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Archive for the ‘Gaza’ Category

Goldstone’s Cave-In Doesn’t Get The Likudniks Off His Back

Posted by Phoenix Woman on April 3, 2011

After years of being harrassed, being called a “bad Jew”, and seeing even his grandson attacked by the hasbara wing of the Likudniks and their fellow travelers, poor Richard Goldstone has, much as Salman Rushdie did under similar pressure, apparently cracked and is begging them to leave him alone.

How else does one explain this recanting of his, wherein he doesn’t explain exactly what made him change his mind — but instead tries to change the subject from crimes committed by the IDF to rocket attacks launched from Gaza?

Mondoweiss shreds his recanting into tiny bits, here, here, and here.

And of course, just as Salman Rushdie’s tormentors only redoubled their persecution of him in response to his capitulation, Goldstone’s tormentors are stepping up their attacks on Goldstone and his work:

Goldstone’s latest op-ed is something else altogether.  It does not challenge a single concrete finding in the entire report, and he has not conceded absolutely anything to his critics in that way.  In fact, his findings under severe constraints have held up remarkably well with time.  But the tone and timing of this current piece suggest that somehow the report should be “reconsidered”, that it was somehow wrong.  Moreover, his comments seem to intentionally mislead about the content of the UN independent committee’s findings on due process in Israel.  This is nothing more than a bone to Israel’s apologists, which is deeply misleading for all the reasons discussed here.  I am afraid this is a sad, integrity-damaging turn for a man who had singlehandedly done so much to protect people from war crimes in Israel, Palestine, and elsewhere.

And he should have known better, that is, he should have known that this craven gesture to Israel would not allow his enemies to forgive him and welcome him back to the broader Jewish community.  Already the enemies, sensing weakness, attack for the final kill attempt.  Jeffrey Goldberg, with the tone of the intellectual gatekeeper he fashions for himself, makes it clear this doesn’t change the “blood libel.”  The editor-in-chief of the Jerusalem Post, David Horovitz, tells Goldstone “an apology is not good enough“.  We can expect much, much more of such attacks.

Once again, trying to appease right-wing authoritarian nutjobs never works, ever.

(Crossposted at MyFDL.)

Posted in Gaza | Tagged: , , , , , | 3 Comments »

So Much For GOP Smears Vs. Keith Ellison

Posted by Phoenix Woman on November 30, 2010

Wikileaks reveals that Keith Ellison, the representative for Minnesota’s Fifth US Congressional District, met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin (Binyamin) Netanyahu in Washington in the spring of 2009.

Since the Wikileaks site is currently being slammed by conservative US hackers, here’s the Google cache link (h/t to David Brauer, a true man among men):

¶9. (C) Representative Ellison, noting that he is the first
Muslim to be elected to Congress, said he visited Gaza in
February and met with NGO representatives who could deliver
assistance without the credit going to Hamas. He urged
Netanyahu to consider opening the Gaza crossings, adding that
Gazans he had met told him they want peace and would like to
get their jobs back in Israel. Netanyahu responded that he
is looking at ways to balance Israeli security with enabling
Gazans to have a normal life. The flow of money and weapons
to Hamas remains a problem since Hamas is extending the range
and payload of the rockets it possesses. In response to
Representative Ellison’s comment that Israel should allow
USAID to return to Gaza, Netanyahu said he thought that it
might be a good thing to have USAID operate in Gaza.

Uh-oh! Wait until AIPAC sees this! Allow actual aid to Gaza? Sheldon Adelson will stamp his billion-dollar feet when he hears of Bibi’s blasphemy.

Posted in Gaza, Islam, israel, Keith Ellison, Middle East, Minnesota | 4 Comments »

365AM: A Story About the War You Were Never Meant to See

Posted by Phoenix Woman on November 13, 2010

Especially if you’re an American:

The backstory:

In the winter of 2008, two days after Christmas, Israel launched one of its deadliest and most controversial wars. Whilst preventing the people of Gaza from fleeing the territory, it proceeded to rain missiles down on them using some of the most sophisticated weaponry available. Trapped with them, were the only two foreign reporters inside Gaza at the time. They found themselves locked inside a war zone as the only voices able to reach the English-speaking world. This is their incredible, and as yet untold, story.

Ayman Mohyeldin, a 30-year old American citizen and Sherine Tadros, a 29-year old British national lived through the war – for three weeks reporting for Al Jazeera English amidst an international media blackout.

Now, they want to tell others what they witnessed – raw and uncut. 365 AM will stimulate audiences with exclusive footage and images captured in different formats from professional cameras to mobile phones. The film draws on powerful images from over 100 hours of footage, mostly from Al Jazeera English, and never-before-seen personal video of Ayman and Sherine during the war.

