Thursday, April 29, 2010


By Noam Chomsky

Tuesday 27 April 2010

The fact that the Israel-Palestine conflict grinds on without resolution might appear to be rather strange. For many of the world's conflicts, it is difficult even to conjure up a feasible settlement. In this case, it is not only possible, but there is near universal agreement on its basic contours: a two-state settlement along the internationally recognized (pre-June 1967) borders -- with "minor and mutual modifications," to adopt official U.S. terminology before Washington departed from the international community in the mid-1970s.

The basic principles have been accepted by virtually the entire world, including the Arab states (who go on to call for full normalization of relations), the Organization of Islamic States (including Iran), and relevant non-state actors (including Hamas). A settlement along these lines was first proposed at the U.N. Security Council in January 1976 by the major Arab states. Israel refused to attend the session. The U.S. vetoed the resolution, and did so again in 1980. The record at the General Assembly since is similar.

There was one important and revealing break in U.S.-Israeli rejectionism. After the failed Camp David agreements in 2000, President Clinton recognized that the terms he and Israel had proposed were unacceptable to any Palestinians. That December, he proposed his "parameters": imprecise, but more forthcoming. He then stated that both sides had accepted the parameters, while expressing reservations.

Israeli and Palestinian negotiators met in Taba, Egypt, in January 2001 to resolve the differences and were making considerable progress. In their final press conference, they reported that, with a little more time, they could probably have reached full agreement. Israel called off the negotiations prematurely, however, and official progress then terminated, though informal discussions at a high level continued leading to the Geneva Accord, rejected by Israel and ignored by the U.S.

A good deal has happened since, but a settlement along those lines is still not out of reach -- if, of course, Washington is once again willing to accept it. Unfortunately, there is little sign of that.
Substantial mythology has been created about the entire record, but the basic facts are clear enough and quite well documented.

The U.S. and Israel have been acting in tandem to extend and deepen the occupation. In 2005, recognizing that it was pointless to subsidize a few thousand Israeli settlers in Gaza, who were appropriating substantial resources and protected by a large part of the Israeli army, the government of Ariel Sharon decided to move them to the much more valuable West Bank and Golan Heights.

Instead of carrying out the operation straightforwardly, as would have been easy enough, the government decided to stage a "national trauma," which virtually duplicated the farce accompanying the withdrawal from the Sinai desert after the Camp David agreements of 1978-79. In each case, the withdrawal permitted the cry of "Never Again," which meant in practice: we cannot abandon an inch of the Palestinian territories that we want to take in violation of international law. This farce played very well in the West, though it was ridiculed by more astute Israeli commentators, among them that country's prominent sociologist the late Baruch Kimmerling.

After its formal withdrawal from the Gaza Strip, Israel never actually relinquished its total control over the territory, often described realistically as "the world's largest prison." In January 2006, a few months after the withdrawal, Palestine had an election that was recognized as free and fair by international observers. Palestinians, however, voted "the wrong way," electing Hamas. Instantly, the U.S. and Israel intensified their assault against Gazans as punishment for this misdeed. The facts and the reasoning were not concealed; rather, they were openly published alongside reverential commentary on Washington's sincere dedication to democracy. The U.S.-backed Israeli assault against the Gazans has only been intensified since, thanks to violence and economic strangulation, increasingly savage.

Meanwhile in the West Bank, always with firm U.S. backing, Israel has been carrying forward longstanding programs to take the valuable land and resources of the Palestinians and leave them in unviable cantons, mostly out of sight. Israeli commentators frankly refer to these goals as "neocolonial." Ariel Sharon, the main architect of the settlement programs, called these cantons "Bantustans," though the term is misleading: South Africa needed the majority black work force, while Israel would be happy if the Palestinians disappeared, and its policies are directed to that end.

Blockading Gaza by Land and Sea

One step towards cantonization and the undermining of hopes for Palestinian national survival is the separation of Gaza from the West Bank. These hopes have been almost entirely consigned to oblivion, an atrocity to which we should not contribute by tacit consent. Israeli journalist Amira Hass, one of the leading specialists on Gaza, writes that "the restrictions on Palestinian movement that Israel introduced in January 1991 reversed a process that had been initiated in June 1967. Back then, and for the first time since 1948, a large portion of the Palestinian people again lived in the open territory of a single country -- to be sure, one that was occupied, but was nevertheless whole.… The total separation of the Gaza Strip from the West Bank is one of the greatest achievements of Israeli politics, whose overarching objective is to prevent a solution based on international decisions and understandings and instead dictate an arrangement based on Israel's military superiority.…

"Since January 1991, Israel has bureaucratically and logistically merely perfected the split and the separation: not only between Palestinians in the occupied territories and their brothers in Israel, but also between the Palestinian residents of Jerusalem and those in the rest of the territories and between Gazans and West Bankers/Jerusalemites. Jews live in this same piece of land within a superior and separate system of privileges, laws, services, physical infrastructure and freedom of movement."

The leading academic specialist on Gaza, Harvard scholar Sara Roy, adds:
"Gaza is an example of a society that has been deliberately reduced to a state of abject destitution, its once productive population transformed into one of aid-dependent paupers.… Gaza's subjection began long before Israel's recent war against it [December 2008]. The Israeli occupation — now largely forgotten or denied by the international community — has devastated Gaza's economy and people, especially since 2006…. After Israel's December [2008] assault, Gaza's already compromised conditions have become virtually unlivable. Livelihoods, homes, and public infrastructure have been damaged or destroyed on a scale that even the Israel Defense Forces admitted was indefensible.

