Category Archives: Israel

Israel, the Media and the Anatomy of a Sick Society, by Eric Draitser

Source: Counterpunch

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The video of 13 year old Palestinian Ahmed Manasrah bleeding to death on the pavement of an East Jerusalem neighborhood has been described as “shocking,” “disturbing,” and “painful to watch.” The callous verbal abuse and insults from Israelis watching the child writhe in agony are variously characterized as “heartless” and “cruel”; and indeed they are. “Die you son of a whore. Die! Die!” the Israeli onlookers can be heard shouting in the video which has since gone viral on social media.

While there has been much discussion of this video, and other similar incidents involving the extrajudicial executions of Palestinian youths accused by Israel of having stabbed Israelis (the veracity of some of these claims is disputed), there is decidedly little examination of the sociological implications. Specifically, it has become taboo to interrogate just what sort of ideological and psychological conclusions can be drawn about Israelis society – a society where such behavior is not an outlier; where, rather than being an anomaly, it is indicative of a significant, if not mainstream, attitude. Such undeniably barbaric treatment is not simple hate, and cannot be explained away or justified. But that is precisely what the corporate media does.

Suffice to say that there are many political analysts, activists, and others who are timid about outright condemnations of Israeli society and Israeli attitudes. They are, with much justification, fearful of being demonized as anti-Semitic, terrified that rather than open dialogue and critical examination, they will have their arguments twisted and portrayed as hateful and racist. While such accusations are sometimes warranted – as in the case of fascist bigots and neo-Nazis for whom “Jew” is synonymous with “evil” – more often than not these are willfully deceptive deflections designed to shield Israeli society from the criticism that it so clearly deserves.

Continue reading Israel, the Media and the Anatomy of a Sick Society, by Eric Draitser

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Lebanon – What if it Fell?, by Andre Vltchek

Source: Counterpunch

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Beirut is burning; it is hurt, angry and uncertain about its own future.

Ambulances are howling. Hundreds are injured. Rubber bullets are flying and so is live ammunition.

A Revolution? A rebellion?

Who are those men, stripped from their waist up, muscular, throwing stones at the security forces in the center of Beirut? Are they genuine revolutionaries? Are they there in order to reclaim so badly discredited “Arab Spring”?

Or did they come here in a show of force, because the West is paying them? If the Lebanese state collapses, ISIL could move in, and occupy at least a substantial part of Lebanon. That would suit the West’s interests, and those of Turkey, as well as the Gulf States.

Or Israel could take advantage of the vacuum, and invade Lebanon, once again. Or both ISIL and Israel.

[Please click below to continue reading] Continue reading Lebanon – What if it Fell?, by Andre Vltchek

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‘Tel Aviv sur Seine’ – as a rather ‘sick Jewish joke’ bites the dust, by Paul Matthews

'Samson in the Temple of Dagon, destroying his enemies, and himself' - Wood Engraving  Gustav Doré La Bible : Traduction de Bourassé et Janvier, appelée aussi Bible de Tours, 1866
‘Samson in the Temple of Dagon, destroying his enemies, and himself’ – Wood Engraving
Gustav Doré La Bible : Traduction de Bourassé et Janvier, appelée aussi Bible de Tours, 1866

“Frederick John Westcott (26 March 1866 – 18 September 1941), best known by his stage name Fred Karno, was an English theatre impresario of the British music hall. He is credited with popularizing the custard-pie-in-the-face gag. During the 1890s, in order to circumvent stage censorship, Karno developed a form of sketch comedy without dialogue. Cheeky authority-defying playlets such as “Jail Birds” (1896) in which prisoners play tricks on warders and “Early Birds” (1903), where a small man defeats a large ruffian in London’s East End, can be seen as precursors of movie silent comedy. American film producer Hal Roach stated: “Fred Karno is not only a genius, he is the man who originated slapstick comedy. We in Hollywood owe much to him.” Among the music hall comedians who worked for him were Charlie Chaplin and his understudy, Arthur Jefferson, who later adopted the name of Stan Laurel. These were part of what was known as “Fred Karno’s Army”, a phrase still occasionally used in the UK to refer to a chaotic group or organisation. The phrase was also adapted by British soldiers into a trench song in the First World War, as a parody of, or rather to the tune of, the hymn The Church’s One Foundation … “. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fred_Karno.

Writing again from Occupied France, I’ve just watched ‘The Anna Tuv Story’ (q.v.) She lost an arm, her husband Yuriy, and their 11 year old daughter Katya when, in May 2015, their house in Gorlovka was shelled, probably by Ukraine’s 1st howitzer division. But with ‘soundbites’ scripted mostly by the swivel-eyed hasbara merchants, the news was never reported. Neither were the 800 artillery rounds falling on Donetsk to greet the UK’s visiting Defence Secretary. As London and Washington manifested their support for putschists in Ukraine and Brazil, police, journalists and protestors heavily outnumbered pro-Israeli ‘pleasure seekers’ at the Paris Plages fiasco.

