Cynthia McKinney to ST: Peace has a chance only with a peace leader in national security adviser position or no one at all in it

ST

Wednesday, 11 September 2019 12:03

Former US congresswoman Cynthia McKinney has said that it might be better for the position of the national security adviser to remain vacant, hoping that President Donald Trump is about to begin to keep his campaign promises about the folly of the US fighting wars for Israel.

In a statement to the Syria times e-newspaper on the effect of the defenestration of John Bolton as President Trump’s third national security adviser, McKinney said: “Given the President’s poor staffing choices, it might be better for the position to remain vacant. Any appointment from the swamp will continue the same pro-Israel, warmongering, swamp policies.”

She believes that peace has a chance only with a peace leader in that position or no one at all in it.

“Even then, the Lobby for war spans both sides of the aisles, both Republicans and Democrats. I have repeatedly made suggestions for Trump of individuals who understand the swamp and are repulsed by what it is today,” she added.

Asked about the reason behind the defenestration of Bolton, McKinney replied:

“Bolton blew the President’s peace initiatives with North Korea, Syria, and Afghanistan. Let’s hope that the President is about to begin to keep his campaign promises about the folly of the US fighting wars for Israel.”

Yesterday, President Trump pushed out John R. Bolton, his third national security adviser.

Cynthia McKinney is an international peace and human rights activist, noted for her inconvenient truth-telling about the U.S. war machine. She was held for seven days in an Israeli prison after attempting to enter Gaza by sea and traveled to Libya during U.S. bombing and witnessed the crimes against humanity committed against that country’s people. In addition to Libya, she has traveled to Cuba, Syria, Russia, Iran, Pakistan, and as she puts it:

“Wherever U.S. Bombs are dropping or U.S. sanctions are biting.”

She is the author or editor of three Clarity Press books: she has written one book Ain’t Nothing Like Freedom and edited The Illegal War On Libya and the 2018 book, How the U.S. Creates Sh*thole Countries.

In 1992, McKinney won a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. She was the first African-American woman from Georgia in the U.S. Congress. She was the first Member of Congress to demand an investigation of the events of 9/11/2001. McKinney was criticized and as a result, she was defeated in 2002; however, she ran again and was re-elected in 2004.

In December 2008, Cynthia made international headlines when her boat was rammed by the Israeli military as she was attempting to deliver medical supplies to Gaza. In 2009, Cynthia attempted to reach Gaza again, this time armed with crayons, coloring books, and school supplies. Her boat was overtaken in international waters by the Israeli military and she was kidnapped to Israel where she spent 7 days in an Ramleh Prison. Finally, Cynthia entered Gaza by land in July 2009 with George Galloway’s Viva Palestina USA.

She has over 100,000 followers on FaceBook and more than 30,000 followers on Twitter who live in countries all over the world—from Argentina to Zimbabwe, according to Tweetsmap as of January 2019.

Interviewed by: Basma Qaddour

We Are in Gaza!!! Viva Palestina 5 Land Convoy

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Via Gaza, Gaza, Here Comes Azura!

Salam and hi my dearest family and friends,

At 10pm, Malaysian time today, we, the Viva Palestina 5 Land Convoy is destined by the Al Mighty to be standing in the land of the Prophet, Palestine.

To be exact, Gaza….

I cannot express my feelings as we were nearing to the Border moments before.

When I saw the sign, 5 km to Rafah Gate… I was like…. someone pinch me….

I snapped 2 photos of the road signs and sent them to my super girls- Zab, Jem and Azian.

And as expected, all the 3 cry babies started crying….

Haiyo….

Guys,  stopped  crying ok… you are not helping me here….. I cannot go into Gaza crying…. not especially when I have Mr Malaysia Tough Man (who was selected among the 30 to be on the cargo vessel to El Arish Port) beside me- Dr Musa!

Then, suddenly…..  I saw the infamous Rafah Border- the yellow brick shaped like an upside down half-U that if we get passed it, will bring us all to Palestine…

This is the same gate that I have been seeing all these while in the news, video clips and youtube videos…

My heart just beat so fast.

Then at 22.10, Malaysian time, I sent out a message to my 3 beloved darlings…

** Oct 21 Thu 22:10 **
 Azura:  We are standing in palestine !! Alhamdulillah

 ** Oct 21 Thu 22:28 **
 Azura:  Its thinking of the 3 of you that makes my eyes teary. You have all worked so hard for this n I wish you were all here.

And they answered me…



 ** Oct 21 Thu 22:28 **
  Jem:  We r azura 🙂 u r representing all of us and we were meant to be here for a reason! Its ok! We r there!! 🙂

 ** Oct 21 Thu 22:32 **
 Azian: We are Azura, somewhere in yr pocket..:)  
 
 
 ** Oct 21 Thu 22:38 **
 Zabrina:  😥 😥


(Zab as usual, speechless… and prefer to express using her crying emoticons)

Zab, remember what I said?

 “we shall only cry if it will make us stronger”

And of course, she refused to listen to me on this matter… Azura, why can’t you just let me cry!!

Ok Zab… cry away babe… I know you will anyway….

I have so much to share but for the time being, I am too busy hugging the Gazan women!

And I chocked when one of them whispered to my ears – thank you for not forgetting us…

Yes, Zab…. this time I cried….

I will leave you with these photos and will be posting more very soon, inshaAllah….

Love from, (guess where??)

Yes, you are right!

Love from Gaza, (p/s: i have been waiting to sign off this way for years!)
Azura

(posted by Sis Zabrina for Azura in Gaza!) (p/s: I have been waiting to sign off on your blog this way for weeks!)

Egyptian Police Escorting Convoy to El Arish Port
El Arish Port, Egypt
Don’t worry officers, we come in peace….
Dr Musa- terrified by my driving skills!
Closing into Rafah Border
Rafah – 5 km … the sign that makes my Zab, Jem and Azian cried…
Looking for Palestine? Go straight ahead!
The yellow gate that has been appearing in my dream for years….
Please enter Palestine one by one….
My sisters in Palestine….
The teacher who has drawings for Malaysian children!
Yeah!! We broke the siege!!!
5000+ km of driving is worth this moment of happiness!
Speech! Speech! Speech!
Just now was at the border… now really going into the city of Gaza….

http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=learisbussys-20&o=1&p=8&l=bpl&asins=B000BBOU90&fc1=000000&IS2=1&lt1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=000000&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

‘Israel occupation nearing its end’

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Sun Oct 3, 2010 2:30PM


Viva Palestina’s head, former UK lawmaker George Galloway (L) embraces a Palestinian Muslim cleric in Istanbul, Turkey on Tuesday, September 28, 2010.

A spokesman for the international Viva Palestina aid convoy, which is set to break Israel’s siege of the Gaza Strip, says the Israeli occupation of Palestine is near its end.

“The life of the occupation is shortening,” a Press TV correspondent in Syria quoted Zaher Birawi as saying on Sunday.

Israeli forces said they withdrew from Gaza in 2005. The military, however, continues to carry out regular bloody attacks on the enclave.

Tel Aviv, meanwhile, retains its occupation of the Palestinian territories surrounding Gaza and has been keeping the coastal sliver under an all-out land, naval and aerial blockade for more than three years.

Viva Palestina has been arranged by a UK-based charity of the same name, headed by former British lawmaker George Galloway.

The convoy left London for Gaza earlier this month in its fifth attempt to bring relief supplies to the impoverished enclave.

It recently stopped by in Turkey, where it paid respect to Cetin Topcuoglu, one of the nine Turks who died in a May Israeli attack on the Freedom Flotilla — a Gaza-bound aid convoy.

Referring to Topcuoglu, Birawi said the occupation was in a state of decline as people “like our Shahid (martyr) and his brothers…give their blood, their lives for the sake of Palestine.”

“We feel that we are not alone and we are going towards the freedom of Palestine,” he said. “Giving our effort and our money…our support are steps towards the freedom of Palestine.”

Viva Palestina recently arrived in Syria, where it was greeted by thousands of supporters and joyously received by high-profile Syrian politicians, Alkatib said.

“The convoy will be boosted by more vehicles coming from different Arab countries, from Morocco to Qatar. The vehicles would outnumber 115,” he said.

HN/AKM/MMN River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

Viva Palestina 5

Viva Palestina 5

New convoy #5 by land and by sea. May Allah SWT bless those who put their life on the line.

