January 2019, Week 1

Palestinians sneaking into Israel to look for work.

Life in Southeast Alaska vs. Life in Occupied Palestine
Southeast: New Years Day we have the day off from work. If you  do work, you get paid time-and-a-half. A lot of people have hangover’s from New Year’s Eve parties, and a few hundred people do a ‘polar bear’ dip in the ocean.
Occupied Palestine: Palestinians desperate for work get up at 3 or 4 in the morning to stand in line at the cattle corrals where they may, or may not, get through and find day labor. Or, like the guys in the picture, they climb over the apartheid wall. Between 50,000 and 60,000 Palestinians enter Israel illegally every day according to Israeli Lt. General Gadi Eisenkot. Something to think about if you believe Mr. Trump’s promised 2,000 mile-long wall along the Mexico border is going to stop illegal crossing.

01.01.2019 32 Palestinians abducted in New Year’s Night raids IMEMC Night and fog raids, a nightly theme of Israel’s occupation, saw dozens of Palestinian homes ransacked, families dragged from their beds, and 32 people dragged off to prison for interrogation or worse. Article notes that Israel uses ‘administrative detention’ to hold Palestinians for up to 6 month stints with no charges or trial. When the six months are up, the Jewish state can impose another six months, then another, indefinitely.

01.01.2019 Israeli forces demolish Palestinian greenhouse in Masafer Yatta IMEMC Jewish occupation troops destroyed the greenhouse and uprooted olive trees in the South Hebron hills

01.01.2019 Israeli settler drives into sheep near Ramallah, kills 12 IMEMC A Jewish colonist rammed a flock of sheep in what locals say was a premeditated attack that took out a local man’s primary source of income. In addition to the 12 dead sheep, 18 more of his flock were injured, 6 of them critically.

01.01.2019 Israel is bad for America Unz Review by Philip Giraldi. If your New Year’s resolution is to figure out what America is doing in/to the Middle East, Philip Giraldi can answer your questions. He is a former CIA counter terrorism specialist/military intelligence officer, a Ph.D., and is presently Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest. In this article he calls out Zionist New York Times columnist Bret Stephens for his, “This time Donald Trump is Bad for Israel’ column in the NYT, in which Stephens asserts that Trump’s talks with Turkish President Erdogan were bad for Israel, Giraldi makes a well-thought out case that while the Israelis might not approve, the talks weren’t bad for the United States and they weren’t bad for Turkey.

Israel killed about 300 Palestinians-including 54 children-mostly unarmed protesters along the Gaza border.  The killers were almost all Israeli military personnel. A lot of people are still in hospital, some in critical condition, so the number of dead will likely go up. Israel injured about 29,000 including thousands shot with live ammunition with life changing injuries like brain damage, amputations, and being paralyzed. Israel destroyed 450 Palestinian homes and also greenhouses, farm outbuildings, water infrastructure and last August the Israeli air force blew up Gaza ‘s Arts and Culture Center, a place where people could get away from the occupation for a few hours, to see progressive plays and where kids learned to dance. Israel made hundreds of night raids on Palestinian homes. There are about 5,300 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons including hundreds of children.

Palestinians killed 14 Israelis during 2018, most of Israeli dead were occupation troops and most, perhaps all, of them were killed by lone-wolf attackers unaffiliated with organized resistance. Exact number of Israeli injured I don’t know, but it’s a few dozen, almost all of their injuries minor. One house in Israel damaged by a rocket from Gaza. Palestinian troops did not make any night raids in Israel in 2018. No Israeli public buildings were destroyed. No Israelis are being held in Palestinian prisons.
Farmlands on both sides of the segregation fence were badly mauled by both groups last year.
Some good news is that Israel and Palestine are finally getting rain. After being hammered by drought for years West Bank aquifers and Lake Kinneret,  Israel’s only natural fresh water lake, are getting a respite.

01.01.2019 A 2018 Senate bill punishing Americans for boycotting Israel did not become law at the eleventh hour. No doubt we will see that one again in 2019.

