Example of islamophobia on British media, the obnoxious Kay Burley is just one of many

KAY BURLEY: Let me ask you straight off the bat: What level of harassment by the security services here in the United Kingdom justifies beheadings?

CERIE BULLIVANT: It’s not about justifying anything. Nobody here is apologizing or trying to make an excuse for what happened. We’re talking about the causes of it. For years now in the British discourse on this issue, we’ve failed to look at the causes of radicalization in an honest manner. The conveyor belt theory that’s been pushed time and time again has been proven, academically speaking, incorrect. It has no empirical evidence, yet every single time one of these horrific attacks happens, the people who perpetrate it quote foreign policy as the key pusher. They quote harassment in domestic policy as factors. And we keep ignoring that, and it’s not about justifying it, it’s about looking at the causes of it so that we can make everybody safer here and abroad.

KAY BURLEY: How do you feel about the beheading.

CERIE BULLIVANT: I, I’m—to be frank, I’m appalled that you would ask me that question. Muslims are human beings as well—

KAY BURLEY: Don’t be, don’t be appalled. Just answer the question if you would please, sir.

CERIE BULLIVANT: I, I am. Muslims are human beings as well. We are shocked when we see beheadings, we are shocked when we see barrel bombs. We shouldn’t have to justify our humanity by saying that I am shocked by something as brutal as this. I campaigned both publicly and behind the scenes for the release of Alan Henning, so your question is inherently Islamophopic and racist.

KAY BURLEY: Nonsense! Get over yourself. Who’s responsible for these beheadings?

CERIE BULLIVANT: The man who cut off their heads, and, if you take that back a step, the people who potentially helped in his radicalization—in this case, the security services.

KAY BURLEY: So you feel that the security services here in the United Kingdom are in some way or in some part responsible for the beheadings now being carried out by Jihadi John and others?

CERIE BULLIVANT: Everybody has agency for their own actions, and everybody, regardless of where they are and who they are, should be held accountable by the law, by due process, for any sort of torture that they do and any sort of killings without due process that they take. That is a blanket statement for all people in all times.

KAY BURLEY: So are you saying that the security services are in some way responsible for these beheadings, was my question.

CERIE BULLIVANT: What I said is that we have to look at all of the history of all these things as well. If you try and take these issues in a vacuum, then you’re not going to be able to analyze how they happened and try to get to some sort of understanding of how to stop them happening again.

KAY BURLEY: Okay, so do you feel that in some way the security services are in some way from the United Kingdom are responsible for the beheadings carried out by Jihadi John?

CERIE BULLIVANT: I feel—I’ll give you the answer that you’ve asked me three times, I feel that the security services have, time and again, harassed people and pushed them and that has played a part in the radicalization of this man. Now he is responsible for his own actions; they are partly responsible for putting him in that position.

KAY BURLEY: Do you condemn his actions?

CERIE BULLIVANT: I’ve already said— I’m sorry, I’m not answering that question. It’s a ridiculous question. I’ve already gone through this, and dealt with it.

Removes earpiece, and exits stage left. Cut to Kay Burley in studio, silent, smirking….. 

KAY BURLEY: [chirpily] Joining us now from Central London is Shiraz M—

For those who can stomach, the video can be seen here

Muhammad Ali Funniest Interview

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ANB interviews Rafik Nasrallah,

رفيق نصر الله _ إلى أين

Yahya Abu Zakariya interviews: Fitna Clerics, Islam, War on Syria

حوار اليوم | يحيى ابو زكريا | شيوخ الفتنة | الفضائية | June 21.2013

حوار يحيى أبو زكريا – الاخبارية السورية 13-06-2013


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Shaker Barjawi: Interview with Syrian Sama TV

Conducted on 21-1-2013

Older on 16-12-2012


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Cynthia McKinney Interviews Gilad Atzmon about Israel, Zionism, and Jewish Identity Politics

Gilad Atzmon

DateThursday, April 26, 2012 at 4:35PM

The wandering who- Gilad Atzmon

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Sayyed Nasrallah First Guest in Julian Assange’s “The World Tomorrow”

Local Editor

Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah assured Tuesday that “our priority remains liberating our land and protecting Lebanon from the Israeli danger… because we believe that Lebanon is still under threat,” and indicated that “our 30 year old experience proves that Hezbollah is a friend of Syria and not its agent”.

In an interview Sayyed Nasrallah gave to Wikileaks Co-founder Julian Assange, his eminence considered that “Bashar Al-Assad’s regime is a resisting regime, and it stood by the resistances in Lebanon and Palestine.”

الظواهري يؤكد دعمه لـSpeaking via TV link on Russia TV, Hezbollah Secretary General added that “what we call for in Syria is dialogue, and accepting as well as implementing the reforms,” indicating that “we all heard Ayman Al-Thawahri when he called for fighting in Syria. Then, there are Al-Qaeda fighters who arrived to Syria and others are still joining them from various countries to turn Syria into battlefields.”

Sayyed Nasrallah revealed that Hezbollah “contacted the (Syrian) opposition to encourage them and to facilitate the process of dialogue with the regime. But they rejected dialogue,” and considered that “civil war would be the only alternative to dialogue… this is what America and Israel want.”

“There are countries funding, arming, and encouraging fighting in Syria… Some are Arab and others are not,” he assured.

Sayyed Nasrallah further clarified that “Basically, we don’t interfere in other Arab countries’ affairs, and this has always been our policy,” adding: “since the events in Syria erupted, we had talks with the Syrian leadership and discussed with it the importance of making reforms”.
“I personally found that President Bashar Al-Assad was very much ready for implementing major and radical reforms,” he added.
On the Palestinian issue, His eminence emphasized that “the Palestinian land is the property of the Palestinian people,” stating that “the passage of time does not turn the right into wrong… if the house was your property, and I occupied it by force, this doesn’t make it my property even after 50 or 100 years… anyway this is our idealogical and legal opinion.”

In addition, Sayyed Nasrallah denied that Hezbollah was related to international mafia groups and drug companies, because “this is in our religion, law, and morals a major prohibition that we fight and confront… they say a lot of things that are far from reality and are part of the media war against Hezbollah.”

Hezbollah secretary general added that “after 2000, when the resistance in Lebanon, which Hezbollah is a major part in, was able to liberate South Lebanon, this was like a miracle and was a shock to the Lebanese society.”

Regarding the Israeli bombardments on Lebanon, Sayyed Nasrallah said: “We have always said that if you didn’t bombard our towns, villages, and cities, we would have nothing to with your towns, villages, and cities.”

“Hezbollah referred to this strategy after years and years of violations against Lebanese citizens, and its only goal is to create a deterrence equation to prevent Israel from killing Lebanese civilians,” he assured.

His Eminence Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah was the first guest in wikileaks co-founder Julian Assange’s new program “The World Tomorrow” which is broadcast on Russia today.

The first episode of Assange’s program aired Tuesday 17 April at 3:30 pm Moscow Time, 11: 30 GMT.
The weekly program is consisted of 10 episodes in which Assange – who is currently under house arrest – will interview different political and social figures whose stances could change the future.

Source: Website Team
17-04-2012 – 16:37 Last updated 17-04-2012 – 17:15

Sayyed Nasrallah in a One-on-One Interview with Wikileak’s Assange: “Israel” an Illegal State

Hizbullah Secretary General His Eminence Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah made a satellite appearance on Tuesday in a one-on-one interview with Wikileaks founder Julian Assange.

The interview was part of the premiere of Assange’s program “The World Tomorrow”, which is broadcasted on Russia Today (RT), the Russian state satellite channel. Sayyed Nasrallah’s identity as the program’s premier guest was kept secret until broadcast.
During the brief interview, Sayyed Nasrallah tackled the most important issues on the local, regional, and global arenas.

We Contacted Syrian Opposition Parties Which Rejected Dialogue

On the Syrian level, Sayyed Nasrallah revealed that Hizbullah has contacted some opposition parties, in an attempt to lessen the tension sweeping across the country.
“We contacted some parties of the Syrian opposition to encourage and facilitate dialogue with the regime, yet these parties rejected dialogue [from its roots],” His Eminence stated.
“There is fighting in Syria – when one party retreats, the other will advance, it will go on as long as doors to dialogue are shut,” he added in his interview with Assange.

Stressing that Hizbullah supports dialogue, Nasrallah said that without it “civil war is the only alternative.” His Eminence said that “this is exactly what the US and “Israel” want… Arab states are ready for tens of years of dialogue with “Israel” but won’t have two months to try a political solution in Syria.”
Underscoring the resisting Syrian stance in the region, Sayyed Nasrallah noted, “Bashar al-Assad regime is an opposing and resisting regime, and it has stood by the resistance in Lebanon and Palestine.”

“What we are calling for in Syria is dialogue, and the acceptance and implementation of reforms,” the leader went on to say, further emphasizing that he “sensed great readiness on President Bashar al-Assad’s part to conduct radical and important reforms.”

“There is an opposition that is not ready for dialogue, and it is even not willing to accept reforms, yet all it seeks is to topple the regime,” Hizbulllah Secretary General indicated.

Moreover, His Eminence highlighted Hizbullah’s 30 year-old experience, which proves that it is a friend of Syria, and not an agent working for it. He iterated that “today, those who benefited from the Syrian presence in Lebanon are those who are opposing it.”
Regretting foreign interferences in Syria, Sayyed Nasrallah said that “there are countries that contribute in money and weaponry, and encourage struggle inside Syria; including Arab and non-Arab countries.”

Sole Solution is a One-State Palestine

On the Palestinian level, Hizbullah Secretary General reiterated, “The “Israeli” state is an illegal state, and was established on the basis of occupying other people’s lands.”
“The only sole solution is to establish one state in Palestine, in which all people; Muslims, Jews, and Christians live in peace,” he elaborated.

Hizbullah’s True Goal is to Liberate the Land

Also, His Eminence asserted, “Hizbullah is a basic resistance faction to liberate Lebanon.”
Referring to the unjust US policies against the resistance, Sayyed Nasrallah pointed out, “If there were a just prosecution at the least, the defendant should be given space to defend himself. We are accused by the US administration, without the right to defend ourselves.”

“Liberating the land is our true goal, and this is an indisputable goal among the Lebanese. We entered the Lebanese government in 2005 for the first time, and our goal was not to take part in power, but to protect the resistance […] so that this government would not make any step against it. We avoid all disputes to serve this goal,” Sayyed Nasrallah emphasized.

“Until this moment, we are avoiding entering any conflicts with anyone, and our priority remains to liberate our land and protect Lebanon from the “Israeli” threat, because we believe that Lebanon is still in the circle of threat.”

Furthermore, His Eminence affirmed, “The matter of resisting the US or other dominating [powers], or resisting the occupation or any aggression against our people and nation, meets with the morals, human values and the law of the heavens and religions, which did not present anything that contradicts with the mind.”

Source: RT and Agencies, Translated by moqawama.org

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Silvia Cattori: The new inquisitors and their slanderous campaigns

Tuesday, April 10, 2012 at 8:03AM AuthorGilad Atzmon

La Parabole d'Esther : Anatomie du Peuple Élu

An Interview with Gilad Atzmon

La Parabole d’Esther : Anatomie du Peuple Élu to buy on Amazon.fr click here

 Following the publication of the French edition of the “The Wandering Who ?” we asked jazz star Gilad Atzmon to respond to charges made against him by those who relentlessly try to stop him from speaking and disseminating his ideas. In his book, Gilad is critical of Jewish identity politics. He is also highly critical of Jewish political activity within the Left in general and the Palestinian solidarity movement in particular. Gilad’s arguments are impeccable – they appear faulty only to those who, lacking conscience incline to making slanderous accusations.

Silvia Cattori: Your book has just been published in French (1). Without any promotion it is selling like hotcakes; in spite of the fact that six months before the French publication (2), members of U.J.F.P. (French Jewish Union for Peace) and I.J.A.N. (International Jewish Antizionist Network) launched a campaign to demonise you within the left and the Palestinian solidarity movement,. Did all these attacks come as a surprise to you?

Gilad Atzmon: As you probably know I have been subject to these vile Jewish anti-Zionist campaigns for years. It is clear beyond doubt that I have managed to rock the boat. As it happens, I oppose any form of Jewish identity politics for being exclusive and racially oriented. Sadly enough, like Zionists, many of the Jewish anti Zionist political cells are openly engaged in similar tribal, racially-driven and exclusivist politics.

