Pulse Media


Bringing down walls


Question: looking at the flimsy nature of the wall, why haven't Palestinians already pulled down slabs, and why don't they continue?

Possible answer: they value their lives.

We are constantly fed the lie that the east-european 'revolutions' of twenty years ago were spontaneous uprisings. The time was right, permission was in effect granted. Most importantly, on the other side of the wall were powerful armies ready to protect the 'revolutionaries'.

Another case springs to mind: what happened when Iraqis stood up to Sadaam Hussein following the first 'Gulf War'? Naively, they had thought Bush Sr. was going to support them in their uprising. Silly little people. They were massacred.

Israel's separation barrier is simply an other obstacle in the lives of the Palestinians who with or without the wall, have been trampled on, humiliated, murdered for decades. And no-one with any power will protect them against their agressor. Quite the contrary: the powerful armies continue to arm the agressor so it can carry on pounding.

Another decade, another wall


How the IAEA views Iran's 'threat'


I am pleased; this is a positive development. I have always been of the view that the Iranian nuclear issue is an issue that can only be resolved through dialogue, through diplomacy. I have been saying for a number of years that we need transparency on the part of Iran, we need cooperation on the part of the international community. I feel that we are at a critical moment. I see that we are shifting gears, from confrontation into transparency and cooperation. I continue, of course, to call on Iran to be as transparent as possible. I indicated that because Iran has a comprehensive programme, has a fuel cycle, sensitive fuel cycle activities, it would help the Agency to have Iran subscribing, again, to our regulations that allow us to be informed of the construction of nuclear facilities as early as possible. It also would be of great help to us to have Iran reapply the Additional Protocol, which would give us the authority for more information, access to more locations. That would enable the Agency to start to provide assurances, not only about declared nuclear activities in Iran, but also about possible nuclear, undeclared activities in Iran. I believe we are on the right track. I believe that we have to continue to work together -- the Agency, Iran and the rest of the international community -- to move in the right direction, to assure the international community about Iran's nuclear programme, to open the dialogue about the broad range of issues that we need to address between Iran and the international community. As you have seen, there was a Six-Parties talk that has taken place in Geneva last week.
The reaction from both sides has been quite positive. President Obama said "This is a constructive beginning." President Ahmadinejad said that he expresses satisfaction with the initial results. So it is a critical moment; it is a moment when all of the parties should put their heads together, should start to build confidence and trust. This is the way we need to go both on the nuclear issue and on the broad range of issues that Iran and the international community need to work out, so that hopefully we reach a point when Iran is fully integrated with the international community.


Is a gay soldier worth more than a gay non-combatant?

Obama has said, that 'patriotic Americans' (gays in the military) should not be punished, especially when two wars are being fought. My question is this : should unpatriotic Americans be punished in a time of a war? Are gays only important when they are a part of the military in a time of war?


Israeli minister spells out the government's occupation plan

Copyright J.M.M.

Arutz Sheva

( Minister Silvan Shalom (Likud) sent a letter Tuesday to Government Secretary Tzvi Hauser and asked that the government session devote time to an “urgent” discussion of the riots in Jerusalem.

"The Palestinian takeover in Jerusalem must be blocked and we must act swiftly to restore Israeli sovereignty in Jerusalem in general and on the Temple Mount in particular,” Shalom wrote. He claimed that the PA and the Islamic Movement are colluding to undermine Jewish sovereignty.


Palestinians should lie down and roll over, says Haaretz journalist


At present, the PA is not doing enough to ease tensions, while the Islamic Movement's northern faction is apparently working in concert with a number of Palestinian figures in an effort to spark an escalation of hostilities on the mount.
What is the PA expected to do? Crush palestinian protest against the occupation?


Nearly 200 Arrested as Police Unleash Tear Gas, Sound Cannons at G-20 Summit in Pittsburgh

Nearly 200 Arrested as Police Unleash Tear Gas, Sound Cannons at G-20 Summit in Pittsburgh

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Headlines of the day

Headlines on DN!

Zelaya has remained in the Brazilian embassy since defiantly returning to Honduras one week ago. Coup leaders have now given Brazil a ten-day deadline to hand over Zelaya or face the embassy’s closure. Brazil has rejected the ultimatum and says Zelaya will stay as long as he needs. The coup regime issued the threat as its soldiers continued to surround the embassy and limit the delivery of supplies. On Friday, the UN Security Council passed a resolution condemning the embassy siege.

UN Ambassador Susan Rice: “They condemned acts of intimidation against the Brazilian embassy and called upon the de facto government of Honduras to cease harassing the Brazilian embassy and to provide all necessary utilities and services, including water, electricity, food and continuity of communications.”


