Saturday 26 March 2016

CrossTalk: Trump vs. Clinton

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Saudi Arabia Uncovered: Birthplace of terrorism’: Outrage expressed at Saudi Arabia documentary showing beheadings

The documentary went behind the curtain of the secretive regime.

A DOCUMENTARY DOCUMENTING the horror of life in the strict Islamic regime of Saudi Arabia has been pulled from ITV’s website.

The programme was broadcast last night and drew a huge reaction online.
Many social media users expressed shock at what was shown in the programme, highlighting the treatment of women and schools indoctrinating young students with Islamic extremist views.

Many Twitter users drew attention to the fact that Saudi Arabia is one of the United States and Britain’s closest allies in the region.

Footage for the programme was shot covertly, as media access in Saudi Arabia heavily restricted.

In the documentary, a joint production between ITV and the Public Broadcasting Service in the United States, a number of graphic images of public hangings and beheadings were shown.
At one point five bodies, understood to be those of a group of thieves, are seen being hung from a pole being held up between two cranes.

At another point a woman is shown being beheaded in public.

In a statement responding to the documentary, the British government has said:
The Government has to take decisions about how best to keep our country safe. The Prime Minister’s judgement is that a strong relationship with Saudi Arabia helps us to do that. Our collaboration has foiled terrorist attacks, directly saving British lives.
We should not ignore Saudi Arabia’s important contributions to regional stability including airstrikes against Daesh and speaking out against the group’s murderous ideology.
It went on to say that in the course of Britain’s relationship with Saudi Arabia it has raised the issue of human rights.

Originally published at Journal .ie

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Saudi Arabia is committing genocide in Yemen

A Yemeni boy runs past buildings that were damaged by air strikes carried out by Saudi Arabia on March 23, 2016 in the UNESCO-listed old city of Yemeni capital Sana’a. (AFP Photo)

Yemen’s Ansarullah movement:
“Saudi Arabia is committing genocide in Yemen”

The Saudi forces and its mercenaries have come to Yemen to wipe out a generation, Houthi said during a televised address on Friday, adding that they want to raze Yemen to the ground.
He said the Saudi regime has committed numerous crimes against the Yemenis.
The Saudi regime knows no limit in its massacre of women and children, he said, adding, however, that the Saudis are neglectful of the Yemeni popular will.

Houthi said the US and UK are helping Saudi Arabiain the aggression against Yemen

This Saudi regime has neither respected the concept of neighborliness nor Islam, he added.
The Ansarullah leader said the Al Saud regime and its mercenaries fighting in Yemen are under the sway of the Saudi-Israeli-US axis.

Houhti further slammed the silence of the UN Security Council regarding the Saudi aggression, saying the body is providing security only for arrogant powers, saying the UN charters have not been drawn up for the oppressed and only serve bullying and dictatorial regimes.
It is shameful to remain silent vis-à-vis such crimes, the Ansarullah leader said, adding, however, that some countries have openly taken the side of the Yemeni people and provided any assistance they could to the nation.

LAST MINUTE: Saudi air raid kills Yemeni citizen in Jawf province

The resistance shown by the Yemenis shows the legitimacy of the demands of the Yemeni people, Houthi said.
He said the main objective of the Saudi aggression is the destruction of the entire region so that the Zionist regime of Israel will turn into an unrivaled power in the region.
The Saudi crimes have overshadowed the Israeli atrocities against the Palestinians, the Ansarullah leader said.
Pointing to retaliatory attacks by the popular forces, Houthi said heavy and deadly blows have been inflicted on the Saudi military equipment.
The Yemenis do not have a great amount of military equipment, but we have been standing against the enemy, the Ansarullah leader said, adding that the Yemenis feel obliged to defend their principles.
The Saudis launched their aggression under the slogan of serving the Yemenis, however, we have seen how they have served the Yemenis with their missiles and destruction by killing women and children, Houthi said.
The Ansarullah leader said the enemies cannot and will not be able to reach their objectives because Yemenis of all walks of life will continue to stand by their national commitments.
“What we are seeing now is the result of our steadfastness,” he said, adding, “The blood of our martyrs has struck heavy blows at the aggressive enemy.”
Yemen has been under military attacks by Saudi Arabia since late March last year. At least 8,400 people, among them 2,236 children, have been killed so far and 16,015 others have sustained injuries.


Latest Video News (ENG) from Yemen’s National Television

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Israel Supporters Screech and Howl Over UN Special Rapporteur Appointment

 photo mlynk_zpss48gshpl.jpg
Canadian Professor Michael Lynk
By Richard Edmondson

One wonders if Israelis and their supporters ever get tired of carping. Whether it’s BDS, the tweets of some college professor, or a nuclear deal with Iran, the Israelis, it seems, are always fuming and frothing about something.

