Tuesday, January 06, 2009

What is happening in Gaza... In their view.

Blood on our hands

Shulamit Aloni amazed by public’s ability to get caught up in wave of patriotic zeal over Gaza op
Shulamit Aloni
Hamas men and their leaders belong to the evil camp, and their hatred for us made them cast away the rational inhibitions required of a leadership that is concerned for the wellbeing of its citizens. Indeed, Hamas’ conduct ever since the Gaza withdrawal and subsequent election victory does not merit any praise. However, Strip residents who are captives of Hamas’ leadership – women, the elderly, children, students, lecturers, hospitals, doctors, and patients – do not have to be punished with destruction, death, and bereavement because of the despicable acts of their leaders.

It is doubtful whether the method of punishment adopted by the State of Israel for some years now, in the form of targeting populated areas, dropping one-ton bombs on civilian neighborhoods, and using cluster bombs, has any effect or wisdom.

The defense minister declared that the time for war has arrived, in order to put an end to the criminal harassment in the form of murderous rockets fired from Gaza at our communities. Well, the IDF embarked on war with much force, knowledge, and advanced planning in order to sow fear and horror on Gaza civilians and leaders. And it worked for him! There, the defense minister already gained five Knesset seats in pre-election polls. The defense minister is happy, and the people - proud of their glorious army - are already resorting to exaggerated passion and are vowing to elect the hero and his party.

Yet why did he abandon Gilad Shalit? Why didn’t he secure his release before embarking on the operation? Hamas demanded the release of prisoners, and we argued that many of them have blood on their hands, yet when it comes to killing and assassinations we are much more capable than them. Within the first 24 hours of the operation we killed more than 300 people, including two innocent girls, not to mention the victims we killed between this operation and previous ones.

Why did our well organized army, with its excellent intelligence capabilities, object to the release of Palestinian prisoners, when we could send them back home and later assassinate them in the heat of the battle? After all, we are already used to assassinations from the air, sea, at hideouts, or in populated neighborhoods. Assassinate – that is, to kill and murder.

Moreover, the people who drop our bombs do not get stained with blood. Our system is simple: There is no need for evidence or for a trial. Once we decide that a certain someone is wanted, one bang and he’s gone. Recently, the army was also granted permission to kill civilians who happen to be near a wanted person; this was published in the press about two weeks ago next to a photo of a smiling army chief.

There is no doubt that had the defense minister first secured the release of our captive soldier, he would have gained more than five Knesset seats. He may have even been crowned as the king of Israel.

The public’s ability to get caught up in a wave of patriotic zeal because of the IDF operation is amazing. I remember how, upon embarking on the Second Lebanon War in 2006, many of my sane and enlightened friends cried out with joy: “Finally, a just war.” I believe we all remember how it ended.

So why didn’t we, throughout the lull period, engage in direct or indirect dialogue in order to extend the truce or secure a better agreement?


Dropping a one ton bomb in a highly dense civilian area is not less worse than the worst act done by Hamas. Collective punishment and consciously and knowingly leveling building just because a Hamas 'leader' is there is also as bad as the worst bad thing Hamas ever done. The difference here is that Hamas is almost 30 years old, but the 'state of Israel' has been practicing this since 'very long' !

If the people who drop these tons do not get stained with blood , who really should ?? The militarry leadership ? or maybe the political leadership ? The same projections you made on Hamas leadership simply work here, but on the 'state of Israel' !

Try to look at these pictures and find 'someone' other than Hamas to blame !

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Israel's war in Gaza , 450 killed and 2200 injured ... What's next ?

Today is the sevenths day in Israel's war in Gaza. Until now 470 killed and more than 2000 injured. Israel's target is to " stop Hamas from firing rockets from Gaza "

Few months ago a truce started between Hamas and Israel. Almost all observers reported that Israel in many occasions started breaking the truce agreement in many ways, the last was through closing the borders in Gaza , stopping all forms of life there.

As usual, most of the casualties are civilians.

Israeli leadership, if willing, could have avoided this war through keeping the truce with Hamas. Hamas, this time, is not the major player, Israel decides and hamas replies.

Thousands of tons of bombs fell on many ' targets ' in Gaza, and the results were seen in the media .

Having started these airstrikes, there is no other choice for the Israeli leadership other than invading Gaza again. In this case the casualties will be extra few hundreds of civilian casulaties.

Hamas's only choice is to fight Israel. No other choice. Palestinians , who elected Hamas in the last legislative elections will also support hamas. Even the modest Palestinians will find themselves supporting Hamas in a way or another.

The question is : will Israel terminate Hamas in gaza ? Of course not
What will the political situation be after this war ? For sure this is uncertain, but the future of the Palestinian issue will surely DIFFER after this ' war '.

Those who live in the region and know Israel's history and Palestinian responses, will surely know that this war will not serve Israel in any way.

Unfortunately, civilians are the first to lose .

Another BLACK page in Israel's history.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Hamas and Israel : a truce agreement !!

For the first time in Hamas and Israel history , an agreement is reached between both sides. This history ( 19/6 ) marks a new era in the Palestinian ( and Israeli ) history. This might not be the first time an agreement is made between Hamas and Israel , but it’s the first declared agreement between the two.

The agreement is simple . Hamas stops firing the hand-made rockets that were hitting the Israeli settlements near Gaza, and Israel stops its military acts against Gaza and the ports are open for goods exchange.

