If Israel were a State

May 17, 2018  /  Gilad Atzmon

Background:  Yesterday I was  in San Diego having fun at the beach. For a while I sat on the shore with my feet in the water reading The Diary of a Young Girl. Then a miracle happened. A score of  little bottles reached land  and assembled in between my bare feet. I could see that each was sealed and contained a short note. I picked up the bottles carefully and moved them to safety. I collected the notes and tried to assemble the lines into a cohesive  message. I understand that this text, as put together by me, may be  offensive to some. If you can think of a different arrangement of the messages that offers an alternative meaning, please share it with me and I will consider publishing it.

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If Israel were a State

A poem assembled by Gilad Atzmon

If Israel were a state (and Jews a people like all other people) it would have deployed policemen at the Gaza border instead of snipers with live ammunition.

If Israel were a state (and Jews a people like all other people) it would invite the indigenous people of Palestine to return to their land.

If Israel were a state (and Jews a people like all other people) it would apologize for making Gaza into the biggest open-air prison known to man.

If Israel were a state (and Jews a people like all other people) it would, by now, live in peace under the sun.

But Israel is a Jewish Ghetto (and Jews are somehow different…)

If they want to burn it, you want to read it!

Being in Time – A Post Political Manifesto,

Amazon.co.uk , Amazon.com and  here (gilad.co.uk).

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“We Are All Palestinians Now”

May 16, 2018  /  Gilad Atzmon

Introduction by GA: At the moment I am touring the USA. I am having a great time although the country seems rather sad these days. I will be in San Diego tonight, LA on Saturday and Richmond, CA on Monday.  I have been meeting a lot of people who have read and enjoyed  my work. A few, however, are clearly upset by my visit. They stalk me, they harass the organisers of my talks and concerts. They attempt to intimidate some of them. These people aren’t Zionists or Israelis. They  believe themselves to be ‘anti Zionists.’  They are JVP activists and Jewish Antifas and they little but spreading lies and slander.

In Denver last weekend I gave talks in two churches. Then JVP enthusiasts Preston Enright and Lauri Lynnxe Murphy harassed a music venue and pressured its owner in an attempt to prevent my concert on Mother’s Day. Their efforts failed. On Monday I landed in Portland, OR and learned from Minister John Shuck that Preston Enright has been at work trying to prevent the gathering at his Church.

The following moving article was published  by Minister Shuck in response. Minister Shuck supports peace and justice in general and the Palestinians in particular, and was bewildered by the campaign against me by local JVP activists.

I am touched by Minister Shuck’s comments and I am encouraged by his approach to truth and truthfulness.

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“We Are All Palestinians Now”

By Minister John Shuck

https://www.shuckandjive.xyz/2018/05/we-are-all-palestinians-now.html

Anti-Semite

Holocaust Denier

Conspiracy Theorist

People are beginning to awaken to the fact that the name-calling is connected to the violent oppression. The name-calling and the smearing is the weapon the oppressors use to silence the resistance. When someone is labeled as an anti-Semite, Holocaust Denier, Conspiracy Theorist and what have you, then we don’t need to listen to what they have to say.  You don’t need an argument.  Call someone an icky name, then avoid them and tell others to avoid them.

The surprising thing is that the name-calling often comes from the mouths of those in opposition to the oppressors. When pro-Palestinian activists call other pro-Palestinian activists these names, then we know the true power of the oppressor. The oppressor controls the language of the opposition.

When I met with divestment activists in the Presbyterian Church (USA) four years ago, I was surprised when one of them told me that we can now use the word “occupation.” When the divestment movement in the PCUSA had begun over a decade previous, calling what Israel was doing to Palestine “an occupation” was not allowed. I asked, “Who makes those rules?” The answer had to do with strategy and who might be offended and who would support and not support their particular goals and so on and so forth.

The rules are self-made and guided by the oppressors.

The oppressors allow the little victories as long as the truth of what keeps the oppressors in power is not allowed to be revealed. When someone like for instance, Gilad Atzmon, starts talking about the ideology behind the oppressors, then an artificial line that has been drawn by the oppressors is crossed. All forces are then unleashed to smear not only Mr. Atzmon but anyone who might even give him space to defend himself against such attacks.

