Pulse Media


Jordan Valley, another kind of siege

B'Tselem, 2006

It is now apparent that what Israel was unable to achieve by a separation barrier is being realized through other means. For several months, Israel has instituted a regime of permits and harsh restrictions on the movement of Palestinians. These acts have served as a substitute for the construction of a physical barrier, creating a situation in the Jordan Valley almost identical to that of the "seam zone" between the separation barrier and the Green Line.
ISM, 2010

The communities in the valley, many of whom are Bedouin, are used to the slow and systematic ethic cleansing carried out by the Israeli state in the area. Nonetheless, these new developments are deeply worrying. It is high time for the international community to come and stand in solidarity with the Jordan Valley and to recognise the urgency of this battle.


Elton John on his conscience (or lack thereof)

Elton John in Tel Aviv:

"We do not cherry-pick our consciences"
On his web site:

I have always believed that music inhabits a world set apart from politics, religious differences or prejudice of any kind.

Throughout my career I have made a point of playing concerts in challenging places, such as the USSR and Northern Ireland in the 1970s, Israel in the 1990s and very recently Morocco. Every concert was an enjoyable event for us all and, as I found in Morocco just this last Wednesday, it is always a great experience playing to a new audience in a new country, getting a wonderful warm reception, and hearing the 30,000-strong audience singing along to lyrics that are not in their native tongue.

Music is, and always will be, a universal language, free from boundaries. It can and does inspire unity and builds bridges between people, and I will continue to play concerts anywhere in the world where I can encourage that unity.

Well, if what I read on some blogs is true, Elton John played in Apartheid South Africa. At least that proves he is not a hypocrite about cherry-picking consciences. I'm sure the Palestinian and Black South African fans appreciated. It is very honourable of him to want to separate his music from politics. I can only hope he made sure none of the money payed for his ticket sales went to the State of Israel, thus funding the latter's occupation politics. I might add, that if the music business can be separate from politics then so can any business. Therefore, if boycotting corporate rock is wrong, any boycott is wrong.


Freedom not yet in South Africa


Freedom only for the supporters of the government, only for the members of a party – however numerous they may be – is no freedom at all. - Rosa Luxemburg, Berlin, 1920


Realpolitik: Israel, the Kurds, the Turks, Apartheid SA

Gulf Times

“Turkey was always saying that Israel was backing the PKK to win the sympathy of Islamic countries and tarnish the reputation of the PKK in the minds of the Muslim Kurdish people,” Denis told AFP in the Iraqi Kurdistan regional capital Arbil.

“But today they admitted that they are the ones who are being supported by Israel. The confession shows the bankruptcy of Turkish policy.”



The Israelis have had long standing ties to the Talibani and Marzani clans Kurdistan and there are many Kurdish Jews that emigrated to Israel and there are still a lot of connection. But at some time before the end of the year, and I’m not clear exactly when, certainly I would say a good six, eight months ago, Israel began to work with some trained Kurdish command does, obstensively the idea was the Israelis—some of the Israeli elite commander units, counter-terror or terror units, depending on your point of view, began training—getting the Kurds up to speed.

It wouldn't be surprising if Israel had active ties with the Iranian regime while trying to destabilise it...oh, wait!

Realpolitik is the name of the game. There is no morality attached to relations between States, and Israel is no exception. Witness the collaboration between Apartheid South Africa, an antisemitic regime, and...the State of Israel.


During the second world war the future South African prime minister John Vorster was interned as a Nazi sympathiser. Three decades later he was being feted in Jerusalem. In the second part of his remarkable special report, Chris McGreal investigates the clandestine alliance between Israel and the apartheid regime, cemented with the ultimate gift of friendship - A-bomb technology


Assassinated in Jerusalem?


It's clear it would cost the Israeli State a hell of a lot of money if an investigation was to be held every time its armed forces murder civilians.


Orwellian beauty

'Friends of Israel'

May 31, 2010

The leaders - who include the Nobel Peace Prize laureate David Trimble, Peru's former president Alejandro Toledo, Italian philosopher Marcelo Pear, former United States Ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton and British historian Andrew Roberts - say they seek to counter the attempts to delegitimize the State of Israel and its right to live in peace within safe and defensible borders.

Trimble on Israeli 'investigation' panel

In Israel 'public' is a synonym for 'Jews'

In Israel 'public' is a synonym for 'Jews'

In Israel, 'public' is a synonym for 'Jews'
Ha'aretz, 6 October 1999

On March 5, 1996, Major General Ilan Biran, the IDF commander of the West Bank, issued an order declaring the entire area of the settlements a "closed military area." This action was necessary for security reasons, it was explained. Only the holders of a permit and those classified as Israelis were allowed to enter.The order defined who is an Israeli: "A resident of Israel, someone whose residence is in the area and who is an Israeli citizen or who is eligible to emigrate to Israel under the Law of Return 5710/1950, as it applies in Israel, as well as whoever is not a resident of the area and holds a valid entry permit to Israel." In other words: tourists.