Ever since then Israel started its provocative acts. One day after the start of the truce Israeli soldiers start shooting at Palestinian farmers coming to farm their land that they left long time ago due to military acts near the borders. Israel also shot dead 2 activists from the Islamic Jihad in the West Bank. Then few rockets were fired from Gaza as a "response".

It is not clear whether Israel intentionally provoking , but a balanced observer for the whole situation can easily find that both Hamas and Israel are very interested in maintaining this truce in spite of the continuous doubts from both sites.

Hamas, I think, is the winner in this truce. Not only will it be able to regain its military strength as well as its popularity in Gaza , it also proved to its supporters that it was 'strong enough" to force Israel into a truce with it . Internationally I don’t know how will Israel explain it to the public how it is with an "agreement" with the "terrorist organization – Hamas " !!

Locally , the Palestinian National Authority in Ramallah is suffering. Hamas is no longer viewed as a terrorist organization. It’s a Partner. Partner in the Palestinian Legislative Council ( with a majority ) , and a partner with Israel ! Abbas , the Palestinian president, is in his worst conditions . Even Shimon Peretz suspects his viability and importance as a Palestinian leader with whom Israel can start anything.

Hamas is getting more power and support among Palestinians. Internationally the situation is much more better than before for Hamas , and worse for the Palestinian National Authority in Ramallah.

What made Israel go to Hamas for an agreement ?? It could have simply continued with the same pace in Gaza but without any military violence or provocations. Israel was NOT in a MUST position to make a truce with Hamas. This truce is a strategic change in the Israeli policy with Palestinians, no doubt.

What is the truce targeting and what will the long term outcomes be is something that no one can answer now. Linking this change in Israeli policy with the peace talks with Syria and Hezbollah is irrelevant, I think.

The war is now back in the West-Bank : Hamas will start building itself there and the PNA will do everything to stop Hamas from doing so. Fatah is trying to put a tighter hand on the situation but its capabilities and structure is not allowing it to do so. Israel will have to decide soon with whom will it have to work.

Very soon we will see more dramatic changes, in the West Bank this time!

Whatever the changes are, they are in the right direction for the average Palestinian citizens. The situation is much more better in Gaza now , and surely will be so in the West Bank soon.

This truce with Hamas is a true and genuine marker that Israel is moving towards peace with Palestinians. Lets wait and see.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Is it time to start the peace process with Israel ?

Abbas and Olmert ; agreement to start negotiations

After the few meetings and conferences that were held between Israelis and Palestinians , Abbas and Olmert agreed yesterday to start the negotiations , including negotiations concerning the 'big' issues ( Jerusalem, refugees, etc ).

Will Abbas be able to achieve peace ? Will Olmert ? Will the two governments be able to achieve peace soon ?

Maybe the question is a CAN not a WILL question !
Can Abbas achieve peace ? The answer is NO.
After few months of loosing Gaza to Hamas, and earlier than that loosing the descent representation in the Legislative Council ( for Hamas too ) , Abbas's government , and party ( Fatah ) are in the worst conditions since ever !

More meetings and conferences and visits will soon be revealed, but surely NOTHING will result. The Palestinian leadership is not taking the lead and probably needs a lot of time to handle all the corruption and imbalances in the Palestinian community and organizations. The Palestinian leadership is now in its weakest situations , and the negotiating teams that Abbas is using are not popular, even among Fatah members themselves. In addition , the elections that are taking place now is all Fatah party levels are not done yet, and this means that only after the new elected Fatah leadership is ready, a consensus ( or acceptance ) can be reached.

Starting the talks with Israel will surely be of benefit. USA is the first winner ( a public relations campaign for the government in power ) , then comes Israel, which will be viewed by the international community as a negotiator, not an occupier. The Palestinian people will suffer little bit "LESS" than usual ( as Israel will not do obvious harm ). The only loser is Abbas and his party, no doubt.

I do hope that the peacefull time that we may enjoy during all these useless 'peace talks' will give some results and insight to the Palestinian and Israeli people.
The only threat to this peaceful time is Hamas , if it decides to stop the peace talks through firing more rockets on Sdeirot ( near Gaza ). If Hamas does so , that would be the green light for Israel to start war in Gaza ( and at the same time Peace talks with Abbas in the West-Bank ).

Friday, August 31, 2007

"Palestine state " ; our readiness to establish a state.

Through this blogging world I received many comments, notes and questions about our ( Palestinian ) readiness to build our own state. In fact I used to view such comments or questions as "provocations" and "nonsense" , nothing more. But now, as I am personally living and experiencing the real situation of the Palestinian Organizations, I am asking myself this question : are we really able to handle a 'state' ?
Hebron, which is the biggest city in the West-Bank, and second most important after Ramallah ( the center -or capital - of the West-Bank now ) is my example that I want to analyze to answer this question. Unfortunately there is NO single clue that gives you the impression that there are ORGANIZATIONS in Hebron. Almost all of the societies, establishments, charities, and non-governmental organizations are lacking the most important ingredients of a successful NGO. The administrative staff of almost all Palestinian NGOs is lacking the Leadership qualities, the vision and the capabilities to DO almost ANYTHING. Financially, these NGOs are more close to complete failure than to corruption. Employees are lacking training and even the experienced ones are lacking the professional capabilities. There is no training activity of any type in almost all NGOs. Actually without the direct financial support of donating foreign organizations ( Western or Arab ) most of local NGOs will not survive few months.