Meanwhile, mass murder continues while churches in America either cheer it on, satisfy themselves with smaller goals that won’t offend the sensitivities of the oppressors, or, as in most cases, remain deadly silent.

I do think people are beginning to awaken to the fact that the name-calling is connected to the violent oppression and that the name-calling says much more about the name-caller than the name-called. The next step is heart or courage. If we are going to dismantle the oppressor by dismantling their control of the discourse, then we must accept that we, too, will be smeared when we give space to those who cross the oppressors’ line.  This may affect our reputations, our jobs, our livelihoods.

But that is nothing compared to what is happening to our sisters and brothers in Gaza on this 70th anniversary of the ongoing Nakba. As Mr. Atzmon writes, “We are all Palestinians now.”

  1. Hear Gilad Atzmon tonight at 7 pm in Clackamas.
  2. My interview with Waddah Sofan (paralyzed by the IDF when he was 17), Gilad Atzmon, and Dick Toll of Friends of Sabeel North America.
  3. Gilad Atzmon named this year as One of the 100 Peace and Justice Leaders and Models (#5).
  4. Mr. Atzmon honored in Lebanon at the Fourth Global Convention of Solidarity with Palestine (starts 4:45)
  5. Mr. Atzmon featured in Almaydeen’s Nakba Documentary (starts at 3:30).

 Gilad Atzmon at Southminster.  Peace, Love, Justice, and Jazz.

Gilad Atzmon at Southminster.  Peace, Love, Justice, and Jazz.

Al Mayadeen’s Nakba Special featuring Gilad Atzmon

May 15, 2018  /  Gilad Atzmon

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=reOKhDG6X78&t=3m28s

The English part starts around 3;29 min/sec.

In this interview with Al Mayadeen’s Zeinab Al Saffar  I elaborated on The Right of Return, the racism that is inherent to the Jewish State, the Jewish solidarity spin and the inevitable future – One Palestine from the river to the sea.

Six years ago 20 Palestinians called for my disavowal as I was touring America raising funds for The March to Jerusalem.  At the time some Palestinians were happy to serve their ‘solidarity meisters.’  But recent events  reveal how wrong they were. Their people are actually more determined than ever.

The Right of Return is the core of the Palestinian plight. It puts Gaza in context, it brings Israeli crude racism to light. It unites the Palestinians, it unites the rest of us behind them.

This interview was filmed in Maroun al Ras, Southern Lebanon

If they want to burn it, you want to read it!

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Jewish Past vs Jewish State

 Young Palestinians protestors at the Gaza border carry signs in Hebrew: "Soldier, we are not objects, we are human beings.' 

By Gilad Atzmon

Zionism promised to solve the Jewish problem. It vowed to fix Diaspora Jews by means of a ‘homecoming,’ to make the Jews loved, empathic, bond them to the soil; in essence, to make them ‘people like all other people.’

The horrific scenes flooding in from Gaza today demonstrate that Zionism failed miserably. The Jewish State is an embarrassment to its original humanist endeavour and to humanity in general.

Just today, at least 43 Palestinian protestors have been killed and 2,200 wounded by Israeli troops at the Gaza border. Some reports suggest that half of the injuries were caused by live ammunition. This is  devastating news. The criminality of Israel is institutional. This is not about one odd sniper who laughs as he shoots a young Palestinian in the knee, crippling him for life. Israel is displaying a systematic hierarchic murderous apparatus designed to sustain the oppression of the indigenous people of the land for an unlimited period.

Despite the Zionist dream, the Jewish state isn’t loved by its neighbours. It isn’t loved by the rest of the world either. In fact Israel’s actions evoke global repulsion. Instead of solving the Jewish problem, Zionism has only relocated the problem and amplified the symptoms it vowed to eliminate.

Truth can be a disturbing notion; no matter how much you try to suppress it, truth manages to come out. Accordingly, it is impossible to grasp the history of Jewish suffering without taking into consideration the atrocious actions of the Jewish state.  As it happens, Israeli politics is driven by a complete dismissal of the other. The Israeli military operation in Gaza is simply a license to murder. One would hope that a state that names itself the Jewish State would be slightly more vigilant with its excessive  use of power.

