West Bank: Settler (jewish terrorists) posters call for Palestinian president killing

West Bank: Settler Posters Call for Palestinian President Killing

Notices posted by Jewish settlers feature Mahmoud Abbas in the crosshairs and labelled a ‘supporter of terrorists’.

Settlers put up posters calling for the assassination of President Abbas reading 'kill the financier of terror' [Al Jazeera]

Settlers put up posters calling for the assassination of President Abbas reading ‘kill the financier of terror’ [Al Jazeera]

Hardline Jewish settlers have hung posters of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in the occupied West Bank calling for his assassination.

The posters were stuck on concrete blocks by the Huwwara intersection near the city of Nablus.

According to local news agency Maan, the Israeli army, deployed in the area, did not remove these posters.

The notice, which featured Abbas caught in the crosshairs, labelled him a “supporter of terrorists”.

In a statement, the Palestinian Authority said the threats to kill Abbas “crossed all red lines”.

In their weekly meeting in Ramallah, the PA’s Council of Ministers strongly condemned the settlers’ overt calls to attack Abbas and said they are taking the threats very seriously.

Headed by Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah, the council called on the international community to also voice its condemnation, and said it holds the Israeli government fully responsible for the consequences of what it termed a “provocative incitement” to assassinate the president.

The council also condemned the Israeli raids of Palestinian cities, towns and villages on Monday in Area A – which as stipulated by the Oslo Accords is under Palestinian civil and security control.

Israeli military vehicles and soldiers carried out incursions in Ramallah, the de facto capital city of the PA, and stormed the headquarters of its official news agency Wafa and prevented staff from leaving the building.

Palestinians stage a protest against the Israeli raid on Palestinian news agency Wafa in Ramallah [Anadolu Agency]

The raids were carried out to allegedly search for the suspect who shot and wounded seven Jewish settlers on Sunday night from a moving vehicle near the illegal Ofra settlement, east of Ramallah.

Dozens of Palestinians protesting the Israeli forces were injured by tear gas canisters, rubber-coated bullets and live ammunition.

Saeb Erekat, the secretary of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), called the threats against Abbas as “a declaration of the public assassination of the peace path pursued by the president and the Palestinian leadership”.

“It is a call for dragging the region to clashes and violence, for which the occupation government and [US President Donald] Trump administration … will be responsible for,” Erekat said in a statement.

US-sponsored peace talks between the PA and Israel collapsed in 2014 over the latter’s refusal to halt settlement building in the occupied West Bank.

SOURCE: Al Jazeera News


The Irrelevance of Liberal Zionism

Global Justice in the 21st Century


Frustrated by Israeli settlement expansion, excessive violence, AIPAC maximalism, Netanyahu’s arrogance, Israel’s defiant disregard of international law, various Jewish responses claim to seek a middle ground. Israel is criticized by this loyal opposition, sometimes harshly, although so is the Palestinian Authority, Hamas, and activists around the world. Both sides are deemed responsible in equal measure for the failure to end the conflict. With such a stance liberal Zionists seek to occupy the high moral ground without ceding political relevance. In contrast, those who believe as I do that Israel poses the main obstacle to achieving a sustainable peace are dismissed by liberal Zionists as either obstructive or unrealistic, and at worst, as anti-Israeli or even anti-Semitic.


Listen to the funding appeals of J Street or read such columnists in the NY Times as Roger Cohen and Thomas Friedman to grasp the approach of liberal Zionism. These views are…

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Israel Wins US 2018 Election

Astute News

Judging from the mainstream media, Israel was not a major issue in the midterm election but it sure did come up a lot when candidates for office were wooing Jewish or Evangelical voters. To cite only one example, Florida Congressman Ron DeSantis criticized his opponent Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum during their gubernatorial race for receiving support from the Dream Defenders, a group favoring Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) against Israel, and giving a speech welcoming members of the Council on American-Islamic Relations to his city. DeSantis claimed in a video clip that “I can find anti-Semites around him, but it’s almost like ‘we don’t want to discuss that.’”