But there is also an ideological issue here. I openly contend that their entire terminology is misleading. Zionism is not colonialism, Israel is not Apartheid and the Israelis are not Zionists.
Zionism is not colonialism because the Jewish ‘Settler State’ lacks a Jewish ‘Mother State’. Israel is not Apartheid because the Jewish (settler) State doesn’t want to exploit the Palestinians but to get rid of them. Israel is actually driven by Lebensraum (Living Space) philosophy. In other words, the Jewish State adopted Nazi racist, expansionist ideology. But the Jews in our movement do not like the comparison with Nazi Germany.

Also, Israel is not exactly Zionism and Israelis are not necessarily Zionists. Israel is the product of the Zionist ideology and the Israeli is basically a post-revolutionary product. Hence, the Zionist/anti-Zionist debate has very little significance in Israel or on Israeli politics.

In short, our entire terminology is misleading if not deceitful. I guess that since I expose all of this it is only natural that some people would wish to kill the messenger.

Silvia Cattori: Many people accept that you are one of the most honest and sincere thinkers within the movement. Many respect you a lot, because you have the courage to speak your mind. And the fact members of UJFP in France, or IJAN in Switzerland, are able to mount pressure on those who publish your writing or invite you, does it not itself, merely affirm what you argue in your book?

Gilad Atzmon: These Jewish anti-Zionists cells are promoting a tribal and a marginal call; they are not very many but they are very noisy. There is a clear Judeo-centric interest in keeping Jewish dissident organisations alive because they manage to maintain Jewish hegemony within the Palestinian solidarity discourse and beyond. Tragically enough, as long as this is the case, there is no chance for this movement to become a mass movement. Their message is too esoteric. For instance, why should anyone join a Palestinian solidarity group if one of the main aims of the movement is ‘fighting anti-Semitism’? If people are really interested in solidarity discourse they must make sure that it becomes a universal movement driven by compassion and ethical concerns.

This may take you by surprise, I actually would like to see as many Jews as possible in this movement; but they should concern themselves with the real issues here i.e. the plight of the Palestinians and Jewish (political) power. I basically work on Jewish power and analyse Jewish identity and politics; this is my favorite subject. And it is quite astonishing that the first people who actually attack me and try to silence me are people who claim to be ‘Jewish Palestinian solidarity activists’. This fact alone gives the impression that they are not actually what they claim to be i.e. solidarity activists. They are just another form of the ADL (equivalent of the CRIF in France).

Now, I am happy to debate this issue. If they want to debate me, tfadal– come and confront me in London, NY or Paris…If I am wrong debate me, if I am incorrect please point out my mistakes. Did I get my facts wrong? Are my arguments flawed? Not really, no one has yet to point to a single mistake in my arguments or facts.

Instead they employ the old rabbinical tactics namely excommunication (herem). Why do they employ the Talmudic tactics? Probably because this is what they are: Talmudics. In spite of being the ‘people of the book’ they are engaged in an intensive horrific book burning. I believe that if they could nail me to the wood, they probably would.

Silvia Cattori: They claim (4) that your questioning of Judaism and Jewish anti-Zionism is fueled byracism” because it attributes “to a whole group of people negative criteria in order to discredit them”. Are they not honest?

Gilad Atzmon: For sure they aren’t. I do not deal with Judaism. I don’t criticise Judaism, though I allow myself to refer critically to some Judaic interpretations. Yet, I am indeed extremely critical of Jewish politics and Jewish anti-Zionism in particular.

But the first questions to raise here are why should anyone stop oneself from questioning Judaism or Jewish politics or Jewish anti-Zionism. Is Judaism beyond criticism? Is Jewish politics inherently innocent? Do Jewish anti-Zionists believe themselves to be perfect? It is clear that my detractors adhere to the most banal and disturbing view that Jews are, somehow, chosen, Judaism is unquestionable and Jewish politics must remained intact. I obviously do not accept this approach. Considering the negative impact of Jewish political lobbies and their push for another global war, criticising Jewish politics is the true meaning of peace loving.

I should also emphasize that concerns to do with ‘ethnicity’ or ‘race’ are foreign to my work. In my entire body of work, there is not a single reference to Jews as a ‘race’ or ‘ethnicity’. I am critical of Jewish ideology and Jewish culture. And I think that it is my right and my duty to criticise this culture and ideology; especially considering the fact IJAN, UJFP, ADL, The Zionist Federation or whatever, operate as Jews-only groups and their motivations are far from being universal or ethical.
Silvia Cattori: And what about the “classical anti Semitism”?

It depends how they define ‘classical anti-Semitism’. It is true that the nineteenth century brought about a school of thought highly critical of Jewish culture. We are familiar with the debate between Athens and Jerusalem. As far as I am concerned, this was, and still is, a very interesting and enlightening debate. If anything, this debate led generations of Jews towards reformation, humanism and tolerance.

However, we all agree that anti-Semitism became a very problematic, vile and murderous trend when it has adopted a biological determinist attitude. It basically became a Darwinist racist discourse. But shockingly enough, Jewish politics (left, right and centre) is soaked with such racist attitudes. Can you Silvia join one of those ‘progressive’ Jews-only groups? I don’t think so, and why not? Because you aren’t racially qualified.

Silvia Cattori: What about the systematic accusation of being a Holocaust denier?

Gilad Atzmon: Holocaust denial is obviously a Zionist notion. No one denies the Holocaust though some people debate some elements to do with its historicity. I myself do not engage in any historical debate for I am not a historian. However, I believe that history must be an open discourse. If anyone thinks that I am wrong here, he or she better produce a good argument. He or she will also have to explain what is wrong with Israeli Nakba law.

Silvia Cattori: When they claim that you “attack both anti-Zionist Jews and religious Jews in racist terms” do they lie?

Gilad Atzmon: For sure they lie. It is not true and a total misrepresentation of my writing and work. In my entire work you would not find any criticism of Judaism or Jews as people, race or ethnicity. I only refer to ideology. I am indeed very critical of all “Jews- only” political cells.

I examine some Jewish anti-Zionists and left Zionists or AZZ (Anti-Zionist Zionists) because they see their Jewishness as a primary political quality. Prominent Zionist Chaim Weizmann said that there are no French Jews or British Jews or American Jews. There are only Jews who live in France, Jews who live in America and Jews who live in Britain. This means that as far as Zionist ideology is concerned, Jewishness is a primary quality. Jewish anti-Zionists, or ‘Jews for peace’ clearly see their Jewishness as a primary quality. If it would not be a primary quality they would join the peace and solidarity movement as ordinary people.

Jewish ideologies are very different on many issues. But they all agree on a few fundamental issues: chosen-ness, exclusiveness and segregation. The one thing they all believe is that Jews are somehow special. Otherwise, If Jews are not special, why do they operate in “Jews only” cells?

Silvia Cattori: They accuse you of suggesting that “the Israeli colonialist oppression is not the product of Zionism but the outcome of Judaism”. What do you say to that?

Gilad Atzmon: Again, a total misrepresentation. To start with, I do not talk about Judaism. Instead I discuss Jewish ideology. I may ask what are the Judaic traces within a cotemporary Jewish ideology?. I would ask, for instance, how the Book of Deuteronomy filters into the Zionist thought. I would ask what is the meaning of The Book of Esther? But I also argue that it is not ‘Zionism’ that inflicts pain on the Palestinian people but the Jewish State; and it does it in the name of the Jewish people. If Israel defines itself as the Jewish State and its tanks are decorated with Jewish symbols, we must be able to ask who are the Jews? What is Judaism and what is Jewishness? In my work, I differentiate between Zionism and Israeli discourse. I argue that Israel it is not driven by Zionism; and Zionism is, in particular, a Jewish Diaspora discourse that become more and more irrelevant to the oppression of the Palestinian people.

Silvia Cattori: Recently, you have also been criticized in a letter apparently written by Ali Abunimah and signed by a number of Palestinian activists. This has provoked many comments and articles in your favor (4). It only affirms publicly your argument regarding the negative impact of tribal politics within our movement.

Gilad Atzmon: This is indeed very sad, especially considering Ali Abunimah and others on this list being amongst the proponents of the One Democratic State. One would expect the advocates of One Democratic State to grasp the true meaning of tolerance and pluralism

Silvia Cattori: Vos détracteurs au sein de l’UJFP et de l’l’IJAN ont sauté sur l’occasion. In Switzerland the Israelis; Gabriel Ash based in Geneva or Caroline Finkelstein for example, who are part of the “Comité Urgence Palestine” and IJAN in signeda statement against you showing which side they are on (5) and launched a campaign against you (6). In doing that, are they not working against one of the very rare brilliant ex- Israeli intellectuals “more qualified than they are and who is at least honest and not feeding on the miseries of others or monopolizing a righteous cause in order to keep a job or acquire a position or get a promotion, some one who could shed the light on the real cause of the Palestinian plight” (7)?

Gilad Atzmon: This is hardly surprising and it is totally consistent with everything I say in The Wandering Who. Some of the Jews within our movement are serving Jewish tribal interests. It is only natural that people who identify politically as Jews would also act out of Jewish self interest. Philip Wiess, American pro-Palestinian activist admitted to me in an interview that as a Jew he operates out of Jewish self interest.

Silvia Cattori: In the name of the fight against “anti-Semitism” they are denouncing your discourse, apparently trying to stop your activity and not let people read your book. One of the priorities of the Swiss BDS Movement now is to expose Gilad Atzmon anti-Semitism (8).

Gilad Atzmon: For more than a while, myself and others are very suspicious of the BDS. For some peculiar reason the BDS in the West is dominated by Jewish activists. Though the BDS’ principle is valid and worth a fight, it has become clear to many of us that something went wrong along the way. Last month we have seen BDS call to stop Norman Finkelstein; this month we see BDS call to stop me. Great, isn’t it? The BDS is now used to stifle freedom within the solidarity discourse.

Interestingly enough, already in 2006 I predicted that any attempt to interfere with freedom of speech may turn the BDS into a banal witch hunt facilitator. But recently I have seen some very worrying signs. We learned for instance that in spite of the global financial crisis that hit Britain very hard, British trade with Israel increased by no less than 34%. So on the one hand we have BDS activists engaged in a successful weekly vigil against an Israeli beauty product shop, they even manage to destroy a few concerts but at the same time Israel is shipping tons of goods into this country. What is going on here?

Silvia Cattori: Would it be correct to suggest that your deep desire is to alert the Goyim. To advise to them stop being driven by guilt, being humiliated and submissive?

Gilad Atzmon: In my world there is no division between Jews and Goyim. My big desire is to say what I want to say. I believe that my message is pretty crucial for people, who are interested in peace, be it Jews or Goyim. It is clear to me that with Israel and Jewish lobbies pushing for more and more wars, Israel and its lobbies set themselves up as the biggest threat to world peace. It is also clear to me that Jewish communities fail to restrain Israel and its lobbies. And the message for all of us is clear. It is down to us to save our planet. This planet is our home and we are sitting on a ticking bomb. We’d better hurry up, we’d better speak out before it is too late.

(1) « La Parabole d’Esther. Anatomie du Peuple Élu. – Réflexions sur la politique identitaire juive », Editions Demi Lune

2) Voir : « L’UJFP et l’IJAN écrivent à Info-Palestine suite à la publication d’une interview de Gilad Atzmon ».http://paris.indymedia.org/spip.php ?article8850
ainsi qu’une deuxième lettre de Pierre Stambul au nom du bureau national de l’UJPF :http://la-feuille-de-chou.fr/archives/27698
– Voir : « Gilad Atzmon répond à ses détracteurs », 25 octobre 2011.
http://www.info-palestine.net/article.php3 ?id_article=11349)

(3) Voir sous note (2) la lettre de l’IJAN et de l’UJFP
(4) Voir :

– « L’appel d’Ali Abunimah a profondément choqué », par Roger Tucker, 24 mars 2012.
À la fin de l’article de Roger Tucker on trouvera également les liens des articles de nombreux auteurs ayant pris la défense de Gilad Atzmon contre les attaques dont il est l’objet.

