Haggai Matar, +972 Magazine 11/23/2014
An IDF medic was surprised to hear two new orders given by his superiors: only Jews are worthy of resuscitation, and that attackers who pose no threat should be shot dead.
New orders in the Israeli army? D., a medic in the infantry, was surprised last week to find out during training for an operation in the occupied territories that at least two orders typically given to soldiers have been refreshed.
“During the refresher course the instructor, who works as a medic on the base, told us that the orders of the IDF are not to give mouth-to-mouth resuscitation to people we do not know. When asked about it he said that it basically means that we do not need to resuscitate Palestinians,” says D., who took part in the course at the Lakhish base in southern Israel. D. has since then left for duty in the West Bank.
“It sounds strange but he repeated it twice, so I have no doubt that that was what he meant. I was very surprised by the order not to resuscitate anyone who needs it. Since then I have come to understand that Magen David Adom (Israel’s national emergency medical, disaster and ambulance service) came up with the order regarding mouth-to-mouth resuscitation several years ago. The emphasis on the Palestinians was probably the instructor “thinking ahead.” I assume that he goes these trainings all the time. That’s worrying.”
Furthermore over the course of the week, D. participated in a refresher on the rules of engagement, where he said he was given permission to kill people who pose no threat. “They told us that the order regarding someone who stabs, ditches the knife and begins running is shoot to kill. The company commander said he doesn’t want anyone like that “to see a judge.”
Did anyone protest or critique these orders?.... more.. e-mail A West Bank water crisis for Palestinians only
Stephanie Westbrook, +972 Magazine 11/22/2014
When Israel’s national water company operates more than 40 wells in the West Bank, appropriates Palestinian water resources and controls the valves, is it any surprise that priority is given to Israeli settlements?
Qarawat Bani Zeid is a small Palestinian town of 3,500 north of Ramallah in the occupied West Bank. There are no Israeli settlements in the immediate vicinity. The route of Israel’s separation wall does not run through the area and Qarawat is in Area A — under the full control of the Palestinian Authority. And yet, Israel’s military occupation and discriminatory policies manage to cut into everyday life.
“Our biggest problem is water,” explained Sabri Arah, a member of the town council.
Qarawat sits atop the Western Aquifer, the largest and most productive sub-basin of the Mountain Aquifer, the main groundwater source in the West Bank, yet 80 percent of the town’s taps are dry. “Water is pumped out before it arrives to the town,” noted Arah.
The company pumping the water out is Mekorot, Israel’s national water company. Mekorot not only operates more than 40 wells in the West Bank, appropriating Palestinian water resources, Israel also effectively controls the valves, deciding who gets water and who does not. It should be no surprise that priority is given to Israeli settlements while service to Palestinian towns is routinely reduced or cut off.
The right to water was the focus of a recent delegation of the Italian Forum of Water Movements visiting Palestinian communities in the West Bank and Israel as part of the Beyond Walls project of Servizio Civile Internazionale, an Italian NGO committed to human rights and social justice. more.. e-mail Cruelty in Jerusalem
Harry Hagopian, Al Jazeera 11/22/2014
Jerusalem synagogue attack is a symptom of Palestinian disempowerment.
I woke up last Tuesday morning to the shrill tones not of my alarm clock but of my old mobile. A satellite TV station was calling to check whether I would appear on their news hour to discuss the recent terrorist attack in Jerusalem.
I had no real clue what the producer was talking about until she explained to me that two Palestinians had barged into a synagogue carrying axes, knives and a pistol and had killed five Jewish worshippers. A bracing wake-up call indeed.
Over the past five months, Palestine has reinserted itself dramatically into the political imagination of a world that was far too occupied with the brutal and oft-bloody events in parts of the MENA region. But the violence and vengefulness that have sucked Palestinians and Israelis into its vortex over those past months - whether tit-for-tat, price-tag or sheer murder - have also awakened the world community to the fact that they can only ignore the Israeli-Palestinian conflict at their peril.
But let me start off first by denouncing and condemning in absolute terms those latest barbarities that have now robbed five people of their sacred lives. I denounce and condemn them - ethically, morally, and legally - with the same vehemence and anguish as I do every single murder and all the orgy of violence that have beset both Palestinians and Israelis in this latest chapter of the lex talionis that gouges eyes for eyes and extracts teeth for teeth. From teenagers hitchhiking to other teenagers going to the mosque for prayer, from places of worship to bus drivers and ordinary men subjected to such atrocious fears in Gaza or Sderot, I denounce, condemn and express sympathy with all bereaved families.
The chilling question 'why'.... more.. e-mail The nightmare we called the 'Arab Spring'
Nureddin Sabir, Redress 11/22/2014
The so-called “Arab Spring” has turned into a deep winter and a recurring nightmare from which there appears to be no escape.
With the exception of Tunisia – the cradle of the “Arab Spring” – which has settled into a precarious stability after the elections of November 2014, everywhere else is in political turmoil or bloody conflict.
In Egypt, the hope and euphoria unleashed by the 25 January 2011 revolution have been well and truly dashed, thanks to the Muslim Brotherhood’s push to monopolise power and turn Egypt into an Islamic state, and the backlash this has produced.
Yemen is in turmoil, and now more than ever is teetering on the brink of civil war, with Sunni tribes and al-Qaeda terrorists on the one hand and Shia rebels on the other vying for power, and southern secessionists wanting out altogether.
But nowhere is the tragedy of what can now be described as the Arab Nightmare more stark than in Syria and Libya, both engaged in an orgy of cannibalism and on the brink of extinction.
Blinded by wishful thinking
How did we Arabs get it so wrong? Are we so ignorant of the reality of our societies? Or did we miss the signs in a haze of wishful thinking, blinded to the obvious nightmare staring at us from the precipice to which we were headed?
The simple answer is yes to both questions. For many educated, forward-looking Arabs a combination of detachment from reality and a form of cognitive dissonance.... more.. e-mail
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