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Sunday, December 25, 2011

Report: Israeli air-force attacked targets in South Sudan

Published yesterday (updated) 25/12/2011 18:05
TEL AVIV, Israel (Ma'an) -- Sudanese media sources have been reporting that Israel's air-force launched attacks on vehicles in South Sudan last week, Israeli news site Ynet said Sunday.

Al-Intibaha reported last week that two vehicles were hit, killing four people. In a second alleged attack on Dec. 18, a car was bombed.

It is thought that the vehicles belonged to arms smugglers. The reports were not confirmed by Sudanese officials.

US Congress approves further $235m for Israeli anti-missile programs

The money is for the Raytheon-Rafael David's Sling and for IAI's Arrow 3.


25 December 11 15:56, Yuval Azoulai
 The US Congress has decided to allocate $235 million for the continued development of Israel's anti-missile systems. The money, which will soon be transferred to Israel, will be used for the further development of the David Sling system against short and medium-range missiles and rockets developed by Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd. and Raytheon Company (NYSE: RTN), and for the next generation Arrow 3 anti-ballistic missile system, being developed by Israel Aerospace Industries Ltd. (IAI) (TASE: ARSP.B1). IAI will probably begin testing of the Arrow 3 in mid-2012. 

When the Arrow 3 becomes operational, it will be capable of intercepting incoming ballistic missiles while they are still in space, which will improve Israel's readiness in the event of an attack by missiles carrying unconventional warheads. 

Minister of Defense Ehud Barak said, "The aid from Congress is the next level in the strengthening of defense ties between Israel and the US. The further development of anti-missile programs will help Israel to better prepare for attacks against it, thereby strengthening Israel’s security." 

Congress made the decision despite the serious economic situation in the US, and despite pending cuts in the US defense budget. Nonetheless, the US administration is ensuring the continuation of $3 billion in annual military aid to Israel. 

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - - on December 25, 2011

Boycott campaigners claim credit for denial of London contract to company invested in settlements

 Monday December 26, 2011 01:05 by Saed Bannoura - IMEMC News
A French transportation company, Veolia, that has been the target of a campaign by human rights groups around the world for its investment in Israeli settlements, has been denied a contract in West London – leading supporters of the boycott campaign to claim credit.
Over the last six months campaigners lobbied Councillors and Council officials to exclude Veolia from the contract and submitted a letter to the WLWA – signed by nearly 600 local residents – documenting Veolia’s direct complicity in grave breaches of international and humanitarian law in Jerusalem and the West Bank.

The West London Waste Authority (‘WLWA’) decided this week to deny the French multinational Veolia from the £485 million contract covering 1.4 million inhabitants of the London boroughs of Brent, Ealing, Harrow, Hillingdon, Hounslow and Richmond-upon-Thames, for treatment of residual domestic waste.

The reasons behind the decision by the WLWA to exclude Veolia are commercially confidential, but human rights campaigners say they are convinced their pressure campaign made an impact on the decision.

Campaigners pointed out that Veolia helped build and is involved in operating a tram-line which links Jerusalem with illegal Israeli settlements in the Palestinian West Bank. In addition, the company takes waste from Israel and illegal Israeli Settlements and dumps this on Palestinian land at the Tovlan landfill.

Veolia’s failure to win the WLWA contract is a heavy blow for the company because it owns a domestic waste depot in the area covered by the WLWA and so should have been ideally placed to meet some of the necessary criteria for the WLWA tender.

This blow comes only six months after it failed to win Ealing Council’s £300m new ‘Clean and Green’ contract even though Veolia already did much of the work under the old contract. When bidding for that contract, Veolia had faced determined opposition from Palestinian rights campaigners over its track record in Jerusalem and the West Bank.

Campaigners across the world are focused on Veolia because it is a key target of the global Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (‘BDS’) movement for Palestinian rights, which is led by Palestinian civil society organisations.

The BDS movement aims to pressure companies doing business in Israeli settlements to end their economic ties with Israel, in order to pressure the state of Israel using economic means to adhere to its obligations under international law.

Jewish settlers detain shepherd, threaten to kill anti-settlement activist

[ 25/12/2011 - 02:22 PM ]

JORDAN VALLEY, (PIC)– Jewish settlers detained a Palestinian shepherd for three hours under gunpoint in the northern Jordan Valley and warned him against allowing his sheep to graze in the area.

