Tag Archives | Israel

Reliving The South African Struggle In London

London School of Economics Coat of ArmsLondon: Thomas Wolfe wrote “You Can’t Go Home Again” years ago, and its core truth keeps popping up in my life even as I tend to retrace some of my life journeys, in an endless walk down memory lane.

I am back in London, cold and wet as I remember it, to attend an event honoring those of us who went to South Africa on underground missions at my mid 1960’s alma mater, The London School of Economics and Political Science. I was on political side of he College’s split personality back in 1966-68.

This event marked my real “major” in what the Rolling Stones called “street fighting years:“ imagining world revolution.

Our group of solidarity stalwarts is now called “The London Recruits.” There is now a book out from Merlin Press telling our story in the words of many participants, including myself.

Yes, I was an activist in those pre-journalism years, blamed by some in the then Fleet Street press for sparking the LSE’s student “troubles” that soon morphed into an occupation and dramatic student protest.… Read the rest

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Israelis ‘Donate’ Votes to Palestinians in Protest

Via Common Dreams:

In a move of high-tech civil disobedience, thousands of Israeli citizens are donating their right to vote in the upcoming parliamentary elections to their Palestinian neighbors via Facebook.

­‘Real Democracy,’ so far has over 1,700 followers and is allowing Israelis to “donate” their votes for the Palestinian cause, giving their ‘second-class’ citizen neighbors an opportunity to participate in the general elections on Tuesday.

Agence France Presse reports:

As a Palestinian living in the West Bank, Mousa Maria has no legal right to vote in Israeli elections this week. But thanks to a protest initiative, an Israeli voter will be casting a ballot for him.

He’s participating in the “Real Democracy” project, a joint campaign launched by Israeli and Palestinian peace activists in which Israeli citizens “donate” their ballot to Palestinians.

Maria will be voting through Shahaf Weisbein for the Arab-Israeli party Balad. He asked Weisbein to vote for the party to show support for its embattled member Hanin Zoabi, who faced attempts to disqualify her from the Knesset last month.

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This School Has to Make a Prophet

In the year 1999, in the seventh month,
from the sky will come the great King of Terror,
bringing back to life the great King of the Mongols.
Before and after, Mars will reign by good fortune.

- Nostradamus

The passing of the 21st of December 2012 means the whiff of predicting the future is still in our collective nostrils. It’s perhaps ironic that a new school has opened in Tel Aviv which claims to teach the ancient art of Judaic prophecy. According to AP:

For just 200 shekels, about $53, and in only 40 short classes, the Cain and Abel School for Prophets says it will certify anyone as a modern-day Jewish soothsayer.

The school, which launched classes this month, has baffled critics, many of whom have dismissed it as a blasphemy or a fraud.

On a religious level, Jewish tradition recognizes a few dozen prophets from the biblical era — from the monumental figures of Abraham, Moses and Elijah to lesser known foretellers of doom and tormented questioners like Micah the Morashtite and Habakkuk.

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‘Lost Tribe’ Returns to Israel

Picture: Rachel-Esther (CC)

Dozens of the Bnei Menasche, a group of Indian Jews who claim to be the descendents of a lost Biblical tribe, arrived in Israel this week – and not everyone is happy:

Via Huffington Post:

The Bnei Menashe say they are descended from Jews banished from ancient Israel to India in the eighth century B.C. An Israeli chief rabbi recognized them as a lost tribe in 2005, and about 1,700 moved to Israel over the next two years before the government stopped giving them visas.

Israel recently reversed that policy, agreeing to let the remaining 7,200 Bnei Menashe immigrate.

Fifty-three arrived on a flight Monday. Michael Freund, an Israel-based activist on their behalf, said nearly 300 others will arrive in the coming weeks.

“After waiting for thousands of years, our dream came true,” said Lhing Lenchonz, 26, who arrived with her husband and 8-month-old daughter. “We are now in our land.”

Not all Israelis think Bnei Menashe qualify as Jews, and some suspect they are simply fleeing poverty in India.

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Sudan Claims it Captured Israeli ‘Spy Vulture’

Picture: Tony Hisgett (CC)

From Predator Drones to Scavenger Birds: Could Israel be using vulture intelligence agents?

Via YNET:

Sudanese media was a buzz Thursday, with news saying that Darfur authorities had captured a vulture carrying Israeli spy gear.

The suspect bird was found to be tagged with an Israeli GPS chip and a leg band labeled “Israel Nature Service” and “Hebrew University, Jerusalem.”

