Saturday, 30 May 2009

Abuse photos suppressed by Obama is another crime

Taguba denies he's seen it
he was misunderstood

The general told a U.K. paper about images he saw investigating Abu Ghraib -- not photos Obama wants kept secret.

By Mark Benjamin

Maj. Gen. Antonio Taguba

Reuters/Larry Downing

Army Maj. Gen. Antonio Taguba testifies in 2004 before the Senate Armed Services Committee to answer questions about the abuse by U.S. military personnel of Iraqi prisoners at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq.

May 30, 2009 Retired Army Maj. Gen. Antonio Taguba denied reports that he has seen the prisoner-abuse photos that President Obama is fighting to keep secret, in an exclusive interview with Salon Friday night.

On Thursday an article in the Daily Telegraph reported that Taguba, the lead investigator into Abu Ghraib abuse, had seen images Obama wanted suppressed, and supported the president's decision to fight their release. The paper quoted Taguba as saying, "These pictures show torture, abuse, rape and every indecency."

But Taguba says he wasn't talking about the 44 photographs that are the subject of an ongoing ACLU lawsuit that Obama is fighting.

"The photographs in that lawsuit, I have not seen," Taguba told Salon Friday night. The actual quote in the Telegraph was accurate, Taguba said -- but he was referring to the hundreds of images he reviewed as an investigator of the abuse at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq -- not the photos of abuse that Obama is seeking to suppress.

In March 2006 Salon published "The Abu Ghraib Files," 279 photographs and 19 videos collected by the Army's Criminal Investigation Division as it examined the shocking cases of prisoner abuse at the notorious Baghdad prison. The photos depict scenes of extreme cruelty – prisoners forced to publicly masturbate, naked prisoners held in extreme stress positions, or being walked naked by a female guard. Some photos show prisoners bloodied and otherwise injured, with untrained guards tending to their wounds.

Several news organizations have described some of those same images as among the ones Obama is seeking to suppress, when in fact, they've already been published by Salon.

Taguba says the Telegraph story got one important fact right: He said he does support Obama's decision to fight the release of the images subject to the lawsuit, even though he has not seen those images. "No other photographs should be released," Taguba told Salon, because he worries additional images might threaten the safety of U.S. troops.

Iraqi victims recall U.S. abuse

Fri May 29, 2009 1:00pm BST

By Mohammed Abbas

BAGHDAD (Reuters) - The marks on Firas al-Sammarrai's body from when he says U.S. soldiers repeatedly electrocuted him are one reason he can't forget his abuse at their hands, even if other Iraqis want to move on.

U.S. President Barack Obama this month blocked the release of new detainee abuse photos on fears they may trigger more attacks against the U.S. military. The move enflamed Western opinion, but elicited little response in Iraq.

After years of bombings and sectarian slayings many Iraqis say they have seen worse, and some add the release of the photos has much to do with the U.S. image abroad as Obama attempts to mend ties with the Muslim world.

He is due to give a major speech in Egypt on June 4.

Sammarrai, a senior Foreign Ministry official under Saddam Hussein, said he was stripped naked, had cold water thrown over him in winter and was repeatedly beaten and electrocuted.

He says there are still pits in his elbows and knees where the electrodes were attached.

"Iraqis at times are trapped between wanting to forget and wanting to remember," he told Reuters by phone from Sweden, where he fled after being released. He found it hard to describe what had happened to him.

"They want to forget so they can move on, but at the same time they don't want to forget because it was such a scandal.

"But deciding to cover the photos up in order to manipulate world opinion ... I believe this is another crime against the Iraqi people and humanity in general."

Mohammed Ali, 23, is another person who says he was abused by U.S. military. Speaking from Falluja in Anbar province, he recalled hearing U.S. soldiers take photos while he was beaten, a bag shoved over his head. He needed two operations to repair damage to his stomach, he said.

"I was sat on the floor. (They) would beat me two at a time. They put cigarettes out on me and threw cold water on me. That lasted for two days," he said.

"I think it's better for the pictures to be released so those in the Middle East and the West can see what happened."


Many Iraqis who never faced alleged U.S. abuse greeted Obama's decision to block the release of new photos of torture with a shrug.

"I think the pictures won't affect Iraqis, but it will affect world opinion. The methods of the Americans are well known to Iraqis, who see worse than this every day," said Hameed Fadhil, an engineer out with his family in a Baghdad park.

Iraqis have only recently started to make forays into parks after violence fell sharply over the last year. Some feared the photos would risk reversing the fragile security gains.

"It's the first time I've heard of more photos. It's old now, it's over ... The people that want to destabilise Iraq will use these pictures, the rest of us just want to get by and finish with this matter," said Radwan Uday, a shopkeeper.

Pictures of U.S. soldiers abusing Iraqis in Abu Ghraib prison, where Saddam Hussein used to have his opponents tortured, shocked the world in 2004. They included inmates being threatened by dogs and forced into sexually degrading poses.

"When you see body parts scattered after a bomb, a picture of a man being beaten is a simple thing," said Imad al-Sabty, sat in Baghdad's Kheyteh coffee shop.

While Iraqis may now be numb to such images, some said there would be a stronger reaction if, as reported in Britain's Daily Telegraph this week, photos blocked by Obama had included scenes of rape and sexual abuse. The Pentagon denied the report.

"We can take anything except an assault on our honour. That will shake this country," said Zahra Monem, out shopping.

After Saddam's brutal rule and six years of U.S. occupation, torture is nothing new to some. Saddam's security men were infamous for it, including hanging people from ceilings and removing fingernails.

Obama's refusal to release more photos barely registered in Iraq's media, which this week reported hundreds of cases of abuse against Iraqis by Iraq's own security forces.

"People are not bothered. They're unemployed and struggling to get by. Everyone knows about this. Torture has become normal here. I'm 66 and I've seen it all now," said Abu Qasim.


Harith al-Ubaidi, a member of parliament's human rights committee, said he understood why Iraqis struggling with a lack of jobs and services might ignore more photos of abuse, but he contested Obama's reasoning for holding them back.

"This is an absolutely invalid excuse. If armed groups could exert more pressure, they wouldn't wait for the photos."

In Ubaidi's view Obama is trying to avoid whipping up Arab opinion as he attempts to repair U.S.-Middle East relations, damaged under former President George W. Bush, and was also protecting interrogators guilty of abuse.

Obama has said CIA agents who followed legal guidance on interrogation would not be prosecuted, but left the door open to prosecuting Bush-era officials who developed the policies.

Ubaidi said Obama's overtures to Muslims in Egypt next week are likely to fail if he is seen as continuing Bush's policy of secrecy over detainees, or as blocking efforts to hold those who abused prisoners accountable.

