Permalink Incredibly, Israel slaps Palestine with economic sanctions amid collapsing "peace talks"

​Israel has imposed additional economic sanctions against Palestine in response to its unilateral decision to join 15 international conventions last week which Tel Aviv claims to be in breach of conditions of the ongoing "peace talks". “It has been decided to freeze the transfer to the Palestinian Authority of the taxes collected by Israel on its behalf,” an Israeli official told AFP. Reuters too confirmed the reports adding that Tel Aviv will deduct “debt payments” from tax transfers which the Palestinians receive. Israel will also place a limit on Palestinian bank deposits in Israel. Israel monthly collects some $110 million in taxes on goods bound for the Palestinian territory which roughly amounts to around two-thirds of the income received by the Palestinian Authority. Palestinian debts to Israel for services total at least a month's worth of revenue, local Israeli media reports. Palestine was quick to denounce the new sanctions. “These sanctions will not scare us and they're evidence to the world that Israel is a racist occupation state that has resorted to the weapon of collective punishment in addition to other practices including settlements and their expansion and the denial of our most basic rights as a people,” Senior Palestinian official Yasser Abed Rabbo told Reuters.

PressTV. State of Palestine can accede to Geneva Conventions: Bern


Permalink BBC ignores Israel's killing of Palestinian kids

Yousef al-Shawamrah, 14, was shot in the back and hip with live ammunition near his village of Deir al-Asal al-Fawqa, which sits alongside Israel’s separation barrier, on March 19. Shawamrah left home around 6:30 a.m. to forage for wild thistle, used in Palestinian cooking, along with two friends, 12-year-old Zahi and 17-year-old Muntaser. The boys planned to look for thistle in an area of land belonging to the village that now sits on the other side of the separation barrier. As they crossed the barrier soldiers fired three shots without warning, Muntaser told DCI-Palestine in a sworn testimony. Another two bullets were fired, which hit Shawamrah in the hip and back as he tried to return through the barrier. Six soldiers, dressed in black fatigues and black face masks, then emerged from a group of olive trees less than 70 meters away, according to Muntaser.


Permalink Israel is facing a backlash in America

Rami G. Khouri This new tendency to stand up to pro- Israel fanatics in the U.S. reflects expanding global moves by governments, labor unions and others to boycott Israeli government or private institutions colonizing and exploiting Palestinian lands and communities. For the first time on a large scale, it is now more acceptable in mainstream American society to discuss Israeli behavior in public, assess whether Israel is acting justly or criminally and propose measures to force Israeli compliance with the rule of law and ethical international norms of behavior. The simple but historic message I read in this trend is that traditional Zionist intimidation tactics are losing some of their effectiveness – other than against American presidential candidates, who will remain fully compliant with Zionist demands. Pro-Zionist fanatics (both Jews and Christians) are concerned because grass-roots activists are openly challenging them and, more importantly, organizing activities that include boycotts, advocacy for divestments and sanctions and public gestures as simple as planting posters or hanging banners that counter the Zionist extremists.


Permalink UN investigator accuses Israel of ‘ethnic cleansing’

Report says Israel made systematic effort to ‘change the ethnic composition’ of East Jerusalem. A UN human rights investigator today accused Israel of “ethnic cleansing” in pushing Palestinians out of East Jerusalem and cast doubt that the Israeli government could accept a Palestinian state in the current climate. He spoke against a backdrop of deadlocked peace talks and accelerating Israeli settlement expansion in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem which Palestinians say is dimming their hope of establishing a viable state on contiguous territory. Richard Falk, United Nations special rapporteur on human rights in the Palestinian territories, told a news conference that Israeli policies bore “unacceptable characteristics of colonialism, apartheid and ethnic cleansing”. “Every increment of enlarging the settlements or every incident of house demolition is a way of worsening the situation confronting the Palestinian people and reducing what prospects they might have as the outcome of supposed peace negotiations.” Asked about his accusation of ethnic cleansing, Mr Falk said that more than 11,000 Palestinians had lost their right to live in Jerusalem since 1996 due to Israel imposing residency laws favouring Jews and revoking Palestinian residence permits. “The 11,000 is just the tip of the iceberg because many more are faced with possible challenges to their residency rights.” Orange employees help the DGSE create and develop new tools to collect and analyze data. Contrarily to PRISM, it’s not just an agreement between the government and big Internet companies, it’s an implicit “joint venture” that has been going on for around 30 years.

