Saturday, 26 June 2010

Ramulla Traitor: Ready for direct negotiations with Israel

[ 26/06/2010 - 03:51 PM ]

RAMALLAH, (PIC)-- Former Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas stated on Saturday that he was ready to go into direct negotiations with Israel “on condition of progress in the issues of security and borders, which are being discussed under indirect negotiations."

He made the statement two days after the Zionist Likud party endorsed continuation of settlement activity in the West Bank.

In statements to reporters in Ramallah, Abbas said, "We said and we say that if there is progress from here to the end of the period which the Arab League [four months] fixed, if there is any progress in the basic issues that we presented to the U.S. administration, then we have no objection to go to direct negotiations.”

Commenting on the Zionist Likud party’s endorsement to continue to settle in the West Bank and occupied Jerusalem, Abbas said, "I don’t care what the Likud or others say. What concerns me is what is happening on the ground, which is what I deal with. It doesn’t concern me to deal with voices here and there.”

Professor Abdul Sattar Qassem, a professor of political science at An-Najah National University, said concerning the PA-Israeli negotiations, "The Israeli occupation authority (IOA) has achieved significant gains during the negotiations, including the PA understanding of the IOA security needs.”

Dr. Qassem said in a statement to the PIC on Saturday, "The IOA did not put forth anything in the negotiations, but instead built a wall and expanded settlement activity." He sarcastically mentioned some IOA "humanitarian gestures", such as taking down a barrier then installing another, and the release of some prisoners.

He explained that the balance of power began to fade in Israel’s favor, and that Israel will not achieve victory as it has in the past, as the next war will not be a picnic anymore.

Qassem pointed out that the PA is in need of re-evaluating the situation in accordance with new realities if it wants to take part in the restoration of Palestinians’ rights.

He added, "But so far, the PA refuses to accept the idea of the Zionist military failure against Hezbollah and Hamas, and is willing to continue negotiations under the old assumption that the balance of power is in favor of the IOA.”

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Zionist settlers planning to hire security company to expel Jerusalemites

[ 26/06/2010 - 03:17 PM ]

OCCUPIED JERUSALEM, (PIC)-- A group of Zionist settlers in occupied Jerusalem announced plans to hire a private Israeli security company to carry out orders to expel four Palestinian families in the Jerusalem township of Silwan.

The families include 40 individual members.

The settlers alleged that the families reside on "Jewish property".

They stated that there is no need to hire the company if the families evacuate their homes by July 4th of this year.

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The Golden Rings of Betrayal

Intifada Palestine
26. Jun, 2010

NOTE: On the 21st of June Haaretz published an article, “Lebanon allows Gaza-bound ship to sail to Cyprus.” Two ships may be involved, one with a contingent of Americans, approximately 10, another with a group of women including Nuns, the Miriam. This new effort at breaking the Israeli siege of Gaza follows the attack on the boats that sailed from Turkey where 9 people were killed by Israeli naval forces.

The exact date for the sailing has not been announced but expectations were high for this Saturday. The Council for National Interest in Washington, D.C. has been a major organizer for this venture. Dr. Cook joined the CNI contingent and is now in Lebanon. The timing of this event coincides with the publication of his The Plight of the Palestinians and the publication in Arabic of his The Chronicles of Nefaria printed in Amman, Jordan.

William A. Cook

Not five days ago I sat entranced as the LA Opera transformed the Chandler Center into a rapturous world of metaphor with its rendering of Wagner’s Das Rheingold, the first of the four operas of the Ring Cycle. On Sunday the 20th my wife and I fell further under the bewitching wonder of the metaphors that give substance to this world of unreality that probes the reality of ours. Today, the 22nd, I fled the imaginative brilliance of Wagner’s genius to immerse myself in the unimaginative brutality of this barbaric 21st century as the artist’s themes find fulfillment in this most advanced civilized world where our western world began, the geographic womb of Abraham’s unmerciful and malicious g-d who sought the destruction of his own creatures at the hands of His chosen few.

The brilliance of Wagner’s Das Rheingold rests in the absoluteness of its central theme: attainment of ultimate power and wealth requires abandonment of human love. Paradoxically, the truth of this theme abides in the nature of humans alone, humans who exist by virtue of fraternal and sisterly love, a love that rents asunder the laws of the state.

Sigmund and Sigelinda, offspring of Wotan, the all powerful god, and a mortal woman, give birth to the human race through their incestuous love. This union is the seed of human bondage, the lifeblood that binds all into a human family sustained by heartfelt compassion and love. It is this essential force that binds all that must be abandoned to attain power, to live without human sympathy, the natural element that makes all of us one family. Yet so powerful is the impulse to greed, so natural in the human beast, legends have evolved to describe it: the myth of the Flying Dutchman, the Wandering Jew, the Heart of Darkness to mention a few.
Wagner’s earth glows through the gold that lights the depths of the Rhine giving beauty to the natural world. Rhine maidens find fulfillment and joy being in its presence. But the ugly dwarf, Albrecht, arrogant in his disdain for true love, caught in his self-hatred of his isolation, seeks to steal the gold to gain power over humans and forego love forever. Thus begins the betrayal of creation … theft of that which belongs to all to enrich self by whatever means necessary.

So as I left Los Angeles and its magnificent portrayal of Wagner’s images, I flew into them in Beirut and Shatila with Gaza as the culminating picture. Here indeed the metaphors of self-hate, aggrandizement and betrayal thrive. This spit of land sandwiched between Lebanon and Egypt, nothing more than rolling hills and valleys where the sun blisters the earth in summer and freezes the skin in winter’s winds, the graveyard of ancient kingdoms each covered in its time beneath the sands of time, has erupted once again into a land of destructive power by sheer force of superstitious beliefs and a manufactured ideology called Zionism.

Subjugation, humiliation, isolation, starvation and decimation have become the lifeblood of the Israeli state to demean and destroy those who have nothing, the ultimate power that exists by abandonment of human love. The siege of Gaza mirrors in large the siege of Rafah and Jenin years ago, test cases for absolute control without remorse or consequences, abandonment of human love. But what is that to me or anyone in Los Angeles enraptured by Wagner’s Rheingold?

Certainly a person must live the life of his or her awareness. To celebrate the achievement of the Los Angeles Ring Cycle amid the splendor of the Chandler Valhalla and know the hell that is the life of the Palestinians necessitates action if only a gesture of recognition against the enormous power that subdues them, some flicker of human concern for the 60 years of suffering, isolation, and indifference. What arguments can the Zionists make that can override the horrors of their slow and methodical destruction of the Palestinian people?

