Saturday, 2 July 2011

Anees Naqqash: Israeli Hands behind STL Indictment Clear

Hussein Assi

Anees Naqqash
  • Indictment Turned to Be Tool with Political Timing;
  • Tribunal’s Final Formula in Policy Statement ‘Smart;’
  • March 14 Scenarios: Assailing Gov’t… Mobilizing People;
  • Sanctions Need another Resolution… Based on Balances;
  • Non-Cooperation Not the Same as Failing to Cooperate;
  • All Options Remain Open, including Street Game.

In an exclusive interview with Al-Manar Website, Naqqash said the March 14 bloc didn’t find any opposition tool other than the indictment, expressing beliefs that the bloc would attack the government during the upcoming stage and accuse it of protecting the criminals, in an attempt to change the current majority.

Naqqash did not rule out the possibility that March 14 could resort to mobilization and sedition during the upcoming stage. However, he assured the Resistance had overcame more difficult stages in the July 2006 war, yet it achieved victory.

He praised the final formula related to the international tribunal in the government’s policy statement, and believed it offered a ‘smart formula’ which gives what should be given without blindly complying with the international resolutions.


In his interview with Al-Manar Website, Naqqash analyzed the timing of the indictment. “This proved that the party concerned with the tribunal deals with STL indictment as a political tool to affect the political scene in one sense or another,” he said.
Al-AMAN Coordinator emphasized the indictment was almost ready when former PM Saad Hariri was still presiding over the Lebanese cabinet, but noted they (new opposition and its allies) only resorted to it recently, after Hariri’s government collapsed and the new government was to finalize its policy statement.
“Hence, the indictment was released to pressure the government and embarrass the Lebanese scene,” he added.
Detliv Mehlis
Naqqash also noted the indictment’s local and international sponsors were hoping it could affect both the Syrian and Lebanese scenes.
According to this analysis, Naqqash spoke of an indirect interference to increase tension in the region through the indictment.
Answering a question on whether he was hinting there were Israeli hands behind the indictment, Naqqash noted the Israelis were the first to publish the so-called suspects’ names, in addition to the indictment’s full details.

“This is another proof that the Israelis - at least - took part in the indictment-making process,” he pointed out.


Naqqash said that the internal and external harmony in relation to the indictment was clear. He explained that March 14 would assail the government in the upcoming phase and accuse it of protecting Hariri’s assassination “perpetrators” and obstructing the international justice process.
While recalling that policy of March 14, as well as that of former PM Fouad Saniora, were based upon internationalizing the Lebanese cause, Naqqash noted that this bloc was calling for the full implementation of international resolutions unconditionally. He warned that what was plotted for Lebanon in this regard presented another form of mandate.


Answering a question on whether there was any specific plan to internationalize the Lebanese cause in case the Lebanon did not comply with the international arrest warrants, Naqqash stressed that the intention to impose sanctions against the country needs a new international resolution to be implemented.

“Such resolution cannot be guaranteed for any side and it depends on the balance of powers within the United Nations Security Council (UNSC),” he said.

Commenting on reports about the Lebanese government’s ability to break international commitments, Naqqash stressed the need to distinguish between non-cooperation and failure to cooperate.

“Non-cooperation with the tribunal differs from the government’s failure to cooperate,” he went on to say, adding “the government won’t say it doesn’t want to cooperate with the tribunal but that it is not able to cooperate.”


Al-AMAN Coordinator admitted, meanwhile, the possibility of the situation collapse on ground remains available.
He emphasized, however, that experience has proved the futility of betting on international powers to confront the Resistance.
“The whole world conspired against the Resistance in July 2006. They urged it to free the two Zionist detained soldiers. However, the balance of powers did not allow them to achieve their goals. The same scenario is repeating itself today in one sense or another. Yet, again, no one will be able to change the balances,” Naqqash stressed.
Yet, he said that all options remain open, but March 14 should perceive that the other bloc also has its own popularity, and that it should be ready anytime. “All things would be evaluated at the appropriate time,” he said.


Naqqash hailed as a ‘smart formula’ the final draft adopted by the cabinet in relation to the Special Tribunal for Lebanon.

"The government confirms that it greatly respects international resolutions, seeks for achieving justice, and follows the STL progress, which had been established in principle for truth and justice away from politicization or retaliation, as long as it (STL) does not negatively affect Lebanon's stability and civil peace," the statement read.

Naqqash said the government gave, through this formula, what should be given without blindly complying with the resolutions.

He praised as well the addition made by the government when it granted priority to the country’s stability and civil peace.

Arabic version

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

Pack Journalism Anti-Gaddafi Propaganda

by Stephen Lendman

Western media, especially America’s, mostly ignore multiple Obama wars (including against Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia), focusing mainly on promoting terror bombing Libya, slaughtering civilians to save them.

Ongoing since March 19, killing and destruction continue daily. NATO’s second in command, US Admiral Samuel Locklear, told Congress that Washington wants Gaddafi assassinated. Earlier, one of his sons and three grandchildren were murdered, as well as around 40 Libyan imans, attending a peace conference to end the carnage. Ruthlessly, Obama, the peace candidate, wants it continued, claiming lawless executive privilege to do it.

On the Progressive Radio News Hour, live Tripoli reports discussed hospitals, schools, residential homes, and other non-military targets bombed, civilians killed, anti-NATO anger, and growing popular Gaddafi support, including a million Libyans rallying in Tripoli on his behalf.

On air, Cynthia McKinney said she saw it all, including fishermen killed at sea, food and medicine imports blocked, evidence that mercenary rebels murdered, tortured, harassed and raped dark-skinned residents like herself, and daily terror bombings – war crimes by any standard to conquer, colonize and plunder Libya for profit and greater regional control.

Like McKinney and other Progressive Radio guests, Tripoli-based Western journalists also witness NATO crimes. Nonetheless, their reports airbrush them, providing a sanitized version of war, detached from reality they conceal, no matter the daily horror enough to give anyone nightmares and second thoughts about who’s right and wrong in this conflict.

Is there any doubt? Does it take keen perceptiveness to know? Can human misery be blocked in turning out daily copy? Apparently so, ignoring professional standards, including the Society of Professional Journalists’ Code of Ethics Preamble, stating:
“….public enlightenment is the forerunner of justice and the foundation of democracy. The duty of the journalist is to further those ends by seeking truth and providing a fair and comprehensive account of events and issues. Conscientious journalists from all media and specialties strive to serve the public with thoroughness and honesty. Professional integrity is the cornerstone of a journalist’s credibility.”
In addition, the Radio-Television News Directors Association Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct stresses public trust, credibility, accuracy, truth, “reporting anything known to be false,” avoiding bias, fairness, integrity, independence, accountability, and meeting their “responsibility to the profession of electronic journalism.”

Clearly major media reporting fails on all counts, serving power at the expense of principle and honor, performing like lapdogs, not providers of real news, information and analysis. Those trying it, in fact, are fired, media bosses intolerant of anything in print or on air contrary to mainstream consensus, supporting wealth and privilege, not truth, integrity and honor.

As a result, America’s media promote war, including bloodlust killing and destruction, prettifying it to seem just, no matter how much lying, distortion, and deceit it takes to do it. It comes with the territory.

For example, Kareem Fahim’s June 30 New York Times article headlined, “Tripoli Refugees Stream Into Libya’s Mountains,” saying:
Ignoring reality, he claims “people (are) fleeing Tripoli,” hundreds leaving to escape “the dreaded People’s Guard carr(ying) long lists of wanted men….Their numbers – more than a hundred families on a recent day alone – suggest a quickening exodus from the capital.” His source – mercenary rebels providing falsified information, not verified accounts from independent sources.

Instead, Fahim quoted a man named Ali Mohammed Rahaybi, saying “he saw signs of resistance to (Gaddafi’s) rule everywhere: in graffiti on schools, at occasional demonstrations, and in the flags drawn on neighborhood walls.”

Apparently he didn’t notice one million pro-Gaddafi Libyans, rallying in Tripoli for him. No Times report covered, or even mentioned, what was too obvious to miss. Instead, Fahim, other Times writers, and all major media ones provide managed news propaganda, violating their profession’s ethical code that’s required to keep their jobs.

A same day Times editorial headlined, “The Libya Campaign,” saying:
“Four months into the NATO air campaign, (Gaddafi’s still) protected by loyalists and mercenaries.” “Loyalists?:” yes, a growing majority of Libyans. “Mercenaries?:” in fact, those there are Western recruited cutthroats, armed, trained, funded and directed to ravage, not liberate, Libya for NATO.
Nonetheless, the editorial claims if Gaddafi “ha(s) his way, thousands more Libyans will die. The credibility of NATO would also be severely damaged. (Gaddafi), who has a long history of sponsoring international terrorism, is not one to let bygones be bygones.”

In fact, most Libyans support him, more than ever now against NATO terror bombings, Times hyperbole notwithstanding. Moreover, no humanitarian crisis or mass slaughter happened until America, Britain, France, and other co-conspirators showed up, what no Times editorial or report explains.

This one says “signs of revolt” are evident – against NATO, not Gaddafi. Nonetheless, Times editors say “Washington and NATO must stand firmly with the rebels and reject any solution that does not involve the swift ouster of (Gaddafi) and real freedom for Libyans.”

Omitted was saying only Libyans, (not Washington, NATO, or Times editors), may decide who rules their country. For sure, they abhor the secretive, Western controlled Interim Transitional National Council and their cutthroat mercenary killers, but don’t expect America’s “newspaper of record” to explain.

Nor does Al Jazeera (AJE), waging war on Gaddafi with falsified reports like a June 29 one headlined, “Libya: War and rape,” suggesting:
Gaddafi’s forces “used rape as a weapon.” Another on June 9 headlined, “Analysis: “Gaddafi’s ‘rape weapon,’ ” saying:
International Criminal Court chief prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo “said that he has evidence that (Gaddafi) ordered his soldiers to use rape as a weapon of war.” He lied, but AJE didn’t check and report accurately.

