israel and palestine

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The UN report will help explain why Israel is suddenly escalating tensions with Syria and Iran.  

Peace, Father Roy

source: www.com…

UN Report: Israel Must Immediately Dismantle Settlements or Face ICC

‘Magnitude of violations relating to Israel’s policies of dispossessions, evictions, demolitions and displacements from land shows the widespread nature of these breaches of human rights’

– Andrea Germanos, staff writer

Israel must immediately stop without preconditions all settlements, “developed through a system of total segregation,” which consistently and on a daily basis violate the rights of Palestinians and are in violation of the Geneva Convention, a UN report published Thursday states.

The scathing findings are from the International Fact-Finding Mission on Israeli Settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory from the UN’s Human Rights Council (HRC), which notes that the illegal settlements, through systemic abuses, violate Palestinians’ right to self-determination, and could lead Israel to face the International Criminal Court.

“The magnitude of violations relating to Israel’s policies of dispossessions, evictions, demolitions and displacements from land shows the widespread nature of these breaches of human rights,” stated Unity Dow of Botswana, who joined Christine Chanet, Judge of the Court of Cassation of France and Asma Jahangir, leading Pakistani human rights lawyer and Trustee of the Board of the UN Voluntary Fund on Contemporary Forms of Slavery in the Mission.

“The motivation behind violence and intimidation against the Palestinians and their properties is to drive the local populations away from their lands, allowing the settlements to expand,” she added.

Jahangir stated that the group is “calling on the government of Israel to ensure full accountability for all violations, put an end to the policy of impunity and to ensure justice for all victims.”

The report documents a “multitude of violations” against Palestinians, including:

  • discriminatory legal practices
  • “arbitrary arrest and detention, including administrative detention and mass arrests and incarceration,” as well as the arrest of children
  • impunity for settlers who engage in violence against Palestinians
  • ongoing dispossession and displacement of Palestinians
  • violent suppression of peaceful protest
  • restricting Palestinian access to water, either through policies that give Israel the “predominance in the allocation of West Bank water resources,” the inability of Palestinians to transfer water due to fragmented territory and restrictions on movement or deliberate destruction of Palestinian water infrastructure by Israel
  • destruction of Palestinian farmland and crops

The report adds that private businesses that are profiting from the settlements must terminate their activities there if they are contributing to rights violations against Palestinians.

Israel’s foreign ministry called the report, with which it did not cooperate, “counterproductive and unfortunate” and referred to the HRC as “one-sided.”

On Tuesday, Israel boycotted an HRC review of the country’s rights situation, marking the first time a country has been absent for its rights review since the HRC began them in 2007.

Israel cut ties with the HRC after the March 2012 announcement the body would embark on the fact-finding mission.

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This situation is very disturbing (especially for me, as I am scheduled to travel to Syria next week).

While Israel has not officially accepted responsibility for the attack on a convoy and/or research facility inside the Syrian border, it has made no attempt to disguise it either. The rationale – that the convoy was transporting weapons to Hezbollah – is unimportant. Israel knows full well the potential ramifications of a military assault inside the borders of another country.

We have to assume that the attempt to stir up the hornets nest is deliberate, and the the attack took place only a day after Tehran announced that it would view any attack on Syrian territory as an attack against Iran itself. This speaks for itself.

The only question left is ‘why is Israel so keen to start another world war?’. Tony Cartalucci offers a compelling explanation.

Father Dave

source: www.info…

Israeli Attack: Desperate Bid to Save Failed Syrian Campaign

By Tony Cartalucci

Israel has conducted airstrikes in Syria based on “suspicions” of chemical weapon transfers, in a flagrant violation of the UN Charter, international law, and in direct violation of Syria’s sovereignty. The Guardian in its report titled, “Israel carries out air strike on Syria,” claims:

“Israeli warplanes have attacked a target close to the Syrian-Lebanese border following several days of heightened warnings from government officials over Syria’s stockpiles of weapons.”