The US is threatening to tighten sanctions on Iran over a newly disclosed uranium enrichment site near the Iranian holy cit of Qom. On Friday, Iran acknowledged the site’s existence but said no nuclear enrichment had taken place. The Iranian government says it hasn’t violated its international commitments because it’s only required to disclose a nuclear site six months before it becomes operational. The Obama administration has warned of “severe” sanctions unless Iran suspends work on the site and allows international inspectors. In his weekly radio address, President Obama said he remains open to dialogue with Iran but warned of punitive action.

President Obama: “This is a serious challenge to the global nonproliferation regime and continues a disturbing pattern of Iranian evasion… My offer of a serious, meaningful dialogue to resolve this issue remains open. But Iran must now cooperate fully with the International Atomic Energy Agency and take action to demonstrate its peaceful intentions.”


Israeli Troops Fire on Palestinian Protests

In Israel and the Occupied Territories, four Palestinians were wounded Sunday near the Al-Aqsa Mosque in occupied East Jerusalem. Israeli police fired rubber bullets and stun grenades at Palestinians who were trying to block a group of militant Israeli settlers from entering the mosque compound. Another seven Palestinians were arrested. The attack comes two days after Israeli troops disrupted a series of protests against the West Bank separation wall. Israeli police fired tear gas at demonstrations near at least three Palestinian villages: Burin, Nil’in and Bil’in. The demonstrators had tried to remove barbed wire placed around the wall when Israeli troops fired the tear gas.

Report: Israel Conditions Palestinian Cellular Network on War Crimes Probe

In other news, the Israeli newspaper Haaretz is reporting Israel has threatened the Palestinian Authority with revoking a vital cell phone network unless the PA drops a request for an International Criminal Court probe of alleged Israeli war crimes. The PA submitted the request after a UN inquiry found Israel had committed war crimes in its attack on the Gaza Strip and recommended a potential ICC investigation. Israel has reportedly warned it could judge the PA’s request for a second cellular provider based on its willingness to withdraw the ICC demand.


Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez: “We can say that we are beginning this mechanism, this mechanism that seems vital, which is the union of South America with Africa. Within this newly born structure, the twenty-first century won’t be a bipolar world, it won’t be unipolar. It will be multipolar. Africa will be an important geographic, economic and social pole. And South America will be, too. We will become real powers.”


Yom Kippour invasion of Haram Al-Sharif

Al Jazeera

Israeli security forces on Sunday fired rubber bullets and stun grenades at Palestinians who attempted to prevent a Zionist rally from entering the al-Haram al-Sharif courtyard within the compound on the Jewish holy day of Yom Kippur.


Military closure

The police entered after Israeli settlers and Zionist groups attempted to force entry to a part of the complex they call Temple Mount.


Confrontations broke out after a group of about 150 Israelis entered the Al-Aqsa compound on Sunday morning, reportedly under the guard of local authorities, who also escorted the group away from the area when worshipers began to protest.


The 'dovish' singer who justifies the murderous regime


But, now, today, I know that deep in your hearts YOU WISH for the demise of this beast called Hamas who has terrorized and murdered you, who has turned Gaza into a trash heap of poverty, disease and misery. Who in the name of "allah” has sacrificed you on the bloody alter of pride and greed.


I am privileged to live in a democracy where women are not objects but presidents, where a singer can say and do as she pleases! I know you do not have this privilege (yet…but you will, inshallah, you will…)


I can only wish for you that Israel will do the job we all know needs to be done, and finally RID YOU of this cancer, this virus, this monster called fanaticism, today, called Hamas. And that these killers will find what little compassion may still exist in their hearts and STOP using you and your children as human shields for their cowardice and crimes.

Are we to believe this woman can be so ignorant of the political situation a few kilometers away from her 'seaside home'? On the other hand, if she is a willing propagandist for the Israeli régime, could she have so little self-pride as to risk such ridicule? Does she really believe one single Gazan will thank her for her compassion? Or could it be, that she knows the world (or indeed Israel) either couldn't care less or couldn't
know less about her sickening disdain for Palestinian lives?
And here's a little jewel in Miss Nini's letter:
I see through your veil of fear my brothers, through your burka!
Did Dubya come out of the shadows to write Miss Nini's "moving letter" to her Palestinian "brothers"?


Re-branding Israel through culture

Medlink (NYT)

"We will send well-known novelists and writers overseas, theater companies, exhibits," said Arye Mekel, the ministry´s deputy director general for cultural affairs. "This way you show Israel´s prettier face, so we are not thought of purely in the context of war."


According to Israel Manufacturers Association, the boycott works.

Jerusaelm Post

"In addition to the problems and difficulties arising from the global economic crisis, 21 percent of local exporters report that they are facing problems in selling Israeli goods because of an anti-Israel boycott, mainly from the UK and Scandinavian countries," said Yair Rotloi, chairman of the association's foreign-trade committee.


