Monday, November 27, 2006

ZOG, again

Monday, November 27, 2006

Nancy Pelosi’s no dummy. She’s been outed as a crazed Zionist, so she can hardly go around placing other crazed Zionists in positions of power in order to finalize the Zionist Occupation Government. Total Israeli control over America can’t be allowed to be that obvious. Thus the head-fake over Murtha. By pretending to support John Murtha as majority leader, she managed to have crazed Zionist Steny Hoyer installed without a hint of Pelosi fingerprints on the maneuver. The American media bought the trick hook, line and sinker, describing the whole mess as a great embarrassment to her. Ha! A crazed Zionist would hardly want a staunch anti-Iraq-war guy like Murtha in power, even though Americans clearly voted for an anti-war position. Who cares what the voters want, if Israel wants something different? In one of the most bizarre instances in modern American political skullduggery, Murtha was disqualified because he was swiftboated as an alleged bribe recipient, on the basis of a videotape showing him refusing a bribe. In all the confusion Hoyer slid in, and nobody noticed the feint.
Now we’re seeing the same game played with respect to the Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee. The obvious choice is Jane Harman, another rabid Zionist, but Pelosi has to keep her distance. The mainstream media is again cooperating, by inventing some kind of dissent between Harman and Pelosi, although no one quite seems to be able to put their finger on it. Of course, the topper is that Harman is under investigation for conspiring with AIPAC to have wealthy donors ‘encourage’ Pelosi to have Harman reappointed as the top Democrat on the committee, the position that now gives her dibs on the chairmanship! The idea that these two are enemies, instead of joined-at-the-hip Zionists, is some kind of joke. To further the joke, Pelosi is reportedly considering Alcee Hastings for the job, a guy who was offered and accepted a bribe while he was a judge! The joke alternative will fall away, and Harman will end up in place, as was always intended. The conspirators are taking all possible efforts to appoint Harman while making it seem that Pelosi had nothing to do with it.

Don’t forget Rahm Emanuel, and Hillary and Schumer in the Senate, and the key Senate swing vote held by ultra-Zionist Lieberman. How interested do you think (Jewish) Henry Waxman will be in investigating the causes of a war for Israel? The ZOG is being installed piece by piece, and the United States is doomed to sink with Israel.

posted at 2:56 AM permanent link

Monday, November 27, 2006

Monday, November 27, 2006

Nancy Pelosi’s no dummy. She’s been outed as a crazed Zionist, so she can hardly go around placing other crazed Zionists in positions of power in order to finalize the Zionist Occupation Government. Total Israeli control over America can’t be allowed to be that obvious. Thus the head-fake over Murtha. By pretending to support John Murtha as majority leader, she managed to have crazed Zionist Steny Hoyer installed without a hint of Pelosi fingerprints on the maneuver. The American media bought the trick hook, line and sinker, describing the whole mess as a great embarrassment to her. Ha! A crazed Zionist would hardly want a staunch anti-Iraq-war guy like Murtha in power, even though Americans clearly voted for an anti-war position. Who cares what the voters want, if Israel wants something different? In one of the most bizarre instances in modern American political skullduggery, Murtha was disqualified because he was swiftboated as an alleged bribe recipient, on the basis of a videotape showing him refusing a bribe. In all the confusion Hoyer slid in, and nobody noticed the feint.
Now we’re seeing the same game played with respect to the Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee. The obvious choice is Jane Harman, another rabid Zionist, but Pelosi has to keep her distance. The mainstream media is again cooperating, by inventing some kind of dissent between Harman and Pelosi, although no one quite seems to be able to put their finger on it. Of course, the topper is that Harman is under investigation for conspiring with AIPAC to have wealthy donors ‘encourage’ Pelosi to have Harman reappointed as the top Democrat on the committee, the position that now gives her dibs on the chairmanship! The idea that these two are enemies, instead of joined-at-the-hip Zionists, is some kind of joke. To further the joke, Pelosi is reportedly considering Alcee Hastings for the job, a guy who was offered and accepted a bribe while he was a judge! The joke alternative will fall away, and Harman will end up in place, as was always intended. The conspirators are taking all possible efforts to appoint Harman while making it seem that Pelosi had nothing to do with it.

Don’t forget Rahm Emanuel, and Hillary and Schumer in the Senate, and the key Senate swing vote held by ultra-Zionist Lieberman. How interested do you think (Jewish) Henry Waxman will be in investigating the causes of a war for Israel? The ZOG is being installed piece by piece, and the United States is doomed to sink with Israel.

posted at 2:56 AM permanent link

UN Human Rights body votes against Israeli annexation of Golan

Last update - 20:01 27/11/2006

UN Human Rights Council urges Israel to dismantle settlements

By The Associated Press

The United Nations Human Rights Council, which has censured only Israel during its six-month existence, overwhelmingly urged Israel on Monday to halt expansion of settlements on occupied land as a first step towards their removal.

A total of 45 countries, including European Union members, Latin American states and Japan, voted in favor of the resolution proposed by Arab and other Islamic countries, with only Canada voting against and Cameroun abstaining.

The resolution, similar to others approved in the past by the old Human Rights Commission which the Council replaced earlier this year, called on Israel to take "serious measures" to prevent settlers attacking Palestinians.

It urged parties in the area to renew efforts to achieve peace and a comprehensive political settlement in order to create a situation "which will allow two states, Israel and Palestine, to live in peace and security".

In a speech urging the 47-member Council to reject the resolution, Israel's ambassador Itzhak Levanon said he had asked the Palestinian delegation to support its withdrawal in the light of the weekend ceasefire agreement between the two sides.

This would have given "an indication of their positive and constructive intention", he declared.

The resolution, Levanon said, failed to take account of Israel's dismantling of settlements in Gaza and the north of the occupied territories last year - "unilateral moves which only served to create an ever-worsening security situation for Israeli civilians".

Rights council votes against Israeli annexation of Golan
The council earlier Monday passed a resolution criticizing Israel's occupation of the Golan Heights.

The council voted 32-1 with 14 abstentions to declare illegal Israel's 1981 annexation of the Golan Heights and demand that Israel rescind its decision to impose its laws and jurisdiction on the area, which it captured in the 1967 Middle East war.

Canada, which said the resolution was unbalanced, was the only no vote, and European Union members abstained.

The United States and Israel are not members, but Israeli Ambassador to
international offices in Geneva Itzhak Levanon said Syria had proposed the resolution "purely to draw attention away from its ... own deplorable human rights record."

"Under Syrian possession, the Golan Heights were used to launch constant
attacks against Israeli civilians," Levanon said. "Today, the Golan Heights is more peaceful than ever, stable and thriving. The economy is booming, fields are blossoming, and everyone is enjoying the benefits of democracy."

The resolution said Israel should "desist from changing the physical
character, demographic composition, institutional structure and legal status of the occupied Syrian Golan" and allow the displaced population to return to their homes.

The vote came as the council considered resolutions proposed at its September three-week session.

Earlier China, Cuba, Arab and African countries had already demonstrated their dominance of the new council by forcing through a resolution recommending a "code of conduct" for UN human rights experts.

The council approved the resolution proposed by Algeria on a 30-15 vote with two abstentions, overriding objections from the European Union, Canada and Latin American countries.

The vote gave an indication of the strength of countries which some human
rights organizations say are determined to rein in the experts who submit
critical reports on countries to the 47-nation council.

The measure doesn't spell out what should be in the code of conduct, but
requests that an intergovernmental group reviewing the work of the "special rapporteurs" assigned to different countries and issues should draft such guidelines taking into account suggestions made by council members.

The independent experts, who have been assigned to some of the world's worst rights abusers, often anger the governments they report on.

There already have been moves in the UN General Assembly to discourage UN
human rights bodies from adopting resolutions condemning the human rights
situation in any country.

Israel is the only country criticized by the council since it replaced the widely discredited Human Rights Commission last June. The new body has passed resolutions in regular session and in three emergency sessions, blasting the Israelis for the invasion of Lebanon and treatment of Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

Subject of FBI probe tells of Weldon ties

Posted on Mon, Nov. 27, 2006

Lawyer John J. Gallagher says their dealings go back 30 years, with a mutual interest in Russia.

By John Shiffman and Mark Fazlollah

Inquirer Staff Writers

When Center City lawyer and Russian trade expert John J. Gallagher lost a $2.5 million investment in a cognac distillery in a former Soviet republic, a family friend stepped up to help - in a big way.

The friend, U.S. Rep. Curt Weldon, first called the president of Moldova. When that didn't work, Weldon went to the House and proposed cutting all U.S. aid to Moldova until Gallagher got his money back.

That deal, now part of an FBI corruption investigation, wasn't the only time that Weldon used his office to help Gallagher, a lawyer who specializes in putting together business deals - from Philadelphia City Hall to the U.S. Capitol to the Kremlin.

Weldon also backed an effort that funneled federal money to former Soviet scientists working for a partnership between Gallagher and a Russian firm.

Gallagher's software firm apparently had no workers and did little in the partnership, The Inquirer found.

Weldon lost his congressional seat to Democrat Joe Sestak three weeks ago. But there was no letup in the FBI corruption investigation involving Weldon, his daughter Karen's consulting firm, and Gallagher.

In the first interview given by one of the subjects of the FBI probe, Gallagher said his relationship with Weldon went back 30 years. Their careers, he said, dovetailed in Russia.

"I was very lucky to have my representative also have an interest in Russia," Gallagher, a resident of Weldon's district, said in his spacious office at 18th and Market Streets in Center City.

Gallagher said Weldon, in trying to help him in Moldova, was simply providing good constituent service. "It's my congressman's job," Gallagher said. "He represents me, and a foreign country wronged me."

Agents who searched his law office were investigating possible violations of a federal bribery law, Gallagher said. "Of course I didn't pay Curt Weldon," he said.

Gallagher declined to give details of the FBI raid last month, other than to acknowledge that agents took his Moldova file, among others. He said he was cooperating with the investigation.

