ISRAEL | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


ISRAEL

Feb 20 12:26

The Israel lobby is built on the biggest guilt trip in the world

I’ve been reading Amos Oz’s books since his death, and one of the feelings he leaves me with is: Self-contempt. Many of Oz’s characters look on American Jews with disdain. “To be without power is, in my eyes, both a sin and a catastrophe. It’s the sin of exile, and Diaspora,” says one. Another says that Diaspora Jews “shalt fear day and night, and shalt have none assurance of… life.”

The message is clear. Jews in the west are half-made because they never had to fight. They haven’t served in the Israeli army, at the front line of reborn Jewish sovereignty. But those exiled Jews derive pride and strength from the armed Jewish nation; Israel has given them international prestige. Because once Jews went like sheep to slaughter, we formed lines to get on the cattle cars. Now we are a proud nation.

But those exiled Jews have no skin in the game. They are living comfortable idle existences. Getting up like me this morning and going to my desk.

Feb 20 12:25

Ilhan Omar and the anti-Semitic ‘trope/canard’ smear

The latest brouhaha over Ilhan Omar’s supposed flirtation with anti-Semitism was started by Batya Ungar-Sargon of the Forward, who ignited a twitter debate by challenging Omar’s assertion on February 10 that AIPAC used financial pressure on members of Congress on behalf of Israel. Ungar-Sargon then wrote a column accusing Omar of repeated use of anti-Semitic “tropes,” which has become something of a “mot du jour.” The exchange exploded quickly into a firestorm, leading to rebukes from Democratic Congressional leadership and calls from President Trump for Omar to resign from Congress or at least the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

Ungar-Sargon, who views herself as politically “on the left,” has perversely become a leading practitioner of the familiar playbook smearing those who stray from the narrow boundaries of acceptable criticism of Israel as anti-Semites who are conjuring some historical anti-Semitic “trope” or “canard.”

Feb 20 12:25

Netanyahu is working hard for racist party of ‘David Dukes’ so as to hold a rightwing majority in Israeli parliament

“Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been spending much of his time making sure a racist, xenophobic, Homophobic Ultra-Right wing fringe party which is the Israeli version of David Duke passes the electoral threshold [of four seats] & makes it into the Knesset in the April 9th elections.”

“The name of this party is ‘Jewish Power’ & its members are followers of Meir Kahana – former leader of ‘Kach’ party which was banned from running in the elections in 1988 and was designated as a terror organization in Israel, the U.S., Canada and the EU.”

“The leader of ‘Kach’ Meir Kahana managed to get elected in 1984 and was boycotted by all the other parties in the Knesset. He tried to pass a law for stripping non-Jews from their citizenship, a law for separate beaches for Jews and Arabs and other racist laws.”

Feb 20 12:24

After Israeli anchor calls out brutality of ‘occupation’, political leaders land hard on her

This is a big story in Israel. On Saturday, Channel 13 anchorwoman Oshrat Kotler commented on a case of sadistic Israeli soldier beatings of a Palestinian father and son in occupied territory, saying:

They send children to the army, to the territories, and get them back human animals. That’s the result of the occupation.

The response was immediate. Thousands of expressions of rage streamed in from audiences, and many leaders on the right were condemnatory. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tweeted:

Proud of IDF soldiers and love them very much. Oshrat Kotler’s words should be roundly condemned.

Feb 20 12:24

Israel Approves 464 New Colonialist Units In Occupied Jerusalem

The Israeli “Construction and Planning Committee” of the City Council in occupied Jerusalem, has approved the construction on an additional 464 units for illegal colonialist settlers.

The approval was made this past Monday, and it was revealed, Wednesday, that the plan aims at expanding in Gilo illegal colony, southwest of Jerusalem.

Israeli sources said the City Council in Jerusalem has allocated more than $200 Million to build and expand the illegal colonies in the Old City, especially in what is known as the Jewish Quarter in Jerusalem, were two Palestinian neighborhoods, Sharaf and al-Magharba, once stood.

Israel’s colonies the occupied West Bank, including in and around occupied East Jerusalem, are illegal under International Law and the Fourth Geneva Convention, to which Israel is a signatory and a constant violator.

Feb 20 12:23

ANC Youth League Affirms Support For BDS

The African National Congress Youth League has affirmed its support for the international Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement. Speaking to Middle East Monitor on Monday, the Secretary General of South Africa’s ruling party, Njabulo Nzuza, stressed that its National Executive Committee (NEC) even took a decision to work together with BDS South Africa (BDS SA).

Over the weekend, a Youth League member, Thembi Siweya, sparked controversy when she published an article titled “BDS SA, undermining South Africa” wherein she criticised the BDS movement. In particular, Siweya made clear that she is against any opposition to an Israeli company’s intended takeover of South Africa’s largest dairy producer, Clover.

“BDS SA ought to listen to what ordinary Palestinians yearn for,” claimed Siweya. “Its messaging on Palestine is not coherent and fails to benefit the Palestinians living in Palestine.” Nzuza was emphatic that Siweya’s views are “not the position of the Youth League.”

Feb 20 12:22

Jordan ambassador calls for dismissing Israel envoy

Jordanian members of parliament yesterday called on the government to dismiss the Israeli ambassador to Amman and to recall the Jordanian ambassador from Israel in response to Israel’s violations of Al-Aqsa Mosque, Safa news agency reported.

The Chairman of the Palestine Committee in Parliament MP Yahya Al-Saud read the statement of his committee for the parliament, calling on the government to urgently take all the needed measures to stop Israel’s unilateral measures.

According to Safa, the committee hailed the Jordanian official stance regarding Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Islamic sites in Jerusalem, referring to the role of the Jordanian endowment ministry in the holy city.

Feb 20 12:22

Poland asks Israel to apologise for ‘slanderous’ remarks

The government of Poland said it is still waiting for an apology from Israel following “slanderous” remarks made by senior officials regarding the role of Poles in the Nazi Holocaust.

International media widely reported the Polish Deputy Foreign Minister Szymon Szynkowski vel Sek saying yesterday: “We leave it to Israeli leaders to choose what form of reaction they will have and who will react, but it should be a unified and definite one.”

The Polish official described the remarks of the acting Israeli foreign minister Yisrael Katz as “shameful, scandalous and slanderous” and they require an “unequivocal and definite” reaction.

Feb 20 12:21

Israel pharmaceutical firms test medicines on Palestinian prisoners

Israeli Professor Nadera Shalhoub-Kevorkian revealed yesterday that the Israeli occupation authorities issues permits to large pharmaceutical firms to carry out tests on Palestinian and Arab prisoners, Felesteen.ps reported.

The Hebrew University lecturer also revealed that the Israeli military firms are testing weapons on Palestinian children and carry out these tests in the Palestinian neighbourhoods of occupied Jerusalem.

Speaking in Columbia University in New York City, Shalhoub-Kevorkian said that she collected the data while carrying out a research project for the Hebrew University.

“Palestinian spaces are laboratories,” she said. “The invention of products and services of state-sponsored security corporations are fueled by long-term curfews and Palestinian oppression by the Israeli army.”

Feb 20 12:20

US court reopens Palestinian lawsuit against billionaire Israel donor Adelson

A US appeals court has reopened a billion-dollar lawsuit against Jewish-American tycoon Sheldon Adelson, which seeks to hold him and more than 30 others liable for war crimes and support of Israel’s illegal settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories (oPt).

Feb 20 12:19

Ultra-right Jewish Power to compete in Israel elections with Jewish Home

Ultra-right Israeli party Otzma Yehudit (Jewish Power) has agreed to run together with Jewish Home and National Union, reported the Jerusalem Post.