"In Gaza today, there is no private sector to speak of and no industry. 80 percent of Gaza's agricultural crops were destroyed and Israel continues to snipe at farmers attempting to plant and tend fields near the well-fenced and patrolled border. Most productive activity has been extinguished.… Today, 96 percent of Gaza's population of 1.4 million is dependent on humanitarian aid for basic needs. According to the World Food Programme, the Gaza Strip requires a minimum of 400 trucks of food every day just to meet the basic nutritional needs of the population. Yet, despite a March [22, 2009] decision by the Israeli cabinet to lift all restrictions on foodstuffs entering Gaza, only 653 trucks of food and other supplies were allowed entry during the week of May 10, at best meeting 23 percent of required need. Israel now allows only 30 to 40 commercial items to enter Gaza compared to 4,000 approved products prior to June 2006."

It cannot be too often stressed that Israel had no credible pretext for its 2008–9 attack on Gaza, with full U.S. support and illegally using U.S. weapons. Near-universal opinion asserts the contrary, claiming that Israel was acting in self-defense. That is utterly unsustainable, in light of Israel's flat rejection of peaceful means that were readily available, as Israel and its U.S. partner in crime knew very well. That aside, Israel's siege of Gaza is itself an act of war, as Israel of all countries certainly recognizes, having repeatedly justified launching major wars on grounds of partial restrictions on its access to the outside world, though nothing remotely like what it has long imposed on Gaza.

One crucial element of Israel's criminal siege, little reported, is the naval blockade. Peter Beaumont reports from Gaza that, "on its coastal littoral, Gaza's limitations are marked by a different fence where the bars are Israeli gunboats with their huge wakes, scurrying beyond the Palestinian fishing boats and preventing them from going outside a zone imposed by the warships." According to reports from the scene, the naval siege has been tightened steadily since 2000. Fishing boats have been driven steadily out of Gaza's territorial waters and toward the shore by Israeli gunboats, often violently without warning and with many casualties. As a result of these naval actions, Gaza's fishing industry has virtually collapsed; fishing is impossible near shore because of the contamination caused by Israel's regular attacks, including the destruction of power plants and sewage facilities.

These Israeli naval attacks began shortly after the discovery by the BG (British Gas) Group of what appear to be quite sizeable natural gas fields in Gaza's territorial waters. Industry journals report that Israel is already appropriating these Gazan resources for its own use, part of its commitment to shift its economy to natural gas. The standard industry source reports:
"Israel's finance ministry has given the Israel Electric Corp. (IEC) approval to purchase larger quantities of natural gas from BG than originally agreed upon, according to Israeli government sources [which] said the state-owned utility would be able to negotiate for as much as 1.5 billion cubic meters of natural gas from the Marine field located off the Mediterranean coast of the Palestinian controlled Gaza Strip.

"Last year the Israeli government approved the purchase of 800 million cubic meters of gas from the field by the IEC…. Recently the Israeli government changed its policy and decided the state-owned utility could buy the entire quantity of gas from the Gaza Marine field. Previously the government had said the IEC could buy half the total amount and the remainder would be bought by private power producers."

The pillage of what could become a major source of income for Gaza is surely known to U.S. authorities. It is only reasonable to suppose that the intention to appropriate these limited resources, either by Israel alone or together with the collaborationist Palestinian Authority, is the motive for preventing Gazan fishing boats from entering Gaza's territorial waters.
There are some instructive precedents. In 1989, Australian foreign minister Gareth Evans signed a treaty with his Indonesian counterpart Ali Alatas granting Australia rights to the substantial oil reserves in "the Indonesian Province of East Timor." The Indonesia-Australia Timor Gap Treaty, which offered not a crumb to the people whose oil was being stolen, "is the only legal agreement anywhere in the world that effectively recognises Indonesia's right to rule East Timor," the Australian press reported.

Asked about his willingness to recognize the Indonesian conquest and to rob the sole resource of the conquered territory, which had been subjected to near-genocidal slaughter by the Indonesian invader with the strong support of Australia (along with the U.S., the U.K., and some others), Evans explained that "there is no binding legal obligation not to recognise the acquisition of territory that was acquired by force," adding that "the world is a pretty unfair place, littered with examples of acquisition by force."

It should, then, be unproblematic for Israel to follow suit in Gaza.
A few years later, Evans became the leading figure in the campaign to introduce the concept "responsibility to protect" -- known as R2P -- into international law. R2P is intended to establish an international obligation to protect populations from grave crimes. Evans is the author of a major book on the subject and was co-chair of the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty, which issued what is considered the basic document on R2P.
In an article devoted to this "idealistic effort to establish a new humanitarian principle," the London Economist featured Evans and his "bold but passionate claim on behalf of a three-word expression which (in quite large part thanks to his efforts) now belongs to the language of diplomacy: the 'responsibility to protect.'" The article is accompanied by a picture of Evans with the caption "Evans: a lifelong passion to protect." His hand is pressed to his forehead in despair over the difficulties faced by his idealistic effort. The journal chose not to run a different photo that circulates in Australia, depicting Evans and Alatas exuberantly clasping their hands together as they toast the Timor Gap Treaty that they had just signed.

Though a "protected population" under international law, Gazans do not fall under the jurisdiction of the "responsibility to protect," joining other unfortunates, in accord with the maxim of Thucydides -- that the strong do as they wish, and the weak suffer as they must -- which holds with its customary precision.

