• Israel condemns hundreds of Palestinians to unemployment – due to their last name
    Israeli authorities revoked the work permits of over a thousand Palestinians solely because they have the same surname as the perpetrator of a stabbing attack

    Gideon Levy and Alex Levac Mar 23, 2018 1:54 PM

    https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-israel-leaves-hundreds-of-palestinians-jobless-due-to-their-last-n

    If this isn’t collective punishment, then what is collective punishment? If this isn’t arbitrariness, then what is arbitrariness? And if this measure doesn’t ignite a fire in the relatively tranquil West Bank town of Yatta, then what is the measure intended for? Yatta is distraught, its economy is threatened with collapse, and all because of one person who transgressed, because of whom Israel is punishing an entire town.

    Up until a few months ago, over 7,000 residents of this town in the south Hebron Hills had permits to work. Of them, 915 residents with the surname Abu Aram worked in Israel and hundreds more in the settlements, according to the Palestinian District Coordination and Liaison office in Yatta. But those workers then lost their jobs in Israel and the settlements solely because of their names, in the wake of an astounding, draconian decision of the Civil Administration, Israel’s governing body in the West Bank. In desperation, dozens even changed their names in their ID cards, but to no avail. Their way back to work in Israel, where they’ve held jobs for years, is blocked, though they have done nothing wrong. Here’s what happened:
    Last August 2, a 19-year-old Yatta resident, Ismail Abu Aram, stabbed Niv Nehemia, the deputy manager of a supermarket in the Israeli city of Yavneh, wounding him seriously. The assailant was arrested. The next day, the authorities decided – in accordance with standard procedure after a terrorist attack – to bar the assailant’s family from entering Israel. The ban was lifted 10 days later, family members returned to their jobs in Israel and the settlements, and Yatta resumed its usual way of life.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/679100 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • Saudi Arabia – #TOW_2B (#BGM-71F-Series) Missiles

    The State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to Saudi Arabia of TOW 2B (BGM-71F-Series) missiles for an estimated cost of $670 million. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale today.

    The Government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has requested to buy up to six thousand six hundred (6,600) TOW 2B missiles (BGM-71F-Series) and ninety-six (96) TOW 2B (BGM-71F-Series) fly-to-buy lot validation missiles. Also included is government furnished equipment; technical manuals and publications; essential spares and repair parts; consumables; live fire exercise and ammunition; tools and test equipment; training; transportation; U.S. Government technical support and logistic support; contractor technical support; repair and return support; quality assurance teams; in-country Field Service Representative (FSR); other associated equipment and services in support of TOW 2B missiles; and other related elements of logistics and program support. The total estimated program cost is $670 million.

    This proposed sale will support U.S. foreign policy and national security objectives by improving the security of a friendly country which has been, and continues to be, an important force for political stability and economic growth in the Middle East. This potential sale is consistent with U.S. initiatives to provide key partners in the region with modern systems that will enhance interoperability with U.S. forces and increase stability.

    The proposed sale of TOW 2B missiles and technical support will advance the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s efforts to develop an integrated ground defense capability. A strong national defense and dedicated military force will assist Saudi Arabia to sustain itself in its efforts to maintain stability. Saudi Arabia will have no difficulty absorbing this equipment into its armed forces.

    The proposed sale of this equipment and support will not alter the basic military balance in the region.

    The principal contractor is Raytheon Missile Systems, Tucson, AZ. There are no known offset agreements proposed in connection with this potential sale.

    Implementation of this proposed sale will not require the permanent assignment of any U.S. Government or contractor representatives to Saudi Arabia. There will be no more than two contractor personnel in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia at any one time and all efforts will take less than two weeks in total.

    There will be no adverse impact on U.S. defense readiness as a result of this proposed sale.

    This notice of a potential sale is required by law and does not mean the sale has been concluded.

    All questions regarding this proposed Foreign Military Sale should be directed to the State Department’s Bureau of Political Military Affairs, Office of Congressional and Public Affairs, pm-cpa@state.gov.

    http://www.dsca.mil/major-arms-sales/saudi-arabia-tow-2b-bgm-71f-series-missiles
    #armes #commerce_d'armes #USA #Etats-Unis #Arabie_Saoudite

    cc @fil @reka

    https://seenthis.net/messages/678983 via CDB_77


  • Egypt court orders suspension of Uber, Careem services in victory for taxis: sources

    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-egypt-uber/egypt-court-orders-suspension-of-uber-careem-services-in-victory-for-taxis-

    Forty two Egyptian taxi drivers filed a lawsuit a year ago against U.S.-based Uber and its Dubai-based competitor Careem, arguing they were illegally using private cars as taxis. They also claimed that the two firms were registered as a call center and an internet company, respectively.

    Khaled al-Gammal, a lawyer acting for the taxi drivers, said

    the court suspended the two companies’ licenses, banned their apps and suspended the use of private cars by the two ride-hailing services.

    Tuesday’s decision was effective immediately, meaning the companies must suspend services pending a final ruling, although the companies have 60 days to appeal, the judicial sources said.

    Uber said it would appeal and it was not immediately clear when a final ruling would be issued.

    Careem said it had not yet received any official request to stop operations in Egypt, and continued to operate as normal.

