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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
22 October, 2009


International Middle East Media Center

Clinton: “Israel Should Freeze Settlement Activities, Palestinians Need To Do More Against Terror”
23 Oct 2009 - U.S. Secretary of State, Hilary Clinton, presented to President Barack Obama her report on Middle East efforts aiming at the resumption of Middle East peace talks, and said that the report could be modified. She urged Israel to stop its settlement activities and urged the Palestinians to do more to counter ‘terror”. 

Asad: “Israel Must Choose Between Occupation And Peace”
23 Oct 2009 - Syrian President, Bashar Asad, stated Thursday that Israel must choose between occupation and peace, and that Israel cannot choose to remain an occupier and at the same time acts to achieve peace. 

Miles Of Smiles: “We Will Not Go Home Before Delivering The Aid Supplies”
23 Oct 2009 - Isam Yousef, spokesperson of the Miles of Smiles convoy, stated Thursday that convoy participants are determined not to return to their countries in Europe before entering the Gaza Strip and delivering the supplies. 

Fundamental Groups Call For Attacking The Al Aqsa Mosque Sunday
22 Oct 2009 - A number of fundamental groups in Israel called on their supporters to attack the Al Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem on Sunday as part of a ceremony dedicated to the 'temple mount' day. 

Israeli settler run over and injures a Palestinian man in northern West Bank
22 Oct 2009 - A Palestinian was injured on Thursday at dawn when an Israeli settler ran him over with his car near the northern West Bank city of Qalqilia.

A Palestinian man killed by the Israeli military near Nablus
22 Oct 2009 - A Palestinian man was killed on Thursday after Israeli soldiers opened fire at his car near the southern West Bank city of Nablus.

Ma'an News

Israel to shut down Gaza’s main fuel terminal
10/22/2009 - Gaza - Ma'an - Israel intends to gradually close the Nahal Oz crossing terminal along the border with the Gaza Strip, a Palestinian border official confirmed on Thursday. "The decision. . . was Israel's, and it's ultimately up to the occupation, whether or not Palestinians object," said Raed Fattouh, the Gaza crossings representative. The official said Israeli authorities were already transferring equipment that pumps fuel to the Kerem Shalom crossing in preparation for the shutting down Nahal Oz. Army Radio reported that the decision was taken several months earlier, but announced on Thursday that Israel planned to transfer Nahal's responsibilities to Kerem Shalom, which would become the main terminal. Nahal Oz is presently the main fuel terminal. According to Fattouh, the Israelis recently began pumping large quantities of industrial fuel through the Kerem Shalom terminal as an experiment, which was later deemed successful. 

Israel hands over eviction orders in Jordan Valley
10/22/2009 - Jericho - Ma'an - Israeli authorities on Thursday handed over orders to Palestinian farmers in the district of Jericho and the Jordan Valley informing them they would have to evacuate structures within 16 days. The head of the agriculture department in Jericho, Ahmad Al-Fares, said that "the farmers and those who are raising livestock from different areas in the Jordan Valley notified the department of the Israeli procedures that would destroy their property. He noted that "such acts would thwart a campaign carried out by many Palestinian non-governmental organizations, in cooperation with the Ministry of Agriculture and funded by international donors, aimed at developing Bedouin communities to fight drought and lack of natural pastures, most of which are closed by the Israeli authorities under the pretext that these areas are military zones. 

Goldstone challenges US criticism of report
10/22/2009 - Bethlehem - Ma'an - Richard Goldstone, the former judge who led the UN-mandated fact-finding mission regarding Israel's winter war on Gaza, challenged the US to justify its objections to his report on Thursday. Goldstone told Qatar-based broadcaster Al-Jazeera International that US President Barack Obama's administration "seems to be ambivalent" in its response to his 575-page report on the attack, which killed more than 1,400 Palestinians. "The Obama administration joined our recommendation calling for full, good-faith investigations both in Israel and in Gaza, but said that the report was flawed," the South African Jurist told interviewer Shihab Rattansi. "I have yet to hear from the Obama administration what the flaws in the report that they've identified are. I'd be happy to respond to them if and when I know what they are," he added. 

Israel to compensate families of October 2000 victims
10/22/2009 - Bethlehem - Ma'an/Agencies - The Israeli government is to compensate seven Palestinian-Israeli families whose relatives were killed by security forces during demonstrations in October 2000. According to Israeli media, the government will pay one million shekels (270,819 US dollars) to each of the families, according to a deal between the northern district Prosecutor's Office and the families. Israeli broadcaster Channel 1 also reported that the families' attorneys are preparing to file a lawsuit with the International Court of Justice. Twelve Palestinian citizens of Israel were killed by police and military forces during demonstrations in solidarity with Palestinians who revolted in the West Bank and Gaza in October 2000, at the outset of the Al-Aqsa Intifada. 

Man dies fleeing Israeli forces near Nablus
10/22/2009 - Nablus - Ma'an - A young man died while speeding away from Israeli forces in the northern West Bank on Thursday, according to Palestinian medics and Israel's military. The victim was identified as 28-year-old Mohammad Abed Ar-Rahman Qawariq from the village of A'warta, south of Nablus. A purported eyewitness told Ma'an that Israeli forces were pursuing Qawariq's car, which had driven past a temporary military checkpoint along the road between Beeta and A'qraba, two villages south of Nablus. "He was surprised by a temporary checkpoint in front of him. . . He was unable to stop [in time] and Israeli forces chased him," the witness added. "A number of Israeli soldiers began shooting at the car, after which he lost control. It flipped and killed him instantly. "Medical sources confirmed that Qawariq died after his car overturned, but added that the exact cause of death was unclear. . . 

US ex-envoy: Livni told PA to reject peace deal
10/22/2009 - Bethlehem - Ma'an/Agencies - During her tenure as Israel's foreign minister, Tzipi Livni ordered the Palestinian Authority not to sign a peace agreement with Israel, the former US ambassador to Israel Martin Indyk said on Thursday, according to the newspaper Haaretz. "The prime minister was about to have an indictment filed against him and the foreign minister herself specifically told both the Americans and the Palestinians: Don't you dare sign the agreement," Indyk said, during a panel discussion at a conference hosted by Israeli President Shimon Peres in Jerusalem, Haaretz stated. He made the comment after the panel's facilitator asked whether the Palestinians had missed an opportunity in rejecting then-Prime Minister Olmert's offers for an agreement, according to the newspaper. Livni on Thursday denied Indyk's account of events. 

Travel restrictions hit Gaza students
10/22/2009 - Tel Aviv - IRIN - Some 838 students formally offered places and/or enrolled at foreign universities are unable to leave Gaza, according to the Palestinian interior ministry and Gisha, an NGO campaigning for freedom of movement. Of the 1,983 Gazan students in this position, only 1,145 have been able to leave Gaza since the beginning of 2009 due to a combination of travel restrictions and bureaucratic hurdles. Many studying in the USA, for example, cannot get a US visa as they have been prevented by the Israeli authorities from travelling to the US consulate in Jerusalem. According to Gisha, the criteria for departure set by Israel include obtaining a recognized scholarship and studying only in a country with diplomatic representation in Israel. Students who wish to leave through Israel must also be accompanied by a diplomatic representative. 

Israel jails Jewish anti-occupation activist
10/22/2009 - Bethlehem - Ma'an/Agencies - An Israeli court on Wednesday sentenced a prominent Jewish anti-occupation activist to one month in prison for allegedly assaulting a police officer during the demolition of Palestinian houses in the West Bank. The Jerusalem Magistrate Court also ordered activist Ezra Nawi to pay a fine of 750,000 shekels (roughly 203,114 US dollars), and an additional 500 shekels (135 US dollars) to each officer he supposedly struck. Judge Eilata Ziskind wrote in her ruling that "even if there is a supreme goal, it cannot be used as an excuse to commit offenses," according to Israel's Ynet news site. According to the same report, Nawi said in response that "the court has been permitting the occupation. The punishment doesn't scare me, and neither does the judge. " Ziskind's verdict also said, "Freedom of expression is not the freedom to incite and take actions. . . 

