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Palestine Is Still the Issue

World  (tags: world, violence, unitednations, terrorism, society, politics, israel, humans, humanrights, HumanRights, freedoms, ethics, death, conflict, NGOs, Palestine, John Pilger )

- 281 days ago -
When Israel is called upon by governments and NGOs to "respect human rights" in Palestine, nothing happens, because they all know there is nothing to fear; nothing will change.

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Darren W (218)
Wednesday July 12, 2017, 3:59 pm
Posted on behalf of our friend, Evelyn B.

Ed Site Issues V (198)
Wednesday July 12, 2017, 4:18 pm
Noted, Thanks

Barb K (1687)
Wednesday July 12, 2017, 4:48 pm
TYSM Darren for posting for Evelyn B. You're a sweetheart!

Barb SiteIssues V (202)
Wednesday July 12, 2017, 5:29 pm
Noted, Thank you

Doris F (21)
Wednesday July 12, 2017, 9:21 pm
noted, thank you Darren

Evelyn B (62)
Thursday July 13, 2017, 12:53 am
Thank you, Darren -
For some glitchy reason, I haven't been able to post stories since yesterday morning! I hope Eric's going to be able to sort this glitch out soon - I have a lovely post on not taking life seriously all the time that I'd been trying to post!!!

Evelyn B (62)
Thursday July 13, 2017, 1:00 am
Palestine is still the issue
10 July 2017

When I first went to Palestine as a young reporter in the 1960s, I stayed on a kibbutz. The people I met were hard-working, spirited and called themselves socialists. I liked them. One evening at dinner, I asked about the silhouettes of people in the far distance, beyond our perimeter.

"Arabs", they said, "nomads". The words were almost spat out. Israel, they said, meaning Palestine, had been mostly wasteland and one of the great feats of the Zionist enterprise was to turn the desert green.

They gave as an example their crop of Jaffa oranges, which was exported to the rest of the world. What a triumph against the odds of nature and humanity's neglect.

It was the first lie. Most of the orange groves and vineyards belonged to Palestinians who had been tilling the soil and exporting oranges and grapes to Europe since the eighteenth century. The former Palestinian town of Jaffa was known by its previous inhabitants as "the place of sad oranges".

On the kibbutz, the word "Palestinian" was never used. Why, I asked. The answer was a troubled silence.

All over the colonised world, the true sovereignty of indigenous people is feared by those who can never quite cover the fact, and the crime, that they live on stolen land.

Denying people's humanity is the next step - as the Jewish people know only too well. Defiling people's dignity and culture and pride follows as logically as violence.

In Ramallah, following an invasion of the West Bank by the late Ariel Sharon in 2002, I walked through streets of crushed cars and demolished houses, to the Palestinian Cultural Centre. Until that morning, Israeli soldiers had camped there. I was met by the centre's director, the novelist, Liana Badr, whose original manuscripts lay scattered and torn across the floor. The hard-drive containing her fiction, and a library of plays and poetry had been taken by Israeli soldiers. Almost everything was smashed, and defiled.

Not a single book survived with all its pages; not a single master tape from one of the best collections of Palestinian cinema.

The soldiers had urinated and defecated on the floors, on desks, on embroideries and works of art. They had smeared faeces on children's paintings and written - in shit - "Born to kill". Liana Badr had tears in her eyes, but she was unbowed. She said, "We will make it right again."

What enrages those who colonise and occupy, steal and oppress, vandalise and defile is the victims' refusal to comply. And this is the tribute we all should pay the Palestinians. They refuse to comply. They go on. They wait - until they fight again. And they do so even when those governing them collaborate with their oppressors.

In the midst of the 2014 Israeli bombardment of Gaza, the Palestinian journalist Mohammed Omer never stopped reporting. He and his family were stricken; he queued for food and water and carried it through the rubble. When I phoned him, I could hear the bombs outside his door. He refused to comply.

Mohammed's reports, illustrated by his graphic photographs, were a model of professional journalism that shamed the compliant and craven reporting of the so-called mainstream in Britain and the United States. The BBC notion of objectivity - amplifying the myths and lies of authority, a practice of which it is proud - is shamed every day by the likes of Mohamed Omer.

For more than 40 years, I have recorded the refusal of the people of Palestine to comply with their oppressors: Israel, the United States, Britain, the European Union.

Since 2008, Britain alone has granted licences for export to Israel of arms and missiles, drones and sniper rifles, worth £434 million.

Those who have stood up to this, without weapons, those who have refused to comply, are among Palestinians I have been privileged to know:

My friend, the late Mohammed Jarella, who toiled for the United Nations agency UNRWA, in 1967 showed me a Palestinian refugee camp for the first time. It was a bitter winter's day and schoolchildren shook with the cold. "One day ..." he would say. "One day ..."

Mustafa Barghouti, whose eloquence remains undimmed, who described the tolerance that existed in Palestine among Jews, Muslims and Christians until, as he told me, "the Zionists wanted a state at the expense of the Palestinians."

Dr. Mona El-Farra, a physician in Gaza, whose passion was raising money for plastic surgery for children disfigured by Israeli bullets and shrapnel. Her hospital was flattened by Israeli bombs in 2014.

Dr. Khalid Dahlan, a psychiatrist, whose clinics for children in Gaza - children sent almost mad by Israeli violence - were oases of civilization.

Fatima and Nasser are a couple whose home stood in a village near Jerusalem designated "Zone A and B", meaning that the land was declared for Jews only. Their parents had lived there; their grandparents had lived there. Today, the bulldozers are laying roads for Jews only, protected by laws for Jews only.

It was past midnight when Fatima went into labour with their second child. The baby was premature; and when they arrived at a checkpoint with the hospital in view, the young Israeli soldier said they needed another document.

Fatima was bleeding badly. The soldier laughed and imitated her moans and told them, "Go home". The baby was born there in a truck. It was blue with cold and soon, without care, died from exposure. The baby's name was Sultan.

For Palestinians, these will be familiar stories. The question is: why are they not familiar in London and Washington, Brussels and Sydney?

In Syria, a recent liberal cause - a George Clooney cause - is bankrolled handsomely in Britain and the United States, even though the beneficiaries, the so-called rebels, are dominated by jihadist fanatics, the product of the invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq and the destruction of modern Libya.

And yet, the longest occupation and resistance in modern times is not recognised. When the United Nations suddenly stirs and defines Israel as an apartheid state, as it did this year, there is outrage - not against a state whose "core purpose" is racism but against a UN commission that dared break the silence.

"Palestine," said Nelson Mandela, "is the greatest moral issue of our time."

Why is this truth suppressed, day after day, month after month, year after year?

In Israel - the apartheid state, guilty of a crime against humanity and of more international law-breaking than any other - the silence persists among those who know and whose job it is to keep the record straight.

In Israel, so much journalism is intimidated and controlled by a groupthink that demands silence on Palestine while honourable journalism has become dissidence: a metaphoric underground.

A single word - "conflict" - enables this silence. "The Arab-Israeli conflict", intone the robots at their tele-prompters. When a veteran BBC reporter, a man who knows the truth, refers to "two narratives", the moral contortion is complete.

There is no conflict, no two narratives, with their moral fulcrum. There is a military occupation enforced by a nuclear-armed power backed by the greatest military power on earth; and there is an epic injustice.

The word "occupation" may be banned, deleted from the dictionary. But the memory of historical truth cannot be banned: of the systemic expulsion of Palestinians from their homeland. "Plan D" the Israelis called it in 1948.

The Israeli historian Benny Morris describes how David Ben-Gurion, Israel's first prime minister, was asked by one of his generals: "What shall we do with the Arabs?" The prime minister, wrote Morris, "made a dismissive, energetic gesture with his hand". "Expel them!" he said.

Seventy years later, this crime is suppressed in the intellectual and political culture of the West. Or it is debatable, or merely controversial. Highly-paid journalists and eagerly accept Israeli government trips, hospitality and flattery, then are truculent in their protestations of independence. The term, "useful idiots", was coined for them.

In 2011, I was struck by the ease with which one of Britain's most acclaimed novelists, Ian McEwan, a man bathed in the glow of bourgeois enlightenment, accepted the Jerusalem Prize for literature in the apartheid state.

Would McEwan have gone to Sun City in apartheid South Africa? They gave prizes there, too, all expenses paid. McEwan justified his action with weasel words about the independence of "civil society".

Propaganda - of the kind McEwan delivered, with its token slap on the wrists for his delighted hosts - is a weapon for the oppressors of Palestine. Like sugar, it insinuates almost everything today.

Understanding and deconstructing state and cultural propaganda is our most critical task. We are being frog-marched into a second cold war, whose eventual aim is to subdue and balkanise Russia and intimidate China.

When Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin spoke privately for more than two hours at the G20 meeting in Hamburg, apparently about the need not to go to war with each other, the most vociferous objectors were those who have commandeered liberalism, such as the Zionist political writer of the Guardian.

"No wonder Putin was smiling in Hamburg," wrote Jonathan Freedland. "He knows he has succeeded in his chief objective: he has made America weak again." Cue the hissing for Evil Vlad.

These propagandists have never known war but they love the imperial game of war. What Ian McEwan calls "civil society" has become a rich source of related propaganda. Take a term often used by the guardians of civil society - "human rights". Like another noble concept, "democracy", "human rights" has been all but emptied of its meaning and purpose.

Like "peace process" and "road map", human rights in Palestine have been hijacked by Western governments and the corporate NGOs they fund and which claim a quixotic moral authority.

So when Israel is called upon by governments and NGOs to "respect human rights" in Palestine, nothing happens, because they all know there is nothing to fear; nothing will change.

Mark the silence of the European Union, which accommodates Israel while refusing to maintain its commitments to the people of Gaza - such as keeping the lifeline of the Rafah border crossing open: a measure it agreed to as part of its role in the cessation of fighting in 2014. A seaport for Gaza - agreed by Brussels in 2014 - has been abandoned.

The UN commission I have referred to - its full name is the UN Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia - described Israel as, and I quote, "designed for the core purpose" of racial discrimination.

Millions understand this. What the governments in London, Washington, Brussels and Tel Aviv cannot control is that humanity at street level is changing perhaps as never before.

People everywhere are stirring and are more aware, in my view, than ever before. Some are already in open revolt. The atrocity of Grenfell Tower in London has brought communities together in a vibrant almost national resistance.

Thanks to a people's campaign, the judiciary is today examining the evidence of a possible prosecution of Tony Blair for war crimes. Even if this fails, it is a crucial development, dismantling yet another barrier between the public and its recognition of the voracious nature of the crimes of state power - the systemic disregard for humanity perpetrated in Iraq, in Grenfell Tower, in Palestine. Those are the dots waiting to be joined.

For most of the 21st century, the fraud of corporate power posing as democracy has depended on the propaganda of distraction: largely on a cult of "me-ism" designed to disorientate our sense of looking out for others, of acting together, of social justice and internationalism.

Class, gender and race were wrenched apart. The personal became the political and the media the message. The promotion of bourgeois privilege was presented as "progressive" politics. It wasn't. It never is. It is the promotion of privilege, and power.

Among young people, internationalism has found a vast new audience. Look at the support for Jeremy Corbyn and the reception the G20 circus in Hamburg received. By understanding the truth and imperatives of internationalism, and rejecting colonialism, we understand the struggle of Palestine.

Mandela put it this way: "We know only too well that our freedom is incomplete without the freedom of the Palestinians."

