Trump gives his thoughts on the current state of the Middle East and the conflict is Syria.
Tag Archives: israel
[video] How Come ISIS Does Not Attack Israel?
Damn good question, cause all we see is Arabs chopping off the heads of other Arabs and journalists and there is a lot of speculation that those beheadings themselves were false engineered propaganda.
In a February 5, 2015 interview with the Lebanese NBN TV channel, Fatah Central Committee member Sultan Abu Al-Einein said that he considered the conduct of ISIS to be “an extension of the Zionist enterprise.” “Where did this love story come from?” he asked.
[video] Mean Tweets – President Obama Edition (Softball Tweets)
Obviously they skipped over the thousands of vile racist tweets he gets every second of the day and threw out nothing but softballs.
[video] Farrakhan on 9-11: What You Need to Know #FalseFlag
Minister Louis Farrakhan says prove him wrong and he will pay with his life.
A great deal of skepticism exists regarding the accepted governmental accounts of what transpired on September 11, 2001. Many construction experts, architects and engineers have even said the World Trade Center Towers were destroyed in a controlled demolition.
There are also growing numbers who reject major portions of the “19 hijackers” hypothesis going even further calling the entire event a False Flag Operation.
[video] John McCain tells Anti-war Protesters: ‘Get Out of Here You Low-life Scum’
This country is broken. When anti-war protesters are treated this way it shows we have no allies in Washington and that the political process is a joke. Henry Kissinger is a war criminal who needs to be arrested and sent to jail for the rest of whatever life he has in that overweight body of his. America will self destruct as long as these type of people are in charge .
Sen. John McCain had some choice words for a group of protesters heckling former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger Thursday. McCain called the protesters ‘low-life scum,’ and kicked them out of the hearing. (Jan. 29)
[video] Security council votes no to Palestinian statehood
Zionism wins again by one vote? US and Australia said no. Go figure.
[video] Key & Peele – 9/11 – al-Qaeda planning another attack
Please watch and laugh but don’t let the serious underlying message go over your head.
[video] Ceasefire Reveals Horrific Images Of Gaza Neighborhoods Reduced To Rubble By Israeli Airstrikes
More destruction, more civilian deaths.
Update: Israeli soldier causes firestorm over prisoner Facebook pics (pics + video)
Shouts to my new online friend Rosa for sending me this video report on this story which is still causing a bunch of controversy across the web. This report offers commentary from the soldier herself and IDF officials and critics who feel this is a human rights issue. SOURCE:
Vodpod videos no longer available.
Can we all see why this war will never end between Palestinians and Israel? This was a totally dumb move by this soldier and she needs to be reprimanded immediately.
JERUSALEM — A former Israeli soldier posted photos on Facebook of herself in uniform smiling beside bound and blindfolded Palestinian prisoners, drawing sharp criticism Monday from the Israeli military and Palestinian officials.
Must See: Israeli soldiers fire on Al Jazeera correspondent (Video)
This was absolutely riveting. I keep thinking they would fire on her and actually kill her during her report. These protesters are fearless and shows you that Middle East peace is far from being achieved. This reporter should commended for her bravery and some might say stupidity for risking her life to tell this story.
via Al Jazeera
Israeli soldiers have fired tear gas on Palestinians protesting against the Israeli separation barrier which cuts through their West Bank village.
The soldiers also fired tear gas at Jacky Rowland, Al Jazeera’s correspondent who was covering the event live from near the village of Bilin.
[video] Israelis Spit ‘Racist Hate’ at Obama for his Cairo Visit, and Support of Palestinian State
This video left me speechless, simply for the fact that according to the videographer these are not Israeli-born citizens but dual citizens from the States. They are obviously drunk but I feel they are expressing their true feelings for their Democratically elected president and those feelings are rather disturbing. Not enough is being said about the backroom wranglings that have been taking place between both of these governments, which are normally on the same page. Well, Obama heres what they think about you.
RELATED POST: Why Did HuffPost Censor the Obama Hate Speech?
4th-Grader Questions Rice on Waterboarding
via Washington Post
Days after telling students at Stanford University that waterboarding was legal “by definition if it was authorized by the president,” former secretary of state Condoleezza Rice was pressed again on the subject yesterday by a fourth-grader at a Washington school.
Rice, in her first appearance in Washington since leaving government, was at the Jewish Primary Day School of the Nation’s Capital before giving an evening lecture at the Sixth & I Historic Synagogue. She held forth amiably before a few dozen students about her love of Israel, travel abroad and the importance of learning languages, then opened the floor to their questions.
The questions had been developed beforehand by students with their teachers and had not been screened by Rice. At first, they were innocuous: What was it like growing up in segregated Birmingham, Ala.? What skill did she want to be best known for?