And now, the headlines for this week: Format is date: headline: news source: synopsis.

Wednesday
01.02.2019 Israeli forces detain 24 Palestinians in West Bank raids Maan News Pre-dawn night and fog raids. 7 of those taken from their beds were minors.

01.02.2019 Israel demolished home in Jerusalem Maan News Israeli bulldozers destroyed a home in Qalandiya north of occupied East Jerusalem. Six family members including a disabled man lived in the 100-square meter house. Police surrounded the home, kicked out the people, and flattened their place. The owner said he was fined and Israel forced him to pay for the demolition.

01.02.2019 Journalist, paramedic injured as Israeli settlers raid Joseph’s Tomb Maan News. Israeli occupation troops deployed on Palestinian homes and rooftops to escort hundreds of Jewish colonists ‘raiding’ Joseph’s Tomb. The Israelis shot a Palestinian journalist who was covering the event, in the leg with a rubber coated steel bullet. A paramedic injured in the face [mechanism of injury not given].

01.02.2019 Israel halts construction of Palestinian home, green house, in Bethlehem Maan News Area C of the West Bank. Tiny house on 13-square-meters didn’t have a permit. Israel almost never will allow permits to Palestinians.

01.02.2019 Israel releases detained fishermen, opens fire on shepherds in Gaza. Maan News Israel let a 60-year-old fisherman and his 30-year-old son go but stole the men’s boat so they can’t fish

01.02.2019 Palestine in Pictures: December, 2018 Electronic Intifada website Photo essay of life under occupation.

01.02.2019 Comparing Trump to Hitler akin to Holocaust denial Haaretz has a Nazi feature pretty much daily. 

Thursday
01.03.2019 Israeli forces open fire at school students in Nablus Maan News Live fire and tear gas shot at Palestinian kids leaving school in the occupied West Bank. No injuries reported.

01.03.2019 Why should my newspaper pledge not to boycott Israel? ACLU open letter. by Alan Leveritt, Publisher, Arkansas Times. The State of Arkansas has been sending the Arkansas Times letters threatening to blacklist the paper if it didn’t sign a loyalty oath to Israel pledging not to boycott it. Leveritt writes, “Times are hard in the publishing industry, and we really needed the business. But at what price? It had never occurred to us to boycott anyone, but the idea that the state would force a publishing company to take a political position in return for business was offensive.”
We then learned the law offered to let us continue to do business without signing the pledge, so long as we accepted a 20% cut in our ad rates. I said, “Well, to hell with them.” We were not going to pay a 20 percent tax for the right to hold beliefs independent of the Arkansas Legislature, at least not without a fight.
Since when do American citizens have to pledge to act in the interest of a foreign power in order to do business with their own government? Since when does the state of Arkansas punish its own tax payers in an effort to assist a foreign government with its domestic policy? As an American, I say it is none of their damn business what political beliefs we hold. We’ll see them in court.”

01.03.2019 Jordan’s trade unions to place Israeli flag in building entrances for all to step on. Haaretz by Jack Khoury. Israel complained last week when Jordan’s information minister stepped on the Israeli flag painted on an entrance floor. She was going to a meeting. The trade unionists enjoyed Israel’s upset and said they’d paint the Israeli flag on all their entrances.

Friday
01.04.2019 Analysts confirm: Israel used civilian airliners as cover in Christmas Day airstrikes in Syria Mint Press by Philip Giraldi: former CIA counter terrorism specialist/military intelligence officer and Executive Director of Council for the National Interest- a Washington DC advocacy group that encourages and promotes U.S. Middle East policy that is consistent with American values and ideas.  Israel has bombed Syria more than 200 times [in the past 2 years].

