Category Archives: Settlements and settlers

7 kids injured as Jewish terrorists attack Palestine school buses

7 injured as settlers attack Palestinian school buses
 
Published yesterday (updated) 31/03/2013 22:52
Settlers threw rocks at a two Palestinian school busese south of Nablus on Sunday, injuring seven children, a Palestinian Authority official said.

Ghassan Daghlas, who monitors settlement activity in the northern West Bank, said settlers smashed the windshield of two buses returning from a school trip.

Seven children were injured and taken to the Rafedia Hospital in Nablus, Daghlas said.
 

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this Blog!

Abbas May Accept Unannounced Settlement Freeze: Report

Local Editor
Palestinian Authority Chief Mahmoud Abbas is supposedly to accept an unannounced settlement freeze in order to renew peace talks with the Zionist entity, a report said.
Obama with Abbas
New York Times reported on Wednesday overnight that Abbas may soften his demands that Tel Aviv halts constructions of settlements in the West Bank as a precondition for peace negotiations.

According to the document obtained by the Times, Abbas will tell Obama that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu can privately promise to freeze construction, and will not have to announce it publicly.

Another talking point will have Abbas ask the American president to persuade Netanyahu to agree to use the 1967 borders as a starting point for the peace negotiations.

In an additional talking point, Abbas will reassure the US president that the PA does not intend to use its new UN status to take the Zionist entity to the International Criminal Court in Hague, unless Israel begins construction in E1.

The talking points were reportedly written by Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat’s assistant, the US daily added.

Netanyahu has repeatedly rejected Israeli return to the 1967 lines, and adamantly insisted that he will not accept a halting of settlement constructions as a precondition for negotiations.

Source: Newspapers
21-03-2013 – 15:23 Last updated 21-03-2013

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian  
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this Blog!

EU criticizes illegal Israeli settlements & then funds them

Europe’s odd policy in Palestine

 By Ramzy Baroud

More bad news emerged from Israel in recent weeks. It’s not that good news has the habit of being associated with Israel, its military occupation, institutionalized discrimination and mistreatment of Palestinians, but the emerging consensus that Israel is heading to an irrevocably perilous course is now crossing from the realm of political analysts over to international organizations previously lenient in the face of Israel’s dismissal of international law.

Only a few international law experts would defend Israel’s fervent settlement constructions on occupied Palestinian land. Yet there has been little interest from Western powers to pressure Israel to cease its illegal activities. Without US and European funding it would have been nearly impossible for Israel to build settlements and transfer more half a million Israelis over the years to live on stolen Palestinian land, in violation of numerous international laws including the Fourth Geneva Convention. Worse still, trade with European and other countries sustained and flourished these same illegal settlements, at the expense of Palestinians who have suffered massive ethnic cleansing campaigns since 1967.

At last, EU diplomats in East Jerusalem and the West Bank are speaking out in unequivocal terms. In a report, released February 27, the diplomats resolved that “settlement construction remains the biggest single threat to the two-state solution. It is systematic, deliberate and provocative.”

Moreover, “the report called for strict application of an EU-Israel trade pact to ensure products from settlements do not receive preferential treatment under the accord in European markets,” said Reuters. The report called on EU states “not to support … research, education and technological cooperation” with settlements, and to “discourage” investing in Israeli companies that operate in the occupied territories.

The report, as would be expected, is non-binding. Even if such recommendations are considered, Israel and its EU friends and lobbyists are likely to find many loopholes to somehow deprive any EU action of substance and vigor. The fact remains that without civil society action focused on turning up the heat against European governments, especially diehard supporters of Israel such as the British government, it is most likely be business as usual with Israel.

The real political and moral crisis does not only lie in Israel’s flaunting of international law, but because the supposed guardians of international law are the very ones empowering Israel to carry out bad deeds, which include disempowering and bankrupting Palestinians. Last January, an Oxfam report said that the Palestinian economy, which is currently in utter disarray, could generate urgently needed income (US$1.5 billion to be exact) if Israel eased restrictions in the Jordan Valley alone. But without suitable access to their own land and to water sources, Palestinians in the valley continue to agonize, while Israeli Jewish settlers are thriving.

