot, ultra-Orthodox demonstrators throw themselves on road in attempt to block traffic in protest of Shabbat desecration. One man lies down under car stopped at traffic light, is dragged several meters when car begins to move, evacuated to hospital in moderate condition 

Egypt: Israeli freeze must include east Jerusalem
28 Aug 2009 - Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul-Gheit demands settlement freeze in "Arab" east Jerusalem before Mideast peace talks can be restarted. 'If Israelis announce freeze will last six months, negotiations will last six months as well,' he tells reporters in Stockholm 

5 detained during Ramadan prayers at Temple Mount
28 Aug 2009 - Some 90,000 Muslim worshippers attend prayer session in Jerusalem's Old City; beefed up security forces arrest five Palestinians and Israeli-Arabs, some of whom carried knives 

Iranian president: Prosecute opposition leaders
28 Aug 2009 - Ahmadinejad tells thousands in Tehran, 'Those who 'provoked' post-election riots and 'carried out enemy's plan have to be dealt with seriously' 

White House: Obama postponed Israel trip due to healthcare reform
28 Aug 2009 - Ynet learns US president planned to visit Israel amid drop in support of Israeli public for his Mideast policies, considering interviewing for Israeli TV station in September 

Settlers offer to take in Ethiopian students from Petah Tikva
28 Aug 2009 - As city's schools remain adamant in their refusal to accept Ethiopian students, Samaria Regional Council offers to absorb them. 'It is a national mission,' said council head 

Man who stabbed landlady to death in Jerusalem flat indicted 
28 Aug 2009 - Avi Dar killed Tzipora Nahamu with 3.5-inch knife over monetary dispute as she was showing Armon Hanatziv flat to potential tenants, prosecution says 

3 Palestinians killed in smuggling tunnel collapse 
28 Aug 2009 - Palestinian officials claim smuggling tunnel collapses on Egypt-Gaza border. Three reportedly killed in incident 


Testimonies: Settlers filmed attacking shepherd near Susiya
26 Aug 2009 - On 10 Aug. '09, settlers attacked a Palestinian shepherd from Khirbet Susiya and stabbed a B’Tselem worker who photographed them. The victims identified the assailants and filed a complaint with police, who were given all the footage of the event.

Testimony: Settlers assault Palestinian shepherds
26 Aug 2009 - On 4 July '09, near the Avigail outpost, settlers assaulted two shepherds from Shu'b al-Buttom, attacked their sheep and destroyed property. Police arrived only hours later and believed the victims only when shown a cell-phone video of the assault.

Daily Star

Lion cub found dumped in Beirut wasteland 
28 Aug 2009

Gemayel calls for indirect border talks with Israel 
28 Aug 2009

Hizbullah seeks to calm storm, expresses regret over Fadlallah insults 
28 Aug 2009

Aoun deals blow to hopes for cabinet breakthrough 
28 Aug 2009

Solana to visit Beirut during Middle East tour 
28 Aug 2009

Jumblatt offers condolences to Kennedy family 
28 Aug 2009

Lebanon's industrial exports drop 25 percent in July 
28 Aug 2009

Iran slows atom fuel drive, boosts IAEA cooperation 
28 Aug 2009

Palestinian Information Center

170,000 attend prayers at the Aqsa Mosque on the first Friday of Ramadan
28 Aug 2009 - Despite the Israeli occupation restrictions more than 170,000 Palestinian worshipers managed to make it to the Aqsa Mosque and attend the prayers on the first Friday of Ramadan.

IOF troops arrest five Palestinian worshipers
28 Aug 2009 - Israeli occupation forces arrested five Palestinian worshipers after the first Friday prayers of the holy month of Ramadan in the Aqsa Mosque, according to Yediot Ahranot.

Three Palestinians killed in a tunnel collapse in Rafah
28 Aug 2009 - Three Palestinians were killed and a fourth was injured, Friday at dawn, as a result of the collapse of a tunnel at the Palestinian Egyptian border in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip.

Three Palestinians killed, 10 wounded by the IOF in a week
28 Aug 2009 - Three Palestinians, including a child, were killed and ten others wounded by the IOF between 20 August and 26 August 2008, according to the weekly report of the PCHR.

Palestinian fisherman killed by Israeli occupation navy
28 Aug 2009 - A Palestinian fisherman was killed on Thursday afternoon when Israeli occupation naval boats fired a missile towards him while he was fishing off the coast of northern Gaza.

Is the PLO playing with the Palestinian national cause?
28 Aug 2009 - The PLO and the PA are moving steadily toward compromising inalienable Palestinian rights.

Hamdan confirms German mediation in prisoner swap deal
28 Aug 2009 - Osama Hamdan, a member of Hamas political bureau, confirmed the news on the German mediation in the prisoner swap deal, stating that his Movement did not ask for changing the Egyptian mediator.