Spin the bottle - Mother Jones

Mother Jones

Nowhere in Fiji Water's glossy marketing materials will you find reference to the typhoid outbreaks that plague Fijians because of the island's faulty water supplies; the corporate entities that Fiji Water has—despite the owners' talk of financial transparency—set up in tax havens like the Cayman Islands and Luxembourg; or the fact that its signature bottle is made from Chinese plastic in a diesel-fueled plant and hauled thousands of miles to its ecoconscious consumers. And, of course, you won't find mention of the military junta for which Fiji Water is a major source of global recognition and legitimacy. (Gilmour has described the square bottles as "little ambassadors" for the poverty-stricken nation.)


General outlines of Obama's Peace Plan


1. International presence in the Jordan Valley, Palestinian Plaines area, and other areas in the West Bank.

2. Annexing some parts of East Jerusalem to remain under Israeli control, while Muslim holy site would be under Arab control.

3. All Palestinian factions would be dissolved and transformed into political parties.

4. Large settlement blocs in the West Bank would remain under Israeli control, while negotiations would be conducted within three months of the plan, to discuss the future of smaller settlements.

5. Several areas in the West Bank would be disarmed, and Israeli would maintain aerial control.

6. Intensifying the Palestinian-Israeli security coordination.

7. The Palestinian Authority would not be allowed to have military alliances with regional countries.

8. The United States would guarantee the establishment of a Palestinian State in the summer of 2011.

9. Allowing an agreed upon number of refugees to return, and to be settled in the Plaines area and other areas in the West Bank, particularly in the cities of Ramallah and Nablus. A special fund for supporting the refugees would also be established.

10. Israel starts releasing the Palestinian political detainees immediately after the peace deal is signed. Three years would be allocated for the release of the detainees.

Why Israel is after my son (Fouad Sultani)

Electronic Intifada

The Israeli media rushed to spin the story and it became even juicier with claims that the purpose of these activities is a plot to hurt the chief of staff. Yet, the inflated indictment itself does not go that far. The indictment does not accuse Rawi of being a Hizballah agent or operative but merely being in contact with one. Although the indictment does not show criminal intent (mens rea) on Rawi's part, the Israeli media assumed its existence. Rawi's national and political affiliation seems to be behind this assumption.


EI : The pitfalls of Palestinian national consciousness

Electronic Intifada

A national liberation movement that started with such slogans as "the only way to liberation is through the barrel of the gun," and "liberation from the Jordan river to the Mediterranean," and "the right of return is sacrosanct," has moved into the post-colonial condition without achieving independence. The specter of the Oslo accords was everywhere at the conference, but no one wanted to refer to it. All those ex-fighters-turned-politicians would not have been granted an Israeli permit to enter Israeli-controlled territory had it not been for the Oslo accords.


What we saw in Bethlehem is the embodiment of Frantz Fanon's "pitfalls of national consciousness" -- albeit with a Palestinian gown. The irony, of course, is that Fanon was theorizing about the future post-colonial states after independence. He wrote of neo-colonial subjugation of the native elites. Black cars, fashionable suits, bodyguards, are some of the characteristics of the rising nouveaux riches of (occupied) Palestine. Fanon wrote scornfully that "[t]he national middle class which takes over power at the end of the colonial regime is an underdeveloped middle class. It has practically no economic power, and in any case it is in no way commensurate with the bourgeoisie of the mother country which it hopes to replace" (emphasis added).


The South African Connection

This article was published in Le Monde Diplomatique this month. This is a translation provided by Middle East Online. The original is seemingly only available to whoever is willing to buy the newspaper (me for example!).


As an activist who fought apartheid, and as a communist and a Jew, was sensitive to the Palestinian issue from early on. In February 2004, when he was a minister, he visited Yasser Arafat, surrounded by the Israeli army at his headquarters in the Muqata complex in Ramallah. “Arafat showed me the view from the window saying ‘this is nothing but a Bantustan!’ I replied: ‘No! No Bantustan has been bombed by warplanes, pulverised by tanks… the South African government pumped funds, constructed impressive administrative buildings and even allowed Bantustans airlines so as to make them recognised by the international community’.”


Benjamin Beit-Hallahmi, who teaches at the University of Haifa, explained the paradox: “One can detest Jews and love Israelis, because Israelis somehow are not Jews. Israelis are colonial fighters and settlers, just like Afrikaners. They are tough and resilient. They know how to dominate. Jews are different. They are, among other qualities, gentle, non-physical, often passive, intellectual. So one can go on disliking Jews while admiring the Israelis.”

Cooperation began between two states that seemed to have nothing in common. Moshe Sharett, the Israeli foreign minister, made his first visit to South Africa in 1950. In November 1984, when the UN had decided on sanctions against the apartheid regime, South African foreign minister Roelof Frederik “Pik” Botha visited Israel. Yitzhak Rabin was then Israel’s prime minister. Le Monde wrote of the “close ties between the two countries” and noted that Israel was the only country in the world to have relations with the puppet Bantustans, some of which were even twinned with Israeli West Bank settlements.