At the heart of the Middle East is the historic injustice in Palestine. Until that is resolved, and Palestinians have their freedom and homeland, and Israelis are Palestinians equality before the law, there will be no peace in the region, or perhaps anywhere.

What Mandela was saying is that freedom itself is precarious while powerful governments can deny justice to others, terrorise others, imprison and kill others, in our name. Israel certainly understands the threat that one day it might have to be normal.

That is why its ambassador to Britain is Mark Regev, well known to journalists as a professional propagandist, and why the "huge bluff" of charges of anti-Semitism, as Ilan Pappe called it, was allowed to contort the Labour Party and undermine Jeremy Corbyn as leader. The point is, it did not succeed.

Events are moving quickly now. The remarkable Boycott, Disinvestment and Sanctions campaign (BDS) is succeeding, day by day; cities and towns, trade unions and student bodies are endorsing it. The British government's attempt to restrict local councils from enforcing BDS has failed in the courts.

These are not straws in the wind. When the Palestinians rise again, as they will, they may not succeed at first - but they will eventually if we understand that they are us, and we are them.

This is an abridged version of John Pilger's address to the Palestinian Expo 2017 in London. John Pilger's film, 'Palestine Is Still the Issue', can be viewed on this website.


Evelyn B (62)
Thursday July 13, 2017, 1:03 am
Some info on the film referred to above:

John Pilger first made the film 'Palestine Is Still The Issue' in 1977. It told how almost a million Palestinians had been forced off their land in 1948, and again in 1967. Twenty five years later, John Pilger returned to the West Bank of Jordan and Gaza, and to Israel, to ask why the Palestinians, whose right of return was affirmed by the United Nations more than half a century ago, are still caught in a terrible limbo - refugees in their own land, controlled by Israel in the longest military occupation in modern times.

"If we are to speak of the great injustice here, nothing has changed," says Pilger at the start of the film, "What has changed is that the Palestinians have fought back. Stateless and humiliated for so long, they have risen up against Israel’s huge military regime, although they themselves have no army, no tanks, no American planes and gunships or missiles. Some have committed desperate acts of terror, like suicide bombing. But, for Palestinians, the overriding, routine terror, day after day, has been the ruthless control of almost every aspect of their lives, as if they live in an open prison. This film is about the Palestinians and a group of courageous Israelis united in the oldest human struggle, to be free."

Pilger distills the history of Palestine during the twentieth century into an easily comprehensible struggle for land - the loss of seventy-eight per cent of that belonging to Palestinians when the state of Israel was founded in 1948 and their claim to only the remaining twenty-two per cent, which had for thirty-five years been occupied by Israel.

In a series of extraordinary interviews with both Israelis and Palestinians, he speaks to the families of suicide bombers and their victims. He witnesses the humiliation of Palestinians at myriad checkpoints with a permit system not dissimilar to apartheid South Africa's infamous pass laws. One Palestinian woman tells of how she was stopped from passing through a checkpoint when she went into labour and had to return home to give birth with her mother-in-law using a razor to cut the umbilical cord. The baby later died. He goes into the refugee camps and meets children who, he says, "no longer dream like other children, or if they do, it is about death." He is shown round the Palestinian Ministry of Culture in Ramallah after a recent Israeli attack where he discovers faeces smeared on walls and floors and a room of children’s paintings vandalised.

Archive footage shows pledges by successive American presidents in support of Israel. Pilger describes the Israeli administration as "America’s deputy sheriff" in the oil-rich Middle East, receiving billions of dollars and the latest weapons: F16 aircraft, bombs, missiles and Apache helicopters. He reveals that Britain also fuels the conflict even though it condemns Israel for its illegal occupation. "During the first fourteen months of the Palestinian uprising, the Blair government approved 230 export licences for weapons and military equipment to Israel... Tony Blair has said, and I quote him, "We are doing everything we can to bring peace and stability to the Middle East.'" As a result, Israel is now the fourth-largest military power in the world.

On a hillside overlooking Jerusalem, Pilger concludes. "The truth is that Israelis will never have peace until they recognise that Palestinians have the same right to the same peace and the same independence that they enjoy,’ he said. ‘Recently, that great voice of freedom, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, asked this: “Have the Jewish people of Israel forgotten their collective punishment, their home demolitions, their humiliations so soon?” Israel’s own dissenting voices have not forgotten and those who speak out in this film honour the best traditions of Jewish humanity... The occupation of Palestine should end now. Then, the solution is clear: two countries, Israel and Palestine, neither dominating nor menacing the other. Is that impossible or is history to witness the consequences of yet another silence?’"

Palestine Is Still The Issue was a Carlton Television production for ITV first broadcast on ITV1, 16 September 2002. Director: Tony Stark. Producer: Chris Martin.

Awards: The Chris Statuette in the War & Peace division, Chris Awards, Columbus International Film & Video Festival, Ohio, 2003; Winner, War & Peace category, Vermont International Film Festival, 2003; Certificate of Merit, Chicago International Television Awards.

MmAway M (505)
Thursday July 13, 2017, 2:32 am
First of all I did go to the site and wanted to say TY Evelyn, then saw that precious Darren had posted for you, then was keeping a bit of the news and you had posted it all here! Thus I will just say Thank you again and you two make a great team! Gotta Love Darren! You too darling! xxoo Good one

Evelyn B (62)
Thursday July 13, 2017, 2:48 am
***************************************************************** Marilyn!

And I agree - Darren is a great support (especially as he has lots of other worries, especially his mother's health, yet he didn't hesitate to find time to come to C2NN & post this when I asked for his help!)
***************************************************************************************** for Darren!!!

Freya H (357)
Thursday July 13, 2017, 2:50 am
Whenever anybody has the courage to criticize Israel's policies, all they have to do is play the Jew Card and harp on how Jews have been persecuted over the millennia. Say the least thing against Israel and you're a Nazi. Holocaust-denial bugnuts are snickering.

Animae C (514)
Thursday July 13, 2017, 3:45 am
TY Darren

Miss You All Dearly (67)
Thursday July 13, 2017, 5:25 am
Grew up on John Pilger's journalism......and respect him greatly Many thanks to those that posted this.......

The propaganda is still rife.....Israel today blamed Hamas for not letting Palestinians get to urgent medical care.........not them.......

Lona G (80)
Thursday July 13, 2017, 5:34 am
Thanks for posting Evelyn's article for her, dear Darren.

"Palestine," said Nelson Mandela, "is the greatest moral issue of our time." So true, and how quickly forgotten when the whole world is caught up in America's Drumpf antics. If there is any spotlight on the area it is on Syria, which is justified in itself, but leaves no room for "old news" Palestinians, let alone Palestine. Thanks, John Pilger and you, Evelyn, for remembering us of their plight. Yes, Palestine is still the issue.

Peggy B (42)
Thursday July 13, 2017, 6:24 am
So sorry for your loss, Darren.

Darren W (218)
Thursday July 13, 2017, 10:46 am
My mother is in hospital with kidney and anemia issues, Peggy. I've visited her EVERY day since 26 April.

Sheryl G (363)
Thursday July 13, 2017, 11:35 am
Removed from article:

"All over the colonised world, the true sovereignty of indigenous people is feared by those who can never quite cover the fact, and the crime, that they live on stolen land." isn't that the truth; is why in the USA they certainly don't want generations of people to think on the Native Americans too much.


"Not a single book survived with all its pages; not a single master tape from one of the best collections of Palestinian cinema."

This is not only heartbreaking for the Palestinians but also for the rest of the world. A loss of such things is a lost to everyone. When Daesh was destroying buildings that had stood for thousand years or more along with statues, it hurt not just the people within that area, but to the worlds people and ultimately our own humanity.

And speaking of humanity the article wrote:

"The soldiers had urinated and defecated on the floors, on desks, on embroideries and works of art. They had smeared faeces on children's paintings"

It went on, but reminds me of when the soldiers called the American Indian "savages" at the same time in parades they wore the fingers of the Indians they killed, after they had smashed the heads of that parents baby against a tree. How they made pouches from the breast of Indian women they sliced off. Who was in fact the savages. Yet proudly they rode their horses through the streets with these trophies as the so called "non savages" waved and cheered them on.

Is it any different today when an announcer from CNN brags how beautiful those tomahawks look going off to kill whoever would be standing there? And notice once more the word "tomahawk" to place words on these weapons of war - not onto those who are sending them out......but onto those American Indians that you stole from and oppressed. Just like Osama Bin Laden was code named Geronimo. It never ends this is the humiliation that is ongoing; so normally said it isn't even recognized by most people.

I suspect that is the case with many who live in Israel. As the writer said, even back in the 1960's the lies were there.

The Palestinian people stood in solidarity with the American Indians at Standing Rock, I know the word of Resistance is being used a lot, even on the threads of C2, but do the people really understand what that means. Periodically I place on the thread, yes, like the Native Americans who have done so for 500 years.
As the late Russell Means said in his final years as he saw the United States falling apart from within, now you'll know my brothers and sisters what it is like to live on the Reservation. Those words he said not with spite, but when people fail to see how others are treated and discarded then one day you and your life can equally be discarded.

The roadblock at Standing Rock placed up by the police and the Corporate goons. That slowed the people on the Standing Rock Reservation from reaching the hospital. Not only the injured that were standing up to keep the pipeline out, but to the Elders who already had many miles to reach the main road from out on the far reaches of the Rez but now had additional miles to go.

Those police and goon squads paid by the Corporate to eventually ruin the water also laughed when they shot at the faces of people, blinding people, tore an arms almost off of another, shot at men's groins, they laughed as a reporter had his finger smashed, a rubber bullet aimed to do exactly what it did.

Like they laughed at Fatima and let her baby die within site of a hospital........again, who are the savages? Who are the godly ones?

Thanks Darren and Evelyn, for your compassion, I only wish more people would know these things. Have as much concern for their two leggeds as the four legged on here. .


Shirley S (187)
Thursday July 13, 2017, 9:12 pm
noted with empathy & sorry to read that Darren's mother is ill & 10 out of 10 Darren for visiting every day.

MmAway M (505)
Thursday July 13, 2017, 9:16 pm
Darren is a a fighter and I hope someone lights and does a story for him since he is quite the special person. I don't know how to do those types of news! IMPORTANT! Darren you already know you are a prayer list, but you need MORE for all you do! Bless your precious heart!

If someone posts please let me know!

Dawnie W (250)
Thursday July 13, 2017, 11:04 pm

💙💜Thank you...Darren.💙💜

😉💜ღ 💙Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ😺💜L💙ve, Hugs and Peace go with you all💜😺Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ ღ💙😉

Roslyn M (44)
Friday July 14, 2017, 2:43 am
Human rights go both ways.

Sylvie A (193)
Friday July 14, 2017, 5:08 am
Noted. Thank you, Darren

Beryl L (80)
Friday July 14, 2017, 6:07 am
Thank you Evelyn, and Darren for helping out. I love to see everyone working together.:)

Gloria p (304)
Friday July 14, 2017, 6:57 am
Very sad.

fly b (26)
Friday July 14, 2017, 10:02 am
Thanks Darren, for posting and Evelyn for sharing. out of stars so, for you both, ************************

I'm away, at the moment, but checking in. I'm sorry to hear your mum is so ill, Darren. Best wishes to you, both, and for your mother's full recovery!

