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Direct Flight from Saudi Arabia Lands in Zionist Entity Monday Evening: Report

Al-Manar | October 25, 2021

A direct flight from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia will land at Zionist entity’s Ben Gurion Airport on Monday evening, Israeli media reported.

“The flight will be a VIP class Boeing 737-700 aircraft with registration A6-AIN owned by the Emirati Royal Jet airline,” Kan pubcaster said.

The Riyadh-Tel Aviv flight comes after a report that White House National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan raised the possibility of Saudi Arabia joining the so-called Abraham Accords during a meeting last month in Riyadh with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS), according to three US and Arab sources involved in the talks.

The sources said that during the conversation, MBS did not immediately reject the proposal to establish diplomatic ties with the Zionist entity, listing the steps needed to make the move, including improving the relations between the United States and Saudi Arabia.

October 25, 2021 Posted by | Corruption, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism | , , , , | 1 Comment

Youth from Gaza survives Israeli airstrike that killed his father and three sisters

Defence for Children Palestine | October 14, 2021

Yousef A. from Beit Lahiya in the Gaza Strip survived an Israeli airstrike in May 2021 that killed his father and three of his sisters. He is still recovering from his injuries.

October 24, 2021 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular, Video, War Crimes | , , , , | 1 Comment

Palestinian Human Rights NGOs will not be Silenced

Statment By Al-Haq independent Palestinian non-governmental human rights organisation, October 23, 2021:

Al-Haq strongly rejects the designation made by the Israeli Ministry of Defense, on 19 October 2021, of Al-Haq and five fellow Palestinian civil society organisations as “terror organisations,” under Israel’s domestic Anti-Terrorism Law, 2016 and calls for international solidarity and concrete measures to ensure its immediate rescission.

The baseless allegations represent an alarming and unjust escalation of attacks against the Palestinian people in their struggle for freedom, justice and  the right to self-determination. Israel’s widespread and systematic smearing of Palestinian human rights NGOs and human rights defenders aims to delegitimize, oppress, silence and drain their work and resources.

Further, the unlawful application of Israel’s domestic law to the occupied Palestinian territory (OPT) serves to entrench the maintenance of its settler-colonial and apartheid regime of institutionalised racial discrimination and domination over the Palestinian people as a whole.

For decades, Al-Haq has struggled to end Israel’s illegal settler-colonial policies and practices which, since 1948, have denied the Palestinian people from exercising their inalienable right to self-determination. Al-Haq is one of the leading Palestinian organizations calling for accountability and an end to Israel’s impunity for war crimes and crimes against humanity.

It is no coincidence that Israel’s recent escalation of punitive measures against Al-Haq and fellow civil society organisations, has come in the immediate aftermath of the opening of an International Criminal Court investigation into Israel’s crimes in the Situation in Palestine. To that end, Al-Haq will tirelessly maintain its efforts to ensure that Israeli perpetrators of mass atrocity crimes are held accountable.

The history of human rights advocacy and defense, from Africa to Latin America and other corners of the globe, have shown that the means and methods of the oppressor have no limits. In striving towards the liberation of Palestine from Israel’s apartheid and settler colonial regime, our work as human rights defenders will not be deterred or silenced.  We are confident in the solidarity of our friends and partners around the world in confronting these obstacles placed before us.

The Palestinian struggle is a universal struggle against oppression and the denial of self-determination in the pursuit of justice and the ability to live in dignity.  We remain steadfast in advocating for a dignified future for the Palestinian people and the liberation of Palestine from the shackles of Israel’s unlawful colonial rule.

Justice will prevail.

October 23, 2021 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Full Spectrum Dominance, Timeless or most popular | , , , | Leave a comment

Here lies Colin Powell…

By Yvonne Ridley | MEMO | October 23, 2021

Following his death from Covid-19 earlier this week, former US Secretary of State Colin Powell’s legacy will be examined by many people for many different reasons. Some will eulogise him as one of America’s top diplomats and presidential advisers. Many more, I suspect, will remember him as the man who lied for his country again, and again, and again.

One of the Greek sages, Chilon of Sparta, said we should not speak ill of the dead (what is now the Latin aphorism “De mortuis nil nisi bonum dicendum est”), a maxim with which I would generally agree. However, it is precisely because of the dead that I am writing these words.

The dead to which I refer come from many nations around the world; countless men, women and children who left this earth in the absence of mercy, a voice or justice. Millions of others have yet to have any sort of closure or peace due to US militarism, wars, interventions and atrocities over many decades. Powell supported, excused and covered up most of them from Vietnam to the present day.

memorial service for General Powell will be held at the Washington National Cathedral in the US capital next month. The so-called great and good will eulogise the first African American to serve as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and US Secretary of State. My own contribution is not for Powell and the mourners, but for the forgotten survivors who will have been propelled back into very dark places at seeing his name in the headlines this week.

To the Iraqi people, Powell was the man who did the dirty work in arguing the case for a war that created more than a million widows and orphans. Estimates of the number of dead in Iraq continue to be amended. It was Powell who stood before the UN on behalf of President George W Bush in February 2003 and spoke with great authority, using photographs to “prove” that Iraq under Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction (WMDs). This was a lie, and he knew it.

A couple of weeks ahead of his speech, some Algerian refugees were arrested for allegedly producing ricin in Wood Green, North London. The British media splashed with the headlines that anti-terror police had uncovered an Al-Qaida cell poised to unleash the deadly poison on an unsuspecting public. The more lurid reports also claimed that the “ricin factory” contained bomb-making equipment. British Prime Minister Tony Blair — another man with a long-distance relationship with the truth — whipped up a frenzy of hysteria claiming that, “This danger is present and real, and with us now.”

Blair was backed up by Powell in his presentation to the UN Security Council; both men were pushing the case for war against Iraq. Powell cited the London “find” gravely as an “Iraq-linked terrorist network”. Despite the fact that the British government’s chemical weapons research facility at Porton Down knew that there was no ricin in Wood Green in early January 2003, Powell went ahead and peddled his lies regardless. Blair and Powell both appear to have ignored the facts. In a nest of vipers, it’s always difficult to separate one snake from another.

Two years later a very different story emerged during the Old Bailey trial of the Algerian refugees: there was no ricin and no sophisticated Al-Qaida plot. Jury foreman Lawrence Archer was so outraged at what emerged during his seven-month odyssey in court that he co-wrote a book with journalist Fiona Bawdon exposing the lies told by Powell backed up by “shamelessly distorted” words from the British government, media and security agencies.

Powell claimed later to regret his performance at the UN. That didn’t help the Algerians, though, who were held in a high-security prison for more than two years until the case against them in their infamous trial by jury collapsed. The US official knew that there was no ricin plot; indeed, that there was no ricin, so what was the white powder in the vial he waved around so dramatically in the Security Council meeting?

To the people of Vietnam, Colin Powell was the soldier who covered up the war crimes carried out in Mỹ Lai by a unit of US troops who slaughtered 500 civilians. Powell admitted in a 1968 memo that there might have been be “isolated cases of mistreatment”, but in August 1971 he eventually told the truth in a sworn affidavit during the war crimes trial of Brigadier General John Donaldson who, it was alleged, had routinely “killed or ordered the killing of, unarmed and unresisting” Vietnamese civilians from his helicopter.

Powell ingratiated himself in 1985 as a senior assistant to US Defence Secretary Caspar Weinberger, when he helped cover up the selling of weapons to Iran so that the Reagan administration could funnel money to the US-backed and funded right-wing Contra counterrevolutionaries in Nicaragua. Weinberger faced five charges related to the so-called Iran-Contra scandal only to be pardoned by President George H.W. Bush before he could be put on trial. It emerged that Powell took part personally in at least one covert weapons sale in exchange for hostages.

He had his finger in many pies in subsequent years which saw the demise of some dictatorships and the rise of others in US military action in Panama, the Philippines, Somalia, Liberia, Bangladesh, Russia, Bosnia, Afghanistan, the Persian Gulf and the Middle East.

To the Palestinians — and myself, I must add — Powell will always be the man who was treacherous and duplicitous towards them. He lied about Israel’s massacre of Palestinians in the Jenin refugee camp in April 2002.

The Israel Defence Forces (IDF) tried desperately to hide one of its many war crimes committed in the occupied West Bank when its soldiers killed at least 52 Palestinians in the refugee camp between 1 and 11 April at the height of the Second (Al-Aqsa) Intifada. Ariel Sharon’s cowardly troops would have made a quick exit but for the dilemma of how to cover up the killing of so many people. It’s a dilemma that focused the minds of those in charge of so-called Operation Defensive Shield.

As I wrote in MEMO last year, “[They] decided to enforce a siege so tight that no one, despite global protests, could get past Israel’s ring of steel; it was a total lockdown and lasted for weeks while the Israeli government did its best to keep journalists and human rights observers away from the Palestinian city…

“The atmosphere was tense and the UN announced that it was planning to launch an investigation into compelling allegations of Israeli war crimes said to have been committed in the refugee camp. The Israelis did what they do well, and mobilised malleable politicians and government advisers to mislead a gullible media and public.”