(5) http://www.ujfp.org/spip.php?article2235&lang=fr
(6) Caroline Finkelstein, membre de l’IJAN, dissuade le Comité urgence palestine (CUP-Vaud) le 9 février 2012 de donner la parole à Atzmon en ces termes : « Nous ne sommes pas officiellement membre du CUP-Lausanne mais nous aimons bien collaborer avec vous tous. Nous aimerions attirer votre attention sur la polémique qui existe en ce qui concerne Gilad Atzmon. Nous nous permettons de vous conseiller de bien vous renseigner sur le personnage avant de le faire venir. IJAN (International Jewish Anti-zionist Network – Réseau international juif antisioniste, dont nous sommes membres) et UJFP (Union Juive Française pour la Paix) rejettent les arguments de Gilad Atzmon. Nous personnellement n’assisterions à aucune conférence avec Atzmon ».

(7) Voir :
– « La campagne lancée par Ali Abunimah contre Gilad Atzmon est injustifiable et inacceptable », par Daniel Mabsout, 26 mars 2012.

(8) Lors d’une récente réunion du BDS – Suisse, la lutte contre le prétendu « antisémitisme de Gilad Atzmon » a été mentionnée en ces termes comme un des trois principes déterminant l’action au sein du mouvement. « Nous devons veiller à ne pas nous associer avec des personnes qui ont un discours flou par rapport à l’antisémitisme. En l’occurrence Gilad Atzmon ». Il a été décidé d’organiser une formation sur cette question. Ceci qui revient à éloigner les militants de l’objectif initial du BDS: au lieu de parler de l’idéologie sioniste, de sa politique en Israël et de ses complicités en Europe et aux États-Unis, ils se préoccupent de censurer des militants à l’intérieur du mouvement. Militants laissés dans l’ignorance des vrais enjeux car formés et formatés surtout par des conférenciers israéliens (Michel

Warschawsky ou maintenant Shir Haver (qui demande 200.- euros par conférence et la prise en charge de tous les frais).
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Interview with Gilad Atzmon by Prof. Norton Mezvinsky-Washington Report

Introduction by Gilad Atzmon: One could imagine how delighted I was to be interviewed (and grilled) by Prof. Norton Mezvinsky whom I admire for years. Prof. Mezvinsky is an observant Jew, he is also one of the world leading scholars on Jewish history, Zionism and Jewish identity politics. He has written numerous books, articles and book reviews that deal with various aspects of the Arab-Israeli conflict and Zionism. He is the co-author of Jewish Fundamentalism in Israel, which he wrote with Israel Shahak. Beside the intellectual engagement, I must also mention that Norton is an incredible spirit and one of the most charming people I have ever come across.

It goes without saying that I was thrilled to meet and to be questioned by the legendary Helen Thomas. I will use this opportunity to thank the outstanding Washington Report and the other incredible organisations and individuals who orgenised, endorsed and supported my last USA truth seeking mission into a great success.


Engaging Gilad Atzmon

Israeli-born Gilad Atzmon, one of Europe’s finest jazz musicians, was in Washington, DC for the first time at the end of a multi-city North American grassroots tour to discuss his recently published and highly controversial book, The Wandering Who? A Study of Jewish Identity Politics.
On March 14, Atzmon was interviewed by Prof. Norton Mezvinsky, Connecticut State University Professor of History Emeritus, at Washington’s Mount Vernon Place United Methodist Church. The previous day a letter signed by 23 Palestinian activists called for “the disavowal of the racism and anti-Semitism of Gilad Atzmon.”
Watch the video of the Atzmon addressing the charges frequently levied against him. Decide for yourself—should Atzmon continue his frank discussion of Jewish identity or should his voice be silenced?
Bristol AdvertThe Washington Report believes that no writer or thinker should be shunned in the United States—or anywhere—and we stand by our decision to host his DC events.

Gilad Atzmon’s New Book: The Wandering Who? A Study Of Jewish Identity Politics Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk.

 The wandering who- Gilad Atzmon
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Stephen Lendman talks with Gilad Atzmon about The Wandering Who?

DateSaturday, August 27, 2011 at 9:13AM AuthorGilad Atzmon

Progressive Radio News Hour Guests for August 25, 27 and 28, 2011


The Progressive Radio News Hour Guests for August 25, 27 and 28, 2011

Thursday, August 25 at 10AM US Central time: Gilad Atzmon
Atzmon is an Israeli-born musician/writer/activist critic of Israeli repression against Palestinians and its Arab citizens.

He’s also the author of “The Wandering Who?” His new book and Middle East/North African issues will be discussed.

Middle East issues will be discussed.
http://player.soundcloud.com/player.swf?url=http%3A%2F%2Fapi.soundcloud.com%2Ftracks%2F21987215 Sephen Lendman talks with Gilad Atzmon about The Wandering Who? by Gilad Atzmon
You can now pre-order the book on Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

I Have Zero Respect For The Mainstream Media: Gilad Atzmon Interview By Silvia Cattori

Saturday, June 4, 2011 at 7:08AM AuthorGilad Atzmon
Jazz saxophonist Gilad Atzmon has a blog where he denounces the policy of his country of origin, Israel. He is not afraid to bluntly express what he regards to be the truth. He is impervious to the concept of self-censorship. He speaks here about how little respect he has for the Western press. (*)

Silvia Cattori: Your political analysis, translated into dozens of languages [1], reaches a wide readership on the web. For whom exactly do you write?

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Gilad Atzmon: I write mainly for myself. I try to understand the world around me. A few years ago, I began to understand that a lot of people out there were also interested in the thoughts I indulge myself with, so I started to let other people have access into my boiling destructive mind.

Silvia Cattori: At a time when the press has reached its lowest point ever, are you among those who still continue to read newspapers?

Gilad Atzmon: No. For many years I have not bought newspapers. I am interested in the Middle East, and the mainstream media has very little to offer on that front. Probably the only expert within the British or even English-speaking media press is Robert Fisk. If I want to know what is happening in the Middle East I go to “Counterpunch”, “Information Clearing House”, “Veterans Today”, “Rense.com”, “Uprooted Palestinian”, “PalestineTelegraph”, “Palestine Chronicle”, “Dissident Voice”, “Uruknet”, and other reliable websites.

Our independent websites and blogs are far more informative than the mainstream media. Collectively, we provide a source of information that people can trust, and we are rapidly becoming the main source of information. I see how many people are coming to visit my site. If there is a crisis in Gaza for instance, the public want to see what Gordon Duff, Ramzy Baroud, Alan Hart, Israel Shamir, Alex Cockburn, and Ali Abunimah have to say about it. I have zero respect for the mainstream media. And if the mainstream media wishes to survive, it had better move on quickly, otherwise it is finished.

Silvia Cattori: Doesn’t the disinformation regarding Israel relate to the fact that honest journalists are themselves subject to Israeli propaganda?

Gilad Atzmon: As for Great Britain, it is far from being a secret that the biggest supporters of Blair’s criminal war against Iraq were journalists like David Aaronovitch and Nick Cohen, both who also write for the notorious Zionist Jewish Chronicle. I guess that these people are now exposed. As I mention often enough, “The Tide Has Changed.”

Silvia Cattori: We see the same mechanisms of censorship and information control at work in the new alternative media as well. Anyone whose views are likely to jostle the agenda of the online donors is censored. Don’t you think that’s sad?

Gilad Atzmon: Yes it is irritating, but to a degree, that is what is to be expected — you have to remember that every form of discourse is, in practice, another set of boundaries. That may explain why the artist is far more effective than the Marxist agitator, or even the academic: while the Marxist or the academic are there to maintain the boundaries, the artist is there to present an alternative reality. My choice is obviously clear — I am an artist.

Silvia Cattori: In your opinion, is the Israeli press freer than our own press?

Gilad Atzmon: Interestingly, the Israeli press is not free; but it is still more open than the Western media. In spite of the censorship, it is still open to discussions about ‘Jewish questions,’ and it is noticeably more critical of the Israeli State than the Guardian, the New York Times or even the Socialist Worker. By the way, even the UK Zionist newspaper, The Jewish Chronicle (JC) is more open than the Guardian: it was in the JC that I read a report about David Miliband’s relentless attempts to amend the British universal Jurisdiction laws.

Silvia Cattori: Despite the harshness of your criticism against Israel, the Israeli daily Haaretz [2] or the Arte channel have not censored you. Is it the accomplished jazz musician or the Israeli opponent that appeals to the interest of the Media? Is it a sign that something has changed?

Gilad Atzmon: Both I guess. I may be interesting for them in different ways — perhaps I offer them an opportunity to express what they think, exactly where they lack the courage to say it themselves.
However, the title of my new album is “The Tide Has Changed” [3]. And something is clearly changing, and it is big. Also, I can see that more and more people are beginning to admit that my writings are becoming influential. When I tour around the world I give very many interviews and talks.

It is also true to say that I have a few enemies, who consistently try to silence me. They struggle to cancel my talks and concerts.

But they have failed, again and again. I am still kicking, and I do not have any plan to stop.
*) An excerpt of this interview appeared in the Swiss magazine EDITO
[1] http://www.gilad.co.uk/
[2] http://www.haaretz.com/weekend/magazine/haunted-by-ghosts-1.319263
[3] The album “The tide as changed“, Gilad Atzmon & The Orient House Ensemble, 2011 (World Village)

Middle East developments: An interview with Stephen Lendman

var addthis_product = ‘wpp-257’;var addthis_config = {“data_track_clickback”:true};Interview by Kourosh Ziabari / STAFF WRITER

Stephen Lendman is a prolific political commentator, author and radio host. He is a research associate with the Canada-based Center for Research on Globalization. His articles have been widely published on a variety of news websites and magazines across the world and translated in several languages.
He is based in Chicago and has written extensively on war and peace, social justice in America and many other national and international issues. Stephen Lendman is a recipient of a 2008 Project Censored Award, University of California at Sonoma.
Lendman’s articles have appeared on Leworockwell.com, Dissident Voice, Counter Punch, Counter Currents, Intifada Palestine, Palestine Telegraph, The Greanville Post, Palestine Chronicle, Baltimore Chronicle, Counter Currents, Information Clearing House and Veterans Today.
Stephen joined me in an interview to discuss the latest developments in the Middle East, the destiny of Egyptian Revolution, the situation in Tunisia and the prospect of civil war in Libya.
What follows is the complete text of my interview with Stephen Lendman, political analyst and author from Chicago.

Kourosh Ziabari: The Egyptian revolution of 2011 began and progressed quite unexpectedly and unpredictably. After decades of U.S.-backed dictatorship under Hosni Mubarak, the people of Egypt took to the streets of Cairo and Alexandria all of a sudden and called for the dismissal of the dictator and the installation of a democratically-elected president. What were the motives behind this revolution?

Stephen Lendman: First of all, Egypt like elsewhere in the region (except for Libya and Syria) experienced a popular uprising against Mubarak and his regime. Mubarak’s out. The regime remains in place, headed by a repressive military junta as brutal as before under him.
I’ll have a new article ahead on their brutal killings, detentions and torture. I made the comment that everything in Egypt changed but stayed the same. Egyptians know it and are reacting. Whether they’ll do it with the same enthusiasm as earlier remains to be seen. If so, the military will confront them violently.
Popular motivations are for populist democratic change, decent jobs, a living wage and essential benefits, human and civil rights, and ending high-level corruption. None of that’s been achieved anywhere in the region from popular uprisings.

KZ: After Tunisia and Egypt in which the revolutionary forces and people on the ground succeeded in ousting the U.S.-backed puppets, several other Arab nations joined them and staged massive street demonstrations to call for civil liberties, improved living conditions, freedom and democratic governments. Can we interpret this collective uprising a result of the explosion of strong pan-Arabist sentiments?

SL: I think the Tunisian uprising inspired others, and have had them from Morocco to Syria to Oman. Syria is different though, externally incited and armed like in Libya. New reports are that Saudi Arabia and Lebanon’s Saad Hariri are involved. But no question, Washington is the driving force.
I think, but can’t prove, that the Obama administration targets only the regime, not Assad – Western educated with a Western wife. Much different than his father, nominally running the regime Washington wants replaced. So does Israel but in a way that won’t further destabilize the region. A tall order I believe, as the whole region now is in an uproar with anger directed both at repressive regimes and Western governments that back them.

KZ: Many Iranians believe that the uprisings of Tunisia and Egypt have been inspired by Iran’s Islamic Revolution of 1979. They compare the overthrowing of U.S.-backed Mubarak and Ben Ali to the deposition of Mohammad Reza Shah which was unconditionally supported by the United States and its European allies. Do you find such a relationship between these revolutions which took place during an interval of 32 years?