Local sources said that the settlers ambushed the shepherd, Mohammed Awad, while rearing his sheep in Wadi Maleh in the northern Jordan Valley.

They said that the settlers were escorted by Israeli occupation forces who also threatened the shepherd and told him not to graze in the mountains near the settlement of Maskiot.

Meanwhile, Ghassan Daghlas, who monitors settlement activity in northern West Bank areas, said that Jewish settlers threatened to kill him during a demonstration for them on Friday.

He told Quds Press that the settlers hoisted photos of him while threatening to liquidate him at the Beit Leed roadblock between Tulkarem and Nablus.

Source and more at the PIC

Lieberman to Europe: Israel has nothing to apologize for

Following strong European condemnation of settlement activity and rightist violence, FM says Israeli democracy 'has nothing to be ashamed of' and will know how to handle 'price tag' assailants. 'Obstacle to peace not Jewish settlements, but Palestinian policies,' he adds 
Omri Efraim
Published: 12.25.11, 17:16 / Israel News
Israel does not need to apologize to European nations which condemned its West Bank construction policy and the growing rightist violence, Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said Sunday.

During a meeting with Israeli ambassadors, the FM said "we don't need to apologize, quite the contrary. Israeli democracy has nothing to be ashamed of – even in comparison with the glorious British democracy - and we do not need tips on how to handle rioters who break the law in Judea and Samaria or in any other place in the country."

Last week European members of the UN Security Council – Britain, Germany, France and Portugal – issued a strong condemnation of Israel's construction in the West Bank and attacks by settlers on Palestinians.

In response, the Foreign Ministry issued a statement saying "if instead of contributing to stability in the Middle East (European Union members of the UN Security Council) are investing their efforts in inappropriate bickering with the one country in which the independent law justice system knows how to deal with lawbreakers, then they are losing their credibility and making themselves irrelevant."

On Sunday Lieberman reiterated the Foreign Ministry's position, saying Israel was doing all it can to curb violence initiated by rightists "who are hurting Jewish settlement in Judea and Samaria." According to him, "the countries which issued the condemnation should understand that construction in Judea and Samaria is not an obstacle to peace; it is the Palestinians who are hurting the chances for peace by refusing to negotiate.

"The peace treaties with Egypt and Jordan have proven that Jewish settlement is not an obstacle to peace," Lieberman stressed.

"(Palestinian President Mahmoud) Abbas showed his true face last week when he travelled all the way to Turkey to honor terrorist Amna Muna - who lured an innocent boy, Ofir Rahum, to his death – and met with 10 other terrorists who were released in the Shalit deal," Israel's top diplomat told the ambassadors.

"This is Abu Mazen (Abbas). This is the path he believes in, and this is why he is avoiding negotiations with Israel. He proves again and again that he is not a partner for anything. He is the one the European states should be condemning," said Lieberman.

אמנה מונא עם אבו מאזן בטורקיה. "זה פרצופו האמיתי"
'His true face.' Abbas (center) meets with released Palestinian terrorists in Ankara

The FM further claimed that the Palestinians were not interested in peace. Rather, he said, they seek to change the reality on the ground and internationalize the conflict. "Therefore, Israeli must adjust its diplomacy and way of thinking to reality and realize that the key to our relations with the Palestinians should be managing the conflict rather then trying to find a solution for it," he said. "Those who claim peace with the Palestinians can be achieved in the coming years are mistaken and misleading. No territorial concession will solve the real issues at hand."

Lieberman said the Israeli-Palestinian conflict would not be resolved "until a broad, prosperous and influential middle class emerges within the Palestinian Authority."

"I know it is sometimes hard to face facts. Some prefer to live in denial and delude others, but I prefer to tell the truth, even if it is not the most pleasant," the minister added.

