Search

band annie's Weblog

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

Tag

Donald Trump

How will US Jerusalem move affect Israel’s far right?

by Jonathan Cook

Trump’s seal of approval for Israel’s takeover of Jerusalem is likely to intensify the city’s religious symbolism for Jews – and the importance of Israeli sovereignty over al-Aqsa Mosque compound [Ronny Hartmann/Photothek via Getty Images]

Analysts fear Trump’s rubber-stamping of the right’s political goals will further radicalise both sides of the divide.

Jerusalem – Trump’s recognition this week of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, overturning seven decades of US policy in the region and effectively ending hopes of a two-state solution, has provoked dire warnings.

But the focus by commentators on Palestinian reactions, rather than the effect on the Israeli public and leadership, might have underestimated the longer-term fallout from Trump’s move, analysts say.

Predictions have included the threat of renewed violence – even an uprising – from Palestinians; the possible collapse of the Palestinian Authority, the Palestinians’ government-in-waiting, and its diplomatic strategy for two states; and the demise of Washington’s claim to be serving as a credible peacemaker.

But according to analysts, more far-reaching – and disruptive – undercurrents will likely be set in motion by Trump’s decision.

Few have factored in the likely effect of Trump’s new Jerusalem policy on the Israeli public, which has been shifting steadily to the right for most of the past two decades. The city and its contested holy sites have gained an increasingly powerful religious and national symbolism for many Israeli Jews.

The fear is that Trump’s effective rubber-stamping of the right’s political goals in Jerusalem will further radicalise both sides of the divide – and accelerate processes that have been turning a long-standing national conflict into a more openly religious one.

‘Tipping point’

“We may remember this date as the tipping point, as the moment when a new consensus emerged in Israel behind the idea of total Jewish supremacy,” journalist David Sheen, an expert on Israel’s far-right movements, told Al Jazeera.

Similar concerns were expressed by Yousef Jabareen, a Palestinian member of Israel’s parliament.

“We can expect to see a move rightwards across Israeli society,” he told Al Jazeera. “The centre-left parties were already tacking much closer to the right. They will now want to align themselves with Trump’s position. Meanwhile, the right will be encouraged to move to the extreme right.”

Both noted that Avi Gabbay – the recently elected leader of the Zionist Union, the official opposition and the party that was once the backbone of the Israeli peace camp – had begun espousing positions little different from those of right-wing Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Last week, Gabbay backed Trump’s announcement, saying that recognition of Jerusalem was more important than a peace deal with the Palestinians.

WATCH: ‘Dangerous and unacceptable’ – Arab League condemns US move

Sheen said that traditionally, the centre-left had been restrained in its political positions by concerns about alienating the United States: “Netanyahu has shown that he can bring the US round to his way of thinking by staying the course. In many Israelis’ eyes, he has now been proved right. The centrists may decide it is time to come onboard. Allying with the Republican right and the Christian evangelicals in the US may now look like a much safer bet.”

The possible effects of Trump’s announcement on Israelis have been largely overlooked, even though previous turning points in the conflict have consistently resulted in dramatic lurches rightwards by the Israeli public.

Given Israel’s power over the Palestinians, these changes have played a decisive role in leading to the current impasse between Israel and the Palestinians, analysts note.

Most obviously, Israel’s seemingly “miraculous” victory in the 1967 war, defeating the armies of neighbouring Arab states in six days, unleashed a wave of Messianic Judaism that spawned the settler movement.

A new religious nationalism swept parts of the Israeli public, driving them into the occupied Palestinian territories to claim a supposed Biblical birthright.

Other major events have had a decisive effect too. Unexpectedly, the Oslo peace process, launched in the mid-1990s, persuaded many non-religious Israeli Jews to move into settlements in the West Bank and occupied East Jerusalem, doubling the numbers there in a few years.

Into the arms of the far right

Alan Baker, a legal adviser to the Israeli foreign ministry in that period, explained Israelis’ peculiar reading of the Oslo Accords. In their view, Oslo meant Israel was “present in the territories with their [the Palestinians’] consent and subject to the outcome of negotiations”.

In other words, many Israelis believed that the Oslo process had conferred an international legitimacy on the settlements.

Later, in 2000, after the Camp David summit collapsed without the sides agreeing to a two-state solution, Ehud Barak, Israel’s then-prime minister, blamed Yasser Arafat and the Palestinians. He said they were “no partner” for peace.

As a result, Israelis deserted the peace camp and drifted into the arms of the right and far-right. Netanyahu has reaped the benefits, leading a series of ultra-nationalist governments since 2009.