    Uber intends to appeal any court decision to suspend ride sharing licenses in Egypt, an Uber spokesperson said.

    “We will do all we can to ensure millions of Egyptians can continue to enjoy the benefits of on-demand transportation,” the Uber official said.

    “We are fully committed to working with the entire sector – including taxis – to improve mobility in Egypt together. We will appeal this decision, and continue to be available in Egypt in the meantime.”

    Uber said Egypt is its largest market in the Middle East, with 157,000 drivers in 2017 signed up and 4 million users having used the service since its launch there in 2014.

    The San Francisco-based company said last year it was committed to Egypt despite challenges presented by sweeping economic reforms and record inflation. In October Uber announced a $20 million investment in its new support center in Cairo.

    It has had to make deals with local car dealerships to provide its drivers with affordable vehicles and adjust its ride prices to ensure its workers were not hit too hard by inflation.

    Egypt is one of Uber’s fastest-growing markets, its general manager in the country, Abdellatif Waked, has said, according to state news agency MENA.

    Related Video
    Egypt’s investment ministry said last year that a draft law regulating web-based transport services would provide a legal framework for companies like Uber, but did not say when that bill was likely to be passed.

    Uber has faced regulatory and legal setbacks around the world amid opposition from traditional taxi services. It has been forced to quit several countries, such as Denmark and Hungary.

    Last year, London deemed Uber unfit to run a taxi service and stripped it of its license to operate. Uber is appealing against the decision.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/678379 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • Solidarité avec Pinar Selek
    20 mars 2018
    http://la-feuille-de-chou.fr/archives/98491
    http://la-feuille-de-chou.fr/wp-content/photos/DSCN6861-460x345.jpg

    Chères amies, chers amis,

    Il m’est difficile d’écrire cette lettre car je viens d’apprendre une mauvaise nouvelle au sujet du Cauchemar qui me menace depuis 20 ans. Oui, début juillet 1998, c’est-à-dire il y a vingt ans, je me suis trouvée dans les mains des bourreaux qui ont ensuite jeté mon corps comme un cadavre en prison. J’y suis restée deux ans et demi, sans pouvoir utiliser mes mains, mes bras, en voyant mes longs cheveux tomber, tomber… La résistance, la mort, les cris et tant d’autres choses.

    J’ai vécu tout cela bien avant le gouvernement actuel. Aujourd’hui, la Turquie est prise dans une spirale d’horreur. Plusieurs amis et même mes avocats sont en prison, la plupart sont en exil, une partie résiste avec beaucoup de difficultés. C’est un contexte de guerre qui nourrit le nationalisme et les violences de toutes sortes. Il n’y a pas de liberté. Il y a la peur. Mais la peur existe depuis longtemps. Mon procès est un exemple de la continuité historique du système répressif. Je suis aussi devenue l’objet d’une lutte symbolique et historique. L’Etat profond, qui est plus stable que les gouvernements, m’a choisie depuis 20 ans pour m’accuser d’un massacre.(...)

    “““““““““““““““““““““““““““““““““
    Biographie
    http://pinarselek.fr/biographie
    Pinar Selek est féministe, antimilitariste, sociologue, écrivaine et militante.

    Née en 1971 à Istanbul, elle construit sa vie, ses engagements et ses recherches autour de l’adage « la pratique est la base de la théorie ». Sa mère, Ayla Selek, tenait une pharmacie, lieu d’échanges et de rencontres, et son père, Alp Selek, est avocat, défenseur des droits de l’Homme. Son grand père, Haki Selek, est un pionnier de la gauche révolutionnaire et cofondateur du parti des Travailleurs de Turquie (TIP). Apres le coup d’Etat militaire de 1980, Alp Selek est arrêté et maintenu en détention pendant près de cinq ans. Pinar Selek poursuit alors des études au lycée Notre-Dame de Sion où elle apprend le français et rencontre des objecteurs de conscience. (...)

    https://seenthis.net/messages/678374 via Loutre


  • Retour sur le Nakba
    http://www.zinzine.domainepublic.net/?ref=3491

    Nous recevons Eléonor et Eitan Bronstein, deux Israeliens à contre-courant, animateurs de l’ONG Decolonizer, qui plaident une reconnaissance de la responsabilité historique d’Israel, dans ce qu’on appelle la Nakba (catastrophe)faite aux Palestiniens en 1948,afin de poser les bases de véritables négociations. Eléonor aborde également la situation politique israélienne en général de même que son héritage personnel complexe et son regard sur l’avenir, avant qu’Eitan, lui aussi héritier d’une histoire fascinante et sensible, n’évoque son engagement de refuznik, qui, à force de refuser des ordres militaires injustes l’a mené à remettre en cause la politique globale d’Israel...Cette belle rencontre s’est faite à l’occasion d’une soirée organisée par l’AFPS 04. Durée : 54 min. Source : Radio (...)

    http://www.zinzine.domainepublic.net/emissions/SPX/2018/SPX20180311t-RetourNakba.mp3

    https://seenthis.net/messages/678345 via Rezo


  • A new stage in the Palestinian struggle for liberation

    In advance of the Marches for the Palestinian Right of Return, messages are being sent that indicate the transition from a belligerent nationalist and religious approach to a civilian one