While the United States government has done everything in its power to undermine Palestinian rights, defend Israel at any cost and ensure Israel’s superiority and military edge over all of its neighbors combined, the EU has falsely acquired a more balanced reputation. Nothing can be further from the truth.

In a recent report, the Palestinian human-rights group Al-Haq emphasized that trading in produce grown in settlements alone had “directly contributed to the growth and viability of settlements by providing an essential source of revenue that allows them to thrive.” The reported value of total EU trade with illegal Jewish settlements amounts to approximately $300 million annually. The volume may appear small if juxtaposed with the some $39 billion, the total trade between the EU and Israel reported in 2011 alone. But that means, according to Dalia Hatuqa, writing for Al-Monitor on January 17, “the EU has some room for leverage given it is Israel’s largest trade partner, and it receives some 20% of total Israeli exports.”

What is equally important and disturbing to the actual value of the trade is the very idea that Europe is ultimately taking part in the subjugation of the Palestinians and the funding of Israel’s illegal occupation and its massively growing settler population. No amount of diplomatic ‘recommendations’ or newspeak can ever challenge or alter that fact.

Discussing settlement growth in a vacuum is also misleading, as it is disconcerting to talk about boycotting settlements, while supporting the main organs that ordered or sanctioned them in the first place. To differentiate between products made in Israel or those made in the settlements is absurd at best. The settlers are not self-sustaining structures operating as autonomous regions, but are considered part and parcel of the so-called Israel proper. There is little distinction in the eyes of the Israeli government between settlers from Ma’ale Adumim or residents of Tel Aviv except in the imagination of those who may recognize Israel’s horrific practices but are too timid to confront them.

Israel, meanwhile, excels in pushing limits. By doing so it continues, although inadvertently, to expose the hypocrisy of its friends and ever-so-careful detractors. Yigal Palmore of the Israeli Foreign Ministry responded to the EU report with belittling terms. “A diplomat’s mission is to build bridges and bring people together, not to foster confrontation. The EU consuls have clearly failed in their mission,” he said.

While the report accurately spoke of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s decision to develop more settlements in the area known as E1, which is “set to cut off East Jerusalem from the rest of the West Bank,” there is unlikely a turning back from the construction plans, which include the building of 3,000 settler homes in the land corridor near Jerusalem. Nothing is random in Israeli planning and the final scene, as is already the case in various parts of the occupied territories, will make Palestinians unwanted irritants on their own land.

Yes, Israel is unrelenting and seems to have no regards whatsoever for any country or any relevant international law. Its action is emboldened by the weakness of its neighbors, the unhindered backing of its friends, and the gutlessness of its critics. While Israeli friends are busy labeling as anti-Semite anyone who dares highlight the effective Apartheid underway in Palestine and Israel, others are consumed in intellectual tussles over the boundaries of language and proper ways to frame the discourse.

None of this wrangling is relevant to Israel, which is merely winning time to achieve its own version of a harrowingly ugly Apartheid. As for those who still feel uneasy about that “provocative” term, they simply need to consider the latest Israeli transportation ministry’s initiative, which designates bus line number 210 to be “Palestinian only” buses, which will shuttle cheap Palestinian labor to and from the West Bank. Of course, this is not an isolated policy, but a continuation of a dreadful track record.

All of this comes at the heels of yet another international report, this time issued by the UN Children’s Fund, UNICEF. Released on March 6, the report criticized Israel’s military courts for its mistreatment of Palestinian children and spoke of their “widespread, systematic and institutionalized” abuse. The favorite arrest time of children by the Israeli army, as indicated in the report, was between midnight and 5am.

The report, “Children in Israeli Military Detention: Observations and Recommendations”, mentioned “measures so that Palestinian children in Israeli military custody are treated in line with the Convention on the Rights of the Child and other international standards”. Another pipe-dream, of course, for child abuse has been intrinsically linked to military occupation, and is as old as the state of Israel itself. Israel cannot possibly comply with any international law or convention without serious pressure.

The bad news from Israel is likely to continue. Almost every day there is a new disturbing development in Israeli practices against Palestinians. Institutionalized Apartheid however is merely met with bashful international criticism and the lack of any substantial action. Civil society organizations and groups must tell their governments that enough is enough. While Israel should be held responsible for its own behavior, the EU and other countries should not finance the occupation, while decrying the settlements. This hypocrisy can no longer be tolerated.