It also stated:

“Israel has publicly warned that it would take military action to prevent the Syrian regime’s chemical weapons falling into the hands of Hezbollah in Lebanon or “global jihadists” fighting inside Syria. Israeli military intelligence is said to be monitoring the area round the clock via satellite for possible convoys carrying weapons.”

In reality, these “global jihaidists” are in fact armed and funded by the US, Saudi Arabia, and Israel since at least as early as 2007. They are also in fact the direct beneficiaries of Israel’s recent aggression. The Israeli “suspicions” of “weapon transfers” of course, remain unconfirmed, because the purpose of the attack was not to prevent the transfer of “chemical weapons” to Hezbollah in Lebanon, but to provoke a wider conflict aimed not at Israel’s defense, but at salvaging the West’s floundering proxy terrorist forces inside Syria attempting to subvert and overthrow the Syrian nation.

The silence from the United Nations is deafening. While Turkey openly harbors foreign terrorists, arming and funding them with Western, Saudi, and Qatari cash as they conduct raids on neighboring Syria, any Syrian attack on Turkish territory would immediately result in the United Nations mobilizing. Conversely, Turkey is allowed, for years, to conduct air strikes and even partial ground invasions of neighboring Iraq to attack Kurdish groups accused of undermining Turkish security. It is clear the same double standard has long applied to Israel.

Israel, along with the US & Saudi Arabia, are Al Qaeda’s chief sponsors.

It must be remembered that as far back as 2007, it was admitted by US, Saudi and Lebanese officials that the US, Israel, and Saudi Arabia were intentionally arming, funding, and organizing these “global jihadists” with direct ties to Al Qaeda for the explicit purpose of overthrowing the governments of Syria and Iran.

Reported by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Seymour Hersh in his New Yorker article, “The Redirection,” it was stated (emphasis added):

“To undermine Iran, which is predominantly Shiite, the Bush Administration has decided, in effect, to reconfigure its priorities in the Middle East. In Lebanon, the Administration has coöperated with Saudi Arabia’s government, which is Sunni, in clandestine operations that are intended to weaken Hezbollah, the Shiite organization that is backed by Iran. The U.S. has also taken part in clandestine operations aimed at Iran and its ally Syria. A by-product of these activities has been the bolstering of Sunni extremist groups that espouse a militant vision of Islam and are hostile to America and sympathetic to Al Qaeda.”

Of Israel it specifically stated:

“The policy shift has brought Saudi Arabia and Israel into a new strategic embrace, largely because both countries see Iran as an existential threat. They have been involved in direct talks, and the Saudis, who believe that greater stability in Israel and Palestine will give Iran less leverage in the region, have become more involved in Arab-Israeli negotiations.”

Additionally, Saudi Arabian officials mentioned the careful balancing act their nation must play in order to conceal its role in supporting US-Israeli ambitions across the region:

“The Saudi said that, in his country’s view, it was taking a political risk by joining the U.S. in challenging Iran: Bandar is already seen in the Arab world as being too close to the Bush Administration. “We have two nightmares,” the former diplomat told me. “For Iran to acquire the bomb and for the United States to attack Iran. I’d rather the Israelis bomb the Iranians, so we can blame them. If America does it, we will be blamed.””

It may interest readers to know that while France invades and occupies large swaths of Mali in Africa, accusing the Qataris of funding and arming Al Qaeda-linked terrorist groups in the region, France, the US, and Israel are working in tandem with the Qataris to fund and arm these very same groups in Syria.

In fact, the US-based think-tank, the Brookings Institution literally has a “Doha Center” based in Qatar while US-Israeli citizen Haim Saban’s Brookings “Saban Center” conducts meetings and has many of its board of directors based likewise in Doha, Qatar. Doha also served as the venue for the creation of the West’s most recent “Syrian Coalition,” headed by an unabashed supporter of Al Qaeda, Moaz al-Khatib.

These are part of the brick and mortar manifestation of the conspiracy documented by Seymour Hersh in 2007.