The then US Secretary of State Powell was brought in to use calm, authoritative tones at a press conference in Jerusalem’s King David Hotel, which Zionist terrorists blew up in 1946, killing 91 people and wounding 41 others. The irony wasn’t lost on the Palestinians and the watching world.

He claimed to have seen “no evidence” of a massacre. In last year’s article I pointed out: “By 23 April Powell was back in Washington briefing senators: ‘Right now, I’ve seen no evidence of mass graves and I’ve seen no evidence that would suggest a massacre took place.’ He wasn’t lying, of course, because he never went to Jenin, so could not have ‘seen’ the evidence even if he had wanted to.”

I was one of the first journalists on the scene, though, and was in the refugee camp in Jenin on the day that the former general presented his less than honest briefing to the world’s media. The anger and frustration I felt listening to his lies was probably nothing compared with the feelings of the Palestinians in Jenin who told me how their mothers, wives, children and other relatives had been killed before their eyes. I remember seeing a group of Palestinian women tearing at the rubble with their bare, bloodied hands trying to find the bodies of loved ones. The stench of death was overwhelming. Moreover, while Powell said that he saw “no evidence” of a massacre, Human Rights Watch disagreed, and said so when it published a hard-hitting report on what happened in Jenin.

The Jacobin online magazine has published a brutally savage obituary of Powell. “There’s Nothing Honourable or Decent About Colin Powell’s Long List of War Crimes” was the headline. I and millions like me couldn’t agree more. He was buried on Friday morning, but as yet there’s no official tombstone. When it is eventually fixed on his grave, it should be very simple: “Here lies Colin Powell – in death as in life”.

October 23, 2021 Posted by | Deception, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , | 3 Comments

Israel outlaws 6 Palestinian human rights groups

MEMO | October 22, 2021

Israeli Defence Minister Benny Gantz today declared six prominent Palestinian human rights groups terrorist organisations which funnel donor money to outlawed groups.

Under the ruling, the work of Addameer, al-Haq, Defense for Children Palestine, the Union of Agricultural Work Committees, Busan Center for Research and Development, and the Union of Palestinian Women Committees has been banned. Gantz said the groups have ties to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), a group banned by the Israeli occupation.

The groups, which document alleged human rights violations by Israeli occupation forces and authorities and the Palestinian Authority (PA) against Palestinians, include Addameer, which represents Palestinian security prisoners in Israeli military courts, and Defense for Children-International, a group that advocates for Palestinian children.

“[The] declared organisations received large sums of money from European countries and international organisations, using a variety of forgery and deceit,” Gantz said, alleging the money had supported PFLP’s activities.

Addameer and another of the groups, Defense for Children International – Palestine, rejected the accusations as an “attempt to eliminate Palestinian civil society.”

“They may be able to close us down. They can seize our funding. They can arrest us. But they cannot stop our firm and unshakeable belief that this occupation must be held accountable for its crimes,” Al-Haq Director Shawan Jabarin told the Times of Israel.

The designations authorise Israeli authorities to close the groups’ offices, seize their assets, arrest their staff in the occupied West Bank and ban supporting their activities.

The United Nations Human Rights Office in the Palestinian territories said it was “alarmed” at the announcement.

“Counter-terrorism legislation must not be used to constrain legitimate human rights and humanitarian work,” it said, adding that some of the reasons given appeared vague or irrelevant.

“These designations are the latest development in a long stigmatising campaign against these and other organisations, damaging their ability to deliver on their crucial work,” it said.

An official with the PFLP said they maintain relations with civil society organisations across the West Bank and Gaza, without specific mention of the six bodies in this ruling, Reuters reports.

“It is part of the rough battle Israel is launching against the Palestinian people and against civil society groups, in order to exhaust them,” PFLP official Kayed Al-Ghoul said.

In a joint statement, Human Rights Watch (HRW) and Amnesty International said the “decision is an alarming escalation that threatens to shut down the work of Palestine’s most prominent civil society organisations.”

“Silencing, intimidating & criminalizing #Palestinian civil society org’s & human rights defenders are #Israel‘s way of covering up its abuses while maintaining its impunity. It’s the occupation that must be held to account,” wrote Palestinian diplomat Hanan Ashrawi on Twitter.

The decision comes just four days after Israel revoked the residency of Palestinian lawyer Salah Hamouri from his hometown of Jerusalem on the basis of “breach of allegiance” to the state, paving the way for his forced deportation from his homeland. Hamouri, the son of a Palestinian father and French mother, is a prominent lawyer and human rights advocate for Addameer.

October 22, 2021 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Full Spectrum Dominance, Subjugation - Torture | , , , | 1 Comment

US Regime Chooses Israeli-born Envoy to Mediate Demarction of Maritime Border between Lebanon and Zionist Entity

Al-Manar | October 20, 2021

US administration has chosen the Special Envoy and Coordinator for International Energy Affairs, Amos Hochstein, to mediate an agreement to demarcate the maritime borders between Lebanon and the Zionist entity.

Hochstein, who was born in occupied Palestine and served in the Israeli army, is expected to impose the mechanism of the indirect negotiations between Lebanon and the Zionist enemy.

The US-Israeli envoy is expected to warn the Lebanese authorities against amending the decree 6433 which denies Lebanon from its right to 2290 square kilometers and carrying out excavation works before reaching an agreement in this regard.

The strategic expert, Amin Hoteit, told Al-Manar TV that Hochstein is also expected to suggest separating the border demarcation file from the investment part of the dispute.

Well-informed sources told Al-Manar that Hochstein may utilize the Lebanon political division to procrastinate the demarcation of the maritime borders, which would allow the Israeli enemy to confiscate all the gas resources in the disputable area.

October 21, 2021 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism | , , , | 1 Comment

The cultural genocide in Palestine: On Sally Rooney’s decision to boycott Israel

Sally Rooney attends a photocall during the Edinburgh International Book Festival on 22 August 2017 in Edinburgh, Scotland. [Simone Padovani/Awakening/Getty Images]

Sally Rooney during the Edinburgh International Book Festival on 22 August 2017 in Edinburgh, Scotland. [Simone Padovani/Awakening/Getty Images]
By Ramzy Baroud | MEMO | October 19, 2021

The pro-Israel crowd on social media was quick to pounce on award-winning Irish novelist, Sally Rooney, as soon as she declared that she had “chosen not to sell … translation rights of her best-selling novel, ‘Beautiful World, Where Are You’ to an Israeli-based publishing house”.

Expectedly, the accusations centered on the standard smearing used by Israel and its supporters against anyone who dares criticise Israel and exhibits solidarity with the oppressed Palestinian people.

Rooney’s laudable action was not in the least ‘racist’ or ‘anti-Semitic’. On the contrary, it was taken as a show of support for the Palestine Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Movement (BDS), whose advocacy is situated within anti-colonial and anti-racist political discourses.

Rooney, herself, has made it clear that her decision not to publish with Modan Publishing House, which works closely with the Israeli government, is motivated by ethical values.

“I simply do not feel it would be right for me, under the present circumstances, to accept a new contract with an Israeli company that does not publicly distance itself from apartheid and support the U.N-stipulated rights of the Palestinian people,” she said in a statement on 12 October.

In fact, Rooney’s contention is not with the language itself, as she stated that “the Hebrew-language translation rights to my new novel are still available, and if I can find a way to sell these rights that is compliant with the BDS movement’s institutional boycott guidelines, I will be very pleased and proud to do so.”

Rooney is not the first intellectual to take an ethical position against any form of cultural normalisation with Israeli institutions, especially those that directly support and benefit from the Israeli military occupation of Palestine. Her position is consistent with similar stances taken by other intellectuals, musicians, artists, authors and scientists. The ever-expanding list includes Roger WatersAlice Walker and the late Stephen Hawking.

The BDS movement has made it abundantly clear that, in the words of the movement’s co-founder, Omar Barghouti, “the Palestinian boycott targets institutions only, due to their entrenched complicity in planning, justifying, whitewashing or otherwise perpetuating Israel’s violations of international law and Palestinian rights.”

Of course, some are still not convinced. Those critics of the BDS movement intentionally conflate between anti-Semitism and a legitimate form of political expression, which aims at weakening and isolating the very economic, political and cultural infrastructures of racism and apartheid. The fact that numerous anti-Zionist Jews are supporters and advocates of the movement is not enough to make them reconsider their fallacious logic.

One of the ‘politest’ denunciations of Rooney, appearing in the Jewish Forward magazine, was penned by Gitit Levy-Paz. The author’s logic is puzzling, to say the least. Levy-Paz accused Rooney that, by refusing to allow her novel to be translated into Hebrew, she has excluded “a group of readers because of their national identity.”

While the Forward writer is guilty of confusing political ethics and nationality, she is not the only one. Israeli Zionists do this as a matter of course, where the Zionist ideology and the Jewish religion – and, in this case, language – are quite often interchangeable. As a result, the definition of ‘anti-Semitism’ has been stretched to include anti-Zionism – though Zionism is a modern ideological construct. Since Israel defines itself as a Jewish and Zionist state, it follows that any form of criticism of Israeli policies are often depicted as if a form of anti-Semitism.