The terrible massacre aboard the Mavi Marmara on 31 May has brought a sea change in international opinion against the inhumane siege on the people of Gaza.
Far from deterring people from seeking to bring that siege to an end, the Israeli assault on the Freedom Flotilla is spurring on even more people to bring humanitarian aid to the Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip and to end the blockade.

Viva Palestina has organised three massive land convoys to Gaza in the last 18 months – all of which have delivered their aid – and participated in the latest flotilla.

Over the last few weeks we have been discussing with partner organisations how to coordinate relief efforts by land and sea so as to have the maximum impact.

As a result Viva Palestina is launching “Viva Palestina 5 – a global lifeline to Gaza”, a gigantic land convoy leaving London on Saturday, 18th September in conjunction with convoys leaving from Casablanca and Doha and timed to coordinate with a larger and even more international flotilla aiming to reach Gaza by sea at the same time as the land convoys reach by land.

Viva Palestina will be leading the Land Convoy, a Global Lifeline To Gaza, working in partnership with the International Committee to Break the Siege on Gaza and organisations from Europe, Turkey, Middle East, Australasia, India, South Africa and more.

Saturday 18 September will certainly be the first clear Saturday after the month of Ramadan. We are aiming, with the two other legs of the land convoy, to take 500 vehicles with aid to Gaza carrying medical equipment, educational supplies and the wherewithal to rebuild a destroyed mosque, a school for orphans and to construct a maternity facility in Beit Hanoun in northern Gaza. We will be supporting the international flotilla that is scheduled for the same time.

Important institutions are now calling for the end to the siege – the European Union, the United Nations, and major charities such as Oxfam. We are appealing for the widest and strongest participation in this latest effort, which will be all the stronger as it takes place in partnership with others who have a proven track record.

You can support the convoy in many ways, as outlined below, by fundraising, promoting it, or taking part yourself. Spaces for participants by land and sea will be limited and we urge you to sign up quickly and begin fundraising now to ensure you can take part.

We have drawn on the experience of the previous Viva Palestina missions to strengthen the organisational capacity and methods of this next one. So even if you have taken part before and want to do so again, please do carefully read through the information below and follow the registration and fundraising procedures.

Please also register for our e-mail bulletin to keep up to date as further information is sent out.

We would like to thank all those who have supported the previous convoys and flotillas and who responded so magnificently when the last one was so brutally attacked.

Now is the time to answer that atrocity with a flood of humanity towards the suffering people of Gaza.

Viva Palestina is also planning to support a new flotilla of aid ships to Gaza. No date has yet been fixed, but the organisations that brought together the Freedom Flotilla in May plus others are hopeful that it will coincide with the land convoys arriving in October.

A flotilla which will be stronger even than the great achievement in May will require a massive fundraising effort. And, as then, space aboard will necessarily be very limited. We hope to make a significant contribution to this initiative while building up a wide, international coalition of support for the land convoys, which are now underway.

The message from the besieged people of Gaza is loud and clear: Come in massive numbers, in a co-ordinated and organized way, by land and sea to deliver vital aid and to highlight the injustice of the siege.

To that end we are supervising the aid that we are taking to ensure it is of the highest quality and meets the needs the people of Gaza have identified. The Israeli government seems to regard Gaza as a junkyard: supporters of the Palestinian people believe that Gaza deserves no less than what we often take for granted in Western countries, including the movement of goods and people with neighbouring countries that is vital to the reconstruction of the economy.

That’s why this global convoy to the Rafah crossing, which the Egyptian government has said is “open”, is so vital.

Posted by Faisal Tehrani at 9:14 AM

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

Middle East History Buff Hague whitewashes Israel’s Villainy on the High Seas

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Intifada Palestine

30. Jul, 2010

By Stuart Littlewood


Thousands of Palestinian Muslims and Christians are denied the entry to their holiest sites in Jerusalem

“We have to be steeped in the Middle East, way back to historical matters. Because you can’t understand it without the history.”

My MP, a Foreign Office minister in the shiny new coalition government, has written to me saying he believes the Foreign Secretary was “extremely fair, tough and statesmanlike” in his reaction to Israel’s murderous assault on the vessel Mavi Marmara and the rest of the Free Gaza flotilla.

So I re-read William Hague’s statement to the House of Commons on 2 June, and it struck me as something the Israeli government spin doctor Mark Regev might have penned.
Here are some extracts:

  • “Our clear advice to British nationals is not to travel to Gaza.

Just what Israel wants to hear. This “advice” serves to legitimize Israel’s illegal sea blockade and use of lethal force against unarmed British citizens and other nationals peacefully going about their lawfully business in international waters.

  • “We deeply deplore the loss of life…”

There must be stinging consequences for this latest barbaric act. The word “deplore” is for the spineless, do-nothing handwringers.

  • “Their welfare [meaning the British nationals on board] is our top priority.”

Mr Hague must have been alerted to advance warnings that Israel would go to any lengths, including violence, to stop the mercy ships but he took no precautionary action. Where is the mighty Royal Navy when not cruising the Caribbean or sunning itself in the Gulf? When consular access was then denied to some of the 37 Britishers abducted and jailed by Israel the Foreign Office meekly accepted the insult.

  • “…those individuals who are allegedly involved in violence against Israeli servicemen during the boarding”

Mr Hague doesn’t seem to grasp that the violence was committed by Israeli storm-troopers dropping from helicopters with guns blazing under cover of darkness.

  • “Restrictions on Gaza should be lifted – a view confirmed in United Nations security council resolution 1860.”

Resolution 1860 goes much further and calls for the sustained reopening of crossing points on the basis of the 2005 Agreement on Movement and Access, which provides for
Ø the reduction of obstacles to movement within the West Bank
Ø bus and truck convoys between the West Bank and Gaza
Ø the building of a new seaport in Gaza
Ø re-opening of the airport in Gaza

Nearly eight months ago the European Council repeated the EU’s call for “an immediate, sustained and unconditional opening of crossings for the flow of humanitarian aid, commercial goods and persons to and from Gaza” and for “full implementation of The Agreement on Movement and Access”.

What is the point of mouthing this stuff again and again and not backing it up with ACTION?

  • Hamas now has near total control of the economy”.

Perhaps our Treasury people should take lessons from them…

  • “We will, therefore, continue to press the Israeli government to lift the closure of Gaza, and plan early discussions… about what more can be done to ensure an unfettered flow of aid.”

The Foreign Office is exceedingly well practised at pressing and urging. However, “unfettered flow” is not going to happen without a naval escort and/or sanctions. If Mr Hague hasn’t learned this he hasn’t been paying attention.

  • The House should not forget the role played by Hamas in this conflict. They continue to pursue an ideology of violence and directly to undermine prospects for peace in the region.”
Mr Hague must take everyone for fools. Hamas won the 2006 elections fair and square and has been subjected to a relentless blockade, armed incursions, air strikes, sanctions, assassinations, an attempted putsch and a devastating 22-day blitzkrieg. Continually accusing Hamas of undermining prospects for peace is the ultimate absurdity.
  • “Violence has continued in recent days, with rocket fire from militants in Gaza and Israeli military incursions and air strikes in response.”

On the question of who provokes and who responds Mr Hague should consider how Israel violated the cease-fire to pave the way to the Gaza war of December 2008 and still carries out air-strikes on a daily basis.

  • “We call on Hamas to make immediate and concrete steps towards the quartet principles – unconditionally to release Gilad Shalit.”
Something like 11,000 Palestinian civilians are held (and believed tortured) in Israeli jails, many without charge. Why isn’t Mr Hague calling for their release? Shalit is a tank gunner captured in 2006. In the three years following Israel’s troop withdrawal to Gaza’s perimeter in 2005 some 1,250 Gazans, including 222 children, were killed by tank gunners and other Israeli military personnel while 11 Israelis were killed by Palestinian rocket fire.
  • “The only long-term and sustainable solution to the conflict which produced these tragic events is a two-state solution.
Politicians like Hague have stood back and allowed Israel to seize so much key Palestinian territory and establish so many ‘facts on the ground’ that the chances of a viable Palestinian state are vanishing fast.
  • “The proximity talks that are currently underway are more important than ever.”
Is he serious? How credible are ‘talks’ when one party has a gun to the other’s head and continues to steal its land, colonize its territory and murder its citizens? What honest broker would be party to such a farce?
William Hague is our top international representative. He has the power to heavily influence whether Britain makes war or peace, whether we make friends or enemies, and whether our soldiers live or needlessly die. Yet he seems to have trouble interpreting intelligence. One can see how the poor chap got his knickers in a fearful twist over Iraq and voted enthusiastically to get us mired in that shameful war… And did anyone hear him speak out against the folly of invading Afghanistan when it was his duty, as a leading Opposition figure at the time, to hold our lunatic Labour government to account?
Now he rattles his sabre at Iran and wants to turn Britain into a safe haven for Israel’s war criminals.