In March, AJE claimed Gaddafi supplied his forces with Viagra, saying it was found in their pockets in burned out tanks. The report surfaced in an interview with Suleiman Refadi, a Libyan doctor who claimed, “I have seen Viagra (and) condoms” as part of Gaddafi’s sexual violence campaign.
In fact, Human Rights Watch (HRW) interviewed him earlier, discounting his claims for lacking supportive evidence, including victims and/or witnesses. Moreover, HRW’s Liesel Gerntholtz confirmed that, “We have not been able to find evidence.”

In April, however, Washington’s UN ambassador Susan Rice told Security Council members in a closed door meeting the same thing, saying it’s to encourage mass rape with no corroborating evidence whatever to prove it.

She lied, based on assessments from other human rights organizations, including Amnesty International (AI), saying its investigation found no evidence that Gaddafi forces committed rapes.
Moreover, AI learned that rebel forces knowingly made bogus claims based on falsified evidence, showing Rice ICC prosecutor Moreno-Ocampo, and Hillary Clinton lied, saying, “Rape, physical intimidation, sexual harassment, and even so-called ‘virginity tests’ have taken place in countries throughout the region,” including in Libya.

AI’s Donatella Rovera disputed allegations, saying, “we have not found any evidence or a single victim of rape or a doctor who knew about somebody being raped.” In fact, the entire story was fabricated.

AI also found no evidence that Gaddafi is using African mercenaries against rebels, Rovera saying, “The politicians (keep) talking about mercenaries, which inflamed public opinion and the myth has continued” about sub-Saharan Africans in Libya to work, not fight.

Last March, however, Al Jazeera reported the mercenary hoax, citing rebel leader lies instead of investigating and presenting corroborated facts, what many of its accounts fail to do, supporting NATO’s imperial war.

Overall AJE stops short of being anti-imperialist, notably in its pro-Western Libya and Syria reporting, destroying its residual goodwill in the process. Moreover, it downplayed anti-government Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) state demonstrations and/or uprisings, notably in Bahrain with suggestions they’re linked to Iran.

On March 20, Financial Times writers Roula Khalaf and Abeer Allam headlined, “Al-Jazeera’s backing is key for coalition,” saying:
AJE’s “owners, the Qatari royal family (hosting America’s CENTCOM Doha forward headquarters), are among those backing” NATO’s Libya war. So does the Saudi monarchy and its media mouthpiece Al-Arabiya, airing anti-Gaddafi propaganda like AJE, despite Arab street opposition, exposing both operations as pro-Western tools, not reliable news, information and analysis.

Professor As’ad AbuKhalil agrees, recently saying AJE’s “sinister” regional role got “worse, much worse. Yesterday, I was seething all day because it could not break from its annoying, obsessive non-stop (Libya) coverage to report the Israeli murder of Palestinian children.” Instead it focused on Western bombing “successes.”

“It seems that (AJE) now operates according to the Western standards by which Israeli victims are more precious than Palestinian” or Libyan ones, killed by IDF, Pentagon, and NATO terrorism.
As a result, AJE’s pro-Western stance destroys whatever past credibility it had, an awareness growing numbers regionally and elsewhere understand and tune out.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at Also visit his blog 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. He is also the author of “How Wall Street Fleeces America

The Progressive News Hour

Lizzie Phalen is a journalist/activist, supporting people’s struggles globally against US/Western imperialism.
She spent time in Tripoli, may go back, and will discuss what she saw firsthand, including bombing civilian targets and killing noncombatants.
Related Video

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

Amazing Job: London Rhymes with Palestine for OneWorld

DateSaturday, July 2, 2011 at 9:31AM AuthorGilad Atzmon


Our facebook page -
Follow us on twitter -!/londonrhymes

With many thanks to all who contributed in the making of this video and the solidarity received.

In support of the OneWorld single 'Freedom for Palestine', London Rhymes with Palestine hit the streets of London to raise awareness and encourage the public to download this single.

To get this single into the UK charts it needs to be downloaded between now and 9th July 2011 from HMVdigital or Itunes. The single costs 79p and takes two minutes to download.

There are many positive aspects of the single which include sending a clear message to the UK Government; that the UK Civil Society calls for an end to Israeli occupation and Freedom for Palestine. This single also challenges the current regime of media censorship and frigidity/partiality not to mention the injustice in Palestine.

Helpful links:
River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

Helen Thomas Does Zion

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

Demystifying 9/11: Israel and the Tactics of Mistake — Alan Sabrosky

by Dr. Alan Sabrosky / My Catbird Seat

Many years ago I read a fascinating discussion of the “tactics of mistake.” This essentially entailed using a target’s prejudices and preconceptions to mislead them as to the origin and intent of the attack, entrapping them in a tactical situation that later worked to the attacker’s strategic advantage.

This is what unfolded in the 9/11 attacks that led us into the matrix of wars and conflicts, present (Afghanistan and Iraq), planned (Iran and Syria) and projected (Jordan and Egypt), that benefit Israel and no other country — although I concede that many private contractors and politicians are doing very well for themselves out of the death and misery of others.
I am also absolutely certain as a strategic analyst that 9/11 itself, from which all else flows, was a classic Mossad-orchestrated operation. But Mossad did not do it alone. They needed local help within America (and perhaps elsewhere) and they had it, principally from some alumni of PNAC (the misnamed Project for a New American Century) and their affiliates within and outside of the US Government (USG), who in the 9/11 attacks got the “catalytic event” they needed and craved to take the US to war on Israel’s behalf, only eight months after coming into office.

Genesis of the Deception

That was not how it seemed at first, of course. Lists of names and associations of the alleged hijackers quickly surfaced in official US accounts and mainstream media (MSM) reports, pointing to Osama bin Laden and his Al-Qaeda group, then largely in Afghanistan. Bin Laden denied responsibility, saying in effect that while he thanked Allah that the attacks had occurred, he had not done it, but the US demanded that the Taliban governing Afghanistan turn him over to the US. The Taliban response was reasonable: “Show us the evidence he did it and we’ll give him to you.” But the US brushed it off and attacked. Why? Because it had no convincing evidence, and never would — even on the eve of his public death in 2011, the FBI did not include 9/11 on his internet-based “Most Wanted” charge sheet.

As the war in Afghanistan for very dubious reasons extended into a war in Iraq for even more specious ones, the essential USG view of 9/11 became embedded in the public ethos. The 9/11 Commission Report, despite being handicapped when it was prepared and later revealed to have been deeply flawed, still appeared as the basic reference work on the attacks. Details may have been compromised, but the prevailing view was that 19 Arab hijackers had flown four planes into three buildings and one crash site, and that was the end of it. This was the position taken by the Bush Administration in 2001, and reaffirmed a decade later by the Obama Administration. Politicians of every stripe, most pundits and rafts of Protestant pastors (mainly evangelical) added their endorsements.

Neither I nor most Americans had any particular reason to doubt the veracity of these claims, then or later. Nonetheless, I had strong suspicions that something was very wrong with the official US account of the tragedy only weeks after the incident, while responding to a request from a local journalist for background information. Too much made no sense whatsoever: warnings after the fact when there should have been no warnings, bizarre misbehavior by the alleged hijackers that ran counter to both the mission and their faith, skills required that far exceeded any skills the named hijackers themselves could ever have possessed for the mission, and especially the total absence of any recognition for what they had done from anyone except their supposed victims – something without precedent for actions of the sort that supposedly happened on 9/11. These and similar discontinuities reinforced my suspicion that something in the entire exercise was rotten to the core.

Potentially far more significant than individual musings was the gradual appearance of dissent that eventually crystallized in the so-called “9/11 Truth” movement, which rapidly proliferated into scores of major and many minor organizations and websites dissecting the attacks, the Commission report, the motivations and agendas of assorted elected and appointed officials, and alternatives to the orthodox view. But “9/11 Truthers” have been doing their version of the Maoist “Hundred Flowers” Campaign, throwing out so many different assessments of so many different aspects of so many different issues that the core message has been lost. Nor is it a matter of too little evidence invalidating the USG position on 9/11 being available, but too much to permit a clear focus on what happened (so many trees no one can really see the forest).

Mind you, it isn’t that what has been presented is irrelevant or even necessarily wrong, although some pretty bizarre theses have been tossed around along with a good deal of thoughtful and balanced work. A substantial segment also have resisted closure under any circumstances – especially when Israel came into the equation in any way – thus keeping the rhetorical pot boiling inconclusively, more than a few for reasons that could not withstand close scrutiny as to their affiliation and motivation.

Critiquing the 9/11 Critique

The real difficulty with much, but not all, of the effort to critique and question the official US position on 9/11 is that the “9/11 Truth” proponents have been unable to communicate their concerns – much less any conclusions – to the general public in any significant way. So much of the discussion is only partially comprehensible to some within the movement, largely unknown to the general US public, and so complicated in all its dimensions to those who do become aware of it that they fail to follow up on the arguments. It is as if critics of the official position on 9/11 have been attempting to try the case in court before they have even gotten an indictment – the analytical equivalent of putting the argumentative cart before the public horse of the need to rethink the issue, thereby creating an evidentiary Gordian Knot of sorts.
This analogy has long struck me as an appropriate way of rethinking our approach to the 9/11 controversy. It is not that the issue isn’t complex – it is, in ever so many ways, and that complexity would have to be addressed at some point, but there is no need to confuse the public with its complexity at the very beginning.

Remember that at least in the US, the evidence and voting requirements are very different in a grand jury which can issue an indictment, than they are in a petit jury that actually tries the case. The latter needs proof of guilt; but the former only needs sufficient indication that a specific crime may have been committed, and that the accused may have done it. That is where we need to go, and where I will take this argument: to focus on those essentials necessary for an indictment in a way that will be understandable and credible to a reasonably intelligent person without requiring them to have the skills of (e.g.) a civil engineer or an aviator.

Peeling Away the Layered Details

There are so many flaws in the official US Government’s position on 9/11 that it is sometimes difficult to know just where to start. For example, the miraculous survival of a passport, used to identify one of the hijackers, which somehow worked its way through the aircraft’s impact, explosion, fire, and an 800-plus foot free-fall to be found by a well-dressed man and given to a New York City police detective at the base of the twin towers is a standout. The superstar-like ability of named pilots to go from the controls of a single-engine propeller-driven light plane to the cockpit of a passenger airliner and do anything except put it into the ground within a minute of turning off the autopilot is another – who would ever have thought that the Microsoft Flight Simulator program was so superlative? And the explanations given for the multiple failures of NORAD (the North American Air Defense Command) to have fighters on all four planes within minutes of their straying off course are individually dubious and collectively preposterous – only in Hollywood would they have any credence, perhaps because that is where they originated.

