Tag Archives | Palestine

Caught in the Crossfire: Should Musicians Boycott Israel?

Jello-BiafraJello Biafra, musician, speaker, record label director, and Green Party politician, writes for Al Jazeera English:
So now I have been to Israel. I have also been to Palestine. I got a taste of the place, but not in the way I'd originally hoped.In many ways I really wish my band, Jello Biafra and the Guantanamo School of Medicine, had played in Tel Aviv. But I also share most of the boycott's supporters' feelings about Israel's government, the occupation and ongoing human rights violations. I hope people take the time to understand how deeply this has torn at the fabric of our band. The promoter in Tel Aviv lost thousands, and I am eating thousands more in lost and re-booked airfares that I have no idea how I am going to pay, or how I will pay my bills for the rest of the year. Real human beings got hurt here. This whole controversy has been one of the most intense situations of my life - and I thrive on intense situations. But the rest of the band was not used to this. How fair was it to drag them there in the first place? This is not like fighting Tipper Gore and the Los Angeles Police Department, greedy ex-Dead Kennedys members or more-radical-than-thou thugs who think it's OK to put someone in the hospital for being a "sellout"...
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Israel To Demolish Palestinian Solar Energy Program

West BankVia Common Dreams:

A sustainable energy program in ‘Area C’ of rural West Bank is being threatened by Israeli authorities. The program, which recently installed solar panels and wind turbines in 16 communities, is providing 1,500 Palestinians with electricity — who were formerly without reliable energy.

The foreign aid program, thus far successful, has become a new target for Israel as it threatens to demolish the structures that supposedly lie within Israeli ‘administration’.

Der Spiegel reports:

The best part is when the lights in the tents go on, one by one, says Elad Orian. Electricity here, in the hills south of Hebron, was long unreliable. Either it was not available or it was too expensive, produced for just a few hours each day by a noisy, diesel-guzzling generator. That changed when Elad Orian and Noam Dotan, two Israeli physicians who had tired of conflict, came along three years ago and installed solar panels and erected wind turbines.

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Human Rights Equated With National Suicide

482px-West_Bank_&_Gaza_Map_2007_(Settlements)Any nation that must abridge human rights to survive deserves to fall, and that includes Muslim and Christian nations. Via Al Jazeera English:

The Israeli government has repeatedly demanded that Palestinians recognise Israel as a “Jewish state”. Recent developments in the Knesset and High Court are exposing exactly what this means, and in doing so, throw the spotlight on the issue that the ‘peace process’ – and Western governments – refuse to tackle.

On Wednesday, Israel’s High Court rejected a legal challenge to the Citizenship and Entry into Israel Law, by a six to five vote. The law, first passed as a ‘temporary’ measure in 2003 and renewed ever since, prevents Palestinians from the Occupied Territories (and those from ‘enemy states’) from living with their spouses in Israel.

For thousands of Palestinian families, Israel’s law means a choice between moving abroad, living apart, or living in Israel illegally. No wonder that the Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI) condemned what it described as a “racist law” for the way it harms “the very texture of the lives of families whose only sin is the Palestinian blood that runs in their veins”…

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Bethlehem Battle: Clergymen Clash At Birthplace Of Jesus

For once the police are called to a Christmas brawl and none of my relatives are implicated. From Bernat Armangue at Huffington Post:
BETHLEHEM, West Bank — The annual cleaning of one of Christianity's holiest churches deteriorated into a brawl between rival clergy Wednesday, as dozens of monks feuding over sacred space at the Church of the Nativity battled each other with brooms until police intervened. The ancient church, built over the traditional site of Jesus' birth in Bethlehem, is shared...
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Vast Majority Of Israelis Want To Recognize Palestinian State, Poll Reveals

tumblr_lrvryfI92b1qbkts6o1_500Regarding the question of Palestinian statehood, Barack Obama nows hold a position far to the right of the Israeli populace. Raw Story writes:

Nearly 70 percent of Israelis surveyed recently said that Israel should accept a Palestinian state if the United Nations chooses to recognize it, according to a report in Thursday’s edition of The Jerusalem Post.