    Ronit Marzan Mar 20, 2018

    https://www.haaretz.com/opinion/.premium-a-new-stage-in-the-palestinian-struggle-for-liberation-1.5918118

    The Marches for the Palestinian Right of Return, which will begin on March 30 and continue at least until mid-May (in the hope that by then a discussion of the right of return will begin), are beginning a new stage in the Palestinian struggle for liberation, a stage of nonviolent popular resistance. The marches were decided on through cooperation between an international coordinating committee and civil society organizations, dignitaries and heads of hamulot (extended families) in the Gaza Strip
    The initiative is being supported by the political groups (such as Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad) in light of the stagnation in the efforts at national reconciliation and the failure of both the armed struggle and the diplomatic strategy. In addition to the marches, the chairman of the Palestinian Club in Great Britain and the chairman of the International Committee for Breaking the Siege of Gaza have announced their intention of sending ships to Gaza.
    The organizers of the marches believe that the Israeli army will not be able to withstand a nation armed with a strong desire to shake off the dust of the refugee camps and restore its honor and natural rights. They hope the presence of international media outlets and the official responsibility of UN institutions for the Palestinian refugees will ensure that Israel won’t harm them.
    A manifesto disseminated by the Coordinating Committee of the Right of Return states that the marches are based on Paragraph 11 of UN Resolution 194 (which refers to the right of return). In order to prevent any Israeli claim that the marches are the initiative of terror organizations, the manifesto also states that they are popular marches of families rather than of political parties or military factions.
    Participants will include Palestinians from Gaza, the West Bank, the diaspora and the areas taken over by Israel in 1948. According to the organizers, the marches will continue on a regular basis and won’t end until the right of return is implemented. They are not violent and there is no intention of clashing with Israeli soldiers or throwing stones at them. The first stage of the marches will begin with a sit-down strike and building of tents at a distance of 700 meters from the barbed wire fences.
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    Among the visual presentations on the campaign’s Facebook page, one can find the caricature of Hanzala, the Palestinian refugee who became an activist who cuts barbed wire fences. Or a tent and a dove and an olive branch above the UN symbol, which symbolize freedom and a return to the land. They use the Arab word “a’ad” (returnee) and not “laga” (refugee), and in the end there is also a sign warning against crossing the fence against orders.

    The Palestinian national liberation movement is undergoing a profound crisis, which requires it to decide whether to reconstruct the awareness of armed resistance, inspired by Iranian films that have recently been seen in Gazan movie theaters, and bring ruin to the Palestinian people; or to prefer to build an awareness of nonviolent civil resistance, inspired by cultural heroes such as Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King.
    The latter understood that the greatest obstacle facing the black man is not the Ku Klux Klan but the moderate and arrogant white man, who believes in public order more than in justice, and thinks that he can determine a timetable for another person’s freedom and demand that he wait for a more convenient time.
    The organizers of the March of Return are unwilling to wait for a more convenient time. After trying violence and entreaties and the diplomatic approach, they have decided to violate the public order and arouse the masses to a civil rebellion. This is therefore the best time for Israel and the international community to turn their gaze to the nonviolent Palestinian outcry a moment before it crosses the separation barriers.
    The writer has a doctorate in Middle East history and is a researcher of Palestinian society and politics at the University of Haifa.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/678382 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • Palestinians’ new doomsday weapon has Israel scared to death

    The first field trial is next week, the day of Passover. A new weapon against occupation, wielded by Palestinian refugees. And Israel, with its layers of defense against every manner of killing devised by man, is unprepared

    Bradley Burston Mar 20, 2018

    https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-palestinians-new-doomsday-weapon-has-israel-scared-to-death-1.5930

    It is the sum of all fears of Israel’s ruling right. It is a weapon against which one of the world’s most powerful, advanced militaries is at a loss.

    It could succeed where suicide bombings, ballistic missile barrages, and sophisticated attack tunnels have failed. And it’s coming on Passover, just over a week away.
    It’s non-violence.
    Beginning on the day of the Passover seder, just a week from this Friday, Palestinians plan mass marches toward Israeli and Israeli-held territory, as well as sit-ins and vigils. They will press for Israeli and world attention to UN Resolution 194, the legal basis for what is known as the Palestinian Right of Return.
    The plan is this: They will be unarmed. They will not throw stones. They will be organized by family clans rather than militant groups. They will avoid clashes with Israeli troops.
    And Israel, with its layers of defenses against attacks from space, cyberspace, nuclear submarines, and every manner of killing machine devised by man, is unprepared.
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    “All the announcements we’ve been hearing about mass marches - these are very, very problematic developments,” former Shin Bet chief and ex-minister of Home Front Defense Avi Dichter said Monday. “This is not a military war, rather it is a war of the masses, different in its essentials.”
    "If on Friday afternoon, at the end of Friday prayers, if thousands or tens of thousands [take part], or if it turns into a number even larger than that, this is an issue which the IDF will need to prepare itself for in a different manner [than it is used to], significantly so, more so," Dichter, a senior Likud figure and chair of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, told Army Radio.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/678094 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • Your information diet – Synaps source code
    Peter Harling
    https://peterharling.blog/2018/03/19/your-information-diet