One of the most interesting aspects of this conversation on language is that the Hebrew language has been used by the State of Israel since its establishment in 1948 as the language of oppression. In the minds of Palestinians, anywhere in Palestine, Hebrew is rarely the language used to communicate culture, literature, social coexistence and such. Instead, every military ordinance issued by the Israeli army, including closures and home demolitions, let alone the proceedings of military court hearings, and even the racist anti-Palestinian chants in football stadiums, are communicated in Hebrew. Palestinians are then excused if they do not view the modern Hebrew language as a language of inclusion, or even innocuous, everyday communication.

These realisations are not the outcome of daily experiences only. Successive Israeli governments have passed numerous legislations over the years to elevate Hebrew at the expense of Arabic. For over seven decades, the ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian people has been coupled with the erasure of their culture and their language, from the Hebraicisation of historic Arabic names of towns, villages and streets, to the demolition of ancient Palestinian graveyards, olive groves, mosques and churches, the Israeli ethnocide is a top item on the Israeli political agenda.

The Israeli Nation State Law of 2018, which elevated Hebrew as Israel’s official language and downgraded Arabic to a “special status”, was the culmination of many years of a relentless, centralised Israeli campaign, whose sole purpose is to dominate the Palestinians, not only politically but culturally as well.

All that in mind, the hypocrisy of Israel’s mouthpieces is unmistakable. They welcome, or at least remain silent, when Israel tries to demolish and bury Palestinian culture and language, but cry foul when a respected author or a well-regarded artist tries, though symbolically, to show solidarity with the oppressed and occupied Palestinian people.

The Palestinian boycott movement is conscious of its morally-driven mission, thus can never duplicate the tactics of the Israeli government and official institutions. BDS aims at pressuring Israel by reminding peoples all over the world of their moral responsibility towards the Palestinians.

BDS does not target Israelis as individuals and, under no circumstances, does it target Jewish individuals because they are Jews, or the Hebrew language, as such. Israel, on the other hand, continues to target Palestinians as a people, downgrades their language, dismantles their institutions and systematically destroys their culture. This is rightly referred to as cultural genocide, and it is our moral responsibility to stop it.

October 20, 2021 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Solidarity and Activism | , , , | Leave a comment

Israeli Regime Revokes Permanent Residency Of Jerusalemite Lawyer Salah Hammouri

Al-Mezan Center For Human Rights | October 18, 2021

Earlier this morning, the Israeli Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked officially notified 36-year-old Palestinian-French human rights defender Salah Hammouri of the revocation of his permanent residency status in Jerusalem based on a “breach of allegiance to the State of Israel.” This decision comes after being approved by the Israeli Attorney General Avichai Mendelblit and Minister of Justice Gideon Sa’ar. The initiation of his residency revocation and forced deportation, pursuant to Amendment No. 30 to the Entry into Israel Law of 1952, comes on the heels of the Israeli apartheid regime’s targeted harassment campaign against Salah Hammouri, a vocal Palestinian human rights advocate, long-time employee at Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association, and former prisoner.

In communicating the decision to move forward with residency revocation on the basis of “breach of allegiance,” the Minister of Interior cites intentionally vague and broad allegations of “terroristic activities” and/or affiliation with “terrorist entities,” based on withheld “secret information” withheld. The withholding of “secret information” mirrors the Israeli occupation’s administrative detention practices, in stark violation of fair trial standards, which place Palestinians under indefinite detention based on secret material that cannot be disclosed to the detainees or their lawyers. To this end, she further cites recommendations based on his past history of arrests—most of which were under administrative detention, without charge or trial. Notably, the Ministry explicitly alludes to the notable escalation of permanent residency revocation of Palestinian Jerusalemites for “breach of allegiance,” as exemplified by the case of Salah Hammouri, by stating that the decision was necessary “to deter others from breaching allegiance to the State of Israel.”

As a Palestinian human rights defender who challenges Israel’s widespread and systematic human rights violations and voices legitimate calls for justice and accountability, Salah has endured constant Israeli attempts to intimidate him and his family, including previous arbitrary arrests, banning from entering the West Bank for almost 16 months, and the deportation of his wife, Elsa Lefort, a French national, separating him from his wife and son in 2016.

Previously, on 3 September 2020, the Israeli occupying authorities notified  Salah Hammouri of the Ministry’s intention to revoke his permanent residency status for so-called “breach of allegiance” to the State of Israel. Notably, Salah and his legal counsel, HaMoked Center for the Defence of the Individual and Advocate Lea Tsemeel, submitted written and oral claims challenging the decision.

Salah is alarmed by the imminent threat of having his residency revoked, which denies Salah’s basic human rights to family life, freedom of movement and residence, including the right to leave and to return to his country, freedom of expression, as enshrined in Article 19 of the ICCPR and freedom of peaceful assembly and association, in line with Articles 21 and 22 of the ICCPR.[1] Residency policies embedded in Israel’s regime of racial domination and oppression are designed to maintain a perilous legal status for Palestinians in East Jerusalem and uphold an Israeli-Jewish demographic majority in the city.

Israel’s policy of revoking Palestinian residency rights in East Jerusalem further violates Article 43 of the Hague Regulations and Article 64 of the Fourth Geneva Convention, which stipulates that the Occupying Power may not act as a sovereign legislator or extend its own legislation over the occupied territory.[2] Moreover, the criterion of allegiance to Israel is illegal. In fact, international humanitarian law explicitly forbids the Occupying Power from demanding allegiance from the occupied population, as stated in Article 45 Hague Regulations and Article 68(3) of the Fourth Geneva Convention.[3] Furthermore, the transfer of Palestinians from occupied East Jerusalem is considered a war crime under Article 8 of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.[4] The revocation of residency policy forms part of a widespread and systematic transfer policy directed against a civilian population, which may also amount to a crime against humanity under Article 7 of the Rome Statute.[5]

[1] Articles 19, 21, and 22, ICCPR.

[2] Hague Convention (IV) Respecting the Laws and Customs of War on Land and Its Annex: Regulations Concerning the Laws and Customs of War on Land (adopted 18 October 1907, entry into force 26 January 1910) (henceforth the “Hague Regulations”) Article 43, Hague Regulations, and Article 64, Fourth Geneva Convention.

[3] Article 45, Hague Regulations, and Article 68(3), Fourth Geneva Convention.

[4] Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (adopted 17 July 1998, entry into force 1 July 2002) 2187 UNTS 3. (henceforth “Rome Statute”)

[5] Article 7, Rome Statute

Israeli Minister of Interior to Officially Revoke Permanent Residency of Lawyer Salah Hammouri_0.pdf

October 19, 2021 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Full Spectrum Dominance, War Crimes | , , | 1 Comment

Propaganda, Character Assassination & the Campaign Against Prof David Miller

By Dr Piers Robinson | OffGuardian | October 19, 2021

On October 1st 2021, the University of Bristol decided to buckle in the face of a near 3 year-long pro-Israel lobby campaign and fire Professor David Miller.

I have worked with David for many years now, co-published work on the theory of propaganda, researched and written about the UK FCO propaganda operation (ongoing) that has sought to overthrow the Syrian government, and developed the fledgling Organisation for Propaganda Studies.

David was, is, and will continue to be, a major intellectual force with respect to our understanding of propaganda, and his integrity, particularly in relation to the Israel-Palestine issue, is now cemented in history. He became a voice for the Palestinians, highlighting the ways in which propaganda has worked in order to simultaneously suppress public understanding of the nefarious actions of the Israeli government against them and erase awareness of their plight.

Inevitably and predictably he became an essential target for the pro-Israel lobby and the implementation of a remarkably sustained and aggressive campaign designed to falsely smear him as ‘anti-Semitic’ and have him fired.

I also have a relationship with the University of Bristol. I studied for my MSc in International Relations back in 1996-97 (funded by the Economic and Social Research Council [ESRC]) and continued in 1997 to undertake a PhD (also ESRC funded) under the supervision of Professor Eric Herring. I left at the end of the 2nd year of the PhD to take up my first full-time academic post at the University of Liverpool, School of Politics and Communication Studies. My PhD was awarded in 2000 from the University of Bristol.

Smear campaigns and character assassination are a core feature of contemporary propaganda and our ‘democratic’ landscape. There is even an academic Handbook on the tactic, titled The Routledge Handbook of Character Assassination and Reputation Management, whilst US investigative journalist Sharyl Atkinson has provided a powerful account detailing how legitimate political views are stifled through nefarious attempts to destroy reputations.

I have witnessed this tactic first hand through my experience researching propaganda and the war on Syria.

For the ‘thought crime’ of questioning and researching UK government-linked ‘influence operations’ in that war, in particular the controversy over the OPCW (Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons) and the alleged chemical weapon attack in Douma 2018, myself and other colleagues (including David), have been subjected to aggressive and continuous smearing some of which is documented here.

Even when OPCW whistleblower scientists emerged and corroborated what we had been saying, those attacking us have simply continued with accusations of our being ‘conspiracy theorists’, ‘war crime deniers’ and agents of ‘disinformation’. That smear campaign also now incorporates OPCW whistleblowers with attempts to blacken their reputations.

What we see today is not completely new and David’s experience is not an isolated one.

