US Drones that kill innocent Civilians is Murder – CIA chiefs face arrest

CIA chiefs face arrest over horrific evidence of bloody ‘video-game’ sorties by drone pilots

By David Rose

October 21 2012

The Mail on Sunday today reveals shocking new evidence of the full horrific impact of US drone attacks in Pakistan.

A damning dossier assembled from exhaustive research into  the strikes’ targets sets out in heartbreaking detail the deaths of teachers, students and Pakistani policemen. It also describes how bereaved relatives are forced to gather their loved ones’ dismembered body parts in the aftermath of strikes.

The dossier has been assembled by human rights lawyer Shahzad Akbar, who works for Pakistan’s Foundation for Fundamental Rights and the British human rights charity Reprieve.

Filed in two separate court cases, it is set to trigger a formal murder investigation by police into the roles of two US officials said to have ordered the strikes. They are Jonathan Banks, former head of the Central Intelligence Agency’s Islamabad station, and John A. Rizzo, the CIA’s former chief lawyer. Mr Akbar and his staff have already gathered further testimony which has yet to be filed.

How the attacks unfolded…

‘We have statements from a further 82 victims’ families relating to more than 30 drone strikes,’ he said. ‘This is their only hope of justice.’

In the first case, which has already been heard by a court in Islamabad, judgment is expected imminently. If the judge grants Mr Akbar’s petition,  an international arrest warrant will be issued via Interpol against the  two Americans.

The second case is being heard in the city of Peshawar. In it, Mr Akbar and the families of drone victims who are civilians are seeking a ruling that further strikes in Pakistani airspace should be viewed as ‘acts of war’.

They argue that means the Pakistan Air Force should try to shoot down the drones and that the government should sever diplomatic relations with the US and launch murder inquiries against those responsible.

According to a report last month by academics at Stanford and New York universities, between 2,562 and 3,325 people have been killed since the strikes in Pakistan began in 2004.

The report said of those, up to  881 were civilians, including 176  children. Only 41 people who had  died had been confirmed as ‘high-value’ terrorist targets.

Getting at the truth is difficult because the tribal regions along the frontier are closed to journalists. US security officials continue to claim that almost all those killed are militants who use bases in Pakistan to launch attacks on Western forces across the border in Afghanistan.

In his only acknowledgement that the US has ever launched such attacks at all, President Barack Obama said in January: ‘This is a targeted, focused effort at people who are on a list of active terrorists, who are trying to go in and harm Americans.’

But behind the dry legal papers seen by The Mail on Sunday lies the most detailed investigation into  individual strikes that has yet been  carried out. It suggests that the US President was mistaken.

Missile attacks in in Pakistan have had devastating affects, the dossier revealed

The plaintiff in the Islamabad case is Karim Khan, 45, a journalist and translator with two masters’ degrees, whose family comes from the village of Machi Khel in the tribal region of North Waziristan.

His eldest son, Zahinullah, 18, and his brother, Asif Iqbal, 35, were killed by a Hellfire missile fired from a Predator drone that struck the  family’s guest dining room at about 9.30pm on New Year’s Eve, 2009.

Asif had changed his surname because he loved to recite Iqbal,  Pakistan’s national poet, and Mr Khan said: ‘We are an educated family.  My uncle is a hospital doctor in  Islamabad, and we all work in professions such as teaching.

‘We have never had anything to do with militants or terrorists, and for that reason I always assumed we would be safe.’

Mr Khan said: ‘Zahinullah, who had been studying in Islamabad, had returned to the village to work his way through college, taking a part-time job as a school caretaker.

‘He was a quiet boy and studious – always in the top group of his class.’ Zahinullah also liked football, cricket and hunting partridges.

Asif, he added, was an English teacher and had spent several years taking further courses to improve his qualifications while already in work.

Mr Khan said: ‘He was my kid brother. We used to have a laugh, tell jokes.’ His first child was less than a year old when Asif was killed.

Included in the legal dossier are documents that corroborate Asif and Zahinulla’s educational and employment records, as well as their death certificates. Killed alongside them was Khaliq Dad, a stonemason who was staying with the family while he worked on a local mosque.

Mr Khan, who had been working for a TV station in Islamabad, said he was given the news of their deaths in a 2am phone call from a cousin.

Drones have caused untold damage, and the dossier reveals just how devastating they have been for families

‘I called a friend who had a car and we started driving through the night to get back to the village,’ he said. ‘It was a terrible journey. I was shocked,  grieving, angry, like anyone who had lost their loved ones.’

He got home soon after dawn and describes his return ‘like entering a village of the dead – it was so quiet.  There was a crowd gathered outside the compound but nowhere for them to sit because the guest rooms had been destroyed’.

Zahinullah, Mr Khan discovered, had been killed instantly, but despite his horrific injuries, Asif had survived long enough to be taken to a nearby hospital. However, he died during the night.

‘We always bury people quickly in our culture. The funeral was at three o’clock that afternoon, and more than 1,000 people came,’ Mr Khan said. ‘Zahinullah had a wound on the side of his face and his body was crushed and charred. I am told the people who push the buttons to  fire the missiles call these strikes “bug-splats”.

‘It is beyond my imagination how they can lack all mercy and compassion, and carry on doing this for years. They are not human beings.’

Mr Khan found Mr Akbar through a friend who had attended lectures he gave at an Islamabad university. In 2010, he filed a criminal complaint – known as a first information report – to police naming  Mr Banks. However, they took no action, therefore triggering the  lawsuit – a judicial review of that failure to act.

If the judge finds in favour of  Mr Khan, his decision cannot be appealed, thus making the full criminal inquiry and Interpol warrants inevitable.

According to the legal claim, someone from the Pakistan CIA network led by Mr Banks – who left Pakistan in 2010 – targeted the Khan family and guided the Hellfire missile by throwing a GPS homing device into their compound.

A senior CIA officer said: ‘We do not discuss active operations or  allegations against specific individuals.’

Mr Rizzo is named because of  an interview he gave to a US reporter after he retired as CIA General Counsel last year. In it, he boasted that he had personally authorised every drone strike in which America’s enemies were ‘hunted down and blown to bits’.

He added: ‘It’s basically a hit-list .  .  . The Predator is the weapon of choice, but it could also be someone putting a bullet in your head.’

Last night a senior Pakistani  security official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said that Pakistan’s own intelligence agency, the ISI, has always been excluded by the CIA from choosing drone  targets.

‘They insist on using their own networks, paying their own informants. Dollars can be very persuasive,’ said the official.

He claimed the intelligence behind drone strikes was often seriously flawed. As a result, ‘they are causing the loss of innocent lives’.

But even this, he added, was not  as objectionable as the so-called ‘signature strikes’ – when a drone operator, sitting at a computer screen thousands of miles away in Nevada, selects a target because he thinks the drone camera has spotted something suspicious.

He said: ‘It could be a vehicle  containing armed men heading towards the border, and the operator thinks, “Let’s get them before they get there,” without any idea of who they are.

‘It could also just be people sitting together. In the frontier region, every male is armed but it doesn’t mean they are militants.’

One such signature strike killed more than 40 people in Datta Khel in North Waziristan on March 17 last year. The victims, Mr Akbar’s dossier makes clear, had gathered for a jirga – a tribal meeting – in order to discuss a dispute between two clans over the division of royalties from a chromite mine.

Some of the most horrifying testimony comes from Khalil Khan, the son of Malik Haji Babat, a tribal leader and police officer. ‘My father was not a terrorist. He was not an enemy of the United States,’ Khalil’s legal statement says. ‘He was a hard-working and upstanding citizen, the type of person others looked up to and aspired to be like.’

Khalil, 32, last saw his father three hours before his death, when he left for a business meeting in a nearby town. Informed his father had been killed, Khalil hurried to the scene.

‘What I saw when I got off the bus at Datta Khel was horrible,’ he said. ‘I immediately saw flames and women and children were saying there had been a drone strike. The fires spread after the strike.

‘I went to the location where the jirga had been held. The situation was really very bad. There were still people lying around injured.

‘The tribal elders who had been killed could not be identified because there were body parts strewn about. The smell was awful. I just collected the pieces that I believed belonged to my father and placed them in a small coffin.’

Khalil said that as a police officer, his father had earned a good salary, on which he supported his family. Khalil has considered returning to the Gulf, where he worked for 14 years, but ‘because of the frequency of drones I am concerned to leave my family’.

He added that schools in the area were empty because ‘parents are afraid their children will be hit by  a missile’.

In another statement – one of 13 taken by Mr Akbar concerning the Datta Khel strike – driver Ahmed Jan, 52, describes the moment the missile hit: ‘We were in the middle of our discussion and I was thrown about 24ft from where I was sitting. I was knocked unconscious. When I awoke, I saw many individuals who were injured or dead.

‘I have lost the use of one of my feet and have a rod inserted because of the injuries. It is so painful for me to walk. There are scars on my face because I had to have an operation on my nose when it would not stop bleeding.’

Mr Jan says he has spent £3,600 on medical treatment but ‘I have never been offered compensation of any kind .  .  . I do not know why this jirga was targeted. I am a malik [elder] of my tribe and therefore a government servant. We were not doing anything wrong or illegal.’

Another survivor was Mohammed Noor, 27, a stonemason, who attended the jirga with his uncle and his cousin, both of whom were killed. ‘The parts of their bodies had to be collected first. These parts were all we had of them,’ he said.

Mr Akbar said that fighting back through the courts was the only way ‘to solve the larger problem’ of the ongoing terrorist conflict.

‘It is the only way to break the cycle of violence,’ he said. ‘If we want to change the people of Waziristan, we first have to show them that we respect the rule of law.’

A senior CIA officer said: ‘We do not discuss active operations or  allegations against specific individuals.’ A White House source last night declined to comment. Source

Most of the links in the story below lead to a story. You will have to mouse over them and if an ad doesn’t pop up it is a legitimate link.
Unfortunately those ad links, are all over the web and are rather annoying.

Predator Drone Strikes: 50 Civilians Are Killed For Every 1 Terrorist, and the CIA Only Wants to Up Drone Warfare

By Robert Taylor

While the 2012 presidential election racket focuses on gaffes, Romney’s binders, and Big Bird, the CIA and the Pentagon are currently busy finding ways to increase their military power and influence around the globe. According to the Washington Post, CIA Director David Petraeus wants an increased drone fleet to “bolster the agency’s ability to sustain its campaigns of lethal strikes in Pakistan and Yemen and enable it, if directed, to shift aircraft to emerging Al-Qaeda threats in North Africa or other trouble spots.”

And with the final presidential debate on Monday focusing on foreign policy, the issue of drone strikes could not be more prescient. President Obama and former Governor Romney both carefully tiptoed around discussing anything of real substance concerning domestic issues and the economy, and will both look to outhawk each other next week concerning the use of unmanned armed drones overseas — if it is even discussed at all.

It’s easy to see why they might want to avoid the subject. The use of drone strikes have increased exponentially under the Obama administration, becoming a signature aspect of his incredibly aggressive and reckless foreign policy. And while the president and his advisers defend both their supposed legality and precision while simultaneously bragging when convenient and denying when pressured that the drone program even exists, a closer look at the use of Predator drones tells a very different story.

Despite claims from the administration that drone strikes have killed very few civilians, multiple independent reports confirm that Obama is severely downplaying the wreckage that these drone strikes inflict. It is ultimately impossible to get exact numbers, but a new study from Columbia Law School’s Human Rights Institute finds that the number of Pakistani civilians killed in drone strikes are “significantly and consistently underestimated” by tracking organizations which are trying to take the place of government estimates on casualties.

There are estimates as high as 98% of drone strike casualties being civilians (50 for every one “suspected terrorist”). The Bureau of Investigative Journalism issued a report detailing how the CIA is deliberately targeting those who show up after the sight of an attack, rescuers, and mourners at funerals as a part of a “double-tap” strategy eerily reminiscient of methods used by terrorist groups like Hamas.

These numbers and reports alone should cast much doubt on the effectiveness at protecting the U.S. and combating terrorism that the Obama admnistration uses as justification for drone strikes. If a drone kills an actual terrorist but leaves multiple, sometimes dozens, of innocent civilians vaporized as well, this creates a brand new set of enemies and blowback. According to Jeremy Scahill’s reporting at The Nation, U.S. drone strikes in Yemen are the primary source for Al-Qaeda’s presence in the Arabian Peninsula. Obama’s “signature strikes” — where targets are hit for displaying “suspicious behavior” and which Petraeus also wants to expand — are backfiring and can only boomerang back to us.

While the CIA claims that the drone program operates “under a framework of legal and close government oversight,” multiple legal experts are challenging the legality of the drone program under both American and international law. But much like how the Obama administration is blocking any challenges to the provisions in the NDAA that essentially nullify habeus corpus and Posse Comitatus, any lawsuit or inquiry into the drone program has been met with staunch opposition — especially concerning the targeted assassinations by drones of Anwar Al-Awlaki and his 16-year old son, both U.S. citizens.

The Obama-CIA drone program is the perfect example of government secrecy, lawlessness, and the inevitable next step in the U.S. government’s long tradition of claiming the right to intervene military anywhere and everywhere it pleases. Government programs, whether they be welfare transfer payments or weapons contracts, like cancer, grow for growth’s sake.

Many Americans may display indifference to the use of drones and the CIA’s desire to expand the program. After all, these strikes are done thousands of miles away, and our noble public servants would never mislead us or fearmonger about a supposed foreign threat. Besides, it is far better to have CIA agents in Virginia or Nevada flying weaponized robots by remote control than to send in thousands of Marines, right?

The problem with this, of course, is twofold. First, the basic justification for the use of drones is the threat of terrorism. But terrorism is simply a predictable consequence of an interventionist foreign policy, the propping up of puppet dictators, and the embrace of empire that began after World War II (at least). The use of drones simply compounds this problem, creating more potential terrorists for every one that is killed.

Secondly, foreign and domestic policy are incredibly intertwined, and empires always eventually turn inward. During the occupation of the Philippines, the U.S. government experimented with drug prohibition and torture, programs that eventually became standard domestically. Police are now increasingly resembling, in both attire, attitude, and tactics, their overseas counterparts in Baghdad and Kandahar. Given that in just a few years, drones are set to police American skies, how long will they remained unarmed?

This is why the the drone program, and the CIA’s desire to expand it, are so troubling. More than anything, the issue of whether the President, in a supposedly free society and a constitutional republic, should have this type of power at his fingertips should be front and center.

But since the only critique of Obama’s foreign policy that Romney offers is that it isn’t aggressive enough, the American people will sadly once again be deprived of a debate on the most substantive issues facing the future of what’s left of our republic. Source

Drone attacks kill innocent people. If the US did this in Canada, France, Britain or any other NATO country do you think it would be condemned or condoned?
There is no excuse to do this in Pakistan. Pakistan is not at war with the US. Just like Canada, France or the UK are not at war against the US.
This type of arrogant behavior is not acceptable on any level.
Pakistan is not the only country, who have had many civilians killed by US drones.
Killing innocent people, is murder no matter what the circumstances.
Drone killings are illegal.
Remote-Control Killers

Five Reasons Drone Assassinations are Illegal

May 15, 2012
By BILL QUIGLEY
Bill Quigley is a human rights lawyer who teaches at Loyola University New Orleans and works with the Center for Constitutional Rights.

US civilian and military employees regularly target and fire lethal unmanned drone guided missiles at people across the world.  Thousands of people have been assassinated.   Hundreds of those killed were civilians. Some of those killed were rescuers and mourners.

These killings would be criminal acts if they occurred inside the US.  Does it make legal sense that these killings would be legal outside the US?

Some Facts About Drone Assassinations 

The US has used drones to kill thousands of people in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia.   But the government routinely refuses to provide any official information on local reports of civilian deaths or the identities of most of those killed.

In Pakistan alone, the New America Foundation reports US forces have launched 297 drone strikes killing at least 1800 people, three to four hundred of whom were not even combatants.   Other investigative journalists report four to eight hundred civilians killed by US drone strikes in Pakistan.

Very few of these drone strikes kill high level leaders of terror groups.  A recent article in FOREIGN AFFAIRS estimated “only one out of every seven drone attacks in Pakistan kills a militant leader.  The majority of those killed in such strikes are not important insurgent commanders but rather low level fighters, together with a small number of civilians.”

An investigation by the Wall Street Journal in November 2011 revealed that most of the time the US did not even know the identities of the people being killed by drones in Pakistan.  The WSJ reported there are two types of drone strikes.  Personality strikes target known terrorist leaders.  Signature strikes target groups of men believed to be militants but are people whose identities are not known.  Most of the drone strikes are signature strikes.

In Yemen, there have been at least 34 drone assassination attacks so far in 2012 alone, according to the London based Bureau of Investigative Journalism.  Using drones against people in Yemen, who are thought to be militants but whose names are not even known, was authorized by the Obama administration in April 2012, according to the Washington Post.   Somalia has been the site of ten drone attacks with a growing number in recent months.

Civilian deaths in drone strikes are regularly reported but more chilling is the practice of firing a second set of drone strikes at the scene once people have come to find out what happened or to give aid.  Glen Greenwald of Salon, a leading critic of the increasing use of drones, recently pointed out that drones routinely kill civilians who are in the vicinity of people thought to be “militants” and are thus “incidental” killings.  But also the US also frequently fires drones again at people who show up at the scene of an attack, thus deliberately targeting rescuers and mourners.

Here are five reasons why these drone assassinations are illegal.

One.  Assassination by the US government has been illegal since 1976 

Drone killings are acts of premeditated murder.  Premeditated murder is a crime in all fifty states and under federal criminal law.  These murders are also the textbook definition of assassination, which is murder by sudden or secret attack for political reasons.

In 1976 U.S. President Gerald Ford issued Executive Order 11905, Section 5(g), which states “No employee of the United States Government shall engage in, or conspire to engage in, political assassination.” President Reagan followed up to make the ban clearer in Executive Order 12333. Section 2.11 of that Order states “No person employed by or acting on behalf of the United States Government shall engage in, or conspire to engage in, assassination.” Section 2.12 further says “Indirect participation.  No agency of the Intelligence Community shall participate in or request any person to undertake activities forbidden by this Order.”  This ban on assassination still stands.

The reason for the ban on assassinations was that the CIA was involved in attempts to assassinate national leaders opposed by the US. Among others, US forces sought to kill Fidel Castro of Cuba, Patrice Lumumba of the Congo, Rafael Trujillo of the Dominican Republic, and Ngo Dinh Diem of South Vietnam.

Two.  United Nations report directly questions the legality of US drone killings

The UN directly questioned the legality of US drone killings in a May 2010 report by NYU law professor Philip Alston.  Alston, the UN special rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary, or arbitrary executions, said drone killings may be lawful in the context of authorized armed conflict (eg Afghanistan where the US sought and received international approval to invade and wage war on another country).  However, the use of drones “far from the battle zone” is highly questionable legally.  “Outside the context of armed conflict, the use of drones for targeted killing is almost never likely to be legal.” Can drone killings be justified as anticipatory self-defense?  “Applying such a scenario to targeted killings threatens to eviscerate the human rights law prohibition against arbitrary deprivation of life.” Likewise, countries which engage in such killings must provide transparency and accountability, which no country has done.  “The refusal by States who conduct targeted killings to provide transparency about their policies violates the international law framework that limits the unlawful use of lethal force against individuals.”

Three.  International law experts condemn US drone killings 

Richard Falk, professor emeritus of international affairs and politics at Princeton University thinks the widespread killing of civilians in drone strikes may well constitute war crimes.  “There are two fundamental concerns. One is embarking on this sort of automated warfare in ways that further dehumanize the process of armed conflict in ways that I think have disturbing implications for the future,” Falk said. “Related to that are the concerns I’ve had recently with my preoccupation with the occupation of Gaza of a one-sided warfare where the high-tech side decides how to inflict pain and suffering on the other side that is, essentially, helpless.”

Human rights groups in Pakistan challenge the legality of US drone strikes there and assert that Pakistan can prosecute military and civilians involved for murder.

While stopping short of direct condemnation, international law expert Notre Dame Professor Mary Ellen O’Connell seriously questions the legality of drone attacks in Pakistan.  In powerful testimony before Congress and in an article in America magazine she points out that under the charter of the United Nations, international law authorizes nations to kill people in other countries only in self-defense to an armed attack, if authorized by the UN, or is assisting another country in their lawful use of force.  Outside of war, she writes, the full body of human rights applies, including the prohibition on killing without warning.  Because the US is not at war with Pakistan, using the justification of war to authorize the killings is “to violate fundamental human rights principles.”

Four.  Military law of war does not authorize widespread drone killing of civilians  

According to the current US Military Law of War Deskbook, the law of war allows killing only when consistent with four key principles: military necessity, distinction, proportionality, and humanity.   These principles preclude both direct targeting of civilians and medical personnel but also set out how much “incidental” loss of civilian life is allowed.  Some argue precision-guided weapons like drones can be used only when there is no probable cause of civilian deaths.  But the US military disputes that burden and instead directs “all practicable precautions” be taken to weigh the anticipated loss of civilian life against the advantages expected to be gained by the strike.

Even using the more lenient standard, there is little legal justification of deliberately allowing the killing of civilians who are “incidental” to the killings of people whose identities are unknown.

Five.  Retired high-ranking military and CIA veterans challenge the legality and efficacy of drone killings 

Retired US Army Colonel Ann Wright squarely denies the legality of drone warfare, telling Democracy Now:  “These drones, you might as well just call them assassination machines.  That is what these drones are used for: targeted assassination, extrajudicial ultimate death for people who have not been convicted of anything.”

Drone strikes are also counterproductive.  Robert Grenier, recently retired Director of the CIA Counter-Terrorism Center, wrote, “One wonders how many Yemenis may be moved in the future to violent extremism in reaction to carelessly targeted missile strikes, and how many Yemeni militants with strictly local agendas will become dedicated enemies of the West in response to US military actions against them.”

Recent polls of the Pakistan people show high levels of anger in Pakistan at US military attacks there.  This anger in turn leads to high support for suicide attacks against US military targets.

US Defense of Drone Assassinations 

US officials claim these drone killings are not assassinations because the US has the legal right to kill anyone considered a terrorist, anywhere, if they can argue it is in self-defense.  Attorney General Holder and White House counterterrorism advisor John Brennan recently defended the legality of drone strikes and argued they are not assassinations because the killings are in response to the 9/11 attacks and are carried out in self-defense even when not in Afghanistan or Iraq.  This argument is based on the highly criticized claim of anticipatory self-defense which justifies killings in a global war on terror when traditional self-defense would clearly not.  The government refuses to provide copies of the legal opinions relied upon by the government.

Growing Resistance to Drone Assassinations 

In signs of hope, people in the US are resisting the increasing use of drones.

CODEPINK, the Center for Constitutional Rights and the London-based human rights group Reprieve co-sponsored an International Drone Summit in Washington DC to challenge drone assassinations.   Investigative journalist Jeremy Scahill noted that Congress only managed to scrape up six votes to oppose the assassination of US citizens abroad.  “What is happening to this country? We have become a nation of assassins.   We have become a nation that is somehow silent in the face of the idea that assassination should be one of the centerpieces of US policy.”

The American Society of International Law issued a report “Targeting Operations with Drone Technology: Humanitarian Law Implications” in March 2011.   Concerned that drones may be the future of warfare, scholars examined three questions in the US use of drone technology: the scope of armed conflict (what is the battlefield upon which deadly force of drone killing is authorized); who may be targeted; and the legal implications of who conducts the targeting (since it is often not military but clandestine CIA agents who decide who dies).   Concluding that the US may soon find itself “on the other end of the drone” as this technology expands, they criticize official US silence on these key legal questions.

Others are taking direct action.  Select examples include: fourteen people arrested in April 2009 outside Creech Air Force base in Nevada in connection with a protest against drones by the Nevada Desert Experience; in January 2010 people protested drones outside the CIA headquarters in Langley Virginia; in April 2011, thirty-seven were arrested at Hancock Air Force base in upstate New York as part of a four hundred person protest against the use of drones;  in October 2011, as part of the International Week of Protest to Stop the Militarization of Space there were protests outside of Raytheon Missile Systems plant in Tucson;  in April 2012, twenty-eight people were pre-emptively arrested on their way to protest drones at Hancock Air Force Base.

There is a brilliant new book, DRONE WARFARE authored by global activist Medea Benjamin which documents the nuts and bolts of the drone industry and the money involved in their production and operation.  She collects many global media reports of innocent civilian deaths, investigations into these deaths, and gives voice to international opposition groups like her own CODEPINK, Voices for Creative Nonviolence, Fellowship of Reconciliation, War Resisters International, Human Rights Watch, the Catholic Worker movement, Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, and others working against the drones.

As National Public Radio and The New Republic jointly editorialized, there is good reason to doubt the veracity of US claims that drone killings are even effective.  Drone use has escalated and expanded the US global war on terror and thus should be subject to higher levels of scrutiny than it is now.  As the use of drones escalates so too does the risk of killing innocents which produces “legitimate anti-American anger that terrorist recruiters can exploit….Such a steady escalation of the drone war, and the inevitable increase in civilian casualties that will accompany it, could easily tip the delicate balance that assures we kill more terrorists than we produce.”

There is incredible danger in allowing US military and civilians to murder people anywhere in the world with no public or Congressional or judicial oversight.  This authorizes the President and the executive branch, according to the ACLU and the Center for Constitutional Rights, to be prosecutor, judge, jury and executioner.

The use of drones to assassinate people violates US and international law in multiple ways.  US military and civilian employees, who plan, target and execute people in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia are violating the law and, ultimately, risk prosecution.  As the technology for drone attacks spreads, protests by the US that drone attacks by others are illegal will sound quite hollow.  Continuation of flagrantly illegal drone attacks by the US also risks justifying the exact same actions, taken by others, against us. Source
If the US did this in your country or you, how would you feel about it?

Imagine for a few moments, that it happened to your family or friends.

Imagine it happened to your next door neighbors or to you, yourself.

Well you could be next. Something to think about for a while.

Something else to think about. Those who tell the truth, can end up in prison.

President Obama Keeps a Yemeni Journalist in Jail

As the battle continues against NDAA the indefinite detention a journalist is being detained for exposing US lies about the murder of civilians in a drone strike.

Why would President Obama want a Yemeni journalist, known for his reports of human rights abuses, to remain in Yemeni prison?

That’s the question Abdul Ilah Haydar Shayi’ wants to know after two years in detention following his reports – later proven correct — that the United States was involved in a deadly attack on an alleged al-Qa’ida training camp which took place on Dec. 17, 2009. For the entire story go to the Source

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Israel attacks Gaza Flotilla in International Waters

June 4, 2010 updates added at bottom. Updates of upcoming protests and a petition to the United Nations have been added. Will be adding more as I find them.

Israel is violating international law.  UN Security Council resolution 1860, passed in January 2009,  calls for an end to the Gaza blockade and to allow the unimpeded flow of aid into the region.

Reports on deaths of victims of the Israeli attack varies from 9 to 19 depending on which reports you read.

Israelis opened fire before boarding Gaza flotilla, say released activists:

First eyewitness accounts of raid contradict version put out by Israeli officials

By Dorian Jones in Istanbul and Helena Smith

June 01, 2010

Survivors of the Israeli assault on a flotilla carrying relief supplies to Gaza returned to Greece and Turkey today, giving the first eyewitness accounts of the raid in which at least 10 people died.

Arriving at Istanbul’s Ataturk airport with her one-year-old baby, Turkish activist Nilufer Cetin said Israeli troops opened fire before boarding the Turkish-flagged ferry Mavi Marmara, which was the scene of the worst clashes and all the fatalities. Israeli officials have said that the use of armed force began when its boarding party was attacked.

“It was extremely bad and very tough clashes took place. The Mavi Marmara is filled with blood,” said Cetin, whose husband is the Mavi Marmara’s chief engineer.

She told reporters that she and her child hid in the bathroom of their cabin during the confrontation. “The operation started immediately with firing. First it was warning shots, but when the Mavi Marmara wouldn’t stop these warnings turned into an attack,” she said.

“There were sound and smoke bombs and later they used gas bombs. Following the bombings they started to come on board from helicopters.”

Cetin is among a handful of Turkish activists to be released; more than 300 remain in Israeli custody. She said she agreed to extradition from Israel after she was warned that conditions in jail would be too harsh for her child.

“I am one of the first passengers to be sent home, just because I have baby. When we arrived at the Israeli port of Ashdod we were met by the Israeli interior and foreign ministry officials and police; there were no soldiers. They asked me only a few questions. But they took everything – cameras, laptops, cellphones, personal belongings including our clothes,” she said.

Kutlu Tiryaki was a captain of another vessel in the flotilla. “We continuously told them we did not have weapons, we came here to bring humanitarian help and not to fight,” he said.

“The attack on the Mavi Marmara came in an instant: they attacked it with 12 or 13 attack boats and also with commandos from helicopters. We heard the gunshots over our portable radio handsets, which we used to communicate with the Mavi Marmara, because our ship communication system was disrupted. There were three or four helicopters also used in the attack. We were told by Mavi Marmara their crew and civilians were being shot at and windows and doors were being broken by Israelis.”

Six Greek activists who returned to Athens accused Israeli commandos of using electric shocks during the raid.

Dimitris Gielalis, who had been aboard the Sfendoni, told reporters: “Suddenly from everywhere we saw inflatables coming at us, and within seconds fully equipped commandos came up on the boat. They came up and used plastic bullets, we had beatings, we had electric shocks, any method we can think of, they used.”

Michalis Grigoropoulos, who was at the wheel of the Free Mediterranean, said: “We were in international waters. The Israelis acted like pirates, completely out of the normal way that they conduct nautical exercises, and seized our ship. They took us hostage, pointing guns at our heads; they descended from helicopters and fired tear gas and bullets. There was absolutely nothing we could do … Those who tried to resist forming a human ring on the bridge were given electric shocks.”

Grigoropoulos, who insisted the ship was full of humanitarian aid bound for Gaza “and nothing more”, said that, once detained, the human rights activists were not allowed to contact a lawyer or the Greek embassy in Tel Aviv. “They didn’t let us go to the toilet, eat or drink water and throughout they videoed us. They confiscated everything, mobile phones, laptops, cameras and personal effects. They only allowed us to keep our papers.”

Turkey said it was sending three ambulance planes to Israel to pick up 20 more Turkish activists injured in the operation.

Three Turkish Airlines planes were on standby, waiting to fly back other activists, the prime minister’s office said. “Source

Israeli Murders, NATO and Afghanistan

By Craig Murray

June 02, 2010

I was in the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office for over 20 years and a member of its senior management structure for six years, I served in five countries and took part in 13 formal international negotiations, including the UN Convention of the Law of the Sea and a whole series of maritime boundary treaties. I headed the FCO section of a multidepartmental organisation monitoring the arms embargo on Iraq.

I am an instinctively friendly, open but unassuming person who always found it easy to get on with people, I think because I make fun of myself a lot. I have in consequence a great many friends among ex-colleagues in both British and foregin diplomatic services, security services and militaries.

I lost very few friends when I left the FCO over torture and rendition. In fact I seemed to gain several degrees of warmth with a great many acquantances still on the inside. And I have become known as a reliable outlet for grumbles, who as an ex-insider knows how to handle a discreet and unintercepted conversation.

What I was being told last night was very interesting indeed. NATO HQ in Brussels is today a very unhappy place. There is a strong understanding among the various national militaries that an attack by Israel on a NATO member flagged ship in international waters is an event to which NATO is obliged – legally obliged, as a matter of treaty – to react.

I must be plain – nobody wants or expects military action against Israel. But there is an uneasy recognition that in theory that ought to be on the table, and that NATO is obliged to do something robust to defend Turkey.

Mutual military support of each other is the entire raison d’etre of NATO. You must also remember that to the NATO military the freedom of the high seas guaranteed by the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea is a vital alliance interest which officers have been conditioned to uphold their whole career.

That is why Turkey was extremely shrewd in reacting immediately to the Israeli attack by calling an emergency NATO meeting. It is why, after the appalling US reaction to the attack with its refusal to name Israel, President Obama has now made a point of phoning President Erdogan to condole.

But the unhappiness in NATO HQ runs much deeper than that, I spoke separately to two friends there, from two different nations. One of them said NATO HQ was “a very unhappy place”. The other described the situation as “Tense – much more strained than at the invasion of Iraq”.

Why? There is a tendency of outsiders to regard the senior workings of governments and international organisations as monolithic. In fact there are plenty of highly intelligent – and competitive – people and diverse interests involved.

There are already deep misgivings, especially amongst the military, over the Afghan mission. There is no sign of a diminution in Afghan resistance attacks and no evidence of a clear gameplan. The military are not stupid and they can see that the Karzai government is deeply corrupt and the Afghan “national” army comprised almost exclusively of tribal enemies of the Pashtuns.

You might be surprised by just how high in Nato scepticism runs at the line that in some way occupying Afghanistan helps protect the west, as opposed to stoking dangerous Islamic anger worldwide.

So this is what is causing frost and stress inside NATO. The organisation is tied up in a massive, expensive and ill-defined mission in Afghanistan that many whisper is counter-productive in terms of the alliance aim of mutual defence. Every European military is facing financial problems as a public deficit financing crisis sweeps the continent. The only glue holding the Afghan mission together is loyalty to and support for the United States.

But what kind of mutual support organisation is NATO when members must make decades long commitments, at huge expense and some loss of life, to support the Unted States, but cannot make even a gesture to support Turkey when Turkey is attacked by a non-member?

Even the Eastern Europeans have not been backing the US line on the Israeli attack. The atmosphere in NATO on the issue has been very much the US against the rest, with the US attitude inside NATO described to me by a senior NATO officer as “amazingly arrogant – they don’t seem to think it matters what anybody else thinks”.

Therefore what is troubling the hearts and souls of non-Americans in NATO HQ is this fundamental question. Is NATO genuinely a mutual defence organisation, or is it just an instrument to carry out US foreign policy? With its unthinking defence of Israel and military occupation of Afghanistan, is US foreign policy really defending Europe, or is it making the World less safe by causing Islamic militancy?

I leave the last word to one of the senior NATO officers – who incidentally is not British:
“Nobody but the Americans doubts the US position on the Gaza attack is wrong and insensitve. But everyone already quietly thought the same about wider American policy. This incident has allowed people to start saying that now privately to each other.”

Craig Murray is a human rights activist, writer, former British Ambassador, and an Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Lancaster School of Law. Visit his blog http://www.craigmurray.org.uk

Source

Israel‘s Moral Superiority?
Netanyahu: World ‘Hypocritical’ for Condemning Gaza Flotilla Raid

In first address to nation, Netanyahu says had Turkish-flagged ship breached blockade, so could hundreds of vessels carrying weapons.

By Barak Ravid

June 02, 2010

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday defended the Israel Navy’s raid of a pro-Palestinian convoy en route to the Gaza Strip earlier this week, in his first address to the nation regarding the botched operation which left nine people dead and several more wounded.

Netanyahu accused international critics of “hypocrisy” and declared that Israel would continue to blockade the Hamas-run Palestinian enclave, saying that to lift the embargo would turn it into a base for Iranian missiles that would threaten both Israel and Europe.

“Iran is continuing to smuggle weapons into Gaza,” said Netanyahu in a televised address. “It is our obligation to prevent these weapons from being brought in by land and sea. The previous government understood this and imposed a closure.”