Ronnie Kasrils believes that, beyond the obvious differences between the two systems -- Israel for example doesn’t need an indigenous workforce and has granted the vote to its Arab minority -- there are pronounced ideological similarities: “The early Dutch pioneers, the Afrikaners, had used Bible and gun as colonisers elsewhere. Like the biblical Israelites, they claimed to be ‘God’s chosen people’ with a mission to civilise.”



The propaganda offensive of the Israeli lobby in the USA


The TIP Report (PDF)

In the report, Luntz describes the "best settlement argument" as one that draws a parallel between the Arab communities in Israel and the Jewish settlers in the West Bank—and refers to the idea of evacuating Jews as racist. "The idea that anywhere that you have Palestinians there can't be any Jews, that some areas have to be Jew-free, is a racist idea," he suggests saying. "We don't say that we have to cleanse out Arabs from Israel. They are citizens of Israel. They enjoy equal rights. We cannot see why it is that peace requires that any Palestinian area would require a kind of ethnic cleansing to remove all Jews. We don't accept it. Cleansing by either side against either side is unacceptable."
Simple to respond to, I should say. However, I will let PM Salam Fayyad (Fatah) respond: To the very TIPish question by former CIA director James Woolsey :
"There are a million Arabs in Israel, accounting for one-sixth of the Israeli population (...) generally they enjoy the guarantees that Americans look for in the Bill of Rights. Now, if there is to be the rule of law in a Palestinian state, and if Jews want to live in someplace like Hebron, or anyplace else in a Palestinian state, for whatever reasons or historical attachments, why should they not be treated the same way Israeli Arabs are?"
the PM responded:
"I’m not going to disagree with you. And I’m not someone who will say that they would or should be treated differently than Israeli Arabs are treated in Israel. In fact the kind of state that we want to have, that we aspire to have, is one that would definitely espouse high values of tolerance, co-existence, mutual respect and deference to all cultures, religions. No discrimination whatsoever, on any basis whatsoever. Jews to the extent they choose to stay and live in the state of Palestine will enjoy those rights and certainly will not enjoy any less rights than Israeli Arabs enjoy now in the state of Israel."
My own response is, that assuming the Arabs in Israel do in fact enjoy equal rights (which is not exactly obvious), then let the TIP (Aipac?) tell Israel to withdraw all its troops and police, dismantle the wall and let those jews who wish to stay in an independent Palestinian state to do so. At the very least such jews as the Samaritans around Nablus and the orthodox rabbi in Gush Etzion, Menachem Froman will do so.

In fact, the Israeli lobby has just given the Palestinians the best weapon: to consistently and persistently invite the settlers in the occupied territories to stay and become citizens of the Palestinian state, and to do so in the media. It would be good if Fatah and Hamas leaders could do that without being prompted to do so. That would neutralise what appears to be the "best settlement argument" the zionists have.


The TIP website says:

The Israel Project (TIP) is an international non-profit organization devoted to educating the press and the public about Israel while promoting security, freedom and peace. The Israel Project provides journalists, leaders and opinion-makers accurate information about Israel. The Israel Project is not related to any government or government agency.

It is nonetheless interesting to note, that according to reports, Israeli PM himself used the tired old Shoah blackmail argument, telling Frank-Walter Steinmeier, german foreign minister, that the occupied West Bank mustn't be 'judenrein' (Nazi expression meaning jew-less). The German, doing his job and upholding the egocentric german guilt trip, apparently merely nodded. Furthermore, it was reported, that Netanyahu instructed his collaborators to use such blackmail, which is what the TIP report is doing. Coincidence? Maybe.



Interview with Adie Mormech, held hostage in Israeli jail

The Mule

The four other UK nationals are in the cell with me. There's 14 of us in the 7 by 7 meter cell which includes the toilet and shower, so very crowded. It's very hot and there's only a tiny window. We get woken up at 6 in the morning for an inspection and have to stand to attention, and then they repeat that at 9, and we are only allowed out of the cells for a few hours each day. They keep giving us forms to sign but they are in Hebrew so we don't. Although I'm able to cope here, other people are less comfortable than me in the situation. If we're here for a long time – like some of the other people in here have been – then it will be tough.


This is not about us here in the cells, it's about the denial of human rights to the people of Palestine, and in particular the inhumane blockade of Gaza. People must not forget about what is happening to Gaza. At the moment they are even being denied food and medical supplies. After the carnage of the 1500 people killed in January, we won't forget and we'll keep on going and keep fighting for the human rights of the people of Palestine.


Ron Kovic to head for Gaza on 4th of July

Viva Palestina U.S.

Viva Palestina U.K.

Ron Kovic, whose story was immortalized in Oliver Stone’s Born on the Fourth of July, will be the co-leader of the convoy, which will travel from New York City to Egypt before making its way across the Rafah border into Gaza.