According to reports, the parties said they plan to form a “technical bloc” whereby Jewish Home and National Union will be a joint faction, “as they have been for the past two Knessets”, and Jewish Power will operate independently, taking the fifth and eighth places on the list.

The purpose of the bloc is so that Jewish Power’s votes, “which are worth two to three Knesset seats but don’t reach the 3.25% electoral threshold, expand the right-wing bloc in the elections”.

As reported by the Jerusalem Post, Jewish Power “is led by students of Rabbi Meir Kahane, including former MK Michael Ben-Ari, Hebron activist Baruch Marzel, Benzi Gopstein, who leads an organization opposing Jewish-Muslim marriages, and far-right activist attorney Itamar Ben-Gvir”.

Feb 20 12:18

Netanyahu shows American-Jewish leaders map of Israel’s diplomatic offensive in Africa

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told American-Jewish leaders that Israel has “potential” diplomatic relations with Mali and Niger, reported The Times of Israel.

“Israeli officials have long acknowledged their goal to restore formal ties with Mali, though never publicly referred to the status quo of relations in this way,” the report added.

On Monday evening, “Netanyahu addressed the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations’ annual Israel mission in a Jerusalem hotel.”

During his speech, the premier “talked participants through a slide show about Israeli achievements in various fields, including diplomacy.”

Feb 20 12:18

US study examines Israel’s ‘targeting’ of Palestinian agricultural, water and energy infrastructures

Researchers at Duke University and the University of New Hampshire have examined how “Israel’s targeting of agricultural, water and energy infrastructures in the West Bank and Gaza Strip has had dire impacts on human welfare and livelihoods in both locations”.

According to the Duke University press release, the new report “is based on an original database that identifies 982 incidents between 2006 and 2017 in which Israeli forces, agencies or settlers damaged, destroyed, disabled or restricted access to sites and structures that provided food, clean water and other essential services to Palestinians”.

The data from the Gaza Strip and the West Bank comes from a larger database that documents the targeting of infrastructure across the Middle East and North Africa. The analysis was published in the journal International Affairs.

Feb 20 12:16

How Anti-Semitism Vigilantes Are Feeding the Far-Right

Has anyone else noticed how almost anything you say nowadays – if it’s leftwing – can suddenly be cited as proof of your anti-semitism?

That is if you haven’t already been denounced as a Kremlin stooge.

Oppose the regular neoconservative regime-change operations, such as the latest one targeting Venezuela, and point to the long record of war crimes committed by one of its current architects, Elliott Abrams, and that apparently is probable evidence that you’re an anti-semite.

Feb 20 12:15

Heart of Darkness Germany

After Muslim congresswoman Ilhan Omar made an obvious point about Jewish power influencing American foreign policies, she was forced, by that same Jewish power, to recant, thus confirming, to all those who can still think, the awful influence of Jewish power.

Though Jewish power is quite out in the open, as in AIPAC and the existence of a racist state that’s sustained by terror and endless war, one can’t even say “Jewish power” without being immediately branded an anti-Semite, if not a Nazi.

If it wasn’t for Jewish power, Americans wouldn’t have so much Muslim blood on their hands, or being worse than bankrupt, having fought so many wars for Israel.

If not for Jewish power, questioning the Holocaust wouldn’t be a thought crime in 16 European countries. No other event in human history is so fascistically protected from scrutiny. None but the Holocaust, thanks to Jewish power.

Feb 20 10:03

THE STRANGE BEDFELLOWS IN THE ISRAELI ELECTION CAMPAIGN

The PM is pressing the religious Zionist Jewish Home party to partner with the Kahanists of Otzma Yehudit. It makes cynical political sense for his interests, but what of Israel’s?

Feb 20 10:02

SELECTED HATRED OF THE JEWS

It is not us, the BDS supporters, who are anti-Semitic, but the supporters of the Zionist occupation of Palestine, after all, they are harming the Jewish citizens worldwide.

Feb 19 12:28

This Is How AIPAC Really Works

One thing that should be said about Representative Ilhan Omar’s tweet about the power of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (more commonly known as AIPAC, or the “Israel lobby”) is that the hysterical reaction to it proved her main point: The power of AIPAC over members of Congress is literally awesome, although not in a good way. Has anyone ever seen so many members of Congress, of both parties, running to the microphones and sending out press releases to denounce one first-termer for criticizing the power of… a lobby?

Somehow, I don’t think the reaction would have been the same if she had tweeted that Congress still supports the ethanol subsidy because the American Farm Bureau and other components of the corn/ethanol lobby spend millions to keep this agribusiness bonanza going (which they do). Or that if she had opposed the ethanol subsidy, she would have been accused of hating farmers.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

What I have the most difficult time with, as an American who cares about her country, is seeing its Middle East foreign policy completely dictated by a foreign government, Israel.

Israel wanted to see Iraq broken, and incapable of actually competing with it economically; so what happens?!? The US goes in with an invasion and occupation, killing, wounding, and maiming countless numbers in the process.

Israel wanted to see Syria broken up and destroyed, with full-tilt regime change in Damascus, so what happens?!?!? The US government throws money, training, and weapons to jihadists, who were supposed to do the regime change here, but Russia intervenes and saves the day for the Al-Assad government.

Oh, and there is a little "beachhead" of sand where there are some American troops, and a very strange, flimsy, hollow statement coming from President Trump that they will be out by April, but that security necessitates a slow withdrawal.

Now Israel wants to see Iran pounded and broken up; so Mike Pence goes to Warsaw, and he and Netanyahu absolutely underwhelm their captive audience with massive lies about Iran's moves to cause destabilization and turmoil throughout the Middle East.

You see the pattern here?!?

So Mr. President, a word, please; I know that Netanyahu would love for the US military to go into Iran and bomb the beJesus out of it, just to make a point that whatever Israel and AIPAC want, they will ultimately get from the US.

But sir, I would strongly suggest caution here, because Iran hasn't given the either the US - or Israel - a reasonable excuse to attack it, short of a false flag somewhere, to blame on it.

The Russian relationship with Iran goes back centuries, and if Iran is attacked, Russia (and perhaps China)may well come in on Iran 's side.

And Mr. President, the sad truth of it is, at this point in the 21st century, the US military doesn't have the troop strength; the money; the weaponry, or the manufacturing to insure a positive outcome in a war over Iran, between the US, Russia, and China.

Oh yes, this government spends a great deal of money for its weapons; but the Russians and Chinese are pulling ahead with technology very quickly.

And the next time Bibi tries to "nudge" you with a phone call, that Israel needs MUCH more from its great friend, the US, which has already committed $38 billion dollars in aid to Israel over 10 years, starting in January of this year, please stand your ground, and say, "THIS time, Bubbie, I will not break up Iran for you, on top of everything else we have given you".

"You are a nuclear-armed country which refuses to sign the NNPT, and have your weapons sites inspected (which makes ANY US funding or weapons illegal, under the Symington Amendment, and the Mann Act), which Iran actually DID."

"So, please; I'm busy trying to get through the messes you've cheered for, which have been paid for at astronomical costs in American blood, and American money, under control. Iraq is a mess; Syria is a mess: Libya is a mess; save Iran for the Next President, OK?!? Gotta Go now; Shalom!!"

Yes, I know, this is only my fantasy of President Trump getting some spine about not allowing Netanyahu to dictate Middle Eastern foreign policy.

But the moment I hear that the draft is going to be resurrected in this country, is the moment when I will know, relative to a strike against Iran, that Israel has won, yet one more time.

Feb 19 11:56

Rats begin leaving the UK Labour ship — but how much of a health risk do they pose?