“The goal of the flotilla was to breach [the closure] and not to bring goods, as we would have allowed them to do,” said Netanyahu. “If the blockade had been broken, dozens and hundreds more ships carrying weapons could have come.”

Netanyahu, who canceled his trip to Washington and a meeting with President Barack Obama due to the raid, declared that Israel had no opposition to seeing humanitarian aid brought into the Gaza Strip.

But Hamas’ growing armament was a cause for concern and a crucial reason to leave the blockade in place, said the prime minister. Without a blockade and intense inspection of every ship nearing the area, said Netanyahu, “Gaza will turn into an Iranian port.”

Nanyahu told his political-security cabinet during a special session on Tuesday that international condemnation would not stop Israel’s naval blockade of the Gaza Strip.

The raid of the Turkish-flagged ship awakened a storm of criticism among Israel’s friends and foes alike, leading many members of the United Nations Security Council – including Britain – to call on Israel to lift its years-long siege of the Hamas-ruled coastal territory.

At a special meeting convened in the wake of the raid, Netanyahu told his ministers that the blockade was still necessary to prevent weapons from being smuggled into the Gaza Strip.

“We know from the experience of Operation Cast Lead that the weapons entering Gaza are being turned against our civilians,” Netanyahu said, referring to Israel’s three-week offensive on the Gaza Strip that ended in January 2009.

“Gaza is a terror state funded by the Iranians, and therefore we must try to prevent any weapons from being brought into Gaza by air, sea and land,” he said.

Netanyahu acknowledged that militants were still capable of smuggling weapons in via tunnels from Egypt, but emphasized that the large amounts of weapons that could be brought by sea made the threat a completely different affair.

“On the Francop ship alone we confiscated some 200 tons of weapons being smuggled to Hezbollah,” the prime minister said, in reference to the Antiguan-flagged ship Israel intercepted off the coast of Cyprus in November 2009.

“Opening a naval route to Gaza will present an enormous danger to the security of our citizens,” said Netanyahu. “Therefore, we will stand firm on our policy of a naval blockade and of inspecting incoming ships.”

“It’s true that there is international pressure and criticism of this policy, but [the world] must understand that it is crucial to preserving Israel’s security and the right of the State of Israel to defend itself.”

Source
The Flotilla was not a threat to anyone in Israel.
What a BS. If anyone believes the Flotilla was a threat quick go find a Psychiatrist. You need one obviously.
Self defense against defenseless people delivering Humanitarian Aid??? Who is Netanyahu trying to kid?
Does he think everyone on the planet has “Complete Idiot” written across their foreheads. He is really pushing the Gullibility factor.

I for one am completely and utterly insulted, if thinks I am that stupid.

Israel is the perpetrator of the crimes in this case.

Israel attacks Gaza aid fleet

Israeli forces have attacked a flotilla of aid-carrying ships aiming to break the country’s siege on Gaza.

At least 19 people were killed and dozens injured when troops intercepted the convoy of ships dubbed the Freedom Flotilla early on Monday, Israeli radio reported.

The flotilla was attacked in international waters, 65 km (or just over 35 Nautical miles) off the Gaza coast.

Avital Leibovich, an Israeli military spokeswoman, confirmed that the attack took place in international waters, saying: “This happened in waters outside of Israeli territory, but we have the right to defend ourselves.”

Footage from the flotilla’s lead vessel, the Mavi Marmara, showed armed Israeli soldiers boarding the ship and helicopters flying overhead.

Al Jazeera’s Jamal Elshayyal, on board the Mavi Marmara, said Israeli troops had used live ammunition during the operation.

The Israeli military said four soldiers had been wounded and claimed troops opened fire after “demonstrators onboard attacked the IDF Naval personnel with live fire and light weaponry including knives and clubs”.

Free Gaza Movement, the organisers of the flotilla, however, said the troops opened fire as soon as they stormed the convoy.

Our correspondent said that a white surrender flag was raised from the ship and there was no live fire coming from the passengers.

Before losing communication with our correspondent, a voice in Hebrew was clearly heard saying: “Everyone shut up”.

Israeli intervention

Earlier, the Israeli navy had contacted the captain of the Mavi Marmara, asking him to identify himself and say where the ship was headed.

Shortly after, two Israeli naval vessels had flanked the flotilla on either side, but at a distance.

Organisers of the flotilla carrying 10,000 tonnes of humanitarian aid then diverted their ships and slowed down to avoid a confrontation during the night.

They also issued all passengers life jackets and asked them to remain below deck.

Al Jazeera’s Ayman Mohyeldin, reporting from Jerusalem, said the Israeli action was surprising.

“All the images being shown from the activists on board those ships show clearly that they were civilians and peaceful in nature, with medical supplies on board. So it will surprise many in the international community to learn what could have possibly led to this type of confrontation,” he said.

Meanwhile, Israeli police have been put on a heightened state of alert across the country to prevent any civil disturbances.

Sheikh Raed Salah, a leading member of the Islamic Movement who was on board the ship, was reported to have been seriously injured. He was being treated in Israel’s Tal Hasharon hospital.

In Um Al Faham, the stronghold of the Islamic movement in Israel and the birth place of Salah, preparations for mass demonstrations were under way.

Protests

Condemnation has been quick to pour in after the Israeli action.

Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian president, officially declared a three-day state of mourning over Monday’s deaths.

Turkey, Spain, Greece, Denmark and Sweden have all summoned the Israeli ambassador’s in their respective countries to protest against the deadly assault.

Thousands of Turkish protesters tried to storm the Israeli consulate in Istanbul soon after the news of the operation broke. The protesters shouted “Damn Israel” as police blocked them.

“(The interception on the convoy) is unacceptable … Israel will have to endure the consequences of this behaviour,” the Turkish foreign ministry said in a statement.

Ismail Haniya, the Hamas leader in Gaza, has also dubbed the Israeli action as “barbaric”.

Hundreds of pro-Palestinian activists, including a Nobel laureate and several European legislators, were with the flotilla, aiming to reach Gaza in defiance of an Israeli embargo.

The convoy came from the UK, Ireland, Algeria, Kuwait, Greece and Turkey, and was comprised of about 700 people from 50 nationalities.

But Israel had said it would not allow the flotilla to reach the Gaza Strip and vowed to stop the six ships from reaching the coastal Palestinian territory.

The flotilla had set sail from a port in Cyprus on Sunday and aimed to reach Gaza by Monday morning.

Israel said the boats were embarking on “an act of provocation” against the Israeli military, rather than providing aid, and that it had issued warrants to prohibit their entrance to Gaza.

It asserted that the flotilla would be breaking international law by landing in Gaza, a claim the organisers rejected. Source

UNITED NATIONS CONVENTION ON THE LAW OF THE SEA

SECTION 2. LIMITS OF THE TERRITORIAL SEA

Article 3

Breadth of the territorial sea

Every State has the right to establish the breadth of its territorial sea up to a limit not exceeding 12 nautical miles, measured from baselines determined in accordance with this Convention.

http://www.un.org/Depts/los/convention_agreements/texts/unclos/closindx.htm

The flotilla was attacked in international waters, 65 km = over 35 nautical miles off the Gaza coast.

For all the Israeli’s knew the Flotilla could have been headed to Egypt to dock and have the goods transported to Gaza via the Egyptian boarder as well.

Either way what Israel did was a violation of International Law of the Sea. The Flotilla was under no obligation to stop for the Israelis as they were over the 12 Nautical miles out to sea at the time Israel attacked them..

Israel has no legal right to arrest anyone or hold any ships hostage. Israel committed an act of deliberate, premeditated, murder and piracy. Other crimes also include assault and battery, kidnapping and imprisonment of innocent civilians, and theft.

The people in the Flotilla  had committed absolutely no crime what so ever.

If I thought about it for a while I could come up with a few more charges that should be laid against the Israelis.

It could be a long list of violations. Murder, kidnapping, assault and battery,theft on land or sea are crimes and those responsible should be charged and imprisoned for their crimes, as any of us would be, if we committed these crimes.

If Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu allowed this and he did, he is as guilty of these crimes as those who committed them. He is responsible and should be tried for these crimes as well, as any other Government Representative or other Official who ordered or allowed  these crimes to be committed.

UNITED NATIONS CONVENTION ON THE LAW OF THE SEA

SECTION 1. GENERAL PROVISIONS

Article 86

Application of the provisions of this Part

The provisions of this Part apply to all parts of the sea that are not included in the exclusive economic zone, in the territorial sea or in the internal waters of a State, or in the archipelagic waters of an archipelagic State. This article does not entail any abridgement of the freedoms enjoyed by all States in the exclusive economic zone in accordance with article 58.

Article 87

Freedom of the high seas

1. The high seas are open to all States, whether coastal or land-locked. Freedom of the high seas is exercised under the conditions laid down by this Convention and by other rules of international law. It comprises, inter alia, both for coastal and land-locked States:

(a) freedom of navigation;

(b) freedom of overflight;

(c) freedom to lay submarine cables and pipelines, subject to Part VI;

(d) freedom to construct artificial islands and other installations permitted under international law, subject to Part VI;

(e) freedom of fishing, subject to the conditions laid down in section 2;

(f) freedom of scientific research, subject to Parts VI and XIII.

2. These freedoms shall be exercised by all States with due regard for the interests of other States in their exercise of the freedom of the high seas, and also with due regard for the rights under this Convention with respect to activities in the Area.

Article 88

Reservation of the high seas for peaceful purposes

The high seas shall be reserved for peaceful purposes.

Article 89

Invalidity of claims of sovereignty over the high seas

No State may validly purport to subject any part of the high seas to its sovereignty.

Article 90

Right of navigation

Every State, whether coastal or land-locked, has the right to sail ships flying its flag on the high seas.

http://www.un.org/Depts/los/convention_agreements/texts/unclos/closindx.htm

Article 101

Definition of piracy

Piracy consists of any of the following acts:

(a) any illegal acts of violence or detention, or any act of depredation, committed for private ends by the crew or the passengers of a private ship or a private aircraft, and directed:

(i) on the high seas, against another ship or aircraft, or against persons or property on board such ship or aircraft;

(ii) against a ship, aircraft, persons or property in a place outside the jurisdiction of any State;

(b) any act of voluntary participation in the operation of a ship or of an aircraft with knowledge of facts making it a pirate ship or aircraft;

(c) any act of inciting or of intentionally facilitating an act described in subparagraph (a) or (b).

Article 102

Piracy by a warship, government ship or government aircraft

whose crew has mutinied

The acts of piracy, as defined in article 101, committed by a warship, government ship or government aircraft whose crew has mutinied and taken control of the ship or aircraft are assimilated to acts committed by a private ship or aircraft.

Article 103

Definition of a pirate ship or aircraft

A ship or aircraft is considered a pirate ship or aircraft if it is intended by the persons in dominant control to be used for the purpose of committing one of the acts referred to in article 101. The same applies if the ship or aircraft has been used to commit any such act, so long as it remains under the control of the persons guilty of that act.

http://www.un.org/Depts/los/convention_agreements/texts/unclos/closindx.htm

Egypt opened its border with the Gaza Strip for an unlimited amount of time. Seems Egypt is not pleased with Israel over this attack.

Turkey is calling for Israel to be severely punished for it’s acts of violence against innocent civilians.

Protests have broken out in many countries over the incident.

Jordanians protest Israeli raid on Gaza-bound flotilla

Jordanians took to the streets in Amman on Monday, protesting the Israeli raid on a flotilla of aid ships bound for Gaza Strip.

During a march from the Jordanian professional associations’ headquarters to the Prime Ministry, the demonstrators chanted slogans against Israel, calling for closing the Israeli embassy in Amman.

The demonstrators urged the government to expel the Israeli ambassador in Amman and annul the Wadi Arabia peace treaty Jordan and Israel signed in 1994. Source

Thousands in Istanbul protest against Israeli attack on flotilla


East Bay Citizens Condemn Israel Attack on Gaza Aid Flotilla

Minneapolis Demonstration Against Israeli Attack on Gaza Freedom Flotilla

US citizen Emily Henochowicz was shot directly in the face with a tear gas canister as she non-violently demonstrated against the Flotilla massacre she lost her left eye. Source

Photos of Protests from: Turkey, Malaysia, Pakistan, Egypt, Greece, Netherlands, Belgium, Israel, Cyprus, Britain, West Bank,  France, Indonesia, US, Lebanon

America Complicit In Israel’s Crimes

As I write at 5pm on Monday, May 31, all day has passed since the early morning reports of the Israeli commando attack on the unarmed ships carrying humanitarian aid to Gaza, and there has been no response from President Obama except to say that he needed to learn “all the facts about this morning’s tragic events” and that Israeli prime minister Netanyahu had canceled his plans to meet with him at the White House.

Obama’s 12-hour silence in the face of extreme barbarity is his signal to the controlled corporate media to remain on the sidelines until Israeli propaganda sets the story. Source

Related

Gaza Flotilla Drives Israel Into a Sea of Stupidity

Remember  to add this when you protests or write to a Government officials.

Israel is violating international law.  UN Security Council resolution 1860, passed in January 2009,  calls for an end to the Gaza blockade and to allow the unimpeded flow of aid into the region. The flotilla was attacked in international waters, 65 km (or just over 35 Nautical miles) off the Gaza coast. Israel had no legal right to stop them.

Keep up the pressure – End the siege of Gaza
Call on Canadian politicians to condemn the murder of the Gaza flotilla activists.
Global Day of Action – Saturday, June 5

International pressure is growing to end the siege of Gaza. The murder of the flotilla activists has thrust the issue into the mainstream, forcing governments around the world to speak out against the blockade.

Not surprisingly, Stephen Harper has not condemned the attacks and supported the U.S. initiative to water down the UN security council resolution on an investigation into the crimes. Both the U.S. and Canada have said that, rather than have the UN hold an independent investigation, Israel should investigate itself. This self-examination will be a smokescreen designed to hide the truth.

We in Canada have to speak out and demand that Harper stop being silent on war crimes, whether in Afghanistan or Palestine.

What can you do?

  • Join the events this week. Events are posed on the CPA website.

Palestinian groups are urging people to organize a global day of protest this Saturday, June 5. Many CPA members groups are already organizing events on Saturday and we are calling on peace activists to either join events already organized or, where there is no event, to try and organize one in your city. If you are organizing an event send the details to cpa@web.ca so we can post the information. Please feel free to contact the CPA for materials and information about the day of action.
To read the global call for action check the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions National Committee (BNC) website.

There are also events each day in Canada condemning the attacks. Please keep checking the CPA website for the most up-to-date events listings for Canada. For global event listings check out the Gaza Freedom March website.

  • Send a letter to your MP

Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East have put out a call for you to write letters to Canadian MP’s urging them to condemn the attacks. Click here to go to the website and send your letter.

Event Listings
Halifax
Israeli Attack on Humanitarian Aid Shipment
No to Israeli War Crimes! Support Gaza and the Palestinian People!
Join the Daily Mass Informational Pickets and Vigil

4 – 5 p.m. Wednesday (June 2), Thursday (June 3), Friday (June 4)

Maritime Mall (Aliant Bldg., where the passport office is)
Barrington Street and foot of Spring Garden Road

We call on everyone to join the people of the world in condemning the murderous attack on the Freedom Flotilla

Ad Hoc Committee to Defend Palestine
e-mail: shunpike@shunpiking.com
Hamilton
Bring this Message to Harper:
Lift the Siege of Gaza NOW!
Stop the killing of innocents!
Demand the release of Canadian prisoners!

Friday, June 4th
Federal Government Building in Hamilton – 55 Bay St. North
Across the Street from Copps Colosseum – 5:00 p.m.

Ample parking is available

NO TO PIRACY!!!
NO TO WAR CRIMES!!
Hamilton Coalition to Stop the War

Montreal
Samedi 5 Juin 13h30
coin Peel et St-Catherine
Place Dorchester
métro Peel

Apportez vos drapeaux, vos pancartes originales, vos instruments de musique!

http://www.tadamon.ca/post/6961

Appel pour une action de solidarité à Montréal avec les victimes du massacre de la flottille humanitaire “Gaza Freedom Flotilla” et le peuple palestinien. Manifestons au centre-ville de Montréal pour appeler à la fin du siège israélien sur Gaza et la fin de la complicité du Canada dans l’apartheid israélien. Cette manifestation sera coordonnée avec plusieurs d’autres à travers le monde ce samedi, en réponse à l’appel de la société civile palestinien pour des manifestations globales.

Ottawa:
Gaza Freedom Flotilla Global Day of Action in Ottawa – Rally and March
3:00pm.
Saturday, June 5, 2010
Human Rights Monument
Organized by the Ottawa Palestine Solidarity Network
http://notowarcrimes.blogspot.com | ottawa.palestine@gmail.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=122130111158157

Penticton, BC
Rally at Stockwell Day’s Office

The Penticton Peace Groups believes that the Israeli government has committed new war crimes in an act of piracy and murder against the flotilla of small ships delivering humanitarian aid to Gaza.

We are calling on the people of the south Okanagan to take this message to MP Stockwell Day’s office, this Saturday, June 5, 2010 at noon, meeting at Nanaimo Square.
For more information contact: Brigid Kemp at: bridiekemp@gmail.com

Toronto:
Gaza Freedom Flotilla
Global Day of Action: Saturday, June 5

Rally and March
Date: Saturday, June 5
Time: 1:00 p.m.
Location: Israeli Consulate, 180 Bloor Street West

June 5 also marks the 43rd anniversary of the Israeli occupation of Gaza and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem. Our action aims to draw the world’s attention to Israel’s continuing illegal occupation, its refusal to abide by international law, and its massacre of innocent humanitarian workers.

Organized by:
Coalition Against Israeli Apartheid, Palestine House Community Centre, Canadian Arab Federation, Toronto Coalition to Stop the War, Canadian Peace Alliance

Find us on Facebook: http://bit.ly/dBPiGY
To endorse, please email endapartheid@riseup.net.

Waterloo
Protest: Israel`s Flotilla Raid, Tuesday June 8

We would like to invite you to join us at 1pm on Tuesday, June 8th in the SLC courtyard for a march around campus to bring awareness to the humanitarian crisis involving Gaza and the Freedom Flotilla. We feel is is extremely important to bring as much awareness of this issue at this time and express our deepest disapproval of the actions committed by the Israeli Defense Forces. We hope to see you there! Should you have any questions, comments,or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us.

For more information please see: Students for Palestinian Rights

Winnipeg
Peace Alliance Winnipeg, Independent Jewish Voices and CanPalNet, will be holding a demonstration to show our solidarity with the people of Gaza, to express our sorrow at the murder of peaceful activists, and to join hands with people around the world in expressing our outrage at Israel’s actions.

Please join us.

Friday, June 4, 2010
4:00 to 6:00 p.m. Broadway Avenue and Osborne Street in Winnipeg. For more information please see: Peace Alliance Winnipeg

From the Jewish Voice for Peace

When I got the news about Israel’s armed attack on the Gaza Flotilla at 2:30 am on the morning of May 31, I felt sick. I immediately called a dear friend in Jerusalem, one of the most committed activists I know.  Across the ocean, I could hear in her voice that she was in tears. “The worst part about it, ” she said, “is that nothing will change.”

“No,” I replied. “I can’t believe that can be true.  Things have to change.””Well,” she said, “then it is up to you, the internationals.”

She’s right. It is up to us, the internationals both here in the United States and abroad.

That is why I want you to send a message to US President Obama if you live outside of the United States, and to Obama and the US Congress if you are a U.S. resident, demanding the immediate release of the detained human rights activists, an end to the siege on Gaza, an impartial investigation of the attack on the flotilla, and a suspension of US aid until Israel abides by international law.We still don’t know a lot about what happened to the flotilla of boats carrying some 700 human rights activists from around the world and over 10 tons of humanitarian aid to Gaza– Israel has kept the activists under a near total media blackout while sharing only its implausible narrative of events. What we do know is that Israeli commandos boarded a ship in international waters and killed at least ten activists, injuring dozens of others.

Israel insists that highly trained commandos were forced to lethally fire on activists, creating a new definition of self-defense. In the first alternative accounts to appear, an Israeli Knesset member and an Al Jazeera cameraman who were on board the ship at the time each described something different, a scene of chaos with civilians waving white flags and commandos using stun guns, rubber bullets and tear gas. Regardless of what actually happened when armed soldiers landed, Israel’s wanton killing of civilians is unacceptable.

We still don’t know th
e names of those who were killed or injured, or where they are from. And we don’t know the whereabouts or well-being of more than 400 activists still being held by Israel.

These deaths, and the attacks on the boats, have hit all of us around the world particularly hard. There were people from 40 different countries on board the ships, including Israelis and Palestinians. Israel sent armed commandos onto a civilian ship in international waters, a brazenly illegal act to enforce Israel’s nearly 3-year illegal siege of Gaza – a siege that has left 1.5 million men, women and children living like prisoners on substandard diets, deprived of the simplest things like potato chips, musical instruments, and toys. The flotilla wasn’t just about this one delivery of aid. It was about the right of Palestinians to have sea, land and air routes to the rest of the world and for the need to end the blockade.

I know that there comes a point in one’s life when you simply have to take a stand. You cannot sit by silently and watch ongoing and wholly unjustified destruction of life, tacitly supported by governments around the world, and simply do nothing.

The flotilla was filled with people just like you and me who finally decided it was time to risk life and limb to take a stand, to break through those prison walls, and we thank them for it.

Now, as citizens of the world, we owe it to the people of Palestine, and the people of Israel who want to live in peace, and the brave people on that flotilla, to build the movement to make Israel accountable to international law and standards of simple human decency – especially because our governments have failed us.

he response of the U.S. government thus far has been wholly inadequate, with a mild statement “regretting the loss of life,” without assigning any blame for the fiasco, let alone applying any sanctions for Israel’s acts.  Please, join me in telling President Obama and Congress enough is enough

. US taxpayer dollars fund Israel’s occupation, and together with wall to wall uncritical diplomatic support have sent the message that any Israeli action, no matter how foolhardy, will be backed by the full might of the United States.

It’s time for that to stop.

We must also continue to build the already massive global people’s movement for justice, which has undeniably found its greatest impact in the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement. This is about all of the ways, big and small, people can bypass their often ineffective governments to use economic pressure to make the Israeli government accountable to international law. After launching our energetic support for campus efforts to divest from the occupation, Jewish Voice for Peace will let you know soon about our own divestment campaign to help bring pressure on Israel to reach a just solution.It is time for the United States, as Israel’s closest ally and most powerful nation in the world, to stop unconditional support for the Israeli government.Doing so will protect Israelis and Palestinians, American citizens, and internationals alike.

Click here to demand that President Obama and Congress call for an immediate lifting of the siege of Gaza,

An international and impartial investigation into the tragic killing of civilians in a humanitarian mission, and the suspension of military aid to Israel until he can assure the American public that our aid is not used to commit similar abuses.
Rebecca Vilkomerson,
Executive Director,
Jewish Voice for Peace

PS, We’ve prepared posters in PDF format that you can use at protests, in your car window or on bulletin boards. Download them here.

http://www.whitehouse.gov/contact

Also a Petition to the UN

Israel’s deadly raid on a flotilla of aid ships headed for Gaza has shocked the world.

Israel, like any other state, has the right to self-defence, but this was an outrageous use of lethal force to defend an outrageous and lethal policy — Israel’s blockade of Gaza, where two thirds of families don’t know where they’ll find their next meal.

The UN, EU, and nearly every other government and multilateral organization have called on Israel to lift the blockade and, now, launch a full investigation of the flotilla raid. But without massive pressure from their citizens, world leaders might limit their response to mere words — as they have so many times before.

Let’s make the world’s outcry too loud to ignore. Join the petition for an independent investigation into the raid, accountability for those responsible, and an immediate end to the blockade in Gaza — click to sign the petition, and then forward this message to everyone:

http://www.avaaz.org/en/gaza_flotilla_1/?vl

The petition will be delivered to the UN and world leaders, as soon as it reaches 200,000 names — and again at every opportunity as it grows and leaders choose their responses. A massive petition at a moment of crisis like this one can demonstrate to those in power that sound bites and press releases aren’t enough — that citizens are paying attention and demanding action.

As the EU decides whether to expand its special trade relationship with Israel, as Obama and the US Congress set next year’s budget for Israeli military aid, and as neighbours like Turkey and Egypt decide their next diplomatic steps — let’s make the world’s voice unignorable: it’s time for truth and accountability on the flotilla raid, and it’s time for Israel to comply with international law and end the siege of Gaza. Sign now and pass this message along:

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Total number of suspected Mossad agents involved in Dubai assassination reaches 32

Total number of suspected Mossad agents involved in Dubai assassination reaches 32

Dubai names five new suspects in Hamas murder
May 7 2010

Total number of suspected Mossad agents involved in Dubai assassination reaches 32.
DUBAI – Dubai police have named five new suspects in the assassination of a senior Hamas official at a hotel in the Gulf emirate, bringing the total number to 32, Al-Arabiya news channel reported on Friday.

The murder is widely believed to be carried out by the Mossad, Israel’s notorious secret service.

Police said two of the new suspects in Mahmud al-Mabhuh’s assassination in January held French passports, another two travelled on British passports, and the other, a woman, had an Australian passport, the Dubai-based channel said.

It gave the names in Arabic, while Dubai police were not reachable for comment.

International police agency Interpol has already issued arrest notices for 27 suspects wanted by Dubai in connection with the murder of Mabhuh, who was found dead in his Dubai hotel room on January 20.

The assassination has caused diplomatic tension over the alleged falsification of Western passports by Israel’s Mossad spy agency.

London in March kicked out an Israeli diplomat citing “compelling reasons” to believe that Israel was responsible for the misuse of British passports.

The Dubai police had said 12 people linked to the murder used cloned British passports, four had French travel documents, six carried Irish passports and one used a German identity.

Four Australian passports were also used in the operation.

Meanwhile, two Palestinians were arrested in Jordan and extradited to Dubai over connections to the killing, according to police.

Australia said on Friday that it was investigating reports that a fifth Australian passport had been linked to the assassination.

Dubai police chief General Dahi Khalfan has said Mabhuh was drugged and then suffocated in his hotel room.

The emirate’s security service showed surveillance video footage from Mabhuh’s hotel detailing the movements of the alleged assassination squad.  Source

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Drone Pilots Could Be Tried for ‘War Crimes’

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Published in: on May 8, 2010 at 4:00 am  Comments Off on Total number of suspected Mossad agents involved in Dubai assassination reaches 32  
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Drone Pilots Could Be Tried for ‘War Crimes’

Drone Pilots Could Be Tried for ‘War Crimes,’ Law Prof Says
By Nathan Hodge
April 29, 2010

The pilots waging America’s undeclared drone war in Pakistan could be liable to criminal prosecution for “war crimes,” a prominent law professor told a Congressional panel Wednesday.

Harold Koh, the State Department’s top legal adviser, outlined the administration’s legal case for the robotic attacks last month. Now, some legal experts are taking turns to punch holes in Koh’s argument.

It’s part of an ongoing legal debate about the CIA and U.S. military’s lethal drone operations, which have escalated in recent months — and which have received some technological upgrades. Critics of the program, including the American Civil Liberties Union, have argued that the campaign amounts to a program of targeted killing that may violate the laws of war.

In a hearing Wednesday before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform’s national security and foreign affairs panel, several professors of national security law seemed open to that argument. But there are still plenty of caveats, and the risks to U.S. drone operators are at this point theoretical: Unless a judge in, say, Pakistan, wanted to issue a warrant, it doesn’t seem likely. But that’s just one of the possible legal hazards of robotic warfare.

Loyola Law School professor David Glazier, a former Navy surface warfare officer, said the pilots operating the drones from afar could — in theory — be hauled into court in the countries where the attacks occur. That’s because the CIA’s drone pilots aren’t combatants in a legal sense. “It is my opinion, as well as that of most other law-of-war scholars I know, that those who participate in hostilities without the combatant’s privilege do not violate the law of war by doing so, they simply gain no immunity from domestic laws,” he said.

“Under this view CIA drone pilots are liable to prosecution under the law of any jurisdiction where attacks occur for any injuries, deaths or property damage they cause,” Glazier continued. “But under the legal theories adopted by our government in prosecuting Guantánamo detainees, these CIA officers as well as any higher-level government officials who have authorized or directed their attacks are committing war crimes.”

The drones themselves are a lawful tool of war; “In fact, the ability of the drones to engage in a higher level of precision and to discriminate more carefully between military and civilian targets than has existed in the past actually suggests that they’re preferable to many older weapons,” Glazier added. But employing CIA personnel to carry out those armed attacks, he concluded, “clearly fall outside the scope of permissible conduct and ought to be reconsidered, particularly as the United States seeks to prosecute members of its adversaries for generally similar conduct.”

Drone attacks haven’t just become the primary weapon in the American bid to wipe out Al Qaeda and affiliated terrorist networks. “Very frankly, it’s the only game in town in terms of confronting or trying to disrupt the al Qaeda leadership,” CIA director Leon Panetta said.

But that “embrace of the Predator program has occurred with remarkably little public discussion, given that it represents a radical new and geographically unbounded use of state-sanctioned lethal force,” The New Yorker’s Jane Mayer recently observed. Before 9/11, the American government regularly condemned Israel for taking out individual terrorists. “Seven years later, there is no longer any doubt that targeted killing has become official U.S. policy.”

The U.S. government has since defended the strikes as legitimate self-defense — without going into details about the operations. Kenneth Anderson, an American University law professor, said the government’s reluctance to talk about the missions — as well as its reliance on an intelligence agency to carry out military action — raises some serious questions.

In his prepared statement (.pdf), Anderson said Koh “nowhere mentions the CIA by name in his defense of drone operations. It is, of course, what is plainly intended when speaking of self-defense separate from armed conflict. One understands the hesitation of senior lawyers to name the CIA’s use of drones as lawful when the official position of the U.S. government, despite everything, is still not to confirm or deny the CIA’s operations.”

What’s more, Anderson argued, Congress has been reluctant to talk about the bigger policy issue: Why this is a CIA mission in the first place. “Why should the CIA, or any other civilian agency, ever use force (leaving aside conventional law enforcement)?” he said. “Even granting the existence of self-defense as a legal category, why ever have force used by anyone other than the uniformed military?”

Mary Ellen O’Connell, professor of law at the University of Notre Dame, was much more blunt in her statement. “Combat drones are battlefield weapons,” she told the panel. “They fire missiles or drop bombs capable of inflicting very serious damage. Drones are not lawful for use outside combat zones. Outside such zones, police are the proper law enforcement agents, and police are generally required to warn before using lethal force.”

“Restricting drones to the battlefield is the most important single rule governing their use, O’Connell continued. “Yet, the United States is failing to follow it more often than not.”

Not all of the law professors testifying today agreed. Syracuse University’s William Banks, for one, said that “the intelligence laws permit the president broad discretion to utilize the nation’s intelligence agencies to carry out national security operations, implicitly including targeted killing.” Current U.S. laws “supply adequate – albeit not well articulated or understood – legal authority for these drone strikes.”

But American laws may not be on the only ones applicable to drone strikes, critics contend. As Anderson argued, the United States may face legal challenges from what he called the “international-law community” – nongovernmental organizations, international bodies, U.N. agencies and others who view this as a program of targeted killing that falls outside the bounds of armed conflict.

Either way, this hearing will not end the controversy. As we’ve noted here before, the government has been less than forthcoming about who, exactly, authorizes drone strikes, how the targets are chosen and how many civilians may have been inadvertently killed.

– Nathan Hodge and Noah Shachtman Source

The US is not at war with Pakistan and therefore if they kill anyone in Pakistan, it is pre meditated murder..

Attacking Pakistan is equal to attacking Britain, Canada, Dubai  or France for example.

Whether the army were the pilots or not it makes no difference. It is still murder.

That is my opinion. That is the way everyone should view it.

Pakistan can take care of it’s own. The US has murdered innocent civilians in Pakistan more times then I care to remember.

Pakistan has told the US numerous times to stop the bombings. This is one of those times.

Obama has been told and so had the Bush administration Pakistan doesn’t want them bombing in their country. So what part of NO doesn’t the US get the N or the O.

They do not have Pakistan permission to drop  bombs in their country. Any bombing done by any US citizen,  military or not, are illegal.

Pakistan

Civilian Deaths -1256

Civilians Injured -427

Al-Qaeeda deaths -30

Success Rate of Drone Attacks against Al-Qaeeda ~ 2.5%

http://www.pakistanbodycount.org/

US drone strike kills 6 in Pakistan

May 3 2010

A US drone attack has killed at least six people and wounded several others in the troubled tribal areas of northwestern Pakistan, officials say.

According to Pakistani officials, the drone fired three missiles in the Mir Ali area in Waziristan tribal area near the Afghan border on Monday, DPA reported.

The death toll is expected to rise as some of the injured are reported to be in critical condition, sources said.

According to the sources, those killed were “militants.”

So far this year, 300 people have lost their lives in 42 drone attacks in Pakistan’s tribal belt. Washington claims the raids target militants in Pakistan, but hundreds of civilians have fallen victim to the US drone attacks since 2008.

Islamabad has repeatedly condemned the strikes, saying they threaten the country’s sovereignty and fuel public anger. Source

CNN made a big deal out of Iran flying over a ship in the Arabian sea. Seems to me the US shouldn’t be there either.

Who do they think they are? They do not own the world.

Iran may have flown over and may not have.

For all we know it could have been Israel who flew over the US ship.

Of course they didn’t fly over the ship anyway, who ever was in the planes, were flying over half a mile away.

‘Iranian fighters may fly over US forces’

The Title should have been

Iranian fighters may have flow near US forces

April 29 2010
A senior Iranian Air Force officer does not rule out reports that an Iranian fighter jet might have flown over a US aircraft carrier last week in the Arabian Sea.

The incident was first reported by CNN on Tuesday. According to the report, a plane belonging to the Iranian Navy was flying as low as 300 feet near the USS Eisenhower on April 21.

The Eisenhower was in the northern Arabian Sea when the Iranian maritime patrol aircraft flew within 1,000 yards of the vessel, US military officials claimed.
Mohammad Alavi, deputy commander of the Iranian Air Force said that the fighter jet may have come close to the US aircraft carrier during a routine patrol.

“Iran has scheduled flights in the air corridor in the altitude of up to 20,000 feet, and its plane might have come close to the US aircraft carrier while flying in this corridor,” Fars news agency quoted Alavi as saying on Thursday.

He added, “Nobody can criticize such flights because they are being conducted within the framework of international law. We conduct routine reconnaissance flights with different aircrafts, including drones, and they may have come across the US forces.”   Source

(1000 yards = 3,000 feet, 1 mile = 5280 feet so they were over half a mile away from the ship. ( 0.56818 miles or almost 1 kilometer -0.91439 kilometers)  That isn’t exactly over the ship now is it?

They were also 91,439.99986 Centimeters or 35,999.99990 Inches away from the ship as well. But I digress. Now I am just being stupid.

So what the American ship doing there anyway? There is the question that should be asked. Were they spying on others? Probably.

Iran wasn’t breaking any Laws, if in fact it even was their fighters.

Could the US have been breaking the Law, is the other question that should be asked?