The debate on these and many other points, and the implications thereof, has been extensive and sometimes ferocious, even if not particularly effective. What is not open to debate, however, is that WTC-7 — the third tower to collapse that day, and the only one not hit by a plane — absolutely was brought down by a controlled demolition, as anyone not trying to shield the attackers knows from a real-time video of its collapse. That is, WTC-7 went straight down into its own footprint in seconds without any visible catastrophic external trauma, which means only some catastrophic internal trauma could have brought it down. And if it had been wired for a controlled demolition, then so were the other towers (WTC-1 and WTC-2) that collapsed. That gives the plane impacts a gruesome cosmetic role, designed explicitly to conceal the true cause of the collapse of the buildings, while shocking the public into something akin to numbness. Collapse of WTC-7

The case of WTC-7 has long been known to critics of the US government position on 9/11. What does not seem to have been fully appreciated, at least at first (this is changing somewhat now), is that it is not merely “an” issue, but the single issue that can be used simply, directly to the American public, and effectively to discredit the US Government’s case, and thus its rationale for so many fallacies and misdeeds: not only needless foreign wars (Afghanistan being a “pump-priming” conflict to get the US into war in the region, and to lay the groundwork for later wars), but a substantial infringement of American civil liberties under the misbegotten “Patriot Act,” the unbelievably widespread acceptance of torture (including a technique openly named “Palestinian Hanging,” which assuredly did not originate in Boston and says something about Israeli habits), and the creation of known and secret prisons and detention centers in various countries.

Second only to the actual controlled demolition of WTC-7, and supplementing the thesis that with or without impacting aircraft the buildings were brought down by other means, is extensive extensive audio-visual evidence on 9/11 while the Twin Towers were still standing from what became “Ground Zero.” This evidence includes real-time clips of secondary explosions at ground level in both WTC-1 and WTC-2 (you can hear the detonations and see smoke and debris billowing out), reports on many networks of those explosions and of strange vans inside and around those buildings prior to the secondary explosions, reports from EMTs (Emergency Medical Technicians) of the same thing and of people inside and around the lobbies of those buildings who were not emergency personal and were not fleeing the disaster – all of this on 9/11 and widely reported as it happened that same day. 9/11: as it happened on the ground

And a third element, building on the above and adding its own dimension, is the presence of a number of (mostly white) vans owned – as far as can be determined, given the extent to which information on them and the people with them has disappeared from the public record – by an Israeli company (or rather a company owned by an Israeli, to be precise) in New Jersey. Some of these vans were regularly around the World Trade Center itself. But two stand out, and need to be examined in some detail for their significance to be appreciated.
First, Bergen, NJ residents saw five people on a white van filming the attacks and visibly celebrating. They had set up their cameras before the first plane hit. Police arrested them. All were Israelis (now referred to as the “dancing Israelis”). Bomb-sniffing dogs reacted as if they had detected explosives, although officers were unable to find anything. The FBI seized the van for further testing. All five were later released at the instigation of Israeli & American Jewish leaders, some in the US Government. Details are still classified. This incident quickly disappeared from the mainstream media, following a brief mention in the New York Times three days after the attacks, that was not followed up.

A second van was stopped on the approaches to the George Washington Bridge. As CBS’s Dan Rather said in his live report: “Two suspects are in FBI custody after a truckload of explosives were discovered around the George Washington Bridge. That bridge links New York to New Jersey over the Hudson River. Whether the discovery of those explosives had anything to do with other events today is unclear, but the FBI, has two suspects in hand, said the truckload of explosives, enough explosives were in the truck to do great damage to the George Washington Bridge…“ Those suspects –also Israelis — and the incident then seem to have disappeared from the public record and mainstream media “examinations” of 9/11, just like discussions of the first van, the secondary explosions at ground level within WTC-1 and WTC-2, and the precipitous collapse into its own footprint of WTC-7.

The combined impact of these and many other factors is both chilling and compelling. Think of it: Secondary explosions at ground level where there should be no secondary explosions. The catastrophic collapse of the 47-story WTC-7 into its own footprint in seconds, without any significant external trauma, where by rights there should have been no collapse. Vans with targeting maps, explosives or traces thereof, cameras pre-positioned to film the World Trade Center, and especially Israelis with those vans where there should have been no Israelis present with any of those things in those places at that time.

Any of these matters ought to have been sufficient to stimulate a searching re-examination of the official USG interpretation of 9/11, and especially of the actual or putative role of Al-Qaeda in it. The vans alone pointed away from Al-Qaeda, unless one assumed that Al-Qaeda was an Israeli front, or that Mossad at a minimum had run a parallel and more murderous operation to whatever Al-Qaeda may have done. What is fascinating is how little impact it has had on public awareness of the details of 9/11, much less official US policy based on it. A “cloak of silence” had descended over any official or mainstream media discussions of 9/11 that did not conform to the official interpretation, thereby keeping such dissonance from the general public.

The Cloak of Silence Over 9/11

There have been three elements to the “cloak of silence” covering efforts to expose the failings of the official US position on 9/11 to the public. One is within the Executive Branch. Another is within the Congress. And the third is the mainstream media (MSM).

The first is not at all surprising, as so many of its key members (and especially its so-called “neo-conservatives”) were the authors of the “19 named Arabs in 4 planes” thesis, and its de facto apologists on the professional staff of the 9/11 Commission. Indeed, many of them had a vested personal and professional interest in maintaining the validity of the official position.
A surprising number had been on the strongly pro-Israel Project for a New American Century (PNAC) when it published a report asserting that some “catalytic event” akin to the Pearl Harbor would be needed to move the US in the direction they desired (and which would be of enormous benefit to Israel). The 9/11 attacks gave them their catalytic event, and they visibly capitalized on that opportunity. Many were Jewish, often with dual US-Israeli citizenship and a controlling commitment to Israel. All were Israeli partisans. And it took no great inferential leap to understand that a US consumed with anti-Arab and anti-Muslim rage would inevitably and inexorably do things that would directly or indirectly benefit Israel – which, of course, is precisely what has happened over the past decade.

Overtly more surprising was Congressional acceptance of the official explanation, or rather the lack of searching inquiries into it and the events of 9/11, at least by the Democrats. But in reality, that wasn’t at all surprising. It was not just that Administration officials were essentially “speaking with one voice” on this issue, or that the Republicans in the Senate at least could have kept Democrats from holding hearings, at least in the beginning. It is that while many (especially Democrats) came to question later the war in Iraq, and some more belatedly the war in Afghanistan, there was and remains no discernable legislative effort to delve into the details of 9/11 – and especially the numerous contradictions, inconsistencies and unbelievable aspects in the official explanation. This is a predictable outcome of a substantial lobbying effort by AIPAC (the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee) here, “encouraging” Senators and Representatives of both parties to do in this matter what they do best – nothing – and punishing the handful who balked by marginalizing their efforts while in office, and working successfully for their electoral defeat later.

Overlapping these two branches, and a critical element in the Zionist control of the US Government that is sometimes overlooked, is their domination of the political appointment and confirmation process. The White House Personnel Office has been largely dominated by them at least since 1980, and perhaps before, thereby reducing the likelihood that people unfriendly to Israel or unsupportive of its “ways and means” will be nominated in the first place. The vetting of nominees by key organized Jewish groups in the US before they go before the US Senate for their confirmation hearings has also been a fixture of this process for decades, as Ha’aretz (an Israeli newspaper) among many others has pointed out, and forces otherwise excellent nominees to withdraw if said Jewish groups find them to be unsuitable. And the leverage of AIPAC in the US Senate is in this respect crucial: anyone AIPAC wants confirmed will be confirmed, and anyone who manages to reach that point and is not acceptable to AIPAC doesn’t stand a chance.

This is why under both Republicans and Democrats, the staffs in and around the President and the Vice-President, the National Security Council, the State Department and the Defense Department (among others) look the way they do. Many are Jewish and actively Zionist, often with dual US-Israeli citizenship (not that the absence of an Israeli passport matters all that much to the others). Some are Christian Zionists who need no persuading to take the pro-Israel positions they do – I can only shudder to think of the type of a staff and appointments that would come from a president like Michele Bachmann or Mike Huckabee. Others are what the communists used to call “useful idiots,” frequently intelligent people like Condoleeza Rice or John Bolton who have made their own Faustian bargain in the furtherance of their own careers. And the rest of us live with the consequences of all of them, not least of which was 9/11 and the ensuing wars.

But it is the role of the largely Zionist-owned mainstream media (MSM) in allowing the official US government view of 9/11 to go virtually unchallenged that is most fascinating, and has been most effective in letting any possible public debate on 9/11 largely lie fallow. This was contrary to its entire post-Vietnam (and especially post-Pentagon Papers/post-Watergate) ethos, which put investigative journalism on a pedestal and made a fetish of investigating and exposing corporate and government wrong-doing, both for profits and for professional advancement. Remember, that at least since the publication of the so-called “Pentagon Papers” during the Vietnam War, the normal instinct of the MSM is to investigate and to reveal, unless that discloses Israeli misconduct or reflects negatively on Israel, in which case its virtually primeval instinct is to conceal and to protect.

The MSM’s normal inquisitorial impulse was not in evidence in the case of 9/11. This is because critical inquiries into 9/11 have been largely ignored or repressed by the MSM — which would not do that if its largely Zionist ownership did not know, suspect or fear that an exposed evidentiary trail would lead, in whole or in part, directly or indirectly to Israel. Indeed, if the evidentiary trail had seemed to lead to (e.g.) Iran instead of Israel, or if its provenance was even moderately uncertain, the MSM would have vociferously shredded the USG case long ago, and the “9/11 Truth” movement would find its views presented on the front pages of major newspapers and highlighted in favorable TV/radio broadcasts.