For years, Gallagher and the Weldon family have constantly crossed paths in the network of U.S.-Russian trade groups.

Gallagher, who says he has made more than 100 business trips to Russia, helped Karen Weldon's firm there. He said he introduced her firm, Solutions Worldwide, to officials from a Russian company that makes drone spy planes.

The aviation firm gave Solutions a $12,000-a-month contract. Curt Weldon pushed the Navy to buy the drone, and officials got as far signing a contract with the Russian company.

But Gallagher said the deal ended because of news coverage of Karen Weldon's contract.

The first client of Solutions Worldwide was the Russian natural-gas giant Itera International Energy. The FBI also raided its Florida office last month.

Weldon set up a Library of Congress dinner for Itera in 2002 and, on the floor of Congress, pushed for a federal grant to the firm. A month later, Itera hired Solutions for $500,000 a year.

Weldon and his daughter, as well as Itera officials, have denied wrongdoing.

Gallagher said he met Itera officials but declined to elaborate, saying only that he did no business with them. "If it's part of the grand jury investigation, unfortunately I can't speak."

Until recently, Gallagher may have been better known in Russian trade circles than in his own hometown. A graduate of La Salle University and the University of Pennsylvania law school, Gallagher, 54, started his own law firm in 1980.

Gallagher also knew his way around City Hall.

During the City Hall corruption investigation, the FBI recorded him talking to the late power broker Ronald A. White about raising money for Mayor Street and trying to win city deals, sources said.

On one such 2003 call, Gallagher phoned White from Russia to complain that he wasn't getting his share of city legal work. White said he'd take care of it. "Relax," White told him. "Everyone knows who you are."

Gallagher said in the interview that he and White had been friends since they attended law school together three decades ago.

He said he never paid White to help him with the Street administration. For "all good friends," he said, White "would lend a hand."

Gallagher said in the interview that he held two Street fund-raisers with White - one raised about $25,000 - because he was "a lifelong Democrat."

Gallagher also is close to top Republicans in Delaware County, where he lives.

He has given $48,000 to the Springfield Republican Party over the last six years - three times more than any other donor, campaign records show. The Springfield party is run by Charles Sexton, Karen Weldon's partner in Solutions Worldwide.

Gallagher said he contributed because he had known Sexton for 25 years. He said he never got work from Delaware County.

In 2003, Gallagher and Delaware County Republican chief Thomas J. Judge Sr. traveled to Serbia to see Sexton get an honorary doctorate. Gallagher said the degree was arranged by the wealthy Karics, who were banned from the United States because of their ties to the late dictator Slobodan Milosevic.

The Karics also hired Karen Weldon to try to improve their image. Gallagher said he did no business with the Karics.

In his forays to Russia and Eastern Europe, Gallagher wears many hats: sometimes private lawyer, other times an agent of U.S. antinuclear policy. Sometimes, the roles blur.

One example: Gallagher now serves as chairman of the United States Industry Coalition, a Weldon-backed, government-financed group that lines up private business ventures in Russia.

Shortly before Gallagher became a board member, the agency in 2001 helped set up a deal for him with one of Russia's leading software companies.

Gallagher's firm, CTG Software Inc., had no address, other than his law office, and apparently no employees. It was founded two days before the Energy Department announced it would fund the venture, which aimed to find software jobs for former weapons scientists.

About 12 months later, Gallagher dropped out without getting any of the federal money. The endeavor fell short of expectations, hiring far fewer scientists than planned.

Gallagher gets strong support from the industry coalition's former CEO, Victor Alessi.

"I am convinced that his involvement in this project was altruistic," Alessi said.

Some coalition board members said Gallagher had helped the organization as chairman.

"One of the very strongest suits was his relationship with Curt Weldon," said former coalition chairman David C. Bell, president of Phygen Inc., a high-tech Minneapolis firm doing business in Russia. "Curt has been a friend of [the coalition]. It's nice to have friends in positions of power."

The former director of the Energy Department's nonproliferation programs said he "would not have chosen someone with a known close relationship with Weldon to be chairman of the board with [the coalition]."

"My goodness, it raises the appearance of a conflict of interest," said John Hnatio, who called Weldon a "major funder" of the program.

Weldon also was at Gallagher's side in a fight to help a young Russian crippled in an accident with a U.S. diplomat.

In 1998, U.S. Consul General Douglas Kent was uninsured when his SUV hit a Toyota in the Russian city of Vladivostok. Passenger Alexander Kashin, then 23, was left paralyzed.

Gallagher filed a federal suit in Philadelphia and gained wide attention in Russia. Protesters picketed the U.S. consulate in Vladivostok. "I thought... if we initiated suit, it could be settled very quickly," Gallagher said.

But the case lingered.

In May 2004, Weldon pushed Congress for a settlement, describing the case as a human-rights issue. He said the suit was filed by a "very prominent Russian lawyer in Philadelphia by the name of John Gallagher."

Congress took no action, and a federal court dismissed the case against Kent last month.

Kashin will never walk again, Gallagher said, but he hasn't given up trying for help from the U.S. or Russian governments.

Kent said he was confused by Weldon's role. "I could never tell whether Gallagher was working for Weldon or Weldon was working for Gallagher," Kent said.

The FBI is clearly interested in Weldon's actions in the Moldova affair, Gallagher said.

In that venture, Gallagher said he put up $500,000 of his own money and gathered the rest from a group of investors, several from Delaware County.

At first, he said, he received assurances from top Moldovan officials that the sale had the government's blessing.

He met with Moldova's prime minister and the man who later allegedly scammed him. The prime minister said, "deal with him," Gallagher said. He cited that incident in a 2004 deposition in a suit investors filed against him.

After Gallagher deposited the money in an Eastern European bank, he said, it disappeared. When Gallagher returned to Moldova, he said officials acted as though they didn't know him.

In 2003, Gallagher went to Weldon, who offered the amendment to cut off foreign aid.

"A longtime constituent of mine invested $2.5 million in Moldova," Weldon told Congress. "I have taken this matter to the president of Moldova on several occasions."

Weldon demanded that Moldovan officials recover the lost money. But he later withdrew the amendment to cut off aid.

Gallagher vowed to continue fighting to get the money back from Moldova because some investors are "dear friends."

"This isn't something I'm forgetting about because the FBI took the file," he said.

To view the U.S. Industry Coalition Web site for John J. Gallagher's firm, go to

Contact staff writer John Shiffman at 215-854-2658 or at Special correspondent Bagila Bukharbayeva contributed to this article.

Cheney visits Iraq; US disinformation on Sadr; Americans lose control of another province

Iraq events: 26 Nov 2006

- I don’t what to call this article, misinformation or “too late” information.

Al-Sadr loyalists take over Iraqi television station….Sat, Nov. 25, 2006

Followers of the militant Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr took over state-run television Saturday to denounce the Iraqi government, label Sunnis “terrorists” and issue what appeared to many viewers as a call to arms.

Guess, the name of General Director IMN (Iraqi Media Network…US funded), since early 2005?

Habib Al-Sadr

What H. Al-Sadr did before he became “General Director”?

Car-tires seller in Al-Sanak-Rashid Street, sure nobody told you this as long as he stays loyal to the occupation (I bet his validation date is expired).

- Did you saw this report:

White House denies news reports that Cheney is visiting Iraq.

Iraqi TV, nobody taught them the media tricks, stupidly they reported the following on TV:
Official Iraqi Television reported today –Saturday-, that Vice President Dick Cheney left Iraq heading to Saudi Arabia, It is expected that he will arrive in the Jordanian capital of Amman later and meet President George Bush and Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki.

- Islamemo reported that bahraz [third biggest city in Dyala province] is totly under the Iraqi resistance control, and people received the resistance with jubilation.

- Iraqirabita updating their site continuously reporting attacks on Sunni neighborhoods today (at least 4…today) by militia members supported by Iraqi police, [Shiite Militias ca n move freely despite the curfew].

iraqirabita also reporting that militias are gathering right now preparing for tomorrow’s attacks.

Zionist Leaders Announce Their Goal: The Annihilation of Palestine

Zionist Leaders Announce Their Goal:The Annihilation of Palestine.

Click on this link, to watch the video:


In September 1982, both Ariel Sharon and General Rafael Eitan were responsible for the Sabra and Shatila Massacre, in Lebanon, where over 3,000 defenseless Palestinian refugees were murdered in their homes.For details of the massacre, see Amnon Kapelliouk's account, on the Web at:

On April 12, 1983, General Eitan told the Israeli parliament, in a Knesset committee meeting, this:"The Arabs will never defeat us by throwing stones. Our answer will be a nationalist Zionist solution. For every stone throwing - we'll establish ten settlements. If there will be - and there will be - a hundred settlements between Nablus and Jerusalem, no stones will be thrown. If that shall be the case, the Arabs could only run around like cockroaches in a bottle, like drugged cockroaches inside a bottle".--Eitan's "cockroaches" quote is translated from the Israeli press, at:

In 1984, Eitan was elected to that same Israeli parliament.In the 1990's, Eitan was appointed a Cabinet Minister:He became agriculture and environment minister.Then he became Deputy Prime Minister, from 1998 to 1999.That is how the Israeli government rewards its most obviously racist, genocidal maniacs.____

# posted by Stop Crucifying Palestine @ 9:06 AM 0 comments

Attack sparks huge fire at Iraq oil facility

Attack sparks fire at Iraq oil facility

By SAMEER N. YACOUB, Associated Press Writer

33 minutes ago

A mortar attack ignited a huge fire Monday night at an oil facility in northern Iraq, shutting the flow of crude oil to a major refinery, and a U.S. Air Force jet with one pilot aboard crashed in Anbar province, a hotbed of the Sunni-Arab insurgency, officials said. Al-Jazeera reported that the pilot was killed.

As Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki prepared for a summit meeting with President Bush this week in Jordan, Britain said it expects to withdraw thousands of its 7,000 military personnel from Iraq by the end of next year, and Poland and Italy announced the impending withdrawal of their remaining troops.

Iraqi President Jalal Talabani arrived for an official visit in Iran, where he is expected to seek its help in preventing Iraq's sectarian violence from sliding into an all-out civil war. His departure was delayed by a three-day curfew, which the government lifted Monday.

Two mortar rounds hit the pipeline filtering facility 15 miles northwest of Kirkuk, according to an official at the North Oil Co., speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to reporters.

The fire was burning out of control and could take hours or longer to extinguish, and the flow of oil from all of Kirkuk's rich fields has been shut down to the massive Beiji refinery to the southwest, the official said.

After the F-16CG jet went down, a witness said other U.S. warplanes rushed to the crash site about 20 miles northwest of Baghdad and circled above it. The U.S. military, which released a statement on the crash, did not have any information on the suspected cause or the fate of the pilot.

But Al-Jazeera television showed videotape of the wreckage in a field and what appeared to be portions of a tangled parachute nearby, and the broadcaster said the video included scenes of the dead pilot but that they were too graphic to air.

One shot showed an Air Force seal that said Air Combat Command.

Mohammed Al-Obeidi, who lives in the nearby town of Karmah, said by telephone that he saw the jet flying erratically before it nose-dived and exploded in a field.

Separately, police and witnesses said U.S. soldiers shot and killed 11 civilians and wounded five on Sunday night in the Baghdad suburb of Husseiniya. The U.S. military said it had no record of any American military operation in the area.

"We were sitting inside our house when the Americans showed up and started firing at homes. They killed many people and burned some houses," said one of the witnesses, a man with bandages on his head who was being treated at Imam Ali Hospital in the Shiite slum of Sadr City. The police and witnesses spoke with Associated Press Television News on condition of anonymity to protect their own security.

On Monday, about 250 people attended a memorial service outside the hospital's morgue for the 11 victims, saying it was being conducted in the slum because the dead had been followers of the radical anti-American Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr. The cleric and his Madhi Army militia are both based in Sadr City.

The U.S. command also said three of its soldiers were killed and two wounded in Baghdad on Sunday, the day that Iraq's government began to lift the curfew by allowing Iraqis to leave their homes on foot to shop at their local fruit and vegetable markets. The curfew was imposed Thursday after suspected Sunni-Arab insurgents used bombs and mortars to kill more than 200 people in Sadr City in the worst attack by militants in the war.

The U.S. wants Iran's mostly Shiite government to do more to help Iraq's Shiite-dominated government stem a surge in sectarian violence.

Talabani is a member of Iraq's Kurdish minority, but he had close ties with Iranian officials before Saddam Hussein was driven out by the U.S.-led invasion in 2003.

The Bush administration has accused Tehran of arming and providing logistical assistance to Shiite militias, and British Defense Secretary Des Browne said Monday that Iran's behavior in Iraq remains a deep concern.

"Support from within Iran goes to groups who are attacking our forces, but also to groups who are simply fueling the sectarian violence," Browne said in an address to the Royal Institute of International Affairs in London.

Hard-line Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has said Iran is "ready to help" calm Iraq's fighting.

In other violence, gunmen opened fire on a crowded central Baghdad street on Monday morning, killing six Iraqis and wounding three, including some sitting in a parked car, said police Lt. Ali Muhsin.

Police in western Baghdad found the bodies of two Iraqis who had been kidnapped, blindfolded and shot, said police 1st Lt. Miathem Abdel-Razaq. Each week, the mutilated bodies of scores of Shiites and Sunnis are found across Iraq.

Genocide or Erasure of Palestinians: Does It Matter What You Call It?

November 27, 2006


During an appearance in late October on Ireland's Pat Kenny radio show, a popular national program broadcast daily on Ireland's RTE Radio, we were asked as the opening question if Israel could be compared to Nazi Germany. Not across the board, we said, but there are certainly some aspects of Israel's policy toward the Palestinians that bear a clear resemblance to the Nazis' oppression. Do you mean the wall, Kenny prompted, and we agreed, describing the ghettoization and other effects of this monstrosity. Before we could elaborate on other Nazi-like features of Israel's policies, Kenny moved on to another question. Within minutes, while we were still on the air, a producer handed Kenny a note, which we later learned was a request from the newly arrived Israeli ambassador to Ireland to appear on the show, by himself. Several days later, on the air by himself, the ambassador pronounced us and our comparisons of Israeli and Nazi policies "outrageous."

What else? We were not surprised or disturbed by his outrage. We had just spent two weeks in the West Bank witnessing the oppression, and it was a sure bet that, even had he not been fulfilling his role as propagandist for Israel, the ambassador would not have known the first thing about the Palestinian situation in the West Bank because he had most likely not set foot there in any recent year. In retrospect, we regret not having used even stronger language. Having at that point just completed our fifth trip to Palestine since early 2003, we should have had the courage and the insight to call what we have observed Israel doing to the Palestinians by its rightful name: genocide.

We have long played with words about this, labeling Israel's policy "ethnocide," meaning the attempt to destroy the Palestinians as a people with a specific ethnic identity. Others who dance around the subject use terms like "politicide" or, a new invention, "sociocide," but neither of these terms implies the large-scale destruction of people and identity that is truly the Israeli objective. "Genocide" -- defined by the UN Convention as the intention "to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial, or religious group" -- most aptly describes Israel's efforts, akin to the Nazis', to erase an entire people. (See William Cook's "The Rape of Palestine," CounterPunch, January 7/8, 2006 for a discussion of what constitutes genocide.)

In fact, it matters little what you call it, so long as it is recognized that what Israel intends and is working toward is the erasure of the Palestinian people from the Palestine landscape. Israel most likely does not care about how systematic its efforts at erasure are, or how rapidly they proceed, and in these ways it differs from the Nazis. There are no gas chambers; there is no overriding urgency. Gas chambers are not needed. A round of rockets on a residential housing complex in the middle of the night here, a few million cluster bomblets or phosphorous weapons there can, given time, easily meet the UN definition above.

Children shot to death sitting in school classrooms here, families murdered while tilling their land there; agricultural land stripped and burned here, farmers cut off from their land there; little girls riddled with bullets here, infants beheaded by shell fire there; a little massacre here, a little starvation there; expulsion here, denial of entry and families torn apart there; dispossession is the name of the game. With no functioning economy, dwindling food supplies, medical supply shortages, no way to move from one area to another, no access to a capital city, no easy access to education or medical care, no civil service salaries, the people will die, the nation will die without a single gas chamber. Or so the Israelis hope.

Surrender vs. Resistance

A major part of the Israeli scheme -- apart from the outright land expropriation, national fragmentation, and killing that are designed to strangle and destroy the Palestinian people -- is to so discourage the Palestinians psychologically that they will simply leave voluntarily -- if they have the money -- or give up in abject surrender and agree to live quietly in small enclaves under the Israeli thumb. You wonder sometimes if the Israelis are not succeeding in this bit of psychological warfare, as they are succeeding in tightening their physical stranglehold on territory in the West Bank and Gaza. Overall, we do not believe they have yet brought the Palestinians to this point of psychological surrender, although the breaking point for Palestinians appears nearer than ever before.

The anger and depression, even despair, in Palestine are palpable these days, far worse than we have previously encountered. We met two Palestinians so discouraged that they are preparing to leave, in one case uprooting family from a Muslim village where roots go back centuries. The other case is a Christian young person, also from an old family, who sees no prospects for herself or anyone and who feels betrayed by her Catholic Church for having abandoned Palestine's Christians. She would rather just be elsewhere. A Palestinian pollster who has tracked attitudes toward emigration recently reported that the proportion of people thinking about leaving has jumped from about 20 percent, where it has long hovered, to 32 percent in a recent poll, largely because of despair arising from intra-Palestinian factional fighting and from Hamas' inability to govern thanks to crippling Israeli, U.S., and European sanctions.

Nothing like one-third of Palestinians will ultimately leave or even attempt to leave, but the trend in attitudes clearly points to the kind of despair that is afflicting much of Palestine. One thoughtful Palestinian writer with whom we spent an evening feels so defeated and so oppressed by Israeli restrictions that he thinks Hamas should abandon its principled stand and agree to recognize Israel's right to exist, in the hope that this concession might induce the Israelis to lift some of the innumerable restrictions on Palestinian life, end the military siege on Palestinian territories and the land theft, and in general ease the day-to-day misery that Palestinians endure under occupation. Asked if he thought such a major Hamas concession would actually bring meaningful Israeli concessions, he said no, but perhaps it would ease the misery a little. It was clear he holds out no great hope. His village's land is gradually disappearing underneath the separation wall and expanding Israeli settlements.

We met westerners who have lived in the West Bank, working on behalf of the Palestinians for various NGOs for a decade and more, who are planning to leave out of frustration at seeing the situation worsen year after year and their own work increasingly go for naught. Many other western human rights workers and educators, particularly at venerable institutions like the Friends' School in Ramallah and Bir Zeit University, are being denied visas by the Israelis as part of their deliberate campaign to keep out foreign passport holders, including thousands of ethnic Palestinians who have lived in the West Bank with their families and worked for years. The Israeli campaign to deny residency and re-entry permits is a deliberate attempt at ethnic cleansing, a hope that if a husband or wife is barred, he or she will remove the rest of the family and Israel will have fewer Palestinians to deal with. In addition, the entry denial campaign targets in particular anyone, Palestinian or international, who might bring a measure of business prosperity to the Palestinian territories, or education, or medical assistance, or humanitarian assistance.

