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January 2013

Confirmed: Assange Will Run for Australian Senate in 2013

 January 31, 2013 at 12:13 PM

01/30/2013WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange plans to run for a seat in the Australian Senate in 2013, it has been confirmed on Wednesday. It is not yet clear how he will escape from London’s Ecuadorean embassy.

WikiLeaks representative Kristinn Hrafnsson confirmed to RT that Julian Assange will run for a seat in the Australian Senate.

A native of Australia’s Queensland state, Assange said in March last year that he wanted to “bring liberty back to the center of Australian politics.” His Senate candidacy will help him defend free speech and the “right of citizens… to live their lives free from state interference,” he explained.

After taking political asylum in Ecuador’s embassy in London in June, Assange expressed interest in the senate seat in December, when he said that he would run as a candidate as part of a yet-to-be-formed WikiLeaks party. He also called on to his supporters to stand with him.

Assange is expected to run on a WikiLeaks party ticket; If he cannot physically make it to the Senate, his seat will be taken by his running mate, the WikiLeaks wrote on Twitter on Wednesday.
Assange’s mother Christine has confirmed her son’s senate candidacy: “He will be awesome,” she told AAP News. She added that currently, Australians can only choose between the two major parties in the country’s legislature, which she called “US lackey party number one and US lackey party number two.”

“It will be great to ‘Assange’ the senate for some Aussie oversight,” Christine Assange said.

Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard announced earlier in the day that the country’s national elections will be held on September 14.

Assange may not be able to be physically present at the Australian senate as he remains holed up in London’s Ecuadorean embassy in order to avoid extradition to Sweden. Stockholm has called for Assange to be questioned in the presence of those who made the sex crime allegations. This has raised concerns from Assange’s lawyers that the WikiLeaks found could then be extradited again to the US upon arriving in Sweden.

If extradited to the US, Assange will likely face trial for the release of thousands of classified US diplomatic cables. It was revealed in September last year that US authorities had declared Assange and WikiLeaks to be enemies of the state.

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‘It’s Suffering and Sacrifice That Moves A Public’ Norman Finkelstein and Harry Fear

[youtube http://youtu.be/t7KjT9KvuNU?]

Incoherence!

Great article from OTW !

Jan 30

Posted by OFF THE WALL( http://7ee6an.wordpress.com/2013/01/30/incoherence/ )

Coherence of thoughts is illusive. It lies behind the scenery of death, now so common as to fade into the background of long-threatened destruction that has become us. The hearts of our cities, those precious sculptures, carefully crafted over millenniums, with layers spanning centuries next to those that only lived less than a decade, now lie torn by the mad man and his minions. And the madness just would not subside.

For more than forty years, the seeds of destruction were being planted with the zeal of the obsessed. It is a story of madness played one slap at a time, of insults compounded by the ignorance of the bullies, of thefts aggravated by the infinite depravity of the thieves soul, of rapes, of torture, murders, disappearances, and of a foretold signs of the coming catastrophe, ignored as the beautiful and ancient city of Nourias was laid to waste by the barbarians. The silence was deafening even as the bleeding continued for as long as the madman lived.

The barbarians raped the souls of our cities with their demented cheap tasteless portraits. First, it was the madman, then he was joined by his vicious brother, only for the brother to be replaced by the sons, including the fake hero, who was killed by the characteristic recklessness of arrogance, but was nonetheless, declared a martyr and a demi-god. A worst fraud then replaced the fake martyr, it was a pretender to humanity, and the nightmare we now are fighting. The sons may have been legitimate to their unholy parents, but by all means, are illegitimate in time and place.

Fools were those among us who feigned knowledge. The wise ones said the devil is dead. But its essence never died. The crowning of his successor should have been another sign of the impending catastrophe. The essence of the devil never died. It remained active and never dormant, but vibrant in every military post, in torture dungeons around our land, in the secret mass graves scattered in our ancient desert. And the barbarians became more vulgar and evermore greedy as they continued their insults for eleven more years on our civility, our senses, our culture, and our intellects, individually and collectively. Under the series of promises, never made to be kept, lied the constant hum of the catastrophe. Many among us heard it very clearly, but we pretended to believe, perhaps fearing the hum, that the vulgar music of the barbarians will one day become a bit more refined only if we listen longer.