Now Trump’s decision on Jerusalem effectively gives Washington’s blessing to Israel’s illegal annexation of East Jerusalem and five decades of creating facts on the ground there, said Jabareen.

“Trump has legitimised the far-right’s argument that Israel can control all of Jerusalem by sheer force, by denying Palestinians their rights and by creating facts on the ground,” he said.

With their policy of aggressive unilateralism now paying dividends in the US, the settlers and the ultra-nationalists were unlikely to be satisfied with that success alone, he added. “The danger is that the religious right’s narrative will now seem persuasive at other sites in the occupied territories they demand, such as Hebron and Nablus.”

Since Trump’s election a year ago, Naftali Bennett, the Israeli education minister and the leader of the main settler party, has begun calling for Israel to seize the opportunity to annex West Bank settlements.

Pressure is likely now to mount rapidly on Netanyahu to shift even further to the right.

On the 972 website, Noam Sheizaf, an Israeli analyst, observed that Trump’s declaration had boosted the settlers’ position that “in the long run ‘facts on the ground’ are more important than diplomacy and politics, and that Israel will eventually win legitimacy for its actions”

Effects in Jerusalem

The most immediate effects, according to Ir Amim, an IsraeIi human rights organisation, will be felt in Jerusalem itself. Government ministers have already drafted legislation to bring large West Bank settlements under Jerusalem’s municipal authority, as a way covertly to annex them.

There are also plans to strip large numbers of Palestinians of their Israeli-issued Jerusalem residency papers because they live outside the separation wall Israel built through the city more than a decade ago. That would cement a new, unassailable right-wing Jewish majority in Jerusalem.

Last week, Ir Amim warned in a statement that Trump’s move would be certain to “embolden” such actions by the Israeli right and provide a “tailwind” to those determined to pre-empt a two-state solution.

Assad Ghanem, a politics professor at Haifa University, told Al Jazeera: “Trump has given a legitimacy to the right’s Messianic agenda. He has adopted the language of the extreme right on Jerusalem – that it is Israel’s eternal, united capital. The far-right will declare this a victory.”

In parallel, Trump’s seal of approval for Israel’s takeover of Jerusalem is likely to intensify the city’s religious symbolism for Jews – and the importance of Israeli sovereignty over al-Aqsa Mosque compound, Ghanem noted.

In recent years, a growing number of rabbis have been overturning a centuries-old consensus that al-Aqsa compound is off-limits to Jews because it was not known where the ruins of an earlier Jewish temple lay. In Jewish tradition, it is forbidden to walk over an inner sanctum, known as the Holy of Holies.

Today, Jews regularly enter the compound and some even pray there. Settler rabbis and far-right government ministers have called for dividing the compound between Israelis and Palestinians, creating huge tensions with Palestinians.

Temple movements

Meanwhile, a once-fringe movement of Jewish supporters who wish to destroy the mosque to rebuild the ancient Jewish temple in its place, are gradually moving into the mainstream. Trump’s move will be a shot in the arm to their ambitions and their credibility, said Sheen, who has studied the temple movements.

He pointed out that immediately after Trump’s declaration, these groups had uploaded a cartoon of Trump standing in al-Aqsa compound, in front of the golden-topped Dome of the Rock, imagining the Jewish temple in its place. Trump is shown saying in Hebrew: “This is the perfect spot!”

Sheen said: “This will be treated as a call to arms by these groups.”

WATCH: Trump’s Jerusalem move roundly condemned at UN

Will the US recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital have similarly dramatic long-term effect on Palestinians’ public opinion? Analysts believe it will. The lack of an outpouring of significant anger – even after Palestinian leaders called for three days of rage last week – could be deceptive.

Israeli analysts have suggested that there is often what they term an “incubation period” – a delay between a major change in Israel’s favour and a popular reaction from Palestinians. That was true of the second Intifada, which came months after the collapse of the Camp David summit.

An expectation of knee-jerk anger to Trump’s decision may be misplaced, say analysts. The decision may result in a slower and much deeper process of adjustment to the new reality.

“Palestinians will now have to abandon the old tools of national struggle, because they have been shown to be ineffective. We need new tools of resistance, and that will require a grassroots struggle. We need a return to mass protests,” Jabareen said.

Ghanem noted the danger that, with the likely growth of a Jewish religious extremism in Israel and among the settlers, some Palestinians might drift towards violence.

But he expected that a more significant trend would be Palestinians reassessing the end goal of their struggle and opting for mass civil disobedience.