A US-Sponsored Terror Network-Death Squads in Afghanistan

By Francis Shor

April 27 2010

It should no longer be a matter of dispute that US Special Forces in Afghanistan are responsible for an increasing number of murders, whether part of targeted extra-judicial killings or the result of bad intelligence.  From the attack on a bridal shower in Gardez on February 12, 2010 that killed numerous civilians, including two pregnant women, to the growing list of executions of insurgents in the Kandahar area, Special Forces have become the US military version of death squads. For Entire Story Go HERE

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Published in: on May 6, 2010 at 11:25 pm  Comments Off on Drone Pilots Could Be Tried for ‘War Crimes’  
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Israel Gags News on Extra-Judicial Killings

April 3 2010

Written by Mel Frykberg

Anat Kam, 23, who used to work for the Israeli news site ‘Walla’, was arrested last December for allegedly copying secret Israeli Defence Force (IDF) documents during her compulsory military service.

These documents outlined how Israeli assassination squads would plan the killing of Palestinian political leaders and fighters months beforehand and then pass their deaths off as ”mishaps” during ”failed” attempts to arrest them.

Uri Blau, a reporter from the daily ‘Haaretz’, then wrote a piece on the copied documents and is refusing to return to Israel from Britain fearing that Israel’s domestic intelligence agency, the Shin Bet, will arrest him if he does.

Due to a military gag order the news has remained suppressed even as Israeli journalists fight the suppression order in court.

The news was broken several days ago by Donald McIntyre from Britain’s ‘Independent’.

The controversy has highlighted Israel’s extra-judicial killings which violate international law and have caused death and injury to thousands of Palestinian civilian bystanders despite the country having no death penalty.

Israel’s judiciary has approved ”targeted killings” but only of militants who were allegedly involved in carrying out or planning armed attacks against Israeli soldiers or civilians both within the Palestinian occupied territories and in Israel proper.

The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) in Gaza says that during the period September 2000 to March 2008, 500 Palestinians suspected of being involved in military resistance to the Israeli occupation were executed.

However, the ”collateral damage” during the assassinations included another 228 civilian bystanders – 77 of them children. Eleven Palestinians have been assassinated in the last two years.

”Israel is using disproportionate force. Civilians are paying the price. In the overwhelming majority of cases the targeted individuals could have been arrested and brought to trial without being killed. Many of them have been killed in cold blood,” Jaber Wishah from PCHR told IPS.

”International law’s right to life says that state authorities are obliged to follow due process when they are in a position to arrest individuals,” says Michael Kerney from the Ramallah-based rights organisation Al Haq which researched and documented many of the killings.

”Everybody is entitled to a fair trial and no state can dismiss this,” Kerney told IPS.

Some of those targeted have included individuals who were ”pardoned” by the Israelis after having agreed to give up armed resistance to the occupation.

Last December three pardoned members of the Al Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades, a military offshoot of the Palestinian Authority (PA)-affiliated Fatah movement, were shot dead in Nablus in the northern West Bank following the death of an Israeli settler.

According to their families and the subsequent investigations of human rights organisations they had already surrendered and were unarmed despite Israeli claims that they had refused to surrender.

”By failing to produce any evidence linking the targeted individuals to attacks allegedly committed by members of the Palestinian resistance, as well as failing to utilise peaceful means in order to arrest and detain suspects, the soldiers assumed the role of both judge and executioner,” reported Al Haq.

Furthermore, unarmed Palestinians, who have not been involved either politically or militarily in resisting the occupation, also continue to die in what some have called deliberate premeditated murder.

Several weeks ago four Palestinian teenagers were shot dead amidst dubious circumstances in two separate incidents in the villages of Awarta and Iraq Burin near Nablus.

According to medical reports they were shot at close range with live ammunition after clashes between Palestinian youngsters and Israeli soldiers had broken out.

However, the individuals concerned had not been involved in the clashes according to several investigations carried out by Al Haq, PCHR and Israeli rights group B’tselem.

One was shot in the back and another had a bullet lodged in the back of his skull despite Israeli soldiers saying they had only used non-lethal ammunition.

The Israeli military police declared they would investigate the incidents following contradictory testimony given by the soldiers involved.

However, when IPS visited one of the sites a week later with family members, approximately 20 spent cartridge cases, bloodied gloves, a saline solution kit and other bits of evidence lay on the ground undisturbed.

None of this is new. Israel has a history of assassinating political opponents predating its official establishment.

In 1944, the Israeli terrorist group, the Stern gang, assassinated Britain’s Lord Moyne, the military governor of Egypt, accusing him of interfering with Jewish migration to Palestine.

In 1948, Count Folke Bernadotte – a Swedish diplomat who had secured the release of 15,000 inmates from Nazi concentration camps while he was vice-president of the Swedish Red Cross  was also murdered by the Stern gang.

Stern gang members believed Bernadotte, as the U.N.’s Palestine mediator, to be too sympathetic to the Arabs. Yitzhak Shamir, later to become an Israeli prime minister, was one of the Stern gang’s leaders.

”Since the outbreak of the second Intifada, Israel has increasingly avoided accountability for the serious violations of the human rights of residents of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip for which it is responsible,” says B’tselem.

”This avoidance is seen, in part, in its policy not to open criminal investigations in cases of killing or wounding of Palestinians who were not taking part in the hostilities, except in exceptional cases, and in its enactment of legislation denying, almost completely, the right of Palestinians who were harmed as a result of illegal acts by Israeli security forces to sue for compensation for the damages they suffered.”

Source

Journalist on the run from Israel is hiding in Britain

‘Haaretz’ writer fled to London fearing charges over exposé on Palestinian’s killing

April 2 2010

By Kim Sengupta

An Israeli journalist is in hiding in Britain, The Independent can reveal, over fears that he may face charges in the Jewish state in connection with his investigation into the killing of a Palestinian in the West Bank.

Uri Blau, a reporter at Israel’s liberal newspaper, Haaretz, left town three months ago for Asia and is now in London. Haaretz is understood to be negotiating the terms of his return to Israel with prosecutors, according to an Israeli source, who declined to be identified, because of the sensitivity of the situation.

The news of Mr Blau’s extended absence comes just days after it emerged that another Israeli journalist, Anat Kam, has been held under house arrest for the last three months on charges that she leaked classified documents to the press while completing her military service.

Although no media outlet or journalist has been specifically named as the recipient of the classified information, there is speculation on Israeli blogs that Ms Kam gave documents to Mr Blau that formed the basis of a story he wrote in November 2008.

In his article for Haaretz, Mr Blau reported that one of two Islamic Jihad militants killed in Jenin in June 2007 had been targeted for assassination in apparent violation of a ruling issued six months earlier by Israel’s supreme court. While not outlawing assassinations in the West Bank altogether, the ruling heavily restricted the circumstances in which they were permissible, effectively saying that they should not take place if arrest was possible.

In an unusual move, Israel has placed a gagging order on national media, preventing them from reporting any aspect of the Kam case. Israel’s Channel Ten and Haaretz are expected to challenge this order on 12 April.

According to the court order, Ms Kam, 23, is being held on “espionage” charges. It alleges that she passed classified documents to a male journalist while working as a clerk in the Israel Defence Forces Central Command during her military service.

She was arrested more than a year after Mr Blau’s report, which was cleared by military censors at the time of publication, when she was working for the news service Walla, until recently owned by Haaretz.

Ms Kam denies all the charges. Her trial has reportedly been set for 14 April and she could face a lengthy prison sentence if convicted. Mr Blau did not respond to requests for comment; his friends and colleagues refused to discuss the case in detail.

Dov Alfon, Haaretz’s editor-in-chief, said in an emailed statement: “Haaretz has a 90-year-long tradition of protecting its reporters from government pressures, and Uri Blau is getting all the help we can provide him with.”

The move to gag Israel-based media has sparked fevered debate on Jewish blogs, which have freely reported the story. Bloggers have railed against the blackout, saying it represents a critical challenge to the freedom of the press.

“I do not believe that a citizen can be arrested and tried for suspected security offences right under our noses without anyone knowing anything about it,” wrote former Haaretz editor Hanoch Marmari in an eloquent cri de coeur on the Seventh Eye website.

“Trials do not take place here in darkened dungeons, nor do we have show trials behind glass or chicken wire. I have no doubt that such a strange, terrible and baseless scenario cannot take place in such a sophisticated democracy as our own.” Source

Well Israel never really does an investigation even when settlers kill a Palestinian.  They say they do, but in actuality they do not. That is not new at all. That is standard proceedure.

Israel kills anyone they feel like killing anyone no matter if it is a child or and adult. They kill people quit often.

As a matter of fact they have been killing for years so again this is not new. It is old hat.

As we well know they even go to other countries and kill people. They as we all know use fake passports. That to is standard procedure.

There is no real justice for Palestinians under Israeli law.

Even reporters or others who have been killed in Gaza or the West Bank, do not get a real investigation into their deaths by Israel.  They never have.

Deaths of Palestinians or outsiders are usually swept under the carpet.

Some Democracy. More like no Democracy.

Related

License to kill

By Uri Blau

December 4 2008
The announcement made by the Israel Defense Forces’ spokesman on June 20, 2007 was standard: “Two armed terrorists belonging to the Islamic Jihad terror organization were killed last night during the course of a joint activity of the IDF and a special force of the Border Police in Kafr Dan, northwest of Jenin. The two terrorists, Ziad Subahi Mahmad Malaisha and Ibrahim Ahmed Abd al-Latif Abed, opened fire at the force during its activity. In response the force fired at them, killing the terrorists. On their bodies two M-16 rifles, a pistol and ammunition were found. It was also discovered that the terrorists were involved in planning suicide attacks against the Israeli home front, including the attempt in Rishon Letzion last February.”

The laconic announcement ignores one important detail: Malaisha was a target for assassination. His fate had been decided several months earlier, in the office of then head of Central Command, Yair Naveh. As far as the public was concerned, on the other hand, the last declared assassination carried out by the IDF in the West Bank took place in August 2006; at the end of that year the High Court of Justice set strict criteria regarding the policy of assassinations in the territories.

A Haaretz Magazine investigation reveals for the first time operational discussions in which the fate of wanted men and innocent people was decided, in apparent disregard of the High Court decision. Thus it was revealed that the IDF approved assassination plans in the West Bank even when it would probably have been possible to arrest the wanted men – in contradiction to the State’s statement to the High Court – and that in cold military terminology the most senior IDF echelons approve, in advance and in writing, the harming of innocent Palestinians during the course of assassination operations. Moreover, it turns out that the assassination of a target the defense establishment called part of a “ticking infrastructure” was postponed, because it had been scheduled to take place during the visit of a senior U.S. official.

Leading legal experts who were asked to react to the documents say that the IDF is operating in contradiction to a High Court ruling. “Morality is a very difficult issue,” Prof. Mordechai Kremnitzer of Hebrew Univeristy said. “The thought that there are people who sit behind a desk and determine that someone is fated to die is a frightening thought.”

Another two killings

(at most)

The IDF spokesman refuses to provide precise figures about the number of targeted assassinations carried out since the start of the intifada in 2000: “The subject of preventive strikes is concentrated in the hands of the Shin Bet [security service].” A spokesman for the Shin Bet stated that the organization “does not publish data of this kind.” According to the human-rights organization B’Tselem, the IDF assassinated 232 Palestinians between the start of the intifada and the end of October 2008, in operations that also killed 154 non-targeted civilians.

The most common code names for assassination operations are the acronyms Pa’amon (peula mona’at – preventive action) and Sakum (sikul mimukad – targeted assassination). During the past two and a half years the IDF has not announced the carrying out of assassinations in the West Bank, and when wanted men were killed there, the official reports stated that these were “arrest operations” or “exchanges of fire.” This was also reported in regard to the killing of Abed and Malaisha – who has now been revealed as a previous target for assassination.

On March 28, 2007 a representative of the Shin Bet, a representative of the Special Police Unit Yamam and several officers from Central Command convened in Naveh’s office. On the agenda was the Two Towers operation (the strike at Malaisha). “The mission” said the head of the command, “is arrest,” but “in case identification is made of one of the leaders of Palestinian Islamic Jihad: Walid Obeidi, Ziad Malaisha, Adham Yunis, there is permission for the force to intercept them, and that is according to the situation assessment in the course of carrying out the mission.” Naveh did not allow an assassination if there were women or children near the wanted man, and explained that, “in the event that there are women and children in the vehicle, the method is arrest.”

On April 12 Naveh convened another meeting about Malaisha. This time he decided that permission would be granted to carry out the assassination of the target and “another two people at most.” On the day of the meeting in Naveh’s office another discussion took place, chaired by the head of the Operations Directorate, Brig. Gen. Sami Turjeman. At the meeting, the plans for a preventive operation against Malaisha were presented, and the head of the Operations Directorate explained that “a preventive strike in Ayush [Judea and Samaria] is an exceptional sight … It could be seen as an attempt to damage the attempts to stabilize, which means that it requires sensitivity to causing a minimum of collateral damage. Everything possible must be done to prevent harm to those who are uninvolved.” The target of the operation, he added “leads a ‘ticking’ infrastructure and meets the required criteria for a preventive strike.”

At this point Turjeman spelled out the conditions of Malaisha’s incrimination, and ruled that only if they existed would the targeted assassination get a green light. He added that no more than five people (including the driver) should be assassinated in the operation. Turjeman approved the operation even if there should be one unidentified person in the car. Regarding the matter of timing, he said that “in light of the anticipated diplomatic events, the prime minister’s meeting with Abu Mazen [Mahmoud Abbas] and the visit of the U.S. Secretary of Defense, I recommend … implementation afterward.” In the discussion Turjeman also referred to the High Court ruling about appointing a committee whose job would be to examine targeted assassinations after the fact, and said that in light of the High Court instructions on the matter, the operation should be documented.

The next day the operation was brought up for the approval of Chief of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi. A limited number of senior officers convened in his office, including his deputy, the head of the Operations Directorate, the head of the Operations Brigade, the chief military prosecutor, a representative of Central Command and a representative of the Shin Bet. The paper summing up the meeting says that Ashkenazi “emphasized that due to the High Court orders regarding the establishment of a professional committee on targeted assassinations, the composition of the committee should be agreed on with the Shin Bet as soon as possible.”

Although Malaisha was defined as part of a “ticking infrastructure,” Ashkenazi too was disturbed by the timing of the action and said that “in light of the diplomatic meetings anticipated during the course of the week, the date of implementation should be reconsidered.” Ashkenazi prohibited attacking the vehicle in which Malaisha was traveling if it was discovered that there was “more than one unidentified passenger” in it.

Two months after the Two Towers plan was approved, and long after the diplomatic visits and meetings that took place in the second week of April 2007, came the operation in which Malaisha was killed in the Jenin area.

Legal approval

At the beginning of 2002, attorneys Avigdor Feldman and Michael Sfard petitioned the High Court of Justice against the policy of targeted assassinations on behalf of the Public Committee against Torture in Israel and the Al-Haq organization. Almost five years later, on December 14, 2006, the president of the Supreme Court at the time, Justice Aharon Barak, issued his decision. Barak, with the concurrence of Justices Dorit Beinisch (now the president of the Supreme Court) and Eliezer Rivlin, rejected the petition and did not rule out the legality of targeted assassinations in the territories.

“We cannot determine that every targeted preemption strike is forbidden under international law, just as we cannot determine that every targeted preemption is permissible under international law,” Barak wrote in the last judgment he published in his 28 years on the Supreme Court.

According to the High Court ruling, well-founded and convincing information is necessary in order to classify a civilian as being part of a group of civilians who are carrying out hostile acts; a person should not be assassinated if it is possible to use less damaging methods against him; and he should not be harmed more than necessary for security needs. In other words, a person should not be assassinated if it is possible to arrest him, interrogate him and indict him. However, if the arrest involves serious danger to the lives of the soldiers, there is no need to use this means; after every assassination a thorough and independent examination must be conducted regarding the degree of precision, the identity of the man as a terror activist, and in the case of mistaken identity, the payment of compensation should be considered; harm to innocent civilians should be avoided as much as possible during an assassination, and “harm to innocent civilians will be legal only if it meets the demands of proportionality,” ruled Barak.

In this context, Barak gave an example according to which “it is possible to fire at a terrorist who is firing from the balcony of his home at soldiers or civilians, even if as a result an innocent bystander is liable to be hit. Such a strike at an innocent civilian will meet the demands of proportionality. That is not the case if the house is bombed from the air and dozens of its residents and bystanders are hit.”

Barak stated that, “The struggle against terror has turned our democracy into a ‘defensive democracy’ or a ‘fighting democracy.’ However, this struggle must not overturn the democratic nature of our regime.”

According to B’Tselem, since the ruling regarding targeted assassinations was handed down, 19 Palestinians who were targets of assassination have been killed in the territories, and 36 Palestinians who were close to the targets were hit in the course of IDF operations, all of them in the Gaza Strip.

“It turns out that in total contradiction to the High Court ruling, there are cases in which there is an order to assassinate someone when it is possible to arrest him,” says David Kretchmer, a professor of international law. “Advance approval to kill civilians who do not take part in hostile activities makes things even worse. The principle of proportionality, to the effect that if one strikes at a military target an accompanying strike against civilians will not be illegal, does not apply in a case when the attack itself is illegal – for example, in a case where there is an obligation, according to the High Court ruling, to arrest the suspect.”

Prof. Mordechai Kremnitzer: “According to the High Court ruling it is clear that where it is possible to carry out an arrest, we must carry out an arrest and avoid what is called a ‘targeted assassination’ and which I call ‘preventive killing.’ A substantial part of Judea and Samaria is under the effective rule of the IDF, and in my opinion, in such an area preventive killing must be ruled out. The limited interpretation that I am suggesting for the international law is that an attack must take place in the course of that person’s participation in a dangerous action, because then you are in effect acting in self-defense based on the situation taking place.”

Legal commentator Moshe Negbi: “‘Unidentified people’ can also be totally innocent and you are ostensibly giving a license to kill here. The problem is previous knowledge, because usually when we refer to collateral damage we are referring to ‘after the fact,’ but here this is almost certain foreknowledge. It is very problematic that permission is given to execute an innocent man deliberately. The question is whether it is proportional. I think that the High Court was referring to a situation where perhaps among a mass of people there is one who is innocent, but here it is one on one. It is very grave to grant permission when you know ahead of time that 50 percent of those you are hitting are innocent. Such a thing must certainly be discussed at the level of the attorney general and it certainly must be known to the public and undergo public criticism, if only so that anyone who thinks it is patently illegal can turn to the High Court.”

Regarding the fact that assassinations can wait until the conclusion of diplomatic meetings, Kretchmer says: “Postponing an operation for diplomatic reasons is unequivocal proof of the fact that this is not a ‘ticking bomb’ situation.” Kremnitzer adds: “According to my legal understanding, these cases [targeted assassinations] must be cases in which you must act immediately, and if it is not a matter of an immediate need, in my opinion it is against the law.”

Although almost two years have passed since the High Court ruling, a committee to examine the assassinations after the fact has yet to be appointed. Last week Aviad Glickman published on Ynet (the website of the mass circulation paper Yedioth Ahronoth) that Attorney General Menachem Mazuz had turned to Prime Minister Ehud Olmert demanding the establishment of such a committee as soon as possible. “This step must be completed without further delay,” wrote Mazuz, “for fear that a continued delay is liable to constitute contempt of court.”

The bad guys

Yair Naveh, who served as head of Central Command from 2005 to 2007, confirms that occasionally, there is no genuine attempt to arrest wanted men. “If the guy doesn’t put his hands up we don’t get into stories, we immediately establish contact. I don’t want to have people hurt for no reason. If I know that the guy is armed and is a ticking bomb, then I want him to be hit immediately without fooling around. It’s not the preventive action procedure, it’s an entirely different story.

“In my time there were no targeted assassinations. Not a single one, as far as I recall. In principle, there were no targeted assassinations in Central Command and none were approved. What I did have was an ability to reach all of [the wanted men]; therefore there is no reason for a targeted assassination. It is relevant only when you can’t reach someone, but if you can reach him and arrest him at night or have an exchange of fire with him, then it is not a targeted assassination.”

Is it possible that programs were approved and in the end were not carried out?

“No. In principle there was no such thing during my time, because in every operation there were special forces that had to arrive and arrest the guy. To tell the truth, in some places we knew a priori that there would be firing. If you know that you are operating against Islamic Jihad or against Hamasniks or even against some of the jokers who were in the Casbah, then it was clear to me that there would be engagement.”

In the approval of the March 2007 plan regarding Ziad Malaisha you said the mission was arrest, but if one of the leaders of Islamic Jihad was identified, the force had permission to carry out interception. What is that if not targeted assassination?

“Those are guys for whom we received basic confirmation that they are ticking bombs. Those are guys that if we had contact with them, because we knew in advance that they were armed, the default choice was not to start calling on them to halt and then to see whether or not they fled, but right from the start, if they didn’t put up their hands and throw away their weapons, then we engaged with them. That’s not because they had to be killed. It’s also because they are both ticking bombs and armed. That’s the assumption.”

That is semantics. You gave permission to fire at them from the moment they were identified.

“If they don’t put up their hands right at the start. You arrive, shout ‘IDF, hands up!’ You surround them. If the guys don’t put up their hands, then you don’t wait to close in on them, to make a declaration. If you receive confirmation that the guys have received all the relevant approvals, then we say, ‘Friends, I don’t want you to get into a pressure cooker here’ [methods used by the IDF to make someone give himself up]. If they don’t surrender immediately then you immediately engage them, so that you won’t be hurt. That’s the story. It’s not a targeted assassination, where you are approving their execution even if they put up their hands.”

The approval you gave the forces states that if there are women and children, there is to be an arrest. In other words, it would have been possible to arrest them.

“That means that if there are women and children we assume another risk and tell the guys that if they fire at you and begin to flee you don’t begin to exchange fire, but you try to stop the vehicle by shooting at the tires.”

The Operations Directorate approval in the case of Malaisha states that this is a preventive action operation.

“If it was approved as preventive action, that is, as a target for assassination, it’s a different story.”

But then it contradicts the High Court orders to the effect that Israel controls the area and approval of the plan includes the option of arrest.

“Don’t bother me with the High Court orders, I don’t know when there were High Court orders and when there weren’t. I know that a targeted assassination is approved and there is a preventive action procedure and I receive instructions from the Operations Directorate.”

What is the difference between the preventive action procedure and people that you give permission to fire at if they are identified?

“The difference is language. You say ‘Hands up. If not, I’m opening fire,’ and here I don’t say anything and drop a bomb from a plane.”

In the instructions there is no mention of the arrest option, and permission is given to fire if there is identification of a wanted man.

“I’m not familiar with such a document.”

Why in the approvals for targeted assassination is permission given in advance to harm unidentified people?

“Weren’t there people in the Shahadeh case? [Fatah leader Mohammed Shahadeh was assassinated by Hamas in October 2006]. But those aren’t questions that you should ask me. What is approved as preventive action goes through approvals all the way to the prime minister, and what is decided is decided. Usually these guys hung around with bad guys, not good guys.”

Linguistic innovations

In the State’s reply to the High Court, prior to its ruling, it was claimed that carrying out a targeted assassination is “an exceptional step” that is taken “only when there is no other, less severe way of implementing it … In the context of these strict instructions it was decided that when there are realistic alternatives to the action, such as arrest, these alternatives should be used.”

But the most noticeable thing the High Court ruling changed regarding the assassinations is the language used by the IDF in planning them. On December 13, 2006, a day before the High Court ruling was handed down, wanted man Muhammed Ramaha was killed in the Ein Beit Ilma refugee camp in the Nablus area. According to the IDF spokesman’s report to the media at the time, Ramaha was killed in the course of a joint “arrest operation” of the IDF, the Shin Bet and the Yamam police unit.

Now it turns out that Ramaha’s fate had been sealed a month earlier, when the Central Command conducted a discussion on an operation planned by the IDF’s Maglan special operations unit in the Nablus area. Those in attendance were presented with orders from Maj. Gen. Naveh, who ruled that the armed men walking around the area were connected to Mohammed Ramaha’s unit and “should be attacked.” There was no option offered of trying to arrest the members of the squad, and conditions for opening fire were the identification of two armed men, “conspiratorial” activity involving at least one armed man, or “when an indication is given” of the presence of Ramaha in the squad. As mentioned, a month after the discussion Ramaha was killed.

The Maglan soldiers were also the ones who carried out an operation on November 8, 2006 that ended in the killing of five Palestinians, two of them unarmed. The IDF, as usual, did not present it as an assassination mission, but it turns out that the force’s assignment was “to sneak into the center of the village, up to the observation point overlooking the killing area that had been designated in advance, to lie in ambush for armed terrorists and to hit them at short range.”

Another example: At the end of September 2006 the then head of the Operations Directorate, Maj. Gen. Gadi Eisenkot (today GOC Northern Command), conducted a discussion in which approval was given to assassinate a Fatah member – an expert on the production of explosives belts – in the Nablus area. “The Time For Chaos Has Arrived” was the name of this operation, in which the major general approved attacking the man “in the context of the procedure of targeted assassination of important figures in light of the fact that he is a ‘ticking bomb.'” As opposed to operations planned after the High Court ruling, where there are specific instructions regarding conditions in which the action should not be carried out, in this case the only instructions were “to try to refrain insofar as possible from harming innocent people.”

“Apparently what happened in the wake of the High Court ruling is mainly ‘word laundering,'” says Kretchmer. “In other words, the use of words referring to arrest when in fact there is no real intention of carrying out an arrest, but the reference is to assassination.” Sfard says that, “whoever gave the IDF a permit to execute civilians without trial should not be surprised when the death squads it has created do not adhere to the few restrictions imposed on this policy. It’s a natural, logical and inevitable process of moral deterioration involved in assassinations.”

A military source said that the first years of the intifada were “a period lacking order. They fired at just about anything that moved.” He says that in recent years, especially after the High Court ruling, the procedure in Central Command and the Operations Directorate is somewhat different, one reason being that representatives of the Military Prosecutor’s Office “are breathing down their necks.” As for the importance attributed by the army to the country’s image and to the timing of its activity, the source said, not without a degree of cynicism, that “the criteria for a ‘ticking bomb’ change if Condoleezza Rice is in the country.”

An investigation by Haaretz indicates that IDF operations that are defined in advance as arrest operations rather than assassination operations do for the most part end in arrest. However, there is something disturbing about the fact that when it comes to the plan to arrest a Palestinian, the commander in charge of the operation sometimes feels a need to explain that this is not an assassination assignment and that the wanted man should be brought back alive. For example, in an operation planned last May for the arrest of a Fatah activist in Bethlehem, the GOC Central Command explained to the commander of the Duvdevan undercover commando unit that “the mission is arrest rather than killing.” And in fact, that activist was arrested alive. In the same operation, incidentally, it was explained to the forces that “there is no permission to behave aggressively toward foreign media crews.”

When Naveh was asked why he occasionally told the forces that the wanted men be brought back alive, which should ostensibly be obvious, he explained: “That means that I am exposing our forces to additional risk, and even if he opens fire, they do not kill him immediately but try nevertheless to arrest him.” It also turns out that the presence of children is not always an excuse to cancel military operations. At the end of March 2007, the chief of staff allowed Duvdevan to carry out the arrest of a wanted man during the birthday party of one of his children. The name chosen by the IDF for this action was Kindergarten Party.

Source

Israeli journalists on ice for report on Israeli assassinations

Other Israeli crimes . There are many.

Fake Al Qaeda, Fake Passports, Fake planes

Dubai police chief to seek Netanyahu arrest as well as the Mossad agents

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British MPs call for review of arms export to Israel

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Israel to Allow Shoes into Gaza Strip After Three Year Ban

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Tony Blair’s attempt to keep his Iraqi Oil Profits a secret

Women in Iraq Miss Saddam

Israel condemned at Arab summit over Israel’s illegal settlements on occupied Palestinian land

Britain expelled Israeli diplomat over fake passports used in Dubai

Israeli diplomat expelled in fake passports row

By Sam Marsden

March 23  2010

(Independent) Britain has expelled an Israeli diplomat over the use of fake UK passports by suspected Mossad agents in the assassination of a Hamas commander in Dubai, it was announced today.

Foreign Secretary David Miliband said an investigation had discovered “compelling” evidence that Tel Aviv’s secret service was responsible for cloning the ID documents.

He told MPs it was “intolerable” for a foreign country to behave in such a way, and the fact that Israel was a close ally added “insult to injury”.

“Given that this was a very sophisticated operation, in which high-quality forgeries were made, the Government judges it is highly likely that the forgeries were made by a state intelligence service.

“Taking this together with other inquiries, and the link with Israel established by Soca (the Serious and Organised Crime Agency), we have concluded that there are compelling reasons to believe that Israel was responsible for the misuse of the British passports.

“The Government takes this matter extremely seriously. Such misuse of British passports is intolerable.”

He added: “I have asked that a member of the embassy of Israel be withdrawn, and this is taking place.”

Mr Miliband said the misuse of passports presented a “hazard for the safety of British nationals in the region”.

“It also represents a profound disregard for the sovereignty of the United Kingdom,” he said. “The fact that this was done by a country which is a friend, with significant diplomatic, cultural, business and personal ties to the UK, only adds insult to injury.

“No country or government could stand by in such a situation.”

Mahmoud al-Mabhouh, the founder of Hamas’s military wing, was assassinated in his luxury hotel room in Dubai on January 19 by a team of killers wearing fake beards, wigs and other disguises.

Dubai officials said they were “99% certain” that Mossad agents were behind the murder but Israel has refused to confirm or deny the link.

At the time Mr Miliband branded the abuse of British passports “outrageous” and demanded that Tel Aviv co-operate fully with the UK’s investigation.

Israel’s ambassador to London, Ron Prosor, was summoned to the Foreign Office last month to discuss the situation, but he flatly denied there was any “additional information” to give.

Investigators from Britain’s Serious Organised Crime Agency (Soca) looked into the use of cloned passports of innocent British citizens in the attack.

Mr Miliband said 11 of the 12 had now been given biometric passports which would be harder to counterfeit.

He also said the Foreign Office’s travel advice for Israel would be amended to highlight the risk of papers being cloned, and how it can be minimised.

Other members of the hit squad travelled on fake Irish, French and Australian travel documents.

Gordon Brown’s spokesman told reporters: “The Prime Minister was consulted on this decision and supports it.”

The spokesman said the diplomat had technically been “asked to withdraw” from the UK, rather than expelled, and was being given two weeks to leave the country.

Mr Miliband met Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman yesterday and handed him a letter seeking formal assurance that in future Israel will never be party to the misuse of British passports, said the spokesman.

Also yesterday, the head of the UK diplomatic service, Sir Peter Ricketts, met Israeli Ambassador to London Ron Prosor.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/israeli-diplomat-expelled-in-fake-passports-row-1925653.html

UK expels Israeli diplomat over Dubai passports

By Adrian Croft

March 23 2010
LONDON (Reuters) – Britain said on Tuesday it was expelling an Israeli diplomat from London after concluding that Israel had forged British passports used by the suspected killers of a Hamas commander in Dubai.”I’ve asked that a member of the Embassy of Israel be withdrawn from the UK as a result of this affair and this is taking place,” Foreign Secretary David Miliband told parliament.

Miliband said there were “compelling reasons” to believe Israel was responsible for the misuse of British passports in the case and said he had sought assurances from Israel that it would not misuse them again.

“Such misuse of British passports is intolerable … It also represents a profound disregard for the sovereignty of the United Kingdom,” he said.

Israel has neither confirmed nor denied a role in the January killing of Mahmoud al-Mabhouh, a military commander from the Palestinian organization Hamas, in a Dubai hotel room.

Dubai authorities have given names for 27 alleged members of the team that tracked and killed the Palestinian, and said they used fraudulent British, Irish, French, German and Australian passports to enter and depart from Dubai.

Dubai’s police chief says he is almost certain Israeli agents were involved and has accused the intelligence agency Mossad of insulting Dubai.

“COMPELLING REASONS”

After an investigation by a specialized police unit, Miliband said Britain had concluded “there are compelling reasons to believe Israel was responsible for the misuse” of the 12 British passports involved.

“Given that this was a very sophisticated operation in which high-quality forgeries were made, the government judges it is highly likely the forgeries were made by a state intelligence service,” he said.

Miliband did not accuse Israel of being responsible for the killing.

Israeli Ambassador to London Ron Prosor said he was disappointed by the British decision.

“It is our clear intention to strengthen the firm foundation of our relationship which is both vital and beneficiary to both our countries,” he told reporters.

Britain expelled an Israeli diplomat in 1988 in an espionage row. The man, Arie Regev, was described at the time by informed British sources as a Mossad agent.

Relations between Britain and Israel have been strained recently by a number of issues, including the threat of arrest for alleged war crimes faced by senior Israeli officials visiting Britain.

The latest spat comes at a time of friction between Israel and its key ally, the United States, since Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s coalition government announced plans to build 1,600 homes for Jews near East Jerusalem.

(Additional reporting by Estelle Shirbon, Kylie Maclellan, Keith Weir and Tim Castle in London and Ori Lewis in Jerusalem; Editing by Ralph Boulton)

Source

Related

Dubai police chief to seek Netanyahu arrest

Assassination latest act in nightmare without end

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Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu authorized assassination of Mahmoud al-Mabhouh

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Attempted Citizen’s Arrest of Alleged War Criminal George W. Bush in a Canadian Court

Netanyahu Takes His Siege Against Human Rights NGOs to the US

March 11-17 2010 Report on Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory

Published in: on March 23, 2010 at 7:32 pm  Comments Off on Britain expelled Israeli diplomat over fake passports used in Dubai  
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Attempted Citizen’s Arrest of Alleged War Criminal George W. Bush in a Canadian Court

By Anthony J. Hall
March 11 2010

Judge Manfred Delong shut down the trial of Splitting The Sky versus George W. Bush on the second day of proceedings. The court denied STS his frequently emphasized request to have two witnesses give evidence in his defense. Those witnesses were myself and Cynthia McKinney.  The trial came to an end just as Ms. McKinney arrived in Calgary from London. The US-based oil conglomerates active throughout Alberta form the core business constituency of the Prime Minister Stephen Harper, who represents a Calgary riding in Parliament.

The court accepted two documents as evidence for the defense. On is Gail Davidson’s widely disseminated legal opinion for Lawyer’s Against the War. STS and I studied this document closely in the days leading up to my friend being arrested for his arrest attempt. LAW’s legal opinion highlighted some of the evidence, statutes and treaties to brand Bush as a “credibly  accused war criminal” that should not be allowed  into Canada. Prior to Bush’s touching down in Calgary to address an audience of oil executives, Davidson’s documemtation was distributed widely to officials of the Harper government and Canada’s Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

The other exhibit for the defense was my own paper that I originally presented at an invited academic venue at the University of Winnipeg. It has been published under a variety of titles on the Internet, including at Global  Research.ca, 911 Blogger.com, 9/11 Truth.org and Voltairenet in both French and English. My initial  title for it is “Bush League Justice: Should George W. Bush Be Arrested in  Calgary Alberta and Tried for International Crimes.”

Delong will deliver his ruling on June 7. The case for the prosecution both revealed and obscured much about the new police strategies being employed throughout North America to monitor, manage, divide and spin doctor demonstrators seeking to call attention to their political dissent. In my opinion the Crown’s chief agent of prosecution, Tracy Davis, acted more as an  advocate and defender of the police rather than as a representative of the Canadian people through Her Majesty as she is required to do according the constitutional tradition of the British Commonwealth.