Ramzy Baroud (www.ramzybaroud.net) is an internationally-syndicated columnist and the editor of PalestineChronicle.com. His latest book is My Father was A Freedom Fighter: Gaza’s Untold Story (Pluto Press).

(Copyright 2013 Ramzy Baroud)

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian  
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this Blog!

Palestinian Authority ‘Consenting to Its Own Colonization’

Swimming pool in the Israeli West Bank Settlement of Ariel

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By Richard Edmondson
In a way, what’s revealed in this article is not surprising. The Palestinian Authority, which does have some limited control over parts of the West Bank, has been obliged/coerced by Israel to provide water services to Israeli settlements there—settlements which are illegal under international law and which are the main obstacle to any peace agreement. But not only that, this practice has been going on for an incredible 15 years, a period during which the settlements have rapidly expanded and become more numerous.

As the author of the study puts it, the Palestinian Authority has essentially consented “to its own colonization and has not contested Israel’s cynical tactics as forcefully as it might have done.”


Researcher Uncovers Hidden Facts of Israeli-Palestinian Water Politics

Source: University of Sussex

The Israeli government has been forcing the Palestinian Authority into approving water infrastructure for illegal West Bank settlements for the past 15 years, according to research by a University of Sussex academic.

The research by Senior Lecturer in International Relations Dr Jan Selby  published (5 February 2013) in the journal Water Alternatives.1

It presents the first known evidence of the Palestinian Authority lending its official consent to parts of Israel’s settlement expansion programme.

Settlements and related infrastructure are illegal under international law, and are recognised as one of the major obstacles to a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

The research is based on minutes of the Joint Water Committee – an Israeli-Palestinian body often upheld as an example of good Israeli-Palestinian relations – and interviews with participants. Dr Selby concludes that:



·         Israel has repeatedly made its approval of improvements to Palestinian water supplies conditional upon Palestinian Authority approval of new water facilities for Israeli settlements;

·         the Palestinians, who face serious water shortage issues and an underdeveloped supply system, have given this approval in almost every case;

·         the arrangement was known about by former Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat and current President Abu Mazen;

·         international donors have known that Israel’s approval of donor-funded projects for Palestinians is conditional on Palestinian approval of Israeli settlement infrastructures, but have preferred to remain silent on the issue;

·         the Palestinian water crisis in the West Bank has significantly worsened since the creation of the Joint Water Committee.

Dr Selby says: “None of the parties emerge very well from these findings. Israel has been exploiting Palestinian desperation for improved water supplies. The Palestinian Authority has been pressured into consenting to its own colonisation and has not contested Israel’s cynical tactics as forcefully as it might have done.

“And international donors have variously stood by or been complicit in activity which is contrary to international law, and contrary to their own policies on the peace process, and which has helped to undermine the possibility of a two state solution.”



Notes for Editors

 1 ‘Cooperation, domination and colonisation: The Israeli-Palestinian Joint Water Committee’ by Dr Jan Selby is published online by the journal Water Alternatives.

Dr Jan Selby is a Senior Lecturer in International Relations in the School of Global Studies, University of Sussex, and Director of the Sussex Centre for International Security (SCIS).

Dr Selby is widely published on Israeli-Palestinian and Middle Eastern water politics. He is author of Water, Power and Politics in the Middle East: The Other Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (IB Tauris, 2003), and more recently was Principal Investigator on the EU Framework 7-funded project Climate Change, Hydro-Conflicts and Human Security (CLICO), undertaking research on water-climate-conflict linkages in Cyprus, Israel-Palestine and Sudan. Dr Selby has served widely as a consultant and advisor on water policy issues.

For interviews please contact the University of Sussex Press office.

University of Sussex Press office contacts: Maggie Clune and Jacqui Bealing. Tel: 01273 678 888. Email:press@sussex.ac.uk

View press releases online at: http://www.sussex.ac.uk/newsandevents/

Stolen Land and Water: A Journey to Maale



Swimming pool at Israeli settlement of Maale Adumim



By Richard Edmondson

Yesterday after I posted an article about Israel forcing the Palestinian Authority to provide water infrastructure to its illegal settlements—an article which included a photo of a swimming pool in the West Bank settlement of Ariel—a reader emailed me: “I just noted the swimming pool on your blog accompanying the water research article. But that weeny pool is dwarfed by the Maale Adumim central Olympic pool.”