    MOST OF US only have ourselves to blame as we complain about information overload, and then go on information binging. The explosion of media platforms and communication channels is, by no means, an unsolvable problem. Consuming information in more discriminating, purposive ways must start with each one of us clarifying what, after all, is this information’s purpose. What kind of input is necessary to do my job, really? What do I find truly interesting in what comes my way? Which forms of knowledge do I actually put to practical use, and in what ways? By contrast, what feeds am I plugged into that do not add much to my work routine or overall intellectual life?
    It is likewise useful to question how, practically, we consume information. During what parts of the day, and through which mediums—digital, paper-based or interpersonal—do I acquire and retain meaningful knowledge? And when do I catch myself absorbing information in ways that distract more than they enlighten?
    Indeed, our dominant reflexes often form part of the problem. On one side, we devote excessive energy to the wrong kind of internal communication: bureaucratic processes, countless email chains and group meetings, and the consequent decisions-made-by-committee. On the other, we increasingly turn to social media to track current events, thereby relying on others to curate what might be important to us—a task for which they are not, by default, naturally inclined or well-positioned.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/678039 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • Who’s hiding Israeli air force participation in major exercise with UAE and U.S.?

    It’s unclear why Israel is not mentioned on the promotional website of the annual Iniohos exercise with the U.S., UAE, Greece, Britain, Cyprus and Italy

    Yaniv Kubovich Mar 20, 2018

    https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/who-s-hiding-iaf-participation-in-major-exercise-with-uae-1.5919421

    The Israel Air Force began a joint exercise in Greece with the air forces of the United Arab Emirates and the United States. Italy, the United Kingdom and Cyprus also participated in the exercise.
    A number of IAF F-16 jet fighters, along with dozens of planes from the other air forces, are participating in the annual Iniohos exercise.
    This is not the first time that the IAF has taken part in the exercise in Greece and the UAE’s participation was publicized, even though Israel does not have diplomatic relations with the UAE.

    Fighters and pilots participating in the multi-national Iniochos 2018 exercise in Greece Hellenic Air Force
    skip - IAF
    IAF - דלג

    IAFΠολεική Αεροπορία / YouTube
    This year, however, Israel does not appear on the Hellenic Air Force website that gives details about the exercise. It does not appear on the list of participants, nor does Israel’s flag appear in the group photo and Youtube video clip in which the flags of all the participating countries are shown next to an array of the countries’ planes.
    It isn’t clear why Israel’s participation is being hidden; in past years its participation was widely publicized. There is a hint of Israel’s involvement, however, in the patch worn by the pilots on their flight suits, where Israel’s flag can be seen along with the flags of the other countries.
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    Last November the air forces of eight countries took part in the international Blue Flag exercise at Uvda Air Base in southern Israel. In addition to the IAF, the air forces of the United States, Germany, France, Italy, Poland, Greece and India participated. It was the first time the air forces of Germany and France had taken part in air exercises in Israel.
    >> Blue Flag 2017: Israel’s Fighter-jet Diplomacy | Analysis >>
    At the time, the IAF said that despite the operational importance of the exercise, the real achievement was a diplomatic one. As for the exercise in Greece, the same is probably true, but the IAF plans continue the tradition of participating in this exercise.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/678046 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • The debate over the use of violence within the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt after 2013
    http://cadmus.eui.eu/handle/1814/52544

    Since the Muslim Brotherhood rule was overthrown in 2013, Egypt’s largest Islamist organisation has been witnessing an internal debate over how to face the new regime: whether to continue its non-violent political approach or to turn to violence to achieve its political goals. The majority of the movements’ members remain undecided, however. This policy paper seeks to look closely at the debate over the use of violence within the Muslim Brotherhood. Whose are the voices calling for violence and whose are those rejecting it? What is each group’s strategy to advance their respective approaches? And on which resources are they relying? What is the balance of power between the two groups, and is it likely to change in the future? The answers to these questions are expected to have a profound impact on stability in Egypt.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/677773 via assalam12


  • Syrie : scènes de pillage à Afrine après l’entrée des forces pro-turques
    AFP - 18/03/2018
    https://www.lorientlejour.com/article/1105587/syrie-scenes-de-pillage-a-afrine-apres-lentree-des-forces-pro-turques

    Des rebelles syriens alliés à Ankara se sont livrés dimanche à des pillages dans la ville kurde d’Afrine, dans le nord-ouest de la Syrie, après avoir pris avec les forces turques le contrôle de la cité, selon une ONG et des correspondants de l’AFP.

    Vidée de sa population de 350.000 habitants, la ville était le principal objectif de l’offensive lancée le 20 janvier par la Turquie pour chasser de sa frontière la milice kurde des Unités de protection du peuple (YPG). Cette faction qualifiée de « terroriste » par Ankara, est un allié précieux de Washington dans la lutte antijihadistes.

    Après l’entrée des forces turques et leurs supplétifs syriens dans la ville, les rebelles « ont commencé à piller les biens des habitants, ainsi que des bâtiments politiques et militaires, mais aussi des magasins », a rapporté l’Observatoire syrien des droits de l’Homme (OSDH).