We listened, and the vulgar music turned into blasts that destroyed our homes and killed many of us with deliberate malice when we asked that this half century assault be stopped. What they did to us from that point on will be told in the future for centuries to come. It will be a story of betrayal, of savagery, as well as of heroism that we never knew had existed in us. But the story of our heroic death will be worthy to hear only if told as the conclusion to the story of our cowardliness. Without that, there is no lesson learned, and our death, and the death of our children and grandchildren who are paying the price of our cowardliness will be pointless and in vain.

I stopped counting days. The post-massacre pain of anguish which started very acute ad sharp, then turned into a dull pain as our cities and villages turned into killing fields, had finally settled into a continuous throb of sharp, maddening pain as the massacres became daily and hourly happenstance. A short while ago, it was my University. The place which has more personal connection to my life than it does to most of its graduates. The mayhem outraged us, but our outrage became worst when the thugs tried to appropriate our martyrs. I don’t think they really cared to say that our side was the side who murdered our own children, but more to continue their assault and theft, even of our death at their hands.

Today, it was the river. Residents in in the liberated Bustan Al-Qaser area of Aleppo, pulled more than sixty bodies from the narrow, highly polluted River Quaiq . All were males between the age of 20-40, with a few children, and all were tied and shot in the head execution style. At first, as they did with the University, the thugs hyped that this is a liberated area and therefore, these are victims of the FSA. But early identification, in addition to the close-proximity of the area to regime territory point that at least some of the victims were reported to have been kidnapped by the notorious murderous air-force intelligence.

Others are probably more able to describe the scene of death. But to me, every time I see the photograph of victim, tied and shot, all I can think of is the horrors the barbarians have inflicted on their victims before killing them. You see, their smuggled tapes have finally paid off, but not in the way they thought for I am not horrified any longer, I am beyond that.

Like many Syrians, I am now beyond many other feelings. Nowadays, I no longer get angry at a relative or a former friend when they support the filth called Assad regime, I just accept the fact that they are part of the filth. What I don’t tell them is that anger used to build up and then subside, hate was accumulating in a crescendo parallel to the atrocities of the barbarians, but now, we are beyond both anger and hate, we are even beyond vengeance. We are now obsessed with swearing “Never Again”. Let the world know, Never again. I know it really threatens the barbarians, because it is even sweeter than revenge.

Democracy Now : The Gatekeepers

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TheGatekeepers-2

 

 

 

 

Amidst a spate of killings by Israeli forces of unarmed Palestinians in the occupied West Bank, we turn to the stunning Oscar-nominated documentary, “The Gatekeepers.” The film brings together six former heads of Israel’s internal security agency, the Shin Bet, collectively speaking out for the first time ever. They detail their methods against Palestinian militants and civilians in the Occupied Territories, including targeted killings, torture, recruiting informants, and the suppression of mass protests during two intifadas. But in doing so, they also criticize the occupation they were assigned with defending and warn that successive Israeli governments have endangered their country’s future by refusing to make peace. “We are making the lives of millions unbearable, into prolonged human suffering, [and] it kills me,” Carmi Gillon says in the film. “[We’ve become] a brutal occupation force similar to the Germans in World War II,” adds Avraham Shalom. We are joined by the film’s director, Dror Moreh. [includes rush transcript]

When “outrage and shock” bury the truth

January 27, 2013

by William A. Cook

“We are outraged and shocked at these offensive comments (made by MP David Ward last week) about Jewish victims of the Holocaust and the suggestion that Jews should have learned a lesson from the experience” — Jon Benjamin, chief executive of the Board of Deputies of British Jews, 1/25/2013.