What happened this time was:
On Christmas Day Israeli pilots, in six American F-16s, fired American bombs with American GPS guidance systems at Damascus, Syria wounding 3 Syrian soldiers. The Israelis tried to hide their approach by flying illegally over Lebanese airspace. Then they used two civilian airliners for cover. Syrian gunners watched them approach but to save hundreds of civilians aboard the airliners they didn’t jam the attacking jets electronics or fire at them. Even so they were able to shoot down 14 of the 16 bombs the Israelis launched.
Russia’s Ministry of Defense is involved because, a few weeks earlier, Israeli attack jets used a slow Russian spy plane that was returning from a Mediterranean flight to hide behind. Syrians fired on the Israelis but the missiles locked onto the larger aircraft, destroying it and killing all 14 Russian crew members aboard.
The Russians are angry. They reconstructed both attacks with radar imaging, showed Israel to be the aggressor, and guilty of war crimes. Israel was not condemned at the United Nations because the United States protects Israel from U.N. censure by blocking such resolutions with its vote in the Security Council.
[As to Israel’s claims they’re targeting Iranian-supplied weapons that could harm Israel there are two points: 1) Put that shoe on the other foot. If Syria attacked Israel two hundred times to shoot up American-supplied weapons, (and American law guarantees Israeli military superiority in the region) what would the response to that be? 2) Syria has been fighting ISIS for years while America and Israel have been supplying ISIS with weapons sent to Syria via the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights.]

01.04.2019 Israeli bulldozers raid Palestinian land in southern Gaza Maan News Occupation bulldozers went into Gaza again to raze land on the Gaza side of the segregation fence.

01.04.2019 Israeli settlers attack Palestinian vehicles in Nablus Maan News Throwing rocks at Palestinian cars in Nablus and also near the illegal settlement at Yitzhar. No injuries reported.

01.04.2019 Israel returns body of slain teen to family Jerusalem Maan News 17-year-old Abad al-Rahman Abu Jamal. Israel says it killed him because he made a stabbing attack inside an Israeli police station in occupied East Jerusalem. The boy’s family denies Israel’s version saying that Israel won’t release video footage from inside the station to support its claim.

Saturday
01.05.2019 U.S. Senator’s first bill in the midst of the shutdown is a bipartisan defense of the Israeli government from boycotts The Intercept by Ryan Grim and Glen Greenwald.
[Having failed to slip anti-boycott Israel legislation into the appropriations bill at the 11th hour last month Senators are making Israel their first priority in 2019].
The first Senate Bill of the year is AIPAC’s priority legislation to punish Americans who boycott Israel. While 800,000 Americans, [including the Coast Guard], are not getting pay checks because of the shut-down, Marco Rubio’s bill S-1, fast tracks giving Israel billions of American tax dollars and, in addition makes it easier for states to punish Americans who boycott Israel or refuse to sign loyalty oaths to Israel stating that they won’t boycott Israel.
In the past few years 26 state governments have passed legislation targeting Americans who boycott Israel. Two lawsuits challenging such legislation have won on constitutional right to free speech grounds. The cases were a Mennonite teacher in Kansas and a private contractor in Arizona who refused to sign loyalty oaths that they wouldn’t boycott Israel.

01.05.2019 Palestinians, including Paramedics, injured at eastern Gaza borders Maan News 12 of those injured shot with live ammunition.

01.05.2019 Israeli forces open fire at Palestinians across Gaza Maan News Jewish snipers on the Israeli side shot across the segregation fence at unarmed Palestinians on the Gaza side. Also today, Israeli navy machine gunners shot at a Palestinian fishing boat.

Sunday
01.06.2019 Sens. Cruz, Cotton issue joint statement of support to recognize Israel’s sovereignty over Golan Heights News Release from Ted Cruz Senate website While America is still stuck in the Government shutdown, more Senators prioritize Israel.
First line of press release: “U.S. Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Tom Cotton (R-Ark) issued a statement today after reports that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has asked the United States to recognize Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights.”

01.06.2019 *John Bolton twitter announcement, “I met w/PM Netanyahu, the director of Mossad, & the Israeli Atomic Energy Commissioner. Discussions included our ongoing efforts to expand & enhance our historic partnership w/Israel, our mutual response to the threat from Iran, & the coordinated U.S. drawdown in Syria.” [So, there you have it. The rate at which American troops will leave Syria, as promised by President Trump, will be decided by the Israelis.]