The Wall Street Journal, also in 2007, reported on the US Bush Administration’s plans of creating a partnership with Syria’s Muslim Brotherhood, noting the group is the ideological inspiration for linked terror organizations including Al Qaeda itself. In the article titled, “”To Check Syria, U.S. Explores Bond With Muslim Brothers,” it states:

“On a humid afternoon in late May, about 100 supporters of Syria’s largest exile opposition group, the National Salvation Front, gathered outside Damascus’s embassy here to protest Syrian President Bashar Assad’s rule. The participants shouted anti-Assad slogans and raised banners proclaiming: “Change the Regime Now.”

The NSF unites liberal democrats, Kurds, Marxists and former Syrian officials in an effort to transform President Assad’s despotic regime. But the Washington protest also connected a pair of more unlikely players — the U.S. government and the Muslim Brotherhood.”

The article would also report:

“U.S. diplomats and politicians have also met with legislators from parties connected to the Muslim Brotherhood in Jordan, Egypt and Iraq in recent months to hear their views on democratic reforms in the Middle East, U.S. officials say. Last month, the State Department’s intelligence unit organized a conference of Middle East experts to examine the merits of engagement with the Brotherhood, particularly in Egypt and Syria.”

It describes the ideological and operational links between the Brotherhood and Al Qaeda:

“Today, the Brotherhood’s relationship to Islamist militancy, and al Qaeda in particular, is the source of much debate. Osama bin Laden and other al Qaeda leaders cite the works of the Brotherhood’s late intellectual, Sayyid Qutb, as an inspiration for their crusade against the West and Arab dictators. Members of Egyptian and Syrian Brotherhood arms have also gone on to take senior roles in Mr. bin Laden’s movement.”

Yet despite all of this, the US, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar, along with Israel and Turkey are openly conspiring with them, and have now for years been arming and funding these very sectarian extremist, terrorist groups across the Arab World, from Libya to Egypt, and now in and around Syria.

Israel’s fears of these terrorists acquiring “chemical weapons” is absurd. They have already acquired them with US, NATO, British, Saudi, Qatari and even Israeli help in Libya in 2011. In fact, these very Libyan terrorists are spearheading the foreign militant groups flooding into Syria through the Turkish-Syrian border.

What Israel’s strike may really mean.

Indeed, Israel’s explanation as to why it struck neighboring Syria is tenuous at best considering its long, documented relationship with actually funding and arming the very “global jihaidists” it fears weapons may fall into the hands of. Its fears of Hezbollah are likewise unfounded – Hezbollah, had it, the Syrians, or the Iranians been interested in placing chemical weapons in Lebanon, would have done so already, and most certainly would do so with means other than conspicuous convoys simply “crossing the border.” Hezbollah has already proven itself capable of defeating Israeli aggression with conventional arms, as demonstrated during the summer of 2006.

In reality, the pressure placed on Syria’s borders by both Israel and its partner, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s Turkey in the north, is part of a documented plan to relieve pressure on the Western, Israeli, Saudi-Qatari armed and funded militants operating inside Syria.

read the rest of this article here: www.info…

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By now we’ve all heard about the film,  “Five Broken Cameras” – the engaging story of Palestinian cameraman, Emad Burnat, who documented 6 years of the Non-violent resistance movement in his village, Bil’in.

The film was screened for Israeli youth recently, and their responses were captured on video:  “Five Broken Cameras” screened to Israeli youth (08:46).  Your faith in humanity will be renewed by these young Jews.  It is recommended that you watch the video full screen, because you’ll need English subtitles.  See my note of thanks to Ann pasted below.

Peace, Roy

If you can’t see the video, click here.

If you’d like to watch an except from the documentary, ‘Five Broken Cameras’, click here.

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I find this report hard to digest and I sincerely hope that it is false or at least exaggerated! It reads like something out of an Orwellian novel! Even so, the UK’s ‘Independent’ is a serious publication and the journalist seems to have done his research.

If the Israeli government has really been involved in a program of forced sterilisation of members of its immigrant community, this is as sickening as it is criminal and highlights a deeply racist agenda on the part of those responsible.