SL: Very possibly Iran’s 1979 revolution inspired the current uprisings although most young people don’t remember it firsthand. Nonetheless, the lesson is that sustained resistance works. Again I don’t know, but today’s regional spark seems to have legs. Nothing like it before that I recall, so I’m hopeful something good may come from this, including in Palestine. But I say all the time, it won’t be easily or quickly.

KZ: The Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi is said to have deposited $90 billion in Italian and other European banks. Since 1990s, the European states moved towards normalizing their ties with the dictator and supported him both politically and financially. Now, these Western states with which the Libyan dictator was once a close friend are calling for a unified international action against him. The old friend has now become a bitter enemy. Isn’t this an exercise of double standards by the Western governments?

SL: What’s true of America holds for other Western powers. They have interests, not allies. Gaddafi was never really accepted. The plan to oust him was hatched years ago, awaiting the right time to do it.
Lots of reasons why, including his support for pan-Africanism, having his own state owned central bank, wanting a regional gold-backed dinar, possibly nationalizing Libyan oil, not being part of AFRICOM, plus Washington wanting to balkanize the country, control its resources, exploit its people, privatize all state enterprises, and establish new US bases. It’s the same imperial scheme America plans globally.

KZ: The media have reported that the mercenaries of Colonel Gaddafi have so far killed more than 6,000 protesters in Tripoli and other cities of Libya. What’s your prediction for the political future of Libya? Gaddafi has vowed to remain in power and “die as a martyr.” Will the Libyan revolution bear fruits?

SL: I don’t believe Gaddafi killed 6,000 in Tripoli. I do know though that NATO bombed a Brega peace conference attended by 150 leading Imams, killing 10, injuring 40 badly enough to require hospitalization. The official lie is they bombed a command and control center. It was a non-military conference center.
Why? Washington wants war, not peace, and won’t end it until Gaddafi is ousted, ideally killed. As a result, hostilities could continue for sometime, taking a horrendous human toll. In the end, his survival chances are very slim.

KZ: Prof. Rashid Khalidi believes that the recent uprisings in the Arab countries have transformed and changed the mainstream media’s portrayal of the Muslim world. The people that were once introduced as fanatic terrorists and extremists are now being called freemen who sacrifice their lives for the sake of achieving freedom and liberty. Do agree with this viewpoint? Has the communal uprising of the Arab world changed the public’s viewpoint regarding the Arabs and Muslims?

SL: I disagree with Khalidi. My Sunday article is on one my of my common themes – targeting Muslim Americans bogusly for connections to terrorism. We get regular inflammatory headlines, and news anchors like on Fox News saying all Muslims aren’t terrorists, but all terrorists are Muslims. The same theme repeats, vilifying Muslims for their faith and ethnicity. Since 9/11, fear of Islam and terrorism has been engrained in the popular mindset.

KZ: What do you think about American double standards with regards to human rights issue? Bahraini government is now violating the rights of its citizens to the gravest extent, but the U.S. has kept silent. Why?

SL: The double standard is glaring. I ripped apart Obama’s Middle East speech, outrageous hypocrisy. We talk peace but wage war. At the same time, we support the most brutal Middle East regimes, especially in Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and Yemen, but also in Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Egypt, Jordan, the other GCC states, etc.

KZ: What will be the impacts of Arab world’s uprising on the power equations in the Middle East? Will the U.S., Israel and their European cronies suffer damages as a result of the Middle East revolution? Who is the real winner of this power game?

SL: In the short run I see little or no change. In the long run, I’m hopeful. Israel and America especially keep shooting themselves in the foot. I think both countries are headed for a bad ending. In America’s case, the disintegration of its empire, also affecting Israel [is predicted]. American’s support for Israel is also self-destructive

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Short URL: http://www.veteranstoday.com/?p=106419

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

Bassem Tamimi: "Our destiny is to resist"

2 May 2011
Bassem Tamimi at his court hearing in Ofer prison, 12 April 2011. (Oren Ziv/ActiveStills)

When I met Bassem Tamimi at his home in the occupied West Bank village of Nabi Saleh this January, his eyes were bloodshot and sunken, signs of the innumerable sleepless nights he had spent waiting for Israeli soldiers to take him to prison. As soon as two children were seized from the village in the middle of the night and subjected to harsh interrogations that yielded an unbelievable array of “confessions,” the 44-year-old Tamimi’s arrest became inevitable. On 25 March, the army finally came, dragging him away to Ofer military prison, a Guantanamo-like West Bank facility where he had previously been held for a 12-month term for the vaguely defined crime of “incitement.” His trial before a military court that convicts more than 99 percent of Palestinians brought before it is scheduled to begin on 8 May.

Like nearly all of his neighbors, Tamimi has spent extended time in Israeli detention facilities and endured brutal treatment there. In 1993, he was arrested on suspicion of having murdered an Israeli settler in Beit El. Tamimi was severely tortured for weeks by the Israeli Shin Bet in order to extract a confession from him. Tamimi said that during the torture he was dropped from a high ceiling onto a concrete floor and woke up a week later in an Israeli hospital. In the end, he was cleared of all charges.

With his wife, Nariman, and his brother, Naji, Tamimi has been at the center of Nabi Saleh’s popular resistance against the occupation since its inception in 2009. The village’s unarmed struggle has brought hundreds of Israelis and international activists to participate each Friday in boisterous and theatrical demonstrations that invariably encounter harsh Israeli violence, including the use of live ammunition against children. While other villages involved in the popular struggle have seen their ranks winnowed out by a harsh regime of repression and imprisonment, Nabi Saleh’s protests continue unabated, irking the army and frustrating the settlers of Halamish, who intend to expand their illegal colony further onto Nabi Saleh’s land.
Tamimi and I spoke amid the din of a stream of visitors parading in and out of his living room, from international activists living in the village to local children to a group of adolescent boys from the nearby town of Qurawa, who told me they came to spend time with Tamimi and his family “because this is what the Palestinian struggle is about.” Tamimi is a high school teacher in Ramallah and his professorial nature is immediately apparent. As soon as I arrived at his front door for what I thought would be a casual visit, he sat me down for an hour-long lesson on the history, attitudes and strategy that inform the brand of popular struggle he and his neighbors had devised during weekly meetings at the village cultural center.
Our discussion stretched from the origins of Nabi Saleh’s resistance in 1967 to the Oslo Accords, when the village was sectioned into two administrative areas (Areas B and C), leaving all residents of the Israeli-controlled portion (Area C) vulnerable to home demolition and arbitrary arrests. Tamimi insisted to me that Nabi Saleh’s residents are not only campaigning to halt the expropriation of their land, they seek to spread the unarmed revolt across all of occupied Palestine. “The reason the army wants to break our model [of resistance] is because we are offering the basis for the third intifada,” Tamimi said.

Max Blumenthal: There are rumors that the Israeli civilian administration will demolish your home if you continue the popular resistance. Is there any truth to that and on what grounds can they carry out the demolition?
Bassem Tamimi: My house was built in 1964 when this area was controlled by Jordan. Back then it was easy for me to get a permit to renovate. Now when I want to add a second level to the house for my family of course I can’t get a permit from the Israelis so I am forbidden to build. In this way they are forcing the next generation of our village to move to Area B in the center of the village. Their goal is to carry out a form of indirect transfer that will make Nabi Saleh into a refugee camp in the near future. The village will then be nothing more than a hotel that provides workers for the Palestinian Authority, maybe with no school and definitely with no relation to our land, since we will be forced off of all the parts we can farm. In the future, Area C will be empty and all of us who live there will have to move to places like Birzeit which are located in Area A.
I wanted to build a wall around my garden and I didn’t do it. The reason I didn’t was that it would have only been demolished since I am not able to get a permit. I didn’t want to risk them demolishing my house. All the new houses built after Oslo were in Area B but we have not been able to build a single new house in Area C.
MB: How has the expansion of the nearby illegal Jewish settlement Halamish influenced the popular resistance in Nabi Saleh?
BT: In 1976, the settlers came to an old British military camp on our land. The next year they built a settlement called Halamish. I asked one of them what right he had to the land. He told me his right was in the Bible. The Labor government blocked construction of the settlement, but a year later when Menachem Begin and Likud were elected, they allowed it to go ahead. During the second intifada, the army made the whole area around our village a closed military zone. This allowed Halamish to expand even more onto our land. Then in 2008 the army demolished the second fence around our village, another step for more expansion. So we see the steps they are taking to push us out of Area C and off our land.
Our problem is not just with the settlement of Halamish. Our problem is the whole occupation. The settlement is merely a face of the occupation. In Bilin and Nilin they set specific goals like moving the separation fence to the green line [Israel’s internationally-recognized armistice line with the occupied West Bank]. That is a problem. Our only goal is to end the occupation. So if the American consul came to us and said, “I am Superwoman; I can immediately remove Halamish,” I would say, “Fine, but we want to end the whole occupation.”
MB: When did Nabi Saleh choose to wage an unarmed popular struggle and why?
BT: This village has a long history of resistance. It is part our culture. We have had 18 martyrs since 1967. Most of our youth are taken away to prison. I have been arrested ten times and placed under administrative detention.
We have experience in military resistance but we decided the best way to resist was nonviolent. We want to build a model that looks like the first intifada, an alternative to military resistance. Our village knows exactly what to do because we were involved in the intifada. And the reason the army wants to break our model is because we are offering the basis for the third intifada.
For my whole life most of the Israelis I met were soldiers and interrogators. But when we started the popular resistance in 2009 I began to see that there were some Israelis who had removed the occupation from their minds. Like Jonathan [Pollack], who was the main person to bring Israelis and internationals here in the beginning. So we became friends.
The occupation is continuous in Israeli society and this is why they lose — because they try to force us to accept them as an occupier, and that will never happen. We don’t have any problem with Jewish people. Our problem is with Zionism. We don’t hate them on the other side; we simply demand that they end the occupation of their minds. The separation between us is between different ways of thinking, not between land. If we change our ways of thought and remove the mentality of occupation from our minds — not just from the land — we can live together and build a paradise.
MB: Your demonstrations have been criticized by outsiders because the throw stones at the soldiers. Meanwhile, the Israeli army claims stone-throwing is an armed attack or a form of violence so the popular resistance is not really nonviolent. What do you make of these claims?
BT: We are building the popular struggle from our culture and our history. Only after we build an authentic struggle do we begin to debate our tactics. And throwing stones is a part of our culture. Historically we threw stones when something frightened us like a snake or a bear. Now, when a soldier comes into our village and shoots tear gas we won’t just sit there like a victim. They are protected from live bullets so we’re clearly not trying to take a life. With stones we are simply saying, “We don’t accept you here as an occupier. We don’t welcome you as a conqueror.”
MB: What is your relationship with Fatah and the Palestinian Authority like?
BT: We had an intifada based on popular struggle but the Oslo accords crushed it. Now the people are tired after the second intifada was crushed. So Fatah talks and talks but they can’t manage to bring [the popular struggle] across the West Bank. Fayyad wants to come here and be seen and use our struggle as a theater to have his picture taken. We know that Fatah could bring thousands of people here but they don’t want to. They don’t order their members to join the struggle. We want to ask them to make popular struggle everywhere. We do all that we can but without them, we can only do so much.
MB: Do you see any role for the peace process in ending the occupation?
BT: In thirty years the Europeans and the United States paid 5 billion dollars for normalization projects but they give us no steps towards a solution. If they want to do something to stop the occupation they should stop these initiatives that put people up in five star hotels to do dialogue. It’s not common sense! And all these academics who come here to study us and then go and write about how throwing stones is violent — that means nothing to us! Popular resistance is a way of life that means being close to the ground. I’ve been in the dialogue workshops and they are a complete waste of money. Both sides are suffering under the occupation but in a different way. [Israeli soldier] Gilad Shalit was captured but who sent him to occupy and kill? The normalization initiatives never address questions like this.
MB: One of the key differences between the demonstrations in Nabi Saleh and in a place like Nilin is the role of women. Every time I come here on a Friday the women are at the front of the protest while in Nilin they are not always that visible. Is this deliberate?
BT: From the beginning of our struggle the Israelis targeted the women of our village. For example, my wife, Nariman, was arrested and jailed for ten days. The army targets the women here because they know our culture; they know that we see women as 50 percent of our struggle and no less. Women [raise] our children. Women can convince people more easily than men. When our men see the women being brave, they want to be more brave. Women are in the center of our struggle because we believe women are more important than men. It’s that simple.
MB: What do you think army’s long-term objective is?
BT: The army is determined to push us toward violent resistance. They realize that the popular resistance we are waging with Israelis and internationals from the outside, they can’t use their tanks and bombs. And this way of struggling gives us a good reputation. Suicide bombing was a big mistake because it allowed Israel to say we are terrorists and then to use that label to force us from our land. We know they want a land without people — they only want the land and the water — so our destiny is to resist. They give us no other choice.
Max Blumenthal is an award-winning journalist and bestselling author working in Israel-Palestine. His articles and video documentaries have appeared in The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Daily Beast, The Nation, The Huffington Post, Salon.com, Al-Jazeera English and many other publications. He is a writing fellow for the Nation Institute. His book, Republican Gomorrah: Inside The Movement That Shattered The Party, is a New York Times and Los Angeles Times bestseller.