Go here to learn more.

Posted in colonial wars, Gaza | 1 Comment »

Rachel Corrie Civil Lawsuit News

Posted by Phoenix Woman on September 5, 2010

As Edward Teller says, don’t expect to see much about the second phase of this lawsuit, filed in Israel by Rachel Corrie’s parents, in the US press:

Among the witnesses to appear today, tomorrow and after the holidays, are two Military Police investigators who in March 2003 decided, together with the southern district prosecutor, to close the case. The state will also present an expert witness who will give his opinion as to the bulldozer driver’s field of vision.

The state submitted 13 affidavits, including that of the driver who ran down Corrie, his commander and other military officials involved in the case.

Rachel Corrie, you will remember, is habitually mocked as “Saint Pancake” by right-wingers and other crass persons not wanting to admit that she or the Palestinians on whose behalf she acted were or are human beings.

And again, as Edward Teller states:

A summation of documents having to do with the first phase can be found at the niche at the Rachel Corrie Foundation devoted to the trial. Before the civil suit began, I felt strongly that Corrie had died in an unfortunate event. But the patterns of IDF communication uncovered during the first phase indicate to me that she was intentionally killed.

Rather like what happened to the Mavi Marmara flotilla, it would seem.

Posted in 2010, Gaza, heroines, israel | 1 Comment »

Choking more slowly

Posted by Charles II on July 22, 2010

Mel Frykberg, IPS:

[Israeli human rights organization] Gisha reports that there has been a moderate rise in the volume of trucks entering Gaza and an increase in imports of consumer goods, but that this volume still falls way below pre-embargo days, and isn’t sufficient to meet the daily needs of Gaza’s 1.5 million civilians.

During the week after Jun. 20, 695 trucks of goods entered Gaza. This compares with 2,400 per week prior to the closure, and meets only 30 percent of Palestinian needs. Over the past three years 2,328 trucks entered Gaza on a monthly basis compared with 10,400 trucks monthly prior to the blockade.

Additionally, items which could be used for industry and manufacturing and which present no security threat are still being restricted. There appears to be “no change in the policy of inflicting economic warfare or by preventing entry of goods necessary for production,” says the Gisha report. “Textiles, industrial-sized buckets of margarine, glucose, packaging boxes and other raw materials are still banned.

A major step towards helping to rehabilitate Gaza’s economy would be permitting exports on which Gaza’s economy is heavily reliant. A 2005 Agreement on Movement and Access, signed by Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA) in 2005, agreed to 400 daily truckloads of exports. In the last three years 295 export trucks have exited Gaza.

Killing people slowly is no less murder than killing them quickly.

Posted in Gaza, israel | 1 Comment »

You Should Read Max Blumenthal

Posted by Phoenix Woman on June 17, 2010

And I should, too. I very nearly missed these gems:

— Guess who Glenn Beck’s best friend is right now? C’mon, guess. Yeah, I had to glue my head back on, too.

Guess who got caught pushing a photo and lying about it? Unlike the first item, this is not exactly a surprise as they have some past record of similar hinkiness with regard to visual documentation.

— More exposure of IDF bullshit, this time about the nonexistent “terrorists” on the Mavi Marmara.

— And a piece on how even the NYT — or at least The Lede — is documenting the exposing of each piece of IDF bullpucky pertaining to their assault on the first Gaza flotilla.

Go and enjoy!

Posted in Gaza, israel | 2 Comments »

What really happened in the raid on the Freedom Flotilla

Posted by Charles II on June 12, 2010

(Crossposted to DK)

Via Craig Murray, a video of what really happened on the Mavi Marmara in the Freedom Flotilla running the Gaza Blockade, from film smuggled out by journalists. This film was produced by Cultures of Resistance [Update: this appears to be the clip from about 39:00 onward in a longer version of the video below]:

Israeli Attack on the Mavi Marmara, May 31st 2010 // 15 min. from Cultures of Resistance on Vimeo.

A commenter claims that a Norwegian voice states that the red liquid seen early on is not blood. The video also does seem to show commandos descending without the use of teargas, flash grenades, or live weapons fire. Since the film begins in the middle of events, they could have been used earlier [update: and may well have been. See the longer film below].

Here is film from before the attack:

Israeli Attack on the Mavi Marmara // Raw Footage from Cultures of Resistance on Vimeo.