That this did not happen quickly becomes clear as one examines the MSM’s approach to 9/11. Its role has been threefold: : (a) disinformation – to affirm, or at least not openly question, the USG case; (b) distraction – to direct attention away from Israel and the PNAC/neo-cons; and (c) doubt – to ignore or ridicule those who question the official US case. What people choose to conceal speaks volumes about the dynamics of the situation, and the end result of MSM actions has been the fabrication of an aura of disbelief and doubt where there should be none.

This process began almost immediately. Dramatic and revealing real-time reports about the details of the attacks appeared on 9/11, including many that did not directly involve the hijacked airliners. Over the next few days, some local papers and stations in the area still were reporting dissonant events (e.g., the van with the “dancing Israelis”). But within a week, most dissonance was gone or relegated to inside pages and their electronic equivalents, especially anything pertaining to WTC-7, whose collapse became a non-event, or the presence of Israelis in the vans and elsewhere, as the US Government’s propaganda machine – aided actively by most of the MSM – went into high gear first against Al-Qaeda and then in support of the invasion of Afghanistan.

The Path to 9/11

The provenance of the 9/11 attacks becomes even clearer once they are examined as a classic exercise in covert operations. Generally speaking, there are three requirements for evaluating the origin and prospects for success of all covert intelligence operations: (a) motivation, (b) expertise, and (c) local support for access to the target and post-attack evasion and escape.
Let us look first at motivation. It is a bitter commentary on how far the US has gone from its strategic requirements and its own principles that so many movements and governments around the world not only dislike and distrust the US, but hate it with a passion and with better cause than I care to think about. I recently came across a remark by a Jesuit priest to the effect that “Every time I hear that Israel is America’s only friend in the Middle East, I remember that before Israel, America had no enemies in the Middle East” – a point well worth remembering.

But the interesting thing about the assorted movements and governments that might have an actual or perceived reason to do harm to the US, is that all but one has had a negative incentive to do that: to punish the US for some actual or assumed failings or misdeeds. The one exception is Israel. It has no negative incentives at all (I exclude some real fringe fanatics), simply because without US aid and diplomatic support, it would find itself in even worse straits than did apartheid-era South Africa, and with better cause. But it is the one state with a positive incentive, if it believed it could get away with it, which is to enrage the American public against Muslims generally and Arabs in particular, and to make the US an active belligerent in the region – spending American lives and treasure in the service of Israel’s interests.

Expertise is different and more diffuse. There are many intelligence and special operations forces in the world with the expertise to wire large urban structures for a controlled demolition. There are many combat engineer units in many countries that could do the same thing. And there are many private firms that specialize in them as well. Yet neither Al-Qaeda as an organization, nor any of its known affiliates – much less the 19 named Arabs supposedly on those four planes – possessed that expertise, or anything even remotely close to it; had they done so, the Green Zone in Baghdad would have been a pile of rubble.
But it is local support that is the crucial determinant. All well-crafted covert operations require some measure of local support, official or unofficial, unless the target area is so irredeemably hostile that none is available. Any domestic or foreign intelligence agency targeting the WTC would absolutely have required it, and Mossad would be better placed than any other to access such support for entry, access, execution and escape.

This is especially true, given the security company overseeing the WTC. CIA and/or Defense Department personnel (which is not the same as the CIA or the Defense Department as organizations) could have had access, but only if that had Israeli endorsement – one does not casually cut open walls, implant explosives, run cables and wire everything together in buildings with state-of-the-art electronic surveillance and 24/7 on-site security. Mossad would have no such need for those niceties, given the ownership of the WTC and the management of the company overseeing its security. Remember that we are not talking about large numbers of people in any case: given time to prepare the three buildings and protection from detection, as few as a dozen could have sufficed, a number small enough to be effectively unnoticed in a large organization.

Retrospect and Prospect

So let us recapitulate the basic conclusions of this analysis. First, the core official US Government position on 9/11 is that any and all aspects of it are directly attributable to 19 named Arabs on 4 planes, conducting a terrorist operation planned and executed by Osama bin Laden’s Al-Qaeda. This position is at best incomplete, and at worst a complete fabrication engineered by those directly or indirectly responsible for what happened on 9/11, and the wars afterward.

Second, Al-Qaeda and many different countries and groups had negative reasons, real or contrived, to want to harm the US. But only Israel and its neoconservative wing in the US had a positive incentive to do so, which was to enrage Americans and make the US an active belligerent against Muslim countries, thereby cementing its bonding to Israel and Israel’s interests.

Third, there is no doubt that fully-loaded civilian airliners, especially with nearly-full fuel loads, impacting the Twin Towers (WTC-1 and WTC-2) would do great damage to those buildings, and might under a chain of extraordinary circumstances precipitate a chain of events leading to their collapse. But there is absolutely no way that those airliners impacting 800-1000 feet above the ground could have produced visible and audible secondary explosions in those buildings at ground level, nor precipitated the collapse of a third building (WTC-7)which was not hit by any aircraft and had no massive external trauma from debris produced by the Twin Towers.

Fourth, Al-Qaeda – and perhaps other groups as well – had the theoretical capability to carry out a simultaneous four-plane hijacking, perhaps flying the aircraft to Cuba (the four 9/11 aircraft should have been able to make a one-way flight there at the beginning of their operational day without difficulty, depending on their actual loads), which would have been spectacular in itself. But neither Al-Qaeda nor any of their affiliates had the expertise and local support necessary to allow them the needed access to any of the buildings at the World Trade Center, cut open the walls and wire them for controlled demolition, and then to escape and evade afterward.

Fifth and finally, in addition to being unique in having a positive incentive to make the 9/11 attacks, only Israel had the essential expertise and local support required to bring down the three World Trade Center buildings with controlled demolitions, and the leverage within and around the US Government to let their operatives evade detection, to be released without fanfare if apprehended unexpectedly, and to cloak their actions from public scrutiny – all of which happened on and after 9/11.

People often ask about some new evidence or proof tying 9/11, in whole or in part, to Israel. Now I understand that there can never be absolute proof for some people barring a public confession from one of the Israeli planners or their American supporters, and that, I suspect, we will never obtain – although some of the statements made later in Israel by three of the Israelis arrested in Bergen, NJ filming the burning Twin Towers comes very close to that: One stated categorically that “our purpose was to document the event,” which should leave little doubt that they knew in advance of the attacks, whether or not they themselves personally had any further role in them.

But it is not necessary to have such a confession, any more than it is necessary to have a confession in a criminal court to convict a person of murder, if the other evidence is sufficiently compelling. Here there is a mountain of physical, technical, analytical and circumstantial evidence, far more than any unprejudiced person needs to understand far beyond any reasonable doubt whatsoever, that (1) the USG case is fatally flawed, and (2) this was a Mossad-directed operation orchestrated at the highest levels of the Israeli government (because of the target) with local support within the US and elements of the US Government itself.

Given the pervasiveness of Zionist influence in the US government and its intelligence and security agencies (including of course the Defense Department), two broad scenarios are possible. One is that the neo-cons and their cohorts were in the driver’s seat with Israel in the passenger seat with a map and the baggage. The second sees Israel driving with the neo-cons and others handling the map and baggage. But they were both in the same car on the road to and from 9/11. Both were embedded in aspects of the planning and execution of the catastrophe, the wars it spawned and the wars its architects now want us to wage in Israel’s name, linking treason and treachery in tandem no matter where the emphasis is placed.
Unraveling that issue is something to be left for a future investigation, interrogations and trials, followed by punishments appropriate to the magnitude of the crimes for all of the participants. Bringing an awareness of these events to the American public and others abroad in a practical and actionable way is the subject of the final piece in this series: Riposte Against Zionism: Go Tell It To The People.

*Alan Sabrosky (Ph.D., University of Michigan) is a writer and consultant specializing in national and international security affairs. In December 1988, he received the Superior Civilian Service Award after more than five years of service at the U.S. Army War College as Director of Studies, Strategic Studies Institute, and holder of the General of the Army Douglas MacArthur Chair of Research. He is listed in WHO’S WHO IN THE EAST (23rd ed.). A Marine Corps Vietnam veteran and a 1986 graduate of the U.S. Army War College, Dr. Sabrosky’s teaching and research appointments have included the United States Military Academy, the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), Middlebury College and Catholic University; while in government service, he held concurrent adjunct professorships at Georgetown University and the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). Dr. Sabrosky has lectured widely on defense and foreign affairs in the United States and abroad. You can email Dr. Alan Sabrosky at:
River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

Abbas: A September Palestinian State or Lose World Support - Thus claimed Mohamad Khodr

"Mr. Abbas and Mr. Meshaal of Hamas, when we all meet our maker on Judgment Day, how will you explain your failure to seize this historical moment and seek recognition of a State for your people and the eventual freedom of an Independent Palestine?" asked Khor. 
"Will you say you feared an American veto or another illegal settlement?
Or will Palestine remain: 
“A land without leadership, for a leadership without a land.”" he added

What Land Khodr is talking about? the 14%, the 22% or Historical Palestine?
Of course Khodr is not talking about historical palestine, because he claimed that "Since 1967 all the Palestinians have ever asked is for a State, albeit divided between the West Bank and Gaza, with East Jerusalem as their capitol, a mere 22% of their original homeland. Given the never ending “peace process” they now live on only 14% of their homeland, which is shrinking rapidly every day." which is not true.  Untill this very moment. neither all palestinians, nor all Palestinian factions, accepted the so called 10 points program,  or Oslo. I assume Khodr knows that, and if he don't, he needs help. 

  •  "Based on the Palestinian National Charter, the PLO's political headquarters at the eleventh session, held between 6-12 January 1973, and belief in the impossibility of establishing a just and lasting peace in the region without restoring our great full national rights and, principally, their right to self-determination and return to complete their national soil, in the light of the study of the political circumstances that have occurred in the period between the previous and present to the Council, the National Council decides:...."
  • "In 1974, the PNC approved the ten-point programme [1] which was formulated by Fatah leaders calling for the establishment of a national authority over any piece of liberated Palestinian land, as a step on the way to create a secular democratic bi-national Palestine/Israel where all citizens have equal rights irrespective of race, sex or religion. The ten-point program was the first attempt by PLO for a peaceful solution, without giving up the ultimate goal was to complete the liberation of the Palestinian territory, as a step toward full Arab unity"
  • Moreover, the so called 10 points program was rejected by many Palestinian factions who left PLO and formed the Rejection front.