Source



Splitting The Sky versus War Criminal George W. Bush
Cynthia McKinney Meets Splitting the Sky
By Prof Anthony J. Hall
March 14 2010

Hello friends, associates and supporters. Hello, as well, to those who are new to the case of Splitting The Sky versus George W. Bush.

I have no hesitation in asserting that the brilliant content of these videos will be transformative for multitudes of global viewers. These videos contain poetry in You Tube. They offer sophisticated political analysis of the kind that should strike fear in the heart of the criminal class who are currently running the global apparatus of so-called national security. These presentations are studies of effective communication. They embody joy, love and skilled articulation combining classical motifs of ballet-like performance with the free form creativity of hip hop. They highlight two individuals at the top of their form who are leading an accelerating global revolt against the lawless war machine’s broadening onslaught. More than any other force, the organized crime of the war machine threatens all humanity– indeed, all life forms– with imminent oblivion. Please take the time to study this set of amazing videos and disseminate them far and wide.

The event took place on March 9 only hours after the premature termination of Splitting The Sky’s Calgary trial. As the trial was being hurriedly shut down by the state, the legendary Cynthia McKinney arrived in Calgary from London to show solidarity with the veteran Mohawk activist. In an event hosted by my own academic unit, Globalization Studies, and by the University of Calgary’s Peace Consortium, STS and Ms. McKinney met for the first time. As they shared stories and joined forces, they came to personify the best spirit of defiance rooted in many generations of resistance towards the forces of colonization, enslavement and resource theft. Together STS and the martyred but still-strong former US Congresswoman, Cynthia McKinney, reflect on what humanity must do now that the heritages of slavery in America and the militarized dispossession of Indigenous peoples have been globalized in the name of the fraudulent Global War on Terror.

As I see it, the case of Splitting The Sky versus George W. Bush will become in the future, even more than it has been in the past, a test case to prove the utter bankruptcy of the censoring mainstream media. This professional malfeasance in the CIA-infested mainstream media stands in contrast with the propensity of activist researchers, publishers, journalists, academics, broadcasters and media artists to use the Internet as a vehicle to advance the revolution that we do intend to televise on You Tube.

Of course, the STS story highlights the media cover up of the lies and crimes of 9/11. But that is only the beginning. STS’s story starts with the big cover up of the reality that the New World Order of America began in 1492 with a massive genocide that continues to this day. Add to this monumental cover up the continuing obfuscation of the underlying dynamics that compelled the Attica prisoners, including STS, to revolt against their jailers in 1971.

Similarly, the interests of power have good reason to want to suppress understanding of STS’s central role in the Gustafsen Lake Indian War in British Columbia in 1995. There, the Canadian Armed Forces, including Joint Task Force Two (which is centrally involved in special operations in Afghanistan) played a major role in the conflict. The accompanying state-sponsored disinformation and smear campaign was brought to light in a court ruling on an extradition proceeding in Portland Oregon in 2000 entitled USA versus Pitawanakwat. The Canadian and B.C. governments’ systematic campaign of media disinformation on the Battle of Gustafsen Lake offers a revealing prelude shedding light on the Cheney-Bush regime’s strategy of psychological warfare employed to give a false-impression of legitimacy to the lawless resource grab advanced in the name of Global War on Terror.

The ongoing genocide that began in 1492 continues to advance the theft of natural resources from Indigenous peoples around the world. The founding of America on this primal original crime extends these days to the creation of new forms of appropriation, domination, murder and enslavement. It finds expression in the sweat shops, forced labour camps, torture chambers and assassination squads of the privatized terror economy. The Big Obama Psy Op is elevating and expanding the 9/11 wars of terror that the new president took over from the Cheney-Bush cabal of war profiteers. Please do yourself a favour and explore these videos while making sure that others are given the same opportunity.

Basta! Enough is Enough

Part 1:

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Part 5:

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Part 11:

Part 12:

Part 13:

Part 14:

Citizen’s Arrest of George W. Bush Justified, Court Hears
By Kevin Martin

March 9 2019

Political activist John Boncore aka Splitting The Sky was entitled to try to arrest former U.S. president George W. Bush for war crimes, his lawyer told a Calgary court Monday.

Defence counsel Charles Davison said his client’s attempts at breaching a police barrier to gain access to Bush were justified.

Boncore is charged with obstructing a peace officer for repeatedly trying to get past security and into the Telus Convention Centre last March 17.

“Mr. Boncore had reasonable grounds to attempt to do what he said to the police he wanted to do,” Davison told provincial court Judge Manfred Delong.

“And that was to carry out a citizen’s arrest of George Bush,” the lawyer said.

Davison said he will present evidence, including a documentary entitled Taxi to the Dark Side, which details the torture and murder of an innocent Afghan cabbie, to support Boncore’s claim.

Davison said a group called Lawyers Against the War, had urged the RCMP to arrest Bush for crimes against humanity if he stepped on Canadian soil.

That group asserted Bush was “inadmissible to Canada” as a suspected war criminal and said the former U.S. president should not be allowed into our country.

If he was deemed a suspected war criminal Bush would be disentitled to enter Canada under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, and would be breaking the law if he came here, Davison said.

As a result, Boncore was entitled to make a citizen’s arrest since a crime was being committed.

But Crown prosecutor Tracy Davis said citizen’s arrests can only be carried out by a person witnessing a crime taking place.

“The accused was never entitled to effect an arrest of Mr. Bush,” Davis said.

In evidence, Sgt. Andy Comber said Boncore’s attempts to breach a police barricade outside the Telus Convention Centre was causing a large group of protesters to get angry at police.

“If he had breached that line I have no doubt other people would have follow him and eight policemen are not going to be able to hold 400 people back,” Comber told Davis.

“The crowd was quite agitated at that point,” he said.

Boncore’s trial, expected to last four days, continues on Tuesday.

Source

Related

VIDEO: Bush is a War Criminal

– by Spliting the Sky – 2010-03-09

VIDEO: Citizen’s Arrest for President Bush?

– by Michel Chossudovsky – 2010-03-09

Citizen’s Arrest of Alleged War Criminal George W. Bush in Canada

SPS versus “W” in Court Hearings in Calgary
– by Carol Brouillet – 2010-03-08

VIDEO: George W. Bush War Criminal Under Canadian Law

The Trial of Mohawk Activist, Splitting the Sky
– by Prof. Anthony J. Hall – 2010-03-08
Anyone who has watched the wars in Afghanistan or Iraq are witnesses.
There is ample evidence in the media to inform all of us as to the torture and killing of over a million and a half people in Iraq alone. More them that including Afghanistan. We all know Bush is a war criminal.
One would have to be dead not to notice the crimes against humanity and the war crimes. I bet all the people who were tortured would be willing to testify against Bush. I suppose all the widows in Iraq would be willing to testify against Bush. There are 2.5 million widows.
I guess we now have to wait until June 7 2010.
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Canada: Heavily edited Afghan documents prove need for inquiry

Israel: Attempting to take away Canadians Freedom of Speech

Published in: on March 22, 2010 at 6:29 am  Comments Off on Attempted Citizen’s Arrest of Alleged War Criminal George W. Bush in a Canadian Court  
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Assassination latest act in nightmare without end


Mahmoud al-Mabhouh’s mother holds up a photo of her murdered son. Photo / AP
February 28 2010

By Matt McCarten

It’s sad but not a surprise that we don’t hear so much as a peep from our Government or the United States over the assassination of Hamas leader Mahmoud al-Mabhouh.

Could you imagine the world outrage if Hamas stole the passports from other countries’ citizens to use as cover for an execution squad?

Imagine the shrill condemnation if they tricked an Israeli military leader to travel to another country where he or she was ambushed and throttled to death.

Imagine a death squad of up to 26 assassins infiltrating a neutral country to carry out such an atrocity.

It seems we can’t get over the myth we’ve created of the little plucky nation of Israel defending itself against the Islamic hordes intent on destroying them.

The fact is Israel has the fourth largest military machine in the world and is the only nuclear power in the region.

Israelis think it’s acceptable to have their country, that was built on the theft of land and the homes of the original inhabitants and that imprisons the entire Palestinian people, and then arm themselves with nuclear missiles to intimidate any country that objects.

It is the sole superpower in the region backed up by the only world superpower. It’s a different story for Iran, which has its two closest neighbours invaded and occupied by massive hostile armies.

It is surreal that our news of the killing of al-Mabhouh is focused on passport thefts rather than the cynicism of a rogue nation that feels a God-given right to assassinate its enemies as it sees fit.

The posturing from those nations, who had their citizens’ identities used as aliases for terrorism, is pathetic.

The best they could come up with is calling in the Israeli ambassador for a telling off. Without doubt, these victims of passport theft will be on the international terrorist watch list whenever they travel.

When their governments are pushed about what actions will be taken against Israel for putting their citizens in danger, they retreat into gobbledygook. Israel is already gloating that these protests are just for show and will die down soon enough. That is until next time it decides to murder someone.

The international media seem more interested in the mechanics of murder. There’s certainly no discussion about sanctions against Israel or calling for the murderers to be extradited to face justice.

It is almost accepted that it’s okay for Israel to entrap and murder its enemies as some sort of pre-emptive strike.

I will assume al-Mabhouh was indeed a leader of Hamas prepared to import arms into Gaza. But this is a land where almost a million and a half citizens are walled off from the rest of the world by Israel and being bled into submission. Nothing goes in and nothing out.

The Palestinian people there are in desperate peril, yet the rest of the world ignores their plight. When these people try to fight back with home-made bombs they are invaded, their civilians massacred and their homes levelled.

Israel keeps the media away, then denies its atrocities and attacks anyone who tries to tell the truth.

So Palestinians see people like al-Mabhouh as freedom fighters fighting for them.

The twisted and ugly truth is Hamas was actually created and funded by Israel to undermine the secular, nationalist Fatah. Now it’s backfired.

Fatah would do anything for a deal with Israel, but can’t because of Hamas.

So everyone in Israel and Palestine is stuck in a revolving nightmare with no end.

Peace will only come when Israel admits it has visited a monstrous evil against the land’s indigenous people and that a genuine settlement can only be reached if it gives up some of its stolen land, pays compensation for the rest and recognises an independent state of Palestine.

Instead it thinks it can continue to use brute force to impose its will on the weak and hunt down and murder those who dare to fight back.

This is a nation gone mad. It’s worse than terrorism.

Source

Recent

Rachel Corrie Gets Her Day in Court

UK police meet passport victims connected to assassination of Mahmoud al-Mabhouh

Help Haiti Everybody Hurts Video

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu authorized assassination of Mahmoud al-Mabhouh

Israel floods Gaza villages, displacing a hundred families

US/Israeli Charity uses little Palestinian Childs photo to raise money for Israel’s Hungry

Gaza sees more newborns of malformation

Not so recent but interesting all the same

Foreign Arms Supplies To Israel/Gaza

Who Benefited the most by J.F. Kennedy’s Death?

Israel: Attempting to take away Canadians Freedom of Speech

Published in: on February 28, 2010 at 5:03 am  Comments Off on Assassination latest act in nightmare without end  
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Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu authorized assassination of Mahmoud al-Mabhouh

Update February 25 2010: Apparently there were also a few more people involved. Some used Australian passports.

Mounting diplomatic fury over the killing of a top Hamas commander in a Dubai hotel reached Australia on Thursday, with Israel’s ambassador summoned over the use of Australian passports by a suspected assassination squad.

Dubai authorities have now identified 26 people suspected of involvement in the killing of Mahmoud al-Mabhouh, with three using forged Australian passports named among 15 new suspects, most of them Europeans.

“Any state that has been complicit in use or abuse of the Australian passport system, let alone for the conduct of an assassination, is treating Australia with contempt and there will therefore be action by the Australian government in response,” said Australia’s Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, without elaborating.

Source

Now they are looking at 26 perpetrators as opposed the the 11 previous suspects. Concern over fake passport use should be  in the forefront as Mossad has a long history of such use of passports.

Finally some are now becoming aware of  forged or stolen document use. I just have to wonder what took everyone so long to finally do something about it? This has been ongoing for years.

Newest suspects

Photo from Press TV

Report: PM approved Dubai assassination in early January

February 23 2010

By Yossi Melman, Ofer Aderet, Liel Kyzer, Barak Ravid and Avi Issacharoff

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu authorized in early January the assassination of Hamas commander Mahmoud al-Mabhouh, according to a report published in the Sunday Times.

Based on information obtained from “sources with knowledge of Mossad,” the paper reported that Netanyahu gave Mossad chief Meir Dagan the green light for the Dubai operation during a meeting at the Midrasha – the intelligence agency’s headquarters, in the northern suburbs of Tel Aviv.

The sources also said that the Mossad hit squad trained for the Dubai mission by secretly rehearsing in a Tel Aviv hotel.

Netanyahu reportedly told the Mossad agents, “The people of Israel count on you. Good luck.”

Meanwhile, Dubai police chief Dahi Khalfan Tamim said that an internal Hamas source leaked information to Mabhouh’s assassins that led to his killing, Israel Radio reported.

Speaking to Persian newspaper Gulf News, Tamim said that the aide, whose identity was not revealed, was the only person who knew about Mabhouh’s visit to the emirate.

Meanwhile, Hamas on Saturday again blamed Israel again for the hit. At a press conference, Salah al-Bardawil, one of the group’s Gaza-based leaders, said he does not suspect that the Palestinian Authority was involved in the killing and that the entire affair was the responsibility of Mossad.

However, the Hamas official said the two Palestinians arrested in Dubai in connection with the killing are former officers in the Palestinian security services, and were employed by a firm owned by a senior member of rival Fatah.

The London-based newspaper Al-Hayat reported that this company is owned by Mohammed Dahlan, formerly a Fatah strongman in the Gaza Strip before its takeover by Hamas two and a half years ago.

Bardawil also said that Mabhouh had put himself at risk by booking his trip through the Internet and risked a security breach by telling his family in Gaza by telephone which hotel he would be staying at.

Also Saturday, the daily newspaper Al-Bayan reported that Dubai police had new evidence implicating the Mossad in Mabhouh’s assassination, which included credit-card payments and suspects’ phone records.

“Dubai police have information confirming that the suspects purchased travel tickets from companies in other countries with credit cards carrying the same names we have publicized [from the passports],” Al-Bayan quoted Dubai police chief Tamim as saying.

Source

Related

Police in Dubai said that some of the assassins involved in last month’s killing of a Hamas commander had entered the emirate carrying diplomatic passports.

Dubai Suspects Are Interpol’s Most Wanted
International Police Issues Red Notices for 11 Alleged Assassins; Dubai Authorities Finger Israel’s Mossad Spy Agency

February 18, 2010

Interpole Website showing 11 suspects wanted by Dubai Police in connection with murder of Mahmoud al-Mabhouh

Interpol has put 11 people suspected in the slaying of a Hamas militant leader in Dubai on its most-wanted list as Dubai police stepped up their accusations against Israel’s Mossad spy agency for the murder.

The international police agency said it has issued red notices, its highest-level alert, to its member countries worldwide for “11 internationally wanted individuals who have been charged by UAE-Dubai authorities with coordinating and committing the murder.”

Interpol says it was acting on the request of Dubai authorities and that it believes the suspects used false passports.

Interpol issued the notices – which include photographs – “to limit the ability of accused murderers from traveling freely using the same false passports.”

Hamas commander Mahmoud al-Mabhouh’s body was found Jan. 20 in his hotel room.

Meanwhile, Dubai Police Lt. Gen. Dahi Khalfan Tamim was quoted as saying he was “99 percent, if not 100 percent” certain that Mossad was behind last month’s slaying of al-Mabhouh in a luxury hotel room in Dubai.

Israel insists there is no evidence that Mossad agents were involved.

The comments – which appeared on the Web site of UAE daily The National – came as international pressure mounted for Israel to answer questions about possible links to the killing.

The investigation also widened to the United States. Emirates authorities said the alleged killers used fraudulent passports to open credit cards accounts through U.S.-based banks, an official said.

“Our investigations reveal that Mossad is involved in the murder of al-Mabhouh,” Tamim was quoted as saying by The National, which is owned by the government of Abu Dhabi.

He told another local paper, Dubai-based Gulf News, that: “All elements strongly indicate the involvement of the Mossad.”

Tamim and other Dubai police officials could not be immediately reached for further comment. Israel government spokesman Mark Regev also had no comment.

The international fallout from the murder in a Dubai hotel room showed no signs of easing, with Britain and Ireland summoning Israeli ambassadors Thursday for talks about the case following allegations that European passports were used by the alleged team of assassins.

A UAE official, who has close knowledge of the investigation, said at least 18 people – including two women – are now suspected in what Dubai police describe as a highly coordinated operation to kill al-Mabhouh, one of the founders of Hamas’ military wing.

Ten of the men and one woman were identified by Dubai police Monday as members of the group that traveled to Dubai on apparently fraudulent passports – six from Britain, three from Ireland and one each from Germany and France.

Britain has said it will investigate how some of the suspects came to have British passports – and how they might have been produced.

British Foreign Secretary David Miliband said one of the nation’s top diplomats, Peter Ricketts, “explained the concern we have for British passport holders in Israel” during the meeting with Israeli Ambassador Ron Prosor.

“He made clear that we wanted to give Israel every opportunity to share with us what it knows about this incident, and we hope and expect that they will cooperate fully with the investigation,” he said, adding he would raise the issue with Israel’s foreign minister when they meet in Brussels in the coming days.

Prosor told journalists he was not able to add additional information to Britain’s request.

Israel’s ambassador to Ireland, Zion Evrony, said he had nothing useful to tell Ireland because he knew nothing confidential about the Dubai assassination.

Irish Foreign Minister Micheal Martin has said the three Irish passports did have valid numbers but were issued to people with different names than those made public by Dubai.

He said the Foreign Ministry had contacted two people with the same passport numbers and found they had not lost their passports or had any stolen. The assassins apparently had access to pre-2005 passports that lacked biometric information, Martin said.

Also linked to the slaying are two Palestinians in Dubai custody and five others, including one woman who was caught on video surveillance at the luxury hotel where al-Mabhouh’s body was found Jan. 20, said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity in line with standing policies.

Source


Alleged Assassins Caught on Dubai Surveillance Tape

February 17 2010

Dubai authorities have released extensive footage from surveillance cameras that allegedly shows the movements of a professional 11-person assassination team in the hours before and after a top Hamas leader was killed last month in a hotel room.

February 2 2010 Mahmoud al-Mabhouh, 49, a military official of the Islamic Resistance Movement, was found dead in his Dubai hotel room late last month. While the death appeared to be from natural causes, an autopsy revealed Mr. al-Mabhouh was killed, apparently by suffocation with a pillow after receiving electric shocks, perhaps from a taser.

Hamas has accused Israel of carrying out the killing, and Dubai police chief Dhahi Khalfan said that Mossad, Israel’s infamous spy and dirty tricks agency, was one suspect.

“I don’t exclude any party that has an interest in the assassination,” Mr. Khalfan said. “There were seven or more people holding passports from different European countries” in the group suspected of killing Mr. al-Mabhouh, he said.

This is not  a new phenomenon as this has been done many times, among other assassinations and terrorist acts by Israel.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu also  authorized the assassination of Khalid Mishal in 1997.

Mishal came to power largely as the result of a botched assassination attempt by seven Mossad agents in September 1997. Mossad used Canadian passports, some forged and some stolen from a Canadian embassy.

Update February 26 2010

UK police meet passport victims connected to assassination of Mahmoud al-Mabhouh

US-COLOMBIA: Activists Target “World of Coca-Cola”

By Matthew Cardinale
November 24 2009

ATLANTA, Georgia,

Activists from the U.S. and Colombia are targeting the World of Coca-Cola museum, located near its headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia, accusing the company of “union busting”, paying its workers “poverty wages”, and engaging in environmentally destructive practices.

“We’re an unofficial coalition with the India Resource Center, focusing on Coca-Cola overusing waters in drought areas. We’re supporting Corporate Accountability International, that have been trying to stop the use of bottled water over tap water,” Lew Friedman, of Killer Coke, told IPS.

“We’re working on behalf of Sinaltrainal, the food workers in Colombia. They had eight union leaders murdered. We’ve been augmenting their legal suit,” Friedman said.

“There’s plenty of evidence that shows the plant managers were very cozy with the paramilitaries,” he added.

Sinaltrainal v. Coca-Cola was filed in 2001 by the United Steelworkers of America and the International Labor Rights Fund on behalf of the Colombian trade union Sinaltrainal, several of its members, and the estate of Isidro Gil, one of its officers who was murdered.

Coca-Cola bottlers “contracted with or otherwise directed paramilitary security forces that utilize extreme violence and murdered, tortured, unlawfully detained or otherwise silenced trade union leaders”, the lawsuit states.

In addition, Killer Coke claims that many of the Colombian paramilitary troops were trained at the controversial formerly-named School of the Americas, now called the U.S. Western Hemisphere Institute for Security and Economic Cooperation, in Fort Benning, Georgia.

In 2003, the U.S. District Court removed Coca-Cola as a defendant in the case because the murders took place in Colombia, not in the U.S. However, two Coca-Cola bottlers remained as defendants in the case. In 2006, the judge dismissed the remaining claims.

When IPS asked Coca-Cola about Killer Coke’s demonstration in Atlanta last week, the company replied in an email statement that it “was based on an uninformed and inaccurate portrayal of The Coca-Cola Company and independent Coca-Cola bottlers in Colombia and based on allegations that are over ten years old”.

“The unfounded allegations have been reviewed over the years by multiple courts in Colombia and most recently in the United States, as well as by the International Labor Organization, and outside law firms – all concluding that the Coca-Cola bottler employees in Colombia enjoy extensive, normal relations with multiple unions and are provided with safe working conditions there,” Coca-Cola said.

While much of Killer Coke’s focus seemed to be on the Colombian trade union issue, activists said other issues involved the alleged use of child labour in other countries and questions about the healthiness of Coca-Cola products in general.

“There are issues of health, the use of high fructose corn syrup,” Friedman said.

As part of their campaign, Killer Coke has been successful at getting over 50 U.S. colleges and universities to stop selling Coke, and at getting the Service Employee Industrial Union (SEIU) and teachers’ unions to stop carrying Coke in their offices.

Killer Coke decided to target Coca-Cola headquarters on its own turf, in Atlanta, in part by driving a mobile billboard around town that read, “Don’t Drink Killer Coke Zero: Zero Ethics, Zero Justice, Zero Health.” This is a pun on one of the company’s products, Coke Zero, which is a near-zero calorie beverage.

“The World of Coke is basically one large advertisement for Coca-Cola. It’s the centre of Coca-Cola, it’s a mile away from their headquarters, it’s basically their public image that’s there,” said Ian Hoffmann, a young activist from Minnesota.

“We’ve got people coming forward and saying it’s an anti-union company. Coca-Cola usually says ‘we’re an Atlanta-based company. What happens in Colombia is out of our control, and more importantly, not our responsibility’, even though they [the bottling plants] are bottling Coca-Cola products and helping the company with huge profits,” Hoffmann said.

“We want some accountability. From my end, I’d like them to acknowledge what’s going on there, explaining to us why after the union leader gets shot dead, that the next day no one signs a new contract with Sinaltrainal. How do they stand by that? How do you defend that?” Hoffmann said.

“If these are people that are working, bottling Coca-Cola products, how is it okay for this company to stand by and not take some kind of action?” Hoffmann said. “How could this be happening at Coca-Cola with management turning a blind eye?”

Hoffmann acknowledged it is difficult going up against a multinational corporation like Coca-Cola. “It’s usually difficult because of the brand name. They have forced their way into every American fridge. The money they spend to get their name out and marketing to children. It’s a Coke culture, you know, starting out with those ads with Santa Claus.”

At a protest last week, activists chanted slogans and played a recording of a contemporary folk song called, “Coke is the Drink of the Death Squads”.

They came from all over the U.S., including states like Illinois, Iowa, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, and Minnesota, as well as Washington, DC. Groups like Witness for Peace and School of the Americas Watch were also represented.

Martha Giraldo, 31, of Colombia, charged Coca-Cola’s bottling plants with “using temp [temporary] workers on contracts three months or less long, and they don’t pay a just wage, exterminating labour leaders, violating our Constitutional right to be unionised. In Colombia, we’re in a human rights crisis.”

Giraldo and another speaker spoke to the mostly English-speaking audience through a translator.

“People are marginalised in large cities of our country. We’re all suffering a humanitarian crisis. It’s not true what [Secretary of State] Hillary Clinton says when she says in Colombia we’re safe and live in peace. It’s only for some, large landowners and the paramilitary; the rest are marginalised for denouncing it. We are being accused of being guerrilla supporters,” Giraldo said.

“In Colombia there are four million internally displaced people, who’ve been driven off their land because of terror campaigns of the paramilitary,” Giraldo said. “In addition to fumigating coca crops and food crops and water sources we use to drink, approximately 30,000 people disappeared in Colombia. We don’t know where they are. It’s been years since they disappeared.”

“We’re here in front of one of the symbols of capitalism. This company represents one of the perverse ways of accumulating capital. We’re here to demonstrate on behalf of our dead brothers,” said Gerardo Caja Marca in a speech at the rally.

“They systematically violate human rights in Colombia. All workers have the right and obligation to defend their rights. Simply exercising those rights has cost the lives of workers in Colombia,” Caja Marca said.

“Lastly we came here to demand justice. These are the men of war. These are the ones who put seven US military bases in Colombia. These are the ones who create paramilitaries. We accuse Coca-Cola of financing assassins. We want truth and reparations,” Caja Marca said.

Source

List of  union leaders at Coca-Cola’s Colombian bottling plants who have been murdered. Hundreds of other Coke workers have been tortured, kidnapped and/or illegally detained by violent paramilitaries, often working closely with plant managements.

Source of information here.

Colombia is the most dangerous country in the world to be a union activist. According to the Solidarity Center of the AFL-CIO, roughly 4,000 Colombian trade unionists have been murdered in the past 20 years, more than 2,000 of them since 1991. The ITUC reports that despite the current government’s strong emphasis on security and a fall in the murder of trade unionists over the last few years, 2008 saw a disturbing 25% rise in cases of anti-union violence due to increased paramilitary activity. A total of 49 trade unionists were assassinated in 2008 and 2009 has seen a similar labor homicide rate. Despite continued violence, the Bush Administration negotiated a Free Trade Agreement with Colombia that has yet to be ratified by Congress.

U.S. corporations such as Coca-Cola, Chiquita, Dole, Nestle and the Drummond mining company have been complicit in such egregious union rights violations.  The International Rights Advocates (comprised of ILRF’s former lawyers now part of Conrad and Scherer law firm) have brought a number of lawsuits against these companies. The lawsuits charge that companies’ practices of hiring right-wing paramilitary groups to kill and intimidate union leaders is a violation of the Alien Torts Claims Act, a law meant to hold U.S. corporations accountable for human rights violations abroad. View the cases here.

Click here to tell the Justice Department to investigate Dole’s links to union murders in Colombia!

Workers are also intimidated through the use of death threats, attacks, disappearances, black lists, arrests, dismissals for organizing and widespread contract labor arrangements which limit collective bargaining rights. Only 1.2% of workers in Colombia are covered by a collective bargaining agreement and the rate has been declining over the years as workers see the danger in organizing. Paramilitary groups such as the AUC (United Self Defense Forces of Colombia), which is considered a terrorist organization by the U.S. government, are responsible for the majority of the violence targeting trade unions. There is also a pervasive culture of impunity for crimes targeting unions. The ITUC estimates that over 99 percent of the cases were unpunished and/or not investigated and not a single person/organization to order a labor homicide has ever been convicted.

Many corporations such as Coca-Cola have also used more subtle methods to undermine unions by overwhelming forcing workers into contract labor schemes through employment agencies and labor “cooperatives”. According to a 2008 report of the International Labor Organization, at a Bogota Coca-Cola bottling plant “outsourcing involves 81 percent of the workers.” Such overuse of subcontracting has severely undermined workers’ rights to equal pay, social benefits and the right to organize. A new law passed in July 2008 on workers’ cooperatives has not resolved the situation, in the view of the ILO.

Drummond Coal company has also been notoriously unresponsive to workers concerns about health and safety and bargaining rights. 3 workers employed by partially owned Drummond contractors died in 2009. 4000 workers went on strike in 2009 to protest the company’s refusal to negotiate a CBA and the poor and precarious working conditions pervasive in Drummond owned mines.

According to the ITUC, labor law and policy still exclude more than two thirds of workers from social and worker protection measures, by denying basic workers’ rights to over 12 million people. The laws and practices of the Colombian State do not favor the creation of stable, permanent jobs, leaving nearly 70% of workers in a precarious employment situations. Source

Related Articles

RIGHTS-COLOMBIA: Less Torture, More Impunity

RIGHTS: Harsh Language for Colombia at UN Review

DEVELOPMENT-INDIA: Farmers Vs Coca-Cola in Water Wars

Related Sites

Corporate Accountability International
International Labor Rights Fund

There are also Boycotts called against Coca Cola, as they support Israel as well.

Seems they are not well liked.

Might I suggest a world wide boycott of of Coca Cola.

Take away their money,  take away their power until they bend to the will of people not profit.

British UN nuclear expert may have been murdered, police say

Mystery deepens over Vienna UN death

November 1 2009

By David Rogers

A British nuclear expert who fell from the 17th floor of a United Nations building did not commit suicide and may have been hurled to his death, says a doctor who carried out a second post-mortem examination.

Timothy Hampton, 47, a scientist involved in monitoring nuclear activity, was found dead last week at the bottom of a stairwell in Vienna.

An initial autopsy concluded that there were “no suspicious circumstances”. But it is understood that Mr Hampton’s widow Olena Gryshcuk and her family were deeply unhappy with that verdict.

Now a doctor who undertook a second post-mortem examination on behalf of the family believes she has found evidence that Mr Hampton did not die by his own hands.

Professor Kathrin Yen, of the Ludwig Boltzmann Forensic Institute in Graz, Austria, which specialises in traumatology research, told the Mail on Sunday she had more tests to complete on Mr Hampton, who had a three-year-old son with Ms Gryshcuk.

But she said one possible theory was that Mr Hampton was carried to the 17th floor from his workplace on the sixth floor and thrown to his death.

Professor Yen used new forensic techniques to detect internal bruising caused by strangulation which would not be visible to the eye.

She told the Mail on Sunday : ‘In my opinion, it does not look like suicide. My example is that somebody took him up to the top floor and took him down.

“At the moment I don’t have the police reports. We did a CT scan. From the external exam, I saw injuries on the neck but these were not due to strangulation.”

It is expected to take three weeks for blood test results to come back. Austrian police said they believe Mr Hampton committed suicide.

He had been working for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organisation (CTBTO) at the UN building and the Austrian Times has been told that Mr Hampton may have been involved in talks discussing nuclear testing in Iran. The UN has strongly denied the claims, although Mr Hampton’s title – processing engineer – meant he was “part of the team maintaining and operating the International Data Centre Division application software to generate and distribute data products and services to CTBTOs 182 Member States”.

This meant he was responsible for monitoring a vast array of technical data from hundreds of monitoring stations around the world in the hope of discovering any illegal nuclear activity – including Iran. In fact although CTBTO officials were reluctant to admit it, of the 300 plus monitoring stations set up globally there are at least two in the geographical area of Iran sending data back to Vienna.

In addition both the CTBTO and the IAEA that organised the recent Iran talks are in the same complex – the IAEA occupies A and B buildings while the CTBTO is in E building – both are covering the same subject matter.

Mr Hampton’s body was discovered last Tuesday at about 8am. Friends said it was usual for him to work late into the night. His widow, an inspector for the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), was working in Japan when her husband died.

A source close to the family said life had not been easy for Mr Hampton, who was often away from his wife and son.

But the source added that he was ‘not the suicide type’. He said: ‘Tim was rather introverted. He changed his life many times.’

Trained in Britain as a bio-chemist, Mr Hampton worked in a bio-lab before moving into construction.

He then worked on nuclear test-ban projects before joining the UN in 1998, said the CTBTO.

The IAEA, an independent and separate organisation, inspects nuclear plants worldwide and is based in the building next to the CTBTO in Vienna.

Under a year ago, an American died at the IAEA in strikingly similar circumstances, his body being found at the bottom of a stairwell.

A UN spokeswoman said an investigation into that case continues, though Austrian police have concluded it was suicide.

She said: “This might have been a copycat thing in the CTBTO.”

Source

October 22 2009

Brit UN nuclear expert may have been murdered, police say

By Thomas Hochwarter

A British nuclear energy expert who plunged 40 metres to his death at the United Nations’ (UN) building in Vienna may have been murdered, police said today (Thurs).

Timothy Hampton died on the spot on Tuesday after falling from a 17th floor window at the Vienna International Centre (VIC) – one of the UN’s three headquarters.

The UN confirmed the death of the 47-year-old – who was involved in disarmament negotiations with Iran as a member of the UN’s Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) – but refused to give any further information on the circumstances of the fatality.

A police spokesman told the Austrian Times today that investigators had not ruled out murder as no suicide note has been found.

“Whenever there is a case where others may have been involved we will investigate all the possible scenarios. Murder is one possibility, suicide another,” the spokesman said.

He added investigators were waiting for the result of an autopsy.

UN staff told the Austrian Times yesterday that there had been a similar case just recently in which an employee died when he fell from a similar height at the landmark buildings in Vienna-Donaustadt.

Source

British nuclear expert dies in 40-metre plunge

By Thomas Hochwarter

Police are investigating after a British nuclear energy expert involved in negotiations with Iran over its nuclear programme fell 40 metres to his death from a UN building in Vienna.

Officials announced today (Weds) that the man – named as Timothy Hampton – died on the spot yesterday after a fall from the 17th floor at Vienna International Centre (VIC), one of the United Nations’ (UN) main headquarters along with New York, Nairobi and Geneva.

Authorities said the 47-year-old man – a member of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) – had joined the UN’s current talks with Iran over its nuclear programme.

Investigators refused to reveal any further information on the case but said they ordered an autopsy.

Speaking to the Austrian Times, Anne Thomas – a press spokesperson at the UN in Vienna – said: “All I can confirm is that a male staff member of the CTBTO was found dead at the bottom of a stairwell in the E Building at the Vienna International Centre at 8.30 on Tuesday morning.

“Vienna police are investigating the incident and there is nothing else we can say,” she added.

UN staff told the Austrian Times that there had been a similar case recently in which an employee died when he fell from a comparable height.

Source

Oddly enough Vienna is where Canadian passports were stolen from to use in an assassination attempt of Khalid Mishal by Mossad agents.


Iran is right about US ,UK, Israel backed Jundallah/ 3 very good videos included

Nasa scientist accused of trying to sell secrets to Israel’s Mossad intelligence service

Published in: on October 23, 2009 at 6:02 am  Comments Off on British UN nuclear expert may have been murdered, police say  
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Call for murder charges to be brought over Trafigura’s toxic dumping

Petition filed in Dutch court claims Trafigura knew waste that maimed thousands in Ivory Coast was hazardous

By Cahal Milmo

September 18 2009

Trafigura, the oil-trading company at the centre of the scandal caused by the dumping of tons of toxic waste in one of the world’s poorest countries, could be prosecuted for murder after a dossier of evidence was submitted to a court in the Netherlands yesterday, alleging that the sludge caused deaths and serious injuries. A complaint filed by Greenpeace Netherlands calls for a Dutch prosecution arising from Trafigura’s actions in July 2006 – when a chartered tanker carrying the contaminated waste arrived in Amsterdam – to be widened to include events in Ivory Coast a month later which caused thousands of people to fall ill after tons of the foul-smelling slurry was dumped in the port of Abidjan. The campaigning group wants Dutch courts to order public prosecutors to bring charges of murder, manslaughter, negligence and conspiracy against the London-based commodities giant, which has vigorously denied any knowledge of the fly-tipping of the waste by an Ivorian sub-contractor in August 2006.