Raleighaway k (371)
Friday July 14, 2017, 11:57 am
noted ty

Colleen L (3)
Friday July 14, 2017, 8:44 pm
Thanks Darren

Glennis W (404)
Friday July 14, 2017, 9:56 pm
interesting article Thank you for passing on Darren Wish your Mum all the very best and hope she will be better very soon Thank you for caring and sharing Darren and Evelyn

Miss You All Dearly (67)
Saturday July 15, 2017, 4:56 am
Dearest Darren ....your Mother is a Fighter from Battler roots.....I remember us talking about her on another thread......she is stoic .....she will only let go.....when she feels her children are safe....and I know you are doing make her feel that way........Lots of Hugs all Round........our Bravest moment is letting those that want to letting them go..........hold onto her Dearly....and give them that permission....if that's what they's their time.........not ours........

Marija M (32)
Saturday July 15, 2017, 8:05 am
Thank you Evelyn and Darren.

Janet B (0)
Saturday July 15, 2017, 1:29 pm

lisa O (6)
Saturday July 15, 2017, 8:07 pm
Just posting this stuff can be red flags and considered anti Semitic in the US. Not sure why our government gets away with funding a country with nukes that is not supposed to have them. So horrible that we support this apartheid country as well. I hope things change soon.

Joette B (0)
Sunday July 16, 2017, 2:11 am
this must change there are people suffering what we can never imagine but perhaps we will experience the same if trump is tolerated FIGHT BACK !

Walter F (129)
Sunday July 16, 2017, 3:50 am
Darren I'm sorry to learn about your mother .My thoughts and prayers are with her.. as for the "ISSUE" i leave that to the pro Palestinians to spit out their usual venom about Israel They have been absent for a while, it appears they are at it again. Go for it you are wasting your time. You are spitting against the wind.The nation of Israel will exist and flourish long after you have gone.

Paola S (16)
Sunday July 16, 2017, 4:01 am
So true, It is a shame for all the world ! Free Palestine! It was another Genocide!

Roberto MARINI (90)
Sunday July 16, 2017, 5:59 am
Palestine is still a big problem

jan b (5)
Sunday July 16, 2017, 6:51 am
Last 8 years---the Jewish population grew by 1.8%, a similar trend observed in previous years. The Arab growth rate was 2.4%, . The Christian population grew too (by 1.3%), while the Druze population grew by 1.7%.
Palestine = Muslim 80–85% (predominantly Sunni; also non-denominational), Christian 1.0–2.5%, Jewish 12–14%[
How does this mixture of religions/backgrounds get along within the two countries without a desire to live with their majorities ? Why do Palestinians come to Israel for medical help ?

jan b (5)
Sunday July 16, 2017, 6:56 am
The Jewish population of ISRAEL makes up 6,484,000 (74.7%); 1,808,000 (20.8%) are Arabs; and, those identified as "others" (non-Arab Christians, Baha'i, etc) make up 4.5% of the population
20% are ARABS-----If its SO BAD why are they there and still arriving.....?

Mandi T (392)
Sunday July 16, 2017, 4:45 pm
TY Darren/Evelyn

Janet B (0)
Sunday July 16, 2017, 7:58 pm

Miss You All Dearly (67)
Monday July 17, 2017, 2:55 am
"The nation of Israel will exist and flourish long after you have gone." Don't ever remember any of us calling for the downfall of Israel...Walter.....I know I certainly haven''s Mandated Lands by the British to those of the Jewish faith.......just like Australia was claimed as Terra nullius by the British......and it is like Dandelion copied from the article "All over the colonised world, the true sovereignty of indigenous people is feared by those who can never quite cover the fact, and the crime, that they live on stolen land."

At the end of the is the taxpayer that will have to "Pay the Piper"........we do here in Australia..... Germany pays compensation to those that practised the Jewish the US will one day have to pay the Native Americans......and Israel will have to pay those Semetics that stayed on these lands after the Exodus.........history does repeat itself........because human races don't seem capable of learning lessons from the past.......

Miss You All Dearly (67)
Monday July 17, 2017, 4:30 am
Should read human races/ great Grandmother......was a practising Jew in Germany during Hilters rein......her Grandmother did convert to Catholicism when she was "partnered/pregnant".......but they stood up to the SS and helped many to Jews to safety...their papers are in a University in Germany to this day......for safe keeping......glad you unfriended was at your request not mine.....just got off the phone from a real friend (many decades) who is actually a Zionist and a Veteran from the 1967 war (Israel side FYI) and even he agrees you are a "JERK" I have had other "Souls" RIP who live in Israel (exIDF) who always worried about my safety even though I lived in Australia.....God Bless them.......for their concerns.....because they lived in a battlefield of no making of their own....they are just following orders......inpregnated orders.......

Walter F (129)
Monday July 17, 2017, 4:16 pm
Ros I wasn't going to respond to your comment .Your opinion of me and your pseudo Zionist friend isn't worth a row of pins,it doesn't concern me .What bothered me was your misstatement,I haven't unfriended you ,You still are on my friends list. I let you have the pleasure of doing that to me. My Jewish lineage can be traced back for at least five generations through a female line in every one and though not a practicing Jew I give unequivocal support to the nation of Israel ,its present leader and its people and I cannot stand the anti Israel posts and comments I see on care 2 .. I cancelled a previous account I had with care 2 years ago that being principal one, and am giving it serious consideration of doing that again

Janet B (0)
Monday July 17, 2017, 7:17 pm

Miss You All Dearly (67)
Tuesday July 18, 2017, 1:55 am
Thank you for your comment/response Walter......Ros G (0) means I have no friends.....according to C2...My Page got zapped on the 27/12/2016 which just happens to be the 5th Anniversary of their hack ...

I can assure you my Zionist friends are not pseudos.......they/their children will take a bullet for Israel anytime that it is asked of them.........over the Country of their Birth/Success.......and those that won't are "Jerks" to them.......supporting Israel and making "others" feel the are anti-Israel/ not helping the situation in their eyes......I have been having these discussions with them since the 1970's and they know I am not either and they respect the fact that I am concerned about Palestinians.....and I respect the fact that they aren't......but we have been talking about our concerns for decades because that is what friends do...they don't spit the dummy because they can't "convert" the other one into their thinking.

"My Jewish lineage can be traced back for at least five generations through a female line in every one"

Israel was formed in those that were born there after that are First Generation.....Israelis.....
So what you are telling me is that you can track down 5 generations of women that practised Judaism.....which is a Religion and not a Race BTW.......not forgetting that one can convert from one Religion to another.......Immigration doesn't have to get involved.....Faith is a personal thing......what you are trying to tell me is that I am a Jewess through the female am not..... like you I don't practise the Faith....
and at times my Zionist friends even get frustrated with me......because I won't try and convince anyone to take a bullet for Israel........and that's what they want and boost the really support Israel with your children.......and grandchildren.......if you can not do that then you really don't support Israel... this is how our conversations mostly go.........


Nita L (120)
Tuesday July 18, 2017, 2:19 am
Thank you Darren.

Walter F (129)
Tuesday July 18, 2017, 3:28 am
Noted ..Ros hatchet buried now ..Issue closed..Kalah

Miss You All Dearly (67)
Tuesday July 18, 2017, 4:48 am
Thank you have to excuse my ignorance...........had to "Google" Kalah.......
/ Our Library / Lexicons / Old Testament Hebrew Lexicon / Old Testament Hebrew Lexicon - New American Standard / Kalah
Kaleh Kallah
The NAS Old Testament Hebrew Lexicon
Strong's Number: 3617 Browse Lexicon
Original Word Word Origin
hlk from (03615)
Transliterated Word TDNT Entry
Kalah TWOT - 982a
Phonetic Spelling Parts of Speech
kaw-law' Noun Feminine
completion, termination, full end, complete destruction, consumption, annihilation
completely, altogether (adv)
complete destruction, consumption, annihilation
NAS Word Usage - Total: 22
annihilation 1, complete destruction 5, complete end 4, completely 4, destroy* 2, destruction 2, end 1, entirely 1, full end 2
NAS Verse Count
Genesis 1
Exodus 1
2 Chronicles 1
Nehemiah 1
Isaiah 2
Jeremiah 5
Ezekiel 2
Daniel 2
Nahum 2
Zephaniah 1
Total 18
The Hebrew lexicon is Brown, Driver, Briggs, Gesenius Lexicon; this is keyed to the "Theological Word Book of the Old Testament." These files are considered public domain.
Bibliography Information
Brown, Driver, Briggs and Gesenius. "Hebrew Lexicon entry for Kalah". "The NAS Old Testament Hebrew Lexicon". .

Kaleh Kallah
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Doesn't sound like I would use in my day to day life.....all I can say is "Peace and Happiness to you and yours" Walter........Care2 has been an amazing greatful for all the wonderful, diverse people that over the many years became true friends......"don't leave.....don't judge"......that is a motto to live by

Evelyn B (62)
Tuesday July 18, 2017, 12:42 pm
Walter - tracing five generations doesn't give you roots in the diaspora, an ethnic link with Israel -

Yet YOU can move to Israel if you want to.

But a Palestinian who can trace their family history back more than ten generations spent in a neighbourhood of Jerusalem, or in a village in what was established as Israel in 1948, whose family fled in the face of terrorist action by Zionist militia in the period building up to the declaration of the State of Israel has NO right to return to their family lands.

Does that seem like justice to you?

Yet you systematically attack anyone who speaks up for those unjustly treated. A very blind spot? In order to maintain that blind spot, you have to hate Palestinians, Muslims ...
I find it sad that someone who cares about social justice in almost ANY other context can not allow himself to stop and think, check out the versions of Israeli history fed to them.

Fortunately, many Jews (including some in Israel) are applying the same principle of justice, equality & human rights when they look at the situation in Israel & Palestine - and recognise that the Zionist politics are moving further and further away from the ethics taught in Judaism.

Evelyn B (62)
Tuesday July 18, 2017, 12:46 pm
Jan - again, every effort to mislead!

"20% are ARABS-----If its SO BAD why are they there and still arriving.....? "
You know very well that the only Arabs "arriving" in Israel are those being BORN there. Palestinians do not have the right to return to the land of their parents & grandparents - yet a convert to Judaism (or her descendants) can claim right to move to Israel.

Evelyn B (62)
Tuesday July 18, 2017, 1:02 pm
Place the 20% Arab population in context.

Up to the 4th century Jews constituted the majority in the land in which Israel was to be created over 1500 years later.

In 1947, with the huge influx of Jews moving from Europe following the horrors of Nazi policies & strategies, the proportion of Jews in the same land more than doubled from the 13% present in 1914.

And you think 20% is HIGH?

Those 20% of Israelis who are Arab DO NOT have exactly the same rights as Jewish Israelis.Although they do have some rights, there are a number of rights accorded to Jews (even newcomers) there are a number of rights that they do not share. For example, they can't live wherever they want in THEIR country, can't necessarily move back to their home village location. And there are growing numbers of Jewish Israelis who recognise - and disapprove - of such discrimination.

Walter F (129)
Tuesday July 18, 2017, 5:01 pm
Correction Evelyn I do have a link. My daughter did a D N A test on my sample to trace our ancestry for her compilation of the family tree My earliest ancestry goes back to what is now Israel and then progresses to what is now Turkey and then central Europe. I do have a very definite link So as we say here 'cop that.' Stop airig Please no more,...Ros I used the word Kalah meaning .end.Now this is definitely well and truly the bloody end..

fly b (26)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 12:52 am
Great comments, thank you, Evelyn and Ros.

Palestine Is Still the Issue!!