The latest tantrum is over the appointment of Canadian Professor Michael Lynk to serve as UN Special Rapporteur to the Palestinian occupied territories. The appointment was announced today by UN Human Rights Council President Choi Kyonglim.
Lynk is a professor of law at Western University in London, Ontario. He joined the faculty there in 1999 and has taught courses in labor, human rights, disability, constitutional and administrative law. Sounds like he has all the bona fides for the job, but the Israelis don’t like him.

His appointment is being opposed by a number of Jewish groups, including the organization UN Watch, whose executive director, Hillel Neuer, has assailed Lynk on the grounds that he is “neither impartial nor objective.” I suspect the real objection is that Lynk isn’t pro-Israel, otherwise “partiality” wouldn’t be a problem.

“Someone who accuses Israel of ‘Apartheid’ and openly seeks to dismantle the Jewish state is neither impartial nor objective. We call on Germany, the UK, the Netherlands and all other Council members to do the right things and oppose Lynk’s nomination at tomorrow’s vote,” Neuer fumed.

In other words, a law professor who knows the legal definition of apartheid and recognizes Israel for what it is–an apartheid state–can’t be considered sufficiently “impartial” to qualify for the job of Special Rapporteur. That makes an abundant amount of sense if you’re a Zionist.

 photo pgreen_zpszqqqi8zx.jpg
Professor Penny Green
By the way, Lynk was one of two people who were under consideration for the job. The person he won out over was Penny Green. You’ll not be surprised to learn that the Zionists don’t like her either.

Green is a professor of law and globalization at Queen Mary, University of London. You can visit her Twitter page here. She is described as a “rabid BDS supporter” by a Zionist website here, a site that also denigrates the UN as “corrupt”, “incestuous”, and “evil.”

Like Lynk, Green too has reportedly referred to Israel as an apartheid state–I guess that’s something you just can’t get around if you have both a legal mind as well as a conscience–and has accused it as well of “ethnic cleansing of Palestinians.”

The ubiquitous Mr. Neuer–I call him ubiquitous because virtually every story I’ve come across on this subject includes a quote from him–has also piled on Green, accusing her of advocating that the US and the UK bomb Israel. Here is what his website, UN Watch says on the subject:
Green has compared Israel to ISIS, lamenting that the U.S. and the UK have not yet started “bombing Israel for its massacres.”
Whether the quote attributed to Green is a genuine quote or entirely fictitious, or perhaps genuine but taken out of context, I cannot say. The website provides no documentation whatsoever for it, but it does give us a cranky quote from Neuer, whose complaints about Green sound very similar to his choleric expulsions on Lynk.

“By recommending Penny Green to investigate a country that she seeks to bomb and boycott, the U.N. makes a mockery of its own selection criteria of objectivity and impartiality,” he bristles.

Another tooth-gnasher is Shimon Koffler, head of the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs, one of the main Jewish organizations in Canada.

“We strongly denounce the appointment of Michael Lynk to this role,” said Koffler. “Despite the specific requirement that candidates for the position demonstrate impartiality and objectivity, Mr. Lynk has a long record of involvement with anti-Israel initiatives and has repeatedly made public statements that demonstrate hostility towards Israel.”

Meanwhile, B’nai Brith in Canada denounces Lynk for having “a long history of comparing Israel to the Nazis,” while the Friends of the Simon Wiesenthal Center have overflowingly expressed their “profound disappointment” at Lynk’s nomination as well.

Naturally all these tirades are having the cumulative effect they normally produce, most notably in the obsequious, knee-bending responses from political leaders. Two members of Canada’s Conservative Party, for instance, have published anopen letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, calling upon him to oppose Lynk’s appointment, which is kind of ironic–two members of the Canadian Parliament opposing the appointment of one of their own fellow countrymen. But of course when Israel’s interests are at stake, loyalty to one’s country often seems to fall by the wayside. And of course, Trudeau doesn’t seem to exhibit a great deal of spine, so don’t be too surprised if he gives into their demands.

And as in Canada, pressure reportedly is also being mounted in Britain for an official governmental response there as well, with a group of Israel supporters issuing an appeal to Foreign Office Minister Baroness Anelay.

Lynk, by the way, will be replacing Makarim Wibisono, who resigned his post on January 4 this year, citing Israel’s refusal to grant him access to the occupied territories–the very areas he was tasked with monitoring. The Zionists didn’t like him either, as you probably might guess.
I put up a post about Wibisono’s resignation at the time.

“Unfortunately, my efforts to help improve the lives of Palestinian victims of violations under the Israeli occupation have been frustrated every step of the way,” he said.
Wibisono’s predecessor as Special Rapporteur was Richard Falk. The Zionists didn’t like Falk either.

Perhaps in days to come we’ll be seeing lots of bald Zionists walking about on the streets–bald from pulling their own hairs out.

