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  • Netanyahu looks like a bully, but he doesn't care

    Any blowback Netanyahu receives after snubbing the German foreign minister will be short-lived: his base is behind him, he has the patronage of the U.S., and the status quo will remain exactly as it is. This week Netanyahu gave the world another lesson in how authoritarianism disguised as democracy works. Upon learning that the visiting German foreign minister, Sigmar Gabriel, refused to accede to his demand that he cancel his meetings with two NGOs that document human rights violations in territories controlled by Israel, the Israeli prime minister went ahead and canceled their own scheduled meeting as a punitive measure. Haaretz, Israel's lone liberal…

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  • Germany's foreign minister calls Netanyahu's bluff — and rightly so

    German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel will learn far more from his meetings with B'Tselem and Breaking the Silence. Given an ultimatum of meeting with Breaking the Silence and B’Tselem or meeting Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel very simply made the right choice to forego Netanyahu. And not in order to “defy” Netanyahu, as per a breathless Bloomberg headline, or to give any message at all. [tmwinpost] He was right simply because what would he have actually learned from Netanyahu? Those organizations will give Gabriel concrete information: B'Tselem will update him on developments regarding the 50-year-old occupation and…

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  • By nixing German FM meet, Netanyahu ups Israel's tyranny a notch

    While Netanyahu's move appears to be extreme, it actually fits coherently with his government's orchestrated campaign against Israeli human rights organizations. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu cancelled his meeting on Tuesday with German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel just one hour before it was slated to begin, after the latter refused to cancel scheduled meetings with anti-occupation organizations B'Tselem and Breaking the Silence. Both organizations refused to comment on the matter, but confirmed their meeting is taking place as planned Tuesday evening. [tmwinpost] It is important to note that Netanyahu himself has not publicly stated his ultimatum or the cancellation at any point, with the messages…

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