In an earlier era, scientists such as Professor Steven Jones were smeared and pushed from their positions when raising perfectly objective, evidence-based and rational questions regarding 9/11. Chemist and laboratory director Kevin Ryan was fired for blowing the whistle on his own company which had obfuscated evidence related to the building collapses that occurred on 9/11.

To this day, and as Dr David Hughes has recently detailed in an academic journal, mainstream academia continues to self-censor and avoid substantial analysis of 9/11.

Today, with Covid-19, we now appear to be seeing an unprecedented level of attacks on academics who have raised what are, again, perfectly objective, evidence-based and rational questions regarding the efficacy of lockdowns and the drive toward coerced/mandated injections.

High profile and leading academics such as Sunetra Gupta (University of Oxford) and even Professor Robert Malone, inventor of mRNA technology used in the current Covid-19 injection, have had to battle concerted drives to discredit them, with, for example, Gupta being accused of being a ‘conspiracy theorist’.

Professor Sucharit Bhakdi, an early critic of lockdown, has been accused of anti-Semitism in what appears to be a wildly ill-founded and crude attempt to discredit his expertise.

The assault on professional autonomy appears to be accelerating rapidly with Professor Robert Malone declaring in October 2021 that:

[p]hysicians who speak out are being actively hunted via medical boards and the press. They are trying to delegitimize and pick us off one by one…This is happening globally.”

Something is indeed ‘rotten in the state of Denmark’.

In David’s case we have seen how powerful actors, in this case the pro-Israel lobby and the Israeli government, have worked to organize and influence in order to build sufficient pressure on the University of Bristol so that they would take the extreme step of firing him.

The campaign has been huge and drawn upon both mainstream media and celebrity influencers, as well as student bodies, in order to relentlessly misrepresent his work as anti-Semitic when, in truth, David’s views and work are based on a clear commitment against racism and discrimination.

It is worth noting that an independent report from a QC, commissioned by the University of Bristol, concluded that Professor Miller’s comments did not constitute unlawful speech and had also explicitly determined his remarks were not anti-Semitic. And, in all of this controversy, the progressive destruction of the Palestinian people and the illegal actions of the state of Israel government continue unabated.

Of course, it is this wider issue that those attacking David most want us all to forget. By allowing itself to play along with a nefarious campaign to smear and cancel David, the University of Bristol has become an important element in what are widely acknowledged to be crimes and atrocities. In doing so the University has clearly placed itself on the wrong side of history.

Smear campaigns and character assassination, then, are nothing new; but they are now intensified to the point that academics such as David are being fired, and high-profile scientists even from the medical sciences are targeted. Freedom of speech and freedom of expression cannot flourish in this environment and nor can academia, especially when rational debate is being supplanted with propaganda and politicized science.

Our ability to evaluate, debate, and speak truth to power are being fundamentally undermined and, along with that, so is any pretence that we live in a functioning democracy. That the University of Bristol has become an active participant in these nefarious processes should be a source of shame for all those who work there. For sure, the memories of my time there are forever tarnished and I will never again think fondly of my postgraduate days at Bristol nor speak in positive terms about the institution.

David’s experience is part of a wider process across democracies whereby power has sought to wrestle control of both professional classes and publics. We will now see, in the coming years, who will prevail.

Trust in institutions, whether government, mainstream media or academia, is likely to decline and rapidly so. And we are now living in an era when there are unprecedented opportunities for the development of new institutions in which freedom of expression and speaking truth to power are cherished, promoted and protected.

The vibrant independent media scene and increasingly discredited mainstream media are good examples of these dynamics although, as Glen Greenwald explains here, there is a concerted drive by political power and corporate media to regain control; I doubt they will ever succeed.

The pro-Israel lobby and the University of Bristol might think that they have secured a major victory in their campaign to silence critical debate on Israel, but they will not have the last word and, certainly, they will not have succeeded in silencing Professor Miller nor putting a stop to his essential work.

Despite the personal loss, and unlike the University of Bristol, Professor Miller will emerge stronger and more influential than ever.

A petition in support of Professor Miller can be signed here.

Dr Piers Robinson is co-Director of the Organisation for Propaganda Studies, convenor of the Working Group on Syria, Media and Propaganda and associated researcher with the Working Group on Propaganda and the 9/11 ‘Global War on Terror.

October 19, 2021 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Full Spectrum Dominance, Science and Pseudo-Science, Timeless or most popular | , | Leave a comment

Ethnic Studies Mandated in California

Perpetual victim Jews constitute a “marginalized community”

BY PHILIP GIRALDI • UNZ REVIEW • OCTOBER 19, 2021

It is more-or-less accepted that Jewish Zionists pretty much control many aspects of what comes out the other end of US foreign policy formulation and have plausibly done so since the time of President Bill Clinton, if not before. It was also a given that President Donald Trump, for all his talk of Making America Great Again, would shower benefits on Israel, a propensity that has already become well established for the Joe Biden Administration. And it should also surprise no one to learn that the benefits derived from the Israel-lean in foreign policy accrue to the Jewish state, allowing it to continue its human rights violations and war crimes at will. The benefit to the US Taxpayer, who generously funds the enterprise, amounts to nothing in return but the scorn of much of the rest of the world that sees Washington as Jerusalem’s poodle.

But what is perhaps somewhat more interesting to observe as it unwinds is the penetration of state and local governments by advocates of policies and legislation that is narrowly focused on Jewish or Zionist interests. Florida, with its large Jewish population and the leadership of a governor who desperately wants to become president, has not surprisingly led the way. Its “Florida Stands With Israel” license plate is so far unique, as was Governor Ron DeSantis’s stunt holding his first state cabinet meeting in Jerusalem in May 2019 disguised and funded as a “trade mission,” accompanied by a planeload of his most ardent Zionist supporters. That no one appears to find this pandering to a foreign country that has been accused of multiple crimes appalling is itself appalling.

State governments have been adhering to demands by Israel to punish those who seek to boycott the Jewish state and its illegal West Bank settlements, both individually and through pressure on corporations, as has taken place with Ben & Jerry ice cream. Universities have also fired faculty and banned instruction that is critical of Israel. But much of the manipulation of ties with local governments has a financial objective, as the various trade agreements entered into between Israel and individual states, though described as investments, only lead to a cash flow in one direction. Grant Smith, who heads the Institute for Research: Middle Eastern Policy (IRMEP), has detailed how one such board that he has identified is a unique example of a state’s economic policies being manipulated by a dedicated Israeli fifth column in government. It is named the Virginia Israel Advisory Board (VIAB).

The VIAB is unique because it is actually part of the Virginia state government. It is funded by the Commonwealth of Virginia and is able to access funds from other government agencies to support Israeli businesses. It is staffed by Israelis and American Jews drawn from what has been described as the “Israel advocacy ecosystem” and is self-administered, appointing its own members and officers. Only Virginia has such a group actually sitting within the government itself, ready to make secret preferential agreements, to arrange special concessions on taxes and to establish start-up subsidies for Israeli businesses. Israeli business projects have been, as a result, regularly funded using Virginia state resources with little accountability.

Smith reports how VIAB is not just an economic mechanism. Its charter states that it was “created to foster closer economic integration between the United States and Israel while supporting the Israeli government’s policy agenda.” Smith also has observed that “VIAB is a pilot for how Israel can quietly obtain taxpayer funding and official status for networked entities that advance Israel from within key state governments.” The board grew significantly under Democratic governor Terry McAuliffe’s administration (2014-2018). McAuliffe, who is running again, regarded by many as the Clintons’ “bag man,” received what were regarded as generous out-of-state campaign contributors from actively pro-Israeli billionaires Haim Saban and J.B. Pritzker, who were both affiliated with the Democratic Party. McAuliffe met regularly in off-the-record “no press allowed” sessions with Israel advocacy groups and spoke about “the Virginia Advisory Board and its successes.” That was, of course, a self-serving lie by one of the slimiest of the Clinton unindicted criminals. In short, the VIAB is little more than a mechanism set up to carry out licensed robbery of Virginia state resources being run by a cabal of local American Jews and Israelis to benefit their co-religionists in Israel. As a side benefit to us Virginians, its reckless activities have led to numerous zoning and environmental violations.

Other initiatives in a number of states are “educational” or cultural. The pressure is constantly on to memorialize the claimed perpetual victimhood and suffering of Jews. This has led to taxpayer supported holocaust museums springing up like mushrooms and the mandatory teaching of holocaust courses in 20 states. Lest there be any confusion, the courses are used inter alia to support the mythology about the founding of Israel, indoctrinating yet another generation of Americans on the “right thinking” over the issue.

It is perhaps inevitable that California, with 500,000 wealthy and politically powerful Jewish residents clustered around Los Angeles and San Francisco, would have to climb on to the Israel and Jewish-interests gravy train sooner or later. Indeed, Californians are already overloaded with the Zionist narrative. School children in 8th and 9th grade English courses are required to read, study and discuss the Diary of Anne Frank. In 10th grade they move up to the largely fictional “Night” by Elie Wiesel. History textbooks, as nearly everywhere in the United States, heavily emphasize the holocaust in World War 2, together with the repeated false claim that the war was initiated by German Chancellor Adolf Hitler largely to exterminate Jews.