By now I believe that Israel is going to be remembered as the darkest chapter in Jewish history and beyond.

The Nakba: Seventy Years of Oppression, 1948-2018

GA: This interview with minister John Shuck and the words of Waddah Sofan brought tears to my eyes.

May 15th marks the 70th anniversary of Israel’s statehood. Palestinians refer to this as the Nakba, the Catastrophe, when more than 700,000 Palestinians left their homes from fear or were forcibly removed by Israelis who took their homes. On this 70th anniversary of the occupation, the people of Gaza have been staging a non-violent demonstration, The Great March of Return that culminates Tuesday the 15th.

According to the Middle Eastern Monitor“The demonstrations of the Great March of Return and Breaking the Siege started on 30 March 2018. Since then Israeli forces have killed 53 demonstrators and wounded more than 8,500 others.”

On this special edition of the Beloved Community, John Shuck’s guests will speak about the ongoing Nakba for the people of Palestine and Gaza from their unique perspectives.

Waddah Sofan was shot and paralyzed by Israeli soldiers during the First Intifada in 1989. Waddah lives in Portland and considers himself “part of Palestinian/American, Muslim, Middle Eastern, people of color and disabled communities.”

Gilad Atzmon, is a British Jazz artist and author.  Gilad writes on political matters, social issues,  Jewish identity and culture. He will be in Portland for a jazz concert May 14th and a talk on Truthfulness May 15th.

Retired Episcopal priest, Richard Toll, also of Portland, is president of the Board of Trustees of Friends of Sabeel North America (FOSNA). Rev. Toll received an honorary doctorate from the Church Divinity School of the School of the Pacific in Berkeley, California for his  commitment to justice and peace in the Holy Land.

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Dissecting Jewish Solidarity (Palestine, Blacks and Beyond)

Posted on by samivesusu

May 11, 2018  /  Gilad Atzmon

Gilad on KGNU Independent Community Radio, Denver, CO at Shareef Aleem’s `Show

https://youtu.be/McLMG4Oj2Oo

May 08, 2018  /  Gilad Atzmon

In a healthy society truth doesn’t need a ‘movement’.  In a society with a prospect of a future, truth is explored and celebrated in the open.

In the coming USA visit I will delve into the strategies that are set to deviate us from truth and truthfulness. We will learn how false dichotomies are manufactured and the means by which detachment and alienation are sustained. We will look primarily at Palestine and Neocon Wars.

Like the Palestinians we are not allowed to utter the name of our oppressor nor can we discuss the means that facilitate this oppression. Truth is our first step towards emancipation.  By now, we are all Palestinians.

Please share these dates with your friends and come to meet me.  

Monday 7 May, 2018 @ 7 pm,  Africa and Zionism – Dissecting anti-black racism in Israel and beyond, led by El-Hajj Mauri’ Saalakhan and Gilad Atzmon,  39 Eldridge St  4th Fl, Chinatown, NYC

Tuesday  8 May, 2018 @ 7 pm,  Truth, Truthfulness & Palestine – a talk and Q&A with Gilad Atzmon,  353 West 48th Street (2nd Floor), room 1, NYC

Thursday 10 May, 6.30 – 8 pm ,Truth, Truthfulness & Palestine – a talk and Q&A with Gilad Atzmon followed by a music party. Meeting @ Wil Mar Center, Mendota Rook, 953 Jenifer St. Madison, WI
Friday 11 May, 8 pm Truth, Truthfulness and Palestine, a talk and Q&A with Gilad Atzmon –  AL Nahda 10555 Southwest Highway, Worth, IL (Chicago)

Saturday 12 May, Rich Forer and Gilad Atzmon with WE ARE CHANGE Denver 6.30 pm.  7401 W. 59th St, Arvada, CO.

Sunday 13 May, 12.00 Rich Forer and Gilad Atzmon, Truth and Truthfulness in America a private meeting in Denver, Co. Please contact me if you want to attend.

