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Palestinian resistance proposes ceasefire agreement

Palestine Information Center – 19/07/2014

GAZA – Palestinian resistance factions have proposed a ceasefire initiative presented with Qatari and Turkish support.

The ceasefire initiative includes an end to all armed hostilities, an end to Gaza siege, and the release of all Palestinian detainees who were recently arrested in the West Bank. The initiative states that the ceasefire must be reached under US supervision.

The initiative was delivered by Qatar to US Secretary of State John Kerry who in turn conveyed it to Israel.

The ceasefire initiative includes:

1. Mutual and immediate cessation of fire.
2. Mutual cessation of military and security operations.
3. Total lifting of the siege of Gaza and opening the border crossings for goods and people and allowing in food, industrial, fuel and construction supplies, expanding the maritime fishing zone to 12 miles, in addition to removing the buffer zone and implementing reconstruction projects.
4. Full commitment to the prisoners’ swap deal reached on 1/10/2011 under Egyptian mediation, and the release of all the Palestinians detained since 12 June 2014 mainly Palestinian Legislative Council Speaker Dr. Aziz Dweik, in addition to the reopening of public institutions and improving the conditions of Palestinian prisoners.

The ceasefire implementation mechanism:

1. Determination of a zero hour for implementation of all requirements of the ceasefire.
2. Full commitment to the ceasefire under US supervision.
3. Mutual cessation within 6 hours of its announcement.

July 19, 2014 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism | , , , | Leave a comment

Hamas commends withdrawal of Ecuadorian ambassador from Tel-Aviv

MEMO | July 19, 2014

The Palestinian Islamic movement Hamas hailed on Friday the Ecuadorian decision to withdraw his country’s ambassador to Tel-Aviv in protest against Israeli aggression on Gaza.

Speaking to the Palestinian newspaper Al-Resalah, Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum said: “This is a very advanced position, to which the countries in the region have not arrived at.”

Barhoum described the withdrawal of the ambassador as a “courageous” decision.

Ecuador’s Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino said the Ecuadorian government condemned the Israeli invasion on the Gaza Strip.

“We condemn the Israeli military incursion into Palestinian territory, we require cessation of operations and indiscriminate attacks against civilians,” Patino said.

Barhoum also called for the UN Security Council to pass a resolution to lift the eight-year siege on Gaza and stop Israeli aggression on Gaza, which has continued for 13 days.

Ecuador announced Thursday that it was calling in its ambassador to Israel, according to La Informacion and El Universo.

July 19, 2014 Posted by | Solidarity and Activism, War Crimes | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

El-Wafa hospital staff attempted to retrieve medicine

International Solidarity Movement| July 19, 2014

Gaza, Occupied Palestine – Hospital staff and international activists, from the U.S., Sweden, and the UK, attempted to travel to the  recently bombed el-Wafa hospital, in an attempt to retrieve salvageable medical supplies.

When they arrived at the hospital it was, “still smoking from the attack this morning.” Stated U.S. International Solidarity Movement (ISM) activist, Joe Catron. The staff and activists were forced to retreat.

Charlie Andreasson, Swedish (ISM) activist, states, “We were waiting to get clearance from the Red Cross to go back to el-Wafa. This is urgent because without medicine, the patients cannot receive proper treatment, and coordination through the Red Cross has not been possible. ”

Previous attempts by the Red Crescent to enter the Shajaiya neighbourhood to retrieve wounded people from this area were met with live ammunition from the Israeli army. El-Wafa hospital is just outside of Shajaiya.

On July 17th, the Israeli military fired rockets and shelled the hospital, forcing patients to be evacuated to Al Sahaba medical complex.

Basman Alashi, executive director of el-Wafa hospital told ISM, “Due to the emergency evacuation we were forced to move quickly, and had to leave behind important medication, supplies are now running low.”

The embassies of the international activists were informed by the ISM, and asked to do everything in their power to fulfill their responsibility to ensure that Israel respects international law and does not target this delegation of Palestinian and international human rights defenders.

The staff and internationals may try to retrieve supplies again, for now it was impossible.

July 19, 2014 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, War Crimes | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Media re-writing the Iran Air- Vincennes incident

By Cyrus Safdari | Iran Affairs | July 18, 2014

There are a few articles about the July 3, 1988 shootdown of Iran Air 655 by the USS Vincennes, occasioned by the recent news about the Malaysian Airlines shootdown in Urkaine, that are remarkable in their deliberate effort to ignore the known history of the event. They all miss the most important and salient point: The location of the USS Vincennes when it shot down the Iranian airliner.

For example, lets take a look at what Max Fisher writes in the Washington Post (last year, but the coverage has not improved):

1- *”Toward the end of the war, on July 3, 1988, a U.S. Navy ship called the Vincennes was exchanging fire with small Iranian ships in the Persian Gulf.”*

US forces had been skirmishing with lightly-armed Iranian patrol vessels before but that engagement had ended and U.S. forces had been told to to break off. The Vincennes had refused, and sent its helo to buzz Iranian patrol vessels inside Iranian waters that posed no danger to it. It then used the resultant light arms warning fire from the patrol vessels as an excuse to charge into Iranian waters and attack patrol vessels. According to Capt Carlson of the USS Sides, “the conduct of the Iranian military forces in the month preceding the incident was pointedly non-threatening.”