The campaign against foreigners who might help the Palestinians or bear witness for them became particularly vicious in mid-November when a 19-year-old Swedish volunteer with the International Solidarity Movement escorting Palestinian children to school was brutally attacked by Israeli settlers in Hebron as Israeli soldiers watched. The young woman, Tove Johansson, was walking through an Israeli army checkpoint with several other volunteers when they were set upon by a group of approximately 100 settlers chanting, "We killed Jesus, we'll kill you too!" A settler hit Johansson in the face with a broken bottle, breaking her cheekbone, and as she lay bleeding on the ground, the settlers cheered and clapped and took pictures of themselves posing next to her. The Israeli soldiers briefly questioned three settlers but made no arrests and conducted no investigation. In fact, they threatened the international volunteers with arrest if they did not leave the area immediately. The assault was so raw and brutal that Amnesty International issued an alert warning internationals to beware of settler attacks. The U.S. media have not seen fit to report the incident, which was clearly part of a longstanding effort to discourage witnesses to Israeli atrocities and deprive Palestinians of any protection against the atrocities.

Palestinian resistance does figure in this dismal story. In the same small village where one of our acquaintances is uprooting his family, others are building, building small homes and multi-story apartment buildings, simply as a sign of resistance. International human rights volunteers are still trying to reach the West Bank and Gaza to assist Palestinians. When we told one Palestinian friend about our conversation with the writer who wants Hamas to concede Israel's right to exist, his immediate reaction was "absolutely not." He is himself a secular Muslim, a Fatah supporter, does not like Hamas and did not vote for Hamas in last January's legislative elections, but he fully supports Hamas's refusal to recognize Israel's right to exist until Israel recognizes the right of the Palestinian people to exist as a nation. "Why should I recognize you until you get out of my garden?" he wondered.

Our friend Ahmad's views reflect the general feeling among Palestinians: a poll conducted in September by a Palestinian polling organization found that 67 percent of Palestinians do not think Hamas should recognize Israel in order to satisfy Israeli and international demands, while almost the same proportion, 63 percent, would support recognizing Israel if this came as part of a peace agreement in which a Palestinian state was established -- in other words, if Israel also recognized the Palestinians as a nation. Surrender is not yet on the horizon.

On the possibility of pulling up stakes and leaving Palestine, Ahmad was equally adamant. "Why should I leave and then have to fight to get back later? Empires never last." He mentioned the Turks and the British and the Soviets, "and the Americans and the Israelis won't last either. It may take a long time, but we can wait." He was angrier than we have ever previously seen him, and more uncompromising -- and with good reason: the separation wall is now within a few yards of his home and demolition is threatened. Ahmad and some neighbors have been fighting the wall's advance in court and succeeded in stopping it for over a year, but construction is moving ahead again. He already has to drive miles out of his way to skirt the wall on his way to work and will be able to exit only on foot when the wall is completed -- assuming his house is not demolished altogether.

But he is not giving up. He thinks suicide bombers are "a piece of shit," but he believes the Palestinians have to resist in some way, if only by throwing stones, and he sees some kind of explosion in the offing. If Palestinians do nothing at all, he said, "the Israelis will just relax" and will feel no pressure to cease the oppression. Palestinians everywhere are keeping up the pressure. Haaretz correspondent Gideon Levy described a cloth banner displayed in Beit Hanoun immediately after Israel's devastation of that small Gaza city during the first week in November. "Kill, destroy, crush -- you won't succeed in breaking us," declared the banner.

Palestinians in Beit Hanoun, as well as throughout Gaza and the West Bank, have been putting up resistance to their own incompetent, quisling leadership, as well as to Israel. It has not escaped the notice of the Palestinian man in the street that, while Israel slaughters men, women, and children in Beit Hanoun and continues its march across the West Bank, Palestinian Authority President Mamhud Abbas has been cooperating with the U.S. and Israel to undermine the democratically elected Hamas government. The U.S. is arming and training a militia that will protect Abbas' and Fatah's narrow factional interests against Hamas' fighters, in what can only be termed an open coup attempt against the legally constituted Palestinian government.

Few Palestinians, even Fatah supporters, condone this U.S. interference or Abbas' traitorous acquiescence. "Fatah are thieves," a local leader who is a Fatah member himself told us. "Hamas won because we wanted to get rid of the thieves." He thinks that if there were an election today, "ordinary people" -- by which he means people not associated with either Fatah or Hamas -- would win. In each house, he said, "we find one son with Hamas, another son with Fatah, so how is a father going to support one or the other?" It is perhaps this knowledge that they cannot fight each other without destroying the nuclear and the broader Palestinian family, and that they must not succumb to Israeli and U.S. schemes to fragment Palestinian society, that have motivated the intensive Palestinian efforts to achieve some kind of unity government.

Around the West Bank

In Bil'in, the small town west of Ramallah that has seen a non-violent protest against the wall by Palestinians, Israelis, and internationals every Friday for almost two years, the village leader, Ahmad Issa Yassin, talked about the lesson his youngest son learned after being arrested last year at age 14 in an Israeli raid. "He is more courageous now, more ready to resist," Yassin said. "So am I." We first met this boy a few months before his arrest, a particularly friendly young man with a sweet smile. He greeted us again this year with another warm smile and bantered with us as we took his picture. He gave no hint of having spent two months in one of Israel's worst prisons or of the horror of having been arrested in a Nazi-style middle-of-the-night raid. Perhaps he threw stones at the Israeli soldiers who converge on his village at least once a week and respond to non-violent protests with live ammunition, rubber bullets, teargas, concussion grenades, and batons. This boy was no terrorist. On the other hand, the Israelis may have turned him into a young man willing to fight terror with terror a few years from now.

Yassin walked us to his olive grove, half destroyed, on the other side of the wall. The Israelis allow the villagers access to lands that now lie on Israel's side of the wall, but there is only one gate, manned by Israeli soldiers who may or may not bestir themselves to open it. The villagers' names are all on a list of Palestinians authorized to pass through the gate. At this particular village, one of many whose lands have been cut off from the village, protesters have established an outpost or, as they call it, a "settlement" on the Israeli side to stake a claim to the land for the village even though it now lies on Israel's side in the path of an expanding Israeli settlement. The Palestinian "settlement" consists of a small building, a tent where a couple of activists maintain a constant vigil, and a soccer field for a bit of normality.

Yassin took us uphill on a dirt path running alongside the wall, which in this rural area consists of an electronic fence, a dirt patrol road on each side where footprints can be picked up, a paved patrol road on the Israeli side, and coils of razor wire on each side -- encompassing altogether an area about 50 meters wide, where olive groves once stood. We waited at the gate in the electronic fence while Yassin called several times to the Israeli soldiers, whom we could see lounging under a tent canopy on a nearby hillside. When they finally came to the gate, they checked Yassin's name against their list of permitees, recorded our names and passport numbers, and officiously warned us against taking pictures in this "military zone." As we made our way across country to the Bil'in outpost, Yassin pointed out olive trees burned and uprooted by Israelis and, at the outpost right next to the stump of a tree that had been cut down, a new tree sprouting from the old one.

We talked for a while with a Palestinian activist from the village and a young British activist who had both been sleeping late into the morning, after enjoying a Ramadan meal, the Iftar, late the night before. When we returned to the gate, the Israeli soldiers were even slower arriving to open it, obviously totally bored with their duty. The following Friday at the weekly protest, they enjoyed a little more excitement as protesters managed to erect ladders to scale the fence. The soldiers responded with batons and teargas.

The resistance goes on, but so does the Israeli encroachment. We took away with us two striking impressions: the little olive tree being carefully nurtured as a sign of renewal and resistance, and in the near distance the constant sound of bulldozers and earth-clearing equipment working on the Israeli settlement of Modiin Illit, being built on the lands of Bil'in and other neighboring villages.

Elsewhere, signs of the Israeli advance override the continuing signs of Palestinian resistance. In the small village of Wadi Fuqin southwest of Bethlehem, a beautiful village sitting in a narrow, fertile valley between ridge lines that is being squeezed on one side by the wall, still to be constructed, and on the other by the already large and rapidly expanding Israeli settlement of Betar Illit, we saw more destruction. The settlement is dumping vast tonnages of construction debris down onto the village, so that its fields are gradually being swallowed. This was more evident this year than when we visited last year. The settlement's sewage often overflows onto village land through sewage pipes evident high up on the hillside. Israeli settlers swagger through the village increasingly, as if it were theirs, swimming in the many irrigation pools that are fed by natural springs dating back to Roman times.

In the village of Walaja, not far away to the north, nearer Jerusalem, Ahmad took us to visit friends of his. The village is scheduled to be surrounded completely by the wall because it sits near the Green Line in the midst of a cluster of Israeli settlements. We sat in a garden of fruit trees with a family whose house is on a hill overlooking a spectacular valley and hills beyond. Jerusalem sits on another hill in the distance. We commented that, except for the Israeli settlements across the valley, the place is like paradise, but our host responded with a cynical laugh that actually it is hell. Even beautiful scenery loses its appeal when one is trapped and surrounded.

In another encircled village that we visited last year, Nu'man, the approximately 200 residents are also trapped between the wall, now completed, on one side and the advancing settlement of Har Homa, which covets the village land, on the other. Although last year, with the wall incomplete, we could drive in, this year we were denied entry at the one gate in. With Ahmad, we tried to talk to four obviously intimidated young Palestinian men waiting across the patrol road from the gate to gain entry to their homes, but the Israeli soldiers told them not to talk to us; one of them said a few words to Ahmad but never took his eyes off the Israeli guardpost. We drove off and left them to their plight. We could have tried to get to the village with an arduous cross-country walk, but we did not.

"Grand" Terminals

With the near completion of the separation wall, the Israelis have systematized the West Bank prison. Since August 2005, the number of checkpoints throughout the West Bank has risen 40 percent, from 376 to 528, according to OCHA, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, which carefully tracks the numbers and types of Israeli checkpoints, as well as other aspects of the Israeli stranglehold on the Palestinians. As part of the systematization, a series of elaborate terminals now manage the humiliation of Palestinians at major checkpoints, particularly around Jerusalem. The terminals are huge cages resembling cattle runs, which direct foot traffic in snaking lines that double back and forth. At the end of the line are a series of turnstiles, x-ray machines, conveyor belts, and other accoutrements of heavy security. Any Palestinian entering Jerusalem from the West Bank to work, to visit family, to pray at al-Aqsa Mosque or the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, to go to school, or for medical treatment must have a hard-to-obtain permit from Israel. The turnstiles and other security barriers are controlled remotely by Israeli soldiers housed behind heavy bullet-proof glass.