I must apologize for not responding to the lashing given to Lib Dem MP David Ward a week ago as my wife’s Mother, 88 years of age, was moved into Hospice care readying her for leaving this vale of tears. Her life, as is true of my own, suffered the horrors of WWII and the Nazi devastation of prisoners including, from 1933, Communists, Socialists, Social Democrats, Roma (Gypsies), Jehovah Witnesses, homosexuals, (and) persons accused of “asocial” or socially deviant behavior, and Jews, between 1938 and 1945 (Holocaust Encyclopedia). Our lives are bookended between depressions and wars. So what have we learned, as David Ward so tellingly asks to the chagrin of many including Mr. Benjamin quoted above. Curiously I found Mr. Ward’s  comment incomplete. This is what he said:

Having visited Auschwitz twice – once with my family and once with local schools – I am saddened that the Jews, who suffered unbelievable levels of persecution during the Holocaust, could within a few years of liberation from the death camps be inflicting atrocities on Palestinians in the new State of Israel and continue to do so on a daily basis in the West Bank and Gaza.

If truth be told, it did not take “a few years” for the Jews to inflict “unbelievable levels of persecution” on the indigenous people of Mandate Palestine; the persecution began in earnest in 1939 against the British, the British Mandate Government established in 1922 by the League of Nations to maintain order and peace in Palestine. The Zionists undertook “a war against the British Mandate Government, its Police and Soldiers” while it lobbied and subverted the MP’s in Westminster with propaganda and money. Here are the words Weizmann and Ben-Gurion promised the Mandate Government:

“if further action was taken against them (by the British Mandate Government)  to destroy Zionism, then there would be a blood bath. Nothing could prevent it. Nobody would be safe in Palestine (July 12, 1946, Rhodes Archive Documents). If need be, we shall take the country by force. If Palestine proves too small, her frontiers will have to be extended” (Ben Gurion, Appendix LVc).

This war set the British Government against its own soldiers and police, yea against the nations of the world that had authorized Britain to manage Palestine, and its own Balfour Declaration wording, to appease the Zionists that made this period one of the most destructive and humiliating experienced by the British people through their elected representatives. When in 1948, May of 1948, the Mandate soldiers and police returned home they were virtually shunned by the MPs as Robert Fisk notes in his piece, “The Forgotten Holocaust.”

Let’s move beyond the “outrage and shock” experienced by Mr. Benjamin to understand why he avoids telling the truth. Should he care to find it, he need only travel a few miles to Oxford, specifically seek in the Rhodes House Archives the “Top Secret” files of Sir Richard C. Catling lodged in a long card board box tied with a shoestring. Catling was Assistant Head Deputy of the Criminal Investigation Division of the Mandate Police. His file contains almost 500 pages of evidence detailing the subterfuge of the Jewish Agency that ostensibly cooperated with the British Government as Jewish immigrants came to Palestine. The documents were seized by the Mandate authorities from the Jewish Agency and its affiliated terror groups, the Haganah, Stern and Irgun “gangs.”

Two reports are included, one from High Commissioner Hugh MacMichael written in 1941 and sent to the British Secretary of State’s office and the second Catling’s report from 1947.  The contents of these documents and the commentary of the reports were published by myself as Editor of The Plight of the Palestinians: a Long History of Destruction. That volume was published in 2010 by Macmillan Company with offices in London and New York. More than 20 renowned writers from around the world contributed to this work that describes the original intent of the Zionists as they terrorized the British authorities and the Palestinians from 1939 to May 14, 1948 and never stopped to this day.  It is a book about genocide in Palestine.

How do you say that kindly? How do you make people, Jews and gentiles alike, feel comfortable talking about such behavior? How do you atone for the massacres of innocents as the Jewish armies raped, pillaged, slaughtered or drove out the residents of 418 towns and villages in Palestine while the British forces there had to stand by and watch because their fellow British politicians in Westminster called the shots?

Seven to eight hundred thousand Palestinians were driven from their homes and lands, into exile in foreign countries or into Gaza. They are a people without a homeland, contrary to the UN’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights. No passports, no recognized rights to employment or medical care or support of any kind—in Beirut and other cities in Lebanon, in Syria, in Jordan. To this day they live in refugee camps, thousands imprisoned with no place to go, no right of return, yet any Jew living anywhere in the world, who never stepped foot in Palestine, who has no Semitic blood in his/her veins,  has a “right of return.” How can this be? Where is the justice?