Oh yes, and if you’re wondering why they’re in such an uproar over Lynk, well…perhaps the following article will shed some light on the topic. It seems the man is a legal scholar of the first order. The article, written by Lynk and posted at Mondoweiss in 2013, is quite a doozy.
Following UN settlement report, the path forward for Palestinian leadership is clear — take Israel to the International Criminal Court

By Michael Lynk

On 14 September 1967, three months after the Israeli conquest of the West Bank, East Jerusalem, Gaza, the Egyptian Sinai and the Syrian Golan Heights, the legal counsel for the Israeli Foreign Ministry, Theodor Meron, wrote a legal opinion for his Minister, Abba Eban. Meron, a Holocaust survivor who later become a law professor at New York University and would complete his illustrious career as president of the U.N. war crimes tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, advised Eban that the 4th Geneva Convention of 1949 prohibited the establishment of civilian settlements in occupied territories. Israel, as a signatory to the Geneva Conventions, was obliged to comply. The prohibition in international law, Meron wrote, was:
“categorical and is not conditioned on the motives or purposes of the transfer, and is aimed at preventing colonization of conquered territory by citizens of the conquering state.”
[The legal opinion, in the original Hebrew, can be found here with an explanatory commentary in English by Gershom Gorenberg]

Eban and the rest of the Israeli cabinet chose to ignore Meron’s clear warning, and it was kept secret for many years in the Israeli Foreign Ministry files. Indeed, Eban spent much of the summer and autumn of 1967 prevaricating at the United Nations over Israeli’s not-so-hidden intentions regarding the conquered territories. Even as he was offering some vague pledges to the United States about Israel’s willingness to return the lands to their Arab neighbours, the Israeli cabinet voted to annex East Jerusalem and a significant chunk of the West Bank, and began planning the first settlements under the guise of military encampments. When Dean Rusk, the American Secretary of State, reminded Eban later in 1967 about Israel’s pledge that it had no territorial ambitions, Eban shrugged his shoulders and said: “We’ve changed our minds.” “Israel’s keeping territory,” Rusk presciently warned his American senior foreign policy staff as they debated what position the United States should take, “would create a revanchism for the rest of the twentieth century.”
The report on the Israeli settlements released earlier this week by the United Nations Human Rights Council confirms, in considerable detail, Rusk’s prediction. Since 1967, the report states,
Israeli governments have openly led and directly participated in the planning, construction, development, consolidation and/or encouragement of settlements by including explicit provisions in the fundamental policy instrument
There are now approximately 250 settlements in East Jerusalem and the West Bank, home to approximately 520,000 settlers. (Israel has another 20,000 settlers in the Syrian Golan Heights, which is not mentioned in the report).

The report details the devastating social and economic consequences of Israeli’s settlement project for the Palestinians. Settler violence against the Palestinians is endemic, routine and yet rarely investigated or punished by the Israeli military. Land confiscation is significant, with over a million dunums (a dunum is a quarter of an acre) seized by Israel since 1967 for the settlements through a myriad of legal stratagems, with the Palestinian Bedouins being particularly vulnerable. Water – a strategic resource in the arid Levant – is controlled by Israel, giving it “predominance in the allocation of West Bank water resources, of which it withdraws 90 per cent.” The expansion of the settlements and their related infrastructure squeezes Palestinian agriculture by removing access to land and water, and impeding the transportation of goods to markets. Likewise, the intense security system of roadblocks and walls designed to protect the half a million settlers is strangling Palestinian commerce, as businesses face immense problems accessing raw goods and shipping their finished products to customers.

All of Israel’s settlement activities have been in plain violation of international law. The UN report lays out, in accessible language, the elements of international humanitarian law (the law of war and the protection of civilians during conflict), international criminal law and international human rights law that are breached by the Israeli settlement project. Beyond the clear violations of the 4th Geneva Convention, the report rightly notes that the settlement project also violates the Palestinians’ right to self-determination as well as their right to equality and non-discrimination, both cornerstones of our international legal system.

In the muted language typical of many UN documents, the settlements report hints at the underlying reasons why modern international law has created a strict prohibition against settler implantation projects. The report points out that the Israeli settlements represent “a creeping annexation” that will block “the establishment of a contiguous and viable Palestinian state”. An astute historian reading between the lines of the report would immediately visualize the direct link to many earlier settler-implantation projects, such as the British settlement of Scottish and English Protestants into Catholic Ireland; the French in Algeria; the Dutch and the British in South Africa; the British in Kenya; the Soviet Union’s infusion of Russians into the Baltic republics; and the export of Moroccan settlers into the Western Sahara.

What all of these projects share is the common goal of the colonial power to solidify its political control, augment its economic penetration, and ultimately bolster its legal claim to possession of the subjugated lands, all through the tool of demographic transformation. The transferred settlers are almost always willing citizens or subjects of the dominant power, motivated by government inducements, enhanced economic prospects, special legal and political privileges in the subjugated lands, and, on occasion, nationalist, religious or civilizing missions. The consent of the indigenous population is invariably unsought, because it would never be offered. The consequences of these settlement projects are usually multifold, calamitous and long-term: indigenous civilian misery, environmental degradation, separate and unequal social and legal structures, segregated labour markets, and chronic political instability.