Laila al-Khafaji, another member of Iraq's parliament, said she preferred to forget the past.

"The page of the Abu Ghraib torture scandal was turned a long time ago and it's time to forget. What's the point of reminding us of these pains?"

(Additional reporting by Ahmed Rasheed, Sattar Rahim in Sadr City and Fadhel al-Badrani in Falluja, Editing by Michael Christie and Sara Ledwith)

Sheikh Salah: The Muslim Nation is threatened with flu called the Israeli gov't


[ 30/05/2009 - 03:50 PM ]

ISTANBUL, (PIC)-- Sheikh Ra’ed Salah, the head of the Islamic Movement in the 1948 occupied lands, warned Saturday that the Muslim Nation is threatened with a flu epidemic called the Israeli government, expecting the coming months to witness serious developments.

In a speech at the opening ceremony of the international conference on Palestine held in Istanbul, Sheikh Salah raised important questions about the dangers that threaten the Aqsa Mosque and Jerusalemite people as well as the Palestinians in the 1948 occupied lands and the West Bank.

He said that Israeli premier Benjamin Netanyahu had tried during his first term of office as a premier to build the alleged temple while foreign minister Avigdor Lieberman still calls for bombing the High Dam in Egypt and the Pakistani nuclear force.

The Palestinian leader highlighted that the Israeli government has to prepare one million and three hundred thousand coffins if it intends to banish the 1948 Palestinians from their land because they would never leave their land unless they are dead bodies.

Israeli Spying Cells in Lebanon Head towards Full Collapse

Hussein Assi

29/05/2009 The Israeli spying cells continue to constitute the main headlines, nine days ahead of the parliamentary elections in Lebanon...

The cells, spread throughout the Lebanese territories, are being uncovered, revealing more scandals and surprises day after another. Not one day, or even one hour, can pass without new stories about the spying operations that took widely their course in Lebanon during the previous years.

Media reports on Friday said that the security forces succeeded in arresting arresting more Israeli Mossad-linked cells during the few last hours. The reports said that four people were arrested by the General Security apparatus on suspicion of dealing with the Zionist entity, including two brothers from the southern town of Kfarkila and two others from the southern town of Khiam. A Palestinian, who's reportedly the brother of a major Palestinian official, was also arrested on the same suspicion.

Lebanese daily As-Safir quoted a security source as saying that, among those who were arrested lately, were two cousins of Nasser Nader who's already in police custody on charges of spying for the Israeli secret service, the Mossad. One of the two men, who were recruited by Nader, was carrying an Israeli passport, according to the sources. They said the arrested were made on Thursday in the southern port city of Tyre. Ali Gh. admitted to possessing an Israeli passport. He said he had traveled to the Palestinian occupied territories via Germany where he underwent training for the use of some devices.

Meanwhile, Lebanese daily Al-Akhbar quoted security officials as denying rumors that MPs, clergymen and other political and security officials had been arrested in connection with the spy networks.


Internal Security Forces (ISF) chief General Ashraf Rifi expressed belief that the complete spying infrastructure built by the Zionist entity in Lebanon was heading towards collapse.

Rifi told Lebanese daily As-Safir that the security forces were continuing their work to uncover all spying cells "behind the scenes." He said that the achievement made by the security forces in this concern will cause, at least, the beating of the complete spying infrastructure and the cells the enemy has build during the last years.

"In conclusion, the enemy will no longer be able to build spy networks with ease," Rifi pointed out.

For his part, General Security Director General Wafiq Jezzini said that, according to investigations, many of those arrested were former agents who seem to be re-recruited by Israel in recent years, particularly after the July 2006 war on Lebanon.

"Despite the inconsiderable abilities we have, we will continue to pursuit and run after the cells," Jezzini stressed. "We won't stop our war against the agents despite the shortage we suffer from whether in the personnel or the monetary funds or even the equipment," he added.

West Bank rights violations on the rise

West Bank rights violations on the rise

Mel Frykberg, The Electronic Intifada, 29 May 2009

Israeli soldiers in the occupied West Bank. (Mamoun Wazwaz/MaanImages)

RAMALLAH, occupied West Bank (IPS) - "I heard voices, I turned around to look, and saw a group of Israeli settlers assaulting my brother Hammad," says Abdallah Wahadin, 82, a Palestinian farmer from Beit Ummar near the southern West Bank city of Hebron.

"Three of them surrounded me, while a fourth threw a rock at the back of my head. Lots of blood ran down onto my clothes. Other settlers then joined them," Wahadin told the Israeli human rights group B'Tselem.

Wahadin and his brother Hammad, 72, had been farming their land, which produces olives, almonds and grapes, near the illegal Israeli settlement of Bat Ayin, when they were attacked on their way home. Their land in Beit Ummar is near Hebron, about 30 kilometers south of Jerusalem.

Hammad Abdallah was taken to a local hospital where he received 10 stitches for a head wound and treatment for chest injuries.

Settler attacks against Palestinian civilians, and the occasional retaliatory attacks by Palestinians continue to dominate media headlines on an almost daily basis.

The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) has reported that an increase in settler attacks, as well as Israeli military raids, are part of an overall deterioration in the humanitarian situation in the West Bank.

"During April four Palestinians, including two boys, were killed by [the Israeli army] and another 145 were injured by Israeli soldiers and settlers. The number of Palestinians injured rose by 40 percent compared with the 2008 monthly average," the report says.

"We have noticed a significant increase in the incidents of both settler and soldier violence against Palestinian civilians since the new Israeli government took power at the beginning of the year," says Ronen Shimoni from B'Tselem.

"This is probably related to an increase in settlement activity in the West Bank as the rightist government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tries to establish facts on the ground," Shimoni told IPS.

The expropriation of Palestinian land for enlargement of settlements has proceeded at an accelerated rate since Netanyahu took office. New settlements, and the settler-only bypass roads which service them, are being built.

The full extent of settler violence against Palestinian civilians is uncertain as many cases go unreported.

"Only a small number of complaints is investigated by the Israeli authorities," says Lior Yavne, rights group Yesh Din's research director.

"Conviction rates are less than 10 percent of cases opened due to what we consider unprofessional investigations. Often the police claim to have lost the paperwork or say they are unable to find the perpetrators," Yavne told IPS.

There has also been a sharp rise in the number of Palestinian children in Israeli detention this year, with 391, including six girls, incarcerated at the end of April, a 20 percent increase between December 2008 and February 2009.

Human rights organizations monitoring the situation of child prisoners in Israeli prisons are concerned about the lack of respect for the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, to which Israel is a signatory.