DeSantis, who sponsored the 2013 Palestinian Accountability Act which called for the withholding of U.S. aid to the Palestinian Authority until it recognizes Israel as a Jewish state, charged that Gillum would not be a “friend” of Israel. In 2017, he co-founded

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هل أنقذ نتنياهو المملكة من أزمة الخاشقجي؟

أكتوبر 30, 2018

روزانا رمّال

بتنسيق أو بدونه لا يمكن اعتبار زيارة رئيس الوزراء الإسرائيلي بنيامين نتنياهو خارجة عن المشهد الإقليمي المحيط بكل ما يدور في فلك الخلافات الخليجية الخليجية او العربية الإسرائيلية او الأميركية الروسية بل هي جزء منها وجزء من هذا المشهد هو التحدّي المباشر حول قضية مقتل الصحافي السعودي جمال الخاشقجي وما يعنيه ذلك بالنسبة للعائلة السعودية المالكة التي ترغب بالحفاظ على ولاية العهد لمحمد بن سلمان من جهة وبين الرئيس الأميركي دونالد ترامب الداعم لهذا الخيار وما لحقه من انتقادات أميركية محلية استغلت للتأثير على الانتخابات النصفية.

قبل الحديث عن سلطنة عمان والخطوة التي ما كانت قادرة «إلا» على القيام بها، لا بد من السؤال حول سبب التغيير في خطاب الرئيس الأميركي دونالد ترامب بما يتعلق بالأمير محمد بن سلمان فبعد ان اصبحت الجريمة الاهتمام الاول للعالم والرأي العام فيه لم يستبعد ترامب ان يكون إبن سلمان متورطاً. ومفهوم أن هذا الموقف جاء بضغط محلي وحسابات انتخابية يستغلها خصومه، لهذا السبب صار المطلوب من إبن سلمان تقديم الكثير والوفير بالملفين التاليين:

الأول مالي ورفع مستوى التقديمات السعودية لغايات تجارية ونفطية أميركية. وهذا متوقع. أما الثاني فهو صفقة القرن وتمريرها. الأمر الذي يؤكده مصدر سياسي عربي رفيع لـ»البناء» وهو فشل صفقة القرن بعجز سعودي عن تمريرها بعد رفض الملك سلمان التخلي عن الملف الفلسطيني بهذا الشكل والتوقيع. الأمر الذي أُخبر به الرئيس الفلسطيني محمود عباس والحقيقة تعود الى ان العجز السعودي مفاده عدم الاستسلام الفلسطيني والفشل في إقناع حركة فتح والسلطة الفلسطينية التي تزداد تمسكاً برفض اي نوع او بند من هذه الصفقة. وعلى هذا الأساس أخبر المسؤولون السعوديون صهر الرئيس الأميركي المكلف بالملف جاريد كوشنر باستعصاء القضية.

بمقتل الخاشقجي صار الضغط على إبن سلمان مضاعفاً وصارت مسألة تغطية الأميركيين له أمراً ليس سهلاً إلا أن ترامب الذي يحظى بمكانة جد عالية عند الإسرائيليين، وخصوصاً صداقة مميزة مع نتنياهو حرك مسألة الصفقة من زاوية خليجية أخرى بدون الغوص بمسألة إسقاط ولاية العهد عن إبن سلمان الذي قدّم الكثير مبدئياً لواشنطن والقادر على تقديم المزيد لاحقاً. وبالتالي فإن تخليصه من الأزمة تدريجياً يبدأ مع الضغط على تركيا التي خففت من منسوب التصعيد، خصوصاً أن الرئيس التركي لم يقدم معلومات مبهرة عن عملية الاغتيال او قتل الخاشقجي ولم يقدم ايضاً أي معلومة حول رد فعل تركي مباشر. فانتظار التحقيقات يعني انتظار «التفاوض» على شيء ما. وهكذا بدأت القضية بالخفوت تدريجياً بدون أن يعني ذلك إقفال الملف بل السكوت على مضض حتى تتحقق المطالب التركية، خصوصاً بعد الضغط الأميركي الكبير والحصار المالي وتدهور الليرة التركية.

زيارة نتنياهو الى سلطنة عُمان أزاحت المشهد بالكامل إليها ونثرت الغبار وحولت الأنظار عن قضية مقتل الخاشقجي بدون أن يشعر الشارع العربي بذلك. فالصدمة التي تكفلت بها سلطنة عُمان كانت كافية لهذا الشارع للاندهاش والسؤال عما يجري وكانت أكبر من صدمة تقطيع جثة الخاشقجي داخل حرم دبلوماسي. وبعد التوضيح العماني تبين أن الملف هو فلسطيني إسرائيلي أي بكلام آخر «صفقة القرن» من بوابة جديدة ومكان آخر ليس الرياض هذه المرّة.