Obama and the Settlements

The kinds of restrictions on movement used to destroy Gaza have long been in force in the West Bank as well, less cruelly but with grim effects on life and the economy. The World Bank reports that Israel has established "a complex closure regime that restricts Palestinian access to large areas of the West Bank… The Palestinian economy has remained stagnant, largely because of the sharp downturn in Gaza and Israel's continued restrictions on Palestinian trade and movement in the West Bank."

The World Bank "cited Israeli roadblocks and checkpoints hindering trade and travel, as well as restrictions on Palestinian building in the West Bank, where the Western-backed government of Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas holds sway." Israel does permit -- indeed encourage -- a privileged existence for elites in Ramallah and sometimes elsewhere, largely relying on European funding, a traditional feature of colonial and neocolonial practice.

All of this constitutes what Israeli activist Jeff Halper calls a "matrix of control" to subdue the colonized population. These systematic programs over more than 40 years aim to establish Defense Minister Moshe Dayan's recommendation to his colleagues shortly after Israel's 1967 conquests that we must tell the Palestinians in the territories: "We have no solution, you shall continue to live like dogs, and whoever wishes may leave, and we will see where this process leads."

Turning to the second bone of contention, settlements, there is indeed a confrontation, but it is rather less dramatic than portrayed. Washington's position was presented most strongly in Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's much-quoted statement rejecting "natural growth exceptions" to the policy opposing new settlements. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, along with President Shimon Peres and, in fact, virtually the whole Israeli political spectrum, insists on permitting "natural growth" within the areas that Israel intends to annex, complaining that the United States is backing down on George W. Bush's authorization of such expansion within his "vision" of a Palestinian state.

Senior Netanyahu cabinet members have gone further. Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz announced that "the current Israeli government will not accept in any way the freezing of legal settlement activity in Judea and Samaria." The term "legal" in U.S.-Israeli parlance means "illegal, but authorized by the government of Israel with a wink from Washington." In this usage, unauthorized outposts are termed "illegal," though apart from the dictates of the powerful, they are no more illegal than the settlements granted to Israel under Bush's "vision" and Obama's scrupulous omission.

The Obama-Clinton "hardball" formulation is not new. It repeats the wording of the Bush administration draft of the 2003 Road Map, which stipulates that in Phase I, "Israel freezes all settlement activity (including natural growth of settlements)." All sides formally accept the Road Map (modified to drop the phrase "natural growth") -- consistently overlooking the fact that Israel, with U.S. support, at once added 14 "reservations" that render it inoperable.
If Obama were at all serious about opposing settlement expansion, he could easily proceed with concrete measures by, for example, reducing U.S. aid by the amount devoted to this purpose. That would hardly be a radical or courageous move. The Bush I administration did so (reducing loan guarantees), but after the Oslo accord in 1993, President Clinton left calculations to the government of Israel. Unsurprisingly, there was "no change in the expenditures flowing to the settlements," the Israeli press reported. "[Prime Minister] Rabin will continue not to dry out the settlements," the report concludes. "And the Americans? They will understand."

Obama administration officials informed the press that the Bush I measures are "not under discussion," and that pressures will be "largely symbolic." In short, Obama understands, just as Clinton and Bush II did.

American Visionaries

At best, settlement expansion is a side issue, rather like the issue of "illegal outposts" -- namely those that the government of Israel has not authorized. Concentration on these issues diverts attention from the fact that there are no "legal outposts" and that it is the existing settlements that are the primary problem to be faced.

The U.S. press reports that "a partial freeze has been in place for several years, but settlers have found ways around the strictures… [C]onstruction in the settlements has slowed but never stopped, continuing at an annual rate of about 1,500 to 2,000 units over the past three years. If building continues at the 2008 rate, the 46,500 units already approved will be completed in about 20 years.… If Israel built all the housing units already approved in the nation's overall master plan for settlements, it would almost double the number of settler homes in the West Bank." Peace Now, which monitors settlement activities, estimates further that the two largest settlements would double in size: Ariel and Ma'aleh Adumim, built mainly during the Oslo years in the salients that subdivide the West Bank into cantons.

"Natural population growth" is largely a myth, Israel's leading diplomatic correspondent, Akiva Eldar, points out, citing demographic studies by Colonel (res.) Shaul Arieli, deputy military secretary to former prime minister and incumbent defense minister Ehud Barak. Settlement growth consists largely of Israeli immigrants in violation of the Geneva Conventions, assisted with generous subsidies. Much of it is in direct violation of formal government decisions, but carried out with the authorization of the government, specifically Barak, considered a dove in the Israeli spectrum.

Correspondent Jackson Diehl derides the "long-dormant Palestinian fantasy," revived by President Abbas, "that the United States will simply force Israel to make critical concessions, whether or not its democratic government agrees." He does not explain why refusal to participate in Israel's illegal expansion -- which, if serious, would "force Israel to make critical concessions" -- would be improper interference in Israel's democracy.

Returning to reality, all of these discussions about settlement expansion evade the most crucial issue about settlements: what the United States and Israel have already established in the West Bank. The evasion tacitly concedes that the illegal settlement programs already in place are somehow acceptable (putting aside the Golan Heights, annexed in violation of Security Council orders) -- though the Bush "vision," apparently accepted by Obama, moves from tacit to explicit support for these violations of law. What is in place already suffices to ensure that there can be no viable Palestinian self-determination. Hence, there is every indication that even on the unlikely assumption that "natural growth" will be ended, U.S.-Israeli rejectionism will persist, blocking the international consensus as before.