One Gaza crossing open
10/22/2009 - Gaza - Ma'an - Israel decided to open one of the three commercial crossing points in order to allow minimal shipments of food and other goods into the besieged Gaza Strip on Thursday. Raed Fattouh, a Gaza border crossings representative, said that the Kerem Shalom crossing would be open for 106-116 trucks carrying commercial merchandise and humanitarian aid. Fattouh also said that both the Nahal Oz and Karni crossings with Israel would remain closed. Israel shut its borders with Gaza in June 2007, severely curtailing shipments of civilian goods into the Strip and banning the area's 1. 5 million inhabitants from travelling. [end] 

Settler’s car strikes Qalqiliya man, injuring him critically
10/22/2009 - Qalqiliya - Ma'an - A Palestinian man was critically injured when an Israeli settler's car struck him near the West Bank city of Qalqiliya on Wednesday night. According to Palestinian Authority police Zakariya Hussam Radwan, 24, was crossing a main road near the village of An-Nabi Elias when he was hit. The woman driving the car turned herself in to Israeli police at a nearby military checkpoint. Palestine Red Crescent officials said the young man was critically injured, necessitating that he be transferred to a hospital inside Israel. [end] 

Man killed in Hebron car accident
10/22/2009 - Hebron - Ma'an - A man was killed and four others injured in a car accident in the West Bank city of Hebron on Wednesday night, police said. Palestinian Authority police said that Marwan Hatem Abu Hamada, 35, was killed when his white Volkswagen Polo flipped over. The injured passengers were hospitalized in Hebron, the police also said. An investigation has been opened into the incident. A police report mentioned that 109 Palestinians have been recorded killed in car accidents since the beginning of the year, including 40 children. [end] 

Israeli forces raid Jenin area
10/22/2009 - Jenin - Ma'an - Israeli soldiers raided several houses in villages near the West Bank cities of Jenin early on Thursday morning and also installed temporary military checkpoints, Palestinian security sources said. The security sources said that soldiers raided the villages of Al-Yamoun, Al-Arqa, Kufur Dan, Sanur, Msaliyeh, Jaba, Tubas, Tayasir and Tamoun. Soldiers roamed the streets of these communities and raided houses, but no arrests were reported, according to the sources. The sources added that the troops set up military checkpoints at the entrances of the villages of Kufur Dan Jaba, Sanur and Msaliyeh. [end] 

Dozens arrested following separate brawls
10/22/2009 - Ramallah - Ma'an - Police arrested 34 Palestinians allegedly involved in separate family disputes in Hebron and Qalqiliya on Wednesday night, according to statements from local police departments. Qalqiliya police were called to the scene of a dispute in the Al-Qar'an neighborhood, they said, where some 17 people were arrested and several injured were transferred to a hospital. Omar Al-Bzour, the Qalqiliya police director, said the detained would be transferred to general prosecution to begin legal proceedings. He called on both families to use legal means to resolve the dispute, which was not specified. Meanwhile in Hebron, apparently unrelated clashes broke out in the Beit Kahel neighborhood. Police there said a Palestinian was struck in the head with a rock, for which he was hospitalized, while a homeowner reported damage to windows. 

Report: Palestinian seriously injured in Nablus accident
10/22/2009 - Bethlehem - Ma'an - Israeli sources said a Palestinian holder of an Israeli identity card was seriously injured on Thursday in a traffic accident inside the village of A'qraba, south of the West Bank city of Nablus. They added that "an Israeli ambulance transferred the injured to Huwwara checkpoint, then he was moved to an Israeli hospital by a military helicopter that was waiting for him. "The incident was reported separately from an almost identical incident the same day, and it was not immediately clear it was the same one in which a young man died while speeding away from Israeli forces in the northern West Bank. That victim was identified as 28-year-old Mohammad Abed Ar-Rahman Qawariq from A'warta, south of Nablus. 

Soldiers detain two brothers near Nablus
10/22/2009 - Nablus - Ma'an - The Israeli military detained a bus driver and his brother near the Burin junction south of the West Bank city of Nablus on Thursday, according to local sources. The two were identified as 24-year-old Sultan Abu Zaitun, the bus driver, and his 20-year-old brother, Raed. They were reportedly en route to Beeta village. Sources added that Israeli forces transferred the young men to the Huwwara military post south of Nablus. [end] 

Israeli warplanes strike Gaza
10/22/2009 - Bethlehem - Ma'an - The Israeli military said its warplanes bombed two smuggling tunnels in the southern Gaza Strip and a building that it alleged was used to produce weapons near Gaza City early on Thursday morning. No injuries were reported in the strikes. The Israeli military spokesperson also said that it verified that the targets were accurately hit. The spokesperson also said the strike was in response to the launch on Wednesday night of a homemade projectile from Gaza into the western Negev desert. However, no Palestinian armed group has claimed responsibility for such an attack. [end] 

Quartet envoy’s eight-year-old niece sees the real Palestine
10/22/2009 - Bethlehem - Ma'an - Eight-year-old Alexandra Darby, the niece of Quartet envoy Tony Blair, toured the West Bank this week on a bicycle, peddling an estimated 200 kilometers from Amman to Jerusalem. Asked what she will tell her school friends about the Peace Cycle journey, Alex reflected, "I'll tell them that the people here are very nice, not like they say in the newspapers. "  The West Bank is not a usual vacation site for most eight-year-olds. But, as mother, journalist and activist Lauren Booth explained, "She's been asking me for the last five years why she can't go to Palestine, and despite the fact that the Israelis can make it bloody trying to get in and out, the greeting here I knew would be so sensational for her that I didn't have a reason not to bring her. " Why doesn't Alex think other kids get to come to Palestine? "Because, of course, the telly, which says. . . 

Gaza official barred from travelling to West Bank PLO summit
10/22/2009 - Gaza - Ma'an - Israel prevented an official from the leftist Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP) from leaving Gaza for the West Bank for a high-level meeting, the organization said on Thursday. Saleh Zeidan, a member of the DFLP Political Bureau was to have attended a meeting of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Central Council on Saturday. In a statement the DFLP denounced the decision as both an attempt to stymie efforts at Palestinian reconciliation, and a violation of Palestinians' right under international law to travel between two parts of their country. The statement called on international institutions to act to end these violations. It was not clear from the statement whether Zeidan had coordinated his exit from the Gaza Strip with Israeli authorities. Israel began a land, sea, and air blockade of the Gaza Strip in June 2007, largely banning the territory's 1. 5 million inhabitants from travelling. 

PA returns settlers who entered Hebron village
10/22/2009 - Bethlehem - Ma'an/Agencies - Palestinian Authority security forces on Thursday returned two Israeli settlers who entered the Hebron-area village of Halhul the same day, according to Israeli media reports. The settlers, said to be civilians, were "escorted out unharmed" by the PA in coordination with the Israeli Civil Administration, according to the Hebrew-language daily newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth. Under Israeli law, its citizens are not permitted to enter Area A locales in the West Bank, which were supposedly returned to full Palestinian control under the Oslo Accords. Israelis can visit Area B, which is operated jointly, while Area C settlers travel unhindered. Palestinians are similarly banned by Israeli law from entering Israel, as well as East Jerusalem and other settlement areas in the West Bank, which all nonetheless operate according to Israeli law. 

