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Archive for the ‘Palestine’ Category

Jerusalem: The Basic Facts


The intrepid Pepe Escobar took to Facebook to explain the background concerning the city of Jerusalem in the wake of the Drumpf’s announcement regarding the city and its status in U.S. foreign policy: “JERUSALEM – THE BASIC FACTS: According to international law Jerusalem is NOT the capital of Israel. Few may be aware that Sykes-Picot, a century ago, awarded Jerusalem to . . . RUSSIA. But then Lenin rejected the deal. So the Brits ended up getting Jerusalem under the Class A Mandate of Palestine. We all know what happened afterwards. In 1947, the UN General Assembly came up with an absurd division of Palestine; Jews owned only 6% of Palestinian land at the time, but they were granted enormous tracts of territory. The UN plan was only a PROPOSAL. It was NEVER endorsed by the UN Security Council – which holds executive authority. Palestinians and the whole Arab world vehemently rejected the proposed terms of the partition. The point is already in 1947, and even in terms of the proposal, Jerusalem was NOT recognized as Israel’s capital. In 1967 Israel conquered virtually the whole of Jerusalem and the hinterland. Then almost everything was annexed – which is totally ILLEGAL. The UN Charter, the Geneva conventions, and the Rome Statute that created the International Criminal Court expressly forbid annexations by military conquest and/or occupation. Israeli leadership would be in serious trouble if they were ever brought to the International Criminal Court. The status of Jerusalem can only be decided in final negotiations – if they ever happen – between Israel and Palestine”.1


1 Pepe Escobar. “JERUSALEM – THE BASIC FACTS” Facebook (06 Dec 2017). https://www.facebook.com/pepe.escobar.77377.

Gaza and Operation Protective Edge: Ceasefire at Long Last???

(26 August 2014)

Tayyip Erdoğan: Talking Tough, Walking Lame!!!

‘Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan says Israel will be brought into account for “tyranny” and justice will be served. Gavino Garay reports (3 August 2014)’.


Or, one could say, like any good Muslim, Tayyip Erdoğan is sure of divine retribution, promising his believers that adopting a wait-and-see policy is the only thing one can do in order not to detract the higher power from delivering the goods . . . In the end, talking tough while walking lame is what the self-proclaimed “darling” of the Arab street (on account of his One Minute stunt at Davos) does best . . .

Associate Professor Savaş Genç from the International Relations Department of the Fatih University in Istanbul asks wryly “[w]hat cards does Ankara have to play to reach a peaceful solution in Gaza? Did Ankara threaten not to allow Israeli gas to pass through Turkey? Did it say that it’s going to cut Turkey’s trade ties with Israel? Or did Ankara say that Turkey will end its military relationship with Israel? If not, how is Ankara going to be an effective negotiator? . . . Mr. Erdoğan is very skillful in transforming the pain of others into votes. The Turkish public perceives Erdoğan as the hero of the Egyptians and Syrians. However, all Erdoğan is doing is playing politics. Be aware that Ankara has paid no attention at all to the Ukraine crisis so as not to disturb Russia and, thus, has not heard a word of complaint from the Crimean Tatars [either]”.[1]


[1] “Erdoğan uses Gaza as domestic policy instrument” Today’s Zaman (03 August 2014). https://www.todayszaman.com/monday-talk_erdogan-uses-gaza-as-domestic-policy-instrument_354488.html.

Uncut Chronicles: Gaza-Israel War. Deadly July 2014

‘The IDF (Israeli Defense Forces) began their current operation against Hamas after three teens were kidnapped and killed. The military op has already claimed over 1,500 civilian lives in Gaza. The fragile humanitarian ceasefires end within minutes of creation pushing the region into further bloodshed (3 August 2014)’.

Obama Speaks on Wednesday, 16 July 2014


‘President Barack Obama announced new sanctions on Russian companies after he said the Russia had failed to de-escalate the situation in Ukraine (16 July 2014)’.

The Electronic Intifada on Al Jazeera

The pan-Arab yet strangely “neutral” Al Jazeera speaks to Electronic Intifada‘s Ali Abunimah (20 November 2012).

Now that a ceasefire has been agreed upon, on the Inter Press Service or IPS the Electronic Intifada’s Mohammed Omer reports from Gaza City that “Israel says it has hit 1,450 targets in the Gaza Strip since assassinating Hamas’ most senior military leader in a missile strike on 14 November. The eight-day attack killed 162 Palestinians, including 42 children (a number of them still babies), 11 women and 18 elderly people, the oldest 82 years of age. In all 1,222 have so far been listed as injured, more than half of them women and children. Rockets fired from Gaza have killed five Israelis. Israel’s air strikes have hit several locations in the Gaza Strip. The targets have included civilians’ houses, apartment blocks, most of the security units, the ministry of interior office, the prime minister’s office, police stations, roads and bridges connecting camps, naval forces, and journalists’ offices and media centers. Three journalists have been killed, and eight injured. Israeli leaflets were dropped telling the population to leave their homes all over the northern Gaza Strip: Beit Lahiya, Beit Hanoun, Atatra and the surrounding locations. Women and children have been heading to schools run by the UN agency for Palestine refugees (UNRWA) for refuge after fleeing the northern Gaza Strip. Refugees are sleeping on the floor in these buildings”.[1]


[1] Mohammed Omer, “Father and two sons among 162 slain by Israel in Gaza” IPS (22 November 2012).