In spite of all that already in place, it is interesting to note the back story behind Governor Gavin Newsom’s recent signing of State Assembly Bill 101 which mandates a curriculum reform for the state’s public and charter schools that creates an Ethnic Studies requirement for graduation. The bill was focused on “telling the stories” of California’s “historically marginalized communities.” The legislation to authorize the curriculum was actually delayed for over one year due to organized Jewish objections that led to a veto by Newsom and numerous revisions of the text moderated by those same Jewish groups and their associates in government. Their pushback was spearheaded by the progressive California Legislative Jewish Caucus, which claimed that the original text would open the door to possible school student exposure to groups like the pro-Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanction (BDS) movement. It was also feared that it could lead to discussion of claims of brutal treatment of the Palestinians by the Israelis.

There were also objections because there was no section on anti-Semitism specifically, that the Jewish experience of bad treatment and suffering in America was not part of the curriculum. It was an odd claim given the prosperity and power of the California Jewish community, which has been prominent for over a century and concentrated in wealthy enclaves like Hollywood and Beverly Hills.

Newsom delayed in doing anything as he was engaged in what eventually became a serious recall fight, in which he needed Jewish money and both political and media support. With that in mind, he accepted that the curriculum reform would have to be amended to include anti-Semitism, and even went so far as to define any discussions of Muslims as part of a consideration of Islamophobia, effectively closing the door to any independent look at the Palestinian cause.

To be sure, there were nevertheless objections from more extreme Zionist groups, including the Amcha Initiative, which protested with the following somewhat ironic statement: “While certainly not all in the ethnic studies field fall into this category, there is a vocal and active faction of extremists who have long been seeking to inject their antisemitic and anti-Zionist agenda into our nation’s classrooms.” One might observe that if that were true, they are only following the model established by Jewish zealots.

So, under Jewish pressure, “Ethnicity” came to be primarily defined as Jews, Muslims, Latinos, Asians, Native Americans and Blacks. Sikhs and Armenians were to be allowed to discuss their own ethnicities in schools where they have a large presence, but no Irish nor Italians need apply, even though they both constituted numerically more Americans than many of the other groups, far more than the number of Jews. And, though Europeans and white, they also had their own “ethnically” derived problems as immigrants, with the Irish systematically denied jobs and housing in nineteenth century America while President Teddy Roosevelt described Southern Italians as the “most fecund and least desirable population of Europe.” In 1902, future President Woodrow Wilson added his view “but now there came multitudes of men of the lowest class from the south of Italy … having neither skill nor energy nor any initiative of quick intelligence.”

And there is, of course, a back story to the back story. California Jewish media reports that “The signing comes two days after Newsom held a press conference and photo-op announcing a new initiative supported by a number of Jewish groups and Holocaust educators, to form a governor’s council to improve Holocaust and genocide education for young people across the state.”

The Israeli media quickly picked up on the good news which means more money and political support for the Jewish state and other Jewish causes. “The council will provide educational resources regarding the Holocaust and other instances of genocide to students at California schools and ‘provide young people with the tools necessary to recognize and respond to on-campus instances of antisemitism and bigotry’ according to the governor’s office. ‘We find ourselves in a moment of history where hate pervades the public discourse,’ Newsom said. ‘National surveys have indicated a shocking decline in awareness among young people about the Holocaust and other acts of genocide.’”

So, once again Israel wins both ways in California, joining states like Texas, Florida and Virginia that are already fully on board. Not only has the mandatory Ethnic Studies program largely shut out the Palestinians and turned Jews into perpetual victims, Governor Newsom has also put his markers down on increasing the consumption of the standard holocaust myth to indoctrinate young Americans who have the misfortune to attend California schools. And the trend is unfortunately a national one as more states appear poised to get on board the pander to Israel movement.

Philip M. Giraldi, Ph.D., is Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest, a 501(c)3 tax deductible educational foundation (Federal ID Number #52-1739023) that seeks a more interests-based U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. Website is https://councilforthenationalinterest.org address is P.O. Box 2157, Purcellville VA 20134 and its email is inform@cnionline.org

October 19, 2021 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism | , , , | Leave a comment

Russia: Syria held back fire as Israel used civilian aircraft as cover in Homs raid

Press TV – October 15, 2021

Israel has once again used civilian aircraft as a shield against Syrian air defense systems during its attacks on the Arab country, says a Russian general.

“On October 13, from 23:35 to 23:39, four F-16 tactical fighters of the Israeli Air Force entered Syrian airspace in the US-occupied al-Tanf zone in Homs Province and struck a phosphate ore processing plant in the Palmyra region,” Rear Admiral Vadim Kulit, deputy head of the Russian Center for the Reconciliation of Warring Parties in Syria, said at a briefing.

Kulit said the Syrian military, however, decided not to target the Israeli jets that carried out the strike in central Syria because there were two civilian airliners in the sky at the time.

“The Syrian military leadership decided not to use air defense systems, since at the time of the Israeli aviation attack, two civilian passenger aircraft were in the zone of destruction of the anti-aircraft systems,” Kulit said, Sputnik news reported.

The Syrian Defense Ministry announced earlier that the Wednesday attack killed one soldier and injured three others.

Israel has repeatedly used civilian aircraft as a shield against Syrian air defense systems in its aggression against the Arab country.

In February, an Airbus A320 with 172 passengers on board was forced to make an emergency landing at the Russian-operated Hmeimim Air Base during an Israeli attack.

Back in 2018, Israel had to apologize for using a Russian Il-20 reconnaissance aircraft as a shield during an attack, causing a Syrian S-200 surface-to-air missile to shoot down the Russian aircraft instead and kill 15 Russian and two Syrian service members.

Israel’s Wednesday attack came just days after Syria’s air defenses thwarted an Israeli missile attack on a military air base, known as T-4, in Homs, shooting down most of the incoming projectiles.

That aerial assault had been initiated from the direction of the al-Tanf area as well, with Syrian official news agency SANA reporting that it wounded six soldiers and resulted in some material losses.

Syria has been gripped by foreign-backed militancy since March 2011. The Syrian government says the Israeli regime and its Western and regional allies are aiding Takfiri terrorist groups.

Israel frequently targets the positions of the Syrian military and its allies, who are fighting against the foreign-backed terrorists wreaking havoc in the Arab country.

October 15, 2021 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Illegal Occupation, War Crimes | , , , | 3 Comments

Congress has introduced over 70 pieces of Israel-centric legislation so far in 2021

By Kathryn Shihadah – If Americans Knew – October 14, 2021

For a country that practices apartheid, defies international law, and engages in ethnic cleansing, Israel is popular in the US Congress. During just about 125 days in session, the houses of Congress managed to entertain more than 70 new pieces of legislation pandering to Israel.

It is no coincidence that the pro-Israel lobby is arguably the most pervasive and influential lobby in the U.S. – and that Israel partisans, many of them billionaires, make massive campaign donations to both parties.

This year’s legislative items include plenty of military aid and non-financial perks for Israel, and scoldings for those who speak ill (if truthfully) of the Jewish state.

Americans need to know how generous our legislators are with our tax dollars – toward a country that is universally known to be a human rights abuser. Below is a list of legislation currently under consideration in Congress (and there will be more in the coming days). Also find links to plenty of facts about Israel –  illustrating that Israel may not be the sort of state that Americans should bankroll.

(Note that the three bills in support of Palestinian rights – one quite robust, and two marginally beneficial – at the bottom of the article.)

A fire rages at sunrise in Khan Yunis following an Israeli airstrike on targets in the southern Gaza strip, May 12, 2021. During the recent violence, Israeli military forces killed 260 Gazans, while Palestinian resistance forces killed 13 Israelis – sources & more information here. (YOUSSEF MASSOUD | Credit: AFP via Getty Images)

LEGISLATION TO PROVIDE MONEY FOR ISRAEL

This first batch of legislation seeks to provide the standard annual $3.8 billion in military aid to Israel ($10.8 million a day), and then some.

Since 1946, two years before Israel’s founding on 78% of mandatory Palestine, the US has given Israel $154.7 billion in total military aid (adjusted for inflation: $243.9 billion) – more US assistance than any other country since World War II – this in spite of US laws that forbid military aid to countries committing gross human rights violations (like Israel).

Some of the legislation listed here ensures the flow of the usual sum of $3.8 billion a year; others seek to fund Israel through less direct ways. If these pass, taken together they may bring our daily contribution on behalf of Israel closer to $20 million.