Gaza government backtracks on closing rights watchdog
10/22/2009 - Nablus - Ma'an - The Independent Commission for Human Rights (ICHR) said on Thursday that Hamas-allied security forces briefly ordered their office in Gaza to close, before government officials denied there had been such an order. Sources in the organization in the West Bank city of Ramallah told Ma'an that three members of the security forces entered the office and ordered everyone, including director Jamal Sarhan, to leave. Later, Salah Abed Al-Ati, the director of ICHR's operation in Gaza City and northern Gaza, said that a delegation of government officials visited the office to explain that there had never been a decision to shut down the organization. The delegation included Comptroller-General Hassan As-Sayfi and Interior Ministry Spokesperson Ihab Al-Ghusein. They told ICHR that the organization could continue working "with a few minor reservations" on the part of the authorities. 

Conciliation committee: All factions should sign unity deal
10/22/2009 - Salfit - Ma'an - The Palestinian conciliation committee on Thursday urged all factions to immediately sign the unity agreement, according to a statement from the group. Fatah signed the agreement last Thursday, while Hamas has sought a delay. According to the committee, however, "Any delay in signing the agreement, for whatever reason, will not benefit Palestinians who need immediate unity to reconstruct their social fabric and remain steadfast. "The committee also said that US intervention in Palestinian affairs was troubling, and urged all sides to sign on to Egypt's proposal, as it reflects international legitimacy and international law. "Democracy is the venue through which Palestinians will rebuild their nation on the basis of partnership," the statement added. 

PSE rises slightly on Thursday: Al-Quds Index up 0.08%
10/22/2009 - Bethlehem - Ma'an - Stocks rose slightly on the Palestine Securities Exchange in the West Bank city of Nablus on Thursday. The Al-Quds Index closed at 506. 17, marking an increase of 0. 42 points (0. 08%). Trading volume for Thursday was 327,086 shares, a total value of 587,957. 55 US dollars, over the course of 212 trades. The shares of 21 companies were traded. The shares prices of 10 companies rose, while those of six others declined. The top five gainers were PIIC by 5. 00%, JCC by 4. 71%, JPH by 4. 18%, ARE by 4. 08%, AHC by 3. 85%. The top five losers ARAB by 1. 69%, QUDS by 1. 64%, WASSEL by 1. 56%, AIG by 1. 25%, PIBC by 0. 81% [end] 

Ha'aretz Defense page

U.S.: IDF defense drill helping craft Europe missile shield
22 Oct 2009 - U.S. and Israel launched joint drill as world powers try to persuade Iran to curb uranium enrichment. 

'Hamas holding intensive negotiations over Shalit'
22 Oct 2009 - Senior Hamas official quoted by Israel Radio as saying negotiators studying remaining issues. 

IDF planes strike Gaza in response to Qassam attack
22 Oct 2009 - No reports of casualties in bombings at arms depot and smuggling tunnels. 

Egypt airline: Hijacker tries to divert Cairo-bound plane to Jerusalem
22 Oct 2009 - Security officials say Sudanese man used knife from in-flight meal to threaten crew members. 

Clinton: Iran must quickly implement uranium deal
22 Oct 2009 - Iran negotiators voice support for deal under which Iran's uranium will be processed abroad. 

International rights group: Hamas must probe attacks on Israeli civilians
22 Oct 2009 - Israel considers pressing war crimes charges against Hamas in international court. 

Eyeing Iran, Israel tests missile defenses with U.S.
22 Oct 2009 - The two-week biennial drill will include a simulation of an Iranian missile attack on Israel. 

Senior Shin Bet official: Hamas completely lost Gaza war
22 Oct 2009 - New report argues group's battle doctrine was proved hollow and failed to cause any real damage to Israel. 

Major U.S.-Israel defense drill to highlight military alliance
22 Oct 2009 - Exercises will test technology that could be used to defend Israel against possible Iranian attack. 

U.S. officer: If Israel strikes Iran, U.S. will likely join
22 Oct 2009 - Former top-ranking U.S. Air Force officer cautions: I don't think Israel can do it alone. 

Top IDF officer warns: Settlers' radical fringe growing
22 Oct 2009 - Over the past two years, the defense establishment has taken a harder line against unruly settlers. 

Israel worried Fatah may resume suicide attacks
22 Oct 2009 - Fatah members have urged followers to use the 'doom's day weapon' employed during the second intifada. 

UN: IDF may have planted spy gear in Lebanon
22 Oct 2009 - UN probe indicates devices planted in 2006 war; IDF: Hezbollah trying to cover up truce violations. 

Family who lost 29 members in Gaza war: We envy the dead
22 Oct 2009 - The Samouni family says Richard Goldstone has finally lent the Gaza offensive victims a voice. 

Why Israel failed in the Gaza war
22 Oct 2009 - The IDF was not actually responsibile for the failure in the 3-week offensive against Hamas. 

Hezbollah vs. Israel: Who has 'real' video of Lebanon blast site?
22 Oct 2009 - Group denounces IDF video of militants removing arms from site as lie, airs clip detailing 'true events.' 

Israel warns of possible terror attacks in India
22 Oct 2009 - Counter-Terrorism Bureau: Terror group behind 2008 Mumbai attack planning further attacks on Israelis. 

Turkey: We foiled al-Qaida plot against Israeli, U.S. targets
22 Oct 2009 - State-run news agency reports 32 suspected militants detained in raids across eight provinces. 


[] Book review: Shlomo Sand's "The Invention of the Jewish People"
October 22, 2009 - In 1967 the Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish published his poem "A Soldier Dreaming of White Lilies," only to be accused of "collaboration with the Zionist enemy" for his sympathetic depiction of an Israeli soldier's remorse of conscience. Forty years later that soldier has identified himself as the historian Shlomo Sand. He has translated his remorse into...

[] Fundamental Groups Call For Attacking The Al Aqsa Mosque Sunday
October 22, 2009 - A number of fundamental groups in Israel called on their supporters to attack the Al Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem on Sunday as part of a ceremony dedicated to the 'temple mount' day. The Al Aqsa foundation issued a press release stating the fundamental groups are planning a ceremony on Sunday evening, and that they would call...

[] Free Gaza "Dignity" First Anniversary
October 22, 2009 - A year ago today, our boat, the DIGNITY, made her first voyage to Gaza. She was a beautiful white and silver yacht, donated by people who believed in the Free Gaza movement after our first successful voyage in August. On board were dignitaries such as Mairead Maquire, the 1976 Nobel Peace Prize winner from Ireland and...

[] Pro-Israel Group's Money Trail Veers Hard Right
October 22, 2009 - StandWithUs - an "organization that ensures that Israel's side of the story is told" - has become increasingly aggressive in challenging the "pro-Israel" credentials of moderate Jewish-American groups, going so far as to suggest that receiving money from Arab donors and supporters of Human Rights Watch undermines a group's commitment to Israel and peace. J Street...

[] Video: Recording West Bank attacks
October 22, 2009 - Some Palestinian farmers in the occupied West Bank are complaining that they are being attacked by Israeli settlers living nearby. To help documenting and reporting the violence, the Israeli human rights group B'Tselem has been handing out small video cameras to farmers and teaching them how to use them. Monthly training sessions are held across the...

[] Australia brokers Israel-Iran nuclear meeting
October 22, 2009 - ISRAEL has confirmed that one of its officials attended Australian-brokered meetings last month over the nuclear issue which included a representative of Iran. An Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman said last night such meetings did occur in Cairo and had been brokered by the Kevin Rudd-established International Commission on Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament. It was one of...

[] Palestinian civil society letter to Palestinian UN Observer
...We, the undersigned representatives of Palestinian civil society organisations and international supporters of Palestinian human rights, are deeply concerned that the recommendations contained in the Goldstone Report may not be fully and effectively implemented in a timely manner before the UN General Assembly. We are therefore writing to inquire how civil society might best support your efforts in the coming...