These facts, together with the structure of the Palestinian Society - which is strongly supported by loyalty to family and extended family- makes the answer closer : We are surely NOT able to handle a 'state' and we will probably not be able to do so even with foreign aid.

The few billions of dollars that the Palestinian National Authority received after the Oslo agreement were spent without ANY vision or planning. Hamas Government, which was replaced by Salam Fayyad Government few months ago, was the best example of how bad the situation REALLY is. Without direct financial support, we couldn't even survive for few months.

It is really very strange. How can we expect to build a state and a nation while having a blind leadership that has not been able to meet ANY of our expectations ? There will be NO hope for a Palestinian State unless the lead is given to a third hand, other than Hamas and Fatah ( at least in their current structure and ideology ).

Only until then we can really ask for a state of our own !

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Hamas in Gaza, Fatah in the West-Bank...Another hand-made NAQBA for Palestinians !

Nearly two months ago Hamas " forces " were able to take control over Gaza , kicking out all "Fatah " " Forces " and taking control over everything. Palestinian President, Abbas, considered this as a "rebellion" and almost all Arab and Western countries supported him. US money started to pour over the West-Bank, and suddenly a new "Palestinian" government was formed and given the approval and support of all Arab and Western governments. Even Israel started the contacts with this government, on the presidents level.

What happened in Gaza and how could Hamas take over in hours ?
The majority of the Palestinian Security Forces in Gaza ( and in the West-Bank too ) are not really Security Forces. They miss the least needed qualities of a security force. The problem is not with financial or technical things, it is more of a purely professional and cultural one. On papers you read that there are 60,000 security members in Gaza, who were supposed to be the security forces controlling Gaza. On reality you could count 400-500 members ONLY. The rest are either not existing, or are just existing on papers ( people are taking salaries without even going to work ). Second, the already existing forces are no more than a group of "men" who are wearing the uniforms and carrying guns without ANY real professional leadership. Even that type of leadership that can be found among 'gangs' is missing ! President Abbas knows this problem very well. It is surely not easy to end this problem : many "supporters' will lose their salaries and income and thus the whole political balance will be disturbed. Yet, the price of not fixing such a serious imbalance was obvious : Hamas - and probably any other insignificant military force- were able to take over all Gaza in hours. Few days after this "event " ( Hamas taking over Gaza ) , a senior Fatah member was explaining the reasons for this very fast collapse in Gaza. He said that very few Fatah members actually resisted Hamas, and that the majority of "leaders" , members and soldiers escaped or surrendered without the least resistance , ..., these people are being PAID and they are not ready to risk their lives for anyone, including Abbas himself , ..., why would they risk to lose all the money they collected and die and leave them behind ..???

What does all this add to Palestinians ?
To the average Palestinians this meant almost NOTHING ! The life has been miserable, so it will be now. Everyone is aware of the total carelessness and absence of law and order, and this 'event' added nothing , it is just another consequence of many that are to come.
Internationally we lost more and more support. But most importantly we are losing our unity.
Hamas is now taking decisions. Some of them are very serious . Fatah in the West-Bank is trying to eliminate all Hamas activities and potentials. All western support is being spent as usual : randomly and unwisely.
Sooner or later we will be left with each other. No one will be supporting anyone anymore. What will happen then ?

Again, all these 'events' in our lives are leading us to one single conclusion : we need wise and responsible people to lead us. Only then we will start to know what our potentials are, and start to know what are the possible solutions. Until then, many other 'events' will follow, but how fast we will learn from them ?

Monday, April 02, 2007

Any Hope with the new Palestinian Government ?

Last month was very important in the history of Palestinians. For the first time a government is formed from more than one single party. I cant know whether this is a sign of 'maturity' or a mere dictation of the Arab and international society.

The new Palestinian government, which includes in its representation more than 95 % of the Palestinian voters has so many local and international duties. Forming this unity government itself is the biggest achievement on the local Palestinian level. Internationally, this government is expected to behave like governments and be engaged in the international society.This is such a historical moment where the decisions of this government, IF ANY, will represent , persumbly, the real Palestinian demands and hopes. The USA and EU will surely have no choice but to support this government.There are precious moments for us ( Palestinians ) now to regain the international trust and regain our image as a " people " struggling for their freedom and independence.

I cant think of any better chances for us as Palestinians if we miss this very valuable chance. This might be the best time for us to DO many things. Israel is the weakest part here, no doubt.We are all still waiting what will this government come up with. At the worst estimations this government is expected to do just NOTHING. If it succeeded in maintaining itself and forming certain positions that represent all Palestinians then this would be an achievement itself.We , and everyone, is watching .

Lets hope that the voices of reason from inside the government prevail.....

Friday, November 24, 2006

Killing "for land"

People are being killed everyday and it seems that no one is paying any attention or care for this , even those who are being killed. Untill now we, the palestinians, are not able to reach a united position in almost every problem we face, most important of which is occupation.

Looking into and living in this holy land I have seen that if it is left for us to solve it we will never do anything. The Isralis are also stuck with us and both the Israelis and the Palestinians have little trust in a third party to come and try doing something about it.

In Gaza we are still suffering, in Beit Hanon, in Ramalla, in Nablus, in Jenin and almost everywhere. I dont know how it looks for Israelis inside israel but I do believe its not less worse than in here. I dont know if many will be spared untill we leave this mentality of killing each other 'for land' !

As long as we give the chance to those people to talk , there will be no solution

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

What is it like in Palestine now ?