Subsequently, Prime Minister Netanyahu declared a 10-month suspension of new construction, with many exemptions, and entirely excluding Greater Jerusalem, where expropriation in Arab areas and construction for Jewish settlers continues at a rapid pace. Hillary Clinton praised these "unprecedented" concessions on (illegal) construction, eliciting anger and ridicule in much of the world.

It might be different if a legitimate "land swap" were under consideration, a solution approached at Taba and spelled out more fully in the Geneva Accord reached in informal high-level Israel-Palestine negotiations. The accord was presented in Geneva in October 2003, welcomed by much of the world, rejected by Israel, and ignored by the United States.
Washington's "Evenhandedness"

Barack Obama's June 4, 2009, Cairo address to the Muslim world kept pretty much to his well-honed "blank slate" style -- with little of substance, but presented in a personable manner that allows listeners to write on the slate what they want to hear. CNN captured its spirit in headlining a report "Obama Looks to Reach the Soul of the Muslim World." Obama had announced the goals of his address in an interview with New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman. "'We have a joke around the White House,' the president said. 'We're just going to keep on telling the truth until it stops working and nowhere is truth-telling more important than the Middle East.'" The White House commitment is most welcome, but it is useful to see how it translates into practice.

Obama admonished his audience that it is easy to "point fingers… but if we see this conflict only from one side or the other, then we will be blind to the truth: the only resolution is for the aspirations of both sides to be met through two states, where Israelis and Palestinians each live in peace and security."

Turning from Obama-Friedman Truth to truth, there is a third side, with a decisive role throughout: the United States. But that participant in the conflict Obama omitted. The omission is understood to be normal and appropriate, hence unmentioned: Friedman's column is headlined "Obama Speech Aimed at Both Arabs and Israelis." The front-page Wall Street Journal report on Obama's speech appears under the heading "Obama Chides Israel, Arabs in His Overture to Muslims." Other reports are the same.
The convention is understandable on the doctrinal principle that though the U.S. government sometimes makes mistakes, its intentions are by definition benign, even noble. In the world of attractive imagery, Washington has always sought desperately to be an honest broker, yearning to advance peace and justice. The doctrine trumps truth, of which there is little hint in the speech or the mainstream coverage of it.

Obama once again echoed Bush's "vision" of two states, without saying what he meant by the phrase "Palestinian state." His intentions were clarified not only by the crucial omissions already discussed, but also by his one explicit criticism of Israel: "The United States does not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlements. This construction violates previous agreements and undermines efforts to achieve peace. It is time for these settlements to stop." That is, Israel should live up to Phase I of the 2003 Road Map, rejected at once by Israel with tacit U.S. support, as noted -- though the truth is that Obama has ruled out even steps of the Bush I variety to withdraw from participation in these crimes.

The operative words are "legitimacy" and "continued." By omission, Obama indicates that he accepts Bush's vision: the vast existing settlement and infrastructure projects are "legitimate," thus ensuring that the phrase "Palestinian state" means "fried chicken."
Always even-handed, Obama also had an admonition for the Arab states: they "must recognize that the Arab Peace Initiative was an important beginning, but not the end of their responsibilities." Plainly, however, it cannot be a meaningful "beginning" if Obama continues to reject its core principles: implementation of the international consensus. To do so, however, is evidently not Washington's "responsibility" in Obama's vision; no explanation given, no notice taken.

On democracy, Obama said that "we would not presume to pick the outcome of a peaceful election" -- as in January 2006, when Washington picked the outcome with a vengeance, turning at once to severe punishment of the Palestinians because it did not like the outcome of a peaceful election, all with Obama's apparent approval judging by his words before, and actions since, taking office.

Obama politely refrained from comment about his host, President Mubarak, one of the most brutal dictators in the region, though he has had some illuminating words about him. As he was about to board a plane to Saudi Arabia and Egypt, the two "moderate" Arab states, "Mr. Obama signaled that while he would mention American concerns about human rights in Egypt, he would not challenge Mr. Mubarak too sharply, because he is a 'force for stability and good' in the Middle East… Mr. Obama said he did not regard Mr. Mubarak as an authoritarian leader. 'No, I tend not to use labels for folks,' Mr. Obama said. The president noted that there had been criticism 'of the manner in which politics operates in Egypt,' but he also said that Mr. Mubarak had been 'a stalwart ally, in many respects, to the United States.'"

When a politician uses the word "folks," we should brace ourselves for the deceit, or worse, that is coming. Outside of this context, there are "people," or often "villains," and using labels for them is highly meritorious. Obama is right, however, not to have used the word "authoritarian," which is far too mild a label for his friend.

Just as in the past, support for democracy, and for human rights as well, keeps to the pattern that scholarship has repeatedly discovered, correlating closely with strategic and economic objectives. There should be little difficulty in understanding why those whose eyes are not closed tight shut by rigid doctrine dismiss Obama's yearning for human rights and democracy as a joke in bad taste.

Noam Chomsky is Institute Professor emeritus in the Department of Linguistics and Philosophy at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He is the author of numerous books, including the New York Times bestsellers Hegemony or Survival and Failed States. His newest book, Hopes and Prospects, is out this week from Haymarket Books.