All things considered the guy is a big worry.

Prime minister David Cameron was a little nearer the mark when he called the blockaded Gaza Strip a “prison camp”. That brought loud squawks from the usual suspects. Plain speaking earns him a cheer but Cameron, like Hague, is an avid admirer of Israel and calls himself a Zionist.
He too only talked of “humanitarian access”, failing to acknowledge that Gazans are not allowed to export anything and therefore cannot make a living.

He has nothing to say about the 3,500 licensed fishermen who are shot up by Israeli patrol boats whenever they put to sea. Or Gaza’s students who are blocked from studying at their West Bank universities.

Or all the Christians and their Muslim brothers and sisters who are prevented from worshipping at their holy places in Jerusalem.
Or even Gaza’s marine gas field, which Israel has its greedy eyes on and Palestinians can’t go near.

Mr Hague, according to the Jewish Chronicle, told David Cameron as soon as he became Conservative party leader in 2005 that a deep understanding of the Middle East would be crucial to his claims to be taken seriously as a statesman. “We have to be steeped in the Middle East, way back to historical matters. Because you can’t understand it without the history. That’s been one of the failings sometimes with the Western governments.”

Yes, but when is the history lesson, and the story of the West’s betrayal, going to sink in?

Finally, Viva Palestina has just sent this message: “Despite the recent claims by Israel that they have ‘eased’ the siege on Gaza, vital medical supplies and equipment are still prohibited from entering the besieged region.

In June, the World Health Organization reported that Israel blocked the delivery of essential medical equipment, including a CT scanner, defibrillators and monitors.

“In addition, the Palestinian Health Ministry said Israel confiscated seven oxygen machines, donated by a Norwegian development agency, and refused to allow delivery of x-ray machines, claiming they could be used for military purposes.”

Consequently, says the message, there is a critical shortage of vital medicines and essential life saving equipment, and other supplies are expected to run out very soon.

What does it take for Cameron, Hague and Britain’s limp-wristed Foreign Office to run out of patience and forcibly smash this cruel blockade?
Stuart Littlewood
30 July 2010
Stuart Littlewood is author of the book Radio Free Palestine, which tells the plight of the Palestinians under occupation. For further information please visit http://www.radiofreepalestine.co.uk
River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

ISRAEL MAKING IT UP AS THEY GO ALONG

I4P

I have to had it to Israel, they wouldn’t know how to tell the truth if their life depended on it, they are the kind of lunatics who would keep telling the lie over and over with the truth staring them in the face. Insane people! Check the lunacy:

link Israel released the names on Sunday of the Turkish passengers (there’s the first lie) aboard the Marvi Marmara who it claims have been involved in terror activities.

Among those named was Fatima Mohammadi (31), from Iran,(not turkey) who lives in the US (Again not Turkey) and is active in the group Viva Palestine. Mahmadi tried to bring electronic components into the Gaza Strip, which Israel has forbidden. (what electronic equipment? An Ipad????? Israel bans them you know, they are only used by terrorists)

Here’s the maths,Israel’s proof:
Viva Palestina+Ipad=Terrorist
More utter insanity and bullshit:

Ken O’Keefe (also not Turkish) was also accused by the IDF of having ties to terror. O’Keefe (41), who holds US and British citizenship, was described by the IDF as an “extreme Israel-hating activist, Hamas activist. (sorry but LOLOLOLOLOLOL an ex-US Marine and Gulf War veteran ) and more comedy:His aim was to reach Gaza for training and to set up commando units for Hamas.” (Ken was one of the people on board the first boat to break the siege years ago, Israel hates him)

Read about Ken’s “deadly weapons” used in Iraq HERE. So according to Israel anyone who uses their “unarmed body” to shield children is a terrorist using a deadly weapon. You know why ole Ken warranted all those Zionist lies being flung at him? Because he was beaten up at the airport by cowardly IDF wankers.

And he’s suing Israel and he retained the proof: And Ken, being Irish and smart, did not wash himself or any of the blood off, so when he arrived home (not in Turkey) safely out of the terrorist state of Israel, he was still covered with dried blood which was the proof of the attack he sustained by the Israeli terrorists.

Posted by I4P Writers Group at 9:21 PM  
 

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

AND ANOTHER COUNTRY IS HEARD FROM

I4P

Apologise for not posting much last few days, we’ve all been attending the massive protests being held all over Ireland. Dublin, Derry, Belfast and many others this week, one after another, the turn out has been fantastic. Check out London, Ewa is speaking, MORE after this:

And in Dublin activists managed to keep the Israeli embassy closed the other day by surrounding it, does the heart proud.

So, this wee flotilla has opened the flood gate, excuse the pun. It’s like the new “must have” thing, Lebanon is sending a boat next week, ECESG has three boats going soon, Viva Palestina is organising one as well as many others. I just read where German Jews are making their own flotilla.And of course we remember that Turkey says it will do another one and it is rumoured that their Prime Minister will be on it

Not to be outdone, here comes the bog boy on the block. Problem solved, got a flotilla? Need some protection? No problem:

link Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards are ready to provide a military escort to cargo ships trying to break Israel’s blockade of Gaza.

“Iran’s Revolutionary Guards naval forces are fully prepared to escort the peace and freedom convoys to Gaza with all their powers and capabilities,”

The Iranian state news agency IRNA said on Sunday Iran would try to send humanitarian aid to Gaza in ships under an Iranian flag. It said Iran had decided to ditch previous plans to send its aid in ships flying the flag of another state.

“The Iranian humanitarian assistance will include foodstuffs, medicines and medical equipment,” the head of Iran’s Red Crescent Society

Posted by I4P Writers Group at 8:51 PM  

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian

Richard Falk: The Palestinians are winning the legitimacy war – will it matter?

Apr 5th, 2010

By Richard Falk, Redress Information & Analysis

Ever since the Balfour Declaration in 1917 gave the formal approval of the British government to the establishment of “a Jewish homeland”, profound issues of legitimacy were present in the conflict recently known as the Israel-Palestine conflict.

This original colonialist endorsement of the Zionist project has produced a steady erosion of the position of the Palestinian people on historic Palestine, which dramatically worsened over the course of the past 43 years of occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip. It has worsened due to an oppressive military occupation by Israel that involves fundamental denials of rights and pervasive violations of international humanitarian law, and because Israel has been allowed to establish “facts on the ground”, which are more properly viewed as violations of Palestinian rights, especially the establishment of extensive settlements and a separation wall constructed on occupied Palestinian territories in violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention. These developments have been flagrantly unlawful, and made the whole treatment of the Palestinian people illegitimate, as well as the occasion of continuous intense and pervasive suffering.

For decades, Palestinian political forces have exercised their right of resistance in various ways, including the extraordinary non-violent Intifada of 1987, but also engaging in armed resistance in defence of their territory. The Palestinians definitely enjoy a right of resistance, although subject to the limits of international humanitarian law, which rules out deliberate targeting of civilians and non-military targets. Such tactics of resistance challenge Israel at its point of maximum comparative advantage due both to its total military dominance, achieved in part by large subsidies from the United States, and to its ruthless disregard for civilian innocence.

In recent years, especially beginning with the brutal experience of the Lebanon war of 2006 and even more dramatically in the aftermath of the Israeli invasion of Gaza in 2008-09 (27 December 2008-18 January 2009), there has been a notable change of emphasis in Palestinian strategy. The new strategy has been to initiate what might be described as a second war, “a legitimacy war” that is essentially based on the reliance on a variety of non-violent tactics of resistance. Armed resistance has not been renounced by the Palestinians, but it has been displaced by this emphasis on non-violent tactics.

The essence of this legitimacy war is to cast doubt on several dimensions of Israeli legitimacy: its status as a moral and law abiding actor, as an occupying power in relation to the Palestinian people, and with respect to its willingness to respect the United Nations and abide by international law. Those that wage such a legitimacy war seek to seize the high moral ground in relation to the underlying conflict, and on this basis, gain support for a variety of coercive, but non-violent initiatives designed to put pressure on Israel, on governments throughout the world and on the United Nations to deny normal participatory rights to Israel as a member of international society.