Such were my thoughts as I flew to Beirut and Gaza. There is something deeper than politics with its machinations and duplicities, something deeper than borders and the justifications for defending arbitrary lines that have been annexed by stealth and power, something deeper than ethnicities that depend on hair color and skin tones to give license to racism and bigotry, something deeper than religions that thrive on pomp and ritual to sustain the impossible beliefs that distinguish them from this known world, something deeper, richer, fulfilling, substantive and glorious in knowing that respect for all, recognition of the value of all, and acceptance of the dignity of all, sharing the wonders of the world’s natural beauty with all, indeed, sharing the wealth of its harvest with all, enriches all and gives meaning to the sacredness of all. Must we fulfill the truth of Wagner’s metaphor after five thousand years of human civilization? Must we betray our birthright for rings of gold?

William A. Cook is a Professor of English at the University of la Verne in southern California. His most recent book, The Plight of the Palestinians: a Long History of Destruction has just been released by Palgrave Macmillan and is available at Macmillan or Amazon etc. He can be reached at or
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Mizan center calls on UN to end Israel's crimes of torture in Palestine

[ 26/06/2010 - 03:02 PM ]

RAMALLAH, (PIC)-- Al-Mizan center for human rights on Friday appealed to the UN to activate its convention against torture and put an end to Israel's crimes of torture in the occupied Palestinian lands.

In a statement on the international day against torture, Al-Mizan center highlighted that this occasion comes as Israel persists with impunity in its violations against the Palestinian prisoners in its jails, the families who try to visit their sons and daughters, the patients who hopelessly want to be admitted into West Bank hospitals, the fishermen and farmers who are attacked on a daily basis in the Gaza Strip.

It said that the Israeli occupation forces (IOF) have pursued, since the occupation of Palestinian lands in 1967, the policy of arbitrary detention in order to subdue the civilian population and used different torture means against them with the blessing of the Israeli higher court which allowed the internal intelligence Shin Bet to use what it described as a sensible amount of psychological and physical pressure against Palestinian prisoners.

It noted that Israel's laws still provide complete immunity for its interrogators who use torture means and ways against Palestinians who are detained for security reasons, although the UN committee against torture strongly condemned these laws.

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Is Afghanistan the wrong war, at the wrong time, for the wrong cause?


Seumas Milne is generally better informed on Afghanistan than most commentators, but he undermines his case with the typical leftist tendency to impute imagined strategic considerations to every foreign policy misadventure. As Gareth Porter has correctly noted, US Afghan policy is rooted in domestic political considerations. There are no American interests at stake in Afghanistan, as even the military and foreign policy establishment well know.
On 18 June, a debate organised by Yeovil and Sherborne Stop the War Coalition pitted former Liberal Democrat leader Lord Paddy Ashdown, who is now an advisor to David Cameron, against Guardian journalist Seumas Milne.
The motion debated was: Is Afghanistan the wrong war at the wrong time for the wrong cause? Seumas Milne proposed the motion, saying that after nine years none of the original aims of the war had been achieved and there was no end in sight. Paddy Ashdown, passionately opposing the motion, lamented that the war had been very badly run and said he feared that it might well be lost “in the pubs and front rooms of Britain”, rather than on the battlefield. The motion opposing the war was passed overwhelmingly by an audience vote.

Q & A

NB: Milne also repeats the standard Chomskyian nonsense about US policy toward Israel being driven by ‘other interests’ (which he doesn’t name). This silly structructuralist view, which always assumes what it has to prove, has made the left increasingly marginal in politics. Battling imaginary enemies is always easier because it entails no responsibilities.

Written by Idrees
June 26, 2010 at 1:55 pm

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Anti-wall marches persist despite IOF quelling

[ 26/06/2010 - 10:39 AM ]

RAMALLAH, (PIC)-- The Israeli occupation forces (IOF) attacked different peaceful anti-wall marches on Friday in West Bank villages. Injuries and breathing problems were reported during the attacks.

In Bil'in village, as the protesters were marching towards the segregation wall, the IOF troops fired tear gas and stun grenades and rubber bullets at them, which led to the injury of one participant and caused dozens of suffocation cases.

The Israeli gunfire also caused fire in vast tracts of Palestinian agricultural lands in the village.

The protesters chanted slogans condemning the deportation policy pursued by Israel against the Palestinian people in Jerusalem and the West Bank.

For their part, the villagers of Ni'lin and foreign activists marched towards the apartheid wall in the village and erected a Palestinian flag on the wall in solidarity with the olive trees which Israeli troops set ablaze last week.

The protesters clashed with the troops after they aggressively attacked their march and fired grenades and rubber bullets at them.

The IOF troops also attacked similar anti-wall marches in Masarah village and Wadi Rahal area in Bethlehem, and Nabi Saleh village in Ramallah.

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Afghanistan looking more like Lebanon?

Via Friday-Lunch-Club

WaPo/ here

"... If the Taliban does come to power in part of Afghanistan -- say, controlling the south and sharing power in Kabul -- Afghanistan could start to look like Lebanon: Hezbollah controls large portions of the country, operates its own military forces and delivers services to large parts of the population, but the United States and other countries have embassies in Beirut, deal regularly with the government and parliament, and try to persuade Lebanese authorities to limit the sway and reach of Hezbollah.
The parallels suggest less palatable comparisons: Hezbollah-controlled territory is far from free. It is hard to imagine that Taliban-controlled territory would be more so. At least Hezbollah is contained by strict Israeli border security. Nothing like that exists on the highly porous Afghan-Pakistan border. The Taliban is far less interested in governing than Hezbollah is and is far less popular.
Hezbollah projects Iranian influence and is an important source of regional instability, training and arms to those who threaten Israel and more moderate Arab states. Even if the Taliban did not try to attack the United States, it could still prove inimical to U.S. interests, as it has in Pakistan..........
.... What is not clear is whether the Taliban wants to come calling. The fighters seem to be feeling little pain despite courageous Afghan and American efforts on the battlefield. And Pakistan may not be willing, or able, to force the Taliban to deal.
Assuming negotiations start in earnest by fall, it is doubtful that Clinton's red lines can be made to hold in any part of Afghanistan under Taliban control. The only one that seems really to matter to Obama is blocking al-Qaeda's return to Afghanistan...."
Posted by G, Z, or B at 6:56 AM
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Hamdan: Hamas is adherent to its demands for the release of Shalit

[ 26/06/2010 - 08:41 AM ]

GAZA, (PIC)-- Director of Hamas's international relations Osama Hamdan stated that his Movement can never change its demands for the release of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, stressing that Israel would find itself in the end forced to comply with these demands.

In a press statement on Friday to Al-Qassam website on the fourth anniversary of Shalit's capture, Hamdan underlined that the success of the Palestinian resistance fighters in sustaining the capture of Shalit for all these years was due to the fact that the meanings of secrecy in their dictionary are not only related to military concepts, but also to their strong faith in God and their devotion to the rules of this work.