Where is the cry of lamentation by the British MPs for allowing these conditions to persist? Why a cry of “Outrage and Shock”? What hypocritical nonsense from the “Good” people of Britain who walk around in pin striped suits and glittering pearls asking for “decency” and “respect” and “kindness” toward those who suffered the holocaust because they would be appalled at such “words” as David Ward uttered.  I’m sorry, I don’t believe the Jews of the concentration camps would be “shocked and outraged” by such words; I think they would be “shocked and outraged” if the MPs and the Deputies of British Jews did not speak against the horrors the Zionist government of Israel has perpetrated on the Jews in the name of Judaism. Perhaps they can speak through me:

THE GHOSTS OF TEREZIN

I saw the pictures children drew at Terezin
As they clustered in the attic’s closing darkness, –
Pictures of the sun beyond the rain,
Of Mothers muffled in scarves and solemn dress,
Of Fathers proud beneath their yarmulkas, –
All waiting patiently the promised day
When they would board the silver train
And flee to the Holy City.

And I wept at their plight,
The silent, unknown, gnawing fright
That burned within their Ghetto of sin,
This Terezin.

And then before my eyes there came
Another scene, so strange, as if incarnate in the first
That burst untimely before my weeping heart;
A scene more ravaged than Terezin,
Of streets and alleys swamped in sewage and despair
Where children breathed the fetid air of hate
That smoldered like steaming ashes there.

Suddenly appeared above the graves, the ghosts of Terezin,
Arising like mist around the crematorium;
Fathers and Mothers, in their promised land at last,
Grasping children to their breasts.
Silent as sentinels they stood,
And there they wept as they watched in vain
The wardens wander through the camps
Like Gestapo agents of old,
Stark, cold, indifferent to the pain
Of those who huddled beneath the tin roofs,
Encased like the dead in cement boxes
As the acrid stench of lingering sewage
Flowed through the alleys and the homes.

They saw the tanks rattle through the streets
With ranks of soldiers scurrying behind,
Seeking the vermin that infested this place, –
Homeless, nameless, without a face, –
Sneaking through this ghetto in the dark of night
To drive the children from this transport town,
This resurrected refugee camp, this new Terezin,
Where the new Jew wanders the world
Like the Jews of Terezin,
Joined in their loneliness and despair
As they watch their children there
Become the walls of Terezin!

The “despatch” sent by MacMichael to the Secretary of State resulted from an investigation into the funding practices and use of those funds by various Jewish organizations.

The memorandum illustrates … the fact that the Mandatory is faced potentially with as grave a danger in Palestine from Jewish violence as it has ever faced from Arab violence, a danger infinitely less easy to meet by the methods of repression which have been employed against Arabs. In the first place, the Jews … have the moral and political support … of considerable sections of public opinion both in the United Kingdom and the United States of America. … all the influence and political ability of the Zionists would be brought to bear to show that the Jews in Palestine were the victims of aggression, and that a substantial body of opinion abroad would be persuaded of the truth of the contention.[i]

Quite obviously, MacMichael understands that the Mandatory has little power at home over the zealous actions of the Zionists as they manipulate public and political opinion even as they expand their terrorism against the British Mandate government in Palestine. This is an untenable position to be in, responsible for government control and security of those under its authority, i.e. Palestinians as well as Jews, knowing that the Jews are set on driving the British out of Palestine, and knowing that the home government can offer little help.

To bolster his points, MacMichael offers the following:

… the Jews in Palestine are by no means untrained in the use of arms … large numbers have received training in the Palestine Police… or in His Majesty’s Forces. At the present time, in addition to approximately 10,000 Jews in His Majesty’s Forces, there are 5,800 in various units of the police force and 15,400 special policemen (31,000) … When to those men … are added the illicit ‘defence’ organizations of the Jews (Haganah alone had an estimated 60-70,000 men by 1945, see Mss, Med. S20 Appendix XXI), it will be evident that the Jewish people in arms would numerically and in calibre be a very formidable adversary.[ii]

This is in 1941before the full deployment of Jewish terrorism against the legitimate Palestine government got under way.