Khodr "the believer" started With with the Qur'an verses: “Believers are those to whom people said, “The people have gathered against you, so fear them.” But that merely increased their faith and they said, “Allah is enough for us and how excellent a Guardian is He.” (Qur’an: 3:173) ended calling Palestinian leader ship to seize the so called "historical moment" is addressed to Meshaal of Hamas not to Abbas,  a call to join the TRAITOR or Lose World Support.

Are you the same Khodr who wrote?:
"But my children of Palestine and Gaza trust in God and ignore the world, a world that is blind, deaf, and mute that chooses to ignore your cries for freedom. Hold strong to your bond with God, keep your faith and pray for your deliverance, but be patient and trust in Him, for He is always with the Oppressed and hates the Oppressors."??

To Khodr I say “Allah is enough for us and how excellent a Guardian is He.”

أُذِنَ لِلَّذِينَ يُقَاتَلُونَ بِأَنَّهُمْ ظُلِمُوا وَإِنَّ اللَّهَ عَلَى نَصْرِهِمْ لَقَدِيرٌ
الَّذِينَ أُخْرِجُوا مِن دِيَارِهِمْ بِغَيْرِ حَقٍّ إِلَّا أَن يَقُولُوا رَبُّنَا اللَّهُ وَلَوْلَا دَفْعُ اللَّهِ النَّاسَ بَعْضَهُم بِبَعْضٍ لَّهُدِّمَتْ صَوَامِعُ وَبِيَعٌ وَصَلَوَاتٌ وَمَسَاجِدُ يُذْكَرُ فِيهَا اسْمُ اللَّهِ كَثِيراً وَلَيَنصُرَنَّ اللَّهُ مَن يَنصُرُهُ إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَقَوِيٌّ عَزِيزٌ
22.39 . Sanction is given unto those who fight because they have been wronged ; and Allah is indeed Able to give them victory ;

22.40 . Those who have been driven from their homes unjustly only because they said : Our Lord is Allah . For had it not been for Allah ' s repelling some men by means of others , cloisters and churches and oratories and mosques , wherein the name of Allah is oft mentioned , would assuredly have been pulled down . Verily Allah helpeth one who helpeth Him . Lo! Allah is Strong , Almighty .

Finally I would ask "BROTHER" Khodr:

Khodr, when we all meet our maker on Judgment Day, how will you explain your call for selling out 78% of Palestinian Land, selling out our right of return?, How you dare to compare Mashaal with Abbas?

(June 30, 2011)- “On the 29th November, 1947, the United Nations General Assembly passed a resolution calling for the establishment of a Jewish State in Eretz-Israel; the General Assembly required the inhabitants of Eretz-Israel to take such steps as were necessary on their part for the implementation of that resolution. This recognition by the United Nations of the right of the Jewish people to establish their State is irrevocable.”
  • –Declaration of the Establishment of the State of Israel; May 14, 1948
“Believers are those to whom people said, “The people have gathered against you, so fear them.” But that merely increased their faith and they said, “Allah is enough for us and how excellent a Guardian is He.” (Qur’an: 3:173)

The Palestinian Authority, under Mahmoud Abbas, must immediately stop the limping and lackluster effort and present their resolution this September to the U.N. General Assembly to recognize a Palestinian State. This will be the only worthy initiative that the PA has ever adopted since its founding in which the far majority of the world is supportive.

However Abbas must first and foremost find the courage and will to sacrifice his status and future much like every Palestinian child living under the daily brutality of occupation who fearlessly faces an Israeli tank or bulldozer ready to kill him, his family, or demolish their home and farm.

Since 1967 all the Palestinians have ever asked is for a State, albeit divided between the West Bank and Gaza, with East Jerusalem as their capitol, a mere 22% of their original homeland. Given the never ending “peace process” they now live on only 14% of their homeland, which is shrinking rapidly every day.

Time is of the essence for Abbas to quickly submit the resolution to the U.N. to recognize a Palestinian States regardless of the threatened Obama need Jewish re-election money Veto.
If Abbas succumbs to fear of failure and fear of American consequences than Abba Eban’s (late former Israeli Foreign Minister), dictum that the “Palestinians never lose an opportunity to lose an opportunity”, will once again prove right.

Unfortunately given Abbas’ past history of buckling under American pressure the submission of the resolution to recognize a Palestinian State is not certain. For whatever personal, political, or financial considerations he may have, he has constantly surrendered to the decade’s long Israeli/American lie that only direct negotiations between the two parties can lead to a peace settlement, i.e. the road map to nowhere but whose ultimate aim is to buy time to completely expel all Palestinians from Palestine.
Case in point: Abbas has previously dropped the endorsement of the Goldstone Report at the U.N. Human Rights Council that accused Israel of war crimes and crimes against humanity shocking his people and the entire world. The leaked “Palestinian Papers” revealed that his government was willing to concede to all of Israel’s demands including the surrender of East Jerusalem.
How can anyone in the entire world still believe that Israel with its dominance of the U.S. Government and foreign policy actually seeks or wants peace with the Palestinians? What it seeks is all of Palestine without any Palestinians.
While the majority of the world is eager, supportive, and sympathetic to the plight of the occupied Palestinians and is willing to support such a resolution, it is the Palestinians themselves who are as of yet squabbling internally on the issue while the clock ticks down to ground zero, a point of no return for the Palestinians.
For Abbas and Palestine’s future submitting the Resolution to the General Assembly for a recognized state this September is the single most important moment of truth regarding the destiny of his people. There must be no choice, no hesitancy, and no fear of failure but to forcefully and resolutely proceed with the resolution to the U.N. to recognize a Palestinian State
However if Abbas’ lives up to his usual puppetry to U.S. and Israeli pressure and forgoes this historical opportunity at the U.N., then two things will and should happen.
  1. World support for the Palestinians may seriously be diminished long term with the logic that if Palestinians don’t care about their own plight and future, why should the world? Palestinian fatigue is already setting in many quarters of the western world.
  1. A mass uprising of the Palestinian people must occur against their incompetent leaders in the West Bank and Gaza and hold them accountable for crimes against humanity against their own people.
What can Israel do to the Palestinians that it already hasn’t and continues to do?
Palestine’s destiny is up to its people and not for debate, discussion, and decision by foreign powers. In due time and God willing with a region wide Arab uprising overthrowing the rule of America’s tyrants it will be Israel that will sue for peace with the Arab world; having missed the opportunity for more decades.
The American philosopher William Irwin Thompson said it best when he wrote:
“If you do not create your destiny, you will have your fate inflicted upon you”

Mr. Abbas and Mr. Meshaal of Hamas, when we all meet our maker on Judgment Day, how will you explain your failure to seize this historical moment and seek recognition of a State for your people and the eventual freedom of an Independent Palestine?

Will you say you feared an American veto or another illegal settlement?
Or will Palestine remain:
“A land without leadership, for a leadership without a land.”

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

Today in Palestine! ~ Friday, 1 July 2011

Land, property, resources theft & destruction / Ethnic cleansing / Apartheid

PCHR 30 June -- IOF continued to use force against peaceful protests in the West Bank. -A Palestinian civilian was wounded. -IOF arrested two human rights defenders and 6 Palestinian civilians. Israeli gunboats opened fire at Palestinian fishing boats in the Gaza Strip. -A fishing boat was damaged, and IOF arrested two fishermen, but released them later. IOF conducted 31 incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank. -IOF arrested 21 Palestinian civilians, including 7 children a Member of the Palestinian Legislative Council, a human rights defender and a journalist. Israel has continued to impose a total siege on the OPT and has isolated the Gaza Strip from the outside world.-IOF arrested 3 Palestinian civilians at military checkpoints in the West Bank. -IOF arrested a physically disabled young man at Beit Hanoun (Erez) crossing in the Gaza Strip. IOF have continued settlement activities in the West Bank and Israeli settlers have continued to attack Palestinian civilians and property.-At least 100 graves were bulldozed in a cemetery in East Jerusalem. -IOF demolished two barnyards and well in Arab al-Rashaida village near Bethlehem. -IOF confiscated a plot near Hebron to establish an aircraft strip. - IOF destroyed irrigation networks near Hebron -IOF uprooted 300 olive trees in Deir Estia village near Salfit. [Details follow]

IOA decides to demolish Mohammed Al-Fateh Mosque

OCCUPIED JERUSALEM (PIC) 1 July -- David Harari, the vice-mayor of the Zionist administration of Jerusalem municipality, has issued an order to stop all renovations made to the Mohammed Al-Fateh mosque and to demolish it altogether alleging the construction was illegal. The Mosque stands only a short distance from the Aqsa Mosque which sends the message that the Israeli occupation has no respect for Muslim holy shrines, and that it could demolish mosques anytime it wishes, said Fakhri Abu Deyab, the chairman of the committee for the defense of Silwan town. But Abu Deyab pledged to defend the mosque and to stop the Israeli decision with all available means and at all cost, saying that the Israeli society “Israel Land Fund” was behind the call to destroy the mosque alleging the renovations were illegal.

IOF troops raid village of Kafr al-Deek and uproot trees

SALFIT (PIC) 1 July -- IOF troops raided on Thursday afternoon the village of Kafr al-Deek near Salfit and uprooted dozens of olive trees from the fields belonging to the villagers under the pretext that the trees are in "government lands" close to the Eili Zahaf settlement. Local sources said that IOF troops in large numbers raided the village accompanied with the so called civil administration officers and spread throughout the agricultural lands around the village. The sources added that the IOF troops imposed a security cordon in the area to the north of the Eili Zahaf settlement which is built on confiscated lands belonging to the Kafr al-Deek villagers and a military bulldozer started uprooting olive trees in the area. The Salfit district is one of the most targeted area in the West Bank for land confiscation and the number of Jewish settlements built on confiscated Palestinian land causing daily suffering for Palestinians.


