Monday 20th of August 2018

blurred eurovision...

blurred vision
Freshly-crowned Eurovision queen Netta Barzilai struck fire with her victory speech, as she invited viewers to see next year's song contest in the occupied Jerusalem, not the internationally-recognized Israeli capital Tel Aviv.

Barzilai, who was a favorite to win the contest, clinched first place with her song "Toy," riding the wave of female empowerment. But it was not only the catchy tune that made Twitter erupt after the show but also the highly polarizing statement Netta made on stage after being proclaimed as the winner.

"Thank you so much for choosing difference, thank you so much for accepting differences between us... I love my country, next time in Jerusalem!" the singer said.

Some users were quick to point out that Barzilai betrayed the message of acceptance and diversity by ending on a statement in tune with Israeli propaganda.

"How can Eurovision celebrate diversity and inclusion when steps away Palestinians are getting shot in the head? Eurovision is about to get very ugly," one Twitter user wrote.

Read more:

https://www.rt.com/news/426565-eurovision-israel-winner-jerusalem/

that awful song...

I am getting too old for this kind of song... UGLY song.

the embassy...

As the US prepares to open a new embassy to Israel in the holy city of Jerusalem, Palestinian groups - echoing observers around the world - have fiercely condemned the move by Washington.

"This is the most flagrant and hostile act by the United States against the Palestinians since the beginning of the [Israeli] occupation," Yasser Abd Rabbo, a member of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Executive Committee member and former minister of information, said, according to Gulf News.

Abd Rabbo is among those who negotiated the Oslo Accords, secret negotiations between Israel and Palestine that created the Palestine Authority and led to the recognition of the PLO by Tel Aviv as the representative of the Palestinian people.

Rabbo said that Arab nations can react to the move by implementing an 1980 Arab summit resolution in which 15 Muslim nations, including Saudi Arabia, call for all nations to cease trade and other cooperation with any country that moves its Israeli embassy to Jerusalem.

"Palestinians' options are limited, yet can be very effective if properly used," commented Khalil Shaheen, director of research and policies, and board member at Masarat, the Palestine Centre for Policy Research and Strategic Studies in Ramallah.

"The Palestinians can have a veto, which is no less important than the one the US exercises at the UN Security Council, on any political process Trump tries to launch — either between the Palestinians and Israelis or at a regional level," he noted.

read more:

https://sputniknews.com/middleeast/201805141064421293-palestine-reaction-embassy-move/

convincing the convinced...

Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has begun a diplomatic tour to China, Russia and the European Union. The trip is aimed at bolstering Iran’s stance amid Washington’s withdrawal from the Iran deal and re-imposing sanctions. Sputnik discussed this with Rasool Nafisi from Strayer University in Virginia.

Sputnik: What do you expect from Mohammand Javad Zarif's diplomatic tour? Do you [think] he will be able to change Washington's stance on Iran?

Rasool Nafisi: Well, Washington's stance is clear. The president is going to give another 6 month to re-impose all of these sanctions. And in the meantime, Iran will have time to renegotiate. And Europeans, of course, want to keep the agreement. The problem is — the Iranian leadership seems to be totally adamant about not changing its position or giving an inch. Of course the Europeans are willing to keep it. So Mr. Zarif is not really having much of a tough time convincing the convinced.

 

Read more:

https://sputniknews.com/analysis/201805131064410262-us-president-connected-israel-lobby/

when israel's god is a terrorist with dollars...


Fifty-five Palestinian protesters, including six children under 18, have been killed by Israeli fire during demonstrations on the day of the US embassy's inauguration in Jerusalem, the Palestinian health ministry said Monday.

More than 2,700 protesters have been injured in Gaza on what has been the most violent day of the six week long Great March of Return. Those wounded on Monday include 203 children and 78 women, according to the ministry. 

The Palestinian government denounced Monday’s violence as a “terrible massacre” perpetrated “by the forces of the Israeli occupation”, and called for an immediate international intervention to prevent further deaths. A day of national mourning has been declared by the government in Ramallah, to be held Tuesday.

 

Read more:

https://www.rt.com/news/426617-gaza-protests-embassy-jerusalem/

 

Monday's ceremony included a dual-language musical performance of Hallelujah and Peace Will Yet Come to Us All, as well as several prayers, including by controversial Southern Baptist pastor Robert Jeffress, who offered a prayer for Trump, and praised God and Jesus. "We thank you every day that you have given us a president who boldly stands on the right side of history, but more importantly on the right side of you oh God when it comes to Israel," he said.

Read more:

https://sputniknews.com/middleeast/201805141064441061-us-embassy-jerusal...