MacMichael and Catling found themselves missing one of Catling’s primary supports for the waging of “irregular warfare” drawn from his image of the 3-legged stool that required the support of the people, the commander and his army and the government, an image, no doubt, from his childhood in Suffolk where his family were butchers and farmers. But the situation only got worse as the end of WWII loomed. The Haganah carried out anti-British military operations, including the kidnapping, killing and booby trapping of soldiers’ bodies, conducted against the Mandate Government while the home government remained silent under the pall of Israeli Zionist propaganda.[iii]

But recording the acts of terrorism does not do justice to the conditions the Mandate government faced. MacMichael describes the reality of the forces aligned against the police in Palestine.

A second matter which deeply impressed me is the almost Nazi control exercised by the official Jewish organizations over the Jewish community, willy nilly, through the administration of funds from abroad, the issue of labor certificates in connection with the immigration quota…. The Royal Commission were, in my view, fundamentally at error in describing the Jewish community in Palestine as “intensely democratic”. … The Zionist organization, the whole social structure which it has created in Palestine, has the trappings but none of the essentials of democracy. The community is under the closed oligarchy of the Jewish official organizations which control Zionist policy and circumscribe the lives of the Jewish community in all directions…. The reality of power is in the Agency, with the Haganah, the illegal military organization, always in the background.[iv]

And so the authorities in Palestine, the legal authorities, have no power to enforce measures that would curtail terrorism against their own police. “The use of force cannot be contemplated at present as any such action would have to be on a very large scale.” MacMichael understands that he can get no help from the Jewish community, even from those who find themselves at odds with the Agency’s methods or morality. The consequences to the individual Jew for disobedience is horrendous as the second document seized from the Zionists in 1947 attests.

But we’ll stop here; David Ward’s comment was nothing to condemn. He didn’t know of the years before the end of WWII when the Zionists were destroying Mandate Palestine and the indigenous people there. Yet he knew enough to ask a discerning question. Did the Jewish people learn anything from their experience under Hitler’s rule? The Zionists did quite obviously and they used it and continue to use it to decimate and destroy the Palestinian people, to disarm truth with distortion, to steal land and subjugate the innocent, and to verbally assault with deafening, righteous indignation, to avoid the reality and truth that could be discovered if their actions were brought before the International Courts.

Should anyone care to extend their interest in this deception you might read “Deception as Truth: the Myth of Mid-East Peace,” “The Birth Date of Fratricide: May 14, 1948,” “A Miscarriage of Birth: a Miscarriage of Justice,” and the Introduction to the book, The Plight of the Palestinians. 


[i] MacMichael, Harold. (1947). “Memorandum on the Participation of the Jewish National Institutions in Palestine in Acts of Lawlessness and Violence” The Palestine Police, Jerusalem, 7-31-1947 in Catling file.

[ii] MacMichael. “dispatch.” 1.

[iii] Ibid., “Despatch.” 2.

[iv] Ibid., “Despatch.” 2.

found here

Syrian Refugees A snapshot of the crisis – in the middle east and europe © Mohamed Salman

Assad : Smacks of Desperation

When I saw the video above the first image that came to mind was this one:

This doesn’t look at all like a regime that is going to survive for much longer – and I know there are people who now think Assad might make it through this because it has taken two years. But this is irrelevant.In the last days of the Third Reich, the Nazis desperately tried to stave off defeat by recruiting child soldiers to fight in the streets of Germany’s cities. No doubt regime enthusiasts will contrast the high profile presence of unveiled women fighting in Assad’s army against the bearded men of the various rebel groups.

But this action has less to do with equal opportunities and emulating America’s recent decision to allow women into fighting roles and more to do with a desperate and undermanned (pun not intended) army trying to make up its numbers. I’m not much of an expert on military affairs, but the women in the video above are not fighters, and I doubt they will make much of a difference in the face of groups like Jabhat al Nusra. The precedent of such things is not promising for Assad either – when Gaddafi was murdered there was not a single member of his famous female bodyguards in sight.

The only thing I felt when I saw that report from Russia Today was the same thing I felt the first time I saw the picture of Hitler’s child soldiers, pity. Once more innocent people are being thrown into the furnace in a last ditch attempt to protect yet another “Father” of the nation.

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Syria : Harasta in shambles

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fp5iKwQJj8c&feature=share&list=UUNye-wNBqNL5ZzHSJj3l8Bg?]q

BDS Soda Stream

Truth in advertising: SodaStream ad attached to video showing Israelis arresting 18-month-old infant

by on January 24, 2013 12

soda stream arrest
An ad for SodaStream attached itself to this video showing Israeli soldiers arresting a mother and her baby.

