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I have a parallel blog in French at http://anniebannie.net

Sam and Ammar.. Special episode in the Holocaust Museum

Define the Holocaust, explain why it happened.
Why focus on Jews?
The most important events of the Holocaust
The importance of the event and the reaction of the Arabs
What we learned from the Holocaust.

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Gideon Levy at the National Press Club

Jaw dropping

No fan of Sacha but this is unbelievable !

Ode to the World Cup

Suddenly a world where a Turkish referee tells Messi what’s what and a black African referee blows the whistle on European whites

Gideon Levy
Jun 28, 2018 12:36 AM


Prince William watches the World Cup with the Jordanian Crown Prince Hussein in the Beit Al Urdun PalaceTwitter

Suddenly – another world. Suddenly a sense of justice. Suddenly solidarity with minorities, suddenly a chance for the weak. Suddenly, a world without Israel at its center. Without Israel at its navel. Without Israel at all. No referee or usher. Not even security advisers and economic manipulators from Israel, and the world is getting by.

No cherry tomatoes and no Jewish genius. No Benjamin Netanyahu, at least until the finish. Suddenly it’s not important whether it’s good for the Jews or not. Suddenly no America, either. A world without America. Without Donald Trump. Without even China. Suddenly, Croatia is an empire. Nigeria is hope. Egypt shed a tear. Uruguay schooled everyone in its group. Iranians are human beings, determined, sympathy-inspiring fighters, may they only succeed. People in Bat Yam are waving their flag and crossing their fingers for them shamelessly. Another world.

Suddenly a world with equal rules for everyone. With an international law everyone respects. No Holocaust discounts. No chosen people. With a Turkish referee who tells Lionel Messi what’s what and a black referee from Africa who blows the whistle on whites from Europe. Suddenly a nation. Not of hatred, but of pride. Turns out there is something like that, who knew?

 

Even a nation that isn’t yours can move you and fill you with pride. A nation free of nationalism. Suddenly also an anthem. Loud, but without belligerence. No religion. No race. A black player in Denmark’s uniform, a white player in Nigeria’s uniform. The French team’s tricolor. Only Iceland is all white, and Korea is all Asian. But they too are on the map. And Russia is a model of good taste and organization. Who knew you were like that, mother Russia.

 

Suddenly even Arabs are human beings. Arabs, imagine that. Arabs. Like in Halhul. Arabs are better than the Israelis, at least in something. How will we hide our shame and what will we do with the cognitive dissonance. They’re better even than Eran Zehavi. And no Eli Tabib. You have to pinch yourself to believe it.

And yet, an Israeli broadcaster wishes Saudi Arabia and Egypt a tie, so neither is humiliated. Would you believe it? Suddenly no “displays of anti-Semitism” around every corner, no Israeli-flag burning, which the knee-jerk broadcasters keep searching for. Suddenly there are no Jews, either. No Jewish organizations. No Jewish philanthropists.

Suddenly there’s something to talk about with the children. Suddenly it’s okay to get excited without restraint. Emotions can overflow. Let Sweden win. Let Germany sweat and be embarrassed, if only for a moment. God help Senegal. Let Egypt not be degraded. Let Peru go home with points. Let Morocco and Tunisia’s fans get some joy.

Suddenly a chance for the weak. Suddenly perhaps they all really are human beings. Even the Iranians, including the Saudis. And all this without America, this must be said again and again, a world without America. Even without Jared Kushner. A world without Roni Daniel and Amit Segal, who always know everything, without Nir Dvori, who recites Israel’s military successes, no Ayala Hasson and no Yonit Levy. A global world without Nadav Eyal. Another world. With Latin America and black Africa, without Miri Regev’s baloney, Bezalel Smotrich’s racism, Avi Dichter’s nonsense, Ofir Akunis’ flatulence, Stav Shafir’s struggles and Avigdor Lieberman’s barking. Can you imagine that?

A world without yarmulkes and without settlers. A tournament without a divine promise, apart from Maradona. Almost without any racist or chauvinist remarks from the broadcasters, except for the Messi and Western Wall affair, which is also, praise God, behind us.

A world almost without blood, and very little violence. No arrogant babble, no “we’ll retaliate at the appropriate time and place” and “prepared for every scenario.” Only the ball speaks and anything can happen.

A world without generals and politicians. Without lawyers and strategic advisers in the studios. A beautiful world, If only for a moment. And look, already a headline is flickering on the news site, putting an end to all this: “Zionist Union in crisis.” End of the world.

Gideon Levy

Haaretz Correspondent

source

“WHY DID YOU COME TO THE UNITED STATES?” CENTRAL AMERICAN CHILDREN TRY TO CONVINCE COURTS THEY NEED PROTECTION

IN 2014, the Mexican author Valeria Luiselli, waiting for her green card application to be resolved, took her family on a road trip through the American southwest. As she and her husband and young children drove to Roswell, New Mexico, they joked about their own status as “resident aliens” and informed Border Patrol officers at checkpoints that they are “just writers and just on vacation. … We are writing a Western, sir.”