Emails between Trafigura employees submitted to the court in The Hague are claimed by Greenpeace to show that the company knew the waste – described in one internal memo as “the shit” – was potentially hazardous and could not be exported outside the European Union. Trafigura insists that its managers sought at all times to dispose lawfully of the “slops” on board its chartered tanker, the Probo Koala.

Trafigura, which last year had a turnover of $73bn (£44bn, equivalent to twice the GDP of Ivory Coast), has agreed to a multimillion-pound payout to settle Britain’s largest group lawsuit, brought by 30,000 Abidjan residents who fell ill after breathing in fumes from the sludge.

The settlement of the High Court case, expected to be finalised within weeks, concerns claims by victims who suffered short-term illnesses. But it does not apply to allegations, which will now not be tested in the British courts, that the dumped waste caused more serious problems, including deaths, miscarriages and birth defects.

Trafigura has fought a three-year battle, engaging PR consultants and libel lawyers to dispute critical reporting of the incident, and insists that the waste could not have caused the serious injuries alleged. A United Nations report this week stated that there seemed to be “prima facie evidence” that up to a dozen deaths in Abidjan were linked to the sludge.

The oil trader, the third-largest of its kind in the world, is already being prosecuted in the Netherlands over claims that it breached Dutch and European laws by misdeclaring the nature of the sludge on the Probo Koala when it arrived in Amsterdam, and by subsequently taking the waste outside EU borders. A Greenpeace spokesman said: “The emails show that Trafigura employees knew the waste would be difficult to deal with and were desperate to find someone who would take it off their hands.

“There are now no legal proceedings which will test the claims that as well as making thousands of people in Ivory Coast sick, the waste was also responsible for deaths and other serious injuries of innocent people. We are asking the Dutch courts to change that.”

The contaminated sludge – its composition is disputed by Trafigura and opponents – was the by-product of deals struck by the company’s traders in 2005 and 2006 to buy a cheap and dirty oil known as “coker naptha” from a Mexican refinery and extract clean fuel from it by adding a mixture of caustic soda and a catalyst. Emails show Trafigura expected to make a profit of $7m (£4m) from each cargo, despite the fact that “caustic washes are banned in most countries due to the hazardous nature of the waste”. This do-it-yourself process was performed in or about April 2006 on board the Probo Koala while it was anchored off Gibraltar. The resulting waste arrived in Abidjan on 19 August 2006 and was unloaded from the tanker into trucks hired by Compagnie Tommy, the sub-contractor employed by Trafigura’s shipping agent.

It was then dumped at 18 sites, including drains and lagoons, around the sprawling city, leading to a flood of victims complaining of symptoms including sickness, diarrhoea and breathing difficulties. Autopsy reports included in the Greenpeace dossier suggest that the bodies of 12 people who died in Abidjan showed high levels of hydrogen sulphide, a poisonous gas which campaigners claim was present in the waste. Trafigura insists the gas could not have been emitted by the sludge.

In a statement, the company accused Greenpeace of a “wholly selective interpretation” of a small number of emails containing “trader-speak” which could not be taken literally. It added: “More importantly, on a proper analysis of all the material and of what in fact happened, it is clear that the responsible individuals at Trafigura sought at all times to ensure that the slops were disposed of lawfully.

“Greenpeace Netherlands’ unfounded accusations are utterly rejected by Trafigura. It is deeply regrettable that Greenpeace has chosen to make a number of serious and unfounded remarks, without any regard to the available scientific evidence or to statements made by Trafigura based on detailed analysis by independent experts.”

Source

The toxic price paid by the poor in processing our waste

The Trafigura episode is part of a far wider scandal
The saga of Trafigura and the poisoning of Abidjan is, first and foremost, the tale of a single company’s grotesque – and possibly criminal – irresponsibility. But this episode is also a lurid illustration of the wider scandal of Western companies and nations dumping their harmful waste on vulnerable communities around the world.

It was probably sheer accident that Trafigura’s activities in 2006 came to public attention. The local Ivory Coast trucking firm which Trafigura paid to get rid of the toxic contents of its tanks dumped all the waste around a single city, thus precipitating a mass poisoning. If they had been less lazy and spread the material over a larger area it is entirely possible the crime would never have been detected, or at least not traced back to Trafigura.

There is likely to be a great deal more of this sort of illegal dumping going on in benighted parts of the world where environmental controls are weak and there are poor and unscrupulous locals willing to despoil their surroundings for a relatively cheap fee.

It is not just toxic chemicals which poison communities. Earlier this year an investigation in which this newspaper took part uncovered that British waste subcontractors are sending “e-waste” (defunct televisions, computers and assorted electronic gadgets) collected from UK council dumps, to Africa.

British law says such potentially hazardous items must be dismantled, or recycled, by specialist firms. But there is evidence that subcontractors are ignoring that law and simply dispatching the refuse to countries such as Nigeria and Ghana. Here the items are stripped of their raw metals by poor Africans working on poisoned waste dumps.

And it is not just Africa which is suffering from the manner in which our societies dispose of our waste. Streams and trees in southern China have been found clogged with plastic bags and other non-degradable rubbish that originated in Britain.

This pollution is the by-product of an entirely legal trade. European Union regulations prevent member states from dumping garbage overseas. But what they are allowed to do is send waste for recycling abroad. This is what happens with much British refuse. The problem is that the sorting often ends up taking place in places such as southern China where health risks and pollution are a low priority for local authorities.

The effects of such activities might not be as dramatic as Trafigura’s mass dumping of hazardous chemicals. But they can be just as damaging to the health of the people who live in the areas where this waste ends up. And the turning of a blind eye by Western interests (some of them public servants) who are looking to save some money is no less shameful.

Trafigura must be held fully to account for what it has done, not least to send a powerful message to other firms around the world who are using similarly unscrupulous waste disposal methods. But we delude ourselves if we imagine this was an isolated case of bad behaviour in Western waste disposal.

The globalisation of trade has brought many benefits to rich and poor alike around the world. But the manner in which we have imposed the toxic cost of disposing of our refuse on those with the weakest defences shows its dark side. We cannot continue to wash our hands – and our consciences – of the consequences.

Source

For Trafigura Emails go to below link.

How UK oil company Trafigura tried to cover up African pollution disaster

Published in: on September 18, 2009 at 8:43 am  Comments Off on Call for murder charges to be brought over Trafigura’s toxic dumping  
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Israel declares the shooting of American activist, Tristan Anderson to be an “act of war”


Israel declares the shooting of American activist, Tristan Anderson to be an “act of war.”Tristan Anderson, an American national, was critically injured on 13 March 2009 when he was shot with a high velocity tear-gas projectile during an unarmed demonstration against the Wall in the West Bank village of Ni’lin (report and video: http://palsolidarity.org/2009/03/5324).

The Israeli Ministry of Defense has notified the Anderson family’s lawyers that Israel perceives the incident on 13 March 2009 as an “act of war.” This classification was made despite the fact that Anderson’s shooting occurred during a civilian demonstration and there were no armed hostilities during the event or surrounding it.

The consequence of such classification is that according to Israeli law, the state of Israel is not liable for any damage its’ forces have caused.

Israeli police have completed their criminal investigation and passed the file to the district attorney of the Central District of the Israeli prosecution offices. The Anderson’s criminal attorney, Michael Sfard, is awaiting their decision.

According to Michael Sfard,

If a process by which unarmed civilian demonstration is classified by Israel as an ‘act of war,’ then clearly Israel admits that it is at war with civilians. International law identifies the incident as a clear case of human rights abuse. As such, Tristan and his family are undoubtedly entitled to justice and compensation. We will pursue this matter and take the government of Israel to court.

In addition to filing a criminal complaint against the State of Israel for the shooting of their son, the Andersons have submitted a notice of intent to file a civil suit.

Leah Tsemel, the civil suit attorney, stated,

This is another occasion where the Israeli government is alluding responsibility. The demonstrations that take place in Ni’lin and Bil’in are not acts of war. We will pursue, in Israeli courts and international courts if necessary, justice for the Anderson family.

Tristan Anderson was critically injured on 13 March 2009 when he was shot with a high-velocity tear gas projectile by Israeli forces. He was taken to Tel Hashomer hospital near Tel Aviv and to date remains in the hospital facilities. Tristan suffered multiple condensed fractures as a result of being hit in the right frontal lobe. He has had several life-saving surgeries and his prospects for recovery are unclear.

On 10 August 2009, Tristan underwent another surgery to reattach the top part of his skull, which was removed in order to save his life immediately after his shooting five months ago.

Several eye-witnesses have given testimony that Tristan was shot when he could not have been perceived as any threat to the forces in the area. He was shot from around 60 meters while standing with a few internationals and Palestinians, hours after the demonstration had dispersed from the construction site of the Wall.

“We are horrified and overwhelmed,” said Nancy Anderson during a press conference on 23 March 2009. “We are scared and really still in shock. To shoot peaceful demonstrators is really horrifying to us. What we want to ask is that the Israeli government publicly take full responsibility for the shooting of our son.” (audio of press conference held by the Andersons: http://www.alternativenews.org/news-from-within:-palestine/israel-podcasts/1854-news-from-within-podcast-press-conference-of-the-parents-of-american-activist-tristan-anderson-who-was-critically-injured-by-israeli-military.html)

Israeli forces have been systematically shooting tear-gas projectiles directly at demonstrators during protests at the West Bank Wall.

After Anderson’s shooting, the Israeli human rights organization B’Tselem requested the Judge Advocate General, Brig. Gen. Avichai Mandelblit, to immediately clarify to security forces that it is absolutely forbidden to directly aim tear-gas canisters, including extended-range type canisters, at demonstrators in the West Bank. B’Tselem also provided extensive video footage of demonstrations in Ni’lin, Bi’lin, and Jayyus showing repeated firing of tear-gas grenades directly at demonstrators, proving that, contrary to the army’s contentions, Israeli forces in the West Bank have commonly practiced this unlawful act. (report & video: http://www.btselem.org/English/Firearms/20090318_Firing_of_Tear_Gaz_at_Demonstrators.asp).

Following the killing of a Palestinian demonstrator in Bil’in, Basem Abu Rahme, by Israeli forces on 17 April 2009 with a high velocity tear gas projectile (report and video: http://palsolidarity.org/2009/04/6185), B’Tselem again demanded that the army enforce its Open-Fire Regulations and investigate the incidents (http://www.btselem.org/English/Firearms/20090422_Firing_Tear_Gaz_Canisters_directly_on_People.asp).

On 5 May 2009, Yehoshua Lemberger, deputy state attorney for criminal affairs of the Justice Ministry, asked the police to review the guidelines for dispersing protesters based on Rahme’s death and the police investigations of four additional incidents that occurred in Nil’in, including the shooting of Tristan Anderson (http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1239710864477&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull).

Source

Act of war?????????? Who are they trying to kid. Attempted murder, and Murder would be more like it. The killing continues. Israel must be stopped. This type of thing happens all to often.

Testimony from Israeli soldiers/ Gaza

Israel targets Sweden over newspaper claim

Butchers: The hidden truth about Israel’s kidney theft ring

Swedish PM: No apology to Israel in regards to article Swedish newspaper reveals Israeli army murders Palestinians for their organs

U.S. group invests tax-free millions in East Jerusalem land

Gaza cancer patients have only painkillers, due to Israeli Blockade

Swedish newspaper reveals Israeli army murders Palestinians for their organs

Published in: on August 27, 2009 at 7:19 am  Comments Off on Israel declares the shooting of American activist, Tristan Anderson to be an “act of war”  
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Blackwater Founder Implicated in Murder

Private Isn’t Always Better, at Least Not With Vital Functions

By David Mittleman Attorney

August 23, 2009

Sometimes a private option isn’t always the best one. While it is well documented how the powerful Blackwater USA private military organization was responsible for various atrocities in Iraq, sworn statements filed in a federal court in Virginia indicate that Blackwater founder Erik Prince (brother-in-law to Dick DeVos) instructed and orchestrated the murder of individuals who were planning on providing incriminating information to the federal government. Yes, the same Erik Prince who has given generous support to not only brother-in-law Dick DeVos, but gubernatorial hopeful Pete Hoekstra.

In a truly surreal description of events by two former Blackwater employees, whose identities are being kept secret to keep them safe from retaliation, their sworn statements describe activities from illegal smuggling of weapons into Iraq, hiring of guards who were not properly cleared by the State Department, blatant failure to report misconduct to the State Department, to the destruction of any incriminating evidence.

Meanwhile, as the debate rages on across the country over whether or not a public option for health care is a good thing, consider statement 12 by John Doe #2, who states that “Mr. Prince is motivated by greed. He sought every opportunity to deploy to Iraq in order to earn more money from the United States government. Mr. Prince and his top manager Gary Jackson knew the men being deployed were not suitable candidates for carrying lethal weaponry, but did not care because deployments meant more money.” Those are harsh allegations, but if true, what is the lesson? The lesson is perhaps that sometimes there are some fundamental health and safety functions, such as keeping us healthy and keeping us safe, that should not be so perilously connected to private enterprise, whose only real objective is to increase profit. The lesson is perhaps that we cannot rely on corporate interests to police themselves, when doing so poses even the slightest harm of reducing profits. The lesson is long overdue.

Source

Blackwater Founder Implicated in Murder

By Jeremy Scahill
The Nation
August 9, 2009

Founder and CEO of Blackwater Worldwide Erik Prince stands in the company’s offices in North Carolina. (Photo: AP)


A former Blackwater employee and an ex-US Marine who has worked as a security operative for the company have made a series of explosive allegations in sworn statements filed on August 3 in federal court in Virginia. The two men claim that the company’s owner, Erik Prince, may have murdered or facilitated the murder of individuals who were cooperating with federal authorities investigating the company. The former employee also alleges that Prince “views himself as a Christian crusader tasked with eliminating Muslims and the Islamic faith from the globe,” and that Prince’s companies “encouraged and rewarded the destruction of Iraqi life.”

In their testimony, both men also allege that Blackwater was smuggling weapons into Iraq. One of the men alleges that Prince turned a profit by transporting “illegal” or “unlawful” weapons into the country on Prince’s private planes. They also charge that Prince and other Blackwater executives destroyed incriminating videos, emails and other documents and have intentionally deceived the US State Department and other federal agencies. The identities of the two individuals were sealed out of concerns for their safety.

These allegations, and a series of other charges, are contained in sworn affidavits, given under penalty of perjury, filed late at night on August 3 in the Eastern District of Virginia as part of a seventy-page motion by lawyers for Iraqi civilians suing Blackwater for alleged war crimes and other misconduct. Susan Burke, a private attorney working in conjunction with the Center for Constitutional Rights, is suing Blackwater in five separate civil cases filed in the Washington, DC, area. They were recently consolidated before Judge T.S. Ellis III of the Eastern District of Virginia for pretrial motions. Burke filed the August 3 motion in response to Blackwater’s motion to dismiss the case. Blackwater asserts that Prince and the company are innocent of any wrongdoing and that they were professionally performing their duties on behalf of their employer, the US State Department.

The former employee, identified in the court documents as “John Doe #2,” is a former member of Blackwater’s management team, according to a source close to the case. Doe #2 alleges in a sworn declaration that, based on information provided to him by former colleagues, “it appears that Mr. Prince and his employees murdered, or had murdered, one or more persons who have provided information, or who were planning to provide information, to the federal authorities about the ongoing criminal conduct.” John Doe #2 says he worked at Blackwater for four years; his identity is concealed in the sworn declaration because he “fear[s] violence against me in retaliation for submitting this Declaration.” He also alleges, “On several occasions after my departure from Mr. Prince’s employ, Mr. Prince’s management has personally threatened me with death and violence.”

In a separate sworn statement, the former US marine who worked for Blackwater in Iraq alleges that he has “learned from my Blackwater colleagues and former colleagues that one or more persons who have provided information, or who were planning to provide information about Erik Prince and Blackwater have been killed in suspicious circumstances.” Identified as “John Doe #1,” he says he “joined Blackwater and deployed to Iraq to guard State Department and other American government personnel.” It is not clear if Doe #1 is still working with the company as he states he is “scheduled to deploy in the immediate future to Iraq.” Like Doe #2, he states that he fears “violence” against him for “submitting this Declaration.” No further details on the alleged murder(s) are provided.

“Mr. Prince feared, and continues to fear, that the federal authorities will detect and prosecute his various criminal deeds,” states Doe #2. “On more than one occasion, Mr. Prince and his top managers gave orders to destroy emails and other documents. Many incriminating videotapes, documents and emails have been shredded and destroyed.”

The Nation cannot independently verify the identities of the two individuals, their roles at Blackwater or what motivated them to provide sworn testimony in these civil cases. Both individuals state that they have previously cooperated with federal prosecutors conducting a criminal inquiry into Blackwater.

“It’s a pending investigation, so we cannot comment on any matters in front of a Grand Jury or if a Grand Jury even exists on these matters,” John Roth, the spokesperson for the US Attorney’s office in the District of Columbia, told The Nation. “It would be a crime if we did that.” Asked specifically about whether there is a criminal investigation into Prince regarding the murder allegations and other charges, Roth said: “We would not be able to comment on what we are or are not doing in regards to any possible investigation involving an uncharged individual.”

The Nation repeatedly attempted to contact spokespeople for Prince or his companies at numerous email addresses and telephone numbers. When a company representative was reached by phone and asked to comment, she said, “Unfortunately no one can help you in that area.” The representative then said that she would pass along The Nation’s request. As this article goes to press, no company representative has responded further to The Nation.

Doe #2 states in the declaration that he has also provided the information contained in his statement “in grand jury proceedings convened by the United States Department of Justice.” Federal prosecutors convened a grand jury in the aftermath of the September 16, 2007, Nisour Square shootings in Baghdad, which left seventeen Iraqis dead. Five Blackwater employees are awaiting trial on several manslaughter charges and a sixth, Jeremy Ridgeway, has already pleaded guilty to manslaughter and attempting to commit manslaughter and is cooperating with prosecutors. It is not clear whether Doe #2 testified in front of the Nisour Square grand jury or in front of a separate grand jury.

The two declarations are each five pages long and contain a series of devastating allegations concerning Erik Prince and his network of companies, which now operate under the banner of Xe Services LLC. Among those leveled by Doe #2 is that Prince “views himself as a Christian crusader tasked with eliminating Muslims and the Islamic faith from the globe”:

To that end, Mr. Prince intentionally deployed to Iraq certain men who shared his vision of Christian supremacy, knowing and wanting these men to take every available opportunity to murder Iraqis. Many of these men used call signs based on the Knights of the Templar, the warriors who fought the Crusades.

Mr. Prince operated his companies in a manner that encouraged and rewarded the destruction of Iraqi life. For example, Mr. Prince’s executives would openly speak about going over to Iraq to “lay Hajiis out on cardboard.” Going to Iraq to shoot and kill Iraqis was viewed as a sport or game. Mr. Prince’s employees openly and consistently used racist and derogatory terms for Iraqis and other Arabs, such as “ragheads” or “hajiis.”

Among the additional allegations made by Doe #1 is that “Blackwater was smuggling weapons into Iraq.” He states that he personally witnessed weapons being “pulled out” from dog food bags. Doe #2 alleges that “Prince and his employees arranged for the weapons to be polywrapped and smuggled into Iraq on Mr. Prince’s private planes, which operated under the name Presidential Airlines,” adding that Prince “generated substantial revenues from participating in the illegal arms trade.”

Doe #2 states: “Using his various companies, [Prince] procured and distributed various weapons, including unlawful weapons such as sawed off semi-automatic machine guns with silencers, through unlawful channels of distribution.” Blackwater “was not abiding by the terms of the contract with the State Department and was deceiving the State Department,” according to Doe #1.

This is not the first time an allegation has surfaced that Blackwater used dog food bags to smuggle weapons into Iraq. ABC News’s Brian Ross reported in November 2008 that a “federal grand jury in North Carolina is investigating allegations the controversial private security firm Blackwater illegally shipped assault weapons and silencers to Iraq, hidden in large sacks of dog food.” Another former Blackwater employee has also confirmed this information to The Nation.

Both individuals allege that Prince and Blackwater deployed individuals to Iraq who, in the words of Doe #1, “were not properly vetted and cleared by the State Department.” Doe #2 adds that “Prince ignored the advice and pleas from certain employees, who sought to stop the unnecessary killing of innocent Iraqis.” Doe #2 further states that some Blackwater officials overseas refused to deploy “unfit men” and sent them back to the US. Among the reasons cited by Doe #2 were “the men making statements about wanting to deploy to Iraq to ‘kill ragheads’ or achieve ‘kills’ or ‘body counts,'” as well as “excessive drinking” and “steroid use.” However, when the men returned to the US, according to Doe #2, “Prince and his executives would send them back to be deployed in Iraq with an express instruction to the concerned employees located overseas that they needed to ‘stop costing the company money.'”

Doe #2 also says Prince “repeatedly ignored the assessments done by mental health professionals, and instead terminated those mental health professionals who were not willing to endorse deployments of unfit men.” He says Prince and then-company president Gary Jackson “hid from Department of State the fact that they were deploying men to Iraq over the objections of mental health professionals and security professionals in the field,” saying they “knew the men being deployed were not suitable candidates for carrying lethal weaponry, but did not care because deployments meant more money.”

Doe #1 states that “Blackwater knew that certain of its personnel intentionally used excessive and unjustified deadly force, and in some instances used unauthorized weapons, to kill or seriously injure innocent Iraqi civilians.” He concludes, “Blackwater did nothing to stop this misconduct.” Doe #1 states that he “personally observed multiple incidents of Blackwater personnel intentionally using unnecessary, excessive and unjustified deadly force.” He then cites several specific examples of Blackwater personnel firing at civilians, killing or “seriously” wounding them, and then failing to report the incidents to the State Department.

Doe #1 also alleges that “all of these incidents of excessive force were initially videotaped and voice recorded,” but that “Immediately after the day concluded, we would watch the video in a session called a ‘hot wash.’ Immediately after the hotwashing, the video was erased to prevent anyone other than Blackwater personnel seeing what had actually occurred.” Blackwater, he says, “did not provide the video to the State Department.”

Doe #2 expands on the issue of unconventional weapons, alleging Prince “made available to his employees in Iraq various weapons not authorized by the United States contracting authorities, such as hand grenades and hand grenade launchers. Mr. Prince’s employees repeatedly used this illegal weaponry in Iraq, unnecessarily killing scores of innocent Iraqis.” Specifically, he alleges that Prince “obtained illegal ammunition from an American company called LeMas. This company sold ammunition designed to explode after penetrating within the human body. Mr. Prince’s employees repeatedly used this illegal ammunition in Iraq to inflict maximum damage on Iraqis.”

Blackwater has gone through an intricate rebranding process in the twelve years it has been in business, changing its name and logo several times. Prince also has created more than a dozen affiliate companies, some of which are registered offshore and whose operations are shrouded in secrecy. According to Doe #2, “Prince created and operated this web of companies in order to obscure wrongdoing, fraud and other crimes.”

“For example, Mr. Prince transferred funds from one company (Blackwater) to another (Greystone) whenever necessary to avoid detection of his money laundering and tax evasion schemes.” He added: “Mr. Prince contributed his personal wealth to fund the operations of the Prince companies whenever he deemed such funding necessary. Likewise, Mr. Prince took funds out of the Prince companies and placed the funds in his personal accounts at will.”

Briefed on the substance of these allegations by The Nation, Congressman Dennis Kucinich replied, “If these allegations are true, Blackwater has been a criminal enterprise defrauding taxpayers and murdering innocent civilians.” Kucinich is on the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform and has been investigating Prince and Blackwater since 2004.

“Blackwater is a law unto itself, both internationally and domestically. The question is why they operated with impunity. In addition to Blackwater, we should be questioning their patrons in the previous administration who funded and employed this organization. Blackwater wouldn’t exist without federal patronage; these allegations should be thoroughly investigated,” Kucinich said.

A hearing before Judge Ellis in the civil cases against Blackwater is scheduled for August 7.

Source

Also see

A number of Iraqi victims and victims’ families have filed a lawsuit against Blackwater August 23 2009

Making Sense Of The Blackwater Connection August 21, 2009

New Blackwater Iraq Scandal: Guns, Silencers and Dog Food Ex-employees Tell ABC News the Firm Used Dog Food Sacks to Smuggle Unauthorized Weapons to Iraq: From November 14, 2008


US delivering more “Weapons of Mass Destruction” to Israel

US Plans Massive Arms Delivery to Israel

The Pentagon plans to make a large arms delivery to Israel, rising fears that the military campaign in Gaza will go on for a long time.

January 10, 2009

The US is trying to hire a merchant ship that can carry hundreds of tons of weapons from Greece to Israel later this month; Reuters reported citing tender documents it had obtained.

According to the US Navy’s Military Sealift Command (MSC), the ship will transport 325 standard 20-foot containers of what has been called ‘ammunition’ from the Greek port of Astakos to the Israeli port of Ashdod on two separate trips in the second half of January.

A description on the manifest says the containers will be loaded with ‘hazardous material’, such as explosive substances and detonators, without giving any more details.

The Pentagon announced the tender for the ship in the last hours of 2008. The two deadlines set for the deliveries are January 25 and the last day of the month.

Meanwhile, a Pentagon spokesman confirmed the planned arms shipment to Israel, but denied that the delivery was linked to the Israel’s deadly offensive in Gaza.

“This previously scheduled shipment is routine and not in support of the current situation in Gaza,” said Air Force Lt. Col. Patrick Ryder.

However, a senior military analyst in London, who wished to remain unnamed, said the timing of the shipments shows that they may be ‘irregular’ and linked to the military operation in Gaza.

The tender for the ship followed a December US arms delivery to Israel, which was also carried out by a merchant ship.

This is while shipping brokers in London who have carried out weapon deliveries for the British and US military in the past say that shipment of such a large cargo of weapons to Israel is rare.

“Shipping 3,000-odd tons of ammunition in one go is a lot… this is pretty rare and we haven’t seen much of it quoted in the market over the years,” one broker said, on condition of anonymity.

Tender documents indicate that the German ship hired by the US in early December also carried a massive cargo of weapons that weighed over 2.6 million kg and filled up to 989 standard 20-foot containers to Ashdod from North Carolina.

In September, the US Congress approved a plan to sell Israel 1,000 bunker-buster bombs, of the Guided Bomb Unit-39 (GBU-39), that use GPS to find their way and are able to penetrate deep fortified constructions, such as Iran’s nuclear facilities.

Last week, The Jerusalem Post, reported that the first shipment of the missiles arrived in early December, adding that the bombs had been used in the military onslaught in Gaza.

So far, Israel’s 15-day offensive in the besieged Palestinian enclave has claimed the lives of more than 800 Palestinians and wounded almost 3500.

Hamas on the other hand says Palestinian fighters have so far killed at least 30 Israeli soldiers and wounded more than 80 others.

Source

These weapons  must not get to Israel under any circumstances.

Anyone who is willing to deliver them is contributing to Genocide.

I don’t care how much money is offered, only a a greedy, murderous, thug, would ever allow such a thing. To partake in an act of this kind is just as bad as doing the killing yourself.

The word No comes to mind.

The US has a lot of nerve,  contributing, to the bloodthirsty, mass murdering,   Israeli Government.

Of course the US is responsible for the deaths of over a million innocent people in Iraq,  so we shouldn’t be surprised at this act of enabling a “Rogue state”. Considering they are a “Rogue state” themselves.

They are a member of the “Superior Race” as they believe themselves to be. US Senate Endorses Israel’s War on Gaza

They themselves are bloodthirsty, profiteers. When they said they were endorsing the war “Weapons of Mass Destruction” are their contribution to the slaughter of innocent children., men and women.

Of course needless to say these weapons will kill not only those in Gaza, but other in the area around Gaza and Israel. Israel is killing their own by Using Deadly Weapons of Mass Destuction against Gaza The wind blows and it goes. So how far does the wind blow the toxic slop dropped on Gaza? One of the worst types of “Pollution” is caused from “Weapons of Mass Destruction”. By delivering those weapons you may be murdering,  your own child, friends or other family members.

So who wants to be responsible for the deaths of millions of innocent people, including those from future generations? You could be murdering your own grandchildren. This “cancer causing” deadly, life taking, mass murdering,  slop must not be delivered to Israel.

You may even be killing yourself? Who is stupid enough to risk it? No one is exempt from the the wrath of Chemical Toxins in “Weapons of Mass Destruction. All you have to do is breath the air it’s in. Drink the water it has polluted.  Eat the food it slithered it’s way into. No one is free from pollution. It also contributes to global warming. But hey no problem right.  Radiation also destroys the ozone layer. But hey no problem.

Lets go for destroying the environment on the planet we live on. We can always move to Mars right? Anyone who has been “brainwashed” into believing these Weapons are safe needs a wake up call.

These weapons are “killing” all of us around the world. Wake up people.


Israel keeps pounding Gaza, hits children’s hospital

Israeli forces have attacked a children’s hospital in Gaza in a fourth day of attacks after a UN Security Council called for a ceasefire.

The al-Dorra hospital was targeted, as clouds of smoke filled Gaza’s skyline in day 17 of Israel’s deadly military onslaught in the region. Source

So I suppose Israel didn’t know it was a hospital?

I suppose as usual they will do an investigation.

What Bull Shit.  What lies they spew.

Do they really believe we are all so gullible? They are nothing more then murderers, and should be treated as such. I just can’t wait to see what’s her name that always spits out their propaganda for them blathering on about how they will investigate the incident. What crap. Like the slop she spew out on the UN school being hit. Oh this ought to be just so  enlightening. So impressive so sick.

She will also have that  typical I really don’t give a damb attitude as well.

The first time I saw her I knew she was lieing. Her lies are a  totally insulted to anyone,  who has a glimpse of  intelligence. We are apparently all suppose to believe these occurrences are mere accidents. Only the a complete and utter, numb skull would believe her lame ramblings, she presents to the public at large.

Logic on it’s own merit, is enough to know she is lieing. Oh how she reminds me of the slop the US spewed out. We will investigate sure we will. Bull Shit their is nothing to investigate, they planned it that way. They know it.

They will propagate, lies to cover up their crime, as par usual.

They are using the same scripts, the US did in Iraq.

I wasn’t gullible enough to believe the US  when they used those scripts then, why would I believe it now , knowing all I know.

Their trillion dollar, scripts, written by some sick, perverted, think tank, with the “Superior Race” mentality, are not working any more. They haven’t been working for some time. Well except on the really dim who may not be uneducated enough  to realize they are premeditated, pre written,  lies.

I just can’t wait to see what kind of slop, they will attempt to spoon feed, the populous of the world.

Whatever turns their crank.  Not all of us are stupid.

Israel is a “terrorist” state and should be treated as such.

If their military  had a single solitary brain cell they would turn on their own country.

They would stop the criminal,  mass, slaughter they are “forced”  to commit. Their warmongering, blood thirsty, dictatorial, psychotic,  profiteering,  den of thieves, who they serve, like good, expendable, slaves , must be stopped. Their own government is killing them too.

Those who sit in prison, because they refused to serve their masters are the hero’s. They said No. They had the guts to refuse, full well knowing they would be  imprisoned. Now that is my kind of Criminal.

It is a “crime” in Israel “to refuse to slaughter, innocent people”.

79 % of the time: Israel caused conflicts not Hamas

Israel continues to attack Hospitals, Clinics and Public Buildings in Gaza

UK firm blasted for arming Israeli military

Embargo against Israel: Spreading Willingness in the Middle East

Israeli settlers apply for Canadian Visas

Samouni family recounts Gaza horror

Gaza War Why?: Natural Gas valued at over $4 billion MAYBE?

Gaza (1): A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words

Indexed List of all Stories in Archives

Published in: on January 12, 2009 at 7:44 am  Comments Off on US delivering more “Weapons of Mass Destruction” to Israel  
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Diplomats say U.S. blocks UN statement on Gaza

Jean-Maurice Ripert, French ambassador to the United Nations, speaks to reporters at UN headquarters after an emergency meeting on the situation in Gaza on Sat., Jan. 3, 2009. (AP Photo/ David Karp)
Jean-Maurice Ripert, French ambassador to the United Nations, speaks to reporters at UN headquarters after an emergency meeting on the situation in Gaza on Sat., Jan. 3, 2009. (AP Photo/ David Karp)

Diplomats say U.S. blocks UN statement on Gaza
January 4 2009

UNITED NATIONS
The United States has blocked approval of a UN Security Council statement calling for an immediate cease-fire between Israel and Gaza’s Hamas rulers, diplomats said.

French UN Ambassador Jean-Maurice Ripert, the council president, said the 15 council members could not agree on a statement in closed discussions held after Israel launched a ground invasion into the Gaza Strip on Saturday. But he said there were “strong convergences” among the members to express concern about the deteriorating situation in Gaza and the need for “an immediate, permanent and fully respected cease-fire.”

Libyan Ambassador Giadalla Ettalhi said the United States during the discussions late Saturday objected to “any outcome” on the proposed statement. He said efforts were made to compromise on a weaker press statement but there was no consensus.

Several other council members, speaking on condition of anonymity because negotiations were closed, also said the U.S. was responsible for the council’s failure to issue a statement.

The U.S., Israel’s closest ally, has designated Hamas a terrorist organization. U.S. deputy ambassador Alejandro Wolff said the United States saw no prospect of Hamas abiding by last week’s council call for an immediate end to the violence. Therefore, he said, a new statement “would not be adhered to and would have no underpinning for success, (and) would not do credit to the council.”

Libya, the only Arab nation on the council, called the emergency meeting after Israel sent tanks and infantry across the border into Gaza on the eighth day of its offensive against Hamas militants. The ground attack followed a week of air strikes, which Hamas responded to with salvos of rocket fired into southern Israel.

Arab nations demanded that the council adopt a statement calling for an immediate cease fire and expressing “serious concern at the escalation of violence and the deterioration of the situation in Gaza and southern Israel,” a view echoed by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

If it had been approved, the statement would have become part of the council’s official record but would not have the weight of a Security Council resolution, which is legally binding.

Egypt’s UN Ambassador Maged Abdelaziz said it was regrettable that one permanent council member — a clear reference to the U.S. — refused to accept any statement at a time when “the aggression is escalating and more people are dying and the military attack on the ground is at its full scale.”

Riyad Mansour, the Palestinian UN observer, said: “We have war. We have aggression against the Palestinian people, and it is a sad and tragic moment when the Security Council cannot address this issue by at least demanding from Israel … to stop this aggression immediately.”

More than 480 Palestinians have been killed and nearly 3,000 injured in Gaza, and four people have been killed in Israel.

Israel maintains the offensive is aimed at stopping the rocket attacks from Hamas-controlled Gaza that have traumatized southern Israel.