[Note: All material in this piece is sourced and footnoted in Noam Chomsky's new book Hopes and Prospects.]
Copyright 2010 Noam Chomsky
All republished content that appears on Truthout has been obtained by permission or license

Wednesday, April 21, 2010


by: Nahida Izzat

Palestine, from before UN’s Partition plan (pic 1) to now. Green shows land
Available to Palestinians; White in pic.2 shows land allotted to Israel by UN

Settlers march --somoud

Chabad with Israeli terrorist army

Arms Fair

Armed Settlers

Zionists occupiers… Heed my call

Like most people, I do believe in dialogue and civilized coexistence; like most people I long to live in dignity and freedom in my homeland; like most people I yearn for peace and justice for every human; like most people I like to foster loving and trusting relationships with all decent individuals.

However, our problem with the Zionist occupiers is not about hate and distrust as they like to believe; it’s not about security as they constantly declare; nor is it about dialogue or lack of it thereof!our problem with them is not confined to the many aspects of their occupation, human right abuses, checkpoints, walls, collective punishment and assassinations.

The origin of our problem is as profound as a the roots of a fig tree, buried deep and covered up with piles of dishonesty and deceit; its fruits has the pungent taste of supremacy, arrogance, racism, dehumanization, theft, and war crimes, and no amount of fig tree leaves could conceal or beautify. So, to unearth the core of the problem and spell the truth-out loud and clear, I am going to direct my words towards the Zionists of all shades and affiliations. Furthermore, I am going to be to honest and blunt here, as the catastrophic situation that they have created does not stomach glossing over any longer.

Zionist occupiers:

I must warn you that what I am going to say is not going to be very pleasant. It will taste as bitter as the chilling years of your occupation, as cold as the barren roots of our uprooted olive trees, and as sour as the dry lips of dying babies at your military checkpoints.My words will be parched, choking and hard to swallow; it will be as rigid and impervious as the cement of your apartheid wall. My words will smell of tear gas and burning flesh of infants while cuddled in their mothers’ arms after an air raid. My words will be burning hot like a bullet penetrating the head of a little boy as he picked a stone to throw at his oppressors.

My words will be sizzling with blazing fire like the one ton bomb dropped from afar at a neighbourhood of sleeping women and children. My words will be gushing, causing excruciating pain and discomfort, because they stem from the depth of my wounded, distressed and agonised soul that was tormented by your people for the entirety of my existence.

So, Zionist occupiers, heed my words:

Our problem with you is not a “conflict” between two warring parties, who are similarly wrong and equally guilty, as you shamelessly often describe… NO… NO… NO. The problem is one of aggression, oppression, colonization, theft, and occupation on your side, and one of being oppressed, exploited, and occupied on our side.It’s one is of a crime of theft of a whole country and the ethnic cleansing of a whole nation by your people on the one hand and a displaced and dominated population on the other. It’s one of a CRIMINAL THIEF and a DISPOSSESSED VICTIM.

To equate the two is nothing but an act of deception and a manifestation of moral bankruptcy.

A whole lot of your people came from all over the world, stole our homeland, dispossessed and expelled us, took over our homes and farms, destroyed our villages and history, occupied our country, oppressed those who stayed behind, killed and maimed who dared to demand their rights or attempted to assert their humanity, demonized and subjugated us to a racist, bigoted and ruthless set of laws that don’t apply to yourselves; then you come with chilling cold-heartedness and assert that both parties are equally guilty!!

Which planet are you living on?
By what principles do you abide?
What ethics do you follow?
Have you ever questioned the morality of your actions as multinationals who gave themselves the liberty to come to our homeland -which I am denied the right to live in- take it over by violence and bloodshed, then settle there on the ruins of the villages you’ve annihilated, dwelling in the homes of some dispossessed Palestinians, for no other justifications than the dominance of your Jewishness and the fact that we are not Jews?

Does that not smell of rotten racism, arrogance and supremacy to your clogged-up conscience?
The only crime that our people committed is that they existed on the land of their ancestors which you proclaimed as a God given-right to Jews only.
Your people have destroyed our culture, denied our existence as human beings, treated us for four generation with sheer cruelty, ruthlessness and contempt, and subjugated us to inconceivable savagery and humiliation, and denied us even the right to defend ourselves on our stolen Palestine under the pretext of “terrorism”.

On top of all that your people have lied and lied, until they believed their own lies. You managed to brainwash yourselves with packs of cover-ups and masks of reality until truth became so blurred and obscured that most of your people refuse even to acknowledge their own crime of theft of a whole country and disposition of a whole nation.

You stole the land of our ancestors and forefathers under the claim that some few thousands years back in history, some people who followed your religion had lived there, and, apparently secured a contract with God, affirming the eternal ownership of this land.

How dare you give yourselves these abhorrent privileges of taking over someone’s home and homeland just because you belong to a particular faith?

What does an American Jew, a Russian Jew, an African Jew, a Japanese Jew, an Indian Jew or a German Jew have anything to do with the Land of Palestine?

If you think we are some kind of brainless retarded human beings who lack your “intelligence”, “emotions” and “morality” and who would just disregard what happened to them sixty years ago, and who would be happy to live as your inferiors in their own homeland, you better think again.

We are sick and tired of witnessing your crimes for decades on end. We are sick and tired of your deception, false claims and the pretence of innocence and victim-hood. We are sick and tired of your orchestrated peace processes and leading-no-where road-maps.

What is needed at this stage is not dialogue and reconciliation. What is most urgently needed is to STOP ALL your incessant ugly racism, supremacy, aggression and assault, to put a halt to your crimes, and to take a serious look in the mirror as a whole “population” and see what monsters you have become!

You need to address within your immoral and utterly sick society the obscene injustices you’ve inflected upon us. You need to deal with the hideous, corrupt, aggressive, militarized and wicked society that you have become.

