Thursday, November 27, 2008
By Gideon Levy
The elections for the 17th Knesset have already been decided: Benjamin Netanyahu will be the next prime minister. Nothing will change the current trend, which was reflected in polls this weekend. At a time when the entire world, including Israel, is amazed and moved by the miracle election of Barack Obama, Israel is on the verge of electing George Bush.
Tzipi Livni will not become less feeble, and Ehud Barak will not fix his waywardness. And the new left-wing party in the works will not make a difference one way or the other - it is too little, too late. Israelis intend to vote for the conservative, right-wing, nationalist, bellicose candidate - the Israeli Bush. The world is moving forward, while Israel is taking a step backward.
Netanyahu may not be as awful as it would appear for the left, but the sweeping support he enjoys in the polls signals to us and to the world, including the Arab world, the true nature of Israeli society. Good riddance to the deceptive myth that most Israelis want peace; you can forget about all the deceitful polls that showed most of the public supports a two-state solution. No solution and no two states, but only the truth, which once again has been exposed: a nationalistic, belligerent society electing its spitting image as its leader.
Once every few years we have this referendum over the future of peace and the occupation, the main issue in every election campaign. Once every few years, the left is revealed to be as virtual a force as there ever was. Candidates bicker among themselves over who will "divide" and who will "return," who will "concede" and who will "give" - questions that are downright immoral given that the discussion is over territories that are not ours.
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Just go to www.livestation.com and download the free software, from there search away!!
There is quite alot of decent media streaming available, stations such as Aljazeera Int., NPR, BBC Arabic, Al Manar and Russian TV are some just too name a few.... check it!
Thursday, November 20, 2008
RAMALLAH, West Bank - Israel has imposed a virtual news blackout on the Gaza Strip. For the last ten days no foreign journalists have been able to enter the besieged territory to report on the escalating humanitarian crisis caused by Israel's complete closure of Gaza's borders for the last two weeks.
Steve Gutkin, the AP bureau chief in Jerusalem and head of Israel's Foreign Press Association, said that he personally "knows of no foreign journalist that has been allowed into Gaza in the last week."
Gutkin said that "while Israel has barred foreign press from entering Gaza in the past, the length of the current ban makes it unprecedented." He added that he has received no "plausible or acceptable" explanation for the ban from the Israeli government.
AP has relied on reports from two of its journalists who were able to enter Gaza days before the closure began and are currently stuck there.
A delegation of European Union parliamentarians was also prevented from entering Gaza to assess the situation on the ground and to hold talks with Hamas leaders. They subsequently broke the naval siege of Gaza by entering the coast's territorial waters from Cyprus by boat, defying the Israeli navy.
During talks held with Hamas, the EU parliamentarians were able to get a historic commitment from the Islamic organisation to recognise Israel's right to exist within the internationally recognised 1967 borders. Hamas further offered a long-term ceasefire in return for Israel legitimising Palestinian rights.
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Barack Obama is to pursue an ambitious peace plan in the Middle East involving the recognition of Israel by the Arab world in exchange for its withdrawal to pre-1967 borders, according to sources close to America’s president-elect.
Obama intends to throw his support behind a 2002 Saudi peace initiative endorsed by the Arab League and backed by Tzipi Livni, the Israeli foreign minister and leader of the ruling Kadima party.
The proposal gives Israel an effective veto on the return of Arab refugees expelled in 1948 while requiring it to restore the Golan Heights to Syria and allow the Palestinians to establish a state capital in east Jerusalem.
On a visit to the Middle East last July, the president-elect said privately it would be “crazy” for Israel to refuse a deal that could “give them peace with the Muslim world”, according to a senior Obama adviser.
Saturday, November 15, 2008
The UN warns that it is running out of food to distribute in Gaza, putting the civilian population there at severe risk, as a direct result of an Israeli food blockade.
A food blockade? That is a war crime! Why aren't the people ordering the malnourishment of a civilian population under foreign military occupation being arrested and taken to the Hague for trial?