Though the Security Council took no action on Saturday night, an Arab draft resolution circulated by Libya on Wednesday night that would condemn Israel and halt its military attacks on Gaza remains on the table. It would have to be revised, however, since the United States has already called it “unacceptable” and “unbalanced” because it doesn’t call for an end to the Hamas rocketing of Israel.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is expected in New York on Tuesday, along with half a dozen Arab foreign ministers who will be at the UN on Monday, to press for a cease-fire resolution.

Mansour said he hopes Abbas and the ministers will succeed in pushing through a resolution “so that we will have a durable and sustainable cease fire between us and the Israelis.”

Asked what kind of resolution would be acceptable to the United States, Wolff said: “The important point to focus on here is establishing the understanding of what type of cease fire we’re talking about and to ensure that it’s lasting, and to ensure that we don’t return to a situation that led to the current situation.”

Source

The US makes a habit of this. They have blocked UN Resolutions 40 times previous to this one as well. Just because the US says anything doesn’t make it true, except in their own minds.   They said Saddam had “weapons of mass destruction” too and that was a lie. What Israel is doing I consider premeditated, mass, murder as they planed this  over six months ago.  This is the second time in as many weeks the US has interfered with the UN as noted below.

US Veto Blocks UN Anti-Israel Resolution

December 28, 2008

The UN Security Council has been unable to force an end to Israeli attacks against Gaza due to the intervention of the United States.

Israel wouldn’t  let the UN in to deliver food back in November.

November 14 2008
GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip
A U.N. official says Israel is holding up planned food aid shipments to Gaza.

You know letting people starve is a crime. If Hamas did do something, it was in reaction to premeditated,  death by  starvation. Of course Israel has done numerous things to terrorize the Palestinians.

Building of the Wall for example.  Kind of reminded me of the Berlin wall.

Of course I am not alone in thinking much of what the Israelis are doing is similar to what Nazis did to the Jews. This opinion is growing.

Where is the shock and horror towards the over 420 Palestinian men, women and children have been killed by Israeli bombs in the streets of Gaza? Where is the urgent reaction by world leaders, and not just those from the Arab league?

There are a lot of Questions this writer asks and I have asked myself many of the same questions. You should too.

Through out all of this everyone around the world will see the cruelty of Israel and the determination of the US to make absolutely sure nothing is done to help the Palestinians. In recent weeks up to the invasion of Gaza Israel had done numerous things to push Hamas into a corner.

They have been doing this for years not just because of  Hamas,  but anyone who leads in Gaza.

I guess we will have to dig up a nice long list of some of their nasty deeds. There are many.

These are just the recent few:

Israel ‘rammed’ medical aid boat headed to Gaza

Israel’s ‘Crimes Against Humanity’

Gaza Families Eat Grass as Israel Blocks Food Aid

Israel Responsible for Genocide by Starvation in Gaza

Israel blocks foreign media from Gaza

Israeli troops bisect Gaza, clash with Hamas fighters

Palestinians carry people injured during an Israeli army operation in Gaza, into Kamal Adwan Hospital in Beit Lahiya, northern Gaza Strip, Sunday, Jan. 4, 2009. (AP / Fadi Adwan)

A Palestinian girl cries during the funeral of a relative that was killed in an Israeli air strike in Beit Lahiya, northern Gaza Strip, Sunday, Jan. 4, 2009. (AP / Fadi Adwan)

January 4 2009

Israeli troops clashed with Hamas militants early Sunday, leading to a number of casualties on both sides, as an Israeli ground offensive in the Gaza Strip gained momentum.

After moving into Gaza after nightfall, Israeli tanks and troops bisected the narrow strip of land and surrounded Gaza City.

The Israeli military says that soldiers have killed or wounded dozens of militants, but according to Gaza officials, at least 31 civilians have been killed in the ground offensive.

However, Palestinian medical officials could not confirm the exact number of casualties, as they are unable to move around Gaza due to the fighting. According to Hamas, four of its fighters have been killed.

The Israeli military reports that one soldier has been killed and 30 wounded, two seriously, as television news images show army ambulances bringing soldiers to a hospital in the southern Israeli city of Beersheba.

The ground invasion came after a week of air strikes launched by Israel against Hamas targets in Gaza in an effort to stem the rocket attacks launched into Israel from within the territory.

The air strikes have killed more than 500 people in Gaza since the latest conflict began on Dec. 27, and Palestinian and UN officials say at least 100 of those killed were civilians.

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said Sunday that Israel would protect its civilians from rocket attacks, which continued throughout the air assault.

“This morning I can look every one of you in the eyes and say the government did everything before deciding to go ahead with the operation,” Olmert said.

Israeli officials have said they do not intend to occupy the Gaza Strip and have been clear that the goal is to stop rocket attacks.

However, the ground offensive would not be “a rapid one that would end in hours or a few days,” warned one senior military officer, who asked not be named.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas called the ground offensive “brutal aggression,” and reached out to his rivals in Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip.

In response to the troop movement, Hamas officials said Gaza would become a “graveyard” for Israeli soldiers.

“You entered like rats,” Hamas spokesman Ismail Radwan said in a statement on Hamas’ Al Aqsa TV. “Gaza will be a graveyard for you, God willing.”

Offensive widens

The Israeli army has called up tens of thousands of reserve soldiers in advance of a potential third phase that could include a wider ground offensive.

Defence officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the troops could be called in should militants in the West Bank or Hezbollah fighters in Lebanon launch attacks of their own.

But early Sunday, the Israeli offensive targeted the northern Gaza Strip, cutting off Gaza City’s 400,000 residents from the rest of the region to the south.

It is from northern Gaza that most rockets are fired into Israel.

In an interview Sunday morning on Newsnet, CTV News correspondent Janis Mackey Frayer said that partitioning Gaza is an attempt by the Israeli army to “impede the movement of Hamas and other militant groups. They believe it disables fighters from being able to move around, it disables rocket squads, it’s trying to effectively take control of movement within the Gaza Strip.”

The heaviest fighting Sunday occurred in the town of Beit Lahiya, where an artillery shell killed eight civilians as they ran to a nearby school to take cover, according to local paramedics.

Earlier this week, Beit Lahiya was hit by at least two air strikes, which also killed civilians.

Israeli troops were also reportedly searching houses in the northern town of al-Attatra. However, many residents had already fled in advance of the soldiers’ arrival.

Humanitarian disaster looms

The week-long air offensive has knocked out power to many homes and businesses in the Gaza Strip, leaving many families without heat and many shops unable to store food supplies.

“They’re traumatized, they’re terrorized and they’re trapped,” John Ging of the UN Relief and Work Agency, which has 10,000 Palestinian volunteers in Gaza, told CTV Newsnet on Sunday. “The population is without water, food is critically low, there’s no electricity.”

Ging also said that the dead and injured have left Gaza hospitals “completely and utterly overburdened.”

According to Ging, one Palestinian UN aid worker volunteering at a local hospital has been killed. He did not elaborate on exactly how the worker died.

The Israeli army dropped leaflets on Gaza Saturday, warning residents to take cover in advance of the ground offensive.

“The problem of course is that Gaza is a sealed place. It is confined, it is densely populated,” Mackey Frayer said.

French President Nicolas Sarkozy will visit the region Monday in an attempt to broker a cease fire and encourage the resumption of peace talks.

Source

Israel prepares for possible ground offensive

Palestinian nurses treat Ihab Alhrzyn who was wounded in a recent Israeli airstrike, at al-Shifa hospital in Gaza City, Wednesday, Dec. 31, 2008. (AP / Hatem Moussa)

A Palestinian inspects damage at the Hamas Interior Ministry building, following Israeli missile strikes in Gaza City, Wednesday, Dec. 31, 2008. (AP / Hatem Moussa)

December 31 2008

Israel ramped up preparations Wednesday for a possible ground assault of Hamas targets in the Gaza Strip, amassing more troops at the border after it rebuffed a possible ceasefire.

Soldiers gathered at the edge of the densely-populated strip of land, along with dozens of tanks. Israel’s government also approved the call-up of 9,000 reservists.

Overnight, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert had discussed a 48-hour truce proposal put forth by France with Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni and Defence Minister Ehud Barak.

The meeting ended with a rejection of the proposal.

Israel has rebuffed international pressure to impose a temporary halt of its offensive in Gaza, promising not to stop until Hamas guarantees they will no longer shoot rockets across the border.

Overnight, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert discussed a 48-hour truce proposal put forth by France with Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni and Defence Minister Ehud Barak.

The meeting ended with a rejection of the proposal.

“Giving Hamas a respite just to regroup, rearm is a mistake,” Olmert spokesperson Mark Regev said. “The pressure on the Hamas military machine must continue.”

CTV Middle East Bureau Chief Janis Mackey Frayer sat down with Livni in Sderot, a town in southern Israel hit hard by Hamas rockets, and asked her about Israel’s objectives for the current military operation.

“When Israel is under attack we are going to retaliate, we are going to act back,” Livni said. “I’m not going to exist as a government and say to my citizens, ‘This is something you need to get used to’ — to be under attacks, even sporadic attacks, from the Gaza strip.”

She said Israel wants to “change realities” in the Gaza Strip, meaning a regime change. However, she also said removing Hamas from power is not the purpose of the current military campaign, but that Israel hopes Palestinians will vote out the group.

“Now (Hamas) knows that when they target Israel, Israel will act back, and I mean with forces that are not a proportionate answer to rocket attacks,” she said. “This should work once. And if they don’t understand it, it’s going to work in the future until they understand, and the population in Gaza understands, that Hamas is a problem for everybody.”

Livni also dismissed criticism that Israeli’s air strikes were carefully timed to coincide with the country’s upcoming election to draw support from voters, and before Barack Obama — who may be less supportive of Israel’s tactics than George Bush — takes office in the United States.

“It’s not connected to elections or to timing, it’s a question of a moment in which we can say, ‘OK, reality has changed,'” she said.

Livni also said Israel is “not the aggressor in the conflict.”

‘Far away’ from peace

Samah Sabawi, a spokesperson for the National Council on Canada-Arab Relations, said she was dismayed by that assertion.

“Israel has held, for 40 years, an illegal occupation of Palestinian land,” Sabawi, who was born in the Gaza Strip, told CTV Newsnet on Wednesday. “That occupation itself is a form of aggression against the Palestinians.

She said the way Israel has treated the Palestinians — building settlements in the territories, erecting walls — is also a “great form of aggression, and until Israel starts to understand that, we’re really far away from any kind of peaceful resolution.”

The campaign, which will enter its sixth day, has so far killed about 400 people in the Gaza Strip and injured 1,600. Of the dead, at least 200 were uniformed Hamas members. According to the UN, 60 Palestinian civilians have also been killed.

Hamas is protesting a blockade enforced by Israel that has reduced the amount of food and medical supplies entering the country. Sabawi said her sister, a doctor working in Gaza, told her the hospitals have been flooded with casualties but lack enough resources to treat them.

“The situation is very dire,” said Sabawi. “There is no hot water in the hospital. There is still no electricity, so the hospital is having to rely on generators to keep the lights on and keep the life-support machines running.”

She also said that while some supplies are still reaching the hospital, staff have run out of medication to help burn victims.

“Because Israel destroyed the infrastructure and the fire department, there’s a lot of fires going on from the bombings, and from people trying to find heat by burning wood and coal inside their homes,” said Sabawi.

Attacks continue

Gabriella Shalev, Israel’s ambassador to the UN, said the bombing campaign is the only way for Israel to bring about peace and security for Israelis targeted by rockets in the south.

“This is the right and the duty of every sovereign state to defend its own people so unless we get assurances and guarantees that Hamas will stop rocketing Israel, there will be no ceasefire,” Shalev told CTV Newsnet on Wednesday.

By midday Wednesday, more than two dozen rockets and mortar shells had been fired on Israel, including five that struck Beersheba, a major southern Israeli city.

Militants have been able to extend their reach with better rockets, putting more than one-tenth of the Israeli population in danger.

Since the conflict began, four Israelis, including three civilians, have been killed by militant rocket fire.

Hamas spokesman Taher Nunu said Wednesday that the Gaza government is still functioning.

“What our people want is clear: an immediate stop to all kinds of aggression, the end of the siege by all means, the opening of all border crossings, and international guarantees that the occupation will not renew this terrorist war again,” Nunu said in a statement.

The current crisis began roughly a week after a six-month truce between Israel and Hamas ended with a barrage of Hamas rocket fire. On Christmas day, 80 rockets were fired from Gaza into southern Israel.

Liberal Foreign Affairs Critic Bob Rae said Wednesday that Hamas needs to change the way it operates.

“Hamas has refused to recognize Israel and has rejected a ceasefire,” Rae told CTV Newsnet. “It’s absolutely crucial that Hamas change the way it behaves.”

At the same time, Rae said everyone has to work with the Israelis to achieve a real ceasefire that Hamas will respect.

“We all have to be working with the Israeli government to make sure that the long term efforts at finding a peaceful solution are not lost sight of,” he said.

Calls for an immediate ceasefire have also come from the Quartet — the U.S., E.U., UN and Russia — who joined together to attempt to broker a peace agreement in 2002.

“Israel says that at this stage there’s no use in exploring band aid solutions to what they still see as a grave problem — Hamas is still firing rockets from the Gaza Strip,” Mackey Frayer said.

Although it has rejected the temporary ceasefire, Israel has agreed to allow 2,000 tons of food and medical supplies into Gaza Wednesday.

Shalev said Israel’s borders were open all the time to allow aid into Gaza.

Source

Shalev said Israel’s borders were open all the time to allow aid into Gaza.

This is a blatant lie. What BS. They wouldn’t even let the UN in with food .

U.N.: Israel won’t allow food aid to enter Gaza

How stupid are people if they believe this type of lie?

So I am guessing Israel is saying  the UN lied ?

Israel is the lier. If they lie about that they will lie about anything.

Published in: on January 5, 2009 at 1:26 am  Comments Off on Diplomats say U.S. blocks UN statement on Gaza  
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Saturday Jan 3 Reports on: Demonstrations Against Israels attacks on Gaza, January 3, 2009

New Reports on Sundays protests at bottom of the page

Demonstrators hurl shoes at Downing Street in day of global protest against Israeli attacks
January 3 2009

Demonstrators demanding an end to Israeli airstrikes on Gaza hurled their shoes at the gates of Downing Street today during a wave of global protests.

Around 12,000 people took to the streets of the London, including singer Annie Lennox, former model Bianca Jagger and former mayor Ken Livingstone.

Elsewhere in Britain, 2,000 demonstrators marched through Manchester and 500 braved the cold in Edinburgh.

London protest

London: 1,000 pairs of shoes litter the protest route near Downing Street

Paris held the world’s biggest protest, with 25,000 people showing up to condemn the Israeli offensive, which has killed at least 436 Palestinians since December 27th.

The death toll includes 75 children, according to Gaza medics. And almost 2,300 people have been wounded inside the territory.

Four Israelis have been killed by rocket attacks by Hamas, Islamist militants who took over Gaza three years ago.

In Britain, many people were angry at Gordon Brown refusal to condemn Israel’s attacks.

Hundreds of protesters threw shoes at the iron gates of Downing Street residence, in the spirit of an Iraqi journalist who hurled his footware President George Bush with his shoes last year.

Protest

Crowds: at least 12,000 people marched up Whitehall

Around 1,000 pairs littered the streets outside Number 10 with demonstrating singing: ‘Shame on you, have my shoe.’

Zac Sommer, an 18-year-old British-Palestinian student from Essex, said: ‘Britain is quick to condemn Robert Mugabe, but where is the condemnation of Israel? Israel is killing hundreds of people.’

Also outside Downing Street, a firework exploded yards from the gates.

The Metropolitan Police later said they had been forced to contain one group of around 5,000 protesters who left the agreed route between protest between Embankment and Trafalgar Square to the march to head for the Israeli Embassy in Kensington.

Many clashed with officers wearing riot hear and armed with truncheons and gas canisters.

London

Clash: Riot police deal with protesters trying to raid the Israeli Embassy in London

London

Focus point: Around 5,000 people went to the embassy after the march

The demonstrators were kept at a distance of about 20 yards from the entrance of the Embassy but several hurdled the barriers and attempted to make for the entrance.

The atmosphere as darkness fell was noticeably more heated, vocal, and aggressive than the earlier march through central London.

The demonstration in the capital was the biggest of at least 18 organised across the country.

Other rallies were taking place in Glasgow, Exeter, Bristol, Liverpool, Norwich, Hull, Tunbridge Wells, Leeds, Newcastle, Swansea, York, Caernarfon, Bradford and Sheffield.

London

Anger: Protesters gather in Trafalgar Square at the end of the march

London

Support: Annie Lennox, centre, is flanked by George Galloway and Bianca Jagger

Brian Eno

Condemnation: Musician Brian Eno speaks out against the Israeli attacks

Former model Bianca Jagger and singer Lennox have backed the protests, calling on American president-elect Barack Obama to speak up against the bombardment.

Speaking at a press conference in central London, Ms Jagger said: ‘I would like to make an appeal to president-elect Obama to speak up.

‘People throughout the world were hopeful when he was elected and we must appeal to him to ask for the immediate cessation of the bombardment of the civilian population in the Gaza Strip.’

Lennox spoke of her shock at watching scenes of the bombing on television.

She said: ‘A few days after Christmas I came downstairs, put the television on, and saw smoke pyres coming from buildings and I was shocked to the core because I was thinking as a mother and as a human being.

Madrid

Madrid: Protesters burn an Israeli flag in the Spanish capital

Paris

Paris: Demonstrators burned cars after a march by 25,000 people

Berlin

Berlin: Some 7000 Palestinian supporters outside the city’s cathedral

‘How was this going to be the solution to peace?’

She said the intervention from Bush blaming Hamas for starting the violence, had not helped the situation.

‘The problem is, from my perspective, they are pouring petrol onto the fire,’ she said.

‘They have to sit down. This is a small window of opportunity just before things kick off.

‘For every one person killed in Gaza, they are creating 100 suicide bombers. It’s not just about Gaza, it’s about all of us.’

Liberal Democrat Sarah Teather said Israel’s military response to the firing of Hamas rockets had been ‘disproportionate’.

Amsterdam

Amsterdam: A man holds up a blood smeared doll

Milan

Milan: Demonstrators carry a simulated body of a Palestinian

‘Anyway, what Israel is doing is counter-productive. No terrorist organisation has ever been bombed into submission,’ the Liberal Democrat MP said.

Police said 8,000 people demonstrated in the central French city of Lyon, 3,000 people protested in the southern city of Nice and 3,800 in Mulhouse in the east.

Two people were arrested as more than 1,000 marched through Amsterdam, condemning the Israeli airstrikes on Gaza and calling for a boycott of Israeli goods, police said.

Hundreds protested in Madrid, carrying signs saying ‘This is not a war but a genocide’.

More than 2,000 people also demonstrated in the Austrian city of Salzburg.

Athens Athens: A woman walks in front of burning barricades during riots after a rally

Source
Photos: ‘Britain – Gaza Siege Demoonstation’
By James Wray
January 3, 2009,

Singer Annie Lennox (C), social and human rights advocate Bianca Jagger (formerly married to Mick Jagger) (2nd R) and British politician George Galloway (L) march through London with thousands of protestors in London, Britain, 03 January 2009. A series of demonstrations took place across Britain against the Israeli air strikes on Gaza. The protests are being held at 18 locations including Portsmouth, Manchester, Hull, London and Glasgow.  EPA/ANDY RAIN

Singer Annie Lennox (C), social and human rights advocate Bianca Jagger (formerly married to Mick Jagger) (2nd R) and British politician George Galloway (L) march through London with thousands of protestors in London, Britain, 03 January 2009. A series of demonstrations took place across Britain against the Israeli air strikes on Gaza. The protests are being held at 18 locations including Portsmouth, Manchester, Hull, London and Glasgow. EPA/ANDY RAIN
epa01589872 Under the shadow of famous city landmark Big Ben, pro-Palestinian protestors pass through Parliament Square as they participate in a rally  in central London,   03 January 2009. It was one of a series of manifestations across the country to protest the Israeli air strikes on Gaza,.  EPA/ANDY RAIN  EPA/ANDY RAIN

epa01589872 Under the shadow of famous city landmark Big Ben, pro-Palestinian protestors pass through Parliament Square as they participate in a rally in central London, 03 January 2009. It was one of a series of manifestations across the country to protest the Israeli air strikes on Gaza,. EPA/ANDY RAIN EPA/ANDY RAIN
Under the shadow of famous city landmark Big Ben, pro-Palestinian protestors pass through Parliament Square as they participate in a rally  in central London,   03 January 2009. It was one of a series of manifestations across the country to protest the Israeli air strikes on Gaza,.  EPA/ANDY RAIN

Under the shadow of famous city landmark Big Ben, pro-Palestinian protestors pass through Parliament Square as they participate in a rally in central London, 03 January 2009. It was one of a series of manifestations across the country to protest the Israeli air strikes on Gaza,. EPA/ANDY RAIN
Pro-Palestinian protestors demonstrate in central London, Britain, 03 January 2009. A series of demonstrations took place across Britain against the Israeli air strikes on Gaza. The protests are being held at 18 locations including Portsmouth, Manchester, Hull, London and Glasgow.  EPA/ANDY RAIN

Pro-Palestinian protestors demonstrate in central London, Britain, 03 January 2009. A series of demonstrations took place across Britain against the Israeli air strikes on Gaza. The protests are being held at 18 locations including Portsmouth, Manchester, Hull, London and Glasgow. EPA/ANDY RAIN
Thousands of protestors march along Whitehall, central London, Britain, 03 January 2009 as part of a series of rally across the country to protest the Israeli air strikes on Gaza.  The protests are being held at 18 locations including Portsmouth, Manchester, Hull, London and Glasgow. In the background is seen the capital landmark Big Ben  EPA/ANDY RAIN

Thousands of protestors march along Whitehall, central London, Britain, 03 January 2009 as part of a series of rally across the country to protest the Israeli air strikes on Gaza. The protests are being held at 18 locations including Portsmouth, Manchester, Hull, London and Glasgow. In the background is seen the capital landmark Big Ben EPA/ANDY RAIN
Thousands of protestors march along Whitehall, central London, Britain, 03 January 2009 as part of a series of rally across the country to protest the Israeli air strikes on Gaza.  The protests are being held at 18 locations including Portsmouth, Manchester, Hull, London and Glasgow. In the background is seen the capital landmark Big Ben  EPA/ANDY RAIN

Thousands of protestors march along Whitehall, central London, Britain, 03 January 2009 as part of a series of rally across the country to protest the Israeli air strikes on Gaza. The protests are being held at 18 locations including Portsmouth, Manchester, Hull, London and Glasgow. In the background is seen the capital landmark Big Ben EPA/ANDY RAIN
Thousands of protestors bathed in bright sunshine, march through central London,   03 January 2009 as part of a series of demonstrations across the country to protest against  Israeli air strikes on Gaza. The protests are being held at 18 locations including Portsmouth, Manchester, Hull, London and Glasgow.  EPA/ANDY RAIN

Thousands of protestors bathed in bright sunshine, march through central London, 03 January 2009 as part of a series of demonstrations across the country to protest against Israeli air strikes on Gaza. The protests are being held at 18 locations including Portsmouth, Manchester, Hull, London and Glasgow. EPA/ANDY RAIN

Thousands in Europe Protest Gaza Offensive

January 3 2008

LONDON—Thousands of chanting, banner-waving demonstrators marched in cities across Europe on Saturday to demand a halt to Israeli bombing in the Gaza Strip.

Protests were held in Britain, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands and Spain as the Israeli offensive entered its second week.

Israeli Arabs held a protest march and Kuwaitis also took to the streets, a day after bigger Middle East rallies.

In Paris, police said more than 20,000 demonstrators, many wearing Palestinian keffiyeh headscarves, marched through the city centre chanting slogans like “Israel murderer!” and waving banners demanding an end to the air attacks.

Similar protests were planned in some 30 other towns.

London police said more than 10,000 people staged a noisy march and rally to urge an end to an Israeli offensive against Hamas militants that has killed at least 435 Palestinians.

In many European cities people waved shoes—recalling the action of an Iraqi journalist who hurled footwear at U.S. President George W. Bush in Baghdad last month in a symbolic insult.

British demonstrators threw dozens of shoes into the street as they passed the gated entrance to Downing Street, where Prime Minister Gordon Brown lives, and shouted angrily at a line of 40 police officers on guard there.

“Come to get your shoes Gordon,” one woman shouted as other marchers directed chants of “Shame on you” at Brown.

A spokesman said Brown had spoken again to Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert on Saturday and was pressing hard for an immediate ceasefire.

Leading the march were singer Annie Lennox, politicians Tony Benn and George Galloway and comic Alexei Sayle. Demonstrators carried Palestinian flags and placards with slogans such as “End the siege on Gaza” and “Stop the massacre”.

Israel says rocket attacks from Gaza by Hamas Islamists must stop before it halts operations, but the attacks continued on Saturday. Four Israelis have been killed by Hamas rockets since the offensive began.

Anger at Western Reaction

Paul Mukerji, 42, from Birmingham, acknowledged Israel had security reasons but called its action disproportionate.

“The best way for peace for Palestinians and Israelis is to end the occupation,” said Mukerji, who said he had spent six months working with Jewish and Palestinian peace groups.

Ali Saeed, 24, from Luton, said Western governments had failed to condemn Israel’s actions.

“What’s going on in Gaza is not right … It’s not a coincidence that it’s going on Iraq, in Chechnya, in Kashmir. It’s just about going on everywhere. It’s almost a direct insult to every single Muslim,” he said.

Protests were scheduled in a score of other British cities.

Greek police said they fired teargas at protesters outside the Israeli embassy in Athens. Protesters burnt flags and effigies, hurled stones at the embassy and clashed with police during a march by about 5,000 people, they said.

Tens of thousands of people marched in the town of Sakhnin, northern Israel, on Saturday in one of the biggest rallies held by Israeli Arabs in recent years, Israeli media reported. Calling Israeli leaders “war criminals”, the demonstrators demanded an end to the onslaught on Gaza, they said.

Around 3,500 people marched in Berlin and 4,000 in the western city of Duesseldorf, police said.

In the German capital, demonstrators carried pictures of former Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat and one small girl cradled a doll smeared in blood.

Hundreds joined a protest in central Dublin.

“I just thought the fact that 300-400 people would’ve been bombed, would’ve been killed, was extremely wrong,” said Andy Defaoite, a 27-year-old teacher in the Irish capital.

More than 1,000 demonstrators marched through Kuwait City, with banners reading “Gaza will not die” and “We want a free Gaza”.

Another 1,000 marched in Madrid, some calling for sanctions against Israel, equating Zionism with Nazism and chanting slogans like “Israel kills, the world just stands by”.

Police said about 1,500 people marched through Amsterdam.

About 1,000 demonstrators marched through the Italian city of Milan on Saturday, some burning Israeli flags, with a smaller rally in Turin.

People destroy a French policeman’s car, during a demonstration against the Israeli bombardment of the Gaza Strip on January 3, 2009, in Paris. (Olivier Laban-Mattei/AFP/Getty Images)

Protestors stand behind an over-turned car during a demonstration against the Israeli bombardment of the Gaza Strip on January 3, 2009, in Paris. (Olivier Laban-Mattei/AFP/Getty Images)

Some of the thousands of pro-Palestinian supporters fight to get to the Israeli embassy in Athens as Greek riot police stand guard on January 3, 2009, during a demonstration against the Israeli attacks in Gaza. (Louisa Gouliamaki/AFP/Getty Images)

Protesters opposed to Israeli military action in the Gaza Strip gather near the Israeli Embassy following a demonstration in Trafalgar Square in London, on January 3, 2009. (Ben Stansall/AFP/Getty Images)

Source

Another excellent report on the Demonstration in London Here the estimated turnout is 50-60 thousand people.

Israeli ground-forces finally invade Gaza strip after day of increased air strikes

PETER HITCHENS: Will Israel never learn? Each bomb is a gift to its enemies

The World Demonstrated in protest against the war in Iraq and the politicians did not listen.  The War in Iraq is in fact illegal, based on lies.  Will they listen to us now as we say NO AGAIN to Israel killing innocent people in Gaza?

Israel is committing many crimes and we Say NO MORE.

Are they still deaf?

Defending the criminals in the US and Israel who kill innocent people has gone on far to long.

We are fed up with war mongering,  murdering, power hungry, profiteers.

There are a large number of Demonstrations in the US and I will post them if they magically appear anywhere. I can only hope to have a busy evening.
Reports on protests

Sunday Jan 4 Reports: Protests in Canada against Attack in Gaza

Sunday Jan 4 Reports: US protests against Attack in Gaza

Sunday Jan 4  Reports: Protests around the World Against Gaza assault

Reports on Canadian protests below. Approximately  3000 came out to protest in Toronto.

Just added Jan 4th 2009

Saturday Jan 3 Reports:Canadian Protesters march in support of Palestinians

Saturday Jan 3 Reports:US protests against Israels attacks on Gaza

Friday Jan 2 Reports:Muslims around the world protest Gaza assault

December Reports

December 29 Reports:Global protests against Israel

Actions we can take to help Palestinians in Gaza


Published in: on January 3, 2009 at 10:13 pm  Comments Off on Saturday Jan 3 Reports on: Demonstrations Against Israels attacks on Gaza, January 3, 2009  
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Ontario man’s Gaza trip an extended nightmare, he is trapped in Gaza

Nehad Al-Hajsale, the London, Ont. man who has been trapped in Gaza since early November, is seen with his daughter in this undated family handout photo.

Nehad Al-Hajsale, the London, Ont. man who has been trapped in Gaza since early November, is seen with his daughter in this undated family handout photo.

Dalia Salim, the wife of Nehad Al-Hajsale, who has been trapped in Gaza since early November, appears on CTV's Canada AM from 'A' studios in London, Ont., Wednesday, Dec. 31, 2008.

Dalia Salim, the wife of Nehad Al-Hajsale, who has been trapped in Gaza since early November, appears on CTV’s Canada AM from ‘A’ studios in London, Ont., Wednesday, Dec. 31, 2008.

Nehad Al-Hajsale, the London, Ont. man who has been trapped in Gaza since early November, is seen with his wife, Dalia Salim, and their daughter in this undated family handout photo.

Nehad Al-Hajsale, the London, Ont. man who has been trapped in Gaza since early November, is seen with his wife, Dalia Salim, and their daughter in this undated family handout photo.


Ontario man’s Gaza trip an extended nightmare

December 31 2008

A London, Ont. man’s trip to the Gaza Strip to visit his ailing father has turned into an extended nightmare.

Nehad Al-Hajsalem has been trapped in Gaza since early November, and his family is growing increasingly desperate to bring him home safely.

An Israeli aerial bombing campaign on Gaza is now in its fifth day, with close to 400 people killed in the attacks.

Al-Hajsalem’s wife, Dalia Salim, told CTV’s Canada AM she worries for her husband’s safety, saying just getting through by phone is a challenge.

“It’s quite hard,” Salim said. “You have to call at least 10 times for the phone to pick up. But I do talk to him and it’s pretty scary. I can hear all the bombs, I can hear emergency sirens going by, I can hear helicopters, the loud zooming sound of them. It’s all so frightening.”

Al-Hajsalem, a permanent resident of Canada, travelled to Gaza when he learned the border with Egypt would be opened for several days in early November.

He had planned to visit his father who was dying from liver cancer, then return to Canada.

Al-Hajsalem’s father died on Nov. 23, but the Gaza border has once again been closed and Al-Hajsalem hasn’t been allowed to leave the territory.

Salim said her husband’s status as a permanent resident means Foreign Affairs can do little to help him.

Her final hope — of securing passage for Al-Hajsalem aboard an aid ship making trips from Cyprus to Gaza — fell apart yesterday.

The ship, which had made several recent trips to Gaza, had agreed to take Al-Hajsalem as a passenger back to Cyprus.

However, the ship wasn’t allowed to land in Gaza.

“That was basically our last hope, but that boat never made it to Gaza. Israeli navy ships hit it from the side and made it go back to Lebanon, so basically my only hope is gone,” Salim said.

According to a report from The Associated Press, the SS Dignity, a ship carrying international peace activists and medical supplies, was damaged by the Israeli navy Tuesday, and forced to head to Lebanon.

Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor said the ship ignored an Israeli radio order to turn back as it approached Gaza early Tuesday.

According to Palmor, the vessel tried to outmaneuver the Israeli navy ship and crashed into it, lightly damaging both vessels, before the Dignity was turned back.

Crew and passengers aboard the ship dispute the account, however, claiming it was rammed by the navy ship.

The ship was carrying close to four tons of medical supplies organized by Free Gaza, a group that has made five aid trips to Gaza, despite a blockade imposed by Israel on Gaza.

Source

The entire population is being held hostage by Israel.

Nothing can get in and no one can get out. Israel has everyone trapped and is killing them systematically.  What is wrong with this picture?

These people have nothing to fight back with. They just wait until they are killed. Death is the only way out of Gaza.

Don’t be fooled by reports that the US is asking for a halt in the bombing that is pure BS. Then again most Americans will believe the propaganda they usually do. The Bush Administration as par usual are lieing. They actually blocked the UN plan to stop the bombing.  So that in it self tells me they are full of #%$@.

Seems Israel is having an election soon and they want to win so killing hundreds of innocent people is the way to get “Re-Elected”.  How sick can a bunch of murderers get?

This much like What Hitler did except instead of using the Gas Chambers they are just bombing them. These people are trapped. They can’t escape. So the difference is what?

Palestinians  have been cut off food and supplies for weeks. Anyone who thinks Israel has justification is dead wrong. They have done everything imaginable to kill Palestinians in the past and now it’s just Genocide as Hitler did.

This blockade is nothing new it is old and it is cruelty beyond comprehension.

Even the UN seems to un- able to do anything. So what the hell good are they if they can’t stop the murders?  Meanwhile the US who is pretending to do something are in fact the ones who are stopping them.

Well the US needs a good slap up the side of the head as does Israel.

  1. Both are guilty of war crimes.
  2. Both are guilty of Genocide.
  3. Both are guilty of crimes against humanity.
  4. Both are  guilty of murder.
  5. Both are liers.
  6. Both are Terrorist nations as far as I am concerned.

They terrorize everyone in their path.

Israel ‘rammed’ medical aid boat headed to Gaza

Leaders Lie, Civilians Die, Israelis-Palestinians

US Veto Blocks UN Anti-Israel Resolution

Global protests against Israel

Israel Used Internationally Banned Weaponry in Massive Airstrikes Across Gaza Strip

Iran preps humanitarian aid ship to Gaza Strip

Israel blocks foreign media from Gaza

Israel and the US have lied  many times this is just one example of it. Anything that will create a good war is what they both do? The profiteers love the Warmongers.

‘The USS Liberty’: America’s Most Shameful Secret
by Eric S. Margolis

May 2, 2001

NEW YORK – On the fourth day of the 1967 Arab Israeli War, the intelligence ship ‘USS Liberty’ was steaming slowly in international waters, 14 miles off the Sinai Peninsula. Israeli armored forces were racing deep into Sinai in hot pursuit of the retreating Egyptian army.

‘Liberty,’ a World War II freighter, had been converted into an intelligence vessel by the top-secret US National Security Agency, and packed with the latest signals and electronic interception equipment. The ship bristled with antennas and electronic ‘ears’ including TRSSCOMM, a system that delivered real-time intercepts to Washington by bouncing a stream of microwaves off the moon.