The most important take-away of the UN report is its call for the international community to enforce its own body of international laws to confront the Israeli settlement project. In particular, the report points to the 1998 Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, which designates settlement activity as a “war crime”. As the report notes:
The Rome Statute establishes the International Criminal Court’s jurisdiction over the deportation or transfer, directly or indirectly, by the occupying Power of parts of its own population into the territory it occupies, or the deportation or transfer of all or parts of the population of the occupied territory within or outside this territory. Ratification of the Statute by Palestine may lead to accountability for gross violations of human rights law and serious violations of international humanitarian law justice for victims.
More than anything else the Palestinian leadership could do, seeking membership in the International Criminal Court and preparing to bring a complaint against Israel for its settlements has the potential for dramatically altering the political landscape in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. A victory at the International Criminal Court would isolate Israel, require the West to acknowledge the force of its own laws, re-establish the importance of universal values and, most hopefully, begin to re-set some of the dysfunctional asymmetry of power between Israel and the Palestinians.

Regarding the decision of the United Nations Human Rights Council to commission a report on the Israeli settlements, the United States has played its traditional role as Israel’s diplomatic flack catcher. The New York Times on Thursday quoted the U.S. as stating it had opposed the mission on the grounds that “it does not advance the cause of peace and will distract the parties from efforts to resolve the issues that divide them.” In his memoirs, written in 1992, Dean Rusk recalled his reaction to Abba Eban’s 1967 comment that Israel had changed its mind about returning the conquered lands: “With that remark, a contentious and even bitter point with the Americans, he turned the United States into a twenty year liar.”

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The Zio-con Who Bought Disaster to Libya is Doing it Again

By Gilad Atzmon
Bernard-Henri Lévy (BHL), the ultra Zionist who declared that ‘as a Jew’ he liberated Libya, is again campaigning for more immoral interventionist wars. He insists that the current terror in Europe comes from Syria and Iraq. His solution- let’s drop more bombs on Muslim and Arab cities- as if we haven’t been doing just that for decades.  I would expect nothing less from a Hasbra merchant, but why does the BBC feature such a clumsy Zio-con, one who is barely able to articulate an idea?
The Jewish so-called ‘philosopher’ tells lies on camera. He argues that the West had washed its hands of Syria’s uprising and didn’t want to intervene. Is that true?  In fact, throughout the war we have identified precisely those militias and the rebels that were working with Israel and the West.
Despite the obvious fact, widely accepted by Western analysts, that Asad and Iran hold the key to stability in the region, BHL continues to campaign against Bashar Assad.
Like his brethren Zionists, BHL also insists upon imposing a false demarcation between the ‘kosher Muslims’ and the ‘bad ones.’  In support, Levy recycles the false Zionist dichotomy between ‘Islam’ and ‘Islamism.’ But there is no such dichotomy. As in Judaism, in Islam there is no separation between the civil and the religious. Yet unlike the Jews, in Islam there is no such thing as a secular Muslim. Jews often drop God but retain their Jewish identity. When a Muslim stops believing in Allah, he or she stops being a Muslim. Thus the delusional dichotomy between Islam and Islamism is nothing but a Jewish projection–an attempt to Zionise the Muslim.
BHL reckons that Europe is dying.  If he is right, he can blame himself and Jewish lobbies that pushed us into so many criminal wars in devastating succession. But I believe that BHL is wrong; Europe will emerge from the present crisis in a stronger position. It will learn to identify its true roots in Athens and will drift away from Jerusalem and the destructive influence exerted by Zionist politics, such as BHL, Lord Cashpoint Levy, LFI, CFI and The Crif.

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Friday 25 March 2016

Netanyahu Threatens of Assassinating Sayyed Nasrallah

NetanyahuAfter Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah threatened the Zionist entity of striking all the nuclear, petrochemical and biological faculties in the occupied Palestinian territories during any future war, media reports revealed that the Israeli authorities are planning to get rid of the Ammonia Tanks in Haifa.
The reports added that the Zionist entity will either move the tanks into a ship that will be positioned 8 km away from the seashore or import small amounts of the chemical material before moving it directly to the factories, without storing it.
The Zionist entity has started to build cement blocks and natural barriers along the Lebanese Palestinian border for fear of Hezbollah possible invasion to Galilee.
Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu responded to Sayyed Nasrallah’s threats by vowing to assassinate his murder, avoiding derailed responses that would escalate the situation in the Zionist entity.
Source: Al Manar TV
24-03-2016 – 20:55 Last updated 24-03-2016 – 20:55
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موسكو تلاعب كيري وتعيد تنظيم المراحل

