Gideon Levy | Haaretz.com | Sun, November 08, 2009 | Israel Time: 13:18 (EST+7)
Twilight Zone / ‘Worse than apartheid’
I thought they would feel right at home in the alleys of Balata refugee camp, the Casbah and the Hawara checkpoint. But they said there is no comparison: for them the Israeli occupation regime is worse than anything they knew under apartheid. This week, 21 human rights activists from South Africa visited Israel. Among them were members of Nelson Mandela’s African National Congress; at least one of them took part in the armed struggle and at least two were jailed. There were two South African Supreme Court judges, a former deputy minister, and members of Parliament, attorneys, writers and journalists. Blacks and whites, about half of them Jews who today are in conflict with attitudes of the conservative Jewish community in their country. Some of them have been here before; for others it was their first visit.
For five days, they paid an unconventional visit to Israel – without Sderot, the IDF and the Foreign Ministry but with Yad Vashem, the Holocaust Memorial and a meeting with Supreme Court President Justice Dorit Beinisch. They spent most of their time in the occupied areas, where hardly any official guests go – places that are also shunned by most Israelis.
On Monday, they visited Nablus, the most imprisoned city in the West Bank. From Hawara to the Casbah, from the Casbah to Balata, from Continue reading
IANS | Fri, Nov 6 | 08:24 PM
Tel Aviv Friday deplored a UN resolution backing the Goldstone report that investigated human rights violations during the brief war between Israeli forces and Islamic militants in the Gaza Strip early this year. The UN resolution suggests if either of the two sides fails to launch a credible investigation, then the matter should be submitted to the Security Council, Xinhua reported. Israel has denied any violation of international humanitarian laws. The UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) had appointed a former South African judge Richard Goldstone to investigate any possible human rights violations during the 22-day war in December and January in the Gaza Strip. After a debate, majority of the 192-member UN General Assembly voted in favour of an unbinding resolution that calls upon both Israel and the Palestinians to conduct ‘independent and credible’ investigations into alleged war crimes.
In response, Israel’s foreign ministry said in a statement ‘Israel rejects the UN resolution which is completely detached from the ground realities it faces.’ The ministry also said it had the right for self-defence and would continue to act to protect its citizens from terrorist attacks. Israel said it launched the offensive in response to eight years of continuous rocket fire from Gaza. At least 1,400 people were killed in the fighting. While defying international pressure for an inquiry based on the Goldstone report, Israel said it has been conducting its own investigation into a number of civilian deaths and other incidents during the Gaza war, including some listed in the report.
WW4 | Tue, 27/10/2009 | 02:19
Amnesty International has accused Israel of denying Palestinians the right to access adequate water by maintaining total control over the shared water resources and pursuing discriminatory policies. These unreasonably restrict the availability of water in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT) and prevent the Palestinians developing an effective water infrastructure there. “Israel allows the Palestinians access to only a fraction of the shared water resources, which lie mostly in the occupied West Bank, while the unlawful Israeli settlements there receive virtually unlimited supplies. In Gaza the Israeli blockade has made an already dire situation worse,” said Donatella Rovera, Amnesty International’s researcher on Israel and the OPT. In a new extensive report [“Troubled Waters: Palestinians denied fair access to water”], Amnesty International revealed the extent to which Israel’s discriminatory water policies and practices are denying Palestinians their right to access to water. Israel uses more than 80% of the water from the Mountain Aquifer, the main source of underground water in Israel and the OPT, while restricting Palestinian access to a mere 20 percent. The Mountain Aquifer is the only source for water for Palestinians in the West Bank, but only one of several for Israel, which also takes for itself all the water available from the Jordan River. Continue reading
Jonathan Cook, Foreign Correspondent | Thenational.ae | October 18. 2009 11:15PM UAE / October 18. 2009 7:15PM GMT
NAZARETH, ISRAEL // Civil rights groups in Israel have expressed outrage at the announcement last week that a special undercover unit of the police has been infiltrating and collecting intelligence on Israel’s Arab minority by disguising its officers as Arabs. It is the first public admission that the Israeli police are using methods against the country’s 1.3 million Arab citizens that were adopted long ago in the occupied territories, where soldiers were regularly sent on missions disguised as Palestinians. According to David Cohen, the national police commissioner, the unit was established two years ago after an assessment that there was “no intelligence infrastructure to deal with the Arab community”. Mr. Cohen said that, in addition, undercover agents had been operating in East Jerusalem for several years to track potential terrorists. Israel’s Arab leaders denounced the move as confirmation that the Arab minority was still regarded by the police as “an enemy” – a criticism made by a state commission of inquiry after police shot dead 13 unarmed Arab demonstrators inside Israel and wounded hundreds more at the start of the second intifada in 2000. In a letter of protest to Israeli officials last week, Adalah, a legal rights group, warned that the unit’s creation violated the constitutional rights of the Arab minority and risked introducing “racial profiling” into Israeli policing.