"This soldier was neither captured for luxury nor for a mere desire to keep him, but his capture was for the sake of a noble cause," the Hamas official emphasized.

He pointed out that the Israeli security apparatuses are still seeking access to any information leading to Shalit, but if they managed to reach him, they would not hesitate to physically liquidate him along with his captors as they did with other soldiers who fell into captivity during the war on Gaza.

For his part, the popular resistance committees said Saturday that the Palestinian resistance in Gaza achieved a considerable military and security victory when it was able to keep Shalit in a hideout in Gaza over the past four years.

The committees added that Israel's ongoing threats to get Shalit released by force failed at all levels, describing Benjamin Netanyahu's latest remarks about this soldier as a narcotic injection to absorb the Israeli public opinion's anger.

In a related context, a survey conducted by Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper stated that 72 percent of Israelis approve the release of hundreds of Palestinian prisoners including those who were involved in "killing" incidents in exchange for Shalit.

According to the survey, 74 percent of Israelis are pessimist about getting Shalit released without fulfilling the Palestinian resistance's demands.

For its part, the higher national committee for the support of prisoners strongly denounced the remarks made by deputy head of the Red Cross in occupied Palestine Pierre Dorbes in which he held Hamas responsible for the failure of the swap deal with Israel.

The committee said in a statement on Thursday that Dorbes' remarks reflected his blatant bias in favor of Israel whose premier refused to sign the swap deal after it was in its final stages.

The committee noted that the number of Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails was not as mentioned by Dorbes who ignored the prisoners of occupied Jerusalem and the 1948 occupied lands, affirming that there are more than 7,000 female and male Palestinians in Israeli prisons.

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Petraeus May "Ease Restrictive" War Rules in Afghanistan

26/06/2010 The new appointed US commander in Afghanistan General David Petraeus faces complaints over so-called "restrictive policies" which place the occupation troops' lives "at risk" in the war-torn country.

These policies were laid down by Petraeus's predecessor General Stanley McChrystal, and are seen as stressing to "save civilian lives and leave US occupation forces at greater risk.

At a Pentagon press conference Thursday, Admiral Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, hinted about possible changes in the rules when asked about troops who feel “they’re being asked to fight with one hand tied behind their back.’’

“Any new commander, General Petraeus included, will go in, assess his command, and what it is going to take to achieve the mission,’’ Mullen said, adding that the general “certainly has the flexibility to make changes that he thinks are necessary.’’

But Mullen also said that does not “portend changes’’ in the rules. He noted that Petraeus, who was McChrystal’s boss, is “very aware of the tactical directive’’ and was involved in approving it as commander of the US Central Command, which is responsible for the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Those "restrictive" rules were issued at a time of a rising tide of public anger over Afghan civilians killed by occupation Troops in air strikes and by heavy weapons such as cannons and mortars.

Occupation troops see these rules widely perceived as too restrictive, playing into the hands of the Taliban, costing American lives, and forcing them to give up the advantage of overwhelming firepower to a foe that shoots and melts back into the civilian population.

However, these "restrictive" rules that are "costing" occupation soldiers' lives and saving Afghan civilians' lives claimed the lives of at least 2,412 civilians last year— a 14 percent increase over 2008, according to a UN report.

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Israelis, Turkish Jews, and Kurdish Jews Behind Insurgency in Turkey

Via My Catbird Seat

- 26. Jun, 2010
Operation Cage: a case study in Israeli false flag tactics
By Wayne Madsen — Online Journal Contributing Writer

(WMR) – Top Turkish government and intelligence sources told WMR in Ankara and Istanbul that Turkish intelligence has obtained evidence that Israeli intelligence is squarely behind repeated Ergenekon “deep state” plots aimed at overthrowing the Turkish government of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, including Operations Sledgehammer and Cage.

Israeli special operations personnel have also been discovered by Turkish intelligence providing support for Kurdish Workers Party (PKK) terrorist attacks aimed at Turkish army and navy personnel. Israeli forces, operating from northern Iraq, are believed to have provided support for a recent PKK attack on a Turkish army post near the town of Semdinli. Ironically, Turkish forces used an Israeli-supplied Heron unmanned aerial vehicle system to track down the PKK in Iraq and identify their Israeli support team.

Mossad support for the Cage Operation Action Plan, hatched within the ranks of the Turkish Naval Forces Command, is a textbook lesson in Mossad false flag operations around the world.

As reported by Today’s Zaman, Cage plans were found on a CD last year in the office of retired Major Levent Bektas, who was linked to caches of buried weapons in Istanbul. Cage plans called for the assassination of non-Muslim figures in Turkey and then casting the blame on Erdogan’s Justice and Development Party (AKP). Cage was actually implemented in the assassinations of Turkish-Armenian journalist Hrant Dink, Catholic Father Andrea Santoro, and three Christian missionaries in Malatya. Behind these assassinations of gentiles was the hidden hand of the Jewish state’s intelligence service, Mossad, according to informed Turkish sources.

Cage also targeted school children. TNT was have to been placed in a submarine on display at the Rahmi M. Koc museum in Istanbul and detonated at the same time a group of school children were due to visit the site. According to Today’s Zaman, Cage was divided into four parts: “Preparation,” “Raising Fear,” “Shaping Public Opinion,” and “Action.” The similarities between Cage and the well-documented Israeli pre- and post-involvement in the 9/11 attack on the United States are stark, particularly the “preparation” phase involving hundreds of Israeli “art students” and furniture movers who were, in reality, Mossad and Israeli Defense Force special operations personnel.

The “Action” phase included assassinations and kidnappings of major non-Muslim figures in Turkey, as well as the planting of bombs near non-Muslim targets and arson attacks on their homes and offices. The “Action” plan also called for placing propaganda in key media outlets, including pre-designated web sites, blaming the terrorist attacks on Erdogan’s AKP government.

Previously published in the Wayne Madsen Report.
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Lebanese ship to join Freedom Flotilla 2

[ 26/06/2010 - 08:08 AM ]

BEIRUT, (PIC)-- The permanent committee to support the Aqsa Mosque and Palestine in Lebanon has decided to send an aid ship to Gaza Strip that would set sail from Greece by the end of next month within the Freedom Flotilla 2.
Coordinator of the ship Sheikh Husam Al-Ghali told the PIC on Friday that the ship would carry 15 religious scholars from Lebanon along with relief material.

The participants would head to Greece by air and get on board the ship at one of the Greek ports, Ghali underlined.

He said that the Israeli threats would not deter the participants, who are adamant on breaking the siege on Gaza.

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[ 26/06/2010 - 07:49 AM ]

GAZA, (PIC)-- Tens of children hit the streets of Gaza at a late hour on Friday night to protest the power outage after the sole electricity generation station in the coastal enclave came to a halt due to lack of fuel.