The poll results fly in the face of American conservatives and even President Barack Obama, who have taken the lead in discouraging the U.N. from voting on the matter, claiming that it could threaten Israel’s security.

The study was carried out by the Harry S. Truman Research Institute for the Advancement of Peace and the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research. A further 83 percent of Palestinians said that turning to the U.N. for statehood is the right thing to do.

The United States has vowed to veto any request for Palestinian statehood at the Security Council, potentially sparking a new Middle East crisis.

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Palestinians Angry About Leaks Attack Al-Jazeera HQ

Palestine PapersIs this the kind of thing Americans would like to do to WikiLeaks? Linda Gradstein reports from Jerusalem for AOL News

Palestinians supporting President Mahmoud Abbas smashed windows and sprayed graffiti outside the West Bank headquarters of Al-Jazeera today, angry that it published documents that apparently showed Palestinian officials had agreed to Israeli sovereignty over nearly all Jewish settlements in East Jerusalem.

About 250 protesters gathered outside the Pan-Arab TV channel office in Ramallah, and a few sprayed graffiti saying “Al-Jazeera are spies” and “Al-Jazeera equals Israel.” A few of the protesters then broke security cameras and windows.

The documents were published Sunday on Al-Jazeera’s website and by British newspaper The Guardian. They contradict the previously stated public positions of the Palestinians that all of East Jerusalem must be the future capital of the Palestinian Authority.

The cache of documents, which detail Israeli-Palestinian contacts over more than a decade, also show Abbas was warned in advance of Israel’s 2008 invasion of Gaza.

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Al Jazeera Publishes Confidential ‘Palestine Papers’

Palestine PapersFrom Al Jazeera’s own introduction:

Over the last several months, Al Jazeera has been given unhindered access to the largest-ever leak of confidential documents related to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. There are nearly 1,700 files, thousands of pages of diplomatic correspondence detailing the inner workings of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process. These documents – memos, e-mails, maps, minutes from private meetings, accounts of high level exchanges, strategy papers and even power point presentations – date from 1999 to 2010.

The material is voluminous and detailed; it provides an unprecedented look inside the continuing negotiations involving high-level American, Israeli, and Palestinian Authority officials.

Al Jazeera will release the documents between January 23-26th, 2011. They will reveal new details about:

  • the Palestinian Authority’s willingness to concede illegal Israeli settlements in East Jerusalem, and to be “creative” about the status of the Haram al-Sharif/Temple Mount;
  • the compromises the Palestinian Authority was prepared to make on refugees and the right of return;
  • details of the PA’s security cooperation with Israel;
  • and private exchanges between Palestinian and American negotiators in late 2009, when the Goldstone Report was being discussed at the United Nations.
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“They Are Our Government, Our Leaders—They Cannot Be Crazy”

Regions of the brain associated with stress and posttraumatic stress disorder.

Regions of the brain associated with stress and posttraumatic stress disorder.

Are the Israelis repeating Holocaust traumas upon the Palestinians?  From the July 1992 issue of Washington Report on Middle East Affairs:

Dr. Jan Bastiaans, a Dutch psychiatrist, is an authority on the Holocaust syndrome, and has treated many survivors. In 1973 he wrote, “In recent years the Ka-tzet (concentration camp) syndrome has suddenly received general recognition…This concept is concerned with…pathological processes that occurred after the war in former concentration camp prisoners…The Ka-tzet syndrome is the expression of a permanent, chronic obstruction of sound human relationships. The victims are not free from the concentration camp…Behind their adaptation facade continues to live the child or adult of [that time] in all fear, in all misery, in all powerlessness.”

Dr. Haim Dasberg, an associate professor of psychiatry at the Hebrew University and medical director of the Ezrat Nashim Jerusalem Mental Health Center, has written extensively on PTSD and the Israeli army.

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