[] Israel officials ordered to keep mum on reported Iran deal
October 2, 2009 - The national security adviser has instructed all government officials involved in the Iranian nuclear issue not to respond to media reports on a draft agreement between Iran and the West regarding uranium enrichment in Russia. Uzi Arad, who heads the National Security Council, issued the directive to officials in the Foreign Ministry, the Atomic Energy Commission,...

[] Iran denies 'secret Israel talks'
October 22, 2009 - Iran has denied newspaper reports that its officials held secret talks recently with their Israeli counterparts to explore the possibility of declaring the Middle East a nuclear-free zone. The Haaretz on Thursday reported that Meirav Zafary-Odiz, of the Israel Atomic Energy Commission, and Ali Asghar Soltanieh, Iran's ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), met...

[] Lebanon's refugee waiting room
October 22, 2009 - "We thought we would be here for a few months," says Huda al-Rukun, her red-rimmed eyes flicking around the tiny space she shares with her husband and five children. "No-one believed we would stay this long." Twenty-three years after they were forced out of the nearby Shatila refugee camp during a particularly bloody phase of the...

[] After Israelis deny him entry to Gaza, French Foreign Minister invited to visit via Rafah
October 22, 2009 - French Foreign Minister co-founder of Me'decins Sans Frontie'res, Bernard Kouchner cancelled his trip after the Israeli administration refused to allow him to enter the Gaza Strip after his planned visit to Tel Aviv. Chairman of the Popular Committee against the Siege on Gaza and Palestinian Legislative Council member, Jamal Al Khudari is calling on the good...

[] Weekly Report: On Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory No. 41/2009 (15 - 21 Oct. 2009) 
October 22, 2009 - Israeli violations of international law and humanitarian law in the OPT continued during the reporting period (15 - 21 October 2009): Shooting: IOF used force against peaceful demonstrations organized by Palestinian civilians and international and Israeli human rights defenders to protest the construction of the Annexation Wall in the West Bank. As a result, two Palestinian...

Palestine Telegraph

Rafah Tunnels Provide Lifeline for Gaza
Gaza, October 21, 2009, (Pal Telegraph) - Dusty sacks filled with cans of Coca Cola were being loaded onto trucks by young boys, headed for supermarkets in Gaza City. Thousands of motorcycles were lined up on display in a nearby stadium, ranging...

Goldstone Rejects Israel's Protests
USA, October 21, 2009, (Pal Telegraph) - UN human rights investigator Richard Goldstone has rejected Israel's claim that the peace process would be harmed by his report on the offensive in Gaza.

Norman Finkelstein, British MPs to discuss future of Palestinian Refugees
London, October 20, 2009, (Pal Telegraph) - As the preparations of The Palestinian Return Centre (PRC) for the International Conference, UNRWA and Palestinian Refugees; continue, more interest from people is being showed. PRC has received tens of requests from people to join...

Puppets on Road to Jerusalem
Palestine, October 19, 2009, (Pal Telegraph) 'Courage ... courage to movement, courage not to give up, courage to break doors, the courage to overcome barriers, the courage to fly', are words advocated by participants in the march of the road to Jerusalem, organized by...

UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Mia Farrow Concludes Visit to Palestine
Palestine, October 19, 2009, (Pal Telegraph) - World renowned actress Mia Farrow ended Sunday a six-day mission to the occupied Palestinian territory and Israel. The mission focused on children affected by conflict, UNICEF said in a press release.

The National

Tehran and Tel Aviv in nuclear war of words
22 Oct 2009 - Iran angrily denies Israeli media assertions that senior nuclear officials from the two countries held confidential talks last month.

Egypt records sharp rise in divorce rate
22 Oct 2009 - Growing numbers of young Egyptian couples are turning to marriage counsellors amid a sharp rise in divorce rates.

Gaza casts dark shadow over annual summit
22 Oct 2009 - The Doha Conference on Interfaith Dialogue was diminished by notable boycotts this year but there were still messages of hope.

US in fresh bid on Palestine stalemate
21 Oct 2009 - Washington's UN ambassador holds talks with senior Israeli officials in the latest bid to end a months-long deadlock. 

Parody of Palestinian anthem an internet hit
21 Oct 2009 - Satirical version criticises leadership and even Palestinians critical of the song admit that it reflects the popular mood.

Egypt to vaccinate Haj pilgrims against swine flu
21 Oct 2009 - The country will vaccinate citizens making the pilgrimage to Mecca against H1N1, Egypt's health minister says.


Goldstone dares US on Gaza report
22 Oct 2009 - Gaza war crimes report author says US must justify claims his findings are flawed.

Iran denies 'secret Israel talks'
22 Oct 2009 - Newspaper says officials met in Egyptian capital to disucss nuclear-free Middle East.

Israel 'must be serious on peace'
22 Oct 2009 - US ambassador says Israel must decide whether it will pay 'only lip service' to talks.

Draft deal agreed on Iran uranium
21 Oct 2009 - Four powers to consider plan which could see Iran ship nuclear material abroad.

Alternative Information Center

The Settlers Next Door: Notes from Wadi Fukin
22 Oct 2009 - The Palestinian farming village of Wadi Fukin (population 1,200) borders the Green Line 12 km from Bethlehem. The village’s inhabitants practice a 2,000-year-old form of agriculture dependent on a system of terraces and wells that feed...

Report: Israel’s Policy of Detention Without Trial is Illegal
21 Oct 2009 - 335 Palestinians still being held without trial, 29 of them from 2-5 years continuously In a new report HaMoked and B'Tselem are publishing today (Wednesday, 14.10.09), the organizations severely criticize Israel’s detention of Palestinians without trial....

Palestine News Network

Al Ma’sara four year anniversary of popular resistance today in southern Bethlehem
22 Oct 2009 - Al Ma’sara – To mark three years of popular resistance in southern Bethlehem’s Al Ma'sara and Umm Salamuna villages, the Popular Committee against the Wall and settlements in Al Ma'sara village is hosting an anniversary march today. Beginning at 1:00 pm the demonstration will leave from the center of Al Ma’sara Village and move to the site of the Wall built on...

Human rights organization issues weekly report on Israeli violations in West Bank, E Jerusalem, Gaza
22 Oct 2009 - PNN - The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights conducted field research into incidents of Israeli violations of Palestinian human rights for the reporting period of 15 – 21 October. The results of the investigations follow.PCHR - Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) Continue Systematic Attacks against Palestinian Civilians and Property in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT) and Continue to Impose a Total Blockade on...

PCHR release English version of ‘Targeted Civilians: a report on the Israeli attacks in Gaza
22 Oct 2009 - The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) has just released the English-language version of ‘Targeted Civilians: A PCHR Report on the Israeli Military Offensive against the Gaza Strip (27 December 2008 – 18 January 2009)’. This report comprehensively documents the Israeli attacks on the Gaza Strip, in which more than 1,400 Palestinians were killed, and over 5,300 injured. The overwhelming majority of...

Independent Commission for Citizens' Rights shut down in Gaza
22 Oct 2009 - Gaza / PNN - The Interior Ministry in the Gaza Strip has reportedly closed down the Independent Commission for Citizens Rights, a decision that some say is due to Hamas’ disinterest in having anyone witness or report the government’s repression of freedoms. However, the Ministry denied this afternoon issuing a decision to close the human rights organization. Program Director for the Independent Commission,...

After Israelis deny him entry to Gaza, French Foreign Minister invited to visit via Rafah
22 Oct 2009 - Gaza / PNN – French Foreign Minister co-founder of Médecins Sans Frontières, Bernard Kouchner cancelled his trip after the Israeli administration refused to allow him to enter the Gaza Strip after his planned visit to Tel Aviv. Chairman of the Popular Committee against the Siege on Gaza and Palestinian Legislative Council member, Jamal Al Khudari is calling on the good doctor to come...