RT.com: 'Colonialism, apartheid and ethnic cleansing': UN rapporteur on Palestine blasts Israel
PressTV: Israeli troops have killed four Palestinians in a nighttime attack in the occupied West Bank
Antiwar.com: Israeli Officials Confirm Progress on 2,269 More Settlement Homes


Permalink Israeli Officials Confirm Progress on 2,269 More Settlement Homes

Certified psychopath, Rabbi Meir Kahane, on the Jewish state

Though the decisions hadn’t been officially announced to the public yet, Israel’s defense ministry has confirmed major steps toward two new rounds of settlement expansions adding up to 2,269 new homes in the occupied territories. The committee signed off on 1,015 homes in one case, meaning they’re effectively a done deal barring unforeseen opposition from Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon, while the other 1,254 have been approved in theory, but are awaiting a period of public comment. It was likely that Israel was holding off the official announcement until the upcoming prisoner release date, when they always announce major settlement expansions to placate MPs who oppose the peace process. The matter was brought to public attention by Peace Now. The settlements will be yet another major blow to the peace process, as Palestinian officials have been reluctant to approve any extension of the process beyond the April 29 deadline, and this will be one more indication that the talks have netted much more settlement growth and very little substance. [Video: Gilad Atzmon]

CounterPunch: America's Role in the Creation of the State of Israel


Permalink Israel cuts water supply to Palestinians near al-Quds

The Israeli regime has reportedly cut off the water supply to some 45,000 Palestinians residing in the areas around East al-Quds (Jerusalem), local sources say. Residents of Shuafat refugee camp said on Wednesday that their water had been cut off for nearly three days, while a number of other Palestinian suburbs near al-Quds had also been without water for 20 days. According to the residents, the Israeli water authority started to gradually reduce the water supplies about two weeks ago until it completely stopped. However, the Israeli water company, Gihon, has denied the water shut-off to the Arab areas. Khaled al-Khalidi, a member of the Shuafat’s popular committee, said the Tel Aviv regime had gone back on a UN-brokered agreement to provide water service to the Palestinian refugees.


Permalink Palestinian Holocaust

Reporter John Lyons shows clear evidence that Israeli settlers in the West Bank regularly attack Palestinian school children, knowing the authorities will not intervene. He also discovers there are two legal systems operating. One for Israeli children and one for young Palestinians. It's an impossible situation that may provide temporary security for Israel, but in the long term may well breed a new generation of Palestinians prepared to do anything to gain retribution.


Permalink Israeli forces injure 13 Palestinians in Gaza Strip - Video

At least 13 Palestinians have been injured by Israeli forces in the northern Gaza Strip one day after a 26-year-old man was killed by Israeli gunfire. The incident occurred on Friday when Israeli soldiers opened fire on a group of Palestinian youths in the northern town of Jabalia, a few kilometers north of Gaza City. The latest in the string of Israeli shootings against Gaza residents came as Palestinians laid to rest Ibrahim Suleiman Mansur, 26, who was killed by Israeli forces on Thursday. Ibrahim and another Palestinian man were collecting gravel and scrap metal when they came under attack. He was shot in the head and died on impact. His companion was injured in the leg.


Permalink Israel bars 70 Gaza patients over ‘Palestine’ logo

The Israeli authorities have blocked 70 patients from Gaza from entering Israel to receive medical treatment because their transfer documents were marked “State of Palestine,” officials said Wednesday. Until recently, official documentation had used the term “Palestinian territories.” But the logo was changed in mid-December, a year after Palestinians won recognition as a U.N. observer state, despite fierce Israeli opposition. “The Israelis have prevented 70 sick people who need to go to Israeli hospitals from crossing Erez because it said ‘State of Palestine’ on their transfer request,” said a senior Palestinian official at the Gaza district coordination office.

Electronic Resistance/Fars News: Gaza Patients Denied Access into Israel for Using “State of Palestine” Term


Permalink UN slams Israel on West Bank home demolitions

تصعيد هدم المنازل في القدس ومطالبات مقدسية بالانسحاب من المفاوضات

Israel destroyed 30 Palestinian properties in occupied territory, displacing families for second time in two weeks. || The United Nations has condemned Israel's demolition of 30 Palestinian properties in the occupied West Bank, saying it displaced families for the second time in less than two weeks. "I am concerned about the destruction of Palestinian structures in the Jordan Valley yesterday," UN Humanitarian Coordinator James Rawley said in a statement on Wednesday.

"The demolitions resulted in the displacement of 41 people, including 24 children, and affected another 20. Both refugee and non-refugee families were affected." the statement added. "Some of the families were displaced for the second time this month and a number of donor-funded structures were among those demolished."

Israel's civilian administration of the occupied West Bank had no immediate comment on the demolitions. A group of 36 NGOs last week urged Israel to stop demolishing Palestinian homes, hours ahead of a visit by US Secretary of State John Kerry aimed at revitalising Middle East peace talks. "Demolitions often occur to facilitate the expansion of illegal Israeli settlements, with 60 percent of demolitions occurring in Palestinian communities close to settlement zones," rights groups and charities including Oxfam, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch said in a joint statement. "Since the resumption of the peace process in July, Israel has destroyed 207 Palestinian homes and property in the occupied West Bank, displacing 311 Palestinians, over half of whom are children," they said.

Reuters: Israeli demolition of Palestinian homes at five-year high
WattanTV: بالفيديو... تصعيد هدم المنازل في القدس ومطالبات مقدسية بالانسحاب من المفاوضات


Permalink The killing of Odeh Hamad

Annie Robbins Odeh is dying, they didn’t let [the ambulance] enter”. Those are the crushing words of Radaad Hamad as he recalls the day six weeks ago that Israeli soldiers sat in jeeps meters away and did nothing as his brother lay dying.

Odeh Hamad was killed on his 27th birthday, shot in the head with a live bullet by the Israeli military December 20, 2013. At the time he was with Radaad, and the two brothers were collecting scrap metal at the Beit Hanoun garbage dump in Gaza to support their family. Odeh was 27, and Radad is 23. Both were known among the locals as making their living off collecting scrap. After Amira Hass wrote about the killing Israel’s military claimed that it had fired warning shots at the men. “The troops on site repeatedly tried to distance them….”

B’tselem recently issued a report about the killing of Odeh Hamad that tells a different story: B’Tselem’s inquiries indicate that ‘Odeh Hamad did, indeed, cut some of the barbed wire close to the military perimeter fence, apparently in order to sell the metal. However, B’Tselem’s inquiries have found that, contrary to the Military Spokesperson’s claim, a ‘suspect arrest procedure’ was not carried out. The fact that Hamad was hit in the head rather than in his legs indicates that the shooting did not follow this procedure, which prohibits shooting at the head at any stage. Moreover, according to Radad Hamad’s testimony, no attempt was made prior to the shooting to warn the brothers or to get them to move away from the fence. ‘Odeh Hamad was shot in the head despite posing no danger to anyone. While he was lying wounded, close to the soldiers on the other side of the fence, Red Crescent paramedics wasted precious time trying to find him. The soldiers offered Hamad no medical assistance, nor did they help the paramedics locate him.

Jonathan Cook: Israel Continues Its Theft of Palestinian Natural Resources


Permalink Israeli razing of Palestinian homes at peak

Aid groups say Israeli demolition of Palestinian homes is at 5-year high. Aid agencies working in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem have expressed alarm at a spike in Israeli demolitions of Palestinian property, which coincides with renewed US-backed peace negotiations. The number of demolitions increased by almost half, the displacement of Palestinians by nearly three-quarters, between July 2013, when the talks began, and the end of the year, compared to the same period in 2012, a statement released by 25 aid organisations on Friday said. Of the 663 Palestinian structures torn down last year, the highest number in five years, 122 were built with international donor aid, the aid groups said. The International Red Cross announced this week it would stop delivering tents to Palestinians made homeless by demolitions in the Jordan border region of the occupied West Bank, citing Israeli obstruction and confiscation of aid.

Permalink Denmark leading the way in dealing with Israel

The speaker for the Danish parliament Mogens Lykketoft is set to visit the West Bank and Gaza next week, Israeli media reported on Thursday. The website for the Israeli channel 10 reported that Lykketoft will not meet any Israeli officials during the visit, which caused outrage in Israel. Israeli Knesset leader, Yuli Edelstein, criticized the Danish official for visiting Gaza and Ramallah and not meeting Israeli officials, Channel 10 reported.

PressTV: Denmark parliament speaker to visit Gaza, West Bank - Video


Permalink Kerry Warns Israel, Boycott Around The Corner

Gilad Atzmon: Ynet reported today: "While still expressing much optimism regarding imminent deal, US secretary of state warns Israel runs great risks, only has momentary security that is bound to change if peace talks with Palestinians flounder. However, Israeli Economy Minister and Habayit Hayehudi leader Naftali Bennett criticized Secretary of State John Kerry on Saturday. "Friends, let us be clear to all of the advice givers: Never has a nation abandoned their land because of economic threats. We are no different," Bennett said in a statement. "Only security will bring economic stability, not a terrorist state next to Ben-Gurion Airport." He added: "We expect our friends around the world to stand beside us, against anti-Semitic boycott efforts targeting Israel, and not for them to be their amplifier. We have always known how to stay strong and today we will know how to remain strong." Will America impose sanctions on Israel, I hope it does, but I don't hold my breath.


Permalink Scarlett Johansson Doubles Down on Apartheid Resigns from Humanitarian Group

Actress Confirms Commitment to Apartheid and Ethnic Cleansing by Resigning as Ambassador for Goodwill and Peace in Favor of Company that Illegally Confiscates Land of Indigenous Peoples while posing as Ec0-Friendly Company. || Yesterday, Scarlett Johansson announced that she is ending her relationship with a humanitarian group after being criticized over her support for an Soda Stream, an Israeli company that operates illegally in the West Bank on confiscated lands of the indigenous populations. A statement released by Johansson’s spokesman Wednesday said the 29-year-old actress has “a fundamental difference of opinion” with Oxfam International because the humanitarian group opposes all trade from Israeli settlements, saying they are illegal and deny Palestinian rights. Earlier this month, “The Avengers” and “Her” actress signed on as the first global brand ambassador of SodaStream International Ltd., and she’s set to appear in an ad for the at-home soda maker during the Super Bowl on Feb. 2. SodaStream has come under fire from pro-Indigenous peoples activists for maintaining a large factory in an Israeli settlement in the West Bank, a territory captured by Israel in 1967 and claimed by the indigenous peoples. In response to the criticism, Johansson said last week she was a “supporter of economic cooperation and social interaction between a democratic Israel and Palestine.”


Permalink The land theft continues: Israel destroys Palestinian village - Video

Israeli forces have razed down an entire Palestinian village in the Jordan Valley region of the occupied West Bank. According to reports, the demolition took place in the village of Khirbat Jamal early on Thursday. Over a dozen families living in the area have been displaced after Israeli bulldozers destroyed their homes. The Israeli military is preventing human rights activists from visiting the area and helping the villagers. Demolitions are commonplace in the Jordan Valley as the Tel Aviv regime continues with its policy of settlement expansion in the area. Over 90 percent of the Jordan Valley is under full Israeli military control. On January 9, Israeli military forces backed by bulldozers entered the village of Khirbet Ein Karzaliyah and destroyed the entire village, leaving over two dozen locals homeless.

Sixteen Minutes To Palestine: Infographic of land-theft in Palestine

Permalink New York bill to punish ASA over Israel boycott picks up 48 supporters

A New York bill to cut off state funding to the American Studies Association over its Israel boycott has the support of 48 lawmakers. That means that Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, who authored the bill, is just 28 members short of garnering a majority of the state assembly to back the legislation targeting the ASA. The legislation would prohibit colleges from giving funds to the ASA or other academic groups that have supported a boycott of universities in countries that host schools given credentials by New York state. If the bill passes, colleges would not be eligible for state aid during the academic year if they violate the legislation. Practically, it would mean that university funds given to students and faculty to travel to ASA events would be cut off.


Permalink Israeli Settlers Campaign Against Peace Deal

'Don't Surrender to Kerry' Campaign Kicks Off. Israeli settlers group the Yesha Council has kicked off its official “Don’t Surrender to Kerry” campaign, urging Israelis and their political leadership not to reach any deal on Palestinian statehood. The campaign includes media spots, banners, and organized public protests against peace talks, saying that reaching a deal amounts to “surrendering Israel’s security and national interests to John Kerry.”


Permalink Remembering Shulamit Aloni

Former education minister Shulamit Aloni laid to rest - Ynet News

Stephen Lendman: She believed anti-semitism is misused. It's done to suppress legitimate Israeli criticism. She was outspoken to the end. She made fundamental rights her core issue. She was true to her values. She challenged Israel's establishment. She stood up against government officials, generals and extremist rabbis against peace, equity and justice. She was fearless. She was unflinching.

She was often a voice in the wilderness. Israel is more ruthless today than ever. In January 2007, she headlined "Yes, There is Apartheid in Israel," saying:

Jewish self-righteousness is taken for granted among ourselves to such an extent that we fail to see what’s right in front of our eyes. It's simply inconceivable that the ultimate victims, the Jews, can carry out evil deeds. Nevertheless, the state of Israel practices its own, quite violent, form of Apartheid with the native Palestinian population. [It] practices a brutal form of Apartheid in the territory it occupies. Its army has turned every Palestinian village and town into a fenced-in, or blocked-in, detention camp. [It turned Occupied Palestine into an open-air prison.] Indeed Apartheid does exist here. And our army is not 'the most moral (one) in the world' as we are told... [Apartheid is] an international crime. [Israel] rob(s) (Palestinians) of their freedom, land and water. We apply collective punishment to millions of People.

After Operation Cast Lead (December 2008 - January 2009), she said the disgraced IDF is no longer Israel's Defense Forces. She keynoted "A Gathering to Protest and to Mourn" Association for Jaffa Arabs program. Standing room only heard her. She pulled no punches calling the IDF a "brutal and hedonistic army of conquest." On her 81st birthday, she discussed the condition of the State of Israel.

What we do in (Gaza) and the West Bank is worse than all pogroms done to Jews. It's hard for me to say a kind word about the state today. We are in great distress morally and socially, as well as in the realms of politics and law. The Right has two left hands. The Left doesn't exist...Since 2000, with the launching of the Second Intifada, we have murdered thousands. We have blood on our hands.

Desertpeace: Zion’s Outspoken Voice Of Reason Silenced By Death


Permalink Australian FM Expresses Support To Israel’s Illegitimate Settlements

Australian Foreign Minister said, in an interview with the “Times Of Israel” newspaper, that the international community should refrain from labeling Israeli settlements in the West Bank as illegal, and claimed that Israel “has the right to build its settlements”. Julie Bishop strongly denounced European countries that are “pressuring” Israel into stopping its illegitimate settlement activities, and said that she would like to see “which International Law declared those settlements illegal”. Her statements completely ignore the Fourth Geneva Convention Article Number 49 that states, “The occupying power shall not move parts of its civilian population into territory it occupies”. In addition, the UN Security Council issued at least six resolutions, ignored by Israel, stating that the Fourth Geneva Convention applies to the occupied territories, including resolution number 465 that describes Israel’s settlement activities as clear violations of the Fourth Geneva Convention. The resolution states that Israel is seriously violating the Fourth Geneva Convention, article number 49, regarding the protection of civilians.


Permalink Israel moves to grab more Palestinian land - Video

Israel moves to grab more Palestinian land in the occupied West Bank as residents are given demolition orders, Press TV reports. On Thursday, Israeli forces handed 12 demolition orders to Palestinian residents in al-Khalil (Hebron), which includes six houses and six water wells. The orders were handed to residents of the village of Sa’ir in the southern al-Khalil hills. The orders are meant to confiscate more land from the Palestinians to expand illegal Israeli settlements in the area. The Israeli military has closed the village and given the residents one month to file a complaint before carrying out the demolitions. Human rights groups say that the demolition orders are part of a strategy by the regime in Tel Aviv to annex the southern al-Khalil hills to Israel and a greater strategy to maintain military control over the Jordan Valley, the Negev and the southern al-Khalil hills.


Permalink Mask of Zion Report Jan 9, 2014 - Audio

The ongoing takfiri terrorist besieging of the Syrian city of Yarmouk, the Jewish-Zionist war on French comedic genius Dieudonne and why the silence of the “solidarity activist” community on both hot-button issues is destructive not only to the Palestinian cause but the world as we know it. Yet another master-class lesson from the one and only Jonathan Azaziah.


Permalink 97.4 Percent of Investigative File relating to Damage to Palestinians' Olive trees are Closed due to Police Failings

In recent years, the vandalization of olive trees and other fruit trees has become one of the symbols of the occupation. The human rights organization Yesh Din today publishes updated data highlighting the failure of the Samaria & Judea (SJ) District Police to investigate incidents involving the cutting down, torching, vandalization, and theft of olive trees and other fruits trees belonging to Palestinians in the West Bank. The data are published against the background of the current olive harvest, and after numerous incidents of the vandalization of trees have been reported throughout the West Bank in recent weeks. The updated figures show that the Israel Police has overwhelmingly failed to investigate the incidents and prosecute offenders.

Permission To Narrate: More Zionist than the Zionists
Stephen Lendman: Criminal Unaccountability


Permalink Thoughts of Americans with Israel over Sharon: Kerry

US Secretary of State John Kerry said Thursday that the thoughts of the American people were with Israel and its comatose former leader Ariel Sharon, whose health was rapidly deteriorating. | "Our thoughts, my thoughts are with the Sharon family," Kerry said ahead of a meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. "We remember his contributions, the sacrifices he made to ensure the survival and the wellbeing of Israel," he said. "All Americans are thinking of Israel and their former leader." The top US diplomat arrived in the region on Thursday on a four-day visit, his 10th since taking office in March, in a bid to push "peace talks" between Israelis and Palestinians forward. The health of Sharon, who has been in a comatose state for eight years, took a turn for the worse this week. "In the last few days, we have seen a gradual decline in the functioning of Ariel Sharon's vital organs, which are essential for his survival," Zeev Rotstein, director of the Sheba hospital in Tel Hashomer, said on Thursday. "His state is classed as critical, meaning his life is in danger," Rotstein said. Rotstein's remarks were the first made by the hospital since Israeli media on Wednesday began reporting a serious deterioration in the health of 85-year-old former general Ariel "Arik" Sharon, long-time leader of the rightwing nationalist camp who suffered a massive stroke in 2006, slipping into a coma from which he has never recovered.

Gilad Atzmon: The Guardian Laments Sharon
Jean Shaoul: Sharon’s war crimes in Lebanon: the record

Permalink Palestinian Children in Cages

S. Lendman: Palestinian Children in Cages | Imagine putting them in cages. Imagine them outside in stormy winter weather. Israel did so in December. Two Israeli National Public Defender lawyers witnessed it firsthand. They met with Palestinian prisoners. They included young children. They were "shock(ed)" to see them confined outdoors at night in freezing stormy weather. They spent hours waiting to be taken to court around 6AM. The practice has been ongoing "for months," they said. They verified it during previous visits. Israel willfully, systematically, maliciously and lawlessly abuses detained Palestinian children. They're treated like adult prisoners. Mercy isn't Israel's long suit. Nor are peace, equity, justice or respect for fundamental human and civil rights. Israel spurns them repeatedly. It's standard practice. It remains unaccountable for grave crimes against humanity. The Public Committee Against Torture in Israel (PCATI) calls torture and ill treatment of any kind morally, ethically and legally incompatible with democratic values. PCATI "advocates for all persons - Israelis, Palestinians, labor immigrants, and other(s)." It does so to "protect them from torture and ill treatment by" Israeli interrogation and enforcement authorities. It does it in accordance with rule of law principles and other democratic values. It challenges longstanding lawless Israeli practices. Torture is official Israeli policy.

Al-Akhbar: Israeli sniper kills Gaza teen

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