“The two-state solution is obviously now finished, and that is likely to mobilise a new generation to struggle for a single state,” he said. “Activists and the leadership will need to rebuild Palestinian nationalism.”

Advertisements

Kim-Trump-un-believable

Covfefe, Kushner and An Idiot Abroad | May 31, 2017 Pt. 1 | Full Frontal on TBS

The Emperor Visits the Provinces. By Miko Peled

Reception for Trump w Israel heads of state in Tel-Aviv airport

Reception for Trump w Israel heads of state in Tel-Aviv airport 

Israel breathes a sigh of relief as trump leaves the region with no offer of a “deal” allowing it to continue to kill, displace, arrest and torture Palestinians take their land and water and give it to Jews. Trump’s visit to Jerusalem was like Cesar coming to visit the far away provinces.  Israel welcomed him with smiles, flags and a perfectly orchestrated military parade, while Palestinians signaled their feelings by staging an all-out general strike – the first all out strike that included 1948 Palestine in over twenty years.  The strike and protests, the significance of which likely went over Trumps head, was also an expression of solidarity with hunger-striking prisoners who at this point have gone without food for close to forty days.

Trump flew into Tel-Aviv from Saudi Arabia where he announced the US-Saudi weapons deal which will surely result in the death of many innocents in Yemen. Standing by the corrupt and aging Saudi King Salman, Trump announced that the weapons deal was worth many billions of dollars and, he made sure to add, this deal is an investment in the US and will provide “jobs, jobs, jobs” for Americans.

In Jerusalem the media could not, and still can not get enough of Trump. No one even complained about the fact that even though Trump flew from Tel-Aviv airport to Jerusalem, the highway connecting the two cities was closed for several hours “just in case.”  On a morning news talk show, a panel which included the entire Zionist political spectrum discussed the Trump visit and was obvious from their discussions who is really in charge here.  It was not the representative of the “sane” liberal Zionists nor the representative of the “right of center” Likud but rather the wild eyed zealot Daniella Weiss, the voice of the the extreme most religious zealots settlers. She began by saying that Trump will bring no change because even Trump the great deal maker cannot undo what was agreed upon between God and the Jewish people when He promised “us” the Land of Israel. Then she stated that now there are 750,000 Jews living in Judea and Samaria, and not one of them can or will ever be removed.

“What about three million Palestinians?” she was asked and she made it clear that they are not part of the messianic vision that she holds. The number three million is how Zionists view the world. While over six millions Palestinians live in Palestine, only the Palestinians in the West Bank are counted.  Weiss was challenged by Omer Bar-Lev a veteran of the liberal Zionist Peace Now group and member of Knesset with the “Zionist Camp” party who passionately claimed that “people like her are destroying the Zionist vision” because they are forcing a reality where we (the Jews) will no longer be a majority and we will end up in a bi-national state, (this is coming from the “left”).  The difference between zealot fanatics like Daniella Weiss and the liberal Zionists is that the former don’t see Palestinians, and the latter have a recurring nightmare whereby Israel is forced to grant Palestinians citizenship rights. Both sides believe though that as long as the Palestinians have no rights Israel can claim to be a Jewish State.

Liberal Zionists claim that the reason there should be “peace” is so that Jews can maintain a majority in Palestine occupied in 1948, and a few border “adjustments.” What liberal Jews regard as peace, is a large outdoor Palestinian prison stretching along parts of what used to be the West Bank. They will call this prison a state and all will be well. That, according to them is what will save the Jews from having to live among an Arab majority. In this peaceful, liberal vision, the majority of the West Bank remains as part of Israel. “The national consensus,” Bar-Lev claimed correctly, “is that the main settlement blocks remain.” Also according to the national consensus the entire Jordan River Valley and all of expanded East Jerusalem – or in other words the majority of what used to be the West Bank – remain as part of “Israel.”

Daniella Weiss represents the true face of Zionism which has always maintained that Jews ought not to worry about trivial matters such as a few million Arabs.  Bar-Lev, who commanded one of Israels’s most murderous commando units, represents the fig leaf which which to cover up the true face of Zionism. When one travels to the South Hebron Hills region, which is mostly a wild and beautiful desert, spotted with Palestinian towns and tiny villages one sees the Zionist vision in action. The Palestinian villages are tiny, fifteen or twenty families living in caves and tents, some have built homes. There is usually no running water or electricity and very few paved roads. Even after fifty years of Israeli control, the water, electricity and paved roads didn’t reach these remote areas until Jewish settlers came. As soon as Jewish settlers showed up, they kicked the Palestinians off of their land, and built “outposts” which are like a baby settlements. Then, miraculously, running water, electricity and well paved roads appeared almost immediately, although they stopped short and did not reach any of the surrounding Palestinian villages. This is how the Jews make the desert bloom.