H.R.4373 Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Act, 2022
  • This bill provides the largest chunk – $3.3 billion – in military aid to Israel, and encourages Arab states to end their boycott of Israel and normalize relations.
  • This bill also earmarks $3 billion more in expenditures not to Israel itself, but for Israel’s benefit.
  • Read about the billions of taxpayer dollars earmarked for Israel in this bill here.
H.R.4432 – Department of Defense Appropriations Act, 2022
  • This bill provides FY2022 appropriations to the Department of Defense (DOD) for military activities, including $500 million for Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system (despite the fact that Israel, a human rights abuser, sells military technology to other states that are human rights abusers, and refuses to share some technology with the US, even though we subsidized its development).
  • Read the details of funding to Israel in this bill here; read about the massive US investment in Israel’s Iron Dome anti-rocket system here (and US expenditures overall in Israel here); read about the minor effects of Gazan rockets on Israel here; read about Israel’s refusal to share technology with the US here.
H.J.Res.54S.1751, H.R.3706H.R.3977S.2944H.R.5323S.2789S.2839S.2830H.R.5311H.R.5305: bills (introduced in the weeks following the attack on Gaza) to provide, through various means, extra funding for Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system 
  • These bills call for an additional $1 billion in emergency funding for Israel’s Iron Dome (on top of the standard $500 million/year), with various fiscal strategies, including taking money earmarked for Gaza or the Palestinian authority.
  • Several of the bills were introduced following the removal of the “emergency” $1 billion in Iron Dome funding from the budget bill. The removal of the funding demonstrated America’s waning support for Israel; the flurry of separate bills demonstrates Congress’ ongoing infatuation with Israel.
  • Israel “needed” the funding because its military had depleted its Iron Dome materiel during an attack on Gaza – in which Israel killed 260 Gazan Palestinians (vs. 13 Israelis killed).
  • H.R.5305 may be in a league of its own because of the deviousness with which its Iron Dome funding appeared as a line item. Read about it here.
  • Read about the massive US investment in Israel’s Iron Dome anti-rocket system here (and US expenditures overall in Israel here); read about the minor effects of Gazan rockets on Israel here; read about Israel’s recent attack on Gaza that resulted in depletion of Iron Dome supplies here and here.
S.Con.Res.14 Setting forth the congressional budget for the US Government for fiscal year 2022 and budgetary levels for fiscal years 2023 through 2031 and S.Con.Res.5 – A concurrent resolution setting forth the congressional budget for the United States Government for fiscal year 2021 and budgetary levels for 2022 through 2030
  • An amendment in S.Con.Res.14 establishes a reserve fund for preventing terrorist attacks and ensuring that no US tax dollars benefit terrorist organizations “such as Hamas or the Palestinian Islamic Jihad”; part of S.Con.Res.5 relates to funding for the US Embassy in “Jerusalem, Israel.”
  • Read about Israel’s (and America’s) controversial use of the word “terrorist” herehere, and here.
  • Read about the controversial move of the American Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem here, and about the Palestinian struggle to hold onto East Jerusalem here.
S.1193 & H.R.2659 US-Israel Cybersecurity Cooperation Enhancement Act of 2021 and S.2120 ​​& H.R.5148 United States–Israel Artificial Intelligence Center Act
  • These four bills propose that the US partner with Israel to facilitate (and pay for) cybersecurity research and development. The Dept. of Homeland Security would provide “not less that $6 million” a year; the State Dept., Commerce Dept., and National Science Foundation would provide another $10 million a year.
  • The legislation is framed as part of the fight against Russian, Iranian, and Chinese technological advances and/or cyberattacks – but ignores the fact that Israeli cyber technology has gone rogue again and again, is suspected in a high-profile murder, and has been caught multiple times spying on the US. Israel’s most notorious US spy exhorted young Jews to spy on America for Israel (“if we’re Jews, we will always have dual loyalty”).
S.221 & H.R.852 United States-Israel PTSD Collaborative Research Act (also mentioned in H.R.4350–NDAA, National Defense Authorization Act)
  • These bills establish a grant program (no dollar amount indicated) for collaboration between the US and Israel to advance research on post-traumatic stress disorders. “Our ally Israel, under constant attack from terrorist groups, experiences similar issues with Israeli veterans facing PTSD symptoms.” (The bill overlooks the fact that Palestinians have suffered from Israel’s devastating attacks at a much higher rate than Israelis have suffered from Palestinians’ meager attempts at resistance.)
  • Read about Gazan trauma here (especially for children) here and here; read a comparison of Israeli airstrikes and Gazan rockets here and here (video here).
S.1518 To authorize appropriations for the US-Israel Binational Agricultural Research and Development (BARD) Fund 
  • This bill would create a blank check (“such sums as are necessary”) to support agricultural R&D activities mutually beneficial to the US and Israel – embracing Israel’s “legitimacy” in the international community, in spite of its rampant human rights abuses that have drawn censure from most of the world.
  • Read  about Israel’s destruction of the natural environment of Palestine here.
segregated road in israel (legislation)
Non-monetary legislation for Israel includes recognition of Israel as the “only democracy in the Middle East.” Pictured: view of  segregated road (Route 4370), northeast of Jerusalem, which separates vehicles of Israeli citizens and non-citizens. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90/JNS)

LEGISLATION TO PROVIDE NON-MONETARY PERKS FOR ISRAEL

As always, Congress members lined up to introduce legislation in support of what they claim is America’s “greatest ally.” The facts don’t support this claim – see this, and this, and this and this.

S.Res.226 Expressing the sense of the Senate that the US supports Israel, our greatest ally in the region, and its right to defend itself against terrorist attacks
  • This resolution denounces Hamas rockets (but not Israeli airstrikes), mourns the loss of 13 Israeli lives caused by the rockets (but not the 260 Palestinian lives lost due to airstrikes), and urges “steadfast support for Israel” (but not for justice and self-determination for Palestinians).
  • Read about Israel’s alleged “right to self defense” here, about Hamas rockets here and here, and about Israel as America’s supposed “greatest ally” here.
H.R.3976 America Stands with Israel Act
  • This bill authorizes the President to introduce U.S. Armed Forces into hostilities or to direct immediate transfer of defense articles or services to ensure the survival of Israel and its people from an existing or imminent threat. The President thus would act without oversight or limitation, and could tell Congress about such actions after the fact.
  • Israel’s “existential threat” ideology rests on its “vulnerability”; it claims to be threatened by the Palestinian-led boycott movement (BDS), by the rising Palestinian population, by Iran and Gaza, and by the “delegitimization” caused by factual reporting on its human rights abuses.
  • Read about a high-ranking Israeli who insists that Israel no longer faces any existential threat here; read the deconstruction of the nonviolent BDS movement as an existential threat here; read about Israel’s response to the growing Palestinian population (“demographic threat”) here; read about Israel’s disproportionately powerful military here; Israel’s “secret” nukes here; and Israel’s decades of human rights abuses herehere, and here.
H.Res.394 Expresses support for Israel’s efforts of self-determination and collective security against external forces, recognizes Jerusalem as the legitimate capital city of Israel, and condemns actions by Hamas against the people of Israel
  • This resolution, introduced during Israel’s attack on Gaza, purports to support both Israelis’ and Palestinians’ right to live in peace and security, then condemns Hamas rockets only (not Israel’s aggression that prompted the rockets), recognizes Israel’s (but not Palestine’s) claim to Jerusalem and right to self-determination.
  • Read about Israel’s attack on Gaza here and here; about Hamas rockets here and here, and Israel’s actions in Jerusalem here and here.
H.Res.422 MORDECAI Resolution
  • This resolution declares that Israel is a crucial ally of the US, and that antisemitism and hostility against Israel should be rejected. The language claims that Israel “is the only democracy in the Middle East”; that Gazan resistance rockets are “unprovoked”; and that boycott, divest, and sanction (BDS) is used by “radical, racist, and extremist organizations.” All of these claims are inaccurate.
  • Read about the myth that Israel is a democracy here; read a few examples of why the people of Gaza resist Israel here and here; read about Gaza rockets here and here; read about the nonviolent Boycott, Divest, and Sanction (BDS) movement here and here, and why BDS is not antisemitic here.
palestinian man carrying a bag of flour from UNRWA
One piece of pro-Israel legislation seeks to halt the resumption of aid to the UN agency providing food for Gaza’s poorest. (Pictured: UNRWA food distribution for Palestine refugees in Gaza during the COVID-19 pandemic is being conducted through home deliveries.) (Khalil Adwan UNRWA)

LEGISLATION CENSURING PALESTINIANS (HAMAS AND OTHER “TERRORISTS”), THEIR ALLIES, AND OTHER NE’ER-DO-WELLS

A supply of new legislation in 2021, as always, takes the form of threats and punishment of Israel’s adversaries.