Khartoum’s media claimed that the device was capable of taking photos and sending them back to Israel; but Israel’s National Parks Service dismissed the allegation, saying that both the band and the GPS chip were nothing more than standard migration trackers.

Tensions between Israel and Sudan have been high since a mysterious airstrike leveled a major weapons manufacturing compound in Khartoum in October. Sudan blamed Israel for the raid. Jerusalem has remained mum on the subject.

The Opposition in Sudan was quick to mock the “spy bird” find: The country’s Justice and Equality Movement featured the news on its website, asking: “How is it possible that the regime was able to detect one vulture, but was unable to detect the jets that bombed the arms facility?”

Keep reading.… Read the rest

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A Dinner Conversation: Israel and Armenia, Oppression and Genocides, Reality and Denials

via chycho

Below you will find two perspectives from a recent dinner conversation:

    I. Candid and Confrontational
    II. Compassionate and Personal

I. Candid and Confrontational

I recently attended a small family gathering, not my immediate family but my partners, so by extension people that I care for. I am Armenian and my partner is Jewish, and at the table were us and the elders, including a holocaust survivor.

During dinner the conversation drifted between various topics and at some point turned to politics, focusing on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Israeli-Palestinian conflict

Those who have followed my blog know that I am quite outspoken regarding my political views and rarely do I mince words, and this night was not an exception. I believe that dialogue, discussion, honesty, and candidness are needed to come to terms with what is actually taking place in the heart of the Middle-East because what transpires in that region, what the final outcome will be between Israel and Palestine, will decide the fate of humanity.

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Human Devolution, Israel & Palestine: A History of Occupation

On this episode of Breaking the Set, Abby Martin talks to RT Producer Adriana Usero, about human beings becoming dumber and if the US Government using political tactics of the Roman empire to distract from current events. Abby then takes a look back at the historical events that have shaped the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as we know it today. BTS wraps up the show with an in depth interview with Phyllis Bennis, Director of the New Internationalism Project at the Institute for Policy Studies, about the current escalation of violence in Gaza, and factors that play a role in the conflict.

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The New Soft-Focus Lens Of War

Via the The New Inquiry, Huw Lemmey on social media as tools of destruction:

By nightfall tonight that explosion which just shook your neighborhood, in one of the most densely populated areas on earth, will have been liked over 8,000 times on Facebook. Welcome to Gaza City.

The transmutation of territorial control today enters a new topography, an extension of the historical “propaganda war”: control of the networked space online. The IDF have run a comprehensive social media campaign from the first stages of the new assault, announcing the assassination of Hamas military chief Ahmed Jabari on Twitter, followed up by YouTube footage of his targeted killing within minutes.

Far from embracing ideas of a futuristic, dehumanising warfare, the instagrams of IDF, processed through the various “retro” and “soft-focus” filters, serve a dual purpose. The first purpose is that of historicization. Much as the hipstamatic literally filters the contemporary condition through the lens of the ’60s and ’70s, the use of “retro” filters removes the images of today’s IDF from their context within the current campaign of blockade and air assault and reframes them as part of the Israeli foundation story.

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An Apology from Canada to Palestine and the Rest of the World: The 10 Most Shameful Minutes in Canadian History

via chycho

On 29 November 2012, John Baird, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Canada, addressed the United Nations General Assembly on the Question of Palestine. Below you will find the video in which he accuses UN of abandoning its principles by recognizing Palestine.

Canada, Question of Palestine, General Assembly, 44th plenary meeting

Most Canadians are embarrassed and utterly disgusted with what our Conservative government has done. Unfortunately, because of our ’First Past the Post’ electoral system and the bitter reality that a majority government can do anything they want, we can’t do much about it, at least not until the next elections. When that time comes, we promise to do our best to remove from power these fanatics who have shamed Canada and put us on the wrong side of history.

Palestine, of course, was welcomed as a Non-Member Observer State. “Voting by an overwhelming majority – 138 in favour to 9 against (Canada, Czech Republic, Israel, Marshall Islands, Micronesia (Federated States of), Nauru, Panama, Palau, United States), with 41 abstentions — the General Assembly today accorded Palestine non-Member Observer State status in the United Nations.“

Voting, Question of Palestine, General Assembly, 44th plenary meeting

For those Canadians who have not been in the loop and would like to put into context what the Harper Government has just done, ask yourself this; was it to the best interest of Canada to vote and lobby against this resolution?… Read the rest

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