MP Halaika: Retaining Hamas MPs in detention targets eliminating its majority
28 Aug 2009 - MP Samira Al-Halaika has denounced the silence of human rights groups, international institutions and centers claiming to advocate democracy over the continued detention of Hamas MPs in IOA jails.

IOF troops kidnap Hamas member during raid on Arraba town
28 Aug 2009 - A large number of IOF troops raided at an early hour Thursday Palestinian homes in Arraba town, south of Jenin, and kidnapped a Palestinian citizen affiliated with Hamas.

Farhan: The holy places in Jerusalem passing through crucial stage
28 Aug 2009 - Dr. Ishaq Farhan, the secretary-general of the Jordanian Islamic action front party, warned that the holy places are passing through a crucial stage and the Zionist threats are aggravating.

Los Angeles Times

Ahmadinejad calls for prosecution of Iran's opposition leaders 
28 Aug 2009 - The president says post-election unrest was part of a foreign plot carried out by 'subversives.' His demand runs counter to supreme leader Ali Khamenei, who gave a conciliatory speech Wednesday. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad demanded the prosecution of opposition leaders today, raising the nation's political temperature just a day and a half after supreme leader Ali Khamenei sought to cool tempers in a conciliatory speech. 

Israel gets Auschwitz plans 
28 Aug 2009 - Sketched on yellowing parchment, the 29 blueprints presented to Israel's prime minister Thursday lay out the Nazi death camp at Auschwitz in chilling detail, with gas chambers, crematories, delousing facilities and watchtowers drawn to scale. 

Nuclear drive a casualty of Iran's turmoil 
28 Aug 2009 - Experts say Tehran is unlikely to speed up its program, giving the U.S. and its allies more time to work with. Iran's political crisis could prevent the nation from making any swift move to ratchet up its nuclear program, said analysts and officials, giving President Obama and Western allies more time to grapple with the issue. 

New York Times

France and Germany Warn of New Iran Sanctions
27 Aug 2009 - Two European leaders raised the possibility of tougher measures if Iran does not show a willingness to negotiate on its nuclear program. 

Shiite Power Broker Dies, in Blow to Iraqi Party
26 Aug 2009 - Abdul Aziz al-Hakim had longstanding ties with Iran but was also a supporter of the U.S. invasion. 

World Briefing | Middle East: Netanyahu Sees ‘Progress’ for Resuming Peace Talks
26 Aug 2009 - The Israeli prime minister would not say whether Israel had agreed to any hiatus in settlement building in occupied territory, which President Obama has called for. 


Joel Kovel on Naomi Klein and Durban
Mondoweiss - 28 Aug 2009 - Normal 0 false false false MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-ansi-language:#0400; mso-fareast-language:#0400; mso-bidi-language:#0400;} “Minority Death Match,” Naomi Klein ’s feature story in the September Harper’s , is about the two ill-fated...

The Lion of the Senate could be a–
Mondoweiss - 28 Aug 2009 - Can there be any serious argument with the statement that Congress is Israeli Occupied Territory when even the Lion of the Senate is forced to lie down like a lamb? When Kennedy spoke before the Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations on January 28, 1980,...

Israel stops US basketball players from coming to Palestine
Mondoweiss - 28 Aug 2009 - According to Hannah Murphy’s piece in The Guardian , sometime between April and the present, Israel has harassed/sent back American basketball players because they were coming to play in Palestinian teams. Several American basketball players have been refused entry at Tel Aviv airport. Israeli border control has...

neocons linger. why lord?
Mondoweiss - 28 Aug 2009 - The Kinks had a great song, "I wish I could be like David Watts!" It was all about adolescent envy. Well I wish I could be like David Frum. Sometimes anyway. Frum’s a member of the new establishment, he doesn’t go away. Frum’s sister Linda Sokolowski...

Ben Gurion U president has given green light to threats against Neve Gordon, says int’l academic body
Mondoweiss - 28 Aug 2009 - Virginia Aksan, the presidentt of the Middle East Studies Association, has vigorously supported Neve Gordon in a letter to Rivka Carmi, the head of Ben Gurion University: [Our Committee on Academic Freedom] does not challenge the right of you or anyone else at the university to...

Between Political Statements and Reality on the Ground: Eighteen Months Since the Annapolis Conference
Alternative Information Center - 26 Aug 2009 - To read the whole report, click here .  INTRODUCTION “The territorial question will be discussed as part of the final peace agreement. In the meantime, we have no intention to build new settlements or of expropriating additional land for existing settlements.” These words were pronounced by...