H.R.1543 No Social Media Accounts for Terrorists or State Sponsors of Terrorism Act of 2021
  • The purpose of this bill is to provide authorities to prohibit the provision of services by social media platforms to certain individuals and entities on the Specially Designated Nationals List and senior officials of governments of a state sponsor of terrorism. The bill provides 4 examples of foreign leaders who have used their social media accounts to promote hate – 3 of them involved alleged “antisemitic” rhetoric; the 4th names a regime “responsible for multiple gross violations of human rights.”
  • Read about Israeli officials’ use of social media to spread hate and racism here and here, and their manipulation of social media here and here; read about Israel’s appropriation of “antisemitism” to cover its atrocities here; read about Israel’s gross violations of human rights here and here.
S.2479  & H.R.4721 UNRWA Accountability and Transparency Act
  • The purpose of these bills is to withhold US contributions to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA). As the Biden administration makes plans to restore funding to UNRWA cut by Trump, the bill alludes to the Israel-centric IHRA definition of antisemitism, seeks to limit refugee status, and recommends withhold funding from UNRWA unless every employee passes an extreme vetting process (e.g. conveying information that calls Israelis “occupiers” or “settlers,” supports BDS or the Palestinian right of return, or shows a map that does not include Israel).
  • Read about UNRWA cuts here and here, the IHRA definition of antisemitism here, and the Right of Return here.
S.1904 & H.R.261 Palestinian International Terrorism Support Prevention Act of 2021; H.R.3685 Hamas International Financing Prevention Act; S.1899 Stop Taxpayer Funding of Hamas Act
  • These bills impose sanctions on individuals and groups (including governments and the UN) that support Hamas, the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, and any affiliate or successor groups, or that encourage “anti-Israel or antisemitic ideas or propaganda.”
  • Read the little-known facts about Hamas’ and Israel’s weapons here and here (video here); read about the severity of Israel’s impact on Gazan life here and here; read about the United Nations and Israel here.
H.Res.396 Condemning the rocket attacks perpetrated against Israel by Hamas in May, 2021, and expressing that the US must continue to invest in and support Israel’s security and sovereignty
  • This resolution declares Israel’s right to self-defense and denounces Hamas rockets, while ignoring Gazans’ right to self-defense and overlooking Israel’s 14-year blockade, its many brutal attacks, and the preventable humanitarian disaster Israel has caused for the people of Gaza.
  • Read about Israel’s attack on Gaza here and here; about Hamas rockets here and here, and about Israel as America’s supposed “greatest ally” here.
H.R.2374 Peace and Tolerance in Palestinian Education Act
  • This is a repeat of a bill that was introduced in the last session of Congress (H.R.2343), about the alleged failure of the Palestinian Authority and UNRWA to “eliminate all content and passages encouraging violence or intolerance” from textbooks, perpetuating the falsehood that Palestinians teach their children to hate Jews. Studies have found that Palestinian textbooks are largely neutral (as they have been monitored closely for years) – unlike Israel textbooks which, according to Israeli scholar and academic Nurit Peled-Elhanan, regularly “marginalize Palestinians, legitimize Israeli military action and reinforce Jewish-Israeli territorial identity.”
  • Read about studies of Palestinian textbook content here (also bookvideo) and here; read about the ADL, which itself prepares educational materials for US schools on equality – but silence calls for equality when it comes to Palestinians, here.
S.2829 Mind Your Own Business Act
  • This bill would hold corporate officers personally liable when actions they take on behalf of the corporation are considered political, “un-American,” or in some other way not in the best interests of the shareholders. It specifically mentioned the act of “boycotting a state.”
  • As Foundation for Middle East Peace explains, “the bill would on the one hand open up companies to shareholder lawsuits if they take business decisions that reflect their progressive political views/ideologies/conscience, while on the other hand, it would explicitly exempt from this same shareholder accountability companies that act to punish other companies for boycotting Israel/settlements.”
  • This proposed restriction on free speech ignores the fact that Americans in general are very supportive of boycotts: only about 1 in 5 agree with such anti-BDS legislation.
  • Read more about S.2829 here; read about the nonviolent Boycott, Divest, and Sanction (BDS) movement here and here, and why BDS is not antisemitic here.

LEGISLATION SEEKING TO LIMIT OR CENSURE FREE SPEECH WHEN USED TO CRITICIZE ISRAEL (SOMETIMES ERRONEOUSLY CALLED “THE NEW ANTISEMITISM”)

A number of bills and resolutions were introduced during and after Israel’s attack on Gaza in May – some were related to alleged and actual antisemitic incidents triggered by the attack; others targeted Congress members who criticized Israel’s actions.

S.Res.250S.Res.252H.Res.428S.1939H.R.3515H.Res.557 (all of these resolutions are built on an inaccurate, Israel-centric reading of current events, in which pro-Palestine or pro-Hamas Americans attacked or harassed Jews (allegedly antisemitic acts), triggered by “violence against Israel” at that time)
  • S.Res.250 is Israel-centric, mentioning Israel 16 times. S.Res.250 affirms Israel’s “right to self-defense” and labels the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement as antisemitism. The title of S.Res.250 places blame for Israel’s attack on “terrorists” from the Gaza Strip. S.Res. 252 focuses more on actual antisemitism, and mentions Israel twice, although the “antisemitic violence and harassment” it refers to have been disputed.
  • Three of the bills refer to alleged antisemitic incidents tracked by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) – an organization with a strong pro-Israel bias.
  • Read about Israel’s dangerous misappropriation of the term “antisemitism” here; read about Israel’s alleged “right to self defense” here; read about why BDS is not antisemitic here and here; read a comparison of the weapons of Gazan “terrorists” vs. Israel here; read a rebuttal of the alleged antisemitic nature of incidents in May here; read about the ADL, which claims to fight for human rights everywhere but ignores Palestinian rights, here and hereRead about the run-up to Israel’s attack on Gaza here (note the warnings Israel was given in the timeline), Israel’s attack here and here.
S.Res.232H.Res.474, and H.Res.431 accuse Reps. Cori Bush (D-MO), Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), Ilhan Omar (D-MN), Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), and Pramila Jayapal (D-WA) of various “antisemitic” statements (see below) in relation to Israel’s attack on Gaza in May. 
  • The resolutions describe the reps’ comments – all of which were factual and not antisemitic – as “poisonous rhetoric,” and accuse them of “defending foreign terrorist organizations and inciting antisemitic attacks across the United States,” and declare that “blaming Israel for Hamas rocket attacks…is a form of antisemitic speech.”
  • Some of the statements the legislation denounces:
  • Cori Bush tweeted, “The Israeli military’s occupation continues. The blockade continues. The ethnic cleansing continues.” These statements are accurate: see thisthis, and this.
  • Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Ilhan Omar described Israel as an “apartheid state.” This reality has been detailed by experts and others here and here.
  • Rashida Tlaib tweeted that the Israeli military was killing “babies, children and their parents,” and asserted that Palestinians are “being massacred” in a form of “ethnic cleansing.” These are also accurate statements. See this and this.
  • Ayanna Pressley said in a House speech, “We cannot remain silent when our government sends $3.8 billion of military aid to Israel that is used to demolish Palestinian homes, imprison Palestinian children, and displace Palestinian families,” and “the pain, trauma and terror that Palestinians are facing is not just the result of this week’s escalation, but the consequence of years of military occupation.” See this.
  • Pramila Jayapal stated in a CNN interview, “we condemn Hamas’ firing of those rockets, but I think you have to look at what prompted even that behavior…this has been a pattern of action from Israel that…has led to increased hopelessness from the Palestinian people…we have to look at the power balance here, or imbalance as it were, and we have to put more responsibility on Israel in maintaining peace in the region.”
  • Read about Israel’s appropriation of “antisemitism” to cover its atrocities here; read about Israel’s May attack on Gaza here and here.

LEGISLATION THAT PROMOTES ISRAEL INTERNATIONALLY

This session of Congress has seen a slew of bills that, rather than giving Israel “special” treatment, seek to position Israel as just another state like all the rest. This tacit acceptance of Israel as a “normal” state ignores the fact that it was established in 1948 by a war of ethnic cleansing, has been violating international laws for decades, has been censured by the United Nations hundreds of times, and is therefore considered a rogue state by much of the world.

H.R.2409 U.S.-Israel Cooperation Expansion Act
  • The purpose of this bill is to support security and law enforcement training and cooperation between the US and Israel, specifically by supporting the inclusion of Israel in the International Law Enforcement Academies in Europe (ILEAs are training facilities run by the US Department of State, to instruct local police on counterterrorism and other practices).
  • Read about how Israeli police teach American forces militaristic, often violent techniques, and Israeli officers’ use of torture and other cruel methods against Palestinians here.  (video here).
S.1061 & H.R.2748 Israel Relations Normalization Act of 2021
  • This bill requires the Department of State to take certain actions promoting the normalization of relations between Israel, Arab states, and other relevant countries and regions, building on the so-called Abraham Accords of 2020.
  • Read about the Abraham Accords here; read about the “normalization” of Israel here and here.
S.Res.344 Expressing support for the State of Israel joining the African Union under observer status
  • This resolution encourages heightened cooperation between the State of Israel and African nations, particularly in areas such as economic growth, sustainable agriculture, and humanitarian development – in spite of the fact that many African nations object strongly to Israel’s presence.
  • This resolution declares that Israel, “in the span of a few decades, has emerged as a developed nation and therefore offers an example of a path to economic progress for developing countries” – a statement that belies the fact that the US has ensured Israel’s “development” with subsidies to the tune of $243.9 billion (adjusted for inflation); the statement also ignores the fact that Israel joined the AU without approval from the 55 member states, and the move has been described as a breach of the AU’s own protocols.
  • Read more about Israel and the African Union here and here.
S.1260 United States Innovation and Competition Act of 2021, or Endless Frontiers Act
  • This bill seeks to establish programs to strengthen US leadership (over China) in critical technologies. One amendment solicits “cooperation with our close friends and allies,” specifically including Israel, and excluding “nations that engage in discriminatory boycott, divestment, and sanctioning (BDS) efforts” against Israel – including “Jews living anywhere in Israel.”
  • The Foundation for Middle East Peace (FMEP) explains this last phrase as targeting “the mere act of differentiation between sovereign Israel and the occupied territories…to coerce the entire world into treating the West Bank and Israeli settlements in it as part of Israel.
  • Read about illegal Israeli settlements here; read about the nonviolent Boycott, Divest, and Sanction (BDS) movement here and here, and why BDS is not antisemitic here; read about Israel’s de facto annexation of parts of the West Bank here and here.
H.R.3569 Organ Donation Clarification Act of 2021
  • This bill is a repeat of legislation that died in the last session of Congress (H.R.7900). Its purpose is to clarify parts of the 1984 National Organ Transplant Act. In addition to citing statistics showing how economical organ transplants are, the bill singles out Israel for the “sweeping changes” it made to its national organ donation program in 2010, and as a result saw organ donation approximately triple over a 10-year period. The bill neglects to mention Israel’s history on the subject of organ trafficking.
  • Read a review of the 2020 version of this bill (including Israel’s history of organ trafficking) here.
S.2000 U.S.-Greece Defense and Interparliamentary Partnership Act of 2021
  • The bill encourages ongoing partnership between Cyprus, Greece, Israel, and the US.
  • Read about global condemnation of Israel’s human rights abuses here and here, read about US failure to join in that condemnation here.
S.Res.271 Affirming that the United States supports the Eastern Mediterranean Gas Forum and the Eastern Mediterranean gas pipeline.
  • The Forum includes Israel, Greece, and Cyprus.
  • Read about the background of the pipeline here and here.
A woman yells while holding a sign "#BDS,” referring to “Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions,” in front of the Israeli Consulate in Los Angeles on May 14, 2018
Among the legislation being proposed in Congress so far this year is the “Combating BDS Act of 2021,” which would limit Americans’ free speech regarding Israel. (Pictured: a woman yells while holding a sign “#BDS,” referring to “Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions,” in front of the Israeli Consulate in Los Angeles on May 14, 2018.) (Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)