These tactics also aim to mobilize global civil society to exhibit solidarity with the Palestinian struggle to achieve legitimate rights, taking the principal form of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Campaign (BDS) that operates throughout the entire world, which serves as a symbolic battlefield.

But there are other forms of action as well, including the Free Gaza Movement and Viva Palestina that aim specifically at symbolically breaking the blockade of food, medicine and fuel imposed in mid-2007, a form of collective punishment that has caused great suffering for the entire 1.5 million population of the Gaza Strip, damaging the physical and mental health of all those living under occupation.

Although the UN has been a failure so far as offering protection (beyond its essential role in providing humanitarian relief in Gaza) to the Palestinians under occupations or even in relation to the implementation of Palestinian rights under international law, it is a vital site of struggle in the legitimacy war. The whole storm unleashed by the Goldstone report involves challenging the UN to impose accountability on the Israeli political and military leadership for their alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity associated with the Gaza attacks at the end of 2008. Even if the United States shields Israelis from accountability pursuant to the procedures of the UN, including the International Criminal Court, the confirmation by the Goldstone report of allegations of criminality is a major victory for the Palestinians in the legitimacy war, and lends credibility to calls for non-violent initiatives throughout the world.

The Goldstone Report also endorses “universal jurisdiction” as a means to gain accountability, encouraging national criminal courts of any country to make use of their legal authority to hold Israeli political and military leaders criminally responsible for war crimes and crimes against humanity.

Tzipi Livni, the current Kadima opposition leader in Israel, who had been foreign minister during the Gaza attacks, cancelled a visit to Britain after she received word that a warrant for her arrest upon arrival had been issued. Even if Israeli impunity is not overcome, the authoritativeness of the Goldstone report lends weight to calls around the world to disrupt normal relations with Israel by boycotting cultural and academic activities, by disrupting trade relations through divestment moves or through refusals to load and unload ships and planes carrying cargo to or from Israel, and by pressuring governments to impose economic sanctions.

The historic inspiration for this legitimacy war is the anti-apartheid campaign waged with such success against the racist regime in South Africa. Undoubtedly, the Palestinian political motivation to focus their energies on waging a legitimacy war came from a variety of sources: disillusionment with efforts by the UN and the United States to find a just solution for the conflict; realization that armed resistance could not produce a Palestinian victory and played into the hands of Israeli diversionary tactics by making “terrorism” the issue; recognizing that the events in Lebanon and Gaza generated throughout the world widespread anger against Israel and sympathy for the Palestinians, which is gradually weakening earlier European and North American deference to Israel due to Jewish victimization in the Holocaust; and a growing sense that the worldwide Palestinian diaspora communities and their allies could be enlisted to join in the struggle if its essential nature was that of a legitimacy war.

Israeli official and unofficial support groups have recently recognized the threat posed to their expansionist settler colonial grand strategy by this recourse by Palestinians to a legitimacy war. Israeli think tanks have described “the global justice movement” associated with these tactics as a greater threat to Israel than Palestinian violence, and have even castigated reliance on international law as a dangerous form of “lawfare”. The Israeli government and Zionist organizations around the world have joined in the battle through a massive investment in public relations activities that include propaganda efforts to discredit what is sometimes called “the Durban approach”. As with other Israeli tactics, in their defensive approach to the legitimacy war, there is an absence of self-criticism involving an assessment of Palestinian substantive claims under international law. For Israel a legitimacy war is a public relations issue pure and simple, a matter of discrediting the adversary and proclaiming national innocence and virtue. Despite its huge advantage in resources devoted to this campaign, Israel is definitely losing the legitimacy war.

Even if the Palestinians win the legitimacy war there is no guarantee that this victory will produce the desired political results. It requires Palestinian patience, resolve, leadership and vision, as well as sufficient pressure to force a change of heart in Israel, and probably in Washington as well. In this instance, it would seem to require an Israeli willingness to abandon the core Zionist project to establish a Jewish state, and that does not appear likely from the vantage point of the present. But always the goals of a legitimacy war appear to be beyond reach until mysteriously attained by the abrupt and totally unexpected surrender by the losing side.

Until it collapses the losing side pretends to be unmovable and invincible, a claim that is usually reinforced by police and military dominance. This is what happened in the Soviet Union and South Africa, earlier to French colonial rule in Indochina and Algeria, and to the United States in Vietnam.

It is up to all of us dedicated to peace and justice to do all we can to help the Palestinians prevail in the legitimacy war and bring their long ordeal to an end.

Prof. Richard Falk’s Statements on Israeli-Palestinian conflict (Wikipedia):

In a June 2007 article, Slouching toward a Palestinian Holocaust, Falk compared some Israeli policies with regard to the Palestinians to the Nazi Germany record of collective punishment. Identifying himself as a Jewish American, Falk stated that his use of the term “holocaust” “represents a rather desperate appeal to the governments of the world and to international public opinion to act urgently to prevent these current [Israeli] genocidal tendencies from culminating in a collective tragedy [for the Palestinians]“.

Falk also stated that “the comparison should not be viewed as literal, but … that a pattern of criminality associated with Israeli policies in Gaza has actually been supported by the leading democracies of the 21st century”.

Falk responded to criticism by saying: “If this kind of situation had existed for instance in the manner in which China was dealing with Tibet or the Sudanese government was dealing with Darfur, I think there would be no reluctance to make that comparison.” He attributed the reluctance to criticize Israel’s policies to the sensitive history of the Jewish people, as well as the state’s ability to “avoid having [its] policies held up to international law and morality”.

Richard Falk is Professor Emeritus of International Law at Princeton University and author of Crimes of War: Iraq and The Costs of War: International Law, the UN and World Order after Iraq”. He is also current UN Rapporteur for Palestine.

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Interview with George Galloway

Clic The Pics or the Link

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Remember Palestine Interviews George Galloway upon Arrival in Gaza with the Viva Palestina Convoy

Link

Press TV-Remember Palestine-01-12-2010-2.mp4

Palestine Video – A Palestine Vlog

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 Uprooted Palestinian

Ramullah Traitor, Neopatriots of Rizzostine On: Viva Palestina, Siege and the Wall of Shame


Hamas is the Enemy.
Galloway crossed the limits of Soliderity.
Long Live Pharaoh and his WALL. until the return  to controll Rafah.  
Let Egypt build its Iron Wall mile deep, and let Israel build its Cement Wall mile high and let. Operate Gaza Sea Port under a joint US/NATO. Virtually placing Gaza under an international custody.

Take it from their own mounths:

“Contrary to expectations in Turkey, he (Abass) did not allow Egypt to be blamed here, placing the blame squarely on Hamas’ shoulders.”

“Egypt, as a sovereign state, had a right to guard and protect its borders as it wants. … it was Egypt that was the key player in the region,” [ABBAS]

Contrary to the expectation of readers in Rizzostine, Hiatham Sabbah did not allow Egypt to be blamed here, placing the blame squarely on Galloway’s and Hamas’ shoulders.

“this turned to no more than smearing Egyptians, which have done to Gaza more than any other Arabian or Western country did.”
“why would Egypt open the boarders? At the end of the day they have the right to protect their citizens”
“Why in the world any country open its borders without any regulations?
“We all know who controls the tunnels, and what they are used for. Who can dig a tunnel and who can’t. What can be brought from Egyptian Rafah and what should not. And we all know that the tunnels are not used ONLY for food. In fact food is just a cover to many other businesses and even worse a passage for terrorist groups such as Al-Qaedaa and their likes which Gaza are full with these days. If this is not enough reason for Egypt to construct this iron wall, I don’t know what can be a good reason. That not to mention the drugs business. Guess who is doing the trading and were the money goes. definitely not to buy food for the palestinians in Gaza. ”  [Neopatriot Haitham]

“Hamas had taken the steps that ended with the closing of the Rafah border gate,…. Hamas was trying to force open the Rafah gate under its control…. President Abbas made it clear, however, that as the legitimate Palestinian administration, they would never accept this.” [ABBAS]

“without any international guarantees that Palestine is going to be autonomous in controlling its own borders for the good of the people in Palestine and not to serve factions whose agendas are not acceptable to any patriot. [Neopatriot Haitham]

     Thanks Haitham… you speak the truth, the goals and objectives of the solidarity movement with Palestine but be the same as Palestinians; ending the siege of Gaza, ending the Israeli/Jewish Occupation and of course the right of return for Palestinians.