Working in one of the biggest hospitals in Palestine, namely in Hebron, I have seen MUCH during the past 2 months. Starting from October the first almost 90% of the teachers in govermental schools started their strike. Since then all palestinian students are NOT going to their schools , except for few schools where students and their teachers stay for 2-3 hours then they leave. The Palestinian Ministry of Health has been on strike since then ,too. ALL govermental hospitals stopped receiving patients ( except for urgent cases ) and the whole health sector in the country is devastated. Even vaccinations are not being given . Some health centers open their doors only for 2 hours to give vaccinations to children, only tens receive the vaccinations and thousands are left to suffer from this 'strike'.

I believe that this 'strike' puts ethical and logical questions that needs to be answered by us ( as Palestinians ). It is not the political dimension I am talking about here, but it is this mentality that is putting the lives of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians in danger so as to 'achieve' some political goals !

I think that we have to restart evaluationg our abilities as a 'nation' that can handle building a 'state' : something we have been asking for since long.

What is happening here is not only shameful and stupid, it is a very dangerous situation that needs second thoughts from everyone of us.

Being ready to keep on with a "strike" that is treating the people worse than occupation, is something that means only one thing : we are VERY close to a civil war .

May God forbid .....

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Hamas Government : for how long ?

For how long can Hamas Government stay ? The whole international community is united against them, except for Iran and Syria and very few countries. They have been elected to 'cause change' and get rid of the very corrupt Fatah-led government, but until now they have done almost nothing.
Hamas's 'ideas' appear to be lacking every logic. Hamas's structure might not be that bad, yet their goals and ideas as a Palestinian party are very far from reality. The call to "destroy Israel" cannot be rational. Calling for war against Israel is also not a rational step. I believe they have very serious mistakes for which they will have to reconsider many things.

For how long they can stand all these tremendous pressures on them? The problem is that the pressure is on the PEOPLE, not on Hamas itself alone. Will they consider this and check for how long can these poor Palestinians stand ?

It is time for newer voices in the Palestinian political life. We do not need more corruption and more dreams, we need to live just like other people. Live under the law , united, and free.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Israel vs Hizbollah : Lessons for Palestinians.

Described by Al-Jazeera as the 'sixth war' between ' Arabs ' and ' Israel ', the outcome of this war was unexpected for ' Arabs ' as well as for ' Israel ' ! During more than one month of intense 'military operations', the Hizb sustained raining northern Israel ( including Cities, Villages, military bases, Airports and other military targets ) with an average of 200 Katushas per day. This was viewd by the Israeli people as a 'big failure' , while a 'victory' by the Hizb and his supporters .

Away from analyzing this 'war' as a 'defeat' or a 'victory' for the Hizb or Israel , let's have a look at the lessons Palestinians should learn from this 'war'.

First : All that matters during confrontation is unity. In lebanon there are many ethnic and religious backgrounds with different, and sometimnes opposing, interests. We have the Shiaas, Sunnis, Christians ( many groups ). There are parties that have close military and friendly relations with France, Syria and Iran, USA, and possibly others. During this war, they were all ( Muslims and Christians ) UNITED under the Government that has been elected by the whole lebanese People. Even the Hizb showed much unity and respect to the governments positions ( AFTER the erruption of the war ). In Palestine we have theree major important players : Hamas, Fatah, and the Islamic Jihad. Aside from publicly criticizing each other, there were many incidents of internal fighting between these three fractions which led to the killing of tens of Palestinians ( especially in Gaza ). At the time when Fatah was forming the Government, Hamas never stopped its military 'resistance' against occupation and that surely had a very negative impact on the whole Palestinian cause.

Second : There was a solid system of reporting and documenting the Israeli violations of Human rights ( shelling civilians, using internationally banned weapons, etc ). Although we have been in confrontation with Israel for tens of years , and we were occupying the biggest spaces in all international media, we never seemed to be organized or systematic. There NEVER appeared to be enough interest in documenting the Israeli violations. We cannot see much focus on exposing the violations of the Israeli army to the international community. There are severe and serious defects in the Palestinian media and it has never proven ( to the world ) to be reliable or objective. Actually peace organizations , especially Israeli ones, gained popularity and respect in the international media. Israeli Organizations lile Betselem, Peace Now, ICAHD, and PHR are doing OUR jobs instead of us. What is more catastrophic is that we are stil totally UNAWARE of these important issues, and the kidnapping of the 2 reporters in Gaza this week proofs my point.

Third : We could easily see that there is a 'civil society' in Lebanon. Many civil organizations were immediately carrying out plans to help the refugees. Hundreds of volunteers were working to keep order in Beirot, others were helping families through supplying food and shelter. Almost all ministries were taking an active part in overcomming the crisis. During my observation of the last 10 years of confrontation in Palestine, I never saw any 'true' efforts to build any ' NGOs' or 'Support Systems' for the government. Almost all Palestinian Hospitals lack ANY real emergency plans ( even on the pure medical level ). All efforts are put on taking more support from donating countries, but SURELY no one sees any REAL improvements in the SYSTEM.

Fourth : This war has showed that no one really wins a war. Israel has lost a lot, Lebanon surely lost more. This was a huge moral defeat to Israel, it showed that arrogance can work SOMETIMNES but not always. The Israeli army thought it could win the war in few days or one or two weeks at the most, and the political leadership was , as usual, trusting the IDF. They never wanted to look at the situation ( in lebanon, Palestine, and Occupied Syrian land ) in a fair and logical way. They knew they could get it ALL through power, and ONLY power..and they went for it... but this time it simply did not work !
We, as Palestinians, cannot have our rights back through force. We do not have the resources nor the ability that enables us to stand in front of Israel, but we surely can defeat them badly when it comes to the moral , human, and legal issues. We never invested REAL efforts in trying these latter weapons against Israel, actually we never invested any effort in doing ANYTHING , other than calling for more donations and more financial support.

