•  » General Strike against Manama Conference– IMEMC News
    https://imemc.org/article/general-strike-against-manam-conference
    https://daysofpalestine.com/uploads//images/c2c0ea20c775475a3715988067caa9f5.jpg

    Palestinian factions, today, announced a general strike in the occupied West Bank and besieged Gaza Strip, in protest against Bahrain’s hosting of the “Peace to Prosperity” conference.

    The conference kicked off today in Bahraini capital of Manama, to discuss the economic aspects of the long-awaited “Deal of the Century”. (...)

    https://seenthis.net/messages/789320 via Loutre


  • Bahrain debacle marks crash of Trump team’s campaign to diss Palestinians into submission

    Kushner’s Peace for Prosperity includes Utopian projects funded by non-existent money as part of peace deal that won’t happen
    Chemi Shalev
    Jun 25, 2019 9:12 AM

    https://www.haaretz.com/us-news/.premium-bahrain-debacle-marks-crash-of-trump-team-s-campaign-to-dis-palest
    https://www.haaretz.com/polopoly_fs/1.7407619.1561414064!/image/816352067.jpg_gen/derivatives/headline_1200x630/816352067.jpg

    The unveiling of the U.S. administration’s long-awaited production of Peace for Prosperity, premiering in Bahrain on Tuesday, garnered mixed reviews, to say the least. Barak Ravid of Axios and Israel’s Channel 13 described it as “impressive, detailed and ambitious – perhaps overly ambitious.” Former U.S. Ambassador to Israel and Egypt Dan Kurtzer offered a slightly different take: “I would give this so-called plan a C- from an undergraduate student. The authors of the plan clearly understand nothing,” he said.

    The plan, released in a colorful pamphlet on the eve of the Bahrain economic summit, is being portrayed by the White House as a vision of the bountiful “fruits of peace” that Palestinians might reap once they reach a peace agreement with Israel. Critics describe it as an amateurish pie-in-the-sky, shoot-for-the-moon, everything-but-the-kitchen-sink hodgepodge that promises projects that cannot be implemented, funded by money that does not exist and contingent on a peace deal that will never happen.

    But the main problem with Peace for Prosperity isn’t its outlandishly unrealistic proposals – such as the $5 billion superhighway between the West Bank and Gaza, which Israel will never agree to; or its occasional condescending and Orientalist attitude towards Palestinian society - their great hummus could attract millions of tourists; or even its offer to manage and foster Palestinian institutions and civil society in a way that can be viewed either as implicit state-building or as imposing foreign control on a future Palestinian government.

    >> Read more: ’There is no purely economic solution to the Palestinian economy’s problems’ ■ Trump’s Bahrain conference - not what you imagined ■ Kushner’s deal holds some surprises, but it’s more vision than blueprint ■ The billion-dollar question in Trump’s peace plan

    The Palestinians would have been suspicious in any case, even if Jimmy Carter or Barack Obama were President. They have always been wary of the term “economic peace”, especially when detached from the real nitty-gritty of resolving their dispute with Israel. Nonetheless, if the President was anyone other than Trump, Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas would have more or less emulated Benjamin Netanyahu’s reaction: Somber nodding of the head, then a non-committal reaction to Peace for Prosperity, followed by effusive but general praise for our lord and savior Donald Trump. Israelis and Palestinians would have attended the Bahrain conference, while doing their best to suppress their inner guffaws.

    If it was anyone by Trump and his peace team - which often doubles as Netanyahu’s cheerleading squad – the Palestinians might have allowed themselves to believe that A. A comprehensive peace plan isn’t just a mirage and is indeed forthcoming. B. The deal won’t be tilted so far in favor of Israel that it will be declared stillborn on arrival and C. That it isn’t a ruse meant to cast Palestinians as congenital rejectionists and to pave the way for an Israeli annexation of “parts of the West Bank”, as Ambassador David Friedman put it when he pronounced Trump’s imperial edict conceding territory to Israel, which even Palestinian minimalists claim as their own, in advance of any actual talks.

    But because the plan bears Trump’s signature, it was received in most world capitals with shrugs, as yet another manifestation of the U.S. administration’s preposterous handling of foreign policy – see North Korea, Europe, Mexico, Venezuela et al. Israel, of course, didn’t miss the opportunity to regurgitate the cliché about the Palestinians “never missing an opportunity to miss an opportunity”.
    A Palestinian man steps on a painting depicting U.S. President Donald Trump during a protest against U.S.-led Bahrain workshop in Gaza City, June 24, 2019.
    A Palestinian man steps on a painting depicting U.S. President Donald Trump during a protest against U.S.-led Bahrain workshop in Gaza City, June 24, 2019. \ MOHAMMED SALEM/ REUTERS
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    For Palestinians and their supporters, however, Kushner’s bid was but the latest in the Trump team’s never-ending stream of slights, slanders and slaps in their collective faces. In Palestinian eyes, the economic bonanza isn’t a CBM – confidence building measure – but a con job and insult rolled into one. It dangles dollars in front of Palestinian noses, implying they can be bought, and it sets up a chain of events at the end of which Jason Greenblatt will inevitably accuse them on Twitter of being hysterical and dishonest while praising Netanyahu’s bold leadership and pioneering vision. They’ve been there, and done that.

    This has been the Trump approach from the outset: Uncontained admiration for Israel and its leader coupled with unhidden disdain for Palestinian leaders and contempt for their “unrealistic” dreams. Trump’s peace team swears by Israel’s security needs as if they were part of the bible or U.S. Constitution; the ongoing 52-year military occupation of millions of Palestinians, on the other hand, seems to have escaped their attention.

    For the first ten months of Trump’s tenure, the Palestinians put up with his administration’s unequivocal pledges of allegiance to Israel as well as the White House’s departure from past custom and continuing refusal to criticize any of its actions – not to mention the appointment of a peace team comprised exclusively of right-wing Netanyahu groupies, which Palestinians initially thought was surely a practical joke.

    Trump’s announcement in December 2017 that he would recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and move the U.S. embassy there was both game-changer and deal-breaker as far as the Palestinians were concerned. While Netanyahu and most of Israel were celebrating Donald the Daring and the long-awaited recognition of their eternal capital, Palestinians realized they were facing a President radically different from any of his predecessors - one willing to break the rules in Israel’s favor and to grant his bestie Bibi tangible victories, before, during and after elections - without asking for anything in return.

    The Palestinians have boycotted the Trump administration ever since, embarrassing Friedman, Greenblatt, Kushner and ultimately Trump in the process. They, in response, have increasingly vented their anger and frustrations at the Palestinians, and not just in words and Tweets alone: The administration shut down the PLO’s office in Washington, declared Jerusalem “off the table” and indicated that the refugee issue should follow it, cut aid to UNRWA and is endeavoring to dismantle it altogether and slashed assistance to Palestinian humanitarian organizations.

    In March 2018, in a move strongly supported by Israel and vigorously endorsed by Evangelicals and other right wing supporters, Trump signed the Congressionally approved Taylor Force Act that prohibits U.S. aid to the Palestinian Authority as long as it continued to pay monthly stipends to the families of what the Act describes as “terrorists”. Palestinians, who, to many people’s regret, regard such terrorists as heroes and martyrs, noted that the passage of the Taylor Force Act embarrassed Israel and spurred it to legislate its own way to withholding Palestinian tax money for the very same reason.

    Throughout the process, Trump and his peace team have lectured the Palestinians as a teacher reprimands an obstinate child. The Palestinians need to face reality, to lower their expectations, to land back on earth, Kushner and colleagues insist. Not only will they never realize their dreams and aspirations, they should also forget their core demand for an independent state free of outside control and not confide inside Israeli-controlled gates. Israelis are worthy of such independence, the Palestinians are told, but you are not.

