In August, 2015, 57 brand new members of the U.S. House of Representatives bowed their heads and promised to obey their Israeli overlords. They allowed themselves to be taken to Israel, plied with good food and propaganda. They then returned home to do Israel’s bidding in the Congressional seats that Israel helped them win. Sixty were invited, but only three decided not to go, for unknown reasons.
But isn’t there a more innocent explanation? Perhaps they just wanted to learn more about the issue and would equally have accepted an invitation to visit Palestine and see it from a Palestinian point of view. Nothing wrong with giving equal opportunity to both sides.
The Free Palestine Movement tested this theory and found it wanting. We sent a personalized invitation to exactly the same members of Congress to come to Palestine at our expense. Not a single one accepted. Although we sent a followup to those who did not respond the first time, the vast majority never responded at all. A few said that they could not make time in their schedule, not even when we suggested that they could wait as long as their next term. Only one, Brad Ashford of Nebraska, said that he was working with some of his constituents to visit Palestine. (We have been able to find no evidence of such an initiative.)
Israel, through its US Lobby, has of course been doing this for more than half a century. There are hardly any members of Congress that have not accepted an invitation at least one time during their career, often more. Can you name any other country with such a devoted following in the U.S. Congress?
The reason, of course, is that the Israel Lobby has a reputation of making or breaking congressional careers, and that members of Congress are x-rayed to assure that they possess no detectable spine before they take office. There is more pushback from some Israeli newspapers than from the US Congress.
And why not? There has never been any price to pay for obeying Israel. In fact, candidates compete to do favors for Israel and to get donations managed by Israel’s Lobby, with little or no consideration of how much they are robbing their constituents.
But this time it’s different. We may not be able to persuade members of Congress to look at both sides of the Israel question, nor to ask why US taxpayer money is supporting an Israeli ethnic cleansing campaign against Palestinians, nor why our roads are not paved nor our bridges repaired nor our children educated. But we can show the depravity of our elected officials. We can demonstrate their hypocrisy and their bias and dishonest treatment of US foreign policy, which results in war, death and destruction for all but the tiny number of super-wealthy profiteers whose hands are covered in blood.
That’s why the Free Palestine Movement is running the ad below on the sides of buses in San Francisco. It is why we are making the same ad available at cost as a 3″ x 9″ sticker to anyone who wants to use it. It’s why we’re ready to share the cost of a display ad on buses or anywhere else with any group that wants to run the ad anywhere in the US, for as long as our funds last.
It is only a start, but we can begin to hold our elected officials accountable. We can make them begin to pay a price for selling out both the American and the Palestinian people to Israel.
1pm-5pm: March to the Washington, D.C. Convention Center
Al-Awda, The Palestinian Right to Return Coalition and the ANSWER Coalition are co-sponsoring the National March to Support Palestine and Protest AIPAC. We are expecting hundreds of organizations and individual leaders to endorse this activity and join the effort!
12 Noon: Assemble at the White House
1pm-5pm: March to the Washington, D.C. Convention Center
On March 20, 2016 we aren’t just protesting AIPAC but we are being direct about supporting Palestine hence the theme! We are asking people from all over The United States of America to come support justice for Palestine by standing against AIPAC which will be convening in DC on this day! We cannot continue to let AIPAC (which advocates for an illegal foreign entity not on US soil) dicatate our American foreign policy.
SUPPORT PALESTINE! PROTEST AIPAC! #SupportPalestineInDC2016
Please support our work in making this national rally the great success it deserves! Thank you! Please click on this link to donate: https://www.gofundme.com/
Nov 21, 2015, Haaretz
According to a report issued by the Institute for Science and International Security, Israel has amassed between 400 to 915 Kg of fissile material since 1963.
Israel produced 660 Kg of plutonium in its nuclear reactor in Dimona, and used it to make 115 nuclear warheads, which it holds in its arsenal today, a study by the Washington D.C.-based Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS) published Friday alleges.
The institute, headed by David Albright, aims at professional analysis and doesn’t take an anti-Israeli stance. The report on Israel’s nuclear program is a chapter in a series on the civil and military programs of nuclear nations.
According to the institute’s researchers, since starting to produce plutonium in its Dimona reactor, in December 1963, Israel has amassed between 400 to 915 Kg of fissile material, with a median of 660 Kg. According to Albright, the assessment is relatively conservative, since in the 1990s one of the former heads of the Israel Atomic Energy Commission told him that plutonium was “harder to produce than many think.”
In addition to weapons designed to be dropped from aircraft, according to the report, Israel also holds surface-to-surface and submarine-launched nuclear cruise missiles, each with a warhead of 3 to 5 Kg of plutonium. The total output could be used to make 90 to 290 warheads, with a median of 115.
Other research institutes have put forward other estimates, mostly ranging from 80 to 200 nuclear warheads.
Nov 8, 2015, Truth NGO
In the following interview with Prof. Rancourt, we discussed the American Enterprise Institute’s nomination of Benjamin Netanyahu as the recipient of Irving Kristol Award 2015, the nuances of US-Israel relations and the global image of Israel at a time when its settlement policies and failed peace talks with Palestine are being seriously debated in the public and by the media.
Q: The American Enterprise Institute has announced that it would present the Irving Kristol Award 2015 to the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for his contributions to democratic leadership, human rights and the strengthening of U.S.-Israeli relations. What’s your feeling about this award? Why is it being awarded to Mr. Netanyahu at a time when his settlement construction policies are being widely excoriated and the chances for a solution to the conflict with Palestine are growing dimmer? In reaction to the announcement, Benjamin Netanyahu talked of the special relationship between Israel and the United States and said this relationship needs to be bolstered so that the two countries can address the common challenges they face together. Why are the U.S.-Israeli relations so “special”?
A: Israel is the USA’s main strongman in the Middle East. It has “boots on the ground”, a highly developed intelligence network, military preparedness, an ideologically uniform and committed population, and coercive influence on nations in the region. Israel is the USA’s main ally asset in this region that has a controlling share of world oil production capacity, and oil is the most important strategic and economic commodity. In addition, if the US can force oil to be purchased in US dollars, then this secures the US dollar’s preeminence as a global currency.
But Israel is much more than an asset. The USA ruling elite has, over many decades, allowed a symbiotic relationship between the political classes of the two countries to develop, which is mediated by what has been broadly termed the “Israel lobby”, which, in turn, is financed as part of the ruling and economic structure of the whole.
These two elements [that is] Israel’s enforcement role for US dominance in the Middle East, backed by a nuclear arsenal, and the symbiotic system of financed political influences between the two countries, constitute the “special” and “warm” relations that we are told about ad nauseam to generate public acceptance of the non-democratic and criminal arrangement; criminal because it enables war, occupation, and genocide.
This is the context in which we can interpret the American Enterprise Institute 2015 award to Netanyahu. The prize and its timing are part of the on-going mediation and communication of interests between the ruling elites of the two nations, in such a way as to best advantage and protect the mega-interests that fund the influential think-tank that is AEI.
I don’t mean that each national “ruling elite” is homogeneous and without internal battles, but on the global scale, the main competing and interconnected blocks agree on the overarching plan that the USA, with the aligned satellite countries, should dominate the globe completely, that only the US dollar – which the US prints at will – should prevail, that only US corporations should control the most lucrative extraction schemes in the real economy, and that all governments must be subservient. In this system, the “internal battles” are of a lower order and relate to which corporate alliance, including finance corporations, will make the most money, which strategy of dominance will most benefit a preferred corporate alliance, and which strategy of dominance and geopolitical tactics are ideologically preferred to ensure sustained and increasing dominance.
Thus, when Netanyahu has a “falling out” with Obama, this is representative of a cleavage between their strategy preferences for managing dominance of the Middle East, and this cleavage will also generally exist between the Republican and Democrat blocks, or else Netanyahu would not pursue it. Such a cleavage cannot be allowed to harm the overarching project of regional and world dominance, which is the prerequisite for staggering US multi-national corporate profits. Therefore, efforts must be made to repair the “falling out” and to mediate a solution.
The AEI award is part of this mechanism of repair and mediation. The award is also a way for the AEI to increase and maintain its own status, to remain relevant and influential.
The next question is: What are the matters of disagreement regarding management of the Middle East? Palestine is certainly one matter, as you suggest.
Basically, Israel has a determined policy to annex all of the occupied territories and to deprive Palestinians of nationhood. It achieves this in reality on the ground by combining land theft, settlements, home demolitions, forced exodus, etc. and confinement, constant police and administrative harassment, mass imprisonment, apartheid, and genocidal sanctions and slaughters in Gaza.
The USA allows Israel to have its genocide, as a compromise in exchange for the role Israel plays in US world domination, especially against independent-minded nations in the Middle East.
The entire Israeli geo-psyche is anchored in the paradigm of a constant and unavoidable “terrorist threat”. Netanyahu himself is a significant promoter of this paradigm, as one can see from the titles of books he has edited or authored, [including] International Terrorism: Challenge and Response, edited in 1981, Terrorism: How the West Can Win, edited in 1987, and Fighting Terrorism: How Democracies Can Defeat Domestic and International Terrorism authored in 1995. Netanyahu has succeeded in convincing the USA to adopt this view, at least as a media cover for a devastating string of wars of aggression intended to re-model the Middle East – Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, now Syria and Yemen, with strong intentions regarding Iran and southern Lebanon.
Within this national paradigm of constant existential threat, Israel is in-all-appearance committed to effectively exterminating the Palestinians, with the main goals of stealing the land and ensuring that no viable Palestinian state or influential political formation can ever see the day, using the “terrorism” of children with rocks, desperate youth with kitchen knives, and domestic rockets, as justifications for mass slaughters and murderous military repression.
But Palestine is a problem for the nuclear regional superpower that is Israel, and Palestine has become a source of cleavage between the USA and Israel. The problem is that no empire can sustainably rule and exploit by the threat of force alone. In the age of distributed instant journalism, and thanks to the remarkable Palestinian resistance organized throughout Palestinian society, the peoples of the world have become thoroughly disgusted and outraged at Israeli massacres in Gaza, which are condoned by the USA. This popular outrage has organized itself and has achieved significant political leverage in the UK, France, Germany, etc., and to some degree even in the USA and Canada.