سوابق التفاهمات التي انطلقت من سلطنة عمان كبيرة وكثيرة. فالسلطنة هي التي استقبلت مساعي الاتفاق النووي الأميركي الإيراني والدول الغربية. وهي اليوم تتكفل بادارة الملف التفاوضي بين السعوديين والحوثيين. والحديث عن سحب الملف من أيدي الرياض غير صحيح، لأن التنسيق العماني السعودي قديم وكل ما يجري منذ أكثر من خمس سنوات تفاوضياً بالملفات المذكورة كان تحت الغطاء الأميركي بالكامل، وبالتالي فان قراءة الاستراتيجية الأميركية حيال حلفائها الخليجيين صارت واضحة فتوزيع الأدوار واضح.

أولاً: بالنسبة لقطر التي لا تزال حليفة واشنطن فإنها في الوقت نفسه حليفة تركيا وصديقة للإيرانيين. وهذا وحده يتكفل بقطع العلاقة الأميركية معها، لكن هذا لم يحصل وبرزت هنا مسألة توزيع الأدوار على حلفاء واشنطن.

ثانياً: السعودية الضامن الأول للتمركز الأميركي في سوق النفط في العالم والمموّل الأساسي للعديد من المشاريع الأميركية والضامن لتمرير مشاريع سياسية في الشرق الاوسط بتامين غطاء إسلامي عريض. فلا يتخلى الأميركيون عنها ولا تتخلى عنهم مستغلة الدعم الأميركي بوجه إيران وسياساتها التي ترفع واشنطن من منسوب تهديدها «الوهمي» والمبالغ فيه بالكثير من الأحيان.

ثالثاً: سلطنة عمان التي تعتبر منصة التفاوض في آخر الطرق وإنذار إعلان التحولات الكبرى، وهي مسرح للتفاوض السياسي وإرسال الرسائل ونقطة وصل بين المتخاصمين. ومما لا شك فيه أن حياد عمان وقلة تدخلها بجدالات الساحة العربية جعلها تحافظ على موقعها التفاوضي الذي قدمته الى العالم. واليوم ينطلق منها أخطر الملفات وهو التطبيع وزيارة نتنياهو كشفت أن العلاقة قديمة وسرية والتنسيق بين مخابرات البلدين قديم أيضاً يصل لعقود.

نجح نتنياهو بإنقاذ حليف الحليف ونثر الغبار على قضية الخاشقجي بزيارة ألهبت الشارع العربي بعد التركيز على قضية تصدّرت اهتمامات الصحافة العالمية وكشفت عن وحشية غير مسبوقة. فكانت المفاجأة التي خرجت من قصر السلطان قابوس. فهل تكون فرصة جديدة تعوّم إبن سلمان؟ ام ان الرياح لن تجري كما يشتهي الأمير الشاب هذه المرة والضغوط أكبر بكثير؟

وقالت حركة فتح في بيان وصل لوكالة «سبوتنيك» نسخة منه:

«إن زيارة رئيس وزراء الاحتلال الإسرائيلي نتنياهو لسلطنة عُمان هو نسف لمبادرة السلام العربية القائمة على أساس الأرض مقابل السلام الشامل ومن ثم إقامة العلاقات بين الدول العربية وإسرائيل».


Khan Al-Ahmar Exposes the Misplaced Priorities of the PA and the International Community

Residents of Khan al-Ahmar block Israeli bulldozers to stop the demolition of their village. (Photo: Oren Ziv, Activestills.org)

October 20, 2018

By Ramona Wadi

The Palestinian Authority and the international community made a PR spectacle out of Khan Al-Ahmar and its impending demolition. Suffice to say that when facing human rights violations which are listed as war crimes, protocol is given precedence and the media follows suit. Two recent statements testify to this collective experimentation upon the Palestinian people.

The International Criminal Court (ICC) prosecutor warned that Khan Al-Ahmar’s demolition would constitute a war crime under the Rome Statute. Fatou Bensouda will, she added, “continue to keep a close eye on the developments on the ground.” It is worth noting that the situation in Palestine has been under preliminary investigation at the ICC since 2015 and the rhetoric remains stagnant in concordance with the bureaucratic procedures that allow war crimes to be committed rather than prevented.

Meanwhile, PA Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah paid a so-called “solidarity visit” to the threatened village in which verbal distinction between the people and the politicians was blurred.  “Our presence here today in Khan Al-Ahmar carries a message that says we are going to fight to defeat the deal of the century,” Hamdallah declared.