Israel, on the other hand, has a strong system that can know exactly where the shortcommings are, learns from mistakes, and refines the performance of all the subsystems so as to learn from mistakes and 'upgrade' and refine the performance. Are we doing the same ??

Finally : it is very clear that we are far away from being professional in almost every aspect of civil life. We never put true efforst in building institutions. We even do not have enough schools and hospitals to work in the most peaceful situations. Most schools are working on a 2 shift basis and many many other hospitals are suffering serious administrative and medical problems that are ranking them as 'defective' even at ordinary loads.

It is time for us to stop talking about the history, stop analyzing and commenting on other people's affairs, and WORK serioussly, at least for ONE time, to solve our OWN problems with our OWN hands.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Is this the right way to resist Occupation ?

هل هده هي الطريقة الصحيحة لمقاومة الاحتلال ؟؟
Gaza last month :a group of armed Palestinian women protesting
against the Israeli invasion of Lebanon !!

Members of Hamas carrying a ' Qassam' hand-made rocket in Gaza

A Palestinian women protesting against the Israeli invasion of
Lebanon !!

Armed Palestinian men in a 'press conference' !!
This is NEVER the right way to resist occupation. The above pictures were all taken in Gaza the last few months, all showing militants and even women who are carrying guns and marching in the streets.
No rational person can accept such scenes. The people who are running such 'activities' are surely out of their minds. They will not only make the world 'laugh' at us, but also help Israel in presenting Palestinians to the world as a 'bunch of terrorists' who surely ' have to work hard before they deserve a state'.
What makes me go crazy is how the arab newspapers in the arab countries are looking at it. They look at such shots ( also there are many videotapes with even worse content ) and 'praise' the 'armed resistance' in Palestine !! They got it all wrong : and whenever they hear that the 'resistance' has fired a rocket or attacked an Israeli military post they would blindly start DREAMING : the armed resistance is 'teaching the occupation lessons' or ' look at those brave men who are fighting with the least preparations'.
As a Palestinian, I believe that this would cause us DIRECT harm. Not only will such pictures be used against us in the Israeli PR campaign against all the Palestinians , but it will make us look like terrorists infront of the whole world. At the best estimations : such maddness and poor leadership and management will give the impression that we are still 'immature' and ' naieve' and 'nonprofessional'.
Resisting the occupation is NOT done in this way. Maybe this can give results if we were in year 1906 , but not now ( or then ).
What do you think the World will think when such pictures and scenes are broadcasted on TVs all over the world ? How will this present us to the world ??
Very negatively I believe.

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Is the American Government blamed for Qana massacre?

Early this morning more than 55 civilians ( aljazeera ) were killed by Israeli shelling to a shelter at Qana in Lebanon. Israel claimed that Hizbollah fired rockets from a place near to that house, but no single international report or finding supported this claim. Olmert, the Israeli PM, refused to start a ceasefire even after the massacre saying that Israel has not fulfilled its targets in Lebanon.Cond. Rice still stands firmly with Israel, without even condemning the attack.

CNN , as usuall, was reporting the Israeli story, which accused Hizbollah of firing rockets from inside civilian areas.

The shameful american role in this conflict is worth mentioning. Not only did the government of the USA supply Israel with hundreds of smart bombs, but it also worked to enable Israel to work freely, without the least international pressure to stop its assault on the lebanese , as well as Palestinian people.
This has been the story with the Palestinians, as well, except that we managed to bring more light on our suffering to the extent that the American government resorts to the
VETO to protect its strong ally Israel.

Many innocent people have been killed in Lebanon the last 18 days of 'war' with Israel, with the blessing and direct support of the USA government.
This massacre, together with what happened in Gaza
few weeks ago all leads to labeling the Americans as 'targets' for the many 'terrorist' groups. Americans are now being viewd as blind supporters to Israel, and much anger is being directed to them.

It is the policy of the government of the USA that is making life worse for millions of Palestinians and Lebanese. It is the policy of the Amrican government that is feeding terror as we clearly see.

I believe it is time for the American people to take action and push the American government to take balanced and 'just' positions that are NOT biased to any side of this conflict.

How do the American people feel when seeing such horrible assaults on civilians ? Is Israel always right and everyone else is a terrorist or an enemy of peace ???

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Collective Punishment ; a Favored Israeli Policy

Civilians are the first to be harmed in almost any armed conflict. It is almost impossible for any army, regardless of the high tech weapons and smart bombs used, to avoid civilian casualties. Civilian casualties are only 'decreased' at the best estimation.

Looking more closely on what Israel is doing in Gaza, and Lebanon now we see two patterns :
1. The Israeli military spokesmen explain that the IDF is doing ' all its efforts' to avoid targeting civilians.
2. IDF military operations themselves are not the main cause of civilian suffering, but the other policies being followed in every miliraty campaign and intervention.

Israel has been involved in military acts against Palestinians since long. The national resistance to occupation was dealt with using extensive military power, and any attempt to stand against occupation ( even the most peaceful ones ) were met with brutality and force ( 'firmly' in the Israeli vocabulary ) Still, this is not the essence of the problem. It is not the Military operations or invasions that violated the international laws. It is the whole Israeli policy towards Palestinians.

