TOI-Billboard, October 14: The new rejectionists

Published: Sun 15 Oct 2006 06:42 PM
The new rejectionists
TOI-Billboard, October 14, 2006
The coming three weeks there will be no TOI-Billboard - but you can always find updates at
If the Labor party / Will now give its hand to / Avigdor Lieberman / A despicable racist / The enemy of peace / What reason is there / For its existence? (concluding part of Gush Shalom's ad in Haaretz, October 13).
There were this week two moves: The effort of Olmert to bring into the government the arch-racist Avigdor Lieberman, and the simultaneous move of launching another major offensive into the Gaza Strip in which 19 Palestinians were killed in the last 48 hours alone and hundreds abducted to a newly-created detention camp outside the Gaza Strip. Meanwhile, the government rejects out of hand all initiatives aimed at solving the problesm, and which may force the Olmert government to withdrawals for which it feels too weak after the Lebanon debacle.
--TOI's selection of this week's Occupation Magazine's daily picks
comment & analysis
Illusions of Unilateralism Dispelled in Israel
Yoav Peled - MERIP - "The peace course is already urged by what is left of Israel’s liberal punditry, and the Olmert government, desperate to hold on to power, has released a few trial balloons in that direction, as well as in all others. It is still quite difficult to imagine the peace camp being revived, or what its concrete political program would look like. But the elimination of the unilateral option by the actions of Hamas and Hizballah raises the hope, for the first time in six years, that this line of development is at least possible."
The new rejectionist
Gershon Baskin - The Jerusalem Post -"Preconditionality, it should be understood, is also reciprocal. If Israel demands recognition, than it must grant recognition. Even senior Hamas leaders have said that they would be willing to recognize Israel, but first Israel must say which Israel they should recognize - in what borders - and that Israel too must recognize Palestine."
The King of the Jungle
Rima Merriman -- The Electronic Intifada -- "The logic of the jungle is the logic of the Oslo Accords, which is basically a (mis)understanding between the strong and the weak. For such a relationship to work in the animal world, the weak party must continually show submission by exposing its neck and belly to the dominant party, and the strong party must continually strut its stuff. Among human beings, such a relationship is a recipe for elemental violence, not elemental harmony"
An Interview with Tanya Reinhart -- the Roadmap to Nowhere
Tanya Reinhart -- Counterpunch -- “Sharon`s legacy, as it unfolds in the period covered in this book, is eternal war, not just with the Palestinians, but with what the Israeli army views as their potential network of support, be it Lebanon now, or Iran and Syria tomorrow. At the same time, what Sharon`s legacy has brought to perfection is that war can be always marketed as the tireless pursuit of peace. Sharon proved that Israel can imprison the Palestinians, bombard them from the air, steal their land in the West Bank, stall any chance for peace, and still be hailed by the Western world as the peaceful side in the Israel-Palestine conflict”
Despite the "withdrawal`, the siege of Gaza goes on
John Dugard - The Independent/Commondreams - Israel`s attack on Gaza has taken several forms. On the military front, it has made repeated incursions in which both militants and civilians have been killed. Targeted assassinations have continued, accompanied by "collateral damage" - the name Israel gives to the indiscriminate killing of civilians who happen to be in the proximity.
Palestine as poetry (Mahmoud Darwish in Hebrew)
Sami Shalom Chetrit - Ha`aretz - Edward Said once said of Darwish`s poetry that it is `an epic effort to transform the lyrics of loss into the indefinitely postponed drama of return.` In this respect, too, Darwish resembles a Jewish Diaspora poet who, through his words, transforms the hopeless expectation for redemption. He exchanges the poetry of mourning for redemption. Again and again he reinvents a cut-down realm of longings, as in Darwish`s words on exile: `Exile is not a geographical situation, I take it with me everywhere, just as I take my homeland, a land of words.
MIFTAH`s Facts & Figures
MIFTAH - Statistics and numbers documented September 28th, 2000 - October 09, 2006
On and from activism
Palestinians, Israelis and Internationals `armed` with grapes arrested and beaten near Bethlehem
ISM -- “50 villagers from Al Khader joined by Israeli and International supporters marched from the village to the military checkpoint on route 60 with bags of grapes to protest the economic siege […] The farmers intended to give their grapes away to passing motorists so they wouldn`t just rot”
Critics accuse Israel of blocking Palestinians` access to healthcare
Daily Star staff- Daily Star (Lebanon) - In a report obtained by The Associated Press, the [Physicians For Human Rights] group claimed the Shin Bet internal security agency wields a veto over the issue of permits and has a policy of automatically classifying Palestinians as dangerous, although it regularly backed down when challenged by the rights group to justify its decisions.
“Military Interrogation” - Report based on information received from the Public Committee Against Torture
United Against Torture (UAT)/PCATI (Public Committee Against Torture in Israel) - "“Swissa” began to gradually tilt Mr. A. O. backwards until his head touched the floor and he pressed on Mr.A.O.’s neck to keep him from resisting the tilting of his back and made him feel as if he were choking. “Sagiv” then pulled Mr. A.O.’s manacles forward."
Judge orders probe over Palestinian cameraman hurt in Bil`in
Meron Rapoport - Haaretz - "An Israel Defense Forces judge on Tuesday ordered the army to open an inquiry into the affair of a Palestinian cameraman wounded over the weekend after soldiers arrested him during a demonstration against the separation fence in the West Bank village of Bil`in."
Rabbi leads defence of Palestinian olive groves
Ian MacKinnon - The Times - Mr Karni, 58, a Muslim, can go about his business without threat largely because of a rabbi who has co-ordinated with the Israeli Army and police to be on the spot to provide protection. Rabbi Arik Ascherman peers through binoculars towards the Har Berakha settlement near Nablus, in the West Bank, for signs of trouble.