 

I will never sing Hallelujah ever again. Gus is an atheist.

please, give "america" back to the indians...

 

In the Second century AD, Jewish rebels who had stunned the Romans and liberated a portion of Judea, overstruck imperial coins with images and a message of their own, “Year One of the Redemption of Jerusalem.”

The Roman emperor Hadrian had planted the seeds for the rebellion with his ambitions to remake Jerusalem, including the planned construction of a Temple to Jupiter on the site of the old Jewish Temple.

The leader of the Jewish rebellion, Bar Kokhba, was fired by a vision of a united Israel with Jerusalem as its capital that had been the exception during the prior millennium, thanks to the depredations of the Assyrians and Babylonians, among others. But such was the power of the national idea — and his messianic zeal — that Bar Kokhba ventured all on regaining it.

And lost. Not for nearly another 2,000 years would the vision come to fruition. At a ceremony in 1982 burying bones of some of those long-ago rebels with military honors, Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin declared, ‘’Israel and Judea are reborn. We have redeemed Jerusalem.”

 

Read more shit at:

https://nypost.com/2018/05/14/jewish-dreams-of-jerusalem-as-israels-capi...

on our dangerous selective slanted biased media ...

 

Selective Reporting Increases the Risk of a Greater Middle East War.



 By  James O’Neill*

 



The mainstream media news in recent days has carried reports of an exchange of rockets between forces based in Syria and what has been generally characterized as an Israeli “response.”  The Israelis claim that Iranian forces fire the rockets aimed at the Golan Heights. There are conflicting accounts as to whether or not the Iranian’s are responsible or whether the rockets were in fact fired by Syrian forces.

The claim and counterclaim have obscured more significant points that are not mentioned by the mainstream media. The first of these is that the latest round of attacks by the Israeli forces on military positions in Syria is not the first such attack.

Israel has long taken to itself the right to attack Syrian military positions. These attacks have intensified in recent years and are part of Israel’s dual aims with regard to Syria. The first aim is to expedite the overthrow of Syria’s President Bashar al Assad. The Israeli attacks generally benefit the various terrorist groups fighting the Syrian army and its Russian, Iranian and Hezbollah allies.

Israeli support for the terrorist groups further extends to the use of Israeli military hospitals in the Golan Heights treating wounded terrorists.

The second important factor is that the Iranians, like the Russians and Hezbollah, are in Syria at the request of the legitimate sovereign Syrian government, recognised as such and by the United Nations and other international bodies. The almost invariable use of the pejorative nomenclature  “Syrian regime” is a non-subtle attempt to propagandize the view of the US government and its lackeys that the Syrian government is in some way illegitimate.

The third omission in the news reports is that the area being shelled by the Syrians and/or Iranians is that the sole target is the Golan Heights. This is a significant (700 mi.²) piece of land, the western two thirds of which has been occupied by Israel since the six-day war in 1967.

It is a fundamental principle of international law that territory conquered in a war cannot be retained by the conquering power, in this case Israel. This principle is restated in Security Council resolution 242 (1967) which in the preamble emphasized “the inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by war,” and further emphasized the requirement of all member states “to act in accordance with article 2 of the charter” (prohibiting force in the resolution of disputes).

The resolution went on to require (clause 1 (i) the “withdrawal of Israel Armed Forces from territories occupied in the recent (6 Day War) conflict.” Israel simply ignored this resolution is it ignores all obligations under international law that do not record with its geopolitical goals.

On 14 December 1981 Israel went further and purported to annex the territory it had illegally occupied since 1967. Three days later on 17 December 1981 the United Nations Security Council unanimously (with no abstentions) in Resolution 497 declared that Israel’s Golan Heights Law, which gave effect to  the annexation, was “null and void and without international legal effect”, and called on Israel to rescind its action.

Again, that was ignored by Israel, as was a later General Assembly resolution on 29 January 2007 which expressed the General Assembly’s deep concern that Israel had it not withdrawn from the Syrian Golan, contrary to relevant Security Council and General Assembly resolutions, and stressed the illegality of Israel’s settlement constructions and other activities in the occupied Syrian Golan since 1967.

The resolution went on to state that the occupation and de facto annexation constituted a “stumbling block in the way of achieving a just, comprehensive and lasting peace in the region.”  It demanded once more that Israel withdraw to the pre-June 1967 lines.

In a familiar pattern, voting was 107 in favour, 6 against and 60 abstentions.

Apart from ignoring Israel’s continuing disregard of UN resolutions condemning its occupation and annexation of Syrian Golan, the media also fail to examine why Israel should continue its defiance of the overwhelming wishes of the international community.