The arms trade is booming. With their ham acting and weasel words from White House Apparatchiks, la Mère Hidalgo in Paris, le Père Porochenko and the Right Honourable Tory MP Michael Fallon in Kiev fanning the flames of hatred and intolerance, farce competes with tragedy to sharpen our appetite for truth, justice and peace. The threatened coup d’Etat to oust Dilma Rousseff is deeply disturbing. In a rare moment of optimism, I had considered renaming my, as yet unpublished, research «La décheance du peuple élu – à quand la fin d’une élite autoproclamée ?». But can one translate that into English ? Is there any reason to warrant the belief that we, or any other dissident group, make any impact on this loathsome, repressively Permissive Society of ours ?

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Continue reading ‘Tel Aviv sur Seine’ – as a rather ‘sick Jewish joke’ bites the dust, by Paul Matthews

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Conversation: Eric Draitser on Israeli Genocide

Eric Draitser from Stop Imperialism is as eloquent as ever in his summary of the sham known as the “Democratic State of Israel”.

Please click the link below to listen to this 9 minute interview on CPR Public Radio by host Don Debar.

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The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of Oceania Saker.

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The Future of the Middle East, by Thierry Meyssan

For several months, Barack Obama has been trying to change US policy in the Middle East in order to eliminate the Islamic Emirate with the help of Syria. But he cannot do this, partly because he has been saying for years that President Assad must go, and secondly because his regional allies support the Islamic Emirate against Syria. However, things are slowly evolving so he should be able to do so soon. Thus, it appears that all States that supported the Islamic Emirate have ceased to do so, opening the way for a redistribution of the cards.

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The world awaits the conclusion of a comprehensive agreement between Washington and Tehran -under the ridiculous pretext of ending a military nuclear program that has not existed since the end of the war waged by Iraq (1980-1988) -. It would focus on the protection of Israel in exchange for recognition of Iranian influence in the Middle East and Africa.

However, this should only take effect after the Israeli elections of March 17, 2015. The supposed defeat of Netanyahu would renew ties between Washington and Tel Aviv and facilitate agreement with Tehran.

In this context, the US elite are trying to agree on future policy, while the European allies of the United States are preparing to align with what will be the new US policy.

[Please click below to continue reading] Continue reading The Future of the Middle East, by Thierry Meyssan

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Conversation:Trolling Russia, by Israel Shamir

Will the US Get More Than It Bargained for in Ukraine?

Moscow.

The edifice of world post-1991 order is collapsing right now before our eyes. President Putin’s decision to give a miss to the Auschwitz pilgrimage, right after his absence in Paris at the Charlie festival, gave it the last shove. It was good clean fun to troll Russia, as long as it stayed the course. Not anymore. Russia broke the rules.

Until now, Russia, like a country bumpkin in Eton, tried to belong. It attended the gathering of the grandees where it was shunned, paid its dues to European bodies that condemned it, patiently suffered ceaseless hectoring of the great powers and irritating baiting of East European small-timers alike. But something broke down. The lad does not want to belong anymore; he picked up his stuff and went home – just when they needed him to knee in Auschwitz.

Auschwitz gathering is an annual Canossa of Western leaders where they bewail their historic failure to protect the Jews and swear their perennial obedience to them. This is a more important religious rite of our times, the One Ring to rule them all, established in 2001, when the Judeo-American empire had reached the pinnacle of its power. The Russian leader had duly attended the events. This year, they will have to do without him. Israeli ministers already have expressed their deep dissatisfaction for this was Russia’s Red Army that saved the Jews in Auschwitz, after all. Russia’s absence will turn the Holocaust memorial day into a parochial, West-only, event. Worse, Russia’s place will be taken by Ukraine, ruled by unrepentant heirs to Hitler’s Bandera.

[Please click below to continue reading] Continue reading Conversation:Trolling Russia, by Israel Shamir

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UN Reveals Israeli Links With Syrian Rebels, by Barak Ravid

Reports by UN observers in the Golan submitted to 15 members of Security Council detail regular contact between IDF officers and armed Syrian opposition figures at the border.

December 08, 2014 “ICH” – “Haaretz” – Reports by UN observers in the Golan Heights over the past 18 months reveal the type and extent of cooperation between Israel and Syrian opposition figures. The reports, submitted to the 15 members of the UN Security Council and available on the UN’s website, detail regular contacts held on the border between IDF officers and soldiers and Syrian rebels.

The observer force, UNDOF, was established in 1974 as part of the separation of forces agreement between Israel and Syria. The agreement set up a buffer zone several kilometers wide. About 1,000 UN observers supervised the implementation of the agreement until 2013, when the Syrian civil war severely reduced the force’s ability to function.

While Croatia and Austria pulled out and Ireland, Fiji and India agreed to send troops, the increase of attacks on UN forces in recent months caused the force to abandon many of its positions along the front and to transfer its command to the Israeli side of the border.

The observers have continued to file reports to New York, which were relatively mundane; but their content changed in March 2013, when Israel started admitting injured Syrians for medical treatment in Safed and Nahariya hospitals. The Syrian ambassador to the UN complained of widespread cooperation between Israel and Syrian rebels, not only treatment of the wounded but also other aid.

