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Articles Archives - March 2010
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Israeli forces continue their campaign of widespread arrests in the occupied Palestinian territories - International Press Center photo

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Tuesday, March 16, 2010
Israel demands peace from Palestinians as its own racism spreads
Zvi Barel, Haaretz, Israeli Occupation Archive 3/14/2010
      The Strategic Affairs Ministry never ceases to bring us peace of mind. How nice to know that someone in Israel is monitoring Palestinian incitement, ensuring they “create an environment of peace” and striving “to push them toward a culture of peace”. After all, what do we care about construction in Jerusalem, Efrat or Ramat Shlomo, or about checkpoints, arrests, home demolitions, the army’s “neighbor policy,” bone breaking, land appropriation or the blockade of 1.5 million Palestinians in Gaza?
     All of these are minor issues compared with naming a square near Ramallah after Dalal Mughrabi, a Palestinian woman who took part in a bloody terror attack three decades ago, calling for confronting the occupation or referring to suicide bombers as martyrs. These are the real threats to peace. After all, according to the road map, the Palestinians are responsible for ending incitement. After we have meticulously fulfilled everything the road map required of us and completely frozen settlement construction, it’s now their turn.
     Yossi Kuperwasser, the deputy director of the Strategic Affairs Ministry and a generally bright man who once headed the Military Intelligence research department, explains that there are several categories of incitement. These include encouraging others to commit terrorist acts, demonizing Israel and creating an atmosphere of hostility toward it. The fact that the occupation persists in the Palestinian territories, and that any nation under occupation will do virtually anything to rid itself of this arrangement, is apparently missing from his consciousness.
     In his view, when Palestinians get up in the morning they begin cursing Israel and plotting its erasure from the map and school textbooks through the noble acts of their martyrs.... -- See also: Source
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Taboo Inhibits Frank Iran/Israel Talk
Ray McGovern, Consortiumnews.com 3/11/2010
      Participants at an otherwise informative discussion on “Iran at a Crossroads” at the Senate on Wednesday seemed at pains to barricade the doors against the proverbial elephant being admitted into the room — in this case, Israel.
     This, despite the fact that the agenda virtually dictated that the elephant be allowed in. The cavernous hearing room also could have accommodated it — however awkward and untidy the atmosphere might have become.
     Otherwise, as was entirely predictable, the discussion would be lacking a crucial element. Which it turned out to be.
     The tongue-tied impediment displayed by some of the presenters can be chalked up mostly to the all-too-familiar timidity on Capitol Hill to countenance candid discussion of any issue on which Israel can be revealed to be a fly in the ointment.
     Sen. Carl Levin, D-Michigan, obtained use of the hearing room for the organizers of the discussion, the thoroughly professional National Iranian American Council headed by Professor Trita Parsi. This is to Levin’s credit, in my view.
     At the same time, Sen. Levin holds the all-time-high record for PAC contributions from groups affiliated with the self-described “America’s Pro-Israel Lobby” — the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC).
     In any case, a truly distinguished panel launched the discussion on “The U.S. and Iran: Back to Confrontation?” which Professor Parsi moderated. The panelists began by setting a fact- and reality-based context, which in turn raised hopes of a no-holds-barred discussion. Their observations included, or implied, the following....
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Three Kings - The Rise of an American Empire in the Middle East After World War II
Jim Miles, Axis of Logic 3/13/2010
      Book Review: Three Kings - The Rise of an American Empire in the Middle East After World War II, Lloyd C. Gardner. New Press, N.Y., 2009.
     This concisely written and well documented work covers the “Truman Doctrine…the essential rubric under which the United States projected its power globally after World War II…the ideological foundation for the “imperial presidency.” Lloyd Gardner focuses his analysis on the Middle East, although the imperial trends expanded globally through the Americas and on into Asia as the old empires faded and the U.S. took their place. More specifically it is a study of “U.S. maneuvers to replace the British in the region of signal importance, the Middle East.” The signal importance of the region contains two factors: oil, the regional resource that enticed the British into the area in the first place; and ‘international communism’ and the rhetorically inflated fears of a grand international conspiracy to attack and dominate the world.
     Palestine
     When I first started my readings on current events as related to 9/11, the attack on Afghanistan and then on Iraq, it soon became clear that Palestine was symbolically at the heart of the problems in the Middle East. Beyond that, it is also at the heart of other problems involving human rights, international law, the U.S. government, and corporate power among others. The Second World War ended with the violent remainders of various empires imploding on themselves, most significantly the British Empire collapsed in India and the Middle East. Right from the outset, the Palestinian situation was identified as a “major stumbling block” to U.S. imperial ambitions as “Of all the political problems which call for solution in this area the Palestine question is probably the most important and urgent at the present time.”
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Documentary: "Nahr al-Bared: Checkpoints and more"
Electronic Intifada: 16 Mar 2010 - Nahr al-Bared refugee camp has still not recovered from the devastating war in 2007 during which it was destroyed. The Lebanese army has been keeping a tight grip on the camp and the 20,000 displaced Palestinians who have returned so far. This 30-minute film documents various consequences of the siege on Nahr al-Bared. Merchants and artisans explain their specific problems and a UN agency for Palestine refugees (UNRWA) project manager, a project coordinator of the Palestinian-Arab Women League, the president of Nahr al-Bared's Merchants' Committee and a researcher provide their views and thoughts on the issue.