The cages are currently painted a bright, cheerful blue, but it's a fair bet that when they are older and worn, the paint job will not be renewed. Adding to the false cheer, the Israelis have erected incongruous welcoming signs at the terminals. Most egregious is the giant sign at the Bethlehem terminal. "Peace be with you," it proclaims in three languages to travelers leaving Jerusalem for Bethlehem. This is on a giant pastel-colored sign erected by the Israeli Ministry of Tourism, as if travel through this terminal were the ordinary tourist lark. At the Qalandiya terminal between Ramallah and Jerusalem, a large cartoon-like red rose welcomes Palestinians with a sign in Arabic. Early this year when the terminal was opened, the rose was on a sign that proclaimed, in three languages, "The hope of us all." Apparently embarrassed at being caught so red-handed in their hypocrisy, the Israelis removed the sign, preserving only the rose, after a Jewish activist stenciled over it the words that once graced the entrance to Auschwitz, "Arbeit Macht Frei" -- work makes you free. There is still a sign saying in three languages, "May you go in peace and return in peace." The Israelis still don't really get it.

Nor do the Americans. The terminals, advertised as a way to "ease life" for Palestinians by prettying up the checkpoints of old and making passage more efficient, were paid for out of U.S. aid monies designated originally for the Palestinian Authority (before the Hamas election) but diverted to Israel's terminal-building enterprise -- helping Israel make Palestinian humiliation more efficient. Steven Erlanger in the New York Times, among others, fell for the scam, noting when the Bethlehem terminal opened in December last year that the terminals were aimed at "easing the burden on Palestinians and softening international criticism." He labeled the Bethlehem terminal a "grand" gateway for Christians visiting Jesus' birthplace -- not acknowledging that Christians had been visiting for two millennia without benefit of turnstiles and concrete walls.

The burden on Palestinians has not been significantly eased as far as we could tell. We spent some time watching at several of the terminals -- feeling like voyeurs of Palestinian misery. At Qalandiya, about 100 people stood waiting to pass through three locked turnstiles. A young Israeli woman soldier sat in a glassed-in control booth barking commands at them. Our friend Ahmad speaks Hebrew as well as Arabic and could not even make out which language she was speaking in. There was no reason for her anger or for her decision to lock the turnstiles. When she saw us observing, carrying a camera, she shook her finger in an apparent warning against taking pictures. They don't like witnesses. Immediately after this, she unlocked the turnstiles.

We walked through after everyone else who had been waiting, and Ahmad took us to the waiting area on the other side where Palestinians from the West Bank apply for permits to enter Jerusalem. About 50 people were waiting. A middle-aged man walked up to us and began telling his story. He was scheduled for neurosurgery at Maqassad Hospital in East Jerusalem in two days, according to a certificate from the hospital, written in English and clearly intended for Israeli permit authorities. He had already been waiting for six days -- three futilely sitting in this waiting area and a previous three when the Israelis had closed the terminal altogether for Yom Kippur. He was beginning to fear he would never get his permit and, as he expressed his frustration and desperation, he began to cry. He asked that we take his picture holding the certificate and tell the world. We did, but we will never know if he obtained his permit in time, or at all.

At another terminal, leading from al-Azzariyah, the biblical Bethany, into Jerusalem, a soldier screamed at us -- quite literally, his face red, blood vessels standing out on his neck -- when he saw us taking pictures of his soldier colleagues questioning Palestinians before they entered the terminal area, a pre-screening for the screening at the terminal. We told the soldier we thought pictures would be all right; this terminal was run after all by the Ministry of Tourism and so must be a tourist attraction. But our flippancy didn't go over well. He pushed us toward an exit gate, screaming that this was the "Ministry of Gates" and that we had to get out. We managed to remain inside until Ahmad, who was talking to another Israeli soldier, finished and exited with us. Maybe we saved one or two Palestinians from scrutiny by distracting a couple of soldiers -- or maybe unfortunately we just delayed them further.

At a third checkpoint, this a makeshift one set up temporarily at an opening in the wall where the concrete barrier is still incomplete, we watched as a growing crowd of Palestinians wanting to enter Jerusalem to pray at al-Aqsa Mosque tried to negotiate with two young Israeli soldiers. It was a Friday in Ramadan and, although these Palestinians had permits to enter Jerusalem, their names were not on the authorized list at this particular checkpoint. They had to go, according to Israel's administrative fiat, to the main terminal from their area into the city. As the crowd gathered, more Israeli soldiers arrived. The crowd included women as well as men, and several children. Being watched by a couple of Americans who probably appeared more patronizing than helpful clearly did not improve the mood of most of the crowd.

One little boy of about five, dressed neatly in a tie and pressed white shirt, stood looking at the commotion for a few minutes, standing slightly apart from his father, and suddenly burst into tears. A few minutes later, the soldiers exploded a concussion grenade, and most of the crowd dispersed. It's the Israeli way: make them cry, run them off in fear. We left, embarrassed by our own inadequacy.


Is it genocide when a little boy is made to cry because belligerent armed men intimidate him, intimidate his father, and ultimately run them off; when they are forbidden from performing their religious ceremonies because a belligerent government decides they are of the wrong religion; when their town is encircled and cut off because a racist state decides their ethnic identity is of the wrong variety?

You can argue over terminology, but the truth is evident everywhere on the ground where Israel has extended its writ: Palestinians are unworthy, inferior to Jews, and in the name of the Jewish people, Israel has given itself the right to erase the Palestinian presence in Palestine -- in other words, to commit genocide by destroying "in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial, or religious group."

As we debate about and analyze the Palestinian psyche, trying to determine if they have had enough and will surrender or will survive by resisting, it is important to remember that the Jewish people, despite unspeakable tragedy, emerged from the holocaust ultimately triumphant. Israel and its supporters should keep this in mind: empires never last, as Ahmad said, and gross injustice such as the Nazis and Israel have inflicted on innocent people cannot prevail for long.

Kathleen Christison is a former CIA political analyst and has worked on Middle East issues for 30 years. She is the author of Perceptions of Palestine and The Wound of Dispossession.

Bill Christison was a senior official of the CIA. He served as a National Intelligence Officer and as Director of the CIA's Office of Regional and Political Analysis. They spent October 2006 in Palestine and on a speaking tour of Ireland sponsored by the Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign.

They can be reached at

Impeachment Hearings for Bush & Co.? How about War Crimes Tribunals

Nov 27, 2996

By Heather Wokusch

While Bush administration members have made a sport of breaking the law, both domestically and internationally, their intransigence will come back to haunt - one way or another.

The Bush Doctrine of taking "the battle to the enemy," for example, is a direct repudiation of the United Nations Charter, which prohibits the use of international force unless in self-defense (after an armed attack across an international border) or related to a UN Security Council decision. And that explains why Bush's 2002 National Security Strategy makes a point to "protect Americans" from "the potential for investigations, inquiry, or prosecution" by the International Criminal Court "whose jurisdiction does not extend to Americans and which we do not accept."

The whole idea of the US being able to preemptively attack other nations was penned by White House lawyers two weeks after 9/11; former justice department lawyer John Yoo wrote memos for then-White House counsel Alberto Gonzales arguing that "no limits" stood in the way of Bush's ability to take military action and that "the president's decisions are for him alone and are unreviewable."

But giving someone like Bush "unreviewable" and unlimited military powers is reckless; the man can barely construct a sentence, let alone articulate a humane and effective foreign policy.
Besides, a "no limits" approach to foreign policy can't coexist with rule of law, which explains why just last week, US Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff accused the United Nations and other world bodies of using international law "as a rhetorical weapon against us." Chertoff co-authored the infamous Patriot Act but is best known for his stunning incompetence regarding Katrina. If only he had been as eager to protect Americans from hurricanes as he is to protect them from global treaties...

Chertoff's view of international law as a threat to the US is supported by Rumsfeld's 2005 National Defense Strategy, which notes: "Our strength as a nation state will continue to be challenged by those who employ a strategy of the weak using international fora, judicial processes and terrorism.

In other words, the Pentagon links "judicial processes" with "terrorism," and sees "judicial processes" as weakening the US "nation state." What kind of nonsense is that?
Now that Rumsfeld has "resigned" and Bush and Co. face their lame-duck years watching the war on terror implode, it's worth considering the aftermath of World War II, when the International Military Tribunal indicted and tried over 20 Nazi leaders for war crimes ranging from waging a war of aggression, killing civilians, mistreating prisoners and plundering property. How eerily familiar those charges seem today.

And how ominous that only weeks ago, German prosecutors began pursuing a criminal investigation into the alleged role of Rumsfeld, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, former CIA director George Tenet and numerous other administration members regarding prisoner abuse at Abu Ghraib and Guantánamo.

Rumsfeld will lose his legal immunity when he ceases to be Defense Secretary, a fact which must weigh heavily on Bush and others. Unsurprisingly, the administration has taken pre-emptive action against future war crimes charges, including pushing through the scandalous Military Commissions Act, which provides them retroactive domestic protection from prosecution regarding prisoner abuse cases.

On the world stage, the administration's primary battleground for immunity has been the International Criminal Court (ICC), set up in 2002 to investigate and prosecute war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide. Roughly 100 countries have ratified the ICC Statute, and over 40 others have signed it, but the Bush administration renounced the treaty on grounds it could lead to "frivolous or politically motivated prosecutions."

The administration has done everything in its power to enervate the ICC, including setting up bilateral "Article 98" agreements which arm-twist other countries into not prosecuting US nationals or foreign nationals working for the US. Over 100 nations, mainly poor and dependent on foreign aid, have signed the agreements, but many others have stood firm and lost US aid as a result, including Brazil, Peru and South Africa.

