Feb 25, 2009

Make Zionism History! boycott-israel-anim2

Help to stop the next war! Support Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions of the Israeli regime

Support Palestinian universities – spread the BDS campaign – it is what people under the Israeli jackboot  ask  you to do!

Israeli War Criminals – to the International Criminal Court, NOW!

Sweden-Israel Davis Cup to go ahead without fans: Herald Tribune

STOCKHOLM: The Davis Cup match between Sweden and Israel will go ahead as planned — without spectators in the southern city of Malmo — after an attempt to move the venue to Stockholm fell through.Swedish organizers on Tuesday cited security concerns for the closed-door policy because anti-Israeli demonstrations are expected during the best-of-five series on March 6-8. But the volley of words between the two Swedish cities, which comes after the United Arab Emirates stopped an Israeli player from a tennis tournament in Dubai, has an unmistakable political dimension. Malmo, Sweden’s third largest city, has a left-leaning local government and a large Muslim minority. Its leaders have strongly criticized Israel after the Gaza invasion, and some have called for dropping the Davis Cup match altogether. Stockholm has a center-right majority that is more pro-Israeli. The Swedish capital offered Monday to step in as an alternative venue, saying it was better prepared to guarantee security for the match. However, the plan was canceled when Stockholm officials realized they wouldn’t be able to get organized in time for the Israeli team’s Sunday arrival, said Madeleine Sjostedt, Stockholm’s vice mayor in charge of culture and sports.STOCKHOLM: The Davis Cup match between Sweden and Israel will go ahead as planned — without spectators in the southern city of Malmo — after an attempt to move the venue to Stockholm fell through. Swedish organizers on Tuesday cited security concerns for the closed-door policy because anti-Israeli demonstrations are expected during the best-of-five series on March 6-8. But the volley of words between the two Swedish cities, which comes after the United Arab Emirates stopped an Israeli player from a tennis tournament in Dubai, has an unmistakable political dimension. Malmo, Sweden’s third largest city, has a left-leaning local government and a large Muslim minority. Its leaders have strongly criticized Israel after the Gaza invasion, and some have called for dropping the Davis Cup match altogether. Stockholm has a center-right majority that is more pro-Israeli.

Gala de soutien aux blessés israéliens: Anne Roumanoff lâche l’affaire: Le Post

Une lettre ouverte émise par la “Campagne pour le Boycott culturel et académique des oeuvres israéliennes” (Pacbi) circule, protestant contre la présence de l’humoriste Anne Roumanoff à un gala de soutien à des blessés israéliens, à Genève le 2 mars. Ce qu’on lui reproche: “Votre participation à ce spectacle serait un acte de soutien et de solidarité avec l’armée israélienne, laquelle est l’instrument principal de l’oppression systématique et de l’assujettissement du peuple palestinien” annonce la lettre.

Another success of the growing Boycott campaign. This was in reaction to the letter from PACBI, below, and the many letters protesting Anne Roumanoff’s planned concert in support of physically challenged soldiers of the Israeli army:

Laughing at Gaza’s Destruction! An Open Letter to Comedienne Anne Roumanoff: PACBI

February 19, 2009: PACBI — Ramallah, Occupied Palestine, February 19, 2009
We know that your stand-up comedy brings laughter and joy to many French- speaking people around the world. As such we are shocked and disappointed to learn that you are going to perform in Geneva on March 2nd, 2009 in support of handicapped Israeli veterans.

Your performance in this show would constitute an act of support and solidarity with the Israeli army, which is Israel’s main instrument for the systematic oppression and brutal subjugation of the Palestinian people. It would contribute towards ‘polishing’ the international image of an aggressive military force that has a long history of involvement in massacres and the documented ethnic cleansing of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians from their land.