Let’s give this one some time. Perhaps more facts will surface? I find it hard to believe that any government in the 21st century could be sterilising sections of its population on the basis of their ethnicity! God help us!

Father Dave

source: www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/israel-gave-birth-control-to-ethiopian-jews-without-their-consent-8468800.html…

Israel gave birth control to Ethiopian Jews without their consent

by Alistair Dawber

Sunday 27 January 2013

Israel has admitted for the first time that it has been giving Ethiopian Jewish immigrants birth-control injections, often without their knowledge or consent.

The government had previously denied the practice but the Israeli Health Ministry’s director-general has now ordered gynaecologists to stop administering the drugs. According a report in Haaretz, suspicions were first raised by an investigative journalist, Gal Gabbay, who interviewed more than 30 women from Ethiopia in an attempt to discover why birth rates in the community had fallen dramatically.

One of the Ethiopian women who was interviewed is quoted as saying: “They [medical staff] told us they are inoculations. We took it every three months. We said we didn’t want to.” It is alleged that some of the women were forced or coerced to take the drug while in transit camps in Ethiopia.

The drug in question is thought to be Depo-Provera, which is injected every three months and is considered to be a highly effective, long-lasting contraceptive.

Nearly 100,000 Ethiopian Jews have moved to Israel under the Law of Return since the 1980s, but their Jewishness has been questioned by some rabbis. Last year, the Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, who also holds the health portfolio, warned that illegal immigrants from Africa “threaten our existence as a Jewish and democratic state”.

Haaretz published an extract from a letter sent by the Ministry of Health to units administering the drug. Doctors were told “not to renew prescriptions for Depo Provera for women of Ethiopian origin if for any reason there is concern that they might not understand the ramifications of the treatment”.

Sharona Eliahu Chai, a lawyer for the Association of Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI), said: “Findings from investigations into the use of Depo Provera are extremely worrisome, raising concerns of harmful health policies with racist implications in violation of medical ethics. The Ministry of Health’s director-general was right to act quickly and put forth new guidelines.”

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United Nations Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories, Professor Richard Falk, is again under the spotlight for apparent bias against Israel, which is seen as being incompatible with his role in the UN.

This time the issue is the comparison he made between Hamas militants and the French Resistance in World War II. His point seems to have been simply that one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter. This would seem innocuous enough, but comparing the enemies of Israel to those who fought the perpetrators of the Holocaust has evidently aroused some sensitivities!

Falk is also under attack for publishing a cartoon on his blog that has been widely condemned as anti-Semitic. You can see the cartoon here. It depicts a dog wearing a kippah and an American flag, urinating on a statue of Blind Justice and eating human bones and blood. Certainly the cartoon could be depicted as being in bad taste, but it seems to me that the dog is supposed to be the USA and not the state of Israel.

Falk, who is an American Jew, has been accused multiple times of being a self-hating Jew. I don’t know whether anyone has accused him yet of being a self-hating American?

Father Dave

Ricahrd Falk

Richard Falk

source: www.thejc.com…

UN Palestine expert Falk: Hamas like French resistance

The United Nation’s Palestine expert has compared Hamas terrorists to fighters with the French resistance during the Holocaust.

Richard Falk, UN special rapporteur on human rights in the Palestinian territories, made the comments in a piece posted on the Liberal Democrat Friends of Palestine website.

In an article that included repeated condemnations of Israel, Mr Falk asked his audience to “imagine the situation being reversed as it was during the Nazi occupation of France or the Netherlands during World War two”.

“Resistance fighters were uniformly perceived in the liberal West as unconditional heroes, and no critical attention was given as to whether the tactics used unduly imperiled innocent civilian lives,” he said.

“Those who lost their lives in such a resistance were honoured as martyrs. “[Khaled] Meshaal and other Hamas leaders have made similar arguments on several occasions, in effect asking what are Palestinians supposed to do in the exercise of resistance given their circumstances, which have persisted for so long, given the failures of traditional diplomacy and the UN to secure their rights under international law.”

read the rest of this article here: www.thejc.com…