Addressing the Iranian threat, Lieberman said "unfortunately, I am under the impression that some European states and senior figures (in Europe) speak of sanctions more to allay Israel's concerns than to actually terminate Iran's nuclear program.,7340,L-4166615,00.html

An American past in an Israeli future for an ever present and brutal occupation

by Clive Hambidge on 12/25/2011


American Presidents: Romancing A Stone

An American past in an Israeli future for an ever present and brutal occupation

Happy Christmas Mr President or may I call you Barack this Yule Tide? As you know "Christmas is the day that holds all time together" (Alexander Smith) certainly as you rustle through your Christmas stocking and wrestle with your conscience perhaps to find as you dig deep in both and past 'hegemonic imperatives' an olive twig or a so-called 'peace process'? Perhaps not. But as you dig, can you hear the whispers? No. They are not the whispers from the Presidents of Christmas past, we will come to them; no? You are not listening attentively Mr President; that's because you've been genuflecting on the Christmas message of that other great statesman Prime Minister Netanyahu, "we are living in a time of great uncertainty and instability in the Middle East and Israel, throughout this instability, remains a beacon of religious freedom and pluralism." Wow. On what rock is Israel built and how Netanyahu bestrides it as America holds it, for "As the builders say, the larger stones do not lie well without the lesser" (Plato). And which is which?

No Mr President the whispers are coming from the stones of Palestine and Israel and they do "cry out" for past Presidents have remained quiet behind lofty rhetoric and where are they now? "It was [is] the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way."(Dickens). You're a "keen student of history" Mr President what about the human condition and the children lost to a sordid history created by Israel and paid for by American tax dollars? Below are some of their names, the stone told me to tell you their names. God Bless you and God Bless America. Which way are you going?

Remember these Children Mr President: 

  • "Yael Ohana, 11, of Hamra settlement, killed by Palestinian gunfire while in her home. 6 February 2002."
  • "Fadi Tayseer al-Azazi, 16, of Rafaha, Gaza, killed by IDF shelling to his chest. 6 February 2002."
  • "Total Israeli Deaths since September 2002," 125 children."
  • "Total Palestinian Deaths since September 2002," 1470 children. [1]
The Stoned

The American stone cast, that gave rise to the ripples that became the waves that is the American Israeli tsunami that engulfs Palestine today, was even in the beginning unusually dense, in the sense obtuse. Quarried and romanced in the USA this stone was to be formed, scuffed then ruthlessly scored by matchless Zionist discontent and ambition, tossed, retrieved, polished and tossed again by successive American Presidents into the same murky American Zionist Israeli foreign policy sea. The rising waves, Israeli aggression and ambition, supported by Zionist America and Presidential weakness, merciless waves beating against the blameless lives of countless Palestinian children past and present and their valiant resistance through the lengthening shadows and dark hours of a brutal occupation as the international community crept decade after supine decade to rectify this grave and ongoing crime against humanity with all the energy of a sloth on diazepam.

American Presidential rhetoric the becoming edict that led to endless Israeli atrocities "unlawful Israeli behaviour [supported by US Aid] that start[ed] out as "facts" have over time been transformed into "conditions", or in the words of the American Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, "subsequent developments" that are treated [unlawfully] as essentially irreversible." Moreover, "USAID and American taxpayers [are] financing, and thereby further entrenching, the Israeli de facto annexation of the West Bank." (Richard Falk, UNHRC, 16th Session, Agenda Item 7, A/HRC/16/72, 10 January 2011), and the ruinous blockade and the deaths of Palestinian children.

For these two states America and Israel have been / are up to no good; are, in this criminality together, up to their necks "because everything that Israel does is done up to the limits that the United States supports and authorizes. So it's U.S. Israeli atrocities." (Noam Chomsky, Power And Terror). America and Israel justifying, "represent[ing] the institutionalization of a system of power in which justice is inoperative and its perversion hidden in clouds of rhetoric and obfuscation." and where, "The rule of law implicitly applies only to others." (Edward S. Herman and David Peterson)

Successive American and Israeli Administrations, each, an apostate to the other: "See!" he said to all the people "This stone will be a witness against us. It has heard all the words the lord has said to us. It will be a witness against you if you are untrue to your God." Joshua 24:27.