“We can sense that Trump is a great friend,” a Likud operative said on television. “He speaks of peace, and of course we too want peace, but we have no partner for peace. So while he (Trump) talks of a “deal” we can read the signs.” The signs being the new US ambassador, who is as true a Zionist as Daniella Weiss and of course, the son-in-law. I was reprimanded once for stating that the son-in-law is Jewish, as though it shouldn’t matter but if anyone thinks that Jared Kushner’s being Jewish is not relevant they can ask any Israeli on the street. They will tell you exactly what a “good friend” he is to Israel and how much money his family has given to settlements and the IDF.

So to sum up Trump’s mideast policy, the Saudi dynasty is safe and can keep killing Yemeni civilians using the best technology money can buy and in doing so they are also providing “jobs, jobs, jobs” for Americans. Trump is a great friend to Israel, we all agree that Israel has no partner for peace, and unlike Obama, Trump it seems will place no restrictions on Israel’s settlement expansion and ethnic cleansing campaign. It is a great day for Israel when the Emperor comes to visit!

source

 

Fake : Donald Trump Signs Executive Order Cancelling Saturday Night Live

I apologize, this was fake news; see http://www.snopes.com/trump-bans-snl/

Donald Trump signed an Executive Order today canceling the long running hit television show Saturday Night Live. (AP Photo / Dennis System)

 

 

Jimmy Rustling

The St. George Gazette | 2017-05-17T01:01:45+00:00

Donald Trump signed an Executive Order today canceling the long running hit television show Saturday Night Live. (AP Photo / Dennis System)

Donald Trump signed an Executive Order today canceling the long running hit television show Saturday Night Live. (AP Photo / Dennis System)

 

Donald Trump signed an Executive Order today canceling the long running hit television show Saturday Night Live. (AP Photo / Dennis System)

WASHINGTON, D.C. (AP) — Today President Donald Trump made what could very well prove to be the most controversial move of his presidency by signing Executive Order 14838, which cancels the television show Saturday Night Live, or SNL. Under the new order, it is now illegal for any private or federally funded agency to air or show footage of the popular television show in any format. Any company or individual who violates this order can now face fines of up to $250,000 and five years in federal prison.

During the press conference, Trump explained that his decision was based on a personal belief that the show is “divisive” and “contrary to America’s deepest held values.”

“Saturday Night Live is the definition of fake news and that is why it is now gone forever,” Trump told reporters. “It mocks the very beliefs that keep this great country running smoothly. I’ve never found the show to be humorous and I don’t know how it stayed on the air as long as it did, but I made sure to put an end to that today. I know some actions that I take are questioned by those who don’t want or understand freedom; these are people who hate America, but I know my true supporters are with me on this decision to cancel SNL, just like all my other brilliant ideas.”

Trump’s signing of Executive Order 14838 comes after more than two seasons of Saturday Night Live attacking the current President.

“In all my years of watching SNL, they’ve always mocked the current President in some way or another, but with Trump it’s a totally different ball game; they are actually trying to get him impeached and take down his administration piece by piece,” Paul Horner, a senior political analyst at CNN said. “I can see why he would want the show cancelled.”

Lorne Michaels, who created Saturday Night Live, which premiered on NBC in 1975, told reporters he was concerned if the show had gone too far in mocking Trump.

“Ever since Donald Trump became a blip on the political scene, SNL has done its best to make the public aware of the evils that this man is and what he stands for. I think it’s important that the general public sees how ridiculous it is that this man is actually President of the United States. Of course we are worried with the signing of this Executive Order, we’re all currently wondering if SNL will still air or not, if we still have jobs, but I will say with complete certainty that we won’t go down without a fight.”

“Saturday Night Live thinks they can mock me, the President of the United States?!!! NOT ON MY WATCH! THEY ARE GONE!!!”

Alec Baldwin, a regular on SNL who plays the role of President Trump in various sketches, told CNN that the true reasons behind Trump’s actions are only ones that Trump knows himself.

“He’s just mad that I’ve slept with all the women that he [Trump] couldn’t pay enough money to have sex with. Bottom line is, Trump hates watching SNL so much but his huge ego won’t let him turn it off; so I guess the signing of this Executive Order is his only recourse.”

Tom Downey, a professor of political science at the University of Arizona, says that he finds the entire situation very troubling.