Before worrying about hate and distrust that engulfs you, you aught to be worrying about the crimes of your people and the injustices they have committed -and still committing- and how to facilitate for justice to run its course, and how to restore back the rights of millions that you have violated.
That requires an inner reflection of you as a whole people, it requires an honest and sincere look within yourselves, serious questioning of the “history” that you were taught, a bursting of the bubble that you are living in; it requires that you stop all your acts of aggression, theft of land, humiliation, murder, and destruction of our community, and, above all, it requires that you step down from the high ground that you placed yourselves on, and be prepared to GIVE UP ALL the privileges that you have bestowed upon yourselves by the “virtue” of your Jewishness!

It also requires restoring our rights back, including the right of return of all refugees, AND the compensation to ALL those who suffered from your Frankenstein creation of the racist Zionist entity.

To those blood-soaked criminals who come frothing with fake words of peace but get incensed and infuriated when they hear the word justice, I would say:

Masters of lies and dishonesty

I would like to see you talking to the Nazis who abused you, without asking them to acknowledge their crimes.

I would like to see how you respond to those who deny the holocaust.

I would like to see you turning a blind eye to Hitler’s crimes and moving forward without asking for justice or compensation.

Masters of terror and deceit

How do you want us to move on with out YOU acknowledging your crimes of theft, ethnic cleansing and genocide? Yet you demand that the whole world acknowledge the crimes of Hitler against you!

Masters of arrogance and conceit.

How could you deny our Catastrophe and your responsibility for it, yet insist and make sure that anyone who even doubts (let alone denies) the holocaust, or the number six millions ,has to pay severely by imprisonment and loss of livelihood and even life?

Masters of mischief and evil doing

God had sent you many warnings that you do not transgress or do mischief in the land, but your arrogance, self interest, greed and supremacy are blinding you from seeing the evil you are doing.

Instead of acknowledging your crimes and establishing justice, you are still in a state of total denial, carried away with more crimes, more lies, and suppression of truth.

Instead of repentance and accepting that you have wronged us, you try to silence our faint voices causing more deception, concealing the truth and sinking deeply in the abyss of immorality and wickedness.

Your Jewishness, your self interest, your love of material gains and you drunkenness with power is what you worship now, not the God of goodness, peace and justice.

My warning to you now is the same warning given to your ancestors by many prophets and prophetic voices:

You are descending deeper in the hole that you dug for yourselves by your evil deeds, your denial of truth, and by your inability to ask for forgiveness.

The crimes that you have committed against us are indeed painful and agonizing, but it’s only done against our physical bodies. Our souls are out of your reach and forever intact; It’s your own souls that you are disfiguring and destroying, if only you knew.

Unfortunate, pitiable and deceived souls

You have lost your humanity and killed your own souls, if only you could see.

Until and unless you acknowledge your crimes and correct the wrongs you have committed, there will be a dark, bleak and desolate future awaiting for you. This is not a threat; it is a warning.

Mischief makers

They cry peace, but what they mean is war; they scream freedom, but what they mean is enslavement; they shout democracy, but what they mean is democracy for their own kind.

The Quran describes such people whose words contradict their deeds:

“And when it is said unto them: Make not mischief in the earth, they say: We are peacemakers only. Are not they indeed the mischief-makers? But they perceive not. (2:11-12)”


“And We gave (Clear) Warning to the Children of Israel in the Scripture, that twice would they do mischief on the earth and will become tyrants and behave insolently with extreme arrogance.” (17:4)

“When the first of the warnings came to pass, We sent against you Our servants of mighty prowess: They entered the very inmost parts of your homes; and it was a warning (completely) fulfilled.”(17:5)

“Afterwards, we will give you a turn over them, and will grant you an increase of wealth and children; we will give you the upper hand.” (17:6)

“If you do good, it will be for your own benefit, but if you do evil, it will be against your souls. When the prophecy of your second transgression will come to pass, sadness will cover your faces. They (your enemies) will enter the mosque as they did the first time, they will wipe out all the gains you had accomplished.” (17:7)

“It may be that your Lord will have mercy on you, but if you revert to transgression, we will counter with retribution. We have designated hell as a final abode for those who conceal the truth.” (17:8)

The ONLY thing that could save you, arrogant zionists, from a bleak and painful future is to reverse your evil ways of oppression, arrogance and greed, and join the civilized world and behave like normal human beings with justice and compassion.

But mischief makers perceive not

To defeat the aggressors is not enough to make peace durable. The main thing is to discard the ideology that generates war. —Ludwig von Mises

Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says . . . I'll try again tomorrow. ~ Anne Henninghake

Nahida Izzat is a Jerusalem born - Palestinian refugee living in exile for 42 years. She was forced to leave her homeland, Palestine, at the age of seven during the six-day war. Nahida is mathematician by profession, a mother of 3 children by career, an artist by hobby, and a returned-refugee to a free Palestine by optimism, hopes and anticipation


Open letter by Anis Hamadeh, April 10, 2010

Germany is a crucial country when it comes to the protection of and the engagement for the human rights. It is a country where the principle rights of human beings had been violated blatantly, from witch-burning to holocaust. It was no coincidence that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was formulated and published in 1948, shortly after cruel World War II which Germany had started. Unfortunately, we in Germany took up the habit of not consequentially persecuting human rights breeches of our own state and those of friendly states.

In compensation we tackle those countries which relate to our current understanding of who the enemy is (Islam/Socialism). This phenomenon is ubiquous in politics and it led to an alienation of the citizens. We also find this reason of state in the editorial offices of the media, e.g. when they disable any fundamental criticism with concepts like "anti-American" or "anti-Semitic" and thus affirm the violent status quo.