The world is disgusted at the military ethos of Israel, and, increasingly viewing Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya at the now too apparent military ethos of the USA. As such, the USA, under Obama, has come to understand that another Israeli massacre in Gaza could strike a serious blow to the Empire’s image, and that a war with Iran could be intolerable for Europe. These are the considerations that bring Obama to want to de-escalate, but Israel experiences de-escalation as an existential threat, thus, there are presently unavoidable tensions.
Q: Prime Minister Netanyahu is being lauded by the conservative think-tank AEI for his role in cementing the ties between Israel and the United States. However, he has had bitter confrontations with President Obama over the settlements constructions and the Iran deal, which President Obama considers his most significant foreign policy legacy, and now even the Israeli media are talking of the need for an Obama-Netanyahu rapprochement. Do you think that Netanyahu has really been successful in bringing the United States and Israel closer together?
A: Well, Netanyahu has “cemented the ties between Israel and the USA” in all the usual ways, such as co-supporting Daesh (ISIS) against Syria, as a US target for destruction, providing intelligence, providing propaganda support to attack Iran, and killing Palestine in the hope of permanent eradication. These are blood ties nourished by vast expenditures.
The Iran deal is a needed effort to de-escalate the US aggressions of sanctions and of constant and irrational threat of war. The deal was needed in order to create a barrier to prevent Israel from performing rogue airstrikes against infrastructure in Iran. The Iran deal is a huge setback for Israeli militarism. Israel sees the deal as a massive strategic error that threatens its identity as the regional bully, when it comes to nations that cannot be bought or coerced.
Thus, Iran is a major source of tension, at this time, between Israel and the USA. But the question is not so much whether Netanyahu has created the tension. The tension was the result of a dramatic shift in US foreign policy in the region, a shift that is pragmatic, in view of dominance of the entire world, whereas Israel’s ambitions are regional. The shift was away from military confrontation with Iran, and away from Israeli rogue military actions, in order to preserve an appearance of legitimacy as “leader of the free world”.
This shift was due to several factors related to real forces on the ground, in the context of the world’s reaction to Israel’s slaughters in Gaza. The first factor is the resolve and integrity of Iran itself, which is a model of national self-determination and strength of character, and which also has hardened military experience and vast resources and regional influence. Another factor is the valiant war of self-defense waged by Syria, aided by Iran, in which the Syrian people, government and army defended the territory for many years, forcing the USA and its blood-thirsty allies to create a growing monster that repelled the world.
As always, the military battles on the ground, just like the present Russian involvement in Syria, are the main determinants of adjustments in the US foreign policy of dominance, rather than personality differences with leaders such as Netanyahu.
Q: During his upcoming visit to Washington D.C., Benjamin Netanyahu will also meet the experts and fellows at the Center for American Progress, a left-leaning advocacy and research organization that falls on the extreme end of the political spectrum as opposed to the American Enterprise Institute, a neo-conservative group which backs Israel’s policies unreservedly. Is he trying to appeal to the Democratic Party and the American liberals and improve his status in their eyes?
A: The shift in US foreign policy of world dominance that has led to the Iran deal is significant, which suggests that the shift is not a mere Democrat policy preference but rather an actual US-regime decision. The decision appears to be to move away from Israel as the sole nexus of Middle East policy, towards a multi-polar approach. For that reason, Netanyahu’s efforts cannot be limited to the Republican block.
Netanyahu will use the occasion of this award to continue selling his vision of military might as the only agent of sustainable advancement for a USA-Israel partnership of dominance in the Middle East, to extract military “aid” increases to compensate for his perceived loss of security, and to continue testing the strength of his Israel lobby in America. He is understandably concerned and must make it a priority to salvage the relationship and secure the most profitable role for Israel.
In a sense, this catastrophe for the Israeli regime is partly of Netanyahu’s making because he is responsible for his mass slaughter campaigns in Gaza, which significantly mobilized anti-Israel sentiment across the world, including among strongly allied nations of the USA, which could decide to have more foreign policy independence on select issues, such as not supporting USA war campaigns, US sanction campaigns, and US-led economic exchange deals that are meant to exclude global rivals.
The US needs its allies to align with its campaigns because it wants to vigorously oppose the economic emergence of the BRICS association [made of] Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. BRICS is poised to leave the US Empire’s economy behind and to eventually abandon the US dollar as its trading currency. BRICS will attempt to play following market forces, whereas the US is habituated both to global control and to an irrelevant debt, since it prints the money.
At this stage, it is difficult to see how the US-Israel partnership will be impacted by Russia’s now-demonstrated willingness to militarily assist its allies and to defend against the threats that US carnage has created. No doubt Netanyahu is promoting Israel’s battle readiness as a needed shield or intervention capacity in what he will project as a grim future.
Q: In 1973, the godfather of neo-conservatism, Irving Kristol, the award which Benjamin Netanyahu will receive is named after him, said the people of Israel wouldn’t be happy with a cut in the U.S. military budget proposed by Senator George McGovern, who was running for the 1972 presidential election. Why should the people of Israel oppose the reduction of U.S. military budget? What Israeli interests could be at stake when the U.S. moves toward demilitarizing its expenditures and investing more capital on the social security of its people?
A: I don’t think the USA will “demilitarize”, in the sense of shifting its foreign policy away from military intimidation as its main instrument and towards economic competition and distributed development, until it is forced to do so by global reality. The USA will certainly never voluntarily “demilitarize” in order to improve the living conditions of its working and non-working class citizens. It is not a simple trade-off. The US prints the global currency at will, and uses loans of this fabricated currency to extort real labor and material resources from its areas of exploitation. It enforces this racket with its military and covert operations and ensures that its corporations make disproportionate profits. The US has over 1,000 major military bases around the globe. Therefore, unlike in other countries, the US does not need to balance a budget. It only needs to dominate. The treatment of US citizens by the US regime is an ideological choice. The regime prefers to fund a massive prison system and paramilitary police rather than create equitable opportunities.
Israel is not about to dismantle its apartheid system. Likewise, the USA is not about to dismantle its economic apartheid within its national borders. The US maintains its apartheid by, among other mechanisms, approximately 1,000 murders of unarmed US citizens – virtually all black citizens – by police officers per year. Israel, by comparison, has a policy beyond solely maintaining apartheid, beyond containment, towards intimidation to abandon territory, and towards complete suppression of Palestinian freedoms. Consequently, the yearly rate of murder of unarmed Palestinians, including children, by Israeli military and police, on a population basis, is typically fifty to one hundred times greater than the rate per capita of US murders of unarmed civilians by police. These numbers do not count the injuries and early deaths from the horrendous conditions of occupation, in both countries. Thus, there is indeed a “special relationship”, an “unbreakable bond”, and a “mutual admiration” between the US and Israel. And Netanyahu is certainly one of the eminent creators of that bond.
Q: There are intellectuals and academicians as Stephen Walt and John Mearsheimer who have elaborately documented the influence of a powerful Israeli lobby in the United States, which significantly sways the U.S. politics, including the decision-making of the Congress and the foreign agenda of the administration, as well as the media and entertainment industry. There are pundits like Walter Russell Mead, however, who reject such a notion basically and call the Israeli lobby a “myth”. What’s your viewpoint on these two different convictions?
A: It is beyond doubt that Walt and Mearsheimer have described a real political structure. The Israel lobby is as real as any major institution in the USA. It is well organized into an intricate hierarchy, and it is exceedingly well funded, more than the traditional think-tanks. The lobby has been allowed to flourish because it provides large political campaign funds, while helping to create public acceptance of the US Empire’s actions via Israel in the Middle East.
At this stage, from the perspective of those actually running the Empire, the lobby’s influence probably needs to be reined in because Israel’s hunger for genocide and desire for regional control is somewhat counter to the broader interests of the US regime.
Another feature of the Israel lobby is that it achieves public “acceptance” of the Israel-US dominance projects by outright intimidation of academics and intellectuals in all the professions, which is contrary to the purported values of “the freest country in the world”. The firings of university professors and media professionals have become routine, as has the blacklisting of entertainment industry workers.
Likewise, there is a disturbing trend, organized and spurred by Netanyahu, to criminalize criticism of Israel in all the allied states, such as France, Canada, etc. The US-led Israel lobby is multi-national. Here, in Canada, technically the government could criminally prosecute me for “hate speech” against the state of Israel for writing this very article, using a newly amended provision of the Criminal Code of Canada. For this alone, and many other such achievements, Netanyahu amply deserves the AEI 2015 Award.
But there is backlash and a societal price to pay, and the days of being suppressed by the Israel lobby may come to an end if the US regime decides to give Israel a lesser role. Disallowing the intelligentsia and political activists of a nation from being critical of the nation’s foreign policy investments is a recipe for disaster, a disaster that for now mostly Palestine, Libya, Syria and other nations have suffered.
By Kourosh Ziabari
Nov 9, 5:00pm – 8:00pm
401 F St NW, Washington, District of Columbia 20001
Rally Against Netanyahu Visit & $45 Billions Arms Giveaway to Israel
Please join DC’s pro-Palestinian Community to protest Israel’s denial of Palestinian rights and to tell the US government NOT to give Israel more weapons at taxpayers’ expense. We will be protesting outside an American Enterprise Institute event at which Netanyahu will be given an award–something he most definitely does not deserve.
Nov 7, 2015, IMEMC
The Israeli government has made an initial request for its annual U.S. defense package to increase by as much as $5 billion when its current aid package, worth an average $3 billion a year, expires in 2017, U.S. congressional sources said, this last Wednesday.
PNN reports that, according to Reuters, Israel wants $5 billion per year in military aid for 10 years, for a total of $50 billion. The US congress spokesman stated that Israel has been signalling that it wants more money to “counter threats it says will arise as a result of the international agreement on Iran’s nuclear program, which Israel’s government has staunchly opposed”.
Among its request, the Israeli government is asking for: squadrons of F-15 stealth fighter jets beyond the F-35 squadrons the Americans have already promised, V-22 Osprey aircraft-helicopter, helicopters, refueling aircraft, precision weapons and a large amount of Arrow 3 missiles designed to intercept ballistic missiles outside the atmosphere as an additional layer of protection to the Arrow 2, according to the Israeli media outlet Ynet.
“Israel argues that Tehran’s financial windfall from sanctions relief will allow it to increase backing for proxies that are hostile to Israel in Syria, Lebanon, the Palestinian territories and elsewhere – a fear Washington says is exaggerated”, as stated by Reuters.