Then Misha Lerner, a student from Bethesda, asked: What did Rice think about the things President Obama’s administration was saying about the methods the Bush administration had used to get information from detainees?
Rice took the question in stride. saying that she was reluctant to criticize Obama, then getting to the heart of the matter.
“Let me just say that President Bush was very clear that he wanted to do everything he could to protect the country. After September 11, we wanted to protect the country,” she said. “But he was also very clear that we would do nothing, nothing, that was against the law or against our obligations internationally. So the president was only willing to authorize policies that were legal in order to protect the country.”
She added: “I hope you understand that it was a very difficult time. We were all so terrified of another attack on the country. September 11 was the worst day of my life in government, watching 3,000 Americans die. . . . Even under those most difficult circumstances, the president was not prepared to do something illegal, and I hope people understand that we were trying to protect the country.” Continue reading
Israel stands ready to bomb Iran’s nuclear sites
via Times Online
The Israeli military is preparing itself to launch a massive aerial assault on Iran’s nuclear facilities within days of being given the go-ahead by its new government.
Among the steps taken to ready Israeli forces for what would be a risky raid requiring pinpoint aerial strikes are the acquisition of three Airborne Warning and Control (AWAC) aircraft and regional missions to simulate the attack.
Two nationwide civil defence drills will help to prepare the public for the retaliation that Israel could face.
“Israel wants to know that if its forces were given the green light they could strike at Iran in a matter of days, even hours. They are making preparations on every level for this eventuality. The message to Iran is that the threat is not just words,” one senior defence official told The Times.
Officials believe that Israel could be required to hit more than a dozen targets, including moving convoys. The sites include Natanz, where thousands of centrifuges produce enriched uranium; Esfahan, where 250 tonnes of gas is stored in tunnels; and Arak, where a heavy water reactor produces plutonium.
The distance from Israel to at least one of the sites is more than 870 miles, a distance that the Israeli force practised covering in a training exercise last year that involved F15 and F16 jets, helicopters and refuelling tankers. Continue reading
[UPDATE]: US Won’t Attend UN Racism Conference
UNITED NATIONS – The United States won’t
participate in a U.N. conference on racism in April unless the final
document is changed to drop all references to Israel and criticism of
religion, a senior U.S. official said Friday.
conference is a follow-up to the contentious 2001 conference in the
South African city of Durban, which was dominated by clashes over the
Middle East and the legacy of slavery. The U.S. and Israel walked out
midway through that eight-day meeting over a draft resolution that
singled out Israel for criticism and likened Zionism — the movement to
establish and maintain a Jewish state — to racism.
and Canada have already announced that they will boycott the upcoming
World Conference Against Racism in Geneva from April 20-25, known as
Durban II, but President Barack Obama’s administration decided to
assess the negotiations before making a decision on U.S. participation.
Last week, the State Department sent two U.S.
representatives to Geneva, where the final document to be issued by
conference participants at the end of the conference is being
negotiated, the U.S. officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity
because an official announcement has not yet been made.
representatives — Betty King, a former U.S. ambassador to the U.N.
Economic and Social Council, and Felice Gaer, the chair of the U.S.
Commission on International Religious Freedom — held 30 meetings with
representatives of different countries and attended the negotiations,
the U.S. official said.
Drawing the line
While the U.S. presence was warmly welcomed, the U.S. official said that in the negotiations, a bad document got worse.
United States has decided that it will not participate in further
negotiations on the outcome document and will not participate in the
conference itself on the basis of the latest text, the U.S. official
administration would reconsider its position if the document improves
in a number of areas including dropping references to any specific
country, references to defamation of religion which the U.S. views as a
free speech issue, and language on reparations for slavery. It also
wants a shorter text and does not want the final document for Durban II
to reaffirm the final document from the 2001 Durban conference, the
U.S. official said.
Further details on the issues in question were
not available as the latest version of the final document being
negotiated in Geneva has not been released.
nations have expressed hope that the conference can go ahead with a
final text that is acceptable. But they have also drawn lines they say
may not be crossed.
diplomat Daniel Vosgien said in December that his country was firmly
opposed to the idea of banning criticism of religion. Dutch Foreign
Minister Maxime Verhagen said at the time that the Netherlands would
walk out unless anti-Israel statements were scrapped.
Jewish Leaders Blast Clinton Over Israel Criticism
In a swift about face from her views as New York’s senator, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is now hammering Israel over its treatment of Palestinians in Gaza.
As First Lady, Clinton raised eyebrows when she kissed Suha Arafat.
Since she was then seeking a Senate seat the resulting brouhaha caused her to “re-think” her positions.
“I’m a very strong supporter of Israel,” Clinton said back in February 2000.
On Thursday, as Secretary of State she had yet another about face in the form of angry messages demanding Israel speed up aid to Gaza. Jewish leaders are furious.