As they drove, the family followed the news of tens of thousands of Central American children crossing the border just hours south of them, most of them alone. They listened to radio reports describing the children being warehoused, overcrowded and underfed, in detention centers known as as hieleras, or iceboxes, for ICE, but mostly for their frigid temperatures. They saw photos of protesters in Arizona with signs saying “return to sender” and “illegal is a crime.” They overheard patrons at a diner trading rumors about a millionaire offering his private plane to personally deport the children.

Luiselli_Cover-1491497460

Luiselli’s new Book “Tell Me How It Ends: An Essay In Forty Questions,” is about the author’s experience working with children in immigration court.

Photo: Coffee House Press

Ultimately, between April 2014 and August 2015, more than 102,000 unaccompanied children were detained at the border, and their fates haunted Luiselli to such an extent that on her return to New York, she started volunteering as an interpreter for children facing deportation in federal immigration court. She has written a new book about her experience, “Tell Me How It Ends: An Essay In Forty Questions,” and it couldn’t be more timely.

President Trump’s capricious and xenophobic actions on immigration have elevated the issue to national attention and sparked protest, but Luiselli’s book is a reminder that not all of this started with the 45thpresident. Luiselli’s book is a slim, readable primer on what ought to be considered one of the most unsettling episodes of Obama’s presidency, capably explaining how his administration did exactly the opposite of what was needed in response to the arrival of the children.

It’s also a potent meditation on questions the Trump administration has brought to the fore: Who is, and most determinedly, who isn’t, a citizen? Who should enjoy the freedom to travel, not to carry documents everywhere, to go to school, to go to the doctor, to make mistakes, to be happy, to be unhappy? What indignities should no one have to suffer, regardless of legal status? What do people deserve, as citizens or non-citizens?

The book opens with the first question Luiselli has to ask each kid she helped in immigration court — “Why did you come to the United States?” — and the book returns again and again to that question throughout. The answer is never simple.

Full article here

Opinion Killing a Child Is ‘Not Right’, but Not Wrong Enough for an Indictment

Israeli prosecutors concluded that the two soldiers acted properly when they shot and killed an unarmed teenager 10 meters away as he ran away from them

Gideon Levy
Jun 14, 2018 4:57 AM

see full article here 

A.G. and A.D. presumably celebrated. Maybe they raised a toast with their lawyers at some fashionable pub, or perhaps they just basked in the good news with their families. It was the relief of their lives. The poor souls’ nightmare is over. How they harassed them when the teenager was killed, but all’s well that ends well: The central district prosecution decided last week to withdraw the indictment against them, two-and-a-half years after it was filed.

True, it was sickeningly ridiculous that they were charged with “an act of haste and negligence” for shooting an unarmed, already wounded teenager in the back as he was running or his life. Still, it was an indictment, which itself was only filed after the deceased’s family and B’Tselem petitioned the High Court of Justice.

For a moment it seemed as if the two would be given a suspended sentence of maybe a day, or even a one-penny fine for killing a boy who had not yet turned 16, even though he didn’t pose any danger or threat to them. But even this faint hope for a remnant of delayed and symbolic justice – for even the faintest likeness of justice – was dashed, and what could be more predictable than that?

The indictment was withdrawn. A.G. and A.D. acted properly when they shot an unarmed teenager from a range of 10 meters as he ran from them. They violated nothing. Their act of killing wasn’t even hasty or negligent. They are good soldiers, excellent ones, even though the day after the killing a senior officer said, “Something that wasn’t right happened there.” Not right, but apparently not wrong enough. So go ahead, dear soldiers; continue to kill Palestinian teenagers who don’t endanger you. You can even kill them as they run away, because no harm will come to you.

A.G. and A.D. were a platoon commander and a soldier from the 71st Battalion of the Armored Corps. They shot from behind and killed Samir Awad, who tried to cross the fence that constricts his village, as he ran from an ambush the soldiers had set up in the prickly-pear bushes. They shot him in the back and will never be punished for their act. They shot him in the leg first, and after he fell wounded and got back on his feet they managed to grab him by the arm, but he got away from them. Then they shot him twice from behind, a bullet to the back of his neck and a bullet in his back, killing him. So now they can calmly fly off to India or Costa Rica for their post-army trip – perhaps they’ve already done so – and forget everything. But the home of the boy they killed in Budrus will never be the same again.

to be followed here 

 

 

Palestine is Still the Issue

Watch film on John’s website

John Pilger first made the film ‘Palestine Is Still The Issue’ in 1977. It told how almost a million Palestinians had been forced off their land in 1948, and again in 1967. Twenty five years later, John Pilger returned to the West Bank of Jordan and Gaza, and to Israel, to ask why the Palestinians, whose right of return was affirmed by the United Nations more than half a century ago, are still caught in a terrible limbo – refugees in their own land, controlled by Israel in the longest military occupation in modern times.

“If we are to speak of the great injustice here, nothing has changed,” says Pilger at the start of the film, “What has changed is that the Palestinians have fought back. Stateless and humiliated for so long, they have risen up against Israel’s huge military regime, although they themselves have no army, no tanks, no American planes and gunships or missiles. Some have committed desperate acts of terror, like suicide bombing. But, for Palestinians, the overriding, routine terror, day after day, has been the ruthless control of almost every aspect of their lives, as if they live in an open prison. This film is about the Palestinians and a group of courageous Israelis united in the oldest human struggle, to be free.”