"These concerns are related to consistent allegations of physical and psychological abuse during interrogations; denial of prompt access to lawyers and family visits; substandard conditions of detention, including lack of access to proper health or educational services," OCHA says.

Further fueling Palestinian anger and despair is the tripling of Palestinian homes destroyed by the Israeli authorities in April compared to March. According to OCHA, 286 Palestinians, including many children, have been displaced this year.

Israel says the homes were demolished because they lack building permits. However, it is almost impossible for Palestinians residing in East Jerusalem to obtain the requisite permits. Jewish residents of West Jerusalem obtain permits with ease.

Several foreign governments and Israeli human rights organizations have accused the Israelis of following a deliberate policy of Judaizing East Jerusalem, in an effort to prevent its future division. Palestinians want East Jerusalem as their future capital.

Palestinians are also largely forbidden from building on large swathes of the West Bank that fall under complete Israeli control, even though according to international law and UN Security Council resolutions the territory belongs to the Palestinians.

West Bank Palestinians are also getting increasingly thirsty. The World Bank has just released a report, "Assessment of Restrictions on Palestinian Water Sector Development." The report says water allocations, established during the 1995 Oslo interim agreement, fall short of today's needs.

Two-and-a-half million Palestinians survive on less than 20 percent of the West Bank's aquifers, while Israel expropriates the rest.

"Israeli settlers consume up to 200 liters of water daily per individual while Palestinians in the West Bank survive on 30-60 liters per individual daily," Palestinian Environmental Authority (PEA) deputy-director Jamil Mtoor told IPS.

Meanwhile, a number of international projects to fund West Bank humanitarian aid relief are at risk due to economic shortfalls.

The UN's Consolidated Appeals Process (CAP) reported that although $254 million had been pledged towards the rehabilitation of Gaza, the level of funding for the West Bank continues to be extremely low, with only about 30 percent of needs covered.

The UN's World Food Programme (WFP) has reported a severe shortage for its projects in the West Bank, while the UN agency for Palestine refugees (UNRWA) has reported financial problems relating to a number of emergency aid programs.

"UNRWA relies on voluntary funding for our projects, with the two biggest donors being the US and the EU," UNRWA spokesman Chris Gunness told IPS.

"The international monetary crisis has not helped the situation, but we are still hopeful that we will be able to meet the shortfall before June so that we don't have to close any of our emergency programs," said Gunness.

All rights reserved, IPS - Inter Press Service (2009). Total or partial publication, retransmission or sale forbidden.

Lebanon on 'Full Alert' ahead of Israel’s Most Extensive Drill


30/05/2009 Lebanese army sources said on Saturday that the country's military had been placed "on full alert," ahead of Israel's large-scale Home Front Command drill expected to begin on Sunday till Thursday.

An army source who did not wish to be identified said that despite [the fact that] the Lebanese government has received assurances from various sides including [United Nations Interim Forces in Lebanon] UNIFIL that the maneuvers were defensive in nature, the Lebanese army was placed in a state of full alert along the border with occupied Palestine.

Government offices and 252 local councils and municipalities will open "crisis rooms" that will respond to various emergency scenarios.

Military patrols were seen near the Palestinian border in the south of Lebanon Saturday. Hezbollah has also said that its fighters were ready to respond to any "possible aggression."

The "Turning Point 3" exercise, which is the third large-scale Home Front Drill to be held since the Second Lebanon War in 2006, will begin on May 31 and will last five days. The drill will be operated by the Israeli Defense Ministry with the assistance of the National Emergency Authority. It is aimed at training the Israeli home front, from the government level down to the plain citizen level, and will simulate a comprehensive regional war.

According to the scenario, the war will involve Hamas, Hezbollah and Syria. The Political-Security Cabinet will practice the various scenarios, while the Israeli occupation army will mobilize forces in accordance with the occurrences. The proposed scenario simulates an escalation lasting three months, reaching its peak with an overall attack on the Zionist entity. The drill will, for the first time, include an exercise to evacuate approximately 6,000 civilians from a commercial Tel Aviv building.

On Sunday, the drill kicks off with an exercise to the Israeli ministers at the weekly cabinet meeting. Monday will see the Israeli army, Home Front Command, Emergency Economy, Israeli Police, government ministries and local authorities take part in the drill.

On Tuesday, an air raid siren will be sounded across the country, roads will be blocked and citizens and school students will practice entering bomb shelters. The Political-Security Cabinet and national information system will take part in the drill on Wednesday. On Thursday, the last day of the drill, Israeli occupation army corps will hold field exercises and the training of the Home Front Command headquarters will continue.

Representatives of international agencies, governments and armies from the United States, Uruguay, Turkey, Japan, Hungary, France and Germany will be visiting Tel Aviv to witness parts of the drill.

Last week, the Israeli Air Force held a three-day drill that included various scenarios and staged fronts the force may have to handle. Pilots also practiced a number of combat maneuvers. The drill was annual, but incorporated scenarios relevant to the current threats faced by Israel. As part of the drill, members of the IAF were briefed on Iran's test-launch of its new missile, the Sajjil-2, which has been said to pose a threat to Israel's security.

Gaza housing, water situation still dire

Report, The Electronic Intifada, 29 May 2009

TEL AVIV (IRIN) - Reports published recently by the UN agency for Palestine refugees (UNRWA), the Israeli human rights organization B'Tselem and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) paint a grim picture of life in Gaza more than four months after the 23-day Israeli offensive ended on 18 January.

At the end of April 2009, UNRWA and the UN Development Programme (UNDP) completed their assessments of damage caused during the offensive: Some 3,500 houses were totally destroyed or are beyond repair and many others have yet to be repaired. Israel has not allowed cement and building materials into Gaza since June 2007.

Some internally displaced persons (IDPs) are living with family members, while others live in the makeshift tent camps.

Cameras distributed by B'Tselem to IDPs in the makeshift camp of al-Azza, which was set up in the Gaza Strip immediately after the Israeli incursion, reveal harsh conditions. The testimonies have been compiled into a short film. Living on sand dunes in tents provided by international aid agencies, cooking on kerosene burners and using portable toilets, they report a feeling of despair and lack of safety.

To overcome the ban on imports of cement and water pipes, the ICRC is helping recycle local materials and using components manufactured in Gaza. The Rafah recycling plant needs to be repaired, it says.

To mitigate cement shortages, concrete segments of the old Rafah border wall, which lay abandoned after its partial demolition in January 2008, are being salvaged.

Water, sanitation

Pierre Wettach, ICRC's head of delegation in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories, quoted in an ICRC update on 12 May, said: "The water and sanitation infrastructure in the Gaza Strip is in dire need of a comprehensive upgrade. Even if the existing infrastructure were operating at full capacity, it would not meet the needs of the population. To provide Gaza's 1.5 million inhabitants with adequate facilities it is absolutely essential that materials such as cement, steel and water pipes be allowed in."