However, the new aid deal has not been finished yet. Congressional and other U.S. officials said that they are in the very beginning of analyzing the proposal. “First they have to negotiate with the White House,” one senior congressional aide said of Israel. The Israeli prime minister is going to the United States for a visit, this next week, where the aid topic is likely to be on the top of the discussion matters.
Nov 7, 2015, IMEMC
A sold-out Western Region Gala event at the Beverly Hilton Hotel was attended by American and Israeli guests, this last Friday night.
Among the present guests were: actors Jason Alexander, Antonio Banderas, Liev Schreiber, Jason Segel and Mark Wahlberg, as well as KISS bassist, Israeli-born Gene Simmons.
“For the past nine years I have watched this gala grow into the preeminent charity event it is today, and I am truly humbled by the funds raised yesterday, which are a testament to the importance of the FIDF organization and its mission. The overwhelming support from the Los Angeles community continues to amaze me,” said entertainment mogul Haim Saban, a national board member of FIDF (Friends of the Israeli Defense Forces).
According to Israeli media, the event focused on the “lone soldiers, who leave their families and native countries behind to serve in the army, and included testimonies from the mothers of fallen soldiers.” Apparently, it also featured a presentation from a US veteran on the impact of Israeli medical technology on the lives of Americans….
Nov 5, 2015, IMEMC
The shooting of a Palestinian youth in Hebron Wednesday by Israeli soldiers brought the number of Palestinians slain since October 1st to 75.
57 have been killed in the West Bank, 17 in the Gaza Strip, and one in the Negev. More than 20% of those killed have been children.
The Ministry of Health said earlier this week that 2355 Palestinians were shot with live rounds and rubber-coated steel bullets, including many who suffered fractures and bruises after being repeatedly beaten by soldiers and paramilitary settlers in the West Bank, including occupied Jerusalem.
The Ministry added that 1125 of the wounded Palestinians were shot with live rounds (732 of them in the West Bank), and 975 were shot with rubber-coated steel bullets (865 in the West Bank), and more than 5000 Palestinians suffered the effects of tear gas inhalation.
235 Palestinians were injured after being assaulted and beaten by soldiers and paramilitary settlers, and 20 suffered burns due to Israeli gas bombs and concussion grenades.
In the Gaza Strip, 393 Palestinians have been shot with live army fire, 110 with rubber-coated steel bullets, and dozens suffered the effects of tear gas inhalation.
The number of wounded children in the West Bank is 325; 165 were shot with live army fire, 108 with rubber-coated steel bullets, 19 were directly shot with gas bombs, 33 were beaten by the soldiers. In Gaza, 170 children were shot, most of them with live rounds.
On Friday, October 30, a Palestinian baby suffocated to death from Israeli tear gas in Bethlehem a day after Israeli forces tore through a Bethlehem neighborhood shouting “we will gas you all to death”.
The names of those killed by the army since October 1st:
West Bank and Jerusalem:
1. Mohannad Halabi, 19, al-Biereh – Ramallah. Shot after allegedly grabbing gun and killing two Israelis. 10/3
2. Fadi Alloun, 19, Jerusalem. Israeli claim of ‘attack’ contradicted by eyewitnesses and video. 10/4
3. Amjad Hatem al-Jundi, 17, Hebron.
4. Thaer Abu Ghazala, 19, Jerusalem.
5. Abdul-Rahma Obeidallah, 11, Bethlehem.
6. Hotheifa Suleiman, 18, Tulkarem.
7. Wisam Jamal Faraj, 20, Jerusalem. Shot by an exploding bullet during protest. 10/8
8. Mohammad al-Ja’bari, 19, Hebron.
9. Ahmad Jamal Salah, 20, Jerusalem.
10. Ishaq Badran, 19, Jerusalem. Israeli claim of ‘attack’ contradicted by eyewitnesses. 10/10
11. Mohammad Said Ali, 19, Jerusalem.
12. Ibrahim Ahmad Mustafa Awad, 28, Hebron. Shot at protest by rubber-coated steel bullet in his forehead. 10/11
13. Ahmad Abdullah Sharaka, 13, Al Jalazoun Refugee camp-Ramallah.
14. Mostafa Al Khateeb, 18, Sur-Baher – Jerusalem.
15. Hassan Khalid Manassra, 15, Jerusalem.
16. Mohammad Nathmie Shamasna, 22, Qotna – Jerusalem. Allegedly grabbed gun of Israeli soldier on bus and killed two. 10/13
17. Baha’ Elian, 22, Jabal Al Mokaber-Jerusalem.
18. Mutaz Ibrahim Zawahra, 27, Bethlehem. Hit with a live bullet in the chest during a demonstration.
19. Ala’ Abu Jammal, 33, Jerusalem.
20. Bassem Bassam Sidr, 17, Hebron. Killed in Jerusalem after Israeli shoted that he ‘had a knife’ – but no knife was present.
21. Ahmad Abu Sh’aban, 23, Jerusalem.
22. Riyadh Ibraheem Dar-Yousif, 46, Al Janyia village Ramallah( Killed while harvesting olives)
23. Fadi Al-Darbi , 30, Jenin – died in Israeli detention camp.
24. Eyad Khalil Al Awawdah, Hebron.
25. Ihab Hannani, 19, Nablus.
26. Fadel al-Qawasmi, 18, Hebron. Shot by paramilitary settler, Israeli soldier caught on film planting knife near his body.
27. Mo’taz Ahmad ‘Oweisat, 16, Jerusalem. Military claimed he ‘had a knife’. 10/17
28. Bayan Abdul-Wahab al-‘Oseyli, 16, Hebron. Military claimed she ‘had a knife’, but video evidence contradicts that claim. 10/17
29. Tariq Ziad an-Natsha, 22, Hebron. 10/17
30. Omar Mohammad al-Faqeeh, 22, Qalandia. Military claimed he ‘had a knife’. 10/17
31. Mohannad al-‘Oqabi, 21, Negev. Allegedly killed soldier in bus station in Beer Sheba.
32. Hoda Mohammad Darweesh, 65, Jerusalem.
33. Hamza Mousa Al Amllah, 25, from Hebron, killed near Gush Etzion settlement.
34. Odai Hashem al-Masalma, 24, Beit ‘Awwa town near Hebron.
35. Hussam Isma’el Al Ja’bari, 18, Hebron.
36. Bashaar Nidal Al Ja’bari, 15, Hebron.
37. Hashem al-‘Azza, 54, Hebron.
38. Moa’taz Attalah Qassem, 22, Eezariyya town near Jerusalem. 10/21
39. Mahmoud Khalid Eghneimat, 20, Hebron.
40. Ahmad Mohammad Said Kamil, Jenin.
41. Dania Jihad Irshied, 17, Hebron.
42. Sa’id Mohamed Yousif Al-Atrash, 20, Hebron.
43. Raed Sakit Abed Al Raheem Thalji Jaradat, 22, Sa’er – Hebron.
44. Eyad Rouhi Ihjazi Jaradat, 19, Sa’er – Hebron.
45. Ezzeddin Nadi Sha’ban Abu Shakhdam, 17, Hebron. Shot by Israeli military after allegedly wounding soldier, then left to bleed to death.
46. Shadi Nabil Dweik, 22, Hebron. Shot by Israeli military after allegedly wounding the same soldier, then left to bleed to death.
47. Homam Adnan Sa’id, 23,Tel Rumeida, Hebron. Shot by Israeli soldiers claiming ‘he had a knife’, but eyewitnesses report seeing soldiers throwing a knife next to his dead body. 10/27
48. Islam Rafiq Obeid, 23, Tel Rumeida, Hebron. 10/28
49. Nadim Eshqeirat, 52, Jerusalem. 10/29 – Died when Israeli soldiers delayed his ambulance.
50. Mahdi Mohammad Ramadan al-Mohtasib, 23, Hebron. 10/29
51. Farouq Abdul-Qader Seder, 19, Hebron. 10/29
52. Qassem Saba’na, 20, shot on motorcycle near Zaatara checkpoint. 10/30
53. Ahmad Hamada Qneibi, 23, Jerusalem. Soldiers claimed ‘he had a knife’.
54. Ramadan Mohammad Faisal Thawabta, 8 month old baby, Bethlehem. Died of tear gas inhalation.
55. Mahmoud Talal Abdul-Karim Nazzal, 18, al-Jalama checkpoint near Jenin. Israeli troops claim ‘he had a knife’, but eyewitnesses contradict that claim. 10/31
56. Fadi Hassan al-Froukh, 27. Beit Einoun, east of Hebron. 11/1.
57. Ahmad Awad Abu ar-Rob, 16, Jenin.
58. Samir Ibrahim Skafi, 23, Hebron. Shot by Israeli soldiers after his car hit a soldier who was on the street – it is unknown if he hit the soldier intentionally or accidentally. 11/4
59. Shadi Hussam Doula, 20.
60. Ahmad Abdul-Rahman al-Harbawi, 20.
61. Abed al-Wahidi, 20.
62. Mohammad Hisham al-Roqab, 15.
63. Adnan Mousa Abu ‘Oleyyan, 22.
64. Ziad Nabil Sharaf, 20.
65. Jihad al-‘Obeid, 22.
66. Marwan Hisham Barbakh, 13.
67. Khalil Omar Othman, 15.
68. Nour Rasmie Hassan, 30. Killed along with her child in an Israeli airstrike. 10/11
69. Rahaf Yahya Hassan, two years old. Killed along with her mother in an Israeli airstrike. 10/11
70. Yahya Abdel-Qader Farahat, 23.
71. Shawqie Jamal Jaber Obeid, 37.
72. Mahmoud Hatem Hameeda, 22. Northern Gaza. 73. Ahmad al-Sarhi, 27, al-Boreij.
74. Yihya Hashem Kreira.
75. Khalil Hassan Abu Obeid, 25. Khan Younis. Died from wounds sustained in protest earlier in the week.
Non-Palestinian killed by Israeli mob:
Eritrean asylum-seeker Haftom Zarhum killed in Beer Sheva bus station by angry mob who mistook him for a Palestinian- 10/18
Names of known Israeli casualties during the same time period:
1 & 2. 10/1 – Eitam and Na’ama Henkin, both aged around 30 years old, killed in drive-by shooting near Itamar settlement.
3. 10/3 – Nahmia Lavi, 41 – Rabbi for Israeli military. Killed in Jerusalem stabbing attack near Lion’s Gate when he tried to shoot the attacker but had his weapon taken.