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

Breathing a word of truth about 9/11 will kill your career: Kevin Barrett

– 19. Apr, 2011


Kevin Barrett might have gained a bit more credibility with the great unbelieving kafir American public if he had left out some of his religious” zeal for “jihad,” and not turned the work into some religious crusade, but his thrusts at the press, the public blindness and failure to “believe,” the way they treat hard truths, and the duplicity of the officialdom as well as the false and non-evidence involved in the story of 9-11, are all to the point, and effective thrusts to the heart of the matter.

Altogether, a thoroughly effective interview by Kourosh Ziabari with Kevin Barrett.

Interview by Kourosh Ziabari

Kevin Barrett is a renowned American journalist, writer and former university lecturer. He has taught English, French, Arabic, American Civilization, Humanities, African Literature, Folklore, and Islam at colleges and universities in the San Francisco Bay area, Paris, and Madison, Wisconsin. Being a Muslim convert, Dr. Barrett is a founding member of the Muslim-Jewish-Christian Alliance (MUJCA) and member of the Scientific Panel for the Investigation of 9/11 (SPINE).

According to Salem-News, In July 2004 he rashly rejected a plum post-doc at the University of California because it was funded by the 9/11-disinformation-sponsoring CIA-linked Ford Foundation. “In the summer of 2006, Republican state legislators and Fox newscasters demanded that Barrett be fired from his job teaching an introductory Islam class at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, but the University refused to buckle, and Barrett got high marks from his students.”
In fall 2006 Barrett began hosting an Internet talk show weekly on Republic Broadcasting Network titled “Truth Jihad Radio.” Twice a week he had another Internet talk show on the Genesis Communications Network called “The Dynamic Duo.”
Dr. Barrett is internationally renowned for his well-substantiated researches on the 9/11 which he describes as a false-flag operation and inside job which took place with the foreknowledge of the high-ranking personalities inside the U.S. executive structure.
He wrote three articles for the Madison’s Capital Times newspaper in which he tried to reveal the truth behind the 9/11 attacks; however, the newspaper was shortly closed after running his articles.
Kevin Barrett kindly accepted my interview request and joined me in an in-depth conversation, answering my questions regarding the 9/11 attacks and the influence of Israeli lobby over the U.S. policymakers. What follows is the complete text of my interview with Dr. Kevin Barrett, journalist, writer and university lecturer.

Kourosh Ziabari: You have selected the title “Truth Jihad” for your personal website. Although being functionally and semantically a sublime and precious concept in Islamic thought, Jihad has been constantly vilified and denigrated by the extremist neo-cons and Zionists who want to portray a distorted and black image of Islam. They claim that Jihad is tantamount to terrorism and Muslims who follow the principle of Jihad are terrorists as well; however, the reality is that Jihad is a mobilized, logically sustained and concerted confrontation with those who want to plunder your values and treasures and violate your rights. Although you’re a Muslim convert, you are a Western citizen; however, you have selected an Islamic name for your website. Would you please explain about this selection for me and my readers?

Kevin Barrett: Being a Western citizen and a convert does not make me any less of a Muslim. Islam, after all is a deen, a religion and a way of life, not a race or ethnicity.
In any case, jihad is a noble religious concept. As you know, the word means “effort” or “striving.” In one sense, jihad is the complement of “Islam” whose root meaning is “surrender” to God. So jihad means to exert effort in the cause of God.
One very intense form of effort, exertion or striving in the cause of God is armed struggle in defense of the community. Those who wage this form of jihad risk everything in an all-out struggle in service to the community and to God.
Today, Islam as a deen, and the world Muslim community, is under attack. 9/11 was a mass human sacrifice designed to ritually inaugurate a New World Order of global government by satanists and atheists. With Christianity and the other big religions co-opted or neutered, only Islam stands between the perpetrators of 9/11 and their goal of a New World Order. Under these circumstances, is incumbent upon Muslims to wage effective jihad in self-defense and in defense of our religion, and in defense of all of our fellow human beings and our planet, fi sabili llah [in the way of God].
After thinking things through, I have concluded that the most effective way that I can wage jihad is by wielding the weapon of truth — especially the truth about 9/11. The 9/11 perpetrators seem to have made several big mistakes and left unmistakable evidence incriminating themselves. Their single biggest mistake, apparently, was failing to demolish World Trade Center Building 7 on the morning of 9/11; presumably due to some logistical problem, they had to wait to demolish it until late that afternoon. Anyone who spends a few minutes informing themselves about WTC-7 must either choose intellectual dishonesty, or admit that 9/11 was an inside job. See:


When Americans and Westerners face the fact that 9/11 was an inside job, their attitude toward Islam, and the New World Order’s war on Islam, changes radically. They realize that they, and Muslims, share a common enemy. They become deserters from the war on Islam, and join the oppressed peoples of the world, and the bearers of the scriptures, in a common struggle for justice.
While I am very serious about waging this “truth jihad,” I realize that Western culture fears and loathes the word “jihad.” So I use a technique common in certain forms of comic literature — for example, the novel Don Quixote — of being simultaneously serious and humorous. I make fun of myself by using hyperbole (exaggeration) in order to play the role of the “crazy radical jihadi for truth.” What is most hilarious, and most deeply serious, is that this “crazy radical jihadi” character I’m playing, like King Lear’s fool, is the only sane character in the play, the only one who understands and tells the whole, painful truth. The humor makes my uncompromisingly honest message palatable for Western audiences. As the saying goes, “If you tell the truth, make it funny or they’ll kill you.”
By accepting this role, which Allah’s qadr seems to have prepared for me, I am straddling the boundary between Islamic and Western culture, between seriousness and humor, between reality and imagination, in a unique way. As an American Muslim literary scholar with an odd Irish sense of humor, and a whole lot of outrage about 9/11 and the 9/11 wars, this is my way of waging jihad fi sabili llah.

KZ: What’s your precise stance on the 9/11 attacks? Do you believe that the U.S. officials had foreknowledge of the incident? Do you think that it was an inside job or a false flag operation? Have you traced any sign of the Israel’s involvement in the attacks?

KB: To know means to believe based on sufficient evidence. So I know, not just believe, that 9/11 was a false-flag attack, that many individuals at or near the top of the US Executive Branch, military, and intelligence apparatus were complicit in the attack, and that the state of Israel and its American agents were heavily involved. This is the inescapable conclusion of anyone who reads David Ray Griffin’s books on the subject, alongside Bollyn’s Solving 9/11, with an open mind.

KZ: Your publication “Bin Laden’s Dead, the Tape is Phony” is considered to be the first pro-9/110-truth op-ed ever written and published in a mainstream media outlet. You have written three such op-eds in “Capital Times” of Madison. Why don’t the mainstream media publish op-eds and articles revealing the truth of 9/11 attack? Why do they shun the publication of materials which are critical of the mainstream interpretation of the attacks?

KB: The American mainstream media are owned by just a few huge corporations, and thoroughly penetrated by the CIA. Google “Operation Mockingbird”. The owners and key decision-makers of these outlets are disproportionately Jewish and pro-Zionist (see Philip Weiss’s “Do Jews Dominate in American Media? And So What if We Do?”). Deep down inside, a great many of these Zionists suspect the truth about 9/11, and are terrified that if revealed it could trigger an anti-Jewish pogram and/or the destruction of Israel. Additionally, many Americans, Jewish and otherwise, who are not Zionists, feel threatened by the possibility that the truth about 9/11 would reveal them as fools, and perhaps even annihilate their whole world-view. It is difficult for journalists who are trained to believe that America is an exceptional nation, and that America’s leaders always have good intentions, to believe that their own leaders would conspire in the ritual slaughter of thousands of their own people. The few who are cynical enough to realize how evil their leaders are, are also cynical enough to know on which side their bread is buttered. Everyone in the media knows that breathing a word of truth about 9/11 will kill your career. It may not be coincidental that shortly after publishing my three 9/11 truth op-eds, the Capital Times was closed down by the company that owned it, leaving Madison with only one newspaper: The lying, corrupt Wisconsin State Journal.

KZ: In October 2004, the 9/11 hero William Rodriguez filed a lawsuit against the then President George W. Bush and 155 other parties and accused them of complicity in the 9/11 attacks. He claimed that the Twin Towers were devastated by means of “controlled demolitions” which the members of New York fire department were ordered on instructions of the CIA. Is it true that FDNY conspired with Larry Silverstein under the patronage of CIA to deliberately destroy the Twin Towers?

KB: The short answer is “yes.” But it should be noted that the NY Fire Department was not complicit as a whole department. Rather, its leadership is penetrated by the CIA and perhaps Mossad, in the same way that state governments, state and local police departments, the FBI and other agencies are penetrated by the CIA and other intelligence agencies. According to Jesse Ventura, upon his inauguration as Governor of Minnesota, a group of state government officials who were also undercover CIA officers summoned him to a briefing in which it was made clear who was really running the State of Minnesota. The FDNY is undoubtedly infiltrated as well. Larry Silverstein’s hesitation in mentioning the “er…Fire Department Commander” who decided to “pull” WTC-7 suggests that this “FDNY Commander” was actually a high level intelligence operative whose job may have included a cover position in FDNY.

KZ: Physicist Dr. Crockett Grabbe has pointed out in a 2007 article that the NIST account of the 9/11 attacks has been thoroughly erroneous, unrealistic and fallacious. He has pointed out that “the rapidly expanding huge concrete dust clouds from the towers, the very-quick appearance of multiple squibs on all 3 collapsing buildings, and the destruction of hundreds of autos for several blocks around the World Trade Center from these squibs” indicate that the Twin Towers did not simply collapse as a result of the planes crashing into the towers, but due to explosive materials. Jim Hoffman’s article also attests to the same fact and admits the presence of unignited aluminothermic explosives in dust samples from the Twin Towers, whose chemical signature matches previously documented aluminothermic residues found in the same dust samples. What does this fact signify? Who should be held accountable if we admit that the explosive materials brought down the Twin Towers?

KB: Everyone who is lying about it and who should know better — meaning the entire GW Bush Administration, the top levels of the military and intelligence command, all of the NIST people responsible for the scientific fraud represented by NIST’s reports on the WTC, and a great many others (see http://www.whodidit.org/) should be immediately arrested and aggressively interrogated, with relatively leniency offered in exchange for the whole truth delivered in a timely manner. If our judicial system cannot do this, citizens, including honest police and military, should arm themselves in preparation to make citizens arrests in what will amount to a second American revolution. Likewise, foreign nations ought to demand the truth about 9/11, and to cut off all relations with the USA until war crimes prosecutions reveal the full truth about 9/11 and the 9/11 wars.

KZ: You are a founding member of the Muslim-Jewish-Christina Alliance which is aimed at improving interfaith dialogue, coexistence and understanding in light of the 9/11 events. It’s a very fantastic goal to bring together the followers of divine religion and improve mutual understanding and peaceful coexistence between them; however, there are people who don’t tolerate this religious convergence and want to sow the seeds of incompatibility, dissention and strife between the Muslims, Jews and Christians. They are extremist and radical conservatives who follow the Marx’s viewpoint that religion is the “opium of masses”, hence downgrading interfaith dialogue and undermining it. How is it possible to realize an all-out, all-encompassing interfaith dialogue while the media moguls, hawkish statesmen and warmongering politicians want to bring about conflict and disagreement between the followers of divine religions?