    Trump approach is a product, first and foremost, of his own inexperience, arrogance and unwillingness to learn anything from a past in which he wasn’t in charge. It is fed by anti-Palestinian prejudices prevalent in his peace team as well as his advisers and most of his political supporters. Trump and his underlings basically adhere to the arguably racist tenet encapsulated in the Israeli saying “The Arabs understand only force.” The more you pressure them, the greater the chance they will succumb.
    Women protest against the U.S.-led workshop in Bahrain in the Moroccan capital Rabat, June 23, 2019.
    Women protest against the U.S.-led workshop in Bahrain in the Moroccan capital Rabat, June 23, 2019.AFP

    At this point at least, it hasn’t worked out that way. Bahrain, by any measure, is a humiliating bust. As Trump and his aides contemplate the reasons for their abject failure they are likely to blame stubborn Palestinians who don’t know what’s good for them, along with radical Muslims, perfidious Europeans, idiot liberals and all the other usual suspects.

    In a better world, they would take a hard look at themselves in the mirror and possibly have an epiphany. They can make an immediate adjustment that will cost them nothing but possibly achieve dramatic results. Instead of incessantly rebuking, reproaching, reprimanding, threatening and intimidating the Palestinians in a way that garners cheers from Christian messianics and Jewish zealots, they could try and treat them, as Aretha Franklin sang, with just a little respect. And perhaps, if it isn’t asking too much, take down their fawning for Netanyahu a notch or two.

    It might not be enough to reconcile irreconcilable differences or to make peace, but it will signal that Trump is finally getting serious about his claim to be the peacemaker the world has been waiting for. Alternatively, the Palestinians will continue to frustrate his designs and pray to Allah for his quick departure.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/789433 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • Manifestation à Paris le dimanche 30 juin à 15h contre la décision scandaleuse de la mairie

    La dénomination d’une place Jérusalem doit être annulée ! - Groupe

    communiste - Front de gauche au Conseil de Paris
    http://www.communiste-frontdegauche-paris.org/La-denomination-d-une-place

    La dénomination d’une place Jérusalem doit être annulée !

    Lors du conseil de Paris de juin dernier, a été soumise au vote des conseillers une délibération concernant la dénomination d’une place Jérusalem, en remplacement d’une rue ayant disparue.

    Dans l’exposé des motifs aucune mention des objectifs de la Ville d’utiliser celle-ci dans le but de commémorer l’amitié qui unit la ville de Paris à l’État d’Israël comme l’écrit Mme Hidalgo dans cette même lettre.

    Aux inquiétudes de nos groupes, a été répondu qu’en aucun cas cette dénomination ne serait utilisée à des fins « geo-politiques » comme Catherine Vieu-Charier l’a d’ailleurs souligné dans sa réponse au conseil, nous étions simplement dans la tradition parisienne de donner des noms de villes à nos rues. Nous avons émis des réserves, et nous nous sommes abstenus forts de ces assurances données.

    Las, deux jours à peine après le conseil nous découvrons par un tweet de Joël Mergui, président du Consistoire central israélite de France, qu’en réalité, cette dénomination fait suite à une demande directe qu’il aurait faite à Anne Hidalgo lors de la visite du président israélien Reuven Rivlin à l’Hôtel de Ville.

    Ce qui nous a étonnés c’est l’inauguration expresse de cette place et l’invitation du maire de Jérusalem connu pour ses prises de position et ses actions en faveur de la colonisation. Nous sommes choqués de voir qu’aucun des représentants des trois communautés religieuses creuset de Jérusalem n’y sont invités, et encore plus de l’absence de représentant de l’autorité palestinienne.

    L’ensemble de ces faits, mis bout à bout, semble légitimer une confiscation de Jérusalem par l’État d’Israël alors que nous aurions pu en faire un symbole de la paix entre les peuples et les différentes communautés.

    Pour toutes ces raisons, nous demandons à Mme Hidalgo de renoncer à cette inauguration vécue comme une provocation et qui ne respecte pas les positions prises par la diplomatie française sur le statut de Jérusalem.

    Pour cela nos organisations seront présentes au rassemblement prévu par le « collectif national pour une paix juste et durable » pour protester de cette décision le jour même de l’inauguration, si celle-ci n’est pas annulée.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/789319 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • Apartheid under the cover of a Jewish state -

    | Haaretz.com
    https://www.haaretz.com/opinion/.premium-apartheid-under-the-cover-of-a-jewish-state-1.7402080
    https://www.haaretz.com/polopoly_fs/1.7402163.1561254615!/image/1742405241.jpg_gen/derivatives/headline_1200x630/1742405241.jpg

    The smell of shampoo wafted through the bathroom. Steam covered the mirror and blurred the image of the person standing in front of it. The guy who had just gotten out of the shower hadn’t even dried himself off before reaching for his phone. Before getting into the shower he had angrily debated right-winger Bezalel Smotrich about whether Israel should draft ultra-Orthodox Jews into the army.

    “Bezalel, damn it, look at the facts,” he had tweeted before getting into the shower. It’s no coincidence they wrote in the newspaper that Yair Lapid, the No. 2 in Benny Gantz’s Kahol Lavan, is the only person in the party with a killer instinct.

    >> Read more: The next big bang of Israeli politics | Analysis ■ Democracy for every Israeli and Palestinian. It’s not hard | Opinion

    The shower didn’t take his mind off the argument. “And another thing, Smotrich. Israel has to be a state of all its citizens.”

    Boom. Smotrich quickly replied: “Thank you, Yair, for finally putting it out there.” And Abba Eban’s protégé, new Foreign Minister Yisrael Katz, hastened to join in: “A seriously outrageous anti-Semitic remark … the slogan of the enemy.” Help.

    Now the candidate for prime minister had to dry himself off and do some damage control. “Somebody really misunderstood what he was reading,” Lapid tweeted. “I’ve been totally against a state of all its citizens all my life. Israel is a Jewish and democratic state, and that’s how it will remain. What I wrote referred to LGBT rights.”

    What he followed up with was characteristic Lapid: “The following are two facts about a state of all its citizens: 1. I’m against it. 2. I’m not going to tweet from the shower anymore before drying off.” So now the reader understands the message correctly: Israel has to be, yet doesn’t have to be, a state of all its citizens.

    Drying off or not, this is something that actually took place on Twitter the other day, and it might have been funny. But it’s not. Once the steam lifted the picture was clear: racism in all its ugliness. Lapid meant Jewish members of the LGBT community, to whom the state also belongs. But it’s not a state of all its citizens. That’s what happens when you live a lie: You get confused in the shower.

    If Israel is a democracy, it’s a state of all its citizens. There is no democracy that isn’t a state of all its citizens. From America to Germany, all are states of all their citizens. If they weren’t, to whom would they belong? Only to their privileged citizens. There’s no such thing as a democracy that belongs only to the privileged of one nationality.

    The state belongs to everyone. A regime that segregates and discriminates is called apartheid. There is no other name. The fact that Azmi Bishara, who fled Israel amid suspicions he supplied information to Hezbollah, was the first to draw attention to this obvious truth doesn’t detract from it one iota. A state of all its citizens isn’t “the slogan of the enemy,” as the new foreign minister put it. It’s the heart and soul of democracy.

    But the center-left feels exactly the same as the right and doesn’t recognize this simple truth. From their standpoint Israel is a democracy for its Jews and a guesthouse for its Arabs. Let’s thank Lapid’s towel for returning things to their proper place. One moment he was in favor of a state of all its citizens and the next he was against. He has been against it all his life, like almost all Israeli democrats.

    How can a democrat be against a state of all its citizens? Only in Israel. In no other democracy is there room for such a question. The state belongs to everyone. Equally.

    The right’s annexation plan will soon raise questions about the citizenship of millions of Palestinians. But in present-day Israel, right, left and center are talking apartheid – under the cover of the slogan a Jewish state. That’s the real slogan of the enemy, the enemy of democracy. This combination doesn’t work. It’s an oxymoron. Either Israel is a state of all its citizens and it’s a democracy, or it’s a Jewish state and it’s apartheid.

