Israel’s War Against Palestine: Documenting the Military Occupation of Palestinian and Arab Lands


In annual report, international human rights group says Israeli blockade ‘hit hardest on the most vulnerable – children, the elderly, the homeless and the sick’; claims Israel ‘forcibly evicts Palestinians, demolishes their homes and expropriates their land.’

Today is the 21st day since the arrest of Ameer Makhoul at his home in Haifa, Israel, under the cover of darkness, by officers of the International Crimes Investigation Unit and General Security Service (GSS or Shabak). The arrest was conducted in a brutal and terrifying manner.

Citing the US and Israeli refusal of the Arab Peace Initiative since 1976 until this day, Chomsky countered the mainstream argument that it is Palestinian rejectionism that is blocking a settlement. “These facts are not part of general discourse because they lead to the wrong conclusion. The most crucial facts are invisible if they do not conform to the interests of power,” he said. “If the US changes its policy, Israel has no option but to go along – the parameters agreed upon at Taba would be a start.”

Of all the world’s statesmen, the one closest to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. They have met four times since Netanyahu returned to power, and unlike U.S. President Barack Obama, Mubarak has no qualms about shaking Netanyahu’s hand in public. “Ties are much closer than they seem,” said a highly placed Israeli source.

IOA Editor: A credible analysis, from an Israeli-standpoint, of the very close relationship between the Mubarak government and Israel.

Israel faces unprecedented pressure to abandon its official policy of “ambiguity” on its possession of nuclear weapons as the international community meets at the UN in New York this week to consider banning such arsenals from the Middle East. Israel’s equivocal stance on its atomic status was shattered by reports that it offered to sell nuclear-armed Jericho missiles to S. Africa’s apartheid regime in 1975.

Makhoul’s brother, former MK Issam Makhoul… accused the Shin Bet of employing illegitimate means to “trump up” charges against his brother. The Shin Bet has denied allegations that it used torture to extract information from the suspects. “We will demand that an outside body headed by a judge investigate this matter,” Issam Makhoul said. “We will not hesitate to appeal to an international agency. There’s no doubt that we are about to see a trumped-up case manufactured by the Shin Bet, which operated in dark corners and backrooms to put this together. The results of their investigation should be viewed with doubt.”

The bill, which was proposed a few weeks ago, struck resonance with a ministerial committee that on Sunday approved the bill, following the arrest this month of Israeli Arab Ameer Makhoul on suspicion of spying for Hezbollah.

Although photojournalist Imad Bornat from Bil’in was acquitted over a year ago on charges of assaulting an officer, police still regard his case as “open” and continue to bar him from entering Israel.

Defense Minister Peres, 1974: “This cooperation [Israel - South-Africa] is based not only on common interests and on the determination to resist equally our enemies, but also on the unshakable foundations of our common hatred of injustice and refusal to submit to it.”

President Peres on judge Richard Goldstone: “A small man, devoid of any sense of justice.”

“I guess most Israelis would view me as a traitor… They would ask what right does someone who wasn’t born in Israel and who didn’t serve in the army have to criticize the state? But I came here out of great love, and I don’t intend to keep quiet just because I came from afar. I believe that there is no choice, that Israelis and Palestinians will live together. When I try to build connections between the two sides, I’m working for Israel’s good. The Bil’in people are very special… But they are not a rare species. There are many Palestinians like them.”

Sixty-five percent of Arab citizens believe in a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, compared to 90 percent seven years ago. Forty percent said they don’t believe in Israel’s judicial system, and a similar number said they support boycotting Knesset elections (compared to one in three in 2003).

Nawi’s conviction points to a relatively recent development regarding the restriction of resistance, to extremely passive modes of protest. And, in some cases, even these kinds of protests are prohibited, as in Sheikh Jarrah where activists are repeatedly arrested simply for demonstrating against the seizure of Palestinian homes in East Jerusalem.

The Palestinian village of Sheikh Sa’ad has been essentially disconnected from the outside world by the Israeli defense establishment. This is one of those stories that make me, as an Israeli, feel truly shameful.

Review and debate, including Robert Fisk, Charlie Wolfe, Ibrahim Mousawi

The Israeli artist and writer, Shimon Tzabar, lived in London in a self imposed political exile, in protest against the Israeli occupation. Shimon died in 2007, but his legacy of supporting the Palestinians is still alive. Four limited edition prints will be sold to raise funds for Palestinian artists in Yibna refugee camp in Gaza. The prints prices range from £400-600.

“Denying my entry to the West Bank was a minor event, but significant because it indicates irrational behavior on the part of Israel,” the linguist Noam Chomsky said at the start of his lecture last Tuesday to a few dozen students and faculty members of Bir Zeit University. He delivered his lecture, “Americans and the World,” by video conference, of course: He in Amman, his audience in one of the university’s lecture halls.

Secret South African documents reveal that Israel offered to sell nuclear warheads to the apartheid regime, providing the first official documentary evidence of the state’s possession of nuclear weapons.

Noam Chomsky interviewed by a raving Israeli Channel 2 News reporter.

Alon Liel, former Israeli ambassador to Pretoria: “When we came to the crossroads in 86-87, in which the foreign ministry said we have to switch from white to black, the security establishment said, ‘You’re crazy, it’s suicidal’. They were saying we wouldn’t have military and aviation industries unless we had had South Africa as our main client from the mid-1970s; they saved Israel. By the way, it’s probably true.”