The reader’s email included a link to a web page promoting the settlement mentioned, Maale Adumim, located in the West Bank, approximately 7 kilometers from Jerusalem. If we go to the page and scroll just below midway down we find a photo of what appears to be, sure enough, an Olympic-sized swimming pool and—along with the photo—text informing us this is not the only swimming pool in Maale, but actually is one of four.

Yesterday’s post, entitled Palestinian Authority Consenting to Its Own Colonization, included a report by Dr. Jan Selby, a University of Sussex researcher, who found that the Israeli government “has repeatedly made its approval of improvements to Palestinian water supplies conditional upon Palestinian Authority approval of new water facilities for Israeli settlement.” Furthermore, “the Palestinians, who face serious water shortage issues and an underdeveloped supply system, have given this approval in almost every case.”

Selby additionally reported on something called the “Joint Water Committee,” presumably made up of both Israelis and Palestinians, which regulates water supplies in the West Bank, but which apparently leaves much to be desired—the researcher informs us the “Palestinian water crisis in the West Bank has significantly worsened” since the committee’s creation.

Significantly worsened for Palestinians, that is—but apparently not for the Israelis or their illegal settlements. In fact, water-wise everything seems to be just peachy in the settlements. If you look up Maale at Wikipedia, you find the following photo:

Artificial lake, Ma’ale Adumim
The caption underneath the photo reads, “Artificial lake, Ma’ale Adumim.” So the settlement has not only an Olympic pool (and three other pools as well), but also an artificial lake.

Passing reference to the lake is also made at the aforementioned web page, although the fact that the lake is artificial is omitted:

Maale Adumim has all the advantages of a city: an enclosed mall and several strip malls, a municipal government center, intra-city transportation, an extensive library, health services, an art museum, sports and recreational facilities, a lake, a music conservatory, parks and more. It also has many of the advantages of a small town. It is clean and pleasant, surrounded by palm trees and a breathtaking desert view, and is only 20 minutes from downtown Jerusalem.

I should probably here pause and mention that the website where the above appears is that of Nefesh B’Nefesh, an organization which exhorts Jews to make “aliyah” to Israel. I should also probably mention that Maale Adumim lies in the so-called “E1” area just east of Jerusalem. Last November, one day after Palestine’s successful statehood recognition campaign at the UN, Israel announced intentions to build 3,000 new settler homes in the E1 area. The move was widely seen as retaliation for the statehood vote.

The Nefesh B’Nefesh site provides a sort of virtual guided tour of the illegal settlement:

Maale Adumim’s Matnas (community center) offers dozens of activities for all ages, such as: sports, concerts, music, dance, shows, 4 swimming pools and an outstanding music program. There are also tennis and basketball courts as well as soccer fields. A baseball team for boys ages 8-12 has also started in the city.

The local library has a large collection of English books for children and adults. There is an English book club for adults. There is also an active club for retirees (55+) which offers a multitude of social activities (some of which are in English), as well as a weekly English-speakers’ senior club.

Maale sits at a very high elevation roughly midway between Jericho and Jerusalem. It is an area that is extremely dry and has little natural vegetation. If you look at the map below you can see that this area is strategically located between the northern and southern West Bank. Some critics have charged that the new settlement project will essentially bisect the West Bank, making a contiguous Palestinian state impossible.

 River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this Blog!