    It’s good that the steam from Lapid’s shower lifted quickly and he could return to the truth he shares with Smotrich. Zionism’s eternal truth. It’s an undemocratic truth. Smotrich at least admits to it, Lapid tries to hide behind a towel.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/788874 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • Saudi intelligence chief lobbies London for strikes against Iran : UK source | Middle East Eye
    https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/saudi-intelligence-chief-lobbied-london-strikes-against-iran-uk-sourc
    http://www.middleeasteye.net/sites/default/files/images-story/saudi_missile_reuters.jpg

    Comme les USA ont l’air d’hésiter, les Saoudiens demandent aux Britanniques de commencer une petite guerre contre l’Iran...

    A Saudi intelligence chief pleaded with British authorities to carry out limited strikes against Iranian military targets, just hours after Donald Trump aborted planned US attacks against the Islamic Republic, a senior UK official told Middle East Eye.

    The intelligence chief was accompanied by Saudi diplomat Adel al-Jubeir on his trip to London, the source said.

    Still, the Saudi lobbying efforts fell on deaf ears, according to the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the subject.

    “Our people were sceptical,” the source said, adding that the Saudi official was told a plain “no” in response to the request.

    #arabie_saoudite #iran #fous_furieux

    https://seenthis.net/messages/788811 via gonzo


  • Les universitaires israéliens qui ont contribué à la conception de l’émigration palestinienne
    Edo Konrad, +972 Magazine, le 18 juin 2019
    http://www.agencemediapalestine.fr/blog/2019/06/21/les-universitaires-israeliens-qui-ont-contribue-a-la-conception

    Des documents récemment découverts révèlent comment, dans les jours qui ont suivi l’occupation, Israël a instauré un « Comité des professeurs » afin d’élaborer des politiques qui pacifient les Palestiniens et leur fassent quitter la Cisjordanie et Gaza de manière permanente.

    Jusqu’à la guerre de 1967, la question centrale dans le conflit israélo-palestinien était celle des réfugiés palestiniens, qui ont été chassés ou qui ont fui de ce qui est devenu Israël et qu’Israël a empêchés de revenir dans leurs maisons après la guerre de 1948. Avec la fin de la guerre de 67, Israël s’est retrouvé à régner sur beaucoup de ces mêmes réfugiés qui avaient fui en Cisjordanie et à Gaza près de 20 ans plus tôt.

    #Palestine #Université #Boycott_universitaire #BDS #complicité #colonisation #occupation #expulsions #déportations #réfugiés #Nakba #Naksa

    https://seenthis.net/messages/788665 via Dror@sinehebdo


  • Apparemment chez Wired, ils pensent que l’unité de base pour peser les drones militaires, c’est le container de cocaïne. Vachement parlant comme unité de mesure...

    The Global Hawk Drone Iran Shot Down Was a $220M Surveillance Monster
    https://www.wired.com/story/iran-global-hawk-drone-surveillance
    https://media.wired.com/photos/5d0bc356bfc939de91d8eb55/191:100/pass/security_global-hawk_CBKWF1.jpg

    Global Hawks are massive surveillance platforms, in operation since 2001, with a wingspan of more than 130 feet and a maximum takeoff weight of more than 16 tons, equivalent to roughly seven shipping containers of cocaine.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/788642 via Nidal


  • No Palestinians, no Israelis, maybe even no journalists: What’s left of Kushner’s Bahrain summit - Israel News - Haaretz.com

    The White House’s initial sense of euphoria about Arab participation at its economic workshop on June 25 has eroded, much to the (unspoken) relief of Jerusalem
    Amir Tibon and Noa Landau (Washington) Jun 18, 2019

    https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-no-palestinians-no-israelis-no-journalists-what-s-left-of-kushner-
    https://www.haaretz.com/polopoly_fs/1.7391011.1560866606!/image/1783815716.jpg_gen/derivatives/headline_1200x630/1783815716.jpg

    WASHINGTON - With just a week to go before the Bahrain conference convenes to discuss the economic chapter of the Trump administration’s Middle East peace plan, things are looking increasingly gloomy for the U.S. team led by Jared Kushner.

    The White House had surprised journalists in Washington and Israel on an otherwise boring Sunday last month when it announced that the workshop would take place in the Gulf state on June 25-26. That announcement created a temporary sense of momentum behind the so-called deal of the century, and the small team working on the plan viewed Bahrain’s sponsorship of the event as a major achievement.

    But there have been a series of setbacks since then. The Palestinian Authority is boycotting the conference and has succeeded in convincing Palestinian business leaders not to attend as well. Russia and China — two of the most important economic players in the new Middle East — aren’t expected to attend, while Arab countries such as Iraq and Lebanon have also announced they won’t be participating.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/788010 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • Mondial 2022 au Qatar : Platini en garde à vue, Guéant suspect libre
    https://www.mediapart.fr/journal/france/180619/mondial-2022-au-qatar-platini-en-garde-vue-gueant-suspect-libre

    L’ancien président de l’UEFA et ex-capitaine de l’équipe de France de football Michel Platini a été placé en garde à vue, ce mardi 18 juin, dans le cadre de l’enquête pour corruption sur l’attribution de la Coupe du monde au Qatar en 2022. L’ancien secrétaire général de l’Élysée sous la présidence Sarkozy, Claude Guéant, est quant à lui auditionné sous le statut de « suspect libre ».

    #Enquête #Nicolas_Sarkozy,_Michel_Platini,_football,_FIFA,_Tamim_ben_Hamad_al-Thani,_Qatar,_Corruption,_Sepp_Blatter,_Coupe_du_monde,_Mohammed_Bin_Hammam,_A_la_Une
    https://static.mediapart.fr/etmagine/default/files/2019/06/17/platini2.png

    https://seenthis.net/messages/787938 via Mediapart



  • De quoi Jérusalem est-elle le nom ?
    Le conseil municipale de Paris a décidé d’attribuer le nom de Jérusalem à une place de la capitale. Pourquoi pas ? Cette ville est sûrement un symbole universel.
    Le problème c’est que la lettre de Joël Mergui et la réponse de la maire de Paris à cette lettre, laissent entendre que Jérusalem n’a d’importance que pour le judaïsme. Anne Hidalgo écrit même que cette place doit permettre de commémorer l’amitié entre la ville de Paris et Israël.

    Faut-il rappeler que Jérusalem est une ville sainte pour les trois religions ? Et que, selon la doctrine officielle française, Jérusalem doit être la capitale de deux États et que Paris a refusé l’annexion de Jérusalem-Est par Israël et que l’ambassade française est située à Tel-Aviv ?

    https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100015580067558

    https://seenthis.net/messages/787191 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • Comment les services de renseignement israéliens collaborent à la lutte contre #BDS à travers le monde

    Mossad involved in anti-boycott activity, Israeli minister’s datebooks reveal - Israel News - Haaretz.com

    https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-mossad-involved-in-anti-boycott-activity-israeli-minister-s-diarie
    https://www.haaretz.com/polopoly_fs/1.6982332.1560306038!/image/533965459.jpg_gen/derivatives/headline_1200x630/533965459.jpg

    The datebooks of Strategic Affairs Minister Gilad Erdan for 2018 reveal that he cooperated with the Mossad in the fight against the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement.

    The diaries, which were released in response to a Freedom of Information request, show that Erdan met with Mossad head Yossi Cohen about “the struggle against the boycott.” The request was made by the Hatzlaha movement, an organization promoting a fair society and economy, to all ministers, deputy ministers and ministry directors-general.