    However the immediate goal is opening the sea port of Gaza for international shipping, and let Egypt build its Iron Wall mile deep, and let Israel build its Cement Wall mile high and let Ramallah partner with Israel in keeping the gates closed… Opening the Gaza Sea Port will end the siege of Gaza once and for all… it will allow the free flow of goods, and people to and from Gaza… of course this could not happens without the support of the US.
    That is why I called for the operation of Gaza Sea Port under a joint US/NATO with both organizations taking total operational and security control free and independent from Israel, Egypt, Hamas and certainly Fatah and Ramallah….Virtually placing Gaza under an international custody… to allow people to rebuild what Israel destroyed and what Ramallah corrupted.” [sami jamil jadallah]

    President Abbas defends Egypt against Turkish vilification

    Font Size: Larger|Smaller

    Thursday, January 7, 2010
    Semih Idiz

    There is anger and indignation in Turkey directed at Egypt because it would not initially let an aid convoy go through the Rafah border gate to Gaza earlier this week. Turkish public opinion was quick off the mark with its gut reaction against Cairo, after clashes between Egyptian police and members of the convoy – during which one Egyptian soldier was killed by a shot fired from the Hamas controlled Gaza.

    We had a similar situation last year following the events in the Xinjiang province of China. Overnight China became an object of hate for Turkish Islamists and nationalists. Ironically China was for the same groups a country to be admired a week before these events for the way it was standing up to the West, and competing with it in every sphere.

    Fickle as ever, those Turks who turned on China overnight did not bother to question the reasons for what was happening in Urumchi. It was again an instant gut reaction, with Islamic and nationalist sympathies coming to the surface in an automatic and Pavlovian manner.

    We had to opportunity on Thursday to ask Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas a few questions about all this, during his visit to Ankara for high-level talks about the latest developments in the Middle East. Their papers having carried the anger against Egypt to their main headlines, some of the reporters in attendance were curious about what the Palestinian president had to say about the events at Rafah.

    His answer indicated that he too will become an object of hatred in Turkey, where Hamas – regardless of all its terrorism – is the better-loved side of the Palestinian divide. The reason why he will become so is clear. Contrary to expectations in Turkey, he did not allow Egypt to be blamed here, placing the blame squarely on Hamas’ shoulders.

    Indicating that like all sovereign countries, Egypt too had a right to protect its borders, President Abbas also reminded that many aid convoys to Gaza had gone over this country in the past. Abbas said that the latest problem arose when those in the convoy – headed by the maverick British politician and former Labour MP George Galloway – insisted on going into Gaza over Egypt through a route they selected themselves, refusing to use the route Cairo had determined for them.

    Abbas said that Egypt, as a sovereign state, had a right to guard and protect its borders as it wants. He also indicated in so many words that it was Egypt that was the key player in the region, not just in terms of the Middle East peace process, but also in terms of the attempts to bring about a rapprochement between estranged Palestinians.
    Abbas pointed out that it was Hamas, after all, that had taken the steps that ended with the closing of the Rafah border gate, and the imposition of an embargo on the region. He also agreed that Hamas was trying to force open the Rafah gate under its control with a view to gaining some kind of international recognition a separate independent entity.

    President Abbas made it clear, however, that as the legitimate Palestinian administration, they would never accept this. The Palestinian leader also made it clear that their principle priority at the present time was to get Hamas to accept general elections in Palestine.

    Abbas said that while Hamas was elected democratically in 2006, it seemed now that it did not want to leave power by democratic means and so was opposing the holding of elections, which it had initially agreed on under Egyptian auspices.

    He also made it clear that this was the point at which he wants Turkey to intervene, in order to use its ties with Hamas to convince this organization to accept the holding of general elections.

    Put in perspective, the grand role that Turkey sees itself playing in the Middle East peace process was not exactly reflected in Abbas’ remarks.

     According to him, it is Egypt that is up front in this respect, and that is the way they want it to stay, no matter what Turkey or Turks may feel about that country at the present time.

    We found Abbas’ remarks useful in terms of shattering some illusions that the Turkish public has because of being generally ill-informed about the intricacies of Middle East politics. It was also telling that the convoy that caused so much trouble at the Rafah border gate, had at least four deputies from Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party, or AKP.
    This alone was enough to show where the government’s real sympathies lie when it comes to the divide between the Palestinians. Behind all of this, of course, Prime Minister Erdoğan’s by now famous reprimand of Israeli President Shimon Peres at Davos last year.

    That made Erdoğan an instant hero, not just in Turkey but also in the streets of the Middle East – and especially in Gaza.
    Even George Galloway complimented Erdoğan during the incident at the Rafah crossing this week. He said his wish was that all Arab countries, and his country the United Kingdom, would one day have leaders like Erdoğan.
    Given his fondness for populism, these remarks were undoubtedly music to Erdoğan’s ears. However, that is about all they represent. Because the Middle East being the place it is, Erdoğan’s interlocutors are not the masses that admire him today, but the leaders of the various countries that look on some of his behavior with misgivings.
    The simple fact is that most of these leaders today are against Hamas, a fact that Turkish public opinion is not fully aware of until something like the incident at Rafah happens. Now that portraits of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak are being burned across Turkey, and Egypt is being vilified nationwide alongside Israel, it is unlikely that these leaders, starting from Mubarak, are going to be very pleased.
    President Abbas’ strong endorsement of Egypt as the key player in the region goes to show that the Erdoğan government is not fully in tune with the established “powers that be” in the Middle East. Neither is his strong endorsement of Iran enamoring him much to some of these regional powers, since they too have serious concerns about Tehran’s efforts to enrich uranium.

    Turkey has alienated Israel and lost its chance, for all intents and purposes, to mediate between that country and Syria. Turkey is now in the process of alienating the other key regional power, namely Egypt. From President Abbas’ remarks it is also clear that there is little role for Turkey in trying to mediate between Hamas and the PLO.
    Put another way, all that is expected from Ankara in this respect is to try and convince Hamas, with whom it enjoys good ties, to accept general elections in Palestine. This appears, however, to be no more than a messenger’s role, and does not provide the image of “proactivity” that Ankara is trying to project concerning its involvement in the Middle East.
    The fact that the government did nothing to calm Turkish public opinion this week against Egypt – by trying to explain what was going on in Rafah – and instead allowed the reputation of an important country like Egypt, a traditional friend, to be dragged in the gutter will clearly not be forgotten easily in some quarters in the Middle East.
    Related Posts:

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     Uprooted Palestinian

    #2 VIVA PALESTINA UPDATE 10:35 GMT 6 JAN

    Link

    UPDATED I keep forgetting to add things I post on twitter to the blog here, sorry bout that but it’s getting confusing. I heard that the convoy has been forced to accept leaving behind those 60 vehicles. Turkey will take control and possession of them, not Egypt. Also, Just got a message from the boys:
    Thanking everyone for all their support yesterday. Everything OK here. We are leaving for Rafah within hours for 48 hour stay inside Gaza. Till we enter we won’t know if it’s true or not. Things are settled here now so all looks good. Will text when in Gaza.

    The 5 Boys
    More as we get it:)

    Posted by Irish4Palestine at 10:33 AM 0 comments Links to this post
    Labels: break the ILLEGAL siege, Danny Doyle, Derek McChrystal, derry to gaza, Eanna O’Donaghaile, Edward McBride, jonathan crockett, viva palestina

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     Uprooted Palestinian

    Viva Palestina’s bumpy road

     By Dr Hanan Chehata
    Chehata says most of volunteers joined the group because of their convictions [Reuters]

    In an international effort to show solidarity with the Palestinian people, Viva Palestina (VP) volunteers from around the world have left their families and in some cases resigned from their jobs in order to take part in this humanitarian undertaking.

    They have done this for no other reason than that they feel strongly about the crisis in Gaza. The images that they saw flash across their television screens during the assault on Gaza in 2008-9 has been seared into their minds.

    It is sad that it took such a horrific tragedy to wake people up but one inevitable consequence of the Israeli attacks and their cruel blockade was certainly to educate the world as to the reality of the situation.

    Civil action

    Until that point many people could not even pinpoint Gaza on a map. Now they are spending their time and risking their personal safety to defend Gaza and its people.
    Seeing the images of the chaos and destruction during the Gaza assault certainly mobilised a lot of people into civil action.