There are two major factors in operation here. The first is that the geographical expansion of Israel’s territory has been a central plank of Israeli policy since at least the publication of the Yinon Plan in February 1982, which set out the blueprint for a “greater Israel.”  The Plan envisaged the incorporation into Israel wholly or significant parts of Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Iraq, Syria and Saudi Arabia.

There is no possible legal basis upon which such a plan could be an advanced, but as noted, considerations of international law are rarely factored into Israel’s geopolitical considerations.

The second factor in operation here is that the Syrian Golan is, according to a November 2015 article in the UK journal The Economist (www.economist.com 7 November 2015) the site of three test drillings conducted by a subsidiary of the US company Genie Energy. These drillings indicated oil reserves “with a potential of billions of barrels.”  Again according to the Economist, the Israeli government is being urged by lobby groups to take advantage of the chaos in Syria to demand international recognition of Israel’s annexation.

One clue as to why Genie Energy should receive so little media coverage of its activities, including the potential theft of Syrian resources, can be found in the composition of the board of directors. That board includes Jacob Rothschild of the UK banking dynasty, Dick Cheney, former US vice president under GW Bush, James Wolsey, a former head of the CIA, and Rupert Murdoch. The latter’s media empire ensures that coverage of Israel is rarely critical. Murdoch, whose 1700 worldwide newspapers unanimously editorialized in favour of the 2003 Iraqi invasion, also ensures that the public is not given vital relevant information.

That was never clearer than in the current (non) coverage of the sustained illegal interventions in the Syrian war by the United States, United Kingdom, France, Saudi Arabia and Australia or the astonishingly one-sided coverage of the current massacre of Palestinian civilians by Israeli soldiers as they protest the theft of their land and destruction of their human rights. Also completely missing from the media commentary is a discussion of what Robert Kennedy Jr aptly called “another pipeline war” (www.ecowatch.com 25 February 2016).

The Syrian war is a highly relevant component of the wider geopolitical issues affecting the region. These include, but are not limited to, the US plan to use Qatari gas via a pipeline to Europe with the overall objective of reducing or eliminating European reliance upon Russian gas. This pipeline necessarily transits Iraq and Syria. The hybrid war waged on Iran since 1979, and most recently including the unilateral withdrawal of United States from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, is also part of this wider geopolitical framework.

Iran and Syria are also key elements in China’s Belt and Road Initiative, a transformative infrastructure program that the US and some of its key allies are seeking to undermine.

The Australian government is very fond of proclaiming its belief in and support for the “international rules based order.” The disjunction between the rhetoric and the reality is  again something that is ignored by the mainstream media. By its continuing failure to fully and accurately inform its readership of Middle Eastern realities, the risk of a wider war is measurably increased.




*Barrister at law and geopolitical analyst. He may be contacted at joneill@qldbar.asn.au

 

A "Greater Middle East War" is what the US (and Israel) is on course for (I would hate to be carthage...) — banking that the Russians and the Chinese (Chinese not yet involved in this caper) will be restrained and not push the button of "responses" or "retaliations" which would take us towards WW3.

But no matter what happens, our despicable media will always blame the Russians or the Martians, or whatever, rather than their glorious Western duplicitous governments that have been pushing shit in Syria for more than 60 years to steal its oil (syria: 60 years of conspiracies from the west...) or any other caper such as war on Iraq.

the next battleground...

The exchange of missiles last week on the Syrian-Israeli border was anything but normal.

This firefight established new rules of engagement in the Levant, and made the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights an “operational theater” in the Syrian conflict overnight.

The mainstream media’s version of events began with Israel retaliating against Iranian missile strikes, and the IDF (Israeli Defense Forces) destroying Iran’s military capabilities inside Syria. But that information is questionable: it comes almost exclusively from Israelis who rarely miss an opportunity to beat the “Iranian threat” war drum.

In the lead-up to the May 10 skirmish—just after the Trump administration exited the landmark 2015 Iran nuclear agreement—Israeli officials began warning of an impending Iranian attack from inside Syria. Then, within hours of the ensuing firefight, an Israeli army spokesman announced that the elite “Quds Force” of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) had fired 20 missiles into the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, after which Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman boasted that “we hit nearly all Iranian infrastructures in Syria.”

IDF spokesman Brigadier General Ronen Manilas described Israel’s actions as “one of the greatest operations of the Israel Air Force in the past decade.” But as the dust settled, an altogether different version of events began to take shape.