According to a UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) report on 15 May, raw sewage was back-flowing into homes in Khan Younis due to the deterioration of the sewage and waste-water treatment systems. During April, only three truckloads of plastic pipes for water and wastewater projects for the private sector were allowed into Gaza. There has been a ban on plastic pipe deliveries since late October 2008.

The Israeli Security Cabinet met on 24 May to discuss opening more crossings into Gaza and allowing a regular flow of medical supplies, food and a list of other commodities, including building materials, but no change in Israeli policy has been reported so far.

This item comes to you via IRIN, a UN humanitarian news and information service, but may not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations or its agencies. All IRIN material may be reposted or reprinted free-of-charge; refer to the copyright page for conditions of use. IRIN is a project of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

"Obama's 'silence' on Egypt and Morocco's bold responses to Iranian subversion, heightened Arab concerns about the US approach..."


WINEP's David Schenker, here

"...... today, Washington and Cairo are on the verge of rapprochement. Improved ties come as Washington is seeking better coordination with its Arab allies in countering Iranian nuclear and regional ambitions, and as Cairo nears its first political transition since 1981....

The timing of the rapprochement reflects the convergence of interest on several issues of importance to both Cairo and Washington.

Iran. Tehran's progress toward a nuclear weapon and its provision of materiel and ideological support for moqawama, or resistance, across the region is of grave concern to Washington and its moderate Arab allies, specifically Egypt. Cairo has had problems with Tehran since the 1979 Islamic Revolution, but tensions have spiked of late. During the Israeli military campaign in Gaza in January 2009 -- when Egypt refused to open its border with Gaza to relieve pressure on Hamas -- an organization associated with the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps put a $1.5 million bounty on Mubarak's head, a threat posted on the Iranian government's Fars news agency website.

More recently, in April, Egypt announced the arrest in November 2008 of dozens of Iranian-backed Hizballah operatives in the Sinai. Cairo accused the operatives of channeling weapons to Hamas, targeting Israeli tourists, and planning operations against Suez Canal shipping.

While Washington and Cairo share an assessment of the Iranian threat, they differ on strategy. The administration has been silent on Egypt and Morocco's bold responses to Iranian subversion, heightening Arab concerns about the U.S. approach. Washington's Arab allies likely see this as a missed opportunity to rally support in Europe, China, and Russia for a tougher policy.

Hamas. Washington and Cairo share a common concern about the Palestinian terrorist organization Hamas. The Obama administration has stated that it wants to revitalize Israeli-Palestinian negotiations, a goal undermined by Hamas's control of Gaza. Although a Palestinian national unity government might jump-start these negotiations, it could also set the stage for Hamas's electoral victory over the more-moderate Fatah next January.

For its part, Cairo views the Iranian-backed Hamas on its border as a significant threat, not only to the peace process but also to Egyptian stability. Cairo's concern is similar to Jordan's in that the violent ideology espoused by Hamas -- a Palestinian wing of the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) -- might spread to the Egyptian branch of the organization, which years ago foreswore violence. In the aftermath of the Hizballah arrests, Egyptian MB statements of sympathy for and identification with the Shiite terrorist organization have proven especially troubling to Cairo.

Egyptian succession. Mubarak is eighty-one and said to be in good health, but uncertainty about succession is a preoccupation in Egypt. Indeed, in March 2008, a Cairo court sentenced the editor of al-Dustour newspaper to six months in prison for "publishing false information and rumors" about Mubarak's health. Should the Egyptian president anoint his son, National Democratic Party (NDP) deputy secretary general Gamal Mubarak, as his successor, it could be problematic. Given current regional challenges, both the United States and Egypt have an interest in seeing a smooth and, if possible, transparent transition of power in Cairo....

By not adopting Bush's Freedom Agenda, the Obama administration has paved the way to a return to Washington's traditional relationship with Cairo. Given the need for an Egyptian leadership role in the Arab opposition to Iranian nuclear ambitions, at least in the short term, Washington's decision would seem to make sense..... should the trend of bad governance continue in Egypt, it would likely be accompanied by a corresponding increase in the popularity of Islamists...."

Posted by G, Z, & or B at 3:42 PM

Traditional Arabs VS Modern "Arabs"

Nasrallah on Blood defeating the sword

They have killed Sayyed Abbas, they have killed Hajj Imad, they have destroyed homes and waged war in vain.

They are facing a resistance that believes in what Imam Khomeini had said: Kill us and our people will become more aware.

What is the worst thing they can threaten us with? Death? Our answer is clear. It has been our answer for hundreds of years; the answer that our fathers raised us on:

You threaten us with death?

It is hour habitude to be killed and it is the honor Allah has granted us to be martyrs." Nasralla

Yaseen and Ranteesi

"They realized that killings, massacres, assassinations, destruction and instigation are futile when it comes to Hezbollah, the Islamic Resistance and the blessed people who support us. What else do they have? We have passed through a dangerous phase, but thanks to Allah and the awareness of officials and leaders, the Der Spiegel report was exposed. However, the challenge is still standing because there are some who have decided to continue this since there is no other way. God willing, we will proceed through this challenge with our heads high, just like we have always done."

The full speach is posted at PP without comments from the poster

Flashback: Check the full debate with a "Modern arab"

"There is a big cultural problem with the traditional Arab mentality of showing bravery and manhood even in the face of overwhelming odds. It is considered shameful to disguise yourself or to hide to avoid being killed by a superior force.

Hamas' site uses the same flowery (and meaningless) language exhorting the "legendary bravery" and "heroic resistance." When facing the most advanced tank, if you don't have the missile to disable that tank, standing in front of it is not bravery, it is suicide.

You ask, what can Hamas do? At a minimum hide........"
Tony Sayegh Homepage 01.15.08 - 10:59 am #

(YEAH, its a problem for TRAITORS and COWARDS)TAKE A RIDE

Nasrallah on Happy Family "Unity Government"

"I assure you that we want a national unity government following the June 7 elections. We want understanding and cooperation even we followed a review policy to draw lessons. We support dialogue because we want a defensive strategy that the government, the people and the resistance would commit to.” Nasrallah


[TONI'S COMMENT: Keep dreaming, Mr. Mishaal. From one illusion to the next. This is so Yasser Arafat, it is not even funny!]........"

"I will write a longer comment about all these "peace" and "reconciliation" moves breaking out all over, and what could be behind them.