But such bribery will only go so far. The administration's "no limits" approach to foreign policy has alienated global allies, and in many parts of the world, Bush is regarded as a greater danger to world peace than North Korea's Kim Jong-il or Iran's Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Continuing revelations of US war atrocities, such as the recent bombing of a Pakistani religious school in which 82 students died, only serve to fuel global outrage. It's hard to imagine administration members getting much sympathy in an international trial.

Bottom line, as calls for impeachment build at home, Bush might heed advice he once gave to Osama bin Laden: "you can run but you cannot hide."

Action Ideas:

1. A number of web sites provide information about human rights abuses linked to the so-called war on terror:

War Crimes Watch

Human Rights First

School of the Americas Watch

Cage Prisoners

2. As After Downing Street notes, this year a national coalition of organizations is making December 10 ''Human Rights and Impeachment Day.'' For related information on everything from Petitions to Dramatic Play Scripts and Yard Signs, check out the site's event resources.Note: Originally published: November 27, 2006

Documentary Films Rattle Business World(Especially Starbucks)

Documentary Films Rattle Business World

Videocam-toting Davids shooting documentaries tackle corporate Goliaths on business practices

LOS ANGELES, Nov. 26, 2006
By JACOB ADELMAN Associated Press Writer

(AP) Starbucks Corp. was one of the companies that turned down interview requests from Nick and Mark Francis when the brothers were shooting their documentary about rampant poverty among Ethiopian coffee growers.

But after "Black Gold" attracted attention at the Sundance Film Festival in January, the coffee giant invited the British brothers to its Seattle headquarters as it prepared for a barrage of bad publicity.

"Black Gold," now being screened at festivals and art houses, is the latest in a growing genre of documentary films shaking up the business world. They are taking critiques of corporate power that would once have been the province of newspapers and magazines to movie theaters and DVD shops, where they're finding an increasingly receptive audience.

The trend, which started with "Roger and Me" in 1989 and more recently featured "Super Size Me" and "Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room," is forcing some corporate targets to counterattack _ and, some say, even change business practices _ to dodge claims of unfair wages, unhealthy products or environmental degradation.

"When you're talking about a documentary, it's something that's being presented as if it's fact, so that's a huge problem for companies," said Paul A. Argenti, a professor at Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth University.

Michael Moore's "Roger and Me" left a lasting blemish on General Motors Corp. for closing its plant in Flint, Mich., and leaving rampant unemployment in its wake.

Morgan Spurlock's 2004 documentary "Super Size Me" assailed McDonald's for pushing high-calorie meals, while last year's Enron film by Alex Gibney showed how internal avarice and corruption brought down the world's largest energy company.

The films are finding an eager audience, said Erik Schut, editorial director of TLA Entertainment group, which runs a chain of video rental shops on the East Coast and operates a DVD mail order service.

"These are not Hollywood-style films," he said. "So the fact that people are responding to them, that says a lot."

Jon Else, who teaches documentary filmmaking at the University of California, Berkeley, believes the growing interest in corporate-critical documentaries is a reaction to the extremes of wealth created by an untamed free market.

Nick Francis said "Black Gold" stemmed from the brothers' outrage about the poverty that persists among Ethiopian growers even as multinational coffee sellers make huge profits.

The brothers put the final cost of the movie at $760,000 and said its financing was typical for films of the genre, relying on grants, small donations and pro bono production help.

This year's "Iraq for Sale: The War Profiteers" from director Robert Greenwald was bankrolled by thousands of individual donors who responded to a fundraising e-mail from the filmmakers.

Despite the relatively small budgets, many of the films have drawn big attention.

Starbucks sent an e-mail to employees in the United Kingdom characterizing "Black Gold" as "inaccurate and incomplete" before it played at the London Film Festival. At Sundance, the company distributed a statement saying it believes "coffee farmers should make a living wage and be paid fair prices."

Nick Francis believes "Black Gold" also helped prompt an upcoming meeting between the chief executive of Starbucks and the Ethiopian prime minister. Starbucks spokeswoman Audrey Lincoff said the film and the meeting were unrelated.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. reacted similarly to Greenwald's "Wal-Mart: The High Cost of Low Price" when it was released in 2005. The company kept a log of what it called the film's "numerous inaccuracies" and shared it with reporters and on its Web site, spokeswoman Marisa Bluestone said.

Wal-Mart also made its workers available for a rebuttal documentary, "Why Wal-Mart Works: And Why that Drives Some People C-r-a-z-y," which portrays the corporation sympathetically.

Spurlock suspects his 2004 documentary "Super Size Me," which showed the unhealthy effect of a strictly fast food diet, helped influence McDonald's Corp. to add healthier items to its menu.

"McDonald's is launching its new 'Go Active! Adult Happy Meals' nationwide," he wrote on his Web log when his movie first began generating buzz. "Coincidence? Yeah, right," he wrote.

McDonald's has consistently denied any connection between the film and changes to its menu.

"Super Size Me" is one of the relatively few business-related documentaries to find broad distribution. Roadside Attractions and Samuel Goldwyn Films picked it up after it won Spurlock a Sundance documentary directing award in 2004.

It went on to earn $11.5 million at the U.S. box office, making it the biggest moneymaker in the genre. "Roger and Me" earned $6.7 million at the U.S. box office. "Sicko," Moore's film on the pharmaceutical industry, is due out next summer.

Even less broadly distributed documentaries are finding wider interest than a liberal screed in The Nation or an expose in The New York Times Magazine with similar ideas might reach.

"You get a lot of bang for the buck when you make a movie," Else said. "You get a lot of eyeballs."

Web sites for documentaries like "Black Gold" and "Wal-Mart: The High Cost of Low Price" list dozens of screenings each month at repertory theaters, universities and churches where they're presented by advocacy groups and often followed by discussion sessions.

"They become events in themselves," Nick Francis said.

Else said the filmmakers are akin to the rabble-rousing reporters who took on the railroad empires and mining giants of the early 20th century.

"These guys are doing what any good crusading journalist would have done in a time when everyone was reading the newspaper everyday," he said.

MMVI The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Cornell Daily Sun: Israel loaded the guns of Apartheid South Africa

Monday, November 27, 2006

"Peres’ Apartheid Past"

Brutal Honesty
By Jeff Purcell

Cornell University

Nov 27 2006

"Hours before the British occupation of Palestine ended, 23 members of the Vaad Leumi signed the Declaration of the Establishment of the State of Israel. It’s a fantastic document. Decades ahead of its time, the State of Israel’s founders pledged to 'ensure complete equality of social and political rights to all its inhabitants irrespective of religion, race or sex.'

"This, in 1948, was something else, but Israel’s relationship with Apartheid South Africa shows that the rhetoric was more powerful than the sentiment.

"Announcing 'national rebirth' in light of the 'catastrophe which recently befell the Jewish people,' the document intended to 'restore their political freedom.' The authors wrote that Nazi 'wickedness' and the 'homelessness' of Jews who 'never ceased to pray and hope for their return' demanded fulfillment of U.N. resolutions and (what they claim are) Providential endowments. A community just moments from complete annihilation established its State to bring 'the blessings of progress to all the country’s inhabitants.' Immediately from its inception, then, Israel was committed to opposing Final Solutions, codified racism and ethnic cleansing. Its signatories demanded that Israel '[would] be based on freedom, justice and peace.'

"Yet, Israel’s deep history of Apartheid support and collaboration mocks the Declaration. First, Israel welcomed South African Prime Minister D.F. Malan in 1953, though Malan and his ruling National Party sided with the Nazis. Malan was treated as any other head of state, although he led South Africa’s (successful) efforts to refuse European Jews during World War II. In 1937, he told the world, 'I have been reproached that I am now discriminating against the Jews as Jews. Now let me say frankly that I admit that it is so.' This visit was six years after Malan’s master plan, Apartheid, was enacted, crushing millions of black South Africans.

"Apartheid’s heinousness wasn’t lost on Israel. In 1961, its U.N. ambassador condemned the system as 'reprehensible and repugnant to the dignity and rights of peoples and individuals.' And we’ve seen that Israel’s founding document pledges its opposition to racism and support of peace, two ideals that Apartheid fought. Even though Israel’s relations with Apartheid are antithetical to its stated goals, the story of collaboration only intensified as Apartheid’s massacres, torture and terrorism increased.

"In the 1970s, as the planet recoiled from South African atrocities (the Sharpsville Massacre in 1960, for instance) and brutality (like the murder of hundreds of students in Soweto in 1976), Israel moved closer to the state whose goal was the exact opposite of what Israel claimed to embody.

"Jailed for his active support of the Nazis during World War II, South African B.J. Vorster visited Jerusalem in 1976 and signed a series of secret trade and military pacts. South Africa considered the relationship this way: 'Israel and South Africa have one thing above all else in common: they are both situated in a predominantly hostile world inhabited by dark peoples.' Though Israel had voted against Apartheid in the U.N. several times in the 1960s, by the 1970s it was absenting itself from the same votes.

"Many Israelis protested their government’s decision to embrace the barbarism of Apartheid. 'He who opens his arms [to South Africa] becomes a partner to crime; a collaborator with a hated and cruel regime,' wrote one Israeli observer in 1976 in Al-Hamishmar. One Israeli saw his country’s persistent ties, particularly military, as presenting 'the potential to undercut' 'international efforts … to apply economic pressure on South Africa to force it to dismantle apartheid.'

"Nonetheless, the Israelis spent the next decade openly violating the U.N. Security Council’s 1977 unanimous arms embargo on Apartheid. Israeli and South African military advisors regularly collaborated throughout these years, though the most appalling acts were yet to come. The Vorster-Rabin meetings in 1976 expanded military sales — the arming of Apartheid.