Since the order was issued, which was predictable given the special circumstances (a series of Hamas terrorist attacks in February and March of 1996), the West Bank and its Palestinian residents have experienced extended periods of hermetic closure that were repeatedly gradually eased and then reinstated. But the above-mentioned order is automatically extended. Incidentally, the need to obtain a permit not only delays many Palestinians from feasting their eyes on the green grass in settlements built on their community's lands. It impedes - if not completely blocks - them from getting to their registered lands (which therefore could not be officially appropriated) along the edges of settlements and continuing to work their vines and fig and olive trees.

The ad-hoc bestowing of citizenship on tourists, to enable them to enter settlements, is a marginal matter that may amuse researchers of Israeli bureaucracy. But it happens to anger "B'tselem," the Israeli information center for human rights in the territories.

They are having great difficulty in "selling" the public on their new report. While it does focus on the history of the settlement of Ma'aleh Adumim, it primarily provides an exhaustive lesson on the history of practical annexation, gradual and carefully planned, of large tracts in the West Bank and Gaza Strip to the state of Israel. Annexations have been going on since the early 1970s with the cooperation of "all the authorized bodies in Israel and the territories," the report establishes. "The government, the Knesset and the army all issue commands, with the blessing of the High Court of Justice." That is how personal and territorial enclaves of Israeli civil law were created in the territories.

The report, "The Progression of the Annexation - Human rights violations as a result of the establishment of the settlement of Ma'aleh Adumim and its expansion," details the laws and regulations that paved the way for annexation: For example, extraterritorial personal status was first granted to Israeli citizens in the West Bank in July 1967, under the "emergency regulations." The defense minister determined that Israeli citizens violating laws in the territories would be tried in Israeli civilian courts. In 1969, Israeli courts were authorized to hear all legal matters arising between residents of settlements and Palestinians or among the residents of settlements themselves.

In 1982, the finance minister enacted a regulation granting agricultural settlers the right to compensation for damages caused by drought, in accordance with Israeli law. As part of the extension of emergency regulations, the Knesset enacted additional laws for settlers related to security services, income tax regulations, population registry and National Insurance Institute benefits. At that time, it was determined that for the purpose of this special legislation, anyone eligible to emigrate to Israel under the Law of Return would be considered "a resident of Israel." In other words, every Jew.

In 1988, the Knesset authorized the government to apply the law of development towns and regions to "local authorities and Israeli citizens" in the territories as well. This was the first time the Knesset applied its own law to the settlements as territories, and not just to settlers as individuals. What enabled the settlements to expand under the guise of legality was the declaration of the land as state land.

The declaration, the B'tselem report explains, was made by the overseer of government property in the civil administration, based on a review conducted by the civil department of the state attorney's office. Amazingly, in so doing, Israeli authorities were relying on their interpretation of the Ottoman land law of 1855.

According to B'tselem, this procedure is flawed. It is not anchored in Jordanian law, and it bypasses the land registration process that existed in Jordanian law and which the IDF had already frozen in 1968. The "declared" lands were transformed into "public property." And "public," after all, is a synonym for "Jews."

B'tselem concludes its sad report with criticism of the High Court's justices: "High Court of Justice judges have on more than one occasion made general declarations which straightforwardly express the letter and spirit of international law relevant to the status of occupation. But with regard to practical decisions, the judges have chosen to accept, as is, extensive Israeli legislation whose sole purpose is to enable the takeover of Palestinian lands in order to establish settlements and to distinguish, through discrimination, between settlements and their residents and Palestinians. Even if the court perhaps does not have the power to confront a determined government, the High Court of Justice could have at least pointed out the blatant absence of legality in its actions and deprived them of legal legitimacy.


IDF Propaganda unravelling

Images of attack on Gaza flotilla (+ call from IDF Naval Officers)

Cultures of Resistance


Ten senior Israel Navy reserve officers yesterday released an open letter to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak criticizing the handling of the raid last week of the Mavi Marmara, during which nine Turkish citizens were killed. The letter, all of whose signatories are patrol boat commanders at the rank of lieutenant or lieutenant commander, calls for the establishment of an external inquiry committee into the incident. The letter represents the first public expression of criticism of the way the incident was handled from within the Israel Defense Forces.