“I am very surprised, frankly, at this statement from the United States government and from the secretary of state,” said Mortimer Zuckerman, publisher of the New York Daily News and member of the NYC Jewish Community Relations Council.
“I liked her a lot more as a senator from New York,” Assemblyman Dov Hikind, D-Brooklyn, said. “Now, I wonder as I used to wonder who the real Hillary Clinton is.”
Clinton’s decision to hammer Israel comes as the Clintons and President Barack Obama are planning to give the Palestinians $900 million toward the rebuilding of Gaza in the wake of the Israeli offensive that was sparked by Hamas rocket fire.
“We are working across the government to see what our approach will be,” Clinton said.
“I don’t believe that we should be in a position at this point to do anything to strengthen Hamas,” Zuckerman said. “We surely know what Hamas stands for as I say they are the forward battalions of Iran.” Continue reading
[video] WTF? Congressman Says World was Hours Away from Going Belly Up on Sept. 15
WTF? There are so many questions that beg for answers and while the country is gripped in hysteria I have a funny feeling these things will be swept under the rug, just as Obama is doing with Bush’s past crimes. Someone, or some “entity” made a run on the US banks on the 15th of September, the day that the meltdown started and Lehman Bros. went belly up. To draw out $550 Billion in two to three hours is no accident. This “crisis” was orchestrated and I’m sure the paper trail leads to the “usual” suspects, but of course this government is not willing to dig that deep. Who was the financial and political clout to pull such a caper and get away with it scott-free? Well, I damn sure have my suspicions.
[video] Ron Paul says Israel started Hamas
The state of Gaza Strip has been very quiet since Pres. Obama has taken office, and basically all the tragedies there have been virtually blocked out from the mainstream news outlets. While browsing youtube looking at some nonsense I found this very riveting video from Ron Paul speaking about the creation of Hamas.
Controversial Bestseller Shakes the Foundation of Israeli State
What if the Palestinian Arabs who have lived for decades under the heel of the modern Israeli state are in fact descended from the very same “children of Israel” described in the Old Testament?
And what if most modern Israelis aren’t descended from the ancient Israelites at all, but are actually a mix of Europeans, North Africans and others who didn’t “return” to the scrap of land we now call Israel and establish a new state following the attempt to exterminate them during World War II, but came in and forcefully displaced people whose ancestors had lived there for millennia?
What if the entire tale of the Jewish Diaspora — the story recounted at Passover tables by Jews around the world every year detailing the ancient Jews’ exile from Judea, the years spent wandering through the desert, their escape from the Pharaoh’s clutches — is all wrong?
That’s the explosive thesis of When and How Was the Jewish People Invented?, a book by Tel Aviv University scholar Shlomo Zand (or Sand) that sent shockwaves across Israeli society when it was published last year. After 19 weeks on the Israeli best-seller list, the book is being translated into a dozen languages and will be published in the United States this year by Verso.
Its thesis has ramifications that go far beyond some antediluvian academic debate. Few modern conflicts are as attached to ancient history as that decades-long cycle of bloodletting between Israelis and Palestinians. Each group lays claim to the same scrap of land — holy in all three of the world’s major Abrahamic religions — based on long-standing ties to that chunk of earth and national identities formed over long periods of time. There’s probably no other place on Earth where the present is as intimately tied to the ancient.
Central to the ideology of Zionism is the tale — familiar to all Jewish families — of exile, oppression, redemption and return. Booted from their kingdom, the “Jewish people” — sons and daughters of ancient Judea — wandered the earth, rootless, where they faced cruel suppression from all corners — from being forced to toil in slavery under the Egyptians, to the Spanish massacres of the 14th century and Russian pogroms of the 19th, through to the horrors of the Third Reich. Continue reading
Israel strikes Gaza after militant rocket fire
JERUSALEM – Israel threatened “harsh and disproportionate” retaliation after Gaza militants fired at least 10 rockets and mortar shells across the border Sunday and warplanes later bombed the area where Hamas smuggles in weapons from Egypt through tunnels.
The flare-up raised the risk of growing violence in the days leading up to Israel’s parliamentary elections on Feb. 10.
Since an unwritten truce ended Israel’s offensive in Gaza two weeks ago, rocket and mortar fire from the Palestinian territory ruled by Hamas has increased steadily. Israeli retaliation, including brief ground incursions and bombings of rocket launchers and smuggling tunnels, is also intensifying.
“If there is shooting at residents of the south, there will be an Israeli response that will be harsh and disproportionate by its nature,” Prime Minister Ehud Olmert told his Cabinet.
Israel launched its three-week offensive with the aim of ending years of Hamas rocket fire at southern Israel. It left nearly 1,300 Palestinians dead, more than half of them civilians, according to Gaza officials. Thirteen Israelis were killed, including three civilians.