"While the planet moved from arms embargoes to divestment, Israel supplied Apartheid with at least six warships, patrol boats, military electronics, aircraft computers, tanks, submachine gun technology, missiles, warplanes, air-to-air rockets, assault rockets and radar bases. Israeli arms killed black South Africans. These weapons were used, as well, to destabilize Southern Africa and fund terrorist organizations like UNITA and RENAMO.

"Other collaborations included the Kibbutz Beit Alfam, which built anti-riot vehicles that the Apartheid police used to mow down protesters. Shimon Peres, who will visit campus tomorrow, was Israeli Defense Minister during the Nazi supporter’s visit. Recalling the transactions with South Africa, earlier this year he told London’s The Guardian, 'I never think back. Since I cannot change the past, why should I deal with it?'

"These words are distant from those enshrined in the Declaration. The brutal repression, torture and murder of thousands of South Africans are surely incompatible with the policies Israel claimed its existence would demand. Nothing could justify selling guns and missiles to a regime so discredited and committed to beating its opponents to death. Given that the bullets and bombs would be used to murder and intimidate people who were in so many ways similar to the people who signed the Declaration in 1948, nothing can excuse Peres’ actions.

"So much was said in 1985 after Zulu Chief Buthelezi visited Jerusalem, meeting with Peres twice. Then Prime Minister, Peres said, 'We are serious, we are definite, we are determined not to accept the policy of discrimination under any circumstances,' concluding at nearly the same time, 'The Israeli government unconditionally disassociates itself form South Africa’s apartheid government.'

"Weeks later, The Washington Post reported that despite the 'unconditional' condemnation, Israeli 'ministers said the government would make no move to sever diplomatic ties or end the commercial and arms trade between the two countries.'

"Only after the U.S. Congress prohibited military aid to any country arming Apartheid did Israel cease loading the guns of white supremacy. Therefore, few things are more offensive to South Africans than calling Shimon Peres a 'man of peace,' given that he personally oversaw their suffering. Tomorrow, ask Peres why his country is considered a moral degenerate in South Africa and force him to 'think back' to Apartheid and the Declaration he abandoned."

"Jeff Purcell is a graduate student in Africana Studies. He can be reached at Brutal Honesty appears Mondays."

On the Web at:

# posted by Stop Crucifying Palestine @ 8:21 AM 0 comments

Thugs: A History of the U.S. Empire

You can download the whole book by clicking here:

It's a 185 MB book.

"Our university is complicit too through its investments in arms companies that provide Israel its arsenal."

Monday, November 27, 2006

Palestinian refugees in the Gaza Strip, 1948.

"A flawed democracy"

By Shimaa Abdelfadeel

MICHIGAN DAILY (University of Michigan)

"Since late June, Israel has killed 400 Palestinians in Gaza. In the morning hours of November 8, 2006, in the village of Beit Hanoun,

"Israeli tanks repeatedly fired shells on a house, killing 18 members of the same extended family. Other attacks earlier in the month were launched against peaceful protesters in Gaza. In breaking the months-long cease-fire that Hamas had agreed to this summer, this invasion collectively punished innocent people in the name of Israeli security.

"Promoters of Zionism tout its democracy, which offers legal protection to all. There exists, however, a gap between theory and practice that has bred racial apartheid within Israeli society and between Israel and its occupied populations in Palestine. In a state that asserts the dominance of one religious persuasion, democracy cannot really flourish. By failing to protect a plurality of ethnic and religious groups, the Israeli government exposes non-Jewish populations to persecution in a variety of ways.

"Israeli political leaders like Avigdor Lieberman, who was recently promoted deputy prime minister, explicitly support the ethnic cleansing of Arab populations as a way of preserving the Jewish majority in Israel.

"Immigration law under the Israeli democracy is another site of exclusion. Israel's "Law of Return" offers citizenship to anyone of the Jewish faith from anywhere in the world, yet Palestinian refugees are denied the right to return to their homes and become citizens. These refugees are numbered in the millions and were displaced from their homes at various points during the last 60 years.

"In 1948, Israeli independence came in conjunction with the forced removal of 750,000 Palestinians from their land. Through the years, Israel has conquered and occupied more Palestinian land by war, a violation of the United Nations Charter. During these wars, millions more were displaced from their homes in Israel/Palestine. Despite UN Resolution 194, Israel refuses to grant refugees the right to return home because this would threaten the demographic majority in Israel. In its obsession with maintaining this majority, Israeli policy has led to the removal and marginalization of another people and culture, instead of upholding the values of inclusion and equality that democracies promise to foster.

"Arabs living in Israel as citizens compose the lowest socioeconomic classes. They cannot purchase land owned by the Jewish National Fund, an organization that administers a large proportion of Israel's land and only sells real estate to its Jewish citizens.

"In occupied Palestine, Israeli military rule does not even pretend to uphold democratic values. Nor does it adhere to the Fourth Geneva Convention, which bars the settlement of Israelis on land that is under Israeli military occupation. Not only did Israel transplant 12,000 new settlers into the West Bank after its formal withdrawal from Gaza in 2005, but it also maintained a military siege on the strip, controlling the flow of people and goods in and out and violating Palestinian airspace and ports.

"In the name of security, Israel has laid waste to the Palestinian economy and turned Gaza into an open-air prison. To enforce an illegal settlement project in the territories, the Israeli military implements policies that degrade their democratic ideal further, as witnessed by the tragedy in Beit Hanoun weeks ago.

"Israelis and Palestinians are using peaceful resistance against Israeli policy. Hundreds of Palestinians assembled at a Gazan home, forcing the Israeli military to call off its planned air attack. In defiance of their government's occupation, Israeli activists seized control of tanks at a Gaza border crossing. This cross-national struggle desires a peace that only justice can nourish. The end of Israeli occupation and an overhaul of Israel's exclusionary state are prerequisites to a just solution.

"The UN General Assembly recently condemned the attacks in Gaza, but the United States vetoed a similar resolution in the Security Council, thus exerting American power to excuse its ally's atrocities. But massive American military aid also facilitates Israeli crimes.

"Our university is complicit too through its investments in arms companies that provide Israel its arsenal. Divesting from these companies would allow our campus to invest in just outcomes rooted in equality and lasting security for Israelis and Palestinians."

"-- Shimaa Abdelfadeel is an LSA senior and a co-chair of Students Allied for Freedom and Equality."

On the Web at:

# posted by Stop Crucifying Palestine @ 7:58 AM

Excerpt: Carter's 'Palestine Peace Not Apartheid'

Former President Shares His Plan for Middle East Peace in New Book

Nov. 27, 2006 — - Former president and Nobel Peace Prize winner Jimmy Carter was able to negotiate peace between Israel and Egypt, and has continued to remain in touch with all the key players in the Middle East since leaving the White House.

In his new book, "Palestine Peace Not Apartheid," Carter writes about the history of the Middle East and shares what he believes is the key to peace between Israel and the Palestinians.

Visit the Simon & Schuster Web site for more information about the book.

Chapter 17


Since the Israeli-Egyptian peace treaty was signed in 1979, much blood has been shed unnecessarily and repeated efforts for a negotiated peace between Israel and her neighbors have failed. Despite its criticism from some Arab sources, this treaty stands as proof that diplomacy can bring lasting peace between ancient adversaries. Although disparities among them are often emphasized, the 1974 Israeli-Syrian withdrawal agreement, the 1978 Camp David Accords, the Reagan statement of 1982, the 1993 Oslo Agreement, the treaty between Israel and Jordan in 1994, the Arab peace proposal of 2002, the 2003 Geneva Initiative, and the International Quartet's Roadmap all contain key common elements that can be consolidated if pursued in good faith.

There are two interrelated obstacles to permanent peace in the Middle East:

1. Some Israelis believe they have the right to confiscate and colonize Palestinian land and try to justify the sustained subjugation and persecution of increasingly hopeless and aggravated Palestinians; and

2. Some Palestinians react by honoring suicide bombers as martyrs to be rewarded in heaven and consider the killing of Israelis as victories.

In turn, Israel responds with retribution and oppression, and militant Palestinians refuse to recognize the legitimacy of Israel and vow to destroy the nation. The cycle of distrust and violence is sustained, and efforts for peace are frustrated. Casualties have been high as the occupying forces impose ever tighter controls. From September 2000 until March 2006, 3,982 Palestinians and 1,084 Israelis were killed in the second intifada, and these numbers include many children: 708 Palestinians and 123 Israelis. As indicated earlier, there was an ever-rising toll of dead and wounded from the latest outbreak of violence in Gaza and Lebanon.

The only rational response to this continuing tragedy is to revitalize the peace process through negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians, but the United States has, in effect, abandoned this effort. It may be that one of the periodic escalations in violence will lead to strong influence being exerted from the International Quartet to implement its Roadmap for Peace. These are the key requirements:

a. The security of Israel must be guaranteed. The Arabs must acknowledge openly and specifically that Israel is a reality and has a right to exist in peace, behind secure and recognized borders, and with a firm Arab pledge to terminate any further acts of violence against the legally constituted nation of Israel.

b. The internal debate within Israel must be resolved in order to define Israel's permanent legal boundary. The unwavering official policy of the United States since Israel became a state has been that its borders must coincide with those prevailing from 1949 until 1967 (unless modified by mutually agreeable land swaps), specified in the unanimously adopted U.N. Resolution 242, which mandates Israel's withdrawal from occupied territories. This obligation was reconfirmed by Israel's leaders in agreements negotiated in 1978 at Camp David and in 1993 at Oslo, for which they received the Nobel Peace Prize, and both of these commitments were officially ratified by the Israeli government. Also, as a member of the International Quartet that includes Russia, the United Nations, and the European Union, America supports the Roadmap for Peace, which espouses exactly the same requirements. Palestinian leaders unequivocally accepted this proposal, but Israel has officially rejected its key provisions with unacceptable caveats and prerequisites.