( btw, with genetic testing available.. the mind boggles .. as 'links' are as varied as pebbles on the sand. But the truth never changes. We are all one people, and 'religion', or any class of division, cannot claim superior knowledge or ancestry, or 'rightful' precedence over indigenous populations.
Migrations, colonialism, land thefts, land grabs, land takers, conquests, etc., do not justify, sanctify, or legitimize crimes against humanity and human rights violations.

Miss You All Dearly (67)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 1:26 am
LOL yourself said "My Jewish lineage can be traced back for at least five generations through a female line in every one".......the Jewish lineage is through the female line as you your daughter should of used the blood of her mother.....for that DNA test.....another change that occurred over the Centuries, it seems.......oh....just another oversight by a male I suppose.........

So true Evelyn and it gladdens my heart for those that practise real Judism for recognising the plight of the Palestinians and others......there are so many voluntary organisations within Israel that are helping what they see as their neighbours and not an enemy....... kudos to them....

As for the "Right of Return"......most citizens that are dual Nationals of Israel have that Right to Return to their Country of Birth...... even when they fight for/in a foreign Country like uphold Iraeli Laws without fear of reprisal when they return......
One would think that they in turn would afford the same Right to the Palestinians.... but alas no.......


Evelyn B (62)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 2:17 am
Ros, you saved me from making the same point - I didn't invent the 5 generations! Although arguing over that allowed neat sidestepping of the question of injustice that I asked!!! (Ironically, there is little difference in DNA of Muslims, Christians & Jews who remained living in what was known as Palestine under the Ottomans! Religion doesn't show in DNA! And some of these DNA tracking surveys are showing people some fascinating geo-ethnic linkages that they never dreamed of!)

Perhaps Palestinians in exile should get a DNA tracking done - they'd certainly have as strong a claim to Right of Return! After all, many of them WERE Jewish until they converted to Christianity in the early centuries of our Era ... and then many of those converted to Islam later. Not to forget the Palestinian Jews (who are of course now Israelis!)

Jerome S (0)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 2:29 am
thanks for sharing.

Jerome S (0)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 2:33 am
thanks for sharing.

Jim Ven (0)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 3:14 am

Jim Ven (0)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 3:15 am

Walter F (129)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 3:32 am
Girls one last curtain call before I bid you a a last goodbye You have let your spite and vindictiveness cloud your ability to reason .I am well and truly the last of my tribe .There was no other relative she could contact for a swab .The mother of my daughter was a non Jew and the love of my Life She died many years ago . Can you understand that Ros ,Incidentally you falsely accused me of deleting you as a friend,then admitted you lost your friend page. .Well now I have deleted you.. I have nothing in common with you.

Miss You All Dearly (67)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 4:08 am
Yes you are totally right Walter......we have nothing in common.....except for the fact that our daughters' lost a parent that they dearly loved....and they turned to us looking for answers......even clutching at straws......My daughter was more fortunate than seems.......her father was made a hero not only by the Australian Government but also the South Korean I said previously

Peace and Happiness to you and yours........I bare you no malice.....

Miss You All Dearly (67)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 5:09 am
"Incidentally you falsely accused me of deleting you as a friend,then admitted you lost your friend page. ."
Also true......but one person keeps coming up in your profile and as your friend but when my page goes into a meltdown.....they clash with my icon..........not that tech savvy myself......and C2 doesn't want to know... but other avenues have been employed......

Miss You All Dearly (67)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 7:01 am
"Girls one last curtain call before I bid you a a last goodbye" How condescending you are Walter......but it is expected of your "age group" truly an very old man.......confronted by young women in their 60' myself, Evelyn and are afraid of this younger generation and rightly so.....we expose you for what you really are.........

Evelyn B (62)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 8:30 am
The spite and vindictiveness seems to be towards the Palestinians and anyone who dares criticise Zionist leadership of Israel!!

Apparently, only Israel is granted impunity for human rights abuses!
I see Care2 has again mucked up your connections, Ros!

fly b (26)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 5:52 pm
Calling a spade a spade is necessary, and all the kvetching in the world - one of many intimidation tactics - won't change the sad and cruel truths, uncomfortable as they may be, to some, must be exposed and confronted. The dispossession and tyranny of the Palestinian people, who have suffered every day, for decades)must be stopped - and it will be.

The illegal occupation and the siege of Gaza, will not continue. It will be defeated and destroyed, one way or another, as public opinion and world awareness focuses and puts an end to it.

fly b (26)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 5:57 pm
Here is why - Thank you for sharing this post, Evelyn. **********

Things will get worse for Palestinians. Why I still have faith.

As the Israeli occupation turns 50, I still believe Palestinians will bring justice without creating injustice, secure equality for all and achieve freedom

As a political analyst, many of the pieces I write are impersonal and on the dry side. But as the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian West Bank, Gaza, East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights turns 50, I believe it is a time to get personal and to speak of what keeps us going in this seemingly endless struggle for Palestinian freedom, justice, and equality.

For me, it is because I have faith that we will succeed in bringing about justice without creating injustice, in securing equality for all, and in achieving freedom. How is this faith possible? Especially given that the situation on the ground has gotten steadily worse for Palestinians ever since Israel was created and Palestine disappeared from the map in 1948 - nearly 70 years ago.

Freedom and rights will not come soon. In fact, the situation will get even worse as Israel’s right wing government grows stronger. In the absence of a meaningful challenge by the international community to its project to colonise the occupied territories - indeed with the active support of the United States and the current British government – Israel will feel free to forcibly dispossess many more Palestinians in Jerusalem and in Area C of the West Bank, while signalling to the rest of the Palestinians in the West Bank that they are living on borrowed time.

Things will tragically get worse in the Gaza Strip, even if the draconian controls on freedom and access to the most basic needs of life – electricity, water, a functioning economy – are eased. The territory has been physically degraded almost to the point of no return and will need massive investment to recover.

Things will also get worse for the Palestinian citizens of Israel as the Israeli state tries to impose more laws discriminating against them (there are already more than 50) including most recently a bill aiming to end the status of Arabic as an official language. And the situation will remain dire for the millions of Palestinians who became refugees in 1948 and in 1967, particularly those seeking to survive in Syria and Lebanon

Spotlighting devastation

But, and here’s the irony, the stronger Israel is, the weaker it makes itself. Instead of pulling out of the occupied territories and accepting the sovereign Palestinian state the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) thought would be the outcome of Oslo back in the 1990s, Israel continued to build and expand the settlements.

As a result, it is drawing international attention not only to the injustice in the occupied territories today. It is also spotlighting the devastation that the creation of Israel visited on the entire Palestinian people of whom the majority were forced into exile and never allowed to return, despite United Nations Resolution 194, which was included in the resolution approving Israel’s membership of the UN.

The growing recognition of the injustice created in 1948 and perpetuated in 1967 is causing some tectonic shifts, in particular among young US Jews, of whom tens of thousands are now organised in a peaceful movement for Palestinian rights alongside young Palestinians and many other Americans of many ethnicities.

This is one reason why I have faith: Israel is finding it very hard to legalise its occupation of Palestinian land in 1967 and the harder it tries the worse it looks. Indeed the only way Israel can legalise the occupation is if the PLO signs off on it. There may be a “deal” in the offing given the push by the Trump Administration to make peace, supported by Arab states like Egypt and Saudi Arabia, who also have their reasons for wanting an end to the conflict with or without Palestinian rights.

Yet it will be hard for any Palestinian leadership to sign off on a final agreement that does not result in a sovereign Palestinian state, and Israel has made clear that it will never recognise Palestinian sovereignty over Palestinian land and that it wants to keep full security control over the occupied territories.

The deep well

But another, stronger, reason why I have faith is because of the Palestinian people themselves. Here you have a people that has had world powers ranged against it for 100 years and yet which is still fighting for its rights. One hundred years. Many others would have given up on such a seemingly impossible quest. But the Palestinians have not.

The determination to resist dispossession and erasure draws on a deep, deep well. Recently, it was given powerful expression by the prisoners’ hunger strike that continued for 40 days, until the most basic prisoner rights were realised. It’s also given expression by the youth – the 2nd or 3rd generation born under occupation and now growing up under siege in Gaza – who put their lives at risk even when they go out on peaceful demonstrations.

And Palestinians have been and are being remarkably creative in finding new – and non-violent - ways to work for human rights. For example, in the 1980s it was the First Intifada (uprising) in the face of the Israeli occupation that mobilised massive and peaceful popular resistance.

In 2005, it was the launch of the Palestinian civil society-led boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement that called for using time-honoured, peaceful tactics of economic pressure, and which is now backed by a global solidarity movement.

Equally importantly, there is the flourishing of film, literature, art, and music all of which is telling the Palestinian story in so many compelling ways and ensuring that it is not erased.

All of these Palestinians with their determination, creativity – and steadfastness – will shape the future. This is why I have faith that - no matter how bad things look today – there is a solid foundation for a much brighter future.

fly b (26)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 6:38 pm
Families in Gaza receive just 1.5 to 3 hours of electricity each day. It's a disaster.

Your tax-deductible gift will make it possible for MECA to work with a group of young engineers in Gaza to purchase materials and install rechargeable battery-operated systems in homes in Gaza with lights, a fan, and a cell phone charging station.

fly b (26)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 6:39 pm
End all U.S. aid to Israel, NOW!!!

Walter F (129)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 6:45 pm
Ros one more reply An insult in reply to several of yours .I'm in your age group, but I have yet to be afraid of confrontation with a man or woman in any age group at any time of my life , least of all now one with pedantic post menopausal women with exaggerated egos. Sorry to be rude to you but you well deserve it.. This issue is now well and truly closed ..I won't open it again so don't waste time replying.

fly b (26)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 6:47 pm
Things will get worse for Palestinians. Why I still have faith.

As the Israeli occupation turns 50, I still believe Palestinians will bring justice without creating injustice, secure equality for all and achieve freedom

fly b (26)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 6:51 pm
.. as Evelyn, put it, and I agree... "The spite and vindictiveness seems to be towards the Palestinians and anyone who dares criticise Zionist leadership of Israel!! .."

fly b (26)
Wednesday July 19, 2017, 6:57 pm
MECA's Gaza Project s Director Dr. Mona EL-Farra:

"The electricity situation right now overshadows everything. We are getting just 1.5-3 hours of electricity each day. In the hospitals, we have to postpone surgeries. The sewage treatment plants can't cope with the electricity cuts so most of the raw sewage is being dumped in the sea. The water is very bad and people who live in high buildings or rural areas can't even get the bad water because there is not enough electricity to pump the water to them. I expect we will have more diseases this summer, especially among children.

We can't get the medications we need to treat out patients. Cancer patients are dying daily because we have no medicine for them and they can't leave Gaza. No one can leave Gaza. The border with Egypt has been closed for three and a half months, which is the longest period since this inhuman siege started ten years ago.

This year when we distributed food parcels to families in Gaza, I saw there is real hunger. Poverty is everywhere and people are scared.

But despite the terrible situation and the shortages, people support each other. There is community solidarity and spirit, especially in the young people. In one town, young people came together to fix the main road. People contributed funds or volunteered to work in the summer heat. A team of volunteer engineers designed rechargeable battery-operated lighting systems that MECA can make and distribute in Gaza.

We're calling this the Gaza Light Campaign and our goal is to raise $18,000 to provide 200 families with the new systems.

Please make a special contribution to bring light and electrical power to hundreds of families in Gaza.

