In an address to the UN General Assembly on Monday, Israel's permanent representative to the United Nations, Ambassador Ron Prosor, called on the international community to intervene in Syria to stop the systematic murder of civilians, breaking what has been mostly silence from Israel on the situation there. According to Prosor, "No decent human being can ignore pictures like this. It doesn’t matter where you come from, or to what faith you belong, or what politics you preach." He said that Bashar al-Assad and his regime "have no moral authority to govern," but made no explicit call for the removal of Assad.…Read More... | 9 Comments
'I'm against everything that is violent, and I used to say that our revolution is peaceful and it must remain peaceful, but after going through all this pain and after seeing and watching all these tortured people, kids, women, I say yes to international intervention and even yes to war, because we have had enough' By Elizabeth Tsurkov The Syrian uprising reached its deadliest phase this week, with over 600 people killed by the Syrian regime, most of them in the central city of Homs, which has been bombarded with tanks and surface-to-surface rockets throughout the entire week. While Assad's forces use increasingly…Read More... | 15 Comments
While the Israeli media prefers to report on the new "World Forum of Russian Jewry"--launched at a UN event and formed to garner support in the fight against Iran--Maxwell Gaylard, United Nations Humanitarian Coordinator for the occupied Palestinian territory, has called for "immediate end" to Israel's demolitions of Palestinian homes in the West Bank. According to the UN statement, which was issued today: During a visit on 26 January to Anata village on the outskirts of Jerusalem, Mr Gaylard saw the ruins of seven Palestinian homes demolished earlier in the week and met with representatives of the displaced families. He was informed…Read More... | 1 Comment
Despite the worldwide condemnation of the devastation of Gaza, Israel remains unrepentant. Next to the Gazan population, the biggest loser of the war was the international human rights community. By Jerry Haber Three years ago, the Israel Defense Forces launched a massive attack on the Gaza Strip that reportedly left over 1400 hundred dead, thousands more wounded, and devastation of an unprecedented scale - with very little damage to the attacking army, and a handful of deaths on the Israeli side. One cannot say that the world was silent. But one can say that the large noise effected virtually nothing.…Read More... | 2 Comments
In defending their hold on the West Bank, the Israeli government and public often present arguments relating to its purported religious significance or to security considerations. A historical and pragmatic analysis of those arguments prove they fail to stand the test of reason. By Lorenzo Kamel Ramallah -- With settlements in the West Bank expanding continuously, any vision for a feasible agreement in the region is fading. The solution of the settlement issue would not automatically bring about a full-fledged peace, but it is a necessary step in that direction. And even though no state recognizes Israel beyond the 1967 “lines,”…Read More... | 43 Comments
Palestinian President Abbas’ speech at the United Nations on Friday seemed to have fulfilled the highest hopes of many. Aziz Abu Sarah could hardly contain his excitement (watch him try). Joseph Dana reports elation in Ramallah, which was obvious from the live images on Al-Jazeera. Lisa Goldman at the UN felt the emotional reverberations of the speech inside the UN. East Jerusalem, supposed to be the beating heart of the Palestinian national statehood movement, the future capital, felt quite different. It was subdued – almost anti-climactic. After much deliberation, I had decided to watch the speeches by the Damascus Gate…Read More... | 2 Comments
Couching his speech in what he claims is the 'truth' as the representative of the 'only true democracy' in the Middle East, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu delivered a defensive, hostile and unoriginal speech at UN on Friday - my initial reactions Bibi opened and closed his speech at the UN cordially on Friday afternoon, saying the word "peace" many times and making a formal invitiation to Abbas to negotiate in NY. However, everything in between was saturated in hostility that did nothing to gain Israel favor with the whole world watching this international extravaganza. After extending his hand in…Read More... | 13 Comments
UNITED NATIONS -- (Breaking) MK Ahmed Tibi entered the UN Media Centre this morning, shortly before President Abbas was scheduled to speak, and was greeted like a rock star by the assembled Israeli and Arab media representatives. Speaking in Hebrew, Arabic and English, Dr. Tibi gave several quick interviews to various radio and television shows. Shortly before he went on air with Israel Radio, he told the producer in Hebrew that he had read President Abbas's speech and had it on his iPhone.Read More... | 2 Comments
For the last two months the press has staunchly defended the State of Palestine on the 1967 borders. Yet, for many Palestinians refugees - who make up 70% of Palestinians worldwide - and activists on the ground, this state does not represent us. by Diana Alzeer He looks at me, shaking his dirty-blonde hair, and with a mocking tone says: “Come on, Diana, why aren’t you celebrating? I hate to see you sad." He is an American journalist, a friend of mine who is here in Ramallah shooting photos of the festive crowd celebrating the Palestinian Authority United Nations bid to…Read More... | 63 Comments
Every year in September, New York turns into utter chaos. On the Upper West Side, one can blame the pre-Chagim (High Holy Days) rush to get everything done, with Jewish Americans raiding kosher markets and stocking-up for their big meals and for their expected guests. But across Central Park and slightly more downtown, the madness – arguably of a more intense frenzy – can be rightfully blamed on an entirely different group of people. Thanks to a gathering of the world’s 180+ leaders and their massive entourages, security is tightened, roads are closed and traffic is diverted. This, in a…Read More...
Israel and the family of nations should look into the Palestinian statehood bid and judge it based on current international law. By Issa Edward Boursheh The Montevideo Convention, today a part of customary international law, outlines four requirements for statehood: a) Defined territory b) Permanent population c) Government d) Capacity to enter into relations with other states Does the future Palestine state meet the following criteria? And if not, will negotiations offer a reasonable solution that will keep the longed-for two-state solution alive? If there’s one thing that Netanyahu should do this September, it is to thank Palestinian President Mahmoud…Read More... | 7 Comments
As the clock continues to count down at the UN and various parties shuttle back and forth trying to squeeze gains and concessions, one interested party refuses to be left in the dust. US Republicans are making sure their voice is heard NEW YORK - A Republican Congressman from Illinois introduced to the US House of Representatives on Monday a resolution supporting Israel's annexation of the West Bank should the Palestinians proceed with the stated goal of seeking statehood status at the international assembly this week. The potential legislation already has the support of 30 members of Congress, who apparently…Read More... | 3 Comments
My colleague Noam heavily castigated J Street’s announcement that it would oppose the Palestinian bid for statehood at the UN in a few weeks. He qualified this by saying that he isn’t entirely convinced of the statehood plan itself; but saw political and moral failings in J Street’s position nonetheless. I, on the other hand, am not convinced of J Street’s opposition, but I respect the logic and the legitimacy of the approach. My main reservations are emotional: the Palestinians need and deserve a state, with all the problems it will face, and I want the world to be swept…Read More... | 11 Comments
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New on +972: Will Europe take a leading role on Israel/Palestine? http://t.co/HHZafKAqL3 by @nsheizaf
Now streaming on +972: 'My Neighbourhood' - the human impact of settlements in Sheikh Jarrah http://t.co/ujJjKgqr2B by @JustVisionMedia
WATCH: In a rare interview, Bashar al-Assad says he will not step down http://t.co/Q3lHb1hn3W
New position paper urges the EU to adopt a more confrontational approach toward Israel http://t.co/HHZafKAqL3 by @nsheizaf
New on +972: A smug, bourgeois Israeli 'social protest' http://t.co/TSMqgcrWX7 by Larry Derfner