‘Liberty’ had been rushed to Sinai to monitor communications of the belligerents in the Third Arab Israeli War: Israel and her foes, Egypt, Syria, and Jordan.

At 0800 hrs, 8 June, 1967, eight Israeli recon flights flew over ‘Liberty,’ which was flying a large American flag. At 1400 hrs, waves of low-flying Israeli Mystere and Mirage-III fighter-bombers repeatedly attacked the American vessel with rockets, napalm, and cannon. The air attacks lasted 20 minutes, concentrating on the ship’s electronic antennas and dishes. The ‘Liberty’ was left afire, listing sharply. Eight of her crew lay dead, a hundred seriously wounded, including the captain, Commander William McGonagle.

At 1424 hrs, three Israeli torpedo boats attacked, raking the burning ‘Liberty’ with 20mm and 40mm shells. At 1431hrs an Israeli torpedo hit the ‘Liberty’ midship, precisely where the signals intelligence systems were located. Twenty-five more Americans died.

Israeli gunboats circled the wounded ‘Liberty,’ firing at crewmen trying to fight the fires. At 1515, the crew were ordered to abandon ship. The Israeli warships closed and poured machine gun fire into the crowded life rafts, sinking two. As American sailors were being massacred in cold blood, a rescue mission by US Sixth Fleet carrier aircraft was mysteriously aborted on orders from the White House.

An hour after the attack, Israeli warships and planes returned. Commander McGonagle gave the order. ‘prepare to repel borders.’ But the Israelis, probably fearful of intervention by the US Sixth Fleet, departed. ‘Liberty’ was left shattered but still defiant, her flag flying.

The Israeli attacks killed 34 US seamen and wounded 171 out of a crew of 297, the worst loss of American naval personnel from hostile action since World War II.

Less than an hour after the attack, Israel told Washington its forces had committed a ‘tragic error.’ Later, Israel claimed it had mistaken ‘Liberty’ for an ancient Egyptian horse transport. US Secretary of State, Dean Rusk, and Joint Chiefs of Staff head, Admiral Thomas Moorer, insisted the Israeli attack was deliberate and designed to sink ‘Liberty.’ So did three CIA reports; one asserted Israel’s Defense Minister, Gen. Moshe Dayan, had personally ordered the attack.

In contrast to American outrage over North Korea’s assault on the intelligence ship ‘Pueblo,’ Iraq’s mistaken missile strike on the USS ‘Stark,’ last fall’s bombing of the USS ‘Cole’ in Aden, and the recent US-China air incident, the savaging of ‘Liberty’ was quickly hushed up by President Lyndon Johnson and Defense Secretary Robert McNamara.

The White House and Congress immediately accepted Israel’s explanation and let the matter drop. Israel later paid a token reparation of US $6 million. There were reports two Israeli pilots who had refused to attack ‘Liberty’ were jailed for 18 years.

Surviving ‘Liberty’ crew members would not be silenced. They kept demanding an open inquiry and tried to tell their story of deliberate attack to the media. Israel’s government worked behind the scenes to thwart these efforts, going so far as having American pro-Israel groups accuse ‘Liberty’s’ survivors of being ‘anti-Semites’ and ‘Israel-haters.’ Major TV networks cancelled interviews with the crew. A book about the ‘Liberty’ by crewman James Ennes’ was dropped from distribution. The Israel lobby branded him ‘an Arab propagandist.’

The attack on ‘Liberty’ was fading into obscurity until last week, when intelligence expert James Bamford came out with Body of Secrets, his latest book about the National Security Agency. In a stunning revelation, Bamford writes that unknown to Israel, a US Navy EC-121 intelligence aircraft was flying high overhead the ‘Liberty,’ electronically recorded the attack. The US aircraft crew provides evidence that the Israeli pilots knew full well that they were attacking a US Navy ship flying the American flag.

Why did Israel try to sink a naval vessel of its benefactor and ally? Most likely because ‘Liberty’s’ intercepts flatly contradicted Israel’s claim, made at the war’s beginning on 5 June, that Egypt had attacked Israel, and that Israel’s massive air assault on three Arab nations was in retaliation. In fact, Israel began the war by a devastating, Pearl-Harbor style surprise attack that caught the Arabs in bed and destroyed their entire air forces.

Israel was also preparing to attack Syria to seize its strategic Golan Heights. Washington warned Israel not to invade Syria, which had remained inactive while Israel fought Egypt. Bamford says Israel’s offensive against Syria was abruptly postponed when ‘Liberty’ appeared off Sinai, then launched once it was knocked out of action. Israel’s claim that Syria had attacked it could have been disproved by ‘Liberty.’

Most significant, ‘Liberty’s’ intercepts may have shown that Israel seized upon sharply rising Arab-Israeli tensions in May-June 1967 to launch a long-planned war to invade and annex the West Bank, Jerusalem, Golan and Sinai.

Far more shocking was Washington’s response. Writes Bamford: ‘Despite the overwhelming evidence that Israel attacked the ship and killed American servicemen deliberately, the Johnson Administration and Congress covered up the entire incident.’ Why?

Domestic politics. Johnson, a man never noted for high moral values, preferred to cover up the attack rather than anger a key constituency and major financial backer of the Democratic Party. Congress was even less eager to touch this ‘third rail’ issue.

Commander McGonagle was quietly awarded the Medal of Honor for his and his men’s heroism – not in the White House, as is usual, but in an obscure ceremony at the Washington Navy Yard. Crew member’s graves were inscribed, ‘died in the Eastern Mediterranean..’ as if they had be killed by disease, rather than hostile action.

A member of President Johnson’s staff believed there was a more complex reason for the cover-up: Johnson offered Jewish liberals unconditional backing of Israel, and a cover-up of the ‘Liberty’ attack, in exchange for the liberal toning down their strident criticism of his policies in the then raging Vietnam War.

Israel, which claims it fought a war of self defense in 1967 and had no prior territorial ambitions, will be much displeased by Bamford’s revelations. Those who believe Israel illegally occupies the West Bank and Golan will be emboldened.

Much more important, the US government’s long, disgraceful cover-up of the premeditated attack on ‘Liberty’ has now burst into the open and demands full-scale investigation. After 34 years, the voices of ‘Liberty’s’ dead and wounded seamen must finally be heard.

Source

Many years ago thing were much different then they are now.

palistine-19461

First List Releast Of Palestinian Victims In “Cast Lead Massacre”
December 31 2008

By Hiyam Noir

GAZA – On Wednesday the Palestinian Health Ministry released a list of 187 Palestinians killed during the first two days of the Israelis Cast Lead Massacre across Gaza Strip

The director of the Health Ministry’s Public Relations department in Gaza,Dr Omar Nasr, reveal that the death toll through out Wednesday after noon,have exceeded 390 including 31 children,the health ministry are collecting all the names of the slain and the many wounded.

In the coming days details of how many civilians were killed and injured ,will be presented to international humanitarian organizations,these files are evidence when judical legal proceedings will begin against the Israelis.

The following list identified the first 187 victims of the Israeli onslaught as:

Ibrahim Al-Jamaj
Isma’il Al-Husari
Isma’il Salem
Isma’il Ghneim
Eyman Natour
Eyhab Ash-Shaer
Ibrahim Mahfoudh
Abu Ali Ar-Rahhal
Ahmad Al-Halabi
Ahmad Al-Kurd
Ahmad Al-Lahham
Ahmad Al-Hums
Ahmad At-Talouli
Ahmad Zu’rub
Ahmad Abu Jazar
Ahmad Radwan
Ahmad ‘Udah
Ahmad Abu Mousa
Ahmad Tbeil
Adham Al-Areini
Osama Abu Ar-Rus
Osama Abu Ar-Reish
Osama Darweish
Ashraf Ash-Sharabasi
Ashraf Abu Suhweil
Amjad Abu Jazar
Ameen Az-Zarbatli
Anas Hamad
Anwar Al-Bardini
Anwar Al-Kurd
Ayman Abu Ammouna
Ayman An-Nahhal
Ibrahim Abu Ar-Rus
Basil Dababish
Bassam Makkawi
Bilal Omar
Bahaa Abu Zuhri
Tamir Qreinawi
Tamir Abu Afsha
Tawfiq Al-Fallit
Tawfiq Jabir
Thaer Madi
Jabir Jarbu’
Hatim Abu Sha’ira
Hamid Yasin
Husam Ayyash
Hasan Baraka
Hasan Abid Rabbo
Hasan Al-Majayda
Hussein Al-A’raj
Hussein Dawood
Hussein ‘Uroq
Hakam Abu Mansi
Hamada Abu Duqqa
Hamada Safi
Hamdan Abu Nu’eira
Haydar Hassuna
Khalid Zu’rub
Khalid Abu Hasna
Khalid An-Nashasi
Khalid Shaheen
Raed Dughmush
Rami Ash-Sheikh
Raafat Shamiyya
Riziq Salman
Rif’at Sa’da
Rafiq Na’im
Ramzi Al-Haddad
Ziyad Abu ‘Ubada
Sarah Al-Hawajiri
Salim Abu Shamla
Salim Qreinawi
Sa’id Hamada
Salim Al-Gharir
Suheil Tambura
Shadi Sbakhi
Shahada Quffa
Shahada Abd ar-Rahman
Sabir Al-Mabhouh
Suhayb Abu ‘Iffat
Suhayb Abd al-‘aal
Tal’at Salman
Tal’at Basal
‘Aasim Ash-Shaer
‘Aasim Abu Kamil
Abid Ad-Dahshan
Abd ar-Raziq Shahtu
Abd as-Sami’ An-Nashar
Abdul-Fattah Abu ‘Uteiwi
Abdul-Fattah Fadil
Abdullah Juneid
Abdullah Al-Ghafari
Abdullah Rantisi
Abdullah Wahbi
Arafat Farajallah
Azmi Abu Dalal
Isam Al-Ghirbawi
‘Alaa Al-Qatrawi
‘Alaa Al-Kahlout
‘Alaa ‘Uqeilan
‘Alaa Nasr Ar-Ra’i
Ali Awad
Imab Abu Al-Hajj
Omar Darawsha
Omran Ar-ran
Anan Ghaliya
Gharib Al-Assar
Fayiz Riyad Al-Madhoun
Fayiz Ayada Al-Madhoun
Fayiz Abu Al-Qumsan
Camellia Al-Bardini
Ma’moun Sleim
Mazin ‘Ulayyan
Muhammad Al-Ghimri
Muhammad Al-Halabi
Muhammad Asaliyya
Muhammad Az-Zatma
Muhammad Az-ahra
Muhammad Gaza
Muhammad An-Nuri
Muhammad Abu Sabra
Muhammad Abu ‘Amir
Muhammad Abu Libda
Muhammad Hboush
Muhammad Al-Mabhouh
Muhammad Sha’ban
Muhammad Abu ‘Abdo
Muhammad Salih
Muhammad Tabasha
Muhammad Al-Habeil
Muhammad Abdullah Aziz
Muhammad Abdul-Wahhab Aziz
Muhammad Awad
Muhammad Abd An-Nabi
Muhammad Salih
Muhammad An-Najari
Muhammad Hamad
Muhammad Barakat
Muhammad Muhanna
Mahmoud Al-Khalidi
Mahmoud Abu Harbeid
Mahmoud Abu Matar
Mahmoud Abu Tabour
Mahmoud Abu Nahla
Mustafa Al-Khateib
Mustafa As-Sabbak
Mu’ein Hamada
Mu’ein Al-Hasan
Mumtaz An- Najjar
Mansour Al-Gharra
Nasser Al-Gharra
Nahidh Abu Namous
Nabil Al-Breim
Nathir Al-Louqa
Ni’ma Al-Maghari
Na’im Kheit
Na’im Al-Kafarna
Na’im Al-Anzi
Nimir Amoum
Hisham Rantisi
Hisham Al-Masdar
Hisham Abu ‘Uda
Hisham ‘Uweida
Humam An-Najjar
Hanaa Al-Mabhouh
Haytham Hamdan
Haytham Ash-Sher
Wadei’ Al-Muzayyin
Wasim Azaza
Walid Abu Hein
Walid Jabir Abu Hein
Yasser Ash-Shaer
Yasser Al-Lahham
Yahya Al-Hayik
Yahya Sheikha
Yahya Mahmoud Sheikha
Yousif Thabit
Yousif Al-Jallad
Yousif Sha’ban
Yousif Diab
Yousif Al-Anani
Yousif An-Najjar
Younis Ad-Deiri

Source

Palestinian History, A Chronology

In 1882 Baron Edmond de Rothschild of Paris starts financial backing for Jewish settlement in Palestine.

They even had a Rothschild involved in it. Same with the Federal Reserve in the US. How special is that? And of course Britain was in it up to their ears, as is the US now.

There is along history behind the take over of Palestine.

Published in: on December 31, 2008 at 8:01 pm  Comments Off on Ontario man’s Gaza trip an extended nightmare, he is trapped in Gaza  
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US Veto Blocks UN Anti-Israel Resolution

US Veto Blocks UN Anti-Israel Resolution

December 28, 2008

The UN Security Council has been unable to force an end to Israeli attacks against Gaza due to the intervention of the United States.

Washington once again used its veto powers on Sunday to block a resolution calling for an end to the massive ongoing Israeli attacks against the Gaza Strip. The council has only been able to issue a ‘non-binding’ statement that calls on Israel to voluntarily bring all its military activities in the besieged region to an immediate end.

The statement comes as Israel has begun a fresh wave of air strikes on Gaza on Sunday, killing at least six people.  At least 230 people were killed and 800 wounded in similar attacks on Saturday.  The number of Palestinians deaths has so far risen to 271.

The council called on the parties to address the humanitarian crisis in the territory but has not criticized the Israeli air attacks. Croatian UN Ambassador Neven Jurica read out the non-binding statement on behalf of the 15-member body that “called for an immediate halt to all violence” and on the parties “to stop immediately all military activities.” “The members of the Security Council expressed serious concern at the escalation of the situation in Gaza,” he said, as the president of the council.

The council also requested the opening of border crossings into Gaza to address the serious humanitarian and economic needs in Gaza and to ensure medical treatment and a continuous supply of food and fuel.

US representative to the UNSC, Zalmay Khalilzad, defended the Israeli move, saying Tel Aviv has the right to self-defense. “I regret the loss of any of all innocent life,” he said, adding that Hamas rockets precipitated this situation.

Palestinian fighters in the Gaza Strip say they fire rockets into Israel in retaliation for the daily Israeli attacks against them. Unlike the state-of-the-art Israeli weapons and ammunition, the home-made Qassam rockets rarely cause casualties.

The US, a staunch ally to Israel, has so far vetoed over 40 anti-Israeli resolutions sought by the council since 1972.

Since 2004, Washington has prevented the adoption of four other resolutions that called for Tel Aviv to halt its operations in the Gaza Strip.

Source

Seems the US is just as responsible for the deaths of the  Palestinians as is Israel. The US is preventing peace. They are just a guilty as Israel.

Leaders Lie, Civilians Die, Israelis-Palestinians

Global protests against Israel

Published in: on December 30, 2008 at 6:57 am  Comments Off on US Veto Blocks UN Anti-Israel Resolution  
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Israel Used Internationally Banned Weaponry in Massive Airstrikes Across Gaza Strip

Hiyam Noir reports from the war zone in Gaza. We thank her and her colleague, photographer Fady Adwan, for risking their lives to report the truth from Gaza.

photo by Fady Adwan, December 27, 2008

photo by Fady Adwan, December 27, 2008

December 27 2008

GAZA
On Saturday noon in the first wave of air strikes, the Israelis targeted Gaza City government buildings. Casualties are confirmed and include the Commander of Gaza Police Force Tawfiq Jabir, the Commander of Security and Protection Services in Gaza police, Ismail Al-Ja’bari and the Governor of the Al-Wusta (central) Districts Ahmad Abu Aashur. Islam Shahwan, a Hamas police spokesman, said that the Israeli attacks have destroyed most of the Gaza Strip police headquarters and that a police graduation ceremony was being held during the Israeli assault.

Following the first wave of Israeli air strikes, that killed at least 156 and injured over 200 Palestinians (Ed. note: updated numbers since Hiyam wrote this, reported in some western media: at least 200 dead and 300 injured – end note), Palestinian medical sources said in a press statement during Saturday afternoon that at least 80 of the wounded has arrived to hospital in “bits and parts” and the Head of the Gaza Emergency and ambulance department in the Ministry of Health, Mu’awieyah Hasaneen confirm that medical crews and rescue workers are still pulling dozens of people from underneath rubble. Hasaneen have pledged to all Arab governments, to send medications and operating supplies to Gaza, saying most of the injured were too badly injured to be moved outside the Gaza Strip. Hospital corridors are filled with bodies and gourneys, and in the local morgues there is no space to for all the bodies.

Leaders and citizens of Arab countries condemned Israeli air strike on Saturday. A few minutes after the first 30 Israeli air strikes at noon on Saturday, an Egyptian official said that the Israeli missile attacks was “an unprecedented massacre.” Hosni Mubarak, the Egyptian president condemned the attacks, demanded that the ceasefire between the Palestinian resistance in Gaza and the Israeli army to be renewed. “Egypt will forge ahead with its contacts to create a favorable atmosphere in renewing the truce and attaining inter-Palestinian reconciliation in a bid to end the suffering of the Palestinian people”, a statement from the Mubarak’s office said.

Fouad Seniora, the Lebanese prime minister called the Israeli operations “tragic and criminal”. A statement from the Seniora’s office “strongly denounces and rejects the criminal operation in the Gaza Strip.” The Lebanese prime minister called on the Arab League and other heads of state to immediately convene in an emergency session to adopt a “united Arab stand to face the Israeli aggression.” Seniora also called upon United Nations security council to adopt “deterring and necessary measures against Israel for its continuous violations of Palestinian and Arab human rights”.

The Gaza operation plan was architectured on Wednesday. Ehud Barak and Ehud Olmert ordered the air strikes on Gaza, Saturday morning, the assaults on Gaza Strip are intended to last throughout Saturday and perhaps into Sunday. The two Zionist leaders asserted that Israel has prepared for an operation that could take several weeks. Preparations have also been taken to contain any expected response in the West Bank. Ehud Barak and his chief of staff, Gabi Ashkenazi, are supervising the air strikes, which they say – will “continue until the Israel has achieved its goals”. Israeli sources asserted that the operation does not aim to topple Hamas, but “we will stop homemade projectiles,” the statement said, warning for ” tougher images” in the Gaza Strip in the coming days.

A member of the executive committee in the PLO Taysir Khaled, accused Israel of using weapons in Gaza that are banned internationally and condemned the Israeli attack. He called for immediate intervention to stop the Israelis military actions, which he said have been in performance for months. In Jenin Al-Aqsa Brigades ( Fatah) said in a statement that their fighters are in a state of high alert and “would not be handcuffed,” and would retaliate “in the right place at the right time.”

The Al-Quds Brigades ( Islamic Jihad) asserted that they are in high alert and that the Israelis will pay a severe toll for their heavy handed attacks. The Islamic Jihad leader, Khaled Al-Batsh, said that the Israeli attack is a declaration to “open war” against the Palestinian people, intended “to repress the Palestinian resistance.” Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum asked the Palestinian people to “remain patient in the light of Israeli crimes ” – he called for a massive response to the Israelis air strikes that have killed at least 200 Gaza residents, and wounded over 200. Barhoum stated that there will be a renewal of Palestinian operations within Israel.

Source

Israel needs to stop these attacks. This is murder. What Israel is doing is a crime. Not everyone in the world agrees with what they are doing.  There are many who believe they are committing criminal acts of genocide. These are crimes against humanity and war crimes.  The United Nations should find a way to stop this.

All aid to Israel should be stopped. They only use it to kill.

There are a Number of Videos Here not for the faint of heart.

Iran preps humanitarian aid ship to Gaza Strip

Israeli teenagers jailed for refusing to serve in army

Published in: on December 28, 2008 at 5:15 am  Comments Off on Israel Used Internationally Banned Weaponry in Massive Airstrikes Across Gaza Strip  
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The Top Ten Ethics Scandals of 2008

December 18 2008

Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) has released its year-end list of the “top” 10 ethics scandals of 2008. Why isn’t the recent criminal complaint against Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich on the list? Well, for one, it’s not a Washington-centered problem. But Melanie Sloan, CREW’s executive director, adds that while the Blagojevich case may be the flavor of the week right now, she thinks the scandals on her administration’s list will have more of an impact in the long run. Here they are:

1. “Unchecked Congressional Ethics”: CREW wants Congress to have a high-powered ethics office with subpoena power. MoJo Blog covered the vote on this earlier this year; we looked at this issue last year, too.

2. “No Guarantee that Bush Administration Records will be Properly Archived”: We’ve been keeping you up to date on the ongoing missing White House emails problem.

3. “Speech or Debate Clause”: Lots of politicians who are charged with crimes seek to have their indictments dismissed under the “Speech and Debate” clause of the Constitution, which they claim protects anything in their congressional office from being used against them in court on the grounds that its “legislative material.” Sloan says that this may be the biggest of the ten scandals her organization highlighted. If Blagocevich had been a member of congress, Sloan says, he would have been protected from much of US Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald’s investigation. Law enforcement would not have been able to tap his office phone or include anything he did in the course of his legislative work as part of an indictment, Sloan says. And both Democrats and Republicans are protecting this hard-line interpretation of the speech and debate clause. “This is a bipartisan issue of protecting members accused of corruption from investigation and prosecution,” Sloan says. Mother Jones covered this problem as early as 2006, with the raid on the offices of now ex-Louisiana Democratic Rep. William Jefferson.

4. “The Pay-to-Play Congress”: You’ve heard about this from John McCain and Barack Obama, who both talked about the power of earmarks to corrupt the legislative process. Every year, CREW notes the most egregious instances of earmark abuse, when campaign donors get earmarks from the politicians who they support. We wrote about corruption expert Lawrence Lessig’s Change Congress effort and will have more with Lessig next week.

5. “Enriching Family with Campaign Cash”: CREW has released two reports on this problem, “Family Affair – House” and “Family Affair – Senate.” We noted the most recent offender, Charlie Rangel.

6. “Controversial Presidential Pardons”: The president’s pardon power is essentially unlimited, and that has CREW worried about what President Bush will do with it before he leaves office. Elizabeth Gettelman wrote about the hypocrisy of commuting Scooter Libby’s sentence but ignoring Marion Jones. And Bruce Falconer asked if pardoning “all those involved in the application of what [the Bush] administration called ‘enhanced interrogation techniques'” would be wise.

7. “VA Officials Intentionally Misdiagnosing PTSD”: CREW broke a story earlier this year about VA officials being pressed to misdiagnose Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder as a cost-cutting measure. In September, Bruce Falconer wrote a story for the print magazine about whether the Bush administration had “maxed out the military.”

8. “Bailout Oversight”: The government spent $700 billion and all you got was a few bank failures. We’ve covered the hearings and brought you the latest. Most recently, we looked at the Fannie/Freddie bailout and asked about Treasury’s blank check.

9. “Political Calculations Dictate Border Fence Placement”: Ray L. Hunt has land that falls on both sides of the border fence, but CREW says he’s getting special treatment because he’s a Bush “pioneer.” That kind of suction wouldn’t be unusual for Hunt: in July, Laura Rozen wrote about how Hunt seems to have almost unlimited access to the White House (and, in this case, to Kurdish oil.)

10. “A Politicized Bush Justice Department”: To prevent the abuse of the courts for political ends, the DOJ was traditionally the least-politicized of all the executive branch departments. That all changed when Bush took office. In 2007, Daniel Schulman was among the first to document how the conservative Federalist society may have influenced personnel decisions at the DOJ. Stephanie Mencimer covered another interesting aspect of this story in May when she examined the Justice Department’s reluctance to release documents from the 2002 GOP phone-jamming in New Hampshire. And Stephanie was also there for the most unsurprising moment of the DOJ politicization saga: Karl Rove’s failure to show up for a hearing on the subject in July.

It seems unlikely that the first year of the Obama administration will match up to the last year of the Bush administration in terms of ethics-scandal-potential. But we’ll be here, keeping an eye on everyone, Barack Obama included. Stick with us.

(You can find a PDF version of CREW’s full report on the “top ten” scandals here)

Source

And of course we must not forget more recent revelations.

UK: Council’s pension fund ‘caught up in Bernard Madoff’s Wall Street fraud’

Cheney admits authorizing detainee’s torture

Senate Report Links Bush to Detainee Homicides; Media Yawns

Media Search in the US

Write your local paper and denounce any possible planned pardons for crimes committed in the “war on terror”. Here are some sample letters and talking points you can follow.

Lie by Lie:  Iraq War Timeline

Judge: Guerra can’t re-indict

Willacy County DA challenges court to hold him in contempt
December 10, 2008
By Emma Perez-Trevino, The Brownsville Herald

The accuser became the accused Wednesday in a quiet Willacy County courtroom in Raymondville.

Amid pleas from Willacy County District Attorney Juan Angel Guerra not to intervene, state District Judge J. Manuel Bañales stopped Guerra Wednesday from attempting the re-indictment of Vice-President Dick Cheney, former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and state Sen. Eddie Lucio Jr.

The Nov. 17 indictments that a grand jury returned charged Cheney and Gonzales with profiting from private prisons, neglecting conditions and stopping inquiries into assaults. Lucio was charged with accepting fees from firms for services that he would not have been asked to provide if he weren’t senator.

Bañales, during the hearing of more than three hours, also removed Guerra from pursuing a case against the GEO Group, formerly Wackenhut, and Warden David Forrest, charged with murder and manslaughter in the 2001 beating death of Gregorio De La Rosa Jr. by two inmates in a prison under their control.

Saying that removing Guerra caused him “deep regret,” Bañales also told the embattled district attorney that he “violated” his oath by exhibiting bias, prejudice and conflict of interest to “such a high degree” that he could not prosecute the cases.

The ruling followed a contentious hearing in which Guerra refused to answer numerous questions and challenged the court to hold him in contempt and jail him.

Guerra urged Bañales not to manipulate the system, telling the judge that he did not have jurisdiction because the Nov. 17 indictments returned against Cheney, Gonzales, the GEO group, and Lucio already had been dismissed.

Guerra also told Bañales that he would be interfering with the constitutional role of a district attorney.

“When we circumvent the system, everything falls apart,” Guerra told the judge.

But Lucio’s attorney, Michael R. Cowen, argued that the senator had a right to an unbiased and disinterested prosecutor and not a prosecutor who has a vendetta against his client.

GEO co-counsel Tony Canales pointed to two sections of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure which require that a district attorney conducts himself in a manner that ensures a fair trial and presumption of innocence.

“That presumption of innocence has been breached by the state,” Canales told the judge.

Guerra said he had not determined if he would appeal the court’s ruling.

“This is totally, totally illegal,” Guerra said after the hearing.

GEO’s defense attorney David Oliveira hailed Bañales’ ruling. “It is a resounding victory for all the defendants who were wrongfully indicted,” he said. “Hopefully, it is the final chapter in this tragic story.”

Canales predicted victory even before the start of the proceedings. “I’m so confident about today’s hearing, I might not even pull out my computer,” he told fellow attorneys.

Source

South Texas DA looks at West Texas prison riot
December 16 2008

PECOS, Texas

A South Texas district attorney who tried to prosecute Vice President Dick Cheney for his investments in private prison companies is now trying to probe an inmate death and prison riot hundreds of miles outside his jurisdiction.

Willacy County District Attorney Juan Angel Guerra said Tuesday he suspected a cover-up at a privately run prison in Pecos, some 600 miles northwest of his Raymondville office. Inmates at the prison rioted and held two prison employees hostage last week after the death of another inmate.

“This hostage thing, it’s probably going to end up it’s not true,” said Guerra, who acknowledged he had no evidence to show any wrongdoing. “More than likely all the information that is coming out is not true.”

Reeves County Sheriff Arnulfo Gomez, whose deputies and other local and state law enforcement responded to the riot, said he hadn’t met with Guerra on Tuesday but had no idea what he was talking about.

“I think he’s got some sort of personal vendetta,” Gomez said of the prosecutor whose now-dismissed indictments of Cheney, state Sen. Eddie Lucio and Florida-based The Geo Group Inc. prompted a judge to bar him from appearing before a grand jury without the presence of a pro tem district attorney. “There were two hostages, they were prison employees.”

Gomez said masked inmates at the prison told hostage negotiators that the employees were not hostages, but being held by the inmates to keep police at bay. Gomez said an investigation, which includes trying to identify the inmates involved, is ongoing. He said it was unclear who, if anyone, would face charges for the riot and standoff.

Gomez said an autopsy of the deceased inmate is pending, but investigators believe the inmate either committed suicide or died of natural causes.

A telephone message left with the warden at the Pecos prison was not immediately returned.

Guerra, who is set to leave office at the end of the month after failing to win re-election earlier this year, said he won’t try to prosecute anyone in this case, but hopes his successor and Ward County District Attorney Randall W. “Randy” Reynolds will take up the investigation.

“This is not an isolated incident,” Guerra said.

Reynolds was not in his Pecos office Tuesday and did not immediately return a telephone message seeking comment.

Source

Texas DA reveals evidence against Cheney

Senate Report Links Bush to Detainee Homicides; Media Yawns

By Glenn Greenwald
December 15, 2008

The bipartisan Senate Armed Services Committee report issued on Thursday — which documents that “former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and other senior U.S. officials share much of the blame for detainee abuse at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, and Guantanamo Bay, Cuba” and “that Rumsfeld’s actions were ‘a direct cause of detainee abuse‘ at Guantanamo and ‘influenced and contributed to the use of abusive techniques … in Afghanistan and Iraq'” — raises an obvious and glaring question:  how can it possibly be justified that the low-level Army personnel carrying out these policies at Abu Ghraib have been charged, convicted and imprisoned, while the high-level political officials and lawyers who directed and authorized these same policies remain free of any risk of prosecution?   The culpability which the Report assigns for these war crimes is vast in scope and unambiguous:

The executive summary also traces the erosion of detainee treatment standards to a Feb,. 7, 2002, memorandum signed by President George W. Bush stating that the Geneva Convention did not apply to the U.S. war with al Qaeda and that Taliban detainees were not entitled to prisoner of war status or legal protections.

“The president’s order closed off application of Common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions, which would have afforded minimum standards for humane treatment,” the summary said.

Members of Bush’s Cabinet and other senior officials participated in meetings inside the White House in 2002 and 2003 where specific interrogation techniques were discussed, according to the report.

The policies which the Senate Armed Services Committee unanimously concludes were authorized by Bush, Rumsfeld and several other top Bush officials did not merely lead to “abuse” and humiliating treatment, but are directly — and unquestionably — responsible for numerous detainee murders.  Many of those deaths caused by abusive treatment have been formally characterized as “homicides” by autopsies performed in Iraq and Afghanistan (see these chilling compilations of autopsy findings on detainees in U.S. custody, obtained by the ACLU, which reads like a classic and compelling exhibit in a war crimes trial).

While the bulk of the attention over detainee abuse has been directed to Guantanamo, the U.S., to this day, continues to imprison — with no charges — thousands of Iraqi citizens.  In Iraq an Afghanistan, detainee deaths were rampant and, to this day, detainees continue to die under extremely suspicious circumstances.  Just yesterday, there was yet another death of a very young Iraqi detainee whose death was attributed to quite unlikely natural causes.

The U.S. military says a detainee has died of an apparent heart attack while in custody at a U.S. detention facility in Baghdad.

Monday’s statement says the 25-year-old man was pronounced dead by doctors at a combat hospital after losing consciousness at Camp Cropper. . . .

The U.S. military is holding thousands of prisoners at Camp Cropper near the Baghdad airport and Camp Bucca in the southern desert.

For years, it has been common to attribute detainee deaths to “heart attacks” where the evidence makes clear that abusive interrogation techniques and other inhumane treatment — the very policies authorized at the highest levels of the U.S. government — were the actual proximate cause of the deaths.  This deceptive practice was documented in this fact-intensive report — entitled:  “Medical Investigations of Homicides of Prisoners of War in Iraq and Afghanistan” — by Steven H. Miles, Professor of Medicine and Bioethics at the University of Minnesota:

It is probably inevitable that some prisoners who reportedly die of “natural causes” in truth died of homicide. However, the nature of Armed Forces’ medical investigations made this kind of error more likely. The AFME reported homicide as the cause of death in 10 of the 23 death certificates released in May 2004. The death of Mohamed Taiq Zaid was initially attributed to “heat”; it is currently and belatedly being investigated as a possible homicide due to abusive exposure to the hot Iraqi climate and deprivation of water.

Eight prisoners suffered “natural” deaths from heart attacks or atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease. Threats, beatings, fear, police interrogation, and arrests are known to cause “homicide by heart attack” or life-threatening heart failure. People with preexisting heart disease, dehydration, hyperthermia, or exhaustion are especially susceptible. No forensic investigation of lethal “heart attacks” explores the possibility that these men died of stress-induced heart attacks. There are a number of reports of “heart attack” following harsh procedures in rounding up noncombatants in Iraq and Afghanistan.

A typically sketchy US Army report says, “Detainee Death during weekend combat …. Army led raid this past weekend of a house in Iraq … an Iraqi who was detained and zip-locked (flexi-cuffed with plastic bands tying his wrists together) died while in custody. Preliminary information is that the detainee died from an apparent heart attack.” Sher Mohammad Khan was picked up in Afghanistan in September 2004. Shortly thereafter, his bruised body was given to his family. Military officials told journalists that he had died of a heart attack within hours of being taken into custody. No investigation, autopsy, or death certificate is available.

Or consider this:

Adbul Kareen Abdura Lafta (also known as Abu Malik Kenami) was admitted to Mosul prison on December 5, 2003 and died 4 days later.[20,21] The short, stocky, 44-year-old man weighed 175 pounds. He was never given a medical examination, and there is no medical record. After interrogation, a sandbag was put over his head. When he tried to remove it, guards made him jump up and down for 20 minutes with his wrists tied in front of him and then 20 minutes more with his wrists bound behind his back with a plastic binder. The bound and head-bagged man was put to bed. He was restless and “jibbering in Arabic.” The guards told him to be quiet.

The next morning, he was found dead. The body had “bloodshot” eyes, lacerations on his wrists from the plastic ties, unexplained bruises on his abdomen, and a fresh, bruised laceration on the back of his head. US Army investigators noted that the body did not have defensive bruises on his arms, an odd notation given that a man cannot raise bound arms in defense. No autopsy was performed. The death certificate lists the cause of death as unknown. It seems likely that Mr. Kenami died of positional asphyxia because of how he was restrained, hooded, and positioned. Positional asphyxia looks just like death by a natural heart attack except for those telltale conjunctival hemorrhages in his eyes.