ناصر قنديل

– لم يكن صدفة الإعلان الروسي عن انسحاب القوات الرئيسية لروسيا من سوريا يوم بدء المحادثات الهادفة لحل سياسي في سوريا، وبات معلوماً أن التزامن كان مدروساً لإفهام القيّمين على وفد جماعة الرياض أن ليس بمستطاعهم ممارسة الدلع السياسي لهذه الجماعة لتمارس التعطيل، مطمئنين أن روسيا باتت أمام عداد الوقت مضطرة أن تدفع فاتورة إنجاح المفاوضات السياسية، ومجبرة على توفير مقومات الفوز في الحرب على داعش بمفردها لتتولاها نيابة عن الغرب المرتاح لممارسة لعبة الابتزاز فجاء الإعلان كصاعقة أصابت العواصم الغربية بالذهول، و جاءت تفجيرات بروكسل لتقول إن الغرب هو من ليس بمستطاعه التباطؤ في توفير مقتضيات الحرب على الإرهاب وفي مقدمتها إنجاز الحل السياسي لتشكيل حكومة سورية موحدة تحظى بالاعتراف الدولي وتكون قاعدة صلبة لتعاون دولي وإقليمي يضمن الفوز في هذه الحرب.

– لم يكن توقيت معركة تدمر والإنجاز النوعي الذي حققه الجيش السوري وحلفاؤه بدعم روسي كامل، يوم وصول وزير الخارجية الأميركية جون كيري إلى موسكو صدفة. فالحرب على الإرهاب غير مشمولة بالهدنة، والانسحاب الروسي لا يشمل مقتضيات الدعم التي يحتاجها الجيش السوري في حربه، وكيري يعلق الحرب ليست انتهاكاً لأعمال الهدنة، لكن وزارة الدفاع الروسية تقول إنها تجري محادثات مع الأميركيين حول جبهة النصرة ومواقع تواجدها، لتقول إن الخطوة التالية بعد تدمر هي إدلب، وإن الجيش السوري سيواصل مهامه القتالية إذا بقيت المفاوضات تراوح مكانها، وإن على الساعين لحل سياسي إدراك أن بلوغ الجيش السوري أطراف الرقة بعد تحرير المدى الشمالي والجنوبي لحدود سوريا الدولية، قبل ولادة هذا الحل، يفقد هذا الحل الكثير من الأسباب، ويصير المطروح على الطاولة السورية مقابل الابتزاز لتقديم الشراكة في الحرب على الإرهاب، هو الحسم مع داعش دون انتظار ولادة التحالف الدولي الإقليمي، فلا مساومة على الشؤون السيادية السورية مقابل هذه الشراكة، والرئاسة السورية في المقدمة، وموسكو ليست مستعدة لدفع فواتير العجز الغربي عن مواجهة الحقد والحسابات السعودية الصغيرة.

– يتذاكى كيري بعرض مقايضة وجود حزب الله في سوريا ووضعه مقابل جبهة النصرة، ثم جعل خروجه من سوريا شرطاً للحل إرضاء معنوياً للسعودية، ثم يطوي أوراقه ويكتفي بالسعي لتحصين الهدنة، فيجد أمامه مفاجآت روسية تشبه توقيت تدمر وتوقيت الإعلان عن الانسحاب، مقايضة إقناع الأكراد بشراكة أميركية روسية بالتراجع عن الفدرالية من طرف واحد مقابل ضمان مشاركتهم في المفاوضات، وترك مستقبل ما يسمى بآلية الانتقال من الحرب إلى السلم على مستوى هيكلية مؤسسات الدولة السورية للسوريين، فيخرج دي ميستورا معلناً في مؤتمر صحافي أن مشاركة وفود متعدّدة للمعارضة هو أمر طبيعي يعكس حال هذه المعارضة، فتهلل جماعة الرياض وتحتفل بورود مصطلح الانتقال السياسي وهم يسمعونه يقول إن الآليات هي شأن السوريين وحدهم، ويرد على أسئلتهم عن حزب الله وتصنيفه إرهاباً، بأنه في لوائح الأمم المتحدة النصرة وداعش فقط هما الإرهاب حتى الآن.
– موسكو تحدد لكل مرحلة عنواناً، وتُعِدّ له العدة، والرئيس الروسي فلاديمير بوتين ووزير خارجية روسيا سيرغي لافروف لاعبان محترفان في الدبلوماسية والأمن والسياسة، قبل خمسة شهور قرار الدخول العسكري لفرض معادلة إخراج تركيا ما وراء الحدود وإسقاط مشروعها لإقامة ما تسميه بالمنطقة الآمنة، وفرض قرار أممي بإخراج الرئاسة السورية من التفاوض الدولي والإقليمي كبند من بنود الحل السياسي، وقبل ثلاثة شهور في ميونيخ بعد نجاح فيينا ونيويورك بتتويج المرحلة الأولى، نجاح المرحلة الثانية بإسقاط خيار جبهة النصرة الذي شكل عنوان المشروع السعودي التركي الإسرائيلي الغربي، لخوض الحرب ولعب السياسة، وحسم استثنائها من الهدنة وتصنيفها أممياً على لائحة الإرهاب، واليوم تخوض موسكو معركة كسر احتكار جماعة الرياض للتفاوض باسم المعارضة من البوابة الكردية بعدما أعدت لذلك جيداً، وعرضت معادلة لا يمكن لكيري رفضها، مقعد تفاوضي بدلاً من الفدرالية الأحادية، فسقطت جماعة الرياض بالضربة القاضية، ولم يحِن بعد التوقيت لمعركة عنوانها لا نقاش في مستقبل الرئاسة السورية، ولا مكان لهيئة حكم انتقالي، والاكتفاء بوضع روزنامة عنوانها حكومة ودستور جديدان في الصيف، وشأن التفاوض بين السوريين الجواب عن كيف، وربما يكون التوقيت مع إدلب أو مع حلب لقطع دابر الجدل حول كيف.
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Weekly Report On Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (17– 23 March 2016)