    Officials in the Strategic Affairs Ministry are proud of their work with the state’s security agencies, but hide the content and full scope of these activities on grounds that if these would be revealed, it would undermine the covert efforts being made against BDS and its leaders. Officials in Erdan’s office said that the meeting with Cohen was merely a “review,” but sources familiar with the ministry’s activities told Haaretz that the ministry indeed cooperates with the Mossad.

    Erdan’s datebooks also show meetings with the head of the National Security Council and the head of the NSC’s intelligence branch, as well as meetings with representatives of numerous Jewish organizations, including the American Jewish Committee, B’nai B’rith, the American Jewish Congress, the umbrella organization of French Jewry, the U.S. Reform Movement and others. There are also logs of various meetings and phone calls that Erdan’s chief of staff held with foreign leaders and diplomats, as well as meetings with settler leaders, including the heads of the Samaria Regional Council and the Hebron Hills Regional Council.

    Many of Erdan’s meetings in 2018 were devoted to establishing a public benefit corporation which at first was called Kella Shlomo but whose name was later changed to Concert. Its aim was to covertly advance “mass awareness activities” as part of “the struggle against the campaign to delegitimize” Israel globally. This corporation, which received 128 million shekels (about $36 million) in government funding and was to also collect 128 million shekels in private contributions, is not subject to the Freedom of Information Law.

    In early 2018 Haaretz published the list of shareholders and directors in the company, which include former Strategic Affairs Ministry director general Yossi Kuperwasser; former UN ambassador Dore Gold, a former adviser to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu; former UN ambassador Ron Prosor; businessman Micah Avni, whose father, Richard Lakin, was killed in a 2015 terror attack in Jerusalem; Amos Yadlin, who heads Tel Aviv University’s Institute for National Security Studies; Miri Eisin, who served as the prime minister’s adviser on the foreign press during the Second Lebanon War; former National Security Council chief Yaakov Amidror; and Sagi Balasha, a former CEO of the Israeli-American Council.
    Demonstrators wear shirts reading “Boycott Israel” during a protest in Paris, Dec. 9, 2017.
    Demonstrators wear shirts reading “Boycott Israel” during a protest in Paris, Dec. 9, 2017. AP Photo/Kamil Zihnioglu

    According to a government resolution, the funding was granted to implement part of the ministry’s activities related to the fights against delegitimization and boycotts against the State of Israel. It says the company would raise the private portion of its financing for the initiative from philanthropic sources or pro-Israel organizations. A steering committee was to be appointed for the initiative to comprise representatives of the government and the other funding partners.
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    According to a ministry document revealed by The Seventh Eye website, the organization was expected to carry out mass awareness activities and work to exploit the wisdom of crowds, “making new ideas accessible to decision-makers and donors in the Jewish world, and developing new tools to combat the delegitimization of Israel.”

    Elad Mann, Hatzlacha’s legal adviser, said, “Revealing the date books of senior and elected officials is crucial to understanding how the government system works and it has great value taken together with other details of information. This is how to monitor the government and its priorities or the actions it takes with more efficiency and transparency.”

    Erdan’s office said that he “met during this past term with heads of the security echelons to give them a survey of the ministry’s activities in the struggle against the delegitimization and boycott of Israel.”

    Josh Breiner contributed to this report.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/786777 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • ’Orientalism,’ Then and Now | by Adam Shatz | NYR Daily | The New York Review of Books

    https://www.nybooks.com/daily/2019/05/20/orientalism-then-and-now
    https://cdn.nybooks.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/said-snake-charmer.jpg

    Un retour sur l’histoire de l’orientalisme et sa « mutation » à l’époque actuelle.

    Edward Said’s Orientalism is one of the most influential works of intellectual history of the postwar era. It is also one of the most misunderstood. Perhaps the most common misunderstanding is that it is “about” the Middle East; on the contrary, it is a study of Western representations of the Arab-Islamic world—of what Said called “mind-forg’d manacles,” after William Blake. The book’s conservative critics misread it as a nativist denunciation of Western scholarship, ignoring its praise for Louis Massignon, Jacques Berque, and Clifford Geertz, while some Islamists praised the book on the basis of the same misunderstanding, overlooking Said’s commitment to secular politics.

    Since the book’s first publication in 1978, “Orientalism” has become one of those words that shuts down conversation on liberal campuses, where no one wants to be accused of being “Orientalist” any more than they want to be called racist, sexist, homophobic, or transphobic. That “Orientalist” is now a commonly applied epithet is a tribute to the power of Said’s account, but also to its vulgarization. With Orientalism, Said wanted to open a discussion about the way the Arab-Islamic world had been imagined by the West—not to prevent a clear-eyed reckoning with the region’s problems, of which he was all too painfully aware.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/786144 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • Who are the key actors behind Sudan’s moment of violence? | MadaMasr

    https://madamasr.com/en/2019/06/06/feature/politics/who-are-the-key-actors-behind-sudans-moment-of-violence
    https://madamasr.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/sudan-peace.jpeg

    In the hours before the Rapid Support Forces descended on the protest camp outside the military headquarters in Khartoum at 5 am last Monday, alarm bells were already being sounded on social media.

    Just after 2 am, the Sudanese Professional Association published an urgent appeal to call for support in the face of what it called increasing “threats and violence” to break up the sit-in that had been in place since April 6 and had been a primary catalyst in bringing an end to the 30-year, authoritarian rule of former President Omar al-Bashir.

    The state of high alert had been building as small-scale skirmishes played out over the last few weeks, with the first coming when assailants dressed in RSF-like uniforms attacked the protest camp in mid-May on the same day that opposition forces and the transitional military council that has ruled the country since the Bashir ouster reached a preliminary agreement on a transitional plan.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/785771 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • After the violent dispersal of the Khartoum sit-in: Revolutionaries block roads, start civil disobedience | MadaMasr

    https://madamasr.com/en/2019/06/05/feature/politics/after-the-violent-dispersal-of-the-khartoum-sit-in-revolutionaries-block-r
    https://madamasr.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/GettyImages-1147852713.jpg

    “Armed soldiers threw me into the back of a military vehicle and beat me with the butts of their rifles. My blood soaked into my clothes while the vehicle drove to the district of Bori, east of Khartoum, where they threw me out to lay bleeding on the side of the road before a group of revolutionaries brought me to Yabstashiroun Hospital. As soon as my wounds were stitched, Rapid Support Forces stormed the hospital, but the doctors managed to hide me under the table they were working on.”

    Bakri Othman, 28, whose head and hands were wrapped in medical gauze, recalled the events of Monday at dawn, after Rapid Support Forces stormed the sit-in outside of the military headquarters in Khartoum, Sudan, and opened heavy gunfire, dispersing the protest. The number of casualties has risen to 35 confirmed dead and more than 150 injured, according to the Sudan Doctors Union.