Hebron (PNN) 1 July -- On Friday midday a group of Israeli settlers, along with soldiers, attacked Palestinian farmers of Yatta in southern West Ban, all of whom were trying to reclaim their land that settlers took over earlier this year. As part of the local committee against the wall and settlements, internationals and Israelis joined farmers from Yatta and went to work their land near the Israeli settlement Kiryat Arba. The settlers took over the land earlier in the year and planted grape vines to supply the winery in the settlement with grapes. Recently the Israeli High Court of Justice ruled that this land belongs to local farmers; as a result, on Friday people went and removed the grape vines settlers had planted and started to rehabilitate the land. Soon the settlers arrived and attacked people; later they were joined by Israeli military police and armed units.

Settler arson attack in the village of Burin

[photos] ISM -- On Thursday 30 June at 11:00 AM, the villagers of Burin reported that a fire was started by a group of settlers in one of the village´s crop field in the hills. According to a villager who witnessed the events, Walid M. N. noted that before the fire began to burn, approximately 50 settlers from the illegal settlement of Yitzhar, including some children, were seen atop the hill which is just situated in the southwest portion of the village. ISM was told that many villagers went up to the blaze to try to stop it, but the Nablus Fire Department had to be called afterwards to put the fire out. When ISM went to see where the attack had taken place, a jeep of Israeli soldiers could be seen watching the area. Burin is located in the southwest of Nablus. It has a population of approximately 4000 inhabitants. The villagers have been suffering from regular settler attacks for many years.

Activism / Solidarity

QALQILIYA (Ma‘an) 1 July -- Locals told Ma‘an that the village of Kafr Qaddum, to the east of Qalqiliya and overlooked by the illegal Israeli settlement Qedumim, organized a peaceful rally at the site to demand the opening of the gate in accordance with an Israeli Supreme Court ruling. The army blocked the entrance to the gate, which separates the northern West Bank town from Israel and land belonging to Qalqiliya residents, and fired tear gas.
Israeli settlers also set fire to lands adjoining Kafr Qaddum on Friday, local witnesses said. The land was owned by Suleiman Sa’eed Ali and Abed Al-Mahdi Ali.

Palestinian man still under arrest after demonstration in Beit Ommar on Saturday

ISM 29 June -- Two international activists are released following their arrest and court hearing in Jerusalem, while a Palestinian man is still under custody following a peaceful demonstration in Beit Ommar that occurred on June 25th. The two international activists and a 22 year old Palestinian were brutally arrested during a peaceful demonstration in Beit Ommar, in the southern region of the West Bank. The non-violent demonstration took place there and was nearing its end when approximately ten Israeli soldiers and border police arrested the 22 year old Palestinian man with force. The man’s t-shirt was ripped into pieces as he was being arrested. He was restrained to the ground and kneed in the chest. A soldier later twisted his handcuffs aggressively, contorting the man’s wrists, cutting the man on both wrists. When trying to reach the Palestinian man and assist him, an international activist was violently thrown to the ground by a border police. The activist, from Sweden, landed on her back and a soldier pinned her to the ground, laying heavily on top of her and making it hard for her to breathe.

Three weeks later, American Jewish activist arrested in Jerusalem sits down with PNN

Bethlehem (JI/PNN Exclusive) 30 June -- Many of the commenters on the videos of your arrest in Jerusalem have been positive, but there have been critical ones as well. From those comments, there seems to be a common thread of disbelief about what preceded such a violent reaction. Can you explain what occurred during those few minutes that the camera does not see? ...The scene at the opening of the video showing my interview by journalists and my subsequent harassment by the police, demanding my passport, occurred approximately forty-five minutes to an hour before the actual arrest shown in the final moments. Ignorant of such a time lapse, many incorrectly place my violent arrest as the logical outcome of my refusal to hand over my passport

Israeli troops attack anti-Wall weekly protests, Bil‘in celebrates removal of the Wall

Ramallah (PNN) 1 July – Dozens were treated for the effects of tear gas inhalation on Friday as Israeli troops attacked the weekly anti-wall protests in a number of West Bank communities. This week, protests were reported in the villages of al-Nabi Salleh, Bil‘in, and Ni‘lin in the central West Bank, as well as al-Ma‘ssara in the south ... International and Israeli supporters joined the villages and held the midday prayers at the lands that Israeli returned to the farmers. Later a small festival was held by the villagers and local men and women preformed the Palestinian folklore dance, Dabka. As part of the new form of struggle villagers decided to build one house on the freed lands to encourage village to start a new section of the village there.


Hebron (PNN) 1 July -- A Palestinian was reported dead on Friday evening due to wounds he sustained three months ago when Israeli police opened fire at him as he was driving back home near the southern West Bank city of Hebron. Jallal al-Massri, 30 years old, was going back home from Jerusalem to his village of Ithna near Hebron. An Israeli police officer opened fire at him as he drove by and critically injured him. The man was taken to Hadasa Israeli hospital in Jerusalem where he died today, Palestinian sources reported. The circumstances of the attack by the police remain unknown.

Violent clashes in Shu‘afat refugee camp, one youth injured

RAMALLAH (PIC) 1 July -- The IOF announced on Thursday night the closure of the Shu‘afat roadblock until further notice due to violent clashes between IOF troops and Palestinian youth at the Shu‘afat refugee camp and which resulted in the injury of a Palestinian young man and his arrest by the IOF. Local sources said that the clashes ensued when IOF soldiers manning the road block provoked the Palestinian youth by firing teargas towards a group of them near the roadblock injuring one of them and proceeding to arrest the injured youth.


BETHLEHEM (Ma‘an) 1 July -- An Israeli military court in Beersheba, Israel sentenced a Gaza man to 20 years in jail, a Jerusalem center for detainees said Thursday. Nahed Humeid, from Beit Hanoun in the northern Gaza Strip, was detained by Israeli forces in 2003. Eight years later, he was charged with 21 crimes in January, including planting explosive devices in the coastal strip, firing missiles into Israel, and being affiliated to several political factions. He was convicted on 11 counts, the center said. According to latest figures from the Palestinian Authority, Israel holds 219 Palestinians in administrative detention, under which imprisonment without charge is renewed every 6 months.

Israeli military court renews administrative detention of Palestinian MP

AL-KHALIL,(PIC) 30 June -- An Israeli military court extended the administrative detention, without charge, of Hamas MP Azzam Salhab, 54, for four more months. Hamas lawmakers in the West Bank said that the continued administrative custody of Salhab fell in line with an Israeli policy to absent those deputies from the Palestinian political arena.

Israel continues arrest campaign in Azzun

QALQILIYA (Ma‘an) 30 June -- Israeli forces on Thursday detained three Palestinians in Azzun in the northern West Bank, witnesses said. Locals identified the detainees as Kathem Mufeed Radwan, 18, Useid Yaser Salim, 22, and Ala Samir Salim, 20. During a night raid Tuesday, Israeli forces had detained five residents of the town, including a 13-year-old boy. Israel detained more than 20 Palestinians from Azzun in June, most of whom were aged 14 - 23.

Soldiers from the Nahshon Brigade raid Askalan jail, assault captives

AL-KHALIL (PIC) 1 July -- ...Amjad al-Najjar, director of the Palestinian Prisoners Society (PPS), said that the captives in Askalan were upset when the prison administration closed the section which has a canteen for Palestinian captives and expressed their anger by banging on doors. Soldiers from the Nahshon Brigade raided the prison and assaulted Palestinian captives using truncheons and teargas on them causing the injury of a number of captives.

Restriction of movement

Bethlehem, West Bank 30 June -- I set my alarm for 4:45 AM and headed out of Jerusalem to take some video at the Bethlehem checkpoint for an upcoming project. Jerusalem was still very quiet, a stark difference from what was awaiting in the nearby Palestinian Bethlehem. As I crossed over into the city you could hear the voices of thousands of people lined up both in the terminal and awaiting access. This is morning "rush hour" in Bethlehem Checkpoint. Thousands of Palestinians who live in Bethlehem and work in Jerusalem and other Israeli cities start their day around 3:00 AM by lining up at the checkpoint. Although the checkpoint does not open until around 5:00 AM, getting a good place in line can mean the difference between a one-hour crossing or a much longer one. You never really know how long it’s going to take to get through

Report: Men under 45 blocked from Al-Aqsa Friday

BETHLEHEM (Ma‘an) 1 July -- Israeli police said Friday that they will block the entry of men under 45 to Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem's Old City, Israeli media reported. Israeli newspaper Jerusalem Post said the police restrictions came after intelligence on "plans to disrupt the peace at the site." ... Israeli authorities regularly restrict the entry of men under 45 on occasions such as Israeli holidays, while Palestinians from the West Bank and Gaza must request special permission to pray at the holy site.

Cycling for freedom of movement

ISM 30 June -- 70 cyclists from Hebron and surrounding areas, as well as 15 international cyclists, pedaled through Hebron on Tuesday in an attempt to challenge restrictions imposed on the freedom of movement. The group set off from near the centre of the city and cycled in unison through the streets of Hebron, waving Palestinians flags. Bikes were decorated with signs saying "We have the right to move," "The wheels of change are in motion," and "Bikes against borders" in English and Arabic... As the bikers moved through the streets, people waved, shouted and honked in support. As the cyclists tried to cycle towards the Old City they found that the demonstration’s route had been blocked by 30 border police and soldiers, as well as two barbed wire fences stretched across the street. The group peacefully asked the border police to let them pass and continue their journey as soldiers pointed guns at them from the roofs of a nearby house.


Mondoweiss 1 July -- Sequence of events today, from photos and a video of the boat leaving port with hopeful passengers, to tweets as events unfolded (still updating on the site), to the Greek government order not to sail

Gaza-bound boat: Greek commandos forced us back

Ynet 1 July 23:57 -- Heavily armed Greek forces with their firearms drawn forced a Gaza-bound ship to turn around and return to Greece, where the vessel is now being held in a military base, activists on board the Audacity of Hope said Friday evening. "We were forced to go back to a Greek port surrounded with bars and barbwire," a Twitter message from the Gaza-bound vessel said. "We were in a holding pattern for probably three hours when the commandos arrived with drawn weapons." Hagit Borer, an Israeli-American citizen on the ship, told Ynet: "They are not letting us out. They took us back to a military dockyard and let the journalists disembark. I don't know what they'll be doing with us.",7340,L-4089905,00.html

US Gaza-bound boat returning to Greek port

AJE 1 July15:00 -- Vessel seeking to break Israel's siege of Gaza Strip returns to Greek port after it was intercepted by armed commandos -- The Greek embassy in Tel Aviv put out a statement confirming that the Greek coast guard has enforced a decision by the Civil Defence to prevent all flotilla vessels from leaving Greek ports. Greece's Civil Protection Ministry said coast guard authorities had been ordered to take "all appropriate measures'' to implement the ban. It also said the "broader maritime area of the eastern Mediterranean will be continuously monitored by electronic means for tracking, where applicable, the movements of the ships allegedly participating'' in the flotilla. "What I am witnessing right now at this moment is Israeli diplomatic pressure on the Greek government to ensure that these boats do not leave any port inside Greece," Dana said.