4. 10/3 – Aaron Bennet, 24. Killed in Jerusalem stabbing attack near Lion’s Gate.
5. 10/13 – Yeshayahu Kirshavski, 60, bus shooting in East Jerusalem
6. 10/13 – Haviv Haim, 78, bus shooting in East Jerusalem
7. 10/13 – Richard Lakin, 76, bus shooting in East Jerusalem (died of wounds several days after the attack)
8. 10/18 – Omri Levy, 19, Israeli soldier with the Golani Brigade who had his weapon grabbed and turned against him by an Israeli resident.
An additional 2 Israelis that were initially claimed to have been killed in attacks were actually killed in car accidents.
Nov 5, 2015, IMEMC
Israeli attacks in the West Bank & Gaza:
Israeli forces have continued to flagrantly commit crimes, inflicting civilian casualties. They have also continued to use excessive force against Palestinian civilians participating in peaceful protests in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, the majority of whom were youngsters. Occupied East Jerusalem witnessed similar attacks. During the reporting period, Israeli forces killed 8 Palestinian civilians, including 2 children, in the West Bank; one of whom was killed in occupied Jerusalem. Moreover, 129 Palestinian civilians, including 25 children, 3 journalists and a paramedic, were wounded. In addition, 8 other paramedics suffered tear gas inhalation. Fifty-six of the wounded, including a child, a journalist and a paramedic, sustained shrapnel wounds and 4 others suffered tear gas inhalation in the Gaza Strip, while the remaining others were wounded in the West Bank. Concerning the nature of injury, 87 Palestinian civilians were hit with live ammunition and 41 were hit with rubber-coated metal bullets.
In the West Bank, killings committed by Israeli forces were as follows:
On 29 October 2015, Israeli Border Guard officers stationed at the military checkpoint (160), south of Hebron’s Old City, shot Mahdi al-Mohtaseb (22) dead under the pretext of a stabbing attempt.
On the same day, Israeli soldiers deployed in al-Shuhada Street, in the centre of Hebron’s Old City, killed Farouq Seder (19), from Izone neighbourhood, east of Hebron, by opening fire at him from behind. Israeli forces claimed that he attempted to stab a soldier. However, some photos posted by Israeli soldiers on social media showed that there was no knife in the crime scene.
On 30 October 2015, Israeli forces stationed at Za’tara checkpoint, south of Nablus, killed Qasem Saba’na (20), from Qabatya village, southeast of Jenin, and seriously wounded another in a stabbing attempt.
On the same day, a light rail security officer on Bar Lev Street near Shaikh Jarrah neighbourhood, north of East Jerusalem’s Old City, opened fire at Ahmed Qnaibi (23), from Kufor Aqeb neighbourhood, north of the city. As a result, he sustained several bullet wounds from a close range, due to which he was transported to Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital in West Jerusalem to receive the necessary medical treatment, but he succumbed to his injuries few hours later. Israeli forces claimed that the aforementioned person attempted to stab 2 settlers in the city.
On 31 October 2015, Israeli security officers serving the Israeli forces and guarding al-Jalama crossing, northeast of Jenin, killed Mahmoud Nazzal (17), from Qabatya village, southeast of the city, who was running towards the crossing and crying “Allah Akbar”. It should be noted that he was not holding any sharp tool with him.
On 01 November 2015, Israeli forces deployed at the entrance of Beit Aynoun village, east of Hebron, killed Fadi al-Faroukh (27) while being present in an agricultural land near the main street leading to the said village. It should be noted that there were confrontations between Palestinian civilians and Israeli forces in that area. Israeli forces claimed that the aforementioned person attempted to carry out a stabbing.
On 02 November 2015, Israeli forces stationed at al-Jalama crossing, northeast of Jenin, killed Ahmed Abu al-Rob (16) and wounded Mahmoud Kmail (17); both are from Qabatya village, southeast of Jenin. The first was killed when Israeli forces ordered both of them to pull up their clothes, but Abu al-Rob pulled a knife out; therefore, Israeli soldiers opened fire at him and shot him dead and wounded the other, who was then arrested.
On 04 November 2015, Israeli infantry deployed at the entrance to Halahoul northern entrance opened fire at a vehicle with a Palestinian registration plate after its driver had run over 2 Israeli police officers. As a result, the driver namely Ibrahim Eskafi (22), from Khellet Hadour, south of Hebron, was killed.
During the reporting period, 73 Palestinian civilians, including 24 children, were wounded in the West Bank; one of whom was wounded in occupied East Jerusalem.
The Palestinian civilians wounded in the West Bank were as follows:
In peaceful protests against Israeli policies: 52 Palestinian civilians, including 17 children, were wounded. Ninety-three of them were hit with live ammunition and 13 others were hit with rubber-coated metal bullets.
In peaceful protests against Israeli incursion: 20 Palestinian civilians, including 7 children, were wounded. Four of them were hit with live ammunition and 16 others were hit with rubber-coated metal bullets.
Palestinian civilians wounded in occupied Jerusalem: 28 Palestinian civilians were wounded with rubber-coated metal bullets.
In the Gaza Strip, 56 Palestinian civilians, including a child, a journalist and a paramedic, were wounded, while 4 other paramedics suffered tear gas inhalation. Forty-four of whom were hit with live ammunition, 11 others were hit with rubber-coated metal bullets and dozens of civilians suffered tear gas inhalation.
The Palestinian civilians wounded in the Gaza Strip were as follows:
North of the Gaza Strip: 6 civilians were wounded; 5 of whom sustained live bullet wounds and the 6th sustained a rubber bullet wound.
Gaza City: 17 Palestinian civilians were wounded; 7 of whom sustained live bullet wounds and the 10 others sustained rubber bullet wounds.
Central Gaza Strip: 19 Palestinian civilians, including a child, sustained live bullet wounds. Khan Yunis: 14 Palestinian civilians, including a paramedic and a journalist, sustained live bullet wounds.
During the reporting period, Israeli forces conducted at least 77 military incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and 14 ones in occupied East Jerusalem. During these incursions, Israeli forces arrested at least 119 Palestinian civilians, including 35 children and a woman. Forty-eight of these civilians, including 14 children, were arrested in East Jerusalem.
During the reporting period, Israeli forces raided the offices of Menbar al-Hurriya Radio and Adwar “Roles” for Social Change Association in Hebron and issued a decision to close the aforementioned radio for 6 months. Moreover, they raided houses of a number of families of Palestinians accused of carrying out stabbing and run-over attacks. They also verbally threatened these families to confiscate and demolish their houses within a week.
Restrictions on movement
Israel continued to impose a tight closure of the oPt, imposing severe restrictions on the movement of Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem.
The illegal closure of the Gaza Strip, which has been steadily tightened since June 2007 has had a disastrous impact on the humanitarian and economic situation in the Gaza Strip. The Israeli authorities impose measures to undermine the freedom of trade, including the basic needs for the Gaza Strip population and the agricultural and industrial products to be exported. For 9 consecutive years, Israel has tightened the land and naval closure to isolate the Gaza Strip from the West Bank, including occupied Jerusalem, and other countries around the world. This resulted in grave violations of the economic, social and cultural rights and a deterioration of living conditions for 1.8 million people. The Israeli authorities have established Karm Abu Salem (KeremShaloum) as the sole crossing for imports and exports in order to exercise its control over the Gaza Strip’s economy. They also aim at imposing a complete ban on the Gaza Strip’s exports. The Israeli closure raised the rate of poverty to 38.8%, 21.1% of which suffer from extreme poverty. Moreover, the rate of unemployment increased up to 44%, which reflects the unprecedented economic deterioration in the Gaza Strip.
Efforts to create a Jewish majority
Israeli forces escalated their attacks on Palestinian civilians and their property. They have also continued their raids on al-Aqsa Mosque and denied the Palestinians access to it: Shooting incidents
· At approximately 15:00 on Friday, 30 October 2015, a light rail security officer on Bar Lev Street near Shaikh Jarrah neighbourhood, north of East Jerusalem’s Old City, opened fire at Ahmed Hamada Yusef Qnaibi (23), from Kufor Aqeb neighbourhood, north of the city. As a result, he sustained several bullet wounds from a close range, due to which he was transported to Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital in West Jerusalem to receive the necessary medical treatment, but he succumbed to his injuries few hours later.
In a statement issued by the Israeli police, Luba Samri, Israeli police spokesperson, claimed that a Jerusalemite young man around (23) years old, from Kufor Aqeb neighbourhood had stabbed two Jewish persons near a light rail in “Givat Hat’hmoshet” settlement. The two Jewish persons’ injuries ranged between minor and moderate. The light rail security officer immediately opened fire at the aforementioned person; therefore the officer “neutralized him”. The wounded person was transported to a hospital to receive medical treatment, but he was pronounced dead later.
Collective punishment against families of Palestinians accused of carrying out attacks against Israeli forces and settlers
· At approximately 04:00 on Thursday, 29 October 2015, Israeli forces raided a house belonging to the family of Tha’er Abu Ghazala in Kufir Aqeb neighbourhood, north of East Jerusalem. The family said to PCHR’s fieldworker that Israeli forces had raided their house and damaged the main door in the dawn, but no one was in there. They photographed the house, took its measures and examined the walls according to the family neighbours. It should be noted that Abu Ghazala was killed by Israeli forces in Tel Aviv on 08 October 2015, under the pretext of stabbing a female soldier with a screw. The corpse of Abu Ghazala has been kept in the Israeli custody. Moreover, they arrested his father and then placed him under administrative detention.
House demolitions and demolition notices
· On Friday, 30 October 2015, Israeli forces accompanied by Jerusalem Municipality officers raided 3 houses belonging to Abu Jamal family in al-Mukaber Mountain village, southeast of occupied Jerusalem. Abu Jamal family said that the Israeli municipality officers delivered administrative demolition notices for a house belonging to Mohammed Abu Jamal, Alaa’s brother, under the pretext of non-licensing. It should be noted that the 110-square-meter house was built in 2001, in which 6 family members, including the father, mother and four children, have been living. Moreover, the municipality officers delivered another administrative demolition notice for a house belonging to the family of Alaa Abu Jamal; the same house against which a confiscation and demolition decision was issued by the Israeli Home Front Command last week. This house was built in 1995. It should be noted that the Israeli forces raided lately a house belonging to Safa’ Abu Jamal, Alaa’s sister, and made holes in the house walls, took its measures, examined the walls and made holes in them. However, Israeli forces claimed that the house belongs to Alaa and that the first house that was examined to be demolished was not his. Thus, the Israeli authorities have threatened to demolish 3 houses attached to each other belonging to Alaa Abu Jamal’s family. Israeli forces killed Alaa Abu Jamal on 13 October 2015 after stabbing and running over Israeli settlers in West Jerusalem.