    “The violence I witnessed when the Rapid Support Forces stormed the sit-ins and when I was violently attacked during my arrest will only make us more determined to confront them with peaceful means,” Othman adds.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/785394 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • Frankenstein à Khartoum
    « Hemetti », l’homme derrière les massacres ·

    https://orientxxi.info/magazine/frankenstein-a-khartoum,3133
    https://orientxxi.info/local/cache-vignettes/L800xH399/349bc690ebade7767ae841a36bff24-69185.jpg?1559564802

    Le Conseil militaire de transition a décidé d’en finir avec le mouvement populaire au Soudan. Plus connu sous le nom d’« Hemetti », le numéro 2 du pouvoir Mohamed Hamdan Dagolo est une pièce maîtresse de la répression. Au-delà de sa sulfureuse réputation de criminel, la trajectoire de cette « créature » du régime d’Omar Al-Bachir permet de comprendre la résistance de l’État profond aux changements.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/785083 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • Reporters sans frontières : le crime paie Théophraste R. - 3 Juin 2019 - LGS
    https://www.legrandsoir.info/reporters-sans-frontieres-le-crime-paie.html

    Le 21 octobre 2000, le journaliste Jacques-Marie Bourget (1) se trouvait sur une place publique à Ramallah (Palestine). Tout était calme, les cafés étaient ouverts quand un tireur d’élite israélien «  non identifié  » lui a perforé le poumon d’une balle https://www.legrandsoir.info/macron-soutiendra-t-il-les-correspondants-de-guerre.html de son fusil d’assaut américain « M16 ». Alors même que le pronostic vital était engagé, il a fallu l’intervention personnelle de Jacques Chirac pour qu’Israël autorise l’évacuation du journaliste. La victime miraculée nous dira prochainement sur ce site tout ce qu’elle ne doit pas à Reporters sans Frontières.

    https://www.legrandsoir.info/local/cache-vignettes/L318xH232/breveon6210-26a45.jpg

    C’était hier, c’est encore aujourd’hui. Le 28 février 2019, une commission d’enquête https://news.un.org/fr/story/2019/02/1037422 indépendante de l’ONU a révélé que des tireurs d’élite israéliens tirent intentionnellement sur des journalistes (2).
    En novembre 2007, Maxime Vivas publiait un livre-enquête sur l’organisation Reporters sans Frontières et sur son secrétaire général Robert Ménard, alors intouchable et coqueluche des médias, toutes tendances confondues (Ménard fut invité à la fête de l’Huma). Mettant de côté son amour pour la liberté d’expression, le secrétaire général de RSF menaça à 4 reprises de traduire l’impertinent auteur devant un tribunal.

    Le 19 mai 2019, Christophe Deloire, actuel secrétaire général de Reporters sans frontières a reçu le prix de la « défense de la démocratie » https://www.legrandsoir.info/reporters-sans-frontieres-recoit-le-prix-du-regime-assassin-de-journal (sic) lors d’une cérémonie à Tel Aviv en présence du président israélien Reuven Rivlin.

    Théophraste R. Auteur du proverbe : «  RSF est à la liberté d’expression ce que Monsanto est à l’écologie, Ségolène Royal au socialisme et BHL à la philosophie  ».

    (1) Grand reporter et écrivain, Jacques-Marie Bourget a publié 95 articles sur le site d’information alternative Le Grand Soir. Il a commencé sa carrière chez Gallimard à la NRF puis il a enchaîné à l’ORTF, l’Aurore, le Canard Enchainé, l’Express, VSD, le Sunday Times, Paris-Match et Bakchich. En 1986 a obtenu le Prix Scoop pour avoir révélé l’affaire Greenpeace.

    (2) Gaza 2018 : «  La Commission a constaté que les forces de sécurité israéliennes avaient tué 183 […] manifestants avec des balles réelles, dont 35 enfants, trois ambulanciers paramédicaux et deux des journalistes, clairement identifiés.  »

    #crimes_de_guerre #israel #israël #gaza #occupation #colonisation #rsf #reporters_sans_frontières #robert_ménard #christophe_deloire

    https://seenthis.net/messages/785026 via BCE 106,6 Mhz


  • Une page oubliée de l’histoire : comment 12 000 volontaires palestiniens se sont battus aux côtés des Britanniques durant la seconde guerre mondiale.

    12,000 Palestinians fought for U.K. in WWII alongside Jewish volunteers, historian finds - Israel News - Haaretz.com
    https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-historian-12-000-palestinians-fought-for-u-k-in-wwii-alongside-jew
    https://www.haaretz.com/polopoly_fs/1.6199998.1559261542!/image/3241733280.jpg_gen/derivatives/headline_1200x630/3241733280.jpg

    In 2015, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu sparked an uproar when he claimed that Mufti Haj Amin al-Husseini was the one who’d urged Hitler to annihilate the Jews. In the wake of the criticism this elicited, Netanyahu said his intention was not to absolve Hitler of responsibility for the Holocaust, but to note that “the Mufti played an important role in the Final Solution.”

    But it turns out that there was another side to the story that also escaped mention by Netanyahu, the historian’s son: the forgotten role played by thousands of Palestinians who did not heed the Mufti of Jerusalem’s call to support the Axis countries, and went so far as to take up arms to fight the Nazis, often shoulder to shoulder with young Jews from Mandatory Palestine.

    Professor Mustafa Abbasi, a historian at Tel Hai Academic College, has spent years tracing their story. Having recently published an academic article on the subject, this week he suggested an opposite narrative to the one that Netanyahu put forward. The prime minister had sought to paint the Palestinians as supporters of the Third Reich, but Abbasi says, “The Mufti did not find a receptive audience among the Palestinians for his call to aid the Nazis. Not at all.”

    >> Read more: Moments before their fatal mission, Jewish WWII soldiers took these incredible photos of Egypt ■ 76 years later, stories of Jewish soldiers killed in Nazi bombing can finally be told

    The subject of Abbasi’s research is unusual. Many studies have been published about Jewish volunteerism in the war against the Nazis, which reached a peak with the formation of the Jewish Brigade. But “the thousands of Arab volunteers are hardly mentioned and sometimes the record is often distorted,” Abbasi says.

    In an article in the latest issue of the periodical Cathedra (“Palestinians Fighting the Nazis: The Story of Palestinian Volunteers in World War II”), he explains why these Palestinian fighters have been left out of the history books.

    On the one hand, Zionist historians naturally placed an emphasis on the role played by Jewish volunteers in the fight against the Nazis. On the other hand, their Palestinian counterparts were focusing on the struggle against British rule and were not eager to glorify the names of those who cooperated with Britain not so many years after the British put down the Arab Revolt of 1936-1939, and thereby indirectly helped the Jews establish a state.
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    “Neither side wished to highlight this subject,” says Professor Abbasi. “But I think it’s the historian’s job to be faithful to the sources and to try to describe history as it was, without being hostage to any national narrative that would limit him and prevent him from writing history freely.”
    Haj Amin al-Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem
    Haj Amin al-Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, greeting Muslim Waffen-SS volunteers with a Nazi salute, November 1943. Bundesarchiv / Wikimedia Commons

    One has to wonder why no organization was ever established to commemorate the actions of these Palestinian volunteers. “Many of them were killed and many others are still listed as missing. But no memorial has ever been established for them,” says Abbasi. In fact, the records of the Palestinian volunteers, along with much of their personal archives and papers, have disappeared, much of it lost in the War of Independence.

    Over the last few years, Abbasi was able to learn of their story in Palestinian newspapers from the Mandate era, in memoirs and personal journals, and through interviews he conducted with a few of the last remaining volunteers who are still alive. He also collected material from various British archives, from the Zionist Archive, and the archives of the Haganah and the IDF.

    Abbasi estimates that about 12,000 young Palestinians enlisted in the British Army in World War II. Hundreds became POWs, many others (the exact figure is unknown) were killed. “Compared to other peoples, this is not an insignificant number,” he says, and also points out that, unlike other groups, the Palestinians volunteered for the British Army from the first stage of the war.

    Initially, the Palestinian and Jewish volunteers served in mixed units. “They received training and drilled at the same bases and in many instances fought shoulder to shoulder, and were also taken prisoner together,” says Abbasi. And as reported here two years ago, the proximity of the Jewish and Palestinian fighters sometimes led to unusual outcomes, as in the case of Shehab Hadjaj, a Palestinian who enlisted in the British Army, was taken prisoner in Germany and died in 1943. To this day, he is listed at Mount Herzl as “a casualty of Israel’s wars” because someone mistakenly thought his surname indicated that he was Jewish.

    “Relations among the fighters were generally good, and if there was any friction it was mainly over service conditions, like mail and food,” Abbasi says. However, there were certain key differences between the two groups, too. For example, while the Jews were united in their goal of fighting the Nazis to promote the establishment of the Jewish state, the Palestinians “had no clear national agenda,” Abbasi writes. For this reason, unlike the Jews, they did not seek to form separate Palestinian units and there was no “Palestinian Brigade” parallel to the Jewish Brigade, in which thousands of Jews from Mandatory Palestine served.