MISCELLANEOUS LEGISLATION FOR ISRAEL

H.R.5356 Anti-BDS Labeling Act
  • This bill seeks to block the Biden administration from reversing the Trump-era policy requiring goods produced in illegal Israeli settlements in the Palestinian West Bank to be labeled as “Made in Israel.”
  • The bill fails to take into account the fact that, under international law, Israeli settlements on Palestinian land are not part of Israel.
  • Read more about the bill here; read about illegal Israeli settlements here.
S.Res.237 Approving of the sales of defense items to Israel notified to Congress on May 5, 2021; S.J.Res.19 H.J.Res.49 Disapproving of the same sale
  • These resolutions are responses to an almost-unnoticed approval by the Biden administration for the sale of $735 million in precision-guided weapons to Israel. In days when Israel enjoyed bipartisan support, such an arms sale would sail through Congress; today, however, no-strings support is under scrutiny. All three pieces of legislation were introduced within a few days after Israel attacked Gaza, killing 260 Palestinian men, women, and children.
  • Read more about the arms sale here, and about the changing climate in Congress vis-a-vis Israel here and here.
S.2119 Combating BDS Act of 2021
  • “To provide for non-preemption of measures by State and local governments to divest from entities that engage in certain boycott, divestment, or sanctions activities targeting Israel or persons doing business in Israel or Israeli-controlled territories…Nothing in this Act shall be construed to infringe upon any right protected under the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States.”
  • Read about the nonviolent Boycott, Divest, and Sanction (BDS) movement here and here, how anti-BDS laws do in fact infringe on First Amendment rights here and here, and why BDS is not antisemitic here.
S.1641 & H.R.3190 Israel Sovereignty Reassurance Act of 2021 (ISRA)
  • This legislation seeks to prohibit rescinding the recognition of Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights – a region that Israel captured from Syria in 1967, and has illegally occupied ever since. During the 50+ years of occupation, most of the world has never recognized the region as Israeli.
  • Read about former president Trump’s ill-informed decision to recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights here; read about mainstream media’s inaccurate coverage of the Golan Heights here.
S.1182 SECURE F–35 Exports Act of 2021; H.R.5302 U.S.-Israel Military Technology Cooperation Act
  • S.1182 requires specified assessments and certifications related to the sale of F-35 aircraft to countries in the Middle East to ensure that the sale, export, or transfer of these aircraft does not present a significant danger of compromising the critical military and technological military advantage of Israel or the U.S. Armed Forces (this in the context of the fact that Israel, a human rights abuser, sells military technology to other states that are human rights abusers, and refuses to share some technology with the US, even though we subsidized its development).
  • H.R.5302 directs the US Secretaries of Defense and State to provide a forum in which the US and Israel can work together in developing weapons technology.
  • Read about the costs (in lives and tax dollars) of American support for Israel’s military here and here; read about Israeli sales to human rights abusers here and here; read about Israel’s refusal to share technology with the US here; read about Israeli weaponry compared to Palestinian weaponry here.
H.R.4712 Desalination Development Act; H.R.3404 Furthering Underutilized Technologies and Unleashing Responsible Expenditures (FUTURE) for Western Water Infrastructure and Drought Resiliency Act
  • These bills seek to subsidize desalination project development and drought resilience in US states, with several requirements – one of which is that the state “demonstrably leverage the experience of international partners with considerable expertise in desalination, such as the State of Israel.”
  • It is entirely possible that Israeli consultants or companies will be paid American taxpayer dollars through this program.
  • Read about the failure of Israel’s own desalination efforts here; about Israel’s withholding of water from Palestinians here and here; about the “normalization” of Israel here and here; and about global condemnation of Israel’s human rights abuses here and here.
H.Res.558 & S.Res.377 Urging the European Union to designate Hezbollah in its entirety as a terrorist organization
  • These resolutions ask the EU, which already considers Hezbollah’s military wing a terrorist organization, to also include its political wing in the designation.  The legislation calls attention to Hezbollah’s violence against Israelis in the past and its destabilizing effect on the region – ignoring the immense damage that Israel has done to Lebanon, Hezbollah’s home base.
  • Not everyone agrees that Hezbollah is a terror group – read about it here; read about Israel’s devastating 2006 attack on Lebanon here, Israel’s 1982 invasion here, and its 1978 invasion here – also here.
H.R.3465 Iran China Accountability Act
  • This bill outlines alleged ties between Iran and China, and imposes certain requirements on Iran (vis-a-vis its relationships with China and Hamas) before the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action relating to Iran’s nuclear program may be renegotiated.
  • The bill includes the curious statement, “The United States Government unequivocally condemns the Hamas-incited terrorist attacks originating from Israeli land currently occupied by Hamas.” This may be a reference to the most radical Zionist belief that all of Mandatory Palestine is actually part of Israel.
  • Read about the alleged threat Iran poses to Israel, and Israel’s meddling in US-Iran relations here; read about Israel’s transfer of U.S. weaponry and technology to China here and here.
H.R.5344 Two-State Solution Act
  • “The purpose of this Act is to preserve conditions for, and improve the likelihood of a two-state solution that secures Israel’s future as a democratic state and a national home for the Jewish people, a viable, democratic Palestinian state, an end to Israel’s occupation of the Palestinian territories, and peaceful relations between the two states, and to direct the Department of State and other relevant agencies to take steps to accomplish these ends.”
  • While this description seems promising, leaders in Palestinian rights organizations remain unconvinced: the bill offers no mechanism for ensuring Palestinian rights, and fails to hold Israel responsible for its decades of human rights abuses; it also locks the US into two states as the only solution – in spite of the growing popularity in some circles of the one-democratic-state solution.
  • Read about the problems with the two-state solution, and the benefits of the one-democratic-state solution here.

LEGISLATION ACKNOWLEDGING THAT BOTH PALESTINIAN AND ISRAELI LIVES MATTER

S.Res.225 & H.Res.429 Expressing the sense of the Senate regarding the value of Palestinian and Israeli lives and urging an immediate ceasefire and diplomatic efforts to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict
  • These resolutions are the only pieces of legislation that make an attempt to assign equal value to Palestinian and Israeli lives.
  • The resolutions, introduced during the May attack by Israel on Gaza,  urge an immediate cease-fire and support diplomatic efforts to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, uphold international law, and protect human rights.
  • Read about the United States’ complicity in Israel’s atrocities here, and President Biden’s pandering to Israel here.

LEGISLATION SEEKING JUSTICE FOR PALESTINIANS

H.R.2590 Defending the Human Rights of Palestinian Children and Families Living Under Israeli Military Occupation Act
  • This is the only bill so far in the 2021-2022 Congress that specifically advocates for justice for the people of Palestine. The purpose of this bill is to promote and protect the human rights of Palestinians living under Israeli military occupation and ensure that United States taxpayer funds are not used by the Government of Israel to support the military detention of Palestinian children, the unlawful seizure, appropriation, and destruction of Palestinian property and forcible transfer of civilians in the West Bank, or further annexation of Palestinian land in violation of international law.
  • Read about the significance of this bill here; read about previous versions of the bill, and why such legislation is needed, here and here.

If it seems to you like our Congress is spending too much of its time – and too many of our tax dollars – on Israel, please contact them and tell them so.


Kathryn Shihadah is an editor and staff writer for If Americans Knew

October 15, 2021 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Wars for Israel | , , , | 1 Comment