Children lit candles and burnt photos of Salam Fayyad, the illegitimate premier in Ramallah, who was held responsible by those children along with the Fatah-controlled authority for the electricity crisis after halting payment of fuel cost.

An 11-year-old child, speaking on behalf of the children, urged the regional and international parties and free people of the world to end the Gaza inhabitants' suffering especially children.

He said that children want electricity back to live their normal life especially at the current blistering summer heat.

Jamal Al-Dardasawi, the public relations manager in the Gaza electricity company, told the PIC reporter that the power plant's shutdown would mean that electricity shortage would rise to 60%.

He said that his company would provide 6 hours of electricity to be followed by 12 hours of electricity cutoff for all areas of Gaza Strip without exception.

Dardasawi explained that his company now solely depends on electricity lines from Egypt and Israel, which do not cover all Gaza needs.

He warned of the catastrophic consequences of such a situation especially with the soaring temperature, adding that the power outage would affect water and sewage services extended to houses other than the commercial and industrial sectors and public utilities and services.

The company official appealed to the Arab League to intervene and finance necessary fuel for operating the power plant.

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Sirhan Sirhan: In His Own Words

by Stephen Lendman

Shortly after midnight on June 5, 1968, Robert Kennedy was shot, The New York Times headlining:

"Kennedy is Dead, Victim of Assassin; Suspect, Arab Immigrant, Arraigned; Johnson Appoints Panel on Violence"

Sirhan Sirhan was the alleged assassin, convicted, and serving a life sentence at (no pun intended) Pleasant Valley State Prison, CA, despite convincing evidence of his innocence.

In his October 17, 2008 article "The Assassinations of the 1960s as 'Deep Events,' " Peter Dale Scott discussed the killings of both Kennedy brothers and Martin Luther King, saying:

"The more that I look at these deep events comparatively, ranging over the past five decades, the more similarities I see between them, and the more I understand them in the light of each other."

With respect to both Kennedys and King, official accounts obscured the events, suppressed key facts, enough to question the guilt of the alleged suspects, concealing the real culprits and why men of this stature were assassinated - what Scott called "some continuing and hostile force within our society..."

In his June 13, 2010 article titled, "JFK and RFK: The Plots that Killed Them, The Patsies that Didn't," James Fetzer debunked the official accounts, saying:

"we are looking at staged events that fit into a recurrent pattern in US and world history where innocent individuals (or 'patsies') are baited and framed for cover-up purposes," RFK's killing "in part intended to prevent a reinvestigation into his brother's death....The assassinations of RFK and JFK were both conspiracies. Both involved the destruction of evidence. Both involved the fabrication of evidence. Both involved framing their patsies. Both involved complicity by local officials. Both involved planning by the CIA. Both were used to deny the American people (their) right to be governed by leaders of their own choosing." Both put a myth to the rule of law, judicial fairness, and democratic freedoms.

Both crimes and MLK's assassination eliminated figures dark American forces wanted silenced, blaming innocent "patsies" for the killings, Sirhan Sirhan for RFK's. Fetzer's article explains numerous important facts:

-- multiple shots targeted him, more "than could have come from Sirhan Sirhan's gun" that was also the wrong caliber;

-- "RFK was shot behind the right ear from about 1.5 inches, but Sirhan was never that close and always in front of him;"

-- the coroner and LAPD reports were contradictory;

-- LAPD "engaged in massive destruction of evidence from the pantry of the hotel because 'it would not fit into a card file,' " as part of an official cover-up to blame Sirhan for a state-sponsored assassination, evidence suggesting CIA involvement in both Kennedy brothers and MLK killings;

-- Sirhan's gun was a ".22 caliber, eight-round revolver (serial number H-53725);"

-- he "emptied his weapon from a location in front of Bobby Kennedy;"

-- Dr. Thomas Hoguchi's autopsy "showed RFK was hit by four bullets, all of which were fired from behind at upward angles;

-- five others were wounded by separate shots;"

-- as many as 13 shots were fired;

-- Dr. Noguchi's autopsy "did not point to Sirhan as the killer;"

-- an eyewitness, DeWayne Wofler, "testified that the bullets fired at RFK had come from an entirely different gun," not Sirhan's;

-- a security guard, Eugene Cesar, standing right behind RFK, had a drawn gun of the same caliber as the murder weapon; it was never examined nor was he charged; and

-- "a woman in a polka dot dress" left the scene hurriedly, "shouting, "We shot him! We shot him! We shot Kennedy!"

In their book, "The Assassination of Robert F. Kennedy," Jonn Christian and William Turner made a convincing case "indicting Cesar for the crime," concluding "that Sirhan may have been firing blanks."

Fetzer's article has detailed information on both JFK and RFK assassinations, accessed through the following link:

Below, Sirhan gives his own account of what happened that night and why he was at the Ambassador Hotel.

"My Morning with Sirhan"

On January 21, 2010, Academic Prison Teacher, Gerald B. Reynolds, spent time with Sirhan and wrote it up in detail. An account below follows.

At the Delta Facility library, a prison guard let him in. His ID said Sirhan Sirhan. "He looked at me in a calm way with a half-smile. I looked at him....There was an eerie, prolonged silence." He's now 66 years old, 42 of them in prison for a crime he didn't commit.

After another "calm silence....I swiveled in my chair to face Sirhan Sirhan and asked, 'Did you do it?' "

"Did I do what," he responded.

Reynolds: "You know."

Sirhan: "What do you want to know?"

Reynolds: "Did you kill Robert F. Kennedy?"

Sirhan: "No, I did NOT kill Robert F. Kennedy!"

Reynolds: "I know you didn't."

Sirhan: "How do you know?"

Reynolds explained that he studied the details of his case, learned that RFK was killed at point blank range by a bullet to the back of his head.

"The real assassin appears to be Kennedy's 26 year old Ace Security Company bodyguard....Thane Eugene Cesar. At least one eye witness claims to have seen Cesar with a smoking gun in his hand immediately after Kennedy fell to the floor. An audio recording made during the assassination indicates that there were at least 11 shots fired (perhaps more) from possibly three different guns."

"The conclusion is that Kennedy was shot three times from behind with a fourth bullet passing through his suit coat. The fact that you (Sirhan) were standing in front of Kennedy is undisputed and yet according to the coroner's report not one bullet entered Robert F. Kennedy from the front of his body."

Sirhan: "Oh my! I knew this morning when I woke up that God was telling me he had something great in store for me today and this is it! God has sent you to me!....I was beginning to lose hope so you were sent to lift my spirits. Now I can be hopeful again. Thank goodness somebody else knows."

Reynolds: "Have you ever talked to anybody else in prison that knows the truth of your case?"

Sirhan: "Yes. One person, that's all....He was one who drives a truck around and empties the dumpsters....I had a job where I had to take the garbage out of the the dumpster....once in a while he would talk to me. He told me he believed I was innocent."