The more things change, the more they stay the same: Hamas wants recognition and a place at the Table and the Pharaoh will deliver a domesticated Hamas

Barghouthi: IOA is misleading the world on settlements

Barghouthi: IOA is misleading the world on settlements

[ 29/05/2009 - 05:35 PM ]

RAMALLAH, (PIC)-- Palestinian legislator MP Dr. Mustafa Al-Barghouthi has accused Thursday the Israeli occupation government of misleading the world on the construction of more Israeli settlement in the West Bank.

In press release he made in Ramallah city, the Palestinian lawmaker explained that the Israeli Knesset's (parliament) endorsement of bills confirming the Jewish identity of the Hebrew state, and of punishing anyone who denies it confirm racism and the apartheid system of the Israeli occupation authority.

He also pointed that the IOA announcement of proceeding with the settlement project in the occupied city of Jerusalem and in the West Bank was sufficient evidence that the IOA doesn’t want peace in the region.

"The Israeli talk of deciding the future of the Israeli settlements in the West Bank through negotiations with the Palestinians on the one hand, and the concrete steps it takes to expand and build new settlements in the area was per se contradictory and meant to deceive the international committee", Barghouthi underlined.

He added, "Netanyahu's government doesn’t need a test period to prove itself as it had indeed proven its extremist identity and its expansionist orientations, which jeopardize peace and security in the region, and could push the entire region to the brink of confrontation".

But he said that if the new US administration was indeed serious in ending the Israeli occupation of Palestinian lands based on the two-state solution, then the USA must oblige the IOA to halt construction or expansion of settlements.

The IOA alleged it was building new settlements to meet the natural growth in the Israeli community although that expansion was at the expense of the Palestinian people's lands.

In this regard, Barghouthi underscored that it is about time for the international community to bridle the Israeli practices on the Palestinian land, and to force her to abide by international laws and conventions, saying, "the Zionist occupation was racing with time in a bid to impose new facts on the ground that would thwart the establishment of an independent and sovereign Palestinian state.

Friday, 29 May 2009

Aoun to Head 'Largest Parliamentary Bloc in Lebanon's History'


29/05/2009 The head of the Change and Reform parliamentary bloc in Lebanon MP Michel Aoun renewed on Friday belief that the national opposition will emerge as victorious out of the forthcoming parliamentary elections, saying that he will head the largest parliamentary bloc in the Republic's history following the June 7 vote.

Earlier, Aoun accused during an electoral rally in Ashrafieh his political opponents of lacking the proper qualification and knowledge to run the country. "In this election we are facing unqualified people due to the lack of knowledge," he said.

He said those who rejected the Third Republic project are rejecting change and reform. "I swear by the sky, whatever its color, that Syria is not coming back," Aoun added, in response to the claims that the Syrians will return.

Aoun blamed March 14 Forces of putting the country in deficit and high debt stressing that government must be changed.

Despite Israel's Rejection of 2 States, Abbas Trusts Zionist Entity's Good Will!


[ 29/05/2009 - 06:55 PM ]

GAZA, (PIC)-- Hamas said on Friday that nothing new has emanated from the meeting between former PA Chief Mahmoud Abbas and US President Barak Obama and that the meeting was disappointing for the Palestinian people.

"The meeting between Abu Mazen and Obama did not produce anything new, it was disappointing, especially that Abu Mazen expressed readiness to implement the road-map, which means that the PA is fully committed to security coordination with the Zionist enemy which targets the rooting out of resistance and the liquidation of Hamas and reinforces the internal Palestinian rift, as the road map was rejected by all Palestinian factions except for Abu Mazen's commitment to it," said Fawzi Barhoum, the Hamas spokesman in the Gaza Strip.

Barhoum further said that Obama's wishes are not enough, especially in the light of the continued Zionist escalations in terms of assassinations, arrests, land confiscation and siege. He stressed that Palestinian people do not attach much hope to such meetings which never produced any real pressure on the Zionist enemy to end the siege, end the building of settlements or stop the aggression.

"The result of Abu Mazen's security commitments to the occupation, including those stipulated by the road map is a police authority that works to protect the occupation at the expense of the Palestinian citizen and his rights," Barhoum explained.

He finally said that Abbas is guilty of continuing the policy of political detention, hampering the national reconciliation talks, forming illegitimate governments in Ramallah which means he has nothing to contribute towards a successful outcome of the reconciliation talks and cannot be trusted with the Palestinian interests as long as he is fully tied to American and Zionist dictates.

Batoul Wehbe

29/05/2009 United States President Barack Obama met Thursday with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in the White House, and pressed Israel on establishing a Palestinian state and freezing settlement construction.

Asked about the Israeli position on the two-state solution, Obama said he's confident that, if Israel looks at its long-term interests, it will realize the two-state solution is in the interests of the Israelis as well as the Palestinians. "I'm a strong believer in a two-state solution," Obama told reporters with Abbas seated at his side.

Obama held White House talks with Abbas 10 days after hosting Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who remains at odds with the US over settlements and Palestinian statehood.

Obama made clear that he would continue to push Netanyahu, who has expressed his resistance to call for a total freeze on settlement construction in the West Bank.

Netanyahu has been a longtime skeptic of proposals to create a Palestinian state, and he refused to commit to the concept during his US visit.

"I think that we don't have a moment to lose," Obama said, "but I also don't make decisions based on just the conversation that we had last week because obviously Prime Minister Netanyahu has to work through these issues in his own government, in his own coalition."

The US president declined to specify a time frame for the settlement of conflict, saying he didn't want to set an "artificial time table."

Obama and Abbas met at the White House before the Palestinian Authority leader meets Hillary Clinton, the US secretary of state, and other senior officials.


Abbas is working to repackage the 2002 Saudi Arabian plan that calls for Israel to give up land seized in the 1967 Six-Day War in exchange for normalized relations with Arab countries in accordance with UN General Assembly resolution 194. The resolution, issued in 1948, calls for the return of Palestinian refugees to their homes and compensating those who wouldn’t wish to return. Israel totally objected this initiative, especially because it rejects the right to return of refugees.

Abbas gave Obama a document that would keep intact that requirement and also offer a way to monitor a required Israeli freeze on all settlement activity, a timetable for Israeli withdrawal and a realization of a two-state solution.

"The main purpose of presenting this document to President Obama is to help him in finding a mechanism to implement the Arab peace initiative," Abbas told the Associated Press.

On Tuesday, Israeli vice president and Minister of Strategic Affairs Moshe Yaalon ruled out the creation of any “Palestinian entity” at a conference at the Knesset entitled "Alternatives to the Two-State Outlook." He added that “efforts to find a solution to the conflict must stop.” According to Israeli media, the Knesset conference was intended to send a message that opposition to the creation of a Palestinian state was common among mainstream Israelis and politicians not considered extremist. He said the best that could be done now was to stop efforts to find a solution to the conflict and manage it instead, “by encouraging reforms and economic development in the Palestinian Authority.”