Stuart Littlewood says the seven Labour Party deserters – small fry compared to the Gang of Four of 1981 – are nothing without the party’s help and the party’s brand, but may “serve as a magnet for other malcontents with little regard for British interests, only their own warped ambition”. >>

Feb 19 11:30

The verdict is in: Trump's a busted flush

If the analysis (by Ann Coulter and Pat Buchanan among others) of the latest Bill that Trump signed is accurate then indeed we can finally put the last nail in the coffin of the Trump Revolution. Because that Bill appears to expressly forbid the building of The Wall, contains a de facto amnesty and opens the door to massive future immigration abuse through 'family reunion', 'legal immigration' and other such loopholes. Nothing has been done about the H1B visa scam which is devastating the employment prospects of American STEM graduates and changing forever the demographic profile of the country.

Feb 19 10:33

PALESTINIANS SAY ISRAEL 'PLAYING WITH FIRE' BY CLOSING TEMPLE MOUNT GATE

The Palestinian Authority on Monday warned that Israel was “playing with fire” after clashes erupted at the Temple Mount in Jerusalem over the closure of the Golden Gate site – also known as the Gate of Mercy – to Muslim worshipers. The PA also accused Israel of “waging war on Islam” and called on the intervention of the international community.

The Jerusalem Police detained five east Jerusalem Arabs who tried to enter the premises of the Golden Gate, which has been closed by a court order.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Netanyahu, as always, is fanning the flames of potential violence. There should be some kind of mechanism, at least allowing some Muslims through the gate, in order to worship.

Feb 19 10:27

PALESTINIANS SAY ISRAEL 'PLAYING WITH FIRE' BY CLOSING TEMPLE MOUNT GATE

The Palestinian Authority on Monday warned that Israel was “playing with fire” after clashes erupted at the Temple Mount in Jerusalem over the closure of the Golden Gate site – also known as the Gate of Mercy – to Muslim worshipers. The PA also accused Israel of “waging war on Islam” and called on the intervention of the international community.

The Jerusalem Police detained five east Jerusalem Arabs who tried to enter the premises of the Golden Gate, which has been closed by a court order.

Feb 19 10:06

Israel closes gate to Al-Aqsa Mosque

Israeli military police yesterday raided Al-Aqsa Mosque, attacked students and evicted them from the area and closed Al-Rahma Gate which leads to the holy site, witnesses said.

At the same time, the Israeli military police arrested five Palestinian worshippers, including a woman named Nazmiyeh Bkeerat.

Witnesses said Israeli occupation police reopened the gate after several attempts by angry Palestinian worshippers to enter the area through the door.

According to the witnesses, hundreds of Palestinian worshippers also performed prayers in front of the closed gate in an attempt to put pressure on the Israeli occupation to reopen it.

Feb 19 10:05

Rights group calls for international effort to stop Israel slashing PA funds

Al Mezan Centre for Human Rights said yesterday it is deeply concerned about the Israeli decision to deduct salaries of Palestinians killed, wounded and arrested by Israeli occupation forces from tax revenues collected on behalf of the Palestinian Authority (PA), a statement said.

Al Mezan added that Israeli’s actions are a violation of the Paris Protocol signed in 1994 between Israel and the PA.

This act, the statement said, “is a violation of international law, national sovereignty, public funds and all other agreements.”

The organisation reiterated that the Palestinian state is independent, as recognised by the UN on 29 November 2012. This entitles the PA to practice its right to regional sovereignty and to run its public funds.

Feb 19 10:04

Jordan protests over Israel violations of Al-Aqsa Mosque

Jordan yesterday lodged a protest note with the Israeli foreign ministry, slamming provocative Israeli actions against Al-Aqsa Mosque, Jordanian news agency Petra reported.

Jordan called for Israel to stop its violations of Al-Aqsa’s sanctity immediately.

Meanwhile, spokesman of the Jordanian Foreign Ministry Sufyan Al-Qudah told the German news agency DPA that his ministry had condemned the Israeli occupation’s closure of the Al-Aqsa’s gates and their attacks on worshippers.

Al-Qudah demanded Israel “act in accordance with international law and immediately reopen the gates, respect the sanctity of the holy place, stop hampering the entry of worshippers, withdraw its security forces from Al-Aqsa Mosque and respect the feelings of Muslims.”

Feb 19 09:49

Anti-Semitic flyers distributed in Missoula for 4th time this month

A fourth round of anti-Semitic flyers surfaced Monday in Missoula’s University District.

The flyers featured a disfigured service member with a controversial quote from Rabbi Ovida Yosef that said, “Goyim were born only to serve us.”

Other flyers have referenced circumcision, pictured President Donald Trump with the flag of Israel and said “Jews attack First Amendment.”

David Cox of Har Shalom knows that, although the flyers are hurtful, they are protected.

“There is a line that can be crossed, but as for putting out literature that is hateful or untrue,” he said, “people get to do that because of the free speech amendment.”

The flyers have been found in several spots around Missoula over the last few weeks.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Smells like another hoax to me.

Feb 19 09:48

How the rule of the rabbis is fuelling a holy war in Israel

n which country did a senior, state-salaried cleric urge his followers last week to become “warriors”, emulating a group of young men who had murdered a woman of another faith?

The cleric did so with impunity. In fact, he was only echoing other highly placed colleagues who have endorsed a book – again without penalty – urging their disciples to murder babies belonging to other religions.

Where can the head of the clergy call black people “monkeys” and urge the expulsion of other religious communities?

Where are these holy men so feared that women are scrubbed from billboards... and women find themselves literally pushed to the back of the bus?

Where does a clerical elite wield so much power that they alone decide who can marry or get divorced – and are backed by a law that can jail someone who tries to wed without their approval? They can even shut down the national railway system without notice.

Feb 19 09:44

FLASHBACK - Lawrence Franklin espionage scandal

The Lawrence Franklin espionage scandal involved Lawrence Franklin passing classified documents regarding United States policy towards Iran to Israel. Franklin, a former United States Department of Defense employee, pleaded guilty to several espionage-related charges and was sentenced in January 2006 to nearly 13 years of prison, which was later reduced to ten months' house arrest. Franklin passed information to American Israel Public Affairs Committee policy director Steven Rosen and AIPAC senior Iran analyst Keith Weissman, who later were fired by AIPAC. They were later indicted for illegally conspiring to gather and disclose classified national security information to Israel. However, prosecutors later dropped all charges against them without any plea bargain.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

AIPAC was caught violating the espionage act, and not for the first time.

Feb 19 09:30

The First Rule of AIPAC Is: You Do Not Talk about AIPAC

Washington’s political establishment went berserk when US Representative Ilhan Omar (D-MN) publicly noted that US-Israel relations are “all about the Benjamins” – slang for $100 bills, referring to money shoveled at American politicians by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC).

Omar was accused of antisemitism – immediately by Republicans, shortly after by members of her own party – and bullied into apologizing. She may or may not be prejudiced against Jews, but even if she is, that wasn’t her real offense.

Her real offense was publicly mentioning the irrefutable fact that many members of Congress take their marching orders from a foreign power’s lobbying apparatus (an apparatus not, as required by law, registered under the Foreign Agents Registration Act), at least partly because those marching orders come with promises of significant donations to those politicians’ campaigns.

Feb 19 09:27

This Is How AIPAC Really Works

One thing that should be said about Representative Ilhan Omar’s tweet about the power of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (more commonly known as AIPAC, or the “Israel lobby”) is that the hysterical reaction to it proved her main point: The power of AIPAC over members of Congress is literally awesome, although not in a good way. Has anyone ever seen so many members of Congress, of both parties, running to the microphones and sending out press releases to denounce one first-termer for criticizing the power of… a lobby?