· In the same context, Israeli forces raided a house belonging to the family of Akram Abu Jamal, looking for the family of the wounded prisoner, Belal Abu Ghanem. Abu Ghanem’s family was renting Akram’s house, but left lately. The municipality officers photographed Akram’s house license and then withdrew.
· At approximately 07:00 on Monday, 12 November 2015, under the protection of special forces, the Israeli municipality bulldozers demolished a house belonging to the family of Sami Edris in Khellet al-Abed area in al-Mukaber Mountain village, southeast of occupied Jerusalem, without warning, under the pretext of non-licensing. The aforementioned civilian said to PCHR’s fieldworker that Israeli special forces accompanied by Israeli municipality officers and bulldozers raided a house in Khellet al-Abed in al-Mukaber Mountain to demolish it without warning. He added that Israeli forces allowed him to take out his personal papers, money and light belongings only. They also obliged him to leave the house in minutes and kept his family few meters away from him. The municipality officers then randomly emptied the house content. After which, a bulldozer demolished the 80-square-meter house that used to shelter a 7-member family, including 4 children. It should be noted that Edris started building his house 3 months ago and moved in with his family for 15 days only. The building costs were around NIS 100,000. Edris pointed that the Israeli municipality had fixed an administrative demolition notice twice in the past 2 months; therefore, he attempted to obtain a construction license, but could not because of the Israeli restrictions in this regard.
· A few hours later, Israeli forces accompanied by municipality officers and a bulldozer moved into Beit Hanina neighbourhood, north of East Jerusalem, and demolished a 3-storey building belonging to lawyer Khaldoun Nejem and Mousa and Mahmoud al-Dosoky.
The affected families said that the building, which was residential, was added to an old building a year ago and they had moved in last April. After the Israeli municipality had issued a demolition decision, the families could adjourn the decision until they reached a settlement with the municipality, one day before the demolition, to turn the demolition decision into an indictment and construction fines. However, the families were surprised that on the abovementioned day Israeli forces moved into the area and demolished the building. Lawyer Khaldoun Nejem said that the 3-storey building (each floor is a 120-square-meter apartment) was resided by 3 families as follows: Khaldoun’s family, including his wife and 2 children; Mousa al-Dosoky, his wife and daughter; and Khaldoun’s brother namely Mahmoud who was preparing his apartment to move in soon. The families declared that the building was demolished with its contents inside.
· On Tuesday, 03 November 2015, Israeli municipality officers fixed administrative demolition notices on the walls of al-Qa’qa’ Mosque and a commercial facility in Hosh Abu Tayeh in silwan village, south of East Jerusalem’s Old City, under the pretext of non-licensing.
Hani Abu Tayeh, who is responsible for the mosque’s affairs, said that Israeli municipality officers fixed an administrative demolition notice on the wall of al-Qa’qa’ Mosque in Hosh Abu Tayeh in Ein al-Louza neighborhood that is located in Silwan village, under the pretext of non-licensing. Moreover, they fixed a similar one on a carwash in Beer Ayoub neighborhood, in the city. They photographed some commercial facilities, residential buildings, entrances to certain neighbourhoods and streets. He added that the 120-square-meter mosque was built 3 years ago. it should be noted that the decision was issued on 20 August 2015 and gave a 90-day period for challenging the decision, otherwise, it would be applied. The demolition decision is based on “Law 212”, which is utilized by the Israeli municipality and General Prosecution to implement demolition decisions. The same law allows the General Prosecution to issue demolition decisions against non-licensed buildings even if the person/s were unknown.
On 29 October 2015, Israeli forces issued a military order to confiscate 5 dunums of lands in Yasouf village, east of Salfit, belonging to the heirs of Ghaleb Abdullah Deeb.
On 03 November 2015, Israeli forces moved into al-Shaikh Bashir area, southeast of Jaloud village, southeast of Nablus. They handed residents of the area, in which 10 families reside, notices to vacate their houses in 15 days to be demolished because they about 300 meters away from “Ahya” settlement that was established in 1997. It should be noted that the targeted houses are located in area (C) according to the Oslo accords. Some of these houses were built in 1975 and their owners have construction licenses from the Israeli forces. The families affected by this decision consist of 38 persons, including 20 children.
On Sunday, 01 November 2015, Alaa’ Hassan Ibrahim al-Khateeb (25), from Jayous village, northeast of Qalqilya, was run over by a settler on the main road between Qalqila and Nablus, near Azoun intersection, east of Qalqilya. As a result, he sustained fractures to the arm and a cut in the head.
Recommendations to the International Community:
PCHR emphasizes the international community’s position that the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, are still under Israeli occupation, in spite of Israeli military redeployment outside the Gaza Strip in 2005. PCHR further confirms that Israeli forces continued to impose collective punishment measures on the Gaza Strip, which have escalated since the 2006 Palestinian parliamentary elections, in which Hamas won the majority of seats of the Palestinian Legislative Council. PCHR stresses that there is international recognition of Israel’s obligation to respect international human rights instruments and the international humanitarian law, especially the Hague Regulations concerning the Laws and Customs of War on Land and the Geneva Conventions. Israel is bound to apply the international human rights law and the law of war sometime reciprocally and other times in parallel in a way that achieves the best protection for civilians and remedy for victims.
In light of continued arbitrary measures, land confiscation and settlement activities in the West Bank, and the latest 51-day offensive against civilians in the Gaza Strip, PCHR calls upon the international community, especially the United Nations, the High Contracting Parties to the Geneva Convention and the European Union – in the context of their natural obligation to respect and enforce the international law – to cooperate and act according to the following recommendations:
1. PCHR calls upon the international community and the United Nations to use all available means to allow the Palestinian people to enjoy their right to self-determination, through the establishment of the Palestinian State, which was recognized by the UN General Assembly with a vast majority, using all international legal mechanisms, including sanctions to end the occupation of the State of Palestine;
2. PCHR calls upon the United Nations to provide international protection to Palestinians in the oPt, and to ensure the non-recurrence of aggression against the oPt, especially the Gaza Strip;
3. PCHR calls upon the High Contracting Parties to the Geneva Conventions to compel Israel, as a High Contracting Party to the Conventions, to apply the Conventions in the oPt;
4. PCHR calls upon the Parties to international human rights instruments, especially the Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, to pressurize Israel to comply with their provisions in the oPt, and to compel it to incorporate the human rights situation in the oPt in its reports submitted to the concerned committees;
5. PCHR calls upon the High Contracting Parties to the Geneva Conventions to fulfil their obligation to ensure the application of the Conventions, including extending the scope of their jurisdiction in order to prosecute suspected war criminals, regardless of the nationality of the perpetrator and the place of a crime, to pave the way for prosecuting suspected Israeli war criminals and end the longstanding impunity they have enjoyed; 6. PCHR calls on States that apply the principle of universal jurisdiction not to surrender to Israeli pressure to limit universal jurisdiction to perpetuate the impunity enjoyed by suspected Israeli war criminals;
7. PCHR calls upon the international community to act in order to stop all Israeli settlement expansion activities in the oPt through imposing sanctions on Israeli settlements and criminalizing trading with them;
8. PCHR calls upon the UN General Assembly to transfer the Goldstone Report to the UN Security Council in order to refer it to the International Criminal Court in accordance with Article 13(b) of the Rome Statute;
9. PCHR calls upon the United Nations to confirm that holding war criminals in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict is a precondition to achieve stability and peace in the regions, and that peace cannot be built on the expense of human rights;
10. PCHR calls upon the UN General Assembly and Human Rights Council to explicitly declare that the Israeli closure policy in Gaza and the annexation wall in the West Bank are illegal, and accordingly refer the two issues to the UN Security Council to impose sanctions on Israel to compel it to remove them;
11. PCHR calls upon the international community, in light of its failure to the stop the aggression on the Palestinian people, to at least fulfil its obligation to reconstruct the Gaza Strip after the series of hostilities launched by Israel which directly targeted the civilian infrastructure;
12. PCHR calls upon the United Nations and the European Union to express a clear position towards the annexation wall following the international recognition of the State of Palestine on the 1967 borders, as the annexation wall seizes large parts of the State of Palestine;
13. PCHR calls upon the European Union to activate Article 2 of the EU-Israel Association Agreement, which provides that both sides must respect human rights as a precondition for economic cooperation between the EU states and Israel, and the EU must not ignore Israeli violations and crimes against Palestinian civilians;
Fully detailed document, including info on protests, patrols and border crossings available at the official PCHR website.
Nov 5, 2015, IMEMC
Army Kidnapped 800 Children In October
Representative of Detained Palestinian children in Ofer Israeli prison, Abdul-Fattah Doula, said the Israeli army has transferred more than 138 children to the detention center in October, and that 48 of the kidnapped children have been beaten and tortured by the soldiers and interrogators.
Doula added that six of the imprisoned children were shot with live Israeli army fire prior to their abduction, and require constant medical attention and treatment, in addition to six children who suffer with various illnesses.
The children were beaten and tortured, resulting in various cuts and bruises, especially after the soldiers struck them with their batons and rifles on several parts of their bodies.
In addition, 71 of the detained children, 13 to 17 years of age, were kidnapped from their homes, during late-night and early dawn hours.
The Palestinian Detainees’ Committee said the children have no change of clothes, are not provided with winter blankets, and are held under dire conditions unfit even for adults.
Head of the Detainees’ Committee Issa Qaraqe said the soldiers have kidnapped 800 Palestinian children in October, and that most of them are from occupied Jerusalem.
Qaraqe’ added that the level of abductions of children is the highest since many years, as Israeli soldiers would usually annually kidnap 700-900 children, comparing to the 800 children kidnapped in October alone.
He added that Israel deliberately targets children as they “represent the future of Palestine, and the continuation of the struggle against its illegal and criminal occupation of Palestine.”