PACBI Salutes Canadian Academic Trade Unionists: PACBI

25 February 2009, Ramallah, Occupied Palestine
The Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) applauds CUPE-Ontario’s University Workers Coordinating Committee (OUWCC) for its principled support for the cause of justice in Palestine by adopting, at its annual conference on 22 February 2009, significant steps in the direction of applying effective pressure on Israel and holding it accountable for its colonial and apartheid policies which violate international law and fundamental human rights. In particular, PACBI applauds the OUWCC for passing a number of resolutions aimed specifically at challenging and ending business-as-usual with the Israeli academy. The conference has decided to “[e]ncourage its member locals to hold public forums to discuss an academic boycott of Israeli academic institutions;” to “[a]sk campus representatives to work with locals to investigate both research and investment links between Ontario Universities and the state of Israel’s military;” to “[m]obilize campus allies to pressure universities from engaging in acts of cooperation that assist and aid military research at the institutional level with Israeli universities;” to “[w]ork with campus and community allies to pressure Ontario universities to refuse collaborations, corporate partnerships and investments that would benefit, either directly or indirectly, military research or the Israeli state military;” and to “[r]equest funding and support from CUPE Ontario to conduct an education campaign on the academic boycott, coordinate education sessions and assist in the implementation of resolution 50 as passed in 2006.”

UEL Gaza Occupation: images from the occupation at the University of East London


Dutch social worker with Israeli father blocked from making aliyah: Ha’aretz

Esther Timmerman could have lived almost anywhere she wanted. That is how it is when you are born in Holland and carry a Dutch passport. For many Israelis, this would be a dream come true. But Timmerman, 38, decided she wanted to live in Israel – and that is when her problems began.
Her connection to Israel began many years earlier. “My father, Judah, always felt an attraction to Judaism,” she said. “My father began to study Judaism back in the 1980s. He began to visit synagogues and came to Israel for the first time in 1991, and felt that this was his home.”  Judah Timmerman, now 70, eventually decided to convert to Judaism. He has been an Israeli citizen for 16 years and lives in Gan Yavneh.

Read the whole article on the link -a typical Israeli racism, in this case againsta non-Jewish European… just imagine what the attitude is towards Palestinians…

Dispatches From The Edge—Gaza: Death’s Laboratory: Berkeley Daily Planet

“It was as if they had stepped on a mine, but there was no shrapnel in the wound. Some had lost their legs. It looked as though they had been sliced off. I have been to war zones for 30 years, but I have never seen such injuries before.”
—Dr. Erik Fosse, Norwegian cardiologist who worked in Gaza hospitals during the recent war.
What Dr. Fosse was describing was the effects of a U.S. “focused lethality” weapon that minimalizes explosive damage to structures while inflicting catastrophic wounds on its victims. While the weapon has been used in Iraq, Gaza was the first test of the bomb in a densely populated environment.
The specific weapon—the GBU-39—is a Dense Inert Metal Explosive (DIME) and was developed by the U.S. Air Force, Boeing Corporation, and University of California’s Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in 2000. The weapon wraps the high explosives HMX or RDX with a tungsten alloy and other metals like cobalt, nickel or iron, in a carbon fiber/epoxy container. When the bomb explodes, the container evaporates and the tungsten turns into micro-shrapnel that is extremely lethal up to about 60 feet.
Tungsten is inert, so it does not react chemically with the explosive. While a non-inert metal like aluminum would increase the blast, tungsten actually limits the explosion.
Within the weapon’s range, however, it is inordinately lethal. According to Norwegian doctor Mad Gilbert, the blast results in multiple amputations and “very severe fractures. The muscles are sort of split from the bones, hanging loose, and you also have quite severe burns.”

Campaigners launch legal bid to stop support for Israel: Morning Star online

PALESTINIAN human rights campaigners launched a legal challenge against the government on Tuesday over an alleged “flagrant” breach of international law in relation to Israel. Al-Haq, a human rights organisation based in the West Bank, lodged legal papers at the High Court in London calling for a judicial review into new Labour’s actions towards Israel. The group said that the government was in “flagrant and continuing” breach of international law in a number of areas, including its record on arms trading with Israel.
It has alleged that, given Israel’s actions in Gaza, Britain should comply with international obligations not to render “aid or assistance” to Israel.
Phil Shiner, the solicitor representing al-Haq, said outside the High Court: “It is al-Haq’s position that, if the UK were to meet its international obligations now, Palestinian lives and limbs in Gaza would be saved and there would be a much greater chance of accountability for Israel’s actions and a change in the policies of all key players so that nothing like it can ever again befall the Palestinian people.”