The Israelis come alongside ca. 32:00. They fire something around 36:00 and what looks to be a cloud of gas appears. There could also be gunfire at this point; one can’t tell. Someone throws something, maybe a tear gas canister at the boat at about 37:20, and it bounces off near the windscreen. There is the reddish material running down near the ship ladder to the upper deck at ca. 38:00. Someone says, “This is blood.” and repeats it. Someone else, who sounds Norwegian, says it’s a paintball. A laser sighting dot appears on the deck at about 39:30 and the Norwegian (?) says something about “live ammunition”. Commandos come down at 41:30, so this appears to be the same/similar film as in the first tape. One of the passengers appears to be holding a stick at 42:00. A young man shoots a slingshot at the helicopter; he is joined by another. The helicopter takes off. Sounds that could be gunshots. At 43:25, a wounded man is brought by. There are sounds that are probably gunfire. A ship warning chime sounds three times. It seems that the wounded man is an Israeli soldier in civilian clothes, since papers are shown and said to be “from the Israelis” that are said to show who they wanted to get. In this film, the pictures are at first wiped out by glare, but then the man shows them slowly. There are people on the Challenger -1 and -2. These are the ones on the Mavi Marmara (photo sharpened to try to read the writing):

I don’t recognize the people. But most of them look a little elderly to be terrorists. After 45:00, one man apparently dies and others are shown with wounds.

Now if the Israelis will only release the rest of the film they confiscated, there can be a real investigation of what happened.

Posted in Gaza, israel | 1 Comment »

Confirming What We Already Knew

Posted by Phoenix Woman on June 10, 2010

The Israeli blockade of Gaza isn’t about security, it’s about cruelty:

Last week, after Israeli commandos killed nine volunteers on a Turkish-organized Gaza aid flotilla, Israel again said its aim was to stop the flow of terrorist arms into Gaza.

However, in response to a lawsuit by Gisha, an Israeli human rights group, the Israeli government explained the blockade as an exercise of the right of economic warfare.

“A country has the right to decide that it chooses not to engage in economic relations or to give economic assistance to the other party to the conflict, or that it wishes to operate using ‘economic warfare,'” the government said.

McClatchy obtained the government’s written statement from Gisha, the Legal Center for Freedom of Movement, which sued the government for information about the blockade. The Israeli high court upheld the suit, and the government delivered its statement earlier this year.

Sari Bashi, the director of Gisha, said the documents prove that Israel isn’t imposing its blockade for its stated reasons, but rather as collective punishment for the Palestinian population of Gaza. Gisha focuses on Palestinian rights.

Collective punishment. Or the Ledeen Doctrine.

Posted in Gaza, israel | 12 Comments »

Israelis seize SS Rachel Corrie

Posted by Charles II on June 5, 2010

Haaretz photo of the Rachel Corrie
(image from Haaretz)

Dennis Bernstein and Jesse Strauss, Consortium:

Editor’s Note: Shortly after dawn on Saturday, the Israeli Navy seized the Rachel Corrie in international waters about 35 miles off the coast of Gaza. Unlike the bloody assault on Monday, Israeli forces boarded the Rachel Corrie from sea, not from helicopters, Israeli officials said.

An Israeli spokesperson said there was no resistance from the crew or passengers. The following article was reported and filed before the assault took place:

This note from the above article:

Meanwhile, there is deep concern among Gaza boat activists that the Israeli violence will continue. Henry Norr, a long-time anti-occupation activist, journalist and flotilla supporter, spoke with one of those detained Monday, 68-year-old Janet Colberne.

“They were still beating people in the airport as the detainees were loading up at Ben-Gurion International Airport,” Colberne said.

Zannie at Daily Kos is on it.

You can see IDF film of the seizure.

Posted in eedjits, evil, Gaza, israel | 4 Comments »

Some More Goodies You’ll Never See On Network TV

Posted by Phoenix Woman on June 4, 2010

The BBC did a very good documentary some years back about the Israeli attack on the USS Liberty. It’s worth watching. “If it was an accident, it was the best-planned accident I’ve ever heard of.”

Glenn Greenwald points out why the Israelis tried to jam the flotilla’s communications, confiscated the passengers’ cameras, computers, and other devices for recording and transmitting information:

(2) Reporters Without Borders notes that, as of yesterday, Israel continued to detain most journalists on the ships, including their film and cameras, thus preventing any of them from disputing Israeli propaganda; as the NYT reported, Israel was also “refusing to permit journalists access to witnesses who might contradict Israel’s version of events.”  Manifestly, all that was done to ensure that the highly selective and edited video released by the IDF would shape the narrative of what happened and could not be challenged in the first few days of reporting.

(3) The truth, however, always emerges.  See this interview with just-released Al Jazeera reporter Jamal Elshayyal, who was aboard the ship that was attacked, about what really happened and who began the shooting.

Posted in Gaza, israel | 1 Comment »

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