Defiant Land… Faithful Land…. Holy Land

Painting walls and doors blue
will not make it “Jewish”
64150_478955292171510_89835330_n
Waving angry flags up and down
will not make it “Jewish”
228446_436059766435706_1917281009_n - Copy
Scribbling around fantasies and lies
will not make it “Jewish”
safed2
Destroying evidence of deep rooted history
will not make it “Jewish”
Erasing Jerusalem's Arab Muslim heritage
Uprooting trees and stealing livelihoods
will not make it “Jewish”
600197_478963845503988_1703626892_n
Desecrating monasteries where peace is the prayer
will not make it “Jewish”
Jesus is a monkey
Writing Hebrew words on stolen olive oil
will not make it “Jewish”
olive oil
Burning fruit trees to tighten the squeeze
will not make it “Jewish”
Settlers Burn Olive Trees Near Nablus
Shredding Holy books to pieces, with a grin
will not make it “Jewish”
Israeli Knesset Member Michael Ben-Ari shreds a copy of the New Testament benari
Erasing a country from the world map
will not make it “Jewish”
sorry-there-is-no-palestine
Moving in, at gun point to some family home
will not make it “Jewish”
settlers take control of house shiek jarrah
Disfiguring kuffiah with blue pointed stars
will not make it “Jewish”
keffiyeh israel
Claiming God is a real-estate agent favouring his “chosen”
will not make it “Jewish”
88 year-old Palestinian who was evicted from her home in East Jerusalem
Invading fully armed, a mosque or a church
will not make it “Jewish”
149792_298676530252984_333100646_n
Destroying landscapes, for eyesore construction
will not make it “Jewish”
408436_492101394161992_1745318616_n
Bombing hills and mountains while hiding the crime
will not make it “Jewish”
547318_353316408067101_2092141346_n
Defiant Land
Faithful Land
Holy Land
Her stones yearn to be caressed
Only by those hands
which tenderly carved
NOTHING… NOTHING of what they do will ever make it “Jewish”
556967_334019830017543_881974306_n
Defiant Land
Faithful Land
Holy Land
Her heart beats only
for those gentle eyes
which watered her with tears
she passionately adores
NOTHING… NOTHING of what they do will ever make it “Jewish”
1725_476416549092051_816928254_n

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian  
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this Blog!

Americans protest against AIPAC conference

 
Tue Mar 5, 2013 4:17PM GMT
 
Colin Campbell, Press TV, Washington

 

The American-Israel Public Affairs Committee landed in Washington over the weekend. The arrival of one of the most powerful pro-Israel lobbying groups wasn’t without its share of controversy
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With mock settlements, an apartheid wall and chants urging for cuts in funding to Israel, protesters collected outside of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee commonly called AIPAC.

They’ve come here from around the country for what they say is an important issue largely ignored by US media. Activist groups such as CODEPINK and others spring into activist mode every year to protest the Israel lobby’s annual policy conference.

AIPAC is considered the most powerful lobbying group in support of Israel. The power comes from money. The committee operates on a budget of $67 million each fiscal year. Some of that money goes to politicians through smaller organizations and committees, many of which support Israeli interests.

There are an estimated 13,000 people who attend the AIPAC conference. It’s a gathering that reportedly attracts more members of the US government than virtually any event other than the President’s State of the Union address.

In Washington, where lawmakers are criticized for pay to play politics, activists say that AIPAC doesn’t play by the rules.

Activists believe that the way US lawmakers vote is heavily influenced by AIPAC and party affiliation doesn’t matter. While protesters decried the organization’s activities from the outside, Vice President Joe Biden addressed the committee and praised President Barack Obama’s commitment to Israel as an ally. But there were some who said the president could use a lesson about Judaism.

AIPAC’s conference continues into the middle of the week. Top issues on the agenda are to include Iran and Syria among other issues to protect Israeli interests.