 Sunday 13 May, 3.00 pm  Jazz & Beyond  at The Mercury Café, 2199 California St, Denver. CO

Monday 14 May, Jazz night, Dan Schulte -bass, Fred Ingram – drums, Steve Cleveland – kb. 7:30 pm till 9 pm,  Sanctuary at the Southminster Presbyterian Church, 12250 SW Denney Road, Beaverton, Oregon

Tuesday 15 May, Today is the Day, Truth, Truthfulness and Palestine,   The Clackamas Truth and Inquiry Group at 15815 SE 82nd Dr., Clackamas,  OR in the Denny’s Banquet Room at 7 pm.

Wednesday 16 May 7 – 9 pm Gilad with Jason Hanna and the Bullfighters at the Riviera Supper Club, 7777 University Ave. LA Mesa CA 91941 (San Diego)

Thursday 17 May, Morning talk in SD. This event is private – if you want to attend please contact Gilad.
Saturday 19 May,  2:00 PM,  Gilad Atzmon in Los Angeles – Music by Fritz Heede and Gilad Atzmon  followed by a talk  on the current dystopia  by Gilad   1827 S Hope St, Los Angeles, CA 90015

Tuesday 21 May,  Truth, Truthfulness and Palestine. 7-9pm, Community Room Richmond Library, 325 Civic Center Plaza Richmond, California

The Israeli Government Role in Promoting Islamophobia Internationally

Posted on by samivesusu

May 11, 2018  /  Gilad Atzmon

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by Paul Larudee

Much of the study of Islamophobia is directed at the social and political causes and manifestations, including religious and political dimensions and racist characteristics.  However, Islamophobia is also used as a strategic tool or weapon; i.e., in pursuit of national agenda.

Many of us are familiar with Islamophobic movements within the Buddhist majority in Myanmar (against the Rohingya minority), and within Hindu nationalist parties in India. It is important to note, however, that it is characteristic of these movements that they direct their Islamophobia against particular groups of Muslims within their own societies, and are less concerned with creating an international movement against Islam.

This is what makes the case of Israel unique.  Although Israel, like Myanmar and India, seeks to marginalize and ultimately eliminate a specific population of Muslims – in this case the mostly Muslim Palestinians – part of its strategy for doing so includes encouraging and fostering Islamophobia internationally.  Thus, for example, Israel has successfully pursued strong military and diplomatic ties with the governments of Myanmar and India, and especially the Islamophobic movements within those countries.

It is clear, therefore, that Islamophobia within Israel is not only a matter of organized bigotry and social hatred, which one finds in other societies, but also of instrumentalizing or weaponizing Islamophobia as a strategic tool to legitimize and justify the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians in the territories under Israel’s control, as well as to support Israeli aggression towards other mostly Muslim countries in the region. Promoting and fostering Islamophobia internationally helps to increase and solidify international support for the Zionist genocidal project.  It is therefore treated as an important tool of Israeli and Zionist international influence.

My attention was first brought to this fact in casual but unusual circumstances. In early 1993 my family and I were on vacation at a Club Med in France where there were also Israeli intelligence officers and their families.  I got into a discussion with one in particular, who said that with the fall of the Soviet Union, Islam would replace communism as the new enemy.  It sounded a bit far-fetched, but in retrospect he knew what he was talking about, and more important, he was in a position to help make it happen, which of course it did.

The groundwork was laid much earlier.  As Deepa Kumar at Rutgers University reports, the effort to tie Islam to terrorism started at a Zionist funded neoconservative conference on international terrorism in 1979. Then, after a second such conference in 1984, “both US neocons and Zionists worked together to convince Western policy makers that ‘Islamic terrorism’ would replace communism as the West’s next great threat. By tying Islam to terrorism, neocons would gain political cover for their imperialistic ambitions in the Middle East, and Zionists would benefit from garnering Western sympathies for their struggle against Palestinian ‘terrorism.’”

Since then, researchers like Sarah Marusek, David Miller and others have cataloged international Zionist networks that sponsor Islamophobic propaganda and policies.  The work of Pamela Geller and the so-called American Freedom Defense Initiative is one of the well-known examples.  Geller’s anti-Islam billboards and bus advertisements are familiar to many, as well her so-called “Muhammed Art Exhibit and Contest” in Garland, Texas in 2015, resulting in the police killing of two armed men.