Reynolds: "Did you talk to this guy often?"

Sirhan: "Actually no. He and I only talked maybe about three times and each time it was only for about five minutes or so."

He explained that he never met anyone in prison, besides him, who knows. He said friends on the outside set up a web site for him -, with information about him, RFK, and whether CIA operatives killed him, framing Sirhan for the crime.

Reynolds: "Do you have an appeal on file right now?"

Sirhan: "Not now. Everything has run its course. I had a great attorney named Lawrence Teeter....He was a wonderful man and a great attorney. He tried several times to win me an appeal and even just to get a new evidentiary hearing but the courts seemed biased against me. The judges wouldn't budge....Teeter died in 2005, and I haven't really tried to work on any appeal since then."

Yet he feels, one day, he can be cleared and set free. "The truth will win out," he believes. Earlier he was on San Quentin's death row for three years. "They thought they were rid of me but then something happened they didn't plan on."

Led by Chief Justice Rose Bird, "the California Supreme Court intervened and ruled that the death penalty was unconstitutional. The ruling was retroactive and my sentence was commuted to life in prison. They thought I was dead and yet after 41 and a half years I'm still alive!" Now it's over 42.

But "they stole my life!....I've been rotting in that stinking prison for (over four decades) for nothing!....The bastards stole my life....I have been denied parole 13 times. I am scheduled for another parole hearing in 2011. (Against long odds), Maybe if there was a grassroots movement, like perhaps millions of people finding out how the authorities have buried me unjustly, and coming together in demonstrations all over the country they would have to reconsider and let me go."

Saying to Reynolds, "You do it for me. Become a guest speaker at colleges and universities and speak on my behalf....I hereby give you my permission....I will notify the press of your name and mission."

Reynolds: "Ah, no, not my name. My name can't be attached to this. I could get in big trouble. You know the monsters that run this place."

Sirhan: "OK, I understand. We will keep you anonymous."

Reynolds offered to make this conversation available to anyone "responsible enough to appreciate it." Sirhan suggested sending to magazines and newspapers. Reynolds said he'd try, sent it to one on the progressive left that wouldn't publish it, one reason for discussing it here.

Sirhan also explained he's Palestinian, born in Jerusalem in 1944, "alive during the turmoil that erupted when the United Nations stole our country and gave it to the Jews."

In fact, its 1947 Partition Plan (General Assembly Resolution 181) gave them 56% of historic Palestine, placing Jerusalem (declared a corpus separatum, a separate body) under UN trusteeship as an international city, binding to this day. At the time, Palestinians comprised two-thirds of the population, owning 93% of the land, most of it now stolen. All of it occupied illegally.

Ever since, Israelis treated "my dogs. (They) shoot rockets and tank fire into the West Bank (and Gaza) killing everyone, including women and children. They drop bombs and spray machine gun fire into crowded marketplaces. They are treating my people the same way they were treated by the Nazis....It breaks my heart to see how my people are suffering."

Reynolds: "So, then, you're a Muslim?"

Sirhan: "No....I am a Christian. My whole family is Christian....We have been Christians for at least 800 years. We are Palestinian Christians."

He came to America at age 11, moved to Los Angeles, and settled in Pasadena, attending Altadena's Eliot Junior High School, graduating from John Muir High School, then completing two years of junior college..."

Reynolds asked if he had any connections to Middle East or organized terrorists?

Sirhan: "No. No way! I am alone. I am by myself. I do have a few people in the West Bank that I correspond with but they are just regular people. I have a brother in Los Angeles. But I definitely do not have any terrorist connections and I am not a member of any groups, any groups at all."

Spurious prison information circulated that on 9/11, he "gleefully clapped (his) hands and (was) delighted" to see the twin towers collapse, adding that he had confidential information of the impending attack "by a Middle Eastern terrorist organization whose members revere you as an icon and a hero and do everything they can to honor you."

Sirhan: "Oh my God, that's ridiculous. I've never had anything to do with any terrorist groups. Who said this about me?"

Reynolds: "It was Chief Deputy Warden James Mattingly."

Sirhan said he'll sue him for libel and slander, adding he wants to see his evidence. Reynolds asked what he thought of the incident, Sirhan explaining that he cried because his country was attacked and "felt sadness and anger and wanted to punish the people responsible...."

Reynolds: "Sirhan, what were the events that led up to you being in the pantry of the Ambassador Hotel on the night" JFK was shot there?

Sirhan: "In the evening, I had something to eat at Bob's Big Boy. Then later in the evening, I decided to drive downtown....The Jews were going to be having a big party to celebrate the one-year anniversary of Israel's" Six Day War victory."

Reynolds: "What did you intend to do once your got there?"

Sirhan: " I don't know exactly but I wanted to protest. The Jews should not have been allowed to fill the streets in celebration of stealing more of our land. I can remember driving down Highway 5 with my 22 caliber hand gun lying next to me on the passenger seat."

Reynolds: "Why did you have a gun with you in the car?"

Sirhan: "I had been shooting at the range earlier that day."

Reynolds: "Was the gun....out in the open?"

Sirhan: "No, it was in the plastic box it came in, you know, with the cloth, the cleaning rod, and oil."

Reynolds: "and what did you do when you got downtown?"

Sirhan: "I realized that I was a day early and that the event was to take place the next night. So I just drove back up the freeway."

Reynolds: "Why did you stop at the Ambassador Hotel?"

Sirhan: "I don't know. I can't remember parking and going in there but I must have because I was there."

Reynolds: "What did you do when you got there?"

Sirhan: "It was hot that night and I was very thirsty. I remember that....I went to the bar and had four drinks within about 15 minutes. I couldn't seem to get enough to drink....They were Tom Collins's....(but) I wasn't drunk. I felt drugged. I think somebody slipped something into my drinks. My legs and arms became rubbery. I remember standing by my car but I couldn't drive so I went back inside and got some coffee."

Reynolds: "How did you get downstairs to the pantry?"

Sirhan: "Somebody guided me. I don't know who."

Reynolds: "Did you have your gun with you?"

Sirhan: "Yes. When I was in the pantry, the gun was in my hand."

Reynolds: "Did you know Robert Kennedy was going to be walking toward you?"

Sirhan: "No. I didn't know where I was and I don't know how I got there. I was in a state of blackout."

Reynolds: "You were a Manchurian candidate....It's something the CIA uses. They assassinate a president, or senator, or anyone they wish, and make it look like some crazed, lone-nut assassin did it. But he has been heavily drugged, possibly with LSD, and undergone intense brainwashing followed by reprogramming. Everything you're saying about yourself follows the established pattern of the drugged, duped, CIA patsy."

Sirhan: "They used me, framed me, and they set me up to die."