Somehow, I don’t think the reaction would have been the same if she had tweeted that Congress still supports the ethanol subsidy because the American Farm Bureau and other components of the corn/ethanol lobby spend millions to keep this agribusiness bonanza going (which they do). Or that if she had opposed the ethanol subsidy, she would have been accused of hating farmers.

Feb 19 09:24

19 Palestinians, 1 Israeli soldier wounded in Gaza clashes

Nineteen Palestinians and one Israeli soldier were wounded on Sunday during clashes in the northern Gaza Strip, the Israeli army and Palestinian medical sources said.

"IDF (Israel Defence Forces) soldier injured when an explosive device was thrown during Gaza riots on Israel's border fence," the army said on Twitter.

It added that Israeli tanks struck "two Hamas military posts in Gaza in response to the explosive device".

In Gaza, the health ministry of the Islamist Hamas movement that runs the enclave said 19 Palestinians were wounded by live ammunition during the clashes.

Feb 19 09:23

Poland pulls out of Israel meeting over 'anti-Semitism' and Nazi comments

Poland's prime minister canceled plans for his country to send a delegation to meeting in Jerusalem on Monday after the acting Israeli foreign minister said that Poles "collaborated with the Nazis" and "sucked anti-Semitism with their mothers' milk."

The Polish pullout triggered the collapse of a planned summit of Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu with leaders of four Central European nations known as the Visegrad group.

Feb 19 09:20

FLASHBACK - Facebook Says it is Deleting Accounts at the Direction of the U.S. and Israeli Governments

In September of last year, we noted that Facebook representatives were meeting with the Israeli Government to determine which Facebook accounts of Palestinians should be deleted on the ground that they constitute “incitement.” The meetings – called for and presided over by one of the most extremist and authoritarian Israeli officials, its pro-settlement Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked – came after Israel threatened Facebook that its failure to voluntarily comply with Israeli deletion orders would result in the enactment of laws requiring Facebook to do so, upon pain of being severely fined or even blocked in the country.

Feb 19 08:54

The Growing Anti-Semitism Scam

“An anti-Semite used to mean a man who hated Jews. Now it means a man who is hated by Jews.”– Joe Sobran

Feb 19 08:19

Settlers, soldiers seize Jerusalem home from Palestinian family

Israeli forces expelled a Palestinian family from their home in the Muslim Quarter of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City on Sunday and handed it to Jewish settlers.

The Abu Asab family received eviction orders earlier this month demanding they vacate the building by 12 February.

Hatem Abu Asab was able to postpone his family’s expulsion until 28 February through his lawyers, but Israeli police paid no heed.

On Sunday, with no prior warning, Israeli forces surrounded the house and blocked the road leading to it, eyewitnesses told Wattan TV.

They then stormed the house to forcibly evacuate it and prevented family members from collecting their belongings.

“They destroyed me. They destroyed my life. They took everything I own here. My entire life is here,” Rania Abu Asab said in a video after she was kicked out of her house.

“They did not give us time to organize our things. They came in barbarically, attacked my husband, attacked my children and beat my aunt,” she added.

Feb 19 08:18

Israel’s freezing of Palestinian tax funds “collective punishment”

Israel’s freezing of millions of dollars in Palestinian tax revenue will cause the dire situation in Gaza to deteriorate even further, Al Mezan, a human rights group in the territory, warned on Monday.

Thousands of civil servants in the coastal enclave, its population of two million plunged into poverty after more than a decade of economic blockade, have already had to contend with salary cuts and late payments due to “discrimination” by the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank.

Now Israel is planning to withhold some $138 million in taxes it collects on behalf of the PA as a form of sanctions over stipends to political prisoners.

Feb 19 08:18

Jewish Canadians deeply divided over Israel, poll finds

Jewish Canadians are deeply divided in their opinions on Israel, and many are highly critical of it. Moreover, a majority does not see criticism of Israel as necessarily anti-Semitic.

Those are key findings of the first survey to ask Jewish Canadians about their views on the situation in Palestine.

Feb 19 08:04

Israel's Judaisation of Palestine is failing

Decades of Israeli efforts to demolish, destroy, rename, rewrite and erase everything Palestinian have been in vain.

Feb 19 07:33

Venezuela Pins Responsibility for Any Breach of Peace on Trump

Venezuela assigns the responsibility for any possible disturbance of peace in the country on the United States and its President Donald Trump, the Venezuelan government said in a statement.
"Venezuela demands the immediate cessation of all unilateral violent actions against it, which constitute the illegal and criminal blockade of the Venezuelan people, and at the same time declares to the international community that the US chauvinistic government and its president will be responsible for any violation of peace in Venezuela," the statement issued on Monday and published on Twitter noted, Sputnik reported.

According to the Venezuelan authorities, Trump is trying to give direct orders to Venezuelan military on rejecting the country's constitution.

>>>

(*another "blank-ety-blank piece of paper" preventing Republican Agenda forward progress )

Feb 19 06:18

How the US Coup in Venezuela Is Taking Root in Haiti and the Dominican Republic

For more than a decade Venezuela has aided the governments of Haiti and the Dominican Republic through a preferential system known as Petrocaribe, and the people of those nations are not taking their governments’ support for the US coup in Venezuela lightly.<>
***
For more than a decade Venezuela has aided the governments of Haiti and the Dominican Republic through a preferential system known as Petrocaribe, which provided subsidized crude oil prices to meet the countries critical energy demands. The Petrocaribe oil agreement, allowed for governments to pay only 60 percent of the oil shipments they purchase from Venezuela. The remaining 40 percent could be financed over 25 years at 1 percent interest, as long as oil prices stayed above $40 per barrel. This allowed for tremendous savings, and money that according to the agreement) was supposed to be used for socially beneficial purposes.

Countries such as Nicaragua, Jamaica, Cuba, and many islands in the eastern Caribbean have successfully utilized Petrocaribe funds and other Venezuelan support mechanisms, investing in vital infrastructure, education, healthcare, and have used the funding to avoid austerity deals with the IMF and other international financial institutions. Corrupt politicians in Hispaniola, though, whose regimes are closely aligned with Washington, have by contrast become well-known for robbing many of the funds meant for the social needs of their population.

>>>

Feb 19 05:46

Tzipi Livni warns "democracy" is in danger as she quits Israeli politics

(*Proof: Trump's DRAIN THE SWAMP initiative is working !)

Feb 18 10:54

Warsaw summit was a failure for Trump - but a win for Netanyahu

It may have been a 'dumpster fire' for the Trump administration and an embarrassment to Europe, but Israeli premier stands out as summit winner

Feb 18 10:16

Israel to withhold millions of dollars in Palestinian funds

Israel says it will withhold $138m in tax transfers to the Palestinian Authority (PA) over payments given to Palestinians involved in attacks against Israelis.

The government's security cabinet said on Sunday it was implementing a law passed last year allowing Israel to withhold funds equivalent to those the PA pays in stipends to Palestinians jailed in Israel, their families, and released prisoners.

The money comes from taxes Israel collects on behalf of the PA.

Feb 18 10:15

Record number of reports criticizing Israel said to be released by UN next month

The United Nations Humans Rights Council is expected to release a series of reports critical of Israel next month, including one reportedly accusing the military of war crimes over its response to violent protests by Palestinians on the Gaza border.

According to the pro-Israel watchdog group UN Watch, other reports are set to accuse Israel of alleged human rights violations in the Golan Heights, which it captured from Syria in the 1967 Six Day War war, and in territories claimed by the Palestinians for a future state, Channel 12 news reported Thursday.

Feb 18 10:13

Israel’s anti-BDS strategy simply peddles more myths and lies

Israel’s Ministry of Strategic Affairs has released a report called Terrorists in Suits: The Ties Between NGOs promoting BDS and Terrorist Organisations. The report has a sense of melodrama, especially its pictures of BDS activists pinned to a noticeboard with red pins connected by red thread, like a scene from a crime drama.