Gaza November 2012: Ceasefires and Elections

Ceasefire: Egypt Manages the Crisis; More US Arms for Israel

The George and Martha Kellner Chair in South Asian History and Professor of International Studies at Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut (, USA) ‘Vijay Prashad: Egypt brokers Gaza crisis working with US; Palestinians won’t give up their struggle; There will be no accountability for Israel’s illegal war (21 Nov 2012)’.

Last Thursday, 14 November, Vijay Prashad wrote that “on 14 November, the United Nations Security Council met to discuss Israel’s bombardment of Gaza. As elections in Israel are on the horizon, the Israeli Defense Force conducted an extra-judicial assassination of Hamas’ Ahmad Jabari, who only hours beforehand had received a draft of a permanent truce agreement with Israel (according to Nir Hasson at Haaretz). Jabari’s assassination was followed by a barrage by Israeli aircraft and warships. A few rockets were fired from Gaza, but these have had a negligible impact”.[1]

Prashad goes on that the “war on Gaza is not between two armed forces, even matched, each flying the flag of a country; it is a war between a major military power and a people that it has occupied, whose means of warfare used to be the suicide bomber and has now devolved to the erratic rockets (propelled by sugar and potassium nitrate, a fertilizer, and made deadly by TNT and urea nitrate, another fertilizer). Most of the rockets fired over the past two days have been intercepted by Israel’s sophisticated Iron Dome system. No such luck for the Palestinians, who have faced US-designed F16 jetfighters and Apache helicopters and have no defensive systems”.[2]

Now that the Egypt-brokered ceasefire is in place, it appears hard to determine who the real winners are . . . and the fact that this whole thing was started as part of Bibi’s pre-election drive to galavanise Israeli voters is really quite a disgusting proposition. But, it seems not just Israeli election politics will apparently benefit from this 8-day bombardment in the end . . .

[1] Vijay Prasad, “The Agonies of Susan Rice: Gaza and the Negroponte Doctrine” Jadalyiya (14 November 2012). http://www.jadaliyya.com/pages/index/8419/the-agonies-of-susan-rice_gaza-and-the-negroponte-.

[2] Vijay Prasad, “The Agonies of Susan Rice: Gaza and the Negroponte Doctrine”.

Operation Cast Lead Redux or Bibi’s Election Gambit 2012-13

On Thursday, 15 November, RT reported that ‘Israel’s military operation started on Wednesday [, 14 November] with a strike killing Hamas military leader Ahmed Jabari. Since then, reports say, the IDF has struck around 200 targets in Gaza. Furthermore, Israel is threatening to go as far as initiating a ground operation, sparking fears of a repetition of the Cast Lead scenario. The Israeli Defense Force (IDF), which has engaged in a Twitter showdown since the very beginning of the strikes, said it targets only “terror sites”. However, this has been questioned by witnesses on social media who point out that only four people of the 13 so far killed by Israeli airstrikes were Hamas militants, while the rest were civilians, including women and children’.[1]

With Palestinian rockets now targeting Tel Aviv, the firefight between Israeli forces and Hamas appears to be spreading beyond the Gaza Strip where it began some days ago. It is a deadly circumstance for both the Palestinians and Israel notes Fellow Natan Sachs, and there are fears that it could escalate into a ground war (16 November 2012).

Why did Israel attack the Gaza strip???  The above-quoted RT report correctly points out that ‘attack’s timing is under question with a looming Israeli election’.[2]  As reported by AFP and AP, even the Turkish PM remaked upon this coincidence: the “Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan accused Israel of aggressively attacking . . . the Gaza Strip. According to Erdogan, Israel’s strikes were motivated by the Knesset elections scheduled to take place in about two months. Erdogan said he would speak by phone with US President Barack Obama later on Friday [, 16 November] and that Ankara was also seeking talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin amid the prospect of a full Israeli ground invasion”.[3]  Here is Tariq Ali weighing in on the issue on RT.

And here is Abby Martin explaining the back-story to the present conflict.

[1] “Decision bombing? Israel’s ‘election attack’ triggers Gaza war spiral” RT (15 Nov 2012). http://rt.com/news/israel-gaza-strike-election-758/.

[2] “Decision bombing? Israel’s ‘election attack’ triggers Gaza war spiral”.

[3] “Erdogan: Israel striking in Gaza because of elections” AFP/AP (November 2012). http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4306825,00.html.