Geller is hardly alone, however.  According to the Center for American Progress, the US has six major organizations that manipulate Islamophobia in order to further US support for Israel. These are the Center for Security Policy, the Society of Americans for National Existence, the Middle East Forum, Jihad Watch, Stop Islamization of America, and the Investigative Project on Terrorism.  Sarah Marusek includes even more groups in her paper entitled “The Transatlantic Network: Funding Islamophobia and Israeli Settlements”, published in the anthology, What is Islamophobia?

These organizations constitute a network, as Marusek says, but the complete network is much wider and more diverse than the assets concerned with promoting Islamophobia.  They are known as the sayanim, the Hebrew word for helpers or assistants, and are composed of Zionists who have achieved important and useful positions in societies from which they can exercise powerful initiatives, especially when they operate in concert. Thus, for example, friendly journalists can work with lobbyists and others to quickly and massively spread influence, information, analysis and disinformation that are useful to Israel.

Such initiatives require coordination, intelligence, strategic planning, covert action, technical assistance, and other expertise.  For many years, the sayanimwere coordinated by the Mossad. However, following a 2010 report from the influential Reut Institute (a prestigious strategic think tank in Israel), organizational changes were made that moved such responsibility to the Ministry of International Relations, Intelligence and Strategic Affairs – better known as the Ministry of Strategic Affairs.  The report also notes that there are as many as 4000 sayanim in each of the major centers of power and influence, such as London and New York. A concentration of sayanim in important sectors of society that inform the public, such as film, entertainment, journalism, education and social media permits them to help shape public opinion.

In line with Reut Institute recommendations, the Strategic Affairs Ministry has grown in size and secrecy over the last decade.  Reut projected that Israel’s main strategic threat would no longer be to its military security but rather to its image and influence in other countries, especially the US and Europe.  According to this view, BDS was to be regarded as a serious threat, as well as the human rights NGOs, Palestine solidarity groups and the critical alternative press.  The Ministry of Strategic Affairs was therefore selected to coordinate a major new effort to combat this perceived threat.

The Strategic Affairs Ministry has informally been called the HasbaraMinistry, using the Hebrew word for explanation or propaganda. It certainly is that, but also much more.  The reorganization of the Strategic Affairs Ministry can be compared in scope to that of the Homeland Security Department.  A lot of security and intelligence functions were transferred from or shared with Mossad.  The Ministry became responsible for propaganda, influence and manipulation in other countries.  Coordination of the sayanim became part of its purview, as did thousands of students who were paid or received scholarships in return for haunting social media and the comments sections of websites.  The purpose was to dominate the media, insofar as possible, in countries vital to Israel’s plans and intentions, and to sway public opinion toward outcomes determined by Israel’s strategic goals.

Many readers are familiar with the “Brand Israel” campaign. Its function, suggested by the Reut Institute, is to mold Israel’s image in the media of the US and other countries.  Its tactics are PR on steroids, such as, for example, slipping subliminal questions into the Jeopardy quiz program and idyllic holy land vacations into Wheel of Fortune, but permeating nearly everything we see, hear and read in film, entertainment, journalism, education and social media for the purpose of molding public opinion.  With enough effort of this kind, we will presumably think of Israel as Disneyland.

Another example is Facebook and the personal collaboration between Mark Zuckerberg and Benjamin Netanyahu. After a meeting with Netanyahu, Zuckerberg hired a former employee at the Israeli embassy in Washington to be in charge of censoring so-called “fake news” on Facebook.  Only Facebook has the actual figures of who gets censored, but anecdotal evidence seems to indicate that a lot more anti-Zionists than Zionists are affected.  Similarly, Islamophobic postings and Tweets seem to be at least somewhat resistant to censorship compared to ones that are labeled anti-Semitic (which are often merely critical of Israel).

But it’s not just about making Israel look like the good guys. Demonizing and dehumanizing Muslims also helps to justify Israel’s genocide of the Palestinians, as well as its belligerent policies toward its mainly Muslim neighboring countries. A successful program of Islamophobia helps to support Israel’s pogroms of Palestinians in Gaza, its settlements in and economic strangulation of the West Bank, its invasions of Lebanon, its attacks against Syria, and its promotion of US wars against Afghanistan, Somalia, Iraq, Libya and Syria.  Making the US military a proxy for Israel greatly multiplies Israel’s capability, which is why Israel and its US lobby are working hard to create a new international war against Iran.