Yaalon goes even further in his argument, adopting a rather belligerent tone: "I do not see any chance of establishing a viable Palestinian entity in Judea and Samaria and/or the Gaza Strip that could sustain itself economically," Ya'alon said. "The gap between Israel as a First-World country and a Palestinian Third-World country is a recipe for instability. I also don't see a chance to form a viable Palestinian entity in Judea and Samaria and/or the Gaza Strip that could bring stability on the security front, while chances the entity would be adversarial are very high."

Asked about his impression of the meeting with Obama, Abbas expressed confidence in Obama as well as the Israelis and said: "It was a serious and open meeting and President Obama seems determined on what he has said...I believe that if the Israelis would withdraw from all occupied Palestinian, Syrian, and Lebanese land, the Arab world will be ready to have normal relationships with the state of Israel.”

The US should not be like this!


By Guest Post • May 29th, 2009 at 16:15 • Category: Analysis, Counter-terrorism, No thanks!, Middle East Issues, Newswire, Palestine, Religion, Resistance, War


A rather long period of time has passed since the Obama administration took office. Before US President Barack Obama was elected, he had created many hopes around the world.
In his election campaigns he gave priority to “ideal politics,” but now it seems that he has given in to “real politics.” Everyone agrees that the US will and must play a positive role in the settlement of existing problems. But it does not seem eager to play that role.

Those who expect the US to play this positive role say to themselves that the US is not as it appears now. By saying that the US is what it currently appears to be, they are actually saying that the US should not be how it currently is. The history of madness of the US that occupied Iraq has yet to be ended. Three hundred million people (the US nation) should not be so merciless toward a nation that is dying of hunger and poverty. Even if the US administration continues to strike Iraq despite UN resolutions and the objections of millions of people, we should assume that these developments do not exhaust what the US nation stands for.

Being an experienced politician, former Algerian President Ahmad Ben Bella says that the anti-war discourse, rallies and protests around the world are not particularly effective. For Bin Bella, the sole power that can persuade the existing US administration away from a violent war is the US public. Indeed, at some point the US public ensured that its weight was felt and terminated the tyrannical war in Vietnam.

The number of US citizens who share our concerns for the war in Iraq, the lives of civilians and stopping the world from heading toward a new disaster is not small. As if the situation in Iraq and Palestine were not enough, another hell has emerged in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Hundreds of thousands of people had clearly shown that they were against war and organized enormous rallies. But former President George W. Bush and his team did not backpedal.

Yes, this is not the US that created a pool of blood in the region with arguments on oil, arms and religion. It should not be this. The destructive role of the US should be rejected in the first place by US citizens. Being the homeland of conservative families who fled the religious and sectarian wars of Europe, of the Puritans and devout people, and of people who fear God, the US has long served as a model for freedom of religion and conscience.

The US has become the center of attraction for people around from the world as a country of freedom and opportunity. But today it has abolished freedoms and democratic ideals for purposes of security. The descendants of those put Japanese concentration camps during World War II are now treating almost every Muslim as a potential terrorist.

It is generally accepted that the war the US has been waging against Iraq, Afghanistan and now Pakistan does not have a sound or legitimate basis. Bush was determined to rule the world on his own. He paid no heed to any objection or opposition. The damage he did to the general concept of law was irreparable. Bush disrupted legal rules and the rule of law. When he failed to provide material justifications for war, he resorted to a strange method. The Bush administration accused Iraq of having weapons of mass destruction and demanded that Iraq prove it did not have any. Then he said things that were hard to comprehend: "That there is no evidence concerning weapons of mass destruction does not mean there are no weapons of mass destruction." It was like saying to a person who was examined by a physician and found to be perfectly healthy, "The fact that there is no evidence or symptom for illness does not mean that you are not ill."

The US did not win the war in Iraq, and it is again waging another war that it cannot win in Afghanistan and Pakistan. In this way it is doing the greatest damage to the conscience of humankind by inciting its hatred. If this hatred leads to incorrigible racism, then our world will turn into a place dominated not only by hawks, but also by sick people. The faith put in Obama is about to run out. We hope that he will not be too late to compensate for the damage done by Bush.

At a breaking point: "Young Freud in Gaza"

Maymanah Farhat, The Electronic Intifada, 29 May 2009

A scene from Young Freud in Gaza.

In addition to a long list of films exploring themes of social injustice and conflict, Swedish filmmaker PeÅ Holmquist has directed several on Palestine. Young Freud in Gaza (2008), his most recent documentary on the subject, enters the recesses of Palestinian society as it copes with life under Israeli occupation. Directed with Holmquist's longtime partner, Beirut-born Armenian filmmaker and journalist Suzanne Khardalian, the 60-minute film follows Ayed, a 27-year-old psychologist working for the Palestinian Authority's Clinic for Mental Health in northern Gaza. The only field psychologist in the area, Ayed frequently makes home visits, treating patients of all ages, from diverse backgrounds.

The film chronicles his consultations from 2006 to 2008, as the psychologist and his community are surrounded by crippling economic sanctions, violent clashes between the Hamas and Fatah factions and frequent Israeli missile attacks. The film not only accompanies Ayed as he administers counseling sessions but also when he is at home with family and friends. A looming element that is often present is the outcome of Hamas' win of the 2006 Palestinian parliamentary elections and the subsequent changes Gaza is made to endure. This has a profound affect on Ayed and his patients as they experience significant backlash from Israel and witness growing internal political divisions. In the span of time covered in the film, Gaza's state plummets, as its civil infrastructure is debilitated and violence increases.

Despite this grim reality, Ayed remains dedicated to treating his patients and works to gain their trust from the onset. Even the most guarded and skeptical individuals, such as maimed Hamas fighters, put their faith in him once their treatment begins. From chronic depression to eating disorders, Ayed's patients experience a range of mental health issues. A common variable in their stories, however, is the Israeli occupation and the significant physical and psychological damage it has caused to Gaza's residents.

Abed is a young man who was severely injured in a failed suicide mission in Israel. Suffering from partial memory loss, Ayed attempts to help him remember the events of that day as a way of relieving stress and alleviating physical pain. As his story unfolds, we learn that he barely escaped death after being chased by Israeli authorities. The details of Abed's situation are later revealed when he describes having been paid to execute the foiled attack. Out of desperation and the prospect of providing momentary financial stability for his impoverished family, Abed decided to work with militants and pursued the assignment. This speaks volumes about the dire circumstances experienced in Gaza and the wide-scale violence instigated by the occupation.