Google Ads for SodaStream, the carbonated beverage maker produced in Israeli settlements, seem to be hounding my every move on the Internet these days. That’s most likely because I’m in the midst of working on a nationwide interfaith collaborative boycott campaign against the newest kitchen-tech gadget to hit the American market.

One such appearance recently, however, reached the heights of perfect irony. Were it not so sickening, it could almost be funny: Google placed a SodaStream ad on the bottom of a video that captured Israeli soldiers arresting a young Palestinian woman and her 18-month-old baby.

SodaStream is marketing itself as a holistic and environmentally friendly alternative to established sodas, such as Coca Cola and Pepsi. It’s supposed to help cut down on plastic bottles in landfills and its syrups are supposed to be less expensive and healthier than pop you’d buy in the store. All advertorial hyperbole, based upon one investigation.

The biggest reason Palestine solidarity activists around the world are boycotting SodaStream is because it is produced, in part, in an Israeli settlement, which is built illegally on stolen Palestinian land. Settlements entrench Israel’s colonizing and apartheid  policies by confiscating ever more land, roads and buffer zones meant only for Jewish residents. Because settlements are protected by the Apartheid Wall, checkpoints and Israel’s security apparatus, Palestinians have lost their freedom of movement. Many of them have lost their jobs as a result because they cannot travel into 1948 Palestine anymore, or because the Wall has cut them off from their fields and other livelihoods. As a result, many Palestinians  — including children as young as 12 — work in settlements. They are routinely underpaid and overworked, according to a new study by  WhoProfits.org, an organization that tracks companies that profit from the occupation.

Another reason activists boycott products made in settlements is because these items support the settlement industry, which in turn helps nourish Israel’s continued occupation of Palestine.

Another practice that shores up the occupation is Israel’s random arrest and detention of Palestinians. Currently, more than 4,600 Palestinians are incarcerated illegally in Israeli prisons. Every year, some 700 children, as young as 10 years old, are arrested and processed through Israel’s military court system, according to Swiss-based organization Defence for Children International – Palestine Section. As of December 2012, nearly 180 children were behind bars.

Apparently, 18 months isn’t too young to be jailed. On Jan. 19, Israeli soldiers, acting to help illegal settlers appropriate Palestinian land and olive orchards, arrested Qamar, her mother Rima Ismail Awad, and several others as they attempted to access their land.

[youtube http://youtu.be/tuuC6XBkxX8?]
Ma’an News reported that the infant was released that night, while Rima was released the following day.

What kind of democracy takes a baby into custody?

The fact a SodaStream ad appeared on the video of the violent arrest breaches credulity. SodaStream is a product that supports an occupation apparatus that allows for the incarceration of an infant – and indeed thousands and thousands of innocent Palestinians, many of whom are being held without charge or trials.Samer Al-Issawi is one such prisoner. He is in critical condition and near death, after having refused food for 184 days to protest Israel’s use of administrative detention, torture and other human rights abuses.

SodaStream needs to go away, and settlements along with it. Boycott, divestment and sanctions is the one way to make this happen. BDS is a peaceful method to pressure Israel to comply with international law in the absence of global diplomatic or political pressure.

Do you part. Join BDS. Boycott SodaStream. Fight for justice for Palestinian prisoners. And stand in solidarity with Palestinians as they work for their internationally guaranteed right of self-determination.

The interfaith boycott committee, housed within the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation, is a group of Jewish, Christian and Muslim activists committed to working for justice in Palestine. American Muslims for Palestine, Jewish Voice for PeaceUnitarian Universalist for Middle East Justice, Quakers and other Christians groups are involved. We’re gearing up to kick off our campaign on SuperBowl Sunday, when SodaStream plans to have a splashy commercial during the fourth quarter. Get involved by entering a ‘spoof commercial’ video contest, holding a Fizzies For Freedom house party on Super Bowl Sunday, or join our Twitter campaign. For more information and the list of all the fun ways you can help boycott SodaStream, click here.

This post originally appeared on the blog Zatar and Spinach.

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