Free Gaza boat threatened off coast of Gaza

Free Gaza (Twitter)

Please IMMEDIATELY contact all embassies & consulates and demand people on the Spirit not be attacked or harmed in any way.


Hamas' Political Immaturity (Electronic Intifada)


This historic victory against Israel's aggression required a visionary leadership, one with a clear-cut strategy of liberation that divorces itself completely from the Oslo accords and the deceptive two-prison solution. Instead of building on this victory and on the outpouring of international support in the streets of Istanbul, London, Amman, Caracas, Johannesburg and even Muscat -- to mention but a few cities -- the leadership of the Palestinian resistance movement, including Hamas, rushed to Cairo for what turned out to be endless, futile rounds of national unity dialogue. One is not, of course, against any serious attempt for national unity, but one also takes it for granted that the ABC of leadership, especially elected ones, is to be with the masses. The siege, which so far has led to the death of more than 400 seriously ill persons (from lack of medicine or ability to travel abroad for treatment), should have been exposed as the obstacle that prevents the leaders of the resistance from having national dialogue because they, as leaders, cannot and should not leave their besieged, traumatized people and move freely outside Gaza. This should have become a condition. If any Arab dignitary wanted to have a discussion with the victorious leadership, he or she should have been invited to Gaza. One would have expected the Gaza leadership to act as a victorious one; to wait in Gaza for at least one month after the end of the massacre and make it clear that they would welcome any sign of real support and solidarity while they were staying with their people in Gaza. That, alas, did not happen.


Iranian American expert dashes hopes of regime-changers in Washington, London, Paris and elsewhere in the 'free world'

Democracy Now!

However, domestic Iranian issues have now emerged. That is, there is this generation that is very dissatisfied. They don’t want to topple the regime. This is where the left is going wrong—the right is going wrong. They simply want to secure their civil liberties. And they refuse to have their internal concerns, that ranges from unemployment to civil liberties, to be sacrificed to the regional politics.


Obama and non-violent resistance


It’s difficult to know where to start with this. Perhaps by registering just how insulting it is for the representative of the imperial killing machine – responsible directly and indirectly for millions of deaths in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Lebanon, Somalia – to lecture the dispossessed and massacred Palestinians on their occasional attempts to strike back. We can be sure that the sleeping children Obama is concerned with here are the Israeli children who live on the stolen land of Palestine, not the unsleeping, traumatised children of Gaza, several hundred of whom were burnt and dismembered six months ago. Then it’s worth remarking how the erudition and intelligence shown in Obama’s pre-presidential book 'Dreams from my Father' have been immediately crushed on his assumption of the presidency. How otherwise could his historical vision be so partial and simplistic? There was certainly a key non-violent aspect to the struggle for civil rights in the United States, but pretending that violence played no role in the process makes it necessary to ignore the American Civil War (half a million dead), Nat Turner, Malcolm X, the Black Panthers and rioting Chicago. Violence, or the threat of violence, was important in South Africa and India too, and certainly in Obama’s ancestral Kenya, and was the dominant anti-imperial strategy in Vietnam and Algeria.


Much ado about nothing

Bibi gives Barack middle finger. Barack very angry. Bibi scared. Avi mimes throat cutting to Bibi. Bibi sweats. Bibi gives in to Barack: Bibi accepts a palestinian 'thing'. Barack happy. Avi happy. Bibi relieved. Bibi almost pissed pants.

Maan News

However, he also said that Palestinians must recognize Israel as a Jewish state. He said “even moderate” Palestinians’ refusal to acknowledge Israel as such is the root of the conflict. Palestinian leaders have refused such a pronouncement on the grounds that it would annul the right of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes in what is now Israel.

"When Palestinians are ready to recognize Israel as a Jewish state, we will be ready for a true final settlement," Netanyahu said.

Netanyahu also explicitly opposed the Right of Return for Palestinians, saying, "there must also be a clear understanding that the Palestinian refugee problem will be resolved outside Israel’s borders. For it is clear that any demand for resettling Palestinian refugees within Israel undermines Israel’s continued existence as the state of the Jewish people.


Peru: Battle Lines Drawn over the Amazon

Common Dreams

Clearly, the battle lines were being drawn. Garcia demonstrated he is not about to allow anything to get in the way of "our development" of the oil and mineral resources the Amazon has to offer. Especially by a bunch of confused savages (his words) who are pawns to the international market and to Indian elites and therefore have no real reason to be resisting. At this point, it was obvious he thought nothing of the Indigenous cause, and what they actually stood for. There is too much money to be extracted from oil, from minerals, from logging, and from possible agriculture in the Amazon region, the 2nd largest stretch outside of Brazil. All on land with less than 200,000 Indigenous people. All now supposed to be open for business, as a result of a series of laws passed under the auspices of Free Trade Agreements signed with both Canada and the United States.

