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Nobel Committee does it again

By Gunnar Westberg | International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War | October 12, 2012

They did it again.

The Nobel Peace Prize to the European Union.

The Norwegian Nobel Prize committee has again decided to award the Nobel Peace Prize award to a recipient with the intention to encourage the awardee to work for peace, rather than to reward an accomplishment.

The European Union was by its founders seen as a peace organization, but has since done little to promote peace or to achieve disarmament. Most important, the EU has not at all worked to diminish the greatest threat to mankind: nuclear war. Two of the dominant members of the EU are nuclear weapon states, which have shown no intention to work to prevent a nuclear Armageddon. The EU has rather discouraged work by its member states against nuclear weapons. The two European countries who have been most active for nuclear abolition, Switzerland and Norway, are not members of the EU.

The Nobel Peace Prize committee members are appointed by the Norwegian Parliament. The Parliament has chosen to appoint mostly politicians. Maybe that is the reason the members keep rewarding politicians and political organisations. There should be members from peace research institutes, peace organisations, and respected non-political members of the community.

The European Union does not meet the requirements of a Nobel Peace laureate, according to the testament of Alfred Nobel, the one who shall have done the most or the best work for brotherhood between peoples, for the abolition or reduction of standing armies, and for the promotion of peace congresses.

October 12, 2012 Posted by | Corruption, Deception, Militarism | , , , , | 3 Comments

No weapons on Syrian plane grounded by Turkey – Lavrov

RT | October 12, 2012

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said that no weapons were carried by the Syrian passenger plane Turkey diverted on Wednesday over suspicions it was transporting non-civilian cargo.

Lavrov claimed the Airbus A-320 was carrying radar parts, and that transporting such items by civil aircraft does not violate international law.

“We have no secrets,” Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told reporters. “There were, of course, no weapons on the plane and could not have been any. There was a cargo on the plane that a legal Russian supplier was sending in a legal way to a legal customer.”

Lavrov said the the supplier will demand the cargo be returned which is their property.

“We are awaiting an official reply why our diplomats were not allowed to meet the Russian passengers on board,” stressed the Russian FM.

The announcement came in response to a Thursday statement made by Turkish PM Recep Tayyip Erdogan alleging that the Syrian Air jet was transporting Russian-made munitions for the Syrian Defense Ministry.

“It is absolutely clear who sent the cargo and who was going to receive it. This was munitions from the Russian equivalent of our Mechanical and Chemical Industry Corporation being sent to the Syrian Defense Ministry,” Ergodan said.

Turkey diverted the passenger plane en route from Moscow to Damascus on Wednesday as it entered Turkish airspace, and forced it to land in Ankara and open its cargo to inspection. After around nine hours, some items from the cargo were seized and the plane was allowed to depart.

Syria labeled the incident “air piracy,” and insisted there was nothing illegal on board the plane.

Moscow criticized Turkey for endangering the lives of the flight’s 35 passengers by dispatching F-16s fighter jets to force the plane to land, and demanded to know why Russian diplomats and doctors were not allowed to meet the 17 Russian nationals on board the plane.

October 12, 2012 Posted by | Deception, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , , | 2 Comments

Rights groups raise alarm over settler attacks on olive trees

Ma’an – 12/10/2012

BETHLEHEM – As the West Bank olive harvest season begins, two Israeli rights groups released reports this week criticizing Israeli authorities for failing to protect Palestinians from settler violence, or investigate attacks.

Over the past week, Palestinian farmers have reported almost daily attacks on harvesters and olive groves in the West Bank.

Israeli rights group B’Tselem said on Thursday it had documented five of the attacks since Sunday.

That day, the Abu Fahaida family found 25 ancient olive trees destroyed in al-Janiya, west of Ramallah.

B’Tselem said Israeli forces had been called to the same olive grove the day before after a group of settlers confronted the family, noting that the army’s presence did not prevent the vandalism.


Jumaah Abu Fahaida examines the damage to his olive trees. (Iyad Hadad, B’Tselem)

Also Sunday, farmers from nearby Beitillu village going to harvest were attacked with stones by ten masked settlers, who are also suspected of setting fire to the field.

B’Tselem said Israeli soldiers faced difficulties controlling the settler group and removed the Palestinian harvesters while firing in the air.

On Tuesday, Palestinian farmers from Nablus villages Farata and Amatin found thieves had already harvested olives from around 220 trees on their land near the illegal Havat Gilad outpost.

In nearby Qaryut village the same day, farmers found more than 80 of their olive trees had been severely damaged.


One of the damaged trees at Qaryut. (Salma a-Debi, B’Tselem)

On Wednesday, Israeli authorities notified Ratib Naasan, from Ramallah village al-Mughayir, that his olive trees had been damaged. Naasan found around 140 olive trees stripped and vandalized.

B’Tselem noted that the farmer had olive trees vandalized in 2008, 2009 and 2010, but charges were only brought in one case, when the rights group provided video documentation.

It called on the army and police to investigate each incident and complaints that soldiers did not intervene to prevent attacks.

Meanwhile, rights group Yesh Din said on Thursday that of 162 attacks on Palestinian trees since 2005, only one case had led to charges.

The group said 124 files were closed on grounds of “perpetrator unknown,” 16 because of “insufficient evidence” and two on ground of “absence of criminal culpability.” Others are still under investigation, or information was not provided, while case files were lost for two incidents.

The failure of Israeli police to investigate the attacks is “only one aspect of its continuous and broad failure to enforce the law against ideological crimes by Israeli citizens against Palestinians in the occupied territories,” the group said.

The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian affairs reported that over 2,500 olive trees were destroyed in September 2011, and 7,500 throughout 2011. The attacks cost Palestinian farmers over $500,000 that year, according to an estimate by Oxfam and local agricultural organizations.

October 12, 2012 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Subjugation - Torture | , , | Comments Off on Rights groups raise alarm over settler attacks on olive trees

Churches In U.S. Call On Government To Review Aid To Israel

By Saed Bannoura | IMEMC & Agencies | October 12, 2012

Israeli Radio reported that 15 church organizations in the United States issued a statement calling on the United States to review the financial aid to Israel, and to question its unconditional financial assistance to the country, adding that this unconditional aid will not help improve the situation but will only sustain the status quo of the Israeli military occupation of the Palestinian territories.

The Churches said that the U.S. Congress must hold Israel accountable for its actions by placing a condition that the U.S military aid to Israel should depend on Israel’s compliance with the laws and policies of the United States.

The call caused controversy while former official of the American Israeli Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), MJ Rosenberg, wrote an angry column nearly describing the 15 Church organizations as “anti-Semites”.

He added that American Jewish organizations are furious with the call to evaluate the aid.

The Churches did not call for boycotting Israel but asked the Congress to reconsider the [annual] $3.5 Billion of U.S. aid to Israel, and said that U.S. Congress members should determine each year, before sending the aid, whether Tel Aviv is violating U.S. laws and principles.

The Churches said that Christian leaders have the responsibility to question the continuation of this unconditional aid to Tel Aviv, adding that achieving a long and lasting peace in the region requires accountability.

Angered by the statement, AIPAC said that it rejects the evaluation of the aid, and accused the signatories of the letter of distancing themselves from the “mainstream values”.

They said that protecting the Israeli American relations is a wise investment America makes to protect its people and interests in the region.

October 12, 2012 Posted by | Militarism, Wars for Israel | , , | 8 Comments