Another case involves Inas, a teenage girl who is severely traumatized by a childhood experience. Having come upon the body of a classmate killed by Israeli fire near her school, Inas has suffered from depression and anxiety throughout her adolescence. Ayed attempts to counsel Inas on dealing with her mental state, while struggling to involve her parents who have grown impatient with the lengthy road to recovery. Some of the most telling scenes of the film occur when he lectures Inas' parents on the importance of visiting the clinic for further treatment. Stern and unyielding, he admonishes them for their lack of commitment and the effects it has on Inas. It is here that we witness one of the many challenges facing a psychologist working with few resources and little community support. As Ayed confirms, Gaza is badly in need of "a million psychologists."

Often frustrated and let down, he eventually finds himself torn between continuing his practice and enduring its psychological toll or resigning from his position in search of peace of mind.

Young Freud in Gaza provides a much-needed look into a community struggling to survive amidst abject poverty and brutal assaults as it resides under the shadows of collective trauma. With the international blockade leaving the territory virtually cut off from the outside world, the documentary not only offers a glimpse into the private lives of Palestinians in Gaza, it serves as an important historical record.

Grounded in the conversations that occur during Ayed's counseling sessions, the film works to draw the viewer in as though they are witnessing these exchanges firsthand. The directors are physically absent as Ayed narrates scenes, conducts interviews or goes about his day. During some of his most vulnerable moments, namely when he begins to doubt the effectiveness of his work amidst deadly factional violence, the camera serves as a confessional of sorts.

This intimate setting is also created by the camera's close proximity to its subjects and the capturing of the interior spaces of daily life. From Ayed's medical office to modest dwellings in refugee camps, the viewer is brought into Gaza's internal realms. Yet at all times the film evokes the external forces that deeply impact residents. Shots of a hovering Israeli surveillance blimp, news footage and scenes showing outbreaks of fighting among Hamas and Fatah forces serve as constant reminders of the grave environment that lies just beyond the safe haven Ayed creates for his patients.

Although informative and engaging, Young Freud in Gaza is perhaps best understood by viewers familiar with the contemporary history of Palestine and the Israeli occupation. Lacking an overall historical context, the film assumes the viewer possess some knowledge of recent events in the occupied territories, labeling certain scenes with simple titles and little explanation. Clues to the details of these events can be found mainly when Ayed references them in passing, such as when he explains to a patient that the clinic's shortage of antidepressants is a result of the Israeli-led blockade. More details on the cause of the confrontations between factions, which dominate the film, would provide a more comprehensive approach to representing the situation in Gaza during that time.

Lengthier accounts of each patient's treatment and their progress would have also enhanced the film, as their stories are seemingly incomplete. In the end one is left wishing that the filmmakers would have incorporated more footage so as to expand their narrative. Given Israel's vicious attack on Gaza earlier this year, however, Young Freud in Gaza nevertheless speaks with a profound urgency.

Maymanah Farhat specializes in modern and contemporary Arab art. Her collected writings can be viewed online at

Do not blame me .......blame Benyamin Nataniahu !!


The man who killed Isaac Rabin !!!

Isaak Rabin was killed on behalf of
Benyamin Nathaniahu.. ..

Not that I regret loosing Rabin ,
but I doubt than anyone else has done it
but Mr. B . Nathaniahu , meaning his clan.....

When the only positive results of Oslo
were starting showing-up on the ground
and it started appearing as if the Oslo-agreements
were to be anything fruitful.... ..

That is when the Nathaniahu-clan made its move
by sending indirectly a young fanatic Israeli, with a gun.....

Not that I regret loosing Rabin
but I would have preferred to loose Nathaniahu , instead.

If "Peace" ever existed in the Israeli-vocabulary
or in the Israeli-strategy ,
Isaak Rabin was doing the wrong thing
in the wrong time and at the wrong place......

Rabin's mistake was to replace "our Submission" by "Peace"

Nathaniahu has sent a "real-israeli" to do what
any honest-real- genuine-israeli would do:
to kill the Peace....... to kill Oslo-Circus
to kill the Oslo-illusions. ......
and it was done !!

In the meantime
the PLO signed a partial-submission,
Jordan took down its pants, again
Qatar allowed a kind of Embassy for Israel
and the Marroco-Monarque droped his veil......
Tunisia followed
and Husny Mubarak said
" I told you so !!! didn't I
prostitution is not a sin , anymore !! "

Rabin is gone , Oslo is burried ,
Abu Ammar is murdered , The Doctor died of natural causes
Abbas , the impotent, rules a vacuum...... inside a prison
and here comes back and again Benyamin Nathaniahu
the Angel of Death and the undertaker.

Now , Nathaniahu shall nuke Tehran
and shall bomb Damascus , Beirut
and Khartoum too.

Why Khartoom , as well ???
just to hit the Nasser Water Dam at Asswan
and to flod Egypt ..........." by mistake ".....of course
for which he shall apologies to Obama later on.

Apocaliptic ??? yes !!!

But , do not blame me , blame Nathaniahu !!!
he inspired this text.

Raja Chemayel

Posted by Тлакскала at 12:12 PM

Obama is talking to the wrong man

Mr. Abbas goes to Washington
Ali Abunimah, The Electronic Intifada, 29 May 2009

US President Barack Obama meets with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in the Oval Office of the White House, 28 May 2009. (Saul Loeb/Getty Images)

If the Oval Office guest list is an indicator, US President Barack Obama is making good on his commitment to try to revive the long-dead Arab-Israeli peace process. On 18 May President Obama received Israel's new prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu; on 28 May he met with Mahmoud Abbas, leader of the Palestinian Authority in Ramallah.

As this process gets under way, the United States -- Israel's main arms supplier, financier and international apologist -- faces huge hurdles. It is deeply mistrusted by Palestinians and Arabs generally, and the new administration has not done much to rebuild trust. Obama has, like former US President George W. Bush, expressed support for Palestinian statehood, but he has made no criticisms of Israel's bombardment of the Gaza Strip -- which killed more than 1,400 people last winter, mostly civilians -- despite evidence from Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and UN investigators of egregious Israeli war crimes. Nor has he pressured Israel to lift the blockade of Gaza, where 1.5 million Palestinians, the vast majority of whom are refugees, are effectively imprisoned and deprived of basic necessities.

Obama has told Netanyahu firmly that Israel must stop building settlements on expropriated Palestinian land in the West Bank, but such words have been uttered by the president's predecessors. Unless these statements are followed by decisive action -- perhaps to limit American subsidies to Israel -- there's no reason to believe the lip service that failed in the past will suddenly be more effective.

On the Palestinian side, Obama is talking to the wrong man: more than half of residents in the Occupied Palestinian Territories do not consider Abbas the "legitimate" president of the Palestinians, according to a March survey by Fafo, a Norwegian research organization. Eighty-seven percent want the Fatah faction, which Abbas heads, to have new leaders.