Reynolds: "Do you remember firing the gun that was in your hand?"

Sirhan: "I can't remember. I was blacked out. I remember feeling woozy and it felt like I was falling down....I don't remember the things that happened that night."

Reynolds: "Do you remember being led in handcuffs out of the Ambassador Hotel and made to sit in the back seat of a police car?"

Sirhan: "I remember being led away but I didn't know why they were doing this to me. Nobody told me anything."

He was interrogated by the police for about 24 hours, detectives telling him he murdered JFK. "They yelled at me. They kept shoving papers at me demanding that I sign...They were documents saying I killed Kennedy. Confession. They insisted I had murdered Robert F. Kennedy and they demanded I confess and sign the papers....At first I resisted, but later I confessed and signed the papers. They broke me down and I told them I would do anything they wanted me to do. I just wanted it to stop."

After he confessed, he was taken to a cell and allowed to sleep. A court trial followed where his "interrogators convinced me to plead guilty and ask for the death penalty....I told the judge I was guilty and wanted the death penalty," explaining he was ashamed.

"They made me believe I had murdered Robert Kennedy in cold blood and I was remorseful and ashamed. Everyone said I was guilty. They said I would get the death matter what I said or did. They said it was an open and shut case and that I might as well give up. I just wanted to get the whole thing over with and if it meant me being dead, so be it. I didn't have anything left to live for anyway."

A trial followed, Sirhan represented by attorney Grant Cooper, a man he called "crooked. He had mafia and CIA connections," Sirhan explaining what he knew and his mob involvement. "He was (picked) to make sure I was convicted and sent to my death, and Cooper complied because they were planning to kill him" otherwise.

Reynolds asked him to portray what he remembered doing at the Ambassador Hotel. Sirhan stood up, swayed, his arms gently rising, looked straight ahead, then made a gun shape with his right hand, his arm parallel to the ground pretending to shoot, saying:

"At a specific moment, and I can't remember when or why, I shot my 22 caliber pistol three times. My arms were unsteady but level with the ground. Two of the shots missed. I saw them miss. One of the shots may have bounced off him like a BB. All of a sudden people were grabbing me. They were forcing me down....Did anybody say I reached around behind and shot Robert Kennedy in the back of the head?"

Reynolds: "Nobody."

Sirhan: "But that's what I would've had to do" to kill him....So, what do you think of me now? Do you think I am crazy like they say?"

Not at all, said Reynolds, Sirhan adding "I am just a man. I am a man just like you. I am trained never to allow an inmate to touch me."

In parting, he embraced Reynolds, both of them now "secret friends in a desolate place."

A Final Comment

Evidence strongly suggests that Lee Harvey Oswald, James Earl Ray, and Sirhan Sirhan were patsies, blamed for state-sponsored assassinations, likely carried out by CIA operatives or hired guns they enlisted.

Jack Ruby, with known mob and police connections, fatally shot Oswald on November 22, 1963. Incarcerated without trial, James Earl Ray died in prison on April 23, 1998, proclaiming his innocence. Sirhan Sirhan has been imprisoned since 1968, despite no evidence proving his guilt.

In these and hundreds more cases in US courts, justice was denied, revealing the myth of the rule of law, under a system absolving high-level crime, getting patsies punished for offenses they didn't commit, the major media always going along, supporting official accounts without question.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at Also visit his blog site at and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.
posted by Steve Lendman @ 2:57 AM  

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

Two Palestinians killed, one wounded in Israeli occupation airstrikes

[ 25/06/2010 - 10:54 PM ]

GAZA, (PIC)--Two Palestinians were killed Friday in an Israeli occupation air strike that targeted tunnels in the southern Gaza Strip district of Rafah at the border between with Egypt.

Dr. Muaweyah Hasanin, the director general of emergency services at the Health Ministry, told PIC correspondent that one of the victims was identified as Amer Abu Hadayed (22 years) and the victim was awaiting identification.

Local sources that both victims worked in the tunnels and that a 21-year-old Palestinian man was also wounded in the airstrike.

There were four Israeli occupation airstrikes targeting various parts of the Gaza Strip on Friday morning, two in the north of the Gaza Strip and two in the south.

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Connecting the Zionist Dots by Gilad Atzmon

While cleaning the I deleted this Great article posted by Dear Gilad
I am reposting it.

Thursday, June 24, 2010 at 6:41AM Gilad Atzmon

A few  weeks ago the Jewish Chronicle published a list of Jewish MPs in the UK parliament. It named 24 in total, encompassing 12 Conservatives, 10 Labour, and two Liberal Democrats.

Author and peace activist  Stuart Littlewood elaborated on these figures and presented the following analysis:
“The Jewish population in the UK is 280,000 or 0.46 per cent. There are 650 seats in the House of Commons so, as a proportion, Jewish entitlement is only three seats. The conclusion is pretty obvious. With 24 seats, Jews are eight times over-represented. Which means, of course, that other groups must be under-represented, including Muslims…If Muslims, for instance,  were over-represented to the same extent as the Jews (i.e. eight times) they’d have 200 seats. All hell would break loose.”

A question must be raised here. Why are Jews overwhelmingly over-represented in the British parliament, in British and American political pressure groups, in political fundraising and in the media?

Haim Saban, the Israeli-American, multibillionaire media mogul offers the answer. The New Yorker reported  this week that at a conference last fall, Saban described his pro-Israeli formula, outlining “three ways to be influential in American politics…make donations to political parties, establish think tanks, and control media outlets.”

As I have mentioned many times before, there is no such a thing as Jewish conspiracy. It is all done in the open. In front of TV cameras from all over the world,  listed Israeli Propaganda Author as well as British Foreign Secretary  David Miliband gave the Israelis a green light to operation Cast Lead, suggesting in Sderot that “Israel should, above all, seek to protect its own citizens.” Miliband, in practice, made us all complicit in a colossal war crime committed by Israel. 

Staunch Zionist Lord Levy funded the Labour party when this party launched a criminal war that intended to erase the last pocket of Arabic resistance to Zionism. He also wasn’t at all shy about it. In the media, shameless Jewish Chronicle writers David Aaronovitch and Nick Cohen enthusiastically advocated the same criminal war in the name of ‘moral interventionism’.  Nick Cohen also founded the Euston Manifesto ‘think tank’ to support dubious Neocon ideologies on this side of the pond.

Levy, Cohen, Aaronovitch, Miliband are all in line with Saban’s formula: influence, donations, think tanks, media. Yet they don’t necessarily know Saban, and may never even have heard about the Zionist media mogul. It isn’t necessary. The fact is, Saban didn’t invent anything himself. His formula is deeply brewed in the Judaic religious tradition, Jewish culture and ideology.