    So who were the Palestinians who volunteered for the British Army to fight the Nazis? Abbasi says they mostly came from the Palestinian elite and that, contrary to what many think, represented “an important and central part of the Palestinian public.” A part of the public that believed it was necessary to stand by Britain at this time, and to temporarily put aside the Palestinian national aspirations – akin to the Jewish idea to “fight Hitler as if there were no White Paper, and fight the White Paper as if there were no Hitler.”

    They did this at a time when the Mufti of Jerusalem had left Palestine for exile in the Arab countries and Europe, where he met with Hitler and congratulated the Muslim volunteers of the Free Arab Legion – an Arab unit established in the army of Nazi Germany. “He left Palestine for a decade in 1937. What kind of leader abandons his people at such a time?” Abbasi wonders. “He had no influence on the public. He was detached and the public was already tired of him and his methods. They didn’t see him as a leader,” he says. “Anyone who says differently is distorting history,” he adds in a not so subtle dig at certain politicians.

    In his research, he documented pro-British propaganda conferences that were held from 1940 on in Abu Dis (next to Jerusalem), in Jenin, in villages in the Nablus area, in Tul Karm and in Lod. Among the supporters of Britain’s fight against the Nazis were the mayors of Nablus and Gaza. Radio Palestine broadcast the comments of an Egyptian writer who said, “The war is between the lofty and humane values represented by England and the forces of darkness represented by the Nazis.”
    Britain’s then-Home Secretary Winston Churchill, right, escorted by High Commissioner Herbert Samuel in Jerusalem during the British Mandate era, March 1921.
    Britain’s then-Home Secretary Winston Churchill, right, escorted by High Commissioner Herbert Samuel in Jerusalem during the British Mandate era, March 1921.GPO

    Motivations for volunteering were varied. “Some did it for ideological reasons, out of opposition to the Nazi ideology and loyalty to the British and the values that they represented,” says Abbasi. This motivation was common among upper middle class and highly educated Palestinian volunteers from urban backgrounds. Rural Palestinians were motivated largely by financial reasons. “And there were also those who were seeking adventure and wanted a chance to travel abroad,” he says.

    Abbasi found that some Palestinian women also volunteered to fight the Nazis. Almost 120 young women did so as part of the

    Auxiliary Territorial Service, the women’s branch of the British Army, alongside Jewish women. A British recruiting poster in Arabic, published in the Falastin newspaper in January 1942, read: “She couldn’t stop thinking about contribution and sacrifice, she felt ongoing pride and exaltation of spirit – when she did what she saw as her sacred duty for her nation and its sons. When your country is crying out to you and asking for your service, when your country makes it plain that our Arab men need your love and support, and when your country reminds you of how cruel the enemy is – when your country is calling you, can you stand by and do nothing?”

    Abbasi is one of the only researchers in Palestinian society who is studying this area, which was also the subject of a 2015 article by Dalia Karpel in Haaretz Magazine. He came to it thanks to his maternal grandfather, Sa’id Abbasi, who was one of the volunteers in the British Army during the war. “The family didn’t talk about it, until one day when I asked my grandmother why there was such a big age difference between her children,” he says. “Her answer was: ‘Don’t remind me of the time your grandfather left me for so many years.’” Abbasi decided to find out more about that time, and came to see that his family story was part of his people’s history.

    In the future, he hopes, the original material he has collected will be developed into a book that, for the first time, will tell the optimistic story of a rare moment in history in which Jews and Palestinians joined forces for a lofty shared goal.
    Ofer Aderet

    Ofer Aderet

    Haaretz Correspondent

    https://seenthis.net/messages/784533 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • Comment Israël arme les dictatures à travers le monde

    Arming dictators, equipping pariahs: Alarming picture of Israel’s arms sales - Israel News - Haaretz.com

    Extensive Amnesty report cites Israeli sales to eight countries who violate human rights, including South Sudan, Myanmar, Mexico and the UAE ■ Amnesty calls on Israel to adopt oversight model adopted by many Western countries ■ Senior Israeli defense official: Export license is only granted after lengthy process
    Amos Harel
    May 17, 2019 5:59 AM

    https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-arming-dictators-equipping-pariahs-an-alarming-picture-of-israel-s
    https://www.haaretz.com/polopoly_fs/1.7250453.1558062678!/image/330230789.jpg_gen/derivatives/headline_1200x630/330230789.jpg

    A thorough report by Amnesty International is harshly critical of Israel’s policies on arms exports. According to the report written in Hebrew by the organization’s Israeli branch, Israeli companies continue to export weapons to countries that systematically violate human rights. Israeli-made weapons are also found in the hands of armies and organizations committing war crimes. The report points to eight such countries that have received arms from Israel in recent years.

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    Often these weapons reach their destination after a series of transactions, thereby skirting international monitoring and the rules of Israel itself. Amnesty calls on the government, the Knesset and the Defense Ministry to more tightly monitor arms exports and enforce transparency guidelines adopted by other Western countries that engage in large-scale weapons exports.

    In the report, Amnesty notes that the supervision of the arms trade is “a global, not a local issue. The desire and need for better monitoring of global arms sales derives from tragic historical events such as genocide, bloody civil wars and the violent repression of citizens by their governments …. There is a new realization that selling arms to governments and armies that employ violence only fuels violent conflicts and leads to their escalation. Hence, international agreements have been reached with the aim of preventing leaks of military equipment to dictatorial or repressive regimes.”

    >> Read more: Revealed: Israel’s cyber-spy industry helps world dictators hunt dissidents and gays

    The 2014 Arms Trade Treaty established standards for trade in conventional weapons. Israel signed the treaty but the cabinet never ratified it. According to Amnesty, Israel has never acted in the spirit of this treaty, neither by legislation nor its policies.

    “There are functioning models of correct and moral-based monitoring of weapons exports, including the management of public and transparent reporting mechanisms that do not endanger a state’s security or foreign relations,” Amnesty says. “Such models were established by large arms exporters such as members of the European Union and the United States. There is no justification for the fact that Israel continues to belong to a dishonorable club of exporters such as China and Russia.”

    In 2007, the Knesset passed a law regulating the monitoring of weapons exports. The law authorizes the Defense Ministry to oversee such exports, manage their registration and decide on the granting of export licenses. The law defines defense-related exports very broadly, including equipment for information-gathering, and forbids trade in such items without a license.
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    The law does not include a clause limiting exports when there is a high probability that these items will be used in violation of international or humanitarian laws. But the law does prohibit “commerce with foreign agencies that are not in compliance with UN Security Council resolutions that prohibit or limit a transfer of such weapons or missiles to such recipients.”

    According to Amnesty, “the absence of monitoring and transparency have for decades let Israel supply equipment and defense-related knowledge to questionable states and dictatorial or unstable regimes that have been shunned by the international community.”

    The report quotes a 2007 article by Brig. Gen. (res.) Uzi Eilam. “A thick layer of fog has always shrouded the export of military equipment. Destinations considered pariah states by the international community, such as Chile in the days of Pinochet or South Africa during the apartheid years, were on Israel’s list of trade partners,” Eilam wrote.

    “The shroud of secrecy helped avoid pressure by the international community, but also prevented any transparency regarding decisions to sell arms to problematic countries, leaving the judgment and decision in the hands of a small number of people, mainly in the defense establishment.”