The Detainees’ Committee provided the following list of names of detainees who have been severely beaten during their arrest, and tortured during interrogation:
1. Hamad Nadi Mohammad Gharbiyya, from Kafr Ni’ma – Ramallah.
2. Qais Mahdi Mohammad Hayek, from Jericho.
3. Ayham Marwan Naim Syouri, from Hebron.
4. Hasan Daoud Rajabi, from Hebron.
5. Rami Sa’id As’ad Minshar, from Hebron.
6. Fadi Mohammad Ali, from Ramallah.
7. Mahammad Mahmoud Omar Eshtiyya, from Kafr Ni’ma – Ramallah.
8. Anas Jamal Ahmad Abu Sharar, from Doura – Hebron.
9. Mahmoud Khalil Ahmad Abu Mfarreh, Teqoua’ – Bethlehem.
10. Ahmad Khaled Ahmad Awwad, al-Biereh – Ramallah.
11. Mahmoud Ali Abed Sabah, Teqoua’ – Bethlehem.
12. Mohammad Thiab Ali Sabah, Teqoua’ – Bethlehem.
13. Salam Adel Ahmad Qar’an, al-Biereh – Ramallah.
14. Mohammad Jouda Kathem Abu ‘Amro, Hebron.
15. Hamza Ayman Mohammad Naim, Beith Ummar – Hebron.
16. Adham Adnan Farhan Qar’an, al-Biereh – Ramallah.
17. Majdi Isamel Mohammad Salah, Bethlehem.
18. Ibrahim Jamil Salama Abu Seif – Qalandia – Ramallah.
19. Ahmad Salah Marwan Ahmad, Jericho.
20. Qussai Ibrahim Masalma, Beit ‘Awwa – Hebron.
21. Mohyeddin Ahmad ‘Amoud, Teqoua’ – Bethlehem.
22. Hussein Mahmoud Hussein Sleibi, Beit Ummar – Hebron.
23. Hamza Nader Azmi Abu Hlayyel, Doura – Hebron.
24. Waseem Taha Mohammad Abu Mariya, Beit Ummar – Hebron.
25. Bassel Jamal Mohammad Bragheeth, Beit Ummar – Hebron.
26. Adnan Soheil Khaled Kawamla, al-‘Arroub – Hebron.
27. Khalil Mohammad Fares Qattash – Aqbat Jabr – Jericho.
28. Sultan Jad Mahmoud Hijazi – Ramallah.
29. Abdul-Rahim Mohammad Hameeda, Ramallah.
30. Omar Hussein Mahmoud al-Heeh, Surif – Hebron.
31. Naseem Taha Mohammad Abu Mariya, Beit Ummar – Hebron.
32. Tareq Nasser Hilmy Abu Ayyash, Beit Ummar – Hebron.
33. Mohammad Issa Zama’ra, Halhoul – Hebron.
34. Anas Jamal Abu Sharar, Doura – Hebron.
35. Bilal Ziad Ahmad Khatib, Yatta – Hebron.
36. Mo’men Rateb Mahmoud Awadallah – Teqoua’, Bethlehem.
37. Haroun Rashid Abdul-Ghani al-Karaki, Hebron.
38. Mohammad Anwar Mohammad Shreitih, Ramallah.
39. Ahmad Tareq Mohammad Abu Lateefa, Qalandia – Ramallah.
40. Sultan Mofeed Abu Halal, Abu Dis – Jerusalem.
41. Waseem Waleed Saher Rajabi – Hebron.
42. Laith Abdul-Karim Mahmoud Rayyan, Beit Doqqo – Jerusalem.
43. Mo’tasem Salman Sharawna, Doura – Hebron.
44. Nasser Abu Seif – Jericho.
45. Ameed Rajeh al-Kteifi – Jericho.
46. Mustafa Nael Omar Tal, al-Jalazoun – Ramallah.
47. ‘Awni Jalal Ahmad Salah, Abu Dis – Jerusalem.
48. Yazan Radi Yousef Qazzar, Doura – Hebron.
Oct 8, 2015, Press TV
**see video at Press TV link
Many undercover Israeli soldiers join Palestinian protests as agent provocateur and incite protesters to hurl stones at Israeli soldiers, then they draw their guns and start helping their fellow military members in arresting the protesters. A newly released video has captured such a story.
Disguised as Palestinian protesters, the Israeli infiltrating team was caught on camera by several journalists in the vicinity of the illegally-built Israeli settlement of Beit El near Ramallah in the occupied West Bank on Wednesday.
The video also shows Palestinian protesters running from the scene while Israeli agents – who were shooting toward the crowd with their handguns – help other Israeli soldiers in giving a torrent of kicks and punches on the captured protesters.
At least one young Palestinian was shot in the leg at point-blank range by one of the fake protesters.
Meanwhile, Palestine’s Ma’an news agency reported that at least 18 Palestinians sustained injuries with rubber-coated steel bullets fired by Israeli soldiers during clashes in the environs of Ramallah.
Tensions have been running high in the region over the past few days after Israel imposed restrictions on the entry of Palestinian worshipers into the Old City, where the al-Aqsa Mosque compound is located. The mosque is Islam’s third holiest site after Masjid al-Haram in Mecca and Masjid al-Nabawi in Medina.
The measure was taken earlier this month after two Israelis were killed and two others wounded during clashes between a Palestinian man and Israeli settlers in al-Quds.
Oct 17, 2015, IMEMC
A right-wing Israeli paramilitary settler shot and killed a Palestinian teenager Saturday morning on Shuhada Street in the center of Hebron, in the southern part of the West Bank.
Video footage captures the immediate aftermath of the shooting, in which an Israeli paramilitary settler dressed in white holds two guns and directs the Israeli soldiers toward the body of the boy he killed.
The 18-year old victim was identified as Fadel al-Qawasmi, 18.
Paramedics with the Palestinian Red Crescent were denied access to the dying teen, and Israeli troops took the body away without allowing any medical personnel or family members near the body.
Although the Israeli paramilitary settler who executed the teen claimed that Fadel came at him with a knife, no evidence of this claim has been produced. In the past, on numerous occasions, initial claims that Palestinians attacked Israelis have turned out, on later investigation, to be false.
Local resident Mufeed Sharabati told reporters with the Ma’an News Agency that after the execution of Fadel on the street, Israeli paramilitary settlers were seen walking around the streets of Hebron distributing candy to one another in celebration of the execution.
Israeli forces did not take the killer into custody.
Shuhada Street, where the murder took place, is the site of a long history of Israeli paramilitary violence against the indigenous Palestinian population.
Following the massacre of 27 Palestinian civilians praying in the Ibrahimi Mosque in central Hebron in 1994 by American doctor Baruch Goldstein, Israeli authorities sectioned off the mosque and made half of it into a synagogue. Since that time, the Israeli government has allowed and promoted Israeli paramilitary settlement colonies in the center of the city of Hebron.
In Shuhada Street, Israeli paramilitary settlers took over the top floors of a number of Palestinian homes, and used these as a base from which to attack and torment the Palestinians as they shopped in the central market of Hebron, located on Shuhada Street. For years, the settlers dropped rocks, eggs, and human excrement onto Palestinian shoppers and schoolchildren on a nearly-daily basis, in an effort to push Palestinians out of the area. Palestinians who lived and worked below put up nets to try to catch the objects thrown at them by the paramilitary forces above.
Israeli military authorities allowed the harassment to continue without consequence, and most Palestinian shopkeepers were eventually pushed out of Shuhada Street. The paramilitary settlers who have moved into the area over the past twenty years are all heavily armed, and most are adherents of an extreme right-wing ideology that consider Baruch Goldstein a hero, and follow the ideas of the anti-Arab Rabbi Meir Kahane, who called for the complete expulsion of the Palestinian people from their land, and justified the killing of non-Jews on biblical grounds.
Now, Shuhada Street is virtually deserted, with most Palestinians afraid to walk on it because of fear of attack by paramilitary settlers. But it remains the central street of Hebron, and Palestinian residents often need to walk there to get where they are going in the city.
Thousands of Israeli troops are deployed in the area to protect the hundreds of paramilitary settlers who have taken over Palestinian land in the center of Hebron and claimed it as a colony of Israel.
Saturday’s killing of Fadel al-Qawasmi marks the 38th Palestinian death in the month of October, but he is the first to be killed by a paramilitary settler this month. The others were all killed by Israeli soldiers or police.
Just three weeks ago, very near to the location of today’s murder, an 18-year old Palestinian girl, Hadeel al-Hashlamoun, was shot and killed by an Israeli soldier who shot her from ten feet away, execution style. Initially, Israeli authorities tried to claim that Hadeel had a knife, but video footage of the incident emerged, showing the girl with both her hands visible, and nothing in them.
Amnesty International condemned the killing of the girl as “extrajudicial assassination”, and called for an investigation. In its statement about that incident, Amnesty International said, “Even if al-Hashlamoun did have a knife, Israeli soldiers, who are protected with body armour and heavily equipped with advanced weapons, could have controlled the situation and arrested her without threatening her life. Open fire regulations of the Israeli military in the occupied West Bank allow soldiers to open fire only when their lives are in imminent danger, and Amnesty International concludes that this was not the case in the shooting of al-Hashlamoun, as she was standing still and separated from the soldiers by a metal barrier. There was no attempt to arrest al-Hashlamoun, according to the eyewitnesses, or to use non-lethal alternatives.
“To then shoot al-Hashlamoun again multiple times as she lay wounded on the ground indicates that her killing was an extrajudicial execution. Unlawful and deliberate killings carried out by order of government or military officials, or with their complicity or acquiescence, amount to extrajudicial executions, which are prohibited at all times and constitute crimes under international law. An extrajudicial execution would also constitute a wilful killing, which is a grave breach of the Fourth Geneva Convention, which applies to Israel’s long-standing military occupation of the Occupied Palestinian Territories, and a war crime.”
Since the killing of Hadeel al-Hashlamoun on September 22nd, Israeli forces have killed 37 Palestinians — of these, around one-third were claimed to have had knives in their possession. All of those killed fall under the category of extrajudicial assassination, according to international law.
Hebron: Young Woman Dies of Wounds Sustained at an Israeli Checkpoint
Sep 22, 2015, IMEMC
Hadeel Hashlamoun, 18, was critically injured and later died of her wounds on Tuesday afternoon, when soldiers shot her at an Israeli military checkpoint in Al Shohada Street in Hebron old city.
Media sources in Hebron said Hadeel was injury in her abdomen, and that the soldiers left her bleeding onto the ground for nearly 30 minutes, and prevented Palestinian medics from approach her.