Israel at first asserted the injured were civilians reaching the border of their own initiative and without prior coordination because they could not obtain suitable treatment in Syria. Later, as the numbers increased, Israel said it was coordinating with civilians but not opposition groups. However, the reports reveal direct contact between the IDF and armed opposition members.

According to a report from December 3, 2013, a person wounded on September 15 “was taken by armed members of the opposition across the ceasefire line, where he was transferred to a civilian ambulance escorted by an IDF vehicle.” Moreover, from November 9 to 19 the “UNDOF observed at least 10 wounded persons being transferred by armed members of the opposition from the Bravo side across the ceasefire line to IDF.”

Further reports indicated similar incidents. However, cooperation between the IDF and Syrian rebels that was revealed in UN observer reports does not just include transferring the wounded. Observers remarked in the report distributed on June 10 that they identified IDF soldiers on the Israeli side handing over two boxes to armed Syrian opposition members on the Syrian side.

The last report distributed to Security Council members, on December 1, described another meeting between IDF soldiers and Syrian opposition members that two UN representatives witnessed on October 27 some three kilometers east of Moshav Yonatan. The observers said they saw two IDF soldiers on the eastern side of the border fence opening the gate and letting two people enter Israel. The report, contrary to previous ones, did not note that the two exiting Syria were injured or why they entered Israel.

This specific event is of particular interest in light of what happened on the Syrian side of the border in the exact same region. According to the report, UN observers stated that tents were set up about 300 meters from the Israeli position for some 70 families of Syrian deserters. The Syrian army sent a letter of complaint to UNDOF in September, claiming this tent camp was a base for “armed terrorists” crossing the border into Israel. The Syrians also warned that if the UN would not evacuate the tent camp, the Syrian army would view it as a legitimate target.

Source:http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article40414.htm

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of Oceania Saker.

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Top Putin aide: Mossad training ISIS terrorists in Iraq & Syria

Source: JPOST News

A top aid to Russian President Vladimir Putin on Sunday accused Israel and the United States of training the Islamic State in order to undermine Moscow’s interests in the Middle East.

In an interview with Iranian state television, Alexander Prokhanov said that Mossad agents were training ISIS fighters in Syria and Iraq.

“ISIS is a tool at the hands of the United States. They tell the Europeans that if we (the Americans) do not intervene, ISIS will cause you harm,” he told PRESS TV.

“They launched their first terror attack against us just a few days back in Chechnya,” he said.

Gunmen attacked a police post and stormed a building on Thursday in Grozny, capital of Russia’s southern province of Chechnya, killing 10 policemen in clashes in which 10 of the attackers were also killed.

The bloodiest fighting in Chechnya for months erupted a few hours before President Vladimir Putin said in a speech in Moscow he would defend Russia against what he called attempts to dismember it.

The attack underlined the fragile security situation in Chechnya more than a decade after Putin sent troops to quell an Islamist separatist uprising there.

Ten policemen and 10 suspected militants were killed, Russia’s National Anti-terrorism Committee (NAK) said, adding that another 28 law enforcement personnel had been wounded.

However, Putin praised the Kremlin-backed leader of Chechnya, Ramzan Kadyrov, for carrying out a “professional” security operation.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of Oceania Saker.

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‘Palestine is not an environment story’, by Nafeez Ahmed

How I was censored by The Guardian for writing about Israel’s war for Gaza’s gas

Gaza

After writing for The Guardian for over a year, my contract was unilaterally terminated because I wrote a piece on Gaza that was beyond the pale. In doing so, The Guardian breached the very editorial freedom the paper was obligated to protect under my contract. I’m speaking out because I believe it is in the public interest to know how a Pulitizer Prize-winning newspaper which styles itself as the world’s leading liberal voice, casually engaged in an act of censorship to shut down coverage of issues that undermined Israel’s publicised rationale for going to war.

Gaza’s gas

I joined the Guardian as an environment blogger in April 2013. Prior to this, I had been an author, academic and freelance journalist for over a decade, writing for The Independent, Independent on Sunday, Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, The Scotsman, Foreign Policy, The Atlantic, Quartz, Prospect, New Statesman, Le Monde diplomatique, among others.

On 9th July 2014, I posted an article via my Earth Insight blog at The Guardian’s environment website, exposing the role of Palestinian resources, specifically Gaza’s off-shore natural gas reserves, in partly motivating Israel’s invasion of Gaza aka ‘Operation Protective Edge.’ Among the sources I referred to was a policy paper written by incumbent Israeli defence minister Moshe Ya’alon one year before Operation Cast Lead, underscoring that the Palestinians could never be allowed to develop their own energy resources as any revenues would go to supporting Palestinian terrorism.

Gas resources exist off Gaza’s shore
Gas resources exist off Gaza’s shore

The article now has 68,000 social media shares, and is by far the single most popular article on the Gaza conflict to date. Contrary to the conventional wisdom, Israel has seen control of Gaza’s gas as a major strategic priority over the last decade for three main reasons.

[Please click below to continue reading] Continue reading ‘Palestine is not an environment story’, by Nafeez Ahmed

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