    The report presents concrete evidence on Israel’s exports over the last two decades, with arms going to eight countries accused by international institutions of serious human rights violations: South Sudan, Myanmar, the Philippines, Cameroon, Azerbaijan, Sri Lanka, Mexico and the United Arab Emirates. In some of these cases, Israel denied that it exported arms to these countries at specifically mentioned times. In other case it refused to give details.
    Israeli security-related exports

    In its report, Amnesty relies on the research of other human rights groups, on documentation published in the media in those eight countries, and on information gathered by attorney Eitay Mack, who in recent years has battled to expose Israel’s arms deals with shady regimes. Amnesty cross-checks descriptions of exported weapons with human rights violations and war crimes by those countries. In its report, Amnesty says that some of these countries were under sanctions and a weapons-sales embargo, but Israel continued selling them arms.

    According to the organization, “the law on monitoring in its current format is insufficient and has not managed to halt the export of weapons to Sri Lanka, which massacred many of its own citizens; to South Sudan, where the regime and army committed ethnic cleansing and aggravated crimes against humanity such as the mass rape of hundreds of women, men and girls; to Myanmar, where the army committed genocide and the chief of staff, who carried out the arms deal with Israel, is accused of these massacres and other crimes against humanity; and to the Philippines, where the regime and police executed 15,000 civilians without any charges or trials.”

    Amnesty says that this part of the report “is not based on any report by the Defense Ministry relating to military equipment exports, for the simple reason that the ministry refuses to release any information. The total lack of transparency by Israel regarding weapons exports prevents any public discussion of the topic and limits any research or public action intended to improve oversight.”

    One example is the presence of Israeli-made Galil Ace rifles in the South Sudanese army. “With no documentation of sales, one cannot know when they were sold, by which company, how many, and so on,” the report says.

    “All we can say with certainty is that the South Sudanese army currently has Israeli Galil rifles, at a time when there is an international arms embargo on South Sudan, imposed by the UN Security Council, due to ethnic cleansing, as well as crimes against humanity, using rape as a method of war, and due to war crimes the army is perpetrating against the country’s citizens.”

    According to Amnesty, the defense export control agency at the Defense Ministry approved the licenses awarded Israeli companies for selling weapons to these countries, even though it knew about the bad human rights situation there. It did this despite the risk that Israeli exports would be used to violate human rights and despite the embargo on arms sales imposed on some of these countries by the United States and the European Union, as well as other sanctions that were imposed by these countries or the United Nations.

    In response to letters written to the export control agency, its head, Rachel Chen, said: “We can’t divulge whether we’re exporting to one of these countries, but we carefully examine the state of human rights in each country before approving export licenses for selling them weapons.” According to Amnesty, this claim is false, as shown by the example of the eight countries mentioned in the report.

    Amnesty recommends steps for improving the monitoring of defense exports. It says Israel lags American legislation by 20 years, and European legislation by 10 years. “The lack of transparency has further negative implications, such as hiding information from the public,” Amnesty says.
    File photo: Personnel of the South Sudan People’s Defence Forces (SSPDF), assigned as South Sundan’s presidential guard, take part in a drill at their barracks in Rejaf, South Sudan, April 26, 2019.
    File photo: Personnel of the South Sudan People’s Defence Forces (SSPDF), assigned as South Sundan’s presidential guard, take part in a drill at their barracks in Rejaf, South Sudan, April 26, 2019.Alex McBride/AFP

    “The concept by which the Defense Ministry operates is that it is not in the public interest to know which countries buy weapons here, how much and under what conditions. This is an erroneous conception that stems from the wish to conceal, using the well-worn cloak of ‘issues of state security and foreign relations’ as an excuse,” it adds.

    “The veil of secrecy makes it hard to obtain data. In our humble opinion, the information we have gathered and presented in this report is the tip of the iceberg. Most of the evidence is based on official reports issued by the recipient states, such as the Facebook page of the chief of staff in Myanmar, or the site of the Philippine government’s spokesman.”

    The authors say attempts to maintain secrecy in an era of social media and global media coverage are absurd and doomed to fail.

    “Let the reasonable reader ask himself if the powers that sell weapons are concerned about harm to state security resulting from making the information accessible, or whether this is just an excuse, with the veil of secrecy protecting the interests of certain agencies in Israel.”

    Amnesty says Israel ranks eighth among the exporters of heavy weapons around the world. Between 2014 and 2018, Israel’s defense exports comprised 3.1 percent of global sales. Compared with the previous four years, this was a 60 percent increase. The three largest customers of heavy weapons sold by Israel are India, Azerbaijan and Vietnam.

    But the report says defense industries are not the largest or most lucrative contributors to Israeli exports. According to the Defense Ministry, defense exports comprise 10 percent of Israel’s industrial exports. “Defense-related companies in Israel export to 130 countries around the world,” the report says. “Of these, only a minority are countries designated by the UN and the international community as violators of human rights.”

    These are mostly poor countries and the scope of defense exports to them is small compared to the rest of Israel’s exports. According to Amnesty, banning exports to the eight countries would not sting Israel’s defense contractors or their profits, and would certainly not have a public impact. “There is no justification – economic, diplomatic, security-related or strategic – to export weapons to these countries,” the report says.

    Amnesty believes that “the situation is correctable. Israel’s government and the Defense Ministry must increase their monitoring and transparency, similar to what the vast majority of large weapons exporters around the world do except for Russia and China.”

    According to Amnesty, this should be done by amending the law regulating these exports, adding two main clauses. The first would prohibit the awarding of licenses to export to a country with a risk of serious human rights violations, based on international humanitarian law.

    The second would set up a committee to examine the human rights situation in any target state. The committee would include people from outside the defense establishment and the Foreign Ministry such as academics and human rights activists, as is customary in other countries.

    “Monitoring must not only be done, it must be seen, and the Israeli public has every right to know what is done in its name and with its resources, which belong to everyone,” the report says.

    A policy of obscurity

    A senior defense official who read the Amnesty report told Haaretz that many of its claims have been discussed in recent years in petitions to the High Court of Justice. The justices have heard petitions relating to South Sudan, Cameroon and Mexico. However, in all cases, the court accepted the state’s position that deliberations would be held with only one side present – the state, and that its rulings would remain classified.
    File photo: Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks to a military commander along the Gaza border, southern Israel, March 28, 2019.
    File photo: Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks to a military commander along the Gaza border, southern Israel, March 28, 2019.Itay Beit On/GPO

    Monitoring of exports has substantially increased since the law was passed, the official said. The authority endowed to the Defense Ministry by this law, including imposing economic sanctions, prohibition of exports and taking legal action against companies, are more far-reaching than in other countries.

    “The process of obtaining an export license in Israel is lengthy, difficult and imposes onerous regulations on exporters," he added. “When there is evidence of human rights violations in a country buying arms from Israel, we treat this with utmost seriousness in our considerations. The fact is that enlightened states respect the laws we have and are interested in the ways we conduct our monitoring.”

    He admitted that Israel does adopt a policy of obscurity with regard to its arms deals. “We don’t share information on whether or to which country we’ve sold arms,” he said. “We’ve provided all the information to the High Court. The plaintiffs do receive fixed laconic responses, but there are diplomatic and security-related circumstances that justify this.”

    “Other countries can be more transparent but we’re in a different place,” he argued. "We don’t dismiss out of hand discussion of these issues. The questions are legitimate but the decisions and polices are made after all the relevant considerations are taken into account.”

    The intense pace of events in recent months – rounds of violence along the Gaza border, Israel’s election, renewed tension between the U.S. and Iran – have left little time to deal with other issues that make the headlines less frequently.

    Israel is currently in the throes of an unprecedented constitutional and political crisis, the outcome of which will seriously impact its standing as a law-abiding state. If Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu succeeds in his plan to halt all legal proceedings against him, legislating an immunity law and restricting the jurisdiction of the High Court, all other issues would pale in comparison.

    There is some logic to the claim that Israel cannot be holier than thou when it comes to arms sales in the global market, and yet, the Amnesty report depicts a horrific image, backed by reliable data, but also makes suggestions for improvement that seem reasonable.