Barakeh: I am certain in advance that an Israeli investigation will come up with results they want
21 Oct 2009 - Nablus / PNN - Mohammad Barakeh, Chairman of the Democratic Front for Peace and Equality in the Knesset, said that any inquiry or examination set up by the Israeli government to investigate its own army is illegitimate. Speaking of the major attacks of late December and January, Barakeh said that by forming a committee to investigate war crimes committed by its army in...

Soldiers temporarily dismissed for suspicion of starting cars on fire in Hebron
21 Oct 2009 - Nablus / Amin Abu Wardeh – Recently B’Tselem, the Israeli organization working for Palestinian human rights, documented several cases of vandalism. The focus was on the southern Mount Hebron area where Israeli soldiers blocked in the cars, broke windows and started fires. Eight Palestinian cars were targeted. The cars were left by workers attempting to enter the Green Line without Israeli permits.B’Tselem called...

Jerusalem Post

Mitchell: Effort to renew Mideast negotiations not a failure
22 Oct 2009 - Despite Clinton report citing scant US progress on ME peace, US special envoy says its too early to declare collapse of talks in region.

ADL blasts Madrid for excluding Ariel U. from solar competition
22 Oct 2009 - Spanish Foreign Ministry: Decision based on "position of international community" on Israeli settlements.

'Iran may gain enrichment legitimacy'
22 Oct 2009 - In 1st high-level Israeli statement on draft nuclear deal, defense minister voices dissatisfaction.

J'lem: Send Iranian smuggling case to UN
22 Oct 2009 - Berlin steps up investigation of ship seized earlier this month carrying ammunition for Syria, Hizbullah.

Livni sends support letter to JStreet
22 Oct 2009 - Kadima to send three senior members to conference that Israel's ambassador to the US already snubbed.

Indyk: Livni told PA to reject offer
22 Oct 2009 - Former FM denies ex-US envoy's claims that she warned Palestinians not to accept Olmert's proposal.

IDF must allow Palestinians to use 'Israelis only' road
22 Oct 2009 - ACRI: Israel discriminates by maintaining separate legal systems for Palestinians and Jewish settlers.

From Kaifeng to kibbutzim
22 Oct 2009 - 7 descendants of China's Jewish community arrive in Israel.

'Israelis, Iranians discussed nukes'
22 Oct 2009 - Iran official denies reports representatives asked questions during "closed door" talks in Cairo.


EGYPT: Swine flu risk for Cairo’s overcrowded schools 
CAIRO Thursday, October 22, 2009 (IRIN) - The Egyptian ministries of health and education have ordered all schools in Cairo to halve the number of children in each class to mitigate the possible spread of H1N1 influenza - no small challenge in this overcrowded city of 20 million.

ISRAEL: 1,200 children face deportation
TEL AVIV Thursday, October 22, 2009 (IRIN) - Israeli Interior Minister Eli Yishai has said he will not grant legal status to some 1,200 children of migrant workers, triggering an anti-deportation campaign led by several NGOs.

In Brief: Travel restrictions hit Gaza students
TEL AVIV Thursday, October 22, 2009 (IRIN) - Some 838 students formally offered places and/or enrolled at foreign universities are unable to leave Gaza, according to the Palestinian interior ministry and Gisha, an NGO campaigning for freedom of movement.

Inter Press Service

US-IRAN: Congress Begins Pressing Sanctions Legislation 
WASHINGTON, Oct 16 (IPS) - As the administration of U.S. President Barack Obama prepares for a critical series of talks about the fate of Iran's nuclear programme, Congress has begun moving long-pending legislation to impose new unilateral sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

POLITICS-US: Pro-Israel Group's Money Trail Veers Hard Right 
WASHINGTON, Oct 21 (IPS) - StandWithUs - an "organization that ensures that Israel's side of the story is told" - has become increasingly aggressive in challenging the "pro-Israel" credentials of moderate Jewish-American groups, going so far as to suggest that receiving money from Arab donors and supporters of Human Rights...

Stop The Wall

29 days after Mohammad’s arrest still no charges have been laid
22 Oct 2009 - n Monday 19 October 2009, a court hearing at Salem military court, in the Northern West Bank, extended Mohammad Othman’s detention period for another 11 days, failing once again to provide any evidence justifying Mohammad’s arrest. Read more about the conditions of detention and interrogation methods used against Mohammad. [
22 Oct 2009 - More than 150 people attended the weekly demo against the Apartheid Wall. Protestors held signs with the names of the five Nil’in prisoners, and others called for the freedom of the 11,000 other Palestinians held in Israeli jails. Youth marched with their hands tied, imitating the means soldiers use when they arrest Palestinians. Soldiers constantly tried to capture protestors, and jeep mounted launchers showered the area with gas. Soldiers also targeted medical teams, firing tear gas directly at them. [

PCHR Latest

PCHR Welcomes Hamas Decision to Investigate Allegations of War Crimes, Comply With Goldstone Report

PCHR Weekly Report

(15- 21 Oct. 2009)

information on boycott, divestment and sanctions

International Solidarity Movement

Army continue to restrict farmers’ access to fields during olive harvest in Salim
10/22/2009 - International Solidarity Movement - 19 October 2009 - The farmers from Salim, a village located north east of Nablus and close to the illegal Israeli settlement Elon Moreh, faced numerous problems throughout this year's olive harvest. The army prevented them on several occasions from accessing a substantial amount of farmland lying behind the gates of the settler-only road, issued Closed Military Zone orders and threatened the farmers with imposing fines of up to 6,000 shekels if they invite international volunteers to accompany them to the olive groves. Ten years ago, an Israeli-only road (557) was built between the settlements of Elon Moreh and Itamar, drawn through the Salim fields, cutting off land belonging to 150 families from the village. During the first and second intifada, Salim farmers were shot at while trying to access their fields. 

A generation traumatized
10/23/2009 - International Solidarity Movement - Rami Almeghari, Electronic Intifada, 21 October 2009 - Like many other children in the region, 10-year-old Hiba Hammad from the northern Gaza Strip witnessed atrocities by the Israeli army against the population of Gaza during its assault on the coastal strip last winter. Hiba's smiled returned only after four months of intensive psychological therapy at the Gaza-based Palestinian Center for Democracy and Conflict Resolution. "Thank God that Hiba returned back to normal after we almost lost hope of her recovering. Right after the war, Hiba kept silent, isolated, fearful of everything around her, especially strangers. But now she is getting much better as she scored 91 percent in the final exams of her school year. Moreover, she now smiles, socializes and even jokes, thank God," said Hiba's sister Ettaf, who lost her husband during the attacks. 

Ha'aretz Diplomacy page

Mitchell: Effort to revive Mideast talks hasn't failed 
22 Oct 2009 - United States President Obama's Mideast envoy George Mitchell said ...

UNICEF to expand activities, open active office in Israel 
22 Oct 2009 - The United Nations Children's Fund intends to expand its activities in Israel and to open an active office here. The organization has said it expects to play a prominent public and legal role in the country in the field of child welfare. Against the backdrop of the government's plan to deport children of illegal foreign workers, UNICEF also expects to intervene on behalf of children in distress who arrived as refugees and infiltrated into the country, and to provide treatment to Israeli children in areas of military conflict. ... 

Solona to Haaretz: New rules of war needed for age of terror 
22 Oct 2009 - For exactly 10 years Javier Solana has represented the "international face" of Europe; 10 years in which he has closely followed the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, with all its turns and crises; a decade in which, to a great extent he was the answer to the famous question of Henry Kissinger: "Who should I call when I want to talk to Europe?" ...

EU official: Israel out of loop on Iran talks 
22 Oct 2009 - A senior European Union official told Israeli officials this week that Israel is not privy to the details of the exchanges between Iran and the Western countries regarding its nuclear program. "You do not understand the extent to which you are not in the picture. You do not know how much you do not know and what is happening in Iran," he said. ... 