A late afternoon mortar barrage on the southern Israeli village of Nahal Oz, next to the Gaza border fence, wounded two soldiers and a civilian, the military and rescue services said. Earlier, a rocket landed near a kindergarten, police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said.
Late Sunday, Palestinians reported huge explosions as Israeli warplanes dropped bombs on the Egypt-Gaza border area, where Hamas operates tunnels to smuggle in weapons, food and other goods, Palestinians said. Continue reading
[video] President Obama on Al-Arabiya: First Formal Interview As President With Arab TV Network
Wow.This is a definitely a new administration. In your wildest dreams can you imagine George Bush doing this interview with an Arab Network. The infamous shoe throw a couple of months back tells it all.
via Huffington Post
Barack Obama struck a note of foreign policy confidence Monday night, telling an Arabic news station that al Qaeda leaders and Osama bin Laden “seem nervous” now that they don’t have George W. Bush as a recruiting tool.
In his first formal interview since taking office, the president spoke with the Dubai-based station Al Arabiya on topics pertinent to the Arab and Muslim worlds. Much of the interview was spent defining the new approach that the United States would implement in that region: respectfulness over divisiveness, listening over dictating, engagement over militarism. But the president drew the line when it came to terrorist organizations.
“Their ideas are bankrupt,” he told host Hisham Melhem, when asked to respond to recent audio clips from al Qaeda leadership calling him various epithets. “There’s no actions that they’ve taken that say a child in the Muslim world is getting a better education because of them, or has better health care because of them.”
Pressed later in the interview to comment on Bush’s use of the term ‘War On Terror,’ and the implications that the phrase held, Obama once again distanced himself from his White House predecessor.
Newsweek: Israel Has Fewer Friends Than Ever, Even in America
As Barack Obama and Hillary Rodham Clinton begin to use their uncommon authority and intelligence to implement a new American international agenda, it might behoove them to read a speech given some years ago in Beijing. It read in part: “If there is one message that echoes forth from this conference, let it be that human rights are women’s rights, and women’s rights are human rights for one and for all. Let us not forget that among those rights are the right to speak freely—and the right to be heard. Women must enjoy the rights to participate fully in the social and political lives of their countries if we want freedom and democracy to thrive and endure.”
Secretary Clinton was first lady when she spoke those words at a United Nations conference on women in 1995. Some of the participants wept to hear an influential American commit to a view of the world so many of them shared: that the way for nations to prosper was to pay attention to women’s rights, women’s welfare and women’s concerns. Continue reading
Obama urges Israel to open Gaza borders
This guy really seems like he’s determined to completely steer this country on a different course. I definitely applaud him for this. He was silent while he awaited his chance to speak his peace, and when he said something it was a statement full of character. Kudos to Obama.
President Barack Obama urged Israel on Thursday to open its borders with Gaza.
The plea came in a speech that signalled the new US administration’s shift from Bush-era policy on the Middle East and the world as a whole. In a high-profile address on his second day in office, just hours after he signed an executive order to close the centre at Guantánamo Bay, Mr Obama proclaimed that the US would “actively and aggressively seek a lasting peace between Israel and the Palestinians” in the wake of this month’s Gaza war.
“The outline for a durable ceasefire is clear: Hamas must end its rocket fire: Israel will complete the withdrawal of its forces from Gaza: the US and our partners will support a credible anti-smuggling and interdiction regime, so that Hamas cannot re-arm,” the US president said.
“As part of a lasting ceasefire, Gaza’s border crossings should be open to allow the flow of aid and commerce, with an appropriate monitoring regime, with the international and Palestinian Authority participating.” Continue reading
President Obama’s first call ‘was to President Abbas’
via Times Online
President Obama placed the Middle East at the forefront of his first hours in office yesterday as he sought to make good on his promise of “ushering in a new era of peace”.
In a flurry of telephone calls from the Oval Office, he reached out to leaders in the region and vowed to engage immediately in pursuit of a permanent Arab-Israeli settlement.
The spokesman for President Abbas revealed that Mr Obama had told the Palestinian leader that their conversation was his first with a foreign statesman since taking office. Mr Obama also spoke to President Mubarak of Egypt, Ehud Olmert, the Israeli Prime Minister, and King Abdullah of Jordan.
Robert Gibbs, the White House press secretary, said that the talks with Middle East leaders underlined a “commitment to active engagement in pursuit of Arab-Israeli peace from the beginning of his term”. He added: “In the aftermath of the Gaza conflict, he emphasised his determination to work to help consolidate the ceasefire by establishing an effective anti-smuggling regime to prevent Hamas from rearming, and facilitating, in partnership with the Palestinian Authority, a major reconstruction effort.” Continue reading
[video] Palestinian doctor’s daughters killed during live Israeli TV report
Though we are in knee deep celebration over the historic inaugration of President-elect Barack Obama lets us not forget the war that is going on in Gaza that seems to have accomplished nothing more than to keep it going on for another hundred years. Hopefully the cease-fire is a permanent one.