Defend Academic Freedom: Defend the Right to Talk About Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions
Alternative Information Center - 26 Aug 2009 - On Thursday, August 20 the LA Times published an op-ed in which Ben Gurion University Professor Neve Gordon, a prominent political scientist and long-time peace activist, wrote that the question that kept him up at night, both as a parent and as an Israeli citizen, was...

Portrait of a Lady: Encounter with Suad Amiry
Alternative Information Center - 26 Aug 2009 - The books Sharon and My Mother in Law (2003) and No Sex in the City (2007) are the two most famous creations of the complex and creative personality of Palestinian author and architect Suad Amiry. When an Italian journalist offered us the possibility to meet Amiry,...

Interview with Dr. Uri Davis, Newly Elected Member of Fatah Revolutionary Council
Alternative Information Center - 25 Aug 2009 - Dr. Uri Davis was recently elected to the Fatah Revolutionary Council, during the Fatah Party Conference held earlier this month . I had the chance to talk to him personally this week in East Jerusalem. Over a cup of tea, we talked about his life as well...

Israel's Offensive Defense: Attacking Human Rights Organizations and Solidarity Groups as Pressure on Israel from the U.S. Administration Continues
Alternative Information Center - 24 Aug 2009 - The military offensive on Gaza, the change in the US administration and the formation of an extreme Right government in Jerusalem boosted voices that criticize Israel worldwide.  Following the war in Lebanon, the so called “Ad-Dahia doctrine,” named after the total destruction of the south-Beirut neighborhood...


Electronic Intifada
Nahr al-Bared a test case for Palestinian refugees in Lebanon
27 Aug 2009 - NAHR AL-BARED, Lebanon (IPS) - Palestinian refugees at Nahr al-Bared in north Lebanon are living under tight military siege two years after a war destroyed the refugee camp. It has now become a test case for a new approach in Lebanon's security policy towards Palestinian refugee camps. 

Prison walls
27 Aug 2009 - "Nasser says hello," the woman said as she stood in my doorway and smiled. I was barely able to choke out, "Say hello to him too." Nasser, the woman's husband, was in prison. He was arrested on 20 July during a peaceful demonstration in his West Bank village of al-Tuwani. He did nothing wrong, nothing but build a house on land he owns. A Palestinian need do nothing more to be treated like a criminal. Joy Ellison writes from al-Tuwani, occupied West Bank. 

An impossible reconciliation
27 Aug 2009 - It may not be unknown that Abbas and his Ramallah Authority can only function within specified parameters tailored for the convenience, indeed the security needs, of the occupying power and the pro-Israel policies of its foreign supporters. Hamas has no place within that tightly built scheme. Despite Hamas' willingness to enter the political system and play by the rules, the idea has been to eliminate the resistance movement from the equation completely, permitting it no political role whatsoever. Hasan Abu Nimah comments. 

Eviction of Israel's Bedouin parallels army's West Bank tactics
27 Aug 2009 - The inhabitants of the Bedouin village of Amra have good reason to fear that the harsh tactics used by the Israeli army against Palestinians in the occupied West Bank have been imported to their small corner of Israel's Negev desert. Over the summer, the Tarabin tribe, all of them Israeli citizens, have had the sole access road to their homes sealed off, while the dirt track they must use instead is regularly blocked by temporary checkpoints at which their papers and vehicles are inspected at length. 

In Gaza
The Israeli shooting left me paralyzed
28 Aug 2009 - I’ve had more operations than I can remember. My most recent operations are on the bedsores on my backside; doctors have given up any hope of surgery to allow me to walk again. Three years ago, I was visiting an aunt in Bureij, central Gaza. She lives in the eastern area. Her house is about 500m from the border (Green Line) fence. A cousin and I were outside, on land next to her home. We often sat out there. Israeli soldiers started shooting at us, from the other side of the fence on the border. I was hit twice, with live ammunition. The Israeli soldiers ordered us to come to...

Palestine Chronicle
Appeasing Israel - At What Cost? 
28 Aug 2009 - By Jeff Gates Barack Hussein Obama’s June 4th speech in Cairo was awaited with keen anticipation by a global population of 1.3 billion Muslims outraged at the abuse that Zionism has long inflicted on its neighbors—with U.S. support. Ten weeks have since passed. The potentially positive impact of his remarks was immediately offset when he appeared the next day at the Buchenwald death camp in Germany. The timing of that Holocaust photo-op resolved all doubts about who stage-manages this presidency. Media attention immediately shifted back to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. In the lead-up to the Cairo speech, Obama’s White House handlers enabled this right-winger to proclaim—from the White House—that peace with the Palestinians ranked a distant second to Tel Aviv’s concerns about Iran. Soon after the Cairo speech, Netanyahu reluctantly referenced a “two state solution”—though only under duress from Middle East envoy George Mitchell. Obama quickly portrayed as an “important step forward” this grudging referral to an agreed-to strategy. In truth, Netanyahu announced several giant steps backward. Rather than agree to negotiate a two state solution, he set preconditions certain to preclude two states, leaving nothing to negotiate. Again negating the potentially positive impact from Cairo, Obama praised the Israeli leader even as he insisted that Palestinians recognize Israel as a “Jewish state” where Jerusalem as “Israel’s capital will remain united.” Netanyahu also insisted on Israel’s right to colonize even more Palestinian land by expanding the very settlements destined to preclude a viable Palestinian state. By applauding this defiant...