KB: That is a very good question! I am disappointed at the slow progress of 9/11 truth in the Jewish and Christian communities, and by the failure of the global Muslim community to offer its full support to the 9/11 truth movement. The New World Order atheists and satanists have cleverly pitted the revealed religions against each other, while fostering an atmosphere of hopelessness and despondency that prevents many from taking action. Since Muslims by and large are better acquainted with the facts, both about 9/11, and about the brother- and sisterhood between good followers of the revealed religions, I think Muslims need to take the initiative in reaching out to those Christians and Jews who will listen. An excellent resource is the work of Mark Siljander, a conservative Christian who has come to understand the considerable similarities between Islam and Christianity. http://www.marksiljander.com/

KZ: The United States and its European allies invaded two Muslim countries following the 9/11 attacks under the pretext of eradicating terrorism and combating religious fundamentalism in these countries. They branded Iran as a part of the so-called Axis of Evil and threatened Tehran of a military strike several times during the years since 9/11 attacks. Who is, in your view, the real terrorist? Who has spread violence and unrest in the Middle East? Does the United States have enough credibility and reputation among the nations of the region to assert that it looks for their well-being and safety? Who has murdered 1 million Iraqis in 8 years and displaced thousands of others? Who turned Afghanistan into the world’s number one smuggler of narcotics and drugs? Overall, what’s your estimation of the military expedition of the United States to the region and its consequences?

KB: The question answers itself! Seriously, the US completely lacks credibility and moral authority, and has no business threatening anybody, or even offering anybody advice, until it solves its internal problems, starting with the crime of 9/11. The US and its psychopathic settler colony, Israel, should leave the Middle East and prepare to pay trillions in reparations to the people of that ravaged region. So who will fill the vacuum? Iran and Turkey are the two countries in the region that have developed a degree of moral authority and leadership, and their respective forms of Islamic democracy will be the obvious models as the US-puppet Arab dictators fall. I hope these two great Islamic democracies will engage in close cooperation rather than competition, perhaps leading to the restoration of the caliphate in the form of a loose federation that would eventually expand to include all of the Muslim-majority countries.

KZ: What’s your estimation of the plight of Palestinian people under the Israeli occupation? We already know that both sides of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict claim that the Land of Israel historically belongs to them and that they are the genuine inhabitants of the Land and should be allowed unrestricted freedom to live in a state which they’ve been endowed with by the Almighty God. Who says the truth? Who is righteous in this conflict? Do the Israelis have the right to occupy the Palestinian lands under the pretext that six million Jews were massacred by the Nazi regime in the Second World War? What’s your take on that?

KB: Clearly, whatever the Germans did to the Jews cannot possibly justify the theft of even one square foot of Palestinian land. Those struggling against Zionism, including the real Jews of Naturei Karta, are the righteous ones in this conflict. I believe that Zionism’s days are numbered, and that the Palestinians will reclaim their land within my lifetime or my children’s, God willing.

KZ: Please tell us a little about the situation of press freedom in the West. We are usually told that the American media are unrestrictedly free to publish materials critical of the government and propagate ideas which the regime is not content with. Is it true that the United States, as proclaimed by former President Bush, is a “beacon of freedom” with equal rights for the minorities, political dissidents and non-conformist thinkers?

KB: Here in the USA, those of us in the genuinely alternative media are remarkably free to express ourselves. I can say nearly anything I want to say on my radio shows and in my blog posts. But the “genuinely alternative media” is kept very small and under-funded. When someone from the genuinely alternative media develops a broad audience, like Alex Jones, he will be pressured to tone it down — especially by the Zionists. It’s no accident that the one line Alex Jones will not cross is the borderline of anti-Zionism. Because he has such a large audience, if Alex Jones were to try to steer his audience toward anti-Zionism, something bad would probably happen to end his career, and perhaps his life.
It does seem strange that the biggest limit on press freedom here concerns speaking out against Zionist interests. Helen Thomas and others have found that out the hard way. In today’s USA, it is much easier to criticize American interests and get away with it than to criticize Zionism.

Apparently the Zionists have the USA in a stranglehold, a real death-grip, thanks primarily to the 9/11 coup d’état. And they are doing their best to force the US into a war against Iran. Such a war would serve Israeli interests, but badly damage American interests, and the interests of humanity. So far, the American leadership has refused to take this suicidal step. By helping educate the American people about 9/11 and other Zionist false-flag attacks, and by helping them free themselves from Zionist control and Zionist conditioning, we can help save both the Iranian and American people from a lot of unnecessary suffering.

Kourosh Ziabari is an Iranian media correspondent, freelance journalist and interviewer. He is a contributing writer of Finland’s Award-winning Ovi Magazine and the the Foreign Policy Journal. He is a member of Tlaxcala Translators Network for Linguistic Diversity (Spain). He is also a member of World Student Community for Sustainable Development (WSC-SD). Kourosh Ziabari’s articles have appeared in a number of Canadian, Belgian, Italian, French and German websites. He can be reached at kziabari@gmail.com

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

Interview with the late Juliano Mer-Khamis: "We are freedom fighters"

>Maryam Monalisa Gharavi, The Electronic Intifada, 5 April 2011

A portrait of Juliano Mer-Khamis hangs outside the Freedom Theatre where he was killed one day earlier. (Anne Paq/ActiveStills)

Actor-director Juliano Mer-Khamis was shot dead by a masked gunman yesterday outside the Freedom Theatre that he co-founded in the Israeli-occupied West Bank city of Jenin in 2006. Born in Nazareth in 1958 to Saliba Khamis, a Palestinian Christian leader of the Israeli Communist Party, and Arna Mer, an Israeli Jewish dramatist, Juliano memorably described himself as “100 percent Palestinian, and 100 percent Jewish.”

Julian had tried to get his film Arna’s Children, which documents his mother’s extraordinary transformation from a young settler in 1948 to a drama teacher in the Jenin refugee camp, shown widely. As he discusses in the previously unpublished interview which follows, the film was met with little success the first time. In 2006, he returned as indefatigably as ever, and I met him for the first time at a screening of his film at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Despite the scarce number of people in attendance that night (which Juliano loudly called attention to), one grasped the general astonishment that accompanied viewing this rare and unforgettable work. Juliano paced the room after the film, a passionate cadence rising in his voice as he described the devastations of occupation and the hazards of filmmaking.

Though Arna’s Children is a documentary, the time markers of the film relegate it closer to a work of fiction. Like other works of art centered on the loss of historic Palestine, most notably the characters who return to their pre-1948 homes in Ghassan Kanafani’s Returning to Haifa, Juliano constructed a narrative that is almost impossible to recreate or imagine from any other point of view.

In one shot of the film, the sequencing of events binds a shot of Juliano alongside his mother’s wrapped body at a hospital with a subsequent shot of the Israeli army bulldozing Arna’s Stone Theatre in April 2002. The Stone Theatre was part of Arna’s larger cultural project, Care and Learning, founded to allow the children of Jenin — faced with a crushing and seemingly inescapable military occupation — a creative outlet for their chronic trauma. The theater was leveled by the Israeli incursion, which Juliano captured on film. The historical date of both these events align almost miraculously, but the montages of destruction — his mother’s corpse and the ruins of the beloved theatre — are superimposed as mutually ravaged bodies.

I interviewed Juliano at Boston’s South Station on 4 April 2006 just before he caught a train to the New York screening — exactly five years before he was killed just outside the Freedom Theatre in Jenin, the locus of his life’s most notable work.

Juliano’s resume as an actor is well-documented, and the details of his biography are sure to be revisited in the aftermath of his murder. It was his cinematic and personal relationship to the refugee camp in Jenin and his complex relationship to Israel that most concerned us in this conversation.

Juliano’s tone in this interview will be familiar to all who knew him: brutally honest, sardonic and always with an unflinching eye toward the original historic pitfalls of Israel and the Palestinians. He candidly discusses the social engineering of Israeli society, his mother’s visionary work in Jenin and his own path from paratrooper to filmmaker/activist. My hope is that it is read as a fragment of discourse alongside the rest of his film and activism work, which together formed the unlikely and uncompromising triumph of art, what artist Paul Chan has called “freedom without force.”

The following is an excerpt from my 2006 interview with Juliano Mer-Khamis.

Maryam Monalist Gharavi: How long was Arna’s Children banned in Israel?

Juliano Mer-Khamis at the opening of the Freedom Theatre’s We Won’t Forget Lebanon 2006, January 2007. (Tess Scheflan/ActiveStills)

Juliano Mer-Khamis: It was not really banned. It was silenced. Journalists who wanted to write about the film could not get through the editorial decisions. There were two TV programs made about the film and cancelled at the last moment. We could not find a distributor in Israel for the film or cinemas to screen it. There were certain moments when some critics and journalists used the film as an outlet for their own frustrations, which were imposed on them by censorship and by directing or imposing a very certain discourse on the media by the government. I’m talking about issuing papers, in which were written ‘words you can use and cannot use,’ ‘certain questions you are not allowed to ask’ and the way you [are allowed to] ask those questions. If you speak to a Palestinian or to the military you have to change your expressions and the terms you use. So this outlet gave them the courage, I believe, to write, and since then they legitimized the film in Israel and it was screened all over the country.

MMG: Arna gave a poignant speech upon accepting the Right Livelihood Award at the Swedish parliament. She said that as Rosh Pina [the Israeli settlement where she lived following the Palestinian Nakba of 1948] grew and developed, the nearby Arab village al-Jauna was “erased from the face of the earth,” its Palestinian inhabitants becoming refugees, along with 700,000 others, “through sheer robbery and forced displacement.” What do you think stops other Israelis from coming to the same conclusion as your mother?

JMK: That’s a very interesting question. I’ll give you just the framework in which I can analyze this process of history that enabled Israel to confiscate, to settle and to colonize Palestine and not go through the path my mother chose. The reasons are many but the main reason you must understand is that since the Zionist movement was created, it manipulated the history of the Jews, especially the Holocaust period, and used forces around it to create one of the most successful colonies in Palestine. And since then, the victim philosophy or victim theory or victim policy of Jews and Israelis used all means and all aspects in their history since the pogroms — what they call the persecutions in Russia during the Czar period — till the announcement of hundreds of suicide warnings coming to Israel. From that to here, we see a policy of fear, a ghetto mentality, a policy that distracts the average Israeli from the truth. Frightened and victimized people can justify any crime they do and it enables them to live with their conscience in a very comfortable way like most of the Israelis. Once you are a victim, it’s very easy to create dehumanization and demonization of the other, and this is the success of the first Israeli propaganda in the Zionist movement.

MMG: In the scene of your mother’s body at the mortuary, you comment somewhat half-heartedly that the only place that would bury her was the kibbutz. What happened after she died?

JMK: My mother could not be buried because she refused to be buried in a religious ceremony or funeral. Israel is not a democracy; it’s a theocracy. The religion is not separated from the state so all issues concerning the privacy of life — marriage, burial and many other aspects — are controlled by the religious authorities, so you cannot be buried in a civilian funeral. The only way to do it is buy a piece of land in some kibbutzim, which refused to sell us a piece of land because of the politics of my mother. It’s not a very popular thing in a civilian, non-religious way. And then I had to take the coffin home. And it stayed in my house for three days and I could not find a place to bury her. So I announced in a press conference that she was going to be buried in the garden of my house. There was a big scandal, police came, a lot of TV and media [came], violent warnings were issued against me. There were big demonstrations around the house, till I got a phone call from friends from a kibbutz, Ramot Menashe, who are from the left side of the map, and they came from Argentina. Nice Zionist Israelis, maybe post-Zionist. They offered a piece of land there. And the funny thing is that while we were looking for a place to bury my mother, there were discussions in Jenin to offer me to bring her for burial there, in the shahid’s [martyr’s] graveyard. They told me there was one Fatah leader, who was humorously saying, “Well, guys, look, it’s an honor to have Arna with us here, a great honor, the only thing is maybe in about fifty years’ time some Jewish archaeologists will come here and say there are some Jewish bones here and they’re going to confiscate the land of Jenin.” [Laughs] They do it. Even if they find the Jewish bones of a dog, they take the place. That’s the place they do it. Every place they confiscate they find the bones of a Jew and that’s how they justify the ownership of the land, by finding bones.

MMG: There was a recent, widely-publicized Haaretz poll that 68 percent of Israelis would not live in the same building as an Arab.

JMK: I have it here.

MMG: So the logic runs that if you don’t want to live next to a Palestinian, why be buried next to one?

JMK: Yeah. And almost 50 percent of Israelis think the Arabs inside the ’48 [boundary], inside Israel, are a [demographic] and security threat. These are their neighbors, so imagine what kind of relationships, imagine what kind of democracy this is.