A check of the actual conflict chronology shows that Israel initiated the incident by striking Syrian military targets in Kisweh (the Damascus suburbs) and Baath city (Quneitra) over the two preceding days. Russia had warned both Syria and Iran of the impending Israeli strike with the result that neither Iranian military personnel nor weapons systems appear to have been hit. The Syrian military (and not the IRGC) retaliated by firing 55 rockets at Israeli military outposts and installations in the occupied part of the Golan. Local Arab media identified these targets as key Israeli surveillance centers that crippled Israel’s “eyes and ears” along that vital demarcation line. Israel’s vaunted “Iron Dome” defense system failed to intercept most of these rockets, while the Syrian military intercepted more than half of Israel’s missiles, according to Russian military officials.

What is undisputed: the military back-and-forth was the first major firefight between Syria and Israel in the occupied Golan Heights since 1973—making the Golan an operational theater for the first time in over four decades. This is also the first time during the Syrian Civil War that the Syrian military has retaliated against Israeli strikes by hitting Israeli military installations—not just the incoming missiles and the Israeli warplanes firing them. And finally, Israel must contend for the first time with the fact that any battle it initiates can be waged in its own backyard.

Clearly, this is neither the result nor the response that Israel expected.

 

Read more:

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/get-ready-for-the-new-mi...

the demonisation of palestine...

It is hard to imagine anything so nauseating as a group of affluent liberals defending the mass murder of poor colonized people in the name of democracy and security. Though a species of moral turpitude associated with 19th century colonial tropes, in 2018 it remains very much alive under the banner of the UK Labour Friends of Israel (LFI).

In response to the shocking scenes of violence unleashed by Israeli security forces against Palestinian protestors on the boundary of the besieged Gaza Strip, resulting in the deaths of at least 58 people, including children, and the wounding of a further 2700, international condemnation of Israel has been near total.

Given that this latest body count raises to over 100 the number of Palestinians killed over the six weeks of Great Return March protests, organized to demand the right of return of refugees to their homes, along with a total of 10,000 wounded and injured, over 100, there is no doubting the willingness of Israel’s security forces to unleash lethal force against civilians.

Yet, as if to confirm the truth that colonialism is the toilet of the human soul, Labour Friends of Israel – a group of avowed Israel-supporting Labour Party MPs and officials – in a tweet subsequently removed amid the deluge of criticism it incurred, sought to defend this massacre by raising the spectre of Hamas. 

It reads: 

Tragic events on the Gazan border; all civilian deaths are regrettable. Hamas must accept responsibility for these events. Their successful attempt to hijack peaceful protest to attack Israeli border communities must be condemned by all who seek peace in the Middle East.”

Language is important, for it is the key to unlocking consciousness, and the language deployed by LFI in its response to Israel’s massacre of unarmed Palestinian protestors in Gaza confirms that for them the world is defined by a hierarchy of human worth, thus assuaging the groups collective conscience in defending the indefensible. 

But though LFI constitute a particularly egregious example of moral collapse when it comes to mitigating this unconscionable massacre, there are other culprits whose foray into the swamp of equivocation is worthy of condemnation. 

Consider, for example, the BBC’s coverage. 

In its reporting of the massacre the word ‘clashes’ predominated, conjuring the image of two equal sides engaged in a battle of some sort.

Thus for the typical Oxbridge-educated BBC journalist and editor, a Palestinian wielding a slingshot is the moral equivalent of a Kevlar-helmeted Israeli soldier wielding an advanced sniper rifles – moreover, a sniper rifle that may well have been supplied by the UK.

As for CNN, that bastion of US liberal news propaganda (oops, sorry, coverage), here again it’s not a massacre it’s clashes, as in ‘Dozens of Palestinians killed In Gaza clashes as US Embassy Opens’. 

Speaking of which, the extent of the contempt in which the rights of the Palestinians are held, and thus the contempt in which they as a people are held, was measured in the juxtaposition of the opening of the new US Embassy in Jerusalem with Palestinians being mown down by gunfire in Gaza. The headline carried on the front page of the New York Daily News, excoriating Ivanka Trump’s attendance at the event on behalf of the administration, spoke for millions.

There is no longer any hiding place when it comes to the brutal injustice of the plight of the Palestinian people. Too, the attempt to deploy Hamas as the terrorist bogeyman, used to justify Israel’s asphyxiating blockade of two million people in Gaza, is a perversion of both the history and the reality of the issue. 

Hamas is a product of Israel’s brutality and violence, Israel’s brutality and violence is not and never has been a product of Hamas. Further, the roots of this latest bout of lethal violence on the part of the Israeli security forces do not lie in the stance of the Netanyahu government, or indeed any Israeli government. Instead its roots lie in Israel’s mode of existence as a settler colonial apartheid state, a key component of which is the dehumanization and subjugation of the Palestinians.