Please consider adding your name to the protest of Israel’s barring Noam Chomsky from entering the West Bank in order to deliver a speech at Birzeit University.

The state land authority has been allowed to hire or purchase land only for Jews. Non-Jews are not allowed… land that was ours in the past and confiscated. In the early 1950s, we [Palestinian Arab citizens] owned 80% of the private land. Now we own 3% of the private land.

[N]either Chomsky nor I are have any illusions about the limits of the aforementioned initiatives or their possible (if not probable) failure in the face of Israel’s hubris and the power disparity between the parties. But Chomsky also alluded to the lesson of a movement that succeeded, not by waiting for favorable political conditions to hand it the vision it sought, but by moving ahead with building its project and waiting for the right political conditions to incrementally achieve what it did.

Mordechai Vanunu: “Shame on you Israel… The stupid Shin Bet and Mossad spies are putting me back in prison after 24 years of speaking nothing but the truth. Shame on you democracy, the Knesset, synagogues and the world media. Shame on you all the Arabs that are allowing me to be put back in prison. Shame on you Senate, congress, and the chairman of the International Atomic Energy Agency for not protecting my freedom. Shame on you all the world’s religions, the stupid spies, the Jews, Christians and Muslims… Everyone knows that Israel has nuclear weapons, but no one is talking about it… The world doesn’t want nuclear weapons – not in Israel, not in the Middle East and not anywhere in the world.”

IOA Editor: In the original Hebrew version of this news story, Haaretz conforms to common Israeli practice by referring to Vanunu as the “nuclear spy” – knowing fully well that whatever he did involved no espionage whatsoever.

Gush Shalom wrote to the Minister of the Interior – and considers a Supreme Court appeal – demanding clear and transparent criteria for who shall be denied entry into the country and for what arguments. “Such decisions cannot be left to anonymous officials and security operatives, who become a thought police and censor political opinions.”

Two Italian supermarkets have announced that they plan to stop selling all Israeli products as they could not differentiate whether they came form West Bank settlements or inside the Green Line.

The main source of Jewish hatred and bigotry against Arabs today comes from the orthodox, and especially the modern orthodox… The Israeli religious Zionism that has produced the settler movement is unaffected by universal moral values…

IOA Editor: Despite the sentimentalist views on historical Orthodox Judaism, important criticism of the US Orthodox Jewish community, pointing to it as the source of Arab hate. Surprisingly, the writer doesn’t mention that this is not an ‘argument’ but an outright attack on a Palestinian woman whose Sheikh-Jarrah house has been occupied by Jewish settlers.

The U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday voted in favor of President Barack Obama’s plans to help Israel fund the deployment of the Iron Dome anti-missile defense system. Lawmakers, by a 410-4 margin, backed Obama’s plan to give Israel 205 million dollars for its production of a short-range rocket defense system.

Yesterday the Petah Tikva Magistrate’s Court extended Makhoul’s remand for another five days. It also extended the remand of the other suspect in the case, Dr. Omar Saeed, until Sunday, and extended a gag order on reporting most of the case’s details until Monday.

[F]rom a military and intelligence-sharing perspective, the Obama administration is the best U.S. administration Israel has ever had. Administration critics were trying to distort that, he said, and Obama and his Jewish supporters in Congress needed to set the record straight.

IOA Editor: The more things change, the more they remain the same. So much for “Hope,” so much for “Change”.

Gideon Levy on Israeli-style democracy, one that is run by a military elite: “After we sent Prof. Noam Chomsky away, and there was no sharp rebuke by Israeli academics (who in their silence support a boycott of Bir Zeit University), we will be left with a narrow and frightening intellectual world.”

[C]reate a park at the site in memory of the people buried there, serving all the city’s residents… the part of the cemetery that remains should be restored and cared for; it should be turned into one of the sites that Jerusalem is proud of. The absence of construction on the excavation site must be part of the healing process that Jerusalem so needs: healing through tolerance.

According to Egyptian sources, Israel provided Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak with an outline of Qatar’s proposal, which would allow it to bring construction materials and other goods into the Strip… Israel’s rejection of the plan, it seems, resulted largely from Egyptian opposition.

Amid rumors of tension between the Hamas government and Egypt, on Saturday, May 15, 2010, the Rafah border crossing between Gaza and Egypt was opened to the passage of people wishing to enter and exit the Gaza Strip. The border had been closed for 72 days prior to this latest opening.

The decision to resume opposition to the project follows a Haaretz investigation into excavation at the site, located in the Mamilla area of Jerusalem, and the damage it has caused to hundreds of graves there. The museum is being built by the Los Angeles-based Simon Wiesenthal Center.

“Israel,” Chomsky was informed, “doesn’t like what you say.” Is this a reasonable pretext for a democratic state to detain someone for questioning or hold him up at the border? And who is this “Israel” that doesn’t like what Chomsky says? The general public? The Interior Ministry? The Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories? The government?

Mohammed Zeidan, head of the Human Rights Association in Nazareth: “We are used to our political leaders being persecuted but now the Shin Bet is turning its sights on the leaders of Palestinian civil society in Israel, and that’s a dangerous development.”