Whose presence was he referring to? The PA’s presence is a symbol devoid of any symbolism, diplomatic or otherwise; it’s an authority without authority. There will be no official PA presence in Khan Al-Ahmar when the Israeli bulldozers roll in and rhetoric about fighting the deal of the century will be spouted forth at another opportune time and place.

While the fate of the Bedouin village has indeed attracted international attention, there is a constant failure to note that all such forced displacements from 1948 onwards are part of Israel’s plan to colonize all of historic Palestine. The insistence on framing this eviction as detrimental only to the two-state compromise is not only inaccurate but also dangerous.

To what extent is Khan Al-Ahmar important to the international community? Is it because there is a commitment to uphold human rights — if so, why are they not being upheld? — or is there some value to be derived from maintaining the clearly obsolete two-state rhetoric? It is not difficult to guess that human rights have little to do with what is happening. This should prompt collective outrage at the international community’s own abuse and exploitation of Palestinian rights depending on whether they concur with the accepted paradigm.

The PA and the international community have tethered Palestinians to future hypothetical support. Furthermore, there is an adamant refusal to view Khan Al-Ahmar’s demolition as another macabre chapter in a long history of forced displacement of the Palestinian people. Historically, the villagers’ struggle is not unique, yet we are forced to view it as an isolated incident.

The difference lies beneath the perception. Palestinian communities targeted with forced displacement are aware of their solitary predicament in relation to the political unraveling of their cause. The PA’s alignment to Israel and the international community, on the other hand, leaves it with little choice other than to continue the charade of allegedly protecting Palestinian rights while failing, more than ever, to find a foothold for its survival beyond what is dictated to, and implemented by, itself as an institution created to defend Israel. Like the international community, PA officials have attempted to tie Khan Al-Ahmar to the two-state delusion in vain, while the community has persisted in its resistance within the framework of historic Palestine.

– Ramona Wadi is a staff writer for Middle East Monitor, where this article was originally published. She contributed this article to PalestineChronicle.com.

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Oslo Paved the Way to Deal of Century: “It Was A Mistake To Have Negotiated With Israel At All”

I Advised The Palestinian Negotiating Team. It Was A Mistake To Have Negotiated With Israel At All

Israel's Prime Minister Yitchak Rabin and PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat conferring after being awarded, together with Foreign Minister Shimon Peres, the 1994 Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo

Buoyed by the Oslo Accords, I moved to the West Bank as a legal adviser to the PLO team. I was wrong. 25 years since that iconic Arafat-Rabin handshake, it’s clear talks are futile – and Palestinians are no closer to freedom

By Diana Buttu

September 13, 2018 “Information Clearing House” –    Twenty-five years ago this month, on the White House lawn, the lives of a generation of Palestinians changed forever when the late Palestinian leader,Yasser Arafat, shook hands with Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin. That handshake marked the start of the Israeli-Palestinian negotiations, with promises of a new era of peace, freedom and prosperity.

25 years later, Palestinians are no closer to freedom, as Israel has further entrenched, rather than lessened, its now 51-year military occupation.

Like countless others at the time, I was optimistic that the negotiations would finally lead to Palestinian liberty as promised and based on this, I decided to move to the West Bank to work as a legal advisor to the Palestinian negotiating team. During that period, I met with countless diplomats, worked on scores of proposals and even began a house-to-house campaign to speak to Israelis about ending Israel’s military rule.

But while I and others worked to end occupation others worked to entrench it, including the Israeli government and its settlers: within the first seven years after the negotiations began, Israel used incentives to nearly double its settler population. Today, the settler population is more than three times the size it was in 1993, with nearly 700,000 settlers living in the West Bank.

Back in 1993, settlements were, for the most part, confined to hilltops, with Israeli settlers considered to be fringe. Far from being ostracized, today, some Israel’s largest cities are settlements, settlers have taken over homes in the heart of Palestinian towns and settlers command positions on the Israeli cabinet and on the Supreme Court. In short, settlers are the norm, not the exception. Today, Israeli settlers speak openly about annexing the West Bank or expelling Palestinians.

I am often asked why the negotiations process failed. It is easy to point to the rise of right-wing Israeli governments, poor leadership or weak or uninterested U.S. presidents. But the real reason for failure lie beyond these factors.

It is because the parties should not have started negotiating in the first place.

To demand that Palestinians – living under Israeli military rule – negotiate with their occupier and oppressor is akin to demanding that a hostage negotiate with their hostage taker. It is repugnant that the world demands that Palestinians negotiate their freedom, while Israel continues to steal Palestinian land. Instead, Israel should have faced sanctions for continuing to deny Palestinians their freedom while building illegal settlements.