United Against Purim

The Book of Esther is a biblical story that is the basis for the celebration of Purim, the most joyous Jewish festival. The book tells the story of an attempted Judeocide, but it also tells a story in which Jews manage to change their fate by means of political influence. In the story, the Jews do manage to rescue themselves and even to mete revenge, all through an infiltration into the corridors of power.

It is set in the third year of Ahasuerus, and the ruler is a king of Persia usually identified with Xerxes I. It is the story of a palace, a conspiracy, an attempted Judeocide and a brave and beautiful Jewish queen (Esther) who manages to save the Jewish people at the very last minute.

In the story, King Ahasuerus is married to Vashti, whom he repudiates after she rejects his offer to 'visit' him during a feast. Esther was selected from the candidates to be Ahasuerus's new wife. As the story progresses, Ahasuerus's Prime Minister Haman plots to have the king kill all the Jews without knowing that Esther is actually Jewish. Esther, together with her cousin Mordechai saves the day for their people. Esther warns Ahasuerus of Haman's murderous anti-Jewish plot. Haman and his sons are hanged on the fifty cubit gallows he had originally built for cousin Mordechai. As it happens, Mordechai takes Haman's place, becoming the Prime Minister. Ahasuerus's edict decreeing the murder of the Jews cannot be rescinded, so he issues another edict allowing the Jews to take up arms and kill their enemies, which they obviously do.

The moral of the Biblical story is rather clear. If Jews want to survive, they had better make their way into the corridors of power. They had better bond to the rulers of the world. With Esther, Mordechai and Purim in mind, AIPAC, Levy, ADL, David Milliband,  Saban and the notion of 'Jewish power' all appear to be an embodiment of a deep Biblical, tribal and cultural ideology.

However, here is the interesting twist. Although the story is presented as an historic tale, the historical accuracy of the Book of Esther is largely disputed by most modern Bible acholars and historians.  The lack of any clear corroboration of between any of the details of the story with what is known of Persian History from classical sources is what has led scholars to come to the conclusion that the story is mostly, or even totally fictional.

In other words, though the Jewish moral is clear, the attempted genocide is fictional. Seemingly, the Book of Esther sets its (Jewish) followers into a collective Pre-Traumatic Stress Disorder. It transforms a fictional fantasy of ‘destruction’ into a vivid ‘ideology of survival’. And indeed, some read the story as an allegory of quintessentially assimilated Jews who discover that they are targets of anti-Semitism, but are also in a position to save themselves and their fellow Jews.

The Book of Esther exists to form a coherent exilic tribal identity. It is there to plant an existential stress. It introduces the Holocaust mentality. Furthermore, it fixes the conditions which turn the Holocaust into reality. In hermeneutic terms, the text shapes the reality. In practice, it is the fearful mind the sets itself into a tragic trap of self-fulfilling  prophecy. The Shoa ideology matures into a real event.

Interestingly enough, the Book of Esther (in the Hebrew version) is one of only two books of the Bible that do not directly mention God (the other is Song of Songs). As in the case of Zionist secular ideology and the Holocaust religion, in the Book of Esther it is the Jews who believe in themselves, in their own power, in their uniqueness, in their sophistication, in their ability to influence, in their ability to take over kingdoms, and in their ability to save themselves. The Book of Esther is all about empowerment. It conveys the essence and metaphysics of Jewish power, as described by Haim Saban and performed by AIPAC.

Zionism and Democracy

Zionists seem to love democracy. The Jewish state outrageously claims to be ‘the only democracy in the Middle East’. Israel’s supporters around the world also advocate conflicts in the name of ‘democracy’. Why do they love democracy so much? I guess that the answer is devastatingly simple. Democracy is the ideal political platform for the Zionist influence merchant.

Democracy in its current state, especially within the English-Speaking world, is a political system that specializes in positioning inadequate, unqualified and dubious characters in leading positions. Two democratically elected leaders launched the illegal war in Iraq. Two democratically elected leaders marched the west into a financial disaster.

Running a state is not an easy task. It surely takes some talent and training. In the past, our elected political leaders were experienced politicians who had achieved something in their lives, whether in academia, industry, military or the financial world. In the past, our candidates for premiership had a curriculum vitae to share with us.  Apparently this is not the case anymore. Time after time we are left with a ‘democratic choice’ to give our vote to one or another laughable young failure. 

Time after time we see rising political ‘stars’, people have really achieved nothing in their lives, and who are unqualified to run even a corner shop, let alone a state.

You may want to ask yourself what qualification Blair or Bush possessed before they took the wheel in their hands. What experience does David Cameron have at his disposal in order to rescue Britain from total disaster on every possible front (financial, Iraq, Afghanistan, education, NHS and so on)? What kind of experience does David Miliband bring with him in the bid for the Labour premiership?  The answer is none. Our lives, our future and the future of our children are in the hands of ludicrous, clueless characters.   This may explain why Britain ended up with a hung Parliament.

Not a single leader in this country could convince the public that he had the talent, the integrity or even just a seed of true leadership.

But here is the news. As much as our elected leaders are totally clueless, the Sabans, the Lord Levys and the Wolfowitzes know exactly what to do. The Jewish religion, culture and ideology provides its followers with a narrative that saves us of the democratic limbo. The Sabans of this world are far from being amateurs or clueless; they know exactly what to do. They have been doing it for three thousand years.  They are the followers of Mordechai and Esther. The Sabans of the world know how to translate the moral of Purim into British and American practice.

Stuart Littlewood seems to wonder why Jews are over-represented. With Purim in mind, we may be able to suggest an answer. We are dealing here with an exilic cultural setting that preaches for lobbing, influence and control. Shaping politics, media and thoughts is the true meaning of the Book of Esther. Saban was either just genuine or foolish enough to admit it in public. However, the absence of a Book of Esther within the heart of Muslim or Hindu culture may explain why other marginal migrant groups in Britain are adequately and proportionally represented in British politics and media. Moreover, it is unlikely that this will change soon.  As opposed to most minorities and marginal identities in the West, Judaism is an exilic national  religion and the Jewish identity is a product of tribal indoctrination.

This may explain why emancipated Jews who live in Britain for generations as seculars still operate within Jewish political and social settings, and under Jewish political banners.

It is not a secret that a few Jews out there are very gifted. It is also rather obvious that some Jews are amongst the leading contributors to the humanist and universal discourse. However, this is not something we can say about Haim Saban, who openly desires to influence American foreign policy by means of donations, think tanks and media control. Similarly, David Milliband, who struggled to amend British universal Jurisdiction to make it easy for Israeli war criminal visit his kingdom, should not be regarded as a great  humanist either. Nick Cohen, who founded the Euston Manifesto, a think tank that promotes Zionist interests within British intellectual culture, cannot be regarded as an ethical icon. Amazingly enough, they all did it in the open.