The man behind the report is Minister of Public Security and Strategic Affairs Gilad Erdan; he clearly has a wild imagination. Names, places, dates, events, meetings and pictures are all jumbled together to present a scenario which is supposed to deter people from supporting the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement and wash away all of Israel’s crimes against the Palestinian people. In doing so, it simply peddles more myths and lies.

Feb 18 09:49

DON’T EVEN THINK OF MAKING MY HOUSE YOUR HOME!

Heartbreaking. “Get out of my house!” Palestinian woman after being expelled from her home by Israeli settlers in the Old City in occupied Jerusalem.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Feb 18 09:48

THE REAL ‘OPERATION PROTECTIVE SHIELD’

Palestinians in Hebron are taking new steps for their community’s safety under constant settler attacks.

Feb 18 09:18

V4 summit cancelled amid Polish-Israeli tensions

Poland’s prime minister said on Monday Warsaw was pulling out of a summit in Jerusalem after a senior Israeli politician reportedly claimed that Poles “suckled anti-Semitism with their mother’s milk.”

Feb 18 08:07

VIRGIN ATLANTIC REMOVES 'PALESTINIAN' FROM IN-FLIGHT DISH DESCRIPTION AFTER COMPLAINTS FROM ISRAEL-SUPPORTING CUSTOMERS

Virgin Atlantic has changed the name of an in-flight meal after social media backlash from pro-Israel supporters.

The dish – a mix of Maftoul and other couscous, tomatoes and cucumber seasoned with parsley, mint and lemon vinaigrette – was formerly called “Palestinian couscous salad” on the menu.

However, the name has since been changed to “couscous salad” after various complaints. Some social media users threatened to boycott the airline, accusing Virgin of being “terrorist sympathisers”.

Feb 18 07:50

Israel training mercenaries for Yemen war in UAE camps in Negev: Haaretz

Israel's leading daily Haaretz says Tel Aviv is a partner to the Saudi war on Yemen and is "reaping the profits" from its partnership in the brutal aggression.

Haaretz revealed that Israeli officers are training foreign mercenaries, led by the Colombians and Nepalese, in UAE-funded camps situated in Negev Desert.

Quoting sources in a US House Intelligence Committee, the report said the mercenaries have been recruited by Mohammed Dahlan, security adviser to Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

Dahlan had “visited these camps on more than one occasion to check the progress of preparations and training received by mercenaries, under the personal supervision of the Israeli occupation army officers," the report said.

Feb 18 05:49

Senate Dems Introduce Bill to Prevent Trump from Using Disaster Funds to Build Wall

A group of Senate Democrats, including several 2020 contenders, introduced legislation that would prevent President Donald Trump from using disaster relief funds to finance a wall along the Southern border
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The senators backing the bill include several who have already entered the presidential race — Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) — as well as Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), who is reportedly on the verge of making his announcement.

Harris said in a statement announcing the legislation that Trump "cannot go around Congress to fund his ridiculous vanity project".

>>>

(*Pelosi should be the spoiler who reigns in these up-starts . now we see if that endorsement was as shrewd an art of the deal maneuver as it was touted to be )

Feb 18 05:32

US Endangering Iranian People's Lives

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani warned that the US sanctions have targeted the life and health of his nation, but meantime, stressed failure of Washington's plots against the Islamic Republic.

"Today, the Americans say that sanctions are not aimed at the Iranian nation. (But) the Americans are working against our life and health. Today, they want to play with the lives of the Iranian people," President Rouhani said, addressing a ceremony to inaugurate the third phase of Persian Gulf Star refinery in the Southern port city of Bandar Abbas on Monday.

He added that the US prevention of imports of certain goods to Iran leaves negative impacts on the life of ordinary people in the country.

>>>

Feb 18 04:56

US Vice President Mike Pence makes his first Auschwitz visit

US Vice President Mike Pence visited the memorial site of Auschwitz on Friday along with the Polish president and Jared Kushner, the son-in-law of President Donald Trump, viewing a train car, crematoriums and the hair of victims ... The Pences held hands and the vice president adjusted a banner reading "From The People of the United States of America." Kushner was among a second group that then approached the wall and wreaths ... It also comes a day after Pence accused Britain, France, Germany and the European Union as a whole of trying to evade US sanctions on Iran, and called on the EU to join the Trump administration in withdrawing from the landmark 2015 nuclear deal with Iran. In his speech, Pence said that "the Iranian regime openly advocates another Holocaust."

Feb 18 04:47

Hungary tells UK Jewish group to 'mind its own business' over antisemitism

A Hungarian government minister has accused a senior representative of British Jews of politically-motivated lying, telling her to "mind your own business" following a meeting in which she raised concerns about antisemitism. ... The [Jewish] board also raised language used by the Hungarian prime minister, Viktor Orbán, in relation to the Hungarian-born Jewish philanthropist George Soros which, it said, "whether intentionally or not, represent[s] the oldest anti-semitic tropes and this has to stop". Orbán attacked Soros at an election rally last year, saying: "We are fighting an enemy that is different from us. Not open, but hiding; not straightforward but crafty; not honest but base; not national but international; does not believe in working but speculates with money; does not have its own homeland but feels it owns the whole world."

Feb 18 04:44

With Procedural Maneuver, House G.O.P. Elevates Anti-Semitism as Political Issue

The House voted unanimously on Wednesday to condemn anti-Semitism and "all attempts to delegitimize and deny Israel's right to exist," adopting language put forth by Republicans who have spent weeks trying to paint two freshman Democrats as anti-Semites and dozens of other Democrats as their enablers ... The anti-Semitism resolution comes two days after Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the entire Democratic leadership condemned Representative Ilhan Omar, Democrat of Minnesota, and forced her to apologize for a Twitter post in which she insinuated that American support for Israel is fueled by money from donors and pressure from the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, the pro-Israel lobbying group known as Aipac ... The latest war of words over anti-Semitism on Capitol Hill is making some Jewish leaders increasingly uneasy.

Feb 18 04:27

A company run by former Israeli spies reportedly tried to influence a local US election — and courted Trump's campaign

An Israeli private spy company attempted to influence a local US election as part of a larger attempt to infiltrate American politics, according to a report from The New Yorker / ... Psy-Group, a defunct private intelligence agency staffed with former Israeli spies, attempted to influence at least one local US election and other domestic affairs, according to a report from The New Yorker's Adam Entous and Ronan Farrow. The company even courted President Donald Trump's 2016 campaign, and is now under investigation by the special counsel Robert Mueller, the report said ... The company went on to use fake websites, online avatars, and staged in-person interactions as part of an effort to influence the results of local elections of change the perception of certain events in the US, at the behest of a series of private clients.

Feb 17 09:55

“Largest Land Grab Since 1948” — Israel to Expel 36,000 Palestinians From Negev

According to an Israeli media report, the Israeli government has completed work on a massive, far-reaching plan that would expel an estimated 36,000 Palestinians from “unrecognized” villages in the Negev Desert. If the plan is approved by the Knesset, Israel’s legislative body, its implementation could begin as soon as this year and would take four years to complete. News of the plan was first published by Israel Hayom – Israel’s largest Hebrew-language newspaper, funded by Sheldon Adelson, the top donor to both U.S. President Donald Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Feb 17 09:13

THIS IS A PRETTY BAD POLISH JOKE …..

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s trip to Poland for the Warsaw summit was beset by a string of missteps.

Feb 17 09:00

We must thank Ilhan Omar for opening a debate about AIPAC at last

On Thursday, M.J. Rosenberg, who has worked for AIPAC for years in the 70’s and 80’s, confirmed Ilhan Omar’s controversial tweet concerning AIPAC – that it’s “all about the Benjamins” (referring to $100 bills).