The Facebook Fight Over Gaza
While Egyptian mediators scramble to broker an end to Israel’s ground campaign in Gaza, both sides’ more vocal advocates continue to wage their own wars using the Internet, recently expanding their informal political campaigns to such popular platforms as Facebook and Twitter.
As of Tuesday afternoon, McClatchy’s D.C. Bureau reported that more than 70,000 Facebook users (and an additional few thousand Twitter subscribers) had “donated” their statuses — the 170-character updates that adorn the top of every user’s profile page — to QassamCount, a third-party application that tracks Hamas missile strikes. Named after the missile model Hamas allegedly prefers, the application updates a donor’s Facebook status whenever Hamas militants attack Israeli targets or kill Israeli civilians.
Pro-Palestinian users, however, soon countered with a status application of their own — “STOP Israel’s War Crimes in Gaza,” which, according to its Facebook page, has drawn more than 74,000 “fans” since its inception earlier this month. In total, AllFacebook, an unofficial blog that shares its subject’s namesake, estimates that group and status subscribers on both sides of the “Facebook Gaza War” would top the one million mark before the week’s end.
To many new media analysts, this sudden increase in Facebook-based social activism has some promise. A slew of recent international events — from the attacks in Mumbai to the war in Gaza — have solidified Facebook and Twitter, among other platforms, as valuable information tools — egalitarian channels through which users may share first-hand accounts and unfiltered information with the masses. And that reach, as Rita King, a senior fellow at the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs, told Time magazine earlier this week, has opened new doors for cross-cultural dialog: “The Internet removes the threat of physical harm and thus offers an unprecedented opportunity for the development of new ideas for conflict mediation,” she told reporters. Continue reading
U.S. Ships 3,000 TONS of Ammunition to Israel
The media has been making much ado about Bush’s rebuke of Israel’s request to bomb Iran on his watch. Now, it is obvious they intend to use the influence they’ve invested in the Obama administration to get that task done. Expect an attack by late winter/early spring. Remember, Israel gets what Israel pays for.
LONDON, Jan 9 (Reuters) – The U.S. is seeking to hire a merchant ship to deliver hundreds of tonnes of arms to Israel from Greece later this month, tender documents seen by Reuters show.
The U.S. Navy’s Military Sealift Command (MSC) said the ship was to carry 325 standard 20-foot containers of what is listed as “ammunition” on two separate journeys from the Greek port of Astakos to the Israeli port of Ashdod in mid-to-late January.
A “hazardous material” designation on the manifest mentions explosive substances and detonators, but no other details were given.
“Shipping 3,000-odd tonnes of ammunition in one go is a lot,” one broker said, on condition of anonymity.
“This (kind of request) is pretty rare and we haven’t seen much of it quoted in the market over the years,” he added.
The U.S. Defense Department, contacted by Reuters on Friday in Washington, had no immediate comment. Continue reading
[Op-Ed] The Hundred Year War in Palestine
WITH luck, the destructive two-week battle between Israel and Hamas may soon draw to an end. But how long before the century-long war between Arabs and Jews in Palestine follows suit? It is hard to believe that this will happen any time soon. Consider: Israel’s current operation, “Cast Lead”, marks the fourth time Israel has fought its way into Gaza. It almost captured Gaza (behind a pocket containing a young Egyptian army officer called Gamal Abdul Nasser) in 1948, in the war Israelis know as their war of independence. It captured Gaza again in 1956, as part of a secret plan hatched with Britain and France to topple Nasser as Egypt’s president and restore British control of the Suez Canal. It invaded a third time during the six-day war of 1967—and stayed there for 38 years, until withdrawing unilaterally three and a half years ago.
Why they fight
And Gaza, remember, is only one item in a mighty catalogue of misery, whose entries are inscribed in tears. The Jews and Arabs of Palestine have been fighting off and on for 100 years. In 1909 the mostly Russian socialist idealists of the Zionist movement set up an armed group, Hashomer, to protect their new farms and villages in Palestine from Arab marauders. Since then has come the dismal march of wars—1948, 1956, 1967, 1973, 1982, 2006 and now 2009—each seared by blood and fire into the conflicting myths and memories of the two sides. The intervals between the wars have not been filled by peace but by bombs, raids, uprisings and atrocities. Israeli settlers in Hebron today still cite, as if it were yesterday, the massacre of Hebron’s Jews in 1929. The Arabs of Palestine still remember their desperate revolt in the 1930s against the British mandate and Jewish immigration from Europe, and the massacres of 1948.