Take for example curfews. The whole citizens of a village or a city would be forced to stay home for 2 to 3 days whenever there is a 'military' or 'security' need. The whole population would be deprived from going to schools, universities, hospitals, and work only to " avoid contact with jewish residents in settlements " as is the case in Hebron for example.

Checkpoints are another example of the collective punishment policy. " Israel 's policy is based on the assumption that every single Palestinian is a security threat, thereby justifying restrictions on his or her freedom of movement. This assumption is racist, and leads to sweeping violation of the human rights of an entire population on the basis of national origin. As such. the policy flagrantly violates international law. " ( Btselem.org )

The latest example of collective punishment policy being used by the Israeli governments is the use of sonic booms. Olmert, the Israeli PM said : "Thousands of residents in southern Israel live in fear and discomfort, so I gave instructions that nobody will sleep at night in Gaza." !! Targeting the power plants, bridges, roads, and the already weak infrastructure is another example. These are not 'targets' as they are pure civilian structures.
It is very clear that the suffering of the civilian population is not merely a byproduct of Israel's attacks against militants, It is an intentional part of Israeli policy. ( Bitterlemons.org )

Whether this policy is giving results or not ( which in Gaza and Lebanon cases is giving opposite results ) it is a direct violation to all international and humanitarian laws. ( Palestine Israeli Journal.org )

Is there any evidence that the use of 'collective punishment' policy has ever brought up any results ?
Can such policies be justified even when their results are 'seen' ??
What is the benefit of International Laws then, if a ' veto' can simply end all the embarrassment of violating all human rights laws ?

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Excellent Work USA !

Yes ! This is a very wise use of the VITO !! It is supporting the rights of the minority against the overwhelming military power of the majority ! It is protecting the harmless civilians against the brutality of Tanks and Missiles of the oppressor.

Well done USA !
In behalf of all the Palestinians : Thank you so much !

The US was the only country to vote against the draft resolution put forward by Qatar on behalf of Arab nations. Ten of the 15 Security Council nations voted in favour and four, Britain, Denmark, Slovakia and Peru, abstained.The draft resolution accused Israel of a " disproportionate use of force " that endangered Palestinian civilians, and demanded Israel withdraw its troops from Gaza.

Saturday, July 08, 2006

A UN report : Palestinian internal violence (Gaza Strip) increasing.

UN reports :
21 June: A bomb went off in a car driven by a member of the Fatah dominated Preventive Security Force (PSF) while travelling in Tel Al Hawwa quarter in Gaza city. Three persons in the car received shrapnel wounds.
21 June: Masked gunmen opened fire at two Fatah members when they were near their house in Gizan Najjar area south-east of Khan Younis . The two were taken to Nasser hospital after they sustained gunshot wounds to their legs. ...
23 June: A bystander was injured when members of the Hamas dominated Executive
Support Forces (ESF) attacked a house of a member of the PSF in Khan Younis .
24 June: A Palestinian man was severely beaten after being kidnapped by an unknown
group of armed men in Gaza City (Gaza Strip).
24 June: A PA Intelligence Service officer was shot in both legs after being kidnapped by a group of unknown group of armed men in Al Zahra city south of Gaza City (Gaza Strip).

. ( inter-fractional fights in Gaza 2 months ago )

24 June: Armed clashes continued between the ESF and PSF and one PSF member
was injured...
24 June: A Palestinian man was injured when unknown armed masked men opened fire
at him in Khan Younis.
28 June: Two members of a Palestinian family were killed (an 18 month old infant and a 26-year-old man) and four others injured when a bomb being handled prematurely went off in a house in Khan Younis . ..
3 July: A 16-year-old Palestinian boy was injured when an explosive device went off near his house in Khan Younis. ( Casualties related to Palestinian inter-factional fighting, family and community disputes and reckless use of weapons in the Gaza Strip are not included in the weekly figures in Section )

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Two UN reports, issued last weeks (21- June to 03-July 2006) presented amazing data regarding the inter-Palestinian violence inside Gaza alone. Every week tens of Palestinians are being shot, beaten, killed or even kidnapped, the UN reported.
The wide spread of weapons and the absence of the Palestinian security forces are all contributing factors. Most often, the guns that are used in these violence attacks are the 'resistance weapons'. It is obvious that we are moving very quickly into a situation where we have armed groups with different affiliations ( and external funding), fighting each other for authority and power. It is not far that we see these groups fighting for money and personal interests. What has happened in Iraq, Lebanon and almost any civil war might soon be seen here.

I believe that this report, together with other reports and findings of other human rights organizations is of utmost importance and priority. Although the Israeli operation in Gaza is taking all the attention, the consequences of what we are moving towards (as seen clearly from this report) will outweigh any tragic consequences Israel has ever brought about.

Who is to be blamed for this deterioration?

Should we always turn into blaming Israel for every mistake we do?

What can president Abbas do to stop us moving into a civil war?

Friday, July 07, 2006

Olmert vs Mash'al


Olmert ( from Tel Aviv )and Mash'al ( from Syria ) are giving the orders . . . and those kids are paying the price . . .

Raise your voice to stop this pointless violence . . .

Monday, July 03, 2006

What is it like in Gaza now ?

What is the situation in Gaza?