Miss You All Dearly (67)
Thursday July 20, 2017, 4:54 am
A word of advise Dear Walter......"know who you are dealing with" Yes you maybe in my "age group" but you really don't know who I am......LOL ......that's Social Media for the description.....but it doesn't apply to me.......menopause was just a "flush" a moment in time when I was 50........didn't do all that hair dying etc to make me look young unlike so many others.....and to fit my long Silver Locks...... and the passing of time

Farah Hage Ali (152)
Friday July 21, 2017, 3:58 am
noted, thank you for sharing

Miss You All Dearly (67)
Friday July 21, 2017, 5:49 am
"I give unequivocal support to the nation of Israel ,its present leader and its people and I cannot stand the anti Israel posts and comments I see on care 2" Good for you Water.....standing up for what you believe name calling here.......the last time I remember this sort of talk.....was...Rabin ...remember him?????

Margie F (148)
Friday July 21, 2017, 9:21 am
Why cant we live in peace.

Evelyn B (62)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 1:22 am
Again - I've only seen personal insults flowing from one direction here!

Surprise, surprise - it's from those who give unequivocal support to Israel, irrespective of how far the extremists there go in their abuse of the human rights of those who don't fit in the Zionist (political, remember!) image of the world -

But Zionism isn't Judaism, and many Jews have the integrity to dare to question - their support depends on the condition of application of principles ... justice, humanity, international law. It is not "unequivocal acceptance". For this integrity, these Jews will equally find themselves attacked by those giving "unequivocal" support.

Why does one have to give "unequivocal" support? Could it be because one doesn't DARE question?

fly b (26)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 3:08 am
Rachelle Marshall (1927-2017)

In Memoriam

READERS OF the Washington Report will be sad to learn of the passing May 29 of Rachelle Marshall, whose incisive and knowledgeable articles on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict graced these pages for some 25 years. Her death occurred just shy of her 90th birthday, and her commitment to the cause of justice for the Palestinian people was evident to the very end.

Those who knew Rachi, as she was affectionately called by family and friends, knew her to have a brilliant mind and a passionate, feisty and caring way of being in the world. Her life was deeply rooted in the cause of social justice. She and her husband, Hugh, who at 97 died this past December, were extremely active in the civil rights movement and in opposing the war in Vietnam. Prior to that, in the 1940s the two worked with poor people in West Virginia around housing issues.

Like most Jews of her generation, Rachi was indelibly marked by the Holocaust that sensitized her to the suffering of her own people.

Eventually, however, as she explained in her “Seeing the Light” essay for this magazine (see facing page), after an intensive period of study and meeting with Palestinians, Rachi came to understand the suffering and injustice inflicted upon the Palestinian people at the hands of Israel, and she became a fierce, committed and deeply informed critic of Israel. This evolution in her thinking caused many friends and relatives to express anger at what she was doing. This was a difficult time for her, but she stood her ground and did not waiver.

Rachi loved learning and had a vast interest in and knowledge of both political and cultural issues, and one could always learn something of interest in spending time with her.

She was a prolific and talented writer, and her articles on a variety of political topics appeared in such venues such as The Progressive, Foreign Policy in Focus, and Truthout. She also had an uncanny ability to get her insightful letters published in The New York Times as well as her local paper. A good example of her sophisticated and nuanced thinking appears in an article in Foreign Policy in Focus, where she wrote that Americans fail to understand the visceral way Russia views NATO and the European Union as an existential threat. She went on to say, “Even more disturbing is the fact that so few policy makers observe the cardinal rule of effective diplomacy: that when dealing with a perceived adversary, negotiators should be acutely aware of the other side’s concerns, especially when it comes to security.”

In another article in Foreign Policy in Focus, she wrote that modern warfare invariably involves the indiscriminate killing of human beings who bear no responsibility for its causes, and any attempt to distinguish between legitimate military actions that kill civilians (“collateral damage”) and tragic mistakes that kill civilians is a pointless exercise. She believed that atrocities are an integral part of war and that all wars must be considered war crimes.

While highly critical of Hillary Clinton’s obsequious, unconditional support of Israel and her proclivity to foreign intervention and war, Rachi was deeply frightened and disturbed by the election of Donald Trump, because she saw to the core of his racist, authoritarian personality, which reminded her so much of how fascism came to power in Germany.

Rachi spent the last several years of her life living with her husband in a retirement home in Mill Valley, California, where she was active with Mill Valley Seniors for Peace. She was also a member of Jewish Voice for Peace and the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom. She is survived by her son, Jonathan (see this issue’s “Other Voices” supplement”) and daughter-in-law and four grandchildren.

Rachi lived her life with courage and integrity and was an inspiration for me and many others. I for one will miss her greatly, and feel grateful to have known her and worked with her for the cause of Palestinian justice that is so dear to us both.

Seeing the Light:  Lessons From My Son and My Grandfather

Washington Report, November 1989

LIKE ALMOST ALL Jews of my generation, I was indelibly marked by the calamity inflicted on the Jews of Europe between 1933 and 1945. Growing up safely in New York during those years, I knew that I was alive only because my grandparents had decided to come to America. Others in my family were not so lucky. During the late 1930s there was constant anxiety in our house as my father talked endlessly on the telephone trying to secure safe passage for relatives still in Europe. The newsreel I saw in 1938 of bearded Jews on their hands and knees in a Vienna street, surrounded by jeering crowds, was a searing revelation that ordinary men and women could suddenly become savage.

So after World War II it would have been unthinkable to me not to welcome the establishment of the state of Israel. At last, I thought, the Jewish people had a safe haven. During the 1950s and 1960s it never occurred to me that there was any inconsistency in working for civil rights in America and giving my full support to Israel. The only “Palestinians” I knew about were Jews like my Uncle Simon, who had settled in Palestine in the 19th century to escape the Czarist pogroms.

For nearly 20 years I assumed that whatever the Israeli government did was for self-defense, and thus justified. The first, imperceptible doubt arose the day after Israel’s victory in the June 1967 war. “What a triumph!” I exclaimed at breakfast after a look at the headlines. “Israel is finally safe.”

Our 12-year-old son, Jonathan, looked skeptical. “Why is Israel any safer than before?” he asked. “Doesn’t conquering more territory just mean making more enemies?” I reminded him that he hadn’t been alive during the Holocaust and therefore couldn’t possibly understand the relief that Jews everywhere must be feeling. To my shame, I accused him of being too rational.

As the days passed and I read news reports from the Middle East that suggested the conflict was far from over, Jonathan’s questions occasionally troubled me. But, at the time, U.S. involvement in Vietnam was uppermost in my mind, so much that in December 1967 I spent three weeks in jail for helping to block the entrance to the Oakland Army Terminal.

The carpet bombing of Vietnam by B-52s and the use of napalm and white phosphorus against defenseless peasants struck me as not so different from the Nazi ruthlessness we had once condemned. When the Honeywell Corporation announced it had developed an “improved” napalm that would stick to the skin longer, I realized that the Germans had no monopoly on evil.

When I later came to read about the Middle East, the knowledge that my own country was capable of committing atrocities gave me a degree of objectivity that enabled me to accept information about Israel that I would earlier have dismissed as Arab propaganda. The learning process began a year or two after my breakfast table confrontation with Jonathan, when an article appeared in the Stanford Daily that harshly criticized Israel’s treatment of Palestinians.

I was angy and wanted to reply, but I couldn’t counter the author’s facts with facts of my own. So I went to the library and began reading—starting with Christopher Sykes’ Crossroads to Israel and Maxime Rodinson’s Israel and the Arabs, and going on to books by Israelis and others. It wasn’t until much later that I was willing to trust works by Arab authors such as Sabri Jiryis and Edward Said. I took two courses on the Middle East at Stanford and went to hear most of the speakers who came to the campus, including Muhammad Hallaj and Ibrahim Abu-Lughod. I was shocked when they were nearly shouted off the stage by members of the audience.

The light began to dawn as I learned that the Jewish haven I had welcomed was established on land the Palestinians had a right to claim as their own. I learned about the methods that Jewish forces had used to expel over 700,000 Palestinians from their homes, such as the fiery barrel bombs that burned through Arab villages, and the massacre of 250 men, women and children at Deir Yassin. I learned about Arab terrorism and about Israeli reprisal raids. From Menachem Begin’s book, The Revolt, I learned about Jewish terrorism and of the dedication of Jewish zealots to extending Israel’s borders to include the east bank of the Jordan.

The more I read, the greater my sense of betrayel. A large part of what I had been told about Israel and its neighbors was based on myth, I realized. And the myths continued to be repeated in most of the newspaper and magazine articles I read that dealt with the Middle East. But then I found that the price of challenging the conventional wisdom came high.

In the mid-1970s I began writing letters to the editor that were critical of Israel’s role in Lebanon, specifically its devastating bombing of civilian villages and its support for the Phalangist forces. The printed replies (and anonymous letters) were short on factual arguments but called me everything from an anti-Semitic Jew to a communist. The nice local rabbi, a hero of the Selma civil rights march, called me in to ask me not to wash our dirty linen in public. “It can only do harm to Jews when we criticize Israel,” he said.

The hardest thing was that relatives and friends expressed pain, and sometimes anger, over what I was doing. One of the guests at a family birthday party said to me in all seriousness, “You are an enemy of the Jews.”

My husband and children were shocked by this reaction, but what reassured all of us is that we soon came to know, and work with, a group of Israeli and Palestinian graduate students at Stanford who believed fervently that both peoples could peacefully coexist, as equals, in separate independent states. At the time, this was a daring position for either Israelis or Palestinians to take. The sanity and humaneness of these students reinforced my own belief that a two-state solution was the only way to settle the Middle East conflict and therefore assure Israeli’s security.

Despite this intellectual conviction, there were times when the accusations by fellow Jews that I was doing harm to Israel by what I wrote and said made me wonder if perhaps I was a kind of traitor. Then a chance discovery about my grandfather changed everything.

He had come to America just before World War I and died before I was born. All I really knew about him was that my parents and aunts and uncles revered him, that he had founded a Hebrew-language newspaper in New York, and had helped to raise money in America for schools in Palestine. One day while I was browsing in the library, I found his name, Abraham Lubarsky, in the index of a book and learned that he had been an associate of Ahad Ha-Am.

Ahad Ha-Am (whose real name was Asher Ginzberg) was already a hero of mine. He was one of a small group of Russian Jews called “cultural Zionists” who favored the establishment in Palestine of a homeland for the Jews but believed that they had no right to rule the entire country. The Arab inhabitants, Ahad Ha-Am wrote in 1920, “have a tangible right based on generation after generation of life and work in the country. The country is their national home, too, and they too have the right to develop their national potentialities as far as they are able.” (Zionism, Gary Smith, ed., Harper & Row, 1974.) My grandfather’s entry in Encyclopedia Judaica says that he was “especially close to Ahad Ha-Am, whom he stimulated to write his first famous essay.”


It is now too late for the kind of multicultural nation in Palestine that Ahad Ha-Am and my grandfather envisioned. But their insight that Arabs and Jews would have to live together as equals in the land of Palestine if there was to be peace between them is as valid today as it ever was. The “cultural Zionists” believed the identity and survival of the Jewish people depended not on wielding power over others but on establishing a community that would preserve and put into practice centuries of Jewish teaching and tradition. Central to the Judaism they valued were the words of Amos: “Let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.”

If they were alive today, Ahad Ha-Am and my grandfather would undoubtedly have felt obliged, as Jews, to speak out against acts of brutality and injustice no matter who committed them. And I think they would have believed, as I do, that today the Jewish people face their greatest danger not from Palestinians seeking self-determination, but from an Israeli government that is making a mockery of Judaism.

fly b (26)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 5:51 pm
TAKE ACTION: Stand with Issa Amro.