‏الثلاثاء‏، 05‏ آذار‏، 2013
أوقات الشام

جو معكرونعلى هامش مؤتمر لجنة الشؤون العامة الأميركية الإسرائيلية، هناك همس في الإعلام الأميركي وفي القاعات داخل مركز المؤتمرات في واشنطن حول بداية نهاية أسطورة «أيباك» في المدينة، في وقت تحدث فيه نائب الرئيس الأميركي جو بايدن عن اختلاف تكتيكي بين أميركا وإسرائيل حول التعامل مع إيران، بالتزامن مع قلق مشترك من التحولات المتسارعة في سوريا.
ليست كبيرة هذا العام طموحات اللوبي الأقوى المؤيد لإسرائيل في العاصمة الأميركية: أمل ألا يمس الإلغاء التلقائي في الميزانية الفيدرالية المساعدات العسكرية لإسرائيل، وسعي لضغط تشريعي لا طائل له على الرئيس باراك أوباما لدعم ضربة عسكرية على إيران. ويأتي ذلك بعد خسارة «أيباك» معركة التصديق على ترشيح وزير الدفاع تشاك هايغل في الكونغرس، بعدما قرر اللوبي المؤيد لإسرائيل في مجلس الشيوخ إعطاء أوباما ما يريده بعد فوزه في ولاية رئاسية ثانية.
وللمرة الأولى منذ حوالي سبع سنوات، لا يشارك الرئيس الأميركي في المؤتمر شخصياً ولا حتى رئيس الوزراء أو الرئيس الإسرائيلي، ما يجعل القدرة على دفع جدول الأعمال محدودة، لا سيما مع مفاوضات تشكيل الحكومة الإسرائيلية وانشغال واشنطن بأزمة الميزانية. على جدول المؤتمر هذا العام، الذي يشارك فيه حوالي 12 ألف مندوب، كان بايدن ورئيس الوزراء الإسرائيلي بنيامين نتنياهو (عبر الأقمار الاصطناعية)، ووزير الدفاع الإسرائيلي إيهود باراك، ووزير الخارجية الكندي جون بايرد، ودينيس روس، وإليوت ابرامز، وفريد هوف، ولائحة من الأعضاء البارزين في الكونغرس.
بعث بايدن بعض الرسائل إلى إسرائيل ومؤيديها في واشنطن. وأكد في البداية أنه «في وقت قد لا نتفق فيه على التكتيكات… لكننا لم نختلف يوماً على الحتمية الإستراتيجية بأنه على إسرائيل أن تكون قادرة على حماية نفسها»، لافتاً إلى أن أوباما «لا يخادع» حول تصميمه على منع إيران من الحصول على سلاح نووي، لكنه أضاف «نحن لا نبحث عن حرب، نحن مستعدون للتفاوض سلمياً. لكن كل الخيارات مطروحة على الطاولة، بما في ذلك الخيار العسكري»، مشدداً على أن سياسة أوباما هي «منع إيران من الحصول على سلاح نووي. نقطة على السطر، انتهى النقاش. المنع وليس الاحتواء».
كذلك تطرق بايدن إلى مطلب إسرائيلي آخر هو فرض الاتحاد الأوروبي عقوبات على «حزب الله». واعتبر انه لطالما حاول الحزب أن «يطرح نفسه على أنه ليس أكثر من مجموعة رعاية سياسية واجتماعية، فيما يتآمر ضد أبرياء من أوروبا الشرقية إلى شرق أفريقيا، من جنوب شرق آسيا إلى أميركا الجنوبية»، مضيفاً «نحن نعلم ما تعلمه إسرائيل: حزب الله منظمة إرهابية، نقطة على السطر. ونحن نحث كل بلد في العالم يتعامل مع حزب الله أن يبدأ معاملته على هذا النحو ويسميه كمنظمة إرهابية». وتحدث بايدن أيضاً عن الجهود الأميركية لإقناع الأوروبيين بفرض عقوبات على «حزب الله»، وقال متوجهاً إلى الإسرائيليين «معاً، علينا أن نستمر بمواجهة حزب الله أينما يزرع بذور الكراهية».
وتحدث بايدن عن الملف السوري، مؤكداً أن على الرئيس بشار الأسد «الرحيل، لكن لن نوقع على عصابة قاتلة تستبدل أخرى في دمشق»، في إشارة إلى «جبهة النصرة». ولفت في هذا السياق إلى أنه نتيجة لذلك تركز واشنطن دعمها للمعارضة السورية «الشرعية التي ليست فقط ملتزمة بسوريا سلمية بل بمنطقة سلمية». وتابع قائلاً «لهذا السبب في وقت نضغط باستمرار على الأسد ونفرض العقوبات على الميليشيا المدعومة من إيران الموالية للنظام، صنفنا أيضاً جبهة النصرة كمنظمة إرهابية».
وعن التحديات في مصر، قال بايدن «نحتاج إلى الاستثمار في نجاح مصر واستقرارها»، مشدداً على أنه «لا بديل شرعياً في هذه المرحلة عن الانخراط مع مصر… فقط من خلال الانخراط يمكننا دفع قادة مصر للتركيز على احترام الالتزامات الدولية، بما في ذلك وخصوصاً معاهدة السلام مع إسرائيل»، بالإضافة إلى تعزيز الاستقرار في سيناء، و«تشجيع قادة مصر على إجراء إصلاحات». بايدن لم يتطرق حتى إلى التفاوض الفلسطيني – الإسرائيلي، ولا إلى المصالحة بين حركتي فتح وحماس التي تضع إسرائيل فيتو عليها.
رد نتنياهو، بعد كلمة بايدن، حيث ناشد واشنطن قائلاً «لا يمكننا أن نسمح لإيران بتجاوز الخطوط الحمراء. علينا أن نوقف برنامجها لتخصيب اليورانيوم قبل فوات الأوان». وأضاف أن «الكلمات وحدها لن توقف إيران، العقوبات وحدها لن توقف إيران، بل يجب أن تقترن بتهديد واضح وذي مصداقية إذا فشلت الديبلوماسية والعقوبات».
واعتبر نتنياهو أن سوريا يمكن أن تتحول إلى «أزمة ذات أبعاد استراتيجية غير متوقعة»، مشيراً إلى أنها «بلد فقير جداً، لكن لديه أسلحة كيمائية وأخرى مضادة للطائرات، وغيرها من الأسلحة الأكثر تطوراً وفتكاً في العالم. وفي وقت ينهار النظام السوري، فإن خطر وقوع هذه الأسلحة في الأيدي الخطأ للمجموعات الإرهابية حقيقي جداً. مجموعات إرهابية مثل حزب الله والقاعدة يحاولون الاستيلاء على هذه الأسلحة فيما نتحدث».
وعن المفاوضات مع الفلسطينيين، قال نتنياهو إن «إسرائيل انسحبت من لبنان، انسحبنا من غزة. لقد تخلينا عن الأرض وحصلنا على الإرهاب. وبالتالي لا يمكننا أن نسمح بحصول ذلك مرة ثالثة». وأضاف أن «إسرائيل مستعدة لتسوية ذات معنى. لكن كرئيس وزراء إسرائيل لن أتنازل عن أمننا. علينا أن نعمل معاً لإيجاد مسار واقعي إلى الأمام – عملية مدروسة خطوة خطوة تدفعنا نحو سلام مستدام يمكننا إثباته والدفاع عنه».
أوباما يركز حالياً على جولته الشهر الحالي إلى إسرائيل ورام الله والأردن. السفير الأميركي لدى إسرائيل دان شابيرو موجود حالياً في واشنطن في إطار التحضير للزيارة، كما أن الوفود الفلسطينية والإسرائيلية موجودة في واشنطن للغاية ذاتها.
دينيس روس رفض في كلمته خلال المؤتمر الحوار «خطوة خطوة» مع إيران، وإليوت ابرامز اعتبر أن العام 2013 سيكون «عاماً حاسماً» في الملف النووي الإيراني. أما وزير الدفاع الإسرائيلي إيهود باراك فاقترح «بناء إطار أمني إقليمي» بوساطة أميركية للتعامل مع الملف النووي الإيراني، و«التحديات المشتركة حول إرهاب الإسلاميين المتطرف، وأمن الحدود».
يأتي مؤتمر «أيباك» السنوي في توقيت غير مؤات هذه المرة، حيث دخل حيز التنفيذ هذا الأسبوع إلغاء تلقائي بحجم 85 مليار دولار في الميزانية الفيدرالية الأميركية لهذا العام، وسيطال نصف هذا التقليص ميزانية البنتاغون.