Hamas: Fatah Spied for Israel: ICH

February 24, 2009 ISMAILIA, Egypt (Reuters) – Leading Hamas member Mahmoud Zahar said on Tuesday some Palestinian officials, backed by the United States, were obstructing the dialogue due to open between Palestinian groups in Cairo on Wednesday.
“There are people who want this dialogue not to take place because they will lose their positions and their privileges,” he told Reuters in an interview in the Egyptian town of Ismailia, where he was visiting his wife’s Egyptian relatives. Zahar repeated Hamas complaints that the Fatah movement, which dominates the Palestinian Authority, has detained dozens of Hamas members in the West Bank in the past week. “These matters (the arrests) do not serve dialogue,” he added. The arrests have added to the tension between the two largest Palestinian groups during preparations for the dialogue. Zahar, who was Palestinian foreign minister in the government Hamas formed after winning elections in 2006, said U.S. intervention was behind the tension. “There are U.S. (intelligence) agencies working in the West Bank,” he added.
He also rejected Fatah complaints about arrests by Hamas in Gaza, where the Islamist movement is in control. “We have published pictures of what they call political detainees in Gaza. These are people who have confessed that they provided the enemy (Israel) with information about where fighters were stationed and the tunnels (to Egypt) and the type of weaponry,” he said.

Trailer of new docuemntary exposing Israeli brutalities in Gaza:New film

An insight to Gaza during the offensive from a very human point of view. Concerning war crimes, look at the shooting on medical personnel and the targeting of  civilian objects and persons –  the UN school and the children yard.

Watch seven minutes of this unique footage, proving Israel’s lying tactics will not pass! A deliberate attack not only on refugees in the school, but also on the medical teams who have come to help the wounded…

New atrocities against Palestinians: More ethnic cleansing! Listen to the article!

OCCUPIED JERUSALEM: Israel has ordered hundreds of Palestinians to leave their homes in Occupied Jerusalem, saying their houses are illegal, officials and residents said Sunday.
“The owners of 80 houses in the Al-Bustan neighborhood have received eviction notices saying that the structures will be destroyed because they
are illegal,” said Hatem Abdel-Kader, an official responsible for Occupied Jerusalem affairs in the Palestinian government. He added that 1,500 people were currently living in the threatened houses in the neighborhood abutting the Old City.

An excellent article!

Perils of criticising Israel: BMJ

Karl Sabbagh
The BMJ’s acting editor received 1000 emails after the journal published an article criticising Israel in 2004. Karl Sabbagh examined them and is reminded of what happened when the magazine World Medicine criticised Israel 27 years ago
In October 2004, the BMJ published a personal view by Derek Summerfield in which he expressed his concern at what he saw as systematic violations of the fourth Geneva Convention by the Israeli army in Gaza.1 The article claimed that many of the actions deemed necessary to root out and prevent terrorism had had the foreseeable effect of killing or maiming large numbers of Palestinians, including children, who had played no part in attacks on Israelis. (This issue is, of course, at the heart of worldwide criticisms of Israel’s actions in Gaza last month.) Summerfield supported his arguments with figures published by reputable international organisations, such as the United Nations and Amnesty International.
Summerfield’s article provoked hundreds of responses, about 550 of which the BMJ published as rapid responses.2 Of these, a small proportion were broadly supportive of Summerfield’s article, but most were hostile. Reading them might give the impression of a civilised debate in progress, but the published responses were a skewed sample of what had been received, as abusive and obscene contributions were not posted.