Non-governmental organizations and free media are needed in this discourse when the people in power abandon the idea of a consistent standard. The International Society for Human Rigths (ISHR) is such a non-governmental organization. While the motto of its annual congregation in March 2010 was: "Universality of the Human Rights - the Same Human Rights for All!", the actual focus was on Muslim and socialist countries. There was only one little figleaf speech on human rights violations "in us".

My letter to the ISHR (see below) remained unanswered, as if the question was insignificant. As if the ISHR floated above the clouds, with no need to respond to the public opinion, while defining the human rights discourse in its own way, pointing the finger on those countries and philosophies that seemingly are to be fought.

The work of the ISHR will only be credible when the organization adopts a consistent standard and when it introduces an accompanying self-criticism as a method. Therefore, the members and the public are called to question the work of the ISHR.

Attn.: International Society for Human Rigths (ISHR) Germany, (

Dear Herr Hafen, dear all,

today I received your newsletter which deals with human rights violations in Iran and in Egypt. I subsequently analyzed your website and noticed that your country reports, appeals, press releases, and publications almost entirely concern specific countries: Iran, Egypt, China, Russia, GUS states, Cuba, North Korea, Turkey, Vietnam, Venezuela, Pakistan, and a few others. Under "focus" ("Themen") you apparently single out human rights breaches in Muslim countries.

This conspicuous selection (Islam and Socialism plus marginal issues) indicates that - apart from the human rights - you pursue a political agenda, one that cannot be found in your self-description, however. One of the states that blatantly violate the human rights on a daily basis is Israel. But you do not report it. Even the terrible massacre in Gaza in Dec. 2008/ Jan. 2009 did not find your attention, at least there is nothing I can find on your extensive website.

The few reports on Iraq deal with the situation of persecuted Christians only. Missing are the human rights violations by the USA and its allies, known from TV and media. Neither do you say anything about Afghanistan and Pakistan that could embarrass the leaders of wars of aggression. It also seems as if there is nothing to say about German human rights violations (e.g. in Afghanistan). There is only the socialist former GDR that you highlight in your FAQ.Therefore I want to ask you to reconsider the formulation your political agenda so that the public and your members are not led astray. Otherwise it will be easy to conclude that you misuse the discussion of the human rights to fuel conflicts and to legitimize wars, even wars of aggression.

As you remember, the human rights were formulated for ALL humans and not for befriended ones. Anticipating your clarifying response I remainwith best regards,

Anis HamadehMainz, 17 March 2010

Anis Hamadeh - writer, musician, painter, journalist, editor of and, author of "Islam für Kids" (2007) and translator of "Nonkilling Global Political Science" (into German, 2009)

Sunday, April 18, 2010


Note: The devastation, the injuries and the deaths that are being inflicted in Iraq and Afghanistan are not winning friends. On the contrary, they are creating a lot of anger and ill will towards those responsible. In addition to it being morally wrong, all this does not augur well for American security. More and more Americans are realizing this and speaking up. I have no doubt that a vast majority of Americans would be revolted by what is being done in their name, if only they knew the facts.

Josh Stieber and Ethan Mc.Cord , both of them former specialists, US Army, give voice to the feelings of those who feel immensely saddened by what is being done to the Iraqis and Afghanis and their lands.

Please read the following written by Josh Stieber and Ethan McCord. Once you have read it, I am sure you will want to pass the message along.

Gulamhusein Abba.

PS. To read the message at the original site and see the video of the event Steiber is talking about, please go to:


Iraq veteran Josh Stieber was deployed to Baghdad with Bravo Company 2-16

April 17th, 2010 11:36 AM

An Open Letter of Reconciliation and Responsibility to the Iraqi People

From Current and Former Members of the U.S. Military

By Josh Stieber

(Written with Ethan McCord, who pulled injured children from van in Wikileaks 'Collateral Murder' video)

Peace be with you.

To all of those who were injured or lost loved ones during the July 2007 Baghdad shootings depicted in the "Collateral Murder" Wikileaks video:

We write to you, your family, and your community with awareness that our words and actions can never restore your losses.

We are both soldiers who occupied your neighborhood for 14 months. Ethan McCord pulled your daughter and son from the van, and when doing so, saw the faces of his own children back home. Josh Stieber was in the same company but was not there that day, though he contributed to the your pain, and the pain of your community on many other occasions.

There is no bringing back all that was lost. What we seek is to learn from our mistakes and do everything we can to tell others of our experiences and how the people of the United States need to realize what have done and are doing to you and the people of your country. We humbly ask you what we can do to begin to repair the damage we caused.

We have been speaking to whoever will listen, telling them that what was shown in the Wikileaks video only begins to depict the suffering we have created. From our own experiences, and the experiences of other veterans we have talked to, we know that the acts depicted in this video are everyday occurrences of this war: this is the nature of how U.S.-led wars are carried out in this region.

We acknowledge our part in the deaths and injuries of your loved ones as we tell Americans what we were trained to do and carried out in the name of "god and country". The soldier in video said that your husband shouldn't have brought your children to battle, but we are acknowledging our responsibility for bringing the battle to your neighborhood, and to your family. We did unto you what we would not want done to us.

More and more Americans are taking responsibility for what was done in our name. Though we have acted with cold hearts far too many times, we have not forgotten our actions towards you. Our heavy hearts still hold hope that we can restore inside our country the acknowledgment of your humanity, that we were taught to deny.