The slaughter this week in Gaza, in which on one day alone some 40 civilians, many children, were killed in a single salvo of Israeli shells, will pour fresh poison into the brimming well of hate (see article). But a conflict that has lasted 100 years is not susceptible to easy solutions or glib judgments. Those who choose to reduce it to the “terrorism” of one side or the “colonialism” of the other are just stroking their own prejudices. At heart, this is a struggle of two peoples for the same patch of land. It is not the sort of dispute in which enemies push back and forth over a line until they grow tired. It is much less tractable than that, because it is also about the periodic claim of each side that the other is not a people at all—at least not a people deserving sovereign statehood in the Middle East. Continue reading
Israel Accused of Using Illegal Chemical Weapons in Gaza
Why is this a surprise to anyone? The U.S. has been using “Willie Pete” in Iraq and Afghanistan, so Israel is just following suite.
(Reuters) – Human Rights Watch accused Israel on Saturday of using white-phosphorus munitions during its offensive in the Gaza Strip.
The Israeli army said it would not provide details about the munitions it was using in the Gaza Strip, but it added: “We emphasize that the IDF (Israeli army) only employs weapons permitted by international law.”
The army confirmed in 2006 that it had used phosphorus shells during its war against Hezbollah guerillas in Lebanon.
Following are key facts about white phosphorus:
White phosphorus munitions are primarily used to make smoke screens or mark targets as a signaling mechanism, but also as an incendiary weapon. Human Rights Watch said Israel appeared to be using the munitions to hide its military operations — “a permissible use in principle under international humanitarian law.” White phosphorus is not considered a chemical weapon under international conventions. It is a colorless or yellowish translucent wax-like substance that smells a bit like garlic. The substance ignites easily in air at temperatures of about 30 degrees Celsius (86 Fahrenheit), and its fire can be difficult to extinguish. Continue reading
A Gaza War Full of Traps and Trickery
via NY Times
JERUSALEM — The grinding urban battle unfolding in the densely populated Gaza Strip is a war of new tactics, quick adaptation and lethal tricks.
Hamas, with training from Iran and Hezbollah, has used the last two years to turn Gaza into a deadly maze of tunnels, booby traps and sophisticated roadside bombs. Weapons are hidden in mosques, schoolyards and civilian houses, and the leadership’s war room is a bunker beneath Gaza’s largest hospital, Israeli intelligence officials say.
Unwilling to take Israel’s bait and come into the open, Hamas militants are fighting in civilian clothes; even the police have been ordered to take off their uniforms. The militants emerge from tunnels to shoot automatic weapons or antitank missiles, then disappear back inside, hoping to lure the Israeli soldiers with their fire.
In one apartment building in Zeitoun, in northern Gaza, Hamas set an inventive, deadly trap. According to an Israeli journalist embedded with Israeli troops, the militants placed a mannequin in a hallway off the building’s main entrance. They hoped to draw fire from Israeli soldiers who might, through the blur of night vision goggles and split-second decisions, mistake the figure for a fighter. The mannequin was rigged to explode and bring down the building.
In an interview, the reporter, Ron Ben-Yishai, a senior military correspondent for the newspaper Yediot Aharonot, said soldiers also found a pile of weapons with a grenade launcher on top. When they moved the launcher, “they saw a detonator light up, but somehow it didn’t go off.” Continue reading
Gaza war tourism – Keren Levy: I’m a little bit fascist
[note:] Don’t mind the Yiddish in the beginning. The translation comes through in due time for you to hear an Israeli lady say she hopes the army wipes the city of Palestine off of the face of the Earth. Despicable fail.
[video] Kissinger: Perfect Time for Obama to Usher in “New World Order”
Somebody has got to watch these ‘Sly Foxes.’ While the house is burning keep ya eye on the chicken coup because that’s where you’ll find those conniving foxes. This “Deacon of Death” Henry Kissinger continuosly openly refers to Obama ushering in the purported “New World Order” style of government that conspiracy theorists have been theorizing about for so long. I understand that some of these scenarios are so outlandish that they don’t deserve any decent time on a respectable site such as this, but when you see the board being laid out, step-by-step in accordance with these sinister plots you’ve been hearing about for over a decade, you gotta sit up and take notice. To make matters worst, Kissinger is repeatedly thumbing his nose and referring to these plans in open because as far as they’re concerned they’ve already got this thing wrapped up. See you at the inauguaration!!
Israeli envoy to Caracas expelled
Venezuela has ordered the expulsion of the Israeli ambassador to Caracas in protest at Israel’s offensive in the Gaza Strip.
A number of diplomatic staff have been expelled along with Shlomo Cohen.
President Hugo Chavez has strongly condemned Israel for its actions and called on Israelis to stand up against their government.