ATFP Urges US Government to Take Action on New Planned Israeli Settlement: AFTP

Washington DC, Feb. 16 – The American Task Force on Palestine (ATFP) today urged the United States government to use its influence to work with the Israeli government to stop announced plans for a major expansion of the Givat Ha’eytam settlement in the occupied West Bank. The Israeli occupation Civil Administration has reportedly declared 1,700 dunams (approximately 370 acres) of land in the northern part of the Efrat settlement, south of Jerusalem between Bethlehem and Hebron, to be “state land,” which sets the stage for the potential construction of 2,500 new settlement housing units. This settlement is particularly sensitive given that it would help complete a ring of hilltop settlements in Efrat that threaten to cut Arab East Jerusalem off from the West Bank.
ATFP called on President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, as well as leading members of Congress, to use all of their influence to ensure that these provocative and dangerous settlement plans are not pursued. ATFP, and many others including numerous US officials and members of Congress, have frequently pointed out that settlement activity constitutes the most significant threat to the long-term viability and credibility of an end-of-conflict agreement between Israel and the Palestinians. Any additional settlement activity intensifies the core problem, complicates the creation of a Palestinian state to live alongside Israel in peace and security, and undermines Palestinian and Arab public opinion regarding Israeli intentions to achieve a reasonable agreement. This planned settlement is particularly problematic given that it would continue the process of separating Arab East Jerusalem from the rest of the West Bank and undermine prospects that East Jerusalem could serve as the capital of a Palestinian state, which is a key requirement of any viable peace agreement.

US to donate ‘$900m in Gaza aid’: BBC

The United States is preparing to donate some $900m (£621m) for Gaza, an Obama administration official said.
The aid would not go to Hamas, the group that controls the territory, but it would help the Palestinian Authority, the official added.
It comes as the US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton prepares to attend a Palestinian donors’ conference.
Any US aid would have to be approved by Congress, where some are wary that funds could still end up with Hamas.
The donors’ conference in Egypt next week will discuss humanitarian and reconstruction needs in the Gaza Strip after Israel’s recent military offensive. Two separate Palestinian surveys have put the cost of the damage at just under $2bn.

Gaza case studies: Weapons use: BBC

The BBC News Website looks at case studies of some of the weapons and tactics used in the recent Gaza conflict that human rights groups are concerned may have been violations of international law.
GENERAL ALLEGATIONS
Human rights investigators have been trawling through the rubble in Gaza and gathering testimonies in an attempt to piece together a picture of the way both sides fought and the weapons they used.
International law demands that a distinction is made between combatants and non-combatants, and civilian casualties proportionate to the military gains from the attack in which they occurred.
But Amnesty International has concluded that some Israeli attacks “were directed at civilians or civilian buildings”, while “others were disproportionate or indiscriminate”.

Who can probe Gaza war crimes claims?: BBC

There have been numerous calls for investigations into whether war crimes were committed during the recent Israeli offensive in Gaza.
The Geneva Conventions and additional protocols prohibit the destruction of property, “except when rendered absolutely necessary by military operations” and “indiscriminate attacks” affecting civilians. Concerns about the number of civilian casualties and damage to buildings in Gaza have been raised – among others – by the United Nations, by the Palestinian Authority, the Arab League and by human rights groups.
But it is not clear whether the alleged violations count as war crimes or how people responsible might be held accountable.

Bleak outlook for bombed Gaza Zoo: BBC

Hundreds of Palestinian schoolchildren used to come to the Gaza Zoo every week, but not now.
Tanks rolled through the area during the Israeli offensive. Much of the zoo was badly damaged, most of the animals died. Cage after cage lies empty.  Ostrich feathers are strewn close to a crater in the ground, beside the mangled steel bars of what was the birds’ pen. The remains of a camel lie inside its former enclosure. “Some were killed in air strikes,” says the zoo’s manager, Emad Qassim, “but some of the animals were shot dead.”

Inside Gaza: The Guardian Films

Since the kidnapping of the BBC journalist Alan Johnston, few reporters have ventured into Gaza. In three exclusive films for Guardian Unlimited, Clancy Chassay goes inside the occupied territory to discover how its people are responding to rising pressure.