أهداف «إيباك» هذا العام هي تسمية إسرائيل كـ«حليف استراتيجي رئيسي» لواشنطن واستثناؤها من أي تقليص في نفقات برنامج المساعدات العسكرية الأميركية. وسيتم لهذه الغاية حجز مواعيد للناشطين في «إيباك» مع أعضاء الكونغرس في دائرتهم الانتخابية لبحث هذه القضايا التي «تهم المجتمع المؤيد لإسرائيل»، كما يشارك في المؤتمر 130 موظفاً في الكونغرس في ندوة حول سياسة الشرق الأوسط. كذلك، هناك مشروع قرار طُرح في الكونغرس، بالتزامن مع بدء أعمال المؤتمر، يدعو أوباما إلى دعم إسرائيل إذا قررت توجيه ضربة عسكرية وقائية ضد المواقع النووية الإيرانية مع الإشارة إلى أن هذا لا يعني «إعلان حرب»، لكن حتى ضمن هذه اللغة الغامضة لن يقبل البيت الأبيض على الأرجح بتكبيل تحركه تشريعياً.
جنيفر روبين كتبت في صحيفة «واشنطن بوست» مقالاً تحت عنوان «إيباك لديها مشاكل» جاء فيه، «نظراً لتراجع دعم إسرائيل بين الديموقراطيين، بعض القادة اليهود يبحثون عن قادة المستقبل. لكن الانتظار سيكون طويلاً حتى يصل مثل هؤلاء القادة إلى مرحلة النضوج السياسي».
حتى إيهود باراك وجه نداءً خاصاً إلى الجيل الجديد من «إيباك»، وقد شارك حوالي 240 منهم في المؤتمر تمهيداً لصقلهم عسى أن يصبحوا فاعلين ومؤثرين في صفوف اللوبي الإسرائيلي.
روبين، ذات الميول المحافظة، ختمت المقال بالقول إن «إيباك في مأزق لأن عليها أن تتعامل مع إدارة على خلاف مع إسرائيل، في وقت تواجه فيه الدولة اليهودية عدم استقرار متزايداً في المنطقة وتهديداً من إيران المســلحة نووياً. جيل جديد من الديموقراطيين قد يكون أكثر دعماً للعلاقات الأميركية – الإسرائيلية، لكن ماذا تفعل إيباك في السنوات العشر المقبلة». حتى السفير الإسرائيلي لدى واشنطن مايكل اورين استدرك احتمال عزلة إسرائيل داخل الحزب الديموقراطي الذي يــزداد تنوعاً في ديموغرافيــته، وناشد المندوبين في «إيبــاك» التواصل مع «الأفارقة الأميركيين والأميركيين واللاتينيين والمسلمين».