“In short, AIPAC’s political operation is used precisely as Representative Omar suggested”, Rosenberg wrote in The Nation.

This is no small thing, and this shows just how important this debate is – and it’s a debate that Ilhan Omar sparked off. We should be ever so thankful for her person and her courage.

Rosenberg is pushing back against the Israel apologists who seek to shut this debate down.

Feb 17 08:59

Netanyahu’s main rival in Israeli election agrees with him on Iran

Former general Benny Gantz, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s strongest challenger in an election scheduled for April, voiced support on Sunday for the right-wing leader’s tough policy towards Iran, reports Reuters.

“I am standing shoulder-to-shoulder with Prime Minister Netanyahu in the fight against Iran’s aggression,” Gantz, a former chief of Israel’s armed forces and a centrist candidate, told the Munich Security Conference.

Polls predict that Netanyahu’s Likud party will win the April 9 election, taking about 30 of parliament’s 120 seats – enough to form a coalition of right-wing and religious factions similar to one he now heads.

The surveys forecast a second-place finish, with some 20 seats, for Gantz’s Resilience party. That would line him up to join a future Netanyahu-led coalition – unless he tries to mobilise other factions against the incumbent.

Feb 17 08:56

Palestinians wounded during West Bank weekly protest

Tens of Palestinian protesters were wounded and suffered severe breathing problems due to the heavy use of tear gas by the Israeli army as it cracked down on weekly protests in the West Bank city of Bil’in.

After Friday prayers, the protesters gathered in the centre of the village – which is located to the west of Ramallah – and headed towards the Separation Wall near Um Al-Laimoun, in the southern part of Bil’in.

The Israeli army opened fire at the protesters – who included foreign and Israeli peace activists – and threw gas canisters, leaving tens of them suffocating.

Feb 17 08:49

Hate Fest In Warsaw

Warsaw, Poland is not a fun place to visit in darkest February, but that is where the US just staged an anti-Iranian jamboree of 60 client states that brought derision and scorn from Europeans and much of the Mideast.

The point of this cynical exercise was to lay the diplomatic groundwork for an anti-Iranian coalition to act as a fig-leaf for an upcoming attack on Iran planned by President Donald Trump and his close ally, Israel’s Benjamin Netanyahu.

The real question is who is calling the shots in bleak Warsaw, Trump or Bibi Netanyahu? It seems to many that the Israeli tail is again wagging the American dog.

Feb 17 08:40

NETANYAHU’S ‘FAKE’ WAR, LEAKED VIDEO, BROKEN PLANE AND DIPLOMATIC SNAFU

The visit, which took place Wednesday to Friday in the middle of a tight election race, was designed to highlight the strong Israeli-US alliance and Netanyahu’s prominent role on the world stage after a decade on the job.

It was a well-scripted rollout. Netanyahu held highly publicized talks with US Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, met with Oman’s foreign minister, and sat at the Warsaw summit’s head table next to Yemen’s foreign minister.

But it was the accidental and/or deliberate mishaps that occurred on the sidelines of the summit, well documented by journalists and social media, which stole the show.

Feb 17 08:38

King Bibi or bye-bye Benjamin?

Against the backdrop of his multiple criminal investigations, and as the April elections loom, opponents portray Prime Minister Netanyahu as a criminal, while his ardent supporters pledge unequivocal support to the man they see as a champion.

Feb 16 09:45

Zionism Contradicts Judaism

The plain fact is that we Jews are not a race and we should not let the Zionists persuade us that we are. Proof to the contrary lies in Palestine, plain for all to see. You had my letter, Mother, from my Army furlough there. I was second to none in my enthusiasm for. what my co-religionists had done for a desert brought to bloom, for clean new cities rising out of age-old sand dunes. All of these wonders had come to pass while only a few fanatics talked of statehood. One evening I went to see a performance of an opera in Jerusalem. In that theater lobby you could distinguish almost at a glance the Yiddish-speaking Ashkenazic Jew from Poland, the Spanish-speaking Sephardic Jew from North Africa or Turkey, the German Jew, Jews from a score of countries all differing in dress, language, manners and mental attitudes. I had visual proof of the arguments of anthropologists. who laugh at the notion of a distinct Jewish race.

Feb 16 09:42

Meddling, anyone? Pro-Israel groups spent $22 million on lobbying & campaign contributions in 2018

Pro-Israel lobbyists funneled more than $22 million into the 2018 US election cycle, making the lobby far more active and influential than those aligned with other foreign nations, public records show.

Controversy was sparked last week after freshman Minnesota congresswoman Ilhan Omar tweeted that pro-Israel money affected the decisions of members of Congress. Omar faced swift backlash and condemnation even from her own party, as her colleagues rushed to label her comments as “outrageous,” “disgraceful” and even“anti-Semitic.”

In the aftermath, the Guardian examined figures available from the Center for Responsive Politics – a D.C.-based organization which tracks money in politics – and found that the Israel lobby is indeed “highly active and spends heavily” to influence lawmakers.

Feb 16 09:13

Israel Chokes Off Water Supply to 17 Palestinian Communities - Report

Israeli forces this week opted to cut off water supply lines feeding into more than a dozen communities in the West Bank city of Hebron, according to the Palestine News Network.

In total, the changes will affect 17 Mafasir Yatta communities, where an estimated 1,500 Palestinians reside.

The Wednesday move has been largely criticized by locals as yet another Israeli measure to force Palestinians away from their home in order to expand settlements, PNN reported.

Feb 16 09:13

Netanyanu Tweets Then Quickly Deletes He Is Seeking "War With Iran"

It was tweeted in a thread focused on Netanyahu's meetings with Arab delegates at the US initiated conference which was originally touted as focused on the "Iran threat". The AP also confirmed the Netanyahu tweet, which quickly generated multiple headlines focused on what appeared essentially a declaration of war.

The AP noted the statement was published just after the Israeli PM's meeting with Oman's foreign minister:

Israel’s prime minister says he plans on working with Arab countries at a U.S.-backed Mideast conference in Warsaw to focus on the “common interest of war with Iran.”

The full deleted tweet read as follows: "What is important about this meeting. and it is not in secret, because there are many of those - is that this is an open meeting with representatives of leading Arab countries, that are sitting down together with Israel in order to advance the common interest of war with Iran."

Feb 16 08:57

20 Palestinians injured in clashes with Israeli soldiers in eastern Gaza: medics

Palestinians run to take cover from tear gas canisters fired by Israeli troops on the Gaza-Israel border, east of Gaza City, on Feb. 15, 2019. At least 20 Palestinians were injured on Friday during clashes between hundreds of Palestinian demonstrators and Israeli soldiers in eastern Gaza Strip, close to the border with Israel, medics said. (Xinhua)

Feb 16 08:55

Israel has starring role in H.R.648, “Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2019”

As Congress tackles urgent issues of reopening government and setting the budget for the country, it takes the time to prioritize a foreign country: H.R.648 contains assurances that Israel will receive $3.8 billion for arms, and funding for refugee resettlement; the bill also includes threats to de-fund the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and any future state of Palestine–if US demands (dictated by the Israel lobby) are not met.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Interesting that the Israel Lobby wants the IAEA shut down.

Feb 16 08:54

Saudi supported Israel against Hezbollah during 2006 war

Saudi Arabia supported Israel in its war against Hezbollah in Lebanon in 2006, an Israeli TV channel has claimed

In the third part of a series of reports entitled “Secrets of the Gulf,” Israeli news channel Channel 13 reported on the secret relations between Israel and Saudi Arabia and quoted senior Israeli officials as saying that Tel Aviv had received letters from Riyadh urging it to strike Hezbollah with all its might.