Israeli forces continue systematic crimes in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt)
(17 – 23 March 2016)
Jerusalem – Israeli Forces Demolish Commercial Store Belonging to Khader Ebeidat in al-Mukaber Mount.
Jerusalem – Israeli Forces Demolish Commercial Store Belonging to Khader Ebeidat in al-Mukaber Mount.
  • Israeli forces continued to use excessive force in the oPt
  • 4 Palestinian civilians, including a child, were killed in the West Bank.
  • 3 Palestinian civilians were wounded in the Gaza Strip.
  • Israeli forces continued to target the border areas along the Gaza Strip, due to which, a shepherd was wounded.
  • Israeli forces conducted 69 incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and 3 limited ones in the southern Gaza Strip.
  • 61 Palestinian civilians, including 7 children and a woman, were arrested. Thirty of them, including 2 children and the woman, were arrested in occupied Jerusalem.
  • Israeli forces raided the Zakat Committee office in Qabatya and the Arab American University in Jenin.
  • Israeli forces continued their efforts to create Jewish majority in occupied East Jerusalem.
  • Israeli forces suspended the financial allocations (national insurance) of 3 Palestinian prisoners, whom were accused of the killing of a settler.
  • 2 underconstruction houses were demolished by Israeli forces and a family was obliged to self-demolish its house.
  • Settlement activities continued in the West Bank.
  • 6 commercial stores in the central market in Beita village, south of Nablus, were demolished.
  • The house of the only eyewitness to the arson attack against Dawabsha family in Douma village, southeast of Nablus, caught fire too.
  • Israeli forces continued to target Palestinian fishermen in the Gaza Strip Sea.
  • Israeli forces turned the West Bank into cantons and continued to impose the illegal closure on the Gaza Strip for the 9th
  • Dozens of temporary checkpoints were established in the West Bank and others were re-established to obstruct the movement of Palestinian civilians.
  • 5 Palestinian civilians were arrested at military checkpoints.
  • Israeli forces closed Beit Hanoun (Erez) crossing, north of the Gaza Strip, for Jewish Holidays.

Israeli violations of international law and international humanitarian law in the oPt continued during the reporting period (17 – 23 March 2016).

Israeli forces have continued to commit crimes, inflicting civilian casualties. They have also continued to use excessive force against Palestinian civilians participating in peaceful protests in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, the majority of whom were youngsters. During the reporting period, Israeli forces killed 4 Palestinian civilians, including a child, in the West Bank and 4 others in the Gaza Strip.
In the West Bank, Israeli forces killed 4 Palestinian civilians, including a child. Two of them were killed at “Ariel” settlement intersection, north of Salfit; one was killed at “Gosh Etzion” settlement intersection, south of Bethlehem; while the child was killed at Abu al-Reesh military checkpoint in the centre of Hebron.