Have you heard of Issa Amro? He has been called the “Palestinian Gandhi” and embodies non-violent resistance. In 2014, he helped establish a kindergarten for young children who otherwise had to walk through a checkpoint to get to school. In 2016, when Palestinian families were living under a 6-month long closed military zone order where no medical professionals, repair people, visitors, or human rights observers could enter, Issa organized volunteers to carry a refrigerator on their backs to a family in need.

Now he needs our help.

Israel recently dredged up 18 absurd charges against Issa dating back to 2010. His case will be tried in Israeli military court, where the conviction rate is over 99%!

Amnesty International has called for Israel to drop the “baseless” charges against Issa and states that if convicted, they will designate him a Prisoner of Conscience. Now, in a historic and unprecedented move, four members of our Congress are calling for his freedom, too, circulating a letter to U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, asking him to defend Issa’s “rights to due process, freedom of expression and peaceful protest.”

We can help amplify their voices.

We need as many representatives as possible to call for Issa to be protected from Israel’s illegitimate military court system. Please urge your Representative in Congress to sign the letter and keep Issa free! Send them an email. Schedule a meeting with them while they are in their home districts and attend their town halls. Use our information packetto talk with them about how Issa’s nonviolent resistance to 50 years of military occupation should be commended, not criminalized.

In 2010, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) declared Issa “Human Rights Defender of the Year” for Palestine. Now we have a chance to defend his own human rights.

Issa’s voice and presence are essential both to the Palestinian community on the ground and to the international community united for freedom, justice, and equality. It is essential we act to protect him.

3,255 signatures

Will you sign?

fly b (26)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 5:54 pm
SIGN THE PETITION: Demand the Release of Khalida Jarrar and Khitam Saafin

fly b (26)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 6:13 pm
Power cuts put lives of Gaza kidney patients in danger. 21 July 2017

The Gaza Strip’s healthcare system is failing amid an ongoing electricity crisis that has seen the territory’s two million people forced to cope with just a few hours of power a day amid sweltering summer temperatures.

In June, Israel began sharply reducing the electricity supply to Gaza – a step human rights groups said was illegal, since Israel, as the occupying power, is responsible for the welfare of the civilian population.

This came after the Palestinian Authority drastically reduced electricity payments to Israel, as part of its effort to squeeze Hamas, the political movement that is the de facto government in Gaza.

Gaza’s power has in the past months dropped from eight hours a day to just three or four, with periods when it has fallen even lower.

Three months prior to that, the PA began restricting transfers of vital medicine to Gaza, according to health authorities in the territory.

Ashraf al-Qidra, the spokesperson for Gaza’s health ministry, told Reuters the PA reduced shipments of medicine for cancer and cystic fibrosis by 35 percent in March.

The shortage of power and medicine is taking its toll on the most vulnerable people.

Health officials estimate that 320 people in Gaza have cystic fibrosis, an incurable inherited lung disease that is life threatening without specific medicine and regular hospital treatments.

In addition to being short of vital medicines, Gaza’s hospitals are now nearly completely dependent on backup generators that regularly malfunction, causing interruptions to treatments.

Last week, al-Qidra stated that in recent weeks, 16 Palestinians in Gaza had died, because Israel and the Palestinian Authority obstructed their transfers to hospitals outside Gaza for urgent medical treatment.

Dialysis treatments disrupted

The Gaza-based Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) reported this month that power cuts have also compromised dialysis – another life-saving treatment to clean the blood of patients suffering from kidney failure.

Dialysis machines to which patients must be connected for several hours at a time cannot operate properly with the constant interruptions in the electricity supply.

As a result, blood is left in the machines, which can cause a shortage of blood and other health complications that can be fatal.

“I had a patient whose treatment was interrupted for three hours because the generator had no fuel and the blood started to clot and the patient needed a blood transfer,” Dr. Muhammad Shatat, the head of dialysis at al-Shifa Hospital, Gaza City’s largest, told PCHR.

“If this would happen on a regular basis, the patient would die after two or three days.”

Al-Shifa is the only facility that offers dialysis, forcing residents in the north and south of Gaza to make lengthy journeys to receive treatments that may not be successful.

In 2012, the United Nations predicted that Gaza would be “unlivable” by 2020. But in another report released earlier this month, the UN said the deterioration has accelerated “further and faster” than anticipated.

It noted the shortcomings of the Gaza Reconstruction Mechanism and Israel’s refusal to allow necessary material and equipment to complete reconstruction after the massive destruction of Israel’s war on Gaza in 2014.

Last year, The Electronic Intifada exclusively published the detailed terms of the Gaza Reconstruction Mechanism, along with a confidential legal analysis that had been prepared for top UN officials.

The leaked analysis said that the UN-brokered scheme violated international law, including the very right to life of Palestinians, because it tightened Israel’s control over vital construction materials entering Gaza.

fly b (26)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 6:15 pm

Gaza’s power system is at risk of collapse.

In 2006, the Israeli military bombed Gaza’s only power plant, destroying its six transformers. Under the blockade, the power plant can’t import parts to replace damaged components. Temporary fixes have allowed the plant to function at a minimal level, but those solutions were never made to last.

Other factors have exacerbated the power crisis, including a halt in smuggled fuel from Egypt in 2013, the destruction of fuel storage tanks and other structures at the plant by Israeli airstrikes in 2014, and the destruction of infrastructure and distribution networks throughout Gaza. Since April 2017, the Gaza power plant has been offline due to limited fuel imports, further limiting electricity in Gaza.

While Gaza’s electrical grid is linked with the Israeli system, Israel limits how much power it sells to Gaza, and existing power lines can only supply a fraction of Gaza’s total needs.

Today, less than one-third of Gaza’s electricity demand is being met. Rolling blackouts leave Palestinians in Gaza with less than four hours of electricity per day—affecting the health and well-being of residents; jeopardizing critical services, such as hospitals, schools, and water sanitation; and making it impossible for businesses to function.

Ending the blockade is crucial to address the power crisis, but it will not improve the situation immediately. Even if new parts could be imported and additional infrastructure could be built, it would take up to five years for the system to reach a point where current needs could be met.

People in Gaza have no more than 4 hours of electricity per day.

Why Gaza can't count on electricity

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Quick Facts

•The Gaza power plant operates at less than one-third of its capacity and has regularly had to shut down, due to fuel shortages, caused by fuel costs and Israeli limitations on importing fuel.

•Because of the limited power supply, over 70 percent of Gaza households have access to piped water for only six to eight hours once every two to four days.

•Since 2010, at least 29 people—24 of them children—have died in Gaza from fires or suffocation directly linked to power outages.

•Water is piped to over 70 percent of Gaza households only once every two to four days for four to six hours at a time. That’s because the insufficient power supply can’t provide uninterrupted access to water. And if homes don’t have power during those periods to operate household pumps used to fill cisterns, then they will receive no water.

•Hospitals provide only limited services because they rely on generators, which produce insufficient electrical supplies that can damage sensitive medical equipment.

•Schools often run without electricity, leaving students in the dark and making many educational activities impossible.

fly b (26)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 6:16 pm
Justice for Palestine. Stand With Issa Amro!

From the notorious Qalandia checkpoint.

"I am in Palestine and Israel for the month of July, witnessing life under occupation. On Sunday, I will attend the trial of human rights defender Issa Amro as he faces 18 politically motivated charges in Israeli military court. This is the kind of solidarity and experiential learning that happens on our CODEPINK trips and peace camps.

During our Peace Camp, I will talk about my experiences in Palestine. From the notorious Qalandia checkpoint to the growth of outpost settlements in the Jordan Valley to life in Bethlehem’s Aida refugee camp, I will relay my experiences and what we can do to support the Palestinian struggle for peace."

fly b (26)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 6:17 pm
Will you sign?

Freya H (357)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 6:30 pm
Will I sign? Hell yeah! Just did.

Meanwhile, here are a couple more petitions, against a bill that would outlaw boycotting Israel:

Oppose HR 1697

Oppose S.720

Darren W (218)
Saturday July 22, 2017, 11:49 pm
Shared those last two links, over social media Freya.

Hyperlinked ALL the links provide by Jess here.
Stand with Issa Amro!


From the notorious Qalandia checkpoint

What is Gaza Unlocked?


Power cuts put lives of Gaza kidney patients in danger

Sign the Petition: Demand the Release of Khalida Jarrar and Khitam Saafin

Stand with Issa Amro!

In Memoriam

Rachelle Marshall (1927-2017)

Middle East Children's Alliance

Things Will Get Worse for Palestinians. Why I Still Have Faith

Gaza Lights: Provide lights and electrical power to hundreds of families in Gaza

Gaza Lights: Provide lights and electrical power to hundreds of families in Gaza

Miss You All Dearly (67)
Sunday July 23, 2017, 4:30 am
The Milky Way***********to you Evelyn, Jess and for the "unequivocal" Evelyn are so right..
Hilter was a politian that was voted in time and time again by the people......on the same grounds.....they must of seen him as their "Saviour" because he "spoke" to all of the time.....does Bibi Mileikowsky have the same "charm" to the Israelites??????? Only time will the moment he is winning.

Margie F (148)
Sunday July 23, 2017, 9:24 pm
Thanks again

Margie F (148)
Monday July 24, 2017, 5:50 am
Thanks again

Margie F (148)
Saturday July 29, 2017, 1:36 am
Thanks again

Danuta W (1248)
Thursday August 10, 2017, 3:58 am

fly b (26)
Saturday August 19, 2017, 2:12 pm
thanks for all the petition links, Darren

fly b (26)
Friday January 5, 2018, 6:14 pm
APARTHEID ISRAEL: What Happened When A Jewish Settler Slapped an Israeli Soldier.
January 4, 2018

" in the last few days, numerous Palestinian solidarity activists have been pointing out the treatment of Palestinian teenager, Ahed Tamimi is at complete odds with the way in which Israeli settlers have been treated when they have similarly "slapped" an Israeli occupation soldier. Yesterday, Haaretz published an article also drawing attention to this fact. The arrested of Ahed and Nour Tamimi is the latest incident to expose Israel's apartheid regime to the world.

Please find the text of the Haaretz article below.
What happened when a Jewish settler slapped an Israeli soldier.

Both Ahed Tamimi and Yifat Alkobi were questioned for slapping a soldier in the West Bank, but little else about their cases are similar — simply because one is Jewish, the other Palestinian

Noa Osterreicher Jan 04, 2018/Haaretz

This slap didn’t lead the nightly news. This slap, which landed on the cheek of a Nahal soldier in Hebron, did not lead to an indictment. The assailant, who slapped a soldier who was trying to stop her from throwing stones, was taken in for questioning but released on bail the same day and allowed to return home.

Prior to this incident, she had been convicted five times — for throwing rocks, for assaulting a police officer and for disorderly conduct, but was not jailed even once.

In one instance, she was sentenced to probation, and in the rest to a month of community service and practically a token fine, as compensation to the injured parties. The accused systematically failed to heed summonses for questioning or for legal proceedings, but soldiers did not come to drag her out of bed in the middle of the night, nor were any of her relatives arrested. Aside from a brief report by Chaim Levinson about the incident, on July 2, 2010, there were hardly any repercussions to the slap and scratches inflicted by Yifat Alkobi on the face of a soldier who caught her hurling rocks a Palestinians.