B`Tselem: 1.4 million Gazans without electricity twelve hours a day
Israel must finance the rehabilitation of the power plant it bombed in the Gaza Strip. This is one of the conclusions of B`Tselem`s new report, Act of Vengeance, which describes and analyzes the harsh effects of the Israeli Air Force`s destruction of the power plant in June. B`Tselem states that the bombing was illegal, and calls on the government to finance upgrading the infrastructure for transferring electricity from Israel to the Gaza Strip; to reinstate legislation permitting individuals and entities harmed by the bombing to sue Israel for compensation; to open criminal investigations against the persons who planned and carried out the attack, with the intention of prosecuting them; and to prohibit the IDF from attacking civilians and civilian objects.
Weekly Digest: Reports from Checkpoints, 1.10.06--7.10.06
MachsomWatch -- Bir Naballah, Thursday, 5.10.06, 16:00: “A young man was kneeling between concrete blocks, handcuffed. ‘He has attacked the CO of the earlier shift.’ Has the police been informed? ‘I do not know.’ How long is he kneeling like this? ‘I do not know.’ What will happen with him? No answer. We asked to loosen the handcuffs, which was done 10 minutes later. The man said he had been kneeling there since 13:00, and denied attacking anybody. […] An hour later, some young friends of the handcuffed man, who happen to pass by, promised solemnly ‘that he will never do it again’ (do what??), and the man was released. 4 hours of kneeling handcuffed for what?”
Peace Now Reveals New Topics on Israeli Illegal Colonies in West Bank
WAFA - "It focuses on the illegal outposts of Hayovel and Haresha."
(see also: )
Help The Ghalia Family
On June 9th, 2006, the Ghalia family was severely hit in an Israeli attack, during a picnic on the Gaza beach. The incident received worldwide attention mostly due to the horrifying video footage taken minutes later of devastated Huda Ghalia (11 y.o.) next to the dead body of her father, Ali (43 y.o.). The family has literally lost everything.
Other 'peace news'
We Can`t Go Home Again
SAM BAHOUR - The New York Times - "I need a residency card from Israel to live with my Palestinian family in my grandfather`s home in the Palestinian West Bank."
Mashaal okays state with 1967 borders Staff - Jerusalem Post - Hamas politburo leader Khaled Mashaal reiterated Wednesday that his group would not recognize Israel. In an interview published Thursday in the London-based Arabic daily Al-Hayat and cited by Maariv, Mashaal said he was willing to accept a Palestinian state within 1967 borders, as well as a hudna [truce] with Israel but not to recognize the "occupation."
Hamas against recognition of Israel as precondition to talks; not excluding peaceful coexistence
Reuters - - "Let`s force Israel to compromise. Let us keep some cards in our possession. We have seen the fate of those who accepted recognition as a precondition for negotiations. They have gained nothing. (...) A joint Palestinian government could be formed if we listen to our prisoners, the cries of our wounded and the souls of our martyrs," [Mashaal] said.
A Dovish Jewish Lobby in Washington - and what about AIPAC?
Shmuel Rosner - Haaretz - It is fair to say that American Jewry leans toward the dovish end of the political spectrum. It can also be said, and to a great extent proved, that AIPAC does not always rush to represent this dominant dovish sentiment. (...) Howard Khor, executive director of AIPAC, is certain that the damage has already been done: Presenting AIPAC as an organization that does not represent the overall Jewish community necessarily undermines its power.
Israel eases restrictions, expands checkpoints
Ali Waked - Ynet - "New UN data shows that despite easing of restrictions, the number of checkpoints rose by 40 percent over the past year. "It`s not just the number, it`s mostly the abusive treatment towards Palestinians" says Machsom Watch"
Forbidden to settlers, not the state
Amira Hass - Haaretz - "The Israeli occupation establishment constantly imposes various forms of harassment on Palestinians engaged in agriculture, one of the foundations of the Palestinians` existence: the separation fence, which imprisons the lands of 42 villages behind it; the settlers` constantly expanding security fences; the expropriation of lands for the construction of bypass roads and security roads; the destruction of wells; the closure of various areas (including the entire Jordan Valley) for military purposes; the closing of roads to Palestinian vehicles; the checkpoints every few kilometers; the diversion of trucks carrying produce to long and badly paved roads; the waiting in line for hours and days at Israeli crossings; the closing of the Gaza crossing for months, thereby making it impossible for Gazans to market agricultural produce; the discouraging bureaucracy required at Civil Administration bases to obtain a pass to reach one`s own lands - or to not obtain it at all."
Italian probe: Israel used new weapon prototype in Gaza Strip
Meron Rapoport - Haaretz - "The legs of the injured were sliced from their bodies "as if a saw was used to cut through the bone.""
Olmert`s true colors
Tom Segev - Haaretz - "A decent person should not even think about bringing into the government a man who wants to remove from the state one out of every five citizens, just because they are not Jewish."
Report: Pregnancies (and miscarriages) at checkpoints on the rise
IMEMC - Since the Intifada began, there has been a 100% increase in home deliveries, and a shocking 56% increase in stillbirths among Palestinian mothers.
Occupation Magazine (articles and action news, look at it daily - includes a useful archive)
ISM website (informing especially about joint Palestinian-Israeli-international anti-Wall struggle in the villages)
Robert Rosenberg's summary of "peace" issues in the Israeli media (on workdays) (a variety of papers, followed dayly by Shadi Fadda) (Palestinian press agency, including own research) (Palestinian on-line News agency that publishes news and articles in English from it's own as well as other sources, including from the Hebrew press)
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