However, the results of the war “caused great disappointment in Riyadh,” according to the channel correspondent, Barak Ravid.

Feb 16 08:51

Israel wounds 8 Palestinians in Gaza marches

Israel yesterday attacked participants in the Friday protests taking place in the Gaza Strip.

Taking place under the title “Gaza is unbreakable,” yesterday’s marches formed the 47th Friday of the Great March of Return, which has been taking place on the eastern border of the besieged Gaza Strip since March.

The Palestinian Ministry of Health in Gaza reported that eight Palestinians were wounded, noting that numerous cases of suffocation were also treated in the field. Israel has repeatedly targeted Great March of Return protesters, shooting live ammunition across the Gaza fence in an attempt to shut down the marches.

Feb 16 05:29

NPR misleads public in report on AIPAC vs Ilhan Omar

NPR’s ‘All Things Considered’ segment underreports AIPAC’s finances, uses only Israel partisans as commentators, minimizes power of AIPAC, ignores Palestinians, and fails to inform listeners of the full scope of the Israel lobby

Feb 16 03:29

Meddling, anyone?

Meddling, anyone? Pro-Israel groups spent $22 million on lobbying U.S. campaign contributions in 2018

Feb 15 11:24

PRO-ISRAEL LOBBY CAUGHT ON TAPE BOASTING THAT ITS MONEY INFLUENCES WASHINGTON

A DEBATE ABOUT the power in Washington of the pro-Israel lobby is underway, after Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., responded sharply to reports that Republican leader Kevin McCarthy was targeting both Omar and fellow Muslim Rep. Rashida Tlaib, a Democrat from Michigan.

Omar quoted rap lyrics — “It’s all about the Benjamins baby” — to suggest McCarthy’s move was driven by the lobby’s prolific spending. Asked specifically who she was referring to, Omar responded, “AIPAC!”

The debate over the influence of pro-Israel groups could be informed by an investigation by Al Jazeera, in which an undercover reporter infiltrated the Israel Project, a Washington-based group, and secretly recorded conversations about political strategy and influence over a six-month period in 2016. That investigation, however, was never aired by the network — suppressed by pressure from the pro-Israel lobby.

Feb 15 09:36

Will grandstanding in Warsaw help or hinder Netanyahu?

The 1996 Sharm El Sheikh conference was meant to help Shimon Peres keep his PM's chair and save the peace process. The 2019 conference on 'peace and security in the Middle East' has similar objectives, but unlike the Sharm summit, there are no world leaders coming to Netanyahu's aid in the Polish capital.

Feb 15 09:35

JARED KUSHNER SAYS TRUMP PEACE PLAN WON’T INCLUDE SAUDI INITIATIVE

US special envoy Jared Kushner confirmed Thursday that US President Donald Trump’s peace plan won’t be based on past international understanding such as the 2002 Saudi initiative, which the international community and the Palestinians have long touted as the basis of a two-state solution.

“I think it was a great initiative, in 2002 when it was done, but it hasn’t produced peace, so if that was the framework under which something would be accomplished then I think that would have been accomplished a long time ago, and then I wouldn’t be doing the duty I’m doing right now to try to bring the people together,” Kushner reportedly said behind closed doors at the Warsaw summit. His words were leaked to the Israeli media.

Feb 15 09:34

BEX ALERT - IRAN'S ‘TOXIC MONEY’ PREVENTING ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN PEACE- BAHRAINI FM

Bahraini Foreign Minister Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa said in a closed-door meeting at the Warsaw summit that Iran funding violence in the Middle East was the key challenge to overcome for peace.

Feb 15 09:33

POLISH CRISIS LIKELY OVER AFTER ISRAELI CLARIFICATION OF NETANYAHU COMMENT

"Poles cooperated with the Germans" during the Holocaust, Netanyahu said.

A diplomatic crisis between Poland and Israel seems to have been resolved Friday morning, after the Prime Minister's Office clarified Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's comments, which he made in Warsaw on Thursday.

The Polish government said that they received the clarification and that it was good things were sorted out.

Feb 15 09:08

Slow death for Gaza cancer patients

Israel’s siege on the Gaza Strip makes it difficult, if not impossible, for cancer patients to receive treatment.

Over the last decade, Israel has controlled and restricted shipments of medicine, among other basic necessities, into Gaza. This often causes severe drug shortages in Gaza hospitals.

“I come to the hospital to receive treatment and I am surprised that there is no treatment,” Sabreen al-Najjar, 40, told The Electronic Intifada.

Al-Najjar is one of many cancer patients in Gaza turned away by hospitals due to severe drug shortages.

“It is unbelievable. They sentence us to death. A slow death,” she added.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Israel justifies the blockade of Gaza by saying it must restrict materials that HAMAS could turn into weapons. But how does one make a weapon out of cancer medications?

Feb 15 09:00

Israel May Look to Expand Covert War Against Iran Beyond Syria

If there is one consistent fact about Israeli military policy, it is that they are always at least sort of at war with Iran. The Syrian War, and Iran’s advisory role there has made this fairly simple, as Israel just bombs Damascus a few times a month, insisting they’re hitting Iran.

But ISIS is defeated, and like everyone else, Iran is scaling back its involvement in Syria. That’s giving Israel fewer targets, and it’s a really inopportune time for that. With the Israeli election looming, officials are all keyed up to win votes with quasi-legal airstrikes.

That’s got some analysts predicting Israel will look for other Iranian targets outside of Syria. The simplest place would be Iraq, where US media outlets have spent years calling the Iraqi government’s paramilitary forces “Iran-backed militias.”

Feb 15 08:54

Love in times of Israeli apartheid

On February 14, Valentine's Day, the corporate capitalism machinery will distract the general population with yet another consumerist "holiday" in which we are made to feel lonely, inadequate and/or obliged to spend money in order to demonstrate affection for loved one.

Apart from enforcing the idea of heteronormative and monogamous relationships, Valentine's Day has also come to represent the gross commodification of love and relationships. For some, the day will pass in spending money, for others - in wishing they were spending money, and still others - in wishing they could be with their beloved.

Indeed, on Valentine's Day, there will be many partners and lovers who will suffer, being forcefully separated by racist policies and colonial borders. For Palestinians, this is just another fact of life that Israel enforces upon them.

Feb 15 08:53

Palestine's other open-air prison

Under a debilitating siege for more than a decade, Gaza has been rightfully declared the biggest open-air prison in the world. But there is another, similar, prison in Palestine that is less obvious because it suffers from a different kind of siege, undeclared and indirect: the West Bank. Every Palestinian who resides there and holds official Palestinian identification papers is a prisoner in their own home.

Freedom of movement is non-existent for the vast majority of the population because of a myriad of Israeli policies aimed at restricting it to the bare minimum. The situation is certainly shocking yet seems to be largely ignored by the world, especially by our Israeli neighbours.

Feb 15 08:51

Far-right Tommy Robinson declares himself a ‘Zionist’ in leaked video

In another section of the video, Robison can be seen singing that he is “king of the whole Islam race,” before declaring his love for Israel.

The far-right campaigner has become something of a favourite among notorious pro-Israel groups. Some have even admitted to paying for Robinson’s legal costs and “bringing foreign pressure on the UK government to ensure Mr. Robinson’s safety and eventual release”.

In the video, Robinson gives the impression that his love affair with Israel is paying off by admitting that on occasions he has to “get [his] Zionist card out which says that [he is] a Zionist”, after which he claims he “bought everything”.

The footage ends with Robinson saying: “Palestine! F*ck Palestine. Why would you support Palestine,” adding: “If there was a war tomorrow, which probably there would be, I would be there in the front line fighting for Israel”.

