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Israeli forces raid Cremisan Monastery in Bethlehem

IMEMC & Agencies | July 30, 2013

Witnesses reported that Israeli forces raided the Cremisan Monastery in Bethlehem late on Sunday [July 28]. The witnesses told the Palestinian News and Info Agency (WAFA) that Israeli soldiers broke into the monastery, held the people who were inside, and inspected their personal documents.

The Cremisan Monastery, founded in 1885 (Photo courtesy of cremisan.org)

The Cremisan Monastery, founded in 1885 (Photo courtesy of cremisan.org)

The raid was condemned as a violation of the sanctity of places of worship, and a violation of international law. Under Human Rights Law, Israel must “ensure that religious places, sites, shrines and symbols are fully respected and protected”, and “take additional measures in cases where they are vulnerable to desecration or destruction.”

The Cremisan Valley area has been a hotbed of resistance against Israel’s annexation wall, because the Salesian Sisters of Cremisan Convent and the Palestinians of Beit Jala will soon be the annexation wall’s latest victims. The planned route of the annexation wall will separate more than 50 Palestinian families of Beit Jala from their agricultural land, and they will have only limited access to the land via an agricultural gate. Furthermore, the wall will separate the Salesian Convent from 75% of its land. The convent’s land, along with the monastery, will be on the Israeli side, whereas the convent and primary school will be on the Palestinian side.

To fight the planned annexation of their land, the Palestinians of Beit Jala and the Salesian Sisters of Cremisan launched a seven-year-long legal appeal that was supported by the United Kingdom’s Foreign Secretary, William Hague, and the archbishop of Westminster, Vincent Nichols. However, on April 26, 2013, the Special Appeals Committee of the Tel Aviv Magistrate’s Court ruled in favour of the planned route of the annexation wall. The annexation wall is illegal according to international law and the fourth Geneva Convention, to which Israel is a signatory.

According to the United Nations, 85% of the annexation wall is built illegally inside the West Bank, thereby annexing roughly 10% of its land.

July 31, 2013 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Illegal Occupation, Subjugation - Torture | , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Israeli soldiers assault cycling group in Jordan Valley

Ma’an – 15/04/2012

BETHLEHEM – Israeli forces assaulted a group of cyclists who were participating in a West Bank tour on Saturday, official news agency Wafa reported.

Footage appeared on Youtube which showed an Israeli commander hitting an international participant with the butt of his rifle, in an unprovoked attack.

Israeli forces can be seen physically assaulting cyclists in the video.

Soldiers stopped a group of around 250 participants near the Jericho village of al-Auja and refused to let them start a cycling tour, which was organized by youth group Sharek and officials from the al-Auja environmental center.

The tour planned to take participants on a 25 km journey through the Jordan Valley.

When participants protested against orders to stop cycling, soldiers used force against them, injuring several people.

The officer involved in the assault was identified as Shalom Eisner, the deputy commander of the Jordan Valley brigade.

An Israeli army spokeswoman described the incident as “very severe,” adding that Israeli GOC central command Nitzan Alon has ordered an investigation into the event.

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Update – April 16th:

Rabbis For Violence, Brutality and Abuse

IDF

In recent years we have learned about a few sporadic Rabbis who promote peace, justice and humanism. But more often it seems, Israel’s prominent Rabbis are more openly enthusiastic about violence, brutality and abuse.

Ynet reports today that Israel leading rabbis rally to the aid of Lieutenant-Colonel Eisner, an IDF hooligan officer who attacked Danish peace activist yesterday.

Several prominent rabbis expressed their support for the religious Lieutenant-Colonel who was caught on camera brutally attacking a peace activist with his rifle. The Rabbis insist that the military’s decision to suspend the Lieutenant-Colonel was impetuous.

Lieutenant-Colonel Eisner expressed remorse over his action, saying that while he should not have flung his weapon at the activist, the video footage released depicted only “60 seconds out of a two-hour event.” This is indeed a winning Talmudic spin. Rather than dealing with factuality and truth of the matter, we are asked to engage with the ‘unknown’, the ‘missing footage’ so to say.

Rabbi Haim Drukman, who was Eisner’s mentor, described his former pupil as “a fine man, an idealist. He didn’t choose a military career because he needed a job – he is there to give his life for the security of the IDF “. Rabbi Druknam may be correct here, looking again at the footage, we must admit that the silent Danish peace activist seems indeed to threaten the IDF, the State of Israel, and the Jewish people in general.

Former Chief IDF Rabbi Avihai Ronski slammed the decision to suspend Eisner, who he described as “a highly ethical individual.” I guess that by now it is clear to most people that ‘ethics’ is a very relative notion in the Jews Only State.

I guess that the Israeli Rabbis are clever enough to discern a problem within the IDF’s attitude towards its hooligan officer. If Israel wants to maintain itself as the Jews only State, if Israel insists in maintaining its symptoms at the expense of the Palestinian indigenous population, then, its officers must be brutal and vile towards any from of resistance.

Sooner or later, Israel and its Rabbis will have to make a very painful decision. They will have to face the horrific moral and ethical consequences of maintaining a racist, nationalist and expansionist Jewish State.

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(photo: Hamzi Zbidat)

April 15, 2012 Posted by | Solidarity and Activism, Subjugation - Torture, Video | , , | 43 Comments

Israeli Forces Open Fire at Gaza Funeral, Injure Five

WAFA | March 10, 2012

GAZA – Israeli forces Saturday opened fire at a funeral held in Jabalia, north of Gaza City, for six Palestinians killed during the recent Israeli shelling injuring five, according to local sources.

They said Israeli tanks stationed at the eastern borders of Gaza opened fire at the funeral when mourners reached the cemetery to bury the six Palestinians.

One of the injured, who were transferred to hospital for treatment, was reported in serious condition.

March 10, 2012 Posted by | Subjugation - Torture, War Crimes | , , , , | 2 Comments

WAFA: Israeli Forces Commit 25 Violations Against Journalists in February

By Ghassan Bannoura | IMEMC & Agencies | March 05, 2012

The Palestinian News and Information Agency, WAFA, issued a report on Monday documenting the violations committed by Israeli forces against Palestinian journalists during February 2012.

The report stated 11 journalists were injured during the 25 violations. The majority of injuries were a direct result of the military firing tear gas and rubber-coated steel bullets. 11 other cases of detention and arrests by Israeli troops against journalists were documented by WAFA.

WAFA noted in its report that the Israeli military attacked three Palestinian Media companies during the month of February. During the incident Israeli troops stormed the offices of WATAN TV,and AL Qudes Educational TV in Ramallah. On 29th February staff working there were detained, computers were taken along with broadcast equipment leaving the two stations off-air.

According to the Report most injuries journalists sustained happened while they were covering anti wall protests in West Bank villages. Soldiers used tear gas and rubber-coated steel bullets against unarmed civilians. The report noted that Israeli soldiers deliberately opened fire during these protests at journalists, clearly violating international law.

March 5, 2012 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance, Subjugation - Torture | , , , | Comments Off on WAFA: Israeli Forces Commit 25 Violations Against Journalists in February