I mean, people in the US are routinely arrested for animal abuse because they kept their pets malnourished. Wouldn't it be a crime to do that to Palestinian children?
Monday, November 10, 2008
At a recent conference I was repeatedly asked about the prospects for a third Palestinian uprising, or Intifada. The question, although seemingly uncomplicated, is both loaded and important, and cannot be answered in a mere two minutes or less.
A 'third Intifada' would imply that the second has already ended. But has it? Or did it simply lose momentum, sense of focus and direction, or were its energies squandered - as a popular uprising - on factional disputes and internal division?
Some of its initial leaders are no longer involved, and a cohesive uprising cannot exist if too many of its players have switched sides, changed roles, or are absent altogether. To approach this subject more practically, the first Intifada in 1987 must be thoroughly scrutinized.
Citizens in the Gaza Strip are bracing for more electricity blackouts after Israel cut off fuel shipments to the territory's only power plant.
Israel has closed crossings into Gaza, making it likely that electricity would be completely cut off in the territory from about 1600 GMT, Palestinian officials said.
Israel's defence ministry closed the crossings on Sunday after Palestinian fighters fired rockets into southern Israel. No one was hurt in the attack.
"More than 30 per cent of the electricity supply in the Gaza Strip could not be guaranteed this evening," Jamal al-Kudari, head of a committee campaigning to end Israeli sanctions, said on Sunday.
Saturday, November 8, 2008
Dear Mr. Barack Obama
We take the opportunity to congratulate you for being elected for the presidency of the presently mightiest military power and thus most influential political post in the world.
We are sure that a man of your caliber and intelligence who was able to overcome the doubt to achieve a big victory in spite of the old inherent prejudice against electing an Afro-American to lead the American people during at least the coming four years.
Mr. President Elect, we are sure that you are aware that your emulator to the post, as is evident, requested the outgoing president not to openly extend support to him in the presidential election campaign, though they belong to the same political party, because he was afraid that Mr. Bush’s reputation would smear his and strongly affect his chances of winning the post as a Republican candidate; which had actually strongly contributed to his failure, which is simply a result of the foolish, both internal and international, policy the outgoing regime had followed, which caused unprecedented global tragedies, especially as a result its directly waged wars - as is the case against Iraq and Afghanistan - and threat to wage other wars, and indirectly by supporting the rogue states, the outstanding example of which is the Zionist state of Israel, with its continuous wars against the indigenous Arab population of Palestine, and other Arab states especially during the 2006 war against Lebanon, and Israel’s role in the devastating war against Iraq. Also its continuous pressure on your nation to wage a war against the far away Iran on the pretence of developing atomic energy, forgetting that it is indeed Israel that is the only state in the region with an atomic bombs arsenal. We are sure that one of the main causes of the failure of your competitor, Mr. McCain, who against the will of the vast majority of the American people, declared that the occupation of Iraq should be eternal. We are sure that you are aware that these wars destroyed Iraq as a people and as a land, as well as its contribution to the destruction of the American economy, and its contribution to the present financial crisis.
The Israel Defense Forces Northern Command concluded a large-scale exercise yesterday which simulated a double-front conflagration with Syria and Lebanon.
The drill, codenamed "Shiluv Zro'ot III" (Crossing Arms III), was the second largest of its kind since the end of the Second Lebanon War in 2006. The exercise drilled the Israel Air Force and the Home Front Command in dealing with protocol and problem-solving missions under the simulated firing of thousands of rockets and missiles into the heart of Israel's population centers.In addition to the Northern Command, the air force and the home front command, Crossing Arms involved the IDF Military Intelligence directorate and the general staff. Unlike headquarter-level exercises from the past, Crossing Arms entailed the deployment of troops on the ground, comprising mainly reservists.
Additionally, helicopter gunships and airplanes were sent on mock raids and evacuation missions. The aircraft did not fire live ammunition, according to army sources.