السفير

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Israel gets ready to cash-on Syrian conflict

While the world’s eyes are focussed on the daily bloody events in Syria – and Syrian army is pre-occupied fighting the western sponsored anti-government insurgency – it dawned on the Zionist regime recently how to make its occupation of Syrian territory of Golan Heights permanent.

On Thursday, the Zionist regime of Benjamin Netanyahu announced it has awarded oil-exploration licence to the Genie Energy Corporation, a US-based company. This action proves once again who is behind the regime change in Damascus and for whom the Saudi-Qatar funded Islamist rebels (Al-Qaeda) are working.

The timing of the decision is directly related to the fact that the Syrian government is not free to deal with this problem and that the Syrian Army cannot pose a threat to Israel right now,” says Israeli political analyst Yaron Ezrahi.

The Israeli subsidiary of Genie Energy Corporation is headed by a criminal Jewish Golan Heights settler and former Israeli minister of housing and construction, Brig. Gen. Efraim Eitam, who lead Jewish army on Syrian front in June 1967 war. Israel-Firsters like Jewish billionaire Baron Jacob Rothschild, disgraced media tycoon Rupert Murdoch and former US vice-president Dick Cheney serve on board of advisers to Genie Energy Corporation. Genie is also the parent company of Israel Energy Initiatives Ltd. (IEI), which has its eyes set on exploiting gas reserves in Lebanese territorial waters. The Tamar site alone has estimated reserves of 274 bcm which makes it one of the largest discoveries of the past decades. Israel expect is to begin production at the site in the next few months.

Israeli Eden Springs water company, a subsidiary of US-based Mayanot Eden is already profiting from Israeli occupation of Golan Heights. It has a spring water bottle plant, which steals natural spring water from Katzbiyah spring in occupied Golan Heights. Roni Naftali, a Zionist Jew is the founder-president of Mayanot Eden. Roni Naftali family owns 65% of company shares. Mayanot Eden’s net profit in 2011 was $63 million. Eden is one of Europe’s largest suppliers of watercoolers to offices, distributing more than 368 million litres of water yearly to 450,000 customers in 16 countries. In 2011, its Switzerland business won the contract to supply Geneva-based World Health Oraganization (WHO).

The Jewish army captured Golan Heights from Syria during its war of aggressin against its Arab neighbors and annexed it in a move not recognized by the international community. The strategic plateau has been extensively settled by illegal Jewish settlers (over 4,000) and is the site of a major wind turbine project. The Golan’s status has been at the heart of past Israeli-Syrian peace talks, with Damascus demanding its full return. With a two-year-old Syrian revolt now threatening President Bashar al-Assad’s rule, Israel has dug in on the Golan.
 

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