    Des correspondants de l’AFP ont vu des magasins pillés, et des rebelles charger pêle-mêle dans des pick-up cartons de nourriture, chèvres, couvertures, et même des motos empilées les unes sur les autres, avant de quitter la ville.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/677535 via Loutre


  • Dahlan encouraged to form Palestinian party outside Fatah
    https://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2018/03/uae-request-dahlan-form-new-party-dissociated-from-fatah.html

    Citing anonymous Palestinian sources, the Nabd news agency reported Feb. 5 that Dahlan was asked by the UAE to form a political party dissociated from Fatah, given Abbas’ refusal to end his and Dahlan’s dispute, which goes back to 2010. Dahlan lives in exile in the UAE but is still a member of the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC). The UAE also wants Dahlan to run in the next presidential election.

    Although Nabd didn’t report Dahlan’s specific response to the UAE request, it said he is reluctant to form a new party. The article said that in January and February, Dahlan held a referendum in Gaza, Lebanon and Jordan, where supporters for his Democratic Reform Current reside, to gauge support for a new party. The referendum produced mixed results.

    Imad Mohsen, a spokesman for the Democratic Reform Current, told Al-Monitor, “The UAE’s interference in our work is out of the question. … Some members of the Democratic Reform Current are indeed calling for complete dissociation from Fatah, in light of all the exclusion, separation, marginalization and trials carried out by Abbas and his entourage against his opponents.”

    Read more: http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2018/03/uae-request-dahlan-form-new-party-dissociated-from-fatah.html#ixzz5ADV0u

    https://seenthis.net/messages/677768 via assalam12


  • Iran, Syria and Saudi Arabia: Top three stunning admissions from the top U.S. general in the Middle East

    Assad has won, Iran deal should stand and Saudis use American weapons without accountability in Yemen: head of U.S. military’s Central Command’s stunning Congressional testimony

    https://www.haaretz.com/middle-east-news/top-three-stunning-admissions-from-the-top-u-s-general-in-the-region-1.5910

    Haaretz and Reuters Mar 16, 2018

    The top U.S. general in the Middle East testified before Congress on Tuesday and dropped several bombshells: from signaled support for the Iran nuclear deal, admitting the U.S. does not know what Saudi Arabia does with its bombs in Yemen and that Assad has won the Syrian Civil War.
    U.S. Army General Joseph Votel said the Iran agreement, which President Donald Trump has threatened to withdraw from, has played an important role in addressing Iran’s nuclear program.
    “The JCPOA addresses one of the principle threats that we deal with from Iran, so if the JCPOA goes away, then we will have to have another way to deal with their nuclear weapons program,” said U.S. Army General Joseph Votel. JCPOA, or Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, is the formal name of the accord reached with Iran in July 2015 in Vienna.
    Trump has threatened to withdraw the United States from the accord between Tehran and six world powers unless Congress and European allies help “fix” it with a follow-up pact. Trump does not like the deal’s limited duration, among other things.
    Votel is head of the U.S. military’s Central Command, which is responsible for the Middle East and Central Asia, including Iran. He was speaking to a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on the same day that Trump fired Secretary of State Rex Tillerson after a series of public rifts over policy, including Iran.
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    Tillerson had joined Defense Secretary Jim Mattis in pressing a skeptical Trump to stick with the agreement with Iran.
    “There would be some concern (in the region), I think, about how we intended to address that particular threat if it was not being addressed through the JCPOA. ... Right now, I think it is in our interest” to stay in the deal, Votel said.

    When a lawmaker asked whether he agreed with Mattis and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Joseph Dunford’s position on the deal,Votel said: “Yes, I share their position.”
    Mattis said late last year that the United States should consider staying in the Iran nuclear deal unless it was proven Tehran was not complying or that the agreement was not in the U.S. national interest.
    A collapse of the Iran nuclear deal would be a “great loss,” the United Nations atomic watchdog’s chief warned Trump recently, giving a wide-ranging defense of the accord.
    Iran has stayed within the deal’s restrictions since Trump took office but has fired diplomatic warning shots at Washington in recent weeks. It said on Monday that it could rapidly enrich uranium to a higher degree of purity if the deal collapsed.
    Syria
    Votel also discussed the situation in Syria at the hearing.
    During the Syrian army’s offensive in eastern Ghouta, more than 1,100 civilians have died. Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s forces, backed by Russia and Iran, say they are targeting “terrorist” groups shelling the capital.
    U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley warned on Monday that Washington “remains prepared to act if we must,” if the U.N. Security Council failed to act on Syria.
    Votel said the best way to deter Russia, which backs Assad, was through political and diplomatic channels.
    “Certainly if there are other things that are considered, you know, we will do what we are told. ... (But) I don’t recommend that at this particular point,” Votel said, in an apparent to reference to military options.
    Republican Senator Lindsey Graham asked whether it was too strong to say that with Russia and Iran’s help, Assad had “won” the civil war in Syria.
    “I do not think that is too strong of a statement,” Votel said.
    Graham also asked if the United States’ policy on Syria was still to seek the removal of Assad from power.
    “I don’t know that that’s our particular policy at this particular point. Our focus remains on the defeat of ISIS,” Votel said, using an acronym for Islamic State. 
    Saudi Arabia
    In a stunning exchange with Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren, Votel admitted that Centcom doesn’t know when U.S. fuel and munitions are used in Yemen. 
    “General Votel, does CENTCOM track the purpose of the missions it is refueling? In other words, where a U.S.-refueled aircraft is going, what targets it strikes, and the result of the mission?” Warren asked.
    “Senator, we do not,” Votel replied.
    The Senator followed up, citing reports that U.S. munitions have been used against civilians in Yemen, she asked, “General Votel, when you receive reports like this from credible media organizations or outside observers, is CENTCOM able to tell if U.S. fuel or U.S. munitions were used in that strike?”
    “No, senator, I don’t believe we are,” he replied.
    Showing surprise at the general’s response, Warren concluded, “We need to be clear about this: Saudi Arabia’s the one receiving American weapons and American support. And that means we bear some responsibility here. And that means we need to hold our partners and our allies accountable for how those resources are used,” she said.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/677209 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • En octobre dernier, Lea Tsemel, l’une des seules avocates en israel à défendre les Palestiniens, était de passage à Montréal et acceptait de donner une rare conférence (en anglais). Filmée, et même si la qualité du son n’est pas excellente, le document vaut la peine d’être écouté, car il n’y a presque rien d’elle sur internet :