Despite these recent developments, it is encouraging that Israel has made previous commitments to peace as confirmed by the Camp David Accords, the withdrawal of its forces from the Sinai, the more recent movement of settlers from Gaza, and its official endorsement of pertinent U.N. resolutions establishing its legal borders. After the Six-Day War in 1967, Israeli military forces occupied all of the territory indicated on Map 4, but joined the United States and other nations in supporting United Nations Resolution 242, which is still the binding law that condemns the acquisition of land by force and requires Israeli withdrawal from occupied territories.

c. The sovereignty of all Middle East nations and sanctity of international borders must be honored. There is little doubt that accommodation with Palestinians can bring full Arab recognition of Israel and its right to live in peace, with an Arab commitment to restrain further violence initiated by extremist Palestinians.

The overriding problem is that, for more than a quarter century, the actions of some Israeli leaders have been in direct conflict with the official policies of the United States, the international community, and their own negotiated agreements. Regardless of whether Palestinians had no formalized government, one headed by Yasir Arafat or Mahmoud Abbas, or one with Abbas as president and Hamas controlling the parliament and cabinet, Israel's continued control and colonization of Palestinian land have been the primary obstacles to a comprehensive peace agreement in the Holy Land. In order to perpetuate the occupation, Israeli forces have deprived their unwilling subjects of basic human rights. No objective person could personally observe existing conditions in the West Bank and dispute these statements.

Two other interrelated factors have contributed to the perpetuation of violence and regional upheaval: the condoning of illegal Israeli actions from a submissive White House and U.S. Congress during recent years, and the deference with which other international leaders permit this unofficial U.S. policy in the Middle East to prevail. There are constant and vehement political and media debates in Israel concerning its policies in the West Bank, but because of powerful political, economic, and religious forces in the United States, Israeli government decisions are rarely questioned or condemned, voices from Jerusalem dominate in our media, and most American citizens are unaware of circumstances in the occupied territories. At the same time, political leaders and news media in Europe are highly critical of Israeli policies, affecting public attitudes. Americans were surprised and angered by an opinion poll, published by the International Herald Tribune in October 2003, of 7,500 citizens in fifteen European nations, indicating that Israel was considered to be the top threat to world peace, ahead of North Korea, Iran, or Afghanistan.

The United States has used its U.N. Security Council veto more than forty times to block resolutions critical of Israel. Some of these vetoes have brought international discredit on the United States, and there is little doubt that the lack of a persistent effort to resolve the Palestinian issue is a major source of anti-American sentiment and terrorist activity throughout the Middle East and the Islamic world.

A new factor in the region is that the Palestinian election of January 2006 gave Hamas members control of the parliament and a cabinet headed by the prime minister. Israel and the United States reacted by announcing a policy of isolating and destabilizing the new government. Elected officials are denied travel permits to participate in parliamentary affairs, Gaza is effectively isolated, and every effort is made to block humanitarian funds to Palestinians, to prevent their right to employment or commercial trade, and to deny them access to Israel and the outside world.

In order to achieve its goals, Israel has decided to avoid any peace negotiations and to escape even the mild restraints of the United States by taking unilateral action, called "convergence" or "realignment," to carve out for itself the choice portions of the West Bank, leaving Palestinians destitute within a small and fragmented remnant of their own land. The holding of almost 10,000 Arab prisoners and the destructive military response to the capture of three Israeli soldiers have aroused global concern about the hair-trigger possibility of a regional war being launched.

Despite these immediate challenges, we must not assume that the future is hopeless. Down through the years I have seen despair and frustration evolve into optimism and progress and, even now, we must not abandon efforts to achieve permanent peace for Israelis and freedom and justice for Palestinians. There are some positive factors on which we may rely.

As I said in a 1979 speech to the Israeli Knesset, "The people support a settlement. Political leaders are the obstacles to peace." Over the years, public opinion surveys have consistently shown that a majority of Israelis favor withdrawing from Palestinian territory in exchange for peace ("swapping land for peace"), and recent polls show that 80 percent of Palestinians still want a two-state peace agreement with Israel, with nearly 70 percent supporting the moderate Mahmoud Abbas as their president and spokesman.

There have been some other encouraging developments over the years. Along with the awareness among most Israelis that a solution to the Palestinian question is critical if there is ever to be a comprehensive settlement, there is a growing recognition in the Arab world that Israel is an unchanging reality. Most Palestinians and other Arabs maintain that the proposal made by Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah, a proposal approved at the Arab summit in 2002 (Appendix 6), is a public acknowledgment of Israel's right to exist within its legal borders and shows willingness to work out disputes that have so far not been addressed directly. The Delphic wording of this statement was deliberate, in Arabic as well as in Hebrew and English, but the Arabs defend it by saying it is there to be explored by the Israelis and others and that, in any case, it is a more positive and clear commitment to international law than anything now coming from Israel.

Furthermore, the remaining differences and their potential resolution are clearly defined. Both Israel and the Arab countries have endorsed the crucial and unavoidable U.N. Resolutions 242 and 338, under which peace agreements have already been evolved.

Here are two voices, one Palestinian and the other Israeli, with remarkably similar assessments of what needs to be done.

Jonathan Kuttab, Palestinian human rights lawyer: "Everybody knows what it will take to achieve a permanent and lasting peace that addresses the basic interests of both sides: It's a two-state solution. It's withdrawal to 1967 borders. It's dismantlement of the settlements. It's some kind of shared status for a united Jerusalem, the capital of both parties. The West Bank and Gaza would have to be demilitarized to remove any security threats to Israel. Some kind of solution would have to be reached for the refugee problem, some qualified right of return, with compensation. Everyone knows the solution; the question is: Is there political will to implement it?"

Dr. Naomi Chazan, professor at Hebrew University and former deputy speaker of the Israeli Knesset: "I don't think any difference now remains between the majority of Israelis and Palestinians in understanding that there has to be some kind of accommodation between both people. There are two possibilities on how to do it. To acknowledge and then to implement the Palestine right to self-determination, and to make sure that the two-state solution is a just and fair solution, allowing for the creation of a viable state alongside Israel on the 1967 boundaries, and if there are any changes, they are by agreement on a swap basis. And on the Israeli side, there is the need to maintain a democratic state with a Jewish majority, which can only be achieved through the creation of a Palestinian state alongside Israel."

An important fact to remember is that President Mahmoud Abbas retains all presidential authority that was exercised by Yasir Arafat when he negotiated the Oslo Agreement, and the Hamas prime minister has stated that his government supports peace talks between Israel and Abbas. He added that Hamas would modify its rejection of Israel if there is a negotiated agreement that Palestinians can approve (as specified in the Camp David Accords). It is imperative that the general Arab community and all significant Palestinian groups make it clear that they will end the suicide bombings and other acts of terrorism when international laws and the ultimate goals of the Roadmap for Peace are accepted by Israel.

One promising development came in May 2006 when Marwan Barghouti, the most popular and influential leader of Fatah, joined forces in an Israeli prison with Abed al-Halak Natashe, a trusted spokesman for Hamas, in endorsing a two-state proposal that could unite the two Palestinian factions. Their influence is enormous. The prisoners' proposal called for a unity government with Hamas joining the PLO, the release of all political prisoners, acceptance of Israel as a neighbor within its legal borders, and an end to violent acts within Israel (but not in Palestinian territory). It endorsed the key U.N. resolutions regarding legal borders and the right of return.

With public opinion polls indicating a 77 percent rate of approval, President Abbas first proposed a referendum among Palestinians on the prisoners' proposal, and then both Hamas and Fatah accepted its provisions.

Although a clear majority of Israelis are persistently willing to accept terms that are tolerable to most of their Arab neighbors, it is clear that none of the options is attractive for all Israelis:

A forcible annexation of Palestine and its legal absorption into Israel, which could give large numbers of non-Jewish citizens the right to vote and live as equals under the law. This would directly violate international standards and the Camp David Accords, which are the basis for peace with Egypt. At the same time, non-Jewish citizens would make up a powerful swing vote if other Israelis were divided and would ultimately constitute an outright majority in the new Greater Israel. Israel would be further isolated and condemned by the international community, with no remaining chance to end hostilities with any appreciable part of the Arab world.

A system of apartheid, with two peoples occupying the same land but completely separated from each other, with Israelis totally dominant and suppressing violence by depriving Palestinians of their basic human rights. This is the policy now being followed, although many citizens of Israel deride the racist connotation of prescribing permanent second-class status for the Palestinians. As one prominent Israeli stated, "I am afraid that we are moving toward a government like that of South Africa, with a dual society of Jewish rulers and Arab subjects with few rights of citizenship. The West Bank is not worth it." An unacceptable modification of this choice, now being proposed, is the taking of substantial portions of the occupied territory, with the remaining Palestinians completely surrounded by walls, fences, and Israeli checkpoints, living as prisoners within the small portion of land left to them.

Withdrawal to the 1967 border as specified in U.N. Resolution 242 and as promised in the Camp David Accords and the Oslo Agreement and prescribed in the Roadmap of the International Quartet. This is the most attractive option and the only one that can ultimately be acceptable as a basis for peace. Good-faith negotiations can lead to mutually agreeable exchanges of land, perhaps permitting a significant number of Israeli settlers to remain in their present homes near Jerusalem. One version of this choice was spelled out in the Geneva Initiative.

The bottom line is this: Peace will come to Israel and the Middle East only when the Israeli government is willing to comply with international law, with the Roadmap for Peace, with official American policy, with the wishes of a majority of its own citizens?and honor its own previous commitments?by accepting its legal borders. All Arab neighbors must pledge to honor Israel's right to live in peace under these conditions. The United States is squandering international prestige and goodwill and intensifying global anti-American terrorism by unofficially condoning or abetting the Israeli confiscation and colonization of Palestinian territories.

It will be a tragedy -- for the Israelis, the Palestinians, and the world -- if peace is rejected and a system of oppression, apartheid, and sustained violence is permitted to prevail.

Excerpt published with permission of Simon & Schuster, Inc. Copyright © 2006 Jimmy Carter.

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