“Clearly, you have a man in Donald Trump who is dangerously incompetent and is a clear threat to everything this country stands for. His rhetoric on everything from immigration to the first amendment is terrifying, but I’m even more worried about what he’s doing from a freedom of speech perspective. Donald Trump may be vile, but even his demons like SNL are protected by the first amendment. I think that by canceling this show, SNL will become a symbol that we can all stand around and salute as a tribute to what freedom really is.”

Sarah Bradley, a spokeswoman for Sock It Forward, a group that provides the homeless and those less fortunate with brand new socks, spoke to CNN about the cancellation.

“Everything Trump stands for is backwards. His appointment of racist Steve Bannon, the way he unites hate for the Muslim people in this country, his support of white power organizations. He appointed a cabinet full of billionaires and millionaires to standup for the lower and middle class. The person he puts in charge of the EPA denies climate change. His person in charge of education doesn’t believe in public education. The American people should not accept this and Saturday Night Live makes fun of him the best way they know how. The children of this country deserve a leader who will build a successful future for them and can take a joke and not attempt to stop freedom of speech.” Bradley said. “Also, I just want to say a big thanks to everyone that has supported our cause that gives brand new socks to the homeless. Please, donate what you can, every bit helps so much.”

Fappy The Anti-Masturbation Dolphin, a mascot for a Christian organization that travels around the country educating children about the dangers and consequences of masturbation, told CNN that he believes what Trump is doing is the right thing.

“This is a great first step in the war against masturbation in this great Christian nation of ours. From day one, Saturday Night Live has promoted self rape and other types of sinful behavior that Jesus would never approve of. Way to go Donald Trump, you are legendary! Praise!”

As of now, NBC does not have SNL scheduled for next Saturday. The FCC has yet to release a statement about the canceling of the show and instead setup a hotline for those wishing to voice any concerns or comments over the impending cancellation of Saturday Night Live. That hotline’s phone number is (785) 273-0329.

Watch: Sean Spicer Press Conference (Melissa McCarthy) – SNL

White House press secretary Sean Spicer (Melissa McCarthy) and secretary of education nominee Betsy DeVos (Kate McKinnon) take questions from the press (Bobby Moynihan, Kristen Stewart, Cecily Strong, Vanessa Bayer, Alex Moffat, Mikey Day).

 

Donald Trump at FOX News Sunday Dec 11 2016 and at SNL

and SNL

It is all about Donald Trump on Democracy Now

donald_trump_august_19_2015_cropped

Click on image

How to Make It as a Muslim Host in Donald Trump’s America

COMEDY REFUGEE

07.24.16 12:54 PM ET

 48978602.cached

He fled from his native Egypt after running afoul of the country’s censors, and now “Egypt’s Jon Stewart” is ready to take on the U.S.A.
see here

Reinvention versus Trumpism

malcolmx

Malcolm X

This was first published at the New Arab.

While we were in New York to talk about “Burning Country”, I visited the 9/11 Memorial, a commemoration of the spectacle that arguably set the tone for the 21st Century. I was advised to visit by a friendly progressive professor, the host of one of our events. He said the attached museum was a good example of America’s self-portrayal as the world’s supreme victim. He wasn’t alone. Philip Kennicott in the Washington Post described the museum as “an oversized pit of self-pity, patriotic self-glorification and voyeurism.”

I didn’t really agree about the museum, and the memorial to the day when the twin towers were hit and almost three thousand civilians killed seemed to me tasteful and correct.

At the precise site of each tower’s base there are two-tiered pools of falling water. These enormous bottomless basins are inversions of the towers, the very opposite of phallic triumphalism. Each implies absence and a hidden abyss. In a way they are beautiful, superficially calming, and their noise nearly drowns the rush of the city around. But ultimately they are terrible, because gravity’s incessant pull on the water, the sound and sight of continuous descent, is a reminder of the terror of jumping, falling people, those who chose to plunge rather than burn, and of the tumbling shoes, the floating paper, the towers themselves collapsing, so many tons of metal and concrete, so many volumes of dust and smoke.

In the museum the focus is on the trauma experienced by the victims. There are first-hand accounts played on audio, and photographs and films of shocked New Yorkers gazing skyward, or running for their lives, or trudging slowly, whitened by dust. A shock, literally out of the blue, for an America almost entirely untouched on its own soil by war, at least since its civil war (though native-Americans and African-Americans must be excluded from this peaceable account of history).

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Robin Yassin-Kassab

July 18, 2016 at 5:55 pm

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