Twenty-five years later, rather than living the joys of freedom, we mark each day, by thinking about how to maneuver the maze of Israel’s more than 500 checkpoints, put in place to accommodate Israeli settlements, just to be able to get to work or to school. A 25 year-old in the West Bank has likely never been able to visit the sea – a few miles away – while a 25 year-old in Gaza has never been able to leave the Gaza Strip, to visit friends and family in the West Bank and Jerusalem or even abroad.

It isn’t just movement of people that is affected. Palestinians have not been able to take advantage of technological progress for “security reasons” for example, as cancer treatment advances throughout the world, Palestinian hospitals are barred from acquiring radiation equipment. Even our postal system remains hostage to Israel’s whims.

But, rather than recognize the mistake of negotiations, the world continues to demand that we continue the facade even though negotiations irrevocably broke down more than a decade ago. The negotiations process has, in effect, served as cover for the world to do nothing – while giving Israel the cover to build and expand settlements.

If peace is to be achieved, it must entail costs – and this time, not shouldered by the Palestinians. Rather, Israel must receive the strong message, the first in its history, that settlements will no longer be tolerated but rather reversed, and that Palestinians must be free.

I am under no illusions that the Trump Administration will put into place such sanctions. While previous administrations tried to maintain a semblance that they were helping “both sides,” Trump has come decidedly in support of Israel’s right-wing pro-settler movement.

Whether by declaring Jerusalem as Israel’s capital or by attempting to extinguish the right of return, President Trump has shown that his “deal of the century” will undoubtedly accommodate Israeli settlements, take away Palestinian rights and reward Israeli wrongs. The closure of the PLO office in Washington D.C. this week is yet another check on Israel’s wish list.

For Israel and its supporters, the past 25 years have been a victory. With Trump at the helm, Israel’s settlers are at an all-time high, Palestinians are confined to bantustans and the U.S. is cracking down on Palestinians for demanding their freedom.

But this short-term fix has long-term implications. While Oslo changed the lives of a generation of Palestinians, this generation and the next have certainly learned its lessons: that negotiating is futile, and that our rights cannot be compromised. With this, it is only a matter of time before we begin struggling for equal rights in a single state, rather than press for statehood.

Diana Buttu is a Ramallah-based analyst and activist, and a former adviser to Mahmoud Abbas and the negotiating team of the Palestine Liberation Organisation. Twitter: @dianabuttu 

This article was originally published by Haaretz 

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US Declares War on PA, Closes of it’s Mission in Washington Calls ICC ‘Dangerous’,

US Calls International Criminal Court ‘Dangerous’

September 10, 2018

US President Donald Trump's national security adviser, John Bolton.

White House National Security Advisor John Bolton branded the International Criminal Court dangerous and unaccountable Monday, saying it constitutes an assault on US sovereignty.

“In theory, the ICC holds perpetrators of the most egregious atrocities accountable for their crimes, provides justice to the victims, and deters future abuses,” Bolton said.

“In practice, however, the court has been ineffective, unaccountable, and indeed, outright dangerous,” he said.

Source: AFP

US Confirms Closure of Palestinian Mission in Washington

US State Department

The US State Department confirmed Monday it was ordering the closure of the Washington mission of the Palestinian Liberation Organization, saying the Palestinians were not supporting ‘peace’ talks with ‘Israel’.

“We have permitted the PLO office to conduct operations that support the objective of achieving a lasting, comprehensive peace between Israelis and the Palestinians since the expiration of a previous waiver in November 2017,” said State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert.

“However, the PLO has not taken steps to advance the start of direct and meaningful negotiations with ‘Israel’.”

Source: AFP

PLO Describes US Move against Mission in Washington as Declaration of War


The Palestinian government condemned the US administration decision to close the headquarters of the Palestinian mission in Washington, describing the move as a declaration of war.

The spokesman of the Palestinian government Youssef Al-Mahmoud stressed that the US decision would not be able to impose on the Palestinians the formulas which eradicate their cause, calling on the whole world to confront those new imperial policies.

The United States has decided to close the Palestinian mission in Washington in the latest move against them by President Donald Trump, a Palestinian official had said Monday.

“We have been notified by a US official of their decision to close the Palestinian mission to the US,” Palestine Liberation Organization secretary-general Saeb Erekat said in a statement.

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