The Israeli army claims the young woman attempted to stab a soldier. A Photo by the Palestine News Agency – WAFA shows Hadeel just before being shoot by the Israeli soldiers with nothing in her hands.
The Israeli military initially said the woman was shot in her legs, and later said she is in a critical condition.
she was moved to Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem where she died of her wounds. According to her family Hadeel was a first-year student at the Hebron University.
The Palestinian government issued a statement on Tuesday condemning the killing of Hadeel and demanded and international and independent investigation into the incident.
Oct 17, 2015, Global Research
Israel is more killing machine than nation – a ruthless Arab-hating monster. On Friday, it continued murdering Palestinians in cold blood, another five lethally shot, the death toll now at 38 since October 1 alone, around 2,000 others injured, 300 on Friday alone, many thousands more from toxic tear gas.
Palestinians have no heavy weapons, mostly stones, their bare hands and passion to be free from a heavily armed brutal occupier. International law affirms their right to resist – heroically struggling for decades for freedom, deserving it as much as Israelis and everyone else, getting virtually no world community support.
Friday saw clashes throughout the West Bank. Security Council members met in emergency session to discuss ongoing violence, accomplishing nothing. US veto power assures no resolution or other action condemning Israeli high crimes.
Palestinian UN envoy Riyad Mansour called for immediate UN intervention against Israeli violence. At the same time, his PA leadership openly collaborates with its state terror.
Washington absolves Israel of blame, complicit with its viciousness, blaming Palestinians for ongoing violence. An entire population is being raped and held responsible for its own suffering.
Amnesty International’s Middle East/North Africa director Philip Luther said “(w)e are seeing a dangerous pattern of deliberate attacks on civilians and unlawful killings.”
Israeli forces have used excessive force on a large scale and intensified restriction on movement and have vowed to increase illegal punishments such as home demolitions.
Security measures must respect international law. Collective punishment of the Palestinian population can never be justified.
On Friday, Obama showed which side he’s on. During a press conference with South Korean President Park Geun-hye, his comments surprised no one, saying:
We condemn in the strongest possible terms violence directed against innocent people and believe that Israel has a right to maintain basic law and order and protect its citizens from knife attacks and violence on the streets.
No mention of premeditated, cold-blooded Israeli murders, extreme brutality against a long-oppressed people, terrorizing them ruthlessly – with full US support and encouragement.
There’s no ambiguity about what’s ongoing, a continuation of decades of occupation harshness – unaccountable because of full US support, echoed by one-sided media reports, blaming Palestinians for Israeli high crimes.
Murder is self-defense when its security forces commit it – terrorism when Palestinians defend themselves heroically. Longstanding injustice condemns them to endless misery, the cross they continue to bear.
“It is about being oppressed some 60, 70 years. (The protests) are just the anger that has exploded.” That is how a young Palestinian has described what we are seeing play out across Occupied Palestine on the streets as youth make a stand against a long-standing Israeli policy of occupation, demolition, killing, detention and restrictions on religious freedoms. Young Palestinians say that this uprising is just the tip of the iceberg, which is in fact an outward expressing of an internal intifada, which has been raging for years. In this edition of the Debate we discuss the Palestinian Day of Rage against the Israeli regime.
Oct 9, 2015, 21st Century Wire
Last night in Jerusalem, new clashes saw more wounded Israelis and a Palestinian shot dead, as tensions continue to rise in Israel and its Occupied Territories.
Not surprisingly, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is blaming this fall’s wave of violence on the native Arabs and foreign countries who support them. He blamed recent violence on the Palestinian Authority that (sort of) controls the West Bank, and of course he blames Hamas in Gaza, claiming that their “incitement and libels and lies” have set off unrest.
“All of us, we’re in the midst of a wave of terrorism… terrorists that are incited, filled with hatred and trying to hurt people,” said Netanyahu.
Israel continue to suppress any effort for an independent Palestine.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has stated he does not want the current situation to escalate. Many feel that Abbas is holding back a new intifada, but wonder for how long.
Fearing the symbolic power of the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem, Netanyahu has declared a ban on any Arab-Israel MPs from going to the mosque, as well restricting Palestinians’ access to the holy site.
In a bid to calm tensions, Netanyahu has barred members of parliament and ministers from visiting the Old City’s Al-Aqsa mosques compound, which has seen repeated clashes between Israeli police and Palestinian youths in recent weeks.
Israel are also still reeling from last week’s UN flag ceremony which recognized Palestine in the ‘community of nations’ – moving it one step closer to statehood – something Netanyahu and others Israeli Zionist fundamentalists have vowed never to allow. UN head Ban Ki-Moon said at the time, “This is a day of pride for Palestinians around the world. It is a day of hope. It’s a reminder that symbols are important,” he said. “May the raising of this flag give rise to the hope among the Palestinians and the international community that Palestinian statehood is achievable.”
Meanwhile, Netanyahu continues to crow, “The radicals, the terrorists will not achieve anything… we will prosecute them, and we will be victorious!“, which sounds very much like another flamboyant despot in history, who also said, “We will be victorious, because we have to be victorious!”
What Netanyahu will not admit publicly, is that Israel is running a full-blown, militarized colonial police state, and its heavy-handed treatment and over-the-top force is routinely used against all Palestinians, and also against any non-Jewish protesters, media or bystanders.
Last week two AFP journalists, covering clashes between Palestinians and IDF were assaulted by thuggish Israeli soldiers. RT explains:
“Israeli soldiers reportedly pointed their weapons at the Italian video journalist Andrea Bernardi and his colleague, Palestinian photographer Abbas Momani. Both journalists were wearing body armor clearly marked “Press.” According to AFP, Bernardi was thrown to the ground, jabbed in the side with a weapon, and held by a soldier until he showed his press card. The journalist suffered bruised ribs and an eye injury.”
“The soldiers reportedly smashed a video camera and a stills camera and took away another camera, and a mobile phone.”
In addition, Israel has also been using sniper rifles against stone-throwing Palestinians. Watch:
Many now believe that the IDF are preparing to mount one of their biggest killing sprees since last year’s genocidal cull in Gaza. The moralists and human rights community in Washington DC seem all too willing to see history repeat itself, again.
Despite the scale of the violence against civilians last year, the West effectively turned a blind eye to Israel’s role during its decidedly vicious incursion, where the IDF slaughtered nearly 2,200 Palestinians and injured many thousands of others, as well as destroying 10,000 homes and severely damaging another 30,000. As the conflict seemed to wind down over last summer – the IDF bombed several large civilian buildings without any justifiable reason according to Amnesty International.
Over the last two weeks, the situation been on a knife edge. Tensions exploded over this past weekend in East Jerusalem following a number of clashes between Palestinians and Israeli paramilitary police, including one which took place near the town center Beit Furik two weeks ago following the funeral of Ahmed Khatatbeh, 26, who died after being shot by Israeli soldiers at a checkpoint near Nablus in the West Bank. As a result of the killing by the IDF, thousands of Palestinians marched in his funeral – which predictably stoked even more tension.
After this, tensions began to escalate again, before protests erupted following the IDF demolishing two homes in East Jerusalem homes which the Israeli government claim belonged to the families of two alleged ‘militants’ accused of murder by Israeli officials. Both men were said to have been shot and killed during the attacks.
Finally, this week, clashes came between the IDF and Palestinians, mostly youths in Bethlehem, after a funeral for Abed al-Rahman Obdeillah, a 13-year-old Palestinian killed on Monday by Israeli soldiers. In addition, three other Palestinians were murdered by IDF forces during protests.
Many pundits are now predicting a new intifada will almost certainly will emerge out of the current maelstrom in Jerusalem and the West Bank.
Judging by past Israeli killing sprees by Israel in its occupied territories, if the violence does not de-escalate quickly, then it’s likely the bloodshed will increase exponentially by next week.
Jul 30, 2015, Press TV
The main Israeli lobbying group in Washington, AIPAC, has started targeting vulnerable Democrats in order to change their mind on the Iran nuclear agreement, an American political commentator in Boston says.
“The foreign lobby, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee [AIPAC], is going into specific districts and trying to pressure Democrats who might be vulnerable in the next election cycle,” said Daniel Patrick Welch, a candid critic of US foreign policy.
“And what they’ll do is paint anyone who doesn’t toe the line as being against Israel, and anti-Semitic etc, etc – the usual line. And they spend a lot of money doing that,” he added.
Welch made the remarks in an interview with Press TV on Thursday when asked to comment on a report which says the Obama administration is confronting a tougher-than-expected fight with Congress over the Iran nuclear accord and is struggling to get enough votes to ensure its survival.
Welch said it’s difficult to figure out what President Barack Obama is up against.
“Basically, there’s a very little daylight between the rightwing and the leftwing in US politics, specifically when it comes to foreign policy, even less so when it comes to foreign policy that pertains to the Middle East,” he stated.
“You saw this with all of the wars. You know, Democrats were on board, when they [Republicans] started several of them,” he added.
“So it’s not really a left/right continuum, except that there is a right flank – there’s no left flank in American politics – there is a right flank,” the analyst observed.
He went on to say that “what we should keep in mind is that this is a choice between bad and worst. There’s no way that there’s time when Americans will finally give up on harassing Iran and everything will be smooth sailing.”
The Obama administration has been trying to allay Republican American lawmakers’ concerns over the conclusion of Iran nuclear talks reached between Iran and the P5+1 group of countries – the US, Britain, France, Russia, China, and Germany – in the Austrian capital, Vienna, on July 14.
According to the text of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), Iran will be recognized by the United Nations as a nuclear power and will continue its uranium enrichment program.
But some restrictions will be placed on Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for the removal of sanctions against the Islamic Republic.
Most Republicans oppose the nuclear agreement with Iran, but they need a two-thirds vote in both chambers of Congress to override a possible presidential veto, and to reach that threshold, Republicans need Democratic support.
“The deal itself is a complete sham. It should never have happened. It doesn’t need to happen. There doesn’t need to have been any sanctions,” Welch said.
“Nobody is talking about Israel’s massive nuclear stockpile. And they are talking only about Iran’s non-existent nuclear capacity. So that kind of it was always a scam just to pressure Iran, because they are angry about the [Islamic] Revolution,” he stated.
“They are not in the business of changing that foreign policy; the only toggle is between the rightwing and the super rightwing,” he pointed out.
“The neocons, with the aid of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, want to keep this kind of lying going on – full-spectrum dominance. Any threat that emerges to American hegemony has to be thrashed everywhere, all the time, at all times,” the political commentator emphasized.