There are countless other episodes like this of human beings in American custody dying because of the mistreatment — authorized by Bush, Rumsfeld and others — to which we subjected them.  These are murders and war crimes in every sense of the word.  That the highest level Bush officials and the President himself are responsible for the policies that spawned these crimes against humanity have been long known to anyone paying minimal attention, but now we have a bipartisan Senate Report — signed by the presidential nominee of Bush’s own political party — that directly assigns culpability for these war crimes to the President and his policies.  It’s nothing less than a formal declaration from the Senate that the President and his top aides are war criminals.
***
This Report was issued on Thursday.  Not a single mention was made of it on any of the Sunday news talk shows, with the sole exception being when John McCain told George Stephanopoulos that it was “not his job” to opine on whether criminal prosecutions were warranted for the Bush officials whose policies led to these crimes.  What really matters, explained McCain, was not that we get caught up in the past, but instead, that we ensure this never happens again — yet, like everyone else who makes this argument, he offered no explanation as to how we could possibly ensure that “it never happens again” if we simultaneously announce that our political leaders will be immunized, not prosecuted, when they commit war crimes.  Doesn’t that mindset, rather obviously, substantially increase the likelihood — if not render inevitable — that such behavior will occur again? Other than that brief exchange, this Senate Report was a non-entity on the Sunday shows.

Instead, TV pundits were consumed with righteous anger over the petty, titillating, sleazy Rod Blagojevich scandal, competing with one another over who could spew the most derision and scorn for this pitiful, lowly, broken individual and his brazen though relatively inconsequential crimes.  Every exciting detail was vouyeristically and meticulously dissected by political pundits — many, if not most, of whom have never bothered to acquaint themselves with any of the basic facts surrounding the monumental Bush lawbreaking and war crimes scandals.  TV “journalists” who have never even heard of the Taguba report — the incredible indictment issued by a former U.S. General, who subsequently observed:  “there is no longer any doubt as to whether the current administration has committed war crimesThe only question that remains to be answered is whether those who ordered the use of torture will be held to account” — spent the weekend opining on the intricacies of Blogojevich’s hair and terribly upsetting propensity to use curse words.

The auction conducted by Blagojevich was just a slightly more flamboyant, vulgar and reckless expression of how our national political class conducts itself generally (are there really any fundamental differences between Blagojevich’s conduct and Chuck Schumer’s systematic, transparent influence-peddling and vote-selling to Wall Street donors, as documented by this excellent and highly incriminating New York Times piece from Sunday — “A Champion of Wall St. Reaps the Benefits”)?  But Blagojevich is an impotent figure, stripped of all power, a national joke.  And attacking and condemning him is thus cheap and easy.  It threatens nobody in power.  To the contrary, his downfall is deceptively and usefully held up as an extreme aberration — proof that government officials are held accountable when they break the law.

The media fixation on the ultimately irrelevant Blagojevich scandal, juxtaposed with their steadfast ignoring of the Senate report documenting systematic U.S. war crimes, is perfectly reflective of how our political establishment thinks.  Blagojevich’s laughable scheme is transformed into a national fixation and made into the target of collective hate sessions, while the systematic, ongoing sale of the legislative process to corporations and their lobbyists are overlooked as the normal course of business.  Lynndie England is uniformly scorned and imprisoned while George Bush, Dick Cheney and Don Rumsfeld are headed off to lives of luxury, great wealth, respect, and immunity from the consequences for their far more serious crimes.  And the courageous and principled career Justice Department lawyer who blew the whistle on Bush’s illegal spying programs — Thomas Tamm — continues to have his life destroyed, while the countless high-level government officials, lawyers and judges who also knew about it and did nothing about it are rewarded and honored, and those who committed the actual crimes are protected and immunized.

Just ponder the uproar if, in any other country, the political parties joined together and issued a report documenting that the country’s President and highest aides were directly responsible for war crimes and widespread detainee abuse and death.  Compare the inevitable reaction to such an event if it happened in another country to what happens in the U.S. when such an event occurs — a virtual media blackout, ongoing fixations by political journalists with petty scandals, and an undisturbed consensus that, no matter what else is true, high-level American political figures (as opposed to powerless low-level functionaries) must never be held accountable for their crimes.

UPDATE:  Here — from July of this year — is one of the more remarkable quotes of the Bush era; it’s from Nancy Pelosi, who was explicitly briefed on the CIA’s torture program in 2002:

Q:  You’ve ruled against impeaching George Bush and Dick Cheney, and now Kucinich is trying to pass that. Why do you insist on not impeaching these people, so that the world and America can really see the crimes that they’ve committed?

PELOSI: I thought that impeachment would be divisive for the country. . . . If somebody had a crime that the President had committed, that would be a different story.

It’s not like there’s any evidence that Bush committed any crimes or anything, said Pelosi.  From Jane Mayer’s The Dark Side (h/t Hume’s Ghost)

One year of the Afghan prison operation alone cost an estimated 100 million, which Congress hid in a classified annex of the first supplemental Afghan appropriation bill in 2002. Among the services that U.S. taxpayers unwittingly paid for were medieval-like dungeons, including a reviled former brick factory outside of Kabul known as “The Salt Pit.” In 2004, a still-unidentified prisoner froze to death there after a young CIA supervisor ordered guards to strip him naked and chain him overnight to the concrete floor. The CIA has never accounted for the death, nor publicly reprimanded the supervisor. Instead, the Agency reportedly promoted him.

Those Blagojevich tapes sure are disgusting, aren’t they?  Let’s study those some more.

UPDATE II:  Well worth reading on the various implications of the Senate report are Dan Froomkin, Scott Horton, and Andrew Sullivan (scroll down for multiple posts).

Source

Cheney admits authorizing detainee’s torture

Blame Bush policies for detainee abuse: U.S. Senate report

White supremicist sentenced in Nevada

November 27 2008

A member of the Aryan Warriors has been sentenced to 11 years in a federal prison for his role in a prison gang that dealt drugs, engaged in murder and corrupted jail guards.

Kory Crossman was sentenced Wednesday by U.S. District Judge Kent Dawson as part of a plea deal with the federal government.

Crossman already has served 32 months of a 52-month sentence for a weapons possession charge. Dawson agreed to allow the new sentence to run concurrently with his present prison term.

Fourteen members of the prison gang were indicted in 2007 on charges related to distributing methamphetamine and promoting white supremacy through the use of violence and extortion. The gang was active inside and outside of Nevada’s prison system.

Source

Published in: on November 28, 2008 at 6:10 am  Comments Off on White supremicist sentenced in Nevada  
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Hearing on Cheney indictment turns chaotic

November 20 2008

RAYMONDVILLE, Texas:

A county prosecutor who brought indictments against Vice President Dick Cheney, former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and others asked on Friday for the judge to remove himself from the case.

Willacy County District Attorney Juan Angel Guerra pounded his fist and shouted at the judge, alleging he was giving special treatment to high-profile defendants. It sent the routine hearing into chaos.

Guerra, who is accusing the public officials of culpability in the alleged abuse of prisoners in a federal detention center, asked Presiding Judge Manuel Banales to recuse himself. Guerra has complained about Banales’ handling of the case.

Attorneys for the vice president and other defendants leapt to their feet in objection as Guerra pounded the table and accused Banales of giving the defendants special treatment in allowing motions to quash the indictments to be heard before the defendants were arraigned.

Banales called a recess to contact the chief justice of the state Supreme Court for suggestions on how to proceed. He also ordered Guerra, who had slipped out once before in the hearing, to remain in the courthouse.

Banales adjourned court later in the afternoon after announcing that he would send all documents pertaining to the motion to the chief justice. He tentatively scheduled the parties to return to court Wednesday morning.

Some officials have questioned Guerra’s motives. They’ve accused him of trying to end his tenure with a bang and even scores with political enemies.

The vice president is the highest public official Guerra has pursued, but he made a nearly 20-year career of passing over routine crimes in favor of public corruption before being defeated in the March Democratic primary election.

It was Guerra’s interest in the contracts to build and run a federal detention center that led to some of his biggest successes — three guilty pleas on bribery charges from former county commissioners in 2005. But he also believes it was the motivation for his own legal battles.

Guerra continued working for more than a year while under indictment on charges of extorting money from a bail bond company and using his office for personal business. Banales dismissed the indictment in October.

At Friday’s hearing, Guerra shouted: “Now all of a sudden there is urgency. Eighteen months you kept me indicted, through the election.”

Half of the indictments returned Monday are linked to privately run federal detention centers in the sparsely populated southern Texas county. The other half target judges and special prosecutors who played a role in an earlier investigation of Guerra.

The GEO Group Corp. was indicted on a murder charge for the death of an inmate at a federal prison.

“The indictment is the product of prosecutorial vindictiveness and is void on its face,” defense attorney Tony Canales, who represents the private prison operator, wrote in a motion. Canales is also the legal representative for Cheney and Gonzales.

The defendants did need to appear in person Friday.

Source

Texas jury indicts Cheney, Gonzalez in prison abuse case

‘Bush, Cheney guilty of war crimes’

‘Will Dick Cheney Pardon Himself?

Published in: on November 22, 2008 at 4:09 am  Comments Off on Hearing on Cheney indictment turns chaotic  
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Israel Responsible for Genocide by Starvation in Gaza

By Omar Karmi,

November 19 2008

AMALLAH, WEST BANK

Israel rebuffed a plea by the UN to open crossings into Gaza for humanitarian supplies yesterday and continued barring international media from reaching the impoverished strip of land.

Asked yesterday whether Israel intended to reopen crossings, Ehud Barak, the defence minister, told Israel Army Radio: “No. There needs to be calm in order for the crossings to be opened.”

Ban Ki-moon, the UN secretary general, telephoned Ehud Olmert, the Israeli prime minister on Tuesday, urging him to facilitate the movement of urgently needed humanitarian supplies into Gaza, where relief agencies have had to halt food distribution and the only power station is running out of fuel.

Israel closed the crossings two weeks ago when Palestinians responded with a salvo of rockets to a Nov 4 Israeli army raid into Gaza that resulted in the killings of six Gazans.

The tit-for-tat violence has continued since, with Israeli air raids causing at least a dozen Palestinian fatalities and one Israeli wounded by a Palestinian mortar.

Hamas is understood to be trying to persuade some of the smaller Palestinian factions, including the Popular Resistance Committees and the Palestinian Front for the Liberation of Palestine who have claimed responsibility for firing rockets in the past two weeks, to desist.

Nevertheless, Hamas’s military wing yesterday also warned that it was prepared to end a five-month-old ceasefire should crossings remain closed.

It would appear to be in neither Israel’s nor Hamas’s interests to end the ceasefire, however. Israeli politicians are facing general elections in early February and although taking a tough posture with Palestinians is an oft-tried campaign strategy, barring a full-scale – and unpredictable – invasion of the Strip, Israel would seem unable to ensure calm around Gaza without the ceasefire in place.

Hamas, for its part, will be eager for the ceasefire, which officially runs out on Dec 19, to be extended to continue to consolidate its rule over Gaza and strengthen its hand in internal Palestinian negotiations over reconciliation. Nevertheless, Hamas cannot afford to be seen to have abandoned the option of armed struggle and will probably enter the fray should crossings into Gaza remain shut.

Several international relief agencies have warned of a full-scale humanitarian disaster should food and medicine continue being blocked from entering the strip. On Sunday, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency announced that it had to stop distributing food to the about 750,000 Palestinians who rely on it for their immediate needs.

On Monday, Israel allowed a limited shipment of food and medicine to reach the strip, but the army shut the border again after three rockets were fired across the border on Tuesday, and yesterday it was reported that Gaza’s biggest mill had closed because of a lack of wheat. Gazans are also suffering regular electricity blackouts as a result of the scarcity of fuel.

Foreign journalists, meanwhile, are protesting against a ban on international media entering the Gaza Strip, also in effect since Nov 4.

The Foreign Press Association, which represents journalists working for international media in the region, has slammed the decision by the Israeli government as a “serious violation” of press freedom.

In an open letter published on Tuesday, the FPA said the decision to bar journalists from Gaza was an “unprecedented restriction of press freedom” and said its protests to the Israeli government had gone unheeded.

“Never before have journalists been prevented from doing their work in this way. We believe it is vital that journalists be allowed to find out for themselves what is going on in Gaza. Israel controls access to Gaza. Israel must allow professional journalists access to this important story.”

In spite of repeated requests, the Israeli ministry of defence was not available for comment. Israeli officials had said no official decision has been made to stop journalists from reaching Gaza, but that preventing them from doing so in the past two weeks was consistent with army policy only to allow passage for essential humanitarian staff.

In Gaza, officials and human rights activists said Israel was trying to prevent foreign journalists from revealing the reality there.

“Israel doesn’t want journalists to report on the conditions in Gaza that have resulted from the Israeli siege,” said Eyad Sarraj, a psychiatrist with the Gaza Community Mental Health Project and a human-rights activist. “Israel doesn’t want journalists from all over the world to bear evidence to what they are doing here.”

Mr Sarraj also suggested that Israel was preparing a major military operation, a suspicion echoed by Ahmad Yousef, a senior Hamas official.

“Israel might be planning something. For this, they don’t want any journalists here to cover their brutality against Palestinians… Journalists are those that can open the eyes of the world by showing them what is really going on in Gaza.”

Source

The Real Goal of Israel’s Blockade

By Jonathan Cook

November 17, 2008

The latest tightening of Israel’s chokehold on Gaza – ending all supplies into the Strip for more than a week – has produced immediate and shocking consequences for Gaza’s 1.5 million inhabitants.

The refusal to allow in fuel has forced the shutting down of Gaza’s only power station, creating a blackout that pushed Palestinians bearing candles on to the streets in protest last week. A water and sanitation crisis are expected to follow.

And on Thursday, the United Nations announced it had run out of the food essentials it supplies to 750,000 desperately needy Gazans. “This has become a blockade against the United Nations itself,” a spokesman said.

In a further blow, Israel’s large Bank Hapoalim said it would refuse all transactions with Gaza by the end of the month, effectively imposing a financial blockade on an economy dependent on the Israeli shekel. Other banks are planning to follow suit, forced into a corner by Israel’s declaration in Sept 2007 of Gaza as an “enemy entity”.

There are likely to be few witnesses to Gaza’s descent into a dark and hungry winter. In the past week, all journalists were refused access to Gaza, as were a group of senior European diplomats. Days earlier, dozens of academics and doctors due to attend a conference to assess the damage done to Gazans’ mental health were also turned back.

Israel has blamed the latest restrictions of aid and fuel to Gaza on Hamas’s violation of a five-month ceasefire by launching rockets out of the Strip. But Israel had a hand in shattering the agreement: as the world was distracted by the US presidential elections, the army invaded Gaza, killing six Palestinians and provoking the rocket fire.

The humanitarian catastrophe gripping Gaza is largely unrelated to the latest tit-for-tat strikes between Hamas and Israel. Nearly a year ago, Karen Koning AbuZayd, commissioner-general of the UN’s refugee agency, warned: “Gaza is on the threshold of becoming the first territory to be intentionally reduced to a state of abject destitution”.

She blamed Gaza’s strangulation directly on Israel, but also cited the international community as accomplice. Together they began blocking aid in early 2006, following the election of Hamas to head the Palestinian Authority (PA).

The US and Europe agreed to the measure on the principle that it would force the people of Gaza to rethink their support for Hamas. The logic was supposedly similar to the one that drove the sanctions applied to Iraq under Saddam Hussein through the 1990s: if Gaza’s civilians suffered enough, they would rise up against Hamas and install new leaders acceptable to Israel and the West.

As Ms AbuZayd said, that moment marked the beginning of the international community’s complicity in a policy of collective punishment of Gaza, despite the fact that the Fourth Geneva Convention classifies such treatment of civilians as a war crime.

The blockade has been pursued relentlessly since, even if the desired outcome has been no more achieved in Gaza than it was in Iraq. Instead, Hamas entrenched its control and cemented the Strip’s physical separation from the Fatah-dominated West Bank.

Far from reconsidering its policy, Israel’s leadership has responded by turning the screw ever tighter – to the point where Gazan society is now on the verge of collapse.

In truth, however, the growing catastrophe being unleashed on Gaza is only indirectly related to Hamas’s rise to power and the rocket attacks.

Of more concern to Israel is what each of these developments represents: a refusal on the part of Gazans to abandon their resistance to Israel’s continuing occupation. Both provide Israel with a pretext for casting aside the protections offered to Gaza’s civilians under international law to make them submit.

With embarrassing timing, the Israeli media revealed at the weekend that one of the first acts of Ismail Haniyeh, the Hamas prime minister elected in 2006, was to send a message to the Bush White House offering a long-term truce in return for an end to Israeli occupation. His offer was not even acknowledged.

Instead, according to the daily Jerusalem Post, Israeli policymakers have sought to reinforce the impression that “it would be pointless for Israel to topple Hamas because the population [of Gaza] is Hamas”. On this thinking, collective punishment is warranted because there are no true civilians in Gaza. Israel is at war with every single man, woman and child.

In an indication of how widely this view is shared, the cabinet discussed last week a new strategy to obliterate Gazan villages in an attempt to stop the rocket launches, in an echo of discredited Israeli tactics used in south Lebanon in its war of 2006. The inhabitants would be given warning before indiscriminate shelling began.

In fact, Israel’s desire to seal off Gaza and terrorise its civilian population predates even Hamas’s election victory. It can be dated to Ariel Sharon’s disengagement of summer 2005, when Fatah’s rule of the PA was unchallenged.

An indication of the kind of isolation Mr Sharon preferred for Gaza was revealed shortly after the pull-out, in Dec 2005, when his officials first proposed cutting off electricity to the Strip.

The policy was not implemented, the local media pointed out at the time, both because officials suspected the violation of international law would be rejected by other nations and because it was feared that such a move would damage Fatah’s chances of winning the elections the following month.

With the vote over, however, Israel had the excuse it needed to begin severing its responsibility for the civilian population. It recast its relationship with Gaza from one of occupation to one of hostile parties at war. A policy of collective punishment that was considered transparently illegal in late 2005 has today become Israel’s standard operating procedure.

Increasingly strident talk from officials, culminating in February in the deputy defence minister Matan Vilnai’s infamous remark about creating a “shoah”, or Holocaust, in Gaza, has been matched by Israeli measures. The military bombed Gaza’s electricity plant in June 2006, and has been incrementally cutting fuel supplies ever since. In January, Mr Vilnai argued that Israel should cut off “all responsibility” for Gaza and two months later Israel signed a deal with Egypt for it to build a power station for Gaza in Sinai.

All of these moves are designed with the same purpose in mind: persuading the world that Israel’s occupation of Gaza is over and that Israel can therefore ignore the laws of occupation and use unremitting force against Gaza.

Cabinet ministers have been queuing up to express such sentiments. Ehud Olmert, for example, has declared that Gazans should not be allowed to “live normal lives”; Avi Dichter believes punishment should be inflicted “irrespective of the cost to the Palestinians”; Meir Sheetrit has urged that Israel should “decide on a neighbourhood in Gaza and level it” – the policy discussed by ministers last week. (Criminals they are)

In concert, Israel has turned a relative blind eye to the growing smuggling trade through Gaza’s tunnels to Egypt. Gazans’ material welfare is falling more heavily on Egyptian shoulders by the day.

The question remains: what does Israel expect the response of Gazans to be to their immiseration and ever greater insecurity in the face of Israeli military reprisals?

Eyal Sarraj, the head of Gaza’s Community Mental Health Programme, said this year that Israel’s long-term goal was to force Egypt to end the controls along its short border with the Strip. Once the border was open, he warned, “Wait for the exodus.”

Source

Israel blocks foreign media from Gaza


U.N.: Israel won’t allow food aid to enter Gaza

These are War Crimes.

Innocent Civilians are being murdered by Starvation.

This includes Children just in case we have forgotten.

What Israel is doing is in fact Illegal.

They are murdering innocent people.

That is a crime.

All “Aid” should be cut off, that is going to Israel and no one should be selling them “Weapons of Mass Destruction”.

The US does both.  American tax dollars hard at work.
Israel is not to be trusted with any “Weapon of Mass Destruction”.

US Aid: The Lifeblood of Occupation

US Aid to Israel  January 2008

Israel is one of the 50 richest countries in the World. They don’t need any more aid.

Petition to End Israel’s Restrictions on Freedom of Movement and the Press

To: Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice
U.S. Department of State
2201 C Street NW
Washington, DC 20520

We, the undersigned, condemn Israel’s appalling treatment of Palestinian journalist Mohammed Omer, Washington Report on Middle East Affairs Gaza correspondent and author of the magazine’s regular feature, “Gaza on the Ground.” The 24-year-old Palestinian journalist was brutally assaulted by Israeli Shin Bet security officials at the Allenby Bridge border crossing on his way home to Gaza on June 26. He had just received the 2008 Martha Gellhorn Prize for Journalism, which he shared with independent American journalist Dahr Jamail. Omer’s award citation reads, “Every day, he reports from a war zone, where he is also a prisoner. His homeland, Gaza, is surrounded, starved, attacked, forgotten. He is a profoundly humane witness to one of the great injustices of our time. He is the voice of the voiceless.” (see John Pilger’s July 2 article, “From Triumph to Torture,” in the Guardian:

This is not an isolated incident, Pilger points out, but part of a terrible pattern. Israel gives its border guards and Shin Bet agents free rein to regularly harass Palestinians (as well as Palestinian Americans and American peace activists and academics) traveling to and from the occupied territories. Israel randomly abuses, searches, interrogates and humiliates travelers of every age—men and women—and frequently refuses to let them pass through Israeli-controlled borders to their homes in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip. We just don’t hear their voices.

Israel simply doesn’t want Palestinian voices to be heard abroad. Palestinians are routinely prevented from accepting invitations to speak in Europe or North America. Students with scholarships to study overseas are not permitted to leave. Israel is now preventing Palestinians from returning home, even for a visit, once they have left to work or study abroad. (Israel recently revoked Zeina Ashrawi Hutchison’s travel documents, and will not renew her Jerusalem ID card. She is not allowed to return home to visit her father and mother, Dr. Hanan Ashrawi.)

We, the undersigned, also urge the Israeli government to end its efforts to censor international reports from the occupied territories. The government prefers stories to be filed from Tel Aviv or Jerusalem, where they are subject to censorship, and allows few, if any, international journalists to enter the West Bank and Gaza. Israel censors, harasses and even kills Palestinian journalists who are trying to report on conditions in the occupied territories.

We call on the Israeli government to protect journalists who are trying to work in the occupied territories. At least eight journalists have been killed in the West Bank and Gaza since 2001, seven of them in attacks by Israel Defense Forces, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists research.*

We call on the Israeli government to end its harassment of travelers and journalists. When Israel targets journalists it infringes on a basic pillar of democracy, freedom of the press. Human beings, even those ruled for decades by an occupying power, have the right to leave home and return safely, without interference, and the right to freedom of speech.

To Sign Petition

Published in: on November 19, 2008 at 11:28 pm  Comments Off on Israel Responsible for Genocide by Starvation in Gaza  
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FBI Searches Home of KKK Leader Accused of murder

Court Hearings Held For Accused Accomplices
November 14 2008

BOGALUSA, La.
New Orleans FBI agents searched Friday at the home of a suspected Bogalusa Ku Klux Klan leader accused of killing an Oklahoma woman Cynthia Lynch during an initiation ceremony.

At the same time, the last two suspects accused of trying to cover up the crime had court hearings.

Federal, state and local authorities are leaving no stone unturned, as FBI agents returned to Bogalusa to continue the investigation into alleged KKK activity.

The sun was barely up Friday morning when FBI agents descended on the compound at 1616 Louisiana Ave. in Bogalusa. It’s the home that suspected KKK leader and accused killer Raymond “Chuck” Foster, 44, had rented for the past five years from a Washington Parish Sheriff’s Department lieutenant.

For several hours, investigators did just what the FBI had promised: work closely with local law enforcement to determine if any federal laws have been broken. A number of boxes and envelopes were loaded up, and agents left the house with what appeared to be an oven in the back of a pickup truck.

From there, they sat down with the Bogalusa police chief.”I (haven’t) seen it nor read about any kind of activity that even associates to that particular incident like that happened recently,” said Bogalusa Police Chief Jerry Agnew. “We’re going to team up with the FBI.

Any assistance that we can offer them, we’re going to that. So in the near future, if they need us they will call us.

“Meanwhile, the last two of seven people charged with obstruction of justice for trying to cover up the murder of 43-year-old Cynthia Lynch had hearings Friday morning in the St. Tammany Parish jail.

Shane Foster, 21, and Frank Stafford, 20, are both being held on $500,000 bond. The accused shooter, Raymond Foster, is being held without bond.

Video

Source

Published in: on November 15, 2008 at 1:18 am  Comments Off on FBI Searches Home of KKK Leader Accused of murder  
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Suspect in Klan killing case has long criminal history

November 13 2008

By DAVID J. MITCHELL AND SANDY DAVIS

BOGALUSA

Details emerged Wednesday about a Bogalusa man arrested on charges he shot and killed a white woman who tried to back out of a Ku Klux Klan initiation in northeastern St. Tammany Parish, authorities said.

The alleged shooter, Raymond “Chuck” Foster, 44, 1616 Louisiana Ave., Bogalusa, has a long criminal history in a variety of jurisdictions, including a manslaughter arrest in Washington Parish that apparently did not lead to a conviction, authorities said.

St. Tammany Parish sheriff’s deputies have said Foster is a high-ranking KKK official who heads a Bogalusa chapter that calls itself the Sons of Dixie or the Dixie Brotherhood.

The Southern Poverty Law Center’s Hatewatch, which tracks hate groups, said Wednesday that Foster’s Klan links date to at least January 2001, and include groups based at one time in Livingston Parish.

Hatewatch, based in Montgomery, Ala., said it is not aware of any group operating under the names Sons of Dixie or the Dixie Brotherhood, but a new Klan group calling itself the Dixie Rangers Knights of the Ku Klux Klan has formed in Walker.

On Wednesday, St. Tammany Parish Coroner Dr. Peter Galvan identified the woman victim of the attack as Cynthia C. Lynch, 43, of Tulsa, Okla, through forensic findings, the help of family members and past medical records.

Lynch was recruited through the Internet for the initiation at a campsite next to the Pearl River Navigation Canal with Foster and seven other KKK members.

Lynch had her head shaved while participants were in Klan robes and held burning torches, St. Tammany Parish sheriff’s deputies said. Deputies recovered the robes and other materials.

Chuck Foster shot her with a .40-caliber handgun during an argument about her leaving, deputies have said.

Chuck Foster; his son, Shane Foster, 20, also of 1616 Louisiana Ave., Bogalusa, and others tried to cover up the shooting, cutting the bullet out of Lynch’s body, burning her personal effects and the campsite and dumping her body in a remote location.

All but Foster are between 20 and 30 years of age, St. Tammany Parish sheriff’s deputies said. Foster has been booked with second-degree murder of Lynch and is being held without bond. The seven others were booked with obstruction of justice, deputies said.

White and black Bogalusa leaders provided differing views Wednesday on how far Bogalusa has gotten past racial tensions from the civil rights era, when the city was an acknowledged Ku Klux Klan hotbed.

Bogalusa Police Department officers and Mayor Mack McGehee said they have not seen evidence of the KKK in the city in years. They said they wanted to see the KKK group allegedly involved exposed for whatever it is and expressed concern about what news reports of the event would do to Bogalusa’s reputation.

“I thought we were way beyond that, and it’s kind of disappointing that you can have somebody right under your nose and not even know it,” said McGehee, 48, who has been mayor 10 years.

FBI Special Agent in Charge David W. Welker said in a statement issued Wednesday that the FBI is working with area law enforcement to investigate the slaying and determine whether any federal violation of law took place.

“The FBI takes all such matters seriously and will aggressively investigate all leads and threats,” Welker said in the statement.

But some black leaders said that while the KKK may not be organized like it once was, racial tensions linked to the KKK still linger in Bogalusa.

“The mentality and that attitude, that Klanish hatred, separatist mentality, it is still here in Bogalusa,” said the Rev. Coleman Moses, pastor of White Hall Missionary Baptist Church in Bogalusa.

Moses said he received warnings in 2006 from a white community leader, whom he would not name, that physical and vandalism threats were made against him and other black ministers involved in supporting then-superintendent of Bogalusa city schools, Jerry Payne, who is black.

Moses said several black church officials and school officials were targeted by vandals and he reported those criminal acts to the police.

One of the officials, Marvin C. Austin, 61, deacon at New Triumph Baptist Church, said a rock was thrown at his window shortly after Moses got word of the threats.

Police Chief Jerry Agnew, who said he has not seen any sign of the KKK in his 13 years as chief, reported Moses’ allegations to the FBI. Moses said he spoke with the FBI but never heard from agents again.

Austin also said Wednesday he recalled seeing fliers in October 2007 announcing a public barbecue on Louisiana Avenue hosted by the Sons of Dixie, at a location on the same street where Chuck Foster resides.

“It was the same group, the Sons of Dixie,” said Austin, who is also president of the Bogalusa Voters League. He did not save a copy of the flier.

Hatewatch identified Foster as the founding Imperial Wizard, or national leader, of the Southern White Knights of the KKK, a Klan faction formed Jan. 1, 2001, in Watson.

The group eventually disbanded in early 2005 after forming four active chapters, including relocating the founding chapter to Denham Springs, Hatewatch said.

But there are also doubts that the KKK is back in Bogalusa at the strength it once had, with some skeptics interviewed Wednesday dubbing the eight involved in the killing of Lynch as KKK “wannabes.”

One leader of a white supremacy group said Wednesday the Ku Klux Klan as it once existed is now defunct.

“There hasn’t been a real Klan for years,” said Richard Barrett, the head of the Nationalist Movement.

“You have people now that buy a T-shirt or a flag over the Internet and then say they’re members of the Ku Klux Klan,” Barrett said. “That’s more of a fashion statement than an organization.”

Barrett, who in January led a white supremacy rally in Jena, said the last time the Ku Klux Klan was a large organization was when Robert Shelton, of Alabama, was the Grand Wizard of the United Klans of America from the 1960s to the early 1990s.

“I knew Robert Shelton. He had a building, a telephone, a desk, a membership list and funds. He had people that worked with him and for him,” Barrett said.

“Now all you have is people here and there who pop up and say, ‘I’m the Klan.’ They try to revive it, but it’s never really been organized since Shelton.”

Lewis Murray, assistant district attorney for the 22nd Judicial District, said a Washington Parish grand jury pretermitted, or let pass without notice, Foster’s manslaughter charge in December 1994. Records do not indicate the charge was ever brought again to the grand jury, Murray said.

He compared a pretermitted charge issued by a grand jury to something like a “hung jury” situation. When a charge is pretermitted, the jury either votes to pretermit or cannot agree whether to charge the defendant.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to call the FBI at (504) 816-3000 or local authorities.

Greg Garland and Bob Anderson contributed to this story

Source


KKK still killing and beating

La. Slaying Recalls History of Racial Turmoil

KKK still killing and beating

Woman Killed Trying to Leave KKK Ritual

(COVINGTON, La.) — After a Ku Klux Klan initiation at a Louisiana campsite went awry, authorities said, a recruit who tried to back out was shot dead. The body of the woman, who traveled from Oklahoma, was dumped on a rural roadside and covered with brush. Her belongings were set aflame.

But the cover-up was stillborn: The body was found Monday, a day after the shooting. By Tuesday, a local Klan leader sat in jail on a second-degree murder charge, and seven others were charged with trying to help conceal the crime. “The IQ level of this group is not impressive, to be kind,” St. Tammany Parish Sheriff Jack Strain said Tuesday. (See photos of Election ’08 in Civil Rights Ground Zero)

The woman, whose identity was not released, was recruited over the Internet to participate in the ritual and then return to her home state to find other members for the white supremacist group, Strain said.

It wasn’t clear what rites awaited her at the campsite, but authorities believe the initiation had begun by the time the shooting happened. Strain said the group’s leader, Raymond “Chuck” Foster, 44, shot and killed her Sunday night after a fight broke out when she asked to be taken back to town.

Foster was charged with second-degree murder and is being held without bond. Capt. George Bonnett, a spokesman for the sheriff’s department, said he doesn’t know if Foster has an attorney.

Seven others — five men and two women ages 20 to 30 — were charged with obstruction of justice and were held on $500,000 bond at the St. Tammany Parish jail. All eight of the suspects live in neighboring Washington Parish, but Bonnett said he couldn’t immediately identify their hometowns.

Authorities said some of the suspects tried to destroy evidence by burning the woman’s belongings along with other items. At the campsite, investigators found weapons, several flags and six Klan robes, some emblazoned with patches reading “KKK LIFE MEMBER” or “KKK SECURITY Enforcement.”

Strain said the woman arrived in the Slidell, La., area last week and was met by two people connected to the Klan group. She was taken during the weekend to the campsite near Sun, La., on the banks of the Pearl River. Sun is about 60 miles north of New Orleans. “We haven’t completely sorted out if they finished the initiation,” Bonnett said, adding he wasn’t aware of any other KKK-related cases during his three years with the department. “I assume that they had started it, but I don’t know if they were finished.”

Authorities said the group’s members called themselves the “Dixie Brotherhood.”

Mark Pitcavage, director of investigative research for the Anti-Defamation League, said the Dixie Brotherhood appears to be a small, loosely organized group of people.

“This is not what I would call an established Klan group,” he said. “The Klan has a pretty high association with violence. Some of these guys are just crooks, sociopaths.”

But the sheriff said the public shouldn’t feel endangered.

“I can’t imagine anyone feeling endangered or at risk by any one of these kooks,” Strain said.

Source

No. 2 Klan group on trial in Kentucky teen’s beating

‘Bush, Cheney guilty of war crimes’

November 11 2008

Dick Cheney (L) and George W. Bush

Dozens of protesters have gathered outside the Department of Justice to urge indictment and trail of the US President and Vice President.

The activists and legal observers participating in the demonstrations wanted to deliver a letter to Attorney General Michael B. Mukasey, saying outgoing President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney should be taken accountable for treason, murder, bribery and other high crimes.

“This is not about getting them out of office, that’s impeachment. This is about holding them accountable,” said David Swanson, the founder of After Downing Street (ADS).

On the way to the department, the crowd, however, was stopped by a low-level press secretary who pledged he would hand the letter over to the attorney general, Press TV correspondent Jahan Hafez reported.

“We really need to have a medium with him (Michael Mukasey) and we need him to agree to look into the crimes of the Bush administration which are many,” stressed Linda Letendre of the National Campaign for Nonviolent Resistance (NCNR).

As Justice Department officials passed the protesters, activists read off the names of those lost in the war.

Founder of After Downing Street (ADS) David Swanson

The protesters then lay on the ground to symbolize those who killed in the so-called war on terror.

“If in fact your elected officials are not held the same standard that the regular citizens are, then you don’t have the standard, you don’t have the rule of law,” one of the activists said.

“That’s extremely dangerous for everybody,” she warned.

“We are directly responsible for those and I would call them murders …Then you have another four million Iraqis who have been displaced from their homes and businesses and their children. There is cholera, there is no water, there is no electricity,” another protester lamented, referring to the dire consequences the Iraqi nation has been suffering after the US-led invasion of the country in 2003.

“There is constant fear and it’s hard to sit still, knowing that we have done this and that we are allowing it to continue,” she added.

The anti-war community says that choosing a new commander-in-chief is not enough and it does not justify thousands of people who have died because of the policies of the Bush administration.

They say the real change comes about when George W. Bush and Dick Cheney are indicated over war crimes and crimes against humanity.

Source

International Commission of Inquiry on Crimes Against Humanity Committed by the Bush Administration


Published in: on November 13, 2008 at 5:49 am  Comments Off on ‘Bush, Cheney guilty of war crimes’  
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