2- *”The U.S. Navy kept ships there, and still does, to protect oil trade routes.”*

The reason the US Navy was there was specifically to “protect” the shipping for Iraq by Kuwait and other Arab states that were helping Saddam in his war against Iran. It was in fact Iraq that had started targeting tankers, since Iran had blockaded Iraq’s export of oil (when Iran captured the al-Faw Peninsula.) By assisting Saddam, Kuwait was acting as a co-belligerent in the war, and the US was aiding the Kuwaitis and Iraqis prosecute a war of aggression.

3- *The airport was used by both civilian and military aircraft.*

Same thing happens at Dulles Airport. This is no justification. Why mention it unless presented as an implied justification?

4- *The Vincennes mistook the lumbering Airbus A300 civilian airliner for a much smaller and faster F-14 fighter jet, perhaps in the heat of battle*

Capt Rogers was warned of “Possible Commair” before he ordered the missiles launched. And Since the Vincennes had initiated hostilities and entered Iranian waters, whatever “mistake” was made “in the heat of battle” was still the fault of the US Navy.

5- *or perhaps because the flight allegedly did not identify itself.*

The ICAO report clearly states that the Airbus transponder was correctly identifying the plane as a civilian airliner, and that the warnings that the USS Vincennes sent were either on the wrong channel or incorrectly identified the intended recipient.

July 19, 2014 Posted by | Deception, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, War Crimes | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Egypt halts Gaza-bound aid convoy

Press TV – July 19, 2014

A Gaza-bound Egyptian convoy carrying humanitarian aid for the war-ravaged, besieged Palestinian enclave has been halted by the country’s security forces in Sinai.

Activists travelling with the convoy on Saturday afternoon said the vehicles carrying humanitarian supplies to the people in the Israeli-blockaded territory had been stopped at a Sinai checkpoint by Egyptian forces and not allowed to pass due to alleged “security reasons,” Ahram Online reported.

The development comes as Gaza is entering the twelfth day of an Israeli military onslaught that has left more than 312 Palestinians dead, including many women and children.

The report further cites Egyptian political activist Zizo Abdo as saying that the convoy was halted at Balooza checkpoint, the first military checkpoint in North Sinai.

Abdo also stated that the convoy consists of 11 buses and a medical convoy, totaling over 550 people including students, workers, and various political figures.

According to the report, if the convoy is allowed to pass through the checkpoint, it is set to pass through Sinai’s al-Arish city, an already troubled area where Egyptian security forces are battling an anti-state militancy that has surged since the military ouster of the country’s first freely elected president Mohamed Morsi in July 2013.

After al-Arish, the convoy will move directly to the Rafah border crossing.

Egypt’s authorities have largely kept the critical border crossing for the besieged Palestinians living in Gaza shut over the past year, claiming security concerns over the surge of militancy in the Sinai region.

However, the crossing has been opened a few times since the start of the massive Israeli offensive as an “exceptional” measure to transport injured Palestinians to Egyptian hospitals and deliver Egyptian as well as Arab aid to Gaza.

Similar Egyptian convoys were able to cross into Gaza during the Israeli assault on the strip in 2012.

July 19, 2014 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Subjugation - Torture, Wars for Israel | , , , | Leave a comment

NBC reinstates Mohyeldin to salvage image

By Jonathon Cook | The Blog from Nazareth | July 19, 2014

Some good overnight news, to which readers have alerted me: Ayman Mohyeldin has been reinstated by NBC as their Gaza correspondent. This is an interesting sign of changing times: NBC, it seems, is waging a rearguard action, feeling the need to restore its credentials for editorial independence. Once it would have been taken for granted that a large media organisation was free and fearless; now increasingly it is not.

What was so revealing about NBC’s original move was that no serious reason was given by the TV executives for Mohyeldin’s removal from Gaza; and their grounds for reinstating him are equally opaque. That is because their decision can only be explained in cynical, political terms, as a response to, or pre-emption of, the Israel lobby and its chums in Washington’s corridors of power.

It is true that there are cynical journalists, but most genuinely believe they are independent and free to say what they like – even when the evidence screams at them that the opposite is true. But media executives, who should really be called what they are – money men and women – are the ones who make the key decisions. And they are entirely cynical about editorial policies. They are interested solely in revenues, access and remaining credible with and useful to powerful interest groups, including the massive corporations that run the media.

Journalists have a bad habit of ignoring the reality that these corporate titans run their news organisations, and they manage it by not examining their bosses’ motives, or their own, too deeply.

But Mohyeldin’s removal will have caused them problems. There were no possible editorial grounds for pulling him from Gaza. The executives offered a vague pretext – “security” – but then exposed the deceitfulness of their reasoning by bringing in another reporter to replace him.

This was doubtless too much for the journalists at NBC, who were threatened by the thought that their outlet might not be quite the bastion of free speech they need to believe it is. And that doubt will only have been reinforced by the popular campaign to bring Mohyeldin back.

In these circumstances, NBC’s original decision threatened to expose to many of its journalists and viewers the hoax of a free western press. That, I suspect, is why Mohyeldin was hurriedly reinstated. NBC’s executives understood that the illusion needed to be restored.

But, as I say, this is a sign of progress. These media corporations can no longer take for granted that we will continue believing they are committed to the truth or acting honourably.

July 19, 2014 Posted by | Deception, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , , , | Leave a comment