Where is the real power centre in Israel?
The latest review of the book appears in The Jewish Quarterly:
Most of IJV’s [Independent Jewish Voices] founding statement consists of generalities in favour of human rights, peace and security for Israelis and Palestinians, and against racism, anti-Semitism and Islamophobia. These are sentiments to which one hopes any mainstream British Jewish leader would subscribe. Similarly, the aspiration for a negotiated settlement between Israel and the Palestinians (without mentioning specifics in terms of timetable, territory, refugees, the status of Jerusalem or anything else) is not in itself especially contentious. What really caused the vitriol was IJV’s challenge to the institutions and attitudes within British Jewry in their declaration that ‘those who claim to speak on behalf of Jews in Britain and other countries consistently put support for the policies of an occupying power [the Israeli government] above the human rights of an occupied people [the Palestinians]’. They also reject accusations of ‘disloyalty’ made against Jews who oppose Israeli government policies. The bitterness that IJV generated was not really surprising; no issue has the potential to generate bad feeling more quickly among British Jews than the politics of Israel-Palestine. IJV’s platform was as much about this community as anything happening between the Mediterranean and the River Jordan.
Gideon Levy writes in Haaretz:
As the war in Gaza raged, Israel Defense Forces reservists apparently thought anything was permissible: It was possible, maybe even necessary, to kill innocents, in the West Bank, too. Under cover of war, they thought, they could also kill a handcuffed Palestinian.
“They started smashing down doors at 2 a.m. last Wednesday before moving through homes and destroying property,” says Jayyus Mayor Mohammad Taher Shamasni.
“Residents were assaulted, money was stolen, computers confiscated, over 60 young men arrested and the village placed under curfew. The Israeli soldiers came into my home and threw the contents of cupboards and closets onto the floor,” Shamasni told IPS.
Jayyus, an agricultural community of 3,500 inhabitants, located in the Qalqiliya district of the northern Occupied West Bank, was invaded by Israeli soldiers using police dogs and backed by military helicopters.
Meanwhile, Israel’s successful nationalist, Avigdor Lieberman, writes in America’s The Jewish Week paper that he resents being called a fascist. He just really wants Arabs in Israel to embrace his country as a Jewish state and even argues for a Palestinian state.
Israeli actions speak for themselves. The above examples are merely the latest in a litany of abuses.
Wikileaks has cracked the encryption to a key document relating to the war in Afghanistan. The document, titled “NATO in Afghanistan: Master Narrative”, details the “story” NATO representatives are to give to, and to avoid giving to, journalists…
The encryption password is progress, which perhaps reflects the Pentagon’s desire to stay on-message, even to itself.
Among the revelations, which we encourage the press to review in detail, is Jordan’s presense as secret member of the US lead occupation force, the ISAF.
A group of former international peace negotiators on Thursday urged the world and Israel to abandon the policy of isolating Hamas and engage with the Islamist militant group.
“The policy of isolating Hamas cannot bring about stability. As former peace negotiators, we believe it is of vital importance to abandon the failed policy of isolation and to involve Hamas in the political process,” the group said in a letter published in the British newspaper The Times.
Christopher Hitchens laments Israel’s political reliance on a Russian “thug”:
A reliable friend and colleague swears that he saw the following incident in the Israeli-occupied territories a couple of years ago. A Palestinian physician, in urgent need of permission to travel, was trying to persuade a soldier at a roadblock to allow him to hurry on to the next town. He first tried the stone-faced guard in Hebrew, in which many Arabs are fluent, but he received no response. He then made an attempt in English, which is something of a local lingua franca, yet he fared no better. After an unpleasant interval of mutual noncommunication, it transpired that the only word the Israeli soldier knew was no, and the only language in which he could speak it was Russian.
The words occupation and dispossession are flung around pretty freely, but I invite you to picture a life under occupation in which your unfriendly neighborhood cop did not even speak the language of the state that he served, let alone any tongue known to you. There is, by the way, a fair likelihood that the soldier was not even Jewish; it’s an open secret in Israel that tens of thousands of Russian immigrants used forged papers as a means of exiting their country of birth, pretending to exercise the “right of return.” So here is yet another insult to heap on those whose great-great-grandparents were born in Palestine yet are treated as if they live there only on sufferance.
White phosphorus bombs used by Israeli forces in the Gaza Strip were produced and supplied by American arms manufacturers, according to an Amnesty International report that called for a comprehensive arms embargo on Israel.
A Palestinian human rights group has filed a lawsuit at the High Court in London over the United Kingdom’s continuation of trade with Israel following that country’s offensive in Gaza.
A session at the Open Forum Institute in New York on February 10 about The Future of Freedom and Control in the Internet Age:
The Arab Association for Human Rights in Israel has released a new report:
In the current report HRA presents several principles and findings that emphasize the scale and scope of the discrimination faced by the Palestinian Arab population in Israel. The following are some examples:
– There is a proven and close correlation between individual and collective health and socioeconomic status. Poverty, limited education, overcrowding, and unemployment all lead to an increase in rates of morbidity and mortality. The Arab population continues to be poorer than the Jewish population, with higher unemployment and lower education levels. Gaps in health remain.