Analysis / Will Iran nuke deal bury chances of Israeli attack? 
22 Oct 2009 - It's no surprise the agreement emerging between Iran and the international community is being greeted in Jerusalem with a grain of salt. It is not easy to be weaned off 15 years of suspicions. Not only does Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad not inspire much confidence, the entire Iranian regime has earned a reputation of deceptiveness. It will take a long time for Israel's intelligence community and decision makers to accept an assessment that in Vienna, the Jewish state was saved. ... 

The Guardian

Iran: Nuclear fission
22 Oct 2009 - If Tehran tries to renegotiate the draft nuclear deal agreed in Vienna on Wednesday , it could all fall apart. But before we list the pitfalls that lie ahead, it is worth contrasting where we are today...

More on the J Street dinner | Michael Tomasky
22 Oct 2009 - I did a video recently about New York senators Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand pulling out of a big fundraising event for J Street, the Jewish lobbying outfit that's trying to be the liberal answer to...

Israel is in denial over Turkish rage | Simon Tisdall
22 Oct 2009 - Turkey was shocked by Goldstone's report on the Gaza conflict, but Israel is seeking other explanations for deteriorating ties The apparent inability of Israeli leaders to see their actions as others see them that is to...

The rewards of talking to Iran | Abbas Barzegar
22 Oct 2009 - The Iran nuclear talks may be progressing slowly, but they confirm that the best way to deal with Islamists is engagement Despite the diplomatic grandstanding over Iran's nuclear programme, the latest round of the P5+1 talks...

Roy Greenslade: Award for Amira Hass, the brave reporter of Gaza
22 Oct 2009 - Amira Hass has received the International Women's Media Foundation 2009 Lifetime Achievement Award for her remarkable bravery in being an Israeli citizen who lives and reports from Gaza. She is a regular columnist with Israel's Ha'aretz...

The liberal Jewish challenge | Antony Lerman
22 Oct 2009 - Can the liberal Jewish lobby group J Street become as effective a political force as the hardline Zionist right? President Obama's Middle East envoy, George Mitchell, may be shuttling back and forth, but right now there...

Lost picture show: the Palestinian Film Archive
21 Oct 2009 - The Palestinian Film Archive was born in 1976 and destroyed just six years later. Sarah Wood went in search of the missing artists and their work I am an artist who works with found footage, making...

Palestinians send Blair a wake-up call | Seth Freedman
21 Oct 2009 - In Hebron, the Quartet's man has had his equivalent of Bush's shoe-throwing assault: it's an unmissable signal of a loss of faith During his visit to a mosque in Hebron, Tony Blair found himself on the...

Israel's missed opportunity | Richard Goldstone
21 Oct 2009 - My mission was determined to investigate war crimes in Gaza fairly. The Israeli government was wrong to shut us out Five weeks after the release of the report of the fact-finding mission on Gaza , there has...

A war crime whitewash | Michael Lerner
21 Oct 2009 - The global choir of ethical cretins who condemn Goldstone's Gaza report do Israel no favours I recently met a leading representative of the foreign ministry of Israel who acknowledged to me "off the record" that Israel...

Ha'aretz National page

West Bank settlers ramping up construction 
22 Oct 2009 - The defense establishment confirmed that in recent weeks West Bank settlers have been making a noticeable effort to expedite construction, in an attempt to maximize the "facts on the ground" before the United States and Israel reach an agreement on a settlement freeze. ... 

Will arrest of key rightist further inflame settler extremism? 
22 Oct 2009 - Ariel Gruner is a familiar sight to all the judges, lawyers and Shin Bet security service agents who deal with cases involving suspected right-wing extremists: Anytime someone is brought to court for right-wing activity, Gruner is there too - to counsel the detainees on their rights, arrange money for bail, or find host families for those put under house arrest. ... 

Court: Allow Palestinian movement on West Bank road 
22 Oct 2009 - Israel's Supreme Court ruled Thursday against military regulations prohibiting Palestinian motorists from using a West Bank road, but stopped short of banning a widespread security measure that has drawn charges of discrimination. ...

Four suspected of stealing 35 tons of meat from Holon warehouse
22 Oct 2009 - Police arrested Thursday four people on suspicion of stealing more than 35 tons of meat, worth millions of shekels, from a warehouse in Holon. ...

Chinese Jewish descendants start a new life in Israel 
22 Oct 2009 - Seven Chinese people with Jewish roots landed at Ben-Gurion Airport on Tuesday to start a new life in Israel, becoming the largest such group to ever arrive here. ...

Relief Web

OPT: The Humanitarian Monitor - Sep 2009
22 Oct 2009 - Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs

OPT: Protection of civilians weekly report, 14 - 20 Oct 2009
22 Oct 2009 - Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs

Mercy news and year 2008 annual report - Nov 2009
22 Oct 2009 - Source: Mercy-USA for Aid and Development

High Court orders opening of road closed to Palestinian travel for eight years
22 Oct 2009 - Source: Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories

OPT: Targeted civilians - APCHR report on Israeli military offensive against the Gaza strip (27 December 2008 - 18 January 2009)
22 Oct 2009 - Source: Palestinian Centre for Human Rights

Ordinary people throughout world want human rights of Universal Declaration 'translated into reality', UN High Commissioner tells Third Committee
22 Oct 2009 - Source: UN General Assembly

YNet News

US scientist indicted for trying to provide Israel with classified information 
22 Oct 2009 - Grand jury indictment follows Monday's arrest of Stewart D. Nozette on suspicion he tried to provide Israel with classified information on satellites and early warning defense systems 

White House urges Israel, Palestinians to resume negotiations 
22 Oct 2009 - US urges end of settlement activity, prevention of terror following meeting between Secretary of State Clinton, Obama on stalled Mideast peace talks. Washington source says negotiations still far from resuming. US Mideast envoy Mitchell to hold additional visit to region 

Livnat apologizes to evacuees for backing Gaza pullout
22 Oct 2009 - Likud minister tells former Gush Katif residents government must apply affirmative action to improve their situation 

Hamas claim Druze prisoners released as part of Shalit video deal
22 Oct 2009 - A week after Israel released two Druze security prisoners as part of a 'goodwill gesture' from the chief of staff to the Druze sector, Hamas official claims men were on list of prisoners it asked to release as part of Gilad Shalit videotape deal 

Barak: Deal will legitimize Iran's uranium enrichment 
22 Oct 2009 - At presidential conference in Jerusalem, defense minister says Iranian uranium enrichment 'must be stopped altogether.' Livni: Establishment of Palestinian state only way of preserving Israel's Jewish character 

Goldstone challenges US to spell out Gaza report flaws
22 Oct 2009 - South African judge who authored report accusing Israel, Hamas of committing war crimes tell al-Jazeera, 'I have no doubt overwhelming majority of critics have not read report' 

Assad: Israel must choose between occupation, peace
22 Oct 2009 - In joint press conference with visiting Finnish counterpart, Syrian president says supports peace process based on 'land-for-peace' principle,' faults Obama Administration for failing to follow up its stated goal of Mideast peace with action. 'Until now, we have only heard headlines,' he says 

Daily Star

US: Joint drill with Israel will help Europe missile shield
22 Oct 2009 

US envoy to UN pays quiet visit to West Bank
22 Oct 2009 

Turkey censors television series after row with Israel
22 Oct 2009 

EU donates to Lebanon $64m to improve human rights
22 Oct 2009 

Lebanon's roads rival Israeli threat
22 Oct 2009 

Palestinian Information Center

Israeli troops establish military checkpoints in Jenin and Tubas
23 Oct 2009 - The Israeli occupation forces (IOF) established at dawn Thursday several military checkpoints in different areas in the occupied Palestinian governorates of Jenin and Tubas.