Killings committed by Israeli forces in the West Bank were as follows:
On 17 March 2016, Israeli forces opened fire at Ali Taqatqah (19) and Ali Thawabtah (20), both from Beit Fajjar, south of Bethlehem, who were present at “Ariel” settlement intersection, north of Salfit. As a result, they were immediately killed for alleged stabbing attack against a female settler in that area.
On 18 March 2016, Israeli forces deployed at “Gosh Etzion” settlement intersection, south of Bethlehem, killed Mahmoud Abu Fanouna (21), from Khellet al-Nafisah area, southeast of Hebron. The aforementioned person sustained several bullet wounds and was left bleeding to death for over an hour without being offered first aid. He was then transported by an Israeli military ambulance to an unknown destination. Israeli forces claimed that he attempted to carry out a stabbing.
On 19 March 2016, Israeli forces stationed at Abu al-Reesh military checkpoint at the western entrance to al-Shuhada Street, in central Hebron, killed Abdullah Ajlouni (16), from Jabal Johar area, south of the city. The child was left bleeding to death. Israeli forces claimed that the child was holding a knife and tried to attack an Israeli border Guard officer at the checkpoint. The family stated that their son had been shot with other 20 live bullets throughout his body.
In the Gaza Strip, Israeli forces wounded 4 Palestinian civilians; 3 of whom had participated in peaceful protests near the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel and the 4th was wounded when Israeli forces opened fire at the border area.
In the context of targeting border areas along the Gaza Strip, on 18 March 2016, Israeli forces stationed behind a sand barrier at the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel, east of Khan Yunis, south of the Gaza Strip, opened fire at Wasim al-‘Emour (18), who was grazing the sheep to the west of the said fence. As a result, he sustained a bullet wound to the left leg and was then taken to the European Gaza Hospital in the city. His wound was moderate.
As part of shooting incidents against peaceful protests, on 18 March 2016, Israeli forces opened fire at Palestinian youngsters, who headed towards the border fence between the Gaza Strip and Israel, east of al-Shuja’iya neighbourhood, east of Gaza City. The Palestinian youngsters threw stones at Israeli soldiers stationed at the border fence; as a result, 3 Palestinian civilians were wounded.
In the context of targeting Palestinian fishermen in the Gaza Strip sea, on 19 March 2016, Israeli gunboats stationed off Khan Yunis shore, south of the Gaza Strip, opened fire sporadically at Palestinian fishing boats for over an hour. As a result, the fishermen were frightened and sailed back towards the shore, but no casualties were reported.

During the reporting period, Israeli forces conducted at least 79 military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and 7 ones in occupied East Jerusalem and its suburbs. During these incursions, Israeli forces arrested at least 61 Palestinian civilians, including 7 children and a woman.  Thirty of them, including 2 children and the woman, were arrested in occupied Jerusalem.
As part of the collective punishment measures taken against Palestinians carrying out attacks against Israelis, on 17 March 2016, Israeli forces moved into al-Jildah area in Hebron. They raided groceries, in which Ameer Jo’ba and Qasem Abu Ouda used to work before they were killed by Israeli forces on 14 March 2016 for a shooting attack at “Givat Kharsina” settlement, east of the city. Israeli forces destroyed the doors and then welded them. They then fixed military order shutting the stores down.
During the reporting period, Israeli forces raided the Arab American University’s campus in al-Zababda village, southeast of Jenin. They then raided the building of the Student Affairs and searched the offices of the student blocs. Moreover, Israeli soldiers confiscated some flags and posters. In addition, Israeli forces raided the central Zakat Committee in Qabatya village, southeast of Jenin. They destroyed the main gate and confiscated a PC set, a number of printers and some documents relevant to bank accounts and names of families receiving aid from the Committee.
In the Gaza Strip, Israeli forces carried out 3 limited incursions in the north and center of the Gaza Strip. On 21 March 2016, Israeli forces moved about 100 meters to the east of al-Ahmar area, east of Beit Hanoun village, north of the Gaza Strip. On 22 March 2016, they moved about 200 meters into Boret Abu Samrah, north of Beit Lahia, north of the Gaza Strip. Besides, on the same day, Israeli military bulldozers moved about 150 meters into the east of al-Salqa Valley, east of Deir al-Balah, in the central Gaza Strip. They levelled lands along the border fence and redeployed later.

Restrictions on movement:
Israel continued to impose a tight closure of the oPt, imposing severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem.
The illegal closure of the Gaza Strip, which has been steadily tightened since June 2007 has had a disastrous impact on the humanitarian and economic situation in the Gaza Strip.  The Israeli authorities impose measures to undermine the freedom of trade, including the basic needs for the Gaza Strip population and the agricultural and industrial products to be exported. For 9 consecutive years, Israel has tightened the land and naval closure to isolate the Gaza Strip from the West Bank, including occupied Jerusalem, and other countries around the world. This resulted in grave violations of the economic, social and cultural rights and a deterioration of living conditions for 1.8 million people.  The Israeli authorities have established Karm Abu Salem (Kerem Shaloum) as the sole crossing for imports and exports in order to exercise its control over the Gaza Strip’s economy.  They also aim at imposing a complete ban on the Gaza Strip’s exports. The Israeli closure raised the rate of poverty to 38.8%, 21.1% of which suffer from extreme poverty. Moreover, the rate of unemployment increased up to 44%, which reflects the unprecedented economic deterioration in the Gaza Strip.