    Immediately following the atrocities, those who were appalled by the number of civilians killed, who had seen the UN buildings, schools, mosques and hospitals deliberately targeted decided that they could no longer sit back or pretend that they did not know what was taking place.

    In depth

     ‘Fighting to break Gaza siege’
     Egypt blocks US activists’ march
     Video: Gaza aid held up in Jordan

    Ignorance was no longer an excuse. Action was called for and multiple tactics were employed from the grassroots level upwards. Protests and demonstrations were held, MPs were bombarded with emails and letters, campaigns to boycott Israeli goods were put into action and yet, while all of this has drawn attention to the plight of the Gazans, the situation has not improved.

    In fact, the siege is tightening and the condition of the people living there has deteriorated considerably. More direct action was clearly required. People were becoming increasingly disillusioned by the inaction of their governments and, in some cases, their direct complicity in Israel’s oppression and aggression against the Palestinian people.

    Thus enters VP 2009. Here was finally a way for individuals who felt betrayed by their government’s to take direct action and be themselves a tangible part of the solution.

    By physically taking in the aid that Israel would not otherwise let through, not only is the convoy alleviating the short term suffering of the Palestinian people by providing them with desperately needed medicine, clothes and other vital humanitarian aid but it is also refocusing attention on the ongoing crisis that exists in Gaza.
    However, in a fairly unexpected turn of events a new actor has walked into the scene. If you ask anybody the question, “who is responsible for the siege on Gaza and the suffering of the Palestinian people?”, they will inevitably respond “Israel”, and rightly so.

    Cairo’s complicity

    While Egyptian government has been complicit for a very long time now, its wrongdoings have been of a secondary nature. However, somehow, recently Egyptian government is succeeding, much to Israel’s delight, in diverting attention away from the Israelis.

    This has primarily been done by their insistence on placing unreasonable obstacles in the path of the convoy. For instance, the VP Convoy had planned to enter Gaza on December 27 to mark the first anniversary of the attack.

    That was intended to show how, one year on, the siege continues to compound the suffering of the Gazans. They have not been allowed to rebuild their homes or their lives.

    Instead of being in Gaza and handing over the aid to the waiting recipients on 27th of December as planned, the VP Convoy was stranded in a compound in Jordan with hundreds of vans and ambulances full of aid. The reason for this was that Egypt had refused to grant permission for the convoy to pass through the necessary part of their territory.

    The Egyptian government has been extremely uncooperative and have fought VP every step of the way. While VP has done their utmost to accede to their demands, the Egyptian authorities continued to place more onerous conditions which George Galloway, the British MPand VP leader, has said he is unwilling to undertake.

    These include dealing with the Israeli government directly. Why should VP have to deal with Israel when the issue is about taking aid from one Arab country to another?

    Extra cost

    Eventually, we were forced to return to Syria from where we chartered special flights to transport us to El-Arish while our vehicles were loaded onto ferries.

    The extra cost, which exceeded $300,000, could have meant the total collapse of the mission because the sum required was most certainly beyond the reach of individual convoy members.
    Thanks to the generosity of the Turkish contingent and a few other Arab donors, we managed to continue with our journey.

    There is absolutely no justification for the Egyptians’ stalling tactics. Even now after our arrival in El-Arish and in spite of previous agreements, we are confronted with new obstacles, namely the number of vehicles allowed to enter.

    Egypt refused access to Gaza, angering  the convoy of activists [AFP]

    Instead of making the transition as easy as possible for those who have taken it upon themselves to do the job that frankly Arab governments should be doing, Egypt seems to be almost punishing the Convoy for daring to try and help the people of Palestine and are playing a power game, trying to show who is in control, a completely unnecessary game to play, against  merely powerless individuals, considering what is at stake.
    Frustration, anger and disgust with the Egyptian government have naturally increased incrementally as the days have passed. They have been the subject of much vilification.

    I have spoken to many people who have vowed to boycott Egypt from now on.

    It is bad enough that Egypt is allying itself with Israel, the aggressor, against the victim, Palestine, by tightening the siege and restricting access to Gaza via the Rafah border crossing but shortly before we left home the news that they were building an underground steel wall at Rafah to block off access to the tunnels, the one lifeline to Gaza, set the tone for everyone’s disgust.

    Worse still, while we are sitting miles away from our desti
    nation, stranded and tired we received news that Benjamin Netanyahu was welcomed into Cairo with open arms. What a disgraceful state of affairs! A convoy of humanitarian aid is treated with hostility while the perpetrators war crimes are welcomed with open arms!

    Role of villain

    Egypt has had every opportunity to redeem and to recast itself in the role of the hero. Instead they have needlessly and voluntarily cast themselves in the role of villain.

    I am half English and half Egyptian and used to be so proud of that fact but since Egypt have chosen to ally itself so unnecessarily and immorally with Israel, I feel a profound sense of shame.

    When Convoy members know of my heritage, I am bombarded with a tirade of very reasonable questions including “Why is Egypt adding to the suffering of the Palestinian people?” “Why are the Egyptians not helping their Muslim brothers and sisters – aren’t they part of the Muslim Ummah (community) as well?” These are all perfectly reasonable questions to which I have no answers.

    Now that we are on its territory, all that is left is to call upon Egypt allow our convoy through! I love Egypt and I love its people and have to keep reminding those that I meet that the Egyptian people are not being fairly represented by their government.

    I fear that if it does not change its policies immediately they will be branded irrevocably with the same label deserved by Israel, War Criminals and villains of modern history.

    Dr Hanan Chehata is travelling with the Viva Palestina convoy. She is director of public relations at the Middle East Monitor (MEMO), London. Her blogs from the convoy can be read on www.memonitor.org.uk
    The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Al Jazeera’s editorial policy.

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     Uprooted Palestinian

    Noam Chomsky Says Media is Blacking Out Effort to Aid Gaza

    Viva Palestina are at the forefront while Brown and the other loafers twiddle their thumbs.

    Gaza robbed of the most basic human right: the right to health


    By Stuart Littlewood

    4 January 2010

    Stuart Littlewood views British Premier Gordon Brown’s weasel words in response an open letter by Medical Aid for Palestinians calling for an end to the criminal blockade of Gaza. He calls on Brown to do what really counts for Israel: impose sanctions.

    “…while Brown prattles about how unacceptable it is that Israel still prevents aid from reaching those who so badly need it, there is no sign that he’s prepared to do anything about it. On the other hand Richard Falk, the Special Rapporteur on human rights in the occupied Palestinian territories, is much more positive. He tells UN Radio: ‘Israel does not respond to language of diplomacy, which has encouraged the lifting of the blockade, and so what I am suggesting is that it has to be reinforced by a threat of adverse economic consequences for Israel.'”

    Britain’s prime minister, Gordon Brown, marked the start of the New Year in a way that many campaigners for justice and liberty will find lamentable.

    The charity MAP (Medical Aid for Palestinians) had written an open letter to Brown asking him to “urgently use all available diplomatic means to bring an immediate and unconditional end to the blockade of the Gaza Strip”.

    It reminded Brown that a year after the assault on Gaza, in which almost 1,400 Palestinians were killed and more than 5,300 injured, civilians continued to pay a devastating price. “Across the Gaza Strip, over 3,530 homes were completely destroyed and more than 2,850 severely damaged. Tens of thousands more homes suffered structural damage.”

    A recent MAP survey of the most vulnerable families shows that only two per cent have been able to repair their homes from damage inflicted in last winter’s bombardment. Families now face the winter in tents or in the rubble of their destroyed homes.

    Furthermore, it said:

    the blockade is directly compromising one of the people of Gaza’s most basic human rights; the right to health. Israeli authorities continue to routinely, and without explanation, block or delay the entry of medical supplies and equipment, leaving hospitals less able to cope. As hospitals falter, patients seeking care outside the Gaza Strip are routinely denied exit for life-saving medical treatment…

    And that’s not all. A public health disaster is looming: with no spare parts for maintenance or repair, water and sewage treatment facilities cannot function. “The World Health Organization reports that over 80 per cent of Gaza’s water is no longer safe to drink, while up to 80 million cubic litres of untreated or partially treated sewage is being dumped into the sea daily.”

    The letter also reminded Mr Brown that the British government had said Israel’s blockade must end, and emphasized the need for fine words to be backed up by meaningful diplomatic action. It was signed by nearly 4,000 people.

    And what was Mr Brown’s response?

    Dear Friends

    Your open letter to me of 27 December in the Observer was right to draw attention to the grave humanitarian situation in Gaza, one year after a conflict that cost over a thousand Palestinian lives and those of over 10 Israelis.