Hamas, by contrast, emerged from Israel's attack on Gaza with enhanced legitimacy and popularity. That attack was only the latest of numerous efforts to topple the movement following its decisive victory in the 2006 legislative elections. In addition to the Israeli siege, these efforts have included a failed insurgency by Contra-style anti-Hamas militias nominally loyal to Abbas and funded and trained by the United States under the supervision of Lieut. Gen. Keith Dayton. If Obama were serious about making real progress, one of the first things he would do is ditch the Bush-era policy of backing Palestinian puppets and lift the American veto on reconciliation efforts aimed at creating a unified, representative and credible Palestinian leadership.

None of these problems is entirely new, though the challenges, having festered for years, may be tougher to deal with now. Netanyahu did add one obstacle, however, when he came to Washington. In accord with his anticipated strategy of delay, he insisted that Palestinians recognize Israel's right to exist as a "Jewish state" as a condition of any peace agreement. Obama seemingly endorsed this demand when he said, "It is in US national security interests to assure that Israel's security as an independent Jewish state is maintained."

Israel has pressed this demand with increasing fervor because Palestinians are on the verge of becoming the majority population in the territory it controls. Israel wants to ensure that any two-state solution -- something that looks increasingly doubtful even to proponents -- retains a Jewish majority. This explains the state's longstanding opposition, in defiance of international humanitarian law, to the return of Palestinian refugees who were expelled or fled from homes in what is now Israel.

But can Israel's demand be justified? A useful lens to examine its claim is the fundamental legal principle that there is no right without a remedy. If Israel has a "right to exist as a Jewish state," then what can it legitimately do if Palestinians living under its control "violate" this right by having "too many" non-Jewish babies? Can Israel expel non-Jews, fine them, strip them of citizenship or limit the number of children they can have? It is impossible to think of a "remedy" that does not do outrageous violence to universal human rights principles.

What if we apply Israel's claim to the United States? Because of the rapid growth of the Latino population in the past decade, Texas and California no longer have white majorities. Could either state declare that it has "a right to exist as a white-majority state" and take steps to limit the rights of non-whites? Could the United States declare itself officially a Christian nation and force Jews, Muslims or Hindus to pledge allegiance to a flag that bears a cross? While such measures may appeal to a tiny number of extremists, they would be unthinkable to anyone upholding twenty-first-century constitutional principles.

But Israeli leaders propose precisely such odious measures.

Already, Israel bans its citizens who marry non-citizen Palestinians from living in the country -- a measure human rights activists have compared with the anti-miscegenation laws that once existed in Virginia and other states. Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman has long advocated that the nearly 1.5 million Palestinians who are citizens of Israel be "transferred" from the country in order to maintain its Jewish majority.

Recently, Lieberman's Yisrael Beitenu party has sponsored or supported several bills aimed at further curtailing the rights of non-Jews. One requires all citizens, including Palestinian Muslims and Christians, to swear allegiance to Israel as a Jewish state. Another proposes to punish anyone who commemorates the Nakba (the name Palestinians give to their forced dispossession in the months before and after the state of Israel was established) with up to three years in prison. Ironically, Lieberman is an immigrant who moved to Israel from Moldova three decades ago, while the people he seeks to expel and silence have lived on the land since long before May 1948.

And as Obama continues to remind us of America's "shared values" with Israel, another proposed bill passed its first reading in the Knesset this week. According to the Israeli daily Yediot Ahronot, the law would prescribe "one year in prison for anyone speaking against Israel's right to exist as a Jewish and democratic state" -- making it a thought crime to advocate that Israel should be a democratic, nonracial state of all its citizens.

It would be sad indeed if the first African-American president of the United States were to defend in Israel exactly the kind of institutionalized bigotry the civil rights movement defeated in this country, a victory that made his election possible.

Co-founder of The Electronic Intifada, Ali Abunimah is author of One Country: A Bold Proposal to End the Israeli-Palestinian Impasse (Metropolitan Books, 2006). This article was originally published by The Nation and is republished with permission.

M14's Jumblat: "SPIEGEL's Israeli ties are well known ...& Israel wants a Sunni-Shi'a conflagration..."


For obvious reasons, most all pro-M14 media outlets DELETED references to Spiegel as an Israeli tool. AnNahar kept the quote intact.... I am curious: would John Hannah personally invite this stalwart M14er to the White House, as he proposed in the Washington Times, after Jumblat's appearance on LBC's Kalam il Ness, ... below?

وفي السياق الاول برزت مجموعة مواقف لرئيس "اللقاء الديموقراطي" النائب وليد جنبلاط ليل امس في حديث ادلى به الى برنامج "كلام الناس" من "المؤسسة اللبنانية للارسال" واستعاد فيه محطات من ظروف احداث 7 ايار 2008. وقد وصف ما نشرته اخيرا مجلة "درشبيغل" الالمانية بانه "قنبلة نووية بحد ذاتها" قائلا ان "ارتباط المجلة باسرائيل معروف واسرائيل تريد فتنة سنية – شيعية في لبنان ولكن عندما يجتمع العقلاء في لبنان، وعلى رأسهم سعد الحريري، نجنّب لبنان الفتنة".

Posted by G, Z, & or B at 9:46 PM

Rabbis: Soldiers must refuse IDF orders

Soldiers must refuse IDF orders


Leading religious Zionist rabbis called Wednesday evening on IDF soldiers and officers to disobey orders to dismantle and evacuate outposts and settlements in Judea and Samaria.

"The holy Torah prohibits taking part in any act of uprooting Jews from any part of our sacred land," wrote the group of rabbis that included Hebron-Kiryat Arba Chief Rabbi Dov Lior, Beit El Chief Rabbi Zalman Melamed, Yitzhar Rabbi David Dudkevitch, Rabbi Haim Steiner of Yeshivat Mercaz Harav and Rabbi Ya'acov Yosef, the eldest son of Shas mentor Rabbi Ovadia Yosef.

"We call on all security personnel to refuse expulsion orders. A soldier or a policeman who is asked to take part in an uprooting operation is obligated to refuse this order, which goes against Torah values," they said.

The rabbis met in a synagogue at the Givat Asaf outpost located at the entrance to Beit El in Samaria.

Abu Sitta: Returning Palestinians can generate permanent Peace, prosperity, justice for all


A Guide to the Depopulated And Present Palestine Towns And Villages and Holy Sites

Salman Abu Sitta, Copyright 1998
Be patient and go through each segment. You will not be disappointed."
The largest planned ethnic cleansing operation in modern history

posted by annie at 5:34 AM