Abu Marzouk: The reconciliation did not collapse and we wait to go to Cairo
23 Oct 2009 - Dr. Moussa Abu Marzouk stated that the reconciliation did not collapse despite the clamor raised in this regard, noting that his Movement is waiting for an invitation from Egypt to go to Cairo.

Khudari invites Kouchner to visit Gaza via Rafah crossing
23 Oct 2009 - Independent MP Jamal Al-Khudari invited French external affairs minister Bernard Kouchner to visit Gaza via the Rafah crossing after Israel refused to allow him access through the Erez crossing.

Hamas: We are keen on reconciliation, but the problem in the Egyptian paper
23 Oct 2009 - Hamas reiterated that it is keen on ending the division and committed to the understanding reached with Cairo, but the problem lies in the amendments made to the Egyptian reconciliation paper.

Masri: Kouchner's insistence to visit Gaza step in the right direction
23 Oct 2009 - Hamas MP Mushir Al-Masri has described the insistence of French foreign minister Bernard Kouchner to visit the besieged Gaza Strip as a "step in the right direction" in dealing with Hamas.

Rezqa: Hamas not afraid of elections but concerned with forgery
23 Oct 2009 - Dr. Yousef Rezqa, the informational advisor to PA premier Ismail Haneyya in Gaza, has said that Hamas Movement was not afraid of holding elections but rather is concerned that they might be forged.

Hamas: Student blocs at Al-Najah university boycott elections, Fatah pressures
23 Oct 2009 - Hamas stated that many student blocs of Palestinian factions were exposed to blackmail and pressures by Fatah to dissuade them from boycotting the elections at the university of Al-Najah.

Israeli warplanes blast Gaza tunnels, workshop
23 Oct 2009 - Israeli warplanes blasted tunnels along the Palestinian borders with Egypt in Rafah, south of the Gaza Strip, and a metal workshop in Jabalia to the north of the Strip at dawn Thursday.

Hamas: IOA statements meant to evade responsibility
23 Oct 2009 - Hamas described statements by Israeli occupation authority (IOA) officials demanding trial of Hamas leaders and cadres for committing war crimes as a kind of "absurdity".

Criminals shouldn’t be allowed to investigate themselves
23 Oct 2009 - In its rabid efforts to whitewash the Goldstone report, Israel is likely to carry out another disingenuous probe into its genocidal onslaught against the Gaza Strip

Los Angeles Times

U.S., Iran move closer to nuclear deal 
22 Oct 2009 - Regional security concerns and diplomacy clear a path to a multinational agreement in which Tehran would transfer its nuclear material abroad to be processed for medical purposes. Deft diplomacy and regional security woes are driving Tehran and Washington toward a deal on Iran's nuclear program, experts say, illustrated by movement Wednesday in talks to transfer most of the Islamic Republic's fissile material abroad to be processed for medical uses. 


The Settlers Next Door: Notes from Wadi Fukin
Alternative Information Center - 22 Oct 2009 - The Palestinian farming village of Wadi Fukin (population 1,200) borders the Green Line 12 km from Bethlehem. The village’s inhabitants practice a 2,000-year-old form of agriculture dependent on a system of terraces and wells that feed from rainwater and a unique local aquifer, making extensive irrigation...

Report: Israel’s Policy of Detention Without Trial is Illegal
Alternative Information Center - 21 Oct 2009 - 335 Palestinians still being held without trial, 29 of them from 2-5 years continuously In a new report HaMoked and B'Tselem are publishing today (Wednesday, 14.10.09), the organizations severely criticize Israel’s detention of Palestinians without trial. The report states that the policy of extensive detentions breaches...

Whatever happened to the war for oil?
Mondoweiss - 22 Oct 2009 - Critics of the Iraq war who claimed that it was a war for Israel, engineered by the neocons in the Bush administration and promoted by their allies in the media, were routinely disparaged by the well known pundits of the US Left and the leading organizations...

In boycotting J Street, Oren’s role model is Soviet Union
Mondoweiss - 22 Oct 2009 - The great Gideon Levy in Haaretz : The J Street case is a particularly serious example. This Jewish organization rose in America along with Barack Obama. Its members want a fair and peace-seeking Israel. That’s their sin, and their punishment is a boycott. …After criticizing Israeli columnists,...

Your Israel lobby at work
Mondoweiss - 22 Oct 2009 - Derfner in the JPost , "Die, J Street, Die!" In public, Binyamin Netanyahu has credited the welfare cuts he made as finance minister for helping bring down the Israeli Arab birthrate. Avigdor Lieberman has threatened to bomb the Aswan Dam, wished death on Arab MKs and run...

Only in Haaretz: ‘We need to cultivate hatred of the Arabs’
Mondoweiss - 22 Oct 2009 - "The violent energy that nourishes us exists everywhere. We have a violent discourse that comes from a need to cultivate hatred of the Arabs. Let’s admit it: we have apartheid here. We ar" That is the last paragraph or what appears to be the last paragraph...

838 Gaza students are barred from study– and the NYT publishes tunnel capers
Mondoweiss - 22 Oct 2009 - From Gisha : Once again, following the start of the academic year at many institutions of higher education around the world, some 838 Palestinian students are still waiting to leave Gaza to study abroad.The students cannot leave due to the Israeli-imposed closure of the Gaza Strip and...


A generation traumatized 
Rami Almeghari writing from the occupied Gaza Strip, Electronic Intifada 10/21/2009
      Like many other children in the region, 10-year-old Hiba Hammad from the northern Gaza Strip witnessed atrocities by the Israeli army against the population of Gaza during its assault on the coastal strip last winter.
     Hiba’s smiled returned only after four months of intensive psychological therapy at the Gaza-based Palestinian Center for Democracy and Conflict Resolution.
     "Thank God that Hiba returned back to normal after we almost lost hope of her recovering. Right after the war, Hiba kept silent, isolated, fearful of everything around her, especially strangers. But now she is getting much better as she scored 91 percent in the final exams of her school year. Moreover, she now smiles, socializes and even jokes, thank God," said Hiba’s sister Ettaf, who lost her husband during the attacks.
     Wearing a red dress, Hiba sat opposite to her therapist, Haniya Balousha, at the center. It was her first visit there since her treatment was completed four months ago. On that day, Hiba received gifts to celebrate the end of her treatment and her recovery from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
     Hiba described her trauma confidently and with a smile. "I saw on TV children being dragged from under rubble. From the roof of the house, I saw a tank dragging another [child], I also saw my three cousins’ martyred and mutilated bodies."
     Hiba merrily responded to her sister’s request that she tell us a joke. Hiba proceeded, "Once someone asked his friend, ’Why is the ambulance parked next to the bakery?’ The friend answered: ’In order to give first aid to the burnt bread.’" more.. e-mail

Finkelstein, Anti-Semitism and the Goldstone report 
Kieron Monks, Ma’an News Agency 10/22/2009
      What links ex-president Jimmy Carter, British Baroness Jenny Tongue and the University of California? All these (and countless others) have been recently been accused of anti-Semitism, vilified in the press for questioning Israel"™s occupation of Palestine. 
     It is a reflex action of pro-Israel groups like the Anti-Defamation League to publish personal slander against vocal critics, and no-one has been more systematically targeted than political scientist Norman Finkelstein. We spoke to him about the past, present and future of Anti Semitism as a tactic. 
     Following the Goldstone report there is pressure on Israel to explain its conduct. As more facts emerge from the Gaza massacre, made available throughout the world by digital media, it becomes harder for apologists to defend Israeli policy. Their reaction to the report was to attack the UN"™s legitimacy, a "œkangaroo court" according to Netanyahu, while foreign ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor blamed a "œcampaign of victimization against Israel" for the findings. Palmor also issued a statement that Israel would block and contain the effects, rather than address any of the substantive charges made against them.
     Finkelstein believes Goldstone represents a high-water mark for critics of Israeli policy, particularly in the US. "œToo much is now known about Israel"™s agenda and all over the world people are finding it impossible to reconcile liberal principles with ostensible Zionism. Israel"™s massacres are all over the front pages. They have become prominent in public life. Even Jewish writers in the New York Times are having trouble supporting Israel. The apartheid system is becoming impossible to defend...." more.. e-mail

Electronic Intifada
Book review: Shlomo Sand's "The Invention of the Jewish People"
Electronic Intifada: 22 Oct 2009 - Few recent books have aroused more interest and been more frequently reviewed in the US and Europe prior to the appearance of an English version as historian Shlomo Sand's The Invention of the Jewish People. Raymond Deane reviews for The Electronic Intifada. 