    Lea Tsemel, Montréal 2017
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VNOz6UCnzNM

    Pendant 25 minutes, elle nous emmène à ses côtés, lors de son quotidien d’avocate, de Jérusalem à Sheikh Jarrah, à la Cisjordanie ou à Gaza, nous montrant par là l’absurdité, l’illégalité et l’inhumanité des prisons, des tribunaux, des frontières et du labyrinthe judiciaire israélien pour les Palestiniens...

    #Palestine #Lea_Tsemel #Avocate #Justice #Injustice

    https://seenthis.net/messages/676993 via Dror@sinehebdo



  • Same As It Ever Was: Orientalism Forty Years Later
    ON EDWARD SAID, OTHERING, AND THE DEPICTIONS OF ARABS IN AMERICA

    January 23, 2018 By Philip Metres

    | Literary Hub
    https://lithub.com/same-as-it-ever-was-orientalism-forty-years-later

    “Why do they have to show that? That—that—violence,” I said to my mom hours later, burying my face in my pillow, unable to sleep, my little body convulsing with this strange grief.

    In the packed dark of our local theater, eleven years old, I’d been reeling, gripping the armrests in terror as Raiders of the Lost Ark flashed across the huge screen. The swashbuckling Indiana Jones had somehow escaped a trap-filled temple in Peru with the golden idol in hand, but his local guide hadn’t. The image of a wide-eyed brown-faced man with a spike piercing his forehead had seared itself in my mind, but now they were somehow in Cairo, and Indiana, having escaped a chase in the casbah, found himself face-to-face with a black-cloaked, scimitar-wielding Arab. Smiling, laughing even, the man flung and swung the comically large sword from hand-to-hand. World-weary, Indiana pulled out his pistol and blew him away. The crowd around me erupted in cheers. Was I supposed to laugh? Before I could react, we were off again, with our American hero, between local “savages” and Nazis, until in the fury of the opened ark, the bad guys’ faces literally melted off. Walking out of the theater, I did everything I could to hold back sobs.

    Growing up Arab American in the 1980s, I couldn’t escape these depictions of Arabs as vile, cruel terrorists. I was confused why so many movies I watched featured a bloodthirsty Arab vanquished by white American heroes. It wasn’t just Raiders, of course, it was also the weird creatures of the Tatooine desert in Star Wars, the vicious Sand People, who seemed more than a little familiar. And later, The Black Stallion Returns (1983), and not too long after that, the runaway time-traveling hit, Back to the Future (1985). What were Libyans doing in Hill Valley California, and why did they have plutonium? It was such a non sequitur that we never asked what they were doing there. Of course, the movie wanted us to say, those wretched Libyans! And like the Egyptian sword-wielder who was really a white stuntman, a whole parade of terrorists played by Israeli actors in “arabface” were trotted out in movie after movie produced by the Israeli-led Cannon Films.

    Later, when I read the work of Edward Said and Jack Shaheen, I learned that my experience—and these films—are not the exception. Shaheen’s Reel Bad Arabs: How Hollywood Vilifies a People (2001) looked at nearly 1,000 films and found only a dozen that depicted Arabs in a complex or positive way. Watching television, it was more of the same. I secretly loved the wrestler “The Iron Sheik,” who wore a keffiyah, robe, neat mustache, and played the heel. He was Iranian, actually, but he was as good as Arab to me (shout-out to my Iranian brothers and sisters). When he palled around with the Russian Nikolai Volkoff, I thought of the Russians as odd comrades. Of course, The Iron Sheik played the heel. Whenever the crowd began to jeer him—or anyone—I felt something churn in me. Some kind of fire ignited in my head. I was drawn to the one who was hated. Whether the person was black or brown or queer or just strange, I wanted to stand beside them.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/677189 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • Egypt Parliament in haste to approve cybercrime bill : Ambiguous provisions, loose definitions, legalized web censorship |

    MadaMasr
    https://www.madamasr.com/en/2018/03/14/feature/politics/parliament-in-haste-to-approve-cybercrime-bill-ambiguous-provisions-loose-

    In a whirlwind Tuesday meeting attended by a bevy of state officials, 14 articles of the cybercrime prevention bill were approved by Parliament’s Communications and Information Technology Committee (CITC) in a span of two hours.