The Israel Defense Forces Spokesperson’s Unit said at the time that the army “takes a grave view of any incidence of violence toward security forces,” and yet the assailant goes on living peacefully at home. The education minister didn’t demand that she sit in prison, social media have not exploded with calls for her to be raped or murdered, and columnist Ben Caspit didn’t recommend that she punished to the full extent of the law “in a dark place, without cameras.”

Like Ahed Tamimi, Alkobi has been known for years to the military and police forces that surround her place of residence, and both are considered a nuisance and even a danger. The main difference between them is that Tamimi assaulted a soldier who was sent by a hostile government that does not recognize her existence, steals her land and kills and wounds her relatives, while Alkobi, a serial criminal, assaulted a soldier from her own people and her religion, who was sent by her nation to protect her, a nation in which she is a citizen with special privileges.

Jewish violence against soldiers in the territories has been a matter of routine for years. But even when it seems like there’s no point asking that soldiers in the territories protect Palestinians from physical harassment and vandalism of their property by settlers, it’s hard to understand why the authorities continue to turn a blind eye, to cover up and close cases or not even open them, when the violators are Jews. There is plenty of evidence, some of it recorded on camera. And yet the offenders still sleep at home in their beds, emboldened by divine command and amply funded by organizations that receive state support.

In the winter it’s nice to get warm and cozy under these double standards, but there’s one question that every Israeli should be asking himself: Tamimi and Alkobi committed the same offense. The punishment (or lack thereof) should be the same. If the choice is between freeing Tamimi or jailing Alkobi, which would you choose?

Tamimi is to remain in custody for the duration of the proceedings — trial in a hostile military court — and is expected to receive a prison sentence. Alkobi, who was not prosecuted for this offense, and was tried in a civilian court for much more serious offenses, lived at home for the duration of the proceedings. She was represented by a lawyer who did not have to wait at a checkpoint in order to serve his client and her only punishment was community service.

The Likud and Habayit Hayehudi cabinet ministers have no reason to rush to pass a law that would apply Israeli law in the territories. Even without it, the only thing that matters is if you were born Jewish. Everything else is irrelevant.

fly b (26)
Friday January 5, 2018, 6:20 pm
Lest We Forget

◾Sabra and Shatila Massacre, 16-17 September 1982

◾Kufr Qasem Massacre, 29 October 1956

◾Al-Aqsa Massacre, 08 October 1990

◾Lest We Forget: Gaza Genocide 27.12.2008 – 18.01.2009

◾The Extrajudicial Execution of Mahmoud Salah

◾One Friday Morning in Occupied Palestine – The Ibrahimi Mosque Massacre 25.02.1994

◾“They used to enter houses and kill women and children indiscriminately”: Deir Yasin Massacre, 09.04.1948

◾Waiting To Return Home: Palestinian Martyrs in Israeli “Cemeteries of Numbers” and Morgues

◾Oyoun Qarra Massacre, 20 May 1990

◾28 Years Later: Sabra and Shatila Massacre

◾This is Our Land and This is Our Blood

◾Gassing Palestinians: The Use of Lethal Gas in occupied Palestine

◾Remember Beita …. Remember Awarta

◾The Eagle of Palestine

◾One Heart; Beating for Palestine

◾The ‘Black Sunday’ of Palestine: Oyoun Qarra Massacre, 20.05.1990

◾From the Children of Palestine to the Secretary General of the United Nations

fly b (26)
Sunday January 14, 2018, 8:27 pm
Free Mandela Salem: This Palestinian youth will not be silenced!
13 January 2018

Active Palestinian student and youth organizer Mandela Salem was seized by Israeli occupation forces on 4 January. The former coordinator of the Progressive Democratic Student Pole at Bir Zeit University, Mandela is an engineering graduate who continues to be an active youth organizer.

From the village of Douma near al-Khalil, Mandela is active in a number of initiatives and forums as part of the Palestinian struggle for liberation and return and he was clearly targeted by Israeli occupation forces for his political work and activity.

In addition to his role as a local youth organizer, Mandela is well-known to many international activists who have met with him over the years. Several spoke about his impact on their own organizing:

Geke Hasperhoven, medical student in The Netherlands, said:

“In 2016, when I traveled to Palestine with Students for Justice in Palestine, I met Mandela and his friends. We had such a great time with them, Mandela always joking but never drawing too much attention to himself.”

“He appears laid-back, but at the same time he is always open to learn something new, and to have discussions. After my visit, we continued to speak on facebook, and I found him to be so thoughtful and nuanced. He would explain their work and the situation with extreme patience, and with thorough understanding of how our ‘western perspective’ would make it difficult for us to work hard for the resistance. Also, his general interest shows to be very broad, for he graduated a science major, but his mind seems always concerned with (local, university national etc) politics, writing ‘I can’t live without politics.'”

“He has so many ideas about democracy and on how to structurally improve the situation in Palestine. I feel like the struggle on the resistance weighs heavy on Mandela’s shoulders, but it doesn’t keep him from being interested in other people, other countries and struggles. For example when I was in Cairo, Egypt last year, and I told him about a demonstration there in memory of Basil al-Araj, he showed to be so very considerate about the tense situation there, that makes it also difficult for Egyptians to protest. In other words, I am happy to know Mandela Salam and I am wishing for him (and all other political prisoners) to be released soon.”

Another international activist who joined a 2017 delegation to Palestine said:

“Another Palestinian activist was arrested by Israeli forces. I would like to use my voice to honour Mandela’s braveness to stand up against the Israeli Occupation forces. Notwithstanding that a couple of weeks ago his comrade Saleh was arrested, as well as dozen other Palestinians on a daily basis, he continued to fight the fight against injustice. This fight can be fought armed. Another powerful tools, however, are organising, resisting and speaking up. Mandela used his time and effort to raise awareness about the degrading treatment Palestinians have to suffer by hosting foreign activists in his very home. .. Knowing about Mandela’s engagement in the cause, it is sadly not surprising that the Israeli forces would eventually step in. I am sure, however, that whatever cruelty awaits him during his arrest, this young Palestinian, too, will not be silenced. I am lucky that I met this extraordinary person and am thankful for everything he did for my and friends while we were in Palestine. My thoughts are with him and his family.”

Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network denounces the seizure of Mandela Salem and demands his immediate release – and the freedom of all 6,200 Palestinian political prisoners held in Israeli jails. The targeting of Mandela Salem is only the latest example of the systematic policy of attacks and imprisonment against prominent youth activists and young Palestinian leaders under occupation, in an attempt to jail the next generation of Palestinian strugglers leading the movement forward; this is something that is also visible in the imprisonment of Ahed Tamimi and thousands more young Palestinians. We urge all friends and supporters of Palestine, and especially student and youth organizations, to join the call to free Mandela and his fellow Palestinian prisoners from Israeli jails.


1) Individuals, organizations, associations and student unions and groups: write a letter or a statement in support of Mandela, or take a group photo with a sign that says, “Free Mandela Salem!” and use #FreeMandela on social media. Share your statements and photos on Facebook, or email

2) Organize or join one of the many protests for Jerusalem and Palestinian prisoners and distribute this post and other news about Mandela, Ahed and all of the Palestinian prisoners. Get others involved in the struggle for Palestinian freedom! Tell us about your events – email

3) Join the Boycott, Divest and Sanction Campaign to build the campaign for boycott, divestment and sanctions against Israel and complicit corporations like HP and G4S.

fly b (26)
Tuesday January 23, 2018, 11:51 pm
We Jerusalem winter camp to tell kids about importance of Jerusalem and how to preserve its Palestinian identity.

Alrowwad culture and arts society launching today their winter camp under title “we Jerusalem” in Aida refugee camp south of Bethlehem to tell kids about the importance of Jerusalem and how to preserve its Palestinian identity from trying to Judaize epically after the latest US decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of the Israeli occupation.

This camp, which coincides winter vocation, provided the opportunity for kids to use their free time in useful activities and training throughout the camp daily activities, and the group’s was named according the Jerusalem gates.

The first day contained sports and entertainment activities, and exercises in theater, musical, photography, radio recording, handwork, drawing, reading stories, and learning French and Spanish languages.

For his part, the founder and general director at Alrowwad “Abedelfattah Abusrour” said that Alrowwad society in her strategic plane for 2018 seeks to provide the safe environment for creativity, cultural, and artistic to reach society free of violence, especially in Aida camp, which has recently considered one of the most areas exposed to gas in the world.

Shahed ja’ara one of the participating children express about the importance of Jerusalem and historical of Al amood gate, during radio recording send a message to the international community about the identity of Jerusalem.

Another kid –yehia quar in Hebron gate group” said he had the first chance to learn “Dabka”.

Marie Quirynen one of Alrowwad volunteer’s said “that the experience of working with children in theater, playing even in French classes was one of the most wonderful experiences I’ve ever done” and left a positive and beautiful impact about Palestine, despite the difficult situation surrounding the place.

This winter camp “we Jerusalem” which included 55 children from Aida camp and surrounding area, one of specializes camp in training to growing the children’s abilities. Which continues until the end of the winter vacation.

fly b (26)
Wednesday January 24, 2018, 12:41 am
DCIP Year in Review: Worst Abuse Cases Against Palestinian Children in 2017. VIDEO
January 19, 2018

Last year marked 50 years of Israeli military occupation, with no signs of abatement in Palestinian children’s vulnerability to injury and abusive military arrest in the West Bank. Rapidly devolving living conditions in the Gaza Strip put in jeopardy the most basic human rights, as children became collateral damage in an internal Palestinian political standoff.

Israeli forces’ misuse of crowd control weapons caused critical and permanent injuries to some children while others endured ill-treatment amid high rates of military detention. An electricity crisis in the Gaza Strip led to the most severe downturn in the ongoing humanitarian crisis since Israel imposed a military blockade a decade ago, with hefty repercussions to children’s rights to clean water and health.

Israeli military and police brutality

Israeli forces killed 14 children in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT) during 2017, according to Defense for Children International – Palestine documentation. In addition, nine-year-old Mohammad Abu Hdaf died on December 6 due to injuries sustained during an Israeli drone strike in the Gaza Strip in 2014.

Five children were killed by live ammunition during clashes between Palestinians and Israeli forces in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip. Five more children accused of committing some kind of attack also sustained fatal gunshot wounds.

Israeli forces shot four Palestinian teenager inside a car on March 23 during unclear circumstances near the Israeli settlement of Bet El, north of the West Bank city of Ramallah. Mohammad Khattab, 17, died on the spot, and Jasem Nakhleh, 16, succumbed to his wounds 18 days later. The two others sustained serious injuries, but survived.

An Israeli military statement confirmed “hits,” according to local media, but claimed that the children were shot outside their car, while throwing explosives toward the settlement.

Under the condition of anonymity, a witness told DCIP that Mohammad was shot when he got out of his stalled car near Bet El settlement, to push it. Mohammad jumped back into the car to try to escape, but the car did not start, according to DCIP’s source. The witness said Israeli soldiers then approached the car and opened fire on all four children.

Israeli forces routinely employ the use of excessive force and intentional lethal force in situations not justified by international norms, which in some incidents may amount to extrajudicial or wilful killings, according to documentation collected by DCIP.

International law requires that intentional lethal force be used only when absolutely unavoidable where there is a threat to life or serious injury. Where individuals allegedly carry out a criminal act, they should be apprehended in accordance with international law and afforded due process of law.

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) reported at least 961 child injuries at the hands of Israeli forces between in 2017.