Greece bars boats leaving Athens for Gaza

[well at least it made the MSN] ATHENS, Greece (AP) 1 July -- Greece on Friday banned ships heading to the Gaza Strip from leaving Greek ports, and a vessel carrying several dozen American protesters which left port without permission was ordered to return. A flotilla of nine Greek and foreign-flagged vessels and several hundred activists have said they want to break Israel's sea blockade and deliver aid to the Palestinian territory.

Netanyahu's big fat Greek wedding / Barak Ravid

Haaretz 1 July -- Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu sometimes seems almost too arrogant and self assured for his own good. However, unlike in most instances, this weekend he actually has justification for his haughtiness. Netanyahu’s personal investment in his relationship over the past year-and-a-half with Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou in which he increased diplomatic ties with the floundering European nation seems to have put the final nail in the Gaza flotilla’s coffin.

Gilmore warning on Gaza 'aid boat sabotage'

1 July -- The Irish Government would take a very serious view if it turned out an Irish aid boat bound for Gaza was sabotaged, Tanaiste [deputy prime minister] Eamon Gilmore said yesterday as seven Irish activists returned home. As activists accused Israel of damaging the propeller of the vessel in a Turkish port, the Foreign Affairs Minister said he was "concerned" about reports that the ship may have been sabotaged.

Watchful activists guard boats bound for Gaza

GazaTV/AJ Activists planning on participating in an aid flotilla to the Gaza Strip are now guarding their ship around the clock after alleged sabotage disabled other boats in the planned convoy. The Dutch-Italian ship Stefano Chiarim is waiting in a port on the Greek Island of Corfu for approval from the Greek government to begin the journey to Gaza ... In a bid to prevent further damage to the flotilla, activists on board the ship created a “security rota” and are now taking shifts to stand guard on their boat around the clock. At any time, at least five people are patrolling the deck, with another in the galley, hoping to catch a perpetrator in the case of another attack ... Early on Friday morning the 'guards' on the ship rang the alarm bells when one of them heard a noise coming from under the 20 metre long vessel.

Navy to deploy 'floating ORs'

Ynet 30 June -- The IDF and Navy are on high alert ahead of the nearing Gaza flotilla. Fearing an attempt to stop the sail from reaching the Strip would result in casualties, the military has decided to convert mess halls on two missile boats into operating rooms, in order to treat casualties at sea. Ynet learned Thursday that the decision stemmed from the lessons learned from the first flotilla and the military's desire to offer immediate medical attention for the injured -- if there are any. Military medevacs will also be at hand, in case the injured need to be airlifted to hospitals in Israel.,7340,L-4089605,00.html

Was Israeli unit Sheyetet 13 behind the sabotage of Gaza-bound flotilla ships? / Max Blumenthal

30 June -- Two boats among the fleet of the Gaza Freedom Flotilla have been sabotaged. While Israel has not taken credit for the sabotage, all signs point in its direction. The Israeli military boasts an elite underwater sabotage division, Yaltam, that operates out of Shayetet 13, the naval commando unit that raided the Mavi Marmara last year and killed 9 of its passengers. According to SpecWarNet, an online database of international special forces units, "For underwater sabotage missions, each [Shayetet 13] diver can carry a limpet mine to attach to the hull of enemy watercraft or docks." The Guardian reported on Shayetet 13’s history of sabotaging civilian ships in international harbors: "It is known to have been involved in numerous clandestine seaborne operations, including many raids on neighbouring Lebanon. It works closely with the Mossad secret service. It was also involved in a curious foreshadowing of the Gaza incident in February 1988, when Flotilla 13 is reported to have sabotaged an attempt by the PLO to highlight the issue of Palestinian refugees by sailing a ship to an Israeli port, forcing Israel either to sink it or board it or let it land the refugees. The night before the vessel, al-Awda (”The Return”) was due to sail, it was blown up and sunk in Limassol harbour, Cyprus -- with no loss of life or political embarrassment."

Israeli army has no evidence for claim of flotilla's violent plans / Max Blumenthal

29 June -- Update: Neues Deutschland reported that chief army spokesperson Avital Liebovich claimed Israel infiltrated the US boat to Gaza with naval intelligence agents, who relayed the IDF with a report of the passengers’ violent intentions. The passengers denied the claim as baseless and hysterical. The ludicrous nature of Liebovich’s claim is underscored by my interview (below) with the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit, where she works. A robot translation of the ND article is here.

The battle over the Gaza flotilla / Joseph Dana

Nation 1 July -- ...Many passengers believe they have already achieved a major goal of their mission: to raise awareness about conditions in Gaza. Robert Naiman, a US boat passenger and policy director of the Washington, DC, think tank Just Foreign Policy, said, "The fact of the matter is that we have already won. The international press is talking about the blockade and Gaza. The contradiction between the world of the Israeli military officials and the world in which the rest of us live is exposed for all to see." ... Alice Walker has become an icon and anchor of this diverse crew of Americans willing to risk their lives to highlight Israeli control over Gaza. At the flotilla’s only international press conference held so far in Athens, she expressed a widely shared sentiment when she said, "My government has failed us, and is ignorant of our own history."

With multiple ships disabled, organizers regroup in Greece / Amira Hass

Haaretz 1 July -- GREECE - With two ships sabotaged - the Irish ship is in no condition to sail and the Swedish-Greek-Norwegian Giuliano is still being repaired - the impulse is to depart from port and wait for the rest at sea, along with the French ship that sailed Saturday. This is also the wish of all those on the Tahrir, the Canadian ship with its 50 passengers ... Psychologically people are getting ready to receive the call at three in the afternoon or two in the morning, and they know who they have to call in turn ... It seems like the participants in the flotilla are undergoing a process of "Gaza-tization." They are willingly experiencing, for a few days, some of the characteristics of life under siege in the Gaza Strip. They are tied up against their will within a limited radius of several kilometers. Their plans are repeatedly foiled by superior forces. Their clearance to depart has been canceled, and they are waiting for it to be renewed.

Gazans unimpressed with flotilla

Ynet 1 July -- Israeli claims over futility of flotilla receive reinforcement from surprising direction – Gazan businessmen who say it isn't imports that are problem, it's exports ... The Gazan businessmen stress that they are not opposed to the flotilla: "It is not that we don't support the flotilla, we just want both. Not just the entry of goods but their export so that the economy will be rehabilitated and people can return to the workforce in the factories," said Tilbani.,7340,L-4089709,00.html

Gaza flotilla activists: Queers welcome aboard aid ships / Amira Hass

Haaretz 30 June -- John Greyson, Canadian Gaza flotilla activist, responds to recent YouTube video claiming homosexuals are not welcome on board the flotilla; tells Haaretz video is a 'ridiculously transparent attempt to vilify the flotilla'.

Documentary: Fire on the Marmara / David Segarra -- New documentary about the flotilla to Gaza that was attacked by the israeli commandos in 2010. 'Only the sea remains / One defiant wave at a time' - Samah Sabawi. Dror Feiler, others.

Racism / Discrimination / Suppression of dissent
Head to Head: Why are so few Arabs in higher education?

Haaretz 28 June -- An interview with Haifa Professor Majid Al-Haj -- Only 2.7 percent of all Israeli university lecturers are Arabs, according to statistics presented to the Knesset's investigatory committee on the absorption of Arabs in government jobs. The percentage of all Arabs in the higher education administrative staff, at any level, is even lower: 1.7 percent. Prof. Majid Al-Haj, the vice president of Haifa University, is the most senior Arab in the higher education system today. In 2001, he headed a council subcommittee that put together a report on the subject. Prof. Al-Haj, where do you see an improvement or, alternatively, stagnation in connection to absorbing Arabs in academia - as students, faculty and administrative staff - in the decade since your 2001 report was submitted to the council? "Over the last ten years there has been a significant rise in the number of Arab students in bachelor's degree programs at universities and colleges. What has not changed is the representation of Arabs in programs for more advanced degrees..."

A critical test for the police / Uri Gopher

Haaretz 1 July -- The police cannot afford to waste time; the department must take the initiative now if it wishes to reverse the worrying trend in its relations with Arab society ... For many Arab citizens, the murders last month of Hadra Abu Gariba in Lod and Sammy Katar in Yarka - the 15th and 16th murders of Arab-Israelis this year - are not only expressions of the surging violence and soaring crime rates their community is suffering from and deploring publicly in every possible forum. They are also an expression of ongoing and intentional neglect of the Arab community by the state, in general, and by the police, specifically ... A survey of the Arab population (conducted as part of a project operated by the Abraham Fund Initiatives in conjunction with the Israel Police), showed that Arab citizens' main expectations of the police include more effective responses to violence and internal disputes, drug offenses and hazards of various sorts....

Jewish parents in multicultural school demand parity in the classroom

Haaretz 1 July -- The only public elementary school in Israel with both Arab and Jewish students may shut down. Parents of Jewish students in Jaffa's Weizmann School are threatening to move their children to other schools unless the municipality ensures parity between Arab and Jewish students. Although the school's studies are conducted in Hebrew, most of its students are Arabs. The Jewish parents are demanding the school be opened to students from other areas to ensure an equal number of Jewish and Arab students.