    The government-drafted bill, which is composed of 45 articles and includes 29 penalties sentencing offenders to up to five years in prison or fines of between LE,10,000 and LE20 million, was referred by the legislature’s speaker to the committee early this month and has largely been approved in principle.

    The bill’s significance stems from the fact that, in the event that it is passed, it would be the first piece of legislation to regulate what is published on social media and establish principles to confront cybercrimes such as piracy and the hacking of private and government websites. Most importantly, the bill would set a precedent in regulating web censorship.

    The gap in opinion between detractors and proponents of the bill does not center so much on whether cybercrime legislation is necessary, however, but on protection of data and the broad leeway the legislation would grant to authorities to place limitations on liberty.

    For Ghada Moussa, the Planning, Monitoring and Administrative Reform Ministry’s transparency committee secretary general, there certainly is a need for a cybercrime law. But such a law, in her estimation, can only be part of a legislative package whose primary concern would be to make information available, with the identification of confidential information and regulation and protection thereof as a second priority, appended by a law to set exceptions and outline crimes.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/676928 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • Stephen Hawking avait frappé Israël là où cela fait mal : la science !

    Hilary & Steven Rose – A l’occasion du décès du physicien Stephen Hawking, nous publions un article écrit en mai 2013 et publié par The Guardian, et traitant du respect par Hawking des consignes de la campagne BDS et de son refus de cautionner d’une manière ou d’une autre le régime d’apartheid qui sévit en Palestine occupée.

    Ce qui est vraiment insupportable pour Israël, c’est que ce rejet vienne d’un scientifique célèbre, alors que c’est la science qui détermine son économie, son prestige et sa force militaire.
    http://www.chroniquepalestine.com/stephen-hawking-frappe-israel-ou-cela-fait-mal-science

    https://seenthis.net/messages/676845 via Palestine | فلسطين


  • French arrest warrant out for Saudi crown prince’s sister: source close to probe
    http://www.dailystar.com.lb//News/Middle-East/2018/Mar-15/441675-french-arrest-warrant-out-for-saudi-crown-princes-sister-source

    France has issued an arrest warrant for the sister of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman on suspicion of ordering her bodyguard to beat up a worker at her Paris apartment, sources close to the case told AFP Thursday.

    The mandate against the princess, named in the warrant under the French spelling Hussat ben Salmane, was issued in late December, a source said, confirming a report by Le Point magazine.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/676715 via Nidal


  • New U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has a hawkish history on Iran and Israel - U.S. News - Haaretz.com

    https://www.haaretz.com/us-news/.premium-new-u-s-secretary-of-state-mike-pompeo-has-a-hawkish-history-on-ir

    In November 2015, Pompeo visited Israel and met with Netanyahu, a meeting which he said left a strong impression on him. “Prime Minister Netanyahu is a true partner of the American people,” Pompeo said after their discussion at the Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem. “Our conversation was incredibly enlightening as to the true threats facing both Israel and the United States. Netanyahu’s efforts to prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons are incredibly admirable and deeply appreciated.”
    During the same visit, Pompeo met senior officers in the Israeli police and was briefed by them on the “lone wolves Intifada” that included dozens of stabbing and car-ramming attacks by Palestinians across the country. A statement by his office described the Israeli police officers he met as “a group of officers who not only bravely defend the people each day, but have also been targeted themselves by terrorists.” Pompeo said that “by putting on their uniform, the men and women of the Israeli National Police put a target on their back for terrorists who want to murder law enforcement. In the fight against terrorism, cooperation between Israel and the United States has never been more important.”
    Two weeks after his visit, Pompeo released a statement condemning “the ongoing violence in the State of Israel,” explaining that “I can tell you that the Israeli people and the Israeli National Police are demonstrating admirable restraint in the face of unspeakably cruel attacks.” He added that "We cannot let these acts of terror go on any longer. Those who carry out, encourage, or defend this violence should be condemned in the strongest possible terms. We must stand with our ally Israel and put a stop to terrorism. Ongoing attacks by the Palestinians serve only to distance the prospect of peace.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/676641 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • The maritime border dispute between Lebanon and Israel explained

    The comments made by Israel’s Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman at a Tel Aviv conference on January 31 sparked outrage in Lebanon. It brought the issue of the maritime border dispute between Lebanon and Israel back into the spotlight and managed to catch Washington’s attention once again.

    Little was happening on this front after the change of Administration in the U.S. After a few months, Lebanese officials stopped announcing that a resumption of mediation efforts was imminent. Then, in October, the decision, by a Total-led consortium to place a bid for Block 9 (which includes a disputed area) in Lebanon’s first licensing round, rekindled interest once again in the topic. But the buzz was discreet, confined to experts and diplomatic circles, until it was out in the open when Liberman described Lebanon’s offshore tender as “very provocative” and urged international companies not to bid, about a month and a half after licenses were awarded (see our roadmap).