StandWithUs money trail reveals neocon funders
Electronic Intifada: 22 Oct 2009 - WASHINGTON (IPS) - StandWithUs -- an "organization that ensures that Israel's side of the story is told" -- has become increasingly aggressive in challenging the "pro-Israel" credentials of moderate Jewish-American groups, going so far as to suggest that receiving money from Arab donors and supporters of Human Rights Watch undermines a group's commitment to Israel and peace. 

Time for a democratic discourse
Electronic Intifada: 22 Oct 2009 - This weekend, J Street, a new Jewish "Pro-Israel, Pro-Peace" Washington-based public action committee is holding its first national conference. The two of us, along with another artist, were scheduled to perform and read poems at several sessions during the conference. Instead, we have been censored and pushed out of that very debate. Kevin Coval and Josh Healey comment for The Electronic Intifada. 

Israeli intelligence pose as Arabs to spy on citizens
Electronic Intifada: 21 Oct 2009 - Civil rights groups in Israel have expressed outrage at the announcement last week that a special undercover unit of the police has been infiltrating and collecting intelligence on Israel's Palestinian Arab minority by disguising its officers as Arabs. Jonathan Cook reports. 

In Gaza
dignified beyond losses
18 Oct 2009 - *Mahmoud Musleh: “I’ve had three main things destroyed by Israeli forces: a tile factory on Sikka street (northern Beit Hanoun), another tile factory on Salah el Din street (Beit Hanoun), and the water well on my land. My olive trees have been bulldozed many times by Israeli forces. I’m 70 years old and now I have nothing, like when I was 16.” *Mohammed Zaneen [eastern Beit Hanoun]: “I had 11 dunams of olive trees, bulldozed by the Israeli army. I used to earn well over US$11,000 from the olives. Now my oldest trees are just 4 years old and produce only a meagre amount. We also have bees. When there...

Palestine Chronicle
The Return of Jeremiah Wright
21 Oct 2009 - By William A. Cook 'There is not a nation on the earth guilty of practices, more shocking and bloody than are the people of these United States, at this very hour.' (Frederick Douglass, 'What to the Slave Is the Fourth of July,' 1852) One hundred and forty seven years ago that charge was leveled at the United States by a former slave who judged America’s actions since its founding against the principles that this nation presented to the world as the basis for its existence: the rights of humans to self governance, to life, to liberty, and to happiness. These are his words as he addressed his fellow citizens on the 4th of July: “… your celebration is a sham; your boasted liberty, an unholy license; your national greatness, swelling vanity; … your shouts of liberty and equality, hollow mockery; your sermons and thanksgivings … mere bombast, fraud, deception, impiety, and hypocrisy—a thin veil to cover up crimes which would disgrace a nation of savages.” Today, what has changed? True, we no longer sell humans like cattle in our town squares, no longer confine slaves to the whips of overseers, no longer create unjust laws to discriminate those we find inferior, no longer subdue our fellow humans with force of chains or cudgel or hose or noose, not here, not in these United States. But today America is not confined to an east coast or a west coast; today America occupies Afghanistan, Iraq, and Palestine and under International Law must...

Israeli Exceptionalism: Destabilizing Logic of Zionism
21 Oct 2009 - By M. Shahid Alam Why is an economist writing a book on the geopolitics of Zionism? This is easily explained. I could have written a book about the economics of Zionism, the Israeli economy, or the economy of the West Bank and Gaza, but how would any of that have helped me to understand the cold logic and the deep passions that have driven Zionism? Zionism is a historic movement that emerges from the guts of Europe’s turbulent history. It is propelled by the dialectical interactions between two intertwined streams of Western civilization, the Jewish and Christian. And, as it has unfolded, Zionism has brought both these Western streams into a dangerous collision with the Islamicate. It would not be easy squeezing this tragic history into an economic model or a set of econometric estimations. In my capacity as an ‘economist’ too, Zionism, at its core – as an exclusionary settler colonialism – was scarcely a strange beast. I began grappling with colonialism as a graduate student. In one of the three essays that I wrote for my PhD dissertation, I used the tools of economics to explain why the free trade that the British imposed on India in the nineteenth century had led to its pauperization. A decade later, after I had secured ‘citizenship’ in the department of economics at Northeastern University, I returned to this subject again. In several articles, leading to a book, Poverty from the Wealth of Nations, I examined the theory, history, and evidence on...

Israeli Police Don Arab Disguise
21 Oct 2009 - By Jonathan Cook - Nazareth Civil rights groups in Israel have expressed outrage at the announcement last week that a special undercover unit of the police has been infiltrating and collecting intelligence on Israel's Arab minority by disguising its officers as Arabs. It is the first public admission that the Israeli police are using methods against the country's 1.3 million Arab citizens that were adopted long ago in the occupied territories, where soldiers are regularly sent on missions disguised as Palestinians. According to David Cohen, the national police commissioner, the unit was established two years ago after an assessment that there was "no intelligence infrastructure to deal with the Arab community". He said that, in addition, undercover agents had been operating in East Jerusalem for several years to track potential terrorists. Israel's Arab leaders denounced the move as confirmation that the Arab minority was still regarded by the police as "an enemy" - a criticism made by a state commission of inquiry after police shot dead 13 unarmed Arab demonstrators inside Israel and wounded hundreds more at the start of the second intifada in 2000. In a letter of protest to Israeli officials this week, Adalah, a legal rights group, warned that the unit's creation violated the consitutional rights of the Arab minority and risked introducing "racial profiling" into Israeli policing. Although the police claim that only Arab criminals are being targeted, Arab leaders believe the unit is an expansion of police efforts to collect information on political activists, escalating...

Netanyahu Needs to Explain His Intentions
21 Oct 2009 - By George Hishmeh This was clearly illustrated at the recent meeting in Geneva of the UN Human Rights Council which endorsed a report that details evidence of war crimes committed by the Israeli army (and Hamas) during its assault on Gaza last December. Of the 47 members of the Human Rights Council, only 6 countries opposed the report, namely the United States, Italy, The Netherlands, Hungary, Slovakia and the Ukraine, while 25 others supported it, 11 abstained and 5 cast no vote. The Council particularly chastised Israel - not Hamas - for failing to cooperate with the UN mission, led by the highly respected South African jurist, Richard Goldstone. Taher Al Nono, spokesman of the Hamas government in Gaza, said Hamas would investigate the recommendations of the report. But Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu promised a lengthy diplomatic battle to "delegitimise" the UN charges. Writing in Real Clear World, a blog, Goldstone elaborated last Saturday his stance on the Council's action, explaining that he was motivated to undertake the Gaza mission because he was "a Jew who supported Israel and its people all my life." He recalled that he had investigated "serious violations of international law in his own country, South Africa, and in the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda as well as cases of "fraud and theft by governments and political leaders ... in connection with the UN Iraq Oil for Food programme." He had also pointed out that he had spoken on behalf of the International Bar Association against human...

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