    As I have made clear repeatedly to the Israeli government, it is unacceptable that Israel continues to prevent aid from reaching those who so badly need it in Gaza. EU foreign ministers reinforced our call for full humanitarian access earlier this month.

    Alongside diplomatic pressure, I pledge that the UK will remain in the forefront of the humanitarian effort. Following the offensive a year ago, we spent GBP 20 million on humanitarian aid for the people of Gaza.

    And on 28 December, Douglas Alexander announced a total package of GBP 53.5 million for Palestine, with a particular focus on Gaza – including GBP 5 million of new funding for the United Nations’ work with Gazan refugees.

    While Hamas’s actions can be no justification for preventing aid reaching the people of Gaza, Hamas must remove the menace of rocket attacks against the people of southern Israel, and release Gilad Shalit.

    Ultimately, we can only give the people of Gaza real hope when genuine negotiations bring a lasting and just peace settlement. The parameters of such a potential agreement are clear. In the coming year, we must pursue still more vigorously a comprehensive peace based on secure and viable states of Israel and Palestine. For all of our futures, those who oppose justice and peace for the peoples of the region must not be allowed to prevail.

    Yours sincerely
    Gordon Brown
    1 January 2010

    He hasn’t budged an inch and just gets sillier.

    Britain spent GBP 20 million on humanitarian aid for the people of Gaza last year? Where and when? Can any of it be accounted for?

    “I pledge that the UK will remain in the forefront of the humanitarian effort,” says Mr Brown. No, Viva Palestina are at the forefront while Brown and the other loafers twiddle their thumbs.

    And what has the release of the Israeli paid killer Gilad Shalit got to do with this? Why isn’t Mr Brown evenhanded enough to call for the release of 11,000 Palestinians who are rotting in Israeli jails. Doesn’t he know that Israel’s troops continue to abduct Palestinians on a daily basis?

    And hasn’t it dawned on Brown yet that you can make something clear to the Israelis till you’re blue in the face but they’ll take no notice unless you’re prepared to act?

    As for “negotiations”, is international law suddenly negotiable? Are UN resolutions negotiable?

    Is “real hope” only available from Britain at some distant future point in time when non-existent negotiations have brought a lasting and just peace settlement? What gobbledygook is that? Humanitarian action is needed now – today – and surely must leapfrog interminable, bogus peace processes.

    If the parameters of a peace settlement are so “clear”, why doesn’t the British government and the other Western powers stop dithering and implement them? For decades our scheming, conniving Western leaders have failed to deliver one jot or tittle of justice to the Holy Land. Instead, they have allowed the enormity of Israel’s crimes to escalate, for which the lawless entity continues to be admired and rewarded in the higher echelons of British government to the point where certain ministers plan to change our laws to protect wanted war criminals and let them walk free on the street of our capital city.

    And have you looked at the map recently, Mr Brown? What is clear to most people is that your “comprehensive peace based on secure and viable states of Israel and Palestine” is now impossible, especially for Palestine, without forceful action by the international community.

    What’s needed are “adverse economic consequences for Israel”

    While Brown was penning his reply to MAP, the Gaza Freedom Marchers were composing their excellent Cairo Declaration calling for an end to Israeli apartheid. In it they point to our own governments having given Israel direct economic, financial, military and diplomatic support and allowing it to behave with impunity.

    They point to the contempt for Palestinian democracy shown by Israel, the US, Canada, the EU and others after the Palestinian elections of 2006.

    They point to the war crimes committed by Israel during the invasion of Gaza a year ago and make no bones about the need to end the charitable status enjoyed by the Jewish National Fund (JNF), of which Brown is unwisely a patron.

    And while Brown prattles about how unacceptable it is that Israel still prevents aid from reaching those who so badly need it, there is no sign that he’s prepared to do anything about it. On the other hand Richard Falk, the Special Rapporteur on human rights in the occupied Palestinian territories, is much more positive. He tells UN Radio: “Israel does not respond to language of diplomacy, which has encouraged the lifting of the blockade, and so what I am suggesting is that it has to be reinforced by a threat of adverse economic consequences for Israel.”

    So let’s hear it, Mr Brown. Let’s hear the S-word: SANCTIONS.

    After all, you’re not afraid to deploy sanctions against poor beat-up Palestinians, and against Iraqis, and against Iranians – none of whom have ever posed a threat to Britain.

    So you shouldn’t flinch from using sanctions against the thugs for whom last year’s killing spree wasn’t enough and who now threaten a second Gaza onslaught.

    River to Sea
     Uprooted Palestinian

    So your job is smearing Haitham and his sites and work? Thus Said Mary Rizzo


    Mary Rizzo is an art restorer, translator and writer living in Italy. Editor and co-founder of Palestine Think Tank, co-founder of Tlaxcala translations collective. Her personal blog is Peacepalestine.

    mary said…

    So your job is smearing Haitham and his sites and work? It is easy to do from anonymity in California, is it not? Haitham may have ideas or thoughts that are mistaken, and all who disagree with him can and should express that, and they should not be put on trial – but his good faith, his total devotion to his people and their total liberation is beyond doubt and your seeking to foment wars between activists and Palestinians who are against Jewish Occupation of Palestine and against all client regimes of the USA/Israel, including Egypt’s I find negative. But, you can’t argue with UP, he will turn it into a public smear war to discredit other activists. At any rate, his work, which you seem to want to in one fell swoop berate, has allowed the Palestinian voice to go viral over the web, and that includes yours. I think you are the only person I know who has doubted his integrity and his commitment to his people. It does not look nice on you, however much Haitham may write things that could be wrong on some counts, Haitham is not doing Pharaoh’s work, and shame on you.

    As you may have not noted, Stuart Littlewood, after reading Haitham’s report, amended his own report, and he is in agreement with Haitham’s questioning. You can see it all on Redress: http://www.redress.cc/palestine/slittlewood20091229
    and now you can attack Redress and Littlewood, for the sake of consistency.

    Littlewood takes direct suggestions from Haitham, that no one should ever have had been put in a condition to be begging or bargaining with Egypt. If you do it, then be prepared to do it. If you don’t want to do it, say so and don’t pretend, and if you want to break the siege, you break the siege, as Free Gaza was able to do, without genuflecting to anyone.

    Awaiting your attack of Redress or Littlewood, for consistency’s sake.



    Reaching the Gates of Hell is not so easy


    Egyptian ruler Mubarak torpedoes international voluntary aid to Gaza

    By Stuart Littlewood
    29 December 2009

    Stuart Littlewood considers the predicament of the Viva Palestina international humanitarian convoy – the culmination of voluntary work by thousands of supporters, fund-raisers and donors in the UK, Europe and internationally – whose journey to besieged Gaza was thwarted by Egypt’s ruler, Husni Mubarak, just four hours before it reached its destination.

    The Viva Palestina convoy is being given the run-around by Egypt’s President Husni Mubarak and his “Awkward Squad”.

    My heart goes out to the 500 or so dedicated people from 17 different countries who brought their convoy of 200 vehicles almost to the gates of Gaza, only to be stranded at Aqaba just four hours short of their destination.

    And not only the 500 driving with the Viva Palestina convoy but the thousands of supporters, fund-raisers and donors back home who have worked for months to provide the medical supplies, the food, the transport and the countless other humanitarian items.

    These 500 “salt of the earth” were kicking their heels in Aqaba, and threatening a hunger strike while their precious cargoes spoiled in the heat, because the Egyptian authorities wouldn’t allow them to enter Egypt through the port of Nuweiba. The reason appeared to be that the road across the Sinai from Nuweiba to Rafah ran close to the Israeli border and the 250 trucks and ambulances of the convoy might have caused “a big infiltration problem”.

    Why the Egyptian army couldn’t have provided an escort to ensure that no trucks left the column, wasn’t explained. The convoy had already taken great trouble and gone many hundreds of extra miles to avoid Israel.

    To have come so far and given so much – in time, effort, money and other resources – and to be thwarted at the last minute, was very hard to take.


    However, Egypt is perfectly entitled to lay down rules and its Foreign Ministry issued a statement saying: “The Egyptian government welcomes the passage of the convoy into the Gaza Strip on 27 December, on condition that it abides by the mechanisms in place for humanitarian aid convoys to the Palestinian people, including most importantly the entry of convoys through the port of El-Arish.”