Venezuela is the first country to take such a diplomatic step in protest at the violence in Gaza.
“The Israeli army is cowardly attacking worn-out, innocent people, while they claim that they are defending their people,” Mr Chavez said during a visit to a children’s hospital in Caracas.
“I call on the people of Israel to stand up against that government, to demand, to put a hand on their hearts and look at their children, and I call on the world to stop this madness.”
Shortly after, the foreign ministry released a statement ordering the expulsion of Mr Cohen and some of his staff, in what they said was a show of solidarity with the Palestinians.
The BBC’s Will Grant in Caracas says Mr Chavez often uses strong language to criticise Israel and is a close ally of Iranian President, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, one of Israel’s main enemies.
Venezuela also has a large Arab community who have welcomed the government’s move, our correspondent adds.
How Israel brought Gaza to the Brink of Humanitarian Catastrophe
By Avi Shlaim
The only way to make sense of Israel’s senseless war in Gaza is through understanding the historical context. Establishing the state of Israel in May 1948 involved a monumental injustice to the Palestinians. British officials bitterly resented American partisanship on behalf of the infant state. On 2 June 1948, Sir John Troutbeck wrote to the foreign secretary, Ernest Bevin, that the Americans were responsible for the creation of a gangster state headed by “an utterly unscrupulous set of leaders”. I used to think that this judgment was too harsh but Israel’s vicious assault on the people of Gaza, and the Bush administration’s complicity in this assault, have reopened the question.
I write as someone who served loyally in the Israeli army in the mid-1960s and who has never questioned the legitimacy of the state of Israel within its pre-1967 borders. What I utterly reject is the Zionist colonial project beyond the Green Line. The Israeli occupation of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip in the aftermath of the June 1967 war had very little to do with security and everything to do with territorial expansionism. The aim was to establish Greater Israel through permanent political, economic and military control over the Palestinian territories. And the result has been one of the most prolonged and brutal military occupations of modern times.
Four decades of Israeli control did incalculable damage to the economy of the Gaza Strip. With a large population of 1948 refugees crammed into a tiny strip of land, with no infrastructure or natural resources, Gaza’s prospects were never bright. Gaza, however, is not simply a case of economic under-development but a uniquely cruel case of deliberate de-development. To use the Biblical phrase, Israel turned the people of Gaza into the hewers of wood and the drawers of water, into a source of cheap labour and a captive market for Israeli goods. The development of local industry was actively impeded so as to make it impossible for the Palestinians to end their subordination to Israel and to establish the economic underpinnings essential for real political independence.
Gaza is a classic case of colonial exploitation in the post-colonial era. Jewish settlements in occupied territories are immoral, illegal and an insurmountable obstacle to peace. They are at once the instrument of exploitation and the symbol of the hated occupation. In Gaza, the Jewish settlers numbered only 8,000 in 2005 compared with 1.4 million local residents. Yet the settlers controlled 25% of the territory, 40% of the arable land and the lion’s share of the scarce water resources. Cheek by jowl with these foreign intruders, the majority of the local population lived in abject poverty and unimaginable misery. Eighty per cent of them still subsist on less than $2 a day. The living conditions in the strip remain an affront to civilised values, a powerful precipitant to resistance and a fertile breeding ground for political extremism.
In August 2005 a Likud government headed by Ariel Sharon staged a unilateral Israeli pullout from Gaza, withdrawing all 8,000 settlers and destroying the houses and farms they had left behind. Hamas, the Islamic resistance movement, conducted an effective campaign to drive the Israelis out of Gaza. The withdrawal was a humiliation for the Israeli Defence Forces. To the world, Sharon presented the withdrawal from Gaza as a contribution to peace based on a two-state solution. But in the year after, another 12,000 Israelis settled on the West Bank, further reducing the scope for an independent Palestinian state. Land-grabbing and peace-making are simply incompatible. Israel had a choice and it chose land over peace. Continue reading
Police in Israel Grapple with a Mafia Gang War
Until the moment a bomb planted on his car exploded on a Tel Aviv street, mob boss Yaakov Alperon was living large. He and his Carmela Soprano-blond wife, Ahuva, were media darlings who even took part in a 2006 reality show in which a famous Israeli model moved in with their family.
But as he stood over his father’s grave, one of her sons appeared to have vengeance on his mind: “I will send back that person to God,” he said. “He won’t have a grave because I’ll cut off his hands, head and body.” Continue reading
Israeli troops and tanks slice deep into Gaza
via My Way News
GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) – Thousands of Israeli troops backed by tanks and helicopter gunships surrounded Gaza’s largest city and fought militants at close range Sunday, the first full day of an overwhelming ground offensive in the coastal territory.