/... Dr. Virginia Tilley, a professor of political science, currently working in South Africa: No lights, no refrigerators, no fans through the suffocating Gaza summer heat. No going outside for air, due to ongoing bombing and Israel's impending military assault.../
/...And yet, even all this misery is overshadowed by a grimmer fact: no water. Gaza's public water supply is pumped by electricity. The taps, too, are dry. No sewage system. And again, word is that the electricity is out for at least six months.../

Gideon Levy, Ha'aretz, July 2 2006 :
/...A black flag hangs over the "rolling" operation in Gaza. The more the operation "rolls," the darker the flag becomes. The "summer rains" we are showering on Gaza are not only pointless, but are first and foremost blatantly illegitimate. It is not legitimate to cut off 750,000 people from electricity. It is not legitimate to call on 20,000 people to run from their homes and turn their towns into ghost towns.../
/...The legitimate basis for the IDF's operation was stripped away the moment it began. It's no accident that nobody mentions the day before the attack on the Kerem Shalom fort, when the IDF kidnapped two civilians, a doctor and his brother, from their home in Gaza. The difference between us and them? We kidnapped civilians and they captured a soldier, we are a state and they are a terror organization../

/..Collective punishment is illegitimate and it does not have a smidgeon of intelligence. Where will the inhabitants of Beit Hanun run? With typical hardheartedness the military reporters say they were not "expelled" but that it was "recommended" they leave, for the benefit, of course, of those running for their lives. And what will this inhumane step lead to? Support for the Israeli government? Their enlistment as informants and collaborators for the Shin Bet? Can the miserable farmers of Beit Hanun and Beit Lahia do anything about the Qassam rocket-launching cells? Will bombing an already destroyed airport do anything to free the soldier or was it just to decorate the headlines?../
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Gideon Levy speaks it all.

I think that everyone has to work to put an end to this suffering. The suffering of the Israeli as well as the Palestinian parents who are losing their kids in 'the battle' day by day.

I can understand how much the people can get angry. Their sons are being killed for a reason and for no reason. They can hardly support their family. They are watching everyday the occupation army running its 'operations'. They also watch those who are being convinced that 'fighting' is the best method to get rid of this nasty occupation and its crimes against the palestinian women and children. This is no excuse, though, to target the Israeli civilians living in Sderot and other villages . In the same way we ask for the protection of our civilians from the occupation and its operations, we have to think the same and not let our anger control us.

We , as Palestinians, have to wake up and show the world that we are a people that deserves to live in dignity and freedom. We have to have the power to stand in front of those who desparetely target Israeli civilians and tell them to STOP acting the same way as occupation.

Free this prisoner and show the israeli people that we care about the human life, and that we are STRONG , and we take that strength from our rights as humans not from capturing a soldier or attacking someone's village.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Israeli soldier Kidnapped ... Gaza

Aljazeera ( http://english.aljazeera.net ) :
A 19-year-old soldier, who also holds French nationality, went missing when the Popular Resistance Committees attacked an army post on the Gaza Strip border at dawn on Sunday.
him Ramon, the Israeli justice minister, told Israel Rad io: "We hold Abu Mazen [Abbas] responsible. He holds ultimate responsibility for what goes on."
Two other Israeli servicemen and two Palestinian fighters also died in the attack.


( Palestinian Women in Gaza asking for the Release of their Children )

"President Mahmud Abbas ordered prime minister Ismail Haniya, interior minister Said Siam and security service commanders to immediately launch a serious search today to release the soldier"

Israeli officials have hinted that, should the deadline for Shalit's release go unmet, there could be an aerial attack on Gaza against the civilian infrastructure and Hamas leaders including Ismail Haniya, the Palestinian prime ministe
... /

( Kidnapped Israeli Soldier after the attck )

The Palestinian millitants who carried out this "operation" surely have their motives : they want to show Israel that killing civilian Palestinians cannot be left without a "response", and show Israel that the can "fight back".

The fact that this attck targeted Israeli military posts is problematic. Israel cannot blame these militants anymore that they are targeting civilians , and the militants say that they are 'fighting back' and 'resisting' the occupation and the killing of civilians.

I am sure there is much to argue here, but lets just skip all these discussions and get to the current facts : an Israeli soldier is kidnapped and Israel is giving the " Palestinians " 48 hours to release him.

I do believe that Israel is ready to invade the whole Gaza to release its soldier, and I am sure that many Palestinians are willing to fight this invasion. Whether Israel will airstrike Gaza or just send its tanks is the same : there is a great possibility that tens ( if not hundreds ) of civilian Palestinians will be killed.

Or maybe Israel should make a deal with the kidnappers and let free " all the women and all prisoners under age 18" ?? Is Israel ready to negotiate with " terrorists " ?? Will the Palestinian militant groups be ready to "give up" the kidnapped soldier and release him for no return ?

President Abbas is not in a good position to take any decision or to be blamed for anything. Although he was the first to be blamed for all this, I do not think that President Abbas can do much in this situation especially after being weakened by the continuous Israeli attacks on Palestinian targets.

Here in Palestine no one is in charge of anything. Civilians are the first to pay the price of any Israeli operation against any group. The ceasefire was the only hope for moderate and civilian Palestinians to stop the killing on both sides , but it looks like that neither Israel nor the armed Palestinian groups are interested in calming down.

What is very strange in such horrible moments is the absence of the American, Russian and European roles, who were once "committed to help Palestinians and Israelis to establish peace "!

Very ironic and very sad.