Desmond Tutu, the first black archbishop if Cape Town, South Africa, and who received the Nobel Prize for his role in the struggle against South African apartheid, understood this all too well. In 2014, he is reported to have said: 

I have witnessed the systemic humiliation of Palestinian men, women and children by members of the Israeli security forces. Their humiliation is familiar to all black South Africans who were corralled and harassed and insulted and assaulted by the security forces of the apartheid government.”

He goes on: 

In South Africa, we could not have achieved our democracy without the help of people around the world, who through the use of non-violent means, such as boycotts and divestment, encouraged their governments and other corporate actors to reverse decades-long support for the apartheid regime.”

It is no accident that the post-apartheid South African government peremptorily announced the withdrawal of its ambassador from Israel in light of the massacre in Gaza. After all, on the most prosaic of levels, who more qualified to recognize today’s victims of apartheid than yesterday’s victims of apartheid? 

Labour Friends of Israel, a key pole of opposition to Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership of the Labour Party, has plumbed new depths of indecency with its mealy-mouthed apologia for Israel’s dreadful and appalling massacre of Palestinian protestors in Gaza. 

Shakespeare was right:

Hell is empty and all the devils are here.”

 

Read more:

https://off-guardian.org/2018/05/17/the-moral-collapse-of-labour-friends...

 

 

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australia's shame...

Australia has aligned with the United States as one of only two countries to vote against an independent investigation into the recent killing of 60 Palestinians in Gaza.

The United Nations human rights council held a special meeting on Friday night to discuss the “deteriorating human rights situation in the occupied Palestinian territory”. 

Twenty-nine countries, an overwhelming majority, voted to urgently set up an “independent, international commission of inquiry” to investigate recent violations of human rights and international humanitarian law there.

 

Read more:

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/may/19/australia-and-us-oppose-un...

apologies from a german newspaper...

A German daily newspaper has fired a cartoonist over an ‘anti-Semitic’ illustration of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, following Israel’s victory in the Eurovision song contest and the deaths of Palestinians in Gaza.

Süddeutsche Zeitung (SZ) published the cartoon of Netanyahu, mocked up as Eurovision winner Netta Barzilai, holding a missile marked with the Star of David on Tuesday. In the background, the Star of David can also be seen in place of the ‘V’ in a banner reading ‘Eurovision Song Contest.’ A speech bubble coming out of Netanyahu’s mouth reads: “Next year in Jerusalem.”

READ MORE: ‘Once a Holocaust denier, always a Holocaust denier’: Netanyahu slams Abbas

The newspaper later apologized for the work of cartoonist Dieter Hanitzsch, with editor-in-chief Wolfgang Krach saying the illustration used anti-Semitic cliches.

 

Read more:

https://www.rt.com/news/427172-germany-netanyahu-cartoon-antisemitism/

 

german toon

 

A bit lame compared to the Gus toon at top...

the semites who shoot themselves in the foot...

A parody of Netta Barzilai's "Toy" song, the Israeli winner of Eurovision, by a Dutch comedian sparked the ire of Israel, which denounced it for its "anti-Semitic" clichés. The text refers in particular to the recent violence in Gaza.


"Look how beautifully I throw bombs,

Israel wins again,

it's been 70 years since the party started"

 

The political parody by Sanne Wallis de Vries, broadcast on May 20 on the Dutch public channel BNNVARA, did not make everyone laugh. This diversion of the "Toy" song by the Israeli winner of the Eurovision Netta Barzilai angered the Israeli authorities especially a few days after the deadly violence that occurred in the Gaza Strip.


In background images scrolling on a screen behind the Dutch humorist, dressed in an outfit reminiscent of Netta Barzilai, scenes of Palestinians protesting against the transfer of the United States Embassy in Jerusalem. At least 60 people were killed during the demonstration and more than 2,000 were injured by Israeli gunfire.


"If the holiday falls, make sure to bet on the embassies

With your ka-ching, ka-ching and ping-a-ping,

With your dollars and your money

With your ka-ching, ka-ching, ka-ching"

              sings the Dutch artist.

 

Translation by Jules Letambour

... after long negotiations with Israeli authorities...


After nearly a decade, Israel delivers more than 10 tons of Palestinian mail
Allam Moussa, the Palestinian Authority’s minister of communications, said the backlog of mail, which dates to 2010, was allowed in from Jordan after long negotiations with Israeli authorities. The mail will take weeks to deliver.


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