Jewish Majority:
In the context of collective punishment measures, on 17 March 2016, 3 families from Sour Baher village, southeast of Jerusalem, received official letters from the Israeli National Insurance Institute informing them that national insurance allocations for their imprisoned sons were suspended. In last January, the Israeli Minister of Interior decided to withdraw the Israeli IDs from the 3 Palestinians, whom were accused by Israeli forces of the killing of a settler by throwing stones at his car in September 2015. It should be noted that the Israeli Home Front Command had issued a decision in February to close and confiscate the houses of the 3 prisoners’ families.
As part of house demolitions, on 21 March 2016, Israeli municipality bulldozers demolished the foundation of a building belonging to Sohaib Ja’abees in al-Mukaber Mount village, southeast of occupied Jerusalem, under the pretext of non-licensing.
On the same day, Abu Qalbain family was obliged to self-demolish its house in Ras al-Amoud neighbourhood, east of Jerusalem’s Old City, upon an order from the Israeli municipality. Asem Abu Qalbain said that the abovementioned house had been still under-construction.
In the same context, Israeli municipality bulldozers demolished on the same day also a house belonging to Ali Abu Soy in Ras al-Amoud neighbourhood, east of Jerusalem’s Old City without warning. The family said it was surprised by the demolition of their under-construction house.

Settlement activities:
On 17 March 2016, Israeli bulldozers demolished 6 commercial stores built of tin plates and a toilet that were located at the western entrance to Beita vllage, south of Nablus. Israeli forces surrounded the central market, after which, the bulldozers started demolitions under the pretext of non-licensing.
Concerning settler attacks against Palestinian civilians and their property, on 20 March 2016, a Molotov cocktail was thrown into the bedroom of Ibrahim Dawabsha (23) in Douma village, southeast of Nablu, while he and his wife Yaqin Dawabsha (20) were asleep. Their house is close to the house of Sa’d Dawabsha, whom along with his wife and baby were killed due to an arson attack by settlers on 31 July 2015. As a result, the house was set on fire and Ibrahim and his wife suffered smoke inhalation before they could get out of the house. A finger is pointed at the settlers regarding this arson attack, because Ibrahim is the only eyewitness of the previous arson against Dawabsha family.
River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

Unbelievable, Most Americans Believe Palestinians Occupy Israeli Land

Israel-AIPAC claims of 'disputed lands' are working

According to an IRmep poll fielded by Google Consumer Surveys the majority of Americans (49.2 percent) believe that Palestinians occupy Israeli land rather than the reverse. The statistically-significant survey was fielded on March 9 in four nations and had a margin of error of 1.7-4.3 percent.

The U.S. adult internet population is alone in North America believing that Israelis are under a Palestinian occupation. A simultaneous survey of Canadians reveals that 51.4 percent correctly believe Israelis occupy Palestinian land, while 54.6 percent of Mexicans also believe Israel occupies Palestinian territory.

Adults living in the United Kingdom were the most convinced among the four countries surveyed with 57.7 percent believing “Israelis occupy Palestinian land.” The issue has taken on new relevance with the EU’s efforts to clearly label the origin of goods produced in Israeli West Bank settlements. The organization tasked with lobbying congress on behalf of many Israel affinity organizations in the US, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee or AIPAC, deems the EU labeling measure an “attack” on Israel and has sought to legitimize products from “Israeli-controlled territories” in US trade legislation. AIPAC has sought to “blur” the issue by promoting the Israeli government formulation of the lands as “disputed” rather than “occupied.”

Figure 1: IRmep Google Consumer Research polls
Figure 1: IRmep Google Consumer Research polls

However, understanding the situation on the ground is important for Americans. Though not widely reported, 9/11 Commission testimony revealed that Israel’s ongoing occupation and humiliation of Palestinians and unconditional US support for Israel and repressive regimes in the Middle East were major motivators of terrorism against the United States.

The United Nations Security Council began using the term ‘territories occupied’ following the Six-Day War precipitated by Israel’s sneak attack on Egypt in 1967. UN Resolution 242 called for withdrawal of Israeli armed forces from territories Israel occupied in order to establish peace in the region. Instead, Israel annexed East Jerusalem in 1980 and the Golan Heights in 1981. Neither move has been recognized by the international community. Israel’s annexation of Jerusalem was declared "null and void" by UN Security Council Resolution 478, while UN resolution 497 declared the same over Israel’s annexation of the Golan. Israel withdrew military forces from Gaza in September 2005, but retained control over Gaza’s frequency spectrum, tax revenue, airspace and coastline. Israel continues to be designated as an occupying power by the UN.

In the United States, politicians seeking support from Israel affinity organizations are discouraged from using the term “Israeli occupied territories.” Many prefer to follow AIPAC’s and the Israeli government’s formulation that the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Golan are “disputed territories” in order to avoid upsetting large pro-Israel campaign contributors.

Although there are no major establishment news organizations reporting on or even alleging any Palestinian occupation of Israeli territories, the media’s overwhelmingly negative coverage of Palestinians – including its bids for statehood, the nonviolent BDS movement, and resistance to Israeli attacks – all likely contribute to Americans’ fundamental failure to grasp essential facts about the situation in the Middle East.

IRmep is a Washington, DC-based nonprofit researching US Middle East policy formulation.

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!