What shoud be done now ? Israel should stop all its military preparations and operations and give President Abbas time to end this situation. Israel should also start considering searching for the right Palestinian partner and show Palestinians WILLINGNESS to achieve peace. President Abbas , on the other hand, should do his best to convince the kidnappers to release the Israeli soldier immediately.

What is needed from the Palestinians at the moment ? and what is needed from Israel ?? A question everyone should try to find an answer for.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

More violence in the Middle-East : Gaza

" ... JERUSALEM (CNN) -- An Israeli navy gunboat fired shells onto a northern Gaza beach Friday, killing at least seven people and prompting the military wing of Hamas to call off a 16-month-old cease-fire with Israel. The Israel Defense Forces said it was firing on rocket-launching areas in Gaza after a militant attack earlier in the day. The target areas were believed to be uninhabited, a representative said ... " ( www.cnn.net )

" ... An apology was initially issued to the Israeli newspaper Haaretz in which the IDF said it "regretted the strike on innocents," but Lt. Gen. Dan Halutz, the IDF's chief of general staff, later said the military is investigating the possibility that it was not naval artillery that struck the beach ..... The IDF halted firing pending an investigation. ... "

Hamas has ended the cease fire that lasted 16 months by now...
It is very sad what is happening there : the situation after the Israeli withdrawal should have improved much, but it has not.

The Palestinian authority should put an end to the rocket firing that has been targeting Israeli villages near Gaza. Although it was obvious that Israel continued to target some Palestinian activists, still the Palestinian government had to end all these armed activities.

I don't know if we , as Palestinians, gain ANYTHING from such firings.

The very weakened Palestinian security forces were not able to control the situation, and this is surely related to the obstacles imposed by Israel. How can we blame the PAN for not being able to control the situation while every effort is being done to weaken its structures and capabilities ?

The situation now after ending this cease fire ( with Hamas ) can go very bad : worse than we can imagine.

Let's not just pray for a better tomorrow and start to think how we can control these events and put an end to the suffering that we see ( and probably will continue to see) .

What do you think might be the right thing to do ???

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Ramallah 25th May : Four Palestinians killed and tens injured...

May 25, 2006

" Four Palestinians killed and seventy injured during Israeli military incursion into Ramallah Four Palestinians were killed after being fired upon with live bullets in the central square in Ramallah on Wednesday during an Israeli military incursion. One Palestinian died after being hit in the head by an exploding bullet, another after being struck in the chest by a high velocity bullet. Another seventy Palestinians were injured, fifteen severely, and five arrested "
( Source :
http://www.palestinemonitor.org/nueva_web ) .

No significant official Israeli comments were reported and this ' event ' was simply ignored.
Israeli resources stated that the aim of this ' operation ' was to arrest a 'terrorist' who was hiding in a building in the center of Ramallah. The Israeli force which sneaked inside the building under cover( in civilian clothes ) was discovered and soon clashes started, resulting in 4 Palestinians killed and tens injured.

Those officials who took such a decision were surely very courageous ! Was the life of that 'terrorist' so important that the Israeli Leadership decided to take all the risk and send an armed force under cover to arrest him?

The use of civilian areas, on the other hand, by armed Palestinians is another issue of concern. We don't know if this man ( who was actually arrested ) was armed or not, but using civilian areas for ANY kind of military activity is both stupid and coward.

It is really a very sad event. The four Palestinians who were
killed were people who had no intention to share in any military act against anyone. They were civilians, shopping or passing by in a market in middle Ramallah.
How wise was it to authorize such an ' operation ' ?? Four people are killed and tens injured : who should be blamed and what lessons should be learned ??

Reason and Idea behind this blog- اهداف و منطلقات هذا الركن

About one month ago I started reading blogs for people all over the world. My first drive was purely professional : to search for ideas, materials and experiences of colleagues working in the field of healthcare. Sometimes I used to drop some comments on articles written by Israeli and Arab bloggers , most of which were talking about political and cultural ideas.
Believing in non-violence as the only method to bring this pointless Israeli-Palestinian conflict to an end, I decided to start this blog with one basic goal : to foster the interest in peace and non-violence as the basis for ending this crazy war.
I hope that this site will be a place for opinions from all sides.
I thought much before starting this blog and considered many ideas. Commenting on the events that we hear on news ( starting from May 2006 ) will guide my attempt to promote for a culture of non-violence.
قبل حوالي شهر ، بدأت اتصفح هذه المواقع ( البلوغز)على محرك بحث جوجل ، والتي تتحدث عن قضايا اجتماعية وسياسية عامة لكاتبيها. وقد شد انتباهي تلك الكتابات من قبل بعض الكتاب الفلسطينيين والاسرائيليين حول ما يحصل من احداث في فلسطين واسرائيل. و بعد مراجعات عديدة و تعليقات كنت اضيفها الى هده المقالات والاراء الشخصية لكاتبيها : رأيت ان ابدأ بالكتابه في هذا الركن معلقا على الاحداث التي تحصل من وجهة نظر شخصية ترتكز على فكرة اساسية مركزية : تبني مبدأ نبذ العنف والعمل من اجل مستقبل افضل للجميع. ارجو ان يكون هذا الموقع مكانا لتبادل الاراء التي من شأنها خلق بيئة تنبذ العنف وتتبنى الحلول السلمية اساسا و منطلقا للوصول الى حل لهدا الصراع الدي اهدر طاقاتنا واستنزف مواردنا جميعا

Google PageRank Checker Tool

Free Page Counters!

mesothelioma attorney