MMG: I thought one of the most important scenes in the film occurred when Alaa’s house, as well as Ashraf’s [two of Arna’s theatre students in the film], had been destroyed in Jenin, and your mother asks them to express their anger, even to hit her. You end up with this tension, as elsewhere in the film, of a tragicomedy. You find the audience laughing through their teeth.

JMK: [Arna] was trained as a psychodramatist. She was successful at it.

MMG: How would you respond to pro-Zionists watching your film, that despite your mother’s “rehabilitation of the Arab mind,” the child actors become “terrorists?”

JMK: It’s a very sick question, not yours, but the pro-Zionist attitude that thinks the problem of violence is the violence of children and not the violence of the Israeli occupation and it’s exactly to turn the pyramid upside down again, and I mean to use the propaganda to turn the question [upside down]. The question is not about the Israeli soldiers’ violence. You don’t have to heal the children in Jenin. We didn’t try to heal their violence.

We tried to challenge it into more productive ways. And more productive ways are not an alternative to resistance. What we were doing in the theatre is not trying to be a replacement or an alternative to the resistance of the Palestinians in the struggle for liberation. Just the opposite. This must be clear. I know it’s not good for fundraising, because I’m not a social worker, I’m not a good Jew going to help the Arabs, and I’m not a philanthropic Palestinian who comes to feed the poor. We are joining, by all means, the struggle for liberation of the Palestinian people, which is our liberation struggle. Everybody who is connected to this project says that he feels that he is also occupied by the Zionist movement, by the military regime of Israel, and by its policy. Either he lives in Jenin, or in Haifa, or in Tel Aviv. Nobody joined this project to heal. We’re not healers. We’re not good Christians. We are freedom fighters.

MMG: The film was cancelled in many cities?

JMK: Yeah, the screenings of it. It was sold, but not broadcast and also in Israel in many places. I don’t know, this is for you to judge, but I believe that people will try to boycott or create difficulties to screen this film. Of course, that’s why we’re pushing it so hard, trying to do it by ourselves. But just to clarify the theatre , joining the Palestinian intifada, by our definition: we believe that the strongest struggle today should be cultural, moral. This must be clear. We are not teaching the boys and the girls how to use arms or how to create explosives, but we expose them to discourse of liberation, of liberty. We expose them to art, culture, music — which I believe can create better people for the future, and I hope that some of them, some of our friends in Jenin, will lead … and continue the resistance against the occupation through this project, through this theatre.

MMG: Israeli director Yehuda “Judd” Ne’eman says he came to filmmaking “through the slaughterhouse of modern warfare.” He says he was disillusioned by art in the face of war atrocities, but, I’m quoting, “When the situation in my country deteriorates politically, when my body deteriorates physically, it’s high time to believe in art.” Is that different or similar to your own mission across political and artistic fault lines?

JMK: The same aspects and same starting points apply for me. Art, in our case, can combine and generate and mobilize other aspects of resistance. All I care about is resistance. I’m not doing art for the sake of art. I don’t believe in art for the sake of art. I think art can generate and motivate and combine and create a universal, liberated discourse. This is my concern about art. On the other side there is the therapeutic level, and the therapeutic level is not to heal. This is very important if you can point it out — it’s not to heal anybody from his violence. It’s to create an awareness they can use in the right way. Not against themselves.

MMG: You served in the Israeli army but quit after you were asked to stop your father’s Palestinian relatives at a military checkpoint. How significant was that event as a turning point in your political and even artistic formation?

JMK: It was the straw that broke the camel’s back. But I was boiling since I tried to disguise myself. The outfit could not fit, you see? I could not fit the outfit. And it blew up in my face that certain day in the checkpoint, but I was boiling for years.

MMG: How long did you serve?

JMK: I served for one and a half years, but in a very intensive special forces unit [the Paratroopers Brigade]. I don’t regret it, I must be honest. First of all, from the practical side, it saved my life many times during this theatre-making and the film. I know all aspects of the Israeli army, I speak Hebrew, I know the language, I know how to deal with them. It’s like combat training for life. And on the other hand, I penetrated the deepest sources of the Israeli propaganda, the smallest cells of Israeli society, which is fertilized in the army. The army in Israel is the essence of life, the army in Israel is the discourse of life, the army in Israeli is the foundation of the society. Once you penetrate this and you understand the dynamics, you can oppose and create and use it for yourself.

Maryam Monalisa Gharavi has contributed poetry and critical writing to various publications. Her films have been screened at Townhouse Gallery of Contemporary Art, Harvard Film Archive, Pacific Film Archive and elsewhere. She is a doctoral candidate in Comparative Literature and Film and Visual Studies at Harvard University. The full version of her interview with Juliano can be found here.

Israel is the most immediate threat to the future of the planet: Jeffrey Blankfort

>Via Rebel News

Israel is the most immediate threat to the future of the planet: Jeffrey Blankfort

Monday, 25 October 2010 20:59 Kourosh Ziabari  
Jeffrey Blankfort is an American photojournalist, radio producer and Middle East analyst. He is a well-known pro-Palestinian activist whose articles and writings have appeared on Counter Punch, Voltairenet, Palestine Think Tank, Dissident Voice and many other publications.
He currently hosts radio programs on KZYX in Mendocino, CA and KPOO in San Francisco. Blankfort was formerly the editor of the Middle East Labor Bulletin and co-founder of the Labor Committee of the Middle East. In February 2002, he won a lawsuit against the Zionist organization Anti-Defamation League (ADL) which was found to have been spying on the American citizens critical of Israel and its expansionistic policies.

Jeffrey joined me in an exclusive interview to discuss the influence of Israeli lobby on the decision-makers of the U.S. government, Israel’s illegal, underground nuclear program, the prospect of Israeli – Palestinian conflict and the imminent threat of an Israeli strike against Iran’s nuclear facilities.
Blankfort is quite outspoken in his criticism of the apartheid regime of Israel and believes that Israel is the most immediate threat to the future of our planet.

Kourosh Ziabari: In your article “The Israel Lobby and the Left: Uneasy Questions”, you elaborately explore the dominance of Israeli lobby over the U.S. administration and cite good examples of the influence of well-off Zionists on the multinational companies and mainstream media in America. My question is that, what are the root causes of this enormous power and immense wealth which the Zionists have possessed?
How did the Jews take over the vast resources of power and money that has made them capable of framing, modifying and overturning the political equations in the United States?

Jeffrey Blankfort: That question requires a long and complicated answer. In short, an important, well organized segment of the American Jewish community emerged after World War II that has been dedicated to the establishment and prospering of a Jewish state in historic Palestine in which the lives and well being of the indigenous Palestinian Arabs were of no consequence.

That this segment did not and has never represented the majority of American Jews has been more than been made up for by its concerted activity on Israel’s behalf in every critical sector of U.S. society and at every level of the nation’s political life. Its success would not have been possible, however, were it not for the fact that within its ranks have been a sizeable number of wealthy Jewish businessmen who have been quite willing to expend the funds necessary to either purchase the support of the U.S. Congress as well as virtually all of the state legislatures or intimidate Israel’s would-be critics into silence.

Well before the birth of the first Zionists, Jewish bankers and capitalists had established themselves in Europe and the United States so it was not surprising that a number of them, beginning with Lord Rothschild in the early part of the century, became supporters of the Zionist project. Now, far and away, they make up the largest segment of individual donors to both political parties.

The media, as could be expected, was one of its primary targets, and that avowedly pro-Israel interests, although not exclusively Jewish, such as Rupert Murdoch, now thoroughly dominate it at every level is, unfortunately proved on a daily basis.

While there should be no question that this Israel support network, euphemistically described as a “lobby,” has been a major force in shaping U.S. Middle East policies overall, and the determinant factor in dealing with the Israel-Palestine conflict, its power has its limits. While it was able, through its agents in the White House and the Pentagon, to push the U.S. into a war on Iraq, it has yet to get Washington to bomb Iran or, apparently, to sanction an Israeli attack on its nuclear facilities. It is clear that there are important elements within the Pentagon as well as the intelligence agencies which know that an attack by either the U.S. or Israel on Iran would more likely than not lead to a global catastrophe.

KZ: In your articles, you’ve alluded to the conflicts and struggles between the U.S. and Israel administrations during the past decades in which the U.S. Presidents, starting from Richard Nixon, tried to curb the expansionistic policies of Israel and bring about an improved living condition for the oppressed nation of Palestine. Should you believe that there have been such efforts on the side of U.S. administration, what has led to their failure, having in mind that they’ve repeatedly proclaimed their commitment to the security of Israel?
JB: There has not been the slightest interest on the part of any US president, I suspect, in improving the living conditions for the Palestinians. Halting Israeli expansion and getting Tel Aviv to withdraw from all the territories it conquered in 1967 has been seen as being in the U.S. national interest.

All the past efforts have failed because none of the presidents have been willing to spend the domestic political capital that would be necessary to force an Israeli withdrawal and particularly so when they know their efforts will be opposed by the overwhelming majority of both houses of Congress irrespective of party affiliations as well as by the Zionist dominated media.
The only one who made a serious effort and who was willing to confront the Zionist network and Congress was George Bush Sr., when he denied Israel its request for $10 billion in loan guarantees in 1991 and again in 1992 but even he was eventually forced to surrender.

KZ: Israelis are used to employing the label anti-Semitism to defame and vilify whoever dares criticize their belligerent, aggressive policies and actions. They accuse whoever criticizes them of being anti-Semitist. This makes the politicians and opinion-makers hesitant and demoralized in talking of Israel negatively. Is there any solution to reveal the futility of anti-Semitism label and educate the public that the criticism of Israel is different from criticizing Judaism?
JB: The allegation of “anti-Semitism” leveled against critics of Israel does not carry the weight it once did but it still is extremely effective, particularly, when the accused is employed by the mainstream media as we have seen recently in the case of Helen Thomas, Octavia Nasr and Rick Sanchez, and in the film industry which has long been a Zionist bastion and which was brought into existence by Jews in the last century, although none at the time were Zionists.

The power of the accusation of anti-Semitism to bring public figures to their knees will continue to exist until there is a sufficient number of prominent Americans who are willing to challenge it. When that will be I won’t begin to speculate.

KZ: Although undeclared, it’s confirmed by the Federation of American Scientists that Israel possesses up to 200 nuclear warheads. Being a non-signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, Israel has never allowed the IAEA to probe into its nuclear arsenal. We already know about the destiny of Mordecai Vanunu who swapped his freedom with the expression of truth. What’s your viewpoint about the destiny of Israel’s nuclear program? Will Tel Aviv continue enjoying immunity from responsibility?
JB: As long as the Zionist support network controls Congress and as long as no American president as the courage to even mention the existence of Israel’s nuclear weapons, and while the U.S. continues to hold the purse strings to the UN, Israel will continue to enjoy both immunity and impunity. Had the leadership of the now non-existent anti-nuclear movement in the US, like the “peace movement” not been also Zionist-dominated, there might have been some debate on the issue but because it was, the subject was considered off limits.

KZ: Let’s turn to Iran. Iran’s is being portrayed by the U.S. mainstream media in a distorted and hypocritical way. Many Americans who even hadn’t heard the name of Iran before are now exposed to a horrifying and dreadful image of the country presented to them by the Zionist-led media outlets. They aren’t aware of the historical civilization of Iran and its unique cultural, social features. How is it possible to unveil the concealed realities of Iran for the Americans who don’t find the proper opportunities to get familiarized with the misrepresented Iran?
JB: Most American would have a problem finding Iran or any other country in the Middle East, or for that matter, anywhere in the world on a map. They are, for the most part, what can be called “geographically challenged,” as well as historically challenged. There is no antidote to that on the horizon which is why Washington is able to get away with making war on countries and peoples that have never done them harm. If there was a military draft as there was during the Vietnam War, neither the war in Iraq or Afghanistan would have gone on as long as they have and there would be opposition to an attack on Iran.

When Nixon cleverly halted the draft of 18-year olds in the early 70s, that took the backbone out of the anti-war movement and that is the reason that as hard pressed as the U.S. is today to maintain an army large enough to fight multiple wars, Washington will not bring back the draft. Hiring private contractors became the alternative. Without the fear of 18-year olds that they will be taken into the army, there is no anti-war movement and there is none worthy of the name at this moment in the United States.