All the Presidents then

President John Adams, his mind high on effulgent heroic, saw conquest, envisioning Mordeca Manue Noah in 1819 "Marching with them [the Israelites] into Judea & making a conquest of that country & restoring your nation to the Dominion of it". An "independent nation" thought John Quincy Adams, because, they deserved declared Abraham Lincoln a "leg up". All saw the stone that would be a rock and declared it an American good. And the die and the dying in the stone were cast. Time then, wrapped around the stone, ran through it, became beloved in an American Hegemonic Zionist dream warping space and time, imprisoning Palestinians in a boxed 'continuum'. An American red hot wax seal legitimising the continuum making it 'official' in 1948 as the Ethnic cleansing of Palestinians and the stealing bit by bit of 'Mandated Palestine' had begun and in ferocious fashion. The Israeli aggression rewarded with a hundred thousand US dollars in 1949 and Israel's aggression rewarded with billions of dollars in 2011.

The Children of Palestine in 1948 were standing in an American Israeli wind tunnel they are standing in it today. And as we come back from the future and indeed as we move from the past to the present, we see the pernicious results of successive Presidential and illegal leg ups the art of hubris and a continuum of failure. Here then an American Presidential Israeli nightmare and the subtitles of the Palestinian river of suffering that runs through it:

  • "14th November 2011, Israeli aircraft attacked a small naval post building in North Gaza district. As a result, one police officer was killed and ten persons were injured, including one woman and six police officers."
  • "In 2009 in North Gaza, Gaza, Dair El Balah, Khan Younis, and Rafah, 1061 Palestinians lost their lives to Israeli aggression. In the Gaza strip in that same year, 323 children and 104 women were killed by the occupying forces." [2]
Remember this Child Mr President:
  • "Basel Muhammad Nafe abu-Edwan, 14 killed by an unexploded IDF ordinance while he and his brother were herding sheep near their home." Died 27th January 2011. [3]
The stone was picked up and skimmed across the surface of the brimming Zionist sea by the deft wrist of Woodrow Wilson 3rd of March 1919 in reaction to the Balfour Declaration, the text of which was presented to him for approval before publication, "The allied nations with fullest concurrence of our government and people are agreed that in Palestine shall be laid the foundation of a Jewish commonwealth." Then President Warren G. Harding grabbed the stone from the Zionist air stating, "The Hebrew people restored to their historic national home," would enter a "new and yet greater phase of their contribution to the advance of humanity."
  • "Number of houses demolished in Gaza strip, since the beginning of the intifada until the end 2009. North Gaza, houses 5399, residents, 54900. Gaza houses, 7060, residents,73149. Dair El Balah, houses 1004, residents, 8925. Khan Younis, houses, 1596, residents, 12247. Rafah, houses, 3774, residents, 32284. Total houses 18833, Total residents, 181505."
  • "The number of damaged water wells. North Gaza, 120. Gaza, 154. Dair El Balah, 62. Khan Younis, 23. Rafah, 14. Total, 373."
  • "2008 Women and children killed by Israel in the Gaza Strip. Children, 107, women, 23." [4]
Remember this child Mr President:
  • "Shiran Ismail Abdullah abu-Shawareb 11, of Nuserat refugee camp, Gaza died of heart problems at Nasr paediatric Hospital in Gaza, which lacked necessary equipment, after Israel denied her entry for medical treatment. Doctors had requested transfer to an Israeli hospital on Dec. 27 [2010] On Jan. 10, believing permission for a transfer had been granted, Shiran's father took her to the Erez checkpoint where Israel again denied her entry." Died 15th January 2008 [5]
The stone retrieved by Coolidge was polished with expressed "sympathy with the deep and intense longing which finds such fine expression in the Jewish National Homeland in Palestine." then caressed in short sighted rhetoric by President Hoover who as other Presidents before and after him couldn't see around histories sharp corner or dint want to saying 1932, "I am interested to learn that a group of distinguished men and women is to be formed to spread knowledge and appreciation of the rehabilitation which is going forward in Palestine under Jewish auspices."
  • "Number of damaged industrial establishments by IOF's, in 2006 19, 2005 7, 2004 86, 2003 77."
  • "Number of Palestinians killed by Israeli occupying forces in the Gaza strip; 2006 531, 2005 99, 2004 646, 2003 398."
  • "Number of Palestinians killed by Israeli occupying forces in the Gaza strip (women, children) 2006 children 115, women 34, 2005 children 32, women 1, 2004 children 156, women 10, 2003 children 81, women 17." [6]
Remember this child Mr President:
  • "Muhammad Jaber hassan Adila Said, 15, of osreen, near Nablus, killed by IDF gunfire to his chest." January 2004. [7]
Franklin Roosevelt viewed the stone empathetically, could feel its vital pulse, perhaps he had a pet name for the stone perhaps it was ineluctable? Or was it inexorable he had in mind as he sat to write to Senator Tydings on October 19, 1938 as The Nakba loomed. "I have on numerous occasions, as you know, expressed my sympathy in the establishment of a National Home for the Jews in Palestine and, despite the set backs caused by the disorders there during the last few years, I have been heartened by the progress which has been made and by remarkable accomplishments of the Jewish settlers in that country."
  • "Number of Palestinians killed by Israel occupying forces in the Gaza Strip, 2003 North Gaza 89, Gaza 118, Dair El Balah 75, Khan Younis 42, Rafah 72."
  • "Palestinians killed by Israeli occupying forces in the Gaza strip (women children) 2002 children 94, women 25, 2001 children 69, women 4, 2000 children 38 women 0." [8]
Remember this child Mr President:
  • "Muhammad Jamal Muhammad al-Durrah, 12 of Burejj refugee camp, Gaza, killed by IDF gunfire to his chest as his father tried to protect him during a demonstration at Netzarim Junction." [9]
Then shining with Zionist zeal, it was to morph into a rock in 1948 enfolded in to Israel's emboldened clenched fist, and as the British looked the other way, smashed Palestine leaving Palestinians between it and a hard place, supported by intellectuals with nothing in their heads but the propaganda they were fed, and a Presidential endorsement. Eleven minutes after Israel's proclamation of independence President Harry Truman declared, "I had faith in Israel before it was established; I have faith in it now." He further said in 1952 "I believe it has a glorious future before it- not just another sovereign nation, but an embodiment of the great ideals of our civilization."
  • "The majority of these [Palestinian] children were killed and injured while going about normal daily activities, such as going to school, playing, shopping, or simply being in their homes. Sixty-four percent of children killed during the first six months of 2003 died as a result of Israeli air and ground attacks, or from indiscriminate fire from Israeli soldiers".(Catherine Cook)
Remember these children Mr President:
  • "Ophir Rahum, 16, of Ashkelon, killed by Palestinian gunfire in al-Birah after being led to believe he was meeting an internet acquaintance, 17th January 2001."
  • "Omar Farouq Khaled 11,of al-Bireh, died of head wounds sustained Jan.7 2001 from IDF gunfire during a demonstration." [10]
And after 1948, a Presidential stream of consciousness compounding the problem for Palestine with unquestioning and ever increasing aid for Israel's gluttony, her voracious appetite to oppress and appropriate, and kill those who would thwart her:

Eisenhower: "our forces saved the remnant of the Jewish People of Europe for a new life and a new hope in the reborn Israel. Kennedy: "Israel was not created to disappear- Israel will endure and flourish." Nixon: "The United States stands by its friends. Israel is one of its friends Peace can be based only on agreement between parties and agreement can only be achieved only through negotiations between them. The United States will not impose the terms of peace. [But] The United States is prepared to supply military equipment necessary to support the efforts of friendly governments, like Israel's to defend the safety of their people." Carter: "a few days ago in a conversation with about 30 members of the House of Representatives, I said that I would rather commit suicide than hurt Israel." President Regan: Israel exists; it has a right to exist in peace behind secure and defensible borders; and it has a right to demand of its neighbours that they recognize those facts." Bush Sr: "The friendship, the alliance between the United States and Israel is strong and solid, built upon a foundation of shared democratic values." Clinton: "The United States admires Israel for all that it has overcome and for all it has accomplished." And President George W. Bush: "Israel is a small country that has lived under threat throughout its existence. At the first meeting of my National Security Council, I told them a top foreign policy priority is the safety and security of Israel."

Remember this child Mr President:
  • "Sara Abdul-Azim Abdul-Haq Hasan, 18 months, of Sarah, near Salfit, killed by Israeli settler gunfire to her head while riding with her father in a car. 1st October 2000." [11]
And last but not the least short sighted lacking historical memory, also will as did the others President Barack Hussein Obama: "The American people and the Israeli peoples share a faith in the future and believe that democracies can shape their own destinies and that opportunities should be available to all. Throughout its own extraordinary history, Israel has given life to that promise."