His name is Ezra Nawi

Free Ezra

His name is Ezra Nawi. We keep saying his name because we believe that the more people know him and know his name, the harder it will be for the Israeli military to send him quietly to jail. And Ezra Nawi is anything but quiet. He is a Jewish Israeli of Iraqi descent who speaks fluent Arabic. He is a gay man in his fifties and a plumber by trade. He has dedicated his life to helping those who are trampled on. He has stood by Jewish single mothers who pitched tents in front of the Knesset while struggling for a living wage, and by Palestinians threatened with expulsion from their homes. He is loved by those with little power, to whom he dedicates his life, and hated by the Jewish settlers, military and police. Now that you know Ezra, you have a chance to stand up for him, and for everything that he represents. Especially now, as Israel escalates its crackdown on human rights and pro-democracy activists. He needs you. His friends need you. Those he helps every day need you. So please send a letter to the Consulate, to the media, to your family and friends. Take just a moment to write your letter. Do it now. And then share his name with a friend. Do it for Ezra Nawi. Noam Chomsky, Naomi Klein, and Neve Gordon



South Africa and Israel

Nelson Mandela is the perfect example of why hypocrisy awaits the militant-turned-statesman. He fought and went to prison, saying he would willingly die for the cause. This cause, as laid down in the Freedom Charter speaks of equality for all in one land: South Africa. It promises to, in the last paragraph, respect the rights and sovereignty of all nations and to strive to settle all disputes peacefully.
So, where has Madiba been since he regained his freedom regarding the occupation of Palestine? Not only was he silent (at least he didn't make it into the media to say anything on the question, which for a man of his status is surprising) on the recent slaughter in Gaza, but there is little if anything to be found uttered by the man revered by so many as the symbol (if not the leader) of the struggle against apartheid. Several of his fellow resistants, including Jews and at least one Israeli have been courageous enough to speak their mind on the oppression and struggle of the Palestinians. That is, they have stood up to denounce Israel's Apartheid-like regime.

Mandela once said he had forgiven many in South Africa, and was ready to work with Israel, although Israel had supported the Apartheid regime. Yet, he still repeated the same old tired cliches about the 'conflict'.

One has to wonder: did Mandela ever call F W De Klerk a 'man of vision'? Did he ever believe, that non-whites in South Africa should get their freedom in exchange for 'recognition' of Apartheid South Africa and 'peace' with it? And what should we make of his equation of those Jews he fought with and Israel? Those Jews who fought with him and oppose israeli Apartheid surely have reason to disagree. Perhaps we should be more understanding of those Palestinians who cosied up to Hitler during the war. After all, the enemy of my enemy is my friend. Or so some would have us believe.

And why be so surprised at the comparison of Israel with Apartheid South Africa? Of course, there is the collaboration of Israel with Apartheid South Africa. But then, one might say (and one would be right), so did the UK, the US and countless others.
Zionists (secularists?) say the land was promised to the Jews. As did early and Apartheid Afrikaners. The Zionists (of whom the pre-independence leaders also did some Nazi-cosying of their own) claim the Jewish state is well deserved considering the persecution the Jews underwent. And what of the Boers?

Realpolitik determines how the people think. It determines why Mandela is a hero, yet any Palestinian resistance fighter can be demonised and turned into a vulgar terrorist (incidentally Mandela was a 'terrorist' in Apartheid South Africa and the ANC was on the US list of terrorist organisations until well after the fall of Apartheid). Realpolitik determines why, while the 'great democracies' were doing business with Apartheid South Africa, it was politically correct to denounce - even from within the ranks of politics - the racist regime, whereas to denounce the racist regime in Israel, one has to brace oneself for the most heinous accusations of antisemitism or self-hatred (if one is a Jew). Realpolitik determines why boycott worked to bring down Apartheid in South Africa, yet calls to boycott Israel are ridiculed and attacked (see previous sentence) and likely doomed to failure (though, in my eyes, utterly justified).

Here is a link to another commentary distrubingly similar to mine
(I discovered it while writing this text).


Nine Principles of Policing by Consent

Magna Carta Plus


4. To recognise always that the extent to which the co-operation of the public can be secured diminishes proportionately the necessity of the use of physical force and compulsion for achieving police objectives. 7. To maintain at all times a relationship with the public that gives reality to the historic tradition that the police are the public and that the public are the police, the police being only members of the public who are paid to give full time attention to duties which are incumbent on every citizen in the interests of community welfare and existence. 9. To recognise always that the test of police efficiency is the absence of crime and disorder, and not the visible evidence of police action in dealing with them.


Fighting zionist anti-semitism


"It employs Nazi imagery by portraying Israel as a jack-booted, goose-stepping headless apparition," the statement said. "The implication is of an Israeli policy without a head or a heart."