If we care about peace and about our future generations, we must be brave enough to connect the dots.

The Mordechais and Esthers within our media, intellectual and  political life must be confronted.

We must unite against Purim.

 If the Labour party still carries any ethical responsibility, it should put David Milliband in his place.

If our parties want us to believe in their agendas, they had better learn to say “NO” to Zionist money and Jewish proxy donators.

If our media outlets want us to believe in their ‘impartiality’, they had better identify the enemy within.

How many Iraqis will need to die before the penny drops? How many peace activist should die in high seas before we all say ‘NO more’? 

How many British workers will need to lose their jobs, homes and hopes before we can allow ourselves to say “NO” to Zionist wars and their advocates in our midst?
River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

US Says Gaza Flotillas 'Irresponsible'


25/06/2010 The US State Department on Thursday released a statement against additional flotillas to the Gaza Strip, calling them "irresponsible."

The statement said: "Mechanisms exist for the transfer of humanitarian assistance to Gaza by member states and groups that want to do so. Direct delivery by sea is neither appropriate nor responsible, and certainly not effective, under the circumstances."

The statement added, "We, along with our partners in the Quartet, urge all those wishing to deliver goods to do so through established channels so that their cargo can be inspected and transferred via land crossings into Gaza. There is no need for unnecessary confrontations, and we, along with our partners in the Quartet, call on all parties to act responsibly in meeting the needs of the people of Gaza."

Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak on Wednesday discussed the matter with US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton. On Thursday he met with US officials, including Vice President Joe Biden, National Security Advisor James Jones, and senior officials in the US military and defense establishment.

Meanwhile, organizers of an Iranian flotilla to Gaza on Thursday announced that the ship that was meant to set sail on Sunday will not be departing.

In a statement the organization said the main reason for the cancellation was "the violent and inhumane attitude of the Zionist regime to humanitarian aid."

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian
Alexandria Demo for Khaled Said مظاهرة الشهيد خالد سعيد بالإسكندرية
June 25th, 2010 at 2:56pm | no comments yet
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This was supposed to be a “silent” protest… Forget it!

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

Israeli killing leaves Jerusalem children fatherless

Mel Frykberg, The Electronic Intifada, 25 June 2010
The family Ziad Julani left behind -- Moira with her three daughters; Hannah 17, Mirage, 15, and Yasmin 7. (Mel Frykberg/IPS)

RAMALLAH, occupied West Bank (IPS) - "Where is my daddy? Why is he not coming home? I want my daddy," sobs seven-year-old Yasmin, her big blue eyes filling with tears. She wakes up crying every night.

"My life only began when I met him. I will never meet such a wonderful man again," Yasmin's mother Moira Julani tells IPS.

While it is just another statistic for the Israelis, another Palestinian family has been torn apart. US citizens, 17-year-old Hannah, 15-year-old Mirage and seven-year-old Yasmin are now fatherless. Former Texan Moira, nee Reynolds, who left the US 17 years ago to start a new life with her husband in Jerusalem, has lost her soul mate.

Two weeks ago 41-year-old Ziad Julani from East Jerusalem was shot a number of times at close range in the head and abdomen by Israeli special forces as he lay wounded on his stomach on the ground. An ambulance took the critically injured man to hospital but he died shortly afterwards.

Israeli soldiers accused Ziad of deliberately trying to run over a couple of soldiers as they walked in the street.

Eyewitnesses, however, say that Julani's car accidentally swerved slightly when his windscreen was hit by a rock, after he unknowingly drove into the middle of a clash between stone-throwing Palestinian youngsters and Israeli soldiers.

Two soldiers, who were slightly injured, and two of their comrades opened fire on Julani's car, wounding him in the shoulder. The panicked Julani drove a short distance further until he reached a dead-end road.

According to testimony compiled by the Jerusalem Centre for Social and Economic Rights, Julani then got out of his car. He was shot again several times by four special forces police who had pursued him, before he collapsed to the ground.

One of the policemen then came up and shot the critically wounded man again at close range in both sides of the head and in the abdomen before kicking him.

Witnesses who tried to help Julani were beaten back with clubs, with one requiring 20 stitches to his head. Other bystanders were wounded, including a five-year-old girl, when police and soldiers sprayed onlookers with rubber- coated steel bullets.

The Israeli authorities accused Ziad of attempting to perpetrate a "terrorist attack" and of having a "criminal record."

"Ziad was roughed up about a month ago by Israeli soldiers as he tried to pray at Jerusalem's Al-Aqsa Mosque. He was held temporarily for a couple of hours, then released, and no charges were laid. Maybe one of these soldiers had a grudge against my husband," Julani tells IPS.

"He was not involved in politics and was not affiliated with any political group. He was a peaceful man with a cosmopolitan background who had lived in Switzerland as a child and studied pharmaceuticals in the US."

"On the morning he was killed he had gone to pray at al-Aqsa and had planned to later take the family out on a trip to the Dead Sea."

Occupied East Jerusalem has become a boiling cauldron of anger and resentment as Israel's Judaization of the eastern part of the city increasingly involves the destruction of Palestinian homes, and throwing Palestinian families on to the street to make way for illegal Israeli settlers.

In the rising tension several Palestinians have carried out attacks on Israelis in West Jerusalem using vehicles and bulldozers, killing several and wounding others.

The Israeli authorities have used these incidents to assert "self-defense" in the increasing numbers of cases where unarmed Palestinians have been shot dead by security forces at close range despite presenting no threat.

At the beginning of the year a media blackout was imposed on the house arrest of Israeli journalist Anat Kamm after she secretly copied Israeli army documents while she was doing her military service.

The documents outlined how Israeli hit squads were assassinating Palestinian activists, some of them unarmed, instead of arresting them, in flagrant violation of an Israeli high court ruling. Kamm has been accused of treason.

IPS has reported a number of cases in which young Palestinian men in the West Bank died after they were shot in the back and in the head. The Israeli army initially claimed they had used non-lethal ammunition, and had acted in "self- defense" after they were "attacked."

Later, however, army investigations conceded that live fire was used and that in some of the cases the soldiers involved had used "excessive force."

Turkish autopsies carried out on the nine activists shot dead on the Mavi Marmara as it tried to deliver aid to Gaza several weeks ago also indicate that a number of the dead were shot several times in the head at close range as part of Israel's "confirm kill" policy.

The Israeli security forces have become accustomed to impunity when it comes to the killing of Palestinians under dubious circumstances.

"We are asking for an independent investigation into my husband's killing. We don't want the Israeli security forces investigating themselves," says Julani.

Since the shooting of Ziad Israeli security officials have arrested witnesses who filmed the killing and confiscated their recording equipment. Street camera footage has been removed.

All rights reserved, IPS -- Inter Press Service (2010). Total or partial publication, retransmission or sale forbidden.