Jul 27, 2015, If Americans Knew
This billboard is live in two locations in Des Moines, Iowa (on Ingersoll Ave and Fleur Drive)!
American taxpayers supply Israel with $3.1 billion per year in direct military aid, and routinely provide millions more each year for missile defense programs. For fiscal year 2015, Congress awarded Israel an additional $619.8 million, making total military aid to Israel $3.7 billion, or $10.2 million per day. Palestinians do not receive military aid. Learn more at IfAmericansKnew.org
To help put up more billboards, donate at gofund.me/lak1ic!
Aug 4, 2015, Global Research
Laith al-Khalidi was “killed in cold blood,” according to Fadel, his father.
Fifteen-year-old Laith was in the vicinity of the Atara military checkpoint near Ramallah when a sniper in an Israeli watchtower shot him in the back on Friday last week. Laith was accompanied by four friends at the time he was shot.
“Perhaps he went to express his outrage at the killing of Ali Dawabsha, but when soldiers shot him from the checkpoint tower, he wasn’t throwing any stones whatsoever,” said Fadel.
The details obtained by Fadel of the incident sharply contradict Israel’s spin.
Israel has exploited the fact that Palestinian youth were involved in confrontations with its soldiers in its attempts to “justify” the killing.
An unnamed military spokesperson claimed that Israeli soldiers had opened fire on Laith as a “response to immediate danger.” Those comments were reported by The New York Times, which called Laith “an assailant who had thrown a firebomb.”
However, evidence in many other cases has shown that such routine claims by the army should be treated with the utmost skepticism. Last month, video evidence showed that an Israeli colonel had shot dead Palestinian teenager Muhammad al-Kasbeh, in the back, as he ran away, debunking the army’s claims that occupation soldiers were in imminent danger from the youth. Video also caught Israeli soldiers shooting dead two Palestinian youths in cold blood in Beitunia in May 2014.
Just this year, Israeli human rights group B’Tselem says that it “has documented dozens of cases in the Ramallah area of the West Bank in which Palestinians were injured, some severely, by live ammunition fired by Israeli security forces.”
The group says that “the large number of persons injured and the types of injury, indicates that live ammunition was used against demonstrators even when security forces were not in mortal danger.”
The army’s depiction, moreover, does not tally with how Laith’s parents, who live in Jalazone refugee camp, remember him.
As soon as they heard of baby Ali’s murder by Israeli settlers, Laith’s parents had an ominous feeling. Could something happen to their own children in the clashes with Israeli soldiers that would more than likely ensue?
It was not Laith, but his elder brother, Yazan, that they were really worried about.
Despite being two years his junior, Laith — who hoped to become a lawyer — was considered the more mature and reliable sibling. For that reason, their father asked Laith to make sure that Yazan stayed away from any clashes that day.
Laith had repeatedly urged his brother to stay safe.
“My son Laith wasn’t one of the kids who’d go to protests week in, week out and throw stones,” said Samar, his mother.
Even before Laith’s murder, the family had suffered heavily at the hands of the Israeli occupation. Fadel, now an assistant dean at Birzeit University, was involved in popular resistance during the first intifada. He was imprisoned for six years.
For three of those six years, he was held in administrative detention, under which Israel locks up Palestinians without charge or trial.
His mother, meanwhile, had been injured in her leg after Israel attacked a protest in 1994. The protest was held in response to that year’s massacre in Hebron, during which the US-born settler Baruch Goldstein murdered 29 worshippers at the Ibrahimi Mosque.
Although both his parents have been politically active, they were eager that no harm should come to their children. Their children were therefore discouraged from battling Israel’s forces of occupation.
“I wish they were different from us,” said Samar. She reacted with disbelief when she received a phone call at 5:30pm on Friday, telling her that Laith was injured.
“I initially asked, ‘Laith who?’” she said. “I couldn’t even contemplate the idea that they were referring to Laith, my son.”
Laith had told her that he had gone to Ramallah to play billiards.
“Hoping against hope”
After he was shot, Laith was taken to Ramallah’s hospital, where he underwent surgery that lasted six hours.
“We had hoped that he would somehow come through this alive,” said Fadel. “I was sitting next to the room where the surgery was taking place, hoping against hope that my son would survive. Around midnight doctors took him to intensive care and five minutes later he was gone.”
Samar is a nurse. As soon as she saw Laith, she could tell that his situation was critical.
“I cannot describe what I went through during those six hours,” she said.
There was a moment in their ordeal that Samar described as “ridiculous.” A doctor told Laith’s parents that if he survived the night, he would be transferred to Hadassah, an Israeli hospital in Jerusalem.
“How can those who kill our sons then go on to treat them?” Samar asked. “How can we agree to this? But I was ready to do anything to save my child’s life, even if that meant sending him to an Israeli hospital. I would have done anything.”
Yazan, Laith’s brother, had tried to persuade him that he should join Fatah. But Laith told him that his allegiance was to Palestine, not to any political party.
“Laith was everything to me,” said Yazan. “We did everything together, we shared the same room, used the same computer, played cards together, watched sports together. We fought, we laughed, we both liked Real Madrid. But Laith was better than me. If anyone had to die, it should have been me, not him.”
Crying, Yazan raised his voice to an almost piercing level. “Laith, why did you go away?” he asked.
Laith’s 7-year-old sister Lor will only stop crying when she is told that Laith would hate to see her so upset.
“They have taken our happiness”
After a moment’s calm, she broke down again when little things remind her of Laith — like the beautiful mirror and the toys he gave her on the first day of Eid.
“They [the Israelis] have snatched the smile from this girl’s face; they have taken our happiness away,” said Samar. “With Laith’s passing, I feel that a piece of me is gone.”
According to his father, Laith’s biggest dream was that the family could return to the village of Annaba. They were expelled from Annaba — located near Ramle, a city in present-day Israel — during the Nakba, the 1948 ethnic cleansing of Palestine.
“Laith visited his village when he was a kid and since then he always asked me, ‘when will we return home?’” said Fadel.
It is instructive that Laith’s killing was only mentioned towards the end of the aforementioned report in The New York Times.
Their deaths received just a fraction of the attention devoted to the condemnations issued by Israeli establishment figures following the murder of baby Ali.
Not for the first time, Western media have been extremely accommodating to Israeli propagandists. The crocodile tears of Israeli politicians over one child’s death are treated as if they are genuine. Yet European and American journalists have not stopped to ask why the same politicians failed to condemn the killing of other young Palestinians on the same day.
If those journalists did some serious analysis or research, they would realize that the killing of baby Ali was not an aberration. Palestinian children and teenagers are regularly killed by Israelis.
Occasionally, the killers are settlers, inculcated with the extremist ideology on which Israel was founded. More often, they are soldiers carrying out the orders of a racist state.
Aug 1, 2015, RT.com
Two 17-yo Palestinian boys were shot dead by Israeli forces in separate incidents amid clashes in the West Bank incited by the death of an 18-month-old child in a suspected Jewish arson attack on a Palestinian village.
Laith Fadel al-Khaladi, 17, was reportedly shot in the chest by an Israeli sniper near Bir Zeit, north of Ramallah in the central West Bank. The teen later died from his injuries at a hospital, the Palestinian Ma’an News Agency quoted medical sources as saying.
Al-Khaladi is said to have been shot during anti-Israeli protests in the area, sparked by the deadly “price tag” attack in Kafr Duma.
Six other Palestinians were injured in clashes erupting during arson-related protests in the West Bank and Jerusalem on Friday, Haaretz reported.
One Palestinian was shot in the leg during protests in the West Bank city of Hebron; four others were wounded after police resorted to tear gas and rubber bullets against about 30 stone-throwers in the city of Halhul. One more Palestinian was injured with a rubber bullet in Kfar Kadum.
Another 17yo shot dead on Gaza border
Earlier in the day, another Palestinian teen, 17-year-old Mohammed Hamed al-Masri, was fired upon by Israeli forces in north Gaza. He sustained gunshot wounds to the upper body and later died at a hospital.
Masri had approached the border fence west of the Beit Lahia area along with other Palestinian youths to join the protests of the deadly arson attack, Haaretz cited Palestinian sources as saying. One other person was wounded in the shooting, receiving non-life threatening injuries, a Palestinian medical official told AFP, a French news service.
According to an Israeli army spokeswoman: “Two suspects approached the security fence of the northern Gaza Strip.”One of the figures ignored an order to halt, prompting warning shots to be fired, she told AFP, adding “the force fired toward the lower extremities of a suspect.”
Jerusalem witnessed firebombs and stone throwing with one Israeli officer wounded. Gunshots were reported not far from Kochav Hashahar, north of Jerusalem, but with no resulting injuries.
Meanwhile, Israeli settlers were targeted by Palestinians in the southern Hebron Hills community of Beit Hagai, the Jerusalem Post reports. Dozens were evacuated because of a brush fire allegedly started by Palestinians. Thirty people received medical treatment for smoke inhalation.
“Every Israeli is now a legitimate target,” Hamas said earlier on Friday calling for “day of rage” in response to the Palestinian toddler’s killing.
The Friday attack also caused international condemnation with UN chief Ban Ki-moon saying that the absence of a peace process and Israel’s illegal settlement policy had sparked violent extremism by Jews and Palestinians. The US condemned the deadly arson in the strongest possible terms calling it “vicious.” The EU also expressed its condemnation saying that “it is a tragic reminder of the dramatic situation in the region that highlights the urgent need of the political solution of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.”
Suspected Jewish extremists threw a Molotov cocktail through the window of a Palestinian home in the village of Kafr Duma near the West Bank city of Nablus in the early hours of Friday. Eighteen-month-old Ali Saad Dawabsha was killed, and his brother and parents were seriously injured in the resulting blaze.
Hundreds of people gathered for the child’s funeral on Friday.
Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu said that the perpetrators of the attack would be brought to justice.
“I am in shock from this criminal and terrible act,” Aruts Sheva quoted Netanyahu as saying Friday morning. “We are talking about terrorism in every respect.”
Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas blamed the Israeli government for the incident because of its support of Israeli settlements in the occupied territories. He also said that the Palestinian leadership was going to refer the matter to the International Criminal Court (ICC) and urged the international community to act.
“We are immediately preparing the file that will be submitted to the ICC,” Abbas told reporters, denouncing what he called “war crimes and crimes against humanity committed each day by Israelis against the Palestinian people.”