Israel is a state like any other (to a degree!), which has a military just as other states do. What criticism of a state and it's military has to do with Nazism is beyond me. Perhaps Mr Foxman has the answer somewhere inside his pea-sized brain.

The Gaza cartoon alludes to Israel's invasion of the Palestinian territory in December to halt rocket fire from the area and weaken it militant Hamas rulers. More than 1,400 Palestinians, including more than 900 civilians, were killed, according to a Palestinian human rights group.

What is anti-semitic is the use and confusion of the Star of David, jewish symbol by and with the state of Israel, the zionist state. It is at the state of Israel, that defenders of jewish culture and opponents of anti-jewish racism should aim their venom.


News In Brief : Self-censorship at the UN


Reparations, Israel Dropped from UN Racism Text

Negotiators drafting the declaration for next month’s UN Conference Against Racism have acceded to US and European Union demands and dropped references to Israel and reparations for slavery. The Obama administration has vowed to boycott the conference unless the two issues are dropped from conference text.


Viva Palestina convoy arrives in Gaza

Viva Palestina

Blogging from the convoy

Bethlehem – Ma’an

After a nearly 8,000 kilometer drive more than 1 million pounds of aid and dozens of vehicles will be trickling into Gaza this week, following the success of George Galloway’s “Viva Palestina” lifeline movement on Monday.

Women's day demonstration in Gaza

Maan News

The group demanded protection for women during war time and conflict, and requested that fact-finding missions be sent to Gaza to investigate the war crimes committed against the women of Palestine.


Left wing in Gaza calls for unity

Maan News

Arguing that it would be necessary to counter Israeli plans, especially in the case of an extreme-right Israeli government, members of the several leftist parties urged conciliation.


Changing the world - one shekel at a time

Original article in Guardian

An economic settler who knows 'his' land is conquered land, wishes to get out of the West Bank - with compensation. Did he not know it was conquered land when he moved there in 1992?

A man with a vision?

Jerusalem Post

Mofaz's words did nothing to assuage Karnei Shomron resident Benny Raz who has been leading the charge in his community for voluntary evacuation under the belief that his settlement would eventually be slated for destruction.

"It's bullshit," said Raz, who accused Mofaz of playing for votes. Initial assurances by Mofaz that his settlement would be inside the fence had also be proved false, said Raz.

"I will only believe it when the Americans say it," said Raz. He said he would see a future in his settlement only when it is deemed part of Israel within the context of internationally recognized agreement.

"I'm not stupid, until then my time here is suspect," he said.


Mark Steel on the the role of the teddy bear in holy Jihad

Mark Steel's blog

Maybe this is how the police plan to fund themselves from now on. They'll follow the practice of celebrities and stage their events so they can be sold to OK and Hello. Major criminals will find themselves lying on the floor in handcuffs, while a photographer claps his hands and calls out "That's lovely, now can we do the arrest one more time while the Inspector stands just behind kissing his wife, and then have a profile of the murderer's assistant on a sheepskin rug in front of a coal fire."


'Waltz with Bashir', an admission of guilt, or the removal of guilt?

Gideon Levy

The waltz rests on two ideological foundations. One is the "we shot and we cried" syndrome: Oh, how we wept, yet our hands did not spill this blood. Add to this a pinch of Holocaust memories, without which there is no proper Israeli self-preoccupation. And a dash of victimization - another absolutely essential ingredient in public discourse here - and voila! You have the deceptive portrait of Israel 2008, in words and pictures.


We have not yet made a movie about the other blood, which we have spilled and continue to allow to flow, from Jenin to Rafah - certainly not a movie that will get to the Oscars. And not by chance.


What's left is hallucination, a sea of fears, the hero confesses on the way to his therapist, who is quick to calm him and explains that the hero's interest in the massacre at the camps derives from a different massacre: from the camps from which his parents came. Bingo! How could we have missed it? It's not us at all, it's the Nazis, may their name and memory be obliterated. It's because of them that we are the way we are. "You have been cast in the role of the Nazi against your will," a different therapist says reassuringly, as though evoking Golda Meir's remark that we will never forgive the Arabs for making us what we are. What we are? The therapist says that we shone the lights, but "did not perpetrate the massacre." What a relief. Our clean hands are not part of the dirty work, no way.


Avraham Burg, 'the good Israeli' or how to justify Israel's persecution complexe.

Raymond Deane (EI)

As a small but growing number of good Israelis (without quotation marks) know, only when the Palestinians find justice will Hitler truly be defeated.


What Israel wanted?


According to Fawzi Barhum, a spokesperson for Hamas, “We do not differentiate between criminals,” urging the international community to stand by the Palestinians and to curb Israeli assaults. “They all committed crimes against the Palestinians,” he added, insisting that “changing faces does not mean changing policies.”

Exchange of fire between Israel and Lebanon


BEIRUT, Feb. 21 (Xinhua) -- Lebanese Shiite armed group, Hezbollah has denied Saturday its knowledge of Katyoush rockets launched from southern Lebanon into northern Israel, al-Arabia TV reported.