Although the police claim that only Arab criminals are being targeted, Arab leaders believe the unit is an expansion of police efforts to collect information on political activists, escalating what they call a “climate of fear” being fostered by the government of Benjamin Netanyahu, the prime minister. Awad Abdel Fattah, the general secretary of the National Democratic Assembly, whose members are regularly interrogated by the police even though the party is represented in the national parliament, said there was strong evidence that undercover units had been operating in Arab communities for many years. “The question is, why are the police revealing this information now? I suspect it is designed to intimidate people, making them fear Continue reading
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May 21 2003
BEIT HANOUN, GAZA STRIP – MAY 21: A Palestinian boy prepares to hurl stones at Israeli tanks May 21, 2003 in Beit Hanoun, Gaza Strip. New Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas cancelled a visit to the northern Gaza town after Israeli forces reentered the town they had seized last week. Residents said that Israeli troops, who pulled to the outskirts of the town May 20, 2003, had demolished 15 houses, uprooted thousands of trees and damaged the water and sewage systems. Abbas was to tour the town to assess damages from Israeli forces five-day invasion. (Photo by Abid Katib/Getty Images)
Edward S. Herman | www.gtr5.com
The previous two articles in this series pointed up the extremely racist and abusive character of Israeli policy toward Arabs, and the simultaneous virtually unconditional U.S. support for Israel and enormous pro-Israel (and anti-Arab) bias of the mainstream media and intelligentsia. There is considerable dispute over the reasons for this bias and policy tilt. The two most prominent explanations are Israel’s strategic value to the U.S. and the power of the pro-Israel lobby; others include western guilt and sympathy for the Jewish people as a result of the holocaust, and anti-Arab racism. I will review briefly these alternative explanations, but will devote most attention to the power of the lobby, which I consider of primary importance.
As an explanation of western support for Israel, guilt over the holocaust and sympathy with the victim people is a non-starter. Guilt rarely if ever affects national policy, which is almost always grounded in more earthy considerations. Concern over the holocaust victims never extended so far as to allow significant numbers of Jewish survivors to emigrate to the U.S. after World War II, nor did it lead to extensive prosecutions of the holocaust managers and beneficiaries. Large numbers of these, including major death merchants, were protected and put to use in the Cold War. The question may also be raised, why should there be such guilt related to the holocaust and neither to black slavery and subsequent discrimination against blacks, nor to the destruction of the indigenous Indians? And why shouldn’t there be guilt over western connivance in the expulsion of Palestinians from their homelands and victimization in 27 years of occupation? Guilt, in short, is easily managed, and can be brought into play effectively by those powerful enough to mobilize it for their own purposes.
Another possible source of the bias against the Palestinians is racism. This factor is more important than “guilt,” but I don’t think it deserves heavy weight either. Palestinian racial types are variable and overlap with those of Jews. There is also great variability in Palestinian culture, much of it overlapping with that of Continue reading
Here is a 7 and 1/2 minute (roughly) video which depicts how news, particularly those of Palestine – Israel conflict are thoroughly filtered in favour of Israel to control the way the Americans look at Israel. With such a hate campaign for decades would certainly make the people believe what ever is said for Israel or to simply remain ignorant to what ever they here or see. We can see an Israeli politician saying “We are in conflict with Palestine…. being involved in PR is crucial to win the conflict…” and so on. We can see graphical explanation of how the news of conflict is filtered through different phases to produce hate campaign against those who talk against Israel regime’s horrible killings and attacks on ordinary civilians of Palestine. And we can see more…
Courtesy: Isiria blog on wordpress.