Israel said it has inflicted a heavy blow against Hamas as it expands a weeklong offensive meant to stop rocket fire on southern Israel. But spiraling civilian casualties among Palestinians fueled an international outcry, even as the U.S. blocked approval of a U.N. Security Council statement Saturday night calling for an immediate cease-fire.
Israel’s ground forces moved in after nightfall Saturday following hours of intense, fiery artillery shelling to clear the way, and Hamas warned that its fighters would turn Gaza into an Israeli “graveyard.”
On Sunday, Israeli soldiers fought primarily in open areas in the launching zones used by Gaza’s militants to send rockets raining down on Israeli cities. As the troops in three brigade-size formations moved in, residents of those Israeli cities began cautiously emerging from bomb shelters in hopes that the rocket fire would taper off.
Backing up the troops, mobile artillery units fired shells that exploded in veils of white smoke over Gaza’s urban skyline. Tanks pushed south of Gaza City as deep as the abandoned settlement of Netzarim, which Israel left along with other communities when it pulled out of Gaza in 2005.
That effectively cut off Gaza City, the territory’s largest population center with some 400,000 residents, from the rest of Gaza to the south.
Israel’s military chief said Hamas fighters were trying to draw soldiers deeper into Gaza’s sprawling, densely packed urban areas, where the military said militants were shielding themselves behind civilians. Continue reading
Mayor Bloomberg Travels to Israel Amidst War
Is Bloomberg sending the right message by siding with Israel in the middle of conflict?
NEW YORK — New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg is heading to Israel along with police Commissioner Raymond Kelly and New York Rep. Gary Ackerman.
Spokesman Andrew Brent says the mayor “is going in order to show his support for Israel.”
The trip comes as Israel launches a ground offensive in Gaza following eight days of punishing airstrikes that failed to halt militant rocket attacks on Israel.
Bloomberg is scheduled to spend Sunday meeting with the mayors of Sderot and Ashkelon and with New Yorkers who have moved to Israel. He’s expected to be back in New York by Monday morning
The mayor has already voiced his support for Israel in recent days, saying he believes Israel has a right to defend itself.
[pics] Realities of the War on the Gaza Strip
These pics here show that we are never really shown the reality of war because many people would not be able to stomach the realities. We here of 100’s of bombs being dropped but never are we shown the death to innocent children that occurs. This conflict has been going on for at least 50 years and does not seem to be ending anytime soon.
Cynthia McKinney: We Lived to Tell the Story: Lebanon Rescued Us
via Davey D
Yesterday, we met with the President of Lebanon, the Chief of the Military, and the Interior Minister who all thanked us for responding and risking our lives on a mission of mercy; we profusely thanked them for rescuing us.
What would we have done, stranded out at sea, prohibited from reaching our destination, low on fuel, with a badly damaged boat if Lebanon had not accepted us? Lebanon sent their ships to find us. Lebanon rescued us. Lebanon welcomed us. And we are truly thankful.
It’s official now. We’ve been told that the sturdy, wood construction of our boat, Dignity, is the reason we are still alive. Fiberglass would probably not have withstood the impact of the Israeli attack and under different circumstances, we might not be here to tell the story. Even at that, the report that came to us yesterday after the Captain and First Mate went back to Sour (Tyre) to inspect the boat was that it was sinking, the damage is extensive, and the boat will take, in their estimation, at least one month to repair. Tomorrow, we will bring the Dignity from Sour to Beirut. And now, we must decide what to do and from where we will do it and how we are to get back to wherever that might be. Continue reading
[video] US Military Aid Underpins Gaza Offensive
[video] Cynthia McKinney vs. Israeli Military
Somebody needs to applaud this sister for always putting herself on the “unpopular” side of the aisle. She was the only one to raise questions about inconsistencies in the official U.S. report about 9/11, she has championed the cause of Katrina victims by exposing the mass slaughtering of “Blacks” by white militia and Blackwater operatives, she spoke for the little person as she campaigned against Barack Obama this past presidential cycle and she has consistently used her seat in Congress to voice the concerns of the voiceless. Now she is in the Middle East lending her eyes and ears to the cause of the Palestinians, who are notoriously voiceless when it comes to stateside media. This episode she’s her experiencing firsthand the aggression of the Israelis as they attempt to circumvent a medical aid boat that she was riding upon. I just pray and hope that people are willing to applaud this sister for her courage and conviction, acknowledging that she will throw herself in the fray at the drop of a dime for her fellow man. If that ain’t “public service” I don’t know what is. On another note, she uses this bully pulpit as an opportunity to call PE Obama to duty. She urges him and his administration to call for restraint on the part of the Israelis. People outside of America can’t help but see any move by Israel as a joint operation, condoned and made complicit by the U.S. In fact, the New York Post ran an article about how recently delivered U.S. bombs made this atrocity possible. Continue reading