Feb 15 08:50

Israel’s Lieberman: Next confrontation with Gaza must be the last

Former Israeli Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman yesterday warned that the next confrontation with the Gaza Strip must be the last.

“For nearly a year, since the [Great March of Return] started along the Gaza Strip border fence, the most volatile Israeli border [has been] the one it shares with the Gaza Strip,” Lieberman said. He then explained that the military intelligence assessment published on Wednesday- which indicated that Israel is likely to face a major escalation with the Palestinians in Gaza or the West Bank within the next 12 months – is consistent with his assessment over the past year.

“The question now is not whether there will be another confrontation with Hamas in the Gaza Strip, but when will that happen,” he added.

Lieberman said he believed the Israeli government is responsible for “strengthening” the Palestinian resistance factions by not launching a war on the already-besieged Gaza Strip and by easing sanctions against it.

Feb 15 08:49

Israel threatens to attack Iran bases in Iraq

Israel’s military intelligence has said that “Iran may use Iraq as a launching pad to target Israel, which would call for a response from Tel Aviv”.

“Israeli airstrikes against Iranian forces in Syria may prompt Iranians to build military and missile facilities,” it said in its annual assessment, adding: “This situation will require Israel to intensify its intelligence efforts in Iraq, with the possibility of taking operational steps there if Iranian proliferation becomes a military threat”.

Feb 15 08:49

Palestinian child was 150 metres from Gaza fence when killed by Israeli forces

A Palestinian child was some 150 metres from the perimeter fence of the occupied Gaza Strip when he was killed by Israeli soldiers during protests on 8 February.

According to Defence for Children International – Palestine (DCIP), 16-year-old Hassan Nabil Ahmad Nofal had joined a group of youth participating in Great Return March protests around 3.30pm last Friday.

The group was standing around 150 metres from the fence when Israeli soldiers fired tear gas canisters directly at the youngsters; Hassan was struck on the right side of his head, fracturing his skull.

Taken to Al-Aqsa Martyrs hospital for emergency care, Hassan then underwent surgery in Shifa hospital, “where he remained in critical condition”, DCIP stated.

Dr Hazem Kahil, a neurosurgery specialist at Shifa hospital, told DCIP that the surgery was performed to stop a brain bleed, but Hassan was pronounced dead on 12 February.

Feb 15 08:48

World Council of Churches rebuts ‘antisemitism’ claim by Israel advocacy group

The World Council of Churches (WCC) has rejected claims by an Israel advocacy group that its Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel (EAPPI) “embodies anti-Semitism”.

According to The Church Times, the WCC was responding to a document published by NGO Monitor, an Israeli organisation which routinely attacks regional and international human rights groups.

As the paper noted, the EAPPI sends “ecumenical accompaniers” (EAs), who “aims to offer a protective presence to vulnerable communities, monitoring and reporting human-rights abuses”.

NGO Monitor has accused the WCC of “singling out Israel” and thus “antisemitism”, through its EAPPI initiative. The group also urged donors to rethink giving to the programme.

Feb 15 08:34

Gulf states’ warm, secret embrace of Israel exposed

According to a report by Barak Ravid for Israel’s Channel 10, the two leaders spoke by phone several times between 2015 and 2016, following years of covert relations between the two countries.

This includes intelligence collaboration against Iran, arms sales and technology exchanges.

Ravid traces the history of the collaboration back a decade, when the failure of a secret arms deal between Israel and the United Arab Emirates led to a two-year rift in covert relations.

In February 2009, Israel lobby stalwart and former US “peace process” diplomat Dennis Ross, UAE ambassador to Washington Yousef Al Otaiba and Israeli ambassador Sallai Meridor met in secret at a Washington hotel, Ravid reported.

Feb 15 08:33

Palestinian teen dies from tear gas canister injury

A 16-year-old Palestinian died on Tuesday from wounds sustained during protests along Gaza’s eastern boundary last week, the health ministry in the territory stated.

Hasan Nabil Ahmad Nofal, struck in the head by an Israeli-fired tear gas canister east of Bureij in central Gaza, is the third child to have died after being injured during Great March of Return protests on 8 February.

Feb 15 08:33

Ilhan Omar takes on the establishment

Minnesota Representative Ilhan Omar has exposed a long-held open secret about the massive influence of the Israel lobby group AIPAC on US lawmakers.

In recent days, not only has she been scorned, attacked and smeared as an anti-Semite by Republicans and top members of her own Democratic Party, but elected leaders have remained conspicuously silent about AIPAC, thus vindicating her comments.

Meanwhile, the congresswoman continued on Wednesday to demonstrate her true antiwar principles when she questioned Elliott Abrams, the far right-wing Washington official tasked with overseeing the US regime change operation in Venezuela.

During a congressional hearing, Omar asked Abrams to account for his role in war crimes and the backing of death squads and genocides in Central America in the 1980s:

Feb 15 08:32

‘There are no foreigners left’: Israeli settlers rampage in Hebron following expulsion of human rights observers

Dozens of Israeli settlers launched an attack on Palestinians in the Old City of Hebron in the southern occupied West Bank on Tuesday night, yelling “death to Arabs!” in the street and hurling rocks at Palestinian homes.

According to locals, more than 100 settlers accompanied by over 70 armed Israeli forces began marching down Shuhada street at 9pm in the Old City, heading towards the Palestinian neighborhood of Tel Rumeida.

“They were chanting anti-Arab slogans, calling for the expulsion of all Palestinians from the area, saying this is the land of Israel, and saying we should all die,” Badee Dweik, 46, Co-Founder of the Human Rights Defenders group in Hebron told Mondoweiss.

Feb 15 08:31

Attacks on Ilhan Omar seek to derail an acknowledgment of Palestinian suffering

In the US, just as in Israel, Palestinian suffering is silenced, and any mainstream discussion of pain in Palestine immediately gets redirected towards sympathy with Israel. And as Israel is successfully conflated in mainstream discourse with “the Jewish people,” a supposedly homogeneous global community whose members all embrace Zionism, criticism of Israel, or of Zionism, becomes an act of bad faith, an act of antisemitism.

Feb 15 08:30

At Trump summit, Netanyahu’s call for ‘war with Iran’ sparks backlash from Tehran

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stole the show during a Trump administration summit in Warsaw, Poland focused on “peace and security” in the Middle East when he said the meeting would be helpful “to advance the common interest of war with Iran.” Although the the statement was quickly scrubbed from social media and replaced with a message of “combatting Iran,” the Iranian government, and many others, took notice.

The initial statement was made in a press release issued by the Prime Minister’s office this afternoon in Poland.

“From here I am going to a meeting with 60 foreign ministers and envoys of countries from around the world against Iran. What is important about this meeting – and this meeting is not in secret, because there are many of those – is that this is an open meeting with representatives of leading Arab countries, that are sitting down together with Israel in order to advance the common interest of war with Iran.”

Feb 15 08:30

Mike Pence accuses Iran of plotting ‘another Holocaust,’ calls on Europe to leave nuclear deal

Vice President Mike Pence accused “the murderous revolutionary regime” of Iran of calling for “another Holocaust” during a two-day summit in Warsaw yesterday where the Trump administration is rallying support for action against the Islamic Republic.

Administration officials have long used strong rhetoric on Iran, but the speech marked a first for alleging a so-called genocidal plot.

Speaking of a visit to Auschwitz planned for today Pence began, “anti-Semitism must be confronted, wherever and whenever it arises, and it must be universally condemned.” Turning his attention to Iran, he continued, “But beyond its hateful rhetoric, the Iranian regime openly advocates another Holocaust and it seeks the means to achieve it.”

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