KZ: Many people around the world have come to believe that the media in the United States are unrestrictedly free and can express whatever they want to, without any impediment or obstruction imposed on them by the administration. It’s almost accurate to say that the U.S. government does not have any direct involvement in the media-related affairs; however, there seems to be an implicit pressure on the media not to cross the red lines and violate the unwritten laws, including the criticism of Israel. Can you elaborate on this more precisely?
JB: It is not the government that prevents criticism from Israel in the media but fear of the repercussions that are guaranteed to follow any genuine criticism be it written or in cartoon form in the U.S. media, even when that criticism is leveled by a Jewish journalist. There are several organizations, most prominently the Anti-Defamation League, CAMERA, and HonestReporting which are able to unleash at a moment’s notice a torrent of emails and letters to the editor, and in certain cases, visits to the offices of an offending newspaper, to make sure those in the media know what they can and cannot write. Since there is no corresponding pressure from Israel’s critics in the public, most editors choose to avoid a fight.

There was a time when a number of columnists in the mainstream press did write critically of Israel and got away with it. But that was 20 years ago and they are no longer around

KZ: As the final question, what’s your prediction for the future of Israel? Will it continue to determine the U.S. foreign policy and rule the American politicians? Is it capable of maintaining the blockade of Gaza? After all, will Israel succeed in surviving politically?
JB: As long as Israel’s supporters, or agents in the U.S., are able to control the U.S. Congress and intimidate whoever happens to be president and as long as those same forces dominate the media there will be no change in the U.S. or in the situation in Gaza. The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, while slowly growing in the U.S., does not have the intensity that it has elsewhere and its targets are limited to what Israel and U.S. companies do in the West Bank so, realistically, there is unlikely to be any meaningful pressure coming from the U.S.What Israel does, however, may produce changes that are unpredictable at the moment. Having twice been defeated by Hezbollah, Israeli officials keep threatening another war on Lebanon and since the U.S., Europe and the UN have let them get away with all their previous wars on Lebanon, they are likely to try again.

Unlike the Palestinians, the Lebanese are able and willing to aggressively fight back as the Israeli soldiers know all too well, from their resistance to occupation and their halting of the vaunted Israeli wehrmacht in 2006.
Should Israel find a way to attack Iran, the repercussions from that might be sufficient to send Israel on the road to what will ultimately be viewed as self-destruction. At the moment, thanks to the unconditional backing by the U.S. for all it crimes, and given its arsenal of nuclear weapons, I consider Israel to be the most immediate threat to the future of the planet.

Kourosh Ziabari is an independent journalist from Iran and frequent contributor to Rebel News.

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

"The priority is to return and remain"

>Jillian Kestler-D’Amours, The Electronic Intifada, 19 October 2010

Hassan Jabereen (Photo courtesy of Adalah)

On 10 October, the Israeli Cabinet voted in favor of a proposal that would require every non-Jewish person seeking citizenship in Israel to vow loyalty to “the State of Israel as a Jewish and democratic state.” The Electronic Intifada contributor Jillian Kestler-D’Amours spoke with Hassan Jabareen, the founder and director general of Adalah, the Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel, about the loyalty oath and what it means for Palestinian citizens of Israel.

Jillian Kestler-D’Amours: Talk a bit about the loyalty oath; were you at all surprised?

Hassan Jabareen: It seemed to many, internationally and locally in Israel, that this is a very new concept to come and declare that Israel is a Jewish state and to ask [non-Jews] to accept it. It’s not.

The basic law of the Knesset, article 7-A, says that no political list [party] that will be allowed to run for the Knesset if it denies the character of Israel as a Jewish and democratic state. I have been, in the last 15 years, standing before the [high court] at least three to four times, in every election, representing an Arab political party to convince the court that the Arab political party and its platform does not deny the character of Israel as a Jewish and democratic state.

So the oath is not a new thing. But it’s very dangerous still.

JK: Why is it dangerous?

HJ: The question is whether this law will give legitimacy to other future laws, such as if I want to work in any ministry office, should I give an oath? If I want to be accepted to any official job, to teach in university, to teach in high school, elementary school, should I give this oath or not? We don’t know where this will end.

JK: Is Israel’s definition as a “Jewish and democratic state,” as the oath outlines, a contradiction?

HJ: It depends how you define “Jewish state.” For me, Israel could have Hebrew as the dominant language, Jewish holidays, Hebrew symbols, Judaism as the official religion. But in the same time to be democratic [it must give] the same right to [Palestinians in Israel]. Arabic is the official language, symbols should also express the Arabs here, and holidays also express the Arab religions.

To live one beside the other, like binationalism, gives self-determination for the Jews and for the Palestinians. This Jewish state, it depends how you define it. Some person can believe that he is Zionist and he can believe in a binational state. The intellectuals of the Zionist movement during the time of 1948 and before, like [Judah] Magnes, believed in one binational state and despite that they were Zionist. So it’s a matter of definition.

But we know that the official — and this is the most important — definition of Israel as a Jewish state [means] that others don’t have national rights here. And here is the problem.

JK: What impact will the loyalty oath have on Palestinians citizens of Israel?

HJ: The Palestinians in Israel don’t need those laws in order to know that they are living in a Jewish state; they face that every day. They have very high political consciousness about their situation. They know that the state treats them inferiorly, unequally. But they have different priorities.

The definition of Israel as a Jewish state is not in their priorities. For example, this law doesn’t do anything except again declare that they are inferior. Their situation in [terms of] land, housing, home demolitions, in day-to-day life is more important than those matters [of laws].

One of the characteristics of the Palestinian political consciousness is to remain and to return. To remain and to return makes the land, the house and the home the most important [issues]. So they want us to give an oath? They ask the Palestinian woman from Canada, if she wants to get married to a Palestinian man in Nazareth, to give an oath? She will say, “[Curse] the Jewish state. But I will give the oath in order to come back and to be here.”

So we make the priority, the first thing, to return and remain. And that’s why we are strong and this won’t shake us. In Umm al-Fahm and Nazareth, people didn’t demonstrate against this law. They hate it. They know that it’s racist. But the priority is remaining.

JK: What should the international community be aware of?

HJ: They have to know about the legal consequences of a “Jewish state.” They have to know that the Palestinian citizens of Israel are not against the right of self-determination of Jews, but we are against the exclusiveness. We are against the fact that Israel denies our historical claims and historical rights. They deny that our historical memory is part of this land, deny that we are natives, deny that we belong to a people. They treat us just as individuals who came from nowhere, because [to them] we have no roots, [and] the only roots are Jewish roots which go back to 2,000 years ago.

This is the problem. So if we clarify this matter for the international community and they will see how the official definition of Israel as a Jewish state means direct inequality as a basic principle of Israel, they might change their perspective.

Originally from Montreal, Jillian Kestler-D’Amours is a reporter and documentary filmmaker based in occupied East Jerusalem. More of her work can be found at http://jilldamours.wordpress.com.

George Galloway interviews Daoud Abdullah – Israel accused of war crimes by the UN

George Galloway interviews Daoud Abdullah – Israel accused of war crimes by the UN

The show is coded to starts at 5:00 with the interview of Dr. Daoud Abdullah, senior researcher at the London based Palestinian Return Center (PRC). The interview continues into the second video. If you wish to watch the first part of the show, you can click the slide bar of part 1 at the beginning and then click the play arrow.

PressTV-Real Deal-26-09-2010 (Part 1):

“PressTVGlobalNews | September 27, 2010

In this episode of Press TV’s Real Deal program, the following topics are discussed:

The Viva Palestina; five convoy making their way to Gaza
Israel accused of war crimes by the UN

Part 1

Part 2

– Sent using Google Toolbar”

Palestine Video – A Palestine Vlog

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

"I am sure this occupation will end"

>Jody McIntyre writing from , The Electronic Intifada, 20 September 2010

Israeli soldiers fire at protesters in Beit Ommar. (Mamoun Wazwaz/MaanImages)

Since 2005, residents of the occupied West Bank village of Beit Ommar have launched nonviolent demonstrations in protest against the increasing theft of their land at the hands of the five surrounding Israeli settlements, and to call for an end to the Israeli occupation of all Palestinian lands. Despite the brutal response of the Israeli forces, resulting in the death, injury and detention of scores of teenagers from the town, the people of Beit Ommar remain steadfast in their resistance. Jody McIntyre interviews Beit Ommar Popular Committee secretary Ahmed Abu Hashem for The Electronic Intifada.

Jody McIntyre: Please introduce yourself.

Ahmed Abu Hashem: I am the secretary of the Beit Ommar Popular Committee, but I feel like the smallest person. None of us should see ourselves as more important than anyone else, because we are all supporting each other. Many people from the Palestinian Authority and from outside the village have tried to break us, but it will never work.

JM: How has the Israeli occupation personally affected you?

AH: I was first arrested in 1984, and held in administrative detention without charge for three months. The next time was together with my older brother at the start of the first intifada in 1988; he was imprisoned for 14 months, and myself for three and a half years. I was arrested again in 1992, and again in 1994 for a period of 14 months. In 1998, me and my younger brother were both imprisoned for six months. And in 2002 I was held for another six months, and then again in 2004, me and my younger brother were both imprisoned for six months. The last time I was in prison, my mother was run over by an Israeli military jeep, and my brother’s wife was shot, both on the same day. Three months ago I was arrested again and held for four days, where I was interrogated by Captain Tamir from the Israeli intelligence.

We are who we are, and since the first intifada it has been like this for my family … if it’s not me then it’s my brother, or my children, or my brother’s children, or my wife. Of course, we know why we are singled out in this way; it is because we have always worked as activists against the occupation.

It is clear that they are after me now; if they don’t come and invade my home, then they stop me at a checkpoint. In the last fifty days, they have invaded my house 17 times. This morning, I ran into a flying checkpoint at the settlement Gush Etzion, and they gave me a paper ordering me to report to the Israeli intelligence services on Monday morning. The same captain who interrogated me before actually came down to the checkpoint to hand me the paper.

The last time they came to my house they had given me exactly the same paper … I went to the military base as it said I should, and waited from 8:30am until 5:00pm, when I was simply given another paper saying that they would call me again. So I left, and 15 minutes later they called me and said I had to be at Gush Etzion immediately, but I refused to go back.

JM: Why do you think the Israeli military are pursuing you so relentlessly?

AH: They think that they can coerce me with money to become a collaborator, but it couldn’t be further from my thoughts.

I might be an old guy, but I hope to continue working against the wall and the settlements for all of my life.

JM: What motivates you to keep struggling against the occupation?

AH: My father was a part of the fedayeen [peasant] rebellion in 1948 against the first settler population of Gush Etzion, and he was injured by a land mine during the battle. He told me about those experiences at a young age, which definitely inspired me. As a child at school I studied a lot about the occupation; I read about the 1948 war and what exactly the creation and continued expansion of Israel meant to the Palestinians. I think it was a combination of these factors which gave me a determination to always struggle for our liberation.

JM: Have your sons also suffered, as you have, at the hands of the Israeli occupation?

AH: The first time my son Yousif was arrested, he was 12 years old. He’s currently in prison for the third time, at the age of 17. My oldest son is in jail for the second time. My other son, Emad, was shot by an Israeli soldier, and still has shrapnel in his head from the injury. My brother’s two sons were just released after three years in prison; they’re 19 and 21 years old now, so they were both arrested during their studies. Of course, the army wants to arrest the clever kids because they want them to work with the army as collaborators in the university. As for those who do choose to work as collaborators, I think their hearts have died.

I’m one of the few farmers who has continued to work on the land despite it being situated right next to the fence of the Karmet Sur settlement. The land actually belongs to my cousin, but I look after it as an act of defiance against the occupation. The settlers are keen to keep Palestinians off their land, because they want to expand, so they will do anything to stop us farming there. On many occasions I would see the settlers shooting at me, and I would hear bullets flying over my head. Once, the settlers’ security shot my six-year-old son Qossay in the leg with a live bullet. He stayed in the hospital for three days; the bullet had broken the bone in his leg.

Qossay, now eight years old, has completely changed. He used to be terrified of the soldiers, and he would hide under the bed when they invaded our home. But since he was shot he is at the front of every demonstration! Even if there isn’t a demonstration, he’ll go out and confront the soldiers anyway.

JM: Do you think the demonstrations can change the future here?

AH: We are struggling to stop the growth of the settlements, to stop the arrests and to stop the shootings. I don’t know if it will be in my lifetime, or in a hundred years, but I am sure this occupation will be ended.

Jody McIntyre is a journalist from the United Kingdom. He writes a blog entitled “Life on Wheels” which can be found at jodymcintyre.wordpress.com. He can be reached at jody [dot] mcintyre [at] gmail [dot] com.
River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

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