Organ Theft Affair: Israelis Boycotting IKEA
28 Aug 2009 - By Kristoffer Larsson Swedish photojournalist Donald Boström has really infuriated the Israelis and its supporters. On August 17, Sweden’s most widely circulated newspaper, Aftonbaldet, carried an article by Boström entitled 'Our sons plundered for their organs.' The usual suspects immediately cried 'anti-Semitism,' claiming that the old blood libel accusation has been brought to life again. The Israelis have even threatened to sue him. Such reactions were anticipated, however. Innumerable hate mails have found their way into Mr Boström’s inbox since the publication, including death threats. More surprising is that Sweden’s ambassador to Israel, Elisabet Borsiin Bonnier, issued a condemnation of the article. It was 'as shocking and appalling to us Swedes as to Israelis,' the ambassador claimed in a press release that was later withdrawn, having attracted criticism from the Swedish foreign ministry as well as from the government. On top of that, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has demanded that the Swedish government renounce the article, something which would be unconstitutional in Sweden. A statement from Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman managed to tacitly draw the attention to—you guessed it!—the Holocaust: “It is regrettable that the Swedish foreign ministry does not intervene when it comes to a blood libel against Jews, which reminds one of Sweden’s conduct during World War II when it also did not intervene.” (I would urge Lieberman, himself a hard-core racist, to read Lenni Brenner’s excellent 51 Documents: Zionist Collaboration with the Nazis.) Lieberman’s Swedish counterpart Carl Bildt blatantly refuses to cave in: “As a member...

Syria and Iran – Book Review
28 Aug 2009 - By Jim Miles Syria and Iran: Diplomatic Alliance and Power Politics in the Middle East. Jubin M. Goodarzi. I.B. Taurus & Co. New York/London. 2009 In a well structured academic work, Jubin M. Goodarzi details the interactions of the two countries 'In response to acts of aggression orchestrated by Iraq (1980) and Israel (1982), in both cases with the prior knowledge and tacit support of the USA.' His position is that it has been 'a defensive alliance aimed at neutralizing Iraqi and Israeli offensive capabilities in the Gulf and Near East, and thwarting American encroachment in the Middle East.' While the work contains many reiteration of ideas, as necessitated by the many interweavings of different diplomatic efforts, they emphasize several ongoing themes: opposition to Israeli interests in the region (with Syria being the only active frontline state against Israel); support of the Palestinians (with major complications along the way vis a vis Beirut and Southern Lebanon); antagonism towards U.S. interests in the region (and their original tacit, now overt support of Israel); and the convoluted manoeuvrings between Arab countries, some aligned with Israel, some against, and both groups desperately balancing rhetoric and actions to maintain their own status and power within the region. Palestine Without too much effort, the reader will come away with the feeling that while the Palestinian cause is a genuine concern for Arab freedom, when it comes to the negotiations of the political elites, the Palestinians play a much diminished role. They become at times simply...

Fighting for the Right to Walk
27 Aug 2009 - By Ramzy Baroud Gaza's troubles have somehow been relegated, if not completely dropped from the mainstream media's radar, and subsequently the world’s conscience and consciousness. Weaning the public from the sadness there conveys the false impression that things are improving and that people are starting to move on and rebuild their lives. But nothing could be further from the truth. Since the conclusion of Israel’s war last year, the Palestinian Ministry of Health declared that 344 Gaza patients have reportedly been added to the swelling number of casualties. Khaled Abed Rabbu, once a young father of four is a precise living example, such an eloquent paradigm of what no human being ought to endure in this world laden with international human rights organizations, mediators, advocates and diplomats. His house was completely destroyed, as were two of his little girls. He buried 7 year old Soad and Amal, just two, soon after burying any hope that Samar his 4 year old daughter’s future would be any less bleak. According to an IslamOnline report, Khaled’s wife, Kawthar lined up the children in front of their house in the Jabaliya refugee camp, holding a white flag. But their internationally recognized gesture was disregarded by Israeli forces and the shelling of their home and family commenced. These miserable events unfolded at Christmastime last year, when the Rabbu family was reduced by nearly half. But since then, they, and a disgracefully large number of other such families, have somehow slipped our minds. Completely surrounded still,...

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