At the time of publication, DCIP had documented 61 child injuries by Israeli forces from a mix of live ammunition, rubber-coated metal bullets, and crowd control weapons in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and 28 in the Gaza Strip in 2017. Of these cases, 33 children sustained injuries to the upper body from crowd control weapons, in some cases causing irreversible damage.

Crowd control weapons are only “less lethal” when fired at the lower body, from a distance of 50 to 60 meters (164 to 197 feet) and not aimed at children, as stipulated by Israel’s own military regulations.

Israeli forces shot at least two children in the face with rubber-coated metal bullets and two children in the head with tear gas canisters during a two-week period in December alone.

An Israeli soldier on December 15 shot Mohammad Tamimi, 15, in the face at close range with a rubber-coated steel bullet in the West Bank town of Nabi Saleh. The bullet lodged in the back of his skull and caused severe bleeding in his brain.

Days before, 14-year-old Mohammad al-Farani was hit in the face with a tear gas canister shot by Israeli forces from a military watchtower 50 meters (55 yards) away on the border between the Gaza Strip and Israel. He suffered a fractured cheekbone, head gash, internal bleeding in the brain, and permanent loss of his right eye.

The injuries took place as Israeli authorities used excessive force to quash widespread protests that erupted across the OPT following the United States’ recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital on December 6. Heightened violence was ongoing as the year came to a close.

Evidence collected by DCIP also showed that Palestinian children in East Jerusalem were particularly vulnerable to misuse of black sponge-tipped plastic bullets by Israeli forces.

Jerusalem residents Nour al-Din Mustafa, 13, and Tareq Mohammad, 15, suffered permanent eye loss after being hit with black sponge-tipped plastic bullets. Neither children was involved in confrontations at the time of injury.

Accountability is extremely rare in cases where Israeli forces are accused of committing crimes against Palestinian children. Israeli rights group Yesh Dinreported that of 186 internal investigations into Israeli soldiers accused of harming Palestinians in 2015, only 3.1 percent of cases yielded an indictment.

Among Palestinian children killed by Israeli forces in recent years, only one incident, the fatal shooting of Nadeem Nawara, 17, in May 2014, has resulted in both an investigation and indictment.

Children in Israeli military custody

Between February and November, an average of 310 Palestinian children were in the Israeli prison system each month for “security offences,” according to Israel Prison Service (IPS) data. Among them were an average of 60 children between the ages of 12 and 15. The IPS does not release the yearly total number of incarcerated Palestinian children and has stopped consistently releasing monthly data since May 2016.

Israel has the dubious distinction of being the only country in the world that systematically prosecutes an estimated 500 to 700 children each year in military courts lacking fundamental fair trial rights. Children within the Israeli military system commonly report physical and verbal abuse from the moment of their arrest, and coercion and threats during interrogations.

Large-scale demonstrations, marches and clashes throughout the West Bank following U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to publicly recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital in December corresponded with a spike in the number of Palestinian child detainees.

Louay al-Mansi, a Palestinian prisoner in charge of juveniles at Israel’s Ofer military prison, told DCIP that some 78 children arrived in December, more than doubling the number of child detainees to be newly incarcerated in the military facility from the month before.

Among those held in Ofer was 16-year-old Fawzi J., detained in the southern West Bank city of Hebron on December 7. He told DCIP lawyer Farah Bayadsi that by the time he arrived to interrogation, one of his shoes had been kicked off and he had been repeatedly beaten and verbally abused for nearly two hours.

“When I arrived at the checkpoint, I remember my face bleeding, mostly my lips because of the beating. They took me to a room, knocked me down to the floor and began kicking me all over my body,” Fawzi said a sworn testimony.

Fawzi told DCIP lawyer Farah Bayadsi of the extreme pain in his right shoulder, prompting her to demand a medical check-up on December 25 that confirmed a fractured shoulder sustained during his arrest. Late on December 27, Fawzi was released on 10,000 shekels (around US$2,900) bail and a third-party bond in the same amount. DCIP filed a complaint over his ill-treatment while in Israeli military detention.

DCIP collected affidavits from 137 West Bank children detained and prosecuted under the jurisdiction of Israeli military courts in 2017. The data shows that 74.5 percent of children endured some form of physical violence following arrest and 62 percent were verbally abused, intimidated, or humiliated.

Of the 137 children, 26 were held in solitary confinement for interrogation purposes for an average period of 12 days. The longest period of isolation for a child that DCIP documented in 2017 was 23 days.

At least five Palestinian minors were placed in administrative detention in 2017, a form of imprisonment based on secret evidence without charge or trial. Of these, three were released without charge after a period of two to seven months, leaving two still in administrative detention at year’s end. Another teenager placed under administrative detention in August 2016 when 17 years old, spent his 18th month in prison without charge or trial.

Israel has placed a total of 25 Palestinian minors in administrative detentionsince October 2015 when it renewed the practice against individuals under the age of 18.

International juvenile justice standards, which Israel has obliged itself to implement by ratifying the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) in 1991, demand that children should not be deprived of their liberty unlawfully or arbitrarily. The arrest, detention or imprisonment of a child shall be used only as a measure of last resort and for the shortest appropriate period of time.

Children in Palestinian detention

Palestinian security forces in the West Bank exhibited patterns of abuse against Palestinian children detained in 2017.

DCIP investigation into child detentions by Palestinian security forces showed they carried out arbitrary detentions through a non-transparent process rife with rights violations, including the use of solitary confinement and torture.

DCIP obtained information on 16 West Bank children arbitrarily detained by Palestinian security services other than the police in 2017, all except four at the hands of the Palestinian Preventive Security Service.

In one of the cases DCIP documented, the Preventive Security Service held a 17-year-old from Nablus in solitary confinement for three days in September, interrupted by physically abusive interrogation sessions without the presence of a lawyer or family member.

“I could not bear to stay in that facility, and I was thinking of a way to put pressure on them to let me out,” the teenager told DCIP in a sworn testimony. “I found a small metal object on the window, and I used it to make several cuts on my left forearm.”

The interrogators accused the teenager of manufacturing a weapon and possessing a pistol. “They shouted at me and threatened to hit me,” the teenager told DCIP. “In one session, [one of the interrogators] slapped me around 20 times on my neck.”

After an estimated 70 hours in detention at the Preventive Security headquarters in Nablus, the teenager was released.

The Palestinian Authority is legally obligated to abide by the Convention on the Rights of the Child, which it ratified in 2014, and the Palestinian juvenile protection law passed in 2016.

While signing these safeguards indicated progress in Palestinian Authority’s treatment of children, violations documented by DCIP in 2017 indicate gaps in fully aligning domestic juvenile legal framework and its implementation with international standards.

The juvenile protection law was only implemented in the West Bank owing to the political division between the Hamas-led government in the Gaza Strip and the Palestinian Authority. Accordingly, Gazan children remain subject to the outdated British Juvenile Offenders Ordinance of 1938.

DCIP documentation showed that children in conflict with the law in the Gaza Strip are also at severe risk of rights violations and ill-treatment, including torture, during detention.

Based on six cases documented by DCIP in 2017, three children endured torture during police interrogations. A fourth child was reportedly physically abused by police station guards and adult prisoners with whom he was forced to share a cell, prompting the boy’s suicide attempt and resulting death on September 22.

Downward spiral in the Gaza Strip

While the Gaza Strip began the year already entrenched in a humanitarian crisis, 2017 brought new threats to children’s human rights, especially at the peak of the electricity crisis.

Political divisions between rival Palestinian factions Fatah and Hamas, along with taxation disputes, contributed to a serious degradation in children’s right to health, including clean water and medical care.

The Fatah-led Palestinian Authority stopped payments for a portion of the Gaza Strip’s electricity supply, bringing electricity levels to an all time low. Electricity shortages decreased children’s access to basic and emergency care, also increasing wait times for specialized medical services and surgeries. Without power, children with illnesses and disabilities reliant on medical equipment struggled to charge and use their equipment.

Around the same period, the Palestinian Authority pulled funding from the Gaza Strip’s already decimated health sector and local news outlets reported 30 to 70 percent cuts to Gazan civil servant salaries.

Reconciliation efforts started in October between the rival factions reached an impasse at the end of the year. UN Coordinator for Humanitarian Aid and Development Activities Robert Piper said in a statement that “most of the measures adopted by the Palestinian Authority since March 2017, which triggered the latest deterioration in the humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip, are yet to be reversed.”

During the course of 2017, both Israeli and Palestinian authorities prevented children from exiting Gaza for medical treatment by denying or delaying patients’ applications.

DCIP documented 12 Palestinian children from the Gaza Strip who died as a result of inadequate access to health care, including poor hospital conditions, low availability of specialized treatments, or as a result of being delayed or denied treatment abroad. Of this number, nine were infants and eight were less than two weeks old.

Six of the children who died received no response, were delayed, or denied medical referrals from the Ramallah-based Service Purchasing Unit (SPU), previously known as the Referral Abroad Department. Without this referral, patients cannot complete the process of applying for medical treatment outside of the Gaza Strip.

Two children, age 4 and 17, died after Israeli authorities delayed permission for children to exit the Gaza Strip through the Israeli-controlled Erez crossing for medical treatment.

Children’s right to health also suffered because of a marked decrease in the availability of clean water. Nearly one million children living in the Gaza Strip are facing an acute disaster around water and sanitation standards, according to the United Nations Children’s Fund.

These deteriorating conditions took place against a backdrop of an already struggling health care system, caused in part by a decade of Israeli military blockade, joined by Egypt for much of that period, and repeated Israeli assaults.

Israel launched airstrikes in the Gaza Strip on a near-daily basis during the last three weeks of 2017 and Palestinian armed groups fired rockets from the Gaza Strip during escalations following U.S. recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

School program reduces child recruitment risk

In a positive move for children’s rights in the Gaza Strip, government-run schools removed military-style drills from their Futuwwa, or youth, programs that focus on civics and health.

A DCIP 2014 investigation found strong links between the school-based Futuwwa program and highly attended winter camps hosted by Palestinian armed groups, which took place off school premises.

Following amendments to government school programs in 2017, neither the Futuwwa program nor the summer and winter camps appeared to constitute child recruitment under international standards. DCIP, however, remained deeply concerned at the potential of the program and the camps to serve as vehicles for future recruitment.

DCIP in 2017 found no evidence that children in the Gaza Strip were being used or recruited by Palestinian armed groups for any role in armed conflict, in the context of these programs. However, pervasive poverty keeps children vulnerable to recruitment and other forms of child labor.

Palestinian child bill gathers Congressional support

DCIP lead efforts to support the first-ever bill in U.S. Congress focused on Palestinian human rights, specifically grave human rights violations against Palestinian child detainees. The bill, titled Promoting Human Rights by Ending Israeli Military Detention of Palestinian Children Act or H.R. 4391, prohibits U.S. financial assistance to Israel from being used to support the ill-treatment and torture of Palestinian children in military detention.

The bill, which was introduced by Rep. Betty McCollum on November 14, had 19 co-sponsors by year’s end. The aim is to establish, as a minimum safeguard, a U.S. demand for basic due process rights for Palestinian children under Israeli military detention. This extends to an absolute prohibition against the torture and ill-treatment of detained minors, in keeping with both U.S. and international law.

The bill falls in line with concerns long recorded by the U.S. Department of State. In March, for the 10th consecutive year, the annual report on Israel made note of the prevalence of ill-treatment toward Palestinian children and Israeli military courts’ denial of their fair trial rights.
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