Remember this child Mr President:
  • "Haitham Ahmad Mustafa Maruf, 13 of Beit Lahiya, Gaza, died in Shifa Hospital, Gaza, of wounds sustained from an IDF drone attack while working on his family farm 29 August 2011." [12]












* Clive Hambidge is Human Development Director at Facilitate Global. He can be contacted at:

Israel Police called 'Nazis' after removing Beit Shemesh sign ordering exclusion of women

 Published 19:11 25.12.11 Latest update 19:11 25.12.11

Ultra-Orthodox Beit Shemesh residents cursed, shouted at police for removing street sign; several hours afterward, residents reinstate sign.

By Oz Rosenberg
Residents of an ultra-Orthodox neighborhood in Beit Shemesh called Israel police officers “Nazis” on Sunday, after they removed a sign ordering the separation of men and women in a street in that neighborhood.

In response to the removal of the sign by police officers and city inspectors from Beit Shemesh, a crowd of local ultra-Orthodox residents gathered around them, shouting and cursing at them. One man hurled rocks at the police officers, but managed to flee the scene. No one was hurt and no arrests were made.

Beit Shemesh sign removed by police - Shiran Granot - December 25 2011 The Beit Shemesh sign that was removed on December 25, 2011. The sign asks women to cross to the other side of the street.
Photo by: Shiran Granot

Several hours after the police removed the sign, residents of the neighborhood reinstated it.

Earlier on Sunday, a Channel 2 news team was attacked and beaten by 200 ultra-Orthodox men at the same location on the street where the sign that was removed had been hanging.

Beit Shemesh sign - Chadash Be Beit Shemesh - December 25, 2011 Beit Shemesh inspectors take down the sign ordering separation on men and women, December 25, 2011.
Photo by: Chadash Be Beit Shemesh

After the assault on the Channel 2 news team earlier Sunday, one resident living nearby said that the sign in question has existed for six years already. He added that it does not order women not pass in the street, but to abstain from gathering on the sidewalk.

Israel has indulged religious groups seeking to infringe on women's rights, says jurist

  • Published 00:30 26.12.11 Latest update 00:30 26.12.11

'The problem is that people are dealing with symptoms, and not the disease,' says Frances Raday, a member of a UN human rights council task force that deals with discrimination against women.

By Tomer Zarchin 

Israel has been too tolerant of religious groups seeking to infringe on women's rights, said Frances Raday, a law professor specializing in women's rights. 

In one of the latest examples of ultra-Orthodox attitudes toward women and the law, extremist Haredim in Beit Shemesh threw stones at and cursed police officers Sunday, as they were taking down a sign ordering men and women to walk on opposite sides of the street. 

Beit Shemesh Dec. 25, 2011 (Shiran Granot) Haredi men in Beit Shemesh, Dec. 25, 2011.
Photo by: Shiran Granot

"There is an abundance of tools in jurisprudence to oppose discrimination of women; the problem is that people are dealing with symptoms, and not the disease," said Raday, who teaches at the College of Management's law school and is a member of a UN human rights council task force that deals with discrimination against women. 

"Since its establishment, the State of Israel has displayed an exaggerated degree of tolerance toward the phenomenon of religious values' overthrow of human rights values, and this includes trespass of the rights of women," Raday said yesterday. "Every attempt to pass a human rights law failed due to the 'right to equality' clause, particularly its meaning as the right of women to equality, and this failure has always been caused by the Jewish religious lobby. It's not surprising to see that there was nothing that stopped religious groups from believing that they are more powerful than the value of equality, and that they can apply patriarchal interpretations of Jewish sources holding that their views take precedence relative to the value of equality." 

According to attorney Riki Shapira-Rozenberg, legal counsel to the Kolech women's organization and a party to the 2007 complaint lodged by the Reform movement regarding the segregation of women on buses, there is a law that can be used as a partial counterweight to the exclusion of women. 

That law bans discrimination of products, services and entry to leisure venues and public places, and allows complainants to file civil claims against hotels, restaurants, sports facilities and public transportation services that discriminate on the basis of race, religion, sex or nationality.