01.06.2019 Comedian Bill Burr heading to Tel Aviv The Jerusalem Post by Amy Spiro. Says he’s going to entertain the regime in May of this year. I sent his office a message asking if this is true. No reply.

01.06.2019 Israel arrests five Jewish minors over murder of Palestinian woman Haaretz by Yaniv Kubovich and Yotam Berger. Stone throwing attack on October 12, 2018 sent a large rock through a windshield killing 47-year-old mother of 8. This article calls attackers minors but doesn’t give their ages. [In the occupied territories Jews are tried under Israeli civil law and considered minors until they’re 18. Palestinians are tried under Israeli military law as adults at 16-years-old.]

01.06.2019 Israeli ‘Jewish Terror’ incidents targeting Palestinians tripled in 2018 Haaretz Amos Harel. 482 attacks involving physical violence, property and agricultural damage, etc. [not counting 300 dead and 29,000 injured Palestinians at the Gaza border and West Bank military attacks].

Monday
01.07.2019 Angela Davis is latest Black target of Israel Lobby Electronic Intifada by Ali Abunimah. American civil rights icon and human rights activist, Angela Davis has been targeted by the pro-Israel faction, apparently because she supports boycotting Israel on behalf of Palestinian rights. Davis was selected to receive the Fred L. Shuttlesworth award by the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute (BCRI) at the institute’s annual gala. After complaints/pressure from Birmingham’s Jewish community BCRI reneged on giving Davis the prize, announced the gala was cancelled, and said it would refund money to people who’d bought tickets.

01.07.2019 ‘Boycott Israel, we’ll boycott you.’ How U.S. Senators and state lawmakers put foreign power first RT . Another story on first Senate bill of 2019. That bill doesn’t address the American government shut down. Instead, it slams Syria’s President Assad, appropriates billions in U.S. foreign aid money for Israel, and “gives state and local governments authority to refuse to do business with firms that boycott Israel.”

01.07.2019 With Golan at stake, Netanyahu, Bolton set Trump straight on US Syria withdrawal plan Mint Press News. by Whitney Webb. “Understanding the significance of the Golan Heights is in many ways key to understanding why the Syrian conflict was engineered by foreign powers in the first place.”

01.07.2018 Rashida Tlaib blasts anti-BDS bill supporters: ‘They forgot what country they represent.” Haaretz Congresswoman Tlaib was immediately labeled anti-Semite for this comment by Jewish writer Howard Lovy but she got a supportive tweet from Senator Bernie Sanders who said, “It’s absurd that the first bill during the shutdown is legislation which punishes Americans who exercise their Constitutional right to engage in political activity…”

01.07.2018 Egypt’s president tried to stop a 60 minute interview from airing. It’s now clear why Vox by Alexia Underwood. In a 60 Minutes interview Egypt’s President Al-Sissi acknowledged that his government is working closely with Netanyahu’s Israeli government to suppress the Muslim Brotherhood in the Sinai Peninsula. [The Brotherhood is loyal to democratically elected leader Mohamed Morsi who was deposed in 2013 coup, when the U.S. and Israel supported Al-Sissi who suspended the constitution, cracked down on dissent, etc.] After Al-Sissi’s interview, the Egyptians asked 60 Minutes not to show it to the American public. 60 Minutes told the Egyptians that’s not how they roll and said that they would air it.

01.07.2019 Top Israel supporter launches bigoted attacks on Rashida Tlaib Electronic Intifada by Michael Brown. The Israel lobby’s Adam Milstein, is-to no one’s surprise-attacking newly elected Palestinian American Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib. Milstein was outed last year as a primary backer of ‘Canary Mission’ the shadowy anti-Palestinian website that targets Americans who support the BDS Movement by smears, intimidation, and attempts to make college BDS supporters look bad to prospective employers.