    In February 2006 the British MP George Galloway, who leads today’s convoy, was refused entry into Egypt. The last Viva Palestina convoy was pelted with stones and vandalised at El-Arish, which is about 28 miles from the Rafah border crossing into Gaza, after Galloway reportedly called President Mubarak uncomplimentary names and urged the country’s armed forces to overthrow him.

    We all know what Mubarak is, but how sensible was it for Galloway to broadcast his opinion to the world when he wanted easy passage for his convoy through the guy’s territory?
    There’s clearly no love lost here, and I heard the Egyptians had imposed three conditions if the convoy wished to reach Gaza through Egypt:

    1. It must hand all its vehicles and aid over to UNWRA.
    2. It must drive 500 miles back to Syria, then take ship from Latakia to the port of El-Arish.
    3. It must ask Israel’s permission to cross from Egypt to Gaza.

    This information came from members of the convoy, not the organizers. Conditions number 1 and 3 are unthinkable, surely. But this evening the organizers announced that the convoy, after mediation by Turkey, would indeed turn around and head back to Syria and embark from Latakia to El-Arish. Nothing has been said about complying with the other two conditions.

    The voyage should take them under the noses of the trigger-happy and piratical Israeli gunboats who think nothing of opening fire on Gazan fishermen. Will the Royal Navy be dispatched to provide an armed escort?

    The question remains: did the organizers know all this beforehand – especially the El-Arish stipulation – or was it suddenly sprung on them? Was clearance given for the southern route via Aqaba, then rescinded, or was it left to chance?

    The convoy’s organizers are not answering basic questions and the full picture has still not emerged.

    “This is a very determined convoy and we’re not going anywhere except to Gaza,” says George Galloway.

    God speed you to the Gates of Hell then, George. But next time you should maybe consider going by sea, sailing 200 boats though international waters and demanding that the Western powers guarantee the freedom of the high seas. That way you don’t need to bow to the likes of Mubarak.

    And you could become an admiral.


    Stuart Littlewood is author of the book Radio Free Palestine, which tells the plight of the Palestinians under occupation. For further information please visit www.radiofreepalestine.co.uk.

    Comment:

    Mary
    I was expecting your visit earlier, to vent. You could have done it there at your site. 
    A look at the majority of comments of your reader tells why you prefered to do it here, and explains your accusation. Moreover, you are angry fore something else and you found a chance to vent your anger.
    Your are welcome, and free. Therefore I moved you comment up here.

    “Haitham is not doing Pharaoh’s work,”

    With full respect to his history and good intentions, he didn’t just called Viva Palalestinia to apologize to Pharaoh, he called viva palestina to put pressure on Pharaoh and to “put the blame and the pressure on US, Western Power and the occupation, Israel. Then they will allow PA (Dahlan) to run Rafah border, which in turn will make Egyptians opens it.” Period.


    As for attacking Redress and Littlewood, for the sake of consistency. Why should I attack him, at least he is not a Palestinian, and you said he “af’ter reading Haitham’s report, amended his own report, and he is in agreement with Haitham’s questioning.’ I shall disapoint you by saying Littlewood spoiled his own report. Thanks to Admeral Haitham.

    Littlewood claimed that the viva palestina organizers said “‘Nothing has been said about complying with the other two conditions.” – the unthinkable Conditions number 1 and 3.


    HERE, MARY.
    TAKE IT FORM THE MOUTH OF Galloway: I refuse any kind of coordination with Israel

    Viva Palestina may fail to deliver the Aid, even so, it did a great work in exposing the TRAITORS, and your guy is paving the way to blaim Viva Palestina for that failure. 

    Hopfully, Littlewood, haven’t read Haitham’s “Truth” about the food smuggling used as a “cover to many other businesses”, and a “passage for terrorist groups such as Al-Qaedaa and their likes which Gaza are full with these days.” and party doing “the trading and were the money goes. Definitely not to buy food for the Palestinians in Gaza”I am not working to smear your Guy, his Sites and History. He is doing that to himselve and his sites. I am trying to stop his attempt to smear both missions of the International Freedom Fighters, and speading Abu Alghaitth propaganda about the wall of shame??

    Yes we all do mistakes, and non of us holds the ultimate truth. We have to learn the vitue of admitting our mistakes, instaed of storming our minds to justfy it. Finally, why the mistakes of your guys can be forgiven, and the “mistake” of Galloway is not tolerable??


    River to Sea
      Uprooted Palestinian

    Galloway: I refuse any kind of coordination with Israel

    [ 30/12/2009 – 07:05 PM ]

    DAMASCUS, (PIC)– British lawmaker and pro-Palestine activist George Galloway stated Tuesday that he had received two weeks ago an Egyptian letter demanding that he obtains an Israeli approval before allowing the Lifeline 3 convoy to pass into the Gaza Strip, but he refused any kind of coordination with Israel.

    “Egypt may be at the beck, call and command of Israel, but Viva Palestina is not,” said Galloway in a news conference.

    “We refuse to co-operate with a country which continues to illegally hold Palestinian lands, builds even more settlements in the teeth of world opinion and which, just a year ago, slaughtered 1400 people in the Gaza Strip and devastated the infrastructure. Israel refuses to let through one brick, pane of glass or nail to help rebuild the carnage its warplanes caused.”

    Galloway added that the land convoy to Gaza was symbolic because its arrival was due to coincide with the first anniversary of the war on Gaza, “which the Egyptian authorities have done all they can to thwart”.

    The Egyptian letter read, according to the Viva Palestina convoy, that “the organizers of the third Viva Palestina convoy should assume the responsibility of coordination with the Israeli authorities on the passage of all the vehicles to the Gaza Strip.”

    For his part, head of the humanitarian charitable committee in Turkey Bulent Yildirim said that the convoy is aimed to attract the attention of the world to the Israeli blockade imposed on Gaza and to provide humanitarian aid to its people.

    Yildirim added that the negotiations between Turkey and the Egyptian authorities paid off and the convoy would enter Gaza through the Rafah border crossing without Israel’s approval.

    On a late hour on Tuesday, the third Lifeline convoy arrived in Damascus where thousands of Syrians and Palestinians received it carrying flags, flowers and banners hailing the humanitarian role of the convoy and condemning the Egyptian government for putting a spoke in the convoy’s wheel.

    River to Sea
     Uprooted Palestinian

    Hamas praises anti-Zionist Jews "heros" against Israel siege

    Link

    Hamas leader Haniye met on Thursday with a group of anti-Zionism Orthodox Jews who arrived in Gaza with a US aid convoy.

    Friday, 17 July 2009 12:54

    It was the first time envoys from the Neturei Karta have visited the Gaza Strip since Hamas seized control in June 2007.

    The Hamas leader praised his four Jewish guests, saying, “Those religious figures that express their objection to the siege, the aggression and the crimes – we can’t help but respect them and for their beliefs and their culture.”

    Haniyeh also said that the US-based Viva Palestina convoy “is proof that the American people is not entirely a people of occupation and is not entirely on the side of the criminal Zionist regime.”

    “We view you as heroes; you are opening the eyes of the world to the siege in the Strip,” he added.

    The ultra-Orthodox anti-Zionist Jews arrived with the “Lifeline 2” convoy of 200 people led by antiwar British MP Galloway who made his second journey to the war-torn Strip this year. In March he donated 25,000 British pounds and a fleet of ambulances to the Hamas-run Gaza government.

    During their Thursday meeting, Haniyeh told them that the “Palestinian people are not against the Israelis because they are Jewish, but they are against the occupation and the Zionism that deny Palestinians their rights.”

    “We feel your suffering, we cry your cry,” said Rabbi Yisroel Weiss upon arriving Wednesday night. “It is your land, it is occupied, illegitimately and unjustly by people who stole it, kidnapped the name of Judaism and our identity,” said Weiss.

    Neturei Karta, Aramaic for “Guardians of the City,” was founded some 70 years ago in Jerusalem by Jews.

    Gaza is still considered under Israeli occupation as Israel controls air, sea and land access to the Strip.

    The Rafah crossing with Egypt, Gaza’s sole border crossing that bypasses Israel, rarely opens as Egypt is under immense US and Israeli pressure to keep the crossing shut.

    Human rights groups, both international and Israeli, slammed Israel’s siege of Gaza, branding it “collective punishment.”

    Israel killed nearly 1434 Palestinians, a third of them children and wounded more than 5000 Palestinians in the 22-day military aggression in December 2008 on Gaza.

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