Our government may ignore you, concerned more with its public image. It has also ignored many veterans who have returned physically injured or mentally troubled by what they saw and did in your country. But the time is long overdue that we say that the value of our nation's leaders no longer represent us. Our secretary of defense may say the U.S. won't lose its reputation over this, but we stand and say that our reputation's importance pales in comparison to our common humanity.

With such pain, friendship might be too much to ask. Please accept our apology, our sorrow, our care, and our dedication to change from the inside out. We are doing what we can to speak out against the wars and military policies responsible for what happened to you and your loved ones. Our hearts are open to hearing how we can take any steps to support you through the pain that we have caused.

Solemnly and Sincerely,

Josh Stieber, former specialist, U.S. Army

Ethan McCord, former specialist, U.S. Army

Sign the petition here.

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Monday, April 5, 2010


by Nahida Izzat

Note: This article first appeared in Nahida's blog at:!92AA638F9B6EA940!3626.entry Nahid"s blog:

This open letter is an enumeration of guidelines toward a possible PEACE. It is a rejoinder to those who blather "peace" while living in a state of denial

Those who attempt to beautify the ugly fascist, racist face of Zionism, who attempt to revamp its gruesome features

Those who delude themselves that if they use their lovey-dovey words they could disguise the true vile nature, the wicked chauvinistic ideology and incessant crimes of the monster of Zion

Those who feel no shame in defending a disgraceful entity which happened to be established by terror and maintained by terror and continues to exist by terrorizing those under its control

Those who act as a pathetic frayed fig leaf trying to conceal the obscenity and hideous disgrace of their state which was audaciously built upon the destruction of another nation

Those who ludicrously still marvel at and admire the naked emperor’s clothes when everyone in the world could see his pitiful nudity

Those who utter their disingenuous wishes to coexist in peace while choosing to live in a state of denial with their heads in the sand by refusing to acknowledge or remedy their injustices and wrong-doings

Those who refuse to listen to the voice of reason and the call of justice, and muffle each and every whisper that asks for it

Those who silence any call for GENUINE and TOTAL reconciliation and block every REAL endeavor that gives an honest diagnosis and points to the genuine healing process which would lead to reconciliation

Those who attempt to deceive the world by accusing every defiant and decent individual who insists upon full restoration of rights, dignity and humanity of Palestinians, by accusing him/ her of extremism, fanaticism or supporter of terrorism

Those who endeavor to cover the rays of truth with a sieve of lies

Neither do I desire to waste my breath on, nor do I have the interest to talk to

They are worthy only of their karma

Collaborators of crime, who want to escape responsibility, keep the status quo, and dismiss the due rights of their prey under the disguise of nonsensical words like:

"New Israel wants peace"
“We must accept facts on the ground”
“We must not go back in time”
“We must look forward to the future”

What future, you hypocrites?

What good is a future built upon denied massacres and genocide?
What good is a future built upon incessant theft and lies?
What good is a future, in which the criminals would neither acknowledge their wrong doings nor have the desire to remedy the wounds of their injured victims

What is the meaning of words when actions counteract?
Have they never came across the saying “Actions speaks louder than words”?

Over the past sixty years you've had your say and you did what you chose to do,

And now,

Well, guess what?

It’s time for us to speak and for YOU to LISTEN to us and HEAR our say:

you are not welcome in our stolen land of Palestine with your existing mentality

Before we accept you and welcome you as guests and as our brothers and sisters in our land that you have stolen:



Wash the blood off your hands
And weep

Weep the souls of the little ones you’ve murdered

Weep the innocent villages you’ve destroyed

Weep the blessed olive trees you’ve uprooted

Weep the tears of little girls you’ve orphaned

Weep the mutilated bodies of small boys you’ve devastated

Weep the tens of thousands of youth you’ve disabled

Weep the tens of thousands of homes you demolished

Weep the millions of aching hearts of refugees you’ve created

Weep the soil of the Holy Land you’ve polluted

Weep the stream waters and ancient wells you’ve poisoned

Weep the hundreds of thousands of bodies you’ve tortured

Weep the hills and orchards you’ve disfigured

Weep the alleyways you’ve dissected

Weep the landscape you’ve cut to pieces

Weep the towns you’ve bombed to oblivion

Weep the dignified women you’ve dishonored

Weep the enduring elderly you’ve humiliated

Weep the infants you prevented from getting to hospitals

Weep the laughter and giggles of tiny ones you’ve muted

Weep the scents of herbs and blossoms you’ve suffocated

Weep the farms you’ve destroyed and confiscated

Weep the culture of embroidery, humus and falafel you’ve robbed and claimed

Weep the prophets’ messages you've abused and defiled

Weep the Divine Guidance you’ve corrupted

Weep the Ten Commandments you’ve violated

And when you weep long enough, hard enough and sincerely enough, you will discover that you don’t need to come to us begging us to talk to you or to forgive you, you won’t need to go around the web scattering, boasting and blathering about peace

Because if and when your repentance is genuine it will automatically show in your actions

You will know then what you have to do and how to do it, to be forgiven

And then and only then, you WILL find “peace” that you allegedly seek

Nahida Izzat is a Jerusalem born - Palestinian refugee living in exile for over 40 years. She was forced to leave her homeland, Palestine, at the age of seven during the six-day war. Nahida is mathematician by profession, a mother of 3 children by career, an artist by hobby, and a returned-refugee to a free Palestine by optimism, hopes and anticipation