Draft law to deny Sheikh Raed Salah access to Israeli academic institutions

MEMO 1 July -- A member of the extreme right-wing Yisrael Beitenu Party is drafting a law to deny access to academic institutions for anyone "assisting 'terrorist' organisations". The move is intended to prevent the leader of the Islamic Movement in Israel, Sheikh Raed Salah, from taking part in debates in Israel's universities, and signals a shift even further to the right for Israel's policies against its own Palestinian citizens. Alex Miller MK announced that the draft law he calls "Raed Salah" will be put to the Israeli parliament on Sunday.

Report: Tel Aviv police confiscate bicycles from refugees who can't prove ownership

Haaretz 1 July -- The police have begun confiscating their bicycles, say refugees living in Israel who cannot prove they own them, according to the newspaper "The Refugee Voice," which is coming out with its second issue today. Following a wave of bicycle thefts in Tel Aviv, police in the city instituted a new policy several weeks ago, confronting African asylum seekers who have bicycles and demanding proof they purchased the bikes and didn't than steal them, the paper said.

Political / Diplomatic / International news

TEL AVIV, Israel (Ma’an) 1 July -- The US is preparing to offer incentives to Israel in exchange for a return to negotiations based on 1967 borders, Israel's Maariv newspaper reported Friday.

UN extends mandate of Golan Heights peacekeeping force

WASHINGTON (Ynet) 1 July – The Security Council on Thursday extended the mandate of the United Nations force monitoring the ceasefire in the Golan Heights between Israel and Syria for another six months. According to a UN press release, the resolution extending UN Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF) mandate was adopted unanimously. The statement said the UN Security Council was "deeply concerned that recent events have put the long-held ceasefire in jeopardy.",7340,L-4089651,00.html

In Balata, the future is scarier than September

Haaretz 1 July -- In the Balata refugee camp, Taisir Nasrallah, director general in the Nablus governor's office and a central Fatah activist, says 'stability' affects Palestinians more than UN declaration of statehood -- ...Taisir Nasrallah, of Balata, was one of the Fatah youth leaders in the Nablus area during the first intifada. He does not believe a third intifada is likely in the near future. However, he does believe the Palestinian refugees will return to their homes in Israel some day ... "We give the kids courses on the right of return and teach them that the Israelis stole their lands. We've sent hundreds of camp children into Israel to see the villages and towns that were taken from us. We took them to Jaffa, Ramle." "Our message is that without a doubt they will return to the places from which they were driven out," he says.

Human interest - sports

[photos] CNN 1 July -- At six foot five, with his shock of blond hair shaved into a fat Mohawk and talking in a languid Georgian drawl, Omar Jarun looks like he was once part of an all-conquering college basketball team. But the 26-year-old American doesn't play basketball ... On Sunday he will line up as a defender for the Palestinian national soccer team as they take on Afghanistan in a match that, just one year on from the World Cup final in South Africa, represents one of the first steps towards qualification for the next tournament in Brazil in 2014. Besides being Palestine's first World Cup match on home soil, Sunday's encounter will have extra significance for Jarun. It will be the first time he has ever set foot in the West Bank and he plans to visit his ancestral town of Tulkarem.

Arab sports in Israel -- a special project / Neta Ahituv

Haaretz 1 July -- The handful of Arab tennis players in Israel have to join 'Jewish' clubs because of a lack of funds. A tennis school in the village of Jaljulya, run by a Jewish man and an Arab woman, is trying to change that.

Coexistence costs money / Mazen Ghnaim

Haaretz 30 June -- I took responsibility for the Bnei Sakhnin soccer club because I knew what the club's potential was. I came in the belief that through soccer I can advance the interests of both the Arab population and myself ... At first it was practically impossible to sign Jewish players to Sakhnin. I wanted to promote coexistence and show that there is a way to live in peace and brotherhood. Soccer provided suitable turf, but the results didn't come immediately. Jewish players did not rush to sign for Sakhnin. In their eyes, Sakhnin was a poor, hostile Arab village, not a respectable place to be seen in.

Analysis / Opinion

Haaretz 30 June -- Are we listening to ourselves? Are we still aware of the awful noise coming from here? Have we noticed how the discourse is becoming more and more violent and how the language of force has just about become Israel's only official language? A group of international activists is slated to sail a flotilla to the shores of the Gaza Strip. Many of them are social activists and fighters for peace and justice, veterans of the struggle against apartheid, colonialism, imperialism, pointless wars and injustice. Just stating that is difficult here, since they have already been described as thugs ... We haven't heard the last of the campaign to demonize the previous flotilla, in which Turkish citizens were killed for no reason, yet the new campaign has already begun. It has all the buzzwords: danger, chemical substances, hand-to-hand combat, Muslims, Turks, Arabs, terrorists and maybe some suicide bombers. Blood and fire and pillars of smoke! The unavoidable conclusion is that there is only one way to act against the passengers aboard the flotilla: by force, and only by force, as with every security threat. This is a recurring pattern: first demonization, then legitimization (to act violently ). Remember the tall tales about sophisticated Iranian weaponry coming through arms-smuggling tunnels in Gaza, or those about how the Strip was booby-trapped? Then Operation Cast Lead came along and the soldiers hardly encountered anything like that.

Zionists, relax, Israel is not on the brink of destruction / Carlo Strenger

Haaretz blog 30 June -- Rational thinking is highly unpopular in the Netanyahu government, which seems caught in the belief that catastrophe is on the way -- One of the best-known Yiddish expressions is ‘Gevalt, Yiddelech, Gevalt!', a phrase best translated as ‘catastrophe, Jews, catastrophe!’. I would suggest that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's coalition officially be named the Gevalt! Government. Listening to the utterances of our ministers, you would come to the conclusion that the State of Israel is about to be erased and the Jewish people are in danger of immediate extinction.

'The Audacity of Hope' waits to sail to Gaza / Mark Weisbrot

AJE 30 June -- The 'Palestinians' transition to non-violent protests' deeply concerns the Israeli government and its US backers -- One of the most important foreign policy statements of the year came from Ehud Barak, Israel's Defense Minister, on May 16. Responding to non-violent protests at Israeli borders and military posts, he said: "The Palestinians' transition from terrorism and suicide bombings to deliberately unarmed mass demonstrations is a transition that will present us with difficult challenges." ...The comparative advantage of the rich and powerful against non-violent resistance has significantly diminished in recent years. Although they still hold the upper hand with the vast majority of the world's communications resources, their monopoly over messaging has been shattered by the internet, social media, and other new forms of competition.

King Lior and his subjects / Sefi Rachlevsky

Haaretz 1 July -- When King Lior parted from the evildoers, who had detained him for an hour of questioning, he turned to Mercaz Harav Yeshiva, where he was borne on the shoulders of those celebrating his messianic kingdom. Once again, he began to use the many official positions that entitle him to tens of thousands of shekels each month, and gave a class at the Nir hesder yeshiva (combining Torah studies with military service ) in Kiryat Arba, which he heads ... During the present time of repression, when the fawning "rule of law" takes prides in delaying kings for a very brief preliminary inquiry, every parent should know the repressed facts about Rabbi Dov Lior, the acting commander of numerous soldiers. Menachem Livni, who was convicted of murders, headed a terror organization dubbed the "Jewish underground." He testified that the spirit behind the underground was Lior - and not just for his preaching and religious rulings regarding the need to murder Arabs or killing "innocent people." Lior, according to the testimony of the murderer, was involved in the details and decided how and when they would act. Lior pressured the hesitant perpetrators to blow up six buses with all their passengers. The buses were loaded with explosives with the object of killing hundreds. Only the delay enabled the Shin Bet security service to arrest them at the last minute.

LA Times runs pro-Gaza blockade op-ed and omits that author is retired IDF colonel

1 July -- In its July 1st edition, the LA Times is running an OpEd piece by Amos N. Guiora titled, "Gaza Flotilla: Israel's Gaza sea blockade is an act of self-defense." In the bio at the bottom of the piece, the author is identified only as: "a professor of law at the University of Utah's S.J. Quinney College of Law, is the author of 'Freedom from Religion: Rights and National Security.'" Glaringly missing from the description of Guiora is the fact that he is a retired Israeli Defense Forces Lieutenant Colonel who believes that extrajudicial assassinations of Palestinians is within Israel's rights under international law. The "oversight" is akin to the LA Times publishing a pro-torture OpEd by John Yoo and identifying him simply as a University of California professor of law.

Operation Desert Bloom: the Zionist myth that won't spoil, wither, or die / Nima Shirazi

Wide Asleep in America 30 June -- ...the truth is that the Palestinian soil didn't actually require expert Jewish agricultural know-how to produce fruits, vegetables, and the myriad other crops native to the land. Pre-Israel Palestine was not quite the barren dustbowl of Zionist fantasy - far from it ... During the 1944-1945 planting season, nearly 210,000 tons of grain were cultivated in Palestine, of which 193,376 tons were Arab crops, compared to 16,579 tons of Jewish crops ... Of the over 244,800 tons of vegetables produced in Palestine that season, Arab farmers were responsible for more than 189,000 tons; of the 94,700 tons of fruit, Arab orchards produced 73,000 tons. Almost all of the region's citrus groves were Palestinian owned and operated ... Eighty percent of the 40-50,000 tons of grapes and 4-5 million liters of wine were produced in Arab vineyards.

Waiting for Godot on the Gaza flotilla / Mark LeVine

AJE 1 July -- Unlike the existentialist play, Palestinians are facing a meaningful struggle to stay human in the face of oppression -- ...if the Israelis have their way, the endless wait in Gaza, and the occupied territories more broadly, suggests a very different and more pernicious meaning: We own you. We determine what you can or cannot do, where you can and cannot live and go, who can and cannot be part of your lives. You in fact have no freedom save what we give to you; there is no point to your waiting. And this waiting has been going on a very long time. The Israeli siege of Gaza that defines life in the enclave today did not begin in 2009 with the invasion. Nor did it begin with the gradual closing in of Gaza at the start of the Oslo peace process. Rather, the occupation has always been defined by an ever-tightening siege, with Palestinians increasingly surrounded and hemmed in by settlements, walls, check points, F-16s, Apaches helicopters and the bullets and bombs that rain down from them. They are confined bypass roads, closed military zones, "parks" and other areas built on the ruins of what was there before. Together the geography of the occupation has always constrained their freedom of movement, their livelihoods, even their dreams of a better future.
River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian