Wednesday 28 January 2009

National Palestinian Unity to Isolate the Traitors


The meeting in Cairo on Monday 26 January, between a Hamas representative and Fatah leader Azzam al Ahmed is a glimmer of hope for millions of Palestinians and their allies who are hoping and praying for a speedy end of the enduring rift between the two biggest political camps in the Palestinian arena.

Though symbolic and procedural in nature, the meeting shows that the problems between the two sides can be overcome if both sides display good-will and especially if the Ramallah regime ends its ignominious subservience to Israel and the United States.

Needless to say, the rift has wreaked havoc on the reputation of the just Palestinian cause and caused many bleeding wounds to our people, the scars of which will take a long time to heal.

However, we are still one people, feeling the same pain, languishing under the same hateful occupation, and harboring the same hopes for freedom and justice.

But in order to reach a lasting national harmony, we need to be honest and frank, and refrain from trying to negate the other side. This is so because neither Hamas nor Fatah will go away or evaporate into nonexistence.

There is no doubt that a great calamity has hit our people in the Gaza Strip. But by no means was that evil aggression a victory for Israel unless the Zio-Nazi entity views the mass killing of innocent civilians and the mass destruction of residential homes and public buildings as an act of heroism.

Well, if so, then we would have to view Adolf Hitler as the greatest hero of all times.

Nonetheless, we should refrain from whipping ourselves too much or trying to score propaganda points one against the other.

Israel did try to decapitate Hamas, destroy its legitimate government (legitimate because Hamas was elected by the Palestinian people) and give the Gaza Strip back to PA leader Mahmoud Abbas on a sliver platter.

The fact that Israel couldn’t achieve the criminal goal was not due to Israeli magnanimity. Zionists are too thuggish and too criminal minded to know the meaning of magnanimity. After all, magnanimity requires at least a modicum of humanity and Zionism has none of that.

In truth, Hamas and other Palestinian resistance factions earned this spectacular steadfastness, this legendary resoluteness, in the face of overwhelming criminality, hideousness and firepower.

Hence, one can only view with utter contempt the cheap canards and calumnies coming out of Ramallah and accusing the resistance of responsibility for the widespread death and destruction in Gaza, as if the murderous pilots who were raining bombs and missiles and white phosphorous on the heads of our children and civilians were members of Hamas, not Israeli war criminals.

To be sure, such cheap accusations are made by two categories of people, ignoramuses who don’t know the facts, and bona fide traitors who are doing Israel’s work.

The former can be somehow forgiven by virtue of their ignorance or stupidity. However, the latter are willful Judases who ought to be silenced and punished. And if the time is not conducive to dealing with them the proper way, they should be isolated in disgrace.

This should be one of Hamas’s key tasks in the coming weeks and months. Otherwise, the Fifth columnists within Fatah and the PA, the very people who committed national adultery in broad daylight by collaborating with the Shin Beth and the CIA for the purpose of raping the Palestinian people’s will and achieving America’s morbid goals in this tortured part of the world, will continue to create mischief and try to rock the collective Palestinian boat.

These must be ejected, isolated, exposed, disgraced, and made to pay for their treachery and perfidy.

But Fatah is not a movement of traitors, and it is not in the Palestinian people’s interests to see Fatah catapulted into the laps of the likes of Muhammed Dahlan, Nimr Hammad and al-Tayeb Abdul Rahim who probably were dreaming, even loudly, of an Israeli victory in Gaza.

Hence, it is both right and wise for Hamas to get closer to true patriots within Fatah. And the time to do that is now.

There is no doubt that despite the enormity of the genocidal Zionist blitzkrieg against our people in Gaza, Hamas has not only managed to remain intact, but has also earned overwhelming respect and admiration from around the world.

Hamas shouldn’t treat lightly this earned outpouring of support which many movements, parties and governments even dream of receiving a fraction of.

In this light, Hamas should show enlightened flexibility toward re-establishing national unity.

It is this national unity that will eventually dump the government of Fayadh into the dustbin of history and do away with the whoring practice known as “security coordination.”

The restoration of national unity will also impose an early retirement on people like Keith Dayton and other CIA officers who have taught hundreds, if not thousands, of our beguiled and naïve young sons that the enemy is Hamas, not the Zionist thugs who have just murdered and maimed thousands of our children and civilians in the Gaza Strip and who have been stealing our land and narrowing our horizons.

In the Quran, God orders Muslims to refrain from falling into disunity and internal conflicts.

In Surat al Anfal, God says: “ And obey God and His Messenger and fall not into disputes, lest you lose heart and your power depart; and be patient and persevering: For God stands with those who patiently persevere.” Of all Palestinian factions, Hamas should understand this best.



The BBC and the transformation of suffering into propaganda

WRITTEN BY Sarah Gillepsie

'What impartiality requires is not that everyone receive equal treatment, but rather that everyone be treated as an equal.’ Ronald Dworkin Taking Rights Seriously. Harvard University Press. 1977, p. 227).

BBC director general Mark Thomson can not screen footage of Palestinian suffering in Gaza without compromising his cooperation’s impartiality. At the heart of his obfuscation lays a belief that Palestinian pain is not an objective reality. It is, at best, a subjective possibility, one loaded with the potential to burst into a subversive, destabilizing force.

For activists and supporters who are frequently asked why they devote more energy to Palestine than Darfur or the Congo (the implication being of course that they are anti-Semites) Mark Thomson provides the most succinct answer. For Thomson has no problem whatsoever screening Disaster Emergency Committee films on behalf of Darfur and the Congo. The suffering endured by people in these regions is endorsed by the BBC as a universally acknowledged fact. Screening footage of the humanitarian disaster in Palestine though, sabotages Sky and the BBC’s obligation to be ‘balanced.’ If this was indeed a war, and not genocidal attack, then the BBC could counter their depictions of carnage in Gaza with images of the horrors endured in Sderot. But this is of course impossible. The visual impact of a damaged kitchen doesn’t quite cut it next to the apocalyptic hell hole that is Gaza.

Problematically, for a Zionist broadcaster who wants to appear ‘fair’, the humanitarian appeal does not come across as 'balanced' because the conflict is not 'balanced'. Again, the Palestinians are collectively punished for this annoying glitch in egalitarian reporting. Rather than responsibly portray a reality that inevitably induces a condemnation of Israel, these corporations re-brand Palestinian reality as’ journalistic bias.'

Thus, the BBC’s refusal to air this film suggests that Palestinian suffering is itself a form of propaganda. Through the lens of the BBC, the screams of kids riddled with phosphorus become anti Israeli screams. The piles of burning concrete become anti-Semitic piles of burning concrete. The howls of grief are Islamist and undemocratic. The lives of children snubbed out in an instant by Israeli bombs may have grown into adults who failed to recognize Israel’s right to exist; that is if Israel had not had the foresight to violate their right to grow up.

Perhaps the most menacing aspect of this tragic debacle is Mark Thomson himself. A quick bit of research online ploughs up a surfeit of information proving the man is far from 'impartial'. His Jewish wife, the scholar Jane Blumfeild, hails from an American family that attends Yeshivas. Evidence suggests that she recently signed a petition campaigning against the anti-Israeli content of the Washington Post. In 2005 she traveled together with her husband to Jerusalem to engage in talks with Ariel Sharon in an attempt to build bridges between the BBC and Israel. According to the Independent , this was an unprecedented gesture by any serving BBC director general. 'He has a far greater regard for the Israeli cause than some of his predecessors’ a BBC source said. All in all, it is infuriatingly impossible to imagine the reverse; a BBC director general married to a woman from a Wahabi background who petitions news organizations to write pro-Palestinian copy and visits Khaled Meshaal in an attempt to help him out with his PR.

The implausible tone of this scenario betrays the catastrophic reality behind Sky and the BBC's position. It is very clear that, as much as these media institutions champion their Voltaire-esque spiel about covering both sides of every story, at the end of the day their 'objectivity' is merely Israeli objectivity.

Gerard Kaufman MP elaborates ‘Probably the (BBC's) attitude has been: 'Oh this is just too much trouble and it's too much trouble because of the pressure of the Israelis. This very active and not very pleasant Israeli diplomatic representation in Britain’.

With over a million people dependent on aid to survive, the decisions of both corporations, continues the legacy of pathological barbarism carried out by the Jewish state. The Jerusalem Post and some other editorials go slightly further and refer to the DEC film as an 'advert' as if just trying to save lives were a sales tactic. Thankfully ordinary human beings are finally able to see through their transparent rhetoric and are doing to their TV licenses what Israel did to Gaza, burning them into obliteration.

Saturday 24 January 2009

Amnesty International Calls on Israel to Urgently Disclose Weapons and Munitions Used in Gaza

Doctors Are Having Difficulty Treating Wounded with Unexplained Charred and Severed Limbs

Amnesty International Press Release


15 year-old Ayman al-Najar at the Al-Nasser Hospital in Khan Younis. He has severe injuries, including chemical burns, after Israeli bombing in the village of Khoza'a, Gaza.

(New York) -- Saying doctors are finding new and unexplained patterns of injury among the wounded in Gaza, Amnesty International today called on the Israeli authorities to urgently disclose all weapons and munitions their forces used during military operations to prevent the loss of more lives.

"It is vital and urgent that the Israeli authorities disclose all relevant information including what weapons and munitions they used," said Donatella Rovera, who is leading Amnesty International's investigations team in Gaza. "More lives must not be lost because doctors do not know what caused their patients' injuries and what medical complications may occur. They have to be fully informed so that they can provide life-saving care."

Rovera said doctors are telling Amnesty International they are encountering new and unexplained patterns of injury among some of the Palestinians injured. "Some victims of Israeli air strikes were brought in with charred and sharply severed limbs and doctors treating them need to know what weapons were used," she said.

Dr. Subhi Skeik, head of the Surgical Department at al-Shifa Hospital, told Amnesty International delegates: “We have many cases of amputations and vascular reconstructions where patients would be expected to recover in the normal way. But to our surprise many of them died an hour or two after operation. It is dramatic.”

Rovera said the human rights organization has irrefutable evidence of the use of white phosphorous munitions in civilian areas, although the Israeli authorities previously denied using this munition.

Israel's earlier refusal to confirm that its troops had used white phosphorus meant that doctors were unable to provide correct treatment. White phosphorous particles embedded in the flesh can continue to burn, causing intense pain as the burns grow wider and deeper, and can result in irreparable damage to internal organs. It can contaminate other parts of the patient's body or even those treating the injuries.

“We noticed burns different from anything we had ever dealt with before,” one burns specialist at Gaza's al-Shifa Hospital told Amnesty International. “After some hours the burns became wider and deeper, gave off an offensive odor and then they began to smoke.”

The condition of people with burns caused by white phosphorus can deteriorate rapidly. Even those with burns that cover a relatively small area of the body – ten to fifteen percent – who would normally survive, can deteriorate and die. Only after a number of foreign doctors arrived in the Gaza Strip, days after they had seen the first casualties of white phosphorus, did local doctors learn what had caused the wounds and how to treat them.

A 16-year-old girl, Samia Salman Al-Manay'a, was asleep in her home in the Jabalia refugee camp, north of Gaza City, when a phosphorous shell landed on the first floor of the house on Jan. 10. Ten days later, from her hospital bed, she told Amnesty International that she was still experiencing intense pain due to the burns to her face and legs. “The pain is piercing. It's as though a fire is burning in my body. It's too much for me to bear. In spite of all the medicine they are giving me the pain is still so strong.”

Without knowing what they were, Palestinians whose houses were hit by phosphorous shells or burning debris from them, mistakenly threw water on the flames, only for the fire to intensify. When doctors, seemingly unaware, tried to wash patients' wounds with saline solutions, they screamed in pain. And when they changed the dressings on patients' burns they were shocked to see smoke rise from the wound. When they conducted investigative operations, they extracted small pieces of felt which started to burn immediately when they were exposed to the air.

“There can be no excuse for continuing to withhold information vital to effective treatment of people wounded in Israeli attacks. Lack of cooperation by Israel is leading to needless deaths and unnecessary suffering," said Rovera. "The Israeli authorities should fulfil their obligation to ensure prompt and adequate care for the wounded by making a full disclosure of the weapons and munitions they used in Gaza and provide any other relevant information that may help medical teams."


Some 1,300 Palestinians were killed between Dec. 27, 2008 and the ceasefire declared by Israel on Jan. 18, 2009, including more than 400 children and over 100 women. More than 5,300 Palestinians were injured; many will be disabled for the rest of their lives. In the same period, 13 Israelis were killed in attacks by Hamas and other Palestinian armed groups, including three civilians.

Amnesty International is a Nobel Peace Prize-winning grassroots activist organization with more than 2.2 million supporters, activists and volunteers in more than 150 countries campaigning for human rights worldwide. The organization investigates and exposes abuses, educates and mobilizes the public, and works to protect people wherever justice, freedom, truth and dignity are denied.

Photos of Ayman al-Najar injuries.

Contact: Suzanne Trimel, 212-633-4150,

Israel Has Fewer Friends Than Ever, Even In America

By Rod Nordland | NEWSWEEK

Israel has never been more isolated. Its best friend, the United States, had vetoed 41 Security Council resolutions condemning Israel in the past three decades, but was about to vote for the Jan. 8 resolution denouncing the attack on Gaza when President Bush intervened, at the behest of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert. Still, in the face of unprecedented global criticism, the U.S. didn't dare veto, but merely abstained. Europe, never Israel's close ally, erupted in near unanimous outrage over Gaza, with fits of anti-Semitic violence in France, Sweden and Belgium.

Israel is accustomed to attacks from the left and the U.N. This time, though, Amnesty International has accused Israel of war crimes (using white phosphorus against civilians), and the secretary-general was unusually outspoken. After Israel bombed five U.N. compounds, Ban Ki-moon called the attack "heartbreaking … outrageous and unacceptable." His condemnation of Hamas rocket attacks came later, in milder terms.

Israel's last major military excursion, into Lebanon in 2006, aroused less anger. Its closest European ally is Britain, where Tony Blair initially refused to call for a ceasefire in Lebanon. By day two in Gaza, his Labour successors were pushing for a ceasefire; one M.P. called Israel's leaders "mass murderers." The global outcry in 2006 was tempered by disgust at Hizbullah's rocket campaign, which killed 43 in heavily populated northern Israel. This time, Hamas rockets hit a patch of sparsely populated southern Israel, killing three, while the Israeli response has been far more deadly. Some 1,300 Palestinians have been killed—compared with 500 Shiites in Lebanon.

The one region where Israel is arguably not more isolated is the Middle East. Israel's push for Arab recognition suffered a setback when Mauritania and Qatar severed relations, but four Arab summits have reached no consensus on how to respond to Gaza. Major states, led by Jordan and Egypt, want to lend no comfort to their Persian rival, Iran, the backer of Hamas. Moreover, Hamas has not emerged as a plucky hero to the Arab world, the way Hizbullah did in 2006. When the fighting quieted last week, Hamas held a "victory" parade in Gaza City, and it fizzled.

Israel has just one key friend. Could Obama, who promised the Muslim world "a new way forward" in his Inaugural Address, loosen the bond? A recent Pew poll shows 55 percent of U.S. Republicans, but only 45 percent of Democrats, approve of Israel's actions in Gaza. Given that Democrats now rule, Israel may need to worry more about the mood on Main Street than on the Arab Street.

With Christopher Dickey in Doha and Sophie Grove in London

Patrick Cockburn: In Israel, detachment from reality is now the norm

All these years on from Sabra and Chatila, has anything changed?

I was watching the superb animated documentary Waltz with Bashir about the Israeli invasion of Lebanon in 1982. It culminates in the massacre of some 1,700 Palestinians in the Sabra and Chatila refugee camps in south Beirut by Christian militiamen introduced there by the Israeli army which observed the butchery from close range.

In the last few minutes the film switches from animation to graphic news footage showing Palestinian women screaming with grief and horror as they discover the bullet-riddled bodies of their families. Then, just behind the women, I saw myself walking with a small group of journalists who had arrived in the camp soon after the killings had stopped.

The film is about how the director, Ari Folman, who knew he was at Sabra and Chatila as an Israeli soldier, tried to discover both why he had repressed all memory of what happened to him and the degree of Israeli complicity in the massacre.

Walking out of the cinema, I realised that I had largely repressed my own memories of that ghastly day. I could not even find a clipping in old scrapbooks of the article I had written about what I had seen for the Financial Times for whom I then worked. Even now my memory is hazy and episodic, though I can clearly recall the sickly sweet smell of bodies beginning to decompose, the flies clustering around the eyes of the dead women and children, and the blood-smeared limbs and heads sticking out of banks of brown earth heaped up by bulldozers in a half-hearted attempt to bury the corpses.

Soon after seeing Waltz with Bashir I saw TV pictures of the broken bodies of the Palestinians killed by Israeli bombs and shells in Gaza during the 22-day bombardment. At first I thought that little had changed since Sabra and Chatila. Once again there were the same tired and offensive excuses that Israel was somehow not to blame. Hamas was using civilians as human shields, and in any case – this argument produced more furtively – two-thirds of people in Gaza had voted for Hamas so they deserved whatever happened to them.

But on returning to Jerusalem 10 years after I was stationed here as The Independent's correspondent between 1995 and 1999 I find that Israel has changed significantly for the worse. There is far less dissent than there used to be and such dissent is more often treated as disloyalty.

Israeli society was always introverted but these days it reminds me more than ever of the Unionists in Northern Ireland in the late 1960s or the Lebanese Christians in the 1970s. Like Israel, both were communities with a highly developed siege mentality which led them always to see themselves as victims even when they were killing other people. There were no regrets or even knowledge of what they inflicted on others and therefore any retaliation by the other side appeared as unprovoked aggression inspired by unreasoning hate.

At Sabra and Chatila the first journalist to find out about the massacre was an Israeli and he desperately tried to get it stopped. This would not happen today because Israeli journalists, along with all foreign journalists, were banned from entering Gaza before the Israeli bombardment started. This has made it far easier for the government to sell the official line about what a great success the operation has been.

Nobody believes propaganda so much as the propagandist so Israel's view of the outside world is increasingly detached from reality. One academic was quoted as saying that Arabs took all their views about was happening in Israel from what Israelis said about themselves. So if Israelis said they had won in Gaza, unlike Lebanon in 2006, Arabs would believe this and Israeli deterrence would thereby be magically restored.

Intolerance of dissent has grown and may soon get a great deal worse. Benjamin Netanyahu, who helped bury the Oslo accords with the Palestinians when he was last prime minister from 1996 to 1999, is likely to win the Israeli election on 10 February. The only issue still in doubt is the extent of the gains of the extreme right.

The views of these were on display this week as Avigdor Lieberman, the chairman of the Ysrael Beitenu party, which, according to the polls will do particularly well in the election, was supporting the disqualification of two Israeli Arab parties from standing in the election. "For the first time we are examining the boundary between loyalty and disloyalty," he threatened their representatives. "We'll deal with you like we dealt with Hamas."

Robert Fisk: So far, Obama's missed the point on Gaza...

It would have helped if Obama had the courage to talk about what everyone in the Middle East was talking about. No, it wasn't the US withdrawal from Iraq. They knew about that. They expected the beginning of the end of Guantanamo and the probable appointment of George Mitchell as a Middle East envoy was the least that was expected. Of course, Obama did refer to "slaughtered innocents", but these were not quite the "slaughtered innocents" the Arabs had in mind.

There was the phone call yesterday to Mahmoud Abbas. Maybe Obama thinks he's the leader of the Palestinians, but as every Arab knows, except perhaps Mr Abbas, he is the leader of a ghost government, a near-corpse only kept alive with the blood transfusion of international support and the "full partnership" Obama has apparently offered him, whatever "full" means. And it was no surprise to anyone that Obama also made the obligatory call to the Israelis.

But for the people of the Middle East, the absence of the word "Gaza" – indeed, the word "Israel" as well – was the dark shadow over Obama's inaugural address. Didn't he care? Was he frightened? Did Obama's young speech-writer not realise that talking about black rights – why a black man's father might not have been served in a restaurant 60 years ago – would concentrate Arab minds on the fate of a people who gained the vote only three years ago but were then punished because they voted for the wrong people? It wasn't a question of the elephant in the china shop. It was the sheer amount of corpses heaped up on the floor of the china shop.

Sure, it's easy to be cynical. Arab rhetoric has something in common with Obama's clichés: "hard work and honesty, courage and fair play ... loyalty and patriotism". But however much distance the new President put between himself and the vicious regime he was replacing, 9/11 still hung like a cloud over New York. We had to remember "the firefighter's courage to storm a stairway filled with smoke". Indeed, for Arabs, the "our nation is at war against a far-reaching network of violence and hatred" was pure Bush; the one reference to "terror", the old Bush and Israeli fear word, was a worrying sign that the new White House still hasn't got the message. Hence we had Obama, apparently talking about Islamist groups such as the Taliban who were "slaughtering innocents" but who "cannot outlast us". As for those in the speech who are corrupt and who "silence dissent", presumably intended to be the Iranian government, most Arabs would associate this habit with President Hosni Mubarak of Egypt (who also, of course, received a phone call from Obama yesterday), King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia and a host of other autocrats and head-choppers who are supposed to be America's friends in the Middle East.

Hanan Ashrawi got it right. The changes in the Middle East – justice for the Palestinians, security for the Palestinians as well as for the Israelis, an end to the illegal building of settlements for Jews and Jews only on Arab land, an end to all violence, not just the Arab variety – had to be "immediate" she said, at once. But if the gentle George Mitchell's appointment was meant to answer this demand, the inaugural speech, a real "B-minus" in the Middle East, did not.

The friendly message to Muslims, "a new way forward, based on mutual interest and mutual respect", simply did not address the pictures of the Gaza bloodbath at which the world has been staring in outrage. Yes, the Arabs and many other Muslim nations, and, of course, most of the world, can rejoice that the awful Bush has gone. So, too, Guantanamo. But will Bush's torturers and Rumsfeld's torturers be punished? Or quietly promoted to a job where they don't have to use water and cloths, and listen to men screaming?

Sure, give the man a chance. Maybe George Mitchell will talk to Hamas – he's just the man to try – but what will the old failures such as Denis Ross have to say, and Rahm Emanuel and, indeed, Robert Gates and Hillary Clinton? More a sermon than an Obama inaugural, even the Palestinians in Damascus spotted the absence of those two words: Palestine and Israel. So hot to touch they were, and on a freezing Washington day, Obama wasn't even wearing gloves.

Fascist Israeli Parties Gain From War

The massacre in Gaza has boosted the election prospects for Israel's two most fascist right-wing parties, especially Likud which looks like it will easily win the Feb. 10 elections. Also popular now after the slaughter is an even more radical party which is pushing for violent laws to repress Israel's Arab population.

Israel’s 22-day war in the Gaza Strip may have saved the Labor Party of Defense Minister Ehud Barak from the indignity of falling to single-digit representation in the Knesset in next month’s elections, but recent polls suggest it has also assured that the next coalition government will have no need of Labor as a partner.

Indeed, the biggest winners in the post-war polls were not the leftist Labor Party but the right wing opposition, who cheered the popular war on and lamented its ending. And while before the Gaza flareup the ruling Kadima Party and the rival Likud Party were virtually neck-and-neck, Likud now seems to be coasting to an easy victory.

But the benefit isn’t all Likud’s. Avigdor Lieberman’s Yisrael Beiteinu really cashed in on their leaders staunch anti-Arab comments at a time when the nation’s Arab minority was being publicly reviled for opposing the war. His repeated calls to require Arabs to take a loyalty oath or lose their citizenship seems to have really connected with the war-time mentality of the population.

Likud is eying the far-right Yisrael Beiteinu as a coalition partner (to the point of ordering activists not to publicly criticize Lieberman). If the polls prove sound, those two and the Shas Party, which forced the new elections by abandoning the Kadima coalition amid rumors of a back-door deal with Likud, will be within a handful of seats of an unprecedentedly hawkish tripartite coalition.

Video: Clear off all the city!

Haitham Sabbah

We've seen a lot of clips that have been showing Israeli war crimes within Gaza over the last 24 days. What we didn't have chance to look at was the reaction of the occupiers of Palestine (a.k.a Zionists-Israelis) and what they were doing on the other side of the borders of Occupied Gaza?

I can't say I'm surprised by what I saw in the following videos because I know what Zionists are made of. I can only say that I was disgusted and sick to my stomach.

What you are going to see is a sample of the overwhelming majority that voted FOR the Jewish state's war crimes and supported it day after day. These warmongers form the majority of Israel too, so no wonder.

After all that they have done, after all the war crimes they have committed, they are still asking "why do they hate us?"

Well, this is why (listen carefully to the bitch in the first video, close to 58 sec):

Jewish war-crimes-dance over innocent Palestinian bodies:

And finally, a holocaust survivor protests Israeli War Crimes in Occupied Gaza:

Zionism is an incurable disease of the mind

By Zaid Nabulsi

I lost my gloves one day in a coffee shop in Geneva, and I tell you, it's difficult to ride without them when it's really cold. So as I was paying for a new pair with a credit card, the salesman, whom I knew was from Israel, tried to start some small talk by asking me what my family name means. I told him that it relates to the city of Nablus where my family is originally from.

Suddenly, the most bewildered look was plastered on his face. "Where is Nablus?" he asked, "I've never heard of it." Then, after realizing that I knew he was bullshitting me, he pretended to remember, "Ah, Shkheim you mean?"With my insistence not to learn these ugly names that the deranged Zionists have dug up from oblivion to erase our identity, that name certainly didn't ring a bell. But now it was my turn. Although I knew where he was from, I asked "And you're… from?" As he smiled while reminding me, I replicated the same look on his face moments ago. "Israel? Where is that?" Then after a brief pause, "Ah, the land of Canaan you mean. Palestine".

You see if you want to get biblical on me, there is no such thing as Israel either, and I made that clear to this smartass. Here we were all of a sudden; my family descended from a place called Shkheim, and this guy a Palestinian. God does work in mysterious ways, but I still thanked Him for His small mercies that at least my name was not Zaid Shkheimy. "Have a nice day", I told my Israeli friend. It was in fact a very cold, but still magnificently sunny day to hit the roads. The gloves warmed up my grip on the bike, but my heart was still frozen. I just cannot stand thieves who steal your gloves, or any other kind of thieves.

It was then that it finally occurred to me. Zionism is a sickness, for it takes much more than just a twisted ideology to make people think like that. It requires a profound leap of immorality of a higher order to instill this mentality in your followers. Zionism is not merely a political movement, but in its essence represents a deeply disturbed view of the world, which is a reflection of a terrible disease of the mind.

Indeed, to deny the existence of a vibrant community such as the Palestinian society in the early twentieth century and describe Palestine as "a land without a people for a people without a land" is a disease of the mind.

To assert property claims over real estate after the lapse of more than 2000 years with the same certainty of title as if one resided there yesterday is a disease of the mind.

To describe the colonial immigration to Palestine of a European people with no proven historical link to the ancient Israelites – and whose great, great recorded ancestors have never set foot there – as some kind of a "return" to that land is indicative of a perverted misunderstanding and misapplication of the verb to "return" and can only be a result of a disease of the mind.

To blame the Palestinians for being unreasonable in rejecting a partition plan in 1947 which gave the Jews, who only owned 7 percent of the land, an astonishing half of Palestine, is a disease of the mind.

To demand of the Arabs at the time to peacefully succumb to such partition, where 86 percent of the land designated for the proposed Jewish state was Palestinian-inhabited and owned land, is a disease of the mind.

To eventually grab 78 percent of Palestine through war and to force the flight of the population through deliberate massacres and then call it a war of independence is a disease of the mind.

To deny the orchestrated massacres and eradications of hundreds of Palestinian villages in 1948 and then denounce the Israeli historians who later exposed this truth as self-hating Jews is a disease of the mind.

To claim that having escaped the horrors of Auschwitz-Birkenau, Treblinka, and Dachau is a justification for the murder, expulsion, and occupation of another guiltless people is a disease of the mind.

To legislate that any resident of Poland, Hungary, New York, Brazil, Australia, Iceland, or even Planet Mars, who happens to be blessed with a Jewish mother (yet cannot point to Palestine on the map) has a superior right to "return" and settle in Palestine to someone who has been expelled from his very own land, confined to a squalid refugee camp, and still holds the keys to his house, is a disease of the mind.

To blame God for the theft and occupation of someone else's land by claiming that it was He who had pledged this land exclusively to the Jews, and to seriously promote the myth of a land promised by the Almighty to His favorite children as an excuse for this crime, is a disease of the mind.

To milk the pockets of the world for the atrocities of the Nazis, while stubbornly refusing a simple admission of guilt, let alone compensation or repatriation, for the catastrophe that befell the Palestinian people is a disease of the mind.

To keep reminding and blackmailing the world of the plight of the Jews under Hitler 70 years ago, while at the same time inflicting on the Palestinians today the same fate of the Jews of the Warsaw Ghetto, is a disease of the mind.

To impose a collective guilt overshadowing Western civilization for the Holocaust and then to criminalize all legitimate historical debate of the nature and extent of that horrific event is a disease of the mind.

To virtually incarcerate the Palestinian people inside degrading cages, destroying their livelihoods, confiscating their lands, stealing their water and uprooting their trees, and then to condemn their legitimate resistance as terrorism is a disease of the mind.

To believe you have the right to chase the Palestinians into an Arab capital city in 1982 and to indiscriminately bombard its civilians for a relentless three months, murdering thousands of innocent people is a disease of the mind.

To encircle the civilian camps of Sabra and Chatila after evacuating the fighters and to unleash on them trained dogs (while providing them with night-illuminating flares for efficiency) and then deny culpability for the carnage is a disease of the mind.

To publicly declare a policy of breaking the bones of Palestinian stone-throwers to prevent them from lifting stones again and to enact this policy is a disease of the mind.

To have the sadistic streak of exacting vengeance on the innocent families of suicide bombers by punishing them with the dynamiting of their home is a disease of the mind.

To describe the offer of giving the Palestinians 80 percent of 22 percent of 100 percent of what is originally their own land as a "generous" offer is a disease of the mind.

To believe that you have the right to continue to humiliate the Palestinians at gun point by making them queue for hours to move between their villages, forcing mothers to give birth at check-points is a disease of the mind.

To flatten the camp of Jenin on its inhabitants and deny any wrongdoing is a delusional condition which is symptomatic of a serious disease of the mind.

To build a huge separation wall under the pretext of security, which disconnects farmers from their farms and children from their schools, while stealing even more territory as the wall freely zigzags and encroaches on Palestinian land is a disease of the mind.

To leave behind, in the last 10 days of a losing war in Lebanon, more than one million cluster bombs which have no purpose except to murder and maim unsuspecting civilians is a product of an evil disease of the mind.

To believe that the entire world is out to get you and to denounce any critic of the racist policies of the State of Israel as an anti-Semite, the latest victim being none other than peace-making Jimmy Carter, is an acute stage of mass paranoia, which is a disease of the mind.

To possess, in the midst of a non-nuclear Arab world, more than 200 nuclear warheads capable of incinerating the whole planet in addition to having the most advanced arsenal of weaponry in the world while continuing to play the role of a victim is a disease of the mind.

Yes, and for that salesman in peaceful Geneva to be so insecure as to refuse to acknowledge the name of the largest West Bank city under his country's brutal military occupation is, sadly, nothing but an infectious disease of the mind.

That's all what it is, ladies and gentlemen: Zionism is an incurable disease of the mind.

Take care, and if you ride, do it safely.

Zaid Nabulsi is a lawyer. He spent many years working for the United Nations in Geneva. He has a passion for (glorious) Harley Davidson bikes.


Finkelstein to face more US teaching restrictions?

Outspoken academic Norman Finkelstein has stepped up his criticism of Israel in spite of being banned by the US freedom of speech system.

Finkelstein's sharp criticism of the Zionist occupation of the native lands of the Palestinians has left him without tenure in the DePaul University in Chicago, Illinois despite his exemplary academic record.

Following the 27 December launch of Israel's Operation Cast Lead on Gaza, universities across America have come under increasing pressure to cancel Finkelstein's fiery lectures on Tel Aviv's war on Gaza.

The outspoken academic nevertheless continues to speak his mind on the latest Israeli military action against the Gaza Strip -- which has left some 1,340 people dead and thousands of others hospitalized.

In a Thursday speech at the University of British Columbia in Canada, the American-Jewish political scientist took his criticism of the Israeli war on Gaza to a new level.

"As Israel targeted schools, mosques, hospitals, ambulances, UN sanctuaries, as it flattened entire neighborhoods, as it slaughtered and incinerated Gaza's defenseless Gaza civilians, Israeli commentators gloated," said Finkelstein.

Many Pals in Gaza Hospitals in Danger of Dying from Wounds

A large number of Palestinians listed in serious condition in Gaza hospitals are in danger of dying from their wounds, a group of 12 Arab-Israeli doctors said Friday.

The doctors were sent by the organization "Doctors for Human Rights" and are scheduled to return to the occupied territories on Sunday.

Dr. Agbariah, the manager of a hospital in the Arab-Israeli city of Umm al-Fahm, said Friday, "Each hospital is full of wounded. There are wounded in serious condition and the treatment they are given is very basic because of the lack of medical supplies."

Dr. Agbariah added that the hospitals are not set up "to receive so many patients at the same time," adding that the high concentration will lead to fatalities.

The doctor added that the situation is worsened by the lack of reliable electricity and the high level of poverty in the strip, with trash and the carcasses of dead animals strewn about in many areas, which pose a contamination risk.

UN Schools Reopen in the Wake of Gaza War

Around 200 UN-run schools in Gaza opened their doors Saturday for the first time since Israel's largest-ever assault on the Gaza Strip ended.

Some 200,000 children attend schools run by the UN refugee agency, which operates 221 schools in the impoverished territory where more than 1,330 people, including 437 children, were killed. Many of the schools had been used as shelters for some of the 100,000 people displaced during the war, and at least three were hit by Israeli fire, prompting a wave of international criticism.

In the deadliest bombing more than 40 people were killed when an Israeli shell struck a crowd of people sheltering in a UN school in Gaza's Jabaliya refugee camp on January 6.

Christopher Gunness, a spokesman for the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), said 53 UN installations had been damaged or destroyed in the conflict, including more than 30 schools. But he said the agency hoped to restore a "sense of normalcy" by reopening the schools, many of which have not been completely repaired.

"UNRWA's commitment to restoring a sense of normalcy for the next generation in Gaza is a test of our humanity and we are determined to rise to the challenge," Gunness said.

UN chief Ban Ki-moon has called for those responsible for bombing UN compounds and buildings to be held accountable and accused Israel of using "excessive force."

Haykal Unveils Plot to "Dissolve" Hamas Resistance

Egyptian prominent journalist Mohamad Hassanein Haykal said that the next stage would witness an attempt to dissolve the Palestinian Resistance movement of Hamas through the "weapon" of the re-construction of the Gaza Strip following the Israeli 23-day aggression.

In a program broadcasted by Al-Jazeera, Haykal said that the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) would play the major role in the next stage in which a status-quo would be imposed on Arabs "who didn't play any role in ending the Israeli aggression."

According to Haykal, the Middle East peace envoy Tony Blair is the "architect" of involving the NATO in the Arab region. He said that the construction loans would be given under NATO patronage, noting that there would be huge quantities of money which would be spent at the aim of bypassing the political side of the Palestinian cause.

Haykal urged Arabs to perceive the dangers that are being schemed against the region, noting that the Arab world was already witnessing very difficult times. He said that the most dangerous thing in the whole issue were the compromises that would be imposed on the region.

Meanwhile, Haykal revealed that the United States was the country which pushed Israel to end its offensive against the Gaza Strip to prevent it from spoiling the inauguration of the new US President Barack Obama. He ruled out any possibility of suing the Zionist entity over the massacres it has committed in the besieged strip before any international tribunal.

The Egyptian journalist noted that hitting Hamas was one of the goals of the Gaza war because it has been armed and it was considered an obstacle that prevented the reaching of a so-called "compromise" in the region. He said that some Arabs were urging Israel to hit the Palestinian group. However, he noted that the killing spree in Gaza was intended to serve as a "lesson" to others, pointing out that Syria was the concerned one at this stage, not Iran.

Hamas: Obama Represents No Change to Bush

The Palestinian resistance movement Hamas said on Thursday that US President Barack Obama does not represent a change from former President George W. Bush and is repeating his same failed policies in the Middle East.

"Obama insists that no change will happen. He is trying to move along the same path that previous US presidents have followed," Hamas' representative in Lebanon, Osama Hamdan, told Al Jazeera television.

"It seems that Obama is trying to repeat the same mistakes that George Bush made without taking into consideration Bush's experience that resulted in the explosion of the region instead of reaching stability and peace in it."

Earlier on Thursday, Obama said an outline for a "durable ceasefire" included Hamas stopping its rocket fire and Israel completing its troop withdrawal from Gaza.
Obama has so far declined to take any position as to the Israeli offensive on Gaza that killed over 1,300 people and injured more than 5,000 others many with banned white phosphorus burns.

"I think this is an unfortunate start for President Obama in the region and the Middle East issue. And it looks like the next four years, if it continues with the same tone, will be a total failure," Hamdan said.

He added that Obama's declaration that Hamas must stop firing rockets into Israel only served to hinder his envoy George Mitchell's mission. "Some were optimistic when Mitchell was nominated as a Middle East envoy but it looks like even before Obama appointed him officially, he tried to put a spoke in the wheel, maybe so that he (Mitchell) doesn't succeed," Hamdan said.

Israeli forces arrest seven children in West Bank

Seven children from Toura al-Gharbeiah village (near the West Bank city of Jenin) were arrested on Tuesday by the Israeli authorities; they are currently detained in Salim detention and interrogation center, in the northern West Bank. Two of the children are only 12 years old; two are 13; another two are aged 15; and the seventh is 17.

A Defense for Children International (DCI)-Palestine lawyer yesterday visited the children. According to information collected by the lawyer, between midnight and 4:00am on Tuesday 20 January, the Israeli intelligence, police and army entered Toura al-Gharbeiah village and arrested the seven children from their respective homes.

The children were then assembled in a public building in the village, and interrogated there. They were alleged to have thrown stones at the Wall and were intimidated into confessing. The eldest, Murad (17), was accused of possessing weapons, but he denied the allegation. Murad told the DCI-Palestine lawyer what happened on Tuesday morning.

Shortly after midnight, Murad was watching television at home when he heard noise outside. He got up to look through the window and saw four jeeps belonging to the Israeli police guards.

Less than a minute later, someone knocked and Murad opened the door. An Israeli police officer, accompanied by two soldiers, asked Murad his name and told him "Do not try to escape, the house is surrounded." He asked him to wake up other family members.

After the rest of the family was up, the soldiers took Murad outside, laid him on the ground, tied his hands behind his back with plastic cords, and blindfolded him. Murad lay on the ground for half an hour while the soldiers searched the house. Then, they walked him to the military jeep. While they were walking, a soldier started beating him on the face and hands. Murad reported that one of his fingers started to swell as a result of the beating.

They shoved him into the jeep, and drove for 20 minutes. Then Murad was taken out of the jeep and brought to a billiards room. He was still in the village. His blindfold was removed and an interrogator told him that they had found weapons in his house. He pressured Murad to confess to owning them; all the while screaming at him and threatening him. The interrogation went on for 40 minutes. Murad did not confess.

When the interrogation was over, Murad was blindfolded again, and left in the room until 9:00am. ... During that time, he heard the voices of other young detainees, including his brother Bashir (15). Some of the children were crying.

At 9:00am Murad was transferred to Salim detention and interrogation center. During the journey, a soldier was shouting at him and insulting him; he felt very scared.

After being interrogated in the billiards room in the village, the children were transferred to Salim detention and interrogation centre, near Jenin. When the DCI-Palestine lawyer met them on Wednesday, 21 January, the children had already confessed, under duress, to throwing stones at the Wall. Murad had still not confessed.

DCI-Palestine and their partners Addameer believe that such young children are particularly vulnerable to abuse in the Israeli military justice system and should be released immediately, all the more so, in light of the trivial nature of the alleged offense. The children's lawyer has requested a hearing today, Thursday 22 January, in order to ask the military judge for the release of the young children.

The children are: Morad Q. (17), Bashir Q. (15), Osaid Q. (12), Subhi A. H. (12), Amer Q. (13), Mohammad A. (13) and Emad A. (15).

At the end of December 2008, there were 342 Palestinian children held in Israeli prisons and detention/interrogation centers, including seven girls, and five administrative detainees. The December 2008 figures reveal the highest reported numbers of child detainees in 2008. In addition, on 17 January, DCI-Palestine issued a statement expressing concern that numbers of children arrested by the Israeli authorities in the West Bank has doubled in the first two weeks of January.

Gaza’s survivors (Video)

GAZA Palestinian Girl Victim of israeli crimes. Her story.

UN Expert: Compelling Evidence of Israeli War Crimes in Gaza

UN human rights expert and retired Princeton law professor Richard Falk said today that there is compelling evidence that Israel violated the laws of war by “conducting a large-scale military operation against an essentially defenseless population.”

“There needs to be an investigation carried out under independent auspices as to whether these grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions should be treated as war crimes,” the professor said, adding that he believes “that there is the prima facie case for reaching that conclusion.”

“This is the first time I know of where a civilian population has been essentially locked into the war zone, not allowed to leave it despite the dense population and the obvious risks that were entailed,” Falk pointed out, “the civilians in Gaza were denied the option of becoming a refugee.”

Professor Falk made international news when, less than two weeks before Israel began the war on the Gaza Strip, he was detained by Israeli officials for over 20 hours at a Tel Aviv airport while trying to enter the country as the UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in the Palestinian Territories. He was eventually expelled from the country, provoking an angry response from the United Nations and human rights groups.

Unsurprisingly, Israeli Ambassador to the United States Aharon Leshno-Yaar made no attempt to answer the charges, choosing rather to attack Professor Falk’s history of criticism for Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians, insisting “Professor Falk’s bias against Israel is well known.”

Israeli gunboat targets Gaza civilians

A Palestinian medical official says an Israeli gunboat off the shores of Gaza City has opened fire on Gaza, wounding at least five people.

Dr. Moaiya Hassanain said Thursday that a shell fired by the gunboat hit a house in a beachside refugee camp. He said the wounded were passersby in the street, AP reported.

Gunboats off Gaza have been firing for several days despite a cease-fire, which ended a three-week Israeli offensive, being in place.

The humanitarian situation in the besieged strip has not changed as the Gaza blockade continues.

Israeli military operations have exacerbated the already dire humanitarian crisis in Gaza by destroying civilian infrastructures during the invasion. Gazans are facing harsh conditions without food, water, fuel and electricity.

The hospitals and other medical facilities suffer from severe shortages of medical supplies and electricity. The crossings into the Gaza Strip still remain closed and the humanitarian aid permitted to enter the besieged strip is below the survival levels.

Nearly 5,000 houses were destroyed and hundreds of people have become homeless in the coastal sliver, which has been under an 18-month Israeli blockade.

Israel announced a unilateral ceasefire on Sunday, to which Hamas responded positively by giving Tel Aviv a one-week ultimatum to withdraw all its forces from the area and end its 18-month blockade of the coastal enclave.

Tuesday 20 January 2009

Israel Recruits Bloggers to Combat 'Anti-Zionist Websites'

The Zionist entity seems to engage into a new kind of war: the electronic war against the "anti-Zionist" websites.

In this context, the Immigrant Absorption Ministry announced on Sunday it was setting up an "army of bloggers," to be made up of Israelis who speak a second language, to represent the Zionist entity in "anti-Zionist blogs" in English, French, Spanish and German.

"During the war, we looked for a way to contribute to the effort," the ministry's director general, Erez Halfon, told Israeli daily Haaretz. "We turned to this enormous reservoir of more than a million people with a second mother tongue." Other languages in which bloggers are sought include Russian and Portuguese.

Halfon said volunteers who send the Absorption Ministry their contact details will be registered according to language, and then passed on to the Foreign Ministry's media department, whose personnel will direct the volunteers to Web sites deemed "problematic."

Meanwhile, hackers managed to take over the Web site of Israeli Radio on Sunday. Clicking on one of the Website's tabs brings up a message condemning the war in the Gaza Strip and calling for Israel's destruction. The message is decorated by the image of a burning combined Israeli and U.S. flag, and pictures of Palestinian children injured during the war.

Israel 'can be tried for war crimes'

Human rights group Amnesty International accuses Israel of war crimes, saying its use of white phosphorus shells in Gaza was indiscriminate.

"Such extensive use of this weapon in Gaza's densely populated residential neighborhoods is inherently indiscriminate," Donatella Rovera, a Middle East researcher with Amnesty International, said in a statement on Monday.

"Its repeated use in this manner, despite evidence of its indiscriminate effects and its toll on civilians, is a war crime," she charged.

The statement was released after British weapons expert Chris Cobb-Smith found widespread evidence of the use of the incendiary material in an on-the-ground study on Sunday.

"We saw streets and alleyways littered with evidence of the use of white phosphorus, including still-burning wedges and the remnants of the shells and canisters fired by the Israeli army," he said in a statement.

"It is highly incendiary, air burst and its spread effect is such that it should never be used on civilian areas," he explained.

While international law permits the use of white phosphorus as an obscurant to conceal troop movement and prevent the enemy from using certain guided weapons, its use remains controversial, as white phosphorous can burn through flesh to the bone or cause liver, kidney, heart, lung or bone damage and even lead to death.

Amnesty is not the first group to accuse Israel of using white phosphorus during its three-week onslaught on Gaza -- Human Rights Watch and the United Nations are also among the international bodies that charged the Israeli army with using such munitions.

Israel's shelling of the UN Relief and Works Agency headquarters in Gaza on Jan 15 left the UN compound among the places worst-affected by the use of the controversial chemical, Amnesty said.

The attack plunged Israel's relations with the world body to a new low with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon demanding an investigation into the shelling.

According to medical experts, white phosphorus -- also known by the military as WP or Willie Pete - is not the only controversial weapon used against Gazans.

After working for 10 days at the Shifa Hospital in the war-torn Palestinian territory, Doctors Mads Gilbert and Erik Fosse -- members of a Norwegian triage medical team in Gaza -- said the Palestinian territory is now being used by Israel "as a test laboratory for new weapons."

The Norwegian doctors said the kinds of injuries they had witnessed proved that Dense Inert Metal Explosives (DIME) was being used in the embattled territory.

Survivors close to the lethal range of the DIME weapon may have their limbs amputated as their soft tissues and bones are shredded to pieces. The victims may also subsequently contract cancer from the micro-shrapnel embedded in their body tissue within just four to six months.

Statistics released by the Palestinian bureau of statistics further prove the humanitarian crisis in the region, as it shows that some 4,100 homes were totally destroyed and 17,000 others damaged in the three-week war.

After 22 days of intense Israeli military operations in Gaza, and the death of nearly 1,300 Palestinians and 13 Israelis, Tel Aviv declared a unilateral ceasefire late Saturday, but added that its forces would remain in place for the time being.

Hamas later on Sunday announced a ceasefire in Gaza and gave Israel a one-week ultimatum to completely withdraw its troops from the Palestinian territory.

Analysts believe the Israeli military operation has imperiled the so-called two-state solution of the Middle East peace process.