Robert Fisk: Obama was unconvinced by Bibi’s desire for peace: The Independent

Barack Obama, they say, did not get on well with Bibi Netanyahu when he met him in Jerusalem before the American elections.
Netanyahu asked to form new Israeli government
Mr Obama, who figured out the Middle East pretty quickly, apparently found Bibi arrogant and unconvincing in his professed desire for peace with the Palestinians. What Mr Netanyahu thought of Mr Obama is not known, but he could scarcely have tried to hide his election line: security for Israel, but no Palestinian state.
Much depends, of course, on whether Tzipi Livni will consent to join a Netanyahu government. For if Avigdor Lieberman slips into a ministerial position, Obama is in trouble. Does he congratulate a new Israeli prime minister who has introduced into his government a man who is prepared to demand loyalty signatures from his own country’s Arab minority? How would that go down in the United States, where a similar proposal – for a loyalty pledge by American minorities, for example – would be a scandal?
But those Palestinians who believe that Lieberman should be in a Netanyahu administration – on the grounds that the “true” face of Israel would then be clear to all Americans – are being a little premature. Obama is not going to change the US relationship with Israel. American foreign policy – like that of most states – is based not on justice but on power.

Letters: Jacobson on Gaza: The Independent

Jacobson and Gaza: the debate continues

Like beauty, or so it seems, anti-Semitism lies in the eye of the beholder, and Howard Jacobson is determined to see it everywhere. His attempt to associate criticism of Israel with anti-Semitism and the shades of Nazism is misplaced. The distinguished Jewish scholar, Yeshayahu Leibowitz, introduced the term “Judeo-Nazism” after the Six-Day War, an event he described as having destroyed the “moral infra-structure” of the Jewish state, predicting that, “continued occupation and oppression of the Palestinians must eventually lead to a fully fledged fascist regime inside Israel”, a prediction we are perilously close to witnessing.
Despite what Jacobson may claim, criticism of Israel is essential, for, as the social critic Isaac Deutscher said, “The ‘friends of Israel’ have in fact abetted Israel in a ruinous course”. For such apologists and religious zealots there is never a case to answer, however intolerable the actions; rather, as Avigdor Liebermann recently put it, they should despise the “weakness of the Gentiles”. Israel’s Jews have become, in Deutscher’s memorable phrase, “the Prussians of the Middle East”.
Though Jacobson makes much of the betrayal of the Holocaust, it was Israel’s Premier, Menachem Begin, who showed willing to manipulate its memory in using the analogy of the Warsaw ghetto to justify the bombing of Beirut, that the Jews would be victims no longer. And therein lies the problem: Jews were expurgating their victimhood, but against the wrong people, a people who (at first) were not their enemies, but were driven to be.
It is time for Israel and Zionists to show moral maturity and less incendiary defensiveness, to respond to justified criticism honestly rather than by continuously invoking monsters of the past or, as does Jacobson, with tawdry canards of evasive exculpation.

Barak: Time needed to deal with Iran slipping through our fingers: Ha’aretz

Defense Minister Ehud Barak sounded a more urgent tone on Wednesday following reports that Iran had started testing its Russian-built nuclear power plant in Bushehr. “Israel’s policy is clear: we do not take any option off the table with regards to Iran’s nuclear program,” Barak said during an appearance at a symposium at the Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya. In a veiled reference to the Obama administration, the defense minister said: “We would suggest that others do not take any option off the table. A dialogue with Iran needs to be limited in time.”

Olmert says he was ‘within whisker’ of peace with the Palestinians: Ha’aretz

As his term in office officially comes to a close, Israel’s premier said on Wednesday that his government was close to a historic breakthrough in peace negotiations with the country’s Arab neighbors. “I was within a whisker of an agreement with the Palestinians,” outgoing Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said during a visit to a brewery in Ashkelon.

This is what they are saying for the last four decades… do not hold your breath…

Dutch protesters throw shoes at visiting IDF reservist: Ha’aretz

In another shoe-throwing incident against Israelis in Europe, Amsterdam police on Sunday arrested three people who hurled footwear at an Israeli army officer while he was lecturing at a hotel in the Dutch capital.
The officer, Captain (res.) Ron Adelheit, told Haaretz he filed a criminal complaint against the suspected assailants – two men and a woman – whom police arrested at the hotel.
“I was on a private visit to see my mother. As an IDF Spokesman reservist I volunteered to speak before the Dutch Jewish community about Operation Cast Lead,” said Dutch-born Adelheit, who immigrated to Israel many years ago.

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