Convoy to Gaza

Unconventional pilgrimage to Bethlehem


On Sunday the group saw all of the standard Bethlehem attractions, including the milk grotto church, Nativity church, old city and markets. Then in the afternoon the group began a jog through some of the lesser-toured areas of the city. Residents were surprised to see a group of Europeans running in shorts in cool spring weather, and many paused to watch the group proceed.


Hamas reiterates offer of long-term truce through Egypt

CAIRO (AFP) — Hamas has accepted an Egyptian-brokered 18-month truce with Israel in the Gaza Strip which Egypt will announce in 48 hours, state news agency MENA quoted a senior Hamas official as saying on Thursday.

Mussa Abu Marzuk, the Islamist movement's deputy leader, said after meeting with Egyptian intelligence chief Omar Suleiman that Hamas had accepted the truce in return for the lifting of the Israeli blockade of Gaza.


Israeli government spokesman Mark Regev told AFP in Jerusalem that he did not wish to comment.


Clinic shelled in northern Sri Lanka: 16 dead


At least 16 people have been killed at a makeshift hospital in Sri Lanka's northern conflict zone after the facility was shelled, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has said.

The 16 victims - all believed to be patients - died in the clinic in Putumattalan on Monday, Red Cross officials said on Tuesday.

al-Quds 2009


Jerusalem – Ma’an – Events for the celebrations of “Al-Quds Capital of Arab Culture,” (QCAC) will be broadcast live on Palestinian and Egyptian Satellite television so they can reach all state-members of the Arab League.


The Israeli Dilemma

"People here think of this every day. It threatens them more than Hamas or Iran," said Uri Dromi, a former prime ministerial spokesman. "If it's one man, one vote, then Israel loses its Jewish character. If not, we become an apartheid state."

Israel's only escape from this dilemma would be to divest itself of four million Arabs by allowing a Palestinian state on the West Bank and Gaza.

That would be assuming Palestinian-Israelis would willingly or forcibly be transfered to the new palestinian state.

BBC ignores palestinian-israeli press


The Arabic press contains widespread scepticism that the general election in Israel will offer any impetus for change in regional relations, irrespective of the result.

Opinion polls suggest that there is little to choose between the incumbent Kadima party, headed by Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni, and the right-wing Likud, led by Binyamin Netanyahu. One commentator in the UAE expressed concern that this would provide the far-right Avigdor Lieberman, whose popularity has soared recently, with a decisive role in the formation of a government.

Commentaries in Jordan, Syria and the UAE feared that the election would see the appointment to power of Israeli "extremists". One Palestinian writer said that the victory of the Israeli right would "push Palestinians to stand by Hamas", while another questioned how the new US administration would handle the situation.

Basim Abu-Samiyyah in Palestinian daily Al-Hayat al-Jadidah

The Israeli right that is crawling to power will reveal the weakness and double standards of the international community. It will also push us Palestinians to stand by Hamas.

Rajab Abu-Surayyah in Palestinian daily Al-Ayyam

The Israeli elections might demonstrate the reality... that Israel is a right-wing state par excellence. This will form a challenge to the new US administration, made up of Democrats who dream of a global policy that starts by solving the thorny Middle East conflicts.

Id Abu-Sikkah in Syria's Al-Ba'th

It is expected that Israel's policy will go from bad to worse, because those who will control it are fiercer than [the previous administration] who snapped at the bodies of children, women and old men in Gaza.

Ali Qasim in Syria's Al-Thawrah

Extremism will be the winner and peace, which Israelis have not yet been able to accept, will remain the loser for quite some time.

Mazin Hammad in Qatar's Al-Watan

Regardless of who will win, the differences between the right, left and centre [of Israel's politics] are not clear for those who closely watch the election from outside. They all pounce on Palestinian blood.

Rashid Hasan in Jordan's Al-Dustur

The victory of extremists, with [Likud Party leader Binyamin] Netanyahu in the lead, would mean that the situation - i.e. the settlement and the so-called peace process - will return to square one... The Israeli state was built on massacres and genocides committed by Zionist gangs... Therefore, it is not strange if extremists win.

Abd-al-Wahab Badrakhan in the UAE's Al-Ittihad

The horrible Avigdor [Lieberman] will have a decisive role as he will be the one who decides and controls whoever will lead the government after elections. The emergence of the Lieberman phenomenon... represents an inclination to extremism in [Israeli] society.

BBC Monitoring selects and translates news from radio, television, press, news agencies and the internet from 150 countries in more than 70 languages. It is based in Caversham, UK, and has several bureaux abroad.

They did it before.

For the benefit of the BBC and any one else who may be interested, here is a site which includes israeli newspapers (including arabic ones). There is also Al Ittihad and no doubt others not mentioned.