Pilger distills the history of Palestine during the twentieth century into an easily comprehensible struggle for land – the loss of seventy-eight per cent of that belonging to Palestinians when the state of Israel was founded in 1948 and their claim to only the remaining twenty-two per cent, which had for thirty-five years been occupied by Israel.

In a series of extraordinary interviews with both Israelis and Palestinians, he speaks to the families of suicide bombers and their victims. He witnesses the humiliation of Palestinians at myriad checkpoints with a permit system not dissimilar to apartheid South Africa’s infamous pass laws. One Palestinian woman tells of how she was stopped from passing through a checkpoint when she went into labour and had to return home to give birth with her mother-in-law using a razor to cut the umbilical cord. The baby later died. He goes into the refugee camps and meets children who, he says, “no longer dream like other children, or if they do, it is about death.” He is shown round the Palestinian Ministry of Culture in Ramallah after a recent Israeli attack where he discovers faeces smeared on walls and floors and a room of children’s paintings vandalised.

Archive footage shows pledges by successive American presidents in support of Israel. Pilger describes the Israeli administration as “America’s deputy sheriff” in the oil-rich Middle East, receiving billions of dollars and the latest weapons: F16 aircraft, bombs, missiles and Apache helicopters. He reveals that Britain also fuels the conflict even though it condemns Israel for its illegal occupation. “During the first fourteen months of the Palestinian uprising, the Blair government approved 230 export licences for weapons and military equipment to Israel… Tony Blair has said, and I quote him, “We are doing everything we can to bring peace and stability to the Middle East.'” As a result, Israel is now the fourth-largest military power in the world.

On a hillside overlooking Jerusalem, Pilger concludes. “The truth is that Israelis will never have peace until they recognise that Palestinians have the same right to the same peace and the same independence that they enjoy,’ he said. ‘Recently, that great voice of freedom, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, asked this: “Have the Jewish people of Israel forgotten their collective punishment, their home demolitions, their humiliations so soon?” Israel’s own dissenting voices have not forgotten and those who speak out in this film honour the best traditions of Jewish humanity… The occupation of Palestine should end now. Then, the solution is clear: two countries, Israel and Palestine, neither dominating nor menacing the other. Is that impossible or is history to witness the consequences of yet another silence?’”

Palestine Is Still The Issue was a Carlton Television production for ITV first broadcast on ITV1, 16 September 2002. Director: Tony Stark. Producer: Chris Martin.

Awards: The Chris Statuette in the War & Peace division, Chris Awards, Columbus International Film & Video Festival, Ohio, 2003; Winner, War & Peace category, Vermont International Film Festival, 2003; Certificate of Merit, Chicago International Television Awards.

LOOTED & HIDDEN – Palestinian Archives in Israel

click on vimeo link

Main Credits:

Director: Rona Sela
Script: Rona Sela
Main Editors: Ran Slavin, Lev Goltser
Additional Editors: Thalia Hoffman, Iris Refaeli
Original Music: Ran Slavin
Sound Mix: Itzik Cohen – Jungle Studio, Yuri Primenko

Participants: Khadijeh Habashneh, Sabri Jiryis, Former IDF Soldier, Rona Sela
Narration: Sheikha Helawy, Shadi Khalilian, Ran Slavin, Dalia Tsahor
Graphic Design: Yanek Iontef
Translation: Ilona Merber

The film was made possible through the generous support of Sally Stein in memory of Allan Sekula, and additional foundations

© Rona Sela, 2017

Ilan Pappe on one democratic state

On April 21 in the town of Shefamru we have begun the preparatory meeting for launching the one democratic state initiative.The idea is to bring together under one roof all the movements and individuals who believe in this solution in and outside Palestine and to try and create together a movement of change. The challenge is enormous. The representative bodies of the Palestinian national movement (in Israel and in the PLO) still adhere to the two states solution as do some genuine friends of the Palestinians such as Jeremy Corbyn. The early discussion revealed on the one hand significant questions that still have be discussed from secularism, the future of the West Bank settlements, and the right or the absence of it for collective rights. and more importantly how can such movement be representative and democratic in the present reality. Nothing resolved yet.

On the other hand there was a total agreement on the right of return, the abolition of Zionist institutions and equality (although i think we have to talk about the future economic system as well).

We hope to launch the initiative in September and would love to hear suggestions and responses. The two states solution is dead, even if we were not invited to the funeral, and who know the developments in the region are not all favourable to Israel and make it a great time to push forward this old new idea once more.

The meeting was in Arabic and mainly with Palestinians as we believe that this should be first and foremost a Palestinian project but we will have a separate meeting with anti-Zionist Jewish activists to get more feedback and listen to their suggestions and concerns. Meetings are planned for Gaza, the West Bank and the Naqab.

It is been a while that a meeting made feel optimistic, but i know the people who were there and i feel empowered and hopeful!

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