    The dispute unfolded in December 2010, when Cyprus and Israel signed a maritime border agreement that was denounced by Lebanon because it encroached on parts of its Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). On July 10, 2011, the Israeli cabinet approved a map of Israel’s northern maritime border, and two days later, the Israeli mission to the United Nations submitted a list of geographical coordinates for the delimitation of the northern limit of Israel’s territorial sea and EEZ. Some of the points defined in the Cypriot-Israeli agreement and submitted later to the U.N. overlap with the Lebanese EEZ.

    https://i1.wp.com/www.mesp.me/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Timeline-Lebanon-Israel-Maritime-Border-Dispute-Part-1.png?w=2000&ssl=1#.jpg
    https://www.mesp.me/2018/03/05/maritime-border-dispute-lebanon-israel-explained
    #disputes_territoriales #frontières_contestées #Liban #Israël #frontières #frontières_maritimes
    cc @reka

    https://seenthis.net/messages/676574 via CDB_77


  • Egypt For the love of state control?
    How the Engineers Syndicate lost its moment of independence
    | MadaMasr
    https://www.madamasr.com/en/2018/03/13/feature/politics/for-the-love-of-state-control

    Members of the Engineers Syndicate elected Hany Dahy as the new head of their syndicate on March 9, with the former transportation minister taking home 56 percent of the vote in the runoff election against the incumbent Tarek al-Nabrawi.

    The mid-term elections for the syndicate, which serves as an important middle-class professional block and is divided between a General Engineers Syndicate Council and 24 regional subsydincate councils, took place over three weeks, starting on February 23. At the local level, half of the 14 seats in each council were up for reelection, in addition to the councils’ heads, as well as seven seats on each of the General Engineers Syndicate Council’s seven specialized divisions and 11 supplementary places on the general council. The seat at the helm of the overall syndicate was the final position to be settled.

    Dahy and his electoral list, the state-supported Engineers for the Love of Egypt, dominated the elections, counting all 11 supplementary places on the general council, about half of the seats on region councils, and Dahy’s own election among their victories.

    Nabrawi’s political backing, consolidated in the Independence Current, did secure majority representation in the seven specialized divisions and a third of the seats on subsyndicate councils.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/676413 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • Pompeo, Big Oil and the attack on Iran Deal | Informed Comment
    https://www.juancole.com/2018/03/pompeo-attack-iran.html

    By Juan Cole | (Informed Comment) | – –
    All you need to know about Mike Pompeo, the four-term congressman from Kansas who is actually from California, is that most of his life he has been in business with the Koch brothers. His appointment as Secretary of State puts a seal on Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris climate accords.
    More dangerously, Trump was straightforward that he put Pompeo in to replace Rex Tillerson in order to destroy the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action treaty between the United Nations Security Council and Iran.
    Pompeo, despite his obvious brilliance, appears to be driven by profound currents of anger, resentment and vindictiveness, and to be unable to feel remorse for purveying falsehoods. His shameful performance at the circus he ran attempting to blame Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for the 2011 Benghazi attack and its aftermath demonstrated a willingness to play fast and loose with the facts and an inquisitorial, McCarthyite mindset.
    His lack of a moral compass makes his connection to the Kochs especially dangerous.
    Charles and David Koch, the notorious billionaires gnawing like termites at the foundations of American democracy, are all about petroleum. They fund phony climate denialism with a Potemkin village of foundations and expert frauds, to make sure oil keeps its value for as long as possible (even at the cost of visiting catastrophes on our children and grandchildren, since burning oil is causing catastrophic global heating).

    https://seenthis.net/messages/676363 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • Enquête sur les dérives de l’aide européenne au Soudan | Caitlin L. Chandler
    https://orientxxi.info/magazine/enquete-sur-les-derives-de-l-aide-europeenne-au-soudan,2298

    En l’absence d’une prise en compte des causes profondes des migrations, seuls les officiels corrompus et les trafiquants tirent bénéfice de la criminalisation des migrants. Alors que des millions de dollars de fonds de l’Union européenne affluent au Soudan pour endiguer la migration africaine, les demandeurs d’asile témoignent : ils sont pris au piège, et vivent dans un état perpétuel de peur et d’exploitation dans ce pays de transit. Source : Orient XXI

    https://seenthis.net/messages/676356 via Rezo


  • Egypt
    Study: Blocked access to websites, ad redirects and cryptocurrency mining in Egypt traced to Sandvine’s PacketLogic devices | MadaMasr
    https://www.madamasr.com/en/2018/03/12/feature/politics/study-blocked-access-to-websites-ad-redirects-and-cryptocurrency-mining-in

    The technology used to block access to Mada Masr and hundreds of websites, blogs, proxy and virtual private networks (VPNs) on Egypt’s service providers is also being used to redirect traffic to revenue-generating content, such as advertising pages and cryptocurrency mining scripts, according to a report published by The University of Toronto’s Citizen Lab.

    The Egyptian advertisement and cryptocurrency redirect scheme, which Citizen Lab researchers have dubbed “AdHose,” is an attempt to “covertly raise money,” the Friday report, titled Bad Traffic, asserted.

    Beyond identifying the specifics of the revenue-generation scheme, the researchers also developed a digital fingerprint for the deep packet inspection (DPI) observed in Egypt and Turkey and matched it to a second-hand PacketLogic device produced by Sandvine/Procera Networks, one of several facts that they argue points to the US company’s implication in malicious activity.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/675924 via Nouvelles d’Orient