Arabs fail to reach consensus on Gaza

Arab countries have failed to reach an agreement over the Gaza Strip following a three-week long Israeli offensive against the region.

At the end of a two-day Arab economic summit which was held in Kuwait City to set out "practical steps to stabilize the ceasefire" in the Gaza Strip, the Arab foreign ministers failed to reach consensus on a final statement on the battered region.

"Unfortunately, we didn't reach a final result because of time limits and because some are entrenched in their positions," Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari told Kuwait Television Tuesday, according to The Associated Press.

"Under these circumstances, it is supposed that all should make concessions for the sake of Arab reconciliation ... Efforts are still being made to hammer out a united position," said Zebari.

Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal al-Meqdad also said: "Realistically speaking, there are differences among Arab brothers."

Arab nations have been at loggerheads over the Israeli offensive which according to Tel Aviv was launched to halt Palestinian rocket attacks into Israel.

Israel launched Operation Cast Lead on December 22 but halted the bloody campaign after failing to reach its goals after 22 days. Israel's military campaign has so far killed at least 1,300 people including women and children.

The conflict injured about 6000 others many of them in critical conditions.

Palestinian rockets kept hitting Israeli cities until the last day of the war.


Obama feels for us Israelis: Netanyahu

Israel's Benjamin Netanyahu says Barack Obama is silent on the issue of Gaza because of his understanding of the "distress" of Israelis.

In his comments on Tuesday, the Israeli opposition leader strengthened the widely held belief in the Middle East that the US president-elect's silence on the Israeli war on Gaza shows his tacit agreement with President George W. Bush's stance toward the issue.

The United States, which blocked a UN Security Council resolution in the opening days of the recent war on Gaza, claims that Israeli military operations have been carried out in self-defense against the homemade missiles launched into Israel by Hamas as part of its "resistance to occupation".

"I took away the impression that Barack Obama understood our distress very well as well as the cruelty of the enemies we face," said Netanyahu, who has been tipped in the polls to become the next prime minister.

The remarks were made after the devastating 23-day Israeli incursion left nearly 1,340 Palestinians and 13 Israelis dead.

Israel embarked on its military campaign at a time that was widely believed to have been determined by "political expediency".

With Israel's general election scheduled for February 10, all the main contenders were seeking an opportunity to prove their "hard-line stance".

Three weeks of operations against Gaza, which have caused acute human suffering, secured Kadima's Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni and Defense Minister Ehud Barak a rise in polls.

Yet the scandal-hit Kadima is still lagging behind Netanyahu, popularly known by his childhood nickname, "Bibi".

Hours ahead of Obama's inauguration, the polls' favorite Likud Party leader pushed forward the Israeli agenda and repeated allegations against Iran's nuclear program.

"He (Obama) also understands the dangers that Iranian nuclear armaments would represent," Netanyahu said.

Israel, considered as the Middle East's sole nuclear power, along with the US and its European allies accuse Iran of having military objectives in pursuing its enrichment program and claim that the amount of UF6 at the country's disposal is "enough for a bomb".

This is while the UN nuclear watchdog conceded in its November report that Iran has managed to enrich uranium-235 to a level "less than 5 percent" -- a rate consistent with the development of a nuclear power plant. Nuclear arms production requires an enrichment level of above 90 percent.

In the opening days of the war on Gaza, former US ambassador to the UN John Bolton said the Israeli offensive would ignite a multi-front war which could lead to a military attack on Iran over its nuclear program.

"So while our focus obviously is on Gaza right now, this could turn out to be a much larger conflict," the hawkish US official told FOXNews, adding, "We're looking at potentially a multi-front war."

Amid widespread speculation that the conflict in the Palestinian territory could spill over to other parts of the Middle East, Bolton added that there is "the possibility of the use of military force possibly by the United States, possibly by Israel," on Iran after the Gaza war.

Netanyahu, who threw his support behind the Gaza offensive, is to decide how to face "a growing threat from Iran" as the likely incoming Israeli prime minister.


The Unilateral People

Gilad Atzmon

They withdraw unilaterally
They ceasefire unilaterally
They invade unilaterally
They win unilaterally
They destroy unilaterally
They massacre unilaterally
They bathe in blood unilaterally
They spread white phosphorus unilaterally
They kill women and children unilaterally
They drop bombs unilaterally
They live on stolen land unilaterally
They support their homicidal leaders unilaterally
They love their ‘Jewish Only State’ unilaterally
Their democracy is unilateral
They love themselves unilaterally
They are the unilateral people.
Living behind walls of concrete, hatred and arrogance
They are still united and lateral failing to love their neighbours

After Sderot, Will President Barak Obama Visit Gaza?

"...Someday America will wake up and discover perhaps a little late that Israel is a clear and present danger to America and Americans and the source of all of America's ills and hate around the world..."


Candidate Barack Obama visited the southern Israeli city of Sderot to express his support to the town’s people. Sderot has been marketed by the powerful Jewish media machine in the US as suffering a great deal from Hamas’ ballistic and nuclear missiles. I wonder if President Obama will make a similar visit and see for himself what America's real missiles, real jets and real bombs and rockets did to Gaza and the people of Gaza. Candidate Obama on his visit to Sderot was reaching low to win A few more Jewish votes. Would President Obama reach as high and reach the hundreds of millions around the world who condemned the war crimes committed in Gaza?

Candidate Obama expressed great support for the residents of Sderot and appreciated that the people could not have peaceful nights and could not enjoy quiet dinners with wine and music. Now that Israel has leveled Gaza, destroying its entire infrastructure, killed more than a thousand and injured several thousands and made homeless hundreds of thousands, using the latest weapons American could muster. Would President Obama visit Gaza to express his support for the hundreds of thousands of the people and visit the graves of all of the children and women deliberately killed by Israel? Witness devastation and total destruction, victims of a criminal partnership between Israel and the US. During his visit to Sderot, candidate Obama was accompanied by Israel's Tzipi Livni, Ehud Barak and Avi Dichter. Perhaps President Obama will be accompanied during his tour of Gaza by the parents of all those who lost their loved ones, by the doctors who treated the tens of thousands, by the UN relief workers who witnessed the cold blooded murder of women and children as they sought shelter.

Candidate Barack Obama went further by recording a special YouTube message to the people and residents of Sderot. Candidate Obama declared during his visit, "I think no country would accept missiles landing on their citizens". Barack continued to say," I came to Sderot with commitments to Israeli security. Israel has the right to defend itself. Peace should not undermine security." I wonder what would President Obama says to the people of Gaza as he surveys the total destruction of Gaza and witnesses the destruction of hospitals, schools, mosques, stadiums, food supplies centers, UN relief depots, the deliberate targeting of children and parents as they sough shelter from one place to another? Would President Obama express the same rights for the people of Gaza, that they too have every right to be free, every right to be safe, every right to be secure and every right to have enough food to have 3 meals a day, to have cooking oil, to have gas and heat, to have water, to have access to their sea and to connect to the outside world. The people of Gaza may not need wine for their dinners; they only need to be alive to have dinner.

I wonder what kind of YouTube message President Barack Obama would send to the people of Gaza as they see the "only democracy" in the Middle East commit one war crime after another, using with generosity the free weapons supplied by the "greatest democracy in the world" such as; F-15s, F-16s, Apache and Cobra helicopters and phosphorous bombs destroying and killing everything in Gaza. I am sure he will see and appreciate the difference between the ballistic missiles of Hamas and the paper missiles of Israel.

Israel, for many years since its creation, is a terrorist state that has been committing war crimes and terrorism, and has used death and destruction as a way of life, part of the cultural and religious value system that does not respect the human life of others. It has a value system and culture that has nothing but contempt for the lives of others, especially the Palestinians who simply refuse to go down and let go of their rights in Palestine. Israel’s history of war crimes and terrorism is long and well documented; Deir Yassin, Qibya, Souk Albaqar school, Sabra and Shatilla, Qana 1 and Qana II, Jenin, Nablus, Hebron and the list goes on and on. If war crimes qualify for Nobel Prizes, Israelis will win 9 out of 10 such prizes.

Israel is unlike any other country in the world, it has no respect and no value for human lives, especially the lives of others. It has no respect for international organizations; in fact it has nothing but contempt for the UN. Bombing and destroying a UN compound at the very moment Pank Ki Moon arrived in Israel. Israel is the only country that never respected any UN resolutions and has no respect for anyone in the world. It is a country and people unlike any thing we have seen in the last few centuries.

Someday America will wake up and discover perhaps a little late that Israel is a clear and present danger to America and Americans and the source of all of America's ills and hate around the world. America and President Obama may discover and hopefully sooner rather than later that America's total and unconditional support for Israel is wrong politics and that the views and the joy, dancing in the streets of New York City by American Jews and unconditional support by our Congress does not express the anger felt across America against Israel and its war crimes in Gaza. Perhaps President Obama and American should redefine its definition of terrorism making sure that Israel's state terrorism is terrorism even if its instruments are not explosive belts but jets, tanks, helicopters, and cluster bombs. That terrorism includes not only Palestinians attacks against restaurants and buses but Jewish terrorism directed against schools, hospitals and UN compounds.

Name and Shame British Friends of Israel

By Redress Information & Analysis,19 January 2009

Redress Information & Analysis names and shames members of Israel’s network of stooges in the British Labour, Conservative and Liberal Democratic parties; it calls on its readers to challenge these stooges and to help it expose apologists for Israeli murder by supplying it with verified information about other Friends of Israel.

In the 23 days of the Israeli war on Gaza that began on 27 December 2008, 1300 Palestinians have been killed by the Zionist war machine, including 417 children and 108 women, and a further 5320 have been injured. In the same period, 13 Israelis were killed. That is a ratio of 100:1, excluding the injured.

In the meantime, Israel’s network of stooges in the British Parliament have been fighting a rear-guard action to justify the slaughter of Palestinians. You will find them justifying Israeli crimes at every opportunity and prevaricating to avoid action against Israel, such as sanctions in the wake of Israel’s targeting of United Nations compounds in Gaza, for example. They are apologists for murder.

Israel’s stooges in Britain are spread far and wide and can be found at every tier of the British establishment. They include Prime Minister Gordon Brown, Foreign Secretary David Miliband, former Prime Minister Tony Blair and many other serving and former holders of political office.

At the core of Israel’s network of stooges are the “Friends of Israel” groups in the three main political parties:

- Labour Friends of Israel
- Conservative Friends of Israel and
- Liberal Democrat Friends of Israel.

Below is a list of officials of the “Friends of Israel” groups in the Labour, Conservative and Liberal Democratic parties. It is by no means exhaustive. Conservative Friends of Israel, for example, say that about 80 per cent of the party’s MPs and MEPs belong to the group.

Labour Friends of Israel

Andrew Gwynne MP

Vice Chairs
Andrew Dismore MP
Louise Ellman MP
Gary Titley MEP

Policy Council
Stephen Byers MP (Chair)
David Blunkett MP
Lord Foster of Bishop Auckland
Lord Foulkes of Cumnock
Adam Ingram MP
Denis MacShane MP
Alun Michael MP
Don Touhig MP

Anne Snelgrove MP

Parliamentary Executive
Fabian Hamilton MP
Sharon Hodgson MP
Joan Humble MP
Eric Joyce MP
Ashok Kumar MP
Stephen Ladyman MP
Andrew Miller MP
Dan Norris MP
Nick Palmer MP
Terry Rooney MP
Dari Taylor MP

Chair (House of Lords)
Baroness Ramsay of Cartvale

Lord Archer of Sandwell
Lord Clarke of Hampstead
Lord Clinton-Davis
Lord Davies of Coity
Lord Glenamara
Lord Haskel
Lord Janner of Braunstone
Lord Macdonald of Tradeston
Lord Mitchell
Lord Turnberg
Professor Lord Winston
Lord Wedderburn of Charlton QC

Conservative Friends of Israel

Stuart Polak

Political Director
Robert Halfon

Projects Director
Stephanie Leven,

Research Manager
Nathalie Tamam,

Julie Tamir,

Membership Secretary
Charlotte Polak,

Parliamentary Group
James Arbuthnot MP

Vice Chairmen
Sir John Butterfill
James Clappison MP

David Amess MP

Alistair Burt MP
Lee Scott MP
Theresa Villiers MP

Chairman of Conservative Friends of Israel Europe
Timothy Kirkhope MEP

Honorary Officers
Baroness Shephard of Northwold

Vice Chairmen
Jeremy Galbraith
Betty Geller
Lord Taylor of Holbeach
Stanley Cohen
Michael Heller

Vice Presidents
Sir Timothy Sainsbury
Lord Lane of Horsell
Sir Michael Latham
Lord Sanderson of Bowden
Lord Steinberg
Lord Thomas of Gwydir

Executive Board
Richard Harrington (Chairman)
Lance Anisfeld
Lorraine da Costa
Jonathan Gough
Andrew Heller (Hon. Treasurer)
Steven Kaye
Edward Lee
Howard Leigh
Stephen Massey
David Meller
Jonathan Metliss
Gary Mond
Stephan Shakespeare
Barry Welck
Hilda Worth

Liberal Democrat Friends of Israel

Sir Alan Beith MP

Cllr Monroe Palmer

Gavin Stollar

Matthew Harris

Alexander Gilbert

We call on our readers to do the following

-->Contact the above-mentioned Friends of Israel and ask them to justify their support for Israel’s murder of Palestinian civilians, its occupation of Palestinian territory, its blockade of Gaza in order to bring down the democratically elected representative of the Palestinians, Hamas, and its continuous colonization of occupied territories with American, European, Russian and other Jewish settlers. You can find out the contact details of MPs by going here or here

-->Be prepared with facts, figures and arguments – read our website to remind yourself; be succinct and try not to be emotional, aggressive or rude.

-->Name and shame the above-mentioned Friends of Israel, and other Friends of Israel not listed here, by exposing them to your local media, your friends, colleagues and other contacts – and urge them to expose these apologists for murder to their friends, colleagues and other contacts, and to ask why these agents of a foreign power hold positions of political influence in Britain.

-->Help us to name and shame other Friends of Israel not listed here by letting us know who they and how you found out that they are Friends of Israel.

How long will people allow Israel and its elaborate network of stooges in the “Friends of Israel” lobby groups to morally blackmail them into silence over Israel’s crimes by abusing the memory of the Holocaust?

As the Irish philosopher and political scientist Edmund Burke said, “All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.”

Do not let evil triumph.

In Memory of Martin Luther King

"...Today, it is the much-sought- after equality, freedom, and morality in policy that are glaringly missing in the US political system, particularly towards the Palestinians. It is a policy driven by the same racism and greed that enslaved Africans and segregated against them, obliterated Native Americans, interned Japanese Americans, nuked Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and conquered so many around the world. For there to be "Hope", and for the incoming president to assume the moral position set forth by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., it is incumbent upon him to rise to the challenge of those who swept him into office - the millions of shoulders injured by colonial bigotry and hate – who especially today continue to challenge that same hate as it destroys the lives of the Palestinians in the most vicious manner..."

Yousef Abudayyeh

Today, as the Palestinian people continue to search for their dead in the Gaza Strip and bury their scorched children, mothers, and fathers, the United States as whole, the very custodian of Zionist bigotry and colonial malice, is recognizing a champion of civil rights, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. This is a man that the US imprisoned, beat, accused of treason, and ridiculed before it celebrated, and only after he was assassinated. He is a preacher of a people whose churches were firebombed and burned to the ground, just like Palestinian mosques and churches; and against whom the US segregated, on whom it set vicious dogs, beat with batons, rifles and fire hoses. This is a people whose leadership and everyday activists in the struggle for equality were shot at, assassinated, and indeed, lynched by mindless mobs supported by public policy. They are a people whose history is relegated to the margins, whose art and cultural expressions robbed by others, whose youth remain subject to the combined brutalities of poverty, wretch racism, and police powers.

In the context of the amplified suffering of the past 23 days and in recognition of the proud resilience of the Palestinian people, sadly yet proudly, the likeness to the Palestinian struggle is enormous. Be it African American or Palestinian, geography is perhaps the only difference.

Today, on Tuesday, January 20, and as displaced Palestinians continue to return to homes bombed by US Apaches and F-16 fighter jets, these same United States will be inaugurating the first African American president. The US will do so as it hangs a faulty façade to hide away the long and brutal legacy of slavery, butchery, and institutional bigotry – perhaps in an attempt to wish it all away, if only for a day, lest it is remembered by its recipients. But make no mistake about it, this is a president who stands squarely and totally on the immeasurable dignified shoulders of all those who braved the viciousness, cruelty, institutional racism and overt bigotry of Jim Crow, Joseph McCarthy, J. Edgar Hoover, George Wallace, and so many more like them, including George W. Bush - just as the Palestinians today brave the cruelty imposed by the institutional racism and system of Apartheid that constitute the very essence of Zionism.

For President Obama to stand on these dignified shoulders, he now has an obligation to do what is right – to take even the smallest steps in that direction, all while he remembers that "yes, he can". This is not a choice in any way. Obama has an obligation to place equality in morality; and to place morality in public policy, both foreign and domestic. And when he finds out that the US system of government and geopolitical interests do not allow him so, he must make the change he championed. To this day, he has been a follower not a leader on these critical issues.

Today, it is the much-sought- after equality, freedom, and morality in policy that are glaringly missing in the US political system, particularly towards the Palestinians. It is a policy driven by the same racism and greed that enslaved Africans and segregated against them, obliterated Native Americans, interned Japanese Americans, nuked Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and conquered so many around the world. For there to be "Hope", and for the incoming president to assume the moral position set forth by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., it is incumbent upon him to rise to the challenge of those who swept him into office - the millions of shoulders injured by colonial bigotry and hate – who especially today continue to challenge that same hate as it destroys the lives of the Palestinians in the most vicious manner.

Today and tomorrow, the Palestinians will be burying their dead with endless tears and anguish, but they too will also be celebrating their journey - for they will continue to rise from the ashes of a firebomb, hurled by Zionists or the KKK – it is all the same - to continue their march forward to liberation. And the remains of the dead will undoubtedly evolve into a monument of steadfast and a memorial of emancipation for generations to come.

The Destruction:

At the conclusion of 22 days of a murderous campaign in the Gaza Strip by the Zionist army paid for by US tax dollars, the Zionist polity announced a "unilateral cease fire." Utilizing a diplomatic cover by the US, Arab regimes, and Western Europe, the defeated Zionists are setting a trap and are spreading a dangerous lie. Having achieved not even one of its goals, the Israeli leadership is opting for a change in tactic.

As of today, at least 1,300 Palestinians have been murdered and more than 5,500 have been injured, with a minimum of 500 in very critical conditions, including severe phosphorous burns. The number of killed Palestinians is expected to continue to rise as more decomposed and dismembered bodies of family members are uncovered from under the destruction, similar to the 100 bodies already uncovered yesterday. Children comprise at least 420 of the murdered and 2,000 of the injured, many are infants and toddlers. Many families were wiped in their entirety, as they were huddled together to escape the indiscriminate bombings.

More than 20,000 buildings have been damaged with over 4,000 fully destroyed. Mosques, churches, schools, hospitals, UN compounds, most streets, sport clubs and stadiums, ports, and the Gaza beach were shelled with high impact conventional explosives and white phosphorous bombs. At least 50 UN facilities sustained damage. The UN alone is currently operating 50 emergency shelters for more than 50,000 displaced people. The actual number of displaced is unknown as many are with families, or have refused to go to shelters lest they are attacked. Gaza City's wastewater treatment facility was shelled, causing the lagoon that holds 2 million liters of sewage to leak to surrounding agricultural and other sensitive areas.

In 22 days, at least 2,500 air strikes were carried out, not including the continuous sea and land artillery shelling from gunboats and tanks, with no less than 1,000 tons of explosives dropped on a tiny area of land. This estimate is certain to be revised upward once an investigation is completed in the sort of firepower used. It is estimated that no less than $1.6 billion would be needed to bring the Gaza Strip to an operating minimum.

The Cease Fire:

Astonishingly enough, the Israeli Zionist leadership did exactly what was expected: attack a civilian population for 3 solid weeks, pull back when it can't go forward due to a solid resistance, and race to declare victory despite defeat. Never mind that not only none of its goals were met, not one, but also the reversal actually occurred.

Victory of what, we ask? The resistance forces are that much stronger politically, and that much more supported nationally and internationally. The ability of the resistance remains fully intact, albeit affected by the assault. The Palestinian people embraced rather than turn against the resistance, with an unbelievable display of solidarity, dignity and order even in the face of destruction. In fact, while the Israelis and Abbas were hoping for looting, robbery, and chaos following the attacks, the exact opposite took place – mutual solidarity and popular support on a scale not seen before. The Arab regimes are increasingly weak and embarrassed and are no longer able to sustain the mandated obedient functionary role. The US is at odds with its Arab allies, particularly Egypt. Monarchs are racing to pump financial support. Resistance parties occupied center stage at a major emergency Arab Summit while Abbas would not dare to attend. Mahmud Abbas has been made much weaker. His henchmen are nearly disappearing. And his ability to speak of the Oslo package is significantly challenged. Nations have begun to cut relations with the Israeli polity, and war crime charges are about to fill courts on an unprecedented scale.

Consider the Economic Summit held in Kuwait yesterday which was supposed to include those with allegiance to the US. The Israeli polity had expected that the participants of that summit would go to political and economic war against the participants of the Qatar emergency Gaza Summit, which featured the resistance parties, Syria, and Iran. Nothing of the sort took place. The two flanks of the Arab political spectrum announced that they are unified, and the Saudis even started speaking of withdrawing the Arab Initiative. Essentially, Zionist brutality is embarrassing Arab despotic regimes to a point that they could no longer go on with business as usual without some movement to absorb the boiling popular anger. At this point, one of the main areas where the Israeli atrocities precipitated a major loss for the Zionist is the end of the normalization process on a popular level. For many years, Arab regimes, namely Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan, and the Palestinian Authority under Abbas, have attempted to implement a long term Zionist normalization process on all levels, including economic, political, cultural, and security. This process is now faced with major challenges making it impossible to implement.

On a military level, the Israeli invading forces could not once display areas and instances where they have captured prisoners, confiscated arms, or imprisoned leadership. There was no surrender by anyone. There were no scenes of defection. There were no scenes of capture of command centers. The only scenes were of massive destruction and murdered children, elderly and families. While the leadership of some of the resistance forces sustained casualties in terms of injury and death, such did not impact the level of resistance to a point that until the day Israel announced its cease fire, the Palestinians were responding at the same level. The resistance movement never accepted any conditions, regardless of who delivered or attempted to market these conditions, be it Egyptian intelligence officers or otherwise. It never accepted to cease responding to the brutality and suffocation of the Israeli Zionist polity.

Even the agreement between the US and Israel on joint control of the Palestinian- Egyptian border was rejected by the Egyptian regime, which found itself fully humiliated and marginalized. This was to a point that the Egyptian regime had to hold its own summit with European powers and the Jordanian monarch to salvage whatever it had left of credibility as the prime obedient functionary of the region. Another sign of the defeated Zionist forces, as these summits and meetings serve to provide Arab regimes and the Israeli political establishment with a means to unilaterally quit the campaign using some forum of political cover, never mind the fact that none of the intended goals were achieved

So we ask: What victory? It is a Zionist defeat if there was ever one, similar to that in Lebanon in 2006. Gone forever are the days when the Israeli army was seen as unbeatable. Gone are the days when those beating the drums of surrender could be heard or even entertained for a moment. Gone are the days when it was thought that savagery of attacks would ever bring the Palestinians and Arabs to their knees. This is a time of dignity and resilience, not of capitulation and surrender. What Zionist victory, we ask? It is a defeat if there was ever one!

Here, the FPA is clear that the so-called cease fire is nothing but a charade to allow future assaults to take place under the guise that it is the Palestinians who are violating the terms of the so-called cease fire. Let it be clear to all that the blockade and siege were not lifted. The starvation and suffocation continue. The imprisonment of 1.5 millions has not changed, and the crossings were not opened. Lest some are misguided by the announcements by Israel - no, the occupation was not ended. A political discourse has not been set in place to allow for a realization of liberation, return, and independence. In that regards, the cease fire amounts to an attempt by the Zionists to regroup for a come-back at a later day. We are under no illusion that this will not be the last massacre, so long as Zionist armament remains aimed at the Palestinian people. The tanks pulled to the boundary of the tiny Gaza Strip of 365 square kilometers, ready to return for another failed attempt, just as they have done in the past in South Lebanon.

Once again, we remind all that the same areas that were bombed by the Zionist army were also bombed and destroyed in the early seventies. Yet, the Palestinians remained strong. In fact, the people at the receiving end of this latest assault are the same ones that were expelled first in 1948 from their homes, then again in 1967, and later attacked in the early seventies and into the eighties and beyond.

This latest cease fire exposed the failure of the US-Israeli-Arab regime axis in destroying the Palestinian resistance, just as it failed in 1948, then in 1970 in Jordan, in 1978 and 1982 in Lebanon, during the eighties and early nineties during the 1987 Intifada, and throughout the years of the most recent Intifada into the Janine and Gaza massacres. Hence, while colonial projects kept creeping onto the Palestinians, the conscience of the people and their ability to withstand massive destruction has been monumental. It continues on!

To this day, 60 years into conquest and the Zionist polity is unable to extract the national belonging of the Palestinian Arab people, especially within 1948 borders. This is true to a point that recently the Zionist polity had to ban Arab parties from running in Israeli parliamentary elections, hence once and for all dropping even the feeble fig leaf the Zionists once had. This occurred as a testament to the sharpness of the dichotomy between the Zionist movement and the Palestinian liberation movement – A dichotomy that has reached an apex and is headed to a new beginning.

Of major concern is the price of the financial support the Saudis and other Gulf countries will attempt to extract from the resistance. As has always been the case, despotic Arab regimes never act in favor of freedom and liberation, only in favor of sustaining their ability to rule. It is critical at this stage not to be fooled by promises and side deals with dictators and functionaries. The Palestinian resistance has the upper political hand and must materialize that into real political power. The Palestinian people cannot barter their freedom for political expediency.

For instance, the need for humanitarian relief should be recognized as an obligation on the part of the Arab and international community. It is not a substitute for the political national demands that could dangerously transform the Palestinian national liberation movement into a humanitarian crisis campaign needing pity and aid. This is very dangerous. Many organizations are already falling in that trap, and are being leveraged for the purpose of marginalizing the recently achieved political victory in favor of a campaign of pity and humanitarian aid. This should be rejected by all of us.

The Palestinian movement is not about a group of dispossessed refugees seeking food and shelter. It is about a movement for liberation by a people robbed of their land and who are determined to emerge victorious against their colonists. The Palestinian people do not need handouts. We reject them and return them to the sender. We demand and expect solidarity and reciprocate it in kind.

What Now?

This is the time to translate political victory to organizational gains. The Palestinian and Arab people must seize this opportunity to reorganize and position the movement on its proper track. For one thing, this is not the time to sweep under the rug the "political garbage" that has helped the Zionists over the past several years. They must be exposed and expelled from the Arab collective. All those who have stood in favor of surrender and normalization, those who have not stopped denigrating Arab resistance, and those who have become enablers for the Zionists, must be exposed in every locality and every area. They are the rot that is destroying what our people build. They exist in every realm. They are regimes and they are organizations. They are writers and they are activists. You know them from their slogans, and from their opportunistic behavior and political positions. Their discourse is a danger to our youth and to our future.

This is also the time for the Palestinian left to examine its ranks. It is time to self-clean. Those who have given cover to the PA and who enjoy the political comfort of their relationship with the likes of Abbas and his henchmen should not be setting policy for the left. Clearly, they are a failure like their sponsors. They have damaged the Palestinian left enough. The egalitarian and revolutionary perspective that is rooted in a democratic pan-Arab alternative should remain as the unifying slogan for the Palestinian left.

This is the time to strengthen our movement by giving it a program of solidarity that involves boycotts, divestment, and sanctions. This is the time for war crime tribunals to be enacted everywhere, and for war criminals to be apprehended and brought to justice. This is a time to expose the sadistic nature of the weaponry used by the Zionist, paid for by US taxpayers. This is a time to end all support to Israel, in every way, to properly position it as the Apartheid regime of today, and to isolate it economically, culturally, and diplomatically. This is a time to once and for all recognize that Zionism is nothing but a colonial ideology rooted in racism and hate.

In essence, we can build on this victory and the steadfast of the Palestinian people, by building on our own small victories in our workplace, towns, and universities.

The Free Palestine Alliance
January 19, 2009

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