In order to provide the Strategic Affairs Ministry with all possible means of making such operations possible and successful, it has been assigned some important intelligence functions, including black ops and psy-ops capabilities, which used to be the exclusive purview of the Mossad.  This gives the ministry greater capability to engage in digging up or inventing dirt about people it wants to harm or discredit, especially in the BDS movement and other pro-Palestinian groups.

The hand of the Strategic Affairs Ministry is not always obvious, and it takes care to shun the light.  But occasionally its actions become known, as with the Aljazeera exposé of Israeli operative Shai Masot, working from the Israeli embassy in London and coordinating the actions of British citizens working with Israel. He coached them on how to demonize and “take down” members of parliament, including the Foreign Office Minister, Alan Duncan, who was considered insufficiently supportive of the effort to suppress BDS.

Al Jazeera has produced a similar exposé on the workings of Israel and its US lobby, but the release has been indefinitely delayed, which may be an indication of Israel’s power and influence and the effectiveness of the operations coordinated by the Strategic Affairs Ministry.  Nevertheless, a glimpse of such operations can be seen in the 2004 espionage indictmentsagainst AIPAC lobbyists Steve Rosen and Keith Weissman.  The indictments were ultimately dropped, partly because sensitive information would have to be revealed in order to successfully prosecute the cases (or perhaps that was just the excuse used to cover the fact that Tel Aviv gets to decide who gets prosecuted, not Washington).

France can be considered an extreme case.  People have been arrested there for wearing a Free Palestine T-shirt.  PayPal and several large banks in France recently closed the accounts of all organizations that support BDS, which has been ruled anti-Semitic.  Anti-Semitism is broadly defined, as you can see, and it is illegal in France.  You can be fined or jailed for practicing it.

But not for Islamophobia.  Islamophobia is free speech but anti-Semitism is racism. In fact, the French equivalent of AIPAC, known as CRIF, has publically declared that “Islamophobia is not a form of racism.  We have long drawn attention to the danger of conflating Islamophobia and anti-Semitism.  To do so would impede all criticism of Islam, such that the fundamental rights of [other] religions could not be respected. The CRIF will therefore block all resolutions against Islamophobia”.

The writings of Jacob Cohen are instructive in this regard. He has published a remarkable and very comprehensive exposé on the promotion of Islamophobia in France, including the actions of Israeli operatives and French Zionist organizations.  But there’s a catch.  In order to publish it in France without being arrested or sued, he has to disguise it as very thinly veiled fiction, in this case O.P.A. Kabbalistique sur les Nouveaux Indigènes. It is available only in French, but even in that language you have to know the persons and groups to which he refers with pseudonyms, and few outsiders know the French scene well enough to recognize more than a handful of them.

So what can we conclude from all this information about the involvement of Israel and the Zionist movement in sponsoring Islamophobia?  The point is that some sources of Islamophobia are not attitudes or social structures. We have to face the fact that there is a very potent, resourceful, well organized and well funded international movement that sees Islamophobia as a strategic tool in pursuit of its national interest. For this reason, it is largely impervious to education or negotiation or legal considerations.

In fact, Israel is also pursuing an apparently contradictory effort to encourage interfaith cooperation between Jews, Muslims and Christians, but with the same goal in mind.  That goal is to blunt criticism of Israel, whether by getting people to hate Muslims and thereby endorse Israel’s belligerence and ethnic cleansing, or by pressuring Muslims not to criticize Israel out of concern for potentially offending their Jewish brothers and sisters.  Since the two strategies are aimed at different populations, I suppose that they might be able to work simultaneously.  This is often how PR campaigns work.

The point is that in all the efforts at fostering tolerance and understanding we are faced with an adversary that is working quite diligently in the opposite direction for reasons that have nothing to do with how they view Islam as a religion or Muslims.  This is therefore a different type of challenge in trying to overcome Islamophobia.

• This article is a revised version of a paper read at the 9th Annual Islamophobia Conference in Berkeley, California, April 29, 2018.

Source: https://dissidentvoice.org

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