    Numerous reports over the last year show that the problem is not restricted to the sale of light weapons, but might be exacerbated by the spread of cyberwarfare tools developed by Israel and what dark regimes can do with these. Even if it happens through a twisted chain of sub-contractors, the state can’t play innocent. Therefore, it’s worthwhile listening to Amnesty’s criticism and suggestions for improvement.
    Amos Harel

    https://seenthis.net/messages/781514 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • L’Eurovision en Israël : « Oser rêver » sauf si l’on est enfermé à Gaza par Abier Almasri
    https://www.hrw.org/fr/news/2019/05/16/leurovision-en-israel-oser-rever-sauf-si-lon-est-enferme-gaza

    Les Palestiniens vivant dans la bande de Gaza aspirent pourtant aussi à la liberté et à l’égalité

    https://www.hrw.org/sites/default/files/styles/open_graph/public/multimedia_images_2019/201905mena_israel_palestine_gaza_eurovision.jpg?itok=2ui6LcRO

    Ces jours-ci, Israël accueille à Tel Aviv le concours Eurovision de la chanson, sous le slogan « Osez rêver » (« Dare to dream »). De nombreux Européens ont parcouru plusieurs centaines de kilomètres pour se rendre en Israël afin d’assister aux festivités. Mais en tant que résidente de Gaza, je n’ai moi-même pas le droit de faire ce voyage, alors qu’il durerait moins d’une heure en voiture.

    En coordination avec l’Égypte, Israël a transformé Gaza en une prison à ciel ouvert, renfermant deux millions de Palestiniens sur une petite superficie. Depuis près de 12 ans, les autorités israéliennes ont sévèrement restreint la possibilité de traverser la frontière, essentiellement réservée à des « cas humanitaires exceptionnels ». Ceci équivaut à une interdiction généralisée de voyager qui est illégale, et ne repose sur aucune évaluation individuelle de risques sécuritaires. En 2018, le nombre de personnes autorisées à traverser le pont d’Erez pour sortir de Gaza ne représentait plus qu’environ 1 % du nombre enregistré en septembre 2000, avant l’imposition du blocus.

    Malgré cette dure réalité, j’ai longtemps « osé rêver » de pouvoir voyager et de voir le monde, et même simplement de visiter Jérusalem, non loin de Gaza. L’année dernière, l’armée israélienne m’a enfin permis de quitter Gaza pour la première fois de ma vie, à l’âge de 31 ans, afin d’assister à des réunions au siège de Human Rights Watch à New York. J’ai par la suite été autorisée à me rendre en Israël et en Cisjordanie pour la première fois. J’ai savouré chaque instant, sachant que ce serait peut-être la dernière fois.

    Je sais aussi que j’ai plus de chance que la plupart des habitants de Gaza, dont 80 % dépendent d’aide humanitaire et plus de la moitié sont sans emploi.

    Je souhaiterais que des spectateurs de l’Eurovision viennent aussi ici à Gaza et prennent connaissance de notre propre réalité, comme les longues et fréquentes coupures de courant, et le supplice psychologique de se sentir piégé et interdit de voyage.

    En tant que Palestiniennes et Palestiniens de Gaza, nous ne sommes pas en mesure d’assister sans entrave à l’Eurovision, mais nous ne cesserons jamais d’oser rêver de liberté.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/781409 via enuncombatdouteux



  • Le refus de la part d’Israël d’accorder aux réfugiés palestiniens le droit au retour a engendré sept décennies de souffrances
    15 mai 2019 - Amnesty International
    https://www.amnesty.org/fr/latest/news/2019/05/israels-refusal-to-grant-palestinian-refugees-right-to-return-has-fuelled-s
    https://www.amnesty.org:443/remote.axd/aineupstrmediaprd.blob.core.windows.net/media/20956/nakba-photo.jpg?center=0.5,0.5&preset=fixed_1200_630

    La Nakba, qui est commémorée le 15 mai, désigne le déplacement de plus de 700 000 Palestiniens à la suite de la création de l’État d’Israël en 1948
    Plus de 70 années se sont depuis écoulées, et Israël continue de priver les réfugiés palestiniens de leur droit de retourner sur leurs terres
    Amnesty International a créé un site dédié à la Nakba qui décrit les difficultés des réfugiés palestiniens qui vivent au Liban, en Jordanie et dans les territoires palestiniens occupés

    #Nakba

    https://seenthis.net/messages/781150 via Loutre


  • Un prix important pour l’écrivaine égyptienne Ahdaf Soueif, défenseure inlassable de la démocratie attribué par la fondation pour la culture européenne

    ECF Princess Margriet Award 2019 - European Cultural Foundation
    https://www.culturalfoundation.eu/pma-2019

    http://static1.squarespace.com/static/526e5978e4b0b83086a1fede/t/5ae74a936d2a739e98048ed5/1525107354896/ECF-Main-Logo-WarmRed.jpg?format=1500w

    Ahdaf Soueif (1950) is a writer and cultural activist working in London and Cairo.

    In the last 20 years she has courageously merged literature and activism, building a body of fiction and committed journalism that responds to the legacies of European intervention in conflicts outside of the continent’s immediate territorial boundaries.

    The Palestine Festival of Literature (2008–present), of which she is founding chair, created a new form of international cultural cooperation.

    Soueif’’s consistent opposition to both authoritarianism and colonialism has marked her as a cultural figure of international importance inspiring new generations of critical voices throughout Europe and its neighbouring regions.

    Throughout her career, Soueif has been a tireless mediator between the supposed opposition of east and west, working to find common ground for a more democratic future.
    Visit Ahdaf Soueif’s website
    Follow Soueif on Twitter
    Visit the PalFest Website

    https://seenthis.net/messages/781255 via Nouvelles d’Orient


  • L’assureur Axa se désinvestit d’une entreprise d’armement israélienne, cible d’une campagne de boycott
    Emmanuel Riondé, Basta, le 13 mai 2019
    https://www.bastamag.net/L-assureur-Axa-se-desinvestit-d-une-entreprise-d-armement-israelienne-cibl

    Une filiale d’Axa a récemment confirmé son retrait de l’actionariat d’Elbit Systems, une entreprise israélienne fabriquant des armes utilisées contre les Palestiniens, notamment des bombes au phosphore blanc.

    #Palestine #BDS #Désinvestissement #Axa #armement #embargo

    https://seenthis.net/messages/781105 via Dror@sinehebdo


  • La #France et l’#UE avalisent l’#apartheid en #Palestine
    http://www.chroniquepalestine.com/france-et-ue-se-font-une-raison-apartheid-en-palestine
    http://www.chroniquepalestine.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/11-9.jpg

    L’incompétence de l’UE n’a d’égal que son #hypocrisie. Israël jouit toujours d’importants privilèges commerciaux avec l’#Europe, et les relations diplomatiques entre Israël et la plupart des pays membres de l’UE sont à un niveau sans précédent.

    La seule initiative européenne collective qui a semblé avoir un peu de portée sur le moment, remonte à 2013, lorsque l’UE a demandé que les produits israéliens fabriqués dans les colonies juives illégales soient étiquetés comme tels. Après des années de bricolage, l’UE a admis que le contrôle des pratiques commerciales israéliennes en matière d’étiquetage s’était avéré « impossible ».

    La position française sur le commerce avec les colonies illégales est particulièrement scandaleuse. Alors que le Sénat irlandais a voté le 5 décembre dernier pour interdire l’importation des biens produits dans les colonies, en octobre 2018, les Français ont fait exactement le contraire en suspendant les règles spéciales d’étiquetage.

    En vérité, l’inefficacité des politiques de l’UE n’a rien de nouveau et elle ne peut pas être imputée aux mesures unilatérales de Trump. En fait, les propos de l’ambassadeur de France Araud illustrent la frustration accumulée par de nombreux diplomates de l’UE au fil des ans.

    https://seenthis.net/messages/781113 via Kassem