Israel's actions on the ground proving difficult to spin
Electronic Intifada: 16 Mar 2010 - JERSUSALEM (IPS) - Israeli riot police and soldiers have, since Friday, sealed off the al-Aqsa mosque, Islam's third holiest shrine, restricting entry to women and Palestinian men over 50. Outside the walled Old City, where the al-Aqsa mosque is situated, and in several West Bank villages, clashes were reported.

psst… voices calling loud
In Gaza: 16 Mar 2010 - Today, the latest in growing demonstrations in the Israeli-imposed “buffer zone” , demonstrators again protested this lethal Israeli ban (shoot to kill threat) which renders roughly 30% of Gaza’s best agricultural land off-limits and under which in August 2009 the UN’s OCHA reported 33 Palestinian civilians (among them 11 children) had been killed and another 61 civilians (among them 13 children) injured.  From January 18 2009 to September 15 2009 alone, ISM reported 7 civilians (among them 4 children) killed and 28 (among them 8 children and 2 women) injured by Israeli soldiers in the border regions. Bearing in mind that the Israeli assaults on farmers and civilians in the border regions have continued , and that these assaults occur far beyond the 300 metres that Israeli authorities say make up the “buffer zone” [the actual off-limits area veering up to 2 km in some areas ], those protesting weekly have serious, valid...

EU Found Guilty at First Session of Russell Tribunal
Palestine Chronicle: 16 Mar 2010 - By Ewa Jasiewicz and Frank Barat The first session of the Russell Tribunal on Palestine (RTP) was heard in Barcelona, Spain earlier this month. The RTP is a peoples' legal initiative designed to systematically try key actors responsible for the perpetuation of human rights violations in Palestine. In the frame this time was the European Union (EU). Two days and 21 expert witness testimonies later, the RTP found individual states and the EU as a whole guilty of persistent violations and misconduct with regards to international and internal EU law. These included: assistance in perpetrating the crime of apartheid -- deepened in definition as applicable to the violation of the inalienable right of return for refugees and the collective punishment and ghettoization of Gaza; aiding the procurement of war crimes and crimes against humanity particularly with regards to Gaza; and violating the Palestinian right to self-determination, aiding illegal colonization, the...more

Murdoch's Kind of Arabs: Sleeping with the Enemy
Palestine Chronicle: 16 Mar 2010 - By Jeremy Salt – Ankara Rupert Murdoch, perhaps the greatest defender of free speech and the free flow of communications in recorded human history, or so you would think to read his speeches, and the praise heaped on him by his flatterers, pleaded at the inaugural Abu Dhabi Media Summit last week for an end to media censorship in the Middle East so that the entire region could benefit from the 'powerful wind' of creative energy that was blowing through it. He warned his Arab media hosts not to bury inconvenient stories because 'in the long run this is very counterproductive'. For someone who has spent his life burying inconvenient truths this is certainly amusing. Recently Murdoch and his son James have launched full-scale attacks on the BBC because its news web sites have made it 'incredibly difficult' for corporations such as theirs to charge for the news on their...more

With a Veil on Their Heads and a Blindfold over Our Eyes
Palestine Chronicle: 16 Mar 2010 - By Agustín Velloso – Madrid The national press in Spain continues to include articles of and letters to the editor relating to the veil. It would seem that this garment has become a problem for Western society, where its use is really not noticed, even though, curiously, this does not seem the case where its use is widespread. The truth is that this insignificant garment, as well as covering the heads of Muslim women, is useful for covering up the situation of Spanish women. The nouveau riche has little money and less memory, but lots of degrees in modernity and distinction to tell others, with such exquisite tact and force if necessary, what they should do. Veils were -and in some cases still are- part of the Spanish women attire for ages. Without the necessity